Neil deGrasse Tyson Does Not Practice What He Preaches

Tyson was preaching on Twitter:

Gee. And just who gets to decide if a belief system is “founded in an objective reality?” Let me guess – people like Neil deGrasse Tyson! Er, someone needs to inform Tyson that fabricated stories and quotes are not part of “objective reality.” Furthermore, urban legends are not part of objective reality. They are subjective realities that exist only in the heads of Tyson and his army of gullible fans. My guess is that these subjective realities are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Tyson’s belief systems. The problem is that he confuses his subjective beliefs with objective reality.

Look, this form of hypocrisy is very common among the atheist and secularist leaders. They love to pat themselves on the back about being so smart and being rooted in “objective reality,” while preaching to the rest of us from their foundations of subjectivity and bias.

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45 Responses to Neil deGrasse Tyson Does Not Practice What He Preaches

  1. Ilíon says:

    “”… you should not be…

    Moreover, he’s asserting transcendant moral obligation. What is it with ‘atheists’, that they’re constantly asserting transcendant moral obligations for others … which just happen to have the result of leaving ‘atheists’ in control of everyone else’s lives by default?

  2. GM says:

    I’d like to see an exhaustive list of decisions that affect other people (as opposed to not?) The implication here is that those with the blessing of Tyson and the like DO have the right to make “these” decisions that affect other people.

  3. Crude says:

    I’d like to see an exhaustive list of decisions that affect other people (as opposed to not?)

    ‘Any political or social hot button topic.’ with a dash of ‘Feeling very strongly about something being right or wrong with nothing but subjective justification counts as being founded in objective reality, but only if you have the right opinion’.

  4. Speaking of preaching out-yer-ass on twitter –

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2014/09/19/maybe-joel-osteen-should-open-up-that-bible-of-his/

    This is a real story about how people make shit up – Osteen totally screwing up Bible verse. The Bible is the ONLY book this schmuck has to get right. You rant on Tyson for errors, where is your outrage for this story? It’s a far more egregious error from a guy who makes millions more than Tyson and uses only 1 reference source.

  5. TFBW says:

    So, what you’re saying, Martin, is that Neil deGrasse Tyson has a lot in common with a televangelist? Fair point, I guess. Mind you, at least it’s clear which source Osteen is mangling: he actually cited it, chapter and verse. That makes it a lot easier to check for accuracy, unlike Tyson’s preferred citation style (e.g. “Newspaper Headline”).

  6. Dhay says:

    Martin > Osteen totally screwing up Bible verse… You rant on Tyson for errors, where is your outrage for this story?

    Allow me to join you in condemning Osteen’s ignorance. I expect better from any preacher. If that is not an isolated incident, I am surprised anyone should continue to listen.

  7. TFBW says:

    Osteen’s sloppiness is disgraceful but hardly shocking. Christendom is fairly rife with that sort of thing — often worse than what we see in this example. I have a real problem with it, but the bulk of the rank and file do not: most people have no concept of academic rigour, and are satisfied so long as the message is not misleading when the full context is known. Given those standards, I doubt that anyone is likely to be outraged by this little exposé. For those (like me) who hadn’t heard of Osteen before now, I’m afraid that lax scholarship is the norm, and such sloppiness is business as usual, so it’s just another stone on the already-large pile which gives weight to my cynical belief that Junk Christianity is rife in this day and age. For those who were already Osteen devotees, I’m pretty sure that the whole context passes the “not misleading” test for the vast majority of them, so there’s nothing to make a fuss about.

    Tyson, on the other hand, doesn’t fare so well in my book. He’s a scientist, with a cartload of doctorates, earned and honorary, so he knows academic rigour. His core message is “science smart; religion dumb” — that is, if you want to know the truth, turn to science, not religion — and yet he’s been spreading blatant falsehoods: things which are misleading when the full context is known. I have long held a slightly negative view of the man, but I thought he was a cut above Dawkins and the other New Atheists. Well now I know better. The sloppy citations which cover up the non-existence of the original sources are a stain on his credibility. The mockery of people who don’t understand statistics, backed by an egregious misrepresentation of what “average” implies, is a blot on his competence. And the blatant untruths, both in content and context, about GWB quoting the Old Testament on God naming the stars, are a demonstration that Tyson is ultimately just an ideologue to whom truth and accuracy are secondary concerns over promoting the right message. Worse, he’s an ideologue who uses his scientific credentials and reputation to pass of his ideology as being a simple consequence of scientific thinking.

    To cap it all off, when he was called out about it publicly, his reaction was along the lines of, “well, it looks like other people are backing me up here, so I don’t need to engage this criticism.” At this point, I’m writing Tyson off as a credible source of any factual statements about anything unless he issues a retraction for the crap where he’s been caught out.

    So if I have a slightly different reaction to Osteen than to Tyson, I hope that explains why.

  8. Billy Squibs says:

    A few quick comments.

    1) Tu quoque is not an appropriate response, Martin. Instead of engaging with deGrasse Tyson’s errors (and perhaps lies) you have instead attempted to sidestep the controversy by pointing the finger at some Christian “scmuck”.

    2) From what I know of Osteen his ministry seems to be a excellent barometer of what is wrong in certain parts of (predominately US) Christianity. In short, it not Christ focused and it’s not in any sense intellectually engaged with the world or the Word.

    The main point here is that Osteen receives criticism from other wings of Christianity. For example, after his wife recently express some self-centred heretical beliefs about the nature of worship the Osteens in general received a massive amount of criticism. I particularly enjoyed this talk – http://apologetics.com/radio/?sermon_id=32

    3) Off top[ic on the latest controversy but people might be interested in this blog entry from Massimo Pigliucci on deGrasse Tyson’s view of philosophy –

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/massimo-pigliucci/neil-degrasse-tyson-and-the-value-of-philosophy_b_5330216.html

  9. Billy Squibs says:

    Apologies for the various grammatical errors above.

  10. GM says:

    If there was significant acceptance of, or even debate over, the soundness of Osteen’s exegesis and theology throughout his entire career (aside from this particular instance) among prominent orthodox, liberal or conservative pastors, theologians and biblical scholars, Martin’s point would be interesting. If I were a gnu, I would be particularly loathe to compare Tyson to anyone remotely like Osteen, as it shows that the new atheist community is susceptible to the same vaudeville as the most gullible of the religious.

  11. Martin Tuelay says:

    Hilarious! I ask “where is the outrage?” and TFBW, Billy, and GM all bash Osteen as ‘not a real Christian’. So, back to the original article, Who gets to make the choices in for everyone? Well, I have 3 Christians right here who are all quick to call out another (and a quite famous ‘another’, indeed) for not being Godly enough. Do all 3 of you go to the same church, thereby agreeing wholeheartedly on every teaching and doctrine? What will TFBW do when Billy wants his 10 Commandments put in front of a Courthouse but they differ from his? That’s only 1 example of the multitude of discrepancies that your vast number of sects and Bibles have among them (more than 25% of all FFRF suits are initiated by religious folks – I’ve lost the cite for that so you can dismiss it). If the law should stem from ‘the’ Bible, who’s ‘the’ is used? Secular law cures that ailment.

    @Billy Squibs – It was never an attempt at tu quoque, as the examples were followed by the direct question of “where is the outrage…”. I accept that Tyson made errors, and therefore would not attempt tu quoque. I was pointing out that both screwed up. BUT, Osteen was within his field of specialty while Tyson misattributed quotes. If Tyson were throwing false calculations to support invalid mathematical or physical hypothesis then everyone should be pissed. The 2 examples are thus telling since Tyson error required 3 OPs (and a half for the vid) on this blog and Osteen gets the “he’s not Christian enough” BS.

    @GM – The comparison is not in character but in 2 cases of similar errors being made. I know how you Christians love to blow everything up so you can watch the fire dance on the corpses, but no comparison that you assume was ever close to being made or inferred.

    @TFBW – You said “At this point, I’m writing Tyson off as a credible source of any factual statements about anything…” So, you are completely willing to discard everything that Tyson is ever involved with, because he misattributed quotes in an attempt to be funny. Yet, you will follow your Good Book to the letter even though it is RIFE with contradictions and made-up stories; you will vote for politicians who wish to use said book as a means to make controversial law (see above); you will join ranks with churches and its members even though they engage in horrific criminal undertakings and conspiracies; these you will continue to do, but Mr. Tyson and his Cosmos will never see your bump in the Nielsen ratings. Excellent way to live your life.

  12. GM says:

    Martin,

    It’s hard to say exactly where I would rank it, but that’s pretty solidly on the list of The 25 Most Boring Things I’ve Ever Read. I need a cigarette.

  13. Ilíon says:

    Billy Squibs:1) Tu quoque is not an appropriate response, Martin. Instead of engaging with deGrasse Tyson’s errors (and perhaps lies) you have instead attempted to sidestep the controversy by pointing the finger at some Christian “scmuck”.

    That’s true. But there is something else going on here that no one seems to have noticed: namely, that no one is extending to Osteen the charity that they themselves would be indignantly demanding were they in his place. Anyone who is not looking for any reason at all to snicker about the fellow can see that he wasn’t intending to say what he actually wrote/posted. Sure, he *should* have re-read what he wrote before he posted it, so that what he posted wasn’t literally non-sense … but everyone of us has also made the error of not editing before hitting [SEND].

    It shouldn’t be necessary to say this — but must people choose to be idiots, and so if I don’t say it, some idiot will engage in idiocy and attempt to tum this post into yet another diversion from the topic of the OP — I’m not carrying water for Osteen: I can’t stand the guy, even before one gets around to maybe discussing his lax theology.

  14. Martin Tuelay says:

    Michael:

    It seems your followers have a lot to say about Osteen and other false prophets. Perhaps, when your hypocrisy loosens, you could look into doing stories about religious leaders who are not Christian enough for you and them. So many more to choose from than the 5 ‘Gnus’ (seriously, that so-called insult is like ‘honky’ or ‘cracker’, no one cares) you beat up on constantly. More comments = more views = more hits = more revenue…. C’mon, the God of Greed is calling you. That, and your regular shit could euthanize pubescent Bonobos.

    @Billy Squibs – “…some idiot will engage in idiocy and attempt to tum this post into yet another diversion from the topic of the OP …”
    Ya. I turned my one comment right back at your stupid azz with my second post. Who should lead who? You Bible thumpers disagree so much you need 41,000 different sects and nearly 20 different Bibles interpretations to worship your ‘1 Lord’. So if Atheists are not rooted in reality, as the OP infers, who is? Which one of your 41,000 sects is worthy enough to run this country? As I said, you redneck: “Secular law cures that ailment”.
    Atheists police their own, as is shown on so many Atheist blogs available. Every Atheist blog I have ever visited allows comments, but very few Christian blogs do —– why? Atheists have no problem with contention while Christians constantly hide in anonymity and behind walls of censorship.
    No, I don’t want religi-tards further ruining a country that’s already heaving death sighs. There is enough injustice that requires actual help, not more Bibles and good wishes. Enough pain that we must say “not God, but man, must decide and do what is right”. No praying. No waiting/hoping for rapture. No more F’n tithings that do more to secure the real estate value of a church than actually going to the needy.

    Believe in God because {fill in blank}. I don’t care. I don’t care so much that I want to untype this sentence. But keep Him away from me, my laws, my family, my beliefs. The more you push them in the public and in our legislation the more you will feel me pushing back.*
    This is seriously the most damage you can produce:
    TFBW “Worse, he’s an ideologue who uses his scientific credentials and reputation to pass of his ideology as being a simple consequence of scientific thinking.”**
    Atheists hold a 140-1 disadvantage in American elected offices – if one of the best icons we can produce is a non-political ideologue who misquotes, I’ll take him over the feces your religion produces for politicos. (see: Santorum, Perry, and 80% of the lunatics that you conservatives put in office even if they believe in YEC)
    Who should be in charge of who?

    * You don’t have to be an Atheist to get my voting support – you just have to promise me you won’t be a dick. I was (R) until 2004 – straightline up-n-down. That was 13 years after my deconversion.
    ** Holy shit, are you telling me no politician that ran on a platform of conservative religiosity has lied to get into office/reelection? Wow, throw more stones at them windows.

    And if your pathetic know-nothing ass is going to try to take apart any part of this, you better approach ALL of it. You can’t, because the truth cuts to the quick, and makes you and your god worthless. Meaning, nothing changes.

  15. GM says:

    “Religi-tard.”

    You were actually old enough to vote in 2004?

  16. Martin Tuelay says:

    You left Matthew 6:5 long enough to say something else void of substance?
    I was born in 1970. My mother ran as an (I) in 1976 in state elections. I voted until 2004 (when I decided to abstain), and now encourage friends to vote socialist (here in Switzerland and back at home).
    If you wanna talk shit about Socialism, you better study up on the Swiss economy (it’s a Socialist Democracy) – it dominates. If you wanna talk shit about its economy having roots in the Nazi party, you better go back further. If you still wanna talk shit, ask the 8 million citizens how much they enjoy a 17SFR (Swiss Franc) minimum wage, 4-6 weeks vacation, stable unemployment and Stock Market……. If you’re still talking after brushing up on all of that, I’ll be too drunk on 8.8 beer to hear you.

  17. GM says:

    Wow. Are you drunk right now?

  18. Martin Tuelay says:

    [EDIT] “I voted (R)…”

  19. Martin Tuelay says:

    Actually, quite.

  20. GM says:

    Oh ok. Carry on then.

  21. Martin Tuelay says:

    crap, guess that explains my unnecessary edit. I see I mentioned it previously.

  22. Martin Tuelay says:

    Oh, ok, then, So, who defines who is ‘in charge’? if the OP is leaning toward a Theocracy, than who gets to choose the doctrine upon which law is built? If, like Mike, you want to be paranoid about a secular system, then show me where it fails. I can point out where Theocracy and its splinters fails – where does Secularism fail? Because the day it is instituted, all morality flies out the window and the courts cease to exist…?
    Uh….
    People will always choose what is best, without the intercession of religion. Period. I, as an Atheist, don’t want to be stabbed/shot on the street, just like you. If churches disappeared tomorrow….. I would still be an Atheist that doesn’t want to be stabbed/shot.
    I want the laws to protect me and you – do you want all laws to protect me? BTW, I’m a white male. If you saw me on the streets you’d have no clue who I was. Do I threaten you as a human, or just as an Atheist?

  23. Martin Tuelay says:

    The responses came rapid-fire, then…
    I’m truly offended by religiosity when it’s thrown in my face – otherwise I don’t give 2 shits. Keep it if you want to have it. If my non-belief offends, I understand. I was raised to believe that serial killers who knocked off prostitutes were going to hell, but with God’s blessing. This was not an idea I had to invent. I was ‘led’ to it through biblical teaching. “Fuck the whores”, I thought. “Why should Bundy burn when he was just slaying sluts that deserved nothing less”?
    Of you, Michael, GM, and everyone who reads this: WHO is worthy to judge or condemn? Not me, and definitely not a single one of you. And sure as hell not your Book or a representative thereof, as we have shown you cannot produce a single representative of your Christian beliefs that will always give judgments that you agree with.

    SO. ALL OF YOU. Answer Michael’s request and produce an infallible leader who is not of the 5 Horseman. Give me a list. Put down, in order, who should run this country. It is the ultimate question of this OP. So do it! Answer Michael and list who should run the USA based on his credentials. And in this forum. Now. Rally behind your blog-o-leader and show the world who should be in charge!!! You fucking chickenshits are so goddamn retarded you can’t even put up 2 names. Relig-tards, no doubt.

  24. GM says:

    If you’re asking me, I don’t see you as a threat at all. The more I read you, the more I just kind of feel sorry for you, and that has nothing to do with you being an atheist.

  25. Martin Tuelay says:

    Then you should pray for me. It’s your job. You and anyone who reads this far, it is your job to drop everything and pray for me. Is it truly in your heart? I doubt it. And since I’ll never go back to religion, your prayer is for naught. Your move.

  26. Martin Tuelay says:

    Doh! While you’re praying for me, you’re not praying to end: poverty, hunger, injustice, slavery…
    if Christians were really what they claimed, there would be no time in their day to work, eat, sleep, etc.
    So, while you’re not praying for me (as your Lord said you should), you should also not be praying for sports victories or selfish gains that I guarantee you all do.
    Anything else I should mention that you shouldn’t be praying for?

  27. GM says:

    Oh, I don’t have a “move” here. This is just kind of fascinating, because you’re THAT guy at a bar, that’s roaming around from group to group, growling non-sequiters at anyone who catches your eye, but no one will actually say anything to you, because you might actually take a swing. Like, you seem THAT out of your mind.

  28. Martin Tuelay says:

    Since I’ve never hit anyone in my life, that lands short. I’m a 2nd degree black belt that hasn’t studied MA in 20 years. My master taught me better – I’ve been knocked out twice by sucker punchers while trying to “talk down” situations – but I’ve never hit a person outside the ring. The fact you call me ‘fascinating’ means you’re reading at least every other sentence.
    (I’ve been with a LOT of ladies. I never discuss/brag about it because I, being older now, feel shame about my actions. I see that actions create reactions we cannot control, and that sexuality is better expressed minimally)
    I really was ‘that guy at the bar’, and it allowed me to seduce a lot of women. At the time I thought it was a measure of my manhood or sexuality. It ended up showing me that I was an idiot, and that having a loving wife trumps all.
    I’ve learned this and moved on. I’ve never struck in anger and I despise emotions like jealousy and anger.
    Am I still THAT out of my mind? I mean, I’ve never done anything in my life that, if exposed to a jury, would put me in jail. I will continue that trend until I die.
    If you ever met me in a bar, back in the day, you would’ve challenged me to Golden Tee, thrown back shots till puking, then talked mad shit to every hottie in the place cuz I goaded you. If not, you would have just been the guy in the corner telling his D&D friends “that guy’s a jerk”. (And I was a D&D guy)

  29. GM says:

    Can you see why I would have a really hard time believing that you despise emotions like anger?

  30. Martin Tuelay says:

    OOHHHH YAHHHH! LIKE MY ALL CAPS RESPONSES SHOW ANGER! OOHHH YAAAHHHH!

  31. Martin Tuelay says:

    Wanna see me? I’ll show you me.
    youtube martin tuelay.
    I don’t care about your criticism, but it allows you to see me. I don’t hide like Christians.

  32. Martin Tuelay says:

    I bet I look REAAAAL SCAAAARY now.
    NOT. I’m a fat funny guy. Bet you just can’t wait to meet me now.

  33. Dhay says:

    > 5 Horseman

    Five? Not three?

    I am reminded of the old joke stating that there are three kinds of mathematician, that the first kind comprises those who can count, and asking what the other two kinds are.

  34. Michael says:

    Martin: It seems your followers have a lot to say about Osteen and other false prophets. Perhaps, when your hypocrisy loosens, you could look into doing stories about religious leaders who are not Christian enough for you and them.

    You are confused. The true example of hypocrisy comes from your idol – Neil deGrasse Tyson. He has received fame and money by selling the notion that we need to be scientific – always use reason and evidence, etc. Yet the man does not practice what he preaches – he makes stuff up and passes on urban legends as truth. Or, is it okay for scientists to invent data?

    Tell me – has Tyson responded by telling everyone where he got his quote? If not, why not?


    So many more to choose from than the 5 ‘Gnus’ (seriously, that so-called insult is like ‘honky’ or ‘cracker’, no one cares) you beat up on constantly. More comments = more views = more hits = more revenue…. C’mon, the God of Greed is calling you. That, and your regular shit could euthanize pubescent Bonobos.

    LOL. This is a free wordpress blog and I don’t make a cent off it.

  35. Michael says:

    Martin is soo desperate to defend his idol, he will try out any excuse to defend him.

    For ezample:

    It was never an attempt at tu quoque, as the examples were followed by the direct question of “where is the outrage…”. I accept that Tyson made errors, and therefore would not attempt tu quoque. I was pointing out that both screwed up.

    So Tyson made “errors.” Hey, we are all human. We all screw up. I don’t think a completely fabricated story, being passed on as truth as part of a formal oral presentation, is just an “error.” But hey, that’s just me I suppose. 😉

    But we all should be able to agree that an error is unintentional.

    Problem is, later on Martin, Martin makes the “errors” intentional:

    So, you are completely willing to discard everything that Tyson is ever involved with, because he misattributed quotes in an attempt to be funny.

    So he made the errors “to be funny.”

    Silly Gnu atheists – the leaders make up stuff and the followers make up excuses to cover for them. Such is the Gnu version of “Commitment to Truth.”

  36. TFBW says:

    For anyone who is still reading after all that angry ranting, I’d like to point out the following issues in Martin’s comments (before he went into full-tilt angry rant mode, that is).

    … TFBW, Billy, and GM all bash Osteen as ‘not a real Christian’.

    I did no such thing, and I don’t see anyone else doing that either. I accused him of sloppy scholarship, and I stand by that if the report about what he said is accurate. There’s a massive difference between “sloppy scholarship” and “not a real Christian” however: Martin is just seeing what he wants to see.

    Well, I have 3 Christians right here who are all quick to call out another (and a quite famous ‘another’, indeed) for not being Godly enough.

    More of the same. Martin is simply pouncing on any criticism as though it were a holy war. This is not a reasonable reading of what has been said — not even slightly.

    So, you are completely willing to discard everything that Tyson is ever involved with, because he misattributed quotes in an attempt to be funny.

    First, I said, “I’m writing Tyson off as a credible source of any factual statements about anything unless he issues a retraction for the crap where he’s been caught out.” In other words, unless he ‘fesses up to his prior infelicities, I will not believe any claim that Tyson makes based on his word alone — some corroborating evidence will be required. Tyson offers a quote? I’m checking it. Tyson makes a statement about history? I’m checking it. Get the gist?

    Second, the quotes weren’t misattributed: they were either vaguely attributed (Newspaper Headline, Member of Congress) with no evidence that the original source actually exists, or attributed correctly (GWB) but misrepresented in terms of content and context. The claim that he did it in an attempt to be funny isn’t really an excuse, unless he’s renouncing his position as Science Communicator and making the transition to stand-up comic. If you’re going to share a funny anecdote like that in order to demonstrate a problem with the state of the world, it should at least be true: science is supposed to be based on factual evidence, not fabricated anecdotes, and people (rightly or wrongly) expect a Science Communicator to be somewhat scientific, so they are likely to assume he’s talking about things that actually happened in the manner presented when he uses them as evidence. But they didn’t: he made stuff up in order to support his position. That is simply not intellectually honest. (Not that I expect Martin to acknowledge this, ever, under any circumstances. He has Chosen his Side.)

    … you will vote for politicians who wish to use said book as a means to make controversial law (see above); you will join ranks with churches and its members even though they engage in horrific criminal undertakings and conspiracies …

    Although Martin is ostensibly addressing me here, his attention seems focused on some distant figment. He has no idea what country I’m from (hint: not the USA), no idea what church (if any) I attend. This hardly seems to matter to him: he is venting against a group of people that he hates, and he has identified me as one of Them.

    Holy shit, are you telling me no politician that ran on a platform of conservative religiosity has lied to get into office/reelection?

    I tell Martin that Tyson is “an ideologue who uses his scientific credentials and reputation to pass of his ideology as being a simple consequence of scientific thinking,” and this is how he interprets it. Picking the difference between what I said and how Martin interpreted it is left as an exercise to the reader, because if it isn’t as obvious as the difference between day and night already, I’m sure I can’t make it any clearer by explaining it.

    I could go on, I suppose, but what would be the point? The conversation with Martin has deteriorated well past the point where it can be productive. Please excuse me if I don’t engage his ranting any further.

  37. Ahhh, good morning! This will be quick.

    I never claimed Tyson’s errors were unintentional, and looking at how often they’ve occured I’m guessing they were, in fact, intentional. Here’s some factoids:
    I’ve never seen ‘Cosmos’.
    I’ve never heard any of Neil’s speeches outside of the questionable material.
    I’ve never read anything by him.

    He’s not my idol. I think he could be a great force for science if he quits doing stupid shit. He also should publicly apologize. Many people do look up to him and he has a responsibility as a celeb to walk a narrower line than the rest of us.

    I see everyone lined up to address everything I mentioned, except what the crux of the article raises – who’s reality is real enough to rule the masses? 36 posts, and nary a mention of it, even though I’ve repeated it in my posts. Beat me up all you like – my ego can sustain Christian belittlement. But your lack, all of you, of approaching my actual question is strange. Why avoid it? I’ll troll back in a few weeks when I need another lift.
    Ciao und Tschüüs

  38. @Billy Squibs – I just got the chance to read your HuffPoo link to Massimo’s article. (I’ve listened to Massimo’s podcast since day 1, he’s a phenomenal Philosopher) After reading the entirety and Tyson’s response, I’m starting to think Neil has/is attaining an overly ego-centric view of himself and his works. I found this article more enlightening than the above OP, but mostly because it contains Tyson’s own words at the end.

    If you guys are bored and wanna trash Tyson a bit more, go to Billy’s link –
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/massimo-pigliucci/neil-degrasse-tyson-and-the-value-of-philosophy_b_5330216.html

  39. Dhay says:

    Martin > More comments = more views = more hits = more revenue…. C’mon, the God of Greed is calling you.

    This sounds familiar. Ah yes, Richard Dawkins. Alex Gabriel on FreeThought Blogs reports (and provides links):

    Since that Buzzfeed article went up and Sam Harris mouthed off about ladybrains, Dawkins has railed nonstop about bloggers like me and Lee ‘faking outrage‘ for money. (Far be it from the author of The God Delusion, worth $135m according to the Sunday Times, to engineer controversy for profit.) Backstroking through my own pools of cash, I have to tell him £17.50 – from seventeen different posts – is the most I’ve ever made from a month’s ad hits.
    http://freethoughtblogs.com/godlessness/2014/09/20/exposing-adam-lees-lies/

    Dawkins is wrong; you are wrong; try not to parrot uncritically.

  40. TFBW says:

    I see everyone lined up to address everything I mentioned, except what the crux of the article raises – who’s reality is real enough to rule the masses?

    I think we’ve seen evidence aplenty that Martin has no idea what the crux of anything is. He sees what he wants to see. The crux of the article is that a man who claims, “if your belief system is not founded in an objective reality, you should not be making decisions that affect other people,” uses fabricated anecdotes and distortions to back up his politics, and he doesn’t even see the irony in that. If we accept his statement as given, you see, then he ought not to be allowed to make decisions that affect other people, because he’s either out of touch with reality (disqualified on his own terms), or deliberately feeding us falsehoods (untrustworthy).

    As to the question, “whose reality is real enough to rule the masses?” — what can one say? In principle, a person with a complete and total grasp of objective reality could be an evil, despotic tyrant, so it’s basically a really stupid question unless you think an omniscient evil tyrant is better than someone less knowledgeable but well-intentioned. I really didn’t want to point that out, but Martin’s pushing the issue by trying to frame it like we’re all to chicken to answer, so there you have it.

  41. Billy Squibs says:

    Wow Martin! What happened from 8:46pm onwards? You went and got all “angry and belligerent atheist” stereotype on us.

    “TFBW, Billy, and GM all bash Osteen as ‘not a real Christian’”

    Could you stop making quotes up, please. That’s more deGrasse Tyson’s style, no?

    To be clear, I never Stated that Osteen was “not a real Christian”. I don’t know enough about the man to start making such pronouncements. Even the podcast I linked to, whist strongly critical of Osteen and his shocking lack of scholarship, didn’t go as far as to claim that wasn’t a Christian. Though I suppose there comes a point when one has sufficiently departed from the classical tenets of Christianity it would be difficult if not impossible for me to consider them a Christian any longer. For example, if one denied the divinity of Christ.

  42. 9lives says:

    Tyson is lying for science

  43. TFBW:

    “I did no such thing, and I don’t see anyone else doing that either. I accused him of sloppy scholarship, and I stand by that if the report about what he said is accurate.”

    I also think it’s worth pointing out that several commenters here had no problem criticising Osteen’s sloppiness when the topic was brought up, whereas Martin’s spent most of the thread desperately trying to change the subject.

  44. Peter says:

    What kind of person goes s around saying things like “if your belief system is not founded in an objective reality…..”?

    One who thinks large numbers of people are stupid or wicked, but is eager to dispense a cure. A zealous convert to an ideology.

    Not the sort of person you want making decisions that affect large numbers of people. Definitely unqualified for public office in my book.

  45. TFBW says:

    @The original Mr. X:
    It’s also worth asking whether there’s anything that anyone could have said which would have earned Martin’s approval, or whether he was always going to disapprove of theists and their viewa as a matter of principle. He started by asking, “you rant on Tyson for errors, where is your outrage for this story?” But was he satisfied with disapproval when it was offered? Certainly not! Instead, he said … well, I can’t actually paraphrase what he said, since it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. It’s the comment that starts with “Hilarious!” and suggests that we theists are an inharmonious bunch, and that secularity solves everything (as though a further lack of common belief would have that effect). My point is that you can be sure he would have come down on us hard had we given Osteen’s (alleged) sloppy scholarship a free pass, so it’s damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.

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