Thursday, January 24, 2008

Johnny B. Goode Stoopid: the Discovery Institute keeps the laffs coming!

They can't offer any peer-reviewed research, but they can publish indignant tirades against "Darwinism" in various forms, the latest of which is a sure-to-be-laff-a-minute diatribe entitled Darwin Day in America, written by John G. West. West's main schtick is to attack evolution by Godwinizing it; i.e., blaming it for eugenics and, in turn, the Nazis. An indication of the emotionalist, rhetorical word salad this book is sure to be is suggested by the wording of its online press release, a paragraph from which is excerpted below. And remember, when dealing with creationists, you can always expect at least one 20-megaton irony blast; I have highlighted it.

Based on extensive research with primary sources and archival materials, John G. West’s captivating Darwin Day in America tells the story of how American politics and culture have been corrupted by scientistic ideology. Marshaling fascinating anecdotes and damning quotations, West’s narrative explores the far-reaching consequences for society when scientists and politicians deny the essential differences between human beings and the rest of nature. It also exposes the disastrous results that ensue when experts claiming to speak for science turn out to be wrong. West concludes with a plea for the restoration of democratic accountability in an age of experts.

Don't you just love that highlighted bit? Especially coming from a clown who's been a poli-sci and history professor, and never, you know, a biology professor. I can't think of anything similarly head-smackingly dishonest, except for the day O.J. got acquitted, and immediately announced he was going to launch a search for "the real killers."

But get a load of the sentence after the highlighted one. Another of West's obsessions is that he cannot stand that there are people in the world who are "experts" in a field, who have an annoying tendency to correct uninformed regular folks who just want everything to be "fair and balanced." When West makes "a plea for the restoration of democratic accountability in an age of experts," he is essentially admitting that he is not an expert in the field he has decided to criticize, and his only way of dealing with this is to try and discredit the idea that there can or should be any experts at all, and that "democracy" ought to reign. And by "democracy" he means, like all religious ideologues, "mob rule," the idea that if the majority doesn't like how reality works, they can just vote it different.

Bad news, Johnny. Science is not a democracy. Facts are what they are, and they don't care what you believe or what ideology, religious or political, you've chosen to embrace. None of the experts whose expertise you resent (because you lack it) deny that evolution takes place, any more than they would deny the sun rises in the east. And tell me, if evolution is "racist," why is it, I wonder, that the KKK burns Christian crosses instead of, say, giant wooden Darwin fish or effigies of the double helix? Why do white supremacists call themselves things like "World Church of the Creator" and "Church of Jesus Christ, Christian," instead of "Darwin's Badasses" or "Chuck D.'s Master Race Society"? Why is it that Darwin's works were banned in the Third Reich, as we see in this list from 1935 (scroll down the page), in which, among works promoting pacifism, bolshevism, communism, and liberal democracy, the Nazis also gave the thumbs-down to...

Writings of a philosophical and social nature whose content deals with the false scientific enlightenment of primitive Darwinism and Monism (Häckel).

Hmm. Could it be, John, that you are simply full of shit? Why, I think it could!

But hey, writing this crap is at least easier than actually producing research that offers scientific (or is that "scientistic") evidence for intelligent design, right?

For more debunking of nonsensical creationist attempts to link Darwin (who opposed slavery, for instance) to the Nazis, here's some worthwhile reading over at Panda's Thumb.


  1. I love the highlighted part, but this ices the cake:

    "scientistic ideology"

    I mean, c'mon! Shitty neologisms, too?

  2. Big words! Ah, I'm overwhelmed by big words!! Seriously though, how many politicians "giddily predicted that science—especially Darwinian biology— would supply solutions to all the intractable problems of American society". Come on!! Biology doesn't attempt to give ANY solution for the ills of society! That's complete and utter bull cookies!! Not to mention that the majority of politicians are scientifically illiterate! What a tool! I bet all his "extensive references" are all from the discovery institute...

  3. Marshaling fascinating anecdotes and damning quotations...

    Wow, hearsay and quotemining! Sounds like they're trying something new, so this looks like a promising change of pace.

    What? ...oh


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