He's right if you use facts and science. Studies are so apparent, you must work ten times harder not to see the truth. Atheist, liberals are more intelligent. Atheist are more knowledgeable on religion THAN the religious. Kids brought up religious are more susceptible, gullible to fall for cons, believe the unbelievable. And moral? Not even close, kids and adults NOT religious are more moral. Point being, nonbelievers US population is over 20%, probably 50% if not closeted herd followers as you'll lose FACEBOOK friends? Woo. But PRISON POPULATION OF ATHEIST? zero point zero seven. Not 7 percent, 0.07% . Insight is about connecting the dots, and these are blatant TELLS, but truth hurts...

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That's a really good point. I don't deny that religions require implausible beliefs. Indeed, I think it's inherent in the idea of faith. To try and be a little more precise in what I mean, I'm saying that just because you decide to believe (or at least accept) something implausible or irrational does not suddenly preclude you from being intellectually honest. It's not a binary thing, in my estimation, where one misstep means you fall into the abyss of irrationalism and error.

I would argue that all human beings hold at least some implausible beliefs and ideas. But that at least with religion, the belief in the implausible is clearly marked and accepted as such. My 'denial' (if we want to use that language) is that this is intellectually dishonest. It doesn't mean you then go on to make all arguments based on faith.

When Monsignor Georges Lemaître, the Belgian Catholic priest and physicist who proposed the ideas of the big bang and the expanding universe published his theories, he did so as a physicist and as a Catholic priest, but he didn't resort to "because God did it" as a kind of deus ex machina. I really don't see a problem with this. We are complex beings, capable of containing apparent contradictions.

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He's essentially saying that if you're intellectual and honest, it's hard to be religious.

Perhaps it will help to point out that "intellectual and honest" (or "intelligent and honest") is not the same as "intellectually honest."

That it is hard to be religious yet intellectually honest follows from the thesis that religions necessarily include "implausible beliefs." (Is that what you deny?) Implausible beliefs are intended to be repugnant to the intellect.

[To take the most extreme example of an intellectual theist from those offered, Augustine was surely not intellectually honest (although very smart and personally honest).] He actually disparaged the intellect in favor of moral goodness.]

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"be religious" /= do "common religious practices"

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I think that for many of the "tech people" - and I consider myself as such - who give speeches in these events suggesting any kind of government action equals giving up on the idea. Politics is a huge sinkhole of ideas. The correctness of the idea doesn't matter anymore because no-one is going to spend time listening to your arguments. Your idea and the idea of building a wall at the border of your country are on equal footing. We see environmental activists spending decades trying convey to the public and the politicians simple ideas like "we should stop dumping plastic waste in the oceans" or "we should stop frying the planet" with little success.

What these speakers might think is "I have solved the technical parts of the problem. Now I can only hope that someone does the actual hard part and solves the political part, but, by god, that someone will not be me."

My favourite variation of the old adage "for every complicated problem there is a simple solution that is wrong" is: "for every complicated problem there is a simple solution that people refuse to accept."

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@Monsoonking -

It's pretty close to implying it though. He's essentially saying that if you're intellectual and honest, it's hard to be religious. Of course, this is nonsense, as (for example) the Catholic and Marxist literary theorist Terry Eagleton would be quick to point out, but the way I read it, that's what he's saying.

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TED seldom passes without a speaker bemoaning 'the water crisis 'But why , after decades of TED does, water conservation scarcely exists in meaningful praxis?

Big low tech questions count too- how can we celebrate high technology while letting the sun evaporate a ton of stored fresh water per capita a day ?

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The problems from "excessive" hygiene probably derive from the fairly specific issue of eliminating intestinal parasites. Getting rid of airborne germs is probably a pure win.

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What he actually said was that a strong self-identity as an honest intellectual often conflicts with common religious practices.

You may disagree with that sentiment, but I think you made up the "stupid" and "moron" stuff.

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I noticed them late - just 3 or 4 years ago.

LessWrong strikes me as a Eliezer Yudkowsky cult. That's not meant as disparagement of LW or EY, just a first impression from the whole "sequences" thing (which I haven't read; they and EY may in fact be wonderful).

EA is interesting and may be something I'll get into.

I'm in late middle age, very busy, and don't feel a lack of community. I had more interest when I was younger.

But in the last few days since I posted on this, I've realized that what's missing for me is eschatology - grand long term goals to give "meaning" and "purpose" and "direction" to life.

Tipler thinks there will be an *inevitable* Omega Point where intelligent life controls all matter in the universe and is able to perform an infinite number of computations in finite time, enabling the resurrection of the dead as ems. (In an infinite number of scenarios.)

I find his argument that all that is *fated* unconvincing. Worse, if you think it's fated, then there's no need to put effort into making it happen.

But as long as that outcome isn't ruled out by physics, it strikes me as an excellent long-term goal to work toward.

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I heard TED insides are cult-like nowadays. Would explain how they got overrun by the SJWs.

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Hope to hear from Robin on this. Here's four pieces of literature on market failures, regulation, and institutional design:

Outline of literature on New Institutional Economics-https://rei.revues.org/4144


Market and regulatory failures in energy efficiency-http://web.utk.edu/~isse200...

Failure of market failures-https://isites.harvard.edu/...

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Yeah, religious people are SO stupid. Augustine, Aquinas, MLK, Niebuhr, Bonhoeffer, Lewis, some of my friends and neighbors - all morons. Not at all like us smart enlightened people.

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Robin, can you give an example of an inefficiency highlighted by a TED speaker, the market failure explanation, and a standard institutional solution? Thank you.

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Recently gave a TEDx talk. My point is simple. Newton & an intelligent CVT can replace entire fossil fuel used by humans , with gravity power; but for infinite stupidity identified by Einstein.https://docs.google.com/pre...

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One of the more awkward things to me is the leader worship that I experience among conservative friends and acquaintances. It's most evident in their regard for military leaders, but manifests itself in other areas where decisiveness, heroic action, and honor are given a bit higher priority than the intellect.

TED is the more lefty urban secular version of leader worship. TED talks are often centered around thought leaders and political leaders finding and implementing solutions to the world's problems.

Emergent Order as the divine is not welcome in either of these two houses of worship.

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