stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
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23-06-2012, 05:02 PM
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
I haven't read the book, so I was extremely surprised to find that WLC argues that when evidence and the bible are contradictory, we ought to assume the evidence is wrong. Not only does this undermine the book's title and thesis, but it contradicts what he says in the same chapter about not begging the question/affirming the consequent.

I have great respect for WLC's skills at debating, but his rationality breaks down every time he discusses religion. He blatantly believes what he wants even when reason and evidence fail. It's tragic, because he has the potential to be a good philosopher. He's creative and smart. He's also inconsistent and dishonest.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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23-06-2012, 09:26 PM (This post was last modified: 24-06-2012 07:58 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
I keep looking for evidence that Craig is either smart or creative. I just rewatched the so-called debate with Krauss. It wasn't even a debate. Krauss isn't the best of debaters, (at that point in his career anyway), which he admits, but Craig didn't even prepare. He just kept repeating his usual list of points, he always gives in his paid presentaions and spent about a minute or two attempting to answer Krauss' point about the universe not being intuitive. He keeps making assertions, as though they are "obvious", and we need to accept them just cuz he asserts them. He keeps saying "experience teaches" .. and Krauss is trying to tell him why that is not acceptable anymore. He just doesn't get it. Even in his rebutalls, he just rehashes his points, not even attempting to answer this opponent. With astounding arrogance, he, (because his usual paid rubric/speech for fundie religious groups includes it), lectures in front of Krauss about Cosmology. Made me want to cringe. At least Krauss admits he is no Philosopher. There is so much wrong with the first 5 minutes, I had to keep replaying it, "wait wait wait, did he really say that ?". Craig puts up this equation, to make it look all "sciencey"/"mathy", without even attempting to show why it is representative, and it immediately begs the question of what solution he will accept as proof. But he, in the space of about a minute attempts to change the terms of the debate, stating "no debate is possible". He says he has to prove that it is MORE probable, (than not), that "god" exists, (and Craig reminds him his logic does not lead him to his god, which he never answers), and represents this by saying he wins if he can say the probability that his god exists is > than 0.5. He conveniently omits telling us why that would be the case, (as opposed to .25, or .01, or .95). I would be happy with .00001, but he doesn't get to pull a number out of a hat, without asking Krauss, or the audience, or anyone anywhere, if they agree, or how he got his number. I was thinking of doing a minute by minute refutation, but it's a waste. I mean, "mountains are contingent beings" ??

He's just a ventriloquist for the Christian fundies, (who pay him very well), and he's been on auto-pilot for at least 25 years. His smug arrogance makes me puke.

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Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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24-06-2012, 03:10 AM
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
There's a lot of profit in saying what people want to hear. Especially if you can get someone like Krauss to try to answer you seriously. 'Cos what the average Joe on the street sees is two very intelligent men, one of whom he agrees with and can more or less feel like he understands the points he's making, arguing very tricky things. Now the guy he's voting for pulls out a big ol' equation and the other guy starts making these obscure objections to it... what's he supposed to think? Craig isn't looking for truth. He's a showman, and his show is "Look at me, I believe as you do. All these intelligent men, some of them very sincere, have spent their lives looking for truth, but they can't answer my arguments, so I win". He probably pulls out those bible verses about how God confuses the wise and all that crap. It's *hard* for a guy without some science training to understand the kind of cross checking on your thinking you need to be aware of, to understand that arguments based on feelings are no argument at all.

As far as Craig is concerned, all he has to do is make it look like Krauss (or whoever else) is objecting to him on some obscure niggling point. No matter that he transparently comes across as stupid to a large number of people, just that to his target audience he seems completely sane and to be arguing on even terms.
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24-06-2012, 08:35 AM (This post was last modified: 24-06-2012 10:50 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
(24-06-2012 03:10 AM)morondog Wrote:  There's a lot of profit in saying what people want to hear. Especially if you can get someone like Krauss to try to answer you seriously. 'Cos what the average Joe on the street sees is two very intelligent men, one of whom he agrees with and can more or less feel like he understands the points he's making, arguing very tricky things. Now the guy he's voting for pulls out a big ol' equation and the other guy starts making these obscure objections to it... what's he supposed to think? Craig isn't looking for truth. He's a showman, and his show is "Look at me, I believe as you do. All these intelligent men, some of them very sincere, have spent their lives looking for truth, but they can't answer my arguments, so I win". He probably pulls out those bible verses about how God confuses the wise and all that crap. It's *hard* for a guy without some science training to understand the kind of cross checking on your thinking you need to be aware of, to understand that arguments based on feelings are no argument at all.

As far as Craig is concerned, all he has to do is make it look like Krauss (or whoever else) is objecting to him on some obscure niggling point. No matter that he transparently comes across as stupid to a large number of people, just that to his target audience he seems completely sane and to be arguing on even terms.


I do think it is the "show". More than once in the past 6 months here, when faced with arguments, we have been handed, (by the drop ins) "well, just go watch WL Craig...he'll tell ya what for". He represents a sort of security blanket for some who either can't or won't think for themselves. Even on You Tube the "just wait till daddy gets home, you're gonna get it", is actually posted about him. Recently TheoreticalBullshit has actually gotten him to obliquely respond, (even though "far be it for him to deign to stoop so far, snort"), and he fails completely. WLC drops names like a trooper, and if you have never actually read any of his references, I could see how some must think, "well he must know, he sounds like he does". The fact is, (as Krauss quietly, in his understated "educator" voice tried to tell him), the Aristotelian model is not reliable in light of Heisenberg and Dirac. and ole Al E. Craig actually "does the 3 minutes" in his Cosmology section to make the listener think, "hey man, I got this, let me handle this, not to worry". Then 100 % reverts to precisely his salme ole position, which he actually has refuted himself, in the Cosmology "3".

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Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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24-06-2012, 03:53 PM
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
WLC makes me sick,how can people be that deluded?

" Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous."
David Hume
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24-06-2012, 06:39 PM (This post was last modified: 24-06-2012 06:44 PM by Starcrash.)
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
(23-06-2012 09:26 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  I keep looking for evidence that Craig is either smart or creative. I just rewatched the so-called debate with Krauss. It wasn't even a debate...


I actually never saw the debate, though I had a feeling that Krauss knew he had lost when he wrote an article rebutting WLC after the debate... it leads me to believe that he didn't feel he had answered him adequately *during* the debate.

With that said, do you know how to score a debate? When you watch a debate, do you write down the points each person makes and the response (or lack of it) given to each point?

I'm not saying that you're necessarily wrong -- again, I haven't yet seen the debate -- but isn't it possible that bias is influencing your view of this particular debate? It seems like every time that I bring up WLC's debating skills -- no doubt gained from taking part in at least 50 public debates -- atheists always want to talk about how awful his arguments are. I can't help but think that bias tinges these responses. Isn't is possible to be wrong, yet still be smart or creative? Or do you just dismiss any positive things said about people that you disagree with?

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24-06-2012, 06:46 PM
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
However skilled a debater he might be, it doesn't make him right.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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24-06-2012, 06:53 PM
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
(24-06-2012 06:46 PM)Chas Wrote:  However skilled a debater he might be, it doesn't make him right.
No, it doesn't. But however wrong he is, that doesn't make him not a skilled debater.

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24-06-2012, 07:50 PM
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
Starcrash, you apologist. Tongue

First time I watched a WLC debate, I was in "debunk self" mode. I wanted to believe he knew his shit, but all I saw was that he knew shit.

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24-06-2012, 08:13 PM (This post was last modified: 25-06-2012 12:54 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: stevelikes2curse takes on WLC's "Reasonable Faith" (Video)
(24-06-2012 06:39 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  I actually never saw the debate, though I had a feeling that Krauss knew he had lost when he wrote an article rebutting WLC after the debate... it leads me to believe that he didn't feel he had answered him adequately *during* the debate.

With that said, do you know how to score a debate? When you watch a debate, do you write down the points each person makes and the response (or lack of it) given to each point?

I'm not saying that you're necessarily wrong -- again, I haven't yet seen the debate -- but isn't it possible that bias is influencing your view of this particular debate? It seems like every time that I bring up WLC's debating skills -- no doubt gained from taking part in at least 50 public debates -- atheists always want to talk about how awful his arguments are. I can't help but think that bias tinges these responses. Isn't is possible to be wrong, yet still be smart or creative? Or do you just dismiss any positive things said about people that you disagree with?



I'm sure a poll would have granted the prize to Craig. http://www.randyeverist.com/2011/03/revi...ebate.html . I could care less. The Argumentum ad Populum is a fallacy. I don't really care about positive or negative things said about anyone. All I care about is the evidence, and the arguments.

How can a professional philosopher not know how to spell "premise", (see his rebuttal to Krauss' written/posted post-statement), or someone who claims to be a Metaphysician, (philosopher), call an "object" a "being", when in Metaphysics such a clear distinction is made between them ? (see the debate content). Something's wrong in Denmark. I'm not sure what it is, but something is very screwy here.

I discovered after writing the problems I had with the Craig/Krauss debate, that Krauss himself had made the same objections, in slightly different form, so I will let that stand for itself :
http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/...lliam-lan/ . After posting his "sciencey"/"mathy" probability equation, Craig conveniently forgot to return to it, and plug in any numbers. I wonder if Craig really knows what dangerous ground he stupidly put humself on. Probabilities are not additive. They are multiplicative. If I was to postualte that Craig's points, (being very generous), had for example the values of .75 X .75 X .75 X .75 X .75, by his own equation, he gets a .2373. He loses. If any one of his points even begins to fail, he fails himself. His fifth point, which he should be the most expert on, (the resurrection of Yeshua ben Joseph) fails utterly. .95 x .95 x .95 x .95 x .05 = .0407 .. Woops. I would bet he won't be doing that again. So having given him far too much credit for the first 4, since Krauss is no Biblical scholar, (but Ehrman is .. if someone wants independant evidence .. I have not watched these, but there is a debate with Bart Ehrman, who is as capable as they come), I will give my own reason why the resurrection evidence is worthless, as stated by Craig.
a. He said Jesus claimed and began to speak with authority that the kingdom of god was at hand. Well so did all the other itinerant apocalyptic preachers of the day, and there were many. The statements which were "placed in the mouth", (a literary device), of Jesus by the Gospel writers, were just that. A literary device. Craig calls the Gospels "biographies". There is virtually no Biblical scholar alive today that would agree with that. The Gospels were "proclamational faith documents", used (only) in liturgical services, as texts for already believing communities. They have no historical value, at all, in the way modern humans mean the word "historical". The "miracle working and exorcism" also was not unique to Yeshua. That also cannot be used as an argument, as he was not unique in that respect either. There were many "miracle workers" running around, doing "cures" and miracles. That is not disputed by anyone.
b. The empty tomb stories differ in each of the gospels with repect to who was there, and what they saw. It's evidence for nothing. As Crossen explains in his debate with Craig, (regarding the resurrection), the fact that, for example the disciples on the way to Emmaus, did NOT say they recognized Jesus, (post "resurrection"), but instead, it says "were not our hearts burning within us as he was walking with us", means that they had some "other" sort of experience, which their brains interpreted as an experience of their risen leader. Something other than a physical/visual experience of a risen mortal body was going on there. We don't really know what that might have been. But even they did not claim to actually have seem him, (at that point, anyway). Craig keeps asserting "most scholars this" and "most scholars that". In fact he has no clue, and no facts..only assertions. Other than the Jesus Seminar, (which is far from unanimous), there is no way of knowng what scholars really think, in general. Since I was introduced to non-belief by the PhD Chairman of Theology of a Catholic University, who is also a priest, in the setting, (his sabbatical) of an Ivy League University, I can only imagine what anyone really thinks, in private. As Craig says "having experiences" of Yeshua as risen, (or the fact that there are proclamational faith documents which make the claims that there were some who "saw" or "experienced" Yeshua after his death), are evidence of nothing. Craig is no scripture scholar.
c. He says the appearances were witnessed by skeptics, and enemies. That is simply a lie, and he doesn't even attempt to support it
d. Craig says the Apostles "came to believe in the resurrection", (well why wouldn't they instantly believe in it, if they actually saw him), and were willing to die for him. Well the guys who flew the planes into the Twin Towers did the same thing. I suppose Craig thinks they were right also, then.
e. Craig quotes NC Wright, "I cannot explain the rise of early Christianity .. bla bla". Well others have, and that is both an Argument from Ignorance, and "god of the gaps", which they bitch about so much. Sorry folks but if it really IS "god of the gaps", "all the way down", that's what it is. He then says "there simply is no good explanation other than..." Sorry, he asks for what he gets.

So Starcrash, what are the "smart" and "creative" arguments ?

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein
Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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