Why do the big names in atheism freeze up when debating William Lane Craig?

I recently watched William Lane Craig's debates with Christopher Hitchens and Sam Harris and in both debates, it was easy to walk away with the feeling that Craig won. Hitchens just kept saying "I haven't heard any convincing evidence..." Without refuting Craig's arguments. Sam Harris did something similar - instead of addressing Craig's arguments, he ignored them for the entire debate. Also, Lawrence Krauss, when debating Craig about A Universe from Nothing, missed an opportunity to counter Craig's (correct) assertion that the primordial soup of the universe is not nothing.

Now, I've heard refutations for Craig's arguments but neither Hitchens, Harris, nor Krauss used them and so it could seem as though they lost their debates with him. Craig even invited Hitchens to become a Christian while onstage, and was justified in asking - given their performances in the debate. Any ideas why they froze up in their debates against him?

I also noticed that Craig got first word in those debates, in which he was able to define the terms used in the debate, giving him an edge.

Finally, why doesn't Dawkins debate Craig?

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Hey Gallups Mirror,

Ohhh, do I agree. You got me started:

Let me dispatch the first causes kindergarten silliness by contradiction to illustrate:

First please allow me to introduce some basic logical terminology to describe what one might call the No Evil Genius’ Proof:

"Something" (think an event) is possible in a system Q (think universe) "in principle" if Q admits of "Something" that is sufficiently well defined relative to Q.

The word "admit" here is taken to mean "allows"; in the sense that the "laws" governing all behaviors in Q "allows" an event to occur. Those laws are simply the essence of what Q is; it is what defines Q as Q.

"Sufficiently well defined" relative to Q here means the set of properties (to include possibly laws) in Q minimally sufficient to causally entrain an arbitrary event, call it k1, occurring in Q into the causal history of Q. The causal history of Q is the set of events that did, are and will (think all conjugations of “to be”) occur in Q “since” its creation. Think of it like a proton. a proton in free space has what is called a Hilbert Space that describes all its possible states (degrees of freedom). All those allowed states are allowed because of the properties of the spatial system in which it is defined; that is, Q. So, a particle can have mass, for example. That is “allowed” because that is how Q (the universe) works.

Now, we can formalize our statement supra to a first-order approximation of where we’re going with this:

Let an event k1 be sufficiently well defined relative to a spatial system Q. An event k1 is possible in a spatial system Q in principle if Q admits of k1.

Now, consider two spatial systems R and S. Let an event k1 be sufficiently well defined relative to R.

In order for causality between R and S to exist, a special condition must be met. Let an arbitrary event k2 ∈ S.

Let the subset of all properties A ∈ R necessary and sufficient to define k1 relative to R be denoted, r, and the subset of all properties B ∈ S necessary and sufficient to define k2 relative to S, denoted s.

Now, the required condition is trivial,

r ∈ S, R and s ∈ S, R ∵ s ≡  r.

must hold.

But this is just the same as if r ∈ R and s ∈ R where R is the natural world exposed to empiricism and s contains all the properties necessary and sufficient to define a cause that is super natural. But that means that s can be fully predicted and understood using empiricism alone, which is not allowed under the presumptive definition of a god.  Q.E.D.

- kk

oh thank you - kk

I was just going to say that --

thank you, thank you - kk

Hey Kris C,

Just so you know, when it comes to atheism, I'm kind of a big deal. :-)

But who is William Lane Craig?

As I've said before, I think these atheist "big names" are not the most competent to debate or deconvert. Let me put it this way: If Sam Harris were running against George Bush for President, who do you think would win? Substitute Al Gore for George Bush, if you like. I can tell you it wouldn't be Sam Harris. You and I would vote for him, but no one else would. That's why he needs to go back to neuroscience or whatever he does and get out from in front of a camera, imo. He's setting us back years. We all have our gifts - and I'd bet Harris is a great scientist - but the gift of gab is not one of Harris'. So, it doesn't surprise me that Nomen Nescio can spank him in a debate.

- kk

I take it that I'm Kris C?

Craig's a master debater of sorts.

Point taken. But in their fields and atheism, they typically do better in debate

Haven't heard of Noman Nescio. I'll have to look his/her debate with Harris

Hey Kris K,

Ha, lol. Yea, I meant Kris K, sorry. Its frustrating when you see someone doing so well as a debater when their facts and ideas are all jacked up. But it happens all too often, imo. You were kidding about nomen nescio, right? ;-)

- kk

Oh wow well now, I feel like an asshole lol I was serious! I thought it might have been a foreign name or something since you had it capitalized...
I wasn't familiar with the phrase so lol please go easy on me with that one

Hey Kris K,

No worries, its latin and it means "name unknown".


"Omni est Gallia divide en tres partes --"

Hey - I'm going to quote Jessica. "Damn". You impress me the more you type.

- kk


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