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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Creeper versus Radar: The Movie

I am posting a comment and then commenting on that comment, with my words now in blue...for those who are unfamiliar with the long, long discussions on this blog, creeper is a long-time commenter with whom I have often disagreed. Unfortunately the discussion has become personal in that he has accused me of being a liar:

Anonymous said...

1. First of all, thank you for being honest about the fact that you simply made the 11% up.

I didn't "make it up" but rather, as I explained, saw no poll specific to the question in Barna and tried to do some math to come up with an approximate number. My later post shows that the estimate was way too high, but I was using the Barna figures rather than just making something up.

I'm still a little puzzled why a "quick and off-hand guess", as you put it, would result in something like 11%, instead of a round number, like, say, 10% or 15%. I suspect that you "calculated" it somehow, but later realized that your calculations were simply wrong.

I hoped you were capable of reading the entire post, "Debates, we have debates! Christians in US prisons? " in which I go over the numbers?

Not that it matters; your admission that it was fiction settles the matter much as we suspected.

You were the guys who gave some ridiculous number like 76% of the prison population was Christian...I used published polling numbers which were not specific and tried to use them to come up with a figure based upon them. If there was any fiction, it was the 76%, which was probably some guy finding that number associated with the entire country and then applying it to jail populations.

2. I take it that you're now happy to characterize the US as a secular nation, not a Christian nation?

Wow, who is trying to be deceptive now? The polling numbers show that the USA is a religious nation that associates itself more with Christianity than other religions, even if most of them are not actually Christians, and that a very small percentage are secularists.

I mean, 9%... that's not exactly a million miles away from the number of full-on atheists, is it? And a whole lotta confused people who think they're Christians but aren't... They go to church and all that (at least so they say), but for you they just don't count... They will not be happy campers when they find themselves in hell.Secular nation it is.

It would be hard to say what percentage of those who associate themselves with Christianity are actually born again. Get this straight, "Christian" = disciple. There are plenty of people who have named the name of Christ and believed in Him but don't care to try to live their lives out for Him.

If I were in charge of polling I could ask the questions that would sort these numbers out, but I'm not so I can only use Barna or a similar poll to try to figure out the numbers. Maybe there are 9% of the population who are disciples. Is the percentage of non-disciple believers somewhere around 15% or so? The numbers are hard to interpret since the questions are not asked properly. But 76.5% of the population associate themselves with Christianity somehow, which means that we are not a secular society, we are a religious one.


3. "Not sure why that is such an issue for some of these commenters. But I will tackle this, since Creeper has been kind enough to focus on one issue and stay there, rather than sending us off down a rabbit trail."Seeing as I listed this as part of a lengthy list, I don't see why it needs to be a priority over all the other issues. It was merely a nicely visible example of you making stuff up and using self-serving definitions as the wind blows. Your confession is appreciated.

I confessed nothing. You are being deceitful.

4. Radar now: "I have tried to find a percentage of evangelicals in prison and have not succeeded. I suspect that, due to the nature of the description of an evangelical, that most evangelicals found in prison were converted after incarceration. I would welcome a good source of information that could nail that down more thoroughly but so far haven't found one."

Radar not so long ago: "My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed." ("A town where God was not allowed (or, an EAE paradise)")Does this count as bearing false witness? Is lying okay with you?And if lying is okay with you, does that mean you're still one of those "real" Christians you're talking about? Or is it okay if you're doing it for Jesus? (One of those weird "absolute laws"...)

Lying? You are spinning this whole thing very deceptively, probably because you wish to take attention away from the issues that make you uncomfortable. I have already explained in detail that I was estimating that number based on figures found in Barna which means that I was certainly neither lying nor making something up. Second, that statement is true. "Up to" means "equal to or less than" and the numbers I have found and posted in "Debates, we have debates! Christians in US prisons? " do, in fact tell us that the number of Christians in jail populations is less than 11%, thus making my statement factual. Therefore, what I posted was true based upon the information I could glean from the resources at hand and I will stand by that statement and the contents of my subsequent post in which I drilled down on those numbers to come up with a better estimate if possible.

5. "Let's see, first, I was hoping to debate on more interesting issues like how does a naturalistic atheistic evolutionist explain the ex nihilo appearance of 1) matter and 2) life?"Well, I was just responding to some of those points yesterday (see the comments on your post "Why did the Ice Core man get 'Iced'?"), so respond whenever you'd like. For starters, who says matter came from non-matter (ex nihilo)?

Why would you post comments on a recent post back on an old one like that? I'll take a look eventually (maybe the weekend), but my recent posts like "Can science and Christianity mix? " and "But is evolution actually science?? " is where that particular discussion is now and I you didn't respond there other than to say you could easily debate me and then slip away.

Why would you go back to Ice Man to debate other issues? Is it because you want to keep discussing ice cores and get away from the real issues? You want to display a big face on a wall and ignore the man behind the curtain? You did mention you had work issues, and I understand that, but if you really have some good stuff to say, say it up front where the discussion is rather than burying it way back on old posts somewhere.


I also notice that you don't mention wanting to discuss other matters, such as a young Earth being supported by tree rings and ice cores. Let me guess: you realized that that doesn't add up for a YEC position either..."Or why won't they acknowledge that they are beginning their interpretations of evidence from a point of view (some of them do, but many run from this) but instead try to pretend that they have the only point of view?"I think we've addressed this numerous times, Radar: yes, there are plenty of world views, and we're absolutely not averse to acknowledging that we have points of view, contrary to your claim. When it comes to science, however, the world views stay at the door, and certain methods are used - by Christians, Jews, what have you. These methods were even used by all the non-atheist scientists you listed not so long ago.

I have posted many quotes and comments from scientists that refutes what you are saying about world views. I have come to realize that you are too stubborn to admit that you filter through a world view, or you are just incapable of seeing it, or you fear to admit it because it brings in secondary questions you don't wish to acknowledge, let alone answer. I guess there is no point discussing it with you in this case. Talk about fallacies, you live in one!

They are put in place so that one can compare findings instead of constantly "agreeing to disagree", which would bring scientific progress to a screeching halt. This is why large numbers of Christians, Jews etc. freely engage in the scientific method while keeping their religious beliefs at home.The only people for whom this is a problem are people like yourself who have a preconceived notion of what the results should be and are disappointed when the facts don't match their views.

Hahahahahaha! This is a classic pot-calling-the-kettle-black. Preconceived notion is your middle name.

Believe me, if YECs could present a 6,000 year timeline that actually could account for ice cores, tree rings, and radiometric dating, I would be quite interested and open-minded.

I don't believe it for a minute. So far you have ignored any evidences that would disagree with your world view entirely.

The chances of such a timeline being created in light of the overwhelming evidence indicating an old Earth are vanishingly small at this point, of course, even if you did claim, for some odd reason that I can't fathom, that you had provided a link to it. What was that about?

It was about giving you a chance to look at evidences that are at odds with your belief system.

-- creeper

When you call a man a liar deceptively, that makes you the liar. I am publically challenging your statement. I have shown evidence that I did not lie. Until and unless you repent and admit your fault I consider you a liar and a fraud for making that charge against me.

23 comments:

Lava said...

Radar,

I hoped you were capable of reading the entire post, "Debates, we have debates! Christians in US prisons? " in which I go over the numbers?

I read the entire post. You provide us with some of the facts and figures you looked at, but you provide no methodology you used to come up with the 11% number.

I have already explained in detail that I was estimating that number based on figures found in Barna which means that I was certainly neither lying nor making something up. Second, that statement is true. "Up to" means "equal to or less than" and the numbers I have found and posted in "Debates, we have debates! Christians in US prisons? " do, in fact tell us that the number of Christians in jail populations is less than 11%, thus making my statement factual.

Maybe factual but perhaps deceptive. If you say "around 10%" or "somewhere under 20%" the reader knows you are speaking more generally. To pull a non-round number out as an estimate and present it as fact is deceiving.

radar said...

re-read the post.

Lava said...

Is this your methodology?

In any event, by usage among Christians and by the Bible definition, Christian most definitely means to be a disciple of Christ. Now lets look at some polling numbers from Barna.

* Looking across the past decade we find the following percentages of born again Christians:

2006 - 45% 2005- 40% 2004-38% 2002-40% 2001- 41% 2000- 41% 1999- 40% 1998- 39% 1997- 43% 1996-39% 1995-35% 1994- 36% 1993-36% 1992- 40% 1991- 35%

There are approximately 101 million born again Christians. (2006)

Wow, that is a big number! But you look within the numbers and you see that there is a problem with the definition of "Christian."

* Half of born again Christians (46%) agree that Satan is "not a living being but is a symbol of evil." (2005)

That cuts the 45% in half, since this is an unbiblical view and directly contradicts the teaching of Christ. Remember, a Christian is a disciple of Christ!

* About one-third of born agains (33%) believe that if a person is good enough they can earn a place in Heaven. (2005)

This directly contradicts Jesus, who said that, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." So that would eliminate 33% right there.

* 28% of born agains agree that "while he lived on earth, Jesus committed sins, like other people," compared to 42% of all adults. (2005)

That eliminated 28%.

* Born again Christians are more likely than non-born again individuals to accept moral absolutes. Specifically, 32% of born agains said they believe in moral absolutes, compared to just half as many (15%) among non-born agains. (2002)

Only 32% believe in moral absolutes. That would take 45% down to 14.4% just by itself, without adding the disclaimers. How are we to know what percentage of the population is actually Christian?????

Well, only 8% identify themselves as "Evangelical Christians" and that may be a fair number. To be an evangelical Christian who believes in evangelizing, well, that is part of discipleship. This demographic chart online gives a number of people identifying themselves as Christians in the USA as 76.5% and yet Evangelicals come in at only 8%. That means that about 10% of those who call themselves Christians could be expected to actually meet the Biblical definition, if that.

Barna states that 9% of the population are Evangelicals. Here are some related findings:

* Of the five faith segments (evangelicals, non-evangelical born again Christians, notional Christians, adherents of non-Christian faiths, and atheists/agnostics), evangelicals were the most likely to do each of the following:
* discuss spiritual matters with other people.
* volunteer at a church or non-profit organization.
* discuss political matters with other people.
* discuss moral issues and conditions with others.
* stop watching a television program because of its values or viewpoints.
* go out of their way to encourage or compliment someone

So my definition of Christian, and the Bible's, is most closely associated today with the term, "Evangelical." Trying to find a percentage of evangelicals in jail is hard, since most of them seem to be either part of a ministry TO inmates, if they are in the US, or have been jailed in foreign lands simply for the crime of BEING and evangelical!

I now suspect my quick and offhand guess at 11% was way too high. Maybe more like 1%.


If yes, then where did the 11% come in? What I get from this part of the post is that you looked at some numbers and guessed. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Anonymous said...

You publically challenge my statement. Sounds official.

All righty, I publicly respond to your challenge.

I thought I had made it pretty clear in my previous comment what the lie was, but I guess not. So I’ll dissect it for you.

Here is your lie:

"My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed."

In this sentence you claimed that:

1. You had figures –
2. Figures that show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian,
3. And that show that many of those Christians were converted after being jailed.

Fact:

1. You do not have these figures. You’ve admitted so yourself... after plenty of prodding by commenters.
2. The alternative figures that you subsequently presented do not show that “up to 11% of the prison population is Christian”.
3. The alternative figures that you subsequently presented do not show that “many of those Christians were converted after being jailed”.

Aside from the fact that you are going by a completely different definition of ‘Christian’ here than you would accept in other arguments, say about the US being overwhelmingly Christian (same word, different meaning), even your backup position that you presented in the post preceding this one doesn’t hold up.

Here’s what a truthful statement would have looked like based on what you knew at the time:

“While the prison population in general falls roughly along the same lines as the general population when it comes to self-identification, I suspect that evangelical Christians (which is what I would consider true Christians) make up a very small proportion of the prison population. I also suspect that a significant number of the evangelical Christians in jail convert to Christianity after incarceration.”

Would that have been so hard?

Why make stuff up?

Is honesty not a virtue in your book?



Now I’d like to briefly point out why the backup position you opted for also doesn’t add up.

1. As you’ve already admitted, you do not have access to data re. evangelical Christians behind bars. Nothing wrong with that, but where you then go awry is when you start making stuff up - I guess in order to sway the easily confused.

You protest that you didn't make stuff up because you based it on Barna figures...

... but Radar, if you take figures on one subject and freely apply them to a different subject without a logical connection between the two, that is making stuff up.

If I were to tell you that, say, 20% of the US population are not Christian and that therefore your first-born child is not a Christian, I would be making stuff up (as well as committing some hefty fallacies). The fact that I would "use figures" doesn't help the fact that the argument doesn't hold up logically at all.

And that – analogously – is exactly what you have done with your line of reasoning here.

2. You cite the statistic that approx. 8-10% of the general population are evangelical Christians. That’s still fine as well.

But this is where this runs into a brick wall...!

You can’t go from this and draw any conclusion at all about what this means for the general prison population. Since you lack data about the proportion of evangelical Christians (to whom you restricted your previous quote about the 11%), all bets are off: evangelicals could be any proportion of those self-identified Christians all the way from zero to all of them.

Which is why you do not have any figures to even support your assertion that ‘up to 11%’ of the prison population are evangelical Christians.

Next:

Not only don’t you have any numbers to support this point, you naturally have none to support your assertion that many of those Christians were converted after they went to prison.

So you have no figures to support this assertion either.

On the whole, it's a complete mystery which figures you thought supported your 11% assertion in the first place. They either never existed or you're too embarrassed to present them now.

Now, everybody makes mistakes. Mistakes turn into lies if we are repeatedly called on them and let them stand. We asked you to back up that 11% claim quite a number of times (half a dozen? a dozen?). Even now you have absolutely no way to back up that claim.

If you knew the figures didn’t exist or didn’t back up your claim, why weren't you just upfront about it?


That’s why I think it’s entirely fair to say that your statement "My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed." is a lie.


-- creeper

Anonymous said...

”I was hoping to debate on more interesting issues like how does a naturalistic atheistic evolutionist explain the ex nihilo appearance of 1) matter and 2) life?"Well, I was just responding to some of those points yesterday (see the comments on your post "Why did the Ice Core man get 'Iced'?"), so respond whenever you'd like. For starters, who says matter came from non-matter (ex nihilo)?

Why would you post comments on a recent post back on an old one like that? I'll take a look eventually (maybe the weekend), but my recent posts like "Can science and Christianity mix? " and "But is evolution actually science?? " is where that particular discussion is now and I you didn't respond there other than to say you could easily debate me and then slip away.”


Why would I want to post comments on an older post? Because these were direct responses to your comments on that post.

Your accusation that I am trying to “easily debate [you] and then slip away” doesn’t make any sense whatsoever, seeing as I specifically draw your attention to them here. Some weird approach to “slipping away”, huh?

Why would you go back to Ice Man to debate other issues? Is it because you want to keep discussing ice cores and get away from the real issues? You want to display a big face on a wall and ignore the man behind the curtain? You did mention you had work issues, and I understand that, but if you really have some good stuff to say, say it up front where the discussion is rather than burying it way back on old posts somewhere.”

You seem to think commenting on an older post is some kind of no-no...

1. Like I said, those comments were in direct response to other comments on that particular post. Where else would you like me to post them? Off topic on another post?

2. My comments are not just in response to ice cores, but to a range of questions, since these are a (partial) list of questions you have been unable to respond to in the past.

3. Are the “real issues” such non-starters as “explain how matter came from nothing” or “acknowledge your worldview”? Ice cores and tree rings certainly are real issues in this discussion. Too bad if they don't support your point of view.

4. If you find it difficult to keep up with comments on your own blog, I once again recommend you go to co.mments.com, a very handy way to keep track of blog posts and comment threads (on your own blog and elsewhere). I use it and, since I previously recommended it to you and anyone else who may read this blog, I certainly don’t expect to “slip away” in any discussion. On the contrary: I expect you to read and respond to my comments.

5. I don’t see what the “work issues” have to do with this (most of us here have jobs, don't we?). That was on another blog post entirely, and on that one I specifically remarked that I would go back and respond to your responses on that previous blog post. Not exactly what I would do if I was trying to "slip away", is it? And by the way, in case you don’t recall, that previous thread was your response to a list of previously unanswered questions that I had compiled. After your many evasions and downright non sequiturs, plenty of them remain unanswered.

Tree rings and ice cores seem to be a particularly gaping hole in your case (that's even if we leave aside for the moment the glaring inconsistency with your championing of old Earth data so you can sit at the same table with global warming skeptics).

Don't shy away from the debate now.

-- creeper

Lava said...

Creeper: That’s why I think it’s entirely fair to say that your statement "My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed." is a lie.

That statement being a lie really depends on how you define "my figures".

Taxandrian said...

Radar said:
The polling numbers show that the USA is a religious nation that associates itself more with Christianity than other religions, even if most of them are not actually Christians, and that a very small percentage are secularists.

So, Radar, do you agree with me that the US is NOT a Christian nation?

Anonymous said...

"That statement being a lie really depends on how you define "my figures"."

I don't really see how.

Seeing as Radar has no figures at all to support his version of this argument (i.e. his self-serving definition of "Christian" as only meaning evangelical Christians), it doesn't really depend on that definition of "my figures", as far as I can see.

Even the alternative, bending "my figures" to include the subsequent alternative figures he presented doesn't help, since those (a) do not allow Radar to reach his 11% conclusion and (b) don't back up much of anything, as they don't allow Radar to make any conclusion at all about the percentage of evangelical Christians among the prison population.

Whichever way you slice it, Radar once again made an unsupportable claim, and the fact that he continues not to provide those figures nor retract the statement leaves only one conclusion: that he lied.

Maybe I'm missing something here, Lava; if I am, please point it out to me.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"So, Radar, do you agree with me that the US is NOT a Christian nation?"

As Radar said himself in "Radar on Christians and hate crimes and special protectionism" (April 12th, 2007):

"But, you say, Christians are a majority in this country and need no protection, don't make me laugh! Are they? Let us shed some light on that...

The Theologica Blog presented some interesting facts in a posting, Between Two Worlds. It turns out that although around 40% of the population of the USA claims to attend church, the number of people who do so is much lower.

Only about 18-19% of the population are found in a church service on a given week, and only half of those are attending an evangelical Christian church service, while about 3% attend mainline churches and 6% go to Catholic services."


You can expect Radar to flip-flop on this as the wind blows: an overwhelmingly Christian nation one moment, poor victims the next.



-- creeper

Lava said...

I was trying to be sarcastic. If you define "my figures" as "random number I pulled from the air" than the statement can be true.

radar said...

14.4 plus 9 plus 8 = 31.4. Divided by 3 = 10.47. Rounded up, that equals 11. I was looking at Barna figures and doing a quick estimate when someone suggested that 76% of inmates were Christians! It wasn't a posting, just a reply to a question. That some of you (Lava, you are particularly disappointing) are making an attempt to characterize that as a lie calls your judgement and veracity into question. I'll not reply to these charges again.

The polling numbers show that the country associates itself with Christianity by at least three-quarters of the population. They also indicate that only about 8-9 percent are actually disciples, or Christians by the Bible definition. You can have your own definition of Christian as you will. The bottom line is that this is a country that is oriented towards Christianity, even if only a small number of us embraced Christianity as a lifestyle.

Anonymous said...

"14.4 plus 9 plus 8 = 31.4. Divided by 3 = 10.47. Rounded up, that equals 11."

??

Radar, could you tell us what these numbers are supposed to represent? It's very difficult to decipher your reasoning otherwise.

I'm guessing you're trying to somehow finagle the numbers in your post above into 11%. Leaving the rather questionable logic of your approach aside for the moment, these are still only figures for the general population...

... not the prison population.

Your claim that "My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed" remains a lie, for the reasons detailed above.

Why not just retract it?

-- creeper

Taxandrian said...

The bottom line is that this is a country that is oriented towards Christianity, even if only a small number of us embraced Christianity as a lifestyle.

- although it's quite amusing to see how you try to wriggle yourself out of it, I would really like a clear answer: when applying your definition of a christian you used on the prison population on the population of the nation as a whole, can you consider the US a christian nation, yes or no?

- considering your percentage, for the sake of the argument, to be correct: how do you explain that there even ARE evangelical christians in prison? After all, when reading your earlier posts, evangelical christians should really be the morally most perfect human beings. What do your figures say about the number of atheists in prison?

- Kent Hovind is in prison while Richard Dawkins is not. How can THAT be? Shouldn't it be the other way around?

radar said...

"The bottom line is that this is a country that is oriented towards Christianity, even if only a small number of us embraced Christianity as a lifestyle."

- although it's quite amusing to see how you try to wriggle yourself out of it, I would really like a clear answer: when applying your definition of a christian you used on the prison population on the population of the nation as a whole, can you consider the US a christian nation, yes or no?

- considering your percentage, for the sake of the argument, to be correct: how do you explain that there even ARE evangelical christians in prison? After all, when reading your earlier posts, evangelical christians should really be the morally most perfect human beings. What do your figures say about the number of atheists in prison?


Only simplistic people demand simplistic answers. My take on the religious orientation of the country is reasonable and explained thoroughly.

As you hopefully read in an earlier post, inmates coming into the jail population are only half as likely to be religion-oriented than the general population. Does that mean that there are twice as many atheists per hundred as there are in the general population? Maybe, but it is hard to nail that down because pollers haven't tried very hard. Maybe you have spotted a need?

- Kent Hovind is in prison while Richard Dawkins is not. How can THAT be? Shouldn't it be the other way around?

Not if Dawkins is a law-abiding citizen and Hovind is a misguided fringy who purposely defied the law. He regrettably deserves to go to prison and has undone much good he originally set out to do by becoming a mockery.

Now here is my question to you...if God is the ultimate lawmaker, then what eternal good will it do Dawkins to avoid jails in the here and now if he is headed for a more permanent incarceration in the afterlife? Not much.

radar said...

After that last post, creeper, I am considering just erasing anything that you write going forward. When you call the truth a lie it shows that you are the liar and calls your motivations into question. What is the internet equivalent of punching you in the nose?

Anonymous said...

"After that last post, creeper, I am considering just erasing anything that you write going forward."

That's one way to "win" an argument, I suppose. Of course it would be a complete concession on your part.

"When you call the truth a lie it shows that you are the liar and calls your motivations into question."

Which truth do you think I called a lie? You have clearly failed to demonstrate that you have figures that support your claim. I have made that clear in great detail, yet your only reply is that you'd like to censor or hurt me.

That says very little for your argument. The decent thing to do would be recognize that you "misspoke", and to retract it.

"What is the internet equivalent of punching you in the nose?"

Nice.

Not very Christian, is it?

-- creeper

Taxandrian said...

Only simplistic people demand simplistic answers. My take on the religious orientation of the country is reasonable and explained thoroughly.

I'm glad you agree with me that, by your standards of who is actually a christian, America is NOT a christian nation. And no, that's not simplistic when there's a choice between either 'true' or 'false'.

Now here is my question to you...if God is the ultimate lawmaker, then what eternal good will it do Dawkins to avoid jails in the here and now if he is headed for a more permanent incarceration in the afterlife? Not much.

Excuse me, but the three topics that eventually led to this discussion (The Ethical Atheistic Humanist: Murder is not mandatory, A town where God was not allowed, The Ethical Atheistic Evolutionist), specifically dealt with the behaviour and moral values of atheists in the physical world. Why do you suddenly feel the need to drag any possible punishment in the afterlife into this discussion? What does this have to do with law-abiding, decent morality in the physical world? You are not stating that it's better to be a christian criminal than a law-abiding atheist, I hope?


Not if Dawkins is a law-abiding citizen and Hovind is a misguided fringy who purposely defied the law.

I'm glad you agree with me that 'atheistic evolutionists' can be law-abiding citizens while 'creationist christians' can be misguided criminals, just like it can be the other way around. What again was it you were trying to prove with the three forementioned topics?

Taxandrian said...

After that last post, creeper, I am considering just erasing anything that you write going forward. When you call the truth a lie it shows that you are the liar and calls your motivations into question. What is the internet equivalent of punching you in the nose?

Radar, although this is something between you and creeper, I sure hope you take some time to reflect on what you typed there.
Now, personally, even when I think someone tells a lie, I don't usually call him a liar outright because it gets me nowhere and only gets people's backs up, even when I 'm right. Creeper apparently has a different opinion on this and simply chose to do so. And truth be told, you personally gave him both the opportunity and arguments to do so. You only have yourself to blame for this, harsh as it may seem. In another topic creeper falsely accused you of deleting one of his replies, but when realizing he was wrong, he had no problems apologizing for it, and quickly did so. Maybe something to think about? No matter which way you look at it, responding to an accusation with veiled threats of censorship and alluding to physical violence will not do you any good, especially if you wish to promote christian values and morality.

Anonymous said...

I think this it the best line from you yet Radar.
"When you call the truth a lie it shows that you are the liar and calls your motivations into question."
I'm surprised your keyboard didn't spontaneously combust when you typed that line due to the dangerously high levels of hypocracy contained in it.
I mean, just as one small example, I trust you checked out that Ken Miller clip from taxandrian in the comments on your recent anti-evolution post because it completely destroys your contention concerning the lack of transitional forms in the fossil record. I ask you, in truth, who is really "calling the truth a lie" on this blog (over and over and over again)?
I also find it interesting that you are so full of bluster over creeper's contention that you "lied" about the 11% figure. Because as far as I can tell, 99% of the comments on this blog state (with proof) that you are completely full of it.
The part about Dawkins burning in hell for his beliefs (or lack thereof) is also priceless. I seriously wonder about that god of yours Radar, I mean, sentenced to burn for all eternity because he doesn't agree with the big guy. To me, he comes across as more cold and cruel than loving and kind.
Oh, and if you delete/ban creeper, I'm done, as I'm sure will be most of your readership (at least the interesting ones).

Canucklehead

radar said...

"I mean, just as one small example, I trust you checked out that Ken Miller clip from taxandrian in the comments on your recent anti-evolution post because it completely destroys your contention concerning the lack of transitional forms in the fossil record. I ask you, in truth, who is really "calling the truth a lie" on this blog (over and over and over again)?"

Ken Miller's video depends on evidence-free assertions. Go ahead and show us all these transitional forms, please. Come on, I don't take Ken Hovind seriously, don't expect me to take Ken Miller seriously either.

"Now, personally, even when I think someone tells a lie, I don't usually call him a liar outright because it gets me nowhere and only gets people's backs up, even when I 'm right. Creeper apparently has a different opinion on this and simply chose to do so. And truth be told, you personally gave him both the opportunity and arguments to do so. You only have yourself to blame for this, harsh as it may seem. In another topic creeper falsely accused you of deleting one of his replies, but when realizing he was wrong, he had no problems apologizing for it, and quickly did so. Maybe something to think about? No matter which way you look at it, responding to an accusation with veiled threats of censorship and alluding to physical violence will not do you any good, especially if you wish to promote christian values and morality."

My comments were out of anger, true. I later realized that banning someone for an opinion rather than for offensive comments would be wrong. That Creeper calls me a liar displays his ignorance or lack of character.

The "up to 11%" comment is accurate and I stand by it as the upper limit of the Christian population in jail. I went to great lengths to present different numbers from which such figures could be extrapolated and also stated that no good poll has been done that directly uses the Biblical definition of "Christian" so I had to use the numbers available.

Perhaps Creeper has a dictionary in which the definition for a lie is: "best estimate based on availalble information", which means that most of us lie every day. If I say sunrise is at 6:30 and it actually takes place 31 seconds later, did I lie? If I promise to be at work at 8 AM and get there at 7:51, am I a liar?

I am amazed at the lack of intelligence being displayed concerning this issue...many of you seem lost when faced with math problems and likely have little idea of how to use the results of polling numbers, which are in themselves estimates in case you didn't know. Did you actually think that Barna reaches out to every single person in the USA to get exact figures? Of course not, they take a sample of the population and extrapolate the data to come up with their conclusions.

Is this tempest in a teapot driven by an agenda or is it just stupid? Here is my comment again:

My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed.

Don't be confused by "religious preferences" questions. 85% of Americans claim some kind of Protestant/Catholic religious preference, as do around 70% of inmates. Less than a third of either group actually get involved or are considered to practice or even believe the label.


I challenge you, I dare you, to disprove one iota of that statement!

Anonymous said...

"That Creeper calls me a liar displays his ignorance or lack of character."

Again, I didn't call you a liar. You are free to disown the lie. Why you choose not to do so is a mystery to me.

The only one here who has called Radar a liar is Radar.

"The "up to 11%" comment is accurate and I stand by it as the upper limit of the Christian population in jail."

Since you don't have any figures about the prison population specifically, you are unable to make this assertion. The percentage of evangelical Christians in the prison population can be anywhere from zero to 100%. You have not presented any figures at all to back up your assertion of 11% as an upper limit in the prison population.

"I went to great lengths to present different numbers from which such figures could be extrapolated and also stated that no good poll has been done that directly uses the Biblical definition of "Christian" so I had to use the numbers available."

Correct, you did present various figures, but they are not figures from which you can willy-nilly extrapolate anything about the prison population barring additional information. This extrapolation simply doesn't work, as was explained to you. If you know that 11% of people living in Timbuktu have gold teeth, what percentage of people living in one particular village in Timbuktu have gold teeth? It's impossible to extrapolate given only that information.

"Perhaps Creeper has a dictionary in which the definition for a lie is: "best estimate based on availalble information", which means that most of us lie every day."

No, "knowingly speaking an untruth" is what I usually go by. Does that work for you?

When someone speaks an untruth, they may be mistaken. When the mistake is pointed out to them and they don't acknowledge this, either by disproving it or taking it on board, and they continue to repeat the untruth, it becomes a lie.

"If I say sunrise is at 6:30 and it actually takes place 31 seconds later, did I lie? If I promise to be at work at 8 AM and get there at 7:51, am I a liar?"

Nope, but that hardly has anything to do with the circumstances here. What's at issue (for the most part) is a fundamental lapse of logic, not a minor error in a guesstimate. You can't automatically assign the properties of the whole to any subset of the whole.

"I am amazed at the lack of intelligence being displayed concerning this issue... many of you seem lost when faced with math problems and likely have little idea of how to use the results of polling numbers, which are in themselves estimates in case you didn't know."

Coming from someone who thinks that any subset of a whole has the same properties as the whole, it's pretty rich of you to accuse others of being "lost when faced with math problems".

"Did you actually think that Barna reaches out to every single person in the USA to get exact figures? Of course not, they take a sample of the population and extrapolate the data to come up with their conclusions."

I have no idea what (or who) this is in response to. Of course polling only deals with representative samples.

"Is this tempest in a teapot driven by an agenda or is it just stupid? Here is my comment again:

My figures show that up to 11% of the prison population is Christian, many of whom were converted after being jailed."


I'm well aware of your statement, and it is and remains an untruth. Your figures only relate to such an assertion about the general population, not the prison population. Can you tell the difference?

"Don't be confused by "religious preferences" questions. 85% of Americans claim some kind of Protestant/Catholic religious preference, as do around 70% of inmates. Less than a third of either group actually get involved or are considered to practice or even believe the label."

Yes, we've been over this and over this, and we get that you've adopted a self-serving and very limited definition of "evangelical Christian" to stand for "Christian" in this particular discussion, and that that is what you mean by the 11%.

"I challenge you, I dare you, to disprove one iota of that statement!"

See my earlier comments, Radar, where I took this apart in detail. Barring additional information (which apparently you don't have), you can't assert that the 11% figure you've concocted for the general population also applies to the subset of the prison population.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"Go ahead and show us all these transitional forms, please."

Since it's quite predictable what particular brand of ignorance you're about to present on this subject, could you please define what you understand a "transitional form" to be?

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

I must admit I was, initially, pleased to see that, for the first time, Radar had addressed one of my comments (albeit merely one small part). Only to be supremely disappointed by his glib and patently silly "answer".

"Go ahead and show us all these transitional forms, please. Come on, I don't take Ken Hovind seriously, don't expect me to take Ken Miller seriously either."

Sorry? Why is it that you can't take Ken Miller seriously? I mean he's a Christian (even if it's not by your ultra-strict definition, I think even you might still describe him as at least Christian-ish, not unlike America itself), doesn't that do it for you? Am I to understand that you can't take him seriously simply because he doesn't agree with your side of the evolution/intelligent design debate? Or do you have “dirt” on Professor Miller that I don’t know about. It seems to me that equating Kent Hovind, a man who prominent YECs can't even stomach (and who, speaking of dirt, has been charged with assault and battery, falsely declaring bankruptcy, making threats against federal officials, filing false complaints, failing to get necessary building permits, and various tax-related charges - and was convicted of federal tax and related charges, for which he is currently serving a 10-year sentence) with Ken Miller, a well known Brown University Academic and Expert Witness (here is a link to his CV - http://research.brown.edu/pdf/1100924768.pdf?nocache=1322280569), only serves to further degrade your already weak position.
Concerning your first point; Radar, are you asking me (or some other godless evolutionist) to physically bring you a fossilized "transitional form" and literally "show" it to you? You are starting to sound like Ken Ham and his frequent, and idiotic, "were you there?" refrain. Let’s say, just for fun, that I did track down one of the transitional form examples that Ken Miller talked about in his presentation and couriered it to your doorstep. Would you even look at it? My guess is No. Through following this blog, I have come to realize that its more likely that when presented with such evidence, you would firmly close your eyes and continue shouting “I don’t see anything. Why don’t you just SHOW it to me?” (see your continued assertions that evolutionary theory is not testable, as one example of this type of behavior). Add this to your claim that Professor Miller's presentation contains "evidence-free assertions" and one begins to further understand that your primary mode of maintaining your ill-conceived positions is to completely ignore any evidence that contradicts them (the Boojums link concerning Ice Cores is yet another example of this, as if more were needed at this point). All of that said, I suppose, by now, I should be able to understand your inability to “see” these opposing points, especially when one considers where your head appears to be firmly planted.

Canucklehead