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RT: Dawkins on biology, psychology of ISIS, religion

I've liked some of the intellectual videos about atheism (like Jonathan Miller's Atheism Tapes with Steve Weinberg and others) but it just happens that these profound enough intellectual debates began to be moved to places such as the Russian media in recent years.



Russia Today has just posted this video of its program "Worlds Apart" hosted by Oxana Bojko. I am confident that she is so advanced that she will be able to peacefully read my comment that there are hotter babes on Russia Today – both those from the post-Soviet realm as well as those imported from the U.S. But holy cow, she is intelligent, indeed. To say the least, she looked like a peer of Dawkins'.




So they discussed many of the usual questions and some novel questions about the evolution, biology, and psychology of religion and atheism. Are the people fighting for ISIS really psychopaths (1%-3% of the U.S. society), or can the "bulk" of the nations be transformed to such folks under certain conditions? Have they gotten desensitized by the wars in the Middle East? Why do they enjoy jumping over the stinking dead bodies if they can catch germs? What is the evolutionary advantage?

Just to be sure, I am absolutely confident that the percentage of the nations – including the Western nation – that would be able to turn into ISIS-like animal killers under "favorable" circumstances vastly exceeds 1% or 3%.




She would debate many other questions, e.g.: Can everyone in the world become an atheist or is it a form of luxury that is confined to the advanced enough world? Dawkins would controversially say that he believed that atheism could be exported everywhere because religion was one of the things that dragged the poor countries down. Bojko is clearly familiar with many of the details of Dawkins' books, among others, so the interview was really like a somewhat predictable exchange between two peers. One could say that their opinions about the validity and the role of religions were very close to each other.

But there came segments in which Bojko was clearly ahead of Dawkins. She wanted to discuss the apparent fact that some of the behavioral patterns – like the search for honor in the conflicts – seem to be almost entirely male patterns. She has quoted many sort of self-evident examples and Dawkins' answer must have been disappointing not only for her. His answer was pretty much that he has never thought about the question whether there are differences between men and women. I find such an answer from a 73-year-old man who is moreover considered to be among the world's most renowned biologists and intellectuals as a deeply disappointing one, indeed.

Bojko would also suggest that the conditions in the Muslim world are such that the "oppression of the women" isn't really something that the folks over there view as oppression – it is rather something that almost everyone considers to be necessary conditions for the society to function at all or to function well. Dawkins laughed said he was "skeptical" about it. But in my opinion, he would display the typical American naivite by this answer. Muslim believers make over 95 percent in many of these nations and this high percentage applies to women, too. Obviously, an overwhelming majority of the women over there must think that the basic organization of their society is right!

Now, from a more objective viewpoint, the societies could make some progress if they believed something else. But the causal relationship goes in both ways. The people's beliefs are influenced by the facts how the society works and how it could work. However, the question whether certain policies, laws, and behavioral patterns help the society do depend on the beliefs of the members of the society, too! The latter sentence is almost completely misunderstood, underestimated, or misunderestimated by the naive Americans – which is arguably the majority of Americans. But again, it's true that "what is helpful for the society" and "what people believe to be good for the society" are two different quantities that dynamically influence each other in both directions!

After 21:00, the host suggested that the intellectual diversity is healthy and a society composed of atheists only could suck for various reasons, much like the uniform Soviet society into which she was born. Well, it's not just a remote analogy but a special example, I would say; after all, the Soviet society was supposed to become completely atheistic. Dawkins has completely ignored all the logic and counterarguments and reiterated that he would prefer the society to be uniform. She posed a related question, whether a certain amount of rational thinking is too much. Dawkins said that there's never enough of it – but added that one shouldn't apply the critical thinking to "everything" such as all the human relationships.

Bojko would then ask whether religion is an example of creativity – both of them expressing the escape from the cruel and down-to-earth world. Dawkins would say that he supports arts, poetry and other forms of refuge but he draws the line when someone needs to promote false theories about the Universe in order to escape. Do I see tears in Dawkins eyes now (24:50)?

In another answer, Dawkins said he would support the Einsteinian religion but he finds it wrong for Einstein to have used the religious language although Einstein apparently didn't believe religious ideas in any tangible sense (I agree that he didn't but I don't mind that Einstein did use the religious language).

Finally, Bojko says once again that religions may bring emotional comfort to everyone, without prerequisites, while science can't. Dawkins agree but he says that psychologists etc. are enough instead of religion. Bojko mentions that psychologists cost something. Dawkins agree and finally reveals that he would prefer a socialist healthcare system where your psychologist is as free-of-charge as a priest. So quite naturally, she explicitly asked him something that she almost did many times earlier:

So aren't you sorry that you don't live in the Soviet Union?
LOL. A good question that every leftist in the West should be asked. Dawkins answers that he believes that his socialism may be achieved without the dictatorial attributes of the Soviet system. Well, count me as a skeptic on this one. A significant distortion of the natural conditions e.g. the market conditions is always an intervention for which one needs an assertive, intrusive enough government that preserves the new unnatural conditions. You can't fully disentangle the "achievements" of socialism from its criminal and inhuman features.

While I would guess that most Russians don't have enough luxury to spend time with similar things – in this sense, the West is ahead – it also seems increasingly clear to me that there is actually much more freedom in Russia (and other countries) to think and talk about profound and general questions such as the relationships of evolution, atheism, religion, gender, and things like that. Sadly, the contemporary Western media seem to be much more controlled by some mediocrity, taboos, and superficiality.

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reader john said...

Dear Lubos, this is slightly off topic but I recommend you to read this : https://mises.org/etexts/hayekintellectuals.pdf .


reader QsaTheory said...

Actually, as early as Mohammad's time the people considered the qu'ran to be a myth, since most of the stories came from the judeo-christian books. see qau'ran 6:25

http://quran.com/6

"This is not but legends of the former peoples."

the english translation has been softened to legends, the actual translation is Myths

But probably the world first vocal atheist was non other than Omar Khayyam the famous mathematician/poet who solved the cubic equation. A prime example is these verses

And that inverted Bowl we call The Sky,
 Whereunder crawling coop’t we live and die,
Lift not thy hands to It for help—for It
 Rolls impotently on as Thou or I.


reader Uncle Al said...

A psychopath is a sociopath with goals. A sociopath is a just man in an unjust society. The just and proper solution is to make all society insane so that there is neither goal nor penalty to be gained by deviant behavior. ISIS is intensely sane.

Deny the average male a god and a sports team, fashion for women, and there is no reason to live except reproduction (sex for males, children for females). Middle class reproduction is outlawed by central revenue harvesting for the deserving. SSRIs (who wouldn't be depressed?) feature decreased libido, impotence in men and poor lubrication in women, and anorgasmia. ISIS is laudable.

ISIS has never beheaded anyone. ISIS echoes social malaise by disembodying. In 2013-14 the US produced 13.016 billion bushels bushels of corn, 35% of the planetary supply. It burned 37% of that as fuel ethanol. Hugely reproductive Muslims are starving. This means war.


reader NikFromNYC said...

Dawkins has been useful lately in trolling what the computer gamer community have dubbed SJW (social justice warriors), really grievance industry third wave manufactured outrage feminists and their “white knight” male defenders. This season VICE.com, today’s version of Rolling Stone/Village Voice culture, tried to bash Dawkins about feminism as well as smear computer gamers now in full 30K Tweets a day grassroots revolt over the #gamergate scandal of corrupt feminist political bias in gaming journalism in the $80 billion a year industry, now bigger than Hollywood. The result was that VICE was simply added to their boycott and advertiser letter writing campaigns, along with 90% angry comments on the articles. The #gamergate scandal humorously started when a boyfriend figured out his amateur hour game developer and feminist activist girlfriend was sleeping with insiders to get good reviews.

I told the pacifists at WattsUpWithThat.com about this younger generation in full social media rebellion, to go join forces against media corruption very similar to climate skeptic smearing, and was ignored and even ridiculed, even as outspoken skeptic James Delingpole is now promoting same. Most skeptics are simply old low testosterone engineers, I'm afraid.

It's good to see Dawkins being taken seriously in detail here. Yet the biggest scientific fraud in history still eludes him, and Briane Green too? Not a single popular voice yet exists to bash climate alarm, so you are about as close as we get. Make a TV show already! I run a small business, so am not available.


reader Shannon said...

Regarding your last sentence it is relative. For you as an atheist you might see Western media as full of taboos. For a religious it would certainly be the extreme opposite.
This picture sums up how women's freedom is perceived. Not much of a choice.


reader lukelea said...

Scientists talking about religious beliefs, at least in the Judeo-Christian tradition -- by which I mean the role these beliefts play and have historically played in people's lives and in the societies in which they live -- are about as informing as laymen talking about science.

As for the oppression of women in Islamic society, a knowledge of the genetic influence of inbreeding in consanguineous societies is much more enlightening:

http://www.parapundit.com/archives/000113.html


reader Shannon said...

Imagine Israël in a few decades: they'll all be mongolitoes... It's already showing patterns.


reader donqpublic said...

I suppose at some point in human prehistory humans had not made the correlation between intercourse and a birth nine months later. Before that correlation was made I suppose inbreeding would have been rather extravagant and common due to estrus and the births were probably magical happenings, subject to all sorts of explanations for the event and the changing physical condition of the female in the months leading up to the birth. I understand there is a 3 to 6 percent probability of negative mutations or defects caused by inbreedings, but apparently that correlation was not a factor in Egypt's tradition of the kings taking sole possession of their sisters for queens. Perhaps to limit intercourse with pregnant females, and the possible damage, led to that correlation between screwing and babies and then to controlling access to females among the males for dynastic purposes. Indeed, the anthropology seems to demonstrate that most tribal conflicts (wars) were over getting access to females by the males (harems are scarcity producing unless there are lots of non-harem females for the warriors at large to capture and subjugate). Homer's Trojan War story comes to mind. So, one way or another, the girls seem to start wars and the boys end up fighting them for gold, god, glory, and some nookie.


reader cynholt said...

Clear as mud

by Aubrey Bailey of Fleet, Hants.



Are you confused by what is going on in the Middle East? Let me explain.



We [sic] support the Iraqi government in the fight against Islamic
State. We [sic] don't like IS, but IS is supported by Saudi Arabia, whom
we do like.



We don't like President Assad in Syria. We support the fight against him, but not IS, which is also fighting against him.



We don't like Iran, but Iran supports the Iraqi government against
IS. So, some of our friends support our enemies and some of our enemies
are our friends, and some of our enemies are fighting against our other
enemies, whom we want to lose, but we don't want our enemies who are
fighting our enemies to win.



If the people we want to defeat are defeated, they might be replaced
by people we like even less. And all this was started by us invading a
country to drive out terrorists who weren't actually there until we went
in to drive them out. Do you understand now?



(posted at zerohedge)



http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-09-24/case-you-are-still-confused-what-going-middle-east


reader Swine flu said...

"Obviously, an overwhelming majority of the women over there must think that the basic organization of their society is right!"

This must certainly be true, just as it is true in the West. Interestingly though, we know that in the West men and women may exhibit somewhat divergent voting patterns on certain issues. It would stand to reason that such divergence may also be present in the views of men and women in Muslim countries. The interesting question would be how much divergence and on what issues.


reader Swine flu said...

Lubos' primary comparison was to Russia, which belongs to Western Civilization and is rather different from Muslim countries. Many of the taboos in question in Western Europe, the US, etc., have to do with political correctness, which is a surprisingly effective mechanism for suppressing freedom of speech. Given that freedom of speech is supposed to be one of the crowning achievements of the Western world, it's quite an ironic situation. Some say that the Western world has become too stupid to survive, and political correctness plays a significant role in that.


reader QsaTheory said...

My guess is not much. They will vote along some affiliation like liberal or not, city vs rural values and so on with variation in country size and geographic location, ethnic mix, wealth ...etc


reader QsaTheory said...

The ME has the same problems as any other third world countries. So no need to add fancy theories that are motivated by geopolitics games.


reader Shannon said...

Cynthia, one has to see the big picture behind all this. The US are paying and helping for the building of "the Great Israël" and Assad has to be eliminated for this. Indeed IS is perfect to create a world coalition to help Israël. One at a time, little by little... It is good to take advantage of any situation. The killings of civilians only come in the picture for communication and PR purposes.


reader QsaTheory said...

With all due respect your analysis is a rehashed myth you see on tv and read elsewhere. What you say is true for a ver very small minority much much less than the hard core right wing in the west who feel super superior and everybody else does not need to live. These are politically motivated in a global geopolitical game run by the masters. Don't be taken for a ride.


reader cynholt said...

ISIS is, of course, the same bunch of folks that the CIA trained and armed in Jordan who are fighting in Syria on the Saudi's buck. Freedom fighters in Syria become terrorists in Iraq.

The only "winner" in this conflict will be the military-industrial-security complex as they play both sides against the middle to maximize profits.

ISIS is doing quite well
Iraq they continue to shell
Their strategy's great
They're growing their State
Those American weapons work swell

The Limerick King


reader cynholt said...

Not to muddy the waters here, but I found this wee video clip from 1990 interesting. ISIS = Israel Secret Intelligence Service.

1990 C-SPAN interview with Brian Lamb, Dan Raviv and Yossi Melman, authors of the book Every Spy a Prince: describe (@ about 2:40) how the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office officially refers to its subordinate organization “the Mossad”–Hebrew for “the institute” and denoting Israel’s most well-known intelligence agency–as the “Israeli Secret Intelligence Service,” or ISIS.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPECe5qhIHQ


reader anna v said...

My bias, and I am biased, from national and particularly family history, as I am descended fro Kappadocia, in asia minor which from the end of the first milenium was continually under attack from the Muslim expansion at the south of the Byzantine empire.

I do not see any geopolitical masters with this ISIS, I see a reawakening of the conquering Islam, raw and barbaric.


reader scooby said...

So you are a typical front national voter after all. Scratch the surface a bit, and you get a raving anti-semite.


reader Shannon said...

Interesting. I now understand why our foreign minister Fabius (a jew) is forcing all French media to call ISIS "Daesh" which means Islamic State in arabic. Media are not allowed to use any other words when talking about Irak's IS in France. Everybody is wondering why. Here we go.


reader Shannon said...

Please if you are a professional mourner don't wet my shoes with your tears. Tiens, I have a soother for you: FN has now a few pro-israëlians among their leaders: for ex elected Aymeric Chauprade is at the European parliament, among others. Feel better now pussy ?


reader cynholt said...

I respectfully disagree, Anna. ISIS is clearly more interested in earthly power than the Rivers of Heaven, so to speak. That's to be expected from such adept pupils of the CIA.


reader Gordon said...

Hey, what is with all the Jew hating? I didn't realize that you were a Muslim---just thought a religious delusional, not a bigot.


reader anna v said...

In my eyes, the old islamic expansion by the sword established an earthly imperium, and that is what they are aiming at now. Do not be deluded. The houris in heaven is just to strengthen the hoi polloi in battle, not to be afraid of death.

I agree they are pupils of the CIA, but they have the old adgenda: "everybody beliefs what I believe Mohamed said or off with their heads".


reader Johannes said...

Why does Mark gives all that credit to Carroll, when really he disagrees rather fundamentally???


reader Luboš Motl said...

Yes, it bothers me greatly - but I got used to insanities like that so it doesn't surprise me at all.


reader Luboš Motl said...

LOL, I was surprised by similar things from Shannon.


But Shannon a Muslim? My understanding was that Shannon was a "the Jews crucified our God" Christian, is that wrong, Shannon? ;-)


reader cynholt said...

My take on Islam's role in the ISIS phenomenon is pretty much the same as yours, Theory Man. Islam has taken the spotlight recently, but every major religion throughout history has shown its violent and intolerant side -- mostly for political or economic ends. For example, European Christians decided to invade the Levant around 1000 AD to “take back” the” holy places” from the infidel Muslims. ISIS is just another quasi-military group using religion for its own ends. There are many examples in Judaism, Hinduism, etc. There's no point, of course, to using the “you started it” rationale for violence.

This also reminds me of a couple of little Hottentots early to mid-last century -- one of whom wanted the German volk to create a Reich to last 1000 years. They were put in place by corporations and other industrialists in the West and then encouraged by a gentle nation called The Vatican.

I wonder if Shrub and The Dick saw this coming in 2002 when they were rubbing their hands together and starting to make a case for the War in Iraq?

By the way, the Hottentots crossed my mind after reading about a period film featuring the Hottentot Venus, which strangely enough mentions Michelle Obama. ;~)

http://slog.thestranger.com/2008/06/coming_vaguely_soon


reader Rehbock said...

The age of reason is not yet upon us in the west either, I think. As Tom Lehrer said " to hate all but the right folks is as American as apple pie. " So Anna I agree with your assessment of Islam but see little greater reason nor enlightenment In the various Christian right wing evangelicals so beloved in America. There are many mother assuring that ignorance is institutionalized and passed on.


reader Shannon said...

You are right Lubos. But I must say I find it extremely delightful to speak down of Israel and the jews just to see the reactions. It is like nuking the PC world each time. Just love it.


reader Shannon said...

Where do you see hate in my message ? Can't we make fun of Israelis now ?


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear Shannon, have you visited a museum of Holocaust, ideally in Auschwitz?



I think that others have had enough fun of this activity of yours before. ;-/ For me, some of these encounters were deeply touching and if I ever make an analogy between anti-Semitism and something else, it's anti-Semitism and the PC, not anti-PC.


reader Shannon said...

Here we go again. When the PC leaves through the door it comes back through the window.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear Shannon, my experience and logic says that it's mostly the "PC" people who are anti-Semites these days - they don't like the fact that the Jews are much more likely to be richer, to possess gold, to be bankers, and to be smart and Nobel prize winners while they (the anti-Semites) are fucking poor stupid losers - a description they prefer to mask under fraudulent euphemisms.


reader Shannon said...

And you forgot one of the most important thing Lubos: they own the media too ;-)


reader BMWA1 said...

Slightly OT (UA related), Lubos might like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSOfQ7tgTLg


reader cynholt said...

Gordon, Shannon isn't anti-Jew. If anything, he's just anti-Zionist, which is exactly what I am. The two have very little to do with one another. In fact, there are many atheist Jews who are hardcore Zionists. Some of them were having a picnic overlooking Gaza and watched with intense pleasure as thousands of innocent and defenseless Palestinians got bombed to death there. Only a deeply deranged psychopath could eat, drink and be merry while watching that.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/15/world/middleeast/israelis-watch-bombs-drop-on-gaza-from-front-row-seats.html?_r=0

Zionism has also worked its way into all of the Abrahamic religions, not just Christianity but Islam as well, and is now being used and abused by Saudi Arabia and other gulf Arab states to expand Western-backed imperialism in the region. Their ultimate goal is to take down Iran. But this will be very hard for them do as long as Iran gets plenty of backing from Russia and China. Wrapping my head around this hasn't been easy, but now that it has, my hatred of Zionism and all of its ruthless, hegemonic players has greatly intensified.


reader Luboš Motl said...

LOL, right. There's nothing wrong about owning things. Most of the bad things in the media is however made by the non-owners who usually fail to be Jews - of course, with the exception of George Soros, Tom Friedman, and 100 other harmful Jewish folks in the media one could enumerate. ;-)


reader Luboš Motl said...

Fun and way too realistic. I've heard about the TV program but this was the first time I could understand it because of the non-deutsch subtitles.


reader Shannon said...

LOL, right.
Don't we love our jews ? They make our days !


reader Swine flu said...

Shannon, I suspect Israel's thinking in more in line with Putin's than with that of the US on the issue of Assad. Assad in control meant stability for Israel, while fractured Syria brings uncertainly and instability. I actually wondered a year ago if Israel may have actually had a hand in changing the Obama's administration's mind on attacking Syria at the time, but there was enough popular opposition in the US for that hypothesis to be needed.


reader QsaTheory said...

Dear anna, I am highly disappointed since I did not expect such irrationality from a scientific person like you, not that it is impossible. Your latest post shows clear contradiction, CIA but!!

anna, please relax, nobody is coming after you. Fact one, so called IS are some group with dodgy origin numbering in 10-20 thousands with very specific agenda set by god knows who(pun intended). They where even no match for even the beleaguered Assad. Second, even if you assume the whole Arab world to be radicalized to IS style(next to zero chance), that will not change anything since these countries are all third world with very weak military. Even, Russia and china put together are no match for NATO. As a matter of fact these countries have been on the receiving end since Napoleon invaded Egypt till today including chewing Palestine. The people in Muslim countries struggling with their problems which are up to their neck, no time or stamina for heroic goals.

Please have a heart, Byzantine !! are you going to take us back to the animosity of Cain and Abel. Be reasonable, this type of talk is unworthy of a learned person like you. Next we will have Persians attacking Greeks as a returned favor to Alexander the great, come on.

And lastly, I don't think you see evaporating people by nuclear bombs or dismembering people to unrecognized pieces by high powered explosives dropped from air as humane killing, or do you?


reader scooby said...

Here is a site where you can exchange your seriously screwed up view of the world with like minded idiots: http://www.dieudosphere.com/


reader Luboš Motl said...

Lots of news about Shannon... first I learned she was a Muslim. Now, she is a he.

Otherwise it is fashionable areamong American anti-Semites to say that there are just against Israel,because they


reader Karel Strašný said...

In the "communist" software environment bugs can be left in the program simply because nobody cares/is not motivated to care.

But basically the same way bugs can be left in the commercial product simply because it is managed by an idiot whose only concern is to get a bonus after his contract expires in a few years so e.g. investments are cut, skilled people fired etc. just to save money and meet some idiotic metrics (set by another idiot awaiting his bonus).



In the end it is always about people ...


Anyway Linux world has found its commertial model - charging for support... so I think that the core components cannot be considered "free" anymore (at least when used in business due to regulations enforced in some coutries).


reader cynholt said...

Our political system bears about as much resemblance to a true democracy as a professional wrestling match bears to an actual athletic contest. It essentially boils down to the chickens being allowed to decide whether the foxes or the weasels will be appointed guardians of the hen house. I guess the outcome matters a little bit -- if you're a fox or a weasel, that is.


reader Rathnakumar said...

Dr. Motl,

As far as atheism is concerned, I would recommend to you the book by the late Christopher Hitchens - 'God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything'.

http://www.amazon.com/God-Is-Not-Great-Everything/dp/0446579807


reader Michael Gersh said...

Shannon, you are willing to go a long way to pretend that you do not hate Jews, but you should try to stick to a tiny bit of truth. All faiths can be citizens of Israel, true, but Jews and their law run the show, the entire country is kosher, and the religious courts have the final word on many matters. You cannot hate the Jewish state and not hate Jews. Eliminate the state and you eliminate them as a people. Finishing Hitler's job is the entire point of antizionism. To pretend otherwise is silly and peurile - it fools no one.


reader Swine flu said...

When you say "our" political system, do you mean a specific country or the whole Western world?


reader andrew said...

If every "leftist" should be asked whether he would like to live in the USSR, perhaps every "rightist" should be asked whether he would like to live in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama or Chile during a US intervention? or Togo, Mali, Eritrea, Burundi or any other third-world country with an economy yoked to the US via the IMF? The USSR did not have a monopoly on state-terror or suffering.


reader Shannon said...

I like Christlike Jews very much, Michael. Actually I am very fond of them.The other jews I like them as much as I like muslims. Actually I put them in the same shit bag.


reader Shannon said...

Damn! it must be my country style that is too abrupt. I am no urban although I do know both worlds. Next time I shall try to be more feminine. My English being limited it is going to be a challenge.
Cynthia: no kidding I am a woman 100%. Here is a picture of me:


reader QsaTheory said...

Well, here is what I can say. I am almost 60 yrs old and remember from 1960 on events in the ME and read about all the earlier events. Up to 1980 before the Iraq , Iran war(also Iranian revolution) and the soviet invasion of Afghanistan you could hardly hear anything related to Islam even with all the wars with Israel. Then after the withdrawal of the soviets with the help of manufactured Arab "Jihadist" and the Iraqi invasion of my country and the subsequent liberation all this talk about Islam and jihad had intensified.

What happened, were the Muslims not Muslims before that even as Israel was created in 1948 which they could see it coming from 1917 Balfour declaration. Was there a switch that flipped in their brains. No it was a consequence of some events that many centers of powers inside and outside capitalized on it for their benefits, that is all.

That is what I am trying to emphasize, just like in any war the civilians are just victims not the perpetuate. Things happens around us and it is not clear why. What I am trying to say that this "Muslim" bashing, fear mongering hysteria is unjustified given that the majority are victims of it and not the perpetuate.

Let me clarify, if you ask that majority, they will tell you that they are adamantly against an unjust solution to Palestine problem because their conscious and their religion forbids accepting bad treatment. Although I would say the strongest motivation is nationalism/moralists by far. And the proof is that the earliest resistance groups where from communists and Christians(nationalists).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_fedayeen

But to go and say these people want to establish Islam by force to control and change the way of life of others is clearly a BIG BIG politically motivated lie, pure and simple.


reader Gordon said...

I am neither anti-zionist, nor Zionist, nor Jewish, but I think there are a few things that you and Shannon are not getting.
First, yes, there could be atheist Jews who are hard core Zionists, as well as anti-Zionists, as well as those who could care less.
Second, the situation between Israel and its neighbors is not one of parity----Israel's neighbors want to annihilate it and its citizens. Israel wants a guarantee that it will be left alone. If your neighbors threatened to kill you and your children and then started lobbing Molotov cocktails through your windows, would you meekly ask them to stop, or would you retaliate with force to convince them that the cost of what they are doing is prohibitive?
I agree with many of your political posts, Cynthia, but not this one. I seldom agree with Shannon's. I find that people who use the word "Jew" too often are anti-Semites.
Yes, I think the carnage in Gaza is horrible--but what would happen if Israel simply laid down its arms and opened its borders?
I think Hitchens was correct in labelling Islam as an extreme danger to our civilisation, and his book "God is Not Great" is a great read. In order to show that I am not totally biased against the believers, a good book is "The Battle For God" by ex-Nun Karen Armstrong who writes well about fundamentalist religions like orthodox Judaism, fundamentalist Christianity with an emphasis on the US versions, and Islam. Her critiques of Islam are suitably scathing.
http://www.amazon.com/Battle-God-Karen-Armstrong/dp/0345391691/ref=sr_1_15?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1411938978&sr=1-15&keywords=karen+armstrong


reader OneStringToRuleThemAll said...

Good show. They also face a lawsuit against a lobbyist who worked at a high prestige media print magazine in Germany and at the same time for some NATO friendly organization. (which is also the case for many print magazines in Germany :-(


reader Gordon said...

I don't think she really is a Muslim--I was using irony, Sheldon :). I think she is Catholic...(Sherlockian deduction: She is apparently from France and moved to Ireland; and likely does support the usual Fascist Front parties in both countries, but I could be over-reacting.)


reader Gordon said...

WTF is a Christ-like Jew? You mean a Catholic?
If you think you are teasing PC folks here on TRF, I think you are barking up the wrong blog--I (and I think, Lubos) are likely extreme outliers on the right side of the anti-PC Gaussian. I see most PC as a systemic illness in our society. Of course, hate speech is different, but people should be able to talk truthfully if the Emperor is wearing no clothes.


reader Gordon said...

Not only that, the sheep do not even seem to know that they tend to vote for the candidates who are most inimical to their interests. Hence, in the US, you often get the poor and marginalised voting for the most egregious Republican corporate shill.


reader RAF III said...

What's wrong with hate speech?


reader OneStringToRuleThemAll said...

And just to comment on the rest. I think that we should leave the countries that are lacking moral values which are presumably preferable over the moral values in their country alone. Just look how long it took for western countries to establish all the human rights we have now. Maybe a little support for these countries would speed that process up. But invading these countries for our own agenda like the US is just wrong.

And this woman is just awesome. Usually such beautiful women don't get much motivation to be interested in such topics, but here you have a superb counterexample.


reader RAF III said...

Shannon - Your spritely insouciance left me in no doubt about your sex. I think Cynthia was fooled by your relentless medievalism. You're younger than I imagined, with a good command of English, and definitely not ugly.


reader Swine flu said...

Some of these voting patterns were over social issues, but the Republicans have abused the trust of these people to such a degree that these voting patterns are unlikely to persist into the future.


reader QsaTheory said...

Gordon,
What do you think the Palestinians should do. If your house was attacked and occupied, will you settle for living in the attic ,the garage, guest room with the condition that the door is not yours or been paid 5 dollars by the occupier to live elsewhere.


reader cynholt said...

Shannon, are you sure you're not an ever-elusive sockpuppet, a digital neutrino of sorts, who's always keeping us on our toes guessing as to what your true identity is? ;~) Seriously though, you got me fooled, big time, like a clueless country bumpkin walking into a Parisian brothel thinking it's a women's fashion boutique.


reader cynholt said...

Anna, I totally agree with your assessment that Islamic State is a growing monster that needs to be defeated at any cost, but we also need to understand that these deep reactionary Islamist forces could not have come into existence from the abstract. In other words, they were aided from the start by regional Middle Eastern actors, and that could not have happened without the full blessing of American imperialism and her allies. My impression is that had ISIS remained in Syria and not spread into Iraq then not much would have been heard today from the Western mainstream media in regards to ISIS's brutal humanitarian violations, which has become a tragic way of life in the eastern parts of Syria.


reader Tilo said...

" to hate all but the right folks is as American as apple pie. "
That must be why we are one of the most ethnically mixed nations in the world and why we have a president that comes from a 13% minority. Tom Lehrer is one of those people who tries to pass off cynicism about America as intelligence.


reader Tilo said...

"but every major religion throughout history has shown its violent and intolerant side -- mostly for political or economic ends."
I've heard that argument a thousand times, and while it is a true argument, it does not create a parallel between Islam and other religions.
The problem with Islam is that it's canon are corrupt to the very core. The prophet of Islam was a murderer, war monger, rapists, sexist, liar, caravan robber, and pedophile. As a human being you cannot compare him to Jesus, Lao Tze, Buddha, etc.
In Islam the issue is not about abuse of religion. In Islam all of the terror and inhumanity come from following the religion exactly as it's prophet and the Quran and the Hadith and the Sharia want it to be followed. Take the beheading of prisoners as one example. The prophet Mohammed, after defeating one of the Jewish tribes in Medina and taking them all prisoner, beheaded all male and sold every woman and child into slavery. Mohammed was the ISIS of his day.
Now, to be fair, Judaism and the texts of the old testament are often just as barbaric as Islam. But Christianity was softened somewhat by the New Testament and the example of Jesus. The only reason why Judaism is not as bad as Islam is because it is not a part of the religion to dominate the world and force everyone to become a Jew.
And before we jump the gun and lay all problems at the feet of religion in general, let's remember that people like Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot were bigger murderers than any religious advocates.
The problem is really about people of any kind who feel like they have a right to force their ideology or will on others.


reader Tilo said...

"What I am trying to say that this "Muslim" bashing, fear mongering hysteria is unjustified "
That is incorrect. As long as people who call themselves Muslim follow a religion that is based on war, terrorism, murder, hatred, bigotry, woman hating, pedophilia, etc. then the those followers must take responsibility for the characteristics of the religion that they follow. No amount of Muslim bashing and fear mongering is enough as long as the central tenant of Islam is world conquest or endless Jihad. Islam still carries the penalty of death for apostates today. And it is supported in the Quran, the Hadith, and Sharia. How can any condemnation of anything so barbaric be too much.


reader efalken said...

I find Dawkins a fraud because his priority is critiquing those who don't buy into the idea that Evolution is all worked out, but then pointed avoids debating their best arguments, their best proponents, because he says he doesn't want to make it seem they are worthy to the general public. That's not a quest for the truth.


I'm not religious, but I do think we have little clue how new complex proteins, and all their accompanying logistical mechanisms, arise. Point mutation or changes in allele frequencies aren't sufficient. I think it's scientifically interesting, but he's so wary of letting religious people 'win' he doesn't address these issue with a real attitude of seeking knowledge.


For example, to go from Pakicetus, a wolf-like animal with a 'whale-like ear bone', to an actual whale, took supposedly only 5 million years, but in that time thousands of new essential proteins had to mutate and then become fixed in a population, and also these 'new' genes needed to be sufficiently compatible with the existing genome of the opposite sex to have successful offspring. They've been breeding E.Coli and drosphila for decades and haven't stumbled across anything like that even once, just deletions and phase shifts, and other simple degradations. I just think it's fascinating, not an affront to rational inquiry.


reader Swine flu said...

I once had a political discussion with a Palestinian friend of mine, politics being something we don't normally talk much about, and he said that it made no sense for anyone to claim the right to reoccupy a house after a 2,000 year absence. I asked him whether, if Mecca and Medina had been occupied by non-Muslims for 1,000 years, he would apply the same logic. He abruptly changed the subject, and I let it go too.

I suspect ultimately the house analogy boils down to one question and one question only, whether the Jews have the right to remain in Palestine or whether their presence there is illegal and they must leave.

There are some who believe that they should indeed return to the countries they originally came from. I don't have much to say about that option except to note the practical difficulties in implementing it, so let's look at the second option, which states that Jews do have the right to remain in Palestine. A natural follow-up question is, where in Palestine and under what arrangements. So, here we are, where and under what arrangements?


reader Swine flu said...

"it must be my country style that is too abrupt."

I sympathize, I hated living in a cave too.


reader QsaTheory said...

Thanks for asking, this will highlight what I have been going on for the past 24 hours. Well, I have news for you the the SECOND holiest site for Muslims is Jerusalem and it is under occupation. And you don't see mass suicide attacks from 1.3 billion people to liberate it. Do you know why, because Muslims just like all other people love life more than anything else, they are NOT the fanatic idiots that they are painted to be.

Second, the Islamic world knows that they are underdog and no match for the west. Also they know that there is no true justice in the world , so they can't wait for the Russians, Chinese, Indians i.e. other forces to have their conscious wake to stand up to west, it is too risky for them.

So, what is the Muslims options. Soft surrender. They have put on the table a humiliating solution since 2002.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_Peace_Initiative



But there are no takers, because the west wants to stick it up in the Muslims and see how far it goes.


reader QsaTheory said...

Dear Lubos,

I want to ask you a question hoping it explains some of my doubts.

You keep repeating how the Jews are smart and winning a lot of Noble prizes and all that, so please take a look at the link below and tell me. How is it that from 1500 all they to 1900 there is NO Jew in the list, but after that the Jews have become all geniuses all of the sudden. That sounds like one hell of a freak gene mutation, or there should be a more logical explaination.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physicist#List_of_important_physicists

BTW, the first guy used to live two hours drive from where I live now!


reader Swine flu said...

The subsection "Dates of emancipation" in this Wikipedia page - http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_emancipation - provides some dates prior to which the Jews would have been decidedly hampered in pursuing a science or mathematics career in many European countries.

After that, it started happening, especially if you include the mathematicians. As just one data point, Jacobi lived from 1804 to 1851, and he was the first Jewish mathematician appointed at a German university.


reader Luboš Motl said...

I agree with Swine Flu. Up to the late 19th century or so, Jews were effectively prohibited from doing things like science, read e.g.

http://www.acjna.org/acjna/articles_detail.aspx?id=457


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear Michael, Gordon, Cynthia, and others,


I am obviously way closer to your opinions' about Jews than to Shannon's but could you/we please stop this selective personally flavored assault on Shannon? She represents opinions that are common at many places and people don't suffer for them over there.


I am going to delete a comment by Cynthia that seemed over the edge.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Shannon posted a reply here:

Damn! it must be my country style that is too abrupt. I am no urban although I do know both worlds. Next time I shall try to be more feminine. My English being limited it is going to be a challenge.

Cynthia: no kidding I am a woman 100%. Here is a picture of ugly me


and posted an attractive picture herself - or, to stick to 100% evidence, of an attractive woman ;-) - that she prefers not to be here publicly. I may only erase the picture if I erase the whole comment which is what I am doing now.


reader Swine flu said...

Good, I was going to suggest to her that she should do that, if that was really her photo. I never understood why some European countries make it a criminal (as opposed to just social) offense to dislike other groups, but they do.


reader Shannon said...

LOL


reader jim z said...

Anna,


What you say is very thoughtful. I agree with you about the necessity of good education of girls, and boys, for there to be a reasonable world in the future. Empathetic people, children who are raised to be empathetic, are essential for the future of reason and science.


The polygamy, polygyny, of the Muhammadans also contributes to the violence. With multiple women taken by older established men, the large excess of young men have no reproductive future. Their extreme violence is the same as the all-or-nothing, nothing-to-lose, violence of natural selection.


reader jim z said...

No, Tom Lehrer was a good professor of mathematics, and very intelligent.


In the same song, he said 'It's fun to eulogize, those that you despise, as long as you don't let them into your school'. He said that in the 60's, and it is true today. Patronize-ism and hypocrisy wont ever end.


reader Shannon said...

Haha. I have never tried to fool anyone. This is me. An average chick ;-)


reader jim z said...

the guy who kills in Oklahoma says Allou Akbar. the guy who shoots 14 at Fort Hood shoots Allou Akbar. the airliner hijackers, many that have happened, say the same. the guys who kill the French mountain guide say allu akbar. the guy who kills hostages says Allou Akber. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc.


but it is not about islam.


qsa and cynthia, you're out to lunch... on an intellectual vacation.


reader Shannon said...

It's not PC. ;-)


reader jim z said...

so what are the names of these 'organizations'?

al queda, al queda in arabia, al queda in iraq, al queda etc. al shabot. boko harem. hezbola. khorosan. jabhat al-nusra. ansar al sharia. isis. isil. islamic state. etc. etc. etc.



But this Has Nothing To Do With Islam.


get real


reader jim z said...

I'll buy you a round trip ticket to Tehran. Will you go to there? (Tell them about your understanding of their history. Don't forget a chador.)


That is a real offer, and a real question.


reader jim z said...

" Mohammed was the ISIS of his day" no, isis are mohammedans, today. historical order.


but since communist murderers were not religious (you say), the murders by isis aren't religious, or they're not as bad, or it's the same, or something else, QED...


reader Shannon said...

I like Dieudonne but I prefer Sasha Baron Cohen.


reader Shannon said...

Gordon, they don't have much choice in the US. It is like chosing between Coca Cola or Pepsi Cola.


reader cynholt said...

Religion is a red herring in this geopolitical game in the Middle East. I'm sorry your tunnel vision is so tight and narrow that you can't see this glaringly obvious fact.

Even if religious weren't a red herring, ISIS, like all other Western hired guns in the Muslim world, was created to do the only thing which it does: attack fellow Muslims and serve as a pretext for Western intervention in Syria and elsewhere, just like Al Qaeda and the Taliban before that, ISIS cannot exist without funding and cooperation from regional powers who wouldn't dare stand against the US lest they be squashed like a roach. If they were in any way for real, they could easily launch attacks against both the US and Israel.

Just smuggle some mortars into Mexico and fire at your leisure across the border. Unleash a few truck bombs at border crossings and watch trade between Mexico and the US collapse. Have some Jihadis wade across the Rio Grande with the commuting day laborers from Juarez and fan out to bomb shopping malls throughout the US simultaneously. If you get caught blow yourself up.

Pretty simple yet somehow all these "anti-Western" terrorists can't fire so much as a BB gun towards the US and Israel but they are certainly adept at repeating MSM propaganda.


reader cynholt said...

If you know so much about Shannon, Lubos, why did you says she's a man? If you hadn't made that comment, I would have never gone on to state with full confidence that's she's a man. Please try not to put me in an embarrassing situation again. I'm more than capable of causing myself to blush beet red without any help from you. ;~)


reader Luboš Motl said...

LOL, I am really not aware where and why I would label Shannon as a man.


reader cynholt said...

For days now, I have been wondering what fairy tale the Obama administration will utilize to explain itself when this so-called "coalition" falls apart and ends in complete disaster.

With so much political rhetoric thrown around and Washington in war fever, I suspect Obama will quickly forget ISIS and this jerry-rigged coalition and move on directly to Assad.

This ISIS fig leaf won't hunt.

Assad is a very bad guy
But ISIS makes everyone die
The mighty U.S.
Will handle this mess
So bombing them both will apply

The Limerick King


reader Swine flu said...

There is another area of interaction between Islam and the West, immigrants from Muslim countries living in the West.

It appears that whatever unique assimilation difficulties exist with this group, they are at least in part tied to religion. One reads of Muslim women coming from the countries where they didn't routinely wear a headdress being close to forced to wear it in certain neighborhoods in a few European cities, and there are other examples of this sort.

Part of the reason religiuos aspects play into it may well not be Islam per se, but the fact that countries like Saudi Arabia have been financing many centers of worship in other countries, steering the congregations towards more conservative views. One of the recent Popes talked about the need for reciprocity - this could mean, for example, that Saudis shouldn't be able to finance mosques in Europe until they allowed churches to be built and openly function in Saudi Arabia. But, it's hard to come up with a mechanism to enforce this that would make sense in the West, nor would the current Western sensibilities allow for such a decisive step.

In any case, somehow or other, I feel that both Qsa and you underestimate the imporance of religion in the interactions between the Western and the Muslim civilizations, even though Qsa is certainly right that a baker must spend his days baking bread, not pondering religious matters all the time. And yet, religion is part of that baker's culture and world view.


reader Tilo said...

Being a professor of mathematics doesn't mean that you are not dumb.


reader Tilo said...

No, the ISIS murders are definitely motivated by religion. My point is not that religion, especially Islam, are detrimental to humanity, but rather that religion is not the only idealogical source of murder and suffering. Atheistic ideaologies can be every bit as brutal as religiously motivated ones.


reader Tilo said...

Really, then how do they benefit from suicide bombing. And what is your evidence that they are pupils of the CIA?


reader Tilo said...

What is your evidence that they are pupils of the CIA.


reader Tilo said...

I doubt that you can find your behind with both hands. You have no evidence at all that the CIA trained ISIS in Jordan. You are simply one of those bigots who thinks all Arabs are motivated by the same thing.


reader Tilo said...

I don't know why so many people on Lubos' site are so uninformed.

A. ISIS is not supported, in any way, by the Saudi government. They may be supported by individual Saudis using their own money, but then that is also true for individuals from many other countries.

B. The Saudis do support other groups in Syria that want to overthrow Assad. But the official Saudi support is to groups that fight against both Assad and against ISIS. ISIS does not recognize the legitimacy of the Saudi government or of any of the Gulf state monarchies. The Saudi monarchy fear both ISIS and Al Queda.

C. The rebels that the Saudis do support are also religious extremists, although not on the same scale as ISIS. Saudis support goes to Wahabbi and Salafi groups.

If people are going to offer their opinions on this blog they should at least read a primer on who is who in the ME.


reader Gordon said...

Well, to start and end with, stop lobbing missiles into Israel trying to hit any civilian centres, and arrest and imprison those doing this. This likely would stop any Israeli attacks. If it did not, then we all would be justified in blaming them for aggression. As I said, there is not parity.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear Tilo, I think that your claims are right - many of them are details and I don't think it's sensible to expect everybody to know all such details about remote countries.


None of your comments change anything about the fact that the assignment of the "friends of the U.S." and "enemies of the U.S." labels across the Middle East is highly inconsistent which also means that the U.S. interventions into the regions are guaranteed to be inefficient or counterproductive.


reader Gordon said...

Yes, OK, truce...this thread is turning into a typical UN session :)


reader Tilo said...

First of all, ISIS started in Iraq, microbrain. Second of all, they did not start in the abstract, Islamic terrorism is 1400 years old. About 1000 years older than the US.
Third of all, show me the land that the US has gained through imperialism in the last 100 years. Show me where they have gained a single drop of oil from their "imperialism".


reader Tilo said...

The Jews occupied 40% of the Arabian Penninsula before the Muslims began to exterminate them. Now the Jews hold on to a postage stamp sized piece of land and all the Muslims are fanatically trying to destroy them. The idea that the lack of peace in the ME is the fault of the Jews is another sign of your idiocy.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Show me the land that other traditional powers and empires such as Russia, Germany, Britain, France, Turkey etc. etc. gained since 1914. It's simply a fact that all these powers were losing and decaying in the last 100 years so your argument is empty.


However, the U.S. was extending its sphere of influence to Western Europe, Hawaii as a new state, and then Eastern Europe, Southeastern Asia, Middle East, North Africa, and so on, and so on. They are not full-fledged parts of the U.S., but the British colonies were not a part of Britain proper during the empire, either.


reader Tilo said...

Actually, the Jews founded Medina long before the Prophet Mohammed arrived there and kicked them out.


reader Tilo said...

So, along with all the other stupid baggage that you advertise, you claim that women don't have a sharp wit.


reader Tilo said...

A. Russia just stole Crimea and part of Eastern Ukraine. So there is no question there. I didn't say that France or Britain or Germany or Turkey today were imperialistic, so what straw man are you arguing about, exactly.

B. Your article provides no evidence of any kind that the US took a drop of oil from anyone, including Iraq, that they did not pay Iraq for. The missing money is from an Iraqi development fund that the US contributed to, as well as many other sources. There is also no evidence of who took the money from that fund. With the level of corruption in the Iraqi government, they could have taken it themselves. Beyond that, the idea that the US would spend a trillion on a war so that they could steal 17 billion is as absurd as you can get.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Russia didn't steal any Crimea.


You were talking about territories acquired in the last 100 years. Russia obviously didn't acquire Crimea in the least 100 years because Crimea belonged to Russia 100 years ago (and in preceding centuries) just like it belongs there today.


When Crimea decided to reunite with Russia, it has only undone an arrogant act of microengineering of a drunken Soviet dictator in the 1950s, an act with a short, temporary effect. You support these malicious interventions by not only dictators against the people's and nations' own and natural wishes because that's your "character".


I am just emphasizing that the suggestion that Russia has behaved more "imperialistically" in the last 100 years than e.g. the U.S. is a self-evident lie.


reader QsaTheory said...

I think you have already answered some of you own questions. People, nations don't need much excuses to commit monstrosities, just the right motivation.


I agree all bad interpretations should be abolished.


From my experience in the ME from families and friends religion just like anywhere else(I went to Greenville college/free Methodist 2yrs)
for 50/60% of people is just a way to find a peace within oneself, a way to have a moral conduct(no lying,cheating etc), doing charity coupled with maintaining some rituals. The other 40% don't care that much for it, there are shades in between. of course , that is just a simplified, rough unscientific estimation. There are Zealots (most from poor background) of course were some of them can be bought off( who ever pays higher) to commit atrocities.


I think the political side has already been beaten to death in this thread.


reader RAF III said...

You seem to be a shepherd, so naturally you miss the point - which is that no matter which shepherd the sheep vote for their fate remains the same. Should the sheep ever decide that it is in their best interest to no longer be sheep even the most 'enlightened' shepherds will be at risk.


reader QsaTheory said...

jim z, I cannot get myself to take you seriously. But as a consolation for you in case you are serious, please go through the thread thoroughly to get your answers.


reader cynholt said...

Well let's ask ourselves who funded and brought the ultra reactionary ISIS movement into existence. This ultra reactionary Islamist movement was created back in 2004 as part of Sunni insurgents fighting in Iraq against the US coalition forces. Back then, it was funded by the Arab wealthy donors living in the Gulf. Later on when the so-called Arab spring broke out, these similar ideological forces played a decisive role in the Syrian civil war, and they were either directly or indirectly funded and armed by the US, Turkey and the Arab regimes in the Gulf, particularly Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Moreover, what happened was that once ISIS which stands for (Islamic state for Iraq and Syria) consolidated and expanded their territorial gains in some of the eastern parts of Syria, they then started crossing into Iraq, and in the process took over major cities in an effort to topple the US backed Iraqi regime of Nour Al Maliki, whom is also a major ally of Iran. This move in itself brought them into direct conflict with Iran and their Shiite allies living in Iraq, and also more importantly, this exposed the double standard policy of the US imperialism in using these Islamist forces as a proxy tool in the Syrian War, and at same time, opposing them virulently inside Iraq.


reader RAF III said...

No Shannon, it is not like that at all. Coca Cola (made with cane sugar) is objectively better than any other; this is a FACT (you can tell because I used capital letters to write 'fact').


reader cynholt said...

Israel has got Saudi Arabia as its ally, Gordon, which is the biggest and most powerful country in the region. So what makes you think that Israel is at risk of being annihilated by her neighbors? Israel isn't the poor and defenseless country you make her out to be. Israel is more than capable of protecting herself. She's got plenty of money to pay for her own protection, but is simply too cheap to pay for it herself.

Even though Israel is financially better off than the US, she is still suckling on the US taxpayer's teat. It's high time that the US wean her off of it.


reader Tilo said...

Your interpretation of the Iraq article that you linked is so absurd and so far off that I can only conclude that you simply read the title and then extrapolated from there. Go back and read the entire article and then we can talk.


reader Pavel Bažant said...

I agree with your observations. The problem is that quality of a product is inversely proportional to the need of support. So basically this model leads to crappy software. Not always, but in the majority of cases.

An analogous situation exists in closed-source development, too. You want to sell new versions for money, so you are not motivated to make any version too good, or the customer won't buy the new one.


reader Bernd Felsche said...

Many years ago, one of the inventors of Unix presented a "backdoor" mechanism which'd compromise all systems. The "trick" was to put it into the compiler.

Only the object-code analysts would be any the wiser.

"Nobody" vets the compiler.


reader Bernd Felsche said...

Somebody might help Luboš out and change his shell to emacs. ;-)


reader Bernd Felsche said...

I've been writing software for proprietary and free and open software (FOSS) for about 30 years. There is no difference in the quality of the delivered product of one from the other. I don't do a sh!tload of FOSS development because nowadays 90+% of the "community" is just like the 90% of the population that does stuff just to be doing stuff. 20 years ago, a larger proprotion of developers had a better understanding of computers and how people could best make use of them.

Although there are now 10 to 100 times as many "software developers", the absolute number of people who know what they are doing has at best doubled. That holds true for both FOSS and proprietary.

As for security and other flaws, proprietary software has no practical advantage of FOSS. Nor does FOSS over proprietary. 99.999% of security is in how people USE their systems and how they manage their data.


reader R T Deco said...

Yes, and (to paraphrase a movie) his journey towards the dark side will be complete! ;-)