Orac paused, his lights blinking, patterns ever changing. It was almost as though he were thinking, if such a thing were possible by a computer. Then he went on, "Of course, as much as I've defended Dawkins before against similarly spurious uses of the Hitler analogy, now that I think of it, I have caught him before making arguments based on a dubious understanding of history."
"Not everyone would agree with you on that last bit," said Vila, smiling because he loved to see Orac get a comeuppance, and betting that Orac would be surprised that he knew of that little fisking.
"My basic point was correct," snapped Orac, his lights blinking red, "but I will concede that I may have overplayed my hand with respect to discussing Bomber Harris, who was a true ideologue. Certainly the Americans would have embraced the technology, even if Harris did not. [...]"
This is just a small part of a much longer post on a controversy raging among atheist bloggers at the moment, which itself is an interesting use/abuse of British history, as it revolves around calling anyone perceived to be "soft" on the intrusion of religion into science a "Neville Chamberlain atheist", i.e. an appeaser -- apparently a trend begun by Richard Dawkins. There's even a cute, ironic graphic to go with it (from here):
I don't think this is an argument I want to get into! Anyway, I think that's something of a concession from Orac on the Harris issue; and I do appreciate his extended Blake's 7 pastiche, as I'm currently working my way through the first season on DVD. And Vila is one of my favourite characters, so I'm honoured to see him take notice of my humble blog :)
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