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Saturday, February 08, 2014

How to defeat the Borg

Buzzfeed published a series of photos in which Creationists held up their questions for scientists on the question of evolution. The piece garnered much attention even though the questions themselves were the quintessence of idiocy. Examples: "Are you scared of a divine creator?" "How do you explain a sunset if there is no God?"

Well, I knew someone would do it. Phil Plait of Slate (I'm not sure if that rhymes) actually offers polite answers to the idiots.
“Because science is 'theory'–not testable, observable, nor repeatable, why do you object to creationism or intelligent design being taught in school?”

Actually, science is testable, observable, and repeatable! That’s the very definition of what science is!
I don't object to Plait's responses per se. But I feel that he made a mistake in attempting to counter illogic with logic.

Christian fundamentalists are like the Borg on Star Trek. You cannot reason with the Borg. You cannot convert the Borg. It is pointless even to talk to the Borg.

All you can do is destroy the Borg.

The ones who have been already sucked into the collective are gone. Forget about them. They're not human anymore. Your sole task now is to make sure that other sentient organisms are not assimilated.

Of course, I do not recommend physically destroying America's Fundamentalist Christian Borg. A far better weapon is ridicule.

Consider: You would never leave the house wearing orange and green striped pants and a pink polka-dot shirt, would you? You have every legal right to wear such clothing, of course, but you wouldn't actually do so. Why? Because normal people would make fun of you.

Similarly, we should let our young people know that if they join the American Borg, normal people will make fun of them.

Come to think of it, using the term "Borg" as a derisive synonym for "fundamentalism" seems like a good way to set this project in motion.

Plait's approach was futile. Here is the right way to resist the Borg:

One of the biggest problems with arguing with other people is that frequently we aren't arguing facts, rather we are arguing axioms without knowing it. When the other person's axioms are different from mine, we are viewing all facts through different prisms. When arguing with a libertarian, he views selfishness as a good and altruism as evil. My axioms are the opposite, so our conclusions about how the world should work will be quite different. Same with religion, same with many political battles throughout the world. By the way, I can absolutely assure you that I know more about the McMartin case and the other preschool abuse cases that occurred at that time than you and the three most knowledgeable people you know. I can also assure you that it, and the rest, never happened.
Aiee! The Michelle Bachman stare!

While under the influence of a self induced oxytocin euphoria, it is difficult to differentiate "their" from "there". might wear stripes and polka dots! This is Baltimore, after all! I moved here for the John Waters look. I bought these darling pink brocade pajama pants with turquoise piping. When my son visited I put them on before we were going out to see the town. He's a very quiet non-reactive person, so when he said "what the hell" I relented, and changed into something more mainstream. sigh. What was the topic again?
joseph, methinks thou talketh out of thy arse, at least when it comes to the McMartin thing. But the rest is all right.


Actually, no I'm not. I defended Richard Barkman in 1985 and spent an entire year researching these types of cases. I spent time with some of the top psychologists in the field 36examining the testimony, investigative techniques and interrogation techniques of the children and child services. It was the Salem Witch Trial hysteria of the 1980s.
Barkman is not Buckey, small j. And the McMartin case was very much its own thing. I know what you read. I know what was printed. I know more than what was printed. You don't.
Let me take the "Devils Advocate" position, Joseph. (har har har).

Suppose 2 thousand years ago people did witness a real jesus, or a real god.

How the heck would they have preserved that moment in time so scientists 2,000 years later would agree?
Are you saying that Israel in 4 BC had no mass communication?

Where have I heard that before...?
I don't think Plait was trying to convince anyone, he was making fun of them for the benefit of his usual readers.

People change their minds all the time, these people are not inhuman.

Me, I'm a sucker fo rthe Vedic hypothesis. No-one likes that.
Incidentally, for little-J's first post, whether greed is good or altruism is good can be objectively measured by the effects that either have on society. It's a matter of facts, not axioms.

And Big-J, did Israel in 4BC, or 6BC, or probably about 30AD, have mass communications? I suppose something brought the five thousand together to be fed. Town criers? Rumour mill?
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