Quantcast

«

»

Feb 03 2014

The cure for climate change

No worries, everyone! You’re not going to have to make any sacrifices, change life styles, or invest in alternative energy sources, because there is a shortcut: just ask god to fix it.

The Utah Farm Bureau asked the public to join in prayer and fasting for moisture for livestock and crops as part of its Harvesting Faith event Sunday.

Utah dairy farmer Ron Gibson told the Deseret News that farmers "can’t go to the Legislature to ask for help, (so they instead) decided to go to the guy upstairs."

Think it’ll work?

Oh, you atheists, I know you’re all thinking that it’s not nice to pick on stupid ideas, especially since this was an interfaith service.

Rajan Zed, who organized the Nevada service, says it drew Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish and other faith leaders.

Don’t you know that if you gather together a diverse enough collection of idiotic ideas, they magically become sensible? If only they’d brought in the Satanists, the Scientologists, a mob of ghost hunters, some ancient astronaut fanatics, Bigfoot, and a crack team of dedicated UFOlogists, they would have reached critical mass and it would be raining buckets in the West right now.

28 comments

Skip to comment form

  1. 1
    richardelguru

    But won’t all those gods be pulling in different directions? So nothing will happen???

  2. 2
    Nick Gotts

    farmers “can’t go to the Legislature to ask for help

    Ahem:

    The United States currently pays around $20 billion per year to farmers in direct subsidies as “farm income stabilization” via U.S. farm bills.

  3. 3
    Moggie

    Better start building an ark, then.

  4. 4
    Daz: Experiencing A Slight Gravitas Shortfall

    Praying? Pah! I say bring out the big guns. It’s time for the stick and bucket dance!

  5. 5
    A Masked Avenger

    The Buddhist version might actually have a positive effect: they don’t believe in any deity stepping in to fix things. They do believe in deities, but in their belief, deities just loll around in paradise, as much in need of enlightenment as the rest of us. Instead, Buddhist “prayers” are understood as intended to cultivate compassion in the petitioner. So if a bunch of Buddhists “pray” about climate change, the intended effect is to make them sensitive to the issue, which is supposed to then change their behavior.

    They also indulge in some magical thinking, of course. They believe something to the effect that the good vibes of their intentions will ripple outward and affect others. But they will generally tell you that the main effect of Buddhism is to reduce the world’s asshole count by one: the practitioner.

    If the Christians would pray for compassion, rather than a climate miracle, it might actually do some good as well. The wish for compassion is one that bespeaks at least enough compassion to wish for more of it.

  6. 6
    PZ Myers

    That’s who they forgot! The Morris dancers!

  7. 7
    Marcus Ranum

    Instead, Buddhist “prayers” are understood as intended to cultivate compassion in the petitioner.

    You’re talking about American buddhism, which bears as much resemblance to the buddhism practiced everywhere else as unitarianism does to christianity. Cue “no true buddhist” defenses, etc…

  8. 8
    Marcus Ranum

    Since a lot of fundies claim not to believe humans cause global warming, then it makes sense that their root cause analysis points to god. So it’s all part of the divine plan. Picture a great big god burning ants with a magnifying glass, while the ants scream their pain and appreciation. Religion is so sick! If we really thought god was doing it, wouldn’t we by trying to figure out how to loft a couple big city-killer nukes into his lap?

  9. 9
    erichoug

    I don’t get it, why is it that they can’t go to the legislature?

    Is it because they’re crazy and like to pretend that the massive irrigation and other farm projects of the last century were the result of John Galt’s will?

  10. 10
    Naked Bunny with a Whip

    farmers “can’t go to the Legislature to ask for help, (so they instead) decided to go to the guy upstairs.”

    Such a defeatist attitude. Tom Thompson got North Carolina to legislate sea level itself, and these farmers won’t even ask Utah to pass a law requiring rain?

  11. 11
    holytape

    Well, it would have worked, abet they forgot to take into consideration the fact that God is old and has bad aim. The east coasts thanks you for the rain.

  12. 12
    Trebuchet

    Hey, why not? It worked for Rick Perry! Didn’t it? Oh.

  13. 13
    A Masked Avenger

    Marcus

    You’re talking about American buddhism, which bears as much resemblance to the buddhism practiced everywhere else as unitarianism does to christianity.

    I can’t speak with authority about any flavor of Buddhism. Stuff I’ve read was written mostly by Asian monastics, which leads me to wonder if the disconnect between Western and traditional Buddhism is quite as sharp as your comment suggests, but I’m not educated enough, and don’t care enough, to take any sort of strong position. I’ve also had some exposure to translations of Pali suttas, and find nothing there about deities or devas materially affecting the world or our lives, and nothing whatsoever about asking them to do such things.

    Cue “no true buddhist” defenses, etc…

    To be clear, I’m not a Buddhist; I can’t tell whether your comment was specifically aimed at me.

    There’s an application of the “no true Scotsman” fallacy that irritates me, though. The comment seems to imply that Buddhists aren’t allowed to make comments about Buddhism, since one can always counter, “Well, in Tibet it’s the opposite of what you claim!” Just as Christians can’t comment about Christianity, and Atheists can’t comment about Atheism, etc. All general statements have lots of exceptions, and whether that matters is generally context-dependent. It doesn’t seem that helpful, and quickly gets annoying, to use this to contradict what everyone says.

    There’s also another aspect of this. Members of any group will often walk the line between descriptive and normative statements. A Pastafarian can say that Pastafarians believe or do X. He may mean that this is generally true, at least in his sect of Rigatonians. Or he may mean that he views this as a core value, and would refuse to associate with Pastafarians who don’t share it. He’s allowed to say all of these things. If we, as unbelievers in His Noodliness, are disinterested in the differences between Rigatonians and Vermicellians, that’s our prerogative, but it’s doesn’t really justify our contradicting him for a while before we give up with a dismissive, “Who gives a shit about denominational differences between you carbo-cult shitstains, anyway?”

    Sorry for straying off-topic, but “No true Scotsman” is a popular fallacy these days, and it’s often misused. One is allowed to make normative statements about one’s group. A major component of group membership is the right to participate in the process of defining the group. PZ participates in this process for Atheism+, for example–and advocates for including humanistic values, like feminism, despite the existence of rapists in the ranks of self-identified GNU Atheists.

  14. 14
    fernando

    And no one asked the colaboration of any worshiper of Enki?

    Last time i checked, Enki is the god that have the control of waters and was the only god that cared enough about mankind to save them in the Flood that An, Enlil, Ninhursag and the others started…

  15. 15
    woozy

    “You’re not going to have to make any sacrifices, change life styles, or invest in alternative energy sources, because there is a shortcut: just ask god to fix it.”

    If I have to start praying, that’s a pretty effin’ big lifestyle change.

    “Rajan Zed, who organized the Nevada service, says it drew Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish and other faith leaders.”

    So it’s going to fail because we atheists are going to refuse to participate. It’ll all be our fault. Man, was are a bunch of selfish dicks, aren’t we?

  16. 16
    xavierninnis4191

    Perhaps “can’t go to the Legislature to ask for help…”, rather than being the usual libertarian claptrap, as many of the above comments seem to assume, was merely a statement of the obvious: that it would be futile to request that the legislature provide rain.
    (Not that importuning god/s is any less a waste of time.)

  17. 17
    zenlike

    9 erichoug

    I don’t get it, why is it that they can’t go to the legislature?

    Because probably a large part of these prayer warriors voted in idiots in the legislature who ran on a platform of doing nothing about AGW. It’s the typical conservative attitude: first sabotage the government, then whine that the government is useless and should be abolished.

  18. 18
    Inaji

    Daz:

    It’s time for the stick and bucket dance!

    Shhhhhhhhh, you’re not supposed to mention it! You don’t want Jason Ogg to have a chat with you, or worse, Nanny.

  19. 19
  20. 20
    Inaji

    Daz:

    Here we goes…

    Hmmm…not filthy enough. ;D
     
    I do wonder how many people got a sound whack to the head during rehearsals.

  21. 21
    Daz: Experiencing A Slight Gravitas Shortfall

    I did picture it as more violenter in the books. It’s ‘elf ‘n’ safety gorn mad, I tell ya!</Peter Hitchens>

  22. 22
    JJ831

    it would be raining buckets in the West right now.

    Maybe I should take up religion, it started raining this weekend here (far from buckets, but it was better than nothing)

    No, nevermind. Instead of hoping that The Sky Fairy fixes the problem, I have worked to reduce my water consumption by:
    1. Taking shorter shows. Fewer as well (Foregoing the them when I can on the weekends)
    2. Putting my homebrewing on hold for an extended period of time (cooling/cleaning can use a lot of waste water)
    3. Looks like no garden this year
    4. The lawn is a hard rock of clay and primary successors. Sorry neighbors (OK, theirs are as bad or terrascaped).
    5. Here’s a gross one – “If its yellow, let it mellow, if it’s brown, flush it down”

  23. 23
    Lofty

    All that happens when people pray for rain is that God sends rain to people who don’t want any.
    I think they need a new deity, this one’s busted.

  24. 24
    Usernames are smart

    Hey, why not? It worked for Rick Perry! Didn’t it? Oh.
    — Trebuchet (#12)

    Even better is a few weeks later when PZ & Co. came to town, it started raining.

  25. 25
    gardengnome

    A rain dance! Yeah, that’ll do it!

  26. 26
    Stacy

    If only they’d brought in the Satanists, the Scientologists, a mob of ghost hunters, some ancient astronaut fanatics, Bigfoot, and a crack team of dedicated UFOlogists, they would have reached critical mass and it would be raining buckets in the West right now.

    Don’t forget the fatheists, standing by and smiling benignly whilst the theist brethren and sistren pray their little hearts out.

  27. 27
    Madigan Nubilous

    Mal-2 was once asked by one of his Disciples if he often prayed to Eris. He replied with these words:

    No, we Erisians seldom pray, it is much too dangerous. Charles Fort has listed many factual incidences of ignorant people confronted with, say, a drought, and then praying fervently — and then getting the entire village wiped out in a torrential flood.

  28. 28
    vortmax

    Clearly, they should have let gay marriage become legal in Utah. It worked in the UK!

Leave a Reply