Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Liars for Jesus?

Sinbad at the blog Someone Say Grace commented on my post on belief and evidence.

In doing so, the question came up as to whether I would categorize Johnson as a member of the "liars for Jesus" crowd. These are people who have no respect for the truth, who will readily assert propositions that they must know to be false, and think that their religion justifies their actions.

This was not my intention.

I do know that Johnson was intellectually reckless in his writing. He reported conclusions that even a slight bit of effort would have shown to be false.

Desire utilitarianism says that an individual acts to fulfill his desires (given his beliefs). We can tell that Johnson had no desire for truth, because a person who had a desire for truth would have checked to see if the claims he was making were true. He did not do so. Thus, we can conclude no particular love for truth.

We also know that his writing the article itself was an act that aimed at fulfilling Johnson's desires, given his beliefs. If there was no love of truth involved, then what desires motivated him to write the article?

I do not need to know the answer to that question to know that, whatever Johnson's objectives were, he was willing to promulgate fictions to achieve that objective.

The intellectual recklessness of his article shows that.

While I am at it, I also want to agree with another of Sinbad's statements. The problem here is a lack of respect for the truth. That is all we need to know to condemn Johnson's intellectual recklessness.


G-man said...

This is off-topic, but since you mentioned my blog before, I thought you might be interested in reading my first blog post that actually presents a brief moral analysis. It may be too long or irrelevant for you to do anything more than skim, but this is just a heads-up.

PS, I've been told that I have a gift at explaining complicated topics very well, especially through analogies. I'd be glad to offer ideas for your intelligent design vs science project.

Alonzo Fyfe said...


You are too late.

Been there, done that, already.

Furthermore, you may want to note the last entry (so far) in my Intelligent Design project.

G-man said...

I noted that entry just after leaving a comment here. I am honored - floored, actually - that you'd use my idea in that way.

Congratulations on the nominations for your blog, by the way. I'm over a page behind in staying current on those essays, unfortunately, and I'm glad I only have to read, rather than write, them.