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Earnings watch for UD News shareholders: Dawkinsbot disliked by scientists, no longer a hot property

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From Andrew Griffin at Independent:

British scientists don’t like Richard Dawkins, finds study that didn’t even ask questions about Richard Dawkins

Though Dawkins wasn’t a part of the interview process, and researchers didn’t ask about him, 48 of the 137 British scientists they spoke to mentioned Dawkins. Of those 48 that referenced him, 80 per cent said they thought that Dawkins misrepresents science and scientists in his books and public speeches, according to the study by Rice University, Texas.

Other scientists did stand up for the evolutionary biologist, and the remaining 20 per cent were positive views. One said that Dawkins has “quite an important place in society” because of his criticism of creationism and intelligent design. The study was funded by the Templeton Foundation, which has traditionally opposed Dawkins’ work.

Some of the scientists interviewed as part of the exercise were religious, and so might be expected to take against Dawkins’ often vociferous opposition to religion. But even scientists who didn’t believe in religion at all said that Dawkins work tended to overestimate the borders of what science can and should examine. More.

Dam. We could end up having to pay for publicity.

French Fries
This calls for a jumbo order of french fries

Now before we go any further, thanks much to our brilliant ID AI team. You successfully fronted the Dawkinsbot for many years, while the actual fellow is living in a cozy Brit cottage somewhere trying to debug his Weasel software. (Good luck with that, Richard!)

The trouble is, folks, it just isn’t possible with current methods to design a Darwinbot that doesn’t get a bit too monotonous a bit too soon.

Should we maybe take out that publicity hound module, to see if we can wring some more performance out of it in the short term?

Kudos also to the PR team who kept guiding the ‘bot into all sorts of messes, including the row in the atheist elevator he wasn’t even in and the rebuke from Sarah and Trig Palin about his low view of the worth of persons who live with Down syndrome. (Thanks, Sarah and Trig! Owe youse guys one!)

Meanwhile, we all need to form a concept team for what our new anti-ID ‘bot should feature. Let’s not call it Dawkins II. We’ll go for something creative, totally reimagining the concept.

So guys, sign up to the team if interested. What should our new ‘bot look, sound, and act like?

See also: Richard Dawkins calls Ben Carson a disgrace

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13 Replies to “Earnings watch for UD News shareholders: Dawkinsbot disliked by scientists, no longer a hot property

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    Don’t you listen to them Dickie D. As long as basement dwelling atheistic trolls are around, who would rather believe in UFOs creating life than God creating life, you will always have a solid fan base.

    Ben Stein vs. Richard Dawkins Interview
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlZtEjtlirc

    Richard Dawkins – Beware the Believers
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlZtEjtlirc

    Of related note to Dawkins’ most notable contribution to science, i.e. ‘the selfish gene’:

    At the 10:30 minute mark of the following video, Dr. Trifonov states that the concept of the selfish gene ‘inflicted an immense damage to biological sciences’, for over 30 years:

    Second, third, fourth… genetic codes – One spectacular case of code crowding – Edward N. Trifonov – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDB3fMCfk0E

  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    I wonder how much of that is jealousy at his immense success as an author and promoter of science and atheism.

  3. 3
    rvb8 says:

    Dawkins is an excellent science communicator, although Hitchens rightly chastised him for the creation of the egregious ‘Brights’; no one likes to be condescended to.

    I read the whole Independent article News, and it appears his success in making science accessable makes him very much more popular than most scientists, this could indeed induce jealousy.

    E.O. Wilson’s crticism of Dawkins is that Wilson believes Dawkins has left his scientific credentials at the door and has embraced populism. Perhaps, but scientists do their best work when they are young, his desire for a little fame is entirely human, and in no way detracts from his post graduate work.

    He is internationally acclaimed, and has friendships with well known public figures, all of this can induce sour grapes, I think it has here. Plus, he’s a really clear, and very good writer.

  4. 4
    bornagain77 says:

    Despite how much Seversky and rvb8 want to believe that Dawkins is a scientist of the first caliber, just so as to buttress their atheism, the fact of the matter is that Dawkins, with his erroneous selfish gene concept, has, as mentioned previously, ‘inflicted an immense damage to biological sciences’, for over 30 years.

    Here are a few notes to that effect:

    “So what exactly is the ‘The Modern Synthesis’? It is sometimes called neo-Darwinism, and it was popularized in the book by Richard Dawkins, ‘The Selfish Gene’ in 1976. It’s main assumptions are, first of all, is that it is a gene centered view of natural selection. The process of evolution can therefore be characterized entirely by what is happening to the genome. It would be a process in which there would be accumulation of random mutations, followed by selection. (Now an important point to make here is that if that process is genuinely random, then there is nothing that physiology, or physiologists, can say about that process. That is a very important point.) The second aspect of neo-Darwinism was the impossibility of acquired characteristics (mis-called “Larmarckism”). And there is a very important distinction in Dawkins’ book ‘The Selfish Gene’ between the replicator, that is the genes, and the vehicle that carries the replicator, that is the organism or phenotype. And of course that idea was not only buttressed and supported by the Weissman barrier idea, but later on by the ‘Central Dogma’ of molecular biology. Then Dr. Nobel pauses to emphasize his point and states “All these rules have been broken!”.
    Professor Denis Noble is President of the International Union of Physiological Sciences.
    Rocking the foundations of biology – video
    http://www.voicesfromoxford.or.....iology/184

    Why the ‘Gene’ Concept Holds Back Evolutionary Thinking – James Shapiro – 11/30/2012
    Excerpt: The Century of the Gene. In a 1948 Scientific American article, soon-to-be Nobel Laureate George Beadle wrote: “genes are the basic units of all living things.”,,,
    This notion of the genome as a collection of discrete gene units prevailed when the neo-Darwinian “Modern Synthesis” emerged in the pre-DNA 1940s. Some prominent theorists even proposed that evolution could be defined simply as a change over time in the frequencies of different gene forms in a population.,,,
    The basic issue is that molecular genetics has made it impossible to provide a consistent, or even useful, definition of the term “gene.” In March 2009, I attended a workshop at the Santa Fe Institute entitled “Complexity of the Gene Concept.” Although we had a lot of smart people around the table, we failed as a group to agree on a clear meaning for the term.
    The modern concept of the genome has no basic units. It has literally become “systems all the way down.” There are piecemeal coding sequences, expression signals, splicing signals, regulatory signals, epigenetic formatting signals, and many other “DNA elements” (to use the neutral ENCODE terminology) that participate in the multiple functions involved in genome expression, replication, transmission, repair and evolution.,,,
    Conventional thinkers may claim that molecular data only add details to a well-established evolutionary paradigm. But the diehard defenders of orthodoxy in evolutionary biology are grievously mistaken in their stubbornness. DNA and molecular genetics have brought us to a fundamentally new conceptual understanding of genomes, how they are organized and how they function.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....07245.html

    Die, selfish gene, die – The selfish gene is one of the most successful science metaphors ever invented. Unfortunately, it’s wrong – Dec. 2013
    Excerpt: But 15 years after Hamilton and Williams kited [introduced] this idea, it was embraced and polished into gleaming form by one of the best communicators science has ever produced: the biologist Richard Dawkins. In his magnificent book The Selfish Gene (1976), Dawkins gathered all the threads of the modern synthesis — Mendel, Fisher, Haldane, Wright, Watson, Crick, Hamilton, and Williams — into a single shimmering magic carpet (called the selfish gene).
    Unfortunately, say Wray, West-Eberhard and others, it’s wrong.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....-heard-of/

    The Fate of Darwinism: Evolution After the Modern Synthesis – David J. Depew and Bruce H. Weber – 2011
    Excerpt: We trace the history of the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis, and of genetic Darwinism generally, with a view to showing why, even in its current versions, it can no longer serve as a general framework for evolutionary theory. The main reason is empirical. Genetical Darwinism cannot accommodate the role of development (and of genes in development) in many evolutionary processes.,,,
    http://www.springerlink.com/co.....03g3t7002/

    also see Talbott’s following article for a well written take down on why the ‘selfish gene’ concept is a ‘not even wrong’ concept for biology;

    Genes and Organisms: Improvising the Dance of Life – Stephen L. Talbott – Nov. 10, 2015
    Excerpt: The performances of countless cells in your body are redirected and coordinated as part of a global narrative for which no localized controller exists. This redirection and coordination includes a unique choreography of gene expression in each individual cell. Hundreds or thousands of DNA sequences move (or are moved) within vast numbers of cell nuclei, and are subjected to extraordinarily nuanced, locally modulated chemical activity so as to contribute appropriately to bodily requirements that are nowhere codified — least of all in those DNA sequences.,,,
    http://www.natureinstitute.org.....nes_29.htm

    Besides the fact that Dawkins’ selfish gene concept ‘inflicted an immense damage to biological sciences’, for over 30 years by leading molecular biologists down blind alleys, Dawkins also wrote another popular book besides his now debunked book ‘The Selfish Gene’. That other popular book was entitled “The God Delusion’. In that book, as the title itself indicates, Dawkins argues that belief in God is a delusion. Yet, contrary to what Dawkins and other Darwinian atheists would prefer to believe, the fact of the matter is that it is belief in atheism itself that is a delusion. It is not belief in God that is a delusion. The fact that atheism is a delusion is clearly illustrated by the fact that, as Dawkins himself reluctantly admits, it is impossible for atheists themselves to consistently live their life as if atheism were actually true.

    In the following article, Dawkins himself admits that it would be ‘intolerable’ for him to live his life as if his atheistic worldview were actually true:

    Who wrote Richard Dawkins’s new book? – October 28, 2006
    Excerpt: Dawkins: What I do know is that what it feels like to me, and I think to all of us, we don’t feel determined. We feel like blaming people for what they do or giving people the credit for what they do. We feel like admiring people for what they do.,,,
    Manzari: But do you personally see that as an inconsistency in your views?
    Dawkins: I sort of do. Yes. But it is an inconsistency that we sort of have to live with otherwise life would be intolerable.,,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....02783.html

    Here are a few more leading atheistic academics admitting that it is impossible for them to consistently live their lives as if their chosen atheistic worldview were actually true:

    Darwin’s Robots: When Evolutionary Materialists Admit that Their Own Worldview Fails – Nancy Pearcey – April 23, 2015
    Excerpt: How does he reconcile such a heart-wrenching cognitive dissonance? He doesn’t. Brooks ends by saying, “I maintain two sets of inconsistent beliefs.” He has given up on any attempt to reconcile his theory with his experience. He has abandoned all hope for a unified, logically consistent worldview.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....95451.html

    The Heretic – Who is Thomas Nagel and why are so many of his fellow academics condemning him? – March 25, 2013
    Excerpt:,,,Fortunately, materialism is never translated into life as it’s lived. As colleagues and friends, husbands and mothers, wives and fathers, sons and daughters, materialists never put their money where their mouth is. Nobody thinks his daughter is just molecules in motion and nothing but; nobody thinks the Holocaust was evil, but only in a relative, provisional sense. A materialist who lived his life according to his professed convictions—understanding himself to have no moral agency at all, seeing his friends and enemies and family as genetically determined robots—wouldn’t just be a materialist: He’d be a psychopath.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/.....tml?page=3

    In what should be needless to say, if it is impossible for you to consistently live your life as if your worldview were actually true then your worldview cannot possibly reflect reality as it really is but your worldview must instead be based on a delusion.

    Existential Argument against Atheism – November 1, 2013 by Jason Petersen
    1. If a worldview is true then you should be able to live consistently with that worldview.
    2. Atheists are unable to live consistently with their worldview.
    3. If you can’t live consistently with an atheist worldview then the worldview does not reflect reality.
    4. If a worldview does not reflect reality then that worldview is a delusion.
    5. If atheism is a delusion then atheism cannot be true.
    Conclusion: Atheism is false.
    http://answersforhope.com/exis.....t-atheism/

  5. 5
    News says:

    bornagain77, Seversky and rvb8 are clinging to their faith in times of trouble. Dawkins was never anywhere near as much of a scientist as he was a popular icon.

    Some brilliant scientists are also icons – Einstein comes to mind.

    Some science icons – Paul Ehrlich comes to mind here – are simply pop science cranks. It took little effort for informed LAYpeople to refute Ehrlich’s claims.* But they remained popular because they matched what trendy people believed.

    I think Dawkins is cheek by jowl with Ehrlich, not Einstein.

    * Because demographics is the only hard edge in social science. It is genuinely researchable in a science way.

  6. 6
    tommy hall says:

    Mark Armitage, the creationist scientist who recently won a settlement for wrongful termination has a new video. Everything this man does or says, each new video, should be showcased on Uncommon descent. He is a huge asset to the Christian/creationist side….yet rarely does he have a mention here…..this latest video exposes the circular nature and the laughable methods of lab dating. This man needs our support…he has a great ministry and he constantly exposes the other side….let’s give him some airtime.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Brr9jQp5z8w&feature=autoshare

  7. 7
    Seversky says:

    I have to agree with everything rvb8 wrote @3. Jealousy of Dawkins’s success as a science populariser is only to be expected from a few who are less skilled as communicators and sharp disagreement with his adaptationist and gene-centric perspective appears to be normal fare in the science community. No, Dawkins is not a great innovator in science as Darwin was in biology or Einstein in physics but he has never claimed to be but none of this diminishes his personal contribution to science or his role as a champion of evolution and atheism.

    While we are on the topic, we should not underestimate the value of what he and the other so-called “Four Horsemen achieved in making atheism a respectable voice in the public square. As others here are wont to point out, the United States was not founded as a theocracy but it was overwhelmingly a Christian nation. Until very recently, this has been born out by every public opinion poll on the subject. Of course, Christianity is a broad tent, encompassing a wide range of beliefs. My personal view is that it was not so much the Establishment Clause that has prevented the establishment of a state church or a theocracy as the often bitter inter-denominational squabbles that persist to this day. In this context, there is little doubt that it is atheists, not Christians, that have been a reviled and oppressed minority for centuries. The Constitution forbids a religious test for public office yet the chances of an atheist winning an election to such an office, until very recently, were in the “snowball in hell” range. Even today, how many self-proclaimed atheists are members of Congress? It is no stretch to say that it is self identified Christians who overwhelmingly have their hands on the levers of power in this country from the President down. Winning a degree of acceptance for non-belief in such a hostile cultural environment in such a short time is no mean achievement.

  8. 8
    ppolish says:

    Dawkins will be forgotten faster than Hitchens. But Sir Richard WILL be long remembered as a hateful gent. So it goes.

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    as to

    “No, Dawkins is not a great innovator in science as Darwin was in biology,,,”

    Actually, Darwin’s greatest claim to scientific fame, natural selection, has now been cast under the bus by findings in empirical evidence and by advances in population genetics.

    Genome-wide analysis of a long-term evolution experiment with Drosophila – 2010
    Excerpt of concluding paragraph: “Despite decades of sustained selection in relatively small, sexually reproducing laboratory populations, selection did not lead to the fixation of newly arising unconditionally advantageous alleles. This is notable because in wild populations we expect the strength of natural selection to be less intense and the environment unlikely to remain constant for ~600 generations. Consequently, the probability of fixation in wild populations should be even lower than its likelihood in these experiments.”
    http://www.homepages.ed.ac.uk/.....202010.pdf

    “The Third Way” – James Shapiro, Denis Noble, and etc.. etc..,,,
    excerpt: “some Neo-Darwinists have elevated Natural Selection into a unique creative force that solves all the difficult evolutionary problems without a real empirical basis.”
    http://www.thethirdwayofevolution.com/

    The waiting time problem in a model hominin population – 2015 Sep 17
    John Sanford, Wesley Brewer, Franzine Smith, and John Baumgardner
    Excerpt: The program Mendel’s Accountant realistically simulates the mutation/selection process,,,
    Given optimal settings, what is the longest nucleotide string that can arise within a reasonable waiting time within a hominin population of 10,000? Arguably, the waiting time for the fixation of a “string-of-one” is by itself problematic (Table 2). Waiting a minimum of 1.5 million years (realistically, much longer), for a single point mutation is not timely adaptation in the face of any type of pressing evolutionary challenge. This is especially problematic when we consider that it is estimated that it only took six million years for the chimp and human genomes to diverge by over 5 % [1]. This represents at least 75 million nucleotide changes in the human lineage, many of which must encode new information.
    While fixing one point mutation is problematic, our simulations show that the fixation of two co-dependent mutations is extremely problematic – requiring at least 84 million years (Table 2). This is ten-fold longer than the estimated time required for ape-to-man evolution. In this light, we suggest that a string of two specific mutations is a reasonable upper limit, in terms of the longest string length that is likely to evolve within a hominin population (at least in a way that is either timely or meaningful). Certainly the creation and fixation of a string of three (requiring at least 380 million years) would be extremely untimely (and trivial in effect), in terms of the evolution of modern man.
    It is widely thought that a larger population size can eliminate the waiting time problem. If that were true, then the waiting time problem would only be meaningful within small populations. While our simulations show that larger populations do help reduce waiting time, we see that the benefit of larger population size produces rapidly diminishing returns (Table 4 and Fig. 4). When we increase the hominin population from 10,000 to 1 million (our current upper limit for these types of experiments), the waiting time for creating a string of five is only reduced from two billion to 482 million years.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pm.....MC4573302/

    Haldane’s Dilemma
    Excerpt: Haldane, (in a seminal paper in 1957—the ‘cost of substitution’), was the first to recognize there was a cost to selection which limited what it realistically could be expected to do. He did not fully realize that his thinking would create major problems for evolutionary theory. He calculated that in man it would take 6 million years to fix just 1,000 mutations (assuming 20 years per generation).,,, Man and chimp differ by at least 150 million nucleotides representing at least 40 million hypothetical mutations (Britten, 2002). So if man evolved from a chimp-like creature, then during that process there were at least 20 million mutations fixed within the human lineage (40 million divided by 2), yet natural selection could only have selected for 1,000 of those. All the rest would have had to been fixed by random drift – creating millions of nearly-neutral deleterious mutations. This would not just have made us inferior to our chimp-like ancestors – it surely would have killed us. Since Haldane’s dilemma there have been a number of efforts to sweep the problem under the rug, but the problem is still exactly the same. ReMine (1993, 2005) has extensively reviewed the problem, and has analyzed it using an entirely different mathematical formulation – but has obtained identical results.
    John Sanford PhD. – “Genetic Entropy and The Mystery of the Genome” – pg. 159-160

    Haldane’s Pre-Cambrian Rabbits and Natural Selection Falsified by Population Genetics – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlGwjUJLgAE

    Kimura’s Quandary
    Excerpt: Kimura realized that Haldane was correct,,, He developed his neutral theory in response to this overwhelming evolutionary problem. Paradoxically, his theory led him to believe that most mutations are unselectable, and therefore,,, most ‘evolution’ must be independent of selection! Because he was totally committed to the primary axiom (neo-Darwinism), Kimura apparently never considered his cost arguments could most rationally be used to argue against the Axiom’s (neo-Darwinism’s) very validity.
    John Sanford PhD. – “Genetic Entropy and The Mystery of the Genome” – pg. 161 – 162

    Kimura (1968) developed the idea of “Neutral Evolution”. If “Haldane’s Dilemma” is correct, the majority of DNA must be non-functional.
    – Sanford

    In other words, Neutral theory, and the concept of junk DNA, was not developed because of any compelling empirical observation, but was actually developed because it was forced upon Darwinists by the mathematics of population genetics. In plain English, neutral theory, and the concept of junk DNA, is actually the result of a theoretical failure of Darwinian evolution, specifically natural selection, within the mathematics of population genetics!

    “many genomic features could not have emerged without a near-complete disengagement of the power of natural selection”
    Michael Lynch
    The Origins of Genome Architecture, intro

    “a relative lack of natural selection may be the prerequisite for major evolutionary advance”
    Mae Wan Ho
    Beyond neo-Darwinism
    Evolution by Absence of Selection

    “Darwinism provided an explanation for the appearance of design, and argued that there is no Designer — or, if you will, the designer is natural selection. If that’s out of the way — if that (natural selection) just does not explain the evidence — then the flip side of that is, well, things appear designed because they are designed.”
    Richard Sternberg – Living Waters documentary
    Whale Evolution vs. Population Genetics – Richard Sternberg and Paul Nelson – (excerpt from Living Waters video)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0csd3M4bc0Q

    And when looking at Natural Selection from the physical perspective of what is actually going on, it is very easy to see exactly why Natural Selection is ‘not even wrong’ as an explanation for the ‘apparent design’ we see pervasively throughout life:

    The abject failure of Natural Selection on two levels of physical reality – video (2016) (princess and the pea paradox & quarter power scaling)
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-619802

    Thus, since natural selection. i.e. Darwin’s greatest claim to scientific fame, is thrown under the bus by population genetics, and by empirical evidence itself, then Darwin was certainly NOT a great scientist. In fact, Charles Darwin, whose degree was in Theology, and whose book “Origin” is replete with bad liberal theology, is more properly classified as being a bad theologian who was trying to impose his anti-Theistic beliefs onto science rather than as a great scientist who was trying to discover new truths about the world through experimentation.

    Charles Darwin’s use of theology in the Origin of Species – STEPHEN DILLEY
    Abstract
    This essay examines Darwin’s positiva (or positive) use of theology in the first edition of the Origin of Species in three steps. First, the essay analyses the Origin’s theological language about God’s accessibility, honesty, methods of creating, relationship to natural laws and lack of responsibility for natural suffering; the essay contends that Darwin utilized positiva theology in order to help justify (and inform) descent with modification and to attack special creation. Second, the essay offers critical analysis of this theology, drawing in part on Darwin’s mature ruminations to suggest that, from an epistemic point of view, the Origin’s positiva theology manifests several internal tensions. Finally, the essay reflects on the relative epistemic importance of positiva theology in the Origin’s overall case for evolution. The essay concludes that this theology served as a handmaiden and accomplice to Darwin’s science.
    http://journals.cambridge.org/.....741100032X

    To this day, since there is no experimental support for Darwinian evolution, bad liberal theology is still essential to the arguments of leading apologists for Darwinism:

    Methodological Naturalism: A Rule That No One Needs or Obeys – Paul Nelson – September 22, 2014
    Excerpt: It is a little-remarked but nonetheless deeply significant irony that evolutionary biology is the most theologically entangled science going. Open a book like Jerry Coyne’s Why Evolution is True (2009) or John Avise’s Inside the Human Genome (2010), and the theology leaps off the page. A wise creator, say Coyne, Avise, and many other evolutionary biologists, would not have made this or that structure; therefore, the structure evolved by undirected processes. Coyne and Avise, like many other evolutionary theorists going back to Darwin himself, make numerous “God-wouldn’t-have-done-it-that-way” arguments, thus predicating their arguments for the creative power of natural selection and random mutation on implicit theological assumptions about the character of God and what such an agent (if He existed) would or would not be likely to do.,,,
    ,,,with respect to one of the most famous texts in 20th-century biology, Theodosius Dobzhansky’s essay “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution” (1973).
    Although its title is widely cited as an aphorism, the text of Dobzhansky’s essay is rarely read. It is, in fact, a theological treatise. As Dilley (2013, p. 774) observes:
    “Strikingly, all seven of Dobzhansky’s arguments hinge upon claims about God’s nature, actions, purposes, or duties. In fact, without God-talk, the geneticist’s arguments for evolution are logically invalid. In short, theology is essential to Dobzhansky’s arguments.”,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....89971.html

    Darwinism is as unscientific today, if not more so, as it was when it was first introduced:

    An Early Critique of Darwin Warned of a Lower Grade of Degradation – Cornelius Hunter – Dec. 22, 2012
    Excerpt: “Many of your wide conclusions are based upon assumptions which can neither be proved nor disproved. Why then express them in the language & arrangements of philosophical induction?” (Sedgwick to Darwin – 1859),,,
    And anticipating the fixity-of-species strawman, Sedgwick explained to the Sage of Kent (Darwin) that he had conflated the observable fact of change of time (development) with the explanation of how it came about. Everyone agreed on development, but the key question of its causes and mechanisms remained. Darwin had used the former as a sort of proof of a particular explanation for the latter. “We all admit development as a fact of history;” explained Sedgwick, “but how came it about?”,,,
    For Darwin, warned Sedgwick, had made claims well beyond the limits of science. Darwin issued truths that were not likely ever to be found anywhere “but in the fertile womb of man’s imagination.”
    The fertile womb of man’s imagination. What a cogent summary of evolutionary theory. Sedgwick made more correct predictions in his short letter than all the volumes of evolutionary literature to come.
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....ed-of.html

  10. 10
    rvb8 says:

    ppolish,

    you do realise that your post script, “so it goes”, is a quote from ‘Slaughter House-Five’, the great anti-war novel by Kurt Vonnegut?

    Vonnegut was an avowed atheist and humanist, and along with Joseph Heller gave us a more realistic view of the US serviceman in combat, which is contrary to the Spielberg/Hanks, ‘Band of Brothers’ twaddle.

    Dawkins is a defender of free inquirey, he defends an individuals right to not believe. For that he should be lauded.

    As has been pointed out in this thread by another contributor, it is atheists who need the help, it is we who are reviled in Africa, the Middle East, even Asia and Russia, (and certainly the US) with the upsurge in irrationality and fear.

    Irrationality and fear:) Heh:) Simmer and serve for a great meal of religiosity.

  11. 11
    ppolish says:

    Yes, rvb8, you can laud Sir Richard for his Atheism and I can laud Pope Francis for his theism. Scientists, however, are decreasingly lauding Dawkins for his science. The Vatican, on the other hand, has a World Class Cosmology program. Carl Sagan Award Winning….

    http://www.smithsonianmag.com/.....180959242/

  12. 12
    Seversky says:

    Science is a human enterprise and far more than the iconography of popular science history. There are thousands, perhaps millions, who have made valuable contributions to their fields but whose names are unknown to the rest of us. Dawkins is an advocate not just for Darwin nor just for evolutionary biology but for science as a whole and has earned his place alongside the other leading proponents of science like Jacob Bronowski, Carl Sagan, Stephen J Gould, David Attenborough and Paul Davies, to name but a few.

  13. 13
    ppolish says:

    Seversky, famous philosopher Nietzsche once said something like “Far from fame happens all that is great”. Famed geology major Nye once said something like “we suck”. For an Atheist to argue that Dawkins is somehow special is a bit rich. Bill Gates raised to the Warren Buffet rich.

    Fast forward a thousand trillion years. Is there a difference between “So it goes” and “Rest in peace”? I would argue yes. An infinite difference. An eternal difference.

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