Now Playing at Reason.tv: Christopher Hitchens Says Bah, Humbug to Christmas

On Monday, December 17, reason hosted a "Very Special, Very Secular Christmas Party" at its Washington, D.C. headquarters.

The evening's special event was a dramatic reading of Tom Lehrer's "Christmas Carol" by Christopher Hitchens, author of God Is Not Great, Why Orwell Matters, No One Left to Lie To, and many other books.

"It may have struck you, ladies and gentlemen, that there's a big relationship between this marvelous time of year and living in a one-party state," Hitchens told the overflow crowd of 250. "You can't go anywhere without listening to the same music. You can't go anywhere without hearing the name of the Great Leader, and his son, the Dear Leader....All broadcasts, all songs, all jokes, all references are, just for that magic few weeks, just exactly like living in...North Korea."

We at reason celebrate the holidays in many different ways (some of us not at all) and extend our best wishes to all for a joyous and happy new year.

To view Hitchens in action, click here or on the image above.

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  • ||

    As an atheist, I intend to consume, drink, buy things, stuff myself enjoy carols and listen to The Messiah all I want.

    Hitchens can enjoy his gruel.

  • ||

    Hitchens drunk at Reason...classic.

    It is weird, as much as i hate is missionary style atheism (Why is it important people must worship the NONGOD is beyond me) i really can't stay mad at the guy

  • ||

    Reason hosts a "Very Special, Very Secular Christmas Party".

    I thought libertarianism (in contrast to objectivism) fights for the freedom to be as spiritual or non-spiritual as you want. What does it profit reason to paint atheists as libertarian saints and religious people as fascist fiends? Godot knows that the 20th century had at least as many secular fascists as religious ones.

  • ||

    Hitchens' is an ass. If we atheists had a ruling body, we'd excommunicate him.

  • Desperado||

    As a non-practicing Jew I would like to wish all my religious, Christian libertarian and anarchist friends merry holidays. Fuck reason's pathetic pandering to the libertarian cosmopolitans and their dishwater politics.

  • Question||

    Since when did neocon Hitchens become the voice of libertarian reason?

    I guess fascist atheism is more palatable than theolibertarianism.

  • ||

    What does it profit reason to paint atheists as libertarian saints and religious people as fascist fiends?



    Fuck reason's pathetic pandering to the libertarian cosmopolitans and their dishwater politics.



    Clearly, it was a mistake on reason's part to assume people would be smart enough to see the humor in the name of the party.

  • Brandybuck||

    Where the Hell [sic] did this bizarre idea come from that atheism is a foundation for liberty? Just becuase Rand and Rothbard were atheist doesn't make it a prereq for libertarianism.

    And why or why does Hitchens continue proselytizing for anti-religion? It's like a Jew eating turkey-ham, it's just silly.

  • How so?||

    Andrew: Did you even listen to Hitchens' drunken rant? Apparently private stores playing x-mas music is the equivalent of "living in Fucking North Korea."

    Perhaps Hitches should become, as he so aptly puts it "our great Leader." Then at least he can sensor free expression.

  • ||

    Godlessness is a precondition for liberty.

  • Ritt\'s Ass||

    Ritt, you're going to need a fucking powerful fascist movement to keep our liberty atheist-pure.

    Which neo-con should head up next year's Reason xmas part?

  • ||

    Did you even listen to Hitchens' drunken rant? Apparently private stores playing x-mas music is the equivalent of "living in Fucking North Korea."



    Why yes, yes I did. It struck me as a joke, as they call it in the biz.

  • ||

    The other day we had Spike Jone and today it's Tom Lehrer.

    Salute to Reason on their recognition of America's brilliant comedic musicians of the Mid 20th century!

    *waves hat*

  • ||

    Remember when Hitchens was complaining that he couldn't walk down the street without seeing Support the Troops Chinese ribbon magnets and other expressions of patriotic hawkishness back in ought-three?

    No, me neither.

    What an ahole that guy is.

  • Grand Chalupa||

    Why does anybody listen to this jackass? Being an-ex communist, like being an ex-Nazi, should make you unqualified to give your opinion in respectable company. He still writes glowingly about Marx and Trotsky.

    On top of that, he's as outspoken a neo-con as you can get. Its amazing that one man could be so wrong so many times over a course of a lifetime and even more amazing that a libertarian magazine treats him like a hero.

  • ||

    Since when did neocon Hitchens become the voice of libertarian reason?

    At exactly the point in time when he put on a Santa hat got up in front a reason icon and started babbling then singing drunken satirical Christmas carols.

    If this is not a self justifying symbol freedom I do not know what is.

  • ||

    Why would Reason want to associate with this asshole?
    C'mon, the fucking guy's an intolerant, drunk, modified socialist. What the hell does he have to do with the faculty of "reason"? In what way does this slobbering twat represent "free minds and free markets"?
    Jesus (taken in vain), Reason, get some new goddamn source material.

  • Grand Chalupa||

    And I don't see the "charm" either. Just looking at him I can already imagine the smell.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    I enjoy a little Hitchens now and again but it was quite nice to hear a few well-deserved boos in the video.

  • ||

    If we atheists had a ruling body, we'd excommunicate him.

    I'm an atheist, and my body rules.

    Excommunicated!

  • Bingo||

    In other news, reason commenters are humor deficient.

  • ||

    Ron paul is the libertarian great white hope.

    Libertarians really like that drunken anti-christ Hitchens.

    = I better vote for The Incredible Huck

  • Mad Max||

    Andrew,

    I once heard Hitchens speak, and he used the North Korea analogy - he didn't seem to be joking.

    Grand Chalupa,

    It's not so much that he's an ex-commie as that he continues to wax nostalgic about his commie days, declare himself glad that the commies won the Soviet Civil War in the early 1920s, say that Marx had some good ideas. He continues to yearn for the fleshpots of Egypt.

    Hitchens avowed himself proud that he was able to reject religious belief once and for all at the ripe old age of 14 - he sees that either as a sign of his maturity or of the immaturity of theistic belief. Alas, he wasn't smart enough at 14 to reject *Marxism* once and for all - that took many more years, and he still falls off the wagon [heh!] occasionally. Thus, to his way of thinking, Marxism is a more intelligent worldview than theism.

  • ||

    reason commenters are humor deficient.

    "The Simpsons" and Sam Kinison are my heroes.
    Hitchens is a full-on wreck of a human, and to associate with him knocks Reason down a notch in my mind.
    With friends like that dickless sot, who needs enemas?

  • Mad Max||

    I should have said, "artificial scarcities of Egypt," to use a metaphor more applicable to a aformer totalitarian socialist.

  • ||

    I have a hard time staying mad at him too, bless him - but when the subject is religion, Hitch becomes as spittle spewingly hysterical as the fundiest of fundies. He morphs into the obessive, ranting weirdo uncle guy you avoid at family reunions. It's just so totally opposite of the cool, witty, bored-yet-amused Brit thing he usually does so well. He sort of turns into exactly the type of reactionary bully he usually despises.

  • ||

    So when is Reason going to have a "very secular Ramadam Party"? Perhaps they could invite a drunken Ayaan Hirsi Ali to give a comical hymm to Allah. That will be the day. Reasons too cool for school secular athiest routine only applies to making fun of religions whose adherents won't blow up their office building or kidnap Weigel and cut off his balls in front of a nationwide audience. How couragous of them.

  • ||

    The Wine Commonsewer | December 19, 2007, 2:24pm | #
    I enjoy a little Hitchens now and again...


    Only a good vintage though. 2003+ just haven't provided me with the same sense of satisfaction and they seem to have a more overwhelming bouquet.

  • dhex||

    when the subject is religion, Hitch becomes as spittle spewingly hysterical as the fundiest of fundies

    it is unfortunately his thing now, it would seem.

    i liked the guy who went after mother theresa much more.

  • ||

    By John's logic, Jefferson's decision to limit his criticisms to the British just shows how afraid he was of the Italians.

    Lord knows there can't be any other possible reason when the British would be more of a concern to him than people on the other side of the planet who have absolutely no influence on what is going on in his country.

    John, why are you criticizing Reason magazine instead of some libertarian magazine in Papua New Ginea? Cowardice, obviously.

  • Blackbeard||

    Yeah Bingo, because drunk Trotskyites are totally hilarious.

  • ||

    You must not get out much Joe. Last I looked there were millions of Muslims in America and billions of them in the world. Why is it that they are somehow immune from lampooning, espeically by Reason. This is especially puzzling considering that Reason generally objects to the devoutly religous and Muslims are some of the most devout people in the country. Yet, Muslims don't seem to get much flack from Reason. I don't know maybe they don't have Muslims in Lowell and you don't get out much. But yes Joe, there really are Muslims right here in the good old USA.

  • ||

    John,

    Clearly it's all part and parcel to the grand Muslim conspiracy.

    I, for one, welcome our Imam overlords...

  • ||

    Why is it that they are somehow immune from lampooning, espeically by Reason.

    1. Reason lampoons Muslim fanatics all the time.

    2. I guess my pont went over your head. Again. So I'll say it in small words. This is a majority-Christian nation, so issues about secularism vs. theocracy and humanism vs. faith in this country deal almost exlusively with Christianity.

    So there are a billion Muslims in the world - so what? So there is a single-digit minority of Americans who are Muslim - again, so what? That has very, very little to do with the experience of someone living in America. We don't walk around surrounded by Muslim imagery, or having political leaders accused of being insufficiently Muslim. I must get out a hell of a lot more than you, if I am aware that Christianity is a major force in our society and Islam isn't.

  • Matt||

    John, This was a Christmas Party, which is a, well, Christian holiday. Hitchens criticisms are thus accurately anti-Christian.

    Hirsi Ali gets play in these pages. And surely you arent questioning Hitchens anti-muslim bonifides.

  • Jason||

    Here's a quotation from my favorite Hitchens piece ever "Not Even a Hedgehog: The Stupidity of Ronarld Reagan"

    I only saw him [Reagan] once up close, which happened to be when he got a question he didn't like. Was it true that his staff in the 1980 debates had stolen President Carter's briefing book? (They had.) The famously genial grin turned into a rictus of senile fury: I was looking at a cruel and stupid lizard. His reply was that maybe his staff had, and maybe they hadn't, but what about the leak of the Pentagon Papers? Thus, a secret theft of presidential documents was equated with the public disclosure of needful information. This was a man never short of a cheap jibe or the sort of falsehood that would, however laughable, buy him some time.

  • Mad Max||

    "I enjoy a little Hitchens now and again"

    Then you'll *love* this. It's not by Christopher Hitchens but by his brother Peter.

    http://tinyurl.com/3xf8e5

    Noteworthy excerpts:

    "Old-fashioned Christianity - on which our laws and society are founded . . .

    "The splendid Article 37 of the Church of England's 39 articles, scorned by modern clergy but the work of serious and learned minds . . ."

  • ||

    Perhaps they could invite a drunken Ayaan Hirsi Ali to give a comical hymm to Allah

    I'm pretty sure that she does show up at the occasional Reason party, or perhaps the Cato ones. I'm not sure if she drinks though.

    I love how some people here thinks they should have a say in who gets to go to Reason magazine parties. Hitch is a local yokel here in DC guys. If there is booze and you can smoke, he is likely to show up. We may as well get a rrecitation of something entertaining in that lovely british public school accent of his while he is there.

    For a magazine called Reason you sure do invite a lot of ...*drink*

  • ||

    "John,

    Clearly it's all part and parcel to the grand Muslim conspiracy.

    I, for one, welcome our Imam overlords..."

    No it is part and parcel to the fact that reason is populated by cowards who like easy targets. Making fun of Christians in this day and age is like picking on the fat kid at school. At some point, you are no longer funny or particularly original for doing it. Christians get Reason's athiest hackles up because they an easy target. How often does Reason post about things like honor killings going on as close as Canada? Rest assured if some fundie judge in Austrailia gave too harsh a sentence for having a joint, Reason would be all over it. A Canadian Muslim lunatic kills his daughter over her refusal to wear a hijab and Reason is not so interested. If you just read Reason, you would never know this kind of stuff happens

    http://www.durdesh.net/news/Article740.html

    Much better to talk about whether the bookshelf behind Huckabee made a cross
    http://www.reason.com/blog/show/123997.html#comments or youtube some drunken Trotskyite than worry about this stuff. Not that it should be all Islam all the time, but Reason seems to be very selective in its athiestic rage these days.

  • ed||

    Hitch is the new litmus test around here. One can tell a lot about a person by his reaction to Mr. Hitchens. Or Ayn Rand. Why think when it's easier to insult?

  • ||

    Joe,

    Reason does occasionally make fun or Islamic fanatics. But since when is celebrating Christmas equivlent to being a Christian fanatic. When has Reason ever lampooned Islam as a religion and made fun of Islamic holidays the way it does Christianity here? Never is the answer. And it is not because Muslims are not important enough to make fun of. It is becuase they don't have the courage or the intellectual honesty to insult Muslims the way they do Christians.

  • ||

    Uh, yeah, making fun of Christianity in the United States is utterly without consequence for people seeking to have political influence.

  • ||

    It appears that we've found the one thing that all commenters at H&R agree on. Hitchins is an ass.

  • ||

    One can tell a lot about a person by his reaction to Mr. Hitchens.

    He's a successful author and is not in any position of power, so his opinions don't matter.

    Decent fellow in my book...

  • ||

    "Uh, yeah, making fun of Christianity in the United States is utterly without consequence for people seeking to have political influence."

    Since when is Reason running for office? Further, how many magazines has Reason sold by playing to the secular athiest crowd? A ton and that is their right. But when your atheists outrage only applies to one religion, you can't claim much integrity.

  • ||

    Reason spends a great deal of time denouncing income tax rates and proposals to hike them, John, and very little time denouncing the VAT.

    Obviously, they are cowards trembling in fear before the VATofascists. There could not possibly be any other reason why they would spend more time on the tax system that actually influences the economy in this country to a considerable degree over a foreign tax system that has barely any influence or following at all.

    Or, maybe, there's some other reason...

  • Anthony Gregory||

    Hitchens is pathetic. I don't see how being atheist makes someone any better or worse, necessarily, in terms of libertarian thought. Indeed, if that's the real standard, then it is Hitchens who would feel at home in North Korea or any other atheistic totalitarian hellhole.

    If Christmas music bothers you, do what the Reason people would surely say you should do if tobacco smoke bothers you - avoid places that allow it. But you know what bothers me? Being forced to fund the mass murder abroad that Christopher Hitchens disgustingly favors.

  • ||

    You can't go anywhere without hearing the name of the Great Leader, and his son, the Dear Leader....

    I didn't think Santa Claus had a son, and if he does, I definitely have never heard his name during the run-up to Christmas.

    Trust me, if there's anything militant atheists and devout Christians can agree on, it's that they really hate what's going on in the larger society at this time of year. Just as an injection of weakened pathogens causes the body to resist a real infection, this sappy, watered down, sacrifice-free, "peace on earth, goodwill to humans" pseudo-Christian bullshit enables people to resist real Christianity.

  • ||

    Why think when it's easier to insult?
    ...
    One can tell a lot about a person by his reaction to Ayn Rand.


    Fixed it.

    Also, is it symbolic of a character flaw that

    ... kidnap Weigel and cut off his balls in front of a nationwide audience.

    made me laugh hysterically?

  • ||

    "It appears that we've found the one thing that all commenters at H&R agree on. Hitchins is an ass."

    He is a nasty fellow. EVen when I agree with him and laugh at him making fun of people I don't like, I feel kind of dirty. He is really not a friend or ally I would like to have.

  • ||

    Magazines don't generally attempt to influence national politics by running for office, John.

    Weak.

  • ||

    "Hitch is the new litmus test around here. One can tell a lot about a person by his reaction to Mr. Hitchens. Or Ayn Rand. Why think when it's easier to insult?"

    Indeed, someone should tell this to Hitchens.

  • ||

    Are you about worn out of all the commercials you've been seeing? Mostly about Christmas. I don't blame you. At this time of year sometimes it's nice to pull aside from all that and just remember that what really matters is presents, and candy, and getting drunk with our family and friends. I hope that you will have a magnificent cornucopia of gifts under the tree this season, and on behalf of all of us, a Merry commercial Christmas. I'm my dream politician, and I approved this message.

    Christmas, it's this atheist's favorite holiday.

  • ||

    "Magazines don't generally attempt to influence national politics by running for office, John."

    Exactly Joe, that is why they are free to rip on things like Christianity and Islam and not worry about the consiquences. They therefore are not exactly couragous in lampooning Christianity and quite cowardly in avoiding doing the same to other religions. You make my point for me.

  • ||

    John, I just did a site search of the Reason website using "Islam" as the search parameter. 80 pages of article listings. "Christian" gave 100 pages. Being as how the U.S. is predominattely Christian, You think that maybe they're going at the muslims too hard?

  • ||

    Even having Hitch at your party is an affront to Islam according to some people. No lampooning needed.

  • ||

    Christopher Hitchens is just the less refined, ball-bearing, godless and tipsier version of that insidious bitch Ann Coulter.
    I'd advocate for those two "hooking up," but I doubt Hitchens could get that gin-blossomed little whiskey dick harder than a Nerf football, and I'm pretty sure that Coulter has cemented up that gash of hers anyway.
    But the two deserve each other. In hell.

  • Jesse Walker||

    John: On behalf of the Reason staff, I'm very sorry we titled this post "Our Brave Attack on Christmas." Also, we should not have written the line, "We posted this to show how brave we are. Bold! Courageous! Brave!" I especially regret the line "Bravy bravy brave brave." It was un-called for.

    We also regret all the stuff about libertarians needing to be atheists. In particular, we regret the line, "Libertarian must be atheists, I tell you. Atheists! Atheists! Brave!"

    If we had it to do over again, we would have limited ourselves to posting an amusing video and inviting our readers to have a chuckle while celebrating the holiday of their choice. I have no idea why we didn't take that route.

  • ||

    I don't think you understand what the word "therefore" means, John. It's usually used to indicate that one statement is evidence or proof of another.

    Nothing that Reason writes more about a topic that is relevant to its readers than one that is irrelevant to their lives does not demonstrate that their motivations are cowardice or prejudice.

    There have been many counter-explainations offered. You haven't even attempted to refute any of them.

  • robc||

    What an ahole that guy is.

    Its today's "thread I agree with joe".

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Yeah I kind of laughed at the visual of Weigel as hostage too......not because of Dave, per se, just was kind of funny.

    Have to agree that Christians are easy targets also hate to break it to the militants but most of the ones I know are just regular people getting on with their lives.

    Also not clear on why it was so important to emphasize that Reason's Christmas Party was secular. The fact that it wasn't held at the rec room of the local Baptist Church should have been clue enough that it was probably secular in nature. Duh.

  • ||

    I love Hitchens. No one can sling insults like he can.

    Trust me, if there's anything militant atheists and devout Christians can agree on, it's that they really hate what's going on in the larger society at this time of year.

    Bah, I hate Christmas. There will be no Popery in my house.

  • ||

    Jessee

    Just have a Ramadan party next year. I dare you. Tell me the date, I will even come myself. I have no problem with video. I just would like to see people start doing the same thing to Islam. If not why not?

  • ||

    If we had it to do over again, we would have limited ourselves to posting an amusing video and inviting our readers to have a chuckle ...

    So why didn't you do that, Jesse?
    Shit-heel.

  • ||

    Reason does occasionally make fun or Islamic fanatics. But since when is celebrating Christmas equivlent to being a Christian fanatic.

    John,

    Christianity, even in its non-fanatic version, greatly influences the life of a typical American.

    Whereas it is only the fanatical versions of Islam, and those who adhere to them, that are of any importance to our politics.

  • ||

    Joe,

    So Reason should only make fun of "politically important religions". Gee I guess that takes Mormanism and Scientology off the table. Give me a break. Reason would think nothing of slamming Mormanism or Scientology even though neither of those religions are particularly important in American Politics, absent maybe this year with Romney running for President and all, but most years Mormonism is not exactly at the top of the headlines. Why won't they do the same to Islam? Why not the occasional joke, aimed not at fanatics but at something like Rammadan or the Hadj. Why not a funny video making fun of all those crazy Muslims visiting Mecca every year?

  • ||

    Yes, as a magazine of political and social commentary, it makes sense for Reason to write about subjects that matter to our politics and society.

  • ||

    Look, everyone, I found a new way to screw up html tags!

    Yes, as a magazine of political and social commentary, it makes sense for Reason to write about subjects that matter to our politics and society.

    Gee I guess that takes Mormanism and Scientology off the table. Perfect example, Mormonism. Before Mitt Romney's run, Reason wrote very, very little about Mormonism. Now, they write more. I doubt this has anything to do with Jesse Walker's abiding terror of the Travoltafascists.

    Why won't they do the same to Islam? Why not the occasional joke, aimed not at fanatics but at something like Rammadan or the Hadj. Why not a funny video making fun of all those crazy Muslims visiting Mecca every year? Because Muslims going on the Hajj have very, very little significance in either our politics or our society.

  • ||

    "Because Muslims going on the Hajj have very, very little significance in either our politics or our society."

    Oh Really Joe? You may be the only person on earth who thinks that. There are anywhere between 2 and 7 million Muslims in this country. Further, we are currently at war in two Muslim countries. By your logic Joe, Communism was never an important issue because only a few thousand Americans were ever actually communists.

  • dpotts||

    If we had it to do over again, we would have limited ourselves to posting an amusing video and inviting our readers to have a chuckle ...

    I dunno, every Christmas party I've ever been to has that one drunken boob who makes an ass of himself. Cheers to Reason for inviting the biggest one they could find! Way to do it up!

  • ||

    Because Muslims going on the Hajj have very, very little significance in either our politics or our society.

    So joe, would you that the reason/Hitchens stunt is important and poignant social criticism, or just a couple of assholes taking a shit on the religious aspects of the holiday just to be self-serving dicks?
    Because if it's the latter, then John is right: They ought to have a burqa cum-rag party and Mohammad-shaped pancake breakfast the next Ramadan.

  • ||

    "would you SAY" ... sorry

  • ||

    Bah, I hate Christmas. There will be no Popery in my house.

    I hope you just mispelled "potpourri"...

  • Bingo||

    Jamie Kelly:

    Where do I RSVP?

  • Jesse Walker||

    the religious aspects of the holiday

    Presents and food?

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    John, you didn't read the little instruction sheet that came with your decoder ring. Libertarians are required by oath to hate Christians. It is part of the blood oath.

  • ||

    Channeling LGF assholes: I thought pancake breakfasts were supposed to come in the shape of Rachel Corrie?

  • ||

    You're weak, Jesse. Freakin' weak.

  • ||

    Between 2 and 7 million Muslims works out to between 0.66% of the population and 2.33%. We're talking LP-like levels of political significance here.

    Further, we are currently at war in two Muslim countries. Reason writes about those wars all the time, and the political movements relvant to those wars.

    I'm still not seeing what the Hajj has to do with anything.

    By your logic Joe, Communism was never an important issue because only a few thousand Americans were ever actually communists. Millions of Americans were communists, John. But good job with the Fredian slip, equating Muslims in America with Communists during the Cold War.

  • ||

    Jamie Kelly,

    Assholes being dicks, but your conclusion does not follow. These particular assholes being dicks are amusing because their topic is familiar and relevant to the lives of the people in their audience.

  • ||

    "the religious aspects of the holiday"

    Then make fun of fasting during Ramadan or the elaborate dinners Muslims have at the end of each day, or Hadj industry that is set up in Mecca every year, or how more than few people are trampled to death every year during the Hadj (gee something tells me REason would have a few snarky things to say if people were rountinely trampled during the Pope's Easter Mass). I don't care. Just do something. Until you are willing to do that, lay the fuck off of Christians for while, okay?

  • Jesse Walker||

    You're weak, Jesse. Freakin' weak.

    I know I am! When I write about this post and this song, I'm stuck with the words in the post and the words in the song. Whereas you have the strength to bring in new words and write a response to them instead. I just can't compete with that.

  • GILMORE||

    Christmas is awesome.

    It mixes impossibilities like virgin-birth with strange fat bearded men who have a stable of flying arctic deer and have total awareness of the Niceness or Naughtyness of children, and dispense gifts accordingly...

    PLUS - you can throw in some winter solstice paganism if you want. Or, fuck it, get all shinto and call it the Amaterasu celebration = Requiem of the Dead!! Take that, Mardi Gras! Aint no party like a blabbermouth-crucified-son of-god-born-to-a-virgin-with-soundtrack-by-Handel party!

    People who want to "de-mystify" the world are a bunch of assholes. Who do they think they're doing a favor? It'd be better if they just stayed at home and felt self satisfied, but NOOOOO, they have to announce their superiority by being, "well *I* think this is silly. First of all, the aerodynamics of reindeer.... also, it's inherently based on false economic.... creates inequality in self perception of naughtyness by lower classes... those songs in the mall are driving me nuts... egg nog is actually very unhealthy...."

    Seriously. Fine - stay home asshole.

    Myths are useful. When we run short of them, we tend to go out and create them. The distinction between 'secular' and 'religious' is not hard cut. People celebrate things for the same basic reasons whether its cause dad sent you to sunday school, or you're jewish but rock christmas anyway cause the kids will bitch otherwise.

    "Reason" is not 100% yang to Superstition's yin. One can be aware of the superficiality of a given ritual, but still appreciate the rewards of participating in rituals. Im sure there are dozens of committed "seculars" out there who didnt just go to the judge for their wedding.

    I want to live in a country like...i dont know, someplace they have like 200 festivals year, each commemorating some event in the story of the 12-armed monkey god who created the earth while scratching his 8th armpit. That would be a place where you could be 100% free of the nitpicking of metaphysical party poopers.

    Actually, there'd probably be some primitive version of Hitchens, arguing that the monkey is only a metaphor and that we'd be more productive and prosperous with only 4 celebrations rather than 200.

    But fortunately, in that country, we'd be able to burn him alive and and throw green bananas at him on celebration #153 = "purge the nudge" day

  • ||

    Christopher Hitchens is just the less refined, ball-bearing, godless and tipsier version of that insidious bitch Ann Coulter.

    Lord knows Hitchens can be an asshole and his opinions regarding Iraq are downright crazy, but just because he makes you as angry as Coulter does, that doesn't mean they're remotely similar. They are altogether different in style, targets, intelligence (or knowledge, perhaps), and allegiance. Hitchens comes down on the "right" and "left" of a variety of issues, frequently criticizing the Bush administration, whereas Coulter's positions are utterly predictable because of her partisan loyalism.

  • ||

    Here is my one Christmas wish, and then I'll let it go:
    Dear Jeebus, please make it so that bloated, leather-faced bowel-dweller Christopher Hitchens gets so abysmally fucked up on cheap gin that he squirts a lake of liquid shit so deep that he ingests it deep into those smoke-crusted lungs and dies painfully and vomitously.
    Merry Christmas, Hitchens, you disgusting pig.

  • ||

    "Millions of Americans were communists, John"

    No they weren't Joe. The American Communist party never had more than 30 thousand members and never won an election that I am aware of.

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

    Who are you Joe McCarthy?

  • Brandybuck||

    Jesse: I read Hit & Run for discussions on topics related to libertarianism in some way. Atheism is not related to libertianism, neither is Hitchens himself remotely libertarian. A story about Hitchens singing atheist carols is about as relevant as a story about Emile making a peppermint Christmas souffle.

  • ||

    communist != member of the CPUSA, John.

  • ||

    ...or perhaps we can start defining "libertarian" only as those who register as LP.

  • ||

    "communist != member of the CPUSA, John."

    You know I never considered membership in the Democratic Party to be a sign of being a communist, despite receiving advice to the contrary on numerous occassions. There were never "millions of communsists in this country" and I defy you to come up with any proof that there was. Further, even if there were, there are "millions of Muslims" in this country so what is your point?

  • ||

    Brandybuck: Sweet point.
    Reason apparently had a slow views day, so decided to go trolling the Fecal Straits to have something to post.
    Congratulations, Jesse. Boy, you guys are sharp.

  • GILMORE||

    Aw, will you guys shut up about the fucking communists. You're ruining a perfectly good thread of Hitchens-bitching

  • ||

    My point is that your statement "there were never more than a few thousand communists in America" is factually-challenged.

  • ||

    John, are you clueless?

    Here, in an Amereican comic strip, they are making fun of, hold on to your seat, Christmas. They've never made fun of Ramadan. Why? Because it's America, an overwhelmingly christian nation. Fell free to look through all of the comics. They make fun of Christmas too. Sheesh!

  • Kolohe||

    "It may have struck you, ladies and gentlemen, that there's a big relationship between this marvelous time of year and living in a one-party state," Hitchens told the overflow crowd of 250. "You can't go anywhere without listening to the same music. You can't go anywhere without hearing the name of the Great Leader, and his son, the Dear Leader....All broadcasts, all songs, all jokes, all references are, just for that magic few weeks, just exactly like living in...North Korea."



    Can't see the video where I'm at currently, so I'm not sure with the addition of context and delivery it's funny.

    But just reading it, I'm sure this is eff-uck-en hilarious to the denizens of Pyongyang.

    (standard libertarian disclaimer: nobody has a right not to be offended)

    (personal disclaimer: the cardinal sin is not "being offensive"; the cardinal sin is "not being funny")

    (and one last thing: I pretty sure George Carlin had a similar bit. The deadly sin is being an unfunny hack)

  • ||

    Further, even if there were, there are "millions of Muslims" in this country so what is your point?

    Let me let you in a little secret about me, John.

    I like discussions to be honest and factual, apart and distinct from advancing an argument for my favored political positions. I value honesty and truth in and of themselves. Sometimes, I try to keep things honest and truthful without regard to what it means for my preferred political stance.

    I know this is a foreign concept to you, John, but I corrrected your factual error without any intent to further any argument or position.

  • ||

    J Sub D,

    So all minority religions are immune from criticism or lampooning? Is that your point? Why do no comic strips ever make fun of Muslims, despite there being 7 million of them in the country, yet they are perfectly willing to make fun of say Church of God Snake handlers, of which there are only a few 100 if that, or Scientologists, of which there are probably less than a million? Are you clueless?

  • ||

    You never corrected my "error" Joe. Where is your proof that there were "millions of communists" in this country beyond your own imagination?

  • ||

    Brandybuck | December 19, 2007, 4:10pm | #



    A story about Hitchens singing atheist carols is about as relevant as a story about Emile making a peppermint Christmas souffle.


    The relevance lies in the Dr.Paul campaign. Folks searching for info on libertarian principles may run across this website. They will be accosted with anti-christian sentiments and the musings of Hitchens. If the voters get the impression that Dr. Paul is supported by a pack of athiest anti-government dopers, it won't matter if he is the best candidate, he will surely lose the support of the populace. Voters are very fickle and easy to alienate.

    I know, not all libs are that way , but voters , in general, are easily misled.

  • ||

    God damn. What's the big, fucking deal? Sometimes I fear I'm the only Christian left with a sense of humor. I just wish I could have been at the party.

  • ||

    Further Joe,

    There were never many actual communists in this country. But of course communism was a pretty damned important political and societal issue because there were millions of communists throughout the world and we had a cold war with many of them. The same holds true with Muslims. It doesn't matter that Muslims are a small minority, what matters is that it is one of the world's largest and most important religions and we are at war in two Muslim counties. That makes Islam a pretty damned important social issue and certainly worthy of lampooning by any good atheist. Yet, Reason despite its constant attempts to establish its atheist street creed, never seems to do that.

  • ||

    ...neither is Hitchens himself remotely libertarian.

    Hitchens certainly possesses several libertarian beliefs and he talks about them, rather interestingly (shock though that might be to those who loathe him for the horrific crime of having opposing opinions and stating them obnoxiously) in this interview.

  • ||

    Why do no comic strips ever make fun of Muslims, despite there being 7 million of them in the country, yet they are perfectly willing to make fun of say Church of God Snake handlers, of which there are only a few 100 if that, or Scientologists, of which there are probably less than a million?

    Because the vast majority of comic readers would "get" jokes about Christmas and snake handlers, and wouldn't "get" similar jokes about Ramadan and dervishes.

    Because, you see, the former are widely-known phenomena owing to the predominance of Christianity in our society, and the latter are not, owing to the same thing.

  • ||

    Look, everyone, I found a new way to screw up html tags!

    The real WTF is that this board makes its users manually format comments with raw HTML. At the very least, there should be some buttons above the comment forms that insert the tags for you, or something.

  • ||

    John,

    There were thousands of communists just among the Finnish in Fitchburg, Massachusetts alone, a city with a population that never reached 70,000. There were enough for there to be competing pro-Trotsky and pro-Stalin factions, each with their own newspaper. That's why there is a Workers Credit Union and a People's Credit Union.

    But of course communism was a pretty damned important political and societal issue because there were millions of communists throughout the world and we had a cold war with many of them. And Islamist is pretty damned important because there are a few million Islamists throughout the world and we are in a terror/counter-terror war with them. Hence, Islamism gets a great deal of press.



    It doesn't matter that Muslims are a small minority, what matters is that it is one of the world's largest and most important religions and we are at war in two Muslim counties. And there has been a great deal of writing, in Reason and elsewhere, about those two countries.

    Perhaps the problem is that you don't understand the difference between Islamists, Iraqis, Afghanis and Muslims?

  • ||

    Actually, the real WTF is John's sandy vagina. Jesus Homosexual Christ.

  • ||

    I swear, the way he's holding his hand in that screenshot, there should be a glass of scoth in it.

    The real WTF is that this board makes its users manually format comments with raw HTML. At the very least, there should be some buttons above the comment forms that insert the tags for you, or something.

    No shit.

    communist != member of the CPUSA, John.

    That's a little narrow, joe. You wouldn't say libertarian = member of the Libertarian Party. I think we could also consider members of the Socialist Workers to be communists, too. Not to mention all the unaffiliated hard lefties who were pretty much in sync with communist ideology.

  • Ugly Stepsister||

    I think John has severe Aspberger's and this is his new obsession. Just let him get over it since attempts to actually discuss the issues will only upset him and make him drool a big as he defaces a copy of the Guru Granth just so he can show his courage by pissing off Sikhs since anyone who doesn't go after them too can't be a real man...

  • ||

    Warty | December 19, 2007, 4:35pm | #

    Actually, the real WTF is John's sandy vagina. Jesus Homosexual Christ.


    crunchewy

  • ||

    I'll ask you again, joe:
    What's the value of cultural and social criticism when it involves getting drunk in public and declaring your atheism through a song? How is that "relevant" to the debate about the influence of Christianity in our culture?
    John is merely asking, why wouldn't reason/Hitchens do the same thing on Ramadan? i.e., get liquored up and pull the same "your god is dead" crap on the Muslim faith? Just because we're a predominantly Christian nation doesn't mean it would be any less funny (or in this case, fucking lame).
    And FWIW, I'm an atheist, but I don't feel the need to do either.
    The fact that reason chose to, in cahoots with a drunk Trotskyite war-mongering anti-libertarian asshole, makes me pretty sick to my stomach.

  • Grand Chalupa||

    So all minority religions are immune from criticism or lampooning? Is that your point? Why do no comic strips ever make fun of Muslims, despite there being 7 million of them in the country, yet they are perfectly willing to make fun of say Church of God Snake handlers, of which there are only a few 100 if that, or Scientologists, of which there are probably less than a million? Are you clueless?

    You know, this topic has fascinated me.

    I think Islamic treatment of women is evil and inhumane, but I believe in gender roles and am no way a feminist in the western sense. My favorite thing is to meet a girl who is a "woman's studies" major. I usually find a way to say "Well, you may really be against Islamic treatment of women, huh?". The response is always "Well, I don't want to judge" or "I don't know enough about it."

    This thing about not judging other cultures is bullshit though, because academic liberals don't have any problem judging apartheid South Africa or Pinochet's Chile.

    And you're right, there's a lot more Muslims in America than Scientologists. So they're here, they're in Europe, as Hirsi Ali points out women in Europe are subject to honor killings and slavery, where's the criticism?

    I've come to the conclusion that this entire generation of educated people in the western world has a subconcious resistance to any criticism of a group of people with dark colored skin. They assume that darkness = innocence as innocentley and as automatically as a Saudi Arabian sees the hand of God in the workings of the world. The reaction I've seen of people have when discussiing black crime rate, illegal immigration or Islamic treatment of women has convinced me of this.

    And this mental cancer has spread to the country club republicans and libertarians too, making them just as unable to deal with the world's realities as the leftists.

  • ||

    And Jesse, that shitty stunt just cost you a subscription, too.

  • ||

    John, I'm not gonna explain it to you again, so pay attention.

    USA Christians ~ 85%
    USA Musloims ~ 1.6%

    Which market are you going to aim your jokes (product) at? Do you get it now? Sheesh squared!

  • ||

    "Because the vast majority of comic readers would "get" jokes about Christmas and snake handlers, and wouldn't "get" similar jokes about Ramadan and dervishes."

    Yeah right Joe. Perhaps it is also because they are cowards. Look at the guys who do South Park who took out a depiction of Muhammad out of fear. They will totally degrade Christianity and Judaism but they won't so much as show Mohammad because they are afraid. It is not that I don't have a sense of humor. Some of the really irreligious things South Park has done are funny as hell. Who couldn't laugh at the Oprah like talk show hosted by Jesus? But I quit watching the show when they bowed to not showing Mohammad. That just showed them to be assholes who make fun of people because they can rather than comedians with something to say.

    I am quickly loosing my sense of humor over this stuff. People kick Christianity because they are too afraid of Muslims to do the same against Islam.

  • Grand Chalupa||

    Well, you may really

    Make that "must", any other typos you can work through.

  • ||

    "Which market are you going to aim your jokes (product) at? Do you get it now? Sheesh squared!"

    Yeah because no one in this country has any dislike for Muslims. No one will ever find making fun of them funny. Never.

  • ||

    J Sub D,

    Making fun of the majority is a quick way to get an audience versus say making fun of the outsider. That has never worked. Sheese tripple squared.

  • Not Joe||

    So all minority religions are immune from criticism or lampooning? Is that your point? Why do no comic strips ever make fun of Muslims, despite there being 7 million of them in the country, yet they are perfectly willing to make fun of say Church of God Snake handlers, of which there are only a few 100 if that, or Scientologists, of which there are probably less than a million? Are you clueless?



    Umm, probably because the sharpest divisions are often between near neighbors, not distant ones. Much like the reason John is distilling his bile here and not on a blog about quilting: it just ain't relevant. Come on, John, are you man enough to go mess with the quilters?

  • ||

    I said I'm not going to explain it again.

    __________________________
    __________________________
    __________________________.

    I meant it, clueless.

  • stephen the goldberger||

    what a killjoy

  • Ugly Stepsister||

    Look at the guys who do South Park who took out a depiction of Muhammad out of fear.



    Actually, if you read reason, you'd know that they didn't take it out; their studio did. But then again your criticisms of reason don't seem to show much awareness of the contents of the magazine.

  • Bingo||

    Drunk people at Christmas parties are serious business.

  • ||

    But I quit watching the show when they bowed to not showing Mohammad.

    Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creators of South Park, were incensed at the decision. It was the network's call to censor the image, and it nearly cost Comedy Central the show.

  • ||

    Look at the guys who do South Park who took out a depiction of Muhammad out of fear. They will totally degrade Christianity and Judaism but they won't so much as show Mohammad because they are afraid.

    Comedy Central took Mohammed out of that episode, not the South Park dudes. Careful! Don't let facts get in the way of your righteous indignation.

  • ||

    Curses, Jamie Kelly! Damn you to hell!

  • ||

    FWIW, there probably aren't enough jokes/lampooning about atheists. Should I be relieved or offended? Or should I just pull that corncob out of my ass? [Hint, Hint]

  • ||

    Drunk people at Christmas parties are serious business.

    Especially for fat, stupid, and horny guys. Otherwise, they'd die virgins.

  • Jesse Walker||

    atheist carols

    Hitchens is a militant atheist. As far as I'm aware, Tom Lehrer is merely a militant curmudgeon.

    Come Christmas morning they both will have bigger hearts and will return the missing presents to all the children of Whoville.

  • ||

    I can't think of anybody else I'd rather have at a Christmas party. ...with a drink or two already down the hatch.

    Um...I mean...I can't think of any other guy I'd rather have at a Christmas party... ...with a drink or two down the hatch.

  • Brandybuck||

    Now at last I can admit it. I am a member of the PCUSA. Not the CPUSA, however, those guys are weird.

    p.s. I do have a sense of humor, I just think a drunk Hitchens is more pathetic than funny.

  • ||

    "Actually, if you read reason, you'd know that they didn't take it out; their studio did. But then again your criticisms of reason don't seem to show much awareness of the contents of the magazine."


    Perhaps if you would read something besides Reason you might know something,

    The creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, were recently interviewed on ABC "Nightline" about the show and its upcoming 10th season.

    "That's where we kind of agree with some of the people who've criticized our show," said co-creator Matt Stone on Sept. 22. "Because it really is open season on Jesus. We can do whatever we want to Jesus, and we have.

    "We've had him say bad words. We've had him shoot a gun. We've had him kill people. We can do whatever we want. But Mohammed, we couldn't just show a simple image."

    The creators said when Mohammed was supposed to air on the screen, Comedy Central replaced the cartoon with a black screen that read: "Comedy Central has refused to broadcast an image of Mohammed on their network."

    Following the Mohammed cartoon uproar earlier this year, several networks had refused to air images of Mohammed, even during coverage of the Denmark cartoon riots, claiming to observe religious tolerance, said the South Park creator.

    "No you're not," Stone countered during the interview. "You're afraid of getting blown up. That's what you're afraid of. Comedy Central copped to that, you know: 'We're afraid of getting blown up.'"


    http://the522.blogspot.com/2006/10/south-park-creators-say-open-season-on.html

  • Kolohe||

    I swear, the way he's holding his hand in that screenshot, there should be a glass of scoth in it.

    What's that called when your brain fills in the picture even if stuff isn't there?

    Because until R.C. Dean pointed it out, I would have sworn he did have a drink in his hand.

  • Ugly Stepsister||

    John, that's just weird, because what you posted to refute what I and others have said confirms what we said... I am not more convinced that you are in your own little world.

  • Ugly Stepsister||

    err, now more convinced. What you just posted confirms that they didn't want it out. It was the studio/network that stripped it for them.

  • Kolohe||

    Re: the south park mohamed episode:

    I can't shake the feeling, despite everything I have read, that the episode aired exactly as intended, and it was all part of the meta-joke.

  • Bingo||

    Hey John, you doofus, COMEDY CENTRAL aka THE STUDIO took out the imagery... not the creators. Maybe if you read your own articles instead of making things up you might know something.

  • ||

    meta-joke

    Wait, is John pulling a meta-joke on us? Maybe meta-meta-? I'm so confused.

  • Ugly Stepsister||

    I'm amazed Joe lasted as long as he did against John. I really don't think facts matter to John: his mind is made up and nothing, absolutely nothing, can change it.

  • Franklin Harris||

    Goodness knows I certainly have my disagreements with Hitch and cannot stand his cozying up to the neocons on foreign policy issues, but I also aspire to his life of writing, drinking, and chain smoking, which forces me to grudgingly admire the bloodthirsty bastard. I also wish that Hitch, rather than Sam Harris, had been the militant atheist at Beyond Belief 2, because the likely exchange after Scott Atran delivered his paper on terrorism and religious belief, which found a negative correlation between mosque attendance and propensity to commit acts of terror, would have been interesting to say the least.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Come Christmas morning they both will have bigger hearts and will return the missing presents to all the children of Whoville.

    Nice Rejoinder!

    Now, where'd I put that got dam lampshade?

  • ed||

    Well, I finally had a chance to watch the vid...what's so objectionable about it?
    Seemed pretty harmless to me. Perhaps the more vitriolic commenters above should get a sense of humor, if not a life?

  • ||

    Jesse: I read Hit & Run for discussions on topics related to libertarianism in some way.

    Well, here's a personal-freedom based solution to your problem brandybuck - choose to read only the threads that are related closely enough to libertarianism to meet your standards and skip the ones that patently are not something you're interested in. I'll bet with very little effort you can pretty often tell from just the headline or, at worst, the first few lines of the story. That seems a better way to go than complaining that reason dares to post items that you are not interested in.

    Perhaps the more vitriolic commenters above should get a sense of humor, if not a life?

    Amen to that. ;)

  • MRW||

    Jamie Kelly,

    Kudos on playing the "cancel my subscription" card. You're sure to be taken seriously now!

  • ||

    Candy corn does not exist

  • Kolohe||

    Finally saw the video.

    It's funny in the same way nuptials during a downpour are ironic.

  • ||

    Christopher Hitchens is one of my favorite human beings. He's such a bitter dickhead, it amuses me to no end. I like his writing, too. He knows he drinks too much, and he knows he's a jerk, he just DOESN'T CARE WHAT YOU THINK OF HIM (though he might care a little more about what you think in general) and there's something admirable about that to me.

  • DJ Voton||

    I like Hitchens for the same reason I like George Bush: because he pisses off so many assholes so much (see above). Anyone who brings on as much spittle-spewing hatred as they do is somebody I'd like to hang out with.

  • Brandybuck||

    Well, here's a personal-freedom based solution to your problem brandybuck

    My personal-freedom based solution is to bitch about it. And you are perfectly free not to read my bitchy posts. See how nice that works out? Freedom is funny that way. Hitchens has the freedom to pretend to be a libertarian and I have the freedom to say he isn't.

    <sniff> bring a tear to my eye <sniff>

  • ||

    Should have been held on Festivus. Why let Hitchens ruin your Holiday. Judging from the comments some of us have done too much shopping.

  • ||

    Hitchens has the freedom to pretend to be a libertarian and I have the freedom to say he isn't.

    I guess the question I have is, are libertarians born or is it possible for a an old wet socialist dog to slowly learn new libertarian tricks?

    Cuz if they are born only, we are fucked.

  • ||

    I gotta tell you, I'm already tired of people saying they are tired of so-called "militant atheists" like Hitchens, Dawkins, and Harris.

    For christ's sake, we've had almost two thousand years of christianity in the west and a couple hundred of it in the US. We've had preachers and radio show hacks and only one president who wasn't a protestant christian. We've got Falwell and Dobson and Laura Schlessinger. But all of a sudden we've got a couple years and a couple of bestsellers by atheists, and a little bit of press, and people are bitching that they are tired of how "militant" it is and they think the writers are assholes. Cry me a river. Fifteen hundred years of christian culture and ideas almost completely unopposed, and people are whining about a couple of books published in the last two years. Give me a fucking break. Marketplace of ideas, indeed.

    And Jesse Walker - if anyone's dumb or humorless enough to cancel their subscription for you guys posting a video of a party you found funny by a writer who has said supportive things of libertarianism, let me know. I'd be happy to add a subscription or two in return.

  • Jeff O.||

    Wow Jason S., Christians have been assholes towards people for like the past 2,000 years? I'm totally glad I've only been alive for the past 20, thus making the past 1,980 years completely irrelevant towards my day-to-day life. I mean, to have been alive for the past 2,000 years would have totally sucked. You have my sympathy.

  • ||

    They should make a Hitchens doll with a gin in one hand and a little cigarette in the other. The arms should move in such a way that you can raise them to his mouth in between pulling the chain on his back which would cause him to say classic Hitchens lines.

    Pull once and he says something profound about Orwell. Pull a second time and he rubbishes Mother Teresa etcetera.

    I'd play with it for hours. I'm totally gonna ask Santa for that.

  • Humour||

    A lot of posters here have no sense of humour. Where is your Christmas spirit?

  • ||

    Having gotten 10 or 15 comments in I'm forced to remember why I've not been a "Libertarian" for so many years. Get a grip, buy a sense of humor, have a drink and a smoke, relax and enjoy the season. Or at least take the stick out of your ass.

  • GILMORE||

    O little town of Bethlehem,
    How still we see thee lie;
    Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
    The silent stars go by;
    Yet in thy dark streets shineth
    The everlasting light.
    The hopes and fears of all the years
    Are met in thee tonight.

    \...

    or, thats like so gayzorz?

  • The Democratic Republican||

    Fortunately I can't play the "cancel my subscription" card because I've never sent a check reason's way.

    But I guess I fall in GILMORE's camp -- let EVERY idea flourish. Of course, Hitchens' has the right to offend on his way to being a lame asshole. But just because you have that right doesn't mean it's not cheap/weak/lame, etc. So all of you out there who want to bitch about how we ought to leave Hithc alone and just chill out -- to hell with you. Because there are things more important than having the RIGHT to do something.

    If atheist idiots who would laugh at Hitchens are reason's audience, then it explains why I find the threads to be places of intolerant stupidity and why I don't need to waste my time here anymore.

  • ed||

    Sorry, but a Christian libertarian is a tainted libertarian. Superstition is a tumor. It diminishes your thought processes and leaves you susceptible to--and offended by--ruthless satire. Stop crying about it and rejoin the Republican party where you belong.

  • ||

    'Wow Jason S., Christians have been assholes towards people for like the past 2,000 years? I'm totally glad I've only been alive for the past 20, thus making the past 1,980 years completely irrelevant towards my day-to-day life. I mean, to have been alive for the past 2,000 years would have totally sucked. You have my sympathy'.


    What the fuck kind of response is that? Are you saying that because something happened before you were born there is no point in bringing it up or discussing it? Please! I bet you were a gem in History class. 'Excuse me professor but I'm not sure how this relates to me because I wasn't born yet'. If you really think this way then the bible is completely irrelevant because it all happened before you graced us with your presence. Fucking idiot.

  • Jim O\'Sullivan||

    Guess what? Nobody knows whether there is a God, and nobody ever will. Get used to it! In the meantime, it's perfectly harmless to believe, or to pretend to believe, that he was born to virgin in the Middle East a couple of thousand years ago. Hey, prove it didn't happen!

  • ||

    "Guess what? Nobody knows whether there is a God, and nobody ever will. Get used to it! In the meantime, it's perfectly harmless to believe, or to pretend to believe, that he was born to virgin in the Middle East a couple of thousand years ago. Hey, prove it didn't happen".


    Jim,

    How is religion NOT harmless? It pits people against each other. It promotes intolerance. It plays a front and center role in our politics and elections (where it has no place). It tells people that its GREAT to blow up buildings and doctors. Some people are willing to do ANYTHING in the name of religion. Should I go on?
    Oh, and by the way, you really can't prove something didn't happen. Can you prove I'm not a unicorn? Didn't think so.

  • ed||

    I know for a fact there isn't one.
    Bow to me, your superior.

  • ||

    RC,

    != means "does not equal." I was making the same point as you.

    Jaimie Kelly,

    What value does it have? Well, it can be good for a chuckle if it's done well. I don't think the same joke about Ramadan would be funny, because I probably wouldn't get it, and certainly wouldn't get that "it's funny because it's true!" response. Because, once again, Islam and its holidays are not widely known or experienced in our society.

  • ||

    I just realized that John accused Chrisopher Hitchens of not having the balls to criticize Islam.

    So, yeah, I think this all some kind of meta-joke he's pulling over on us. No one could be that stupid.

  • ||

    How is religion NOT harmless? It pits people against each other. It promotes intolerance.

    "In a strange country, you made me at home
    Seeking employment, you found me a job
    Now enter into the home of My Father

    Whatsoever you do
    To the least of My brothers
    That you do unto me

    When I was Negro, or Chinese, or White
    Mocked and insulted, you carried my cross
    Now enter into the home of My Father

    Whatsoever you do
    To the least of My brothers
    That you do unto me"

    (Rather old hymn, hence oldfashioned racial terminology.)

    It plays a front and center role in our politics and elections (where it has no place).

    "My kingdom is not of this world."

    It tells people that its GREAT to blow up buildings and doctors.

    Um, I can't remember this teaching from grade school. Where is this, in the Book of Demolitions?

    Some people are willing to do ANYTHING in the name of religion.

    Sadly, yes. You'll find people willing to anything in the name of just about ANYTHING.

    Should I go on?

    No need.

    Religion does a lot of things, actually.

    Here, use this baby-filter when you pour out the bath water.

  • ||

    Debating whether religion has good or bad influences can be fun but on one level it has always bugged me. Believing in Santa Claus till the day you die may have also have a good or bad influence on you but you'll never hear people debating about that.

    Why? Because there is no good reason to think that Santa actually exists. We are perfectly willing to sacrifice any good that such a belief might entail since it's simply dishonest to let people belief it.

    Religion may be comforting, it may inspire people to do good and behave well. But is there actually any reason to think that religion, any religion, is true? Even if it was undeniably a good thing, could we live with ourselves if we didn't point out the (supposed) lack of evidence?

    "I may know that it stands on shaky ground but you are weak and need it, so I'm not going to tell you about it".

  • B||

    A Very Special Secular Christmas Party? This site is so fucking stupid, it's seems it is at times meant to be self-parody. I must have missed your "Hannukuh with Jews-for-Jesus".

  • BABH||

    What we need is a Festivus - for the rest of us.

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