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Mark R. O.
MROrel
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 104
Mark:

No way, goalpost-mover! You know darn well no such
"statistics" exist- you'll have to compile them yourself.
Better yet, you can observe the phenomena yourself
in real time. Keep a daily log of posts & comments at
a place where it is known that a large number of
atheists & agnostics "hang out"... Pharyngula would
be an obvious choice. You can keep your own tally
of how many degrading adjectives are linked with
religion (often justifiably so).


I disagree that I moved the goal post. If the tables
were turned you would not have accepted anecdotal
evidence from me. I do agree that the statistic is
probably not available, however we can use this
group for a statistical sampling.

Current membership 615. Of those 84% or 517 are
atheist or agnostic. There are about 25 who post
regularly via e-mail. Of those about 15 seem to use
the adjectives in question, to play it safe I'll assume 25.
This give us 4.8%. That is that of all the atheist and
agnostics in this group only 4.8% use the adjectives
in question, as described. This constitutes a small
minority and the use of the word 'common' cannot
not apply.



M. Orel
Mark T.
user 4783078
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 582
Nice try- but our forum, while publicly viewable due to the display of our mailing list archive, is private. Our long-suffering blog, on the other hand, is public sphere because it is "officially" published.

My original assertion was that justifiably degrading adjectives (and analogies/general remarks, the "etc." was intended to cover) are commonly used by atheists & agnostics towards religion, or claims associated with religion, in the public sphere.


A former member
Post #: 33
For what it's worth, I believe the universe has always existed and wouldn't need a "first cause," but is in a constant state of change.
Mark R. O.
MROrel
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 105
Mark:

Now who is moving the goal post?
I can use this group as a microcosm
for purpose of statistical analysis.
At least my data is not anecdotal.



Jenny:

Why do you believe the universe has always existed?


M. Orel


Mark T.
user 4783078
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 583
I didn't move the goal posts... you tried to pull a bait-and-switch that didn't work.

Current membership 615. Of those 84% or 517 are atheist or agnostic. There are about 25 who post
regularly via e-mail. Of those about 15 seem to use the adjectives in question, to play it safe I'll assume 25.
This give us 4.8%.

This shows nothing but your awful analytic skills. The only sample you can take in this case is your 25 regular posters. If 15 of 25 use the terms in question, then that means 60% of the sample use those terms. If you "play it safe" and use 25 out of 25, you have 100% laughing

Now quit goobering up Jenny's thread, and let's hear some deconversion stories!
A former member
Post #: 34

Jenny:

Why do you believe the universe has always existed?


M. Orel


Because energy cannot be created nor destroyed; merely transformed from one form to another.

Perhaps the universe was once much smaller and more compact until the Big Bang (in theory), but it still existed.
A former member
Post #: 219
Mark:

No way, goalpost-mover! You know darn well no such
"statistics" exist- you'll have to compile them yourself.
Better yet, you can observe the phenomena yourself
in real time. Keep a daily log of posts & comments at
a place where it is known that a large number of
atheists & agnostics "hang out"... Pharyngula would
be an obvious choice. You can keep your own tally
of how many degrading adjectives are linked with
religion (often justifiably so).


I disagree that I moved the goal post. If the tables
were turned you would not have accepted anecdotal
evidence from me. I do agree that the statistic is
probably not available, however we can use this
group for a statistical sampling.

Current membership 615. Of those 84% or 517 are
atheist or agnostic. There are about 25 who post
regularly via e-mail. Of those about 15 seem to use
the adjectives in question, to play it safe I'll assume 25.
This give us 4.8%. That is that of all the atheist and
agnostics in this group only 4.8% use the adjectives
in question, as described. This constitutes a small
minority and the use of the word 'common' cannot
not apply.
This is just cargo cult intellectualizing.
Rafiq M.
RafiqMahmood
Bogor, ID
Post #: 1,079
Because energy cannot be created nor destroyed; merely transformed from one form to another.

Jenny, did you actually read ­my post discussing cause and effect and the second law of thermodynamics and ­my response to Mark Orel? You didn't say anything in response and yet you repeat this mantra as your belief.

We seem, on Mark Orel's prompting, to talk rather haphazardly about our beliefs as though they are something, like the colour of our eyes, that we were "endowed with" as WS Gilbert has Private Willis sing in Iolanthe:

That every boy and every gal
that's born into the world alive
is either a little Liberal
or else a little Conservative!
Fa la la!


To be honest, I'd rather leave beliefs to the believers. But if we really must go in for believing then I'd take my clue from Pee Zee:

­
A former member
Post #: 37


Jenny, did you actually read ­my post discussing cause and effect and the second law of thermodynamics and ­my response to Mark Orel? You didn't say anything in response and yet you repeat this mantra as your belief.


Yes, I read them, and as I can't go back in time and see what happened, do not know about "first causes" or anything. I can only go by what I know of at the moment, so did not feel I had much to add to that particular side discussion.

I stated that because Mark O asked me the question directly.
Rafiq M.
RafiqMahmood
Bogor, ID
Post #: 1,080
What is the basis for your belief? There is plenty of evidence that the universe is expanding and there is plenty of evidence in the form of the background cosmic radiation that there was an event some 13.7 billion years ago from which everything has expanded. Fred Hoyle's steady-state theory was utterly demolished. We do know that the physics pervading under those conditions are likely to have been very different to those that we find around us now. There is no reason to extrapolate present observations based on the second law of thermodynamics back to that time even if we knew nothing else. Precisely because you say you cannot go back in time you cannot maintain a belief about what happened then. You can reasonably ask: well, what about the second law of thermodynamics then? You cannot reasonably say: I was told at school that matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed, only changed from one form to another and I will stick to what I was told come what may.

I am not saying, "You ought to believe that something came from nothing." I am saying that the idea of "beliefs" is not really a very scientific one. We don't need to have beliefs about anything. We are neither of us physicists. Greek equations baffle me. On the whole, I realise that we do need to accept certain working hypotheses, theories and laws to be getting on with, of course, but to talk about them as beliefs is misleading and a slippery psychological slope. Even though physicists probably understand more about these things than I do and can make sense of the Greek, I still have the right to question and challenge them.

I don't believe in ghosts or gods, but I don't believe in Newton's Laws of Motion either because I follow the excellent principle of not taking anything merely on authority. What I do say is that the ghost or god hypotheses have far less utility than Newton's laws and lead to far more tragic mistakes.

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