Wednesday, December 16, 2009

That's Classy Time, Real Classy


This from Time magazine on the death of Oral Roberts: "Roberts was finally called to meet his alleged maker this week."

That's classy, Time, real classy. If you can't bring yourself to run a common expression as-is, why bother?

Makes me glad I let my Time magazine subscription lapse a few years back. I did it to save the planet.

Now, after this gratuitous and unnecessary swipe against Oral Roberts, Christianity, and belief in God in general, I can't wait for Time magazine to meet its alleged maker.

Guess that's not very charitable of me, huh?

The love that Jesus commanded is hard.

I need to speak to my Maker and Redeemer about this.

And that's the way the early-morning Ball bounces.

14 comments:

SDC said...

"Classy"? This is the same shake-down artist that claimed several years ago that "Jesus was going to call him home" unless a bunch of grandmothers living on cat-food scraped their pennies together so he could buy a new closet full of tailored suits. Not dead soon enough, as far as I can see.

RkBall said...

I guess you don't believe in the "judge not, lest you be judged" saying of Jesus that unbelievers like to trot out when someone criticizes them, huh? Or does critical judgment only go one way?

itsboopchile said...

I missed seeing that line. I will remember it now and refuse to read Time magazine.
Thank you.
As for Oral Roberts,he believed what he said and he was free to say it, but we didn't have to listen to him. We do have to be very discerning for ourselves.
Betty G

lastchancetosee said...

As for Oral Roberts,he believed what he said and he was free to say it, but we didn't have to listen to him.

And Time magazine isn't?

I guess you don't believe in the "judge not, lest you be judged" saying of Jesus

Well, that IS a very nice sentiment, but there is of course reality to consider. For example, I doubt that any believer would claim that saying that Stalin was a bad man that the world is glad to be rid of would be covered under that rule, because, well, that statement is true.

Same goes for Oral Roberts. He IS (or rather was) the shake-down artist that claime that "Jesus was going to call him home" unless people gave him money. That is just reality.

As for Time magazine, good for them. I can't help but feel that remarking that it is possible that God doesn't exist is pretty mild stuff compared to what both camps usually throw around.
Count your blessings that Time didn't word it like this: http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2009/12/called_home_finally.php

SDC said...

I believe that ALL manner of con-men, thieves, and shysters should be exposed for what they are, whether they're Chretien and the LIEberals running a kickback scheme, or weasels like Oral Roberts claiming that they have a direct line to an imaginary "god", and, by extension, selling false hope to desperate people that don't have two nickels to rub together. So, there's no "one-way judgement" on MY part, but you certainly seem to believe that your particular superstition should be above criticism.

RkBall said...

" but you certainly seem to believe that your particular superstition should be above criticism."

Not at all. I just think that if you are going to use a cultural expression, like "meet your maker", then use it. But don't alter it to overlay it with your prejudices.

As it is, Time has rendered the expression incoherent. "He went to meet his alleged maker" means he went to meet someone, who was allegedly his maker. I think what they were aiming for was something like "he has allegedly gone to meet his maker". So, it was a corruption of a cultural saying and it was incoherent. And frankly petty. If you don't believe in God, just don't use the expression.

When Hitchens gloated about Jerry Falwell's carcass I complimented him, because, if atheism is true, then human beings are indeed no better than an animal, or a slug for that matter, and human dignity nothing more than a self deceiving conceit.

SDC said...

The difference being that humans are SELF-AWARE animals, and, therefore, can and should strive to better ourselves.
TIME's phrasing makes perfect sense no matter how you try to parse it.

RkBall said...

The difference being that humans are SELF-AWARE animals, and, therefore, can and should strive to better ourselves.

Why? How does that follow? Self-aware? Big hairy deal. Purely an accident. Unintended. Of no consequence whatsoever. We, like the rest of the uncreated order, are without plan, purpose, or destiny. You flatter yourself if you think any more of yourself. Have you read lately how much we have in common with worms and bacteria?

And, by what criteria do we seek to better ourselves? What, become better cannibals? Better killers? More efficient reproducers via conquest and rape? The idea that there is a better or worse is absurd in an atheistic universe.

You want your atheism, apparently, but, when it comes to meaning, purpose, value, worth, etc. you quickly come over to the theistic side -- the only worldview that grounds such things in something other than human self-delusion.

SDC said...

Baloney, and you know it; we know when we do something wrong to someone else because we can appreciate it that we wouldn't want that done to us. That, and that alone, is the basis of morality, not your little magic book (which, BTW, is chock full of examples of depravity of the worst sort, committed by characters that your superstition holds up as examples of "moral virtue"). People never commit evil so heartily and joyfully as when they do it in the name of religion.

RkBall said...

"Baloney, and you know it". No, I don't know it. The idea that there is right and wrong, good and evil in a purposeless, meaningless, amoral universe, is absurd. They are absurd categories of thought.

"we know when we do something wrong to someone else because we can appreciate it that we wouldn't want that done to us. That, and that alone, is the basis of morality" That's it? That's all there is to it? Then it's not really good and evil, right and wrong, it's just pragmatics. I don't steal because stealing would be wrong, I don't steal because I don't want someone to steal from me.

That's not good and evil, right and wrong my friend. That's just pragmatics. Let's see how this might play out.

If you wouldn't mind a woman seducing you and forcing herself on you, that means it should be OK for to force yourself on a woman -- after all, you wouldn't mind, and that is the only basis for morality you have come up with.

And how about the rights of the unborn? Nobody is unborn, so I guess we shouldn't care about how the unborn are treated, should we? (Actually sums up abortion rights thinking pretty well. Not gonna affect me; not gonna care about it.)

And how about performing an indignity upon a dead body? You're dead. "You" don't exist any more. "You" are gone. So, in your moral universe, presumably you don't care what people do to your carcass when you are no more -- that would be illogical and unscientific. You don't care, do you? Or are you still stuck with some lingering intimations of morality from a superstitious past?

Presumably, you would have no problem with someone taking an already dead body and committing an indignity upon it, or, perhaps, eating it? After all, the science you guys love so much would tell you that it's a perfectly fine protein source (as long as it's well-cooked).

And, keep reminding yourself how much you have in common with other animals. Why, you probably share 80% of your DNA with a chicken, and we all know chicken is yummy. What makes you think human beings are any different? We're just animals and nothing more. And if one kind of animal is good to eat, so is another. Get over it.

Atheists want to have their cake and eat it too. They just can't bring themselves to actually live in the purposeless, meaningless, amoral universe that is the logical extension of an uncreated, undesigned universe that has no source greater than stardust and water -- the one they claim we inhabit.

"People never commit evil so heartily and joyfully as when they do it in the name of religion".

Your problem is as I have stated -- committing "evil" is an absurd notion in a universe that has no purpose, no design, no meaning, and is completely and utterly amoral -- "utterly indifferent" as one of your own so eloquently put it.

Remember, we're just super-apes -- and surely you wouldn't accuse apes of rape or murder or cannibalism, and accuse them of "wrong" or "immoral" or gasp "evil" behavior, would you? Or is it all wrong and evil but they get a pass because they are not self-aware? Is that what you believe?

So, rave on. But good and evil as ontological categories and as categories of mind are only comprehensible and objectively meaningful in a theistic universe.

Otherwise, you just haven't thought your atheism through to its deepest logical conclusions.

SDC said...

Yes, that IS all there is to it; your rape example is laughable because it ignores what the "rapee" wants, you fool. If two people have an agreement that they want to "play rape" (as is common, I understand, though haven't played that particular scene out myself), that's still a mutual agreement between the two parties.
In the case of rape, a fetus is merely a POTENTIAL human being, at least until it reaches a stage of development where we might agree that it is in fact an actual human being; I'd be happy with no restrictions up to 3 months (no brain waves up to that point), restrictions from 3-6 months, then prohibition with medical exceptions after that.
"Indignity to a dead body" is a fiction used to salve the consciences of those who remain alive (again, because those who remain alive wouldn't like to imagine themselves being treated in a given manner after they're dead, despite the fact that they are nothing more than an assembly of random matter returning to the biomass).
Now, if we look at your little magic book and the supposed "moral guide" it offers, what do we see? We see your imaginary "god" (through the writers of said book) approving of human sacrifice, rape, murder, slavery, and a multitude of other things that any reasonably-moral person can immediately recognize as "evil". We're told that the supposed founder of your superstition (Abraham) was convinced by voices in his head to try to kill his own child, in return for future unspecified favours, and almost went through with it, yet your cult holds this nut up as someone to be VENERATED. If you hear voices telling you to kill your family members because those voices will improve your life in the future, that's not something to be proud of, that's a WARNING to get yourself to a hospital for a CAT scan and a psych eval. Why is a nut like Abraham venerated for hearing voices in his head, but we recognize that a nut like Phillip Garrido is out of his gourd for hearing voices in his head telling him to kidnap a little girl and hold her hostage for 18 years?
Think about your superstition for more than a few minutes, and you'll see that the LAST thing it cares about is "logical conclusions".

SDC said...

Correction; "In the case of ABORTION, a fetus is merely a POTENTIAL human being,..."

lastchancetosee said...

Not at all. I just think that if you are going to use a cultural expression, like "meet your maker", then use it. But don't alter it to overlay it with your prejudices.

You can't honestly mean that. Language is flexible. Do you really claim that figures of speech are sacrosanct? Because I see a lot of different balls bouncing around your post ...

RkBall said...

LC2C You've got a point. When I "corrupt" a saying, I try to do it in a witty way. If they had done something clever, I probably would have been OK with it. But "alleged"? Just too unnecessary. Something like this: he went to meet his maker (as the saying goes) or (or so he thought) would have conveyed the sense of the author but done it in a less irritating way. Language is subtle. Nuance is important. And, as Mrs. Slocomb would say, "I am unanimous in this". Hey, I'm in Ottawa tonight. Radisson Parliament Hill. Priceline. Talk to you later.

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"