Regarding the 6 Sep 08 podcast. You mentioned good atheist books in the last few minutes of the show
I'm a used book dealer, stuck in Tyler Tx. Most of my relevant books are on the wrong side.
But there was an oblique mention of "Innumeracy". I was able to bend over and pull that title out of my stack of recently added titles. How rare that I find a relevant book in a stack.
Sigh... I think hocking used copies of "Of Pandas And People" has managed to pay my rent for a month. Combined with the other creationists books and the fact that the ladies behind the counter at the Salvation Army store adore me make me a charlatan.
I have an inscirbed copy of "Freedom Under Siege"; I swear I try to be a good atheist.
/I think my conversion was Douglas Adams speech at Digital Biota II
//Delivered via pirated audiobook of Salmon of Doubt
Innumeracy isn't terribly atheistic, but it's damned good. It's one of the few that I would say should be read by just about everybody.
If you're interested in discussing this, or any other topics relating to the shows, there's a much more active forum at IronChariots.org
These message boards are hardly used at all and desperately need replacing.
Wildcardjack - John Allen Paulos is an atheist. He has a home page. He wrote the book Innumeracy. You're (jawdroppingly) right about the book "Innumeracy" by John Allen Paulos. It is harmonious with atheism. And John Allen Paulos' book entitled Irreligion: A Mathematician Explains Why the Arguments for God Just Don't Add Up.
Innumeracy - the author is trying to point out how the failure to understand chance phenomena, statistics, and probability leads to belief in nonsense. Sh*t happens. The author also wants people to understand that some statistics are meaningless.
That kind of ignorance lead to an increase in pseudoscience - Like "Of Pandas And People" But, actually the more subtle influence of this type of ignorance is more interesting than the obvious consequence of illiteracy or general cultural ignorance.
I don't have a problem with people who find it necessary to keep their non-belief to themselves. Especially anyone living in Tyler TX., but some people denounce those who do not hide the fact that they are non-believers. I don't know how they think this helps them.
For instance just the fact that so many people write to this message board and state that they have to hide the fact that they are atheists. And state what would happen if they didn't hide that fact. It let's a lot of people see what's going on. What's the problem?
When you realize that nothing has changed in this country concerning the attitudes toward non-believers you start to get the picture, and I think it's getting worse. Some "non-believer" groups have "church" in their title. Frankly, I think it's seriously apropos.
Atheist Alliance International has a lot of good information.