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Take a cruise with Dan Dennett, Susan Blackmore, Paul Kurtz, etc.


The Center for Inquiry, a leading skeptic society, is putting together a “dream cruise” December 10-17, 2005. Imagine with me putting a dozen extremely bright, ID-enthusiastic, street-witnessing Jesus-freak undergrads on this boat and letting them pass out tracts, ask tough questions during lectures, and engage in assorted mayhem. Ah, if only I had millions…. I guess I’ll just have to go by myself.

Of course, you wouldn't need your IDers to be Jesus freaks, right? The designer doesn't have to be the Judeo-Christian God? It might be better to put some pro-ID scientists on the ship. They wouldn't be as easy to mock, and they might be able to do more than parrot your arguments. Of course, Susan Blackmore has never doubted her existence (Dennett, either, in fact), and she's closer to your side than she is to Dennett's. She's certainl not a devout philosophical naturalist. Honestly, that would hardly be my dream cruise. Dennett might have interesting things to say about consciousness, but there are no biologists on the cruise. Why would it be a dream come true to hear philosphers and psychologists (or mathematicians, for that matter) with no real training in biology talk about biology? It wouldn't be. Especially if they're psychologists who've never really produced any positive work of their own, as is the case for all those anti-paranormal investigators (the same goes for mathematicians who misuse and misrepresent theorems, of course). Chris
Benjii, that cruise points out that even materialistic naturalists can have a good time and enjoy life. Let them have it. Moreover, life without God is not a problem, since all atheists I know live average lives without any problems. Still, it would be nice to spend time on a cruiser _and_ cause mayhem among them! Juha Leinivaara
As a christian, I must respect everybody and not judge. However, if people want to live a pointless life without God then that is their problem. I don't think I would like to do anything in a world full of emptiness and nihilism. Sorry, I just don't have enough faith! Benjii
Don't forget to sign up for the Center for Inquiry's Explorer Club which "is to provide for travel with like minded people, to broaden our community and foster friendships, and to provide a unique itinerary exclusive to the interests of skeptics and secular humanists." What's next, a dating site??? The cruise sounds like fun."Cruise to Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico" You get to discuss why all that natural beauty is just by chance. But then again, who is to judge beauty? I would go but, dang!, that is right around the time of my graduation from college and my move to seminary to start work on my Mdiv. (Not to be a minister, but for Doctoral work in New Testament). Oh well... sue
[From a Colleague --WmAD] Well, Daniel Dennett and Susan Blackmore both have serious problems establishing their own existence, so it is hard to see how they can handle "personal responsibility" and "ethical living." However, with the right guests (Barbara Forrest and Richard Dawkins for starters) I could see the whole cruise being televized as a fusion of "The Love Boat" and "The Adams Family." On the other hand, if something should go wrong, we are overdue for a remake of "Gilligan's island." Only I fear that with this group, it would likely turn into "The Lord of the Flies" in the end. William Dembski
Bill, People like Susan Blackmore and Paul Kurtz are (in my opinion from reading their work) second-rate intellectuals that would counter *tough* questions with *old* dodges (and then arrogantly smirk as if they were original [sic]). Dennett, on the other hand, would bring his own brand obfuscation to any argument...quickly putting any would-be may mayhem causers to sleep. However... Put those same theistic undergrad mayhem causers on a cruise with "The New York Times Staff" and not only would they get more of a reaction out of their tormentees they might also get their mayhem published! Skeptical_Dualist

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