Sunday, August 17, 2008

News media

The ever-reliable Ben Goldacre has a nasty piece (in yesterday's Guardian) about, well, the moronic media: From the mouths of morons in the media. It's veddy, veddy good.

I was watching Countdown on Friday, with Rachel M subbing for Keith Olbermann. She interviewed the two Georgia hikers who claimed to have the body of a Bigfoot. Check out the video (below); the guy on the left looks like he can hardly keep from cracking up. Rachel also has a rough time keeping her dubiousness off of that sleeve of hers.

Countdown video. [Luddites, click on the pretty red words.]

On Saturday, however, MSNBC reported that two genetic samples taken from the alleged Bigfoot proved to be "from a human" in one case and "from an opossum" in the other. 

Too bad. Like most skeptics, I want to believe!

See 'Bigfoot' fails DNA test


Anonymous said...

Veddy veddy droll.

torabora said...

10:36 It's intro Philosophy stuff and it's what he teaches for a living. To have a road you have to lay some bricks and if you've been paying attention Chunk has been working off some kinda catharsis. He's teaching, if you will listen.

That said, I too have a God problem having worked through the Jesus problem some years ago. I get stuck on a big issue though...the undeniable existence of evil.

Where does evil emanate from? What could possibly animate a human being to commit evil?

And is evil dissolvable so that a person can be just a little bit evil?

See, as I note evil I believe that, as I can see in nature, there must be a counterbalancing force to evil or we couldn't "see" evil. There must be a 'contrast'.

Some folks go to Church to try to answer these 'ponderables'. I've been looking elsewhere.

Roy Bauer said...

I can think of no physical, logical, or other reason why it should be supposed that there must be evils if there are to be "goods."

Is there some reason why a universe could not contain in it simply one white rock? Would such a universe explode for lack of a black one?

If we must "see" evil to "see" (or understand) good, then why aren't representations of evil sufficient? Why must there be evil?

And if there must be evil, wouldn't a speck of evil serve as the contrast? On what basis would one assume that there must be a great deal of evil?

Certainly we don't want to say that there must be an evil for each good. Again, there is no principle available that requires this. None. (No, not conservation of...) But if we insist (inexplicably) on this "symmetry" thesis, we must wonder what the point of creation is.

So we return to the speck of evil. But the "need" for the existence of a speck of evil does not solve the problem of evil. The problem of evil is not that there is evil; the problem of evil is that there is so much evil.

The free will 'theodicy" suggests, plausibly, that God cannot both insure that we choose good and allow true freedom of choice/will/action. (The theodicy has some complexity to it that i am ignoring for brevity's sake.) But, again, the problem that arises is the issue of quantity (and heinousness). How can a God be viewed as "good" if he allows the deaths and suffering of millions as the price of one man's free will? Why does (evidently) limit how much evil some can do, but not others who are much more ambitious?


I fail to see what is mysterious about "evil" in human beings. Prima facie, those who are reared without benefit of moral constraints will likely not have such constraints. So where is the mystery? I just don't see it.

If you do not maintain a building then it will fall apart. It is not a mystery when it does.

torabora said...

I get my notion of balance from nature. We see predator and prey at a simple level. When we look deep with the atom we find a variety of forces all competing with each other yet finding a balance. The planets find an orbital speed around the sun and maintain a distance from the sun in a similar manner as electrons around a neutron.

Symmetry and balance seem to be a theme in nature, to me. Humans are pattern recognition machines and I try to see the complement of evil...I just can't prove that good is that complement.

We don't live in a "one white rock universe". This existence of ours is complicated. We don't live long enough to "know it all" much less know enough to know we know much of anything....hope you followed that. That's very important.

this ability to know, to learn, to be a sentient being is what makes us ask these stupid questions...nay even to question!

Way back when I was alot younger there was a cartoonist named R. Crumb. He had a great way of attacking this problem. But alas no answer. Another was Philip Jose Farmer and his Riverworld. Many of us are not religious yet are looking for the truth of this world. This is one of those subjects that is very slippery...the closer you look the further away it gets.

Roy Bauer said...

Dude, Crumb is still very much around. Did you see the documentary, maybe ten years ago?