Mailvox: applied reading

JB sends an update:

Perhaps you can recall the previous email I sent you requesting advice about staying in college or leaving? Just a brief update; I left the PhD program and got a regular job…best choice I’ve made so far. Thank you for your advice (and that of the Ilk). Also, after reading the blog for a while now, I’ve finally started contesting the atheists I know when the usual arguments pop up, (using your new slide show has been a huge boost to the discussion), and I can now see why the ilk are so entertained by the trolls who drop by the blog.

Welcome to the workforce! That’s a very smart move in this economy. It’s always good to see when the ongoing discourse here inspires people to step back, look at their situation, and actively think about what they’re doing. So much of life happens to people because they never stop to consider if the assumptions that put them on their present course still apply. Pursuing higher education was an excellent occupational choice 40 years ago, rather less so 20 years ago, and is arguably a terrible choice today thanks to the inexorable logic of supply and demand. Speaking of atheism, one result of the recent flood of the education bubble and the degree-selling it involved is that the irreligious are no longer much more highly educated than the norm; 21 percent of atheists have post-graduate degrees, which is a lower percentage than that of Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, Unitarians. And, since atheists are such a tiny fraction of the population, there are 16 times more Protestant Christians with post-graduate degrees than atheists.

One thing you are quickly forced to recognize when maintaining a blog like this is how most people think in a completely unoriginal manner. They simply repeat arguments that they heard and half-understood at some point in the past. I don’t post even a tenth of the critical emails I receive; if I did most readers would quite reasonably assume I was constructing really retarded strawmen in order to make myself look better. What the slideshow does very well is to not only show the atheist that his arguments are incorrect, but that they are not even his arguments. It can’t prove the existence of God or the truth of the Christian faith, of course, but it completely undercuts the atheist’s claim to any rational or intellectual superiority. That’s why none of the atheists who have attempted to belittle the slideshow have dared to do more than nibble about the edges; they know they can’t successfully argue the substance. Of course, in the event that any of that nibbling should turn out to be correct, I’ll simply utilize their criticism to update and improve it.