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Tags atheism , atheists , immorality , morality

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Old 10th August 2017, 06:58 AM   #201
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
It is fine, you are enamored with your incredibly, deeply flawed analogy.
It is not so much that I am enamored with the analogy. Heck, I even said it was just an angle, not the whole thing. You know, like an aspect. I could see myself being offended that someone would associate evil with the church of my childhood. Reflexively, at least. We all have such tribal biases, that the authors found them while looking for them is no real surprise, so I thought it interesting to look at the reasons why. Look at it from different angles. But then . . .

What I am hooked by are your responses that seem to not even be based on the posts you are responding to. That I find alluring. Reading your questions as if the answers were not provided. I find such posts intriguing.

Thank you for participating. At least until Logger gets back from vacation.
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Old 10th August 2017, 07:02 AM   #202
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
I have already explained that it was not a logic test.
Only after you'd had that explained to you; initially you rejected the fundamental theme of the paper, that it was a study of prejudice rather than reasoned belief, and you've now backed away from that position because you've realized it was untenable. But at least you've made some progress.

Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Further, now we are taking the next step, why do people have that belief? Id it because it is true? Is it because we instinctively recognize the superiority of the religious faith in the development of society?

Other reasons?
Centuries of indoctrination by religions which start by claiming that anyone following any other religion is inherently evil, then move on to claiming that anyone following no religion at all is the most evil of them all. It's simple marketing; it's important to make the claim that your product is the best on the market, because rival products can take away your market share, but people who point out the worthlessness of all the products on the market are the most dangerous of all because they can destroy the entire market.

At this point you should poison the well by branding the above a conspiracy theory, even though it's actually no more than a set of extremely powerful organisations simply pursuing their best interests quite openly.

Dave
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Old 10th August 2017, 07:38 AM   #203
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
Only after you'd had that explained to you; initially you rejected the fundamental theme of the paper, that it was a study of prejudice rather than reasoned belief, and you've now backed away from that position because you've realized it was untenable. But at least you've made some progress.



Centuries of indoctrination by religions which start by claiming that anyone following any other religion is inherently evil, then move on to claiming that anyone following no religion at all is the most evil of them all. It's simple marketing; it's important to make the claim that your product is the best on the market, because rival products can take away your market share, but people who point out the worthlessness of all the products on the market are the most dangerous of all because they can destroy the entire market.

At this point you should poison the well by branding the above a conspiracy theory, even though it's actually no more than a set of extremely powerful organisations simply pursuing their best interests quite openly.

Dave
Did you really just take a deep dive back into "centuries of indoctrination" despite the fact that atheists in secular countries believe it as well.

No conspiracy at all. Just basic social evolution and the superiority of religious faith in connection there with.

As I have explained already. Do keep up.
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Old 10th August 2017, 07:53 AM   #204
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Did you really just take a deep dive back into "centuries of indoctrination" despite the fact that atheists in secular countries believe it as well.
Yes, because (a) most atheists have been affected by some kind of religious indoctrination even in secular countries and (b) long-lasting social attitudes don't vanish overnight even when we want them to because they're counterproductive.

Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
No conspiracy at all. Just basic social evolution and the superiority of religious faith in connection there with.
If religious faith is obviously superior and is therefore favoured due to basic social evolution, why are atheists and secular countries becoming more numerous?

Dave
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Old 10th August 2017, 07:57 AM   #205
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
I have already explained that it was not a logic test.
Yet the question was posed in exactly the same format as the example of the Conjunction Fallacy which aleCcowaN linked to, which indicates the testers familiarity with that logical fallacy and that they recognised their comparison was between two sets of fallacious answers.
Quote:
Further, now we are taking the next step, why do people have that belief? Id it because it is true?
Exactly which of the several beliefs mentioned do you mean? Are you asking why people have religious belief, or why people think the threat of punishment is a deterrent, or why people think other people who are religious expect to be judged on their actions?

If it's the first of those then with so many different religions in the history of the world it can hardly be the case that people believed in each of them 'because it's true'.

Quote:
Is it because we instinctively recognize the superiority of the religious faith in the development of society?
No I don't think humans instinctively do that, and they wouldn't need to do it to evolve a tendency to invent religions. It would only require some benefit to accrue to a band of humans from a shared supernatural belief system for that tendency to be selected by evolution. Society benefits from rules in order to be stable and religions provide supernatural authority and imagined oversight for those rules.

It doesn't seem to matter whether or not those beliefs are in any way true. Ancient civilizations rose and prospered under religions and pantheons of gods which I think every person here could agree were false. Okay, almost certainly false.
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Old 10th August 2017, 09:15 AM   #206
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
Yes, because (a) most atheists have been affected by some kind of religious indoctrination even in secular countries and (b) long-lasting social attitudes don't vanish overnight even when we want them to because they're counterproductive.

If religious faith is obviously superior and is therefore favoured due to basic social evolution, why are atheists and secular countries becoming more numerous?

Dave
For the sake of discussing, we will assume that "atheists and secular countries are becoming more numerous."

There are several obvious answers:

1. de-evolution
2. people are becoming more immoral and/or
3. coercive governmental control.

these are not, as we say, mutually exclusive.
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Old 10th August 2017, 09:17 AM   #207
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
It is not so much that I am enamored with the analogy. Heck, I even said it was just an angle, not the whole thing. You know, like an aspect. I could see myself being offended that someone would associate evil with the church of my childhood. Reflexively, at least. We all have such tribal biases, that the authors found them while looking for them is no real surprise, so I thought it interesting to look at the reasons why. Look at it from different angles. But then . . .

What I am hooked by are your responses that seem to not even be based on the posts you are responding to. That I find alluring. Reading your questions as if the answers were not provided. I find such posts intriguing.

Thank you for participating. At least until Logger gets back from vacation.
Well, you'll forgive me that while wrong answers are a type of answer, they are not true answers.
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Old 10th August 2017, 09:25 AM   #208
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Well, you'll forgive me that while wrong answers are a type of answer, they are not true answers.
Right. But if I say bacon is delicious because of its crispy texture and slightly salty taste it is perplexing and interesting for a the next post to quote that language and ask if I ever even considered if bacon taste good or why.

I've posted reasons and your posts don't contradict them, they just pretend like the reasons were never mentioned. I find that very amusing. Especially on such important topics.
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Old 10th August 2017, 09:30 AM   #209
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
For the sake of discussing, we will assume that "atheists and secular countries are becoming more numerous."

There are several obvious answers:

1. de-evolution
2. people are becoming more immoral and/or
3. coercive governmental control.

these are not, as we say, mutually exclusive.
Nor are any of them 'obvious answers'. The first isn't even a real thing, the second doesn't appear to be happening and the third, in my country at least, isn't true.
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Old 10th August 2017, 09:33 AM   #210
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
For the sake of discussing, we will assume that "atheists and secular countries are becoming more numerous."

There are several obvious answers:

1. de-evolution
The fact that you can even use that term indicates that you fail to comprehend the meaning of the term "evolution".

Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
2. people are becoming more immoral
That's simply one further level of regress; why might people be becoming more immoral, if religion is a strong and stable way of inculcating morality? Why is the trend away from what you consider an obvious advantage in social evolution?

Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
and/or
3. coercive governmental control.
Again, simply one level of regress; why would governments be evolving in that direction if religion is advantageous to social evolution?

Let me suggest:

4. Rationalism, increased scientific understanding and a strong framework of secular morality are superseding religion as a basis for society.

Dave
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Old 10th August 2017, 09:35 AM   #211
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
Right. But if I say bacon is delicious because of its crispy texture and slightly salty taste it is perplexing and interesting for a the next post to quote that language and ask if I ever even considered if bacon taste good or why.

I've posted reasons and your posts don't contradict them, they just pretend like the reasons were never mentioned. I find that very amusing. Especially on such important topics.
Don't contradict them? Except the part where I showed that the whole "not collecting stamps" analogy was grossly erroneous.

Some atheists are willing to and in fact do engage in a community of people who are also atheists because of their shared beliefs, can you think of some?

Actually if I were an atheist (and thank Jesus I am not) I'd be a bit miffed at your apparent desire to pigeonhole other atheists. Seems like atheists need a Support network!
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Old 10th August 2017, 10:16 AM   #212
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
the superiority of religious faith
Africa and the Middle East are howling with laughter over that claim.
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Old 10th August 2017, 10:23 AM   #213
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The argument for the evolutionary advantage of religious faith centers on pre-historic human evolution. The claim goes: as our human ancestors spread around the world in bands, keeping together for food and protection, groups with a religious belief system survived better because they worked better together.

Once we were in towns, cities, and castles, religious belief was a negative selector for evolution. Think of The Crusades for example.
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Old 10th August 2017, 11:16 AM   #214
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Don't contradict them? Except the part where I showed that the whole "not collecting stamps" analogy was grossly erroneous.
Right, that was the analogy I had to repeat to get you to address. Thank you for pointing it out.

Quote:
Some atheists are willing to and in fact do engage in a community of people who are also atheists because of their shared beliefs, can you think of some?

Actually if I were an atheist (and thank Jesus I am not) I'd be a bit miffed at your apparent desire to pigeonhole other atheists. Seems like atheists need a Support network!
Quite the opposite.

What percentage of Religious people self identify with an organization or denomination related to their religiosity?

What percentage of non-religious people self identify with an organization or community based on their non-religiosity?

I can see joining a support group where atheism is actively discouraged and atheist face discrimination. But otherwise, any community I would join would have to be based on something more than just non-religiosity.
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Old 10th August 2017, 11:42 AM   #215
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
Right, that was the analogy I had to repeat to get you to address. Thank you for pointing it out.

Quite the opposite.

What percentage of Religious people self identify with an organization or denomination related to their religiosity?

What percentage of non-religious people self identify with an organization or community based on their non-religiosity?

I can see joining a support group where atheism is actively discouraged and atheist face discrimination. But otherwise, any community I would join would have to be based on something more than just non-religiosity.
Get me to address? Can a brother get a laughing dog? I addressed it and showed why it is ridiculous as soon as I realized you were serious.

Now, lets take, as it were, a "deeper dive."

"What percentage of Religious people self identify with an organization or denomination related to their religiosity?"

who cares? No one because that does NOT impact whatsoever the discussion we were having about the actual subject: ATHEISTS

Now the actual question:

"What percentage of non-religious people self identify with an organization or community based on their non-religiosity?"

More than None

As such your claim: "there is no universal generalization for people who don't collect stamps, or don't have Scottish heritage, or don't hold god beliefs" has been well and fully debunked and utterly destroyed.

By the way, while I personally enjoy your tales about what you would personally do, I have to point out that your anecdotes are not data.
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Old 10th August 2017, 11:50 AM   #216
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Get me to address? Can a brother get a laughing dog? I addressed it and showed why it is ridiculous as soon as I realized you were serious.
It is this thread, you even noted it.

Quote:
Now, lets take, as it were, a "deeper dive."
I doubt that, but let's see . . .


Quote:
who cares? No one because that does NOT impact whatsoever the discussion we were having about the actual subject: ATHEISTS
Really, then why are you constantly bringing up religion?

Quote:
Now the actual question:



More than None
Of course. I even mention why some who find themselves in the minority may band together to fight back against persecution, but the vast majority of people who do not hold religious beliefs will not have joined an atheist group and will likely list their religion as Church of England.

Quote:
As such your claim: has been well and fully debunked and utterly destroyed.
I don't see that in the least. Please elaborate.

Quote:
By the way, while I personally enjoy your tales about what you would personally do, I have to point out that your anecdotes are not data.
No, but they help me understand the data. How would I answer that question? Why would I pick that answer? What does that choice mean to me? How much candy would I require to take this survey?
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Old 10th August 2017, 11:59 AM   #217
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post

Of course. I even mention why some who find themselves in the minority may band together to fight back against persecution...
There folks is why the next time someone tries to draw up some silly analogy that involves truly insipid "people who don't collect stamps" meme, you tell them to get that next level nonsense out of here, because unless there is a Freedom from Religion Stamps Foundation or people who don't collect stamps have to "band together to fight back against persecution" then that silly meme is nothing but a San Antonio Dumpster Fire.

Thus endeth this part of the lesson
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Old 10th August 2017, 12:02 PM   #218
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
There folks is why the next time someone tries to draw up some silly analogy that involves truly insipid "people who don't collect stamps" meme, you tell them to get that next level nonsense out of here, because unless there is a Freedom from Religion Stamps Foundation or people who don't collect stamps have to "band together to fight back against persecution" then that silly meme is nothing but a San Antonio Dumpster Fire.

Thus endeth this part of the lesson
Well, when Stamp Collectors start trying to influence the life of non-stamp collectors by limiting their freedoms you'll have something to point at.

Are these intentional soft balls?

And why are San Antonio Dumpster Fires being brought into it? Its a nice town, even if the river is more of a cess pool than a real body of water . . .

PS: Thanks for snipping the rest of my post and not repointing to it. Keeping true to form helps my argument.
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Old 10th August 2017, 12:19 PM   #219
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
No problem, you see, I am really not a fan of the "Cut Up A Short Post Into a bunch of Tiny Quote Boxes and then reply with Some Snarky Comment" school of responding.
Some call it addressing each issue. For completeness.

Quote:
My posts are typically crisp, clean woven tapestries of context, a sum greater than its parts.
I guess I only see the parts. My loss, I'm sure.

Quote:
Now as for this:

"Well, when Stamp Collectors start trying to influence the life of non-stamp collectors by limiting their freedoms you'll have something to point at.'
Is this some sort of "Cut Up A Short Post Into a bunch of Tiny Quotes without Boxes and then reply with Some Snarky Comment" style of posting?

Quote:
I truly appreciate that you have given us yet another reason why the "not collecting stamps" meme is utterly asinine! Thanks!
In most places it works quite well. In others, not so well. I agree that it is sad that some have to fight for religious freedom. Sadder still that that the religious don't fight more for such freedom.
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Old 10th August 2017, 02:54 PM   #220
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
well considering he is history's most prolific serial murderer by a long ways, that would go a hell of a long way toward explaining why atheists are thought immoral, even by fellow atheists....
I thought you had moved on from that misrepresentation of this study?
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Old 10th August 2017, 03:06 PM   #221
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Oh dear, what did I do now?

Listen you tell me what shorthand you want me to use and if we can agree on it, I'll put it right there in my sig so we are for ever and henceforth on the same page, as it were, in connection with shorthand references.

/I'm certain people that don't collect stamps would not be so pedantic....
Forgetful then?

Lordy, let me pick up the pieces for you while we circle back to the beginning . . .


Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
You may wish to address the fact that the authors also found that atheists think atheists are immoral.

And please don't be seduced by certain unfortunate posts suggesting that the study does not say that because there is absolutely no question that it does.
Originally Posted by Jack by the hedge View Post
No, it really doesn't.

It says that the authors found that even atheists tended to think the immoral person would be atheist. Which is not the same thing as thinking an atheist person would be immoral.
Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Oh well, that seems to be a distinction without a substantive difference, but I am a get-along guy, and as such;

Cheerfully Conceded!
Maybe if you corrected the misleading title of the thread it would be easier to remember you conceding that you were misleading.
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Old 10th August 2017, 03:12 PM   #222
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
Forgetful then?

Lordy, let me pick up the pieces for you while we circle back to the beginning . . .


Maybe if you corrected the misleading title of the thread it would be easier to remember you conceding that you were misleading.
It is not misleading.... but as i said, I am a trooper.
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Old 10th August 2017, 03:35 PM   #223
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
It is not misleading.... but as i said, I am a trooper.
Then not cheerfully conceded.

Well done.
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Old 10th August 2017, 05:58 PM   #224
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
Going to correct the thread title next?
Not a chance.
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Old 10th August 2017, 06:42 PM   #225
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
Going to correct the thread title next?
Nothing at all to correct, however, if you feel aggrieved and can convince the editors of the article linked in the op that their headline is problematic, and they change it, I will thereafter go to the mat to have the headline changed.

Godspeed.
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Old 11th August 2017, 12:17 AM   #226
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I'm not caught up, but there is a perfectly reasonable explanation of why a higher number said the torturer/killer would be more likely to be an atheist than a theist. It doesn't require any hardwired assumptions and the social or evolutionary value of theism is a red herring.

Atheists fear only one set of consequences - the earthly ones, like getting caught, or not being able to live with themselves. Theists in theory fear two sets of consequences - getting caught/not being able to live with themselves, plus the possibility of going to hell, or damaging their karma, at the hands of a supernatural force.

It is riskier behavior for someone who believes in God than it is for the person who doesn't. Therefore the atheist would be less afraid of consequences - a more-limited downside.

Is someone who flies a jet into a skyscraper likely to be an atheist, or a theist? A theist, because there is more potential upside.

I wonder why they didn't just ask the same people whether they thought the perpetrator would more likely be a) an atheist or b) a theist.

Apologies if someone else has made the same point.
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Old 11th August 2017, 01:35 AM   #227
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It bore repeating. The study shows a proportion of people imagine a wicked person might not act out their evil intents if restrained by fear of divine retribution. And to no surprise at all, some atheists are included in that group.

Regarding the thread title, although we've all agreed it's false, it was the headline of the article first linked to, so the OP was only copying somebody else's mistake.
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Old 11th August 2017, 02:03 AM   #228
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
I wonder why they didn't just ask the same people whether they thought the perpetrator would more likely be a) an atheist or b) a theist.
As I said before, that's a fundamental part of the methodology, and the way that the study is designed to look at prejudice rather than reasoned conclusions. If they'd simply asked a straight question, responders might have examined their own prejudices and corrected for them; by only considering answers that already suffer from cognitive bias, the study is designed to bypass that level of self-censorship.

And I'm sure there are different crimes that are associated with different demographics, as you suggest. If the initial description were, say, a young man from a racial minority who becomes disillusioned with his life, isolates himself from his friends and family and then blows himself up in a crowded place, I'd be very surprised if anyone thought he was more likely to be a teacher and an atheist than just a teacher.

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Old 11th August 2017, 06:14 AM   #229
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Originally Posted by Jack by the hedge View Post
It bore repeating. The study shows a proportion of people imagine a wicked person might not act out their evil intents if restrained by fear of divine retribution. And to no surprise at all, some atheists are included in that group.
It did? I don't recall seeing that in the paper and I cannot easily get access to it this early a.m Can you specifically post what you are referring to?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11th August 2017, 06:58 AM   #230
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I am offering my personal opinion for what can explain the effect shown in the paper. Do you think it an unlikely explanation?

I think that a proportion of people, some atheists included, think that religious believers fear divine justice or karmic retribution, and they might consequently expect such people to be less likely to be the terrible person described.
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Old 11th August 2017, 07:30 AM   #231
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Originally Posted by Jack by the hedge View Post
I am offering my personal opinion for what can explain the effect shown in the paper. Do you think it an unlikely explanation?

I think that a proportion of people, some atheists included, think that religious believers fear divine justice or karmic retribution, and they might consequently expect such people to be less likely to be the terrible person described.
Oh, you had written "The study shows" so I thought I had missed something.

No worries.
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Old 11th August 2017, 09:37 AM   #232
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Nothing at all to correct, however, if you feel aggrieved and can convince the editors of the article linked in the op that their headline is problematic, and they change it, I will thereafter go to the mat to have the headline changed.

Godspeed.
What were you cheerfully conceding, then?
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Old 11th August 2017, 09:44 AM   #233
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
What were you cheerfully conceding, then?
I don't remember, I cheerfully concede many things, mostly small insignificant issues that have appeared to get under someone's skin for a reason or other, and I usually do it so we can get back with a laser like focus on learning and teaching the substantive issues.

Cheers!
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Old 11th August 2017, 09:55 AM   #234
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I cheerfully concede that I like cheerful concessions.
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Old 11th August 2017, 11:57 AM   #235
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Oh, you had written "The study shows" so I thought I had missed something.





No worries.


Perhaps that should have been 'the study shows me...'
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Old 11th August 2017, 12:10 PM   #236
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
I don't remember, I cheerfully concede many things, mostly small insignificant issues that have appeared to get under someone's skin for a reason or other, and I usually do it so we can get back with a laser like focus on learning and teaching the substantive issues.

Cheers!
That's precious.

What is more substantive about this topic than properly reporting the conclusions the study can actually support?

It's a fairly flimsy study to begin with. But when you stretch it beyond what it can support, it reflects on your position. And when you feign forgetting that you cheerfully conceded that very salient point, it reflects on your arguments.
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Old 11th August 2017, 12:21 PM   #237
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
That's precious.

What is more substantive about this topic than properly reporting the conclusions the study can actually support?

It's a fairly flimsy study to begin with. But when you stretch it beyond what it can support, it reflects on your position. And when you feign forgetting that you cheerfully conceded that very salient point, it reflects on your arguments.
Oh dear, I had no idea that it meant ever so much to you, so I have spent a few minutes of my time and have determined that what i had "cheerfully conceded" did not involve the title of the article in the OP. I remain willing to request that the thread title be amended when the authors of the article linked in the OP do so as well.
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Old 11th August 2017, 12:38 PM   #238
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Oh dear, I had no idea that it meant ever so much to you,
Your thread, just looking to keep it top quality!

Quote:
so I have spent a few minutes of my time and have determined that what i had "cheerfully conceded" did not involve the title of the article in the OP. I remain willing to request that the thread title be amended when the authors of the article linked in the OP do so as well.
Oh, so you are keeping the admittedly misleading title as a skeptical exercise for the reader. A bit of a lesson in journalistic click bait. Nicely done.

It is a shame when articles use headlines that are misleading and we should draw attention to those misleading headlines. My bad for not getting your purpose from the start.

Cheers.
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Old 11th August 2017, 12:39 PM   #239
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
Oh dear, I had no idea that it meant ever so much to you, so I have spent a few minutes of my time and have determined that what i had "cheerfully conceded" did not involve the title of the article in the OP. I remain willing to request that the thread title be amended when the authors of the article linked in the OP do so as well.
No. You don't. It would matter not a whit to you what the author did.
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Old 11th August 2017, 12:45 PM   #240
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Atheists thought immoral, even by fellow atheists: study

Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
No. You don't. It would matter not a whit to you what the author did.
I don't remain willing? Hmm, i am going to just have to have to go right ahead and disagree with you.

Have you gotten feedback from the linked article's author/editor/publisher?

Full disclosure, I have no problem with the headline here or in the linked article, but remain willing to adjust things if the need arises, and I am beginning to get the feeling that need ain't never gonna arise.
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