Sunday, March 08, 2009

Annoucement, see Atheist Watch for debunkcing atheist myths.

I have answers to John Loftus' arguments made in the lattest comment section to this bolg.

These are published on Atheist watch.

I especially want to direct your attention to the one about Christians going to prision so much more than atheits (some estimate as high as 60x more). this is nothing a lie and it' based upon reading the tables wrong. Its' totally hilarious because find this bit of sheer propaganda repeated ad infinitium. I disproved it twice on two different websites. The first time it was gone for over three years. I was truely killed because the mistake so blearing. Now they make the same mistake again and change the tables so it's less obvious.

I will also be presenting more arguments on different issues Raised by Loftus here latter this evening.

I am realy sick of this atheist mythology that wont die because so obvioulsy based upon someone who is not hip to statitistics or the way you read a table. They never catch it's become an actual watch wrod of the atheist movement and its based on just an obviouis mistake.


A Hermit said...

Measuring what people believe is a tricky business. But here's the latest data from Trinity College, Hartford:

"Only1.6 percent of Americans call themselves atheist or agnostic. But based on stated beliefs, 12 percent are atheist (no God) or agnostic (unsure), while 12 percent more are deistic (believe in a higher power but not a personal God). The number of outright atheists has nearly doubled since 2001, from 900 thousand to 1.6 million. Twenty-seven percent of Americans do not expect a religious funeral at their death."

Of course it's all a matter of "lies, damned lies and statistics" isn't it? ;-) There's nothing in any of this which is, or should be, persuasive either way as to whether or not I personally should believe in the existence of god(s)...

J.L. Hinman said...

I don't see how you can argue with the fact that they read the table wrong. I'm that's very inexcusable. right at the bottom it says "no religion, other" and then lists a very much larger number then they claimed. it's the kind of mistake an eighth grader would make.

I really don't see what the things you say here even have to do with the issues.

ZAROVE said...

So 24% of the populaiton in he US is Athiestic or Atheist leaning? I highly doubt that.

Being unsure doens't mean yor an Atheist, and oftenthoe hwo say they have no religion are still strogn beleivers in soem sort of God.

The truth is, if you merge Agnostism and Ateism you still only get about 2-3% of the ppulaiton as a whole, and the rest that your lumping in don't really make much sense to, except to inmflate the numbers.

Deism, for example, is a form fo THeism. It spopular to deny that it is, and to claim tis a third way between Atheism and Theism, but THeos means god in Greek, not "Personal god who get sinvovled in things". THeism isn't about beleif that a god gets invovled in the worlds affairs, Theism is about beleiving a god exists at all. Deism certainly wouln't belong to the Atheist category, and I also doubt its that high.

ZAROVE said...

SPeakign of Stats, I did one for he Famous Prison STat, I see often.

It inclues a reference to a 2006 Times Aritlce.


It never ceases to amaze me who the Atheists who come here, every single time, claim they are Sceptics who always text claims that are made and never belief anything unless evidence is provided, only to repeat the most biased and inaccurate information that can easily be refuted by a five minuets Google search and a calculator.

We open this thread with the semi-Infamous study by Gregory S. Paul that reports to show an inverse correlation between Religiosity and Crime, and which concludes that places rich in Crime are also deeply Religious communities. The study tends to favour the explanation that Crime and poverty (As well as lower education if you follow up in his newer report he produced with Phil Zuckerman) lead to an increase in Religiosity because the undereducated people will rely on it to give them hope and deal with anxiety in a violent and unpredictable world in which their needs aren’t met and they do not feel safe.

Of course he doesn’t discount the possibility that Religion itself motivates crime in and of itself, and also suggests that it is possible that a Religious person is simply more inclined to commit criminal acts by his rejection of this world as relevant. Some even suggested this here.

It seems well proven by Science until you realise a few things, one of which is that Gregory S. Paul is not a Scientist. He is an Artist whose principle subject is Dinosaur illustration for books and magazines. He has no training as a Sociologist or as a Statistician.

Worse still, he is horrendously Biased.

Gregory S. Paul has been a member of the Counsel of Secular Humanism for 20 or 30 years, and has frequently written and spoken on the topics of how bad Religion is for society. In an Earlier work he even tried to link Christianity with Nazi Germany, a theme that’s been done to death, except Paul went further saying that Christian thought lead naturally to National Socialism.

Paul has preached for years that Religion is evil and this he assures us is most true specifically of Christianity.

Given that these where all claims he made long before this “Study’, we should be more than a little wary of his findings on that ground alone.

But its worse still, Paul intentionally Stacked the Deck to generate a false picture. He clearly went for the crimes that where significantly higher in areas that where Religious by his definition, in order to show this cause and effect. I could prove, by this mean, that Japan or Sweden have a higher Crime rate and attribute it to some social factor of theirs, such as Sweden’s Socialism, if I cherry picked crime stats to suit my interests. Why, I could massage the numbers enough to convince the causal reader that the average Swede is a bloodthirsty brute.

Worse still, Paul ignores numbers that contradict him, and often Pauls numbers are simply wrong.

His “Study” has been ignored by real Academia, and even the Journal which is linked above ran two, two mind you, criticisms of it in the very next issue and apologised for running his shoddy piece of work.

It surprises me that it still makes the rounds.

But because it does, I’ll show you the link to those who have already debunked it. Yes they are Christians, but before we cry havoc and claim they are biased, so is Greg Paul. At least the Christian Blog Verum Serum seems far more willing to supply real numbers in its criticism.

There are numerous article son Paul on this blog, each investigates the claims, and shows them false by reason and numbers.

Please do not dismiss it out of hand.

That said, I know firsthand that Pauls studies are false.

As Paul defines it, I live in a deeply Religious area, in Tennessee, in the United States, in a small southern town. Nearly 80% of the population attend Church on any giving Sunday, and thee is a Church on every corner. If you visit the Laundromat you will hear Gospel music play and see ranks of Gospel Tracts. People openly talk about their Christian Faith to each other in the streets.

According to Gregory S. Paul, this should indicate a high level of societal decay. The area should be in poverty, and there should be high levels of Teen Pregnancy, drug use, unemployment, and of course crime, especially violent crime. None of that’s true. The City I live in is actually peaceful, and prosperous. Its actually growing, and dispite the US General Economic downturn, we still see an influx of new businesses. Generally speaking family life is stable and though normal problems like Teen Pregnancy and Drug use exist, they aren’t in as great a number as other places I could list. As to crime, I can leav emy house with a loaded wallet on foot, in the dead of night, and walk to the Walking Tract, alone, in the dark, and not worry about my life. I know, I’ve done it. Walking about at night is not something one would do in a crime ridden area, but I’m not in one.

The Crime Rate in my county is actually pretty low.

I checked the Stats when this came out a few years ago and the same holds true of most of the surrounding Counties, with only Hamilton being high in Crime. It also has the larger city, Chattanooga, and is actually LESS Religiously devout.

Also, just this year they did a survey of States, which showed them by Religiosity. If you cross correlate those with which States have the higher Crime Rates, you will see that he Secular States end to be higher in Crime than he Religious ones.

Don’t take my word for it, look this up yourselves.

As to the now infamous and often reported Prison Statistic, its just a whole lie. The report doesn’t even get right the average number of prisoners, ad fails to mention any Prisoners region beyond “Christian” and “Atheist”. Are we to expect no one is Muslim in Prison? Bernie Madoff is Jewish, wouldn’t he count? What about Hindu Criminals? Their all just Christians or Atheists, really?

The truth is, the Prison Stat is even wrong about the General population. It claims that about 10-15% of the population are Atheists, a number it gets by lumping all that are “Non-Religious” and “Not classified” into the same category for the general population. It then uses a different standard of who counts as an Atheist in Prisons. Only those who flatly claim to be Atheists matter.

This is flagrantly Dishonest. Hen again, so is the rest.

They also do not take into account the actual number of Prisoners who actually attend religious services. Most who classify themselves tend to only class themselves as what they where raised, rather or not they actually believe in it. None of this is controlled for.

Not that it matters, the numbers they use are bogus. They even get the actual Prison Population wrong, citing a number much too low. The figures are either horribly outdated or utterly fictitious.

Here are links to Adherants.Com. They took a look at the Prison Stats.

Page 2.

As you can tell, the Prison Statistic that is the Darling of numerous Atheistic circles and often quoted is simply erroneous. It seems to me it is adhered to soley because it tells the Atheist what he wants to hear, and supplies him with a false sense of superiority.

This is why I’ve lost all Respect for the Modern Atheist movement. I’m expected to believe they want evidence for their claims and build their beliefs based on Critical thinking and logic, and are sceptical of all they profess, yet they push the Greg Paul study as if its real and tell us that the Atheist Population is Underrepresented in Prisons based on an obviously fake statistic.

Where is the Scepticism In blindly believing these numbers?

Where is the famed Critical Thinking when presented with these too good to be true smoking guns?

These things aren’t believed because this is where the evidence leads, they are believed because they give the Atheist room to gloat over their supposed superiority and how much better their way of life is.

But if Atheists are willing to just blindly accept these claims without checking if they are true, if they just accept them without question and believe them because its what makes them feel better, in what way are they the Rationalists who use Critical Thinking to arrive at all of their conclusions? How can I see this as the predict of Logic and Truth?

When I see these sorts of message boards, there are always the Dawkins Style Atheists who love to Drone on and on about Rationality, logic, and Science, and who accuse Christians and others who hold to divergent Religions of being void of Rational Thought whilst promoting themselves as the keepers of Critical Thinking.

We even have a thread asking of Christians can be Rational.

The assumption is that we have a battle between Reason and Religion, with the Atheists taking the side of Rationality and the Religious the side of Faith, as if Faith is irrational. (Ill post on why its not later.)

We are told that the Atheists always, always use Critical thinking, and are Sceptical of claims made, and then they always use these sorts of ridiculous claims that aren’t true.

So Ill ask, why is it that I should see this as Critical Thinking and Logic? Where is the ability to be Sceptical of these claims?

Or is Scepticism only applied to claims made by those of other Religions that are being subject to Criticism?

PS. I wrote this last night and dint post it, as the boards where closed. I didn’t respond to the Home Office study but it does seem “Religious” is a unilump as it always is.

EG, suppose we could prove that there are a disproportional number of Buddhists who are Rapists, the wonderful “Sceptic” would use this to prove how bad Religion is in general… its like how 9-11 is used to bash Christians as if Islam and Christianity are interchangeable. ( And I’m not saying all Muslims are terrorists, but you’d think they where by the talk on these sorts of boards.)

That said, if you read the article linked above and remove the need to see in it vindication of how wrong Religion is, you will see they also mention, granted in passing, that Atheists are more likely to be thieves. Unlike the Religious, they decided the Nonreligious where not worthy of examination in the article, as to why Atheism would be linked to Thievery. Probably because they assume there is no real link, as they only see the link with Religious people as it is a cultural trend to.

Still, Atheism can be, form this article, said to lead to Thievery; that is, if you where to use the same standard as you do for Religious people, which you don’t.

You also ignore the reasons why Sex Offenders are said to be more religious. Most of them came to their Faith whilst in Prison, and the Article said this was most likely due to the stigma sex offenders face. In other words, its not that Religion leads to Sexual Offences, but rather because Sex Offenders get a sympathetic ear from Prison Chaplains that they come round to it.

The other key factor in those who where not Prison Converts is availability of Children. If you study Criminal behaviour at all, you will see that paedophiles will want to go where there are large numbers of Children. Churches supply this. This is also why in America there are a large number of Paedophile School teachers (Which are largely ignored, by the same people who would point to every Paedophile Priest ever caught to show how bad Religion is.)

The reason behind this is because they want to go where they can have easy access to their victims.

The Rationalisation of their behaviour as Gods will or whatever would happen even if they where Atheists, they’d just find another excuse.

That’s just how Criminals tend to think, they rationalise their behaviour in order to convince themselves its either not wrong or at least acceptable that they commit these acts.

But the bottom line, Religiosity doesn’t lead to Criminal Behaviour, and there is no link between Criminal behaviour and Religious devotion that would suggest it does.

godfree said...

-Hi Joe,My compliments & congratulations. You succeeded in composing a 10,000 word treatice in responding to a simple question, without answering it. You missed your calling. You should have gone to a law school instead of a bible college. You would have been notable even among fellow attorneys for obfuscation above & beyond that of the vast majority of lawyers who deal in it.I'd still LOVE to know what religion you think you might be promoting had you been born to muslim parents in the middle east & never even HEARD of JC until long after your 'immersion' into the muslim 'faith'.

J.L. Hinman said...

Hi Joe,My compliments & congratulations. You succeeded in composing a 10,000 word treatice in responding to a simple question, without answering it. You missed your calling. You should have gone to a law school instead of a bible college. You would have been notable even among fellow attorneys for obfuscation above & beyond that of the vast majority of lawyers who deal in it.I'd still LOVE to know what religion you think you might be promoting had you been born to muslim parents in the middle east & never even HEARD of JC until long after your 'immersion' into the muslim 'faith'.

No that's a trait of theologians too.

people in the middle have heard of Jesus. There are Christians who are indmeic to the middle east. One could also be a Jew, or Druse, or several things.

I did actaully answer your quetsion.

waht I said was

(1) that is not an arguemnt because my theology doesn't say one tradition is better than antohre.

(2) it doesn't matter.

I'm sorry you do not have the intelligence to understand why this is an answer.

I guess you are just stupid. well I don't write for stupid people. I think you want the DC blog.

billwalker said...

Joe,My comment, if youll read it again was not stating or inferring that Muslims never heard of the late Hesus Krishna. I said if YOU had never heard of JC. And as usual, you didn't answer the question. Read it again, very slowly, it may help you understand the question.

Metacrock said...

Bill I answered the intent of your idiotic comments. Your question, stupid and rhetorical does not deserve a serious answer. The point of it is your confused idiocy that thinks all religions disprove each other by their mere existence. you are too dense to get it through you head that I am a universalist (although a Christocentric one) and I don't think one religion is true to the exclusive of all others, so it doesn't matter what the answer to your dumb question is.

all religions are cultural contradicts centered around experiences of God that can't be put into words. The reality behind them all is the one truth that can only be experienced and the traditions themselves are the attempts to put those experiences into words. They are all wrong, and they are all true.

Perkins school of Theology is not a "Bible College!" It's one of the top seminaries in the world and it's liberal.