Whenever possible, I try to conduct my own research and reach my own conclusions rather than rely on the opinions of others. In highly technical matters (e.g. ancient languages, advanced quantum physics), of course, that can't always be done and I have to trust the consensus of experts. Generally, however, I don't like accepting conclusions I cannot personally defend.
I am confident that the peer-reviewed secular academic marketplace of ideas converges reliably toward truth, and I don't delude myself that I could ever replicate even a tiny fraction of the empirical investigation that underlies human knowledge.
Exactly when and where does the EB assert Jesus was born?
Those great historical records called the Gospels give mutually exclusive accounts. You need better sources.
BH: If we discovered some new epistle that made odd statements about Paul, would you suddenly doubt Paul's historicity?
D: SOMEBODY wrote those letters..
BH: I'll take your non-answer to my question as a "no".
D: It isn't a "non-answer" but my attempt to show that your question makes no sense. According to scholars, a single individual wrote several of the letters attributed to Paul. That alone is FAR more evidence for Paul's historical existence than we have for Jesus so it is simply silly to try to draw an analogy.
The fact is, whether mythical or historical, the evidence relevant to Jesus is unique.
BH: I admire Carrier immensely, buthe's technically not a professor.
D: Why not?
Have you actually read any of the creationist arguments put forth by their leaders?
They are replete with quotes deliberately taken out of context, repeated misquotes, and outright false statements. And that doesn't even touch on the fake credentials those nutjobs claim! The amount of dishonesty on the part of creationists was probably the biggest shock I received once I began trying to improve my understanding of the subject.
Duane Gish, for example, has had the author of a text he repeatedly misquotes in his lectures publicly correct him yet he was heard at the very next lecture misquoting the exact same thing. That is deliberate falsehood and it is not uncommon in creationist texts.
Questioning the sincerity of one's opponents is legitimate if evidence exists of intentional duplicity and that evidence is plentiful.