Saturday, January 06, 2007

Lies of Lying Liars and the Liars Who Tell Them

This time I am picking on a left wing free-will-less political twat fold for a change. Sam Harris had a conversation on the phone with this guy named John Gorenfeld at The conversation was taken out of context in such a way as to prompt Harris to send out the following message to his email news subscribers:

Dear Readers – Some of you may have noticed an article about me that is now running on The writer, John Gorenfeld, has taken a ninety minute telephone interview, along with selective passages from my books, and made of them a poisonous of mash of misquotation and paraphrasis for the purpose of portraying me as an evil lunatic. While some level of innocent distortion can be expected in print interviews, this case appears genuinely malicious. You can find Gorenfeld’s account of me here. Please feel free to post comments of you own to the site. If you want to alert the management at Alternet of your displeasure, the contact page can be found here. As you will see, Gorenfeld distorts my views on torture, spiritual experience, and the paranormal. For the record, I have summarized my views on these subjects on my website.

All the best, Sam

I read the article and it truly is a horribly irresponsible distortion. I signed into and wrote a response. Please follow suit if you are of like mind.


Aaron said...

Okay good, it looks like everybody in the known universe agrees that this article is crap and has posted a reply to it. Ha! This reminds me of the garbage some of those freaks used to write on the the other message boards! How somebody can be so purposefully distorting and yet claim the moral highground is so bizarre to me that I seriously think they may need psychological evaluation!

upinVermont said...

Hey A.,

I read alot of the comments. I was going to add something but, like you, decided: what's the point? There are so many good rebuttals that one more turns the whole thing into alphabet soup.

It just makes me like Harris all the more.

I read a borrowed copy of "Xtian Nation", and now I wish I owned it. (I just ordered it from Amazon.)

Aaron, what do know about this editorial Gorenfeld refers to?

"While keeping the Christian Nation on notice that Harris remains disdainful of "wasting time" on Jesus, he now calls for something of an alliance with the Right against Muslim Arabs and the "head-in-the-sand liberals" he denounced in a recent editorial. "Nonbelievers like myself stand beside you, dumbstruck by the Muslim hordes who chant death to whole nations of the living," he writes.

Thus praising the hard Right for its "moral clarity" in the War on Terror, Harris reserves much of his wrath for nonfundamentalist Christians, whom he considers enablers of a virgin-birth sham."

Aaron said...

I think the problem we see with people who don't like what Sam has to say is that they can't find anything to say of any substance as a retort. I've seen very little meaningful reaction. In fact, if you scour reviews you will find only theological arguments for why Sam is wrong. Dozens of Courtier's replies. It's like a bunch of alcoholics in denial that they have a problem.

The media also can't find any useful retorts to balance with. Their tactic is to say "he sounds just as dogmatic as the people he accuses of being dogmatic". In other words, well reasoned arguments based on evidence with no substantive counter argument is just- dogmatism.

Its the same exact thing as people who think that the theory of evolution is dogmatism. Fair and balanced!

upinVermont said...

Can you hunt down what editorial Gorenfeld was referring to?

Aaron said...

Gorenfeld was referring to a 90 minute personal phone conversation with Harris. Conveniently unavailable to everyone else.

upinVermont said...

Are you sure? Why would Gorenfeld call it an editorial if he was referring to his own interview. I think this must be something separate.