The Lower Quote, As If You Didn't Know, Is By Richard Dawkins, Son.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Irony Meter...Straining...Straining...Exploding

I know, everyone's tired of the stupid bullshit from Premise Media and the Expelled crew. I'm tired too. The thing is, the people making it are so retarded that they apparently don't even have a dictionary to check out the meaning of "ironic". At their site they have a section called "Big Science Academy" where they have a picture of Charles Darwin and the following text under the heading "President's Welcome":
At Big Science Academy we take our motto seriously: “No Intelligence Allowed.”
And this year, we are proud to report that in every subject but Science, students and faculty are free to challenge ideas, and seek truth wherever it may lead.

But Science is different. In Science, there is no room for dissent, for dissent is dangerous. That is why we at Big Science simply refuse to allow it. Like dancing, “dissent” can lead to other things.

As Class President Richard Dawkins put it so well: “Shut up!”

As you know...last year we had the misfortune of “presupposition of design” rearing its ugly head, with several students challenging Neo-Darwinian materialism, and arguing incessantly for the right to examine Intelligent Design.

They were all Expelled, of course – but still: it just goes to show where academic freedom can lead, if not shut down immediately!


Charles Darwin
Principal, President, Admissions and Diversity Affairs Officer,
Big Science Academy “No Intelligence Allowed”
*Sigh*, it's so tiring to deal with the same shit again and again. These people are like the Pope, constantly yammering on about "God says 'this'" and "God wants you to 'that'", without ever showing a shred of the supposed evidence they demand so stringently from scientists.

So I'm just going to address one point in the above; the "In Science, there is no room for dissent" bit. Allow me to introduce these folks to Mr. Isaac Newton. He was the fella who described that the force that made things fall to Earth (apples, books, peach marmalade) was the same force that kept the planets where they should be around the Sun. It was revolutionary. The calculations were so accurate that they can, for all intents, be used today. Newton admitted, however, that he could only describe gravity, but he didn't understand how it worked.

Then Albert Einstein came along and, first with Special then General Relativity, he made some changes to Newton's idea. It wasn't much, but it challenged the ages old theory in ways that made a noticeable difference. Einstein's predictions actually worked when tested. This small change to a major scientific theory changed everything.

So...where is the "no room for dissent" in that story?

Is the Newton/Einstein thing too old? How about in 2003? A serious scientific theory about ancient polar forests was overturned because new evidence came to light. There are many more to report but what's the point?

Science is about dissent, about questions. When you get a kid interested in science, you teach him or her to question everything. The answer to "Why is the sky blue?" is not "Because God made it that way." That is a dogmatic, uninteresting, and wrong answer. The actual answer is so much better, predictive, testable, falsifiable, and correct. There's no "debate" about whether or not "Bluists" are dominating the academic landscape with their fancy talk about "wavelengths", never allowing the idea that a Designer made the sky blue because it's easy on the eyes.

The assumption that these movie-makers throw out to the viewers is that no scientist has seriously examined "intelligent design". Here's an article from the New York Times from 2005 with this quote from Charles Harper Jr. of the you-would-think-sympathetic Templeton Foundation:
The Templeton Foundation, a major supporter of projects seeking to reconcile science and religion, says that after providing a few grants for conferences and courses to debate intelligent design, they asked proponents to submit proposals for actual research.

"They never came in," said Charles L. Harper Jr., senior vice president at the Templeton Foundation, who said that while he was skeptical from the beginning, other foundation officials were initially intrigued and later grew disillusioned.

"From the point of view of rigor and intellectual seriousness, the intelligent design people don't come out very well in our world of scientific review," he said.
Hm, that's odd. You'd think from the tub-thumping of the movie-makers that there's a bevy of evidence supporting this idea, and yet, there's...what's that term? Oh right, "Not One Goddamn Shred".

The world of science depends on dissent to progress, so that accusation is false and helmet-headed. The assumption that no one has checked into "intelligent" design is also false and, moreover, an outright, blatant lie. I'm curious as to whether the movie will pick up any attention from the general public at all, but if it does, I hope when people google "Expelled", they get directed to Eugenie Scott's site instead. That'd be the best.

1 Barbaric Yawps:

At 1/4/08 4:02 pm, Blogger King Aardvark said...

What about Darwin himself? He was so afraid of the earthshatteringness of his theory that he sat on it for decades before publishing.

As punishment for their crimes against reason, I decree that Ben Stein should have to wear those little boy pants for the rest of his life.


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