Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

From the ” I can’t believe I’m reading this, but that proves I’m alive” department …

arroba Email

Why Europe has been in decline for so long:

At the Post-Darwinist, I received a message in my inbox regarding my update to the file I keep up on opinion polls relevant to the intelligent design controversy:

Immigrant from Europe, I have been living in the country for a little over 7 years now.
SInce then, I have been flabbergasted by the creationism-intelligent design movement in the States. Before coming here, I have never, ever seen anyone even remotely question evolution, and this in a number of countries were I have stayed and lived. To be fully exact, in none of what we usually call “civilized” countries; not to put some countries down but just that there education level is not at the typical “western world” level.

I am always amazed by hearing comments by citizens of this most advanced country about what has been accepted as basic fact, not even subject to discussion outside the physical walls of churches, in all advanced countries.

This post is not intended to hurt anyone. I would just like to understand why and how a vast number of American came to so firmly believe in creationism (or intelligent design if you want to call it that name). – xxxxxx

I assume that by “this country” my correspondent meant the United States. I replied, a tad frostily,

xxxxxx, you wrote, “This post is not intended to hurt anyone. I would just like to understand why and how a vast number of American came to so firmly believe in creationism (or intelligent design if you want to call it that name).”

Please be assured that you are not “hurting” anyone.

You are providing a valuable demonstration of why so many North Americans think that Europe is in decline once again.

I can offer two thoughts in response to your question:

1. Here in North America, people have the right to question authority and to offer alternative accounts. Twice in the last century, we have had to rescue Europe from descending into chaos precisely because of mass belief in the doctrines promulgated by authorities. Many thousands of Canadians died – indeed, Canada suffered more than the United States did, and was in both wars much longer.

I am glad to think you appreciate our efforts. Certainly, the Dutch government who hosted my father (a veteran) did. Because of that history, many of us have nothing to be ashamed of in our tradition that permits broad skepticism of the ideology of the authorities.

2. If you feel free enough while living here to get and read books like Behe’s Edge of Evolution , [Wilson and] Dembski’s (ed) Uncommon Dissent, or my own By Design or by Chance?, you will understand much better why reasonable people can think that there is a case against Darwinian evolution as a source of major innovations in life forms. If you do not feel free enough, there is not much I can do to help.

whereupon he replied,

Thank you for your answer but it doesn’t really give me more insight about the subject of interest.

Regarding the “rescue of Europe”, if you are to study well WW1 and ‘2, you will discover that the intervention of the US was marginal and short-lived (just 1 year) on a tactical level during WW1 -while very important on a logistical point of view.

During WW2, the States were equally reluctant to get involved in Europe and only did so when it became evident that it would be the next target of Hitler’s plans.

Contrary to what many people believe, Europe would not have become Nazi but… communist. Never forget that the bulk of the war in Europe was on the eastern Front, whatever British, French, Dutch or Italian might say.

SO!! Yes, Western Europe should -and is- grateful of the intervention of the United States… even if this one too often forgets that it would never have been without the French intervention during the Independance War…

I really consider myself as an open person. I was baptized as a Catholic, got married in a Methodist Church, got interested in learning of Islam when I was living in the Middle East and attended Baptist Churches -including Sunday school- during my years in Texas. All that to say that I am always looking for answers to all sorts of questions.

Faith, of whatever kind of denomination, I do not discuss and nothing can upset me worst than when someone tries to impose his or her faith. But about creation, I do not -really do not- understand how some people want to make it pass as science while it is only faith…

and I said,

Xxxxxx, you apparently did not notice that I am a Canadian, and was referrring to Canada. That’s okay. Canada is often overlooked.

If you consult the history books, you will discover that Canada was in both World Wars from the very first day till the bitter end.

Proportionately, Canada sustained far more casualties than the United States in consequence.

So, you better believe, we had a bellyful of the European propensity to accept materialist dogmas. I’m not typically impressed when a European is amazed to discover that it isn’t mandatory here to believe that flapdoodle.

In fact, there are lots of places you can go in North America where people will think you a sap for believing it – whether or not you indulge in a smorgasbord of “faith” positions, while insisting that the materialist view is the one that matters.

I am puzzled by your assumption that I should rejoice to think that Europeans would be communists rather than fascists. How is THAT good?

In particular, how is it better than learning to think for oneself?

I remember the flood of refugee children from Hungary and Poland (countries which had attempted to break free from Communism) who sat beside me in school. The lucky ones, they were.

Anyway, to enjoy your time “here” – I assume you are in the United States, not Canada – note that it is simply okay not to agree with the honchoes. It is also okay to proselytize peacefully for one’s “faith.” It is part of the celebrated dynamism of the continent.

Learn to love it, or go home and quit boring us. Well, one thing about having a blog, you do learn a lot about your cyber-neighbours. By the way, anyone interested in the least in Canada’s war contribution in the twentieth century, go here. The “anti-war” tag was the product of hippies in high office, courtesy in part of American draft dodgers, and doesn’t bear historical scrutiny.

Also, at Mindful Hack: Evolutionary psychologist fails to acknowledge earlier source.

Here is what Michael Behe has to say about The Spiritual Brain.

PS: A fascinating look at disinformation -- the first link being to an article by one of its former professional practitioners -- can be seen here and here -- warning: very un-PC. (The first is an article by a former head of the Romanian intel services,the highest ranking defector from Sov Bloc intel during the Cold War. The second is a summary from Answers on how disinformation works, and proposes several alleged cases in point, which it would be interesting to follow up but that is not germane to the point that the techniques exist and are potentially distorting.) My thought is, therefore, that we need to be very careful indeed in looking at ID issues and the surrounding debates, because the techniques of disinformation are now easily available and widely used by the unscrupulous, taking in the unwary and gullible. As the sad history of Athens 430 - 400 BC shows, disaster can result; cf. as well the parable of Plato's Cave, which takes an allegorical view of the same history. So, let us focus our attention on the merits of fact and logic at the heart of the issues at stake. kairosfocus
Brief note: (Now the blog is back up . . .) Re JS in 30: you are right on misinformation -- or, is it in many cases calculated disinformation -- masquerading as conventional wisdom in a Plato's Cave media shadow show culture. The incidence of such on matters connected to ID is astonishing, or maybe, it is a strong sign of the balance of the actual case on the merits. The truth is always so nuanced relative to "conventional wisdom" assertions! On history of WW II: 1] Something like 3/4 of the German armed forces were deployed against Russia, and were beaten by them . . . TRUE 2] That is where the German army gave and took casualties comparable to the butcher bills of WW I, which led to a situation where by 44 - 45, the Red army was some 10% women and some 10% Polish as I recall. (Casualty exchange rates too often ran 10:1 in favour of the Germans.) 3] At the same time, the logistics base for that Russian effort was to a great degree Western-supplied, and 4] This required winning the Battle of the Atlantic, at terrible cost in men and materiel, a battle that was only really decided in 1943 summer. 5] At the same time, as I noted earlier, a bloody sustained struggle in the air over Germany made a crucial difference in deployment of several key German force multipliers: airplanes, and the 88 mm flak/antitank gun being most notable. [These weapons were as central to Blitzkreig as were the more visible tanks. And, from Arras in 1940, the 88 was crucial to German forces' ability to blunt counter-attacks by superior tanks, e.g. the Matilda and the Char B2. Not to mention in both 1940 and 1942, the German armoured forces were outnumbered. BTW, in 1942 the Germans pressed into service 600 remounted French 75s to stand up to the Russian tanks. 500 of the 5,000 in reserves, resolutely manned a la Verdun 1916, might have made all the difference on the Meuse in 1940.] Maybe, we can wake up and see what is going on? Then, we can make a difference, starting with the blogosphere, which the power-brokers do not control. GEM of TKI kairosfocus
Hello Robo, (comment 28: "Start an ID blog in German"). Good suggestion. For your info, there is already an ID blog in German language, see http://evolution-schoepfung.blogspot.com/ And I agree, blogs are an excellent means of free speech, and constitute a "crack" in the media monopoly of pro-evolution opinion. Rod
Perhaps you should have asked why he/she believes in the theory of evolution. Ask him/ her for the scientific data which demonstrates that a population of single-celled organisms can "evolve" into something other than single-celled organisms. Then when no such scientific data is put forth you can say that he/ she accepts the ToE on faith alone. You culd also ask xxxx why is it that the only people who conflate ID and Creation are the same people that know the least about either? Joseph
Re: "Never forget that the bulk of [WW II] in Europe was on the eastern Front." If this commmenter is indicative, maybe folks in Europe not only know little about ID, but little about history. Sans the West's strategic support of the Soviet Union, Hitler would have won the war in the East. According to British military historian John Keegan (in The Second World War, p. 218):
These shipments [from the Western powers to the USSR] were on an enormous scale. The ... donations provided the Soviet Union with a high proportion not only of its war-industrial requirements but also of its means to fight. "Just imagine," Nikita Khrushchev later remarked, "how we would have advanced from Stalingrad to Berlin without [American transport]"; at the end of the war, the Soviet forces held 665,000 motor vehicles, of which 427,000 were Western, most of them American and a high proportion the magnificent 2 1/2-ton Dodge trucks, which effectively carried everything the Red Army needed in the field. American industry also supplied 13 million Soviet soldiers with their winter boots, American agriculture 5 million tons of food, sufficient to provide each Soviet soldier with half a pound of concentrated rations every day of the war. The American railroad industry supplied 2000 locomotives, 11,000 freight carriages and 540,000 tons of rails... American supplies of high-grade petroleum were essential to Russian production of aviation fuel, while three-quarters of Soviet consumption of copper in 1941-4 came from American sources.
To these must be added Britain's contributions of goods and sea-borne transport, covered by Keegan in previous paragraphs. jstanley01
Rod, Start an ID blog in German. That would help in the battle. Robo
Prof Sachs I have responded over at the Scoville scale thread. kairosfocus
PS: Wiki has a further telling quote, from Albert Speer -- Hitler's armaments minister at the time of the peak of German arms production; shortly after the war:
the real importance of the air war was that it opened a second front long before the invasion of Europe. That front was the skies over Germany...The unpredictibility of the attacks made the front gigantic...Defence against air attacks required the production of thousands of anti aircraft guns, the stockpiling of tremendous quantities of ammunition all over the country, and holding in readiness hundreds of thousands of soldiers...As far as I can judge from the accounts I have read, this was the greatest lost battle on the German side.
H'mm: Interesting developments! 1] Jerry on Athens, Alcibiades etc . . . That is exactly what I am talking about. And Socrates' fighting retreat was famous in his time and should be in ours. He was not just a scholar, and his courage on the battlefield was matched by his moral courage on the intellectual field. Unfortunately, Socrates' example and precepts on virtue and soundness did not take on Alcibiades, but only the arts of self-serving rhetoric. (I never did figure out what he thought he would get out of playing games with the wife of one of the Spartan Kings.) The US Constitution, so far as I can see, tries to balance elements from the major classical constitutions, including BTW, Deuteronomy, so the defects of any one form are checked by the advantages of the others, all in a reformed Judaeo-Christian framework. Today, we need to go back tot hose sources, and by their light see what is going on today in our political culture. For, those who refuse to learn and heed the lessons of history are doomed to repeat its worst chapters. [BTW, ask yourselves, onlookers: since the career of Alcibiades was a key part of the lesson on how a Democracy can fail by suicide, why is it that his name is so unfamiliar to most of us today? Think about the implications of what has been edited out of what we are taught.] 2] Canada's Contribution, WW I: Spell that V-I-M-Y R-I-D-G-E. This was the very first in effect independent operation by the Canadian Army Corps in a major war, and it was the first relatively low cost [for WW I] unequivocal major Allied success after three years of bloody fighting, even though the wider battle was the usual mud and blood mess. Given the inverse body-count games going on today in our friendly local shadow-show operations, it is worth noting the official casualty count for the four days of the main operation: 3,598 Canadians were killed and another 7,000 wounded. It is worth citing as well, Brigadier-General A.E. Ross:"in those few minutes I witnessed the birth of a nation." So significant was this founding event of the Canadian nation, that: "In 1922, the French government ceded to Canada in perpetuity Vimy Ridge, and the land surrounding it. The gleaming white marble and haunting sculptures of the Vimy Memorial, unveiled in 1936, stand as a terrible and poignant reminder of the more than sixty thousand Canadians who died serving their country during the First World War." Let that speak for Canada, and its further sterling contributions ever since. 3] Bomber Command: Whatever we may challenge or doubt on Harris' strategy and the usual debates over related serious ethical concerns, let us never forget the sacrifice of the British, Commonwealth and exiled European crews: Let Wiki speak, noting the especially gallant effort of the Australians:
Mention must . . . be made of the extremely high casualty rate suffered by RAF Bomber Command crews, who suffered 55,573 dead, 4,000 wounded and 9,784 prisoner. These fatalities included over 38,000 RAF aircrew (of all nationalities), 9,900 Royal Canadian Air Force personnel, and over 1,500 aircrew from the European occupied countries. It is illustrative that members of the Australian squadrons of Bomber Command equalled only two percent of Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) personnel, but the 4,050 killed represented 23% of the total number of RAAF personnel killed in action (5,367) during World War II. No. 460 Squadron RAAF, which had an aircrew establishment of about 200, experienced 1,018 combat deaths during 1942-45 and was therefore effectively wiped out five times over. Taking an example of 100 airmen: * 55 killed on operations or died as result of wounds * 3 injured (in varying levels of severity) on operations or active service * 12 taken prisoner of war (some injured) * 2 shot down and evaded capture * 27 survived a tour of operations In total 364,514 operational sorties were flown, 1,030,500 tons of bombs were dropped and 8,325 aircraft lost in action. The very high casualty levels suffered give testimony to the dedication and courage of Bomber Command's aircrew in carrying out their orders. Statistically there was little prospect of surv[iv]ing a tour of 30 operations. This was because for much of the war the loss rate hovered around 5%, about 1 in 20 aircraft would, on average, be shot down - although obviously there was great variation here, on some occasions the loss rate exceeded 10% - sometimes much higher than that.
But, in the end, Great and determined Powers can only be defeated by being ground down to the point where a tipping point is reached. In WW I, that happened in the main on the Western Front -- and note on this that away from that front the same generals [BTW, on both sides] who "couldn't win" there by and large suddenly turned victorious. No prizes for guessing why. In WW II, the major sustained battles of attrition happened in the main on the East Front and in the air over Germany. Let us honour the sacrifices, and understand that Leonidas and his 300 Spartans -- a very flawed state indeed, but in the end part of a Civilisation worth defending -- had a point, ever so long ago now. 4] Jerry and Prof Sachs on materialism and rationalism vs rationality: We need to think through the issues. I strongly recommend Dallas Willard's remarks here as a start. GEM of TKI kairosfocus
Carl Sachs asks "What are the logical conclusions of materialism, however materialism is defined? What are the logical conclusions of rationalism, however rationalism is defined?" I believe most people here define materialism as material and energy and that all that we witness is a result of these two entities and no immaterial force(s). There is probably a more elegant definition of materialism out there but from my reading of this blog for over 2 years that what my assessment of what people here believe it is. It is also my assessment of what the term means. God knows what rationalism is. If it is something like Descartes deductive thinking then I don't think too many here ascribe to this but I could be wrong. If it has a specific definition that is currently preferred, let us know and each of us can say whether we believe what is says. The implications of materialism could probably fill a series of volumes on thinking but I bet many here oppose it because they believe it leads to atheism and from atheism to functionally disruptive behavior for many in society and maybe eventually to chaos. Atheism as a full blown ideology does not exists so we do not have not too many examples of what can result from it. Communism is one example of its failure but Communism also had a lot of economic ideology attached to it that may have been the cause of its nihilistic tendencies. I am not sure what will be gained by a focused discussion on either of these terms on the site here because it seems more appropriate for a discussion of philosophy and political theory unless you want to tie them into the practice of science. jerry
DaveScot, Good on your dad. The Marauder had the lowest loss rate of the war for bombers, so he had a fine mount to fly in. Along with the Thunderbolt they are my favorite fighting planes. I was a bit young for WWII and ended up in Korea. Still think I missed out on the better war. cheers, dennis grey
Denyse, A great many of those Canadian casualties incurred in the first war were because of the general stupidity of the commanders, which includes Canadian commanders, who thought that flesh and blood could face down industrial technology. Being proud of the stupidity of the generals is not impressive. Had that sacrifice actually accomplished something more then years of bloody, man-wreaking, stalemate then you would have something to be proud of. cheers, dennis grey
kairosfocus, I have never read the parable of the cave in the original Republic but have listened to and watched several lectures on it. No one should go through life without trying to understand the parable of the Cave. Your link is a good start and the theological and political implications are obvious. Plato is a major part of Christian thinking. His political ideas of communism have never proved practical or even desirable. I have been to Greece twice in the last 30 months with Greek scholars overseeing each trip. In one we discussed in detail the Peloponnesian War and the rise and fall of Athens. Did you know that Socrates was a war hero in Athens and this was why he was accepted so much by the Athenians and worshiped by Plato. He and Alcibiades, who I consider the most interesting person in all ancient history, were close war buddies. In case no one has ever heard of Alcibidaes, he makes Bill Clinton look like inept piker at politics and power. It was democracy that brought Athens down while the oligarchy of Sparta that succeeded. By the way the constitution of the US is primarily based on Sparta's form of government and not Athenian democracy or Roman republicanism. The debacle of Athenian democracy and the subsequent chaos of the Roman Republic made democracy dormant for 1800 years. We are beginning to see something like the Gracchi Brothers of the Roman Republic now in the United States and many do not see how democracy can survive it. The next 50 years will be interesting. Hopefully, it will be just a passing trial like our Civil War. jerry
jerry states in post 12 above: "Actually the “norm” I am talking about are running US society and are definitely running most of Western society. They are certainly not everyone but they are business people, teachers, engineers, government workers, you name it." I think this is well said. I don't think its too far-fetched to state that secular humanism/materialism is the state sponsored religion. Therefore, teachers and the media are educated under this religion, and they pass their values down to the next generation. There is no separation of church and state. The new founded church is materialism and it is taught in school. The question of orgins is inevidibly a religions one and it is taugtht in school. How do we break this cycle. We all need to learn how to think freely and independently, which is what a good education should ideally provide. DrDan
Rod, thanks for your post. It is always nice to get good news from Europe. :-) tribune7
Hello Denyse, I am a German (living in Netherlands). I believe the reason that most Europeans think ID is unscientific, is that the only place to get information on this is the mass media, which is usually reporting uncritically on evolution. (Reporting evolution as a fact). Once people get exposed to books that are critical on evolution, or to some good arguments, they often begin to re-think or re-consider. The reason that in Europe one did not hear much criticism on evolution (so far - but that will change...) is that there is a smaller number of christians, and christians are not as vocal as in USA. (In general, christians (like other groups) in the USA are more vocal to express their opinion than Christians in Europe. Maybe because as you mentioned people are more used to criticize authorities in the USA (?)). In addition, christianity in USA has developed a stronger "worldview" tradition than in Europe. "Evangelicals" in Europe often tend to be a bit anti-intellectual, due to false separation of sacred and secular (e.g. science is "secular" and therefore christians should not be involved too much...), and seeing "reason" (thinking) as non-conducive to faith. (Focus on evangelism instead of influence on society). But christians are supposed to be salt and light, including in the area of science, and that is only possible if faith and reason are combined. But this is presently changing. Evolution and ID is these days often in the news in Europe (or at least in Germany), especially in the last weeks. Also, christians in general are starting to get aware of cultural responsibility in Europe. (And I know that ID is not a "christian" movement, but by tendency, christians will tend to be more pro-ID than atheists). Anyways, in short: it is true that many people in Europe have never read of or heard of serious literature critical of evolution. That is why you may meet more Europeans who think ID is unscientific, so don't judge them :-), but give them two good books, and they may re-think. Rod
Proportionately, Canada sustained far more casualties than the United States in consequence. The numbers don't support your claim. Proportionately, the U.S. and Canada suffered nearly equal losses (.32% and .40%), with the U.S. suffering 10 times the number of casualties. Yes, I know that is not the central point of your post, but I couldn't let that gross error go unchallenged. vorwof
Speaking of bombing runs over Nazi Germany - my father was a tail gunner in a B-26 Marauder (medium bomber). He flew 25 missions as did all bomber air-crew. It was the most hazardous assignment there was. Survival rate of bomber crew members over 25 missions was 66%. One in three didn't come home alive. DaveScot
"Proportionately, Canada sustained far more casualties than the United States in consequence." From http://www.hitler.org/ww2-deaths.html U.S. lost 500,000 people. Canada lost 39,000. USSR lost 13,600,000. I'm afraid ratios mean nothing to those with an empty place at the table. Ratios don't bleed in an attempt to defeat a deadly idea. bill Me
The vast majority of the "enlightened" believe that evolution in its entirety is a "proven fact". If questioned the "enlightened" show they are totally ignorant of what evolution involves and how flimsy much of the evidence is. Evolution advocates have been highly successful in brainwashing the ignorant and covering up the limitations of the "theory". The public at large are accepting because "scientists" always tell the "truth" and should not be questioned. Like others I would have told xxxxx that creationism is not equivalent to ID and that this is a deliberate misrepresentation perpetrated by "evolutionists" to safeguard their own "uncertain" theory. deric davidson
Jerry: Read the linked parable on Plato's Cave. It summarises what is going on (hostile group-think) very well -- and it dates from 2,400 years ago. GEM of TKI kairosfocus
Jason, Actually the "norm" I am talking about are running US society and are definitely running most of Western society. They are certainly not everyone but they are business people, teachers, engineers, government workers, you name it. So they may not exhibit critical thinking about evolution, they are exercising it in other areas. I come across people in lots of different jobs and have yet to find one other person who doesn't think it strange to discuss evolution so I rarely have a chance to discuss it except for this site. And that includes my children all of whom are well educated and successful. If I ever bring it up in a conversation, it generates strange looks so I tend not to. I am not saying that some people do not think about it but it is a taboo subject in polite conversation unless one wants to take shots at fundamentalist religions. It is funny that most people do not care a wit about evolution but a few do and it can generate intense reactions not unlike what you see on Panda's Thumb. We were at a barbecue awhile back and two very liberal members of the group brought up what they called the "absurd" position some of the Republican presidential candidates had on evolution. They assumed all would agree with them but certainly not challenge them. When I politely asked what they knew about evolution and implied that there was no basis for Darwin's ideas, their comments got very snide and nasty. Others listening just hoped it would go away and after a couple minutes it did. It was something most did not care to talk about. jerry
PS: Jerry, Cf The manipulative and deceptive shadow-shows of Plato's Cave -- a parable on the failure of Athenian Democracy circa 430 - 400 BC -- with the reasons why "criticism of Darwin is so identified with nutty religious ideas that they wonder what other strange ideas I have . . . in the Northeast part of the US, it is a rarity to find someone who understand the problem or doesn’t think it is only the result of fundamentalist Christian groups." kairosfocus
Hi Ms O'Leary: Thanks for standing up for the Commonwealth's honourable and painful place in standing up to the C20 mass frenzies of European tyrants and their ideologies of domination! (NB: I went to a High School in Barbados that has its own War memorial to 1914 - 18 and 1939 - 45, in additional to the national one. Both lists at Kolij are painfully long, and every Nov 11 or so, there is a special parade. In my yet younger days in my homeland, Jamaica, there was a memorial every Nov 1 or so too. And here in Montserrat, we have our own war memorial, with some very familiar names on it. Some of my friends here are now aging 80's + years old vets from the 2nd war.) BTW, I should note that on the American battlefield contribution to the 1st war: in March 1918, Hindenberg and Ludendorf [the latter later a key associate of the Nazis in 1923; the only man who unflinchingly marched right up to then through the police line when they were shooting in response to the Beer Hall Putsch attempt] launched a massive intended to be war-ending offensive with the troops transferred from the Russian front, after the Bolsheviks had taken Russia out of the war in effect. The intent was to knock out the Western Allies before the weight of American manpower and industry could be fully brought to bear. The doughboys broke the careful calculations of HL and co. For, hastily rushed up Americans were the margin of success on holding the line with the thrusts as they neared Paris; e.g. the famous, costly, USMC stand at was it Belleau Wood. In WW2, the USSR would probably have come to a compromise peace if he Western Allies were not involved, and the Western Front dates more to 1941 - 2 than to 43 - 4. That is, we must reckon with the impact of the ever so costly sustained Bomber offensives, in which Canada and the Caribbean played a part proportionate to our propulations. For instance the loss of German Air superiority on the E front, and the critical shortage of 88 mm antitank guns were directly traceable to needing to defend the homeland against those ill-armed, slow, four-engined eggshell crates that were flying over Germany and bombing its industrial heart out. (Had it not been for the sustained bombing campaign, Germany's war production would have reached heights that would have been far more than the margin of successful defence. BTW, before the battle at Kursk, there were in fact negotiations between the Russians and the Germans on a settlement.) Anyway, back on the main point. There is no single Creationist-ID meovement as such, i.e they are distinct, as a commenter above has noted. Similarly, I contend, on IMHCO excellent reason, that evolutionary materialism is self-refuting, corrupting of morals and thus injustice- and tyranny- prone, and factually unable not only to account for the origins of the cosmos, life and biodiversity, but also for the credibility of mind and the validity of the convictions of conscience. And, perhaps this can be explored at a more serious level in the Scoville Scale thread, as there Prof Carl Sachs has taken back up the issue? Or do you think there is merit in debating here at popular level while Prof Sachs raises the more sophisticated version? GEM of TKI kairosfocus
That doesn't say much for the critical thinking faculties of "the norm". ;) Jason Rennie
Darwinism is the most simple of scientific theories. We see the results of it around us everyday in variation of people and offspring. How can you argue against it. I have met few people who understand the controversy or understand it past the level of the obvious micro-evolution we all see in the world. So it is so easy to think it must extend over time, especially deep time, to greater diversity and that anyone who denies it is a whacko. I believed it till I was introduced to the logic and actual lack of data for gradualism. So does nearly everyone of my friends and acquaintances. If it ever comes up in conversation they are curious about me not that Darwinism is wrong, exhibiting an attitude that I have gone off the deep end. The reason why, is that criticism of Darwin is so identified with nutty religious ideas that they wonder what other strange ideas I have. So what Denyse's blog correspondent is doing is just what nearly everyone thinks that I know of when even the word evolution is mentioned. Many on this blog may come from different social backgrounds but in the Northeast part of the US, it is a rarity to find someone who understand the problem or doesn't think it is only the result of fundamentalist Christian groups. So don't think that people here on this blog or your local Church group are the norm. Denyse's correspondent is more the norm. jerry
What are the logical conclusions of materialism, however materialism is defined? What are the logical conclusions of rationalism, however rationalism is defined? I ask because, where I come from, 'materialism' and 'rationalism' are precisely defined terms of art, and I want to be careful here, and try to understand how these terms are understood among the blog patrons and contributors. Carl Sachs
XXXX thinks he is being rational - but he is really being a rationalist. No premises are self justifing, and even "rational" thought is founded on unprovable assumptions; On faith. I'm sure xxxx doesn't understand either 1) the assumptions of materialism/rationaism or 2) their logical conclusions. moot point, but The US, Canada, and UK could not have whipped Hitler without the Russians. However, its likely the Russians would have beat the Nazi's even if The Western Front was never opened. RogerW
Also, I'm afraid it's true that Canada is often overlooked. I saw a stand-up comic the other day compare Canada to an attic. We hardly ever think of it, and then when we go up there we say, "Wow, look at all this great stuff!" My parents were on PEI last week; said it was the most beautiful place they've ever been. BarryA
You replied a "tad frostily?" Yes, and the core of the sun is rather warmish. ;-) BarryA
It's been said that "America is the only country founded on an idea, the idea that a people can govern themselves, without a king or a monarch." I guess Europeans are just more enamored with authority than Americans, who tend to view authority wih suspicion. russ
I wish that you had informed xxxxx that intelligent design is not creationism. Collin
"I am always amazed by hearing comments by citizens of this most advanced country about what has been accepted as basic fact" What an odd comment. Not even a hint of the possibility that the reason it is questioned is because it may in fact be questionable. Funny how the Darwinist Zealots don't ever consider such a possibility. I guess it makes them uncomfortable to consider the possibility that any rational person could question Darwinian religious commitments. Jason Rennie

Leave a Reply