Uncommon Descent has been scooped by the Pearcey Report: go here. The $1000 reward is herewith withdrawn — the bet still obtains.
First, the reward: In discussing with my wife Eric Pianka’s Texas Academy of Sciences speech in which he had audience members switch off cameras and tape recorders because the unwashed masses arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t ready to hear what he has to say, she remarked that this would have been the time she would have turned on her recorder. I therefore expect a recording of his talk does exist. I’m therefore offering $1000 to the first person who sends me a reasonable quality digital version of Pianka’s speech before the TAS (.wmv or .mp3) that is undoctored and unabridged and that has not appeared elsewhere (this needs to be a UD exclusive). I guarantee confidentiality.
Second, the bet: In today’s American Statesman (go here), one reads: “Fellow professor David Hillis said most people were sympathetic of the nationally renowned professor’s plight. ‘There’s a strong anti-science sentiment in the country right now,’ Hillis said. Pianka ‘has such a passion for life and diversity. How anyone could paint him as pro-death is unbelievable.'” I’m willing to wager $1000 with David Hillis that sympathy not just nationally but at UTAustin for Pianka will take a nose dive once his TAS speech goes public. Of course, we need to set the terms of this wager more precisely. But it’s a wager easily settled — Pianka needs merely to make his speech before the TAS public (the actual speech — not a bowdlerized version of it).
On another note, I seem to remember testifying opposite Hillis before the Texas State Board of Education regarding misrepresentations of the evidence for evolutionary theory in high school biology textbooks. It just seems we can’t see eye to eye on anything — first evolution and now Ebola.