Thursday, August 20, 2009

More stupid from an evangelical...

Lately there has appeared a new "examiner" on the site examiner.com. This site likes to think of itself as an outlet for citizen journalism. By all appearances it is owned by the Clarity Media Group from Denver Colorado. A part of the same company that owns a number of proper newspapers.

The CEO was/is a man named Michael Sherrod who was quoted and paraphrased as saying:

"We are not looking for people who are inwardly focused,” says Sherrod. Rather, he wants people who are experts in their field, whether that is real estate, restaurants, parenting, sports, technology, or business."

Which is nice. I guess.

But it makes it strange that they pay a bigot called the Knoxville Evangelical Examiner to write on theological issues. Particularly strange given his own biography:

Dan received his BA in religion and education at Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City, Tennessee. With more than 40 years of both personal and academic study in the Bible and related fields, Dan is uniquely qualified to provide intellectually challenging insight into all topics concerning religion and spirituality.

I mean, you can just about see the train wreck coming. The Knoxville Evangelical Examiner writes a whole page of useless tripe, aimed, ultimately at proving his point that Christianity is the only valid world religion. That is his prerogative, although it seems rather narrow minded of a journalist, private citizen or otherwise. Our interest in this piddle is confined to one small section of this page. To wit:


GOD’S WORD WAS NOT WRITTEN IN AN HISTORICAL VACUUM!

The Avesta-Yasna

The discerning reader will note "examiner" Daniel's placement of the Bhagavad Gita as one of the great and seminal texts of Buddhism. The same Daniel Hopkinson who is reputed, in his own biography, to be a graduate of Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City, Tennessee. The same Daniel Hopkinson who has "...more than 40 years of both personal and academic study in the Bible and related fields". The same Daniel Hopkinson who is "uniquely qualified to provide intellectually challenging insight into all topics concerning religion and spirituality."

The same Daniel Hopkinson who identifies the Bhagavad Gita, one of the great seminal world religious texts, A HINDU TEXT, identifies it as a great Buddhist text. Ooops.

Well, you might say, probably just an editing error, he obviously meant to include it in the section on Hinduism.

Let us just look a little further, for say, Danny's explanation:

A Buddhist: I am sorry for that, although that is not my opinion, but the information that the Bhagavad Gita was a Buddhist writing appears in many of the writings and sources online that I have encountered. When it appeared so many times in those other writings I was working through, I felt it necessary to include it in my reading and study as well. Thank you for clarifying this fact for us all. Wikipedia calls it “an important Sanskrit Hindu scripture”. If you feel that it does not do a descent job of giving an overview of the Buddhist, is it religion or philosophy, then why not consider writing a better overview for Wikipedia; they used to solicit clarifications and updates right on the site itself.

So, our uniquely qualified examiner, using internet sources misidentifies one of the world's greatest and most important religious texts? It seems Danny, besides being an ignorant dolt using this site to promote his agenda that Christianity is the only truly relevant religion, is not the brightest light ever to graduate from Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City, Tennessee. He also does not know anything about proper research techniques. Citizen Journalism takes quite a hit from Mr. Hopkinson's inept scribbling.

As for the rest of that mess of a page on world religions? It reveals his true intentions:


These other sacred writings have historically been interpreted figuratively-symbolically-allegorically as opposed to literally and this practice was adopted by the rabbis of the Mishraic Period and the early church fathers, and became the norm in the Catholic Church.

Danny also likes to quote annonymous "scholars", and believes as the excerpt above demonstrates that the Catholic Church is complete bollox as far as its interpretation of the Bible goes. In later posts he makes clear his hatred of Freemasonry too, taking on Albert Pike's "Morals and Dogma". However, given the complexity and stream of
consciousness nature of the writing in Pike's book, and his freedom in borrowing from an imense range of sources dealing with myriad religions, including Hinduism and Buddhism, it is obvious that the task is way over Danny's head.

So, like any bigot determined to prove his point, he deletes posts which prove him to be incorrect in his interpretations of Pike's work and its meaning.

He seemingly used his attack on the Masons to increase the number of hits to his page as they reported his numerous errors, only to have many of their posts deleted. Danny does not like to be shown to be wrong. You see Danny gets paid for "hits" and "advertising":


These writers are vetted and paid based on how many pageviews and advertising clicks their articles can produce. The pay is not a lot. It starts at a $2.50 for every thousand pageviews. The median amount each examiner s making right now is $25 a month, although Sherrod has written a check for as high as $1,700. Anschutz is bank-rolling the whole project. He is the only investor (the amount is not being disclosed)

So attacking some group to garner responses as Google News gets spammed by examiner.com, like Freemasons, or Catholics, or Hindus, or Buddhists, drives up Danny's hits and makes him more money.

Very Christian of you Dan. Perhaps you better do some more reading up on that too.





4 comments:

Daniel J. Hopkinson Sr. said...

I am flattered that anyone would feel so compelled to present, albeit, a very biased critique of what I do at Examiner.com. Why would anyone spend an average of 8 hours a day writing and posting articles and replies to comments sent in by other readers for a paltry $.01 per hit? Certainly, as you point out, the money is what makes it all worthwhile. As for comments being deleted, why not report the total truth instead of your version. Notice that coments once deleted are being re-posted complete with my comments as well; explanations why have been given on the site, or did you conveniently forget to include that in your review?

Your comment:

"Our interest in this piddle is confined to one small section of this page. To wit: ..."

says it all! "piddle" "one small section" of 430 articles and replies to comments barely scratches the surface.

And if making a financial profit, small as it may be, is wrong, then why are you calling attention that fact and my site? To provide me more money? Bigotry comes in ALL forms, and your bigotry against other Christians while asserting your own Christianity seems suspect too. Or shall we use the synonyms of fanaticism, enthusiast, zealot, or is it mere intolerant prejudice?

I quote from your site:

"A dedicated Christian who is sick of the highjacking of Christianity by hatemongers who are not even Christans. These would include the members of evangelical and fundamentalist cults diguised as churches."

Baal said...

"I am flattered that anyone would feel so compelled to present, albeit, a very biased critique of what I do at Examiner.com."

Very biased Danny? Your "work" is a virtual compendium of bias.

"Why would anyone spend an average of 8 hours a day writing and posting articles and replies to comments sent in by other readers for a paltry $.01 per hit?"

So then in your view Daniel, it is permissible to make money, however paltry that amount might be relaying lies, untruths, and poorly researched tosh against people who's beliefs you do not understand and in fact that you reject with a degree of animosity?

And further, Danny, Danny, Danny, those internet sources you use, tsk., tsk., tsk.

Very Christian of you Daniel.

"Notice that coments once deleted are being re-posted complete with my comments as well; explanations why have been given on the site, or did you conveniently forget to include that in your review?"

You are well aware that there have been comments that you have not re posted, as well as comments where you have only re posted a portion of what the person had to say.

'Your comment:

"Our interest in this piddle is confined to one small section of this page. To wit: ..."

says it all! "piddle" "one small section" of 430 articles and replies to comments barely scratches the surface.'

The error in question was about as major as it is possible for someone with a BA in religion and education from Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City, Tennessee to make Daniel.

And further, the rest of your 430 articles and replies are so rife with error anyone with a middle school education could pick one, deconstruct it, identify the bias and error, and demolish the whole edifice of "examination".

As a matter of fact, now that you have brought all of this to my attention, I shall at random select some other ignorance from your "examinations" to flay in demonstration of the sophomoric error they all contain.

"And if making a financial profit, small as it may be, is wrong, then why are you calling attention that fact and my site? To provide me more money? Bigotry comes in ALL forms, and your bigotry against other Christians while asserting your own Christianity seems suspect too. Or shall we use the synonyms of fanaticism, enthusiast, zealot, or is it mere intolerant prejudice?"

I am calling attention to your site because it has been spamming Google News with your simple minded ignorance. You are printing lies and distortions about people of other faiths an getting paid for it.

And finally, as for the pot calling the kettle black: You can stand up like a man and assert that the Christian Bible is superior to Eastern religious writings, that the Roman Catholics have it wrong, that the Mormons are so far in error as to possibly worship Lucifer (who does not exist anyway), that you just can't seem to find any legitimate source to refute the legendary Taxil hoax that Mason's worship Satan. And you consider NONE of that bigotry? At the very least it is a sorry excuse for research on any of the topics in question.

But while you engage in all of this behavior, you find that when I point out that you are biased, cannot conduct proper research, report false information, and in effect attack religious groups with which you disagree, and I call you out on your bigotry (and it is nothing less), you need to whine and cry that some unfair bigot who could not possibly be another "Christian" is attacking you? Perhaps Danny this is because you believe the only people who are truly Christian believe exactly as you do?

Perhaps you should remove the beam from your own eye before resuming your "work".

Fellow Traveler said...

I don't think it is the "Examiner" intent to promote his particular brand of Christianity but rather to stir controversy in order to receive more page views and comments. It appears to be the "Evangelical" way: to make some sort of profit.

After all, when it comes to Evangelicals, it's not truly about Christianity but how much money that they can con from Christians.

Evangelicals = Flim-flam Christians

Baal said...

Fellow Traveler,

I agree with most of what you have to say. However, it is lines like this:

"One scholar in particular who studied the sacred writings of the East noted how “superior” the Christian Bible is compared to the sacred writings of the other religions."

The scholar is never identified and I sincerely doubt any actual "scholar" would make such a sweeping claim. This is simply a chauvinistic attempt (and a poorly and ineptly executed one at that) to make Christianity out to be the only truly valid religion.

And it is fine to have that opinion. But odious in the extreme to pretend that you can prove it. Lastly, it is the refuge of a scoundrel to resort to anonymous "experts" or "scholars" to prove such a point.

He is poisoned by his religion and just can't help letting his true feelings through even in his quest to kiss Mammon's derriere.

Baal