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How influential are the new atheists?

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A source tells us that the reading lists of Foreign Policy mag’s annual Top 100 Global Thinkers, as printed, don’t feature the “new atheists.” No Dawkins, no Harris, one Robert Wright. Steve Pinker is #48 for “looking on the bright side” – arguing that violence has declined overtime, despite the past century. Even his most fawning reviewer had a hard time with that one.

In our experience, the new atheists tend to be favorites of people who market other people’s ideas rather than develop their own. Among marketers generally, marketing concepts rule: Once a guy gets tagged as Wow, Really Deep, even his drunken ravings are treated as insights.

Indeed, under the influence of such branding, hearers who need the opinion leaders’ approval cannot even recognize the ravings as nonsense, the way they would if boozy Uncle Pete had said them.

So how influential are they? Among a swathe of society that gets all opinion third hand, still considerably influential.

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5 Replies to “How influential are the new atheists?

  1. 1
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: My critical thinking 101, and my straightening out spin 101. Starters for getting worldviews straight, here. (Starters for getting origins science straight, here.)

    Hope these help. KF

  2. 2
    Bantay says:

    William Lane Craig has pretty much dismantled the so-called “new atheists”.

    Dawkins brought his own humiliation upon himself, and the rest of them have retreated to agnosticism….occasionally peeking out long enough to squeak out some shrill personal attack, before scurrying back to their closet of shadows. Basically, there is no more new atheism. There was nothing new about it anyway.

  3. 3

    Well shoot, I didn’t realize you were hanging out in the Caribbean — how great is that!

    On the other side of the planet from you I’ve got a brother who went off to Guam for a couple month stint and ended up staying more than 10 years!

  4. 4
    Mytheos says:

    They are very influential.
    I see their handiwork in the media all the time.

  5. 5
    MedsRex says:

    Hey Sam Harris has the number 12 kindle single (esssay length works). So obviously he’s a big fish. The single is called “lying”. According to the reviews by modern day thinkers like Neil Tyson De Sagan….oops Degrasse and Ricky Gervais, it’s revolutionary. It’s about how lying is….you know….is. . .like bad. . . and stuff.
    So. . .yeah.

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