Redact! Redact! Redact!

David Ould has taken to redacting posts now, in order to protect his own fragile ego


Indeed. Long story short, this thread has been one long morrass of Godwinism, occasionally interspersed with logical failures and rebukes. Finally, it's reached the point where David is now redacting content which exposes his own logical flaws and retaining the final, entirely deliberate insult (not an ad-hominem, since I'm not using it to counter his "arguments") - which is frankly meaningless without the preceding content.

So, business as usual then. Theist selectively quotes atheist in order to make the atheist look bad and the theist look good. Film at eleven.

Here's the actual comment that David redacted:

Yes, David, I agree.

YOU were the one that started it, with a very-much-aware piece of innuendo. You should know better.

Plead innocent of that charge some more. Go on.

The rest of your reply, meh. whatever. Stalin, whoever. We also don't know for sure what Stalin's private beliefs actually were, though he was seminary trained and opposed the church as a threat to his absolute power. I'm over this continued smear campaign on atheists, whoever you happen to try and compare us to. It's cheap and it's a personal insult, David. You should be above that, but clearly you're not. If I overstate it's because I want to throw it right back into your self-satisfied face. Whatever, I'm over it.

But I find this interesting

And finally, you return to your claim that the NT is fiction.

Now, if it weren't for the supernatural claims, I'd render the scottish verdict and say "not proven", but the supernatural claims are outlandish and require a bit more than blind acceptance. I cannot prove a negative, and I kinda respect logic, therefore I add the qualifier "utterly" to "indistinguishable from fiction". If I'm feeling uncharitable, casual or using verbal shorthand, then I'll say the NT is just not true.

I have said in this thread, clearly and repeatedly, that it is indistinguishable from fiction. There's a distinction there you seem singularly unable to grasp, yet I've repeated it over and over, being careful to apply your logic to known fiction.

Let's recap, shall we? I'll paraphrase your claims, allowing you to come back and plead misrepresentation, which you're almost guaranteed to try:

1. "There are four gospels all following roughly the same story. How remarkable, that certainly attests to their reality."

Laying aside the fact that they do contradict each other, I countered with the fact that Grimm's fairy tales come in many differing versions. The fact a story comes in a few different packages has no bearing on its truth. Separate renderings of existing stories happen all the time. Shakespeare, for instance, is paraphrased and changed all over the place. The events are tweaked, the dialogue is updated, the situation changes, the costumes are swapped, songs are added, but they're still the same core story. And they're fictional. A "childrens pastor" once tried this on me and for her pains got four renderings of the plot of Snow White and The Seven Dwarves, from four different atheists, for her trouble. She looked like a stunned mullet, but I think she got the point.

2. "We have several source texts and kinda sorta good analysis of them."

So what? Just because we have source documents still does not give us a link to the reality of the events described. We have numerous drafts of Dickens' novels, and I'm pretty sure they're fictional. We also have Shakespearean adaptation and multiple versions of the same story packaged differently. Still not real events.

3. "The text cites hundreds of witnesses"

Again, so what? Hundreds of people saw Superman save a falling child at Niagara falls. Is Superman therefore real? It gets all circular here (although you're apparently in denial of that). The bible is true because the bible says the events were witnessed by hundreds. Circular, circular circular.

4. "The bible contains descriptions of real places, people, facts"

And I've demonstrated that so does fiction. Moby Dick, King Kong and The Brentford Trilogy, remember? You can add Spiderman, if you like, since that takes place in a fictionalised New York.

5. "The text was successful and being copied widely in the 1st century."

Flawed logic again. Distribution does not equal veracity. A Tale Of Two Cities has sold over 200 million copies, and also contains many real locations and people. But it's fiction.

6. "It reads like it's meant to be history not fiction"

Subjective. I think it reads like myth blended with cultural context. Still, there is a whole thriving genre in fiction that reads like history, or descriptions of history. Tolkein was particularly good at inventing histories. Sometimes when something looks like a duck, it's actually just a decoy.

So there's 6 cases of your utterly flawed logic. Using this, there's no way to distinguish the bible from fiction - but you seem to think it works.

Got anything better?

(I'm not spending all week on this, if you're going to act all butthurt in your response, make it a short whinge)

David, you're fucking dishonest. You're a liar for jesus, and your grasp of logic is laughable. Ad hominem enough for you?

posted @ Sunday, December 12, 2010 11:56 PM


Comments on this entry:

# re: Redact! Redact! Redact!

Left by David Ould at 12/13/2010 8:05 AM
Thanks Jason.
You seem to have forgotten to remind your readers that actual reason I gave for editing your comment. That information is, of course, all available on the thread which you are more than welcome to return to at any time.

# re: Redact! Redact! Redact!

Left by Jason at 12/13/2010 8:50 AM
The actual reason?

I reviewed your response. You're not very clear about the reason, unless you mean your claim that I've "jumped the gun" in using the phrase "He’s the one that dug up the Hitler zombie"

I should have phrased that "He's the one that just waded in and attempted to keep this nonsense going when it should have been dead and buried long ago".

No, it's not sufficient. You redacted everythying that made your logic look goofy, and kept the one thing, context-free, that made me look uncharitable and nasty - which at this stage I am of course feeling.

Seriously, David, the whole "let's link atheism to 20th century mass-murdering dictators" trope is boring, insulting, irrelevant and fallacious, and you deserve having it thrown back at you. I don't give a crap how you phrase it.

Now, I was tempted to leave your comment in the spam bucket where Akismet thinks it belongs, but I actually think it's more interesting to see you continue to strive for the high ground here, even when it's absolutely clear that you've cut a comment critical of yourself and kept in the little insult (not an ad-hominem) at the end to make me look like a nasty evil atheist making widdle christians upset

Here are the facts as they remain

1. In your mind it's OK to link atheism with mass-murdering dictators and omit christianity's role, but it's not OK to call the bible fictional, and especially not OK to demonstrate it in a point-by-point manner
2. You fail hard at logic, yet you're paid decent money and a shedload of perks to explain christianity for a living
3. Redacting critical comments is apparently OK, as long as you leave in the invective.

Frankly, David, you're a hypocrite.

# I simply cannot believe...

Left by Dave The Happy Singer at 12/13/2010 10:34 AM
...that David still doesn't know what an ad-hominem is.

He has truly given up any claim to the benefit of the doubt regarding his honesty.

# re: Redact! Redact! Redact!

Left by bobblycuda at 12/13/2010 1:17 PM
This sounds like a discussion I had with several Christians last week. It seems ad-hominem is a completely respectable way to argue...

# Ad hom

Left by Dave The Happy Singer at 12/13/2010 2:49 PM
An ad-hominem argument is always fallacious (though the conclusion may or may not be true).

But all too often, butthurt theists incorrectly mistake an insult for argumentum ad hominem.

And occasionally, you get utterly dishonest liars like David Ould who despite having been corrected on their mistake continue to argue:

1) I'm butthurt
2) Making me butthurt means you're making an ad-hom argument
3) Ad-hom arguments are logically invalid
4) I win!

It's a sloppy, dishonest and, I dearly hope, ultimately embarrassing tactic.

# re: Redact! Redact! Redact!

Left by Jason at 12/13/2010 6:16 PM
It's not just theists, either.

We know certain antivaccination loons who think the same thing applies. I'll take this little opportunity to clarify

An ad-hominem argument, by definition, plays the man instead of the ball. It replaces reasoned argument with insult, and hopes that will be sufficient. Augmenting a reasoned argument with a little spicy insult merely makes it more tasty.

Some exercises:

I am arguing about obesity with an overweight person. They say it's a disease, I don't. I say "you're fat, so you're wrong". Ad hominem

I am arguing about vaccination with a natural health advocate. They say they have data to back up their claim. I demonstrate why they have misinterpreted the data, and for spice call them an idiot. Not Ad Hominem. If I then later refer back to their poor interpretation and say they're still an idiot, is it then ad-hominem? No, because I'm questioning their ability to interpret the data based on their past performance. It has a direct bearing on the question at hand, though it may be courteous to fact-check them rather than dismissing out-of-hand.

I argue with a Christian. I say "You have an imaginary friend, grow up". Ad hominem? Yes. The insult is my argument, and it's not relevant, though it is kinda true.

But if I state why their book is indistinguishable from fiction, make my case and deliver it, then call them a whining cry-baby with an imaginary friend, then what is it?

Not so hard, huh?

This, of course, ties back into the idea that many people have that their beliefs are automatically worthy of respect and deference. This is just not true. Ideas stand on their merits, and if they fail, they are worthy of no respect at all. There is no pass-card for theism, though many theists ferevently wish it were so, and in doing so, expose their own intellectual double-standard. It's OK to attack atheism and link it to mass murder, but don't dare suggest the bible is fiction.

On the upside, the bible has plenty to say about hypocrites. Petard, prepare for hoistin'

# re: Redact! Redact! Redact!

Left by Fr. Christian Troll at 1/18/2011 4:45 PM
Lest we be tarred with a brush Mr. Ould indisputably deserves, let it be clear that many of us whom for reasons we have no interest in inflicting upon you enjoy our relationship(s) with that which we're in no way offended by you describing as imaginary, also find the young fundamentalist utterly appalling.

My apologies for his having wandered over to your side of blogdom, but please be assured you're welcome to keep him if you wish. While he's been busy annoying you we've enjoyed a much needed break from his inane belligerence, and should you be able to persuade the lad to leave us for good and embrace atheism I can personally promise you the kind of reward that only a large religious organization can afford.

Yours Faithfully,
Rev. Dr. Father Christian Troll.
International Doctrinal Warrior
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