I wouldn't say such disparaging things about atheists if they didn't pull such sneaky tricks. Now of course I don't mean all atheists. But there are atheist fundies just as there are Christian fundies, and there's an atheist atheism of the gaps kind of argument. Right now on CARM I'm being bugged by this guy calling himself "Derek Sansone." he's into atheism of the gaps.
The atheist fundie fools himself into thinking that his view is totally empirical and demonstrated by science but "nothing in Christianity is objective," you know they don't understand anything about epistemology when they start demanding "objectivity." Espeicially to demand it from a world view. I can see asking for "objectivity" in the form of veri similitude for a study on air bags in automobiles, for example, but not backing up a world view! That's as idiotic as believing that you are being scientific because you life white lab coats.
The problem is this kind of atheist fundi fools himself into thinking that eh as some real verification and objective demonstration of his world view, but he's only being fooled by a self induced con job. It works like this. First he imposes a self privileging ideology upon the world. He privies doubt, so in his mind doubt comes to equal truth. Then he orients his world view around a value of accepting "only empirical evidence." He cons himself into thinking that he only accept ideas that are proven with empirical scientific evidence. Then attaches such importance to this concept that he is able to make a leap of faith and pretend that somehow valuing induction proves the materialist conclusions that he leaps to. So he think just because he wants all of his positions to be proven with empirical evidence, they must really be so. And of course he convinces himself that the task of science is to protect form religion and then science becomes his get out of hell free card. Let's review these steps.
(1)Impose ideology privilaging doubt
(2)accepts value of empirical data only
(3)leap of faith from value of emprical data to assumption of emprically based conclusions
(3) sanctions with the arua of science.
Of course he has no such data. There is no data that God doesnt' exist or that there is nothing beyond the material world.He has no of proving this at all. But that's OK he says because it's having a scientific way of life that counts. At least his over all view is supported by his love of "objectivity" so that sanctions his conclusions even if logic doesn't' sanction them.
The truth is he has no such proofs and his bold scientific way of life is a sham because he has many assumptions upon which his world view is predicated, the basis of which cannot be supported by science. I've made lists like this before, they include all the basic epistemic assumptions:
(1) The existence of other minds.
(2) that the future will be like the past
(3) that the sun will come up tomorrow
(4) That a world exists external to his own mind.
Now most of these are reasonable assumptions. But the point is he holds them without the possibility of any sort of real direct empirical scientific evidence, all the while claiming that as the basis of his entire world view.
The thing is, I wouldn't mind that so much, but then he tries to use this in contrast to religious thought. Everything that religious thinkers say or do receives hyper criticism from them. He imagines that theologians like Paul Tallich are just glorified sudayschool teachers with nothing going on up stairs. He waves around the word "objectivity" like there's really something to compare.
But he wont evaluate Christniaity on the terms of its own inner logic and every attempt to expalin what is is met with "but that's not objective, you dont' have anyting objective," that's just the illusion created by their value system.