Evolution Intelligent Design

The Foghorn Leghorn of Evolutionary Thinkers

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Foghorn Leghorn

Paul Myers, the Foghorn Leghorn of evolutionary thinkers, offered the following memorable quote a few months back. I preserve it here for the record books. Let the humiliation of ID proponents continue and intensify.

Yeah, I’m afraid the “civilized academic debate” was settled about a century ago. Scientists have been engaging in that ideal, non-militaristic fashion for quite some time, and still are — those discussions go on in the pages of the journals. Unfortunately, while we have been doing everything in the proper civilized way, the forces of ignorance have not; they have lied their way into considerable power.

Here I am, a biologist living in the 21st century in one of the richest countries in the world, and one of the two biology teachers in my kids’ high school is a creationist. Last year, the education commissioner in my state tried to subvert the recommendations for the state science standards by packing a hand-picked ‘minority report’ committee to push for required instruction in intelligent design creationism in our schools. All across the country, we have these lunatics trying to stuff pseudoscientific religious garbage into our schools and museums and zoos.

This is insane.

Please don’t try to tell me that you object to the tone of our complaints. Our only problem is that we aren’t martial enough, or vigorous enough, or loud enough, or angry enough. The only appropriate responses should involve some form of righteous fury, much butt-kicking, and the public firing and humiliation of some teachers, many schoolboard members, and vast numbers of sleazy far-right politicians.

[Go here for the source: http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2005/06/a_new_recruit.html#c35130

29 Replies to “The Foghorn Leghorn of Evolutionary Thinkers

  1. 1
    mentok says:

    The nerd brigade on march, beware their pocket protectors and tremble.

  2. 2
    Benjii says:

    PZ Myers reminds me of a little boy who cries because he can’t get his way?

    Poor little PZ. Maybe mommy wants to wean you know.

  3. 3
    Bombadill says:

    It’s just this sort of crazed zealotry that sends up a red flag in reasonable, thinking people.

    And it is why ID will continue to prosper.

  4. 4
    Bombadill says:

    And I continue to wonder what horrific childhood experience drove people like Myers to such a bitter and sad existance and self-deceiving pseudo-intellectualism.

  5. 5
    Bombadill says:

    existance == existence

  6. 6
    mmadigan says:

    Exactly the same mentalilty that wetn after Bible readers in the Inquisition.
    STOP LOOKING AT THOSE FACTS, DAMN YOU!

  7. 7
    Bombadill says:

    Exactly. “”Ignore the science and pay attention when we tell you it’s all a political and religious conspiracy!””

  8. 8
    jboze3131 says:

    The most shocking thing is that this guy teaches kids!!

    “All across the country, we have these lunatics trying to stuff pseudoscientific religious garbage into our schools and museums and zoos.”

    That is the ranting of a madman.

  9. 9
    dodgingcars says:

    “Let the humiliation of ID proponents continue and intensify.”

    Did you mean opponents?

  10. 10
    steve_h says:

    How would the critics feel if Myers had said something similar about teaching astrology as science? Then everyone would have seen him as a bigot, instead he picks on a discipline which has equal scientific standing to Astrology (See Dover Testimony) and evolutionists just lap it up.

  11. 11
    jboze3131 says:

    I think Behe’s comments have been explained before. He never said that ID was akin to astrology or on the same level.

  12. 12
    DonaldM says:

    Look at this quote carefully:

    Here I am, a biologist living in the 21st century in one of the richest countries in the world, and one of the two biology teachers in my kids’ high school is a creationist. Last year, the education commissioner in my state tried to subvert the recommendations for the state science standards by packing a hand-picked ‘minority report’ committee to push for required instruction in intelligent design creationism in our schools. All across the country, we have these lunatics trying to stuff pseudoscientific religious garbage into our schools and museums and zoos.

    First of all, PZ doesn’t tell us anything about what the biology teacher in question is actually teaching in his/her science classroom. For all we know, this teacher is one of the top 10 biology teachers in the USA. But note how PZ sets up the usual guilt by association by slapping the dreaded “C” word label on her/him. In PZ’s world, apparently, creationism = incomptenece (I guess) and, one would suppose, then, that “atheism = competence”. That seems to be part of his intent, anyway.

    Secondly, there doesn’t appear to be any actual connection between the biology teacher and education commissioner. What’s the point? Is PZ implying that the commisioner is also a creationist? He doesn’t say. All he rants about is that the commissioner in question wanted some language regarding ID included in the science standards. Given how PZ continually distorts facts about IDPs actually say and write, I for one will not just take his word for what this commissioner’s agenda really was.

    Finally, PZ moves from the state commissioner to the entire> country. Wow! In one paragraph we have a ‘creationist’ biology teacher in a [gasp!]public school; a very wayward and out of control state education commissioner, and finally a bunch of raving lunatics pushing “pseudoscientific religious garbage into our schools and museums and zoos.”

    And guys like PZ wonder why no one takes them seriously? Isn’t this someone who supposedly holds science and scientific reasoning in high regard? Does this look like sound scientific reasoning to anyone? It sure doesn’t to me. But, when you’re sounding off against ID, reasoning doesn’t matter, I guess.

  13. 13
    jboze3131 says:

    Like I said, even worse is the fact that, in PZ’s world- intelligent design proponents are lunatics. He often goes as far as to say that they’re lunatics secretly bent on establishing a theocracy and destroying all science as we know it.

    Problem is- no one gets to say WHAT is science and what isn’t. Science is a study. If some consensus group is allowed to say what is and what isn’t truly science, and who are and aren’t truly scientists- they’d have to throw our Newton, one of the most respected scientists in history, because he was into alchemy. They’ve no choice- if someone proposes ID, that makes them lunatics…what does PZ think of Newton then and his interest in alchemy? In PZ’s world, great men like Newton are labeled lunatics.

    Surely, he’d assert a double standard and make an excuse and say…’but, but, this is a different case.’ But, if we follow his logic down the line and stay consistent with it, Newton and hundreds of other famous scientists are lunatics and not truly scientists.

  14. 14
    steve_h says:

    Hi Iboze,

    I thought he said that under his private definition of science, both
    astrology and I.D. would qualify. Thanks for the correction. For future reference, can you point to me to the place in the transcript where he explains how they differ?

  15. 15
    jboze3131 says:

    i think DI has transcripts. he said something about the definition of science being made far too narrow in recent times, and how the establishment is trying to craft a definition of science merely to try to say that ID isnt science. i forget his exact quotes. this was used to claim he likened ID to astrology, but many sites pointed out that he was being misinterpreted.

    id try idthefuture.com- they had a number of posts with transcripts.

  16. 16
    crandaddy says:

    “Here I am, a biologist living in the 21st century in one of the richest countries in the world, and one of the two biology teachers in my kids’ high school is a creationist.”

    To be a creationist is to hold a *belief* that the world was created by a higher power, usually a deity. Notice he doesn’t mention a fault with any action that this particular instructor has made. He demonizes this person simply for the belief that (s)he holds. Stalin would have been very proud.

    David

  17. 17
    DaveScot says:

    Actually what Behe said was that astrology was a legitimate science in the past and is a discredited science today.

    Other than being wrong, what about astrology is it that everyone thinks makes it not science?

  18. 18
    dodgingcars says:

    “Actually what Behe said was that astrology was a legitimate science in the past and is a discredited science today. ”

    I think you’re right. He also differentiated between the astrology back then (studying stars, etc. and their effect on human behavior) with astrology of today (tarot cards and psychics).

  19. 19
    jmcd says:

    Astrolgy did not use any sound reaoning. When the planets align in a certain order event A will happen. Well thats all fine and dandy but why will A happen? What is the mechanism that makes A happen? These are questions that astrology, to the best of my knowledge, never attempts to answer. It was and is by all accounts I have come across a very mystical affair.

  20. 20
    deanesmay says:

    To be honest I am an ID skeptic as I’m having trouble figuring out what predictions ID makes. But PZ Myers is a laughable, pathetic little man and one of the most flagrantly dishonest bloggers I’ve ever encountered. No question about it. I feel sorry for this guy’s students, I really do.

  21. 21
    DaveScot says:

    jmcd

    Ancient astronomers had no theory of gravity to explain why celestial bodies moved the way they did. Was astronomy a science before that?

    Perhaps the largest part of science isn’t explaining the how of any given phenomenon, it’s meticulously collecting, sorting, recording, and correlating observations such that patterns relevant to the phenomenon might emerge and lead to an explanation. Astrology and astronomy were once the same science. Imagine that.

  22. 22
    DaveScot says:

    Astrology vindicated? 😉

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/en.....t=Abstract

    Human aggression and the lunar synodic cycle.

    Lieber AL.

    Data on five aggressive and/or violent human behaviors were examined by computer to determine whether a relationship exists between the lunar syndoic cycle and human aggression. Homicides, suicides, fatal traffic accidents, aggravated assaults and psychiatric emergency room visits occurring in Dade County, Florida all show lunar periodicities. Homicides and aggravated assaults demonstrate statistically significant clustering of cases around full moon. Psychiatric emergency room visits cluster around first quarter and shows a significantly decreased frequency around new and full moon. The suicide curve shows correlations with both aggravated assaults and fatal traffic accidents, suggesting a self-destructive component for each of these behaviors. The existence of a biological rhythm of human aggression which resonates with the lunar synodic cycle is postulated.

    Or does this study belong in a mythology journal?

  23. 23
    DaveScot says:

    deanesmay

    ID predicts that you can use chemicals and ionizing radiation to accelerate mutation rates in fruitflys many orders of magnitude above the natural rates, you can artificially select interesting individuals for further breeding to nullify the haphazard way that natural selection works to preserve mutations, and at the end of the day you’ll have nothing that isn’t still a fruitfly. You will have no novel, useful new cell types, tissue types, organs, or body plans for your trouble.

    So far this prediction has panned out. It’s panned out so well that evolutionists don’t want to talk about it.

    ID further predicts that no amount of dog breeding will produce anything that isn’t a dog, no amount of bacterial culturing will produce anything that isn’t a bacteria, and so on and so on.

    Predictions that have all proven to be true so far.

    So there are some predictions ID makes for you. Happy now?

  24. 24
    bastiaan says:

    Wouldn’t colonial instead of singular cells count as something that negates your ID-prediction?

  25. 25
    scordova says:

    Dear wrote: “To be honest I am an ID skeptic as I’m having trouble figuring out what predictions ID makes. But PZ Myers is a laughable, pathetic little man and one of the most flagrantly dishonest bloggers I’ve ever encountered. No question about it. I feel sorry for this guy’s students, I really do. ”

    I salute you Dean!

    Salvador

  26. 26
    jmcd says:

    Dave Scott

    It is ludicrous to expect novel cell tpes or anything up the ladder could be produced in a matter of decades. You can only apply so much pressure without killing an organism. You cannot realistically expect to reproduce millions of years of evolutionary change in a few years or a few thousands of years.

    By the way, NS does not preserve mutations in a haphazard way. It preserves them in the most efficient and effective way possible.

  27. 27
    DaveScot says:

    “Wouldn’t colonial instead of singular cells count as something that negates your ID-prediction?”

    No. Many bacteria are colonial. That’s nothing new.

  28. 28
    DaveScot says:

    “It is ludicrous to expect novel cell tpes or anything up the ladder could be produced in a matter of decades.”

    It’s ludicrous to claim that random mutation + natural selection can turn bacteria into babboons without demonstrating even one significant step of the process in a lab too.

  29. 29
    DaveScot says:

    “By the way, NS does not preserve mutations in a haphazard way. It preserves them in the most efficient and effective way possible.”

    Yes, it is haphazard. An organism can be born with a nice beneficial random mutation only to get run over by a bus before getting a chance to reproduce. It’s mostly a matter of luck which non-fatal mutations get fixed in the gene pool.

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