Saturday, June 20, 2009

it's saturday night and time for: britain's got fuckwits

Here's something to test yourself with: if the audio extract I'm about to link to doesn't get you shouting at the internet and tearing out the threadbare remains of your hair, then you may have to conclude that you are so heavily sedated that you are in danger of imminent death.


OK. Here we go: this is an extract (the relevant "play" button is at the bottom of the page) from a radio interview with Terry Eagleton in promotion of his new book Reason, Faith, and Revolution: Reflections on the God Debate. The Eagleton approach to the debate mainly seems to consist of airily dismissing demands for any sort of proof for the existence of supernatural entities as hopelessly naive and simplistic, chuckling indulgently at the hopelessly hackneyed picture of religion painted by the so-called "new atheists" (Dawkins and Hitchens, principally), and chuckling indulgently once again at the simple-minded lack of understanding of the deep theological tradition inherent in such questions as "do you pray?" before neatly avoiding supplying any sort of an answer. Being a great big vacuous pompous gasbag fuckwit, in other words.

It's the same sort of hand-waving bollocks inherent in other books like Alister McGrath's The Dawkins Delusion?, though my suspicion is that McGrath's book is a more cynical attempt to cream a few shekels off the coat-tails of Dawkins' The God Delusion.

You can see it also in the brand of utter horseshit spouted by David Berlinski (author of The Devil's Delusion - you can see the emerging pattern here I hope) - try the following couple of clips which appear to be advocating the teaching of creationism in schools, although it's hard to tell with Berlinski's head lodged so far up his own arsehole. This clip from the execrable Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed sees Ben Stein earnestly interviewing Berlinski while he sinks languidly into a horizontal position in a comfy chair. I have just an inkling that Berlinski is also only in it for the money he can squeeze out of the Discovery Institute, and that it will all in the end be revealed as some fabulously droll post-modern joke on his part.

The far more important question is this: who is the bigger arsehole? My instinct is to say Eagleton, probably because my cultural upbringing ensures that I find chuckly tweedy English patronising barking irrationality to be more profoundly irritating than supercilious New York Jewish patronising barking irrationality. YMMV, though, as they say.

No comments: