Intelligent Design

Darwin Meets Orwell

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Evolution’s corruption of science in general, and the peer-review process in particular, continues to reach new heights. Consider a recent paper written by an evolutionist in a leading journal about, of all things, our criminal justice system. That’s right, evolutionists now want to recast sentencing procedures according to their beliefs about origins. It’s another should-we-laugh-or-cry story as the underlying reasoning is so banal while the recommendations are so scary. I doubt even George Orwell could have envisioned this.  Read more

13 Replies to “Darwin Meets Orwell

  1. 1
    Granville Sewell says:

    “Utterly unlike anything we’ve seen in the serious sciences,” is how David Berlinski describes evolutionary biology, in the video at http://www.davidberlinski.org.

    We should be grateful to people like Cashmore, who carry Darwinism to its logical conclusions, thereby demonstrating to the rest of the world what an “unserious” science evolutionary biology is.

  2. 2
    O'Leary says:

    As a lifetime non-perp, I have only one question: Who benefits from all this, other than the defense bench and a bunch of perps?

    Don’t mean to be rude, but as someone who has stood off both the defense bench and a bunch of perps in my time*, all I can say is, stuff a sock in it.

    All those guys could just go get a job.

    If they don’t want to, it is not anyone else’s problem, and “evolution” is not to blame for why someone tried to blow up or rob “Harry’s Fallafel House”, or kidnap Harry or anything.

    *When called as a witness, NOT an accused.

  3. 3
    Phaedros says:

    Liberals and atheists want to blame religion for high crime in the United States, funny thing about that is that Rudy Giuliani almost single handedly reduced crime 35% in the U.S., but if things like this really become serious we’re going to descend into anarchy.

  4. 4
    CannuckianYankee says:

    Well we can all allow ourselves to be frightened by this, until we realize that law enforcement and the courts are not going to give this kind of thinking the time of day; even if it does sound scientificish.

  5. 5
    Phaedros says:

    cannuck-

    Ever hear of Dukakis’ furloughs?

  6. 6
    CannuckianYankee says:

    Phaedros,

    Well that’s true. Massachusetts tends to be an exception to the rule in a lot of things. But that particular event prevented Dukakis from getting elected President.

  7. 7
    CannuckianYankee says:

    My point is that when you spend time working with actual criminals, you understand that they do have a choice in the matter. That’s what “corrections” is about: correcting criminal behavior. I have some experience with this, as I taught classes to criminals on how to disassociate from negative elements in order to avoid being involved in the system. You really can’t correct someone’s thinking if they don’t have choices.

  8. 8
    CannuckianYankee says:

    “Rudy Giuliani almost single handedly reduced crime 35% in the U.S., but if things like this really become serious we’re going to descend into anarchy.”

    That’s a really good point, which touches on what I’ve been saying (although I don’t know if that statistic is accurate). The practical application of disciplines in law enforcement and corrections; which have their own empirical studies by the way, completely contradict what Cashmor is saying. The whole criminal justice system is predicated on individual free will, and that’s not about to change by one flawed assumption about human nature.

    That’s not to say that his ideas will not enter the mix, and some experiments will be tried; but they will fail. They will fail because he’s not saying anything about the reality of the situation. People commit crime because of thinking errors. Those thinking errors require some element of choice, or they’re not really errors; and we can’t call their product crime.

    Really, if you think about it, we would need to come up with a whole new vocabulary if we employ what Cashmor is proposing. This vocabulary will not include the word “crime.” It will be meaningless; rendering his whole argument circular. The criminal justice system is predicated on free will for a reason. Crime itself is predicated on free will. If there’s no choice in the matter, then it isn’t crime.

    The only frightening prospect I see in this is that Cashmor is proposing a crime against humanity; which we will not be able to label as such, because we’ve done away with such labels. That’s what makes it Orwellian.

  9. 9
    Ilion says:

    Cannuckian:My point is that when you spend time working with actual criminals, you understand that they do have a choice in the matter. That’s what “corrections” is about: correcting criminal behavior. …

    Actually, that whole “corrections” mindset is part and parcel of this denial of human free will and dignity.

  10. 10
    CannuckianYankee says:

    Ilion,

    Lewis in that article is not so much talking about incarceration as a “correction” in the sense I describe it, as the trend away from incarceration as a deterrent as well as a punishment. I don’t think you could safely say that (at least here in the US) incarceration ceases to be a punishment, although I would agree that there may be a trend away from this.

    Corrections in the sense I describe it is in helping the criminal to understand that their way of thinking is what gets them in trouble. Also, it deals with their taking responsibility for their behavior, rather than passing the blame on society or individuals; so it’s not something that Lewis is necessarily objecting to in his essay.

    The idea of corrections as I describe it needs incarceration to be a deterrent as well as a punishment. Otherwise, it has no correcting effect. If incarceration were to go to the extreme that Lewis describes, we might have a society made up of criminals, who desire to be in the system, where they are well cared for. I don’t think that’s close to the reality we have in our institutions at this time, although I can see things trending towards this.

    Practically speaking (and even in mental health settings), it’s more advantageous to talk about correcting behavior, rather than providing therapy. Even in mental health today you can see that practicality; which is why mental health is now often referred to as “behavioral health.” Behavior requires some autonomy – free will. It used to be (in the 40s and 50s) when it was believed that psychotropics alone could do the work in helping individuals to overcome the symptoms of mental illness. The trend today is to help them change their thinking patterns through a combination of interventions, including psychotropics. It’s the same with corrections; and there is actually some overlap between the two, particularly here in California where some of the state mental hospitals are run by the state Department of Corrections.

    But I think Lewis tends to oversimplify the issue, and that’s understandable given the time in which he lived.

    So I don’t agree that a corrections mindset contributes to a denial of human free will and dignity. It has a potential to go either way; but at present it is firmly on the side of free will and dignity. Although there are some in the field, who would like that to change.

    I think if we are to have a purely correctional approach to criminality, we should do away with the comforts made available in today’s prisons, which are not directly related to corrections – television sets, libraries, educational materials and the like; with the exception of only those materials, which foster change. If there is to be a library, it should be filled only with books on practical self-help as it pertains to peaceful and respectful living in a civilized society. If there is to be television, it should also be centered around these aspects. The fact is that most criminals are not serving a life sentence. As such, they will eventually be released back into society. It makes every bit of sense that while they are incarcerated, we provide them with an education on how to avoid recidivism.

  11. 11
    GilDodgen says:

    University Student: My evolution professor says I have no free will. How can I convince him otherwise?

    Gil: Steal his car, and claim you had no choice in the matter, because he said so.

  12. 12
    GilDodgen says:

    Granville: We should be grateful to people like Cashmore, who carry Darwinism to its logical conclusions, thereby demonstrating to the rest of the world what an “unserious” science evolutionary biology is.

    Granville,

    You are far too generous using the words science and unserious. Darwinism, in all its modern anti-glory, has infected like a pathogen virtually every field of academic study, even those transparently and logically unrelated to its endlessly unsupported speculations.

    When it comes to the big questions (the origin of life and biological information in general) the outright denial of reality (mathematical, computational, evidential, and experiential) on the part of Darwinists is completely mystifying.

    Darwinian apologists love to label themselves “skeptics,” but they are mysteriously immune to skepticism concerning their own absurd assertions.

  13. 13
    Ilion says:

    University Student: My evolution professor says I have no free will. How can I convince him otherwise?

    Gil: Steal his car, and claim you had no choice in the matter, because he said so.

    Or, to avoid the legal issues, call him a fool and a liar (that’s actually a redundancy) to his face. And, when he objects to your “rudeness,” remind him that you had no choice in the matter, nor freedom to do other than you did.

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