Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins are not the smartest people in the world, they are the smartest people that silly Americans are capable of recognizing as smart. They take credit for things they didn’t do and instead of being intellectually honest they obfuscate, conflate, and create false dichotomies.
“Christopher Hitchens doesn’t take himself seriously, there is no reason anybody else should.” ~ Noam Chomsky
Now, the original argument came up between the Vienna Circle, Ludwig Wittgenstein, and Karl Popper. The Vienna Circle was creating what would become the modern philosophy of science and they were studying the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus of Ludwig Wittgenstein, I am not even sure if he was technically part of the Vienna Circle or just mentoring it. He used to say, “Deep is that which cannot be said.” Based on the fact that according to the new Philosophy of Science it would only accept A priori, and empirical data, which means it was editing it’s consideration set to exclude personal experiences that could not be verified by peer review. Wittgenstein’s favorite hobby was to enjoy the poetry of Sri Aurobindo:
Sri Aurobindo (Sri Ôrobindo), (15 August 1872 – 5 December 1950), born Aurobindo Ghose, was an Indiannationalist, philosopher, yogi, guru and poet. He joined the Indian movement for independence from British rule, for a while became one of its influential leaders and then became a spiritual reformer, introducing his visions on human progress and spiritual evolution. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Aurobindo
Karl Popper was also from Vienna and having inferior support and recognition he had a short man complex. Popper thought that he was falsifying Ludwig Wittgenstein, he believed that he understood Wittgenstein through the Vienna Circle, and he thought that Wittgenstein was some manner of Pope and that the Vienna Circle took his word on everything. Popper accused Wittgenstein of making ex Cathedra assertions:
A person in making an ex cathedra assertion presupposes their own authority to make that assertion, if they don’t support it with reason or evidence. Hitchen’s razor is basically a tautology of that moment in the history of science. He just reworded it and then didn’t give credit to the source. So not exactly plagiarism but maybe in spirit…
Now where Mr. Popper’s argument is weakest is when the person is giving information on something about which they are a priorily an authority. Like themselves, what they think and what they believe. People are authorities on themselves, so unless their is some reason to believe that they are lying, one should accept their word on what they believe as long as they are not arguing for what other people should believe. Scientific materials are descriptive, predictive, and prescriptive, so when a person is describing what they believe that is scientific in a sense. But if they are arguing for what another must believe they don’t have that authority. Furthermore, Atheist like to use the extraordinary claims argument on religious people describing what they believe. An extraordinary claim is a claim which if true would radically alter the way in which the scientific community went about its business. The last time I checked nobody was trying to force the scientific community into accepting god, and Dawkinites and Hitchenites are trolls, they aren’t the scientific community.