Thursday, August 15, 2013

University Of Rochester Paper: Atheists Iz Smarterz! Yes We Kan Haz Schadenfreude! (Or Kan We Haz?)

This paper, based on dozens of studies conducted over almost a century, flatters me and people like me; therefore, I think its research and methodology are sound and its results reliable. And also because religion is stupid.

Actually I don't know what to think of this. I don't know what to think of sociological surveys like this. I meant it when I said I found the results flattering, and I meant it when I said religion is stupid. But I neglected to mention that I think studies like this are stupid, too. How do you measure such things? How do you even begin to remove observer bias and other forms of bias? In short, I wouldn't be surprised if very soon a similarly wide-ranging analysis appears which asserts the very opposite, that intelligence and the level of one's piety rise hand in hand. And then a battle between the supporters of the conflicting studies will emerge, a debate almost as pointless and embarrassing to watch as theology itself. I agree with this study's major conclusion; I don't trust the methods by which it was achieved. The headline I'm still waiting for is: Sociological Study Proves Conclusively That Sociological Studies Are Stupid And That Sociologists Are Well-Meaning But Very Dull-Witted. Academic Discipline To Be Discontinued

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