Friday, July 09, 2010

The Daily Show brings the stupid

The Daily Show's guest tonight was Marilynne Robinson whose new book "Absence of Mind" apparently describes its own author.  Wow, was she inane.  She spoke for ten minutes and didn't utter one sentence that wasn't new-agey mumbo-jumbo.

Basically, she's a religious apologist who doesn't like those mean old atheists who dare to criticize the religious for making no sense, for trying to impose religious belief on scientific fact (see creationism), and who dare to speak out in favor of rationality.  She recites the old saw about how science and religion are equivalent and their "extremist" proponents are equally at fault.  It's crap and nothing we haven't heard before. 

Ms. Robinson, here's the deal:  religious leaders have pontificated on every subject for thousands of years and most of what they have to say is worthless superstition that just happens to confirm their prejudices.  We don't need a dialogue with them to know their position.  It's been made abundantly clear:  "Our 'faith' trumps empirical fact.  Where they conflict, faith wins out over reality."

The most disappointing part was Stewart's incomprehensible question/statement about how science is so much like faith.  He actually said that when scientists hypothesize or theorize, it's just faith on their part.  He specifically cited the existence of anti-matter as something scientists just have "faith" in, rather than having, you know, actual scientific evidence for its existence.

Easily one of the worst guests I've ever seen and one of the worst interviews I've seen Jon do.

But then, I'm one of those extremist atheist types who believe in science and empirical fact.


Anonymous said...

I agree. There are several guests that Stewart could have on that would do an excellent job of refuting her nonsense and school him on the subjects 'discussed'.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree. I was very disappointed with the interview. Then again, I've often noticed that Stewart, unlike Colbert, tip-toes around the issue of atheism, even when Christopher Hitchens is a guest. Stewart is usually an astute interviewer but when he brought up the "dark matter" analogy, he clearly showed his lack of understanding about how science operates. He did what any misinformed individual does in that situation - resorts to placing science and religion on an equal epistemological footing. And Marilynne Robinson was simply embarrassing.