Tag Archives: religious radicals

‘Science’ is Worse Than Religon

“The funny thing about ideas is that they’re outdated well before they’re abandoned” – DC Hero

In 1543, Nicholas Copernicus published a book that proved mathematically what the Greeks, Indians, Muslims, and an untold number of other ancient civilizations had known but never fully explained: that the Sun is at the center of the Universe. This proof triggered an avalanche of many other ‘it’s about time’ proofs in many unrelated scientific disciplines, which collectively many historians refer to as the Scientific Revolution. This removed some long-held power from the Church, which had previously moonlighted as a place for Scientific ideas in addition to the Spiritual ones.

Now, the major players in all of this business (especially Galileo) realized that:

  1. They were taking power away from the Church that didn’t belong to the Church to begin with
  2. There were things that Science would never be able to explain

I really think Einstein said it best: “What separates me from most so-called atheists is a feeling of utter humility toward the unattainable secrets of the harmony of the cosmos.” There are people who really believe that Science can explain everything (the people who have DarwinFish on their cars). What’s terrifying is they’re the ones who don’t know anything about Science, they’re the girls who major in Philosophy and blab on about the power of logic and reason. I’d swear those girls off if they weren’t so damn easy. But really, these people are shockingly similar to those who believe that Religion can explain everything; those people don’t have a grasp of what Religion is supposed to be about. It really boils down to whether you use Religion to explain the explainable, or you use Science to explain the unexplainable. Yeah, that’s it.

Hm, well it seems that if you had a Religion where people blindly accepted things about the Universe, but those things were actually Scientifically accurate, then you would have a Religion that actually worked very well. In other words, the institution of Religion has the capacity to explain the explainable accurately. Now, on the other hand, Science will never have the capacity to explain the unexplainable unless broad, untestable lies are created. However, this is counter to the institution of Science. Q.E.D..

Oh, and can the people who say “Religion kills many innocent people because they’re doing it in the name of God and they believe they’re righteous…”. Um, sweetheart, people die at the hands of weapons, which are the ultimate driver of Science and technology. The Crusades would not have been possible with Stone Age technology. Weapons kill people, Science makes weapons, Science kills people. Q.E.D..

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Why Do Southerners Vote Republican?

Last week I swore that if I heard this question again, I’d write about it on my blog to be able to point anyone else who had this question to when the question reared it’s head again. I’m a believer in giving the short answer before giving the long answer, so here we go:

  • In two words: Civil Rights
  • In one word: Racism

This probably isn’t shocking to a lot of you older people, but I bet it is to the younger people out there. Growing up, I always wondered why relatively poor Southerners would vote for a party that encouraged the growth and prominence of big business. It didn’t make sense. Also, I wondered why relatively wealthy Northerners would vote for a party that transferred their wealth to the poor. It was counter to what I understood about human nature. I couldn’t get a direct answer from my history book, my history teacher, or political commentary shows. It just seemed like everyone accepted that this was how it was. How strange.

But then I pieced it together. Northerners used to vote Republican and Southerners used to vote Democratic. This was the way it was from when the Republican party was formed out of other parties (including the Whigs) to support higher education, banking, railroads, industry and cities. This modernization went hand in hand with ending slavery, which they felt was in disharmony with their vision of the future. Ok, so at some point in history it made sense, people were actually voting for their interests.

It stayed this way all the way up to 1948, which was when Harry S Truman ran on a Civil Rights platform as a Democrat. He was supporting views FDR had, but FDR had some big shit go down during his presidency (Great Depression, WWII, you might have heard of it) and he didn’t have time. Then, Strom Thurmond ran as a Dixiecrat (which means a Southern Democrat who is also racist) and won a bunch of Southern votes (4 States).

These Dixiecrats were obviously too numerous to stay a 3rd party for long, so the Republicans, in a particularly shrewd move, absorbed the racists and called it a ‘Southern Strategy‘. In another shrewd move, the Republicans then absorbed the Conservative Christians into the party to combine those who were anxious about racial issues with those to were anxious about religious issues to capture the votes of rural America. They sold ‘less government’ as ‘more freedom’ to them instead of how they sold it in the past: ‘less government’ as ‘better for business’. Absolutely… Brilliant.

And that, my friends, is how a small group of the super wealthy can push their free-market agenda onto the ballots of people who shouldn’t be voting for it: by using racism and religious fanaticism to get votes. As to why the Democrats manage to get so many votes from wealthy White people? I have no idea. I bet when the Republicans came up with this idea, they figured they’d get those votes as well.

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Getting Defensive: Part 2

I’ve been thinking about it for most of the last couple of hours, and I’m pretty sure now that getting defensive in the face of criticism is the worst way to go. It’s unclear to me whether crying is a better option. Probably not. Anyway, I’ve noticed that most people who are members of any arbitrary group get defensive when the group (it’s purpose or existence) gets criticized. The level of defense, something I’m going to measure in Fury Units (FUs), is directly and exponentially proportional to the amount of time and energy the person has spent becoming a member and staying a member of the group.

For the purposes of our scientific analysis, we’ll look at 3 groups who are representative of groups who get defensive when challenged in our society: Environmentalists, Religious Radicals, and Animal Rights Activists. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to get started. Let’s kick things off.

The Environmentalists:

mcdonalds hummer environmentalists

I mean, holy fuck do they get defensive. Environmentalists have a very strong self-image as people who do what’s best for nature, which is fine. I really like nature, it’s pretty and it smells nice, which is also a description of girls I like. However, if you can see through the recycling bins and marijuana smoke, you’ll see that most of them have other priorities. You probably heard about the front page story in the New York Times last year about how the #1 reason people bought a Toyota Prius was ‘It makes a statement about me’. Oh the vanity! And that’s only the tip of the melting iceberg.

If we take that one data point and extrapolate it to make a broad statement about environmentalists (which is sheer brilliance, by the way), we can see how this commitment of environmentalists to maintain a self-image of someone who is unselfish and unwasteful (not a word) directly leads to them being defensive. Saving the environment isn’t as important to environmentalists as proving that the rest of us gas-burning, fat-people-hating Americans are wrong. Most environmentalists live in cities and tell people in Alaska that they can’t dig for oil on their land. Most of these people will never go to Alaska, I don’t get it. But we’re not here to get emotional, we’re here to study this group scientifically. Let’s get to the conclusion.

Getting defensive is easier for environmentalists than admitting the contradiction that, by and large, they aren’t outdoors people. Defensive Intensity (1-10): 6 FUs.

The Religious Radicals:

pat robertson sky clouds

Here’s a fun group. The only thing they have in common with each other is the idea that everybody else is wrong. And instead of it just being Team A vs Team B like the environmentalists, there’s like 20 different groups and they all get defensive when their beliefs get questioned. Personally, I think we should just have a beauty contest to settle who’s right. Wouldn’t God make the right people prettier?

To make things even better, there’s a whole separate group called Atheists who assert that all of these groups are fundamentally wrong, all the people in the groups are ignorant blind fools, and they go around spending time preaching this fact that everybody is wrong. I don’t get why they waste their time on something they think is irrelevant. What a happy world we live in.

As I’m sure you’ve seen, the actual beliefs of the religions involved often take a backseat to proving that one group is more right than another group. I don’t get it. Well, I guess it’s good if you like arguing. Let’s just get to the conclusion.

Religious Radicals get defensive because if other religions are right, it creates a huge contradiction, it means their religion is wrong, and it invalidates their belief structure. Defensive Units (1-10): 8 FUs.

The Animal Rights Activists:

Here’s another fun group. From what I can gather, the idea that animal suffering is equal in importance to human suffering is central to their argument. I hope the rescue personnel don’t feel that way if I get in a car crash and I have a dog in the car, and they have to choose between me and the dog to pull from the burning car.

But the rest of their ideas are like: instead of testing chemicals on animals, we should test them on homeless people instead. I can see that, that makes sense. And wearing fur? Yeah, I guess that does seem a little unnecessary unless you killed the animals yourself. Not eating meat? I don’t know, that seems a little shortsighted. Don’t those wheat and soy combines chop up animals when they harvest the crops? And animals eat each other every day, I don’t feel bad for them. I bet a lot of my ancestors got eaten by animals and they’d want me to get some revenge for them. In fact, I’m dedicating my next chicken sandwich to a bird flu victim. We can’t let those birds win!

And why so they get so defensive, so emotional about it (PETA does at least, but there are better run groups out there)? Because they feel that unless they change the minds of everyone else, their cause is meaningless. I guess that’s really at the center of getting defensive: you feel like you have to change other people’s minds. And that brings us to Hero Adage #2: Nobody gives a shit about your problems, get used to it. But back on the subject, the conclusion:

Animal Rights Activists get defensive because they know that getting everyone to accept their beliefs is literally impossible. When you combine that with the fact that their cause is questionably important at best when compared to other causes, they’re forced to accept the fact that they’ve wasted a large chunk of time and energy on this or they get defensive instead. That’s probably why PETA compares animal suffering to the Holocaust instead of admitting to themselves that the vast majority of people will never care. Defensive Intensity (1-10): 9.5 FUs (I know there has to be a 10 group out there).

 

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