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Episode 65 Partial Transcript

May 15, 2014 4 comments

by Heath Enwright and Noah Lugeons

Note: Transcript contains elements that were removed from the episode due to time constraints

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LINK TO EPISODE

 

Warning: Lucinda isn’t feeling quite up to recording so this episode won’t even have that typical shred of innocence.

 

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Today’s episode of the Scathing Atheist is brought to you by Unborn Life Savers brand abortion-safe coat hangers.  Our Donut-shaped, soft-plastic coat hangers have been scientifically designed to dissolve instantly in vaginal mucous.

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And now, the Scathing Atheist.

 

Intro:

It’s Thursday,

It’s May 15th,

And Johnny Football gets media attention for taking a shit. Imagine if he takes the Browns to the Super Bowl.

I only have so much imagination.  I’m Noah Lugeons,

I’m Heath Enwright.  And from “A black guy, a Puerto Rican, and Jew walk into a bar” New York, New York,

And “Oh hell no they don’t” Podunk, Georgia, this is the Scathing Atheist.

In this week’s episode,

  • We’ll discuss Noah’s rash,
  • A Tennessee college will stand up for cousin-fucking,
  • And Cash from Atheists on Air will join us for a ReasonCon-versation.

But first, the diatribe.

 

Diatribe:

I get this message on the Scathing Atheist Facebook page the other day.  It’s from a Catholic dude who’s going way out of his way to be an asshole politely.  The message asks if we support “free speech” on our page, because he would like to politely hop on the page and politely counter some of the arguments that are being made.

Now, this struck me as odd because there’s really no argumentation on our Facebook page.  I mean… did he want to dispute the fact that the show notes and transcripts for episode 64 were available?  Did he want to refute the fact that we would be interviewing Cash from Atheist on Air this week?  Did he want to disagree that I was finally done reading Psalms?

So I responded with an analogy I was proud of; it was one that I thought succinctly made my point in a language he could understand without being rude.  I said, “suppose your church put up a Facebook page where you coordinated the bake sale and posted upcoming mixers and stuff.  How polite would the atheist that came on the page to dispute the existence of god have to be before you wouldn’t think he was being an asshole?”

I went on to explain the debating religion isn’t really the purpose of our Facebook page.  We maintain it to keep our audience up to speed with what’s going on with the show; I use it to share information on atheist events or share new stories that I think our audience will find interesting.  That being said, there are no shortage of Facebook pages set up specifically for atheists and theists to debate.  I offered a few links and told him to knock himself out.

I even went on to say that he was, of course, perfectly welcome to post anything he wants on our Facebook page, but I warned him that he may not get polite, respectful responses.

I thought it was a good answer.  I thought, for some reason, that he might realize that not every atheist venue is designed to engage religious people… some of them are for atheists.  But apparently he missed all the words but one.  I wrote three paragraphs of explanation, but all he saw was that I used the “a-hole word”.

So rather than engaging me on any of the points I made, he sends a follow up message where he politely psychoanalyzes me and the anger issues that drive me to use naughty words so much.  He admitted that sometimes he (and I quote) “uses the F word and regrets it”, but only when he’s really, really angry.  So why was I so angry at god?

And if you follow us on Facebook, you may have already seen my response, but if you haven’t, it went a little something like this:

Dear Polite Asshole (except I actually used his name),

I should start off by pointing out that your idiosyncratic aversion to profanity is of absolutely no concern to me. If you strictly use “fuck” as an expression of anger, you’ve obviously overlooked the multifaceted utility of this wonderful syllable. I use the word “fuck” for a variety of reasons and an expression of anger is only one of them. Often I use it because (when you’re not dealing with people who are irrationally prudish) it gives the discussion an air of informality that allows it to be more familial. This is probably not true for most practicing Catholics, but as neither my show nor its ancillary Facebook Page is for practicing Catholics, I am under no obligation to give a shit.

Additionally, I often I use the word “fuck” because it has a vulgar explanatory power that no other word has. If I were to refer to the systematic rape and torture and consequent global cover-up that you financially supported by giving to the Catholic church, for example, I could refer to it as “child molestation” but that has such a clinical feel to it. It fails to have the emotional impact of “child fucking”. When discussing such horrors, I feel obligated to do so in a way that doesn’t sugar coat it.

But it’s true that I also use “fuck” as an expression of anger. When, for example, you hear from a person who has funded a worldwide cabal of child rapists that thinks he deserves an explanation for filthy language on the internet, it is tempting to tell that person to go fuck themselves. Any lesser expression would fail to properly encapsulate the aversion I have to such petty nonsense.

Respectfully, Noah

So once more, to any masochistic theist who is listening; you’re an uninvited vegan at a barbecue.  Eat some chips and shut the fuck up.

 

Headlines:

Joining me for headlines tonight is the Rush Limbaugh of good, Heath Enwright.  Heath, are you ready for some justified assholery?

Right – I’m a bigot, but for the left.

Annie Hall reference for the win.

In our lead story tonight, in “Goodell Without God” news, despite the best efforts of an allegedly omnipotent being, this year’s NFL draft made the league less Christian, and more openly gay.  For many Amyrrhicans, it might as well be soccer at this point.

And for our British listeners, soccer is what we call that sport you guys pretend is hardcore even though you don’t need any padding to play it.  And for our Australian listeners, think Australian rules football only it makes sense and Colonel Sanders isn’t there.

This story has two parts: First, we have San Diego State running back Adam Muema, who skipped this year’s scouting combine at the last second because he was (quote) “following God” (end quote).  Muema claims God told him that if he skipped the event, he would definitely get drafted by the Seattle Seahawks.  Turns out a bunch of players – even Christian ones, oddly enough – did show up for the combine, so he obviously went undrafted.

He must have received his divine instructions out of context.

On the other side of the coin – the tails side I guess – we have former Missouri defensive end (he’s a power bottom) Michael Sam, who is now a St. Louis Ram, and the first openly gay player in the NFL.  I especially enjoyed that in the process, Sam made millions of Christians squirm with bigotry when he kissed his boyfriend on national television after being drafted.   Many congratulations are in order here …

Most of all to the Rams head office.  Because anybody could have drafted him, but only the Packers and Browns would have offered up an easier slate of buttsex jokes.  So go Rams.

And congrats for taking a roster spot from Adam Muema, who tweeted about talks with the Rams pre-draft.  And most importantly, congrats for ensuring that the first openly gay player is a Rams Defensive End!!!  You can’t make this shit up!!!  The only way this gets better, is if he moves to the other side of the ball, and learns to play tight end.

God’s #1 pick still on waiver wire: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2014/05/10/nfl-prospect-who-skipped-out-on-scouting-combine-because-god-told-him-to-doesnt-get-drafted

And in “Exiting two by two” news tonight, a Christian college in Dayton, Tennessee has lost nearly a quarter of its full-time professors in the last couple of months after the board of trustees insisted on glorifying incest.  Faculty at Bryan College…

…”Go Lions”…

… were responding to a recent update to the school’s statement of belief, which added an assertion that (quote) “Adam and Eve were historical people that were not created from previously existing lifeforms” (end quote)

“Have we ever observed evidence of Adam or Eve?  No.  But like I said, they’re not observational people …  They’re historical people.”

School president Stephen Livesay insists that these minor “just how seriously do we want to pretend to take this doctrinal horse shit?” type dust ups are common in Christian Colleges, oblivious to the mathematical result of repeatedly losing a quarter of one’s faculty.

How much faculty do they need to study 2 books?!?  And you know they skim over Psalms.

Students have joined in the protest by signing petitions, writing letters to the board of trustees and wearing black armbands.  Their message is clear, “We want some true stuff sprinkled in with the wacky bullshit we want you to teach us.”

Christian college loses nearly a quarter of it’s professors after insisting on biblical literalism: http://www.timesnews.net/article/9076475/bryan-college-losing-nearly-25-of-faculty-after-adam-and-eve-controversy

And from the “Clergymen in Black” file, Pope Franetarium finally weighed in on whether Catholics should splash Martian space travelers with heaven water, if said aliens sprung to existence, came to Earth, and asked nicely.  And yes, they should.

I mean, sure, this sounds silly, but promising to baptize Martians might be the most substantive thing he’s done in his pontificate.

Along with letting atheists apply for Catholic heaven … Apparently the Pope isn’t the first church official to consider hydro-fracking souls on other planets.  Vatican scientist Guy Consolmagno made a similar suggestion about baptizing aliens in 2010.  But let’s just pump the brakes here … There’s something called “Vatican Scientist”?!?  What’s this guy been doing all this time?!?

Here’s my guess.  Day one they sit him down and say, “justify transubstantiation with your fancy science words.”  Like a Manhattan project of futility there.  Bunch of brilliant scientists that didn’t read the fine print on the employment contract.

So here’s a real statement from the Pope: (quote) “If – for example – tomorrow an expedition of Martians came […] Martians, right? Green, with that long nose and big ears, just like children paint them … [Just like vaguely racist children paint them] … And one says, ‘But I want to be baptized!’ What would happen?” (end quote) … They would bathe those green men, is what would happen!  Useless counterfactual parsed!  We are Catholicism! Good night Vatican City!

Pope Francis would baptize martians: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/12/pope-francis-aliens_n_5310935.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

And in “What about the Father and the Holy Ghost of Sam?” news tonight, Jesus has forgiven the slightly infamous underachieving serial killer David Berkowitz for murdering the same number of people in his entire serial killing career as die every year from fatigue.

Son of Sam, one one hundredth as dangerous as auto-erotic asphyxiation.

So despite being an unrepentant murderer, and such a crappy one that more that half of his victims survived, Berkowitz was able to exploit the little known loophole in Christianity known as the “we’ll take whoever we can get at this point contingency” and earned his way into Heaven.  Me? Still going to hell.  Son of Sam?  Golden-fucking-ticket.  Great theology you guys have going there, by the way.

Just reinforces the terrible message that everyone should be working the Saint Augustine strategy … Which goes something like, “Lord: Grant me chastity and virtue, but not just yet.”  Just let me finish this murder spree, and then I promise I’ll get all saved up, right after that.

Berkowitz explained his application of apostolic white-out this week while being denied parole for his feeble little serial killer career.  And I’m sorry to keep talking up what a crappy serial killer he is, but I think New Yorkers need to hear this shit.  He’s ranked right up there with such well known serial killers as Robert Berdella and some crazy chick that killed her family.  And you guys were scared shitless of this dude for a whole year.  Seattle’s had seven Son of Sam’s in the last three weeks or something and they aren’t pussing out about it.

It was probably that thug Richard Sherman … And like 6 other guys.

Son of Sam claims Jesus has forgiven him: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/13/son-of-sam_n_5314336.html?utm_hp_ref=religion&ir=Religion

And in “Blue Waffle Ridge” news, school offi- (Google that by the way) School officials at Blue Ridge High School in Greenville, South Carolina decided to censor a painting by senior Tracie Holtzclaw entitled Rape Culture, removing it from the district art exhibition two days prior to the event.  The student artist is a victim of rape herself, and says that the piece explores frustration with the reaction of her Christian community, most of whom told her she was probably dressing too slutty.

Well the painting was kind of asking to be force fucked by a passing art patron.

Holtzclaw disputed the decision to remove the piece, and despite playing her permanent rape victim card that trumps everything, still no love … So what’s their problem with Rape Culture?

They seem okay with it when it’s not a painting…

Well, not only did the title have a scary word like ‘culture’, the painting of a topless, tattooed woman has a pre-censor bar painted over what the district assumes would have been a nipular side boob area.  And this particular brand of whimsy was a little too nuanced, even for the art historians and museum curators that run the censorship program in Greenville, South Carolina.

Proof that she kind of nailed the whole concept of “art” if you ask me.  I don’t know why people think “art” is so hard to define.  If it pisses off conservatives in Greenville, South Carolina and it isn’t a black person voting, it’s art.

Seems like at the very least, they could have allowed the piece, but with the word ‘rape’ blacked out.  (Or maybe hang a hijab over it.)  Or just call it Nonconsensual Attempted Fatherhood Culture that day … Or some other clever title that two offensive atheist assholes could come up with on the spot right now …

So 30 seconds on the clock … “Sexually Explicit Artwork Titles” … GO!!!

I wanna start with the Hymen Pop-Art master Glandy Warhol… hm… something about some soup… in the can… Shit, I pass…

Botticelli’s “Girth of Penis”

Same subject as the “Penis de Milo”… also known as Venus on the half-stock.  Cautionary piece on the dangers of repeated handjobs, I think.

With the arms falling off … That’s a highbrow lowbrow reference … Very hard to pull off … What about: “Permanent Scarry Night”?

That one’s by Unmarked Van Gogh, right?

Yeah same guy that did that famous mugshot of himself … “Self-Portrait of a Rapist as a Young Man”

Girl with a Pearl Necklace?

Generous lovers give you the necklace and the earrings … Was she wearing those when we walked into the museum earlier? … What about: “Dogs Playing Poker in the Rear”?

Little too highbrow for me.  How about the Arc de Triomphent Ropes of Jism.

Yeah better high brow than right in the eye … Black Snake Mona Lisa … You always notice that bored look in her eyes, no matter where you stand.

Two girls, one fur-lined teacup?  …two art history majors laughed out loud just now.

The Procreation of Adam … Touching portrait of the time God fingered his first man.

Should have called it “Adam squealing on the ceiling.”

Art show censorship in South Carolina schoolhttp://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/05/10/sc-teens-rpe-culture-artwork-reflecting-her-own-sexual-assault-banned-from-art-exhibit

And finally tonight, from the “Itchy Rash on my SCOTUS” file, Roanoke County Supervisor Al Bedrosian reminded everyone this week why the recent Supreme Court ruling regarding official prayers at government meetings is fucking stupid.  In the wake of the ruling he called for revisions to the county’s policies to ensure that only Christian prayers would be heard since, of course, his religion is the right one.

Which divergent sect of the right one is he, again?  Baptist?  Because someone recently told me very confidently that God was a Methodist.  And he sounded pretty sure.

Somebody’s full of shit…

At least one of them… maybe both…

In one of earth’s greatest examples to date of not getting it, Bedrosian promised to reject any non-Christian invocation, explaining that (quote) “That does not infringe on their freedom of religion.  The truth is you’re trying to infringe on my right, because I don’t believe that.” (end quote).  So yes, it is clear from that statement that Al Bedrosian actually thinks that the founders of this nation specifically meant freedom of Al Bedrosian’s religion.

So this was a preemptive strike against people praying for God to convert to Islam?  Which he thinks might have worked?

I think you’re giving him a lot of credit when you say “thinks”.

In wake of SCOTUS ruling, Virginia asshole promises Christian-only invocations: http://www.centerforinquiry.net/newsroom/cfi_warns_roanoke_supervisor_of_legal_action_if_christians-only_prayer_poli/

Well, I guess we’ll have to take a break from infringing on Al Bedrosian’s rights because that’s all we’ve got for headlines this week.  Heath, thanks as always.

Jew-Manji!

And when we come back, Cash from Atheists On Air will be here to talk about herding cats.

 

Outro:

Before we clock out for the night, I wanted to thank everybody who sent my wife well-wishes this week.  If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter you might know that the lovely Lucinda lost 4 ounces the hard way last week when she had her gallbladder removed.  She’s recovering nicely and all the love she got from all of you really made her smile when she had no other good reason to.  She’d be thanking you herself but she’s still a little dopey so on her behalf and mine, thanks a ton.  Too many to mention everybody by name, but specific thanks to Dee, Bill, Suzy, Deb and Vinny.  And then nonspecific thanks to a lot of other really awesome people.

That’s all the blasphemy we have for you tonight but we’ll be back in a hundred and sixty eight hours with more.  If you can’t wait that long, though, you can catch me on a recent episode of the Quranify Me podcast as well as an upcoming episode of “An American Atheist”, you’ll find a link to the former in this week’s shownotes and link to the latter on our Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus accounts as soon as it’s available.

Quranify Me Podcast

And speaking of awesome podcasts that’ll be linked on this week’s shownotes, another quick thanks to Cash for giving us a bit of his time.  If you haven’t checked out Atheists on Air yet, I highly recommend it.  Cash is hilarious, he gets great guests and because it’s a newer show, there’s a damn good chance you can chat with his guests live if you call in.  Anyway, he’s on blogtalkradio but you can also find him on this week’s shownotes.

Atheists on Air Podcast

And speaking of speaking of awesome podcast that’ll be linked on this week’s shownotes, I also need to thank David from the “My Book of Mormon” podcast for providing this week’s Farnsworth Quote.  Basically giving the Book of Mormon the Thomas and the Bible (slash) Quranify Me treatment and doing it in a baritone that damn near makes me come; again, shownotes, links, et cetera.

My Book of Mormon Podcast

And at the risk of overthanking this week, I need to thank Heath for keeping the rape jokes classy.  I need to thank Lucinda, who should be back to her regular Scathing Atheist duties next week.  But most of all I need to thank this week’s best people, Shelly, Chuck13, Lawrence, Jamie, Donovan, Bill, Quinn, Vadim, Vinny, Ken, Jason, and Rizado.  Shelly, Chuck13 and Lawrence, who are so quick-witted their neuronal pathways have onramps; Jamie, Donovan and Bill, who are mild mannered by day, but ninja-cidal by night; Quinn, Vadim and Vinny, who saw and conquered before they came, which is better; and Ken, Jason and Rizado, whose erections will be the undoing of the Extenz Hose guy’s patent..

These twelve paragons of altruism have beaten back the forces of destitution that constantly threaten our noble effort to combine secularism with the finest in flatulent humor this week by giving us money.  Only those with the most impressive genitals and/or intellects have the genitals and/or intellect to give us money but if you think you’ve got the aforementioned genitals and/or intellect, you can make a per episode donation to the show at Patreon (dot) com (slash) Scathing Atheist, whilst simultaneously scoring yourself some cool Scathing Atheist shit.

You can also make a one time donation by clicking the donate button on the right side of the homepage at Scathing Atheist (dot) com, or you pick up our new book; “Diatribes, Volume One: 50 Essays From a Godless Misanthrope” as an ebook or a paperback at Amazon (dot) com.

And you can also leave us a glowing review on iTunes because, shit, that’s free.

If you have questions, comments or death threats, you’ll find all the contact info on the contact page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.  All the music used in this episode was written and performed by yours truly and yes, I did have my permission.

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Episode 64 – Partial Transcript

May 11, 2014 3 comments

by Heath Enwright and Noah & Lucinda Lugeons

(Note: Transcript contains elements that were removed from the episode due to time constraints)

LINK TO SUPPORT US ON PATREON

LINK TO BUY THE BOOK (E-BOOK)

LINK TO BUY THE BOOK (PAPERBACK)

LINK TO EPISODE

 

Warning: It would take a lot more than Orbitz Gum to keep these guys from saying Fuck.

 

Sponsor:

Today’s episode of the Scathing Atheist is brought to you by Uni-Psalm: Official Sleeping Pills of the Old Testament

Were you tricked by an old book into being sober all the time?  Not allowed to jerk off and go to bed like a normal person?  Arbitrary rule against fucking your neighbor’s wife?  Try Uni-Psalm: The soporific power of 150 awful poems, concentrated into a single pill.

And now, the Scathing Atheist.

 

Intro:

It’s Thursday,

It’s May 8th,

And believe it or not, when black people play golf, they’re great chippers.

I’m Noah Lugeons,

I’m Heath Enwright.  And from “De-Segregated Golf Club” New York, New York,

And “Deep Fat Friar’s Club” Podunk, Georgia, this is the Scathing Atheist.

In this week’s episode,

  • California students deny the holocaust, and support their thesis with examples of Jews.
  • We’ll knock out a whole episode in less time than it takes for an Oklahoman felon to die of a lethal injection,
  • And theologians are still stumped by issues surround pre-op tranny weddings.

But first, the diatribe.

 

Diatribe:

I’m gonna do my level best tonight not to just say “ReasonCon” over and over again for thirty minutes because DAMN what a good time.  Holy shit, all in one weekend, I get my first chance to hang out with our listeners, I get my first chance to hang out with other atheist podcasters in person, I get my ass handed to me in a debate with Tracie Harris, I get a private lecture on Hitler’s Table Talk monologues from Dr. Richard Carrier and I get to make masturbation jokes at the expense of a former pastor.

Okay, yes, I’m blatantly name-dropping and shamelessly bragging.  Sorry about that, but DAMN what a good time.  Holy shit what a good time.  Had a blast.

This was actually my first time going to an atheist convention.  I’ve been to some skeptical cons and some science cons and I’ve been to Comic Con and shit like that, and I’ve always had a great time.  But it’s nothing compared to the knowledge that at any moment I can actually just say what I’m thinking without first planning an evacuation route.  I can make the Jesus joke that occurs to me as it occurs to me.  Not something I’m used to experiencing in public.

But I don’t want to make the weekend seem like it was all open bars, captivating conversations, hedonistic debauchery and brilliant lectures.  There was way more to it than just that.  I got something while I was there that I needed.  Something I’ve never gotten before and probably couldn’t get anywhere else.

See, I was lucky when it came to religion.  My parents were nominally religious but they were okay with me exploring spirituality in any whacky way I chose.  I got beat up a few times for being a “devil wor’shupper” and I got ostracized by a few teachers for standing up for the First Amendment once in a while, but by and large I got through life with no religious scars.  I started this podcast because religion annoys me and it’s bullshit.  But that’s all it was for me; an intellectual annoyance.

And sure, I’m aware of the real victims of religion.  I’m aware of the oppressed women and the abused kids and the sexually dysfunctional adults and the estranged children and the suicidal gays and the destitute marks, but I’ve never met them.  I’ve never spoken with them.  I’ve never looked into their eyes while they told me those stories.

This weekend I met Phoebe; an amazing young woman who is somehow filled with confidence and strength despite being dragged from one sexist cult to another through her youth.  I met Derrick, whose mother hasn’t returned a message from him for three years because she’s so ashamed to have raised an atheist.  I met Chris who spent years contemplating suicide because he couldn’t stop jerking off.  I met Ryan whose stepfather couldn’t possibly have been abusing him and his brother the way he claimed because his stepfather was a good Christian man.  I met Bobby whose father sexually abused him and used the Bible to justify it.

But the crimes of religion aren’t always so grandiose and they don’t have to be.  Because I also met Ben, who was a well-adjusted, super-bright dude that almost gave up on his Chemistry major to pursue a career in pretending that space-Jesus was for real.  He thought better of it, but he told me about a friend who didn’t.  A bright, promising mind foregoing scientific advancement in favor of promoting ignorance.

Now don’t get me wrong here.  I don’t think pursuing theology or biblical studies is necessarily a waste.  I also met Richard Carrier this weekend and I’m damn glad he’s devoted his brilliance to examining the Bible.  Every pursuit has value as long as it’s as the pursuit is honest.  But what is the societal cost when intelligent people devote themselves to perpetuating a lie?  How many chemists do we lose?  How many doctors or biologists or engineers never got to do anything useful because they were busy turning crackers into zombified Jew-flesh?

Every college degree in divinity is a college degree in not-something-else.  Every church is taking up space that could be used for a not-church.  Every pastor who pounds a pulpit could be hammering a fucking nail.  It’s silly to pretend that society doesn’t pay for this shit.  Every time you see a nice church surrounded by shitty houses, you’re looking at the societal cost.  Every time you see a wealthy preacher next to a struggling teacher, you’re looking at that cost.

And if you ever feel like you’ve seen it so many times your eyes have grown numb to it, I suggest hitting up an atheist convention.  From what I understand, they have a way of opening eyes.

Headlines:

Joining me for headlines tonight is escaped ReAsonConvict, Heath Enwright.  Heath, are you ready to regale us with tales from the event?

ReAsonCon in Hickory, North Carolina was the real deal!!!  Plenty of free-range, locally-sourced, Hickory-smoked baby bacon.  The best pork comes straight from the stork!!!  MMMM GODLESS BITCHES!!!  Big thanks to the everyone involved, including the dedicated, talented, and hilarious hosts of Atheists on Air … Cash and Love!!!

Along with Gene and everybody else from Hickory Humanists… It was a phenomenally awesome time, which was good, because I needed all the pre-existing good mood I could get when I woke up Monday and read our lead story for the week.  Normally I’d try to write some witty headline to describe it or something, but I really don’t think I could do better than Andy Borowitz from the New Yorker, so in our lead story tonight “In Landmark Decision, Supreme Court Strikes Down Main Reason Country Was Started.”

Or in other words: “Roberts Court digs up James Madison’s grave and shits in his mouth.”

Okay, yeah… that was better than Borowitz.  And of course we’re talking about the controversial 5-4 decision that upheld the right of the Town of Greece, New York to wrap the Bill of Rights around a pile of dog shit and then light it on fire and leave it on some old dude’s porch to see if he’ll stomp it out.  Writing the Majority opinion, Anthony “What the fuck ever happened to you, you bumbling tit?” Kennedy said, and I’m paraphrasing here, “Fuck the first amendment. Ya’ll keep bringing up old shit.”

Can’t local politicians in Greece, NY just pray for their job to matter in the car, before they walk into the meetings? … That’s literally the trade-off here.  We had to either scrap the First Amendment, or ask people to shit before the meeting.  And we decided on diapers in the meeting.

Well, the majority opinion actually claimed that the prayers didn’t violate the first amendment because they didn’t (quote) “denigrate nonbelievers or religious minorities, threaten damnation or preach conversion.”  Because isn’t that what the Constitution says?  I believe the exact portion he’s referring to is the part that reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion unless everybody’s really nice about it.  And then it’s okay.”

But they’re not even being really nice about it!!!  In what sense is threatening damnation, and preaching conversion capable of being friendly?!?

Now in the aftermath of the decision, the American Humanist Association announced a program that will help train people to give secular invocations while the Freedom From Religion Foundation has offered a reward to the person who gives the best one.  Because, let’s face it, if we were supplicant, we would be religious, which is why eventually we always win fights like this.

If the Scathing Atheists are allowed to make invocations before redneck town meetings, they’ll stop praying real fast.

I’ll be adding links to more info on the AHA and FFRFs efforts on the shownotes for this episode and I strongly encourage everyone who listens to this to take this one seriously.  This is some activism we can all do in our hometowns that will really make a difference.

Supreme Court upholds prayer before public meetings: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303647204579543572388368040?mg=reno64-wsj&url=http%3A%2F%2Fonline.wsj.com%2Farticle%2FSB10001424052702303647204579543572388368040.html

LINK TO AHA SECULAR INVOCATION INFORMATION

LINK TO FFRF SECULAR INVOCATION REWARD INFO

And from “The Most Dangerous Game Theory” file, one of Oklahoma’s tax-paid executioners botched a routine iocane powder procedure, and witnesses were forced to see that awkward, prolonged, death seizure look on the perp’s face for about 20 minutes.  This is why atheists only murder unborn children.  No eye contact.

Yeah, I hate it when state sponsored barbarism is so barbaric.  If the two terms weren’t mutually exclusive, I’d suggest we execute prisoners like a civilized society.

In order to avoid bureaucratic ineptitude like this in the future – and keeping in mind they still want to continue murdering people – many Republican Christians are calling for privatization of the capital punishment industry, making it more efficient, and profitable at the same time.  Or …  instead of no-bid contracts for domestic vigilante Halliburton death squads, we could realize that capital punishment costs taxpayers more than life in prison … and also murder is probably wrong.  

Just when you think the Republican irony meter can’t go any higher.  As it turns out, they only had issues with the “state sponsored” part of “state sponsored death panels.”

I know it’s not a top priority like “Don’t whittle figurines”, but something along the lines of “Shalt not Kill” is in the 5-7 range depending on how you mistranslate the perfect word of god and his ten most important commandments.  But more importantly – just in general – if somebody asks you if you should murder people … and you have to consult a textbook … that’s problematic … REALLY pedantic at best.

Death Penalty Sort-of Works Eventually: http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2014/05/02/what-it-was-like-watching-the-botched-oklahoma-execution/

And in “Defrock ‘em in the ass” news tonight, the Vatican has finally released details of exactly how they’ve disciplined priests accused of child rape and torture.  Before we get to the sanctions, I’d like to point out that they did so while being questioned by the UN committee that monitors the implementation of the UN Treaty against torture, so for the assholes that email me and tell me calling it torture is hyperbolic, fuck you.  It is absolutely torture; it’s torture of the worst kind and the people doing the torture no longer dispute that fact.  So stop standing up for child torturing rapists.

Yeah, let’s just take a moment and consider one more time, that Christianity is appearing before the UN Anti-Torture Committee.  Must be a few awkward moments … “So this last part’s just a formality … Embarrassed to even ask, but it’s our last checkbox here … You guys keep the pedophiles away from kids after you find out, right?  You’re not still setting them up with jobs as Chuck E Cheese bathroom attendants, right?”  

The numbers also cast enormous suspicion on the whole “Yeah, sure, back in the 50s we fucked the hell out of some kids, but now we’re cool” argument the Vatican’s been peddling for the last couple years.  More than 3400 credible accusations of abuse have been referred to the Vatican in the last ten years including more than 400 cases just last year.

If they’re gonna equate institutional pedophilia to cigarette smoking, then we get to put a Surgeon General’s warning on every bible from now on.  Because they’re still smoking boy pole!!!

Warning: Do not use while operating civic machinery.  I like it.  So in 848 of the nearly 3500 cases, the priests ID card and his super-saver discount card were revoked.  And that represented the tough punishment.  They didn’t get to be priests anymore.  Which means that in more than 2,500 instances they did get to be priests anymore!  The Rapists!

Vatican releases stats on punishments for molester priests: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/may/06/vatican-figures-disciplined-priests-sex-abuse

And in “@GOP + @GOD = #BFF” news, the Republican National Committee tweeted the following over the weekend: (quote) “Religious freedom is our God-given right.” (end quote) … Also included was a link to a strongly-worded petition demanding that President Obama stop helping Satan by refusing to fill the crucially important position called: Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom.  Rumors on the Hill suggest the currently serving Traveling Secretary to the Assistant Quidditch Game Warden is perfect for the job … But then you get Harry Potter fans petitioning Obama about the free exercise clause.

Right.  The guys that have the judiciary running on fumes and dryer lint are worried about this unfilled post?

Knowing that Jesus was less about public well-being, and more about deadly weapons, the GOP recently bolstered it’s Christ-Cred even further, when it blocked the selection of an extremely qualified Surgeon General nominee, for his role in angering the NRA by suggesting bullet wounds may be harmful to your health.  Doesn’t the First Amendment say Christians can’t vote because that would be crazy?

Yeah, but as of this week we’re not doing the First Amendment anymore.

RNC tweets about being the god party and Obama oppressing religious freedom: http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/republican-party-announces-it-is-officially-the-party-of-god/politics/2014/05/05/86744

And in “63% of Respondents said “Ungh….”” news tonight, a new study finds that Evangelicals are still stunningly stupid.  (Stunningly?)  A new survey by The Associated Press looked into America’s willingness to accept established, fully demonstrated scientific fact and to the surprise of nobody, we flunked miserably.  The survey showed that the Evangelicals were leading the way, proudly marching toward hegemonized stupidity, but kind of running into each other and falling down a lot.

Like chickens proudly marching to the KFC factory … It’s okay to be stupid, but when all the smartest chickens do shitloads of research on KFC, and show you videos of the Fargo Chipper, you halt the fucking procession!!!

Yes, but this study casts doubt on any analogy that assumes Evangelicals have intelligence equal to that of a chicken.  Okay, so the numbers.  They looked at four key scientific facts and asked people if they were confident that these demonstrable, unambiguous FACTS were true.  More than three quarters of Evangelicals expressed doubt in the big bang and evolution; with more than half doubting anthropogenic climate change and the established age of the earth.

We finally have actual evidence suggesting a flood, and the Christians are denying it???

This is further proof that we didn’t need that religion stifles scientific advancement and it’s not the sporadic influence the apologists would have you believe.  I’d argue that if this was the only negative influence of religion, that would be enough to justify this show and my outrage.  And it’s not.  Because they also fuck kids.

Oh, right I forgot about that, since we covered it two stories ago!

Study: Evangelicals are still stunningly stupid: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/01/ap-survey-faith-science_n_5249154.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

And in “Wiles E Coyote Ugly” news, conservative North Carolina Senate candidate Steve Wiles – whilst campaigning on the gay-marriage-ban platform – was recently outed as a former drag queen emcee at a Winston-Salem gay bar, performing under the stage name, “Miss Mona Sinclair”.

The greatest part of this story is that when they asked the staunchly anti-gay rights candidate if he himself was gay, he said, and I quote, “I really won’t make any comment on that.”  So yeah, he really dodged a bullet there.  They almost figured him out.

Yeah close one … So after being fired from his/her job as a promoter for the 2011 Miss Gay America pageant, for (quote) “conduct unbecoming” to the organization, it seems Wiles decided he/she was better suited to perform conduct unbecoming to a politician.

What kind of a tease is it to mention “Conduct unbecoming of a Miss Gay America promoter” and then not give details.  Motherfuckers…

Obviously we’ve already got 30 seconds on the clock for this one … “Republican Drag Queen Bar Names” … GO!!!

Forged Bush

The GOP Spot

I was gonna says the “Trans Old Party”

SantoRum and Coke

I don’t mind admitting, that place gives me a Boehner.  How about “Gippers & Strippers: The Home of Trickle Down Your Back Economics.”

Ted’s Gay Cruise?

Colon Pow!

Tap That Ashcroft

Chris (equals) Christie?  Great place to get your tunnel jammed.

Kind of like “Vicar/Victoria” …

The Oral Majority

The Dick Army Gravy Train

Prostate’s Rights?

Entrance in the Back Tucker Carlson’s

The LGBT Party.

Adam’s Applebees

Anti-gay politician once worked as drag queen at gay bar: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/anti-gay-north-carolina-republican-candidate-worked-drag-queen-gay-bar-report-article-1.1779271

And finally tonight, in “Holocaust of Living” news, a high school in Rialto, California learned the stupid way that you shouldn’t assign kids to write a paper entitled “Did the holocaust really happen?”  Eighth grade students in the school were asked to do some research and write a paper explaining whether they believed the holocaust was (a) the holocaust or (b) a political scheme concocted to influence public emotion.  And they somehow failed to know in advance that they’d reached “drooling into your soup” levels of idiocy here.

If I remember high school correctly, that means I could have gotten an A on a holocaust denial essay, as long as I used transition words like “moreover”, and somewhere included the phrase “encompassing a wide swath of cultural mores”.

I should point out that I don’t think the topic should be off the table for discussion or anything.  If somebody wants to research the historical evidence on that one I invite them to do so because the historical evidence is FUCKING OVERWHELMING.  I mean… just… what else happened to all the fucking Jews?  There are censuses before the holocaust and there’s all these jews.  And then there’s now.  And all those Jews are gone.  So sure.  Look into it.  Start with some of Michael Shermer’s excellent work on the subject.  But don’t make a fucking history assignment out of it!  And especially don’t do that if… and I don’t give a shit if this is unrelated… but especially don’t do it if the superintendent of the school is sporting the “I shit you not” name of Mohammad Z. Islam.  That’s actually the dude’s name.

That was also the #2 answer when Family Feud asked 100 Texans to name the President of the United States.  And the #1 answer: … George Bush.

Anyway, after fucking-duh complaints from the Anti-Defamation League, a number of other groups and most of the parents who weren’t assholes, the school apologized and scrapped the paper and replaced it with a less controversial sociology assignment entitled, “The Blacks: Do They Really Love Them Some Cornbread?”

“Rape: Legitimate Gripe or Bid for Attention?”

California School debates historical legitimacy of the holocaust: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/05/rialto-holocaust-assignment_n_5268840.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

Well I guess now that we can chalk up the rape joke we can close out the headlines tonight.  Heath, thanks as always for joining me.

If they downloaded our podcast, they were asking for it.

And when we come back, Lucinda will be here to make excuses for not reading all the way through Psalms.

 

Babble:

Holy shit… which was, I believe, the working title for Psalms.

They also kicked around “Better Off Dead Poet’s Society” …

We had the supreme displeasure this week of reading by far the longest book of the bible and the only task less desirable than reading this shit is figuring out a way to break it down in a 10 minute segment.

Which is only slightly less desirable than Anne Coulter’s personality

Indeed.  Not only is this book way too long for a meaningful overview; it’s also just a random anthology of needy, whining jews.  There’s no story to talk about… it’s just a collection of crappy and often cadaverous prayers about random shit.  So joining us to try to find a way to sum this sucker up is my lovely wife Lucinda.  Lucinda, welcome back.

Good to be back… I’ve missed me.

As have I.  So to give this discussion some kind of structure we’re gonna look not to the individual psalms, but rather to the five sections within the book.  So Lucinda, why don’t you start us off with part one:

 

  • Part one:

 

      • So Basically you have two types of Psalms right off the bat.  They’re either saying “Hey, you can tell how glorious god is because everything is going right for us” or they’re saying, “I know things aren’t going right for us, but that doesn’t mean that God’s not glorious.”
      • Right.  A lot of “Damned if I do, damned if you don’t” stuff…  and it’s so funny coming right off of Job.  The very first psalm basically negates the entire previous book.
        • And they make sure to point out that good Christians are always prosperous because their parents own valuable coastal properties.  So choose your parents wisely.
      • And then there’s a bunch of “My god could beat up your god” and “Dear god, don’t let anybody fuck me in my sleep” shit for the next hundred and fifty chapters.
      • Interspersed with some serious shit talk about atheists.
      • Yes, apparently we’re cannibals and do only wicked acts.  But that’s just because of the dude we sent back in time to terminate the Jesus pregnancy, or “Project: Hasta la vista, Baby Jesus”.  That’s a nice brunch right there: Bacon, Egg, and Jesus, and a Bloody Mary with stem celery garnish.
      • It worked better in part two, but they’re still waiting for the second coming anyway.
      • Yeah, 18 is a weird one, too.  It’s a mile and a half longer than all the other ones around it, but it’s about a scene where basically God kills a bunch of ninjas, so I didn’t mind so much.
      • I liked 22, which I call “The prayer of the pantsed nerd”
      • Yeah, right before the “The lord is my sheppard bit” we get the whole “My mom says you guys are only persecuting me because you’re jealous” Psalm… which was fun.
      • And then in Psalm 35 we get the prayer of the RoadRunner… it’s all about my enemies getting caught in their own nets and accidentally strapping themselves to their own Acme rocket…
        • “And God made the law of gravity, and the coyote fell, and it was good.”
    • Part Two:
      • Then we get to part two and it’s worth pointing out that there’s nothing that divides book one from book two except a header that says, “book two”.  There’s no substantive difference between the content of either book.
      • Right.  The Psalms continue to basically fall into two themes: (a) Our enemies just got their asses kicked, how about god, huh? and (b) Our enemies just kicked our asses so what the hell?
      • Is that what you guys were getting?  I swear at a certain point I was just reading “goddy-goddy-god-god… god god ‘selah’”
      • Yeah, lot of that too.  But there was also plenty of backhanded praise in this one.  A lot of “God, I know it seems like you’re fucking up all your godding and what not, but we know better.”
      • And then there’s all the flattering, obsequious, “I sure hope god fucks my daughter” stuff … “God. God. God. Dad. Daddy. Yahweh. Hashem. Lois. Are you watching? Are you looking?”
      • I giggled at Psalm 47, which was basically the biblical version of the Hokey Pokey.
      • And I think it’s worth noting that Psalm 53 is basically identical to Psalm 14. They were hoping we wouldn’t notice, but we did.
      • Probably not a coincidence that they doubled up on the Psalm that talked shit about atheists.  Literally claims that every single atheist is evil.  So all babies are evil.
      • A lot of justifications for racism and genocide too.  Psalm 58, 60, 63, 68… basically all the ones that aren’t telling god how massive his dick is.
      • Yeah, 58 was particularly egregious.  I believe that was the one where you ask god to rip out the teeth of your enemies children.  Or at least make sure nobody is allowed to provide them with affordable medical coverage.

 

  • Part Three:

 

      • Then we get to part three.  And I’m hoping that we’re gonna see some kind of change in theme or something, but I’ve been burned once before.  Book One and Book Two were just randomly separated.  But this time Book Two actually ends by saying, “Okay so that’s all of David’s shit.”  So I got my hopes up one more time.  Would something finally be different?
      • No.
      • Right.  No.  First Psalm in book three?  Same “Damn is god awesome and damn do wicked people suck” nonsense for another 16 Psalms.
      • Right, but this book is shorter so it feels like you’re getting somewhere.  It’s like driving through New England.  Every few minutes you’re going over another state line and even though you’re not actually getting anywhere any faster, you feel like you are.  
      • I wanted to point this one out, by the way, because I could be mistaken, but I’m pretty sure that in 74:11 god says he can’t help the Israelites because he’s busy fondling his own tits…. or whacking off or something.
      • That’s how I read it.
        • If I remember correctly – and I rarely do – in King James, God was giving himself a Rusty Trombone.
      • And as you’re slogging through this thing, once in a while you get shit like Psalm 78, which is five Psalms long and basically rehashed all the highlights from Exodus through Second Samuel.
      • But here and there you’ll come across a nugget of gold.  Like verse 81:10 where god says to the Jews, “Open your mouths and I shall fill them…” and then starts talking about them sucking up his dripping honey.  We’re all adults here.  You hear milk and honey … You think arcing ropes of jism.  God made us this way.
      • Then you get a whole bunch of “when are you gonna get around to incinerating my enemies, god?” to wrap up book three.
      • I was actually pretty fond of Psalm 89, which says, and I’m paraphrasing here, “Dear god, pretty sure you fucked up the last couple years of earth. Feel free to take a mulligan.”

 

  • Part Four:

 

      • And then there’s book four, which is just more kissing of the holy holey.
      • And these fucking poems… when did the bible turn into a recently dumped highschool girl?  “You want to read some of my poems?”  “Of fucking course I don’t! Nobody ever honestly answered ‘yes’ to the question ‘Do you want to read some of my poems’!”
      • But at least teenage girl poems have some important themes like slitting your wrists or getting finger fucked.  These ones are all about how Jews are invincible and god is such a snappy dresser.  Yeah I’d love to hear those, but maybe I can read the new unedited manuscript of that novel you’ve been working on, right here on the spot.  And then you can play us that song on guitar you’re halfway through writing.  And then the poems, right after that.  
      • Right, so moving on, we get another generous helping of “Hey god, did you notice how much more moral I was being than everybody else?  That’s because they all suck and need a good smiting.”
      • And I thought Psalm 96 was an interesting one.  It basically says that god is great and he knows everything… but we still have to remind him how awesome he is constantly.
      • Yes and in the following Psalm I believe we learn that if you have the right Poke-Ball, god can breathe fire, which is a pretty cool trick.
      • Put perhaps my favorite of all of them was Psalm 101 which says, and again, paraphrasing here, but it basically says “God is peace and love and justice and I’ll kill any motherfucker who disagrees.”
      • And you thought the Muslims made that shit up.  Just another Jewish cover band like the Christians.

 

  • Part Five:

 

    • And then you mercifully get to Part Five and you’ve been through so much that you think it’s almost over… but you forget that just this part of this book is basically the length of Exodus.
    • And it starts off right, with a Psalm that reminds us that if you starve or rot in prison or get sick and die or drown… it’s because god hates you and you’re evil.
    • And we keep getting all the mixed messages.  Like take Psalm 111 for example.  It tells us that the lord is forgiving and trustworthy and infinitely just… and because of that, you should be scared shitless of him.
    • Yeah, that’s something of a running theme in this book.
    • But Psalms also has my favorite thing in the bible so far… the middle.  Psalm 118 is the midway point so we’re definitely getting somewhere.
    • And interestingly enough it’s sandwiched between Psalm 117, which is the shortest chapter in the entire bible, and Psalm 119, which is the longest chapter.  And believe me, this meaningless coincidence has been the subject of billions of words worth of religiotic babbling.
      • And 119 was clearly written by a 5-year-old learning the Hebrew alphabet with an acrostic poem.
    • One of our listeners said on Facebook that he actually had to memorize that motherfucker in school.  3 pages of divine felatio…  What a waste.
    • I think it’s interesting that in Psalm 122 they specifically call for peace in Jerusalem.  So… Jews and Christians have been praying for this for how many millennia now?  And they still haven’t given up on praying?
    • Seems clear that this god dude is a slacker.
    • Yes, but as Psalm 123 explains at length, as much of a pathetic fuck up as god is, you’re even worse.
    • And was it just me or was there a ton of thanking god for the wrong shit?  Like in 126 where they thank god for no longer requiring them to be enslaved.  Thanks for not hitting me in the dick with that weed eater again!  Thanks for not fucking me in the ass between each pump!
    • Or 135, which basically says, “As evidence of god’s infinite compassion, I submit the following list of people he’s killed…”
    • And, of course, we have to talk about the most notorious of all the Psalms, number 137.
      • Which essentially says “If a foreigner asks you to sing them a psalm, you refuse.  Non-Jews can’t hear Psalms.  They can listen to them, but they can’t hear them.”
    • It’s probably a good idea to have this Psalm at the ready, though, if you think about it.  Just in case somebody captures you and tells you to sing a song, it’s nice to have a song at the ready about not wanting to sing songs for your captors and smashing their children’s skulls.  That’s just prudence.
    • Not many songs about smashing baby skulls these days.
    • A lost art, indeed.
    • Then we get a bunch more “Have you ever met a starving kid in Africa?  Bunch of assholes. Quit blaming god” type Psalms, and it draws to an overdue but merciful close.

And thus ends the longest book in the Bible and the only legitimate competitor to Vogon poetry.  Next up is Proverbs which is still stupid long but it’s gonna seem like a cakewalk compared to Psalms.

Getting baptized by Sarah Palin would seem like a cakewalk after Psalms.

Yep.  So no Bible for the next three weeks.  Between now and then I’m just gonna read Billy Collins until my eyes hurt.

Thanks for soldiering through it, guys.  Halfway and then some.

Aww, Only halfway? ( Shit.)

Halftime Score: Jews 1, Christians and Muslims 0

 

Outro:

Before we settle the tab tonight, I wanted to throw a huge thanks out to all the listeners that made it out to ReasonCon last weekend.  It was our first chance to actually hang out with our audience a bit and it turns out we’ve got a hell of an audience.  Thanks so much for making it an unforgettable weekend.  Too many people to thank by name… and I’d probably fuck up and leave someone out… so just in general, thanks a ton.  Really meant the world to us that so many of you were able to make it.

I also wanted to thank Paul from the Quranify Me Podcast for inviting me to take part in a skit he did for his show.  Tom and Cecil, Adam Reakes and me all popped in for a few minutes and I believe you can hear that on his most recent episode.  I’ll link to it in the shownotes.

LINK TO QURANIFY ME PODCAST

Obviously, I need to thank Bobby C from the No Religion Required Podcast for providing this week’s Farnsworth Quote.  I hate to admit that I still haven’t had a chance to check out his show, but I’ll be rectifying that today and with good reason.  While we were at ReasonCon he caught some audio that was either one of the greatest moments in atheist podcasting history or we were all so shit-faced we just thought it was.  What started off as a few minutes with Heath and I eventually turned into several hours with us, Cash and Love, Bill from Bar Room Atheists, Tracie Harris from The Atheist Experience, Dr. Richard Carrier, “Year Without God” pastor Ryan Bell… along with a dozen other hilarious drunken atheists.  Not sure how good the audio quality will be, but if it’s even remotely good it will be well worth your time to check it out.  If nothing else, it includes Heath and Cash competing for the most off-color abortion joke so that should be enough to get you there.

LINK TO NO RELIGION REQUIRED PODCAST

Speaking of Heath, need to thank him once more for all he does both on and off the air.  Need to thank Lucinda for toughing it out all the way through Psalms.  And speaking of Psalms, I also want to thank all our Twitter followers for all the words of encouragement during my one hundred and fifty hour Psalm-a-thon last week.  Happy to have that over and done with.  Thanks to everybody who favorites or retweeted or responded or whatever.

But most of all, of course, we need to thank this week’s most honorable hominids; Robert, Andrew, John, Mark, Kilburn State Records, Shane, Eric with a C, Robives (dot) com, Don, Daniel, Jonathan, Robert, Nicholas, Scott, Liam, Erik with a K and Steven.  Robert, Andrew, John and Mark, whose erections give railroad crossing arms feelings of inadequacy; Kilburn State Records and Robives (dot) com, which would have made the list if it was the Fortune 502; Shane, Eric with a C, Don and Daniel; whose archery skills are too much for even the nimblest of neutrinos; Jonathan, Robert and Nicholas, who aren’t the droids you’re looking for; and Scott, Liam, Erik with a K and Steven, who make Mother Teresa look like a miserable bitch and not just because Mother Teresa really was a miserable bitch.

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Episode 30 – Partial Transcript

September 12, 2013 10 comments

(note: Transcript may contain parts that were edited out of the final episode due to time restraints)

Sponsor

This week’s episode of the Scathing Atheist is brought to you by the new chain of creationist-friendly grocery stores “Ray Comfort Foods”, where the vegetables are guaranteed to be divinely created in their present form, the canned goods are 100% abiogenesis free and there’s plenty of Jesus in our cheeses.

So shop at Ray Comfort Foods, because creationists do what they’re told.

And now, the Scathing Atheist

Intro:

It’s Thursday, it’s September 12th and it’s the 12th anniversary of Heath’s first 9-11 joke.

I’m your host Noah Lugeons and from sardonic New York, New York, this is the Scathing Atheist.

On this week’s episode,

  • We’ll be compassionate enough to cut the story with all the childrens’ cancer jokes

  • We’ll discover that there are levels of evil Pat Robertson can reach that would still surprise you,

  • And Christian homophobes create a Christian version of something that was Christian to begin with.

But first, the diatribe.

Diatribe

I was twelve years old and my mom was talking to a couple of friends of hers about where they were when they learned that Kennedy got shot.  One of the friends admitted that she couldn’t actually recall where she was and that freaked my mom right the fuck out.  How could she not remember that moment?

Now, psychologists will tell you these so-called “flashpoint” memories are just as unreliable as most of our other memories, but I didn’t know that at the time and neither did my mom.  It was simply unthinkable in her mind that somebody could have forgotten that moment.  And that was simply unthinkable to me.  I couldn’t comprehend of an event so potent that you’d be surprised when somebody failed to recall it precisely a quarter of a century later.

And I continued to not comprehend that for another thirteen years.

It’s damn hard to say that there was a silver lining to 9/11.  I’ll have enough respect not to rank it on a scale of tragedy, but it was the most horrible example of humanity that I’ve ever had to witness.  The emotional reaction that so many of us shared that day can’t be explained rationally.  That colossal mix of anger, fear and impotence isn’t something I’d ever like to revisit.

But if there was a phoenix that rose from the ashes that day, it was the new-atheist movement.  The four horsemen all cite the 9/11 attacks as the impetus to their vocal opposition to religion.  Throughout the 90s we’d all been force fed the immutable dictum of cultural tolerance so faith was off limits.  Sure, there were still plenty of atheists and there were still plenty of people bitching about the evils of religion, but after 9/11 those people were suddenly on TV.  They were writing best sellers.  They were suddenly being listened to.  They had been right all along and it took a few airplanes crashing into a few buildings on live television for a lot of people to realize that.

Of course, references to 9/11 have fallen out of favor in the atheist movement.  It’s become fashionable to rise above that type of rhetoric.  I’ve seen a number of prominent atheists vehemently disavow the popular meme that reminds us that science flies you to the moon while religion flies you into buildings, or the one that shows the twin towers standing stalwart above the words “Imagine no Religion”.

The platitude a la mode would tell us that the number of religious people who have flown airplanes into buildings is sufficiently eclipsed by the number of religious people who haven’t flown airplanes into buildings.  It would be too simplistic to say “religion did it”, wouldn’t it?  There were far more things contributing to the rationale of the suicide bombers on 9/11 than just the six dozen hotties they were about to deflower.  So you can’t blame religion, can you?

And there’s a lot there that I’ll agree with.  I’ll agree that the overwhelming majority of believers aren’t suicide bombers.  And I’ll agree that it’s more complex than “religion did it”.  And I’ll agree that there were other contributing factors.  And even granting all that, I’ll still blame the shit out of religion.

Here’s the thing: convincing somebody to blow their self up is trickier than you think.  Without divulging any of the details of why I know that, consider the most gullible person you know and ask yourself if you think you could convince them that blowing their self up would earn them a trip to a virgin-laden paradise.  Tough, huh?  Now imagine you had to do it without using religion.

No one person can do that.  It would take indoctrination from birth.  It would take total control of what the victim learned, what they read, what they watched.  It would take institutions to make somebody believe anything so patently counterintuitive.

And it just so happens that we have institutions that were designed for exactly that purpose.  Modern day religious apologists are fond of telling us that the religion of today is nothing like the barbaric faith at it’s roots and that’s true to a certain extent in certain parts of the world at certain times, but that doesn’t change the fact that the vehicle they’re driving was designed to make people do what they were told to do, even, nay especially, when it went against their own best interest.

If you take out the poverty or the nationalism or the charismatic recruiter, you could still get probably round up 19 guys willing to kill in the name of god.  But if you take out the god your task becomes damn near impossible.

So call it hyperbolic if you want.  I say if there was any lesson we could extract from that tragedy it’s that religious zealotry isn’t something we can afford to tolerate.

Headlines

Joining me for headlines tonight is cleverly introduced Heath Enwright.  Heath, are you ready to participate in pre-headline banter?

Witty response, Noah.

Laughter, fading to witty retort, Heath.

Laughter indeed, Noah.  I think I’ll exercise my optional additional witty rebuttal here, at which point you’ll probably add a rejoinde-

Rejoinder ending in half-ass segue.

In our lead story tonight, the Vatican has recalled its ambassador to the Dominican Republic amid allegations of being a naughty, naughty nuncio.  Archbishop Josef Wesolowski was yanked off his post for getting his post yanked off and then winding up in the yankee post.

“Pope Franky Cranky About Wesolowski Lanky Crank Yanky Spanky Hanky Panky”  

Surprised you didn’t get “skanky” in there.  Rumors of the archbishop’s frisky business first arose in the Dominican press a few weeks ago and the ambassador was whisked away before you could say “official investigation”… or at least, before Dominican Attorney General Francisco Dominguez Brito could say “official investigation”.

We atheist podcasters could be foiled so easily, by clergy just not raping kids.  We’d lose a big chunk of material there . . .

So if the intrinsic value of not raping kids isn’t enough, they should consider the strategic value.  And as much as it would hurt our stellar ratings, I’d give away all this fame and podcast fortune,

if the church dialed down the rape even just a little.  

Sounds fair to me.  But instead, in yet another concerted effort to undercut their own “we-really-mean-it-this-time” charade, the Vatican has moved quickly and decisively to protect an Archbishop from prosecution for sex crimes AGAIN.  With the ink on his new “get tough on child rapists” legislation still drying, Pope Sweet Frans-vestite winds up in the delicate position of explaining that when he said “get tough” he didn’t mean tough as in “subject to the same minimal legal standards as the rest of the world”.

When a senior official of an institution is caught covering up decades of child rape, there IS a classy way to handle it.  And I think Joe Paterno showed us that classy way . . . And in case that was too subtle . . . I’m saying take a cue from Joe Pa and go die quickly.

Wesolowski, who was nomadic even for a child-raping Catholic official, had previously served in Africa, Costa Rica, Japan, Switzerland, India, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Denmark.  But I’m sure he only started fucking kids in the DR.

Yeah lots of people don’t develop those kid-rapey instincts until later in life.  Much like scotch, cock is an acquired taste.  Best to start with ten-year-olds, then maybe move your way up to twelve and fifteen.  Twenty-one isn’t worth the extra money.         

And I know that officially I’m supposed to call him “alleged child rapist” or whatever, but fuck that and fuck him.  The Vatican is going to make damn sure he’s only ever “alleged” child rapist so I’m gonna go ahead and call an unprecedented abrupt removal from a diplomatic post that exactly coincides with the opening of a sex-crimes investigation an admission of guilt and say this dude is a dirty child fucker.  And if he doesn’t like it, he can come and get me.  He’ll find me in a neutral nation with friendly extradition treaties with the Dominican Republic.

Do you think the court cases against these guys ever get settled by the victims raping them back.  Like a “brown eye for a brown eye” type of deal?

Vatican withdraws Dominican ambassador quick before he has to face charges of child sex abuse: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/catholic-church-relieves-its-ambassador-in-dominican-republic-amid-official-investigation/2013/09/04/8dd3e8e0-15c6-11e3-961c-f22d3aaf19ab_story.html

And in “Not all the stories can be as light hearted as that last one” news tonight, a Bangladeshi court has indicted four atheist bloggers on charges of not properly cupping Mohammed’s balls and saying things that hurt Allah’s feelings.  Because apparently Allah is a sissy god and can’t smite these dudes on his own.

Are there a lot of Bangladeshi citizens reading atheist blogs and Reddit posts all day, trying to really hash out their true feelings on the origins of the universe?  Is that what they do between state-mandated early morning Muslim prayer, and state-mandated later early morning Muslim prayer?

Despite the Vonnegutian nature of arresting people for insulting a fictional character, the (air quote) “assailants” are facing as much as 14 years in prison after at least one of them already faced a brutal assassination attempt.

If you get 14 years for epistemological whistle blowing, what’s the penalty for attempted brutal assassination?

The indictments you were asking for, apparently.

This is like if Edward Snowden found out the CIA was spending millions of tax dollars to track Santa Claus throughout the Arctic . . .

And also chasing Carmen Sandiego from Berlin down to Belize.  

I’d like to think we wouldn’t have jail time and water boards on the table in that situation.     

Before moving on to any more of the details, I’d just like to say that I make a lot of jokes about how backwards and fucked up the US judicial system is, but all things considered, I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of ‘Murica and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under whoever the fuck I’ve gotta say to not spend 14 years in prison, so help us baby-Jesus, Amen.

The accused, whose names I won’t butcher out of respect, have already spent three months in prison and are currently free on bail after pleading not guilty.

Prosecution by the Ministry of Silly Walks would be far less ridiculous.

4 Bangladeshi Bloggers indicted for being atheist bloggers: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/bangladesh-court-indicts-4-bloggers-for-allegedly-posting-derogatory-comments-about-islam/2013/09/08/8b05423c-1876-11e3-80ac-96205cacb45a_story.html?

And from the “It turns out there actually were worse things we could’ve done in Rwanda than nothing” file tonight, blathering idiot and perpetual first runner up in the crypt-keeper lookalike competition Pat Robertson is working hard to remind everyone that he’s not just a crazy, ranting, superstitious, senile old bigot; he’s also evil.

First place must have gone to Lisa Robin Kelly from “That 70’s Show”?

Well, …now.

But even slightly pre-mortem.  And for those listeners playing in celebrity death pool fantasy leagues, she was 43 years old, so that’s 57 points for the predictably departed meth enthusiast, in standard formats.  

And from celebrity death pool back to celebrity death-monger, a documentary titled “Mission Congo” recently premiered at the Toronto film festival and apparently it details how Pat Robertson used the suffering of the Rwandan people to perpetuate a scam almost as reprehensible as the whole Jesus thing.

It’s hard to tell who cured more cholera and dissentary in the refugee camps, because Doctors Without Borders was there at the same time as Pat Robertson’s preachers.  That’s lots of doctors and lots of bibles, so . . . who’s to say?  

According to filmmakers David Turner and Lara Zizic, it might be fewer bibles than you think.  Robertson consistently exaggerated, distorted and misrepresented the extent of his charity’s work in Rwanda and used these lies and deceptions to bring in hundreds of millions of dollars, a very small percent of which actually wound up helping anyone but Pat Robertson.

It’s about now I’d normally compare him to a Bond villain, or a Die Hard villain . . .

But Pat Robertson is SO MUCH WORSE, because he’s actually a real person doing this shit in reality.  He raised money from gullible rednecks in the American south, to finance bullshit humanitarian aid to Rwandan refugee camps, but actually diverted the planes to service his secret blood diamond company!!!  All he’s missing is a disfiguring scar, and conspicuous red doomsday button that says DO NOT PRESS.   

If anybody’s out there investing in “rapture button” technology…

And just to fit the bad guy stereotype perfectly, and get a three week timeshare on Secret Bad Guy Island, his covert African diamond mining company is owned through those “offshore accounts” they always use.  I never understood those.  Is the money hidden in the ocean?  Why does offshore mean we can’t find these banks?  Yes it’s offshore, but we all still know where Bermuda is.  

Robertson denies these allegations and if you can’t trust the guy who said last week that gay people in San Francisco have secret rings with AIDS needles so they can infect straight people when they shake their fucking hands, congratulations, your brain still works.

Obviously a hoax . . . And if Pat Robertson had ever been to San Francisco, he would know that real gay people in San Francisco don’t shake hands . . . they dick bump.  

Yeah but to be fair, the ring idea would work for that, too.

Pat Robertson accused of fraud: http://www.theguardian.com/film/2013/sep/05/mission-congo-pat-robertson-aid-rwanda

And protecting the rights of children to be stupid this week is the Islamic Society of Tampa Bay Area who are fighting for the right of their children to be the most undereducated in the Florida public school system.

Muslims and Christians love to compete … I guess “Dumbest Kids in Florida” is a fitting battle for those two groups.  We’re really talking about “Dumbest Adults in Florida” aren’t we?  And that’s a competitive category.  This is a state that was governed for eight years by a guy named Jeb.  

This story revolves around a letter being circulated by said society that twists the shit out of Florida law to make schools think they’re under some obligation to let kids out of school whenever god tells them to.  Titled “Religious Observance Early Dismissal Request Form”, the letter misrepresents several laws in an effort to excuse Muslim kids from school at 12:30pm to pray during a special holiday… called Friday.

What are we even talking about?  How disruptive could it be for the three Muslim students in all of Florida to leave early on Friday?

And, as the group points out, education obviously isn’t as important as everyone makes it up to be or they couldn’t get away with the grammatically dubious moniker “Islamic Society of Tampa Bay Area”.

This whole thing is suspicious though. Muslim families in Florida?!?  There’s no normal Muslim family stubborn enough to settle in Florida.  These are obviously deep sleeper cells.

Tampa Islamic group wants kids released early once a week to pray: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/09/06/islamic-society-of-tampa-bay-area-wants-schools-to-let-muslim-students-leave-class-hours-early-every-week/

And from the “Equal Opportunity Inequality” file tonight, pastor Makeda Pennycooke is begging for forgiveness from Jesus and people who really exist this week after sending out a controversial email that encouraged her congregation to try to look less black.

As in more Barack, less Michelle?  Colored but not too colored?

No, Barack is still too black for her.  The email in question actually said that the church should work to put it’s best foot forward and make sure that the people greeting parishioners on Sunday morning should only be the best people, by which she meant the white people.  And don’t let the caucasian sounding name fool you, pastor Makeda Pennycooke is a sista.

I’d like to read a quote I made up, from the email:

“Our white workers will be at the front, and our workers of color will have a separate, but equally important job in the back of the house, much like a restaurant staff.”

Can’t imagine how that stirred up any trouble.

And while there is something of a silver lining in the realization that a black woman can hate the coloreds as well as any white man, I think we can all agree that it’s important that we continue to allow blacks in North Carolina to greet people outside of churches.  Otherwise they’ll have nothing at all to do on election day.

Black Pastor apologized for insisting that only white people should greet parishioners: http://www.christianpost.com/news/im-sorry-pastor-begs-diverse-congregations-forgiveness-for-only-white-people-email-on-sunday-104106/

And in “We’ll just start our own universe and it’ll be way better than yours” news tonight the ongoing attempt to create a fully realized parallel reality for Christian children is one step closer to fruition this week with the announcement of the new queer-hatin’ alternative to the Boy Scouts, Trail Life USA.

The Brokeback Mountaineer issue strikes again.

Joining Christian versions of theme parks, museums, music, science, television, wikipedia, schools and Floridian Courthouses, this latest attempt to inculcate children with a Truman Show like inability to recognize that gays don’t have hooves and bifurcated tails is, of course, a response to the Boy Scouts recent partial backpedaling of it’s long standing official policy of demonizing an innocent segment of society.

Nothing says “The Boy Scouts of America no longer officially hates gays enough” . . . than starting your own all-male tent pitching squad.  

Scheduled for official launch on precisely the day that the Boy Scouts start letting the homos in, Trail Life USA promises to be (quote) “stronger, safer and more principled in every way” and co-founder and head redneck John Stemberger went out of his way to use hairy testicled phrases like “masculine outdoor program” when describing the program and how totally heterosexual it will be.

I think as a country, we’re pumping out more than enough homophobic outdoorsmen, without any additional youth outreach programs.  There’s an entire homophobic outdoorsmen genre on television.  We have an entire swath of this country that is clever enough to see the amazing rhyme potential of hatin’ queers and lovin’ steers, but fails to see the irony of preferring livestock anus to human male anus.

New Alternative to Boy Scouts for queer-hatin’ rednecks: http://www.christianpost.com/news/christian-values-based-alternative-to-boy-scouts-launched-104009/

And finally tonight, in felonious coconut news, a delinquent drupe was detained by detectives in the Maldives last week under suspicions that the tropical fruit was possessed by an evil wizard who intended to use the dark coconut arts to influence an upcoming election.

I’m not sure how we could possibly mock religion here, but you were saying “evil coconut wizard” . . . go ahead.

The story begins, as magical coconut stories often do, when a concerned citizen noticed the suspicious brown orb outside a local school that was designated as an upcoming polling station.

Can a brown orb that is – in fact – a coconut, be suspicious in a country that has palm trees and coconuts everywhere?

Well, either it was noteworthy or this weird ass is just taken to closely examining the scattered fruits he comes across  One way of the other, he noticed that a Koranic verse was etched into it, meaning it could only be the work of a malicious sorcerer.

Or maybe one of the 100% of citizens that are Muslim, have Korans lying around, and have easy access to brown orbs.      

He contacted authorities who inexplicably did not tell him to fuck off and instead investigated the coconut and according to the terminology in every news report we could dig up, the coconut was… arrested.

Textbook profiling of an infidel spy.  Brown on the outside, white on the inside.

A local wizard was summoned by the police to determine the exact mystical properties of the suspect and to counteract its evil powers.  Because apparently Maldivians are idiots.  And before we get a bunch of emails about it, yes, Maldivian is the correct demonym.

And yes, “idiots” meaning “stupid people that believe in voodoo coconut election fraud” . . .   

And I can’t believe we didn’t mention this yet, but how does election fraud make any fucking difference in a theocracy?!?  

Fraudulent by definition.

Curse-carrying coconut arrested in the Maldives: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/09/06/a-coconut-is-messing-up-this-countrys-elections/

That’s gonna do it for headlines tonight, Heath, thanks again for joining me.

And when we come back, we’ll be doing that bit you were really looking forward to.

Song

 

For the sake of your survival, you should really read the bible,

It’s the only moral guide you’ll ever need;

Think you found a contradiction? You must suffer some affliction,

Cause there ain’t no fucking fiction there to read.

For the sake of your salvation, believe in Biblical creation,

Learn these Jewish incantations, learn them well.

Why go through life just guessin’, when the bible teaches lessons,

Like the fabrics you can dress in; to bypass hell.

Well… God wrote that he wrote it.  Inside that’s clearly noted.

Just ask yourself, why would he lie?

God said that he said it.  Don’t you ever forget it.

Can’t be refuted so don’t try.

For the sake of your society, you really should try piety,

It cloaks your improprieties, we swear.

We’ll accept your sinful vices, and my only real advice is,

If you put your life in Christ, you’re in the clear.

Don’t forget the basics, like the fact that god’s a racist,

And it’s okay if you’re a rapist, if you pay.

If you’ve committed genocide, it’s possibly justified,

If god hates the folks who died, it’s all okay.

The most immoral bastard, gets forgiven if he ask for,

A quick favor from his master in a jam.

What’s that? You’re no believer? Then gimme that book and leave, sir.

And if I seem a little eager; it’s cause I am.

After all…

God insists he insists it.  I’m not sure how you missed it.

Don’t see how that’s difficult to buy.

God revealed he revealed it, so I figured that sealed it.

Can’t be refuted so don’t try.

God claimed that he claimed it.  All this time he’s maintained it.

You keep debatin’, but I don’t know why.

God declared he declares it, and he swore that he swears it,

Can’t be refuted so don’t try.

 

Feedback

Now it’s time for the part of the show that comes next, listener feedback.  This is the part of the show where we hope other people will write funny shit that we’ll tangentially get credit for and act as though we have some kind of expertise or special knowledge that qualifies us to answer questions.

So our first email comes from Milton in New Jersey City and he asks:

When is it okay to tell Christians to go fuck themselves?

Any time after 3pm and all day Sunday

And to clarify, any time is OKAY.  I think he means, “When is it BEST to tell Christians to go fuck themselves?”

Right.  And I think it’s worth noting that Heath and I have pretty lax personal “Go fuck yourself” thresholds even for New Yorkers so I’m saying it’s okay any time you’re saying to yourself, “I’m done talking to this Christian and I have no interest in eventually having sex with them.”

Our next comment comes from the blog.  Ken loves the show but offered a not-exactly-correction to our story in episode 29 about the Salvation Army attending a South African Porn Convention to (quote) “be available”.

Ken points out that the Salvation Army often goes to these types of events to be available for potential victims of sex trafficking and abuse, which, we didn’t mention because we were busy making apartheid dick jokes.

And it’s probably a good thing that we didn’t know about that angle.  We clearly would have made sex slave rape jokes that were way worse than mere apartheid dick jokes.  

Also, I don’t recommend using our notoriously dick-joke-laden headlines segment as a single source news program.

Our next email comes to us all the way from wherever Brandon is from.  And Brandon writes us to ask what he can do about the Jehovah’s Witnesses that keep showing up at his door.

Hm… great question.  My first thought on this one requires a wheelbarrow, a holocaust cloak and Andre the Giant but he’s dead so that won’t work.

“Do I want some literature about Jesus?  No.  But do you want some weed?”

I find that wearing nothing but a necktie when you come to the door works with varying levels of success depending on what you tie it around.

Sometimes I like to lower a basket down from the second floor window, and yell “It puts the propaganda in the basket!!!”  Then they get the hose regardless.  

Okay, so here’s my serious answer.  I say you invite ‘em in, get ‘em a drink and let them give you the whole spiel for their little cult.  But the whole time have this episode playing on the stereo in the background.  Make sure it’s loud enough that they can hear it the whole time, but not loud enough to drown them out.

Until you reach this part.  And then you turn it up really loud so that they know that you’ve been fucking with them the whole time and delaying them from spreading their filthy virus to anyone else while you made them listen to the Bible song.  And if they’re still in the room they can hear me tell them to go fuck themselves while they’re gathering up all their Jesus stuff.

And that’s all the feedback you get.  If you want more, send us more questions.

You’ll find all the contact info on the contact page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.

Outro

Before we lock it up for the night I wanted to make a quick correction to last week’s show.  If you were looking for the interview I did on the A Matter of Doubt Podcast and were surprised to discover that I was actually ex-Jehovah’s Witness Kenny Wyland, that’s because I fucked up the episode number.  I said episode 54, but it was actually episode 56 that you wanted.  Not that episode 54 didn’t kick ass or anything, I just wasn’t on it.

http://www.amatterofdoubt.com/podcasts/ep-56-noah-lugeons-the-scathing-atheist/

And if you were looking for the live broadcast I did on CWebb’s Sunday School, well, sorry about that, too.  An hour after I published the episode I learned that the time had been pushed back from 5 to 4:30.  Sorry if you missed it live; it was a fun panel discussion on the biblical prophecies surrounding the destruction of Damascus.  It’s on CWebb’s archives now if you’d like to catch up.  You’ll find a link in the shownotes, of course.

http://cwebbssundayschool.com/bonus-the-end-is-near-or-is-it/

And because I’m apparently a total podcast whore, you’ll also be able to catch me on the extremely funny Imaginary Friend Show with Jake Farr-Wharton in the next few days.  I believe the episode will be up this weekend and as soon as I know the date, I’ll be posting it on our Facebook page, our blog and our Twitter feed, all of which you should probably follow just in case.

Can’t close the show without thanking Heath for everything he does to make this show have Heath in it.  I also need to thank Adam Reakes from the Herd Mentality podcast for providing this week’s embellished Farnsworth quote.  He’s a rising star in the podcast community and if you check his show out you’ll find out why.  Can’t recommend it enough if you haven’t heard him already.  And if you’re presently kicking yourself for that oversight, calm down, you’ll find a link to his show in the show notes for this episode.

http://www.herdmentalitypodcast.com/

I also need to thank Heath’s roommate for our kick ass new logo.  We’ll be setting up a Cafe Press site this week if you’re dying to get a customized Scathing Atheist T-Shirt, coffee mug, iPhone cover, whatever.  That stuff should be available no later than Sunday so there’s plenty of time to do all your Jesus-Day shopping right there.

And lastly, of course, I need to thank this week’s most shining examples of humanity, Kevin, Richard, Brian, Andrew and Magnus.  Kevin, who once defeated the devil himself in arm-wrestling and scrabble at the same time, with the same hand; Richard, a man whose bravery and intelligence redefines redefinition; Brian, who shall rescue humanity in it’s darkest hour atop his mighty steed, Poof the Fabulous Dragon; Andrew whose army of robot spiders and amazon love warriors are the envy of supervillains everywhere; and Magnus whose name is so fucking cool that I don’t have to add any imaginative descriptors to increase the perception of his awesomeness.

These five noble philanthropists have conquered the final task in their path to glorification by giving us money.  Not everyone has the gallantry, luminosity and sexual magnetism required to give us money, but if you think you’ve got what it takes, you’ll find the donate button on the right side of our homepage at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.

And if you’d like to help but you only love us as a friend, you can also show your appreciation and help us out a ton by swinging over to iTunes and leaving us a glowing review.  We really appreciate everybody who takes the time to stroke our ego and help our iTunes ranking.  You can also help us out by telling your friends about the show or sharing an episode on Facebook or Twitter or whatever.

Oh, and listen to us on Stitcher if you’re into that kind of thing.

If you have questions, comments or death threats, you’ll find all the contact info on the contact page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.  All the music used in this episode was written and performed by yours truly and yes, I did have my permission.

Episode 20: Partial Transcript

Sponsor:

Today’s episode of the Scathing Atheist is brought to you by Scott’s new brand of retroactive thaumaturgical fertilizer, Post-Mortem Miracle Gro.  Do you have a deceased pontiff a few miracles shy of canonization?  Well just dump this fertilizer on that fertilizer and watch the Miracles Grow.

Miracle Grow… making miracles out of bullshit since 1868

And now, the Scathing Atheist…

Intro:

It’s Thursday, it’s July 4th and I only like snakes and sparklers.

I’m your host Noah Lugeons and from seasonably patriotic New York, New York, this is the Scathing Atheist.

On this week’s episode:

  • We’ll learn why gay sex makes Jesus cry,

  • Buddhists will weigh in on all that blasphemous YOLO shit

  • And I’ll put the opening of the second chapter of the God Delusion to music

But first, the Diatribe.

Diatribe:

I had about half a dozen listeners email me the same article from the CNN Belief Blog this week.  The headline read “Christians are happier than atheists… on Twitter.”  Before I even clicked the hyperlink I was already salivating, ready to skewer the shit out of this pseudo-scientific nonsense.  So I read the article and I took a look at the research and I read their conclusions.

And unfortunately, as much as I’d love to unleash both barrels of my verbal-ought-six on this thing, it turns out that there’s just nothing to criticize.  The research was sound, the methodology was solid and the conclusions were perfectly defensible.  It turns out they’re right.  We’re a bunch of miserable, hateful, unhappy fucks.

I know this may come as a surprise to you, because you might often mistakenly think that you’re happy, but you can’t argue with science.  In fact, you might as well just stop arguing altogether and dive head first into a tub of Caramel-Sutra laced with Xanax, for you will never know joy.

So quick before you slit your wrists while sitting in a running car and drinking bleach, let me explain how the advanced new science of Twitter-ology works.  The first step is, of course, to draw a conclusion.  As you’ll see later, if you don’t start with a conclusion, the data’s gonna be too messy to interpret later.  So start off with a firm conclusion and hold on to it no matter what.

Step two is generating sample groups and remember, this is no time to worry about precision.  To study atheists and Christians, for example, all you need to do is randomly select five prominent atheists and five prominent theists and call all of their followers your two groups.  I know that not everybody who follows Dinesh D’Souza is a Christian and not everyone who follows Richard Dawkins is an atheist, but this is science… it doesn’t have to be exact.

So once you have your suspect samples, you analyze the words usage.  Whatever words are used more often are indicators of deep psychological truths about the people using them.  And we know this, because we just do.  It doesn’t matter that there’s no credible research or even logical reason to believe in the core assumption behind this research.  The people doing it wore lab coats or had pocket protectors or something and that makes what makes it science.

So with our rock solid assumption that people who say “happy” a lot are happy, people who say “family” a lot love their families and people who say “food” a lot are fat, we can go to work on our pseudo-data.  And when we do we discover our conclusion, which, you’ll recall, we decided on before we started the research.

In this instance, we’ve proven that atheists aren’t as happy as Christians and they don’t love their families as much.  Viola, conclusion reached, thesis proven, Nobel prize is in the mail.

Admittedly, some atheists have been a bit more critical about the research than I am.  They point out that there’s no reason to assume that people who follow prominent Christians and people who follow prominent atheists are using Twitter for the same purpose.  They point out that many atheists have multiple Twitter accounts and keep their atheism on one and their family stuff on the other.  They point out that even with a perfect sample the study would still be nonsense, as the average Christian is older than the average atheist, more likely to have children and more likely to come from a large family and any one of these covariances would render all the data worthless.  They point out that even if the data wasn’t useless, the conclusion still would be, considering that what they’ve proved is that a privileged majority is happier than the unprivileged minority.

But I think these critics are looking at it the wrong way.  So before you toss out this study just because it’s poorly constructed, obviously biased, impossible to blind, poorly conducted, unscientific and stupid, I should point out some other things this study finds.

Consider the fact that atheists were shown to be far more likely to use words like “reason”, “think”, “idea” and “knowledge”, so if we accept the flawed premise of this  flawed study it also proves that atheists are smarter than Christians.  In addition, it shows that atheists are more likely to use words like “dick”, “fuck” and “pussy”, so clearly we’re also getting laid more often than the Christians.

After all, if we accept the first conclusion and the others are reached through the exact same process, it’s hard to ignore… not so hard that the researchers didn’t manage to ignore it, but hard to ignore nonetheless.

And if you need any further proof that this is sound science, consider the alternative.  If this study isn’t legitimate scholarship, CNN just ran an article that used unproven science and half-ass conclusions to reinforce a hurtful stereotype that has no basis in fact and wouldn’t be newsworthy even if it did.  And we all know that could never happen.

Song

“The God Song”

 

Well Jesus is great, he’s my best friend.

He’s the kinda fella who would die for your sins.

He says women should obey their men,

And ownin’ slaves is fine every now and again.

 

Well Jesus is my buddy and I’m really glad.

He’s the best buddy that a guy ever had.

And if you think some stuff he said was bad,

At least it’s nothing when compared to Jesus’s dad:

 

“Now let me tell you about that fella…”

 

He’s a homicidal, genocidal, pestilential, filicidal,

Petty jealous racist full of rage and spite.

Wicked and misogynistic, he’s a sado-masochistic

Homophobe that massacred Amalekites.

And Midianites.

And Sodomites.

And Perizzites and Moabites and Philistines and Benjamites,

Syrians, Assyrians, Ethiopians and Amorites.

And Egyptians.

 

“But we’re not yet, because he’s also…”

 

A Maleficent, Malevolent, Omnipotent, Irrelevant,

Megalomaniacal vindictive beast.

He’s ruthless and he’s useless; he’s an evil, brutal, futile nuisance.

Turned a chick to salt just for looking east.

 

Heartless, inexorable, rancorous and horrible,

He’s got a torture chamber and a thirst for blood,

He’s a fictitious, injudicious, vile, vicious, angry bitch;

His temper’s like a two year old with global floods.

 

He’s capricious and malicious and flagitious and pernicious

And an ethnic-cleansing bully of the highest sort,

Injurious, Inglorious, Nefarious, Notorious,

And when he raped a married virgin? Paid no child support.

 

Headlines:

Joining me for headlines tonight is my consiglieri Heath Enwright.  Heath, are you ready to con-siggle?

I’d be happy to.

Well, not according to those Twitter-ologists, you aren’t, but I’ll overlook it.

In our lead story tonight, we’re one step closer to legalized goat-sex thanks to the Supreme Court’s recent ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act.

According to Rick Santorum, it’s not just one step closer… We’ve actually legalized the equivalent of goat sex.  

As all but one of our listeners know, the nation’s highest court recently struck down a 17 year old piece of bigoted legislation that denied federal benefits to same-sex spouses.

And just fucking barely.  The highest court in the land, which should be 9 of the most rational and intelligent people in the country, came as close as possible to a tie on this issue.  Which is almost as embarassing as the fact that gay marriage and gay rights in general are even an argument that’s still on the table.  

  • “If we could have made no decision on gay rights, we would have, but there’s fucking 9 of us, so we couldn’t tie.  And since Kennedy’s not a complete asshole, gays are people …  according to 55.6% of us here at the highest court.”

The reaction of America’s religious leaders was surprisingly muted and tolerant:

(SOUNDCLIP)

The ruling was even enough to prompt scientifically-anomalous unhappy Tweets from Christians, calling the decision a “Tragic Day for Marriage and Our Nation”, declaring that the “Supreme Court Overrules God” and that “Jesus Wept”.

But don’t worry, it’ll only be a few decades before the prominent Christian voices are taking credit for this.

We’re forgetting the real victim here . . . the good people over at Merriam-Webster, who will now have to work tirelessly around the clock to go through every dictionary, and cross out the part that says, ‘between a man and a woman’.

No, trust me, I’ve read the Tweets, Jesus is the real victim here.  Now, in honor of the DOMA ruling I put together my three favorite insane overreactions.  My number three was Rick Santorum and you already beat me to the punch on that one.  But I will say, in Rick’s defense, what is the difference between two consenting men or women entering into a legal bond of love and raping a donkey?

Mostly just the consent of the ass, I guess.

Number two was the verbal gymnastics of the guy with the most Christian name ever, Monsignor Charles Pope, who proposed the “freedom fry” option, suggesting that Christians just drop the word “marriage” altogether and switch to “Holy Matrimony”

Shit, yeah that would entirely disempower us f-word-lovers.  Is that really what he’s going for?

But the gold medal goes to the head of the Catholic Church’s matrimonial court, Archbishop Oscar Cruz, who answers the question “Can gay men get married?” with “To lesbians, sure.”

What is he, multiplying negative numbers in his weird little head?

Supreme Court Decision on DOMA and bigoted reactions from churches: http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/26/religious-reactions-to-scotus-decisions/ & http://wordnews.org/2013/06/26/reactions-from-christian-organizations-swift-to-supreme-courts-overturning-of-doma/

Catholic Priest: It’s okay for gay men to marry lesbians: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/428951/catholic-church-has-no-problem-with-marriage-between-gay-man-lesbian & Catholic Priest Suggests that in the wake of DOMA they should drop the word “marriage” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/28/marriage-holy-matrimony_n_3517019.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

And in a follow up to a story we talked about in episode 17, American Atheist president David Silverman unveiled America’s first monument to atheism in Fuckville, Florida last week.  And, in the humble, deferential manner we’ve come to expect from Bible Belt Christians, a number of Evangelicals showed up to help us dedicate what inaugural Farnsworth quoter and blogger Hemant Mehta has deemed a “Non”-ument.

I was gonna say Skepti-Couch . . . or Secu-Lounger . . .  or Seat of Doubt.

Protesters blasted Christian music and carried signs that read “Honk for Jesus”, “Preserve Florida’s Christian Culture” and “The South is a Christian Nation”.

Where the fuck do southern, conservative Christians get the balls to have pride as a group?  And how does Christianity get southern blacks on board so well?  Shouldn’t there be more awkward guilt around the South?  You don’t see conservative Germans flying Third Reich flags . . . 

And as if to lend validity to your point, according to our friends at Bar Room Atheist one of the signs actually read “Hook for Jeses”.

One lover of the lord tried to place a toilet seat on the bench during the ceremony, but not to be out-douched, prominent creationist and son of a felon Eric Hovind jumped on top of the monument to scream about how awesome Jesus was.  Hovind said that he was happy that the American Atheist had provided him a platform to preach from that was 48 inches high; ten inches short of being one inch tall for every felony conviction for which his father is concurrently serving time.

So the genius who – at one point – was carrying around a toilet seat in public . . .

I’m just guessing, but he probably wasn’t making an artistic philosophical statement relating to Marcel Duchamp, was he?

I really hope somebody out there gets that.

The big news out of the unveiling ceremony is that the show was so popular they’re taking it on the road.  Silverman announced that American Atheists are prepared to put up as many as 50 similar monuments all over the country in a social counter-offensive to the fundamentalist assholes who put Christian monuments on public property.

Excellent . . . Looking forward to The Seat of Doubt Tour <bunch of assholes>

Atheist Bench Unveiled in Starke, FL: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/atheists-unveil-monument-nonbelief-god-article-1.1386919 & http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/06/29/american-atheists-unveils-godless-monument-in-front-of-florida-courthouse-and-announces-many-more/

And in this week’s “How many felonies can the Catholics fit into one Scandal?” report, the Milwaukee Archdiocese was recently forced to release 6000 pages of Sexual abuse documents due to allegations of bankruptcy fraud stemming from some financial shenanigans allegedly intended to shield money from abuse victims.

Atheist Podcasters are already – as I speak – calling this the “Anal Leaks Scandal”.

Depends . . . but this could get messy.  

And as it happens, Cardinal Timothy Dolan appears to have his hands about elbow deep in the anal leakage, too, as included in the documents is a deposition where he suggests moving money to a “cemetery maintenance fund” to keep it shielded from future claims.

So if it wasn’t obvious to everyone already, the Catholic Church is officially – financially . . . and morally – bankrupt.    

  • “Ok, yes . . . we raped a bunch of kids, but if the courts make us pay for it, that would be prostitution, which is wrong.  We didn’t want to make whores out of these kids, just innocent rape victims.  Rape victims go to heaven.  Think about that trade.  Rape victim for several decades on earth, but then eternal bliss.  We’re doing favors, here.  We’re raping stairways to heaven for these kids.”

To Dolan’s credit, most of the documentation I’ve seen up to this point shows him impotently trying whatever he can to get these pedophiles the fuck out of the priesthood and while I’m not sure I’m in love with his proposed solution of paying them to leave and never turning them into the cops, he’s made to seem far less villainous by the merit of the people writing him back and saying, “No, pedophile or no, we need all the priests we can get.”

Milwaukee Archdiocese releases sexual abuse files: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/01/milwaukee-priest-sex-abuse-records_n_3527980.html

And in “We’re-worse-than-we-thought” news, a new international religion poll from German non-profit Bertelsmann Stiftung makes me want to swim with toasters.

So I take it we didn’t do that well?

The survey compared religious views of 13 nations and if you’re grading this thing fairly, the US lost to pretty much everyone on pretty much everything.

Among the study’s findings:

  • Americans lead all 13 nations in believing that (quote) “Only politicians who believe in god are suitable for public office”.

  • The very first amendment clearly says, “Don’t do that.”

  • Americans are the most willing to make sacrifices for their religion

  • It’s really just happiness and societal progress . . . so not THAT big a sacrifice.

  • And 50% of Americans find atheists (quote) “threatening”.

  • They fucking should.  We’re expediting their inevitable removal from the political decision-making process.        

The survey doesn’t offer any answers to the obvious follow up question: “Is it too late to un-secede from England?”

I’d be down for an Evolutionary War, where we get back with England for atheist reasons, by taking them back over.  And then give away Northern Ireland for spite.  Maybe drop the South on waivers.

I’d also like some answers on what, exactly, that 50% is afraid we vile secularists are going to do.  Are they afraid we’re gonna incur the wrath of their petty god?  Are they afraid we’re gonna make it legal to gay-marry a harem of chinchillas?  Or are they afraid we’re gonna prove they don’t get to go to eat sky-cake when they die?

Well I probably shouldn’t even be talking about this, but Phase 2 of our plot IS complete.  That’s all I’ll say, but they should certainly be threatened.

Or . . .  Is it that everyone on the wrong, backwards, misinformed side of every argument ever, is threatened by the truthier side?  The 50% number would be higher if more theists were smart enough to recognize their obsolescence.

New Survey: 50% of Americans find atheists “threatening”: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/06/26/new-survey-50-of-americans-find-atheism-threatening/

And from the “How-Much-Will-You-Give-Me-For-This-Golden-Rule?” file, Australian priest, Anglican opportunist and shining example of Christianity in practice Terry McAuliffe got a little unwanted press last week over an incident involving a lost bracelet and an asshole.

Please tell me this dude found a bracelet in his asshole.

…or in his gay lover’s asshole.

No, were that the case it would have been the lead story.

Oh, so instead we’re sticking it somewhere in the rear?

The story goes like this; he finds a bracelet valued at around $6,500.  He tracks down the owners and offers to sell it back to them for half the price.  But don’t worry, he wasn’t only trying to fuck them on the deal.  He also suggested that they continue to claim it as lost and recover the money by scamming their insurance company.

“Wait… you’re telling me I get the bracelet that demonstrably belongs to me and I get to pay you $3000 and all I have to do is commit felony insurance fraud?  What’s the catch?”

Yeah, if it sounds too good to be true…

The one good thing he does here is suggest screwing the insurance company, but that doesn’t exactly make him Robin Hood here.  He’s stealing from the rich, and stealing from the poor.

Once the story hit the news the good reverend had a quick change of heart and offered instead to return the bracelet at no cost, stop being an asshole and wonder why he hadn’t just raped some kids instead.

Anglican Priest finds bracelet, tries to sell it to owners: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/26/reverend-bracelet-terry-mcauliffe_n_3503644.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

And in “God-Hates-Your-Jiggly-Bits” news, the Christian Post brings us the story of two Christian ministries in Southern California who are willing to bravely venture deep into the heart of the satanic underworld of strip clubs and porn conventions to win souls back for Jesus.

Among those brainwashed into doing Christian charity work, I imagine a “missionary position” like that is highly prized, so they probably only have a couple of holes to fill at once.  

With names like (I shit you not) “JC’s girls” and “XXXChurch”, the ministries go to strip clubs armed with gift baskets that contain things like (I still shit you not) “Lotions, lip gloss and hot pink bibles” these groups send their crew to (again, I still shit you not), “strip clubs, brothels and between 8 and 11 porn conventions a year”

“If just one hooker find solace in her new pink bible, after getting sodomized for money, then we’ve done our job.  And if just one porn star uses her pink bible to block a money shot, we get some good free product placement.”

Ok let’s put 20 seconds on the clock – Church Porn Titles . . . Go!

Lord of the Thighs

Cream Piety  

How about Nympho Nuns Nine: The Naughty Nazarite?

Missionary Impossible

12 Apostles, One Cup

Numbers Colon 69

Can you reach the colon, in a 69?

Sheri Brown, lead coordinator of the San Diego Chapter of JC’s Girls told the Christian Post that god calls them to “reach out in love”, “form bonds with desperate women”, “offer them fulfillment” and “bring them to their knees for Jesus”; and then honestly expects us not to make fuck jokes about it.

Ok so what you’re saying is, “Last call for missionary fucking jokes.” . . .

“The Consu-Matrix” immaculate conception porn, starring Holey Trinity as the Virgin Mary. . .

It’s a threesome with Mary, Joseph, and God.

I love the concept of immaculate conception porn.

Yeah, kind of looks like masturbation… you can’t really tell.

Christian Outreach focused on Strip Clubs and Porn Conventions: http://www.christianpost.com/news/christians-outreach-into-strip-clubs-porn-conventions-to-share-love-of-jesus-98899/

And with those sexy images swimming through your head we’ll close out the headlines for the night.  Heath, thanks as always for joining me.

And when we come back, you’ll realize that we never really left.

Bible Story:

Run grab the young ‘uns, folks!  It’s time for Lucinda Lugeons’ Bible Stories for Kids!

——————-

Gather around boys and girls.  Today we’re gonna open the bible up to Genesis and talk about the story of Lot’s daughters.

Now once upon a time there was a man named Lot.  Lot had two daughters whose names weren’t important enough to record in the bible, because they were women.

Lot and his family grew up in a town called Sodom, a town where a lot of daddies loved a lot of other daddies in the butt.  God hates gay people so he really, really hates whole towns of gay people.  So one day he decided to destroy the town and all the people who lived in it.

But don’t worry, kids.  Lot’s daughters were safe.  God loved them more than the other people who lived there, so he sent two angels to warn them.  They wouldn’t have to die.  It would only be their sisters, all of their friends and all the little dogs and cats and hamsters that lived there that would perish in a fiery catastrophe.  And trust me, boys and girls, the hamsters that lived in Sodom were begging for death.

But when the two angels showed up to warn Lot and his family, all the villagers, young and old gathered around because they wanted to anally rape the angels.  But anally raping angels is very naughty so Lot said “No villagers!  Don’t rape the angels!  You can rape my daughters instead.”  And he threw his two virginal, innocent daughters to a mob of diseased, rape-starved perverts.

But luckily for Lot’s daughters, the villagers really wanted to rape the angels instead, so the angels struck them blind.

“Hooray!”

Lot and his family had to move very quickly because death and torment was about to befall everyone they’d ever known.  So mommy, daddy and their two daughters ran away.  But mommy looked back at the town, so god killed her by turning her into salt.  Because if you look in the wrong direction, sometimes god kills you.

So with their mommy dead and all of their friends and pets burned alive, they hid in a cave and slept on rocks with nobody to keep them company but their drunken daddy.  And what’s even worse, they had nobody to have sex with except their daddy.  Of course, daddy wouldn’t want to have sex with them because daddy’s having sex with their daughters is naughty, so they got daddy really drunk and they force-fucked him several times.

They both got pregnant with inbred rape-children who they loved very much and the few people who lived through the story lived happily ever after.

The End.

Skit:

Henchman: “Heath, Noah… SCOTUS has overturned DOMA.”

(Sinister Laughs)

It’s all proceeding exactly according to plan.

Gather the others.  We must meet tonight.

(Scene Switch Sound Effect)

I hereby call this meeting of the League of….  

Um… Doctor Myers, Mister Dillahunty… The buffet is supposed to be for after the…

Whatever, I now call… you’re really gonna just take all the baby-bacon?  The whole platter.  No… that’s fine.  Um… yeah.  That’s fine.

Like I was saying, I hereby call this meeting of the League of Sinister Secularists to Order.  The honorless Noah Lugeons presiding.

Thank you, Heath.  Now obviously we all know there’s big news this week, but first things first.  Heath, can you read us the minutes of the last meeting?

We all started off pledging allegiance to Darwin, we hated America for a little while, Greta gave us an update about her cats, Doctor Myers and Mister Dillahunty ate all the baby-bacon before I got to the buffet, and we decided to go with the bench instead of the Trojan-Horse Satan Sculpture I submitted.

Thank you, Heath.  Now if there’s no new business, I’d like to move on to the… Um, Hemant, can you practice your sinister finger steepling some other time?  This is important.  Thank you.  And um… Tom, Cecil… We’re all still really impressed that you can both do that with your testicles, but if you don’t mind, we’re trying to have a meeting here.

Now, as you all know, we’ve received word that the Supreme Court has struck down DOMA, leaving marriage completely defenseless.

(Hooray!)

Yes, we should all be proud of the job we’ve done, but this is no time to rest on our laurels.  The family isn’t destroyed yet.

You can’t even legally marry a sheep yet.

That’s right!  Polygamy, bestiality, child-sacrifice; none of that is legal yet.  And nevermind gay adoption… why aren’t those kids being aborted in the first place?

Or made into bacon?  Or both?  Fetus bacon is like the pre-veal filet mignon of atheist cuisine.  In French, ‘mignon’ means cute, so this makes sense.  If babies are cute, then fetuses are fucking adorable.  And small strips of that tender, undifferentiated fetus meat, slowly smoked, and then fried in its own almost babyfat . . . fucking delicious.      

Exactly.  We’ve won an important battle, but we can’t lose sight of the war.  Heath, what are we doing to further cement the destruction of traditional American values?

We’re drafting legislation now that would make happiness illegal in the month of December.  We’ve got some of our top agents planting more apocryphal evolution fossils.  And we’re still looking into that end-of-the-world-building from Ghostbusters, see if that’s for real, but it’s not looking good..

That’s not enough!  Is it still legal to be heterosexual!?  Why haven’t we fixed that yet?  Is it still legal to love your neighbor and be moral?  We’ve been fighting against that for centuries to no avail.

I think it’s time to enact phase 3 of the plan.

Is that the one where we cease human births and turn to cloning just to piss god off?

No… that’s phase 6.

Oh, right.  Three is the one where we kidnap Anna Kendrick and chain her up in your basement.

No, that’s phase 13 and that one was tentative.  Phase three is the part where we make Christians get UPC symbols tattooed on their wrists and foreheads.  I tell you, I’m starting to think nobody’s reading my memos but Glenn Beck.  And how the hell did he get a hold of those anyway?

Yeah, we’re still looking into that.

Hemant, the steepling.  Don’t get me wrong folks; I don’t mean to downplay the significance of this ruling, but as long as happiness, democracy and virgins are still out there, we can’t afford time to celebrate.  Remember, we can’t take away their ignorance, but we can damn sure take away their bliss!

Outro:

Before we cash in our chips tonight, we need to take a few seconds to recognize this week’s most exceptional mammals; Lindsay, April, Jason, Douglas and  Geoff spelled the cool way.  The quintessence of non-quiescent quercine qualities, this quick-witted quintet quietly quelled the quarrelsome quandary about quartering our quirky, quodlibetical quest by quantifying their appreciation and giving us money.

If you, too, would like to be the subject of some archaic alliteration and earnest appreciation, you can help keep this whole experiment going by clicking on the donate button on the right side of our homepage at Scathing Atheist (dot) com and giving til it hurts.  And then continuing to give because you can take it.

All jokes aside, in all seriousness, we really do want your money.  But if we can’t talk you out of your hard earned dollars, you can always help us out by leaving us a glowing review on iTunes because that’s free.

That’s all we’ve got for you this week but if you want more, there’s more.  Frank and Dan at Thank God I’m Atheist invited me over to defend the utility of acerbic atheism the other day.  It was a really good discussion and you can find it on episode 85 of their show, which will be linked on the shownotes for this episode.

TGIA Archive: http://www.thankgodimatheist.com/podcast/archives.php

I also need to thank Heath once more for all he does to make this thing possible, and of course, my lovely wife Lucinda for providing the bible story this week and, of course, for performing adult services for me for 17 years and counting.  I also want to offer a concurrent thanks and apology to my muse Richard Dawkins, whose voluminous vocabulary acted as the inspiration for the song this week, as anyone who’s read the God Delusion probably already figured out.

I should also point out that I’m in a constant state of scrambling for Farnsworth quotes so if you have a blog, a podcast, a facebook page or even a consistently interesting Twitter feed, I’d be happy to throw you a plug in exchange for a 5 second audio clip of you quoting the 22nd century’s most stylish professor.

And finally tonight, I want to thank you, dear listener, for giving us 30 minutes of your life.  We’ll be hard at work trying to earn 30 more minutes next week but until then, you can also check out our erratically published blog and get occasional nuggets of Scatheism by following us on the Twitter, liking us on the Facebook and subscribing to us on the YouTube.

If you have question, comments or death threats, you’ll find all the contact info on the contact page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.  All the music used in this episode was written and performed by yours truly and yes, I did have my permission.

Episode 18 – Partial Transcript

by Noah Lugeons and Heath Enwright

Sponsor:

Today’s episode of the Scathing Atheist is brought to you by Sony’s new Pray Station Portable Pocket Placebo: When you need to credit random events to a nonexistent force and a sugar pill isn’t enough, reach for the Sony Pray Station.

PSPPP – Because Sony wouldn’t sue God, would they?

And now, the Scathing Atheist:

Intro:

It’s Thursday, it’s June 20th and we’re still waiting on that God fossil.

I’m your host Noah Lugeons and from the perpetual parade that is New York, New York, this is the Scathing Atheist.

On this week’s episode,

  • It turns out they did make a good Superman movie… in 1980,

  • The Pope will continue to suck at the infallibility thing,

  • And Dan from Thank God I’m Atheist will join us for a little “Faith No Mormon”

But first, the Diatribe…

Diatribe:

Even in a city as diverse as New York, an atheist can still apparently be a rarity.  I learned this while fighting crime the other day when a co-worker approached me to ask about this podcast.  She’d heard from one of the other masked vigilantes that I was an outspoken atheist and she was curious.  She’s one of these people that was raised with religion, accepted it without any real devotion and never really bothered to question it.

To these folks, the idea of atheism is completely foreign.  God’s there because he was always there and why wouldn’t he be there?

She said she had a million questions, but since we were both on the clock, I asked her to narrow it down to one.  And from her bouquet of inquiries, she plucked one that perfectly encapsulated how little she understood about the atheist worldview.

“Don’t you want to live in a world where you’re part of something larger than yourself?”

Of course, three words in she’d already fucked up.  I don’t base my beliefs on the world I ‘want’ to live in, I base them in the world I do live in.  To suggest otherwise betrays not just a lack of understanding about atheism, but a lack of understanding about understanding. It isn’t a rejection of a world without an afterlife or a loving god or a divine plan.  Rather it’s a recognition of such a world.

But that’s not even the dumbest thing about this question.  Now I’ve heard it before so I didn’t give her the blank faced glacial blink that it deserves, but I couldn’t give her the answer that she deserved either.  I didn’t have enough time to explain the vastness and limitlessness of the universe I’m a part of.  Or to elaborate on the modest role I’m playing in the enormity of history.  Or to expound on the profundity of working my way through a world while authoring my own path.

From the perspective of a theist, the universe exists for them.  It was brought into being for them and the billions of light years that surround them is just a decoration.  What’s more, the grandest knowledge will never be known and the grandest knowledge that ever will be known is already known.  The purpose may be mysterious, but the goal is established.  The further the theistic mind wanders from the center of god’s love, the smaller and less significant the cosmos becomes.

But for a mind unleashed by the wonders of science, I know that from one perspective I’m an imperfection on a speck of dust and from another I’m as grand as a galaxy.  I know that every cell in my body is born of billions of years of evolution and that their key elements are older still, forged in the hearts of stars too massive to comprehend.

When I raise my eyes to the heavens I’m no less in wonder of them than a person who looks there to see god.  When I see a dim star nearly invisible amid the endless curtain of space I think of the journey those photons took along their epic voyage to our night sky  Thousands or millions of years ago they were ejected from the boiling surface of some nuclear furnace at the speed of light.

Did they pass by some distant world along the way?  Were they part of some beautiful alien sunrise before they got here?  Did they narrowly miss a spacecraft from some species thousands of technological years beyond our own?  Did they pass by some rogue planet drifting through the abyss of interstellar space?  What astonishing marvels might they have happened by on their million year pilgrimage to my eye?

But the wonders of science aren’t limited to the grandiose.  I can find that same awe when I look down at a community of ants or into a drop of water.  I find that wonder when I contemplate the mundane because I know that the mystery isn’t any less beautiful because it’s solved.  I look at the rainbow and I find that I admire it more because it was unweaved.  Magnets are more fun when you do know how the fuck they work.

She asked me if I wanted to be part of something larger and by that she meant some tiny little god that rules over some tiny little fraction of some tiny little world.  The product of tiny little minds from the distant past that had never tasted something as grand as a light year; a fiction conjured by an imagination that couldn’t begin to comprehend how big the cosmos truly was and how small they were in comparison.

But I didn’t have time to tell her all of this because somewhere out there, my arch-nemesis was plotting something counterintuitive and unnecessarily complicated so I had to settle for a short answer:

In the third episode of Cosmos there’s a phenomenal bit where Carl Sagan is answering questions for a bunch of kids at his old elementary school in Brooklyn.  One of the kids asks him if the sun is considered part of the Milky Way and he gets that smile that teachers get when they get to tell you something you’ll never forget.  He nods and he says, “You are considered part of the Milky Way.”

Headlines:

Joining me for headlines tonight is my fellow empiricist, Heath Enwright.  Heath, are you ready to continue being angrily correct?

Indeed I am.  Also, you haven’t had any introductory announcements, so . . .

Anchoring the headlines as always is my fellow disbeliever in the evidently non-existent, Noah Lugeons.  Noah, are you ready to begin your systematic weekly skewering of the bumbling, theist masses?  

There’s only one way to know for sure…

In our lead story tonight, Warner Brothers might have found a use for churches after all; captive-audience marketing.  With “Man of Steel”, the latest Zack Snyder computer generated, testosterone-vomit of a film hitting theaters this week, Warner Brothers wanted to make sure it had all the marketing angles covered, including sending “discussion guides”, “sermon notes” and a special “faith-friendly” version of the trailer to pastors all over the country.

Nobody can sell bad fiction like the Christian church.

Ironically, the “Superman” title should really belong to God’s eulogist, German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche.  Which makes one wonder whether Hasselhoff might have been a better casting move.  

I agree.  He would have made a way better Lois Lane than Amy Adams.  Now, if you’ve seen the movie, you’ll have noticed that you don’t really need a preacher to point out the heavy handed Jesus allegories in the movie and if you haven’t seen it, (spoiler alert) it sucks.

Wait, wasn’t Superman created by a couple of Jews?

Yeah, but to be fair, so was Jesus.

So how overboard did they go on the Jesus stuff?

Couple of examples:

  • Young Superman asks his stepdad “Did God do this to me?” and Jonathan Kent responds “You have another father and he sent you here for a reason.”

As shitty a director as Snyder is, he might have done that by accident.

  • When an image of Superman’s Krypton dad says, “You can save them all,” Superman stretches out in a crucifixion pose, despite the fact that he’s floating through a jagged hole in a spaceship at the time so it’s kind of a counter-intuitive arm position.

Yeah, but they could’ve been referring to any crucified savior.

  • Superman, at age 33, is wrestling with a moral dilemma in a church.  Behind him is a stained glass window with an image of Jesus wearing a red cape.  The scene climaxes with the priest explaining that sometimes you just have to take a (quote) “leap of faith”.

I don’t know, that’s a pretty tall building.

  • The bad guy’s hench-girl says, amid mid-battle banter, “There’s no point in fighting, evolution always wins.”

To be fair, I did learn two things from watching this movie.  It doesn’t matter if you can tell what’s going on, as long as you know it’s an action sequence and you should always take the 3D glasses off before facepalming.

Warner Bros. pushing “Super-Jesus” at the pulpit: http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/14/superman-coming-to-a-church-near-you/

Moving on to a news item that isn’t just me bitching about a crappy movie, Pope Fran-Sista-Please admitted last week that there was a (quote) “gay lobby” in the Vatican.  In the seemingly weekly ritual of the Vatican trying to somehow distance itself from the Pope’s declarations, the Pope-wranglers have this time opted for the “That shit never happened because you don’t have it on tape” defense.

Well I’m pretty sure gays don’t show up on video or in mirrors, so . . .  

To be fair, this report comes from a private meeting between the Pope and a group of Latin American Catholic leaders so nobody at the meeting was trustworthy, but rumors of an increasingly powerful gay-lobby within the Vatican have been gaining legitimacy ever since the Vatileaks scandal.

The gay-lobby, also known as the Fudge PAC, has indeed come from behind, and has now managed to widen and deepen their impact on those assholes in Washington.  I guess they’re tearing it up inside the Vatican now too.  

It would also explain who was hiring all those male prostitutes.  This would represent the first official confirmation of such a lobby, except that it isn’t official and it isn’t confirmed.

Seriously?!  The reports that some Catholics might be gay is being called “unconfirmed” ?

“I can’t say for sure, so let’s not get cocky and call this ‘confirmed’, but is that a priest’s dick in my son’s ass?  And now out of it . . . And now in it again.”

“I could swear that’s a . . . Take a look at the this angle here . . . Is it safe to say that my son was ‘unofficially’ gay raped by that priest who had his penis out in the video?”

What?!  Gays?!  Here!?  Wearing these clothes?

Just because of all that holy seed on the walls?

And I love that they justify their paranoia by noting that Cardinals and Bishops engaged in gay relationships would be vulnerable to blackmail.  Well, yeah, but not if you stopped being a bunch of queer-hatin’ rednecks about this shit.  See how that works?  If you stopped being bigots, they wouldn’t be afraid of your bigotry, right?

Pope Francis admits to “gay lobby” in the Vatican: http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/11/pope-francis-gay-lobby-exists-inside-vatican/

And in other “It’s a gay! Kill it!” news, Danielle Powell, a lesbian student at Grace University in Nebraska was recently expelled for being a lesbian student at Grace University.  Citing the general ickiness of gays, the Christian college gave her the boot only a few months before graduation.

Lesbians aren’t gay in the evil sense of the word.  I thought everyone had agreed to a perfectly legitimate double standard on this.  Gay bad, lesbian good.    

The bible says nothing at all about women lying with women… I think it’s okay for women to masturbate as well, as long as they don’t squirt.  But as much as the Omaha school hates gay people, they don’t seem to hate gay people’s money, as Powell received a $6000 bill from the school for matriculation.  What’s worse is that it wasn’t tuition she owed them for the semester or anything.  This was for reimbursement of federal loans that she’d only lost eligibility for because the school kicked her out.

And Grace University receives federal funding, yet somehow doesn’t have to follow federal anti-discrimination laws.  

Yeah, according to the Department of Education, schools “controlled by religious organizations are exempt from some federal requirements that might conflict with the organizations’ religious tenets.”

So the spirit of the law is:

You can’t hate the homos… unless you cite your sources.  “It’s not that I hate fags, as you can see here in this bronze age goat-herder’s manual, the omnipotent universe creator hates fags.”

It’s worth pointing out that in addition to their “no being in love with an unapproved gender” rules, this school also has rules against students having premarital sex, kissing on campus or even, prolonged hugging.  Yes.  This school has a policy about the acceptable duration of hugging.

Sounds like they’re pretty tight-assed . . . rosary anal beads might help.

Yeah, but then you’ll never get rid of the gays.

Lesbian expelled from Christian college for being a lesbian; charged tuition anyway: http://news.yahoo.com/christian-college-expels-lesbian-charges-tuition-233514855.html

And in “Uh, Uh, Uh, You Didn’t Say ‘Jesus Says’” news, 64 year old Margaret Doughty, a UK citizen who has spent more than 30 years living in the US was recently denied citizenship based on the non-religiousness of her morals.

“You can’t REASON OUT your belief system.  If you do that, new information could change your opinion.  All of a sudden we’re talking about open, rational discourse.  This isn’t some sort of parliamentary democracy, you limey logic snob.”

Exactly.  What’s worse is that this is really just a punishment for being honest on the paperwork.  Among the questions she was asked was one of her willingness to take up arms in the defense of the country.  We’re talking about a 64 year old woman so she could have just said, “Sure, what the hell”.  But instead she opted for full disclosure.

Her answer read, in part, “Since my youth I have had a firm, fixed and sincere objection to the participation in war.”  Now, this is a perfectly acceptable answer as long as you finish with, “Because it would make the baby Jesus cry.”  But you’re not allowed to just find killing people in the name or regional conflict wrong; it has to be against your religion.

“It’s okay to have a fancy watch that works, but only show it to Christians twice a day.  Don’t be an asshole.”

So based on her honesty and her unwillingness to pretend to be religious for the purposes of dodging the granny-draft, she was ultimately denied her bid for citizenship.

This really pisses me off.  If we don’t let the British immigrants in, who’s going to correctly pronounce all the words that Americans don’t want to correctly pronounce?

Woman being denied citizenship for having non-religious morals: http://dividedundergod.com/2013/06/14/woman-being-denied-citizenship-because-her-morality-doesnt-come-from-religion/

And in “magical hat” news this week, the Quebec Soccer Federation was recently suspended by the Canadian Soccer Association because apparently both of these groups exist.  The suspension was in response to a recent international uproar against Quebec for its failure to lift the long standing ban on wearing Turbans during matches.

In fairness, the “towel header” maneuver, does give an unfair advantage.  Plus, these teams don’t need to employ a towel boy.   

Those are both valid points, but instead, they cited safety concerns, which supporters of wearing magical hats point out is pretty silly, as soccer players all over the world wear turbans and there’s no record of turban-related-injuries.  Of course, the Quebecois can’t just come out and say, “No because fuck people in turbans” in so many words.

Right, because Quebecois can’t speak English.  

And according to people in France, they can’t speak French, either.  Now I know a lot of atheists are on the fence about stuff like this and I understand it, because there is an element of xenophobia to some of these burka-ban type moves.  But I for one support any move that denies some special privilege to religious people on the merit of what their imaginary friend demands.

At least the Jews are sensible enough to avoid similar yarmulke-related issues by entirely avoiding sports as a group.

Quebec bans soccer-players wearing turbans; idiots outraged: http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/on-faith/soccer-ban-on-sikh-turbans-leads-to-backlash-against-quebec/2013/06/14/63f30292-d523-11e2-b3a2-3bf5eb37b9d0_story.html?

And finally tonight, Rick Perry is a callous, misinformed, obtuse, asinine, fallacious, babbling,  unthinking, dogmatic, sectarian zealot.  And his mother dresses him funny.

And in breaking Rick Perry news, he thinks Texas needs to replicate the success of the TV ad that made New York City into the financial center it is today.

“Texas doesn’t suck because of all the shitty, racist, rednecks.  It’s because we never put out an  infocommercial.  Everyone loves infomercials.  Remember how well Ross Perot did?”

We first talked about Texas’s so called “Merry Christmas” bill back on episode 15.  This bill essentially acts as an impediment to secular challenges against unconstitutional religious displays in schools and on public property.  The bill sailed through the house and senate and could hardly land all the way on governor colostomy-hose’s desk before he signed it into law.

During the bill-signing extravaganza, in his tireless campaign to make George W. Bush look good in comparison, Perry was actually quoted as saying, “Freedom of religion isn’t freedom from religion,” to which secularists all over the country responded, “Yes, the fuck, it is.”

Yeah, freedom of religion is freedom to one religion.  Exactly.  You can’t go having no religions.  We’re not hearing any of that shit.  

The number of religions you are free to have shall be an integral number not equaling or exceeding 2, and not equal or less than 0.  

And three is right out!

Nice

Thanks, but this asshole makes it pretty easy.  He might as well have said, “Freedom of peaceable assembly don’t mean the cops have to peaceful.”

Right, “The first amendment isn’t a license to yell ‘fire’ in the middle of a burning building.”

Rick Perry signs “Merry Christmas” bill; says “Freedom of religion isn’t freedom from religion.” http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/06/15/gov-rick-perry-religious-freedom-does-not-mean-freedom-from-religion/

Well that does it for headlines tonight, Heath, thanks for joining me.

And when we come back, Dan from the Thank God I’m Atheist podcast will join us and teach me the secret Mormon handshake.

Outro:

Before we close things out for the night we need to take a few seconds to recognize the magnanimity, intelligence and pulchritude of this week’s best people Jason, Anne, Michael, Lindsay, Benjamin and Bryan.

Jason, the sharp-witted demolition expert with a heart of gold; Anne, the exotic and deadly master of disguise; Michael, the devastatingly brilliant computer genius with a black belt; Benjamin, whose sharp tongue and rugged good looks are urban legends in 14 countries; Bryan, whose indispensable wisdom is almost as valued as his katana skills and, of course, Lindsay, the fearless and brilliant leader of the team. Together, this duo of trios is known notoriously throughout the halls of villainy as the Fantastic Six, the Dirty Half-Dozen or sometimes the Hexa-Decimators.  They’ve all earned our admiration and gratitude by taking bold steps to keep the world safe from stupidity by giving us money.

Not everyone has the magnificence and biological acuity that it takes to give us money, but if you share Jason, Anne, Michael, Lindsay, Benjamin and Bryan’s altruistic commitment and intellectual refinement, you’ll find the donate button on the right side of the page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.

And if you’d like to help but you’re money is yours damn it, you can also help us a ton by swinging over to iTunes and leaving us a good review there.  Every review makes a big difference and it’s a great way that you can help us expand our audience.  It also takes, like, 9 seconds and it’s free.

I also need to re-thank Lindsay (yes, the fearless leader) for providing this week’s Farnsworth quote.  I’d also like to take this opportunity to apologize to 51% of the world’s population for it taking 18 episodes for us to have a woman’s voice doing the quote.  I also want to plug Lindsay’s very cool Facebook page, “Have You Hugged an Atheist Today?”, which you’ll find linked on the shownotes for this episode.  Her and her sister run it, they always manage to find some funny stuff and they get good discussions going on the big issues, so I strongly encourage you to check it out.

https://www.facebook.com/HaveYouHuggedAnAtheistToday

And hey, while you’re there, you might as well like the Scathing Atheist page as well.  And then go to Twitter and follow us there.  And then go to YouTube and subscribe to us there.  And then go to the blog and subscribe there.  And then go to Stitcher and listen to our archives there.

Lastly tonight, I want to thank Lucinda for the bible lesson, Heath for the color-commentary and, of course, Dan from the Thank God I’m Atheist podcast.  He and Frank have one of the best produced atheist podcasts out there.  They’re funny, well-informed and they provide a really important voice to the movement so I strongly suggest you give them a day in court as well.  Again, you’ll find a link on the show notes.  And while you’re there, you can hear an extended version of the interview on our “Extras” page, along with a bunch of other cool extra stuff.

Thank God I’m Atheist Website: http://www.thankgodimatheist.com/

Thank God I’m Atheist on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/thank-god-im-atheist-podcast/id481105796

Thank God I’m Atheist on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TGIAtheist

If you have questions, comments or death threats, you’ll find all the contact information on the “Contact” page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.  All the music used in this episode was written and performed by yours truly and yes, I did have my permission.

Religion, Atheism and False Equivalency

May 25, 2013 4 comments

by Noah Lugeons

I’m so tired of hearing it that I’m tired of saying that I’m tired of hearing it.

Christians and their cohorts are desperate to seize the middle in the culture wars and that’s damn hard to do when you’re still dragging your heels on subjects like birth control, gender equality and premarital sex.  The tenets of religion are so far behind the mainstream that the only hope they have of appealing to the masses is taking the focus off how medieval and fucked up their beliefs are.

You can see this in their constant attempts to publicly back-pedal everything their religion stands for.  They’ve already distanced themselves from God, from all the crappy stuff Jesus said, from the entire history of their religion’s expression and practice, from the current hierarchy that controls it, from almost every passage in the bible and from almost every major precept of their faith.  They try to water it down so much that god just means love and there’s no way to disagree with them.

And that public face is, of course, contradicted by almost everything that the majority of the faithful do and say, but it doesn’t matter.  It’s a PR campaign and if you’re trying to sell a product that everyone knows breaks immediately, the first words you’re going to attach to it our “long lasting”.  Think about how often you hear about Islam being a “religion of peace”, Judaism being “modern” or Christianity being a “religion of tolerance”.  The hope is that if you can put your slogan on the complete opposite side from the truth, people’s opinions will land somewhere in the middle.

Which brings us to the false equivalency.  Because the Christians have no good answer for “your religion is insane, unverifiable and it’s a tool to justify bigotry, sexism, child abuse and ignorance”, they have to deflect.  They can’t reasonably stand there and try to pretend that their religion isn’t insane, unverifiable, bigoted, sexist, abusive and ignorant, so instead they opt for the “Oh, yeah?” tactic and say, “Well, atheists are even worse!”

Think about how often you hear a Christian imply (or directly say) that atheism:

  • Takes just as much faith as religion
  • Is just as militant as religion
  • Is just as unverifiable as religion
  • Can be used to distort morality just like religion
  • Is just as “bad” as religion

This seems to be the Argument Du Jour with online apologists right now.  They say that “Dawkins is just as bad as…” and then they’ll insert the name of somebody who just said something about how gay people should be beaten to death or that women should learn to shut up and listen to their men… in the name of the son, the father and the holy ghost, amen.

And as Dawkins recently responded via Twitter;

Yes, I’m just as bad as the fundamentalists.  Now excuse me while I throw acid in a woman’s face and then behead someone with a machete for disagreeing with me.

Shall I bother to refute it further?  Should I bother to point out that nobody has ever been killed in the name of atheism? (And remember apologists, being killed by an atheist isn’t the same thing)  Should I bother to point out that there is no doctrine or authority that can alter morality within atheism?  Should I bother to point out that the most “militant” atheist you can find has never called for the killing of anyone anywhere?  Should I bother to point out that even the really sexist atheists never talk about covering women from head to toe and then stoning them to death?

The answer to all of these questions is, of course, no.  The very act of refuting this type of argument gives it more credit than it deserves.  I’m an atheist blogger, podcaster and from what I hear, I’m one of the most vicious atheists out there.  And the worst thing I’ve ever done to a Christian is made him cry because I used potty words and talked about Jesus’ naughty parts.  I’m an “atheist extremist” and the only weapon I own is a thesaurus.

Episode 12: Partial Transcript

by Noah Lugeons & Heath Enwright

(Note: Transcript may contain portions that were edited for time reasons)

Sponsor:

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Mention this ad and get a free polygamy upgrade: two man-wives for the price of one in the BOGO-Homo-Momo-Promo.

And now, the Scathing Atheist.

Intro:

It’s Thursday, It’s May 9th and somebody needs to tell people in Kentucky to stop wearing “I ‘heart’ KY” shirts

I’m your host Noah Lugeons and from voluptuous New York, New York, this is the Scathing Atheist.

On this week’s episode,

  • Christians will get upset about imaginary threats to their imaginary friend,

  • We’ll learn that in Turkey, you’re autistic,

  • And Darrel Ray will rejoin us to talk about pee-pees and coochies,

But first, the Diatribe.

Diatribe:

I started my post-secondary education at a small state college in rural Georgia.  And while you may not know me that well, even if this is your first time listening to the show you’ve probably already figured out that I’m not exactly right for a small state college in rural Georgia.  Let’s just say that my theological opinions ran counter to the prevailing ones.

You may have also picked up on the fact that I really don’t give two shits who I offend.

As you can imagine, this made for a combustible mix that didn’t take long to ignite.

I all but insured it with what I thought a harmless and excessively hilarious gag.  My dorm number was 174, but with a piece of posterboard and a sharpie, I cleverly changed it to 666.  Now, rural Georgia or no, I didn’t think this would actually piss anyone off.  Sure, they’re all Christian there, but this was college.  We were all a bunch of seditious rebels telling the status quo to go fuck itself, right?

Well, as it turns out, not so much.  Later that day I came back to a 174 where I’d left a 666 and below it there was a handwritten note.  I don’t recall every word of it, but I remember the opening line exactly:

“All the rest of us on this hall are Christian.”

The righteous vandal went on to explain that they didn’t want to see none of my satanic crap any-no-how and if I didn’t love Jesus I didn’t belong in that dorm hall, I didn’t belong in that college, I didn’t belong in that state and, come down to it, I didn’t belong in this country.  I was not welcome.

And, of course, I left a response.  Again, I don’t recall it verbatim, but it was a variation on the following:

“How feeble is your conviction if the very fact that someone doesn’t agree with you threatens it?”

I probably used a lot more words than that and I probably ensured that a few of them would force his ass to the dictionary, but that was the core of my rebuttal.  It’s been twenty years and I’m starting to think he’s not going to respond at all.

But that continues to be my strongest issue with religion as a whole.  If your idea has merit, it doesn’t need you there to defend it.  You can simply place it in the public arena and it can fend for itself.  Hell, how impressive would an omnipotent god be if he needed you to fight his battles for him?

If you want to see the deafening echo of this threat-response, just express your atheism on any social media venue and watch the wagons circle.  They’ll attack your intellect, your motivations, your morals, your conviction and occasionally your penis size (regardless of your gender).  They’ll gather together like white blood cells to defend their precious idea.

But meritorious ideas don’t need white blood cells.  If your ideas need to be reinforced once a week, they’re bullshit.  If you need to read the same book over and over again and hang out with people pre-screened to agree with you, you’re giving the bullshit armor.  If your ideas need to be propagated by an organized group that exists only to propagate your ideas they are bullshit.  And finally, if you’re threatened by people thinking you’re full of shit, it can only be because you’re full of shit.

Nobody ever had to show up at my door on a Saturday morning to convince me that A is equal to C if both are equal to B.  Nobody ever had to sneak a pamphlet into my Halloween candy to convince me that elephants are bigger than gerbils.  Nobody ever woke up early and dressed their kids up so that they could go somewhere and sing songs about cesium atoms having 55 protons.

Nobody ever passionately held a belief because it was true.  If it’s true, you don’t need passion.  Logic is more than enough of a scaffolding to hold up a genuine fact.  You only passion if logic isn’t enough.

Headlines:

Joining me for headlines tonight is the Pythias to my Damon, Heath Enwright.  Heath, are you ready to… be pithy, I guess?

Like Tina Fey if she were a dude?

She’s not a dude?  I feel so much less gay now…

In our lead story tonight, Christians across the internet are screaming themselves hoarse over an almost completely bullshit story about the Pentagon court-martialing people for being Christian.

Christianity pays for an entire staff of dudes who speak loudly about bullshit stories every week.  As a group, not exactly the pantheon of epistemological rigor.  

The tiny nugget of truth buried among this citadel of bullshit involves an April 23rd meeting between Mikey Weinstein, the head of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation and a group of pentagon officials including several generals and a chaplain.  And the very fact that the pentagon had the audacity to sit down with a person bearing legitimate complaints about clear violations of military prohibitions against religious proselytization was more than Christians could bear.

If they’re not careful, all this logic is gonna snowball out of control.  

Don’t worry, the paragons of journalistic integrity at Fox News were quick to put the brakes on it.  They noticed an article about this meeting and asked the pentagon if there were any plans to court-martial chaplains who proselytize.  The pentagon said no, but that wouldn’t piss of their viewers so they pretended the answer was yes.  And before long bloggers were leading off with headlines like “Pentagon Confirms They May Court-Martial Soldiers Who Hold Christian Faith”.

Yeah, court martialing 90% of the armed forces.  That shouldn’t fuck up military readiness, should it?  I mean, who’s gonna remotely fly all these drones?

They manage to inflate a low-level meeting to Weinstein now chairing a panel to reform court-martial procedures, they conclude that this will mean the end of military chaplains and that Obama’s Defense Department was (quote) “promising to bring criminal charges against any military personnel who express or share their faith.”

I’m beginning to think Obama made up all that stuff about being Christian and white, just to get elected.  

So yeah, scant amount of dubious evidence, passionately held conclusion despite overwhelming data to the contrary.  Been there, done that.

Pentagon warns Christian soldiers that proselytization will be met with court martial: http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2013/may/06/blog-posting/bloggers-say-pentagon-may-court-martial-christian-/ & http://nation.foxnews.com/religion/2013/05/03/rear-admiral-says-faith-under-attack-military & http://www.christiannewswire.com/news/2569472030.html

And in other Christians-Being-Furious-Over-Shit-That-Didn’t-Actually-Happen News, a high-school track team in Texas was disqualified from a 4 by 100 meter relay last weekend when a runner made a religious gesture at the end of the race.

Jews are gonna get offended by swastikas . . . Muslims are gonna get offended by Danish cartoons . . .  As an atheist, I’m supremely offended by any trinity-related gesture.  Don’t we get to pick an N-word too?  We’ve got unholy cows.

That sounds fair to me, but it really wouldn’t matter in this case because they weren’t actually disqualified because of a religious gesture, but rather because the judges deemed it “excessive celebration” and backed it up with clearly stated rules that specifically forbade “raising the hands or arms in celebration” after winning because, you know, it’s un-Jesus-y.

Do we really need to sit Christianity down for a quick seminar on what subset means?  Did religion really manage to brainwash away the Venn diagram concept?  That’s like a free built-in piece of brain functionality they’re throwing away.  And don’t they believe that somebody REALLY IMPORTANT designed all the brains?  

Well, I don’t know… if god made man in his own image then most of god is an idiot.  But this is how desperate Christians are to maintain their “help, help, I’m being oppressed” narrative.

Supreme omnipotent power is a mandate from the masses.

Excellent supplementary reference.  So here we’ve got a high school kid who gets disqualified from a track meet and it’s being reported on national news.  Nevermind that he was DQed for “excessive celebration and acting disrespectfully toward officials” and admits himself that there was no oppression of his faith here.

We can’t keep having laws that say “No doing stupid shit, unless you REALLY believe in it, and have a group of people with similar hats.”

Track Team disqualified for making “Religious Gesture” (Officially for “excessive celebration”): http://www.christianpost.com/news/was-relay-team-disqualified-from-state-championships-for-religious-gesture-95251/

Our next story takes us to New York Cities parking lot, New Jersey, where three members of the Trenton Diocese have resigned amid allegations that they knowingly allowed a child-molester to accompany them on overnight youth retreats.

Father Michael Fugee was convicted of fondling a teenage boy in 2003, but the conviction was overturned on appeal despite the fact that he had previously confessed to investigators.  Rather than retry the case, the prosecutors struck a deal with the archdiocese of Newark that would allow Fugee to remain with the ministry provided that he didn’t work with children.

I’m worried we won’t get in a dick joke if we don’t take the opportunity here.  

This show does have a two dick-joke minimum…

So what do you suppose they had in their video library there?  Movies like A Few Good Boys

The Priests of the Southern Child?

Altar Boys on the Side

Rosemary’s Adolescent

The Best Little Rectory in Texas

Super 8… Year Olds

Defrock of Ages (8-12)

And for the Jewish clients maybe Who Fucked Roger’s Rabbi?

It’s worth noting that in 2009 the archdiocese assigned him to the Saint Michael’s Medical Center in Newark and eventually removed him amidst scandal when this unsettling history came to light, so basically they’ve been moving this child-molester from place to place and waiting for somebody to say, “Hey, isn’t that dude a child-molester?” and then moving him somewhere else.

Wonderful . . . they figured out bit torrent for pedophiles.

3 resign from NJ church in pedophile priest scandal: http://news.yahoo.com/3-resign-nj-church-priest-scandal-161033762.html

And in our next story, a Turkish taint-stain has proven that when it comes to autism, one can actually have one’s head further up one’s ass than the anti-vaxers. Fehmi Kaya, the head of the Health and Education Associations for Autistic Children in Adana, Turkey said in a recent interview that atheism is (quote) “a different form of autism”.

If you’re gonna compare atheism to a mental disorder, autism is possibly the most flattering choice.  Rain Man was an awesome dude.  Sometimes autism comes with some super powers.  

On the other hand, theism as a mental disorder, would be something more like addiction to delusional psychosis with an extra chromosome on top.

Arguing that autism is the result of a lack of development in the “faith” center of the brain, he explains that this is why autistic children lack empathy with others, just like we atheists.

Kind of like the way Martin Luther King had an underdeveloped bigotry center of his brain.

Turkish Head of Education Dept. says Atheism is a Form of Autism: http://www.examiner.com/article/all-autistic-kids-are-atheists-and-atheism-is-a-form-of-autism & http://www.timeturk.com/en/2013/04/22/all-autistic-kids-are-atheists.html

And finally tonight, from the “If-God-Existed-He-Wouldn’t-Make-It-So-Easy-On-Me” News, the priest who was in charge of the treatment center where they sent priests accused of inappropriate sexual conduct has resigned amid allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct.

You’ve gotta be a little suspicious of these corporate climber types.  “So I hear you need somebody to head up the new Rape Department.  Look no further.  I’m your guy.  I know rape backwards and forwards.  I know it inside out… coming and going.  I know it like the back of my fist.

What would that resume look like?

Now, in defense of Monsignor Edward J. Arsenault, former president and CEO of the Saint Luke Institute he was accused of more than just sexual impropriety.  He’s also being investigated for some shady financial practices so he’s really proving himself Catholic to the core.

Throw in some Nazi affiliation and you’ve got the holy trinity.

And, of course, to a Monsignor the term “inappropriate sexual conduct” is redundant.  So this could be an inappropriate, consensual relationship with his hand for all they care.  If he’s coming, it’s inappropriate.

What if God blows you in a dream? . . .  An Immaculate Erection scenario . . .

Or Ejaculate Conception…

Would that count as honorable discharge?

Priest who heads top clergy treatment center resigns amid allegations of impropriety: http://www.religionnews.com/2013/05/06/priest-who-heads-top-clergy-treatment-center-accused-of-impropriety/

Well, unfortunately we’ll have to leave you on that puzzler, as that’s all the time we’ve got for headlines tonight.  Heath, thanks once again for joining me tonight.

And when we return, you’ll witness the second coming of Darrel Ray.

Calendar:

It’s time for the atheist calendar portion of the show.  Back and well rested from a hiatus on last week’s episode, this is the part of the show we set aside to keep everyone up to speed on all the great atheist and secular events happening around country and around the world.

We’ve already talked them up a couple of times on the show, but a quick reminder that the weekend of May 17th has two big events; Imagine No Religion 3 in Kamloops, BC and the Women in Secularism Conference in Washington DC.  Details on the lineups are linked on the website.

Imagine No Religion 3: http://inr3.eventbrite.ca/

Women in Secularism Conference: http://www.womeninsecularism.org/

At the end of the month we’ve got the American Humanist Association Annual Conference in beautiful San Diego, California.  They’ll be honoring some of the very best in the Secular Humanist movement including 2013’s Humanist of the Year, Dan Savage.  Other honorees include Greta Christina, Katha Pollitt (I hope I’m pronouncing her name right…), Carl Coon and Richard Leakey.  Oh, and did I mention Richard Dawkins was gonna be there?  So yeah, if you’re in the same hemisphere as this thing (and by that, I mean Western or Northern), you should really try to make it.

American Humanist Association’s Annual Meeting: http://conference.americanhumanist.org/

The following weekend they’ll be doing something pretty similar on the other side of the Atlantic.  The British Humanist Association Annual Conference will be taking place in Leeds over the weekend of June 7th.  They’ll be honoring Terry Pratchett with the 2013 Award for Services to Humanism.  They’ve already got a pretty impressive list of confirmed speakers and they’re promising more to come.

British Humanist Association’s Annual Meeting: http://bhaconference.org.uk/

You’ll find more information, including links to the homepages for all these events under the “Show Notes” for this episode.  Remember, if you’re involved with an atheist, humanist, skeptical or secular event that could use a little free publicity, let me know.  I’d be happy to plug your event to thousands of people who probably live nowhere near it, many of whom will hear it in archives long after it’s over.  You’ll find all the contact info on the contact page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.

Outro:

Before we wrap things up for the night I wanted to make a quick correction about last week’s episode.  But unfortunately it looks like we didn’t fuck anything up last week so I won’t get to.  I promise to try less hard next time.

Normally I close the show out by thanking all the people who help make it go.  I usually thank all the people who send encouraging emails, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, subscribe to us on YouTube, rate us on iTunes and tell their friends about us.  Then I’ll thank people like Heath Enwright and Darrel Ray who joined me on the show and I’ll usually thank people like Bill and Suzy from the “Bar Room Atheist” podcast for providing the Farnsworth quote this week and for putting together a really fun and relaxed podcast which you’ll find linked on our shownotes.

Bar Room Atheists on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/bar-room-atheist

And I usually thank everybody who could have spent the last 30 minutes listening to any number of awesome things and chose to listen to this show instead.  And above all, I usually thank the world’s most astute, intelligent and discerning people, the one’s who donate money to our show.  People like Justin, this week’s most valuable human.

But I’m not going to do that tonight.  It’s not that all those aforementioned people don’t deserve thanks; they do, especially Justin because he gave us money, but I’ve got a really important thanks this week and I’m afraid it would have overshadow all those other ones.  I want to thank one of the most dedicated, influential and admirable people in the modern secular movement.  Eugenie Scott, long time director of the National Center for Science Education and valiant warrior against creationism and science denialism recently announced her retirement.

So I want to say to Eugenie Scott that we in the secular community cannot thank you enough for all the hard work you’ve done in defense of science and rationality.  After a long and successful career taking on all comers, you’ve earned the right to retire in peace, knowing that you’ve made a substantive difference and that you’ve inspired an army of freethinkers to follow in your footsteps even if none of them will ever quite fill your shoes.  So from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

That does it for tonight, but we’ll be back in 168 hours with the “Out of Egypt” Edition where Lucinda and Heath will join me to pour over 40 more chapters of immoral bullshit in the “Holy Babble”.  But if you can’t wait that long for more us, fear not.  Even in two parts I didn’t have quite enough room for all the good stuff from that Darrel Ray interview so I added a quick bonus question and answer to the “Extras” page on the website.  While you’re there, be sure to check out our erratically published blog and if you want to help me buy a new alternator and a car to put it in, click on the donate button on the right side of the page.

If you have comments, questions or death threats, you’ll find all the contact information on the “contact” page at Scathing Atheist (dot) com.  All the music used in this episode was written and performed by yours truly and yes, I did have my permission.