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Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by stOx, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. Will.Spencer

    Will.Spencer NetBuilder

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    #21
    It's sort of like physics. It some applications, Newtonian models work, in other applications you have to switch to Quantum Mechanics.
    SEMrush
    I am a Utilitarian, in some applications, much as Machiavelli was three centuries before Bentham. At the same time, however, I am absolutely terrified by the perils of moral relativism. Unfortunately, I have yet to find a good base to support moral absolutism, so... I am stuck living in the world as it is -- morally messy. (Note: I am working on this...)

    One issue with Utilitarianism is that "the greatest happiness" is difficult to see over a long timeline. Would you trade ten thousand years of miserable pain and suffering for every living human being for a 10% increase in human intelligence at the end? I might.

    Similarly, I might be a Secular Humanist, except that I do not believe that "eliminating human suffering" should be our highest goal. There is no progress without struggle and the elimination of struggle would mean the death of progress. Human suffering is a cost of progress, and one that I believe to be well justified.

    Utilitarianism is an excellent model for allocating "in group" resources. It is somewhat unhelpful at dealing with out-groups. If you were the head of a nation which comprised 10% of the planets population and the other 90% of the planet would achieve incredible incalculable happiness by flaying your people alive -- would you let them do it? I am not that much of a Utilitarian. At that point I switch to Nietzsche and start killing off those who oppose me.

    And, of course, the common criticism of Utilitarianism being oblivious to individual rights has some truth to it. Utilitarianism is an excellent model for enlightened despots. It is not so useful in a Lockean democracy. The Utilitarian despot would be correct to roast one of his citizens alive in the public square, if it made enough of the other citizens happy. This may not jive with individual rights which the roasted citizen may have. Unfortunately, we still have yet to determine a real basis for individual rights. "It works" and "It's the only system of belief which keeps us all from acting like bloodthirsty savages" are useful arguments, but again they lack that nice warm feeling provided by moral absolutism. So, I am enough of a moral absolutist that I would not roast one citizen alive just to bring "greatest happiness" to the others -- but I can't quite justify why not. That's frustrating.
     
    Will.Spencer, Sep 6, 2010 IP
    SEMrush
  2. Will.Spencer

    Will.Spencer NetBuilder

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    #22
    There is a whole Wikipedia entry devoted to Adolf Hitler's religious views. I was a bit surprised. The evidence in support of the "Hitler was a Christian" theory is must stronger than I thought. Previously, I had blown it off as propaganda.

    ApocalypseXL, your own source concludes with a chart showing that only 0.209% of prisoners are Atheists:

    Response Number %
    ---------------------------- --------
    Catholic 29267 39.164%
    Protestant 26162 35.008%
    Muslim 5435 7.273%
    American Indian 2408 3.222%
    Nation 1734 2.320%
    Rasta 1485 1.987%
    Jewish 1325 1.773%
    Church of Christ 1303 1.744%
    Pentecostal 1093 1.463%
    Moorish 1066 1.426%
    Buddhist 882 1.180%
    Jehovah Witness 665 0.890%
    Adventist 621 0.831%
    Orthodox 375 0.502%
    Mormon 298 0.399%
    Scientology 190 0.254%
    Atheist 156 0.209%
    Hindu 119 0.159%
    Santeria 117 0.157%
    Sikh 14 0.019%
    Bahai 9 0.012%
    Krishna 7 0.009%
     
    Will.Spencer, Sep 6, 2010 IP
  3. supernal

    supernal Member

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    #23
    The first post made me laugh. The consequent comments also inspired laughter. Good read.
     
    supernal, Sep 6, 2010 IP
  4. Grimm

    Grimm Peon

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    #24
    Could you kindly pass the butter flavored popcorn? and a can of mountain dew please. :D
     
    Grimm, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  5. stOx

    stOx Notable Member

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    #25
    I don't think he read his source. He just see it was a religious site and concluded that they must have gone looking for the evidence to support their conclusion, even if he was too lazy too.
     
    stOx, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  6. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #26
    Manipulating statistics ? This is beyond the level of lying politician , this is close to propaganda level . Sink a little more and you'll find yourself next to a guy shouting "Freedom of Speech , DIE !!!!" . Here's the data from two studies . Including the one you took the data from .

    Texas Department of Criminal Justice, 1999
    Source: Peggy Fikac. "More prison inmates say they're Baptist than any other religion." Associated Press (The Abilene Reporter-News)
    Baptist 39,781 30.3%
    Unknown* 28,890 22.0%
    Catholic 23,637 18.0%
    Other 39,009 29.7%
    -------- ------- ------
    Total 131,316 100.0%

    * Unknown: "22 percent are categorized as 'unknown,' representing inmates who didn't say or didn't care when asked for their religious denomination." Most of these would be classified functionally in the "nonreligious" category.

    And the 2nd study .

    The data came from Denise Golumbaski, who was a Research Analyst for the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The data was compiled from up-to-the-day figures on March 5th, 1997. (Note that as of the year 1999, Analyst Golumbaski is no longer working for the Federal Bureau of Prisons; I had telephoned Analyst Golumbaski to request the latest figures, and was told by another analyst that Golumbaski was no longer employed there.) The data was requested by Mr. Rod Swift, who passed it on to me for my web site. I later called the Federal Bureau of Prisons and confirmed that the data did in fact come from their database.

    Catholic 29,267 31.432%
    Protestant 26,162 28.097%
    None/Atheist/Unknown 18,537 19.908%
    Muslim 5,435 5.837%
    American Indian 2,408 2.586%
    Nation of Islam 1,734 1.862%
    Rastafarian 1,485 1.595%
    Jewish 1,325 1.423%
    Church of Christ 1,303 1.399%
    Pentecostal 1,093 1.174%
    Moorish 1,066 1.145%
    Buddhist 882 0.947%
    Jehovah's Witnesses 665 0.714%
    Adventist 621 0.667%
    Eastern Orthodox 375 0.403%
    Latter-day Saints 298 0.320%
    Scientology 190 0.204%
    Hindu 119 0.128%
    Santeria 117 0.126%
    Sikh 14 0.015%
    Baha'i 9 0.010%
    ISKCON 7 0.008%
    -------------------- ------ --------
    Total 93,112 100.000%

    Stop trying to manipulate data . It simply doesn't work

    After the execution of the Jews ? As far as I know the massacre continued till the operations where shut down due to advancing enemy armies . There is now after the execution of the Jews . And as far as I can see Hitler - a political genius -
    maintained a Christian image on the outside while being disgusted of Christianity confessing only to close friends . It can be argued without doubt that Hitler stayed hostile trough wards atheism in order not to encourage communism . And here's a quote from Wikipedia : "In 1998 documents were released by Cornell University from the Nuremberg Trials, that revealed Nazi plans to eliminate Christianity entirely "
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  7. Helvetii

    Helvetii Notable Member

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    #27
    Christians are still way more than than "unknown", whats your point?
     
    Helvetii, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  8. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #28
    Simple the OP is displaying the atheist as moralistic angles who won't hurt a fly . And both the OP and Will.Spencer tried to prove that atheist only make up for 0.2 % of the prison population . The reality is that lack of religion doesn't make you a model citizen . Whit ~20% of the prison population being Atheist .
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  9. Will.Spencer

    Will.Spencer NetBuilder

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    #29
    That's ridiculously silly. There is no justification, other than your own bias, for assigning all the people who don't choose to share personal information to the Atheist group.

    You're just making shit up now.
     
    Will.Spencer, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  10. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #30
    http://yfrog.com/5n36579938j
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  11. Will.Spencer

    Will.Spencer NetBuilder

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    #31
    I'm so proud of you. You've learned how to make a red Fallacy of Appeal to Authority. :p

    Quoting someone else making a bad argument doesn't make the argument any less bad.
     
    Will.Spencer, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  12. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #32
    argumentum ad verecundiam - nope , just pointing out for the 3rd time the statistic . Be reasonable and find another argument then selective blindness ;)
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  13. BRUm

    BRUm Well-Known Member

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    #33
    Someone mentioned Hitler was an Atheist. That's not wholly accurate. He wrote in Mein Kampf that he was doing god's work. While a social-darwinist, he had some narcissistic self-proclaimed relationship with a 'creator'. His thoughts on organised religion at the time, though, is a another matter.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2010
    BRUm, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  14. stOx

    stOx Notable Member

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    #34
    The statistic doesn't in any way support your premise. Which is tragic, considering it was the premise for which the statistics were gathered explicitly to support.

    20% of prisoners religious beliefs are unknown. Just because your flaccid little article then makes the frankly humiliating jump and concludes that "unknown" = "atheist" doesn't negate the fact that it obviously doesn't. It's sad that you are so wrong and ignorant that it has taken you just over one page to go from challenging me to simply making up these humiliating attempts at redefining words.
     
    stOx, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  15. Will.Spencer

    Will.Spencer NetBuilder

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    #35
    I think we should assume that every prisoner who wants to keep his privacy is a follower of Manichaeism. It makes just as much sense as assuming that they are Atheists. :)

    What would make sense would be assuming that their religious beliefs are roughly the same as their peers. duh. And in an 80+% Christian nation...
     
    Will.Spencer, Sep 7, 2010 IP
  16. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #36
    Thank you , you've helped me discover a new species : fundamentalist atheist . You've attacked me , you pretended to be have selective blindness and not see what the article states . Now to ice your hypocrisy cake you're attacking that you yourself used to argument your view . It is sad to see someone that claims he doesn't give a dam about religion making some half brained troll propaganda .

    Challenging you ? What is to challenge about you ? You don't have a point of view so what is to challenge ? You would could not be a challenge even to the mind of 6th grader . If you claim to have some degree of intelligence you know that there are no official statistics regarding the religious beliefs of the prison population . Still you've campaigned whit statistics that could not be backed up . Now you sounds like you're almost ready to shed a tear . Here's one next time when you try to campaign against religions do it in a more civilized , sounding like a Nigerian politician in not going to convince anyone .
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 8, 2010 IP
  17. stOx

    stOx Notable Member

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    #37
    You made a claim, it was false, we told you that it was false and why. If that is too much for you and your fragile little feelings to handle i'd suggest keeping your opinions to yourself. This whiny little victim act isn't going to get you out of being honest around here.

    The article does at no point state the number of atheists in prison. It states the number of prisoners with an "unknown" religious view.

    I'll ask you a question here, you know, just so we can laugh watching you flap around trying to get out of answering it.
    Does not knowing what someones religion is, or them refusing to tell you what it is, make them an atheist? - yes or no?
     
    stOx, Sep 8, 2010 IP
  18. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #38
    Let's recap you've tried to demonstrate that religion is causes violence and that atheists are innocent people . You where shown that atheist are criminals and also the best genocide architects . You counter argued whit a statistic . I counteracted whit more statistics . You attacked me and the statistics instead of coming up whit valid data . Now sound like you're suffering from multiple personalties and you act butthurt .
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 8, 2010 IP
  19. Will.Spencer

    Will.Spencer NetBuilder

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    #39
    Actually it does -- 0.209%. :)
     
    Will.Spencer, Sep 8, 2010 IP
  20. ApocalypseXL

    ApocalypseXL Notable Member

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    #40
    [​IMG]
     
    ApocalypseXL, Sep 8, 2010 IP