A “Stumble Upon” Experiment

I’m linking to the first five websites tagged in Stumble’s “Atheist/Agnostic” category:

(1) http://www.futilitycloset.com/2008/12/13/powerless/

Of course, this depends on your definition of omnipotent. Most definitions of omnipotence hinge on some concept of logical possibility and, if so, this argument fails to defeat omnipotence. If one defines a genuine bank note as one printed by a mint (or printed by non-God, at least) then of course God could not create a genuine bank note. That’s because there is a definitional absurdity involved.

I was intrigued by the imagination of the argument’s author. It’s a bad argument, but interesting nonetheless.

(2) http://www.parentingbeyondbelief.com/images/coming.jpg

Ok, this one counts as a win for atheists (or, at least a loss for fundies).

(3) http://www.godless-heathen.com/?p=97

I wasn’t expecting much from “Godless Heathen”, and sure enough, the post is filled with the usual rhetoric of internet atheism. The actual 10 “morals” atheism gives him are trivial and uninteresting, but his intro-paragraph has a few nuggets worth looking into:

Rather than go through an exhaustive analysis of why these questions are flawed, I’m going to make a list. See, God may tell Christians not to murder or steal and all that good stuff, but really, not murdering and stealing is really basic human common sense. If we’re going to praise God for all those great rules he supposedly came up with, what about all those nasty morals he came up with? I would argue that my lack of a belief in God makes me a more moral person than someone who is religious. My moral choices aren’t made out of fear of eternal punishment. Just as I don’t have a reason to have “good” morals, I don’t have an excuse for bad ones, either.

Is “not murdering and stealing” common sense? Of course, “common sense” is useless as an explanatory tool here. Imagine if I asked where moral norms come from and my atheist interlocutor answers “they are common sense.” Are they common sense? Do obligations come from majority vote? The atheists ought to worship God, since the majority of people believe in God of some sort and believe we have an obligation to worship him. But perhaps by “common sense” he means something like “easily available upon reflection”. In this case, we haven’t an explanation of why we have them but simply a pronunciation that we have them. This does not touch upon the issue of God providing obligations.

(4) http://www.atheists.org/Top_Ten_Atheist_Myths

Ugh, take a smattering of pop-atheism and condense it into a single post, and you have this offering. Myth 2 is especially interesting as it appears to be one of the most misunderstood concepts in all of internet atheism. I’ve already tipped my hand here.

(5) http://awesomepedia.org/journal/index.php?view=22

I don’t know what to say. Theism isn’t anti-food/hard work/cow, and despite the possible connection to some religious people’s objections to stem-cell research (and related areas of research), it isn’t clear how the magic beans relate to anything in a plausible fashion.

Conclusion: Internet Atheism is pedantic, childish and (ironically) anti-reason.

Alternate Conclusion: Never take the internet seriously.


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