Tuesday, November 27, 2012
In a blog on the CFI website Ronald Lindsay presents some good news. The Center for Inquiry is not going to be shunning speakers just because a bunch of people have threatened a boycott if a certain person is speaking. I think that makes perfect sense. I also think, as I have said before- We should not refuse associate with people just because they don't think exactly like us.
For the CFI or any other organizer to give in to threats of a boycott based on a difference of opinion would be a bad thing and would soon result in a big damn mess every time there was a conference.
While we should all realize there is one boat we are all traveling in together, some don't see it like that. They want to claim the boat is theirs and they can choose who is the dead weight. That isn't the way it works, and those people should be waking up to that fact by now. These people think they are the be-all-end-all when it comes to social values, skeptics, and atheists. They think the people who rally around them nodding and smiling represent the people of the world. That is an incorrect assumption. I'm afraid the reality is --1)Most people don't care about you or 2)don't know who the hell you are, and if they did it wouldn't change fact #1. Add to this the very important fact that most people are moderates, they don't want to deal with your extreme views no matter what they are about.
While I think we should include everyone who has something new, interesting and worthwhile to say, I also wonder if some of the people who are most often invited to speak really meet that criteria. PZ Myers gave his talk about atheism having a soul and A+ thinking and it was a snore-fest I don't think even he was awake during the entire talk. In the video you can see the attendees start looking around for a piece of rope to make a noose. Since then PZ Myers himself has given everyone fair warning that he probably won't have anything new to say until.....well I doubt he will manage to ever work that out considering the direction his feeble mind is headed. Why then is he even being invited to attend as a speaker? Is there a shortage of people who can speak to large groups about a topic atheists/skeptics find interesting? Or how about Rebecca Watson?....When is the last time she said something that hasn't been heard a thousand times before, or even something true? The only way she can manage to say anything people haven't grown tired of is to either lie or twist the meaning in order to make it seem like important new information or unbelievable drama.
Rebecca Watson can't shut up long enough to realize she doesn't speak for every woman on the planet. She should also realize you can't force people to agree with you just by acting like they don't matter when they disagree. The same kind of thing can be said about people like Ophelia Benson who seems to be blogging as if someone has a gun pointed at her head and is forcing her to blog something, anything no matter how petty, unimportant, or ignorant. Here is some advice--If you don't have anything to say then shut up. Maybe spend more time reading and listening to the opinions of other humans who have put just as much thought into things as you, if not more. Who is interested in paying money and/or wasting time to hear Ophelia tell them things like how she doesn't like the word "cunt" or how bothersome it is that people use the short version of someone's name?
Would it be entertaining to listen as Stephanie Zvan gave new definitions to all the words in the English language? That seems to be her major focus at this time, when she isn't accusing people of hating all women because they don't like her friends. Or maybe it would be better to spend the $250 or whatever it is Richard Carrier is asking on some old propaganda films from WW2 or the cold war. You could get the same feeling and still have money left over to serve everyone hot dogs and a shot of whiskey. Better yet you could ask someone who isn't actively calling for a war between atheist/skeptical factions that only exist as your self fulfilling prophecy.
Yes we include people who think outside of the box or who may stir things up a little, but just as you can have a mind that is too open, you can have a policy that invites thinking that will be more harmful than helpful or interesting.
The bottom line is some people are just looney and/or attendees are gonna get bored listening to the same old common sense delivered with the enthusiasm it deserves for being repeated for the 7,995,547th time. No one is going to need to worry about who is speaking because no one will be there to listen. I'm sure some conference organizers know this already and will manage to offer the opportunity for some new face to enlighten the masses. Wouldn't it be nice to listen to someone who has a new or even just a different delivery of the topics we find of interest or importance?
I may be a bit biased but the SkeptiCal conferences we have in my area are very good at providing new and interesting speakers each year. I'm sure there are other similar events, in my opinion they should all be this way. Ronald is correct about shunning others but you shouldn't keep having the same things repeated to you over and over by the same people, or make it a habit of helping spread thinking that undermines the very thing you are working to achieve, unless you are expecting a different result, but that is an entirely different issue isn't it?
Here is Ronald's post. Make sure you check out the comments for a laugh or two...or a cry
Ronald A. Lindsay-On Shunning Fellow Atheists and Skeptics
Saturday, November 17, 2012
I was speaking with a friend about some of the socially stunted people I have dealt with lately and at one point in the conversation my friend said "You know, I spent a long time as an atheist and a skeptic thinking I was all alone. Then I realize there are a whole bunch of people who are like me. Finally, people I can talk to about this stuff. Then I realize a lot of them are being total idiots and acting just like religious people. I don't want any part of that or the high school drama included with it."
That is being heard more and more.
As soon as we started to gain momentum along comes Rebecca Watson, Jason Thibeault, Surly Amy, Stephanie Zvan, Jen McCreight, Ophelia Benson, Richard Carrier, and a group of atheist/skeptic posers who call themselves A+. All not being led in anyway, shape, or form by PZ "you're a stupid dummy" Myers.
They've been marching around screaming "MISOGYNIST" at anyone who doesn't fall in line, or telling people to "pick sides". They have declared war on the atheist who applies logic and reason to gender issues. It is an aggressive-passive-aggressive strategy and it has hurt skeptics and atheists on numerous levels.
Whether we know it or not the fact is the vast majority of the people who will be effected by the work of active and/or outspoken skeptics and atheists are never heard from or seen. They are voyeurs. A large number just like to watch and what they have been seeing has probably made them cover their eyes at times.
The mighty logical, scientific portion of the population has begun to fall to the emotional, fallacy-driven poser skeptics. This is all happening in a vortex which is sucking everyone involved back to the days of high school. It is the high school popularity contest, the battle for student council president. It's the gossip made up by the most popular kids to make the lesser known kids look bad just in case they started looking cool. It's immaturity getting in some last jabs before adulthood takes over. Somehow a group who never quite made it to the adult part of their lives has managed to sneak in and fuck up progress.
Now claims of rampant misogyny in the atheist/skeptic circles have caught the ear of the theist. Always looking for a way to paint atheists as a negative force they can hardly be expected to pass up an opportunity to point out the new major flaw in atheism. It hates women. Nevermind one of the main political parties has been openly attacking women's rights, the real problem is all those atheists who don't believe Rebecca fucking Watson's pathetic story about a guy who asked her to coffee and to whom she said "no thanks" How terrifying! Rebecca Watson can't be bothered by what other people may be thinking or feeling she is being threatened by email constantly, she lives in....well that is hard to say cause she giggles when talking about the threats she gets. Rebecca can't remember the faces of people she has met before, doesn't like it when people ask her what her name is, and is threatened when someone asks her to coffee in a hotel elevator. Is she really who should be telling others how/how not to behave in social situations? Is this a joke? Have we actually allowed a hypocritical smart-ass know nothing to effect us this way? Really?
Before you get all uptight and start telling me that I am being inconsiderate of women's feelings, save it. I can understand how Rebecca could have felt threatened but isn't Rebecca intelligent enough to know when her social disorder may be causing her an issue and deal with it instead of projecting it on everyone? Everyone should live in fear because she is at least a little dysfunctional in social situations? It's like expecting everyone to quit carrying balloons at the amusement park because Rebecca gets scared of balloons.
Then we have A+, an attempt by some of Rebecca's buddies to start a movement that was already in progress and take credit for it. They also added a "no bully" policy. A bully was defined as anyone who disagreed with them. This A+ fiasco was (and still is) useless and divisive. Another example of posers throwing a wrench into what was a steady move forward.
It is time to come to our senses. It is time to stop abusing words like misogyny. It's time to stop making the ways we can claim to be offended #1 priority. It is time to bring back logic and healthy skepticism.
I can see it happening now but let's pick it up, we got started late on this one. Skeptics need to start calling out these posers and expecting of them the same things we have expected of anyone who presented public claims.....proof, examples of what they say is true, data, accurate, tested data. If there is a real problem we deal with it, if there isn't then we dismiss and move on. No harm, no foul, just do it right next time cause it isn't that hard to figure out.
Truth doesn't come from the most blog hits or from the most dramatic actor/actress performance. Truth doesn't automatically appear because people have been offended or because the person presenting it is your bff.
Truth doesn't result from simply shutting down any opposing opinion.(PZ Myers) When did we get too lazy to argue our point?(PZ Myers) If you are peddling the truth you will have to defend it from a thousand fools and when that's done a thousand more will come to attack. We are supposed to be ready to defend with facts and intelligently thought out reasons. Instead we see a lethargic pitiful complaining dolt who can't be bothered to support his public offerings.(PZ Myers) If you can't/won't stand behind your claims then stop throwing them into a public forum.(PZ Myers) What's the point? Let those who are willing to step up do so and you can go to the back of the room and watch.(PZ Myers you lying, lazy, dimwitted, painfully ignorant, twit)
People have watched as narcissistic personalities have been playing games and crying wolf just for amusement and how dare anyone accuse them of it. To do so means you are cast out. If you don't go on your own these posers will lie, insinuate, accuse, petition, assume in order to get you out. They behave in such childish fashion that the adults lose by simply acting mature.
It's been quite a circus the clowns are in abundance and it is the definition of "knowing just enough to be dangerous"
I have no doubt it will be fixed and some of the people who have been acting like posers are going to get the attention they deserve, none. And the move towards logic and healthy skepticism will continue even stronger having dumped the weight of narcissistic personalities and needless drama. To those who may be watching now would be a good time to post that comment somewhere you never have before informing these skeptic posers they have gone far enough. People like Rebecca Watson and PZ Myers are not good role models in general but to follow their lead on social behavior? What the fuck is that all about?! PZ Myers is not exactly a social butterfly and he never has been. Maybe it is time to accept the fact that sometimes people like PZ Myers have said about all they can say that is worthwhile and start inviting some new people to share ideas and thoughts at conventions and rallies. Rebecca doesn't have concern for the best interests of anyone but herself in mind. She doesn't care who or what gets harmed by her bullshit. A normal person would see all the problems that have arisen from her elevator interaction and work to try and lesson the negative effects in some way. Not her, she just keeps feeding the fire and that indicates her motives are selfish and she has no concern for others, least of all men.
Time to take back skepticism and remove the plus from atheism, it was working fine without the hood emblem. It's common sense and reality, it shouldn't be that tough
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
I'm afraid I owe certain people an apology. I am big enough to admit I'm wrong unlike some people. As tough as it is to admit it, I stand corrected today. Remember that blog I wrote talking about how the Lousy Canuck, Jason Thibeault and Stephanie Zvan were probably okay people in real life? I'm sorry but it looks like I was wrong about that. Not just wrong but "what the hell were you thinking?!" wrong. I'm sorry I misled you.
You see I had an exchange of ideas with Jason today except only one of us knew what the exchange rate was. Or maybe Jason Thibeault is just cheap. I know, I know I shouldn't be talking like that if I am to be fair. Well I have been pretty fair up til now. I am not jumping to conclusions. I admitted in the beginning there could be some redeeming qualities about Jason we were not aware of. Maybe he was just being a jerk while on line. After today I am going to have trouble showing any amount of consideration for Jason unless he can learn how to connect the dots.
I don't know exactly when Jason got the promotion to PZ's message boy/bodyguard but I suppose we should congratulate him. Great work Canuck the job seems to fit your ability. Living up to the 'lousy' part of his name Jason figured it was his place to tell me PZ Myers was not calling me a racist when he posted as a last word to Al Stefanelli.
" I've enjoyed your conversation and wish you well but" followed by a youtube video of Your Racist Friend by They Might be Giants (see below)
|This is what PZ Myers will post when he isn't calling people racists according to the lousy canuck|
This was also was around the same time PZ was acting like Stephanie Zvan's pimp or something defending her and talking smack because I had called her a bitch (note: she was being a bitch)
While most people took the opportunity to label Al Stefanelli a racist because they didn't like his hat ( Real high IQ the people reading PZ's blog these days huh?) Many people also figured PZ was referring to me since I am Al's friend and the masters of the obvious at freethoughtblogs had suddenly realized Al and I hosted a radio show, a radio show PZ had been a guest on in the past. We had been doing so for a few years. There was even a blog post on Skepdirt telling the story. PZ was one of the commenters on that blog and he never mentioned a misunderstanding about the meaning behind his post.
Why am I telling you a story about Jason Thibeault being wrong? What's that? It's happened so many times no gets surprised by it anymore? Yes I know that, who doesn't?
Now on with the story..... In all fairness I did tell Jason to STFU. He took it as an insult when I was simply trying to keep him from making himself look silly. He could have thanked me and been on his way, instead he did this-
This isn't the entire exchange. Jason tries to get some other kids from his playground to convince me I'm a misogynist by practically chanting at me. It reminds me of mindless zombies stumbling around with confused looks uttering all the cool catchphrases.... misogynist ....rigid gender roles....toxic masculinity... in an attempt to convince people you are whatever word they are chanting. Its childish and it annoys me. I hate stupid people who think they can dictate what is proper and what isn't. One thing I hate more than that are people who contradict themselves. Jason has embraced the art of contradiction. He demands I give him specifics. I tell him I'll write it up because twitter is not the right venue for such a discussion. I know ahead of time Jason is gonna be challenged. If he hasn't even grasped the basics by now he isn't going to in a twitter exchange.
Then he tells me he won't read it, well he might, or he might not. He tells me again "go ahead write a blog about me" I never said I was going to blog about him. I said I would write up specific examples about his behavior I disagreed with I'm not writing his on-line dating profile. Although I will if he likes. It's gonna cost though. Hit me up after the blog Jason.
At this point I figure it is resolved for the time being and here comes mr bi-polar canuck...
He then accuses me of demanding his time. This sounds like the same bullshit PZ Myers likes to sling around, usually when someone disagrees with him (coincidence I'm sure..) How DARE I try to steal Jason's time by doing what he suggested. In the meantime I'm telling the A+ zombies to go the fuck away their chanting won't work on me. If only they actually said something when they spoke. I point out to Jason that it was he who wanted specifics. I had already told him I disagreed with assumptions he made about Justin Vacula but that wasn't specific enough. I inform Canuck it hardly seems to be an adult I am dealing with and he comes back with something about giving me enough rope to hang myself. Remember at this point I have already agreed to what Jason requested (demanded) of me. Because it really is the best chance I have at making a point with this high school kid. I think Jason's personality flip-flops a couple more time before I quit paying attention and after I'm gone I see a few more notifications pop up. Later I check and find Jason clucking still even after I have left the room.
The entire exchange gave me the same feeling a babysitter must get after spending an afternoon with a spoiled, not too bright 3 year old that likes to chew on his diaper. Jason if you ever find the time in your busy schedule to read this let me tell you I have had many exchanges with all kinds of people over the years and I can say you are way up on the list of childish idiots I've come across. I don't mind having a good internet flame war with someone who has some wit the closest you get to that adds a letter 't'. I was tempted to not even write this blog because you just don't matter that much. But I gave you my word so here we go...
It is very simple Jason
- You describe yourself as " the guy who still thinks your argumentation is vacuous and your tactics often trollish." Justin is far from a troll I've had numerous conversations with him about a wide variety of subjects and the last thing I would call him is a troll not to mention the fact he kicks your ass every time you try to argue against him, that is why you banned him from your blog comments. You hide behind the tone troll claim.
- You accuse him of " sexism and bigotry in our community" When? How? You assume he is a sexist and a bigot just because you say so. You demand specifics from others yet your own argument constantly falls flat on it's ass time and time again
- You said " not even Googling the guy’s name(Justin V) they missed out on learning all the many ways the man is a terrible fit for representing our movement and undercuts inclusivity for his divisive and polarizing attacks on members of said movement" Hey wonder-boy, a google search doesn't equal facts. Do you even know what the word skeptical means?
- You refer to Stephanie Zvan's petition indicating you support the accusation - 1. He has engaged in extreme behavior, including harassment, in opposing feminists within the secular movement that does not befit a leader and does not promote broad participation in the movement. So he's not allowed to disagree with any feminist? This is incredibly stupid. Since when are people not allowed to disagree with any one? "Extreme behavior" ? Such as? You spout off constantly wanting everyone to explain shit to you specifically. It is almost like you find anything that doesn't favor your opinion impossible to comprehend. As if anything that doesn't follow your thinking can't possibly exist. Yet Stephanie's petition is consistently vague and give few if any examples of the exact behaviors supporting the claims against him. He is just bad and hateful, just because you said so.
- Use of the word "terrorist"
- I have a couple previous blogs about your antics which give more specifics. Feel free to not read those too. Listening/reading- totally over-rated idn't it ?
- You accused Justin of attacking Surly Amy when he criticized her statements about banning fake jewelry. She equated wearing fake jewelry and having your ass grabbed. I heard her say it (several times cause I kept playing it hoping I was hearing her wrong) You have painted him as a blight on society. he isn't. He is a well intentioned young adult. I know you are fucking perfect Canuck but cut us mortals a fucking break. if you want to disagree and tell me you know you have faults THEN FUCKING ACT LIKE IT and stop pretending you never did anything dumb. Hopefully you learned from it cause that is how it works. I explained the same thing to your buddy Stephanie "my ass knows nothing about turds, it's that good" Zvan. Where did you people get the idea that you have the right to judge people and label them for the world based on your opinions? Get over yourself already.
- Or how getting all butt hurt about the fact Justin didn't get sad enough and cry when Jen stopped blogging? Really? What the fuck caused that dysfunction? People who don't get sad about the things that make you all weepy are dicks too now? Next you are gonna get pissed when we all don't need to take a leak at the same time as you do.
I think you are an idiot Canuck. I also think you are at least a bit of a chicken shit due to the fact you have banned people from comment on your blog and then went on to talk shit after you made it impossible for them to answer or address your attack on them. Yes when you go on the offensive after you have disarmed your opponent it makes you...well there are several terms I could use and I know how fragile you are about those things.... I'll go with weak. That's why you are comfortable being a victim its exactly what you are, a victim of your own flawed logic.
This is just my opinion, I don't expect the world to take my word as the absolute truth.
I could pick apart your assumptions, biases, and idiocy ALL FUCKING DAY but I think I have made my case well enough. Let me close with this.... Don't bother slapping your labels on me. I have one life, one chance to live it. I am not going to spend it walking on eggshells worried about every fucking thing I say or do offending someone. Life is not nice in case you didn't notice the view outside your bubble. Life is cold and uncaring it has no concern for how you come in or how you go out. So take what you get and run with it. I can't change how I was born or the way the world reacts to my presence on the planet. I can do my best to treat people fair and with respect until they no longer deserve that respect. When I see a wrong I try to make it right. I keep in mind how much I do not know and I make mistakes which I try to learn from on the first try. You can't do shit about me or people like me except complain and cry, neither of those is productive so take some advice- Lighten the fuck up......and maybe take some anger management classes, you are sorta a hothead.