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Food for Thought: Morality

I am always genuinely interested in any article regarding faith, theism vs. atheism, and moral philosophy, so I decided to write one of my own.  I read an article the other day entitled 6 (Unlikely) Developments That Could Convince This Atheist To Believe in God, in which an atheist put forward scenarios that would successfully convert them.  The point of the article was to emphasize the fact that religious theists occupy a completely unfalsifiable position: that is, NOTHING will get them to stop believing in God.  I am not one of those theists.

I can concede that there are perfectly scientific reasons for Earth’s formation (I’m not one of the crazies that think Earth came about 6000 years ago).  I can concede that organized religion has been one of the more destructive forces in human history.  I can even concede that Jesus was probably a hippie and maybe not the divine son of God.  But one riddle that atheism has trouble solving is the origin of morality in humans.

For instance… If there is no punishment to keep me from stealing from another person other than jail (which I can avoid by not being caught), why shouldn’t I do it.  Robert Dawkins, author of The God Delusion (great read by the way), when asked why not kill and steal, said that not doing it because you believe in God is a pretty contemptible reason, and I agree.  He then said that the reason he doesn’t do bad things is because he would rather not live in a society where others choose to do bad things, and I in my experience, this is the rationale used by many atheists.

But there is a problem with this rationale, one that even Dawkins himself acknowledges.  If I steal my neighbors wallet, society is not going to become one in which stealing becomes acceptable, so what is the REAL reason I don’t do it.  Why shouldn’t I take what I want?  Because the person I take it from will be upset?  But that person is a stranger, whose future I have no personal stake in.  I may not want him to take something from me, but why should that keep me from taking something from him, especially without his knowledge?  This “I  wouldn’t do it because I wouldn’t want other people to” argument is completely irrational.  For those who use it, good news…just because you are bad doesn’t mean other people will be, and that fact is obvious.  I am aware that in an evolutionary sense, humans and animals steer clear of senseless violence to preserve the species, but we humans can operate using logic.  In a completely logical sense, there should be nothing wrong with it.

But why does it FEEL wrong to take something from someone else.  Someone you don’t know.  Someone you will never meet again.  You might say empathy.  But I KNOW they will feel bad, but why does that keep me from doing it?  I’m a logical person.  I know that if everyone used that mentality the world would be a horrible place to live, but why not take advantage of the fact that everyone else doesn’t have that mentality?

The point is this.  I will stop believing in a higher being if rationality, logic, and science can explain to me why there is anything WRONG with stealing or killing, keeping in mind that it cannot be logically concluded that doing either of those things will make everyone else in the whole world do them.

Atheism is founded on logic.  It’s premise is that things that are not observable by any means (such as sight, mathematics, electron microscopes, or other instruments of perception that humans haven’t even invented yet) do not exist.  So why let emotions get in the way of stealing the wallet of that tourist you saw walking aimlessly down the street, especially when you rely completely on rationality to form you’re system of belief.

I believe in a higher being because I don’t know scientifically why there are so many good people.  If morality is simply the manifestation of a million year old Darwinian impulse, it should not carry any greater weight than any other urge, such as a sexual urge.  If an objective standard of good and evil does not exist outside the natural world, then choosing a preferable moral philosophy over another becomes as arbitrary as choosing you’re favorite flavor of Gummi-Bear.  If there is no objective sense of morality, then it doesn’t matter whether “God told me to” or because “I wouldn’t want to live in a bad society.”  It becomes easy to defend a contemptible moral philosophy because you have no objective standard with which to measure the validity of one over another.

So then.  I guess I’m not trying to convert atheists or discourage “believers” (like I said some so-called believers are completely moronic and not even good people)  I’m just trying to get you to think.


Glenn Beck Announces His Candidacy for President, Palms Hit Faces Everywhere

If there was one person, just one, whose ability to speak could be taken away by you personally, who would it be?  Leave a comment and you’re reasoning.  Remember, they could still read, write, and communicate via other means, but they simply couldn’t speak.  Well this next article is dedicated to the source of my political frustration and sheer annoyance:  Glenn Beck.

This is where I put on my headphones, change my Ipod to hardcore, throw caution to the wind, and write the most vicious and scathing article I know how to that would still concievably draw views from the general public.

You know Glenn I always knew you were a fucking genious.

Glenn Beck is a dumbass.  He isn’t reasonable.  He does not fact check.  He stone-cold fucking batshit crazy.  Now, a lot of people, like Jon Stewart, SNL, and Stephen Colbert have deconstructed his methods, which consist of this:  think of an outrageous claim, find away to make it more outrageous, and then talk obscurely about things that are unrelated until he can connect A to B via some sort of ‘us vs. THEM’ monologue.  It is not difficult to do.  Look at the picture people.  I didn’t edit it in any way.  That picture illustrates one of his more reasonable claims.  Watch this video for others.

But for a while I didn’t care that his claims were so outrageous that his viewers probably began looking at iguanas  thinking “I suppose there’s no real reason they couldn’t grow wings and fly.”  What pushed me over the edge was when he began to talk of himself as a prophet.  Not like in a metaphorical, “I told you so”, kind of way.  He began to talk about himself as a legitimate mother fucking Jeremiah straight out of the Old Testament. Its as if one day he decided getting his viewers to believe iguanas could fly wasn’t enough.  He needed more.

So he embarked on a quest to place himself one step below Jesus on the average conservative’s list of “people who could get me to jump off a bridge just by asking.”  Ladies, he’s like that guy who comes up to you in the club and starts saying things.  Nothing in particular, just whatever he thinks will get you in his car in the next 5 minutes.  And whats worse is he seems like he actually believes with every fiber of his being that his penis is ACTUALLY the size of a Louisville Slugger.  In fact, he’s so full of himself, that’s what he calls it.  That guy is Glenn Beck.  He treats everyone on the other side of the camera as if they will believe whatever he says, and because of this, he only keeps those viewers who do believe everything he says.  That’s why EVERY Glenn Beck fan will defend ANYTHING he says.

Ok this picture I did mess with

I ran the probability tables and discovered that I could reduce cable news’ fallacy content by a full 41 percent by taking away Glenn Beck’s speaking ability.  I’m holding out for his ego to explode out of his nipples and possess him to run for president, which would allow me to attempt to eclipse the Guinness Book of World Record’s longest face-palm, a record previously held by the viewers of the Sarah Palin/Katie Couric interviews:

Now I can’t spend this entire post picking apart every aspect of Glenn’s show, personality, or ideological ‘imperfections’ lets call them.  But I’m not above taking a cheap shot….hey Glenn….next time you’re at Mickey D’s, maybe get 1 number 12 combo rather than 12 number 1 combos.  Fatty.

How to turn 2 hours of news into 24 hours of programming

A lot goes on in a 24 hour span.  You wake up, you get dressed, you shuffle around until you get your coffee, make it to work, come home, maybe mow your lawn, jerk off, go to bed.  No offense, but that isn’t exactly news.  So how is it, that while millions of us do exactly that every day, there is enough BIG news to fill in 24 hours of cable programming.

The simple answer is that there isn’t that much news happening during the day.  So how do channels like CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC manage to pump out endless hours of “news.”  The simple answer to that one is that they don’t.  In fact, on an average day, these networks cover the same 4 or 5 stories in an endless loop, filling in the cracks with pants-on-head retarded stories about Lindsey Lohan’s latest gangbang/DUI/overdose, or Mel Gibson’s latest comment about those money-grubbing Jews, and with anchors switching from behind the desk like a bunch of hockey players subbing in for the last 2 minutes of a game.  But its not the anchors who have it the hardest, its the other guys.

See all those people behind him? Yeah, they're like those guys in 300 that lug around Xerxes' ridiculous pyramid throne

The drones in the background frantically search for even the slightest bit of information that could justify flashing breaking news across the screen, causing the anchor to pretend that this next story is unlike anything they’ve ever seen.  And what is with the bears?  I honestly can’t understand why so many goddamn bears get loose in the middle of random suburban neighborhoods.  Maybe the bears know that they wouldn’t get as much camera time if they rolled up in the Portland or the Bronx.

This might as well be real.  And every time there’s a car chase, you would think by watching the anchors demeanor that it was the first time someone ever thought it might work to try and step on the gas pedal rather than stop. I’m not diminishing the danger of a high-speed chase, but if they are really that high a priority on the news agenda, why don’t I ever get to see the Fox News helicopter over my town covering the drag race between my neighbor and his meth-head uncle?

The Meth-Head uncle

But there are other strategies to fill the time that only partially involve bullshit.  Opinion shows.  Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and I don’t even care if you’re talented enough to have your own show.  But when you open a newspaper, normally 1 or 2 pages are dedicated to opinion.  The pages are clearly labeled.  In a small newspaper, lets say 10 pages, opinion will encompass no more than one-tenth to one-fifth of the total content.  On Fox News, weekday programming consists of NEARLY FIFTY PERCENT opinion.  Oh by the way, if you want news after you’re finally able to sit down for the day, the networks are going to want you to go ahead and pour yourself a nice refreshing glass of go fuck yourself, because you won’t find it after 8. Instead, you’ll find these guys:

This must have been his reaction to 2 girls 1 cup

I think this was his argument for universal health care

Apparently the best time to get your news is when you’re at work.  Unfortunately, all I care to get from my news is the facts of what happened in the day WHILE I WAS AT WORK NOT WATCHING THE NEWS.  I don’t want to hear Glenn Beck talk about why God sent him to Earth to tell everyone that liberals want to eat your babies, and I don’t want to hear Keith Olbermann talk scientifically about how his wiener came to be the biggest on the planet.  I want the one thing that the 24 hour news networks can’t seem to find: news.

Long Story Short

The internet is a big place.  Too big for just any blog.  In fact this isn’t even a blog.  Technically it is, but The Guys and I think it could be so much more.  You want news, we got news.  You want sports, we got sports. You want videos, we got videos.  You want crude humor, we got it.  You want insults?  Then you’re probably a douche bag.   In fact if there’s something we don’t have, tell us and we’ll lock that shit down. We have more interests than we do Hannah Montana memorabilia.  No but really, check it out.  We’ll keep you posted…

The Guys