2011-04-25

Highly esteemed friends and supporters of Steph and Maurice Casey

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by Neil Godfrey

I have removed several comments from “Deane” of the Remnants of Giants blog from the comments sections here, and have placed all further posts from this person on moderation. This is because when I asked him to refrain from using foul language he has responded by injecting even more varieties of four letter crudities into his replies.

So these are the “honeys” adored by the likes of Maurice Casey’s fans. Charming.

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12 Comments

  • 2011-04-26 14:20:07 GMT+0000 - 14:20 | Permalink

    Twice now I have attempted to post a comment on Deane’s Remnants of Giants blog in order to clear my name of an accusation posted there about me, and twice my attempt has been denied by that blog’s moderator. The gist of what I have attempted to post is here.

    For completeness of record, Deane has addressed my views on another blog before: http://vridar.wordpress.com/2010/12/01/two-misunderstandings-in-biblical-studies-the-nature-of-scepticism-and-evidence/

  • 2011-04-26 18:35:24 GMT+0000 - 18:35 | Permalink

    This is an unpleasant topic but it does appear that Dr Maurice Casey’s doctoral student, Stephanie Louise Fisher, who used to comment here regularly, is continuing to post mischief about me personally, and most recently on R. Joseph Hoffmann’s blog.

    I have replied with this comment and hopefully it will pass moderation and be allowed to appear there:

    Steph, I am sorry that you have seen my posts as misinterpreting and making fun of other scholars, and in particular I must defend myself against your accusation of name-calling and worse.

    I have a great deal of respect for a lot of biblical scholarship — and its scholarly authors — and have posted many reviews and discussions of scholarly works of a wide variety of views on my blog (including some ideas from the thesis of the author of this blog).

    I have received positive feedback from a number of mainstream biblical scholars in response, several of which have been publicly posted in the comments. I was once asked by a academic editor to prepare some of my posts for publication in a scholarly journal. There have been a few times when I have inadvertently misrepresented a scholar (e.g. Mark Goodacre and R. Joseph Hoffmann), and both times when notified I immediately apologized and corrected my post.

    At the same time I have found some scholars and scholarly students comment on my posts with obscenities, foul language, and personal abuse.

    Yes, I have sometimes injected some humour into some posts where I do address some fundamental logical fallacies in certain arguments and methodological approaches. Surely a little levity is allowable from time to time as long as it does not descend into personal insult or ridicule.

    Your imputation that I called you a vampire and Fredriksen a naughty schoolgirl are absolutely false. Yes, I did twice address certain repeated behaviours with colourful analogies (e.g. my vampire and naughty schoolgirl references) , but in both online and offline personal communications I have spoken to you with respect and attempted to work towards peaceful resolutions of our differences. I have also addressed Fredriksen’s views with positive respect a number of times on my blog.

    I do admit to one partial exception to the above, and I have never been able to tell if Dr James McGrath is wilfully twisting my posts or blinded by preconceptions to my meaning. Even in this case I did express regret on his own blog for once losing my temper with him.

    And yes, I do speak out if I believe a scholar is betraying his or her responsibility as a public intellectual for some reason and either fanning public bigotry and ignorance or culpably making misleading claims.

    Many of my posts are reflections on scholarly articles and books, and I believe you will find listed in the dozens of authors in my blog categories many positive comments, and where I express criticisms I address the arguments without any personal abuse whatever.

  • 2011-04-29 14:58:15 GMT+0000 - 14:58 | Permalink
    • 2011-04-29 15:45:12 GMT+0000 - 15:45 | Permalink

      I hope Steph is wrong about Casey, namely that he intends to “refute mythicists.” His time would be much better spent constructing a case against the arguments, not the people who make them. Even better, perhaps he could have a go at constructing an argument for historicity that doesn’t rely on conjecture and assumption.

      • Steven Carr
        2011-04-29 16:22:32 GMT+0000 - 16:22 | Permalink

        Casey relies on junk scholarship, such as his claim that we should accept that Matthew was a tax-collector, because the author of ‘Matthew’ would not have added that detail ‘…unless he had a good source for it. We should therefore accept this.’ (!)

        Amazing. Does Casey have any standards, even low ones?

        How does Casey know that one of the Twelve took notes on Jesus during the ministry? Casey knows that happened because ‘it is entirely natural’ that somebody would do such a thing.

        It is also ‘entirely natural’ that the teachers in Hogwarts would write school reports about Harry and Hermione.

        We should therefore accept any school reports which appear.

        This is junk scholarship by Casey, who does not deserve a place in a British University which is about to charge its students at least 6000 pounds a year in tuition fees.

        ‘It is natural’ is not a way of establishing the existence of a tax-collecting , note-taking disciple of Jesus.

        First, start with the evidence, rather than claim that is ‘natural’ that such a person would have existed, therefore such a person must have existed.

        • 2011-04-29 16:58:03 GMT+0000 - 16:58 | Permalink

          Steven, your problem is you do not understand Aramaic. I am told I am off target with my criticisms of Casey’s arguments for this reason.

          Presumably no-one can understand Casey’s arguments in his “Jesus of Nazareth” unless they first learn Aramaic for themselves. Casey’s publisher made a mistake in releasing the book for a wider audience. It would have been confined to its real target audience, the only ones who could appreciate it, if it were written in Aramaic itself.

          • Steven Carr
            2011-04-29 17:06:10 GMT+0000 - 17:06 | Permalink

            I could always try to learn Aramaic, but even if I reach the level of being bilingual, Casey points out that bilingual speakers are often ‘not fully competent’.

            Unlike Casey, of course, who is fully competent in Aramaic, in stark contrast to the author of ‘Mark’ who had trouble with wax tablets that Casey knows were ‘legible’ and ‘accurate’ wax tablets, and not in the slightest a figment of Casey’s imagination.

            Casey is a world expert on translating Greek documents back into their original Aramaic, although, for some unaccountable reason, Steph Fisher has never given the name of a single Greek document that Casey has successfully produced the Aramaic for, despite repeated requests.

            Not only has the Emperor got no clothes, but his tailor has described himself as a world-expert on making clothes, without ever producing a single garment!

          • 2011-04-29 17:28:11 GMT+0000 - 17:28 | Permalink

            I’m reminded of the old Unix source comment, just before some particularly hairy kernel code:

            /* You are not expected to understand this. */

            Casey’s writings cannot be understood by anyone who reads Casey’s writings; they must be accepted on faith.

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