Heh, I want his Mo' (it is Movember after all).
The problem with this whole thing (and I think a lot of people might agree) is that Ben and Tomorrowpeople are right - if we had been talking about and planning a waterfront stadium for the last year it would probably have a massive amount of support behind it.
I'm starting to swing for the waterfront - just because this whole thing is going to be rushed either way and f-it - I'm a gambler.
If people want to free associate/speculate/extrapolate/make sh*t up about other dimensions and multiple universes they are free to do so, but I fail to see how such imaginary worlds are any better than Collins' imaginary friend
These theories are not created for the benefit of theists, they're conjectures by physicists to describe the universe as they investigate it. They do have implications for religion, but as far as rationality goes, those implications are secondary.
If one is acceptable conjecture so is the other, particularly when god concepts more sophisticated than 'old man with a beard' are taken into account.
Well, no. The theories that are just 'made up' are 'made up' to as hypothesis' that can then be disproved. Case in point: Ether. The ether was a medium conjectured by physicists to explain how light could travel through apparently empty space. When it was found that the Ether could not exist (see Michelson-Morley experiment) this opened the door to Einsteins theory of relativity. That's how science progresses our understanding of the universe - by setting up ideas and knocking them down.
Religion puts up an idea with no intention of letting it get knocked down. The whole formulation of sprituality is a human construct specifically designed to avoid argument altogether.
Why has the nation been suckered into this dumb competition by the IRB?
Heh, first time I've heard someone actually come out against the whole concept of a rugby world cup.
Lets be fair, having the rugby world cup here will be a huge boom time for business. The company I work for had stellar sales during the Lions Tour and RWC will be bigger than that. If we can just not screw it up too much we will come out in the black.
Another thing, a 67 floor tower block is just about to be dumped into Auckland's city centre, no doubt blocking off plenty sky, space and having a lot of other impacts.
I'm all for it - more [quality] inner-city living is exactly what Auckland needs. But aside from whether you like it or not, it's a private investment in the central city. And lets face it, if you live in an inner city block and you're concerned about having your view cut off, maybe you should think about whoevers view your building cut off first. Its the CBD - the one place in Auckland where big buildings should be built.
Anyway, it won't cause the same kind of kerfuffle because budget overruns don't become a tax-payers problem.
We could probably dedicate a whole forum to calling out journalists on their shortcomings... (glances nervously at the majority of PA/S members who are actually journalists)
Could it not equally be a property of our number systems? That is, we just happen to measure things in a way that make them seem spookily just right.
Not quite - if the gravitational constant (for example) was out by an extremely small amount (I forget how much, but in the order of a millionth of a percent) the universe could not form in the way that it has.
However, I think it is odd that people so quickly dismiss the possibility of life forming in other universe types. When you consider the sheer complexity of DNA, how can we assume that other types of universes cannot possibly support life. There is no way we could conceive of DNA a priori - then to assume that some kind of equivalent process could not happen in other universes is a huge claim.
The invocation of bronze age theology, the death of Galileo, or teapots in orbit does not advance this debate.
Actually, it does. Bronze age theism was equally 'valid' a world-view for what was known by people at the time. The arguements for Religion have changed to accomodate scientific discoveries down the ages - but the underlying theme remains the same.
In my view both the theist and the atheist are making claims they need to prove, rather than simply assert.
Claiming that something doesn't exist is not a 'provable' claim. Logically, it is invalid to ask someone to prove that something doesn't exist. It's not a matter of not wanted to, or ignoring facts, or being contrite. If I say I have super-powers, you cannot prove me wrong. But the burden of proof still lies with me to prove a claim that I'm making. If you 'claim' I don't, then it is up to me to settle the claim.
...the difference between intelligent design and theistic evolution is not widely understood
What is 'theistic' evolution?
Unfortunately, many athiests prefer not to accept that their own religious belief (the unprovable assertion that there is no god) is open to serious critique.
That is EXACTLY the kind of poor logic that riles Atheists. Something that is 'unprovable' is not false - there is very little that is 'provable'. You cannot 'prove' that a ball will fall if you drop it, but the overwhelming body of evidence supports the 'unprovable assertion' that gravity will cause the ball to drop.
It is not about preference - if you look at the overwhelming body of scientific evidence then the natural conclusion is that supernatural beings are highly unlikely.
Feel free to point us in the direction of serious critique based on sound science that says otherwise.
I'm not sure that the absence of something needs to be proved.
It it can't be, which is more or less the point of Agnostism.
But Agnostism is just I don't know.. it's a pointless system because it means you have to be agnostic about everything that could 'possibly' be true, but you are not sure. The agnostic cannot say that they don't believe anything at all - which is completely meaningless. Agnostics remove themselves from the arguement, but it says nothing about what is, or isn't, true.