Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

Sad day for rational thinkers everywhere

For discussion of politics, and what's going on in the world today.

Moderators: Blip, The_Metatron, Matt8819, Ironclad

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#501  Postby Just Wondering » Dec 20, 2011 6:13 pm

So that contrarians can rest their hearts that Hitch is being over hero-ized (it's a word, I said so):

http://www.salon.com/2011/12/20/hitchen ... of_genius/

It's nice to hear a balance of views.

And another from someone who, although they endured violence at Hitch's hands, called him a friend. Now this particular article puzzled me.

http://www.salon.com/2011/12/20/i_knew_ ... _than_you/

It was funny to read though.
User avatar
Just Wondering
Banned User
 
Posts: 2766

Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#502  Postby redwhine » Dec 20, 2011 6:17 pm

Spearthrower wrote:I forgive him.

Me too. :thumbup:
Like BEER? ...Click here!

What do I believe?

Atheism is myth understood.
User avatar
redwhine
 
Posts: 6187
Age: 61
Male

Country: England
England (eng)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#503  Postby Agrippina » Dec 20, 2011 6:24 pm

I like this: "death is not a consequence of disbelief, it's a consequence of life, you moron." :lol: What an idiot.
Nothing is too wonderful to be true, if it be consistent with the laws of nature.
Michael Faraday
User avatar
Agrippina
 
Posts: 33190
Age: 103
Female

Country: South Africa
South Africa (za)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#504  Postby Exi5tentialist » Dec 20, 2011 9:12 pm

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:To be honest I never heard much talk of religious freedom from Hitchens, nor does it emanate from the astounding intellect of Richard Dawkins, but then they were both a generation late to have witnessed the holocaust

when was the holocaust about religion?

Did it only hit people with funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns?


There are many facets to the identity of the Jews - including their ethnicity, their history, their language, their customs and their religion. It's easy to forget the last one, and just as easy to dismiss it, especially if you're anti-semitic. But the Holocaust, as you know, was about all of the things I listed, including religious persecution, a fact that did not go unnoticed in the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed in 1948, which guaranteed religious freedom to all. Leaving aside that the history of the holocaust is not particularly difficult to understand, even though for most of us it has drifted out of living memory, the right of everybody to worship whatever god they choose, in the way of their choosing, is surely a cornerstone of a sensitive, compassionate and strong democracy, is it not? If Christopher Hitchens had ever said such a thing, I surely would have heard about it. And if he really did, and I just missed it, perhaps he should have said it more often, and more loudly, because all I ever heard was his blanket dismissiveness of all things religious. That, I think, is where he concentrated his volume.

While your petty-minded little anti-semitic outburst about 'funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns' may raise a chortle in the reactionary circles Christopher Hitchens might have found the most attention in, I do think it was ill-advised given that we are talking about the extermination of a section of the human race. And before you repeat the indiscretion by arguing genitals at me (I would counter-argue that all circumcision of boys on non-medical grounds should be banned by law), I would ask you to calm down, reflect on human suffering and perhaps spare a thought for millions of human beings who were tortured and died in those times at the hands of people who were at least as uncaring of people's religious freedoms as many people today appear to be; and perhaps watch a few films about the period such as Au Revoir Les Enfants, that reflect the tenderness and solace that people gained in those times from religious observances close to their hearts, any display of which would result in summary transportation without the slightest recourse to any judicial authority or public forum.

In that light, what would be your argument to someone taken away to be killed through having been discovered secretly observing jewish religious ceremonies? That their death and that of their family was not about religion? I'd be interested to see how you construct it.
Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:Maybe they just never studied much history.

or a wee bit more than you

or a wee bit less.

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
you can have all the religious freedom you can carry, as soon as it stops being a big issue on public pollicies and lawmaking.

Did Hitchens argue that? Surely religious freedom is for everybody, not just me, and I unconditionally support the religious freedom set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights - it was signed 3 years after the Holocaust, in case you've forgotten already. Read Article 18. You'll notice, it says nothing about requiring people to stop religion being a big issue on public policies and lawmaking. That aim was more what motivated those against whom the final signing of the Declaration was a reaction. I'm sure we don't want to be revisiting those times, do we? Would Christopher Hitchens not want that either? ...oh but he's no longer here to ask. All he has left is his legacy of writings and speechifying - not a particularly rich legacy, it has to be said, for those seeking quotes in support of human life, freedom, peace, and democracy.
User avatar
Exi5tentialist
Banned Troll
 
Posts: 1211

United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#505  Postby THWOTH » Dec 20, 2011 9:22 pm

Christopher Hitchens, open letter to the Texans for Truth Rally held on Sunday, May 16, 2010 in Austin. (LINK)

    We know of no spectacle more ridiculous — or more contemptible — than that of the religious reactionaries who dare to re-write the history of our republic. Or who try to do so. Is it possible that, in their vanity and stupidity, they suppose that they can erase the name of Thomas Jefferson and replace it with the name of some faith-based mediocrity whose name is already obscure? If so, we cheerfully resolve to mock them, and to give them the lie in their teeth.

    Without Thomas Jefferson and his Declaration of Independence, there would have been no American revolution that announced universal principles of liberty. Without his participation by the side of the unforgettable Marquis de Lafayette, there would have been no French proclamation of The Rights of Man. Without his brilliant negotiation of the Louisiana treaty, there would be no United States of America. Without Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, there would have been no Virginia Statute on Religious Freedom, and no basis for the most precious clause of our most prized element of our imperishable Bill of Rights — the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.

    We make no saint of Thomas Jefferson — we leave the mindless business of canonization and the worship of humans to the fanatics — but aware as we are of his many crimes and contradictions we say with confidence that his memory and example will endure long after the moral pygmies who try to blot out his name have been forgotten.

    As Abraham Lincoln died, after a cowardly shot in the back from a racist traitor, Secretary of War Edwin Stanton sighed and said: “Now he belongs to the ages”. Or did he say “Now he belongs to the angels”? In a roomful of highly literate and educated officers and physicians, in an age of photography and stenography, and with newspaper presses around the corner on Pennsylvania Avenue, there was no agreement among eye-and-ear witnesses as to what Stanton had actually said.

    Those of us who write and study history are accustomed to its approximations and ambiguities. This is why we do not take literally the tenth-hand reports of frightened and illiterate peasants who claim to have seen miracles or to have had encounters with messiahs and prophets and redeemers who were, like them, mere humans. And this is also why we will never submit to dictation from those who display a fanatical belief in certainty and revelation. They try to tell us that to do otherwise is to collapse into “relativism”. But it is they who wish to promote the life and work of Jefferson Davis — an advocate of slavery, backwardness, treason and disunion — to an equality with Lincoln, who suffered agonies of doubt, who never joined a church, who was born on the same day as Charles Darwin and who introduced his colleagues to the work of Thomas Paine — and who was the last brave casualty of a war: a war begun by devout and fanatical Christians, that preserved our Union and in the end led to the striking of the shackles from every slave. It was inscribed in the documents of the Confederacy that the private ownership of human beings had a divine warrant. And so it did — to the everlasting shame of those who take the Bible as god’s word.

    It is notorious that the news of the Emancipation Proclamation was kept from the people of Texas and not celebrated until “Juneteenth”. There may be those in Texas now who believe they can insulate their state — a state that had its own courageous revolution — from the news of evolution and from the writing in 1786 of a Constitution that refuses to mention religion except when demarcating and limiting its role in the public square. But we promise them today that they will join their fore-runners in the flat earth community, and in the mad clerical clique of those who believed that the sun revolved around the earth. Yes, they will be in schoolbooks — as a joke on the epic scale of William Jennings Bryan. We shall be fair, and take care to ensure that their tale is told.

    As President, Thomas Jefferson received a letter from a concerned group of Baptists in Danbury, Connecticut. These people were the objects of persecution and the victims of discrimination, and they beseeched Jefferson to uphold their liberties. Of whom were they afraid? It should be remembered, and taught in our schools, that these poor Baptists were afraid of the Congregationalists of Connecticut, who subjected their fellow-Christians to insult and insecurity. Thus it was the secular and unbelieving Jefferson who insisted that, by means of a “wall of separation” between religion and government, all faiths and communities could take shelter under the great roof of the godless Constitution. From that day to this, the only guarantee of religious pluralism has been the secular law.

    We inherited these principles and these freedoms and we here highly resolve that we shall pass them on, as we will pass on an undivided Republic purged of racism and slavery, to our descendants. The popgun discharges of a few pathetic sectarians and crackpot revisionists are negligible, and will be drowned by the mounting chorus that demands: “Mr Jefferson! BUILD UP THAT WALL”.

      – Christopher Hitchens
"Hope is that by which we measure our ability to cope with disappointment."
— Michel de Montaigne, Essais, 1580


Image
User avatar
THWOTH
Senior Moderator
 
Name: Penrose
Posts: 32256
Age: 49

Country: ConDemNation
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#506  Postby Exi5tentialist » Dec 20, 2011 9:37 pm

hackenslash wrote:
Barry Cade wrote:Hitchens's support for the invasion of Iraq helped to sustain the ideological offensive launched by the US and its allies; it is not merely polemical to point out the reactionary consequences of this stance. While Hitchens was drunkenly lurching around the US lecture circuit, dazzling the gullible with his loquacity, the people of Fallujah were suffering and dying in their thousands.

If you want to get all sentimental about the recently deceased, I am sure Kim Jong-il's family would appreciate a Xmas card.


What a feeble pile of ignorant, festering fucking guff.

On the contrary, Barry Cade's paragraph above is insightful, eloquent, on-topic and wholly accurate, unlike your own. hackenslash, I do not know if there is a word for a sentence that describes itself, but I think you have produced one there.
User avatar
Exi5tentialist
Banned Troll
 
Posts: 1211

United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#507  Postby horacerumpole » Dec 20, 2011 9:55 pm

Just Wondering wrote:So that contrarians can rest their hearts that Hitch is being over hero-ized (it's a word, I said so):

http://www.salon.com/2011/12/20/hitchen ... of_genius/

It's nice to hear a balance of views.

And another from someone who, although they endured violence at Hitch's hands, called him a friend. Now this particular article puzzled me.

http://www.salon.com/2011/12/20/i_knew_ ... _than_you/

It was funny to read though.


Pollack's article is hilarious. The Lind article is pretty scathing, but disingenuous.
"There is not a court in Heaven or Earth...where Horace Rumpole is not ready and willing to appear. On the Day of Judgment I shall probably be up on my hind legs putting a few impertinent questions to the prosecutor."
User avatar
horacerumpole
 
Name: Horace Rumpole
Posts: 1933
Male

Country: United States
United States (us)
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#508  Postby Banzai! » Dec 20, 2011 10:03 pm

there was another tawdry opinion piece in tonight's London Evening Standard

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-24023231-atheists-are-at-odds-with-our-nations-history.do
User avatar
Banzai!
 
Posts: 229

Canada (ca)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#509  Postby Exi5tentialist » Dec 20, 2011 10:14 pm

Banzai! wrote:there was another tawdry opinion piece in tonight's London Evening Standard

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-24023231-atheists-are-at-odds-with-our-nations-history.do

The Evening Standard talking about Hitchens & Dawkins is nothing more than one set of reactionaries talking to another. It's that conversation that is tawdry. With Hitchens gone, is there a chance of a real atheist renaissance? You cannot have three horsemen - the metaphor no longer works. From where might those newer atheist voices come?
User avatar
Exi5tentialist
Banned Troll
 
Posts: 1211

United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#510  Postby Agi Hammerthief » Dec 20, 2011 10:22 pm

Exi5tentialist wrote:<snip wall of text> While your petty-minded little anti-semitic outburst about 'funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns' <snip wall of text>

give me a break! :roll:

Not everything that goes against the religion of judaism is antisemitic.
If we had been discussing Mormonism , I'd have made a comment about Magic Underwear
Sikh: towels on heads and funny beards (a friend of mine used to have those till he thought "fuck this silly outfit")

get the drift? or do I need to draw you a picture?

Exi5tentialist wrote:or a wee bit less.

and so on :roll:

Exi5tentialist wrote:Surely religious freedom is for everybody, not just me

are you of the "religious freedom" =/= "freedom from religion" camp perchance?

Exi5tentialist wrote:Read Article 18. You'll notice, it says nothing about requiring people to stop religion being a big issue on public policies and lawmaking.
my point exactely

1948...
not much going on, on the lines of freedom from religion back then. Pre Scientology too.

Exi5tentialist wrote:Did Hitchens argue that?

see this post for an answer:
THWOTH @ Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)
* my (modified) emphasis ( or 'interpretation' )

when you chop off your neighbours head and use it as a vase, you can call it 'culture'.
it's called civilisation is when this gets you jailed for the rest of your live.
User avatar
Agi Hammerthief
 
Posts: 790
Age: 41
Male

Country: .de
Germany (de)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#511  Postby Exi5tentialist » Dec 20, 2011 10:45 pm

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:While your petty-minded little anti-semitic outburst about 'funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns'

give me a break!

Not everything that goes against the religion of judaism is antisemitic.

In the context of the holocaust - a context you freely entered into - your outburst was anti-semitic.

I am also still waiting for your answer to why you think a jewish person being transported to their death, having been discovered engaging in jewish ritual, means the holocaust wasn't religious. Or was it because you never stated it wasn't religious, you merely asked a question? Time for you to tell us what you think - where does your certainty lie?

For your information, I am certain that the holocaust was about religion, amongst many other bigotries. Mind you, I'm not surprised you didn't spot my question. I notice you "snipped" my "wall of text". Is that, by any chance, a mental habit you've got into, every time you see more than a couple of sentences in a row?

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Sikh: towels on heads and funny beards (a friend of mine used to have those till he thought "fuck this silly outfit")
get the drift? or do I need to draw you a picture?

Feel free. Anti-semitism and forms of bigotry that supplant racism are obviously your forte - you might as well depict them pictorially.

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:Surely religious freedom is for everybody, not just me

are you of the "religious freedom" =/= "freedom from religion" camp perchance?

No

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:Read Article 18. You'll notice, it says nothing about requiring people to stop religion being a big issue on public policies and lawmaking.
my point exactely [/quote
So why are you introducing such a requirement? Do you support human rights or not?
Agi Hammerthief wrote:
1948...
not much going on, on the lines of freedom from religion back then. Pre Scientology too.

The Universal Declaration guarantees religious freedom. It is a current document. What makes you say it was only relevant to 1948? Wishful thinking?

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:Did Hitchens argue that?

see this post for an answer:
THWOTH @ Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

I see nothing there but a laboured assault on the english language, filled with pomposity. The quote was entirely about secularism. My question was about religious freedom. Not one of Hitchens's strong points, I feel.
User avatar
Exi5tentialist
Banned Troll
 
Posts: 1211

United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#512  Postby cherries » Dec 20, 2011 10:54 pm

"My own view is that this planet is used as a penal colony, lunatic asylum and dumping ground by a superior civilisation, to get rid of the undesirable and unfit. I can't prove it, but you can't disprove it either." – God Is Not Great

Christopher Hitchens :heart:

just bookmarking :)
"Most books on witchcraft will tell you that witches work naked.
This is because most books on witchcraft were written by men."
-Terry Pratchett / Neil Gaiman




A theists for Conservation
User avatar
cherries
 
Posts: 6834
Age: 50
Female

Country: deutschelande
Germany (de)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#513  Postby SafeAsMilk » Dec 20, 2011 11:05 pm

Exi5tentialist wrote:
Agi Hammerthief wrote:
Exi5tentialist wrote:To be honest I never heard much talk of religious freedom from Hitchens, nor does it emanate from the astounding intellect of Richard Dawkins, but then they were both a generation late to have witnessed the holocaust

when was the holocaust about religion?

Did it only hit people with funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns?


There are many facets to the identity of the Jews - including their ethnicity, their history, their language, their customs and their religion. It's easy to forget the last one, and just as easy to dismiss it, especially if you're anti-semitic. But the Holocaust, as you know, was about all of the things I listed, including religious persecution, a fact that did not go unnoticed in the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed in 1948, which guaranteed religious freedom to all. Leaving aside that the history of the holocaust is not particularly difficult to understand, even though for most of us it has drifted out of living memory, the right of everybody to worship whatever god they choose, in the way of their choosing, is surely a cornerstone of a sensitive, compassionate and strong democracy, is it not?

No, it isn't. The freedom to worship OR NOT WORSHIP whatever god they choose certainly is. But your omission speaks volumes.

If Christopher Hitchens had ever said such a thing, I surely would have heard about it. And if he really did, and I just missed it, perhaps he should have said it more often, and more loudly, because all I ever heard was his blanket dismissiveness of all things religious. That, I think, is where he concentrated his volume.

Oh, please excuse Hitchens, he didn't know that it was his job to say what you want him to say, at the volume you want him to say it. Note the Jefferson speech above (http://www.rationalskepticism.org/post1 ... l#p1122725), which I will reference again later. Newsflash: Hitchens hated your religion, he didn't feel the need to promote it to make you feel better. Perhaps you should supply some evidence of him saying religion should be forcibly taken away from people, since you seem to be implying that is what you think his position is. I would assert he has made the case for religious and ethnic plurality it quite clear, although if one doesn't give a rat's ass about the Kurds I can see why it wouldn't sink in.

While your petty-minded little anti-semitic outburst about 'funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns' may raise a chortle in the reactionary circles Christopher Hitchens might have found the most attention in, I do think it was ill-advised given that we are talking about the extermination of a section of the human race. And before you repeat the indiscretion by arguing genitals at me (I would counter-argue that all circumcision of boys on non-medical grounds should be banned by law), I would ask you to calm down, reflect on human suffering and perhaps spare a thought for millions of human beings who were tortured and died in those times at the hands of people who were at least as uncaring of people's religious freedoms as many people today appear to be; and perhaps watch a few films about the period such as Au Revoir Les Enfants, that reflect the tenderness and solace that people gained in those times from religious observances close to their hearts, any display of which would result in summary transportation without the slightest recourse to any judicial authority or public forum.

In that light, what would be your argument to someone taken away to be killed through having been discovered secretly observing jewish religious ceremonies? That their death and that of their family was not about religion? I'd be interested to see how you construct it.

Way to spectacularly miss the point :clap: No shit, the Nazis were after the Jews? Really?

Now, address the point of the question: are Jews the ONLY people who were persecuted by the Nazi's? Everyone that the Nazi's persecuted, it was all because they were Jews, every one of them? Gosh, 11 million minus 6 million isn't zero...And then, did you link a video promoting the benefits of religion after having ranted about a Christian killing a bunch of Jews? The cheek! The point, if you've still missed it: Nazis killed for more than just funny hats, mutilated penises and curly sideburns. But go ahead, cry racism, it looks real good.

As you can see in the Hitchens speech quoted above...he admires Jefferson for promoting true religious plurality, going as far as to protect one religious group from the persecution of the other, having no personal stake in either. There are plenty of objections to be made at things Hitchens has said, but your glossing over the broader concepts that Hitchens supported, all to rain sour grapes on a man because he calls religions on their bullshit, all are quite telling. For fuck's sake, isn't there a single Hitchens objector out there that has the foggiest fucking clue what he's said? :nono:
Yes, a mighty hot dog is our Lord!
User avatar
SafeAsMilk
 
Posts: 5095
Age: 34
Male

United States (us)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#514  Postby Agi Hammerthief » Dec 20, 2011 11:25 pm

SafeAsMilk wrote:Way to spectacularly miss the point <snip>

thanks, you just made me dump 30 minutes of typing for that and what followed ( :roll: @ me)

SafeAsMilk wrote:Oh, please excuse Hitchens, he didn't know that it was his job to say what you want him to say, at the volume you want him to say it.

:this:
when you already have more freedom of religion than others have freedom from religion, you are "complaining on a high comfort level"
* my (modified) emphasis ( or 'interpretation' )

when you chop off your neighbours head and use it as a vase, you can call it 'culture'.
it's called civilisation is when this gets you jailed for the rest of your live.
User avatar
Agi Hammerthief
 
Posts: 790
Age: 41
Male

Country: .de
Germany (de)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#515  Postby SafeAsMilk » Dec 20, 2011 11:36 pm

Agi Hammerthief wrote:
SafeAsMilk wrote:Way to spectacularly miss the point <snip>

thanks, you just made me dump 30 minutes of typing for that and what followed ( :roll: @ me)


:lol: Sorry man, I couldn't help it. I've been hoping to see some good criticism of Hitchens in the couple weeks after he passed away, people who are actually interested in discussing/taking apart his ideas. Mostly I've just been seeing crap like this apologetic drivel because he wouldn't play softball with religion-induced nonsense. Nobody needs to pander to this bullshit in order to support people's right to believe in it.
Yes, a mighty hot dog is our Lord!
User avatar
SafeAsMilk
 
Posts: 5095
Age: 34
Male

United States (us)
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#516  Postby Exi5tentialist » Dec 21, 2011 12:28 am

SafeAsMilk wrote:
Now, address the point of the question: are Jews the ONLY people who were persecuted by the Nazi's?

Yeah but that wasn't actually "the point", was it? "The point", in case you missed it, and what a shame Agi Hammerthief lost all his typing because it might have answered it, was that the Holocaust was about religion. Of course, Agi's question, "Since when was the holocaust about religion?" was indeed only a question. But - sorry to labour the point - "the point" was, he asked it, and the fact Agi even asked it shows a level of detachment from the reality of the holocaust that is not far removed from the kind of detachment Hitchens was frequently guilty of.

So you choose to portray me as saying the holocaust was not also about racism, homophobia, anti-semitism, anti-communism, anti-anything else? In Agi's words, give us a break. Bit of a tangent that, and not what I said.

Please believe me, it's fine if Hitchens isn't there to say what I want him to say, it's not as if it's possible for him to do that now anyway, is it? And really, there's no need to resort to expletives. I quite clearly have "the foggiest f****** clue what he's said," as you so delicately put it, because his laborious Jefferson letter was quoted in full above. Dear oh dear. I really do prefer to rely on rational argument rather than sexual abuse to get my point across. Surely we can have a discussion on that basis, please?

And why so angry? I was merely making the point that for Hitchens, the point of the letter was to demonstrate that secularism benefits society and warring religions by keeping them apart. That is not a statement in principle of support for religious freedom; it is support of religious freedom which is conditional on the sanctification of secularism - I wouldn't use the word sanctification usually but Hitchens was clearly not above similar pomposities so why not?

To argue that secularism must at all costs remain central to national governance in order to keep religions in conflict apart from one another (and indeed away from harming society itself) is not the same as arguing for the principle of religious freedom in its own right. This is a (not very) subtle but important difference which of course will be lost in the almost inevitable "<snip>" of every rational argument that appears in this thread in favour of abusive language. Hitchens seems to think secularism is the only thing that guarantees religious freedom - that's the core point of his letter - but it's not true anyway. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights guarantees religious freedom, and that was signed by more theocratic governments (like the UK) than you'd care to mention. The UK has enshrined human rights in its law, and the UK is hardly a secular state.

Hitchens really hasn't demonstrated his point. Now, in your responses to me, please don't swear.
User avatar
Exi5tentialist
Banned Troll
 
Posts: 1211

United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#517  Postby epepke » Dec 21, 2011 1:30 am

It's funny that Hitchens is still tweaking dingbats even after his death.
User avatar
epepke
 
Posts: 2951

Country: US
United States (us)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#518  Postby hackenslash » Dec 21, 2011 1:42 am

Exi5tentialist wrote:
hackenslash wrote:
Barry Cade wrote:Hitchens's support for the invasion of Iraq helped to sustain the ideological offensive launched by the US and its allies; it is not merely polemical to point out the reactionary consequences of this stance. While Hitchens was drunkenly lurching around the US lecture circuit, dazzling the gullible with his loquacity, the people of Fallujah were suffering and dying in their thousands.

If you want to get all sentimental about the recently deceased, I am sure Kim Jong-il's family would appreciate a Xmas card.


What a feeble pile of ignorant, festering fucking guff.

On the contrary, Barry Cade's paragraph above is insightful, eloquent, on-topic and wholly accurate, unlike your own. hackenslash, I do not know if there is a word for a sentence that describes itself, but I think you have produced one there.


What a brilliant riposte, even on behalf of somebody who can't be bothered to defend his own ignorant bollocks.

Insightful? Only insofar as one can see up one's own rectum. Eloquent? Hahahahahahahaha!

Keep trying, Exi, and you might one day understand what some of those words mean, and indeed what reality looks like. I doubt it, but there's always hope if you keep banging the rocks together.
Dogma is the death of the intellect
There is no more thunderous prescient of doom than the flutter of tiny wings...
User avatar
hackenslash
 
Name: The Other Sweary One
Posts: 17144
Age: 45
Male

Country: Republic of Mancunia
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#519  Postby THWOTH » Dec 21, 2011 1:47 am

Exi5tentialist wrote:I see nothing there but a laboured assault on the english language, filled with pomposity. The quote was entirely about secularism. My question was about religious freedom. Not one of Hitchens's strong points, I feel.

His point was that secularism was enshrined in the US constitution and that only the secular principle allows freedom of religion and freedom from religion.

P.S. 'English' is a proper noun btw.
"Hope is that by which we measure our ability to cope with disappointment."
— Michel de Montaigne, Essais, 1580


Image
User avatar
THWOTH
Senior Moderator
 
Name: Penrose
Posts: 32256
Age: 49

Country: ConDemNation
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Christopher Hitchens dead (1949—2011)

#520  Postby Just A Theory » Dec 21, 2011 2:08 am

Exi5tentialist wrote:
hackenslash wrote:
Barry Cade wrote:Hitchens's support for the invasion of Iraq helped to sustain the ideological offensive launched by the US and its allies; it is not merely polemical to point out the reactionary consequences of this stance. While Hitchens was drunkenly lurching around the US lecture circuit, dazzling the gullible with his loquacity, the people of Fallujah were suffering and dying in their thousands.

If you want to get all sentimental about the recently deceased, I am sure Kim Jong-il's family would appreciate a Xmas card.


What a feeble pile of ignorant, festering fucking guff.

On the contrary, Barry Cade's paragraph above is insightful, eloquent, on-topic and wholly accurate, unlike your own. hackenslash, I do not know if there is a word for a sentence that describes itself, but I think you have produced one there.


Insightful, eloquent, on-topic and wholly accurate would seem to mischaracterise Cade's sentences.

Firstly, he editorialises by claiming that the Iraq war was ideological in nature without that being a demonstrated point. It could (and still might) have been economic in nature. Secondly, he claims that his points are not polemic in nature when the type of personal attack on a viewpoint held by a singular person is the very definition of polemics. Thirdly, the ad hominem attacks of "drunkenly lurching" and "dazzling the gullible" have not been substantiated - was Hitchens commonly drunk when speaking, were only the gullible persuaded?

Finally, false equivalence between a journalist who had something to say and a dictator who oppressed a country for a generation has been drawn by Cade.

His points are definitely not wholly accurate and neither on-topic nor eloquent except insofar as his boorishness displays a large vocabulary or access to a decent thesaurus.
"He who begins by loving Christianity more than Truth, will proceed by loving his sect or church better than Christianity, and end in loving himself better than all."

Samuel Taylor Coleridge 1772-1834
Just A Theory
 
Posts: 1224
Male

Australia (au)
Print view this post

PreviousNext

Return to News, Politics & Current Affairs

Who is online

Users viewing this topic: No registered users and 0 guests