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Open Thread: TAE #751 (Matt and Jen)

While I’m thinking about it, here’s the thread.  At the moment I’m sitting in the studio, with my laptop, about five minutes left to go, and this guy is still on the line presenting his proof that God exists, or at least trying to make the case that he really does care about what’s true.

Comments

  1. says

    My jaw dropped when the 2nd to last caller said that he doesn’t understand the mode of thinking where you follow where the evidence leads.

    The reason is that it is a consistently demonstrably accurate approach to learning about reality.

    Following the evidence has resulted in the following real/true things:

    Cell phones, airplanes, computers, vaccinations, satellites, space travel, optical mice, LCD technology, radio technology, every household chemical there is, CFL lights, LED lights, microwaves, X-Ray imaging, audio equipment, digital magnetic storage techniques, EEPROM (Flash), laser technology, MRIs, composite materials, solar panels, [add in more things here].

    Making something up and then trying to support it by cherrypicking evidence has resulted in the following real/true things:

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

  2. CompulsoryAccount7746 says

    In an uncrashable car, leaving the seatbelt unfastened has no consequences. Wearing the seatbelt is restrictive and unappealing, so I need a reason. My own car hasn’t crashed, so I’ll pretend it’s the uncrashable variety.

    For my argument, let’s overlook how many other drivers crash in similar-looking vehicles, and lack of precedent for such a car that is both capable of getting me somewhere and has no chance of collision.

  3. says

    I’ve thought about writing about the parallels between computer programming and science, as I find the process of debugging progrmas is very similar to the scientific method.

    If I don’t follow where the evidence takes my investigation, then my career in web development would never have started. The only programs I would have been able to get operational would have been flukes.

    What I have found is that common sense is a poor guide. Intuition is a poor guide. I’ve found that the truth is often stranger than fiction, and if I didn’t follow the evidence, I’d never be able to figure that out. I’d be stuck on my first gut reaction – forever wrong.

    So please, tell me some more about how evidence based hypothesis testing doesn’t make sense.

  4. paul says

    Eyes and ears started glazing over about 15 minutes into that, what was it, 40 minute call? Matt’s hang-up-on-yo-ass trigger finger is a little rusty.

  5. CompulsoryAccount7746 says

    So please, tell me some more about how evidence based hypothesis testing doesn’t make sense.

    If you’re ignorant enough, hypotheses will be hard to generate.
    If you have insufficient skills, tools, or organization – or if the situation’s inconsistent or subject to outside interventions – testing’s not gonna go well.
     
    These aren’t problems with empiricism, but rather problems with a particular person’s ability to expect to successfully apply it to a given issue. Cripple someone’s confidence in enough areas, and learned helplessness might make sense to them.

  6. CompulsoryAccount7746 says

    Making something up and then trying to support it by cherrypicking evidence has resulted in the following real/true things:

    – Profitable careers in woo and advertising
    – Political movements
    – Far-reaching religious institutions
    – Cheap labor castes (maintained by doctrines of inferiority/subservience)
    – Placebo medicine
    – Blind gambles that coincidentally turn out to be correct less often than chance
    – Umm… Corn Flakes
    – Cautionary examples

    Human manipulations and weirdly motivated discoveries are still real things. But even so, science can come along and optimize them.

  7. says

    Alright, that wasn’t really what I was getting at, but you do have a point, based on how I phrased it.

    I’m addressing advanced technologies that advance humanity from real science that you can’t just guess at without evidence.

    The Harry Potter literature is also not real, but manifests as real books – not within the realm of what I’m talking about, though.

    If those are examples of “making stuff up” results, then I think it reinforces my point about the utility of evidence-based investigation.

  8. andrewhawkins says

    Though he didn’t show a very good understanding of epistemology or the scientific method, I think his main contention was since God is unfalsifiable it shouldn’t make a difference if he believes or not. The point that any belief affects actions and decisions couldn’t be driven home hard enough.

    The other thing that gets me is that only an ill-defined deist god is really unfalsifiable. Most theistic claims are easily destroyed under scrutiny.

  9. andrewhawkins says

    Instead of “pleasure is generally preferable to pain,” I prefer Sam Harris’ wording: “well-being is preferable to suffering.” Because the pleasure of being strung out on heroine is ultimately bad, and pain can be good when it averts us from bad behavior (per Matt’s hand on the stove example).

  10. Tomasz R. says

    Actually you may start from what is totally bad, and define moral as activity that tries to achieve opposite to this. My favorite is “destruction of everyting” as a starting point. So the closer your actions are to this, the worse morally you are.

    This example may not be liked by religious people, as their gods supposedly did such things eg. by floods.

  11. John Kruger says

    Yargh, un-falsifiable man strikes again!

    I really think that guy does not understand the problem with an un-falsifiable theory. There is no way to distinguish such a thing from something completely made up. I wish the hosts might have nailed him on that more, but I doubt it would have made much of a difference in the end.

    I like the idea of all powerful leprechauns, therefore they exist. I cannot think of any harm in believing in them, thus they doubly exist. Besides, I am happy thinking I might get a pot of gold someday, so you lose a-leprechaunists!

  12. hp9000 says

    Whether the second caller likes an orange or not is irrelevant; the fact is, the orange still exists. It’s not a preference. As it was explained to him a million times in the show, he cares more about what he prefers than about the truth. His preference to believe in a fantasy may not have caused him any direct harm so far, but he’ll come across other people who have different preferences than his and will certainly impact him, and he won’t think that being free to believe anything is a harmless thing. Heck, people who believed in a different god than his crashed two planes into the Twin Towers. And they were (probably) happy to be doing god’s will. Is that OK for him, then? We’re back to whether believing in something or someone, without any evidence, is perfectly fine as long as it makes you happy. No, it’s not fine; you don’t live in isolation and your beliefs shape your behaviors and your behaviors impact the people around you. People who don’t care about others are usually referred to as sociopaths.

  13. Tomasz R. says

    The special case: the Hiding God. His powers lie in hiding so well, that nobody is able to find him. The more you are not able to find him, the more it proves his powers!

  14. jacobfromlost says

    It seems the caller doesn’t distinguish between a preference among things the existences of which are falsifiable (like fruits), and a preference among things that are unfalsifiable (such as gods and other beliefs that can redefine “harm”, or anything else, any way they like).

    In his last call, he said something about it being ok to believe unfalsifiable things as long as it didn’t hurt other people.

    He doesn’t seem to realize that believing unfalsifiable things makes the idea of “hurting people” totally open to “preference”. Perhaps my preference of unfalsifiable god says that it is very good and helpful to destroy people who believe in his unfalsifiable god (and, indeed, it would be HARMFUL NOT TO DESTROY them, so it makes me happy to destroy them, which means it is ok).

    He says that his harmless, unfalsifiable god would not approve of me destroying him and those who believe like him, but my unfalsifiable god says people who believe in his unfalsifiable god are destroying the universe, and damning souls to hell for all eternity. That’s bad. So DESTROYING people who believe in his unfalsifiable god is the best, most helpful thing to do and minimizes the harm his belief in his unfalsifiable god will cause to others and the universe.

    Once you say it is fine to believe in any specific “unfalsifiable” thing, there is nothing stopping the person next to you to redefine “harm” to mean “allowing you to live.”

    I think it might also be considered that there is some indication that the caller doesn’t REALLY believe in an unfalsifiable god, as the principle of “not harming others” seems to supercede even his idea of an unfalsifiable god, and his idea of “harm” seems to be a reasonable one demonstrated in reality with evidence. (And I just remembered that in the last call, he said that he is open to the possibility of future evidence falsifying his unfalsifiable god…which means it isn’t unfalsifiable, which means the caller doesn’t know what “unfalsifiable” means, which also means he doesn’t believe in an unfalsifiable god. He’s just using the word.)

    The problem is that he doesn’t see how it is harmful to believe in an unfalsifiable god as long as that belief conforms to not being harmful in demonstrable reality.

    The fact is, it may not be. But I wouldn’t call that “belief” in an unfalsifiable god, either. I would call that belief in “doing no harm in reality” being projected on a very nebulous, perhaps undefined, CERTAINLY CONTINGENT (and hence falsifiable), “unfalsifiable god” that could be tossed aside and you would still be you, still be believing in “doing no harm in reality”, because the “do no harm” part is your primary premise–that’s why he already tossed all the god concepts he thought were harmful and reduced his god concept to virtually, or exactly, nothing…then ask us, what is the harm in believing god is next to nothing?

    Well, the answer is that it is harmful to you to exactly the degree you believe in something that is unfalsifiable, and harmful to everyone (including himself) in advocating that it is perfectly ok to believe in unfalsifiable things as long as it isn’t “harmful”. HARMFUL is something that is falsifiable, and if you are going to believe in something unfalsifiable, you cannot make it CONTINGENT on something that is falsifiable…otherwise you are contradicting yourself, and giving a free pass to others who believe in different “unfalsifiable gods” based on a “preference” to do whatever they already wanted to do (ranging from “doing no harm”, to “bring on the extinction of humanity any way we can so we can all live forever in unfalsifiable heaven”).

  15. CompulsoryAccount7746 says

    Take the unfalsifiable solipsistic proposition:
    “People other than myself only appear to feel pain.”
    There’s clearly harm in believing this if false, so there’s reason to avoid it.
     
    What he didn’t get was that even believing unfalsifiable do-nothing gods can have harm if false. He wasted a chunk of his and everyone else’s lives talking about it.

  16. Trooper CX says

    You guys need to take a page from the book of Tom Ashbrook from On Point. He is king at cutting off the caller when they become rambly and repetitive. That way you can get to more than 2 calls a show.

  17. Daumier says

    I don’t know what game Mr. Unfalsifiable is playing, but it sounds like a great way to mess with friends.

    “Hey, you want an unfalsifiable apple?”

    “Uh, I don’t think that’s an apple.”

    “No, it’s an apple.”

    “But it looks like an orange. I’m pretty sure that’s an orange.”

    “No, it’s an unfalsifiable apple. You can’t say it’s anything other than an apple, because it’s unfalsifiable.”

    “But I’m pretty sure all tests will conclusively show that it’s an orange.”

    “No, I just told you it’s an unfalsifiable apple. It’s something that can’t be subjected to testing.”

    “But I can. Look, I’ll cut it up and show you. See? It’s an orange. It tastes like an orange. It looks like an orange. Quit saying it’s an apple.”

    “No, the characteristics of this apple are unfalsifiable. It doesn’t matter what you see or taste, it’s an apple on another plane beyond our senses.”

    “I don’t think you can just throw the word unfalsifiable on something and just make it so just because you said so, and then say whatever you want about it because I supposedly can’t prove you wrong, even when I can demonstrate you are wrong. You’re just making stuff up, and you sound like you’re five years old.”

    “Look, I didn’t want to have to tell you this, but I’m unfalsifiable.”

  18. tosspotovich says

    I’d forgotten about this site…

    What’s the harm in autism denial?
    Katie McCarron Murdered by her mother; Abubakar Tariq Nadama Died; Jack Piper’s Bowel perforated in 12 places.

    What’s the harm in moon landing denial?
    Bart Sibrel Punched in the face by Buzz Aldrin.

    Taking nothing away from from the more serious issues, that is just hilarious!

  19. says

    If people want to know more about what the first caller was wondering about – ‘reading or picking up’ signals from others, and sensing others mental states, then one can google mirror neuron systems or unconscious simulation. It should explain pretty much all such things.

  20. Fabricio Ferreira says

    I’m glad I’m not watching the show for now. Not losing too much, I see.

    Please, those long creationist calls suck. Big time. They suck more than Charlie The Schmarriage Guy ever sucked. Could we please go back on making the shows interesting again?

  21. Emil Boulos says

    Not sure if anyone has said this already, but here’s what I was thinking while listening to the ‘unfalsifiable’ quasi-philosopher via podcast just now:

    First, while the concept of an “unfalsifiable god” is imaginable, it is in itself a tautology. In order for there to be a truly unfalsifiable deity, it must not have any interaction with material reality, since any such interaction would provide a data point that could (theoretically at least) be proven or dis-proven.
    As Matt and Jen were trying to say (I think) what would be the benefit of believing in such a tautology, and why would a reasonable person even ‘prefer’ to believe such a thing, since by definition no benefit could accrue from such a belief?

    In fact, the caller holds no such belief, as born out by his later confession of a belief in ‘soul’ and ‘after-life’, presumably emanating from his ‘unfalsifiable’ god. As the hosts were on their way to indicating, these concepts are ultimately falsifiable: circumstantially at least, if not completely refutable, therefore providing data points that are in fact falsifiable.

    Finally, the caller’s challenge that no belief in god does not differ from his belief in an ‘unfalsifiable’ deity, is either dishonest (or self-delusional) since an unfalsifiable god cannot provide the benefits he claims for his, or it is refutable on the basis that his belief in an eternal soul and an after-life will change his behavior in the material world, as any of us who have slogged our way to atheism through the miasma of a christian upbringing can attest. Indeed, once you realize that this life is all any of us have, it must change the way you live it, since it now has an importance and immediacy that it previously lacked.

    I appreciate the obvious sincerity of the caller (though not his lack of clarity in thought or expression) but he needs to free himself of the delusion of his post-modernist prejudice against objective reality if he is to ever overcome this patently fuzzy thinking. The idea that opinions and facts are interchangeable or carry equal weight has no value outside of aesthetics or literary theory.

  22. D.H. says

    I think Matt missed an important opening when the second caller asked what harm his beliefs would have on the world around him. It could affect the way he votes, how he treats someone(gay, atheist, etc.), and/or charities. Could have lead him to that conclusion with questions. Did anyone else see this as an opening?

  23. jacobfromlost says

    watch?v=AKtOj8Tup20

    I think they handled the caller better here. If you don’t want to slog through the 25 minutes, skip to minute 21. Matt explains that asserting something is unfalsifiable stops one from searching for the truth, and the caller then counters that he could still look for the truth anyway…which is a basic admission that his god isn’t unfalsifiable.

    The caller also counters that science says things are true and then continues searching anyway. Tracie explains that science doesn’t declare things to be unfalsifiable.

    It seems to me the caller really doesn’t understand what “unfalsifiable” means. He’s just using the word as a shield against criticism.

  24. Daald says

    You can’t believe in an unfalsifiable god and believe in an afterlife. As soon as you die you will have the proof that the god does exist and as such that god was never unfalsifiable. An unfalsifiable god would not provide an afterlife.

  25. terrycollins says

    Another great show, and a good decision to keep Jonathan on for most of the show. Matt had complete control, until the brain chemistry part, where Johathan at least brought up some good food for thought and stumped Matt for a response

    Matt: Do you believe it’s plausible my brain chemistry changed between the time I was a believer and and the time I was a non believer?

    Jonathan: Yes I do think it’s plausible.

    Matt: ok.

    Not a great gotcha moment, but Matt really has no way of proving this false one way or another. It also ties in with determinism, and how much control we have in what our beliefs are.

    Hope he calls again.

  26. jacobfromlost says

    D.H: It could affect the way he votes, how he treats someone(gay, atheist, etc.), and/or charities.

    Me: This was a continuation of an earlier conversation with this caller. Matt and Tracie brought this up to him before, but the caller claimed the three in his belief was A) that it does not harm anyone, B) it makes him happy, and C) that the god was unfalsifiable. Whenever you criticize ONE of these, the caller simply jumped to another–so if you criticized a belief in a god that would lead to harming others, he would say he doesn’t believe in that god. The key problem as I see it is that “harming others” is falsifiable, and he seemed to elevate that criteria about his belief in his unfalsifiable god (although the way he described the god was such that it WAS falsifiable).

    Daal: As soon as you die you will have the proof that the god does exist and as such that god was never unfalsifiable.

    Me: Right, but the caller simply says that means the god is unfalsifiable now, not after he dies. Which technically means it is not unfalsifiable, but I’m not sure the caller understood this because he made other such errors in the previous conversation (he said there could be future evidence to disprove his “unfalsifiable” god).

    Psychologically it is interesting to me that the caller started off believing in a fundamentalist, bible-based god (according to himself in the link above), and over time he has redefined it in his own mind to be very close to the “metaphysical nothing” the caller from last week was harping about. It’s almost as if he got into the habit of thinking it was reasonable to believe in a god, so the habit became a persistent feeling that made him happy…but once he examined the question in light of reason, it became clear it was not reasonable, but the FEELING persisted. Therefore he still has the belief based on FEELING, but not on reason, because reason won’t support it. (Reminds me of the Darwin quote from the de Botton thread.) And the FEELING makes him feel good, so he keeps asking why a feeling that makes him feel good is bad. But criticizing the feeling that makes him feel good with REASON isn’t working because he is actively ignoring reason–that’s how he got to this position in the first place.

    This is a prime example of my point in the de Botton thread–emotion and reason are integral components to human thinking. You can never really separate the two. Getting someone to recognize that their reasoning was mistaken is one thing. Getting them to recognize that the habit of that mistaken reasoning led them to a particular feeling, and that DESPITE how correct that feeling feels, it is based on faulty reasoning…is something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.

    You can point all day long to people who used faulty reasoning to get into a habit of feeling that their conclusions were correct, when reality shows us they are not correct (indeed, can’t all be correct, because many of those people have conflicting habits of reasoning and feeling)…but it doesn’t matter to someone like the caller because the FEELING is so strong. All we can do is to continue pointing this out and hope they can come to grips with the fact that NOT believing in an “unfalsifiable god” doesn’t have to make you UNHAPPY.

    That may be a concept and feeling totally unimaginable to someone like the caller. (I suggest this as an approach next time: ask the caller if he can imagine being happy while NOT believing in his unfalsifiable god. If he can’t…this may be the sticking point, and the place to begin–helping him imagine being happy while NOT believing in an unfalsifiable god.)

  27. rrpostal says

    Wait. If his god is unfalsifiable… how does he know enough about it to call it unfalsifiable? It’s like saying the one thing I can tell you about god is that I can’t tell you even one thing about god.

    He was a decent enough guy. I think that’s a big reason he’s been given such latitude. But c’mon. The argument we are having is not can belief in god make you happy. The question should be is belief justified.

  28. rrpostal says

    I just read what I wrote. Obviously the caller would say that because it makes him happy, it is “justifiable”. I don’t agree, and that was the whole conversation. I should have written, and what I meant was, the argument should be whether there a reason to think that this god actually exists and not does this belief make you happy. I think he’s admitted he has no good reason, but he’s happy with that. Ok, have a good day. Come talk to me when you figure out tricking yourself into being happy isn’t as fulfilling as you seem to think.

  29. jacobfromlost says

    I’m not sure he is fully tricking himself anyway. If he were, he wouldn’t be calling the show.

  30. Emil Boulos says

    I agree Jacob, Matt was pithier and more coherent in the previous interaction with this caller. I still think they have allowed him to go on about ‘unfalsifiability’ much longer than is warranted. The concept when applied to a purported god is at once a tautology and a violation of explanatory economy (e.g., Ockham’s Razor.) Two violations of logic in one concept should be sufficient justification to call ‘shenanigans’.

  31. Aaron says

    The hosts always do a great job, but might consider making it a standard practice to ask callers what they think certain words mean, especially when the caller’s whole argument rests on that word. This would be for the same reason as asking what they mean by “God”.

    The concepts that seem to trip up theists are for example, unfalsifiable, scientific, observation, claim, default position, and evidence.

    Maybe the best metaphor for claims and evidence is a car’s gearbox: a claim is to have the car in gear, while the default position is for the car to be in neutral. It’s not that a car is either in forward or reverse which is the typical theistic misunderstanding, where “If you can’t explain X, then that means God”. Quite the contrary, if there’s no explanation then we’re in neutral, not in gear.

    In terms of falsification, theists need to understand that if something is truly unfalsifiable, then it can have absolutely no effect at all on the universe, or that the idea to be tested is so vague, or so outside of our ability to observe by any means such as equipment or even side-effects, that it can’t be tested. Any effect can theoretically be tested, even if we don’t yet have the technology as that would merely be ‘not yet falsifiable’.

    It’s not a strong position to argue that your deity is unfalsifiable; in fact, it’s the complete opposite. It means that your deity has zero effect, that you have zero information on it, that there will not be anything you could claim to know about it except what you know it cannot do, and that anything you say about it can in any case be dismissed completely in any case, as you have no information on which to base your ideas.

    If we make a guess about something, then at least our guess is based on some sort of information.

    An unfalsifiable god is even less noteworthy than a guessed-at god.

  32. VladTheImpala says

    A whole product line of Unfalsifiabili-Tees?

    And, per the orange/apple comment above, you could include dress shirts, rugby shirts…heck, cardboard boxes and knotted pieces of string.

    “That’s not a T-shirt. It’s a piece of string.”

    “No man, it’s a T-shirt. It’s an UnfalsifiabiliTee.”

  33. VladTheImpala says

    I agree that he should have been asked for (pinned down to) a definition of unfalsifiable. It’s often been discussed on the show how effective communication relies on having the same (or at least compatible/overlapping) definitions for what’s being discussed.

    If there’s no external manifestation or effect of his god (ie intercessory protection, blessings/benefits, etc.), there’s no point to believing in it.

  34. LP says

    Man, what are you talking about? Haven’t you ever looked on YouTube to see what excites people enough to post? It’s not atheists calling up with praise for the show (ho hum) or theists who sound like they have an 8th grade education phoning up as though the hosts had never heard the Good News, “and let me tell you ’bout Jayziz…”. It’s the sharp theists who put up challenging arguments for the hosts to logically deconstruct. How can you find that boring? For me, it’s the reason I tune in. I love watching Matt and Jeff and Tracie and Russell, et al., wrestle these impressive arguments to the mat. The shows that are just umpteen puddle-hopping calls, one after the other, are the sleepers.

  35. says

    I think his main contention was since God is unfalsifiable it shouldn’t make a difference if he believes or not.

    Santa Claus is real but never leaves the North Pole to deliver presents

    The problem is that such a god has no difference between existing and non-existing.

    In that case he’s believing something that he believes can have zero effect on his life or anyone else…yet insists that this belief doesn’t have any influence or consequences? Bullshit. If it matters so little why bother?

  36. Tomasz R. says

    Gods – as beings – cannot be falsifiable/unfalsifiable. This word is associated only with information. Eg. a statement about a cat can be falsified, but a cat cannot. Synesthesia of the caller?

    It’s not the first caller with mental problems. I remember episode (with Jeff) where a guy argued that it’s ok to believe that something is true because it’s internally logically consistent. This looked like a problem with the right brain hemisphere not working well, which results in left hemisphere accepting logically consistent system as true.

  37. Eyedunno says

    On the Roman Baptist thing, this video from the Republican debates is hilarious:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5xdU0YrU-o
    Note that there is a Southern Baptist on stage here, and he’s the one who got (basically) the right answer, while the two Catholics are just nuts (and the Mormon had a canned answer that completely ignored what preceded him, haha).

  38. Aaron says

    “Gods – as beings – cannot be falsifiable/unfalsifiable”

    Falsifiable/unfalsifiable is a dichotomy. It can only be one or the other.

    If a deity is so poorly defined as to be unable to make a falsifiable statement about it, then it remains something that has no effect at all, that the statement is too vague to be useful, or that there are no observations that can be made about it or its effects.

    To take your cat example, even if we don’t know that there is a cat, if we find bird feathers and dead mice in the backyard, and wake up to meowing noises, we’ve got observable effects that can lead us to say “There might be a cat” (or at an extreme end “I don’t know what’s causing it, but it can do A, B, C”). The word “God” itself comes with such an amount of baggage that it’s impossible to say anything without first asking “What do you mean by ‘God’?” If the answer is “It’s a being that we have no information on” then why use the term ‘God’, rather than “being”?

    It comes across as special pleading: “Everything that we decide exists has a series of falsifiable claims about its effects and its characteristics supported by evidence…. except I don’t want to hold my deity up to that standard.”

    Thus no matter which way is used to address the “God is unfalsifiable” claim, it fails:

    A: There’s a God… we don’t know anything at all about it (which leads to the obvious question “so why conclude it exists?”)
    B: We observe A, B, C… no reason to conclude “therefore God” without first positing what this “God” is/can do and explaining why this ‘God model’ is the only, or best, explanation.

  39. mike says

    I’m not sure why Mr Unfalsifiable called into the show, he only believes in stuff that he thinks will make him happy. At the end of the call he stated that before he could believe in atheism (sic) he wanted to know what benefits that would bring him. To me, he is the opposite of a skeptic, he looks at all the data and opinions for and against a subject then chooses which path that makes him happy. A skeptic follows the evidence, where ever it leads. I’m assuming Matt didn’t hang up on him sooner because he is being accused of having a hair-trigger. But due to the length, you could see just how twisted the logic is of some of these believers, logistic fundamentals of cause& effect,knowing vs assuming, and other basics just aren’t there.

  40. says

    I am late in news, but watching it right now. I love the label “Roman Baptist” Matt came up with. I grew up a Catholic and I thought I was too devout then, but even the superstitious, uneducated Catholicism I was being fed with at school is nothing compared to the cultist brand Santorum and others believe in.

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