That's really code for "Atheist." When someone doesn't want to be painted with the absolutist label "Atheist", they call themselves a "skeptic."
Being a real skeptic isn't necessarily a bad thing, as long as one is honest about it. Any good scientist must be a skeptic - you have to be willing to look at faulty or circular logic in someone's interpretation and call it that. You must also always be willing to scrutinize data when it seems a bit too clean, a bit too good. The scientists who provided the latest value for the Hubble Constant - the relationship between the Red Shift and how far away something was - initially came up with 42... and paused and re-checked every calculation multiple times:
LONDON (Reuter) - Scientists searching for one of the fundamental keys to the universe found they had been beaten to the answer by the comic cult novel ``Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy''; and the answer was 42. In the British novel and radio serial by Douglas Adams, an alien race programs a computer called Deep Thought to provide the ultimate answer to understanding life and the universe.
In the novel, seven and a half million years later Deep Thought comes back with the result: 42.
Astronomers at Britain's Cambridge University took a little less time - three years - to calculate the Hubble Constant that determines the age of the universe. But the answer was the same.``It caused quite a few laughs when we arrived at the figure 42, because we're all great fans of The Hitchhiker's Guide,'' Dr. Keith Grange, one of the team of Cambridge scientists who worked on the project, said Friday.
But you can take anything to extremes, including skepticism. If you're not honest and even-handed, you can't call yourself a scientist, and that includes admitting when you have insufficient information or data to make a call. It includes admitting that your current scientific paradigm is not permanent.
Under the guise of skepticism, Atheists commonly review each other's books promoting Atheism. Does that sound in-bred to you? Does it sound any different than Believers praising books by Believers?
Skeptics promote magazine columns with that word - and as part of the devious game some of them play, they will lump Believers with the most bizarre and narrow cults and beliefs... Painting everyone with the same tar-brush is an old pseudo-logic trick, closely related to an ad hominum attack. They also make heavy use of another emotional tool: ridicule. I've seen this done by professors to their own students.
To me, it's just another manifestation of a substitute religion for belief in a Supreme Being. As I said in an earlier blog/chapter, everyone has a religion. There are Atheists and there Proselyting Atheists, but they are all guilty of the same blindered data-selection that they accuse Believers of.
I sure hope they enjoy the uplifting help and support provided by their god. I'm sure their god will take great care of them at their end.