well people, it’s time for me to rail against the insanity of most people’s favorite holidays. In three parts: (1) the history, (2) the present, and (3) analysis.
- If some guy walked out of bellevue and said "I am the messiah!" you’d probably tell him to turn around and check back in for some R&R. If he performed some magic tricks, you’d probably tell him he’s clever before walking away. If someone else told you about some guy who does magic tricks and is the messiah, you’d probably think the messenger was a little off kilter.
Ockham’s razor says the simplest explanation is probably the right one. And the plausible (Jesus was mentally ill, or a self-interested charlatan, or an unwitting posthumous cult figure) trumps the implausible (Jesus is the messiah even though not everyone believes it).
And for chanukah (any way you spell it), one day worth of lamp oil lasting 8 days is either a tall tale, a clever sleight of hand (on the part of self-serving priests) or somenone couldn’t measure properly. Miracles don’t exist. Go study some statistics*. End of story.
- In the modern era, the ‘holiday season’ has become a string of capitalist holidays. cue the Live Aid. The people they’re singing about (1) for the most part aren’t christian and (2) suffer so europeans and north americans can have a capitalist christmas. Sam Walton’s heirs get rich at the expense of the environment and the second and third world workers. Not a nice present for them (and ultimately everone due to the consumption of nonrenewable resources and pollution).
- Call me Scrooge. Call me a spoilsport. Call me a hypocrite for flying into Buffalo on the 24th at 7PM and going straight to a very lavish party (thrown by family friends). And you should give me grief for playing along with Santa and not bursting the little kids bubbles.
But at least I’m thinking about this stuff. Instead of talking about "the christmas spirit" and putting change in the salvation army buckets (and countenancing their existence), we should abolish the whole thing and start over. here’s to a sustainable, efficient, and just future.