you're a long way from home yuppie boy. i'll start a tab.
Well that tears it. I'm going to try and get this book banned. And I'm not even gonna read it.What a bunch of horseshit! I ought to picket in front his house. How dare he tarnish the good name of atheists?!BOOOOOOOOOO!
On a more serious note, since Salon is giving me issues and I can't read the article, what the heck is a "new atheist"?Is he just talking about the current generational crop or did he make up some new term he could box atheists into and then say they're exactly like another group?
From the book description on Amazon:There are two radical and dangerous sides to the debate on faith and religion in America: Christian fundamentalists, who see religious faith as their exclusive prerogative, and New Atheists, who brand all religious belief as irrational. Too often, the religious majority—those committed to tolerance and compassion as well as their faith—are caught in the middle. As far as I know, faith is involved in all aspects of religion. Faith, the firm belief in something for which there is no proof is pretty much irrational (god, an afterlife, reincarnation, nirvana, whatever).The tolerant and compassioniate are only caught in the middle if they want to be. It's not really faith if you get all pissy and butt-hurt because someone called you on it (or tolerant really). the religious believe in something invisible, and experimentally impossible to conclude anything about (by the order of the very thing you believe in).If you're down with that, be down with it. If you're not, try something else I suppose.
the new athiests, as he uses the term, are guys like dawkins, harris and hitchens.can you unpack/explain this comment, "The tolerant and compassioniate are only caught in the middle if they want to be. It's not really faith if you get all pissy and butt-hurt because someone called you on it (or tolerant really). the religious believe in something invisible, and experimentally impossible to conclude anything about (by the order of the very thing you believe in)."because as i'm reading the snip from amazon, he's saying that there's a group (religious majority , the group that's tolerant & compassionate) caught in between the two extremes. at least how i'm reading the snip, they're neither pissy or butt hurt. but it seems like you're reading the snip some other way.(btw, i ordered the book, along with one of his others, american fascists: the Xian right and the war on america)and salon is loading slowly right now. but it should load.
How I read it is that he's framing it in such as way as to villify atheists.Here's the whole Amazon review. I think I was just a bit upset after reading the whole thing and then took that snip out of context:The New York Times bestselling author speaks out against those who attack religion to advance their own agenda: global capitalism, intolerance, and imperial projects. There are two radical and dangerous sides to the debate on faith and religion in America: Christian fundamentalists, who see religious faith as their exclusive prerogative, and New Atheists, who brand all religious belief as irrational. Too often, the religious majority—those committed to tolerance and compassion as well as their faith—are caught in the middle. Chris Hedges critiques the mindset that rages against religion and faith. He accuses the New Atheists—led by Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens—of promoting a belief system that is not, as they claim, based on reason and science, but on a simplified worldview of us vs. them, intolerance toward behaviors that are not understood, and the false myths of human progress and moral superiority. Ultimately, he makes way for new, moderate voices to join the debate. A timely, compelling work for anyone who wants to understand the true state of the battle about faith today.I read the Salan interview as well. I've read a several Dawkins books and while he's adamant and outspoken, I certainly think that Hedges is misrepresenting his philosophy and ideas about science.And his comments about Utopia 'n' shit like that are a total dog whistle and misrepresentation as well. I'm surprised he didn't just call them evil socialists.
From the interview:I want to go back to what you see as the ultimate threat of the New Atheists and the Christian right. You voice concern in the book that these two groups of fundamentalists are going to gang up, "to call for a horrific bloodletting and apocalyptic acts of terror..."It's a possibility. I mean, I covered al-Qaida for the New York Times. There wasn't an intelligence chief who I interviewed who didn't talk about another catastrophic attack on American soil as inevitable. They never used the word "if." They just used the word "when," and if this kind of rhetoric, which is racist, is allowed to infect the civil discourse -- whether it comes from the Christian right or the New Atheists -- toward Muslims, who are one-fifth of the world population, most of whom are not Arabs, then what I worry about is that in a moment of collective humiliation and fear, these two strands come together and call for an assault on Muslims, both outside our gates and on the 6 million Muslims who live within our borders. And that frightens me, that demonization of a people -- turning human beings into abstractions, so that they're not human anymore. They don't have hopes, dreams, aspirations, pains, sufferings. They represent an unmitigated evil that must be vanquished. That's very scary, and that is at the bedrock of the ideology of the New Atheists as it is with the Christian fundamentalists.Are you fucking serious? For someone who's not into fundamentalism, he's pretty fucking good at hysterics, fear-mongering and hyperbole. I mean, really?!Suddenly, declaring an ideological stance to be irrational (which is a bit contradictory for Hedges, as he's just written two books about how terrible two other ideological stances are) is dehumanizing and will lead to a call for mass murder?
not all atheists, just certain ones. just like he's not trying to vilify all Xians, just those on the far right.and, he says that there is a possibility that these two opposing pov's might both end up calling for a bloodbath. this thought of his is based on his experience interviewing people in both groups. and it's not because he thinks they're calling muslims irrational. he doesn't specify what event exactly would spark this call, but it would be based in fear & humiliation.as for your surprise that he didn't just call the new atheists evil socialists, well, he says there agenda is the exact opposite: global capitalism. so, perhaps he is the evil socialist.
Yes, I understand that he's picked a select group.And I didn't realize that all you had to do was qualify asinine statements with "possibly" in order to get a book published. I ought to get started right away.
Here's a key statement:And that frightens me, that demonization of a people -- turning human beings into abstractions, so that they're not human anymore. They don't have hopes, dreams, aspirations, pains, sufferings. They represent an unmitigated evil that must be vanquished. That's very scary, and that is at the bedrock of the ideology of the New Atheists as it is with the Christian fundamentalists.He's picked a small group of new atheists and far right Christians and decided to paint with broad strokes. Suddenly, none of the people in those groups see anyone as human.Like I said, I've read some Dawkins and I would be surprised if he ever called for violence against those who hold differing opinions than his. In fact, his whole thing is education and debate.Hedges is making a strawman agument.
And he's doing it to sell books.
I wonder if he protested the title of his book. It sure doesn't give the impression that he's talking about subset of atheists.
i thought this was going to be about a geoff moore and the distance song or something.and that joke might be lost on everyone but me...
Wow. GM and the distance? Aren't him and Steven Curtis Chapman retired by now? They both must have walkers or at least canes.
are you sure he's making a strawman argument? after all, you haven't read the book. nor have i. but the article was provoking enough to sell two books.but, since you've read some of dawkins, would you disagree with the assessment that he is a neocon?
I'm just referring to his comment in the interview. That specifically is a strawman argument.I don't know Dawkins' particular political affiliations as the books of his I've read deal either with science or religion. That and he's British. I'm not sure if the neocon label works globally or if it's more of a U.S. sentiment.
And I'll borrow the books from you when you're done if that's cool.
right, he's the british one. that was mentioned in the article but, as sara says, i couldn't be bothered to look again and see who was what.and sure, you can borrow them.
and i just want to remind everyone that they don't serve breakfast in hell. for whatever that's worth.
I have to say, as someone who has observed Hitchens transform from an intellectual pillar of the left to a flaming cheerleader for the war in Iraq, this rings true. Hitchens said that on 9/11 he was filled with exhilaration that this would lead to the final conflict between everything he loves (liberty, enlightenment principles, gin) and everything he hates (religious fundamentalism, totalitarianism). I guess it didn't occur to him that he'd be on the side of a different bunch of religious fanatics.
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