Online Betting Website Offers 666:1 Odds on Richard Dawkins Becoming the Next Pope

Irish bookmaker Paddy Power has already set the odds on who will become the next Pope. While the favorites are Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana (3/1 odds), Cardinal Marc Ouellet of Canada (7/2 odds), and Cardinal Francis Arinze of Nigeria (9/2 odds), there’s an interesting name in the mix…

Richard Dawkins is a 666/1 longshot.

If I’m doing my math right, that means a $1 bet could possibly earn you… $0.

But there’s at least a chance, right?

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Chris B

    Is this for real? My BS detector is on full alert. How could Dawkins have a better shot than any actual priest?

    Also, Bono being on the list (and having identical odds to an actual priest) is funny too.

    • jdm8

      “Father Dougal Maguire” probably references a character on “Father Ted”, Father Dougal McGuire.

    • OverlappingMagisteria

      He doesn’t. Father Dougal Maguire is a character from the British comedy show “Father Ted.”

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Father_Ted_characters#Father_Dougal_McGuire

    • http://twitter.com/the_ewan Ewan

      “How could Dawkins have a better shot than any actual priest?”

      Er; 666:1 is very long odds, reflective of a poor chance.

      That said, strictly speaking, they’re probably the value in this book – the offered odds are probably in line with a higher probability than actually exists.

      • baal

        666 is also clearly a joke and not some pseudo-mathmatical projection. The bookies are having a bit of fun.

    • http://truth-tables.com James Hotelling

      I strongly suspect that Bono’s 1000/1 odds are due to his work to actually stop the spread of HIV through tactics other than “prayer and abstinence”. It seems that the view of Catholics is that they hold that in about the same regard as someone who is a) a famous idiot, and b) nonexistent.

  • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

    Universi Dominici Gregis (as most recently modified by puts two prerequisites on the Papacy: a two-thirds vote of the assembled College of Cardinals in Papal conclave, and… accepting the job.

    You don’t have to be a cardinal, bishop, or even priest beforehand (though immediate ordination as Bishop follows accepting, if you weren’t one). It doesn’t specify that the candidate must be male; the College could do an end-run to settle the question of the ordination of women in a hurry by picking Jen McCreight. (It also doesn’t specify being Catholic as a prerequisite. Afterward, it gets unavoidable more or less by definition.)

    Granted, it’s completely implausible that two-thirds of the Cardinals would think this is a good idea. Still, not impossible; perhaps some mad scientist might have finally gotten YGBM technology nailed down well enough for a serious field test.

  • raytheist

    typo alert: you post: “Richard Dawkins is a 666/1 longshot.” but the chart only shows 66/1 .

    • Tainda

      The odds are to the right of the name

      • raytheist

        oops, my bad. I was reading the numbers left of the name. Thanks for the correct. :-)

        • Tainda

          lol not a problem! My eyes had to adjust too. The numbers to the left are closer to the names on the right and it messes with you

  • Piet Puk

    I’m still betting on Darth Vader becoming the next pope. It could bring the catholic church to a bit more human level.

    • Tainda

      It only makes sense since Benedict is Darth Sidious

    • The Other Weirdo

      You mean, he would bring balance to the Force?

  • Kirby_G

    I wish this was done by web-poll.

    Dougal would rock as pope.

    • Sindigo

      Keyboard cat would probably win an online poll though.

  • ARB

    actually, the requirements are 1. Catholic in good-standing, 2. Male. Richard, alas, is not qualified. Newt Gingrich is, though.

    • http://twitter.com/docslacker MD

      Not unless Newt got his previous marriages annulled. He be an adulterer.

      • David Starner

        I’ve had it explained to me by a Catholic (who was not in any way proud of this) that his second marriage was null because he didn’t get divorced in the Church from his first wife, so his current marriage is A-OK because his first wife is dead and his second wife doesn’t count.

        • http://twitter.com/docslacker MD

          So if he’s on his third marriage, he’s technically right. He was living in sin while married to his second wife. To be in the clear, though, he needed to wait until his first wife died in order to marry #3 in the RCC. And to have confessed and made a penance for his adultery.

          I went to Catholic school in South America and had a friend who was kindly asked to withdraw when her divorced father remarried. The girl was 11 years old, but the whole sins of the father thing, you know.

    • Baby_Raptor

      Dude, I’m afraid to go to bed now. That’s nightmare material.

  • http://www.facebook.com/guilberube Guillaume Bérubé

    Im placing my bets on the Dalaï Lama. He has previous experience leading a world religion.

    • The Other Weirdo

      He also minces words like a champion. He’s a perfect shoe-in.

  • http://boldquestions.wordpress.com/ Ubi Dubium

    I’m rooting for Stephen Colbert!

    • The Other Weirdo

      Well, he was president when aliens attacked the Earth and monsters had to save the day. So, why not?

      • Pepe

        I actually didn’t know that! Hopefully will come in handy during trivia.

  • http://twitter.com/WCLPeter Rob U

    My personal vote is for Sarah Silverman, she’s already got a clear plan to follow the gospels by living humbly and ending world hunger.

  • Houndentenor

    I’ll give you whatever odds you want for Dawkins becoming pope. Free money. Make checks payable to Hound N. Tenor. :-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/gregm766 Gregory Marshall

    Shouldn’t he actually be 616/1? I mean if you include the proper translation.

  • Raising_Rlyeh

    May the odds be ever in your favor, Richard Dawkins.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lonborghini.funghini Lonborghini Funghini

    With the god delusion all things are possible.

  • Kimpatsu

    Hey, those are better odds than they’re offering for Bono (1000/1, right below Dawkins).
    Anyway, Dawkins doesn’t need to be Pope; he’s already a saint. Or is that Simon Templar?

  • http://www.facebook.com/travis.myers.102977 Travis Myers

    So does this mean that if I bet $1000 against Dawkins, I’ll win $1.50?


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