Thursday, October 1, 2009

Colbert -v- Dawkins: The Blind Leading the Blind Watchmaker

Dawkins completely evades the real questions (as usual) ... with his circular reasoning, assuming what he wants to prove ... same old stuff.

When asked "why there is beauty," Dawkins responds that, "we have brains that perceive beauty because we have evolved our brains to see beauty."

AAhhh, now I see. The problem is that he answered a question that he wasn't asked. Even if we agree with what he said (which I don't), he is only offering a (lame) explanation for our perceptions -- he is not even attempting to explain where the beauty we perceive came from in the first place.

Oh well, at least he seems to have a sense of humor. Enjoy ...

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Richard Dawkins
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  1. I don't think you should over analyze Dawkins's quote here; its done in an interview setting so it wasn't a very articulated statement.

    What dawkins means is that Beauty is a social construct; that beauty exists because we percieve certain things to be beautiful.

    Beauty has never been constant. What is considered beautiful changes from culture to culture and from generation to generation.

    I think your decision to analyze his syntax then use that to attack his arguments is a perfect example of a straw-man argument.

  2. Corolla...

    I don't think I "overanalyzed" Dawkins' quote. I said about 40 words about it -- and ended with an "Oh well..." Syntax? But since you brought it up ...

    What he, and you, fail to understand is that beauty is only a "social construct" on Dawkins' view of the world. But that is NOT the classic definition of beauty. If you don't trust me, trust Plato. The Greek philosophers recognized a relationship between beauty and mathematics that existed in nature (in the "golden ratio"). It is something that is built into the structure of the universe.

    We recognize beauty, we don't "construct" it.

    So, you can accept Dawkins' (one of the world's WORST philosophers in the opinion of actual philosophers) view of beauty. I don't. But even if you do, you still can't get around the fact that he didn't answer the question he was asked. Instead, he gave a circular argument ... which is an example of why real philosophers mock the guy.

    All that said, I kind of just shared the video because I thought the interview was funny, and planned to leave it at that.


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