If Evolutionists Were Smart…


I know. I know. Most of the current scientific establishment, Big Science if you will, the intelligensia, allegedly the greatest minds of our time are supposed to be evolutionists. And here I am, crackpot creationist extraoridinaire, suggesting that they aren’t all that smart.

They’re not.

I’m not even sure we can reasonably grant that they’re intelligent. Intelligence tends to challenge the prevailing notions, to push the envelope, to expand the scope of knowledge and human potential. Big Science seems more interested in chasing after grants, tenure and protecting their own interests. They not only go with the flow, following along with lemming-like ardor, they criticize anyone who goes against it. No salmon allowed. Galileo, Copernicus and Darwin all challenged the paradigms of their day. Today, they would be ostracized, criticized and generally ridiculed by the likes of  PZ Myers and his rather rabid fan base. Yes, fan base. They would be kept out of peer-reviewed journals and then criticized for not having their work in peer-reviewed journals. Their work would be called pseudoscience without ever considering it seriously. They would be subject to pernicious personal attacks from those who hold to the Party line. They would be denied grants, tenure and visibility because they weren’t bleating the right things, rather than because their work was credible or not.

I digress.

The Darwin Party is making a Big Mistake.

If they were smart, they’d stop attacking people and start testing their ideas. 

You see, people don’t like it when they realize that your position isn’t being held by argument and evidence, so much as propaganda and suppression of any debate. But they’re not giving us evidence for evolutionism and evidence against intelligent design or creationism. They’ve left behind an evidence-based argument.

They’re using censorship to keep any criticism of evolutionism out of public school textbooks.

They’re using deception, using slippery, shifting definitions to get across the Big Idea of evolution to indoctrinate school children.

They’re using indoctrination, presenting children with a rosy view of evolutionism that ignores any of its problems and teaches it as established fact.

They’re using endorsements, pointing to religious leaders who compromised Creationism with evolutionism, saying, “Look, if your preacher thinks evolution is OK, it must be true.”

They’re using ridicule, ad hominem attacks and mockery of the other guy’s position without ever addressing his arguments.

They’re using denialism, saying that the opposition simply isn’t science, but never address whether it is true.

They’re using straw men of their opposition’s actual views, equating OEC with YEC and ID with Creationism in general. They counter and ridicule arguments that no one in the opposition’s camp uses.

They’re using outrage, claiming we’re wasting their precious time with things that are obviously pseudoscience since they are not evolutionism. This strained protest reminds me of debaters who claim that there are sooo many errors on our side that are soooo easy to refute, but they don’t want to waste their time with something sooo obvious. Weak.

They’re using a tight-fisted control of expressive venues, keeping the opposition voice to a fringe minimum, all the while conveniently accusing them of being a fringe minority. Ask Sternberg what happens if you allow the opposition a chance to voice their position.

They’re using extortion and intimidation, denying jobs, tenure, grants and visibility to those who show disloyalty to the Darwin Party.

I think you get the point.

When an established position begins using these tactics at the hint of criticism or closer examination, we correctly suppose they have something to hide.

If evolutionists were smart, they’d get back to the business of science. They’d get back to the evidence. They’d welcome open debate, if for nothing else than the opportunity to squash the opposition and demonstrate the truth of their own position.

Unless, of course, they really do have something to hide. Unless the Great and Powerful OZ isn’t all he’s cracked up to be. Unless there isn’t blessed thing to the Emperor’s New Science.

If the theory really is in such poor shape after, maybe they’re doing the only smart thing they can by refusing to engage us. Maybe it’s not just unfounded arrogance that keeps them from considering the other position. Maybe its not just cowardice that causes them to fascistly suppress all criticism and maintain that High Wall of Protection around East Berlin Evolution. Maybe they ARE smart. Maybe they know that house of cards will come crashing down at the slightest breath of inspection. Maybe they’ve measured their actual troops and resources against that of their opposition and have realized, despite the overwhelming advantage they bluster about having, that an open battlefield is the surest way to defeat!

Of course, if their position is that weak and they refuse to admit it, maybe it’s not their intelligence we should be questioning but rather their motives.

Now compare this to the desire of creationists and intelligent design advocates to engage in open debate. Compare the Darwin Party’s appeals to authority and mockeries to their oppositions evidence-based arguments. One of these is saying, “I’ve got nothing to hide. Test me!” The other is saying, “We have the truth. Shut up and fall in line!”

I wonder what would happen if we were allowed to simply follow the evidence wherever it leads?

–Sirius Knott

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. Neil says:

    Excellent summary, Sirius. I especially liked how you noted their arguments from outrage (“Won’t someone please think of the children!” One guy who got banned from my blog would say ridiculous things like how ID was slowing down cancer cures, and how since Stalin opposed Darwinism and I oppose Darwinism then I am like Stalin. Fun stuff!

    “They’re using endorsements, pointing to religious leaders who compromised Creationism with evolutionism, saying, “Look, if your preacher thinks evolution is OK, it must be true.”

    Yep. I like how Expelled! showed how the Darwinists just use the theological liberals as useful idiot and have no respect for them.

  2. Neil says:

    Sirius, good points about the Galileo straw man that the evolutionists like to trot out. Oh, the humanity! Too bad the facts don’t support their position . . . again.

  3. Sirius says:

    Four predictions that ID makes:

    1. That we will find specified complexity in nature
    2. That we will see a rapid appearance of complexity in the fossil record.
    3. That we will see a re-usage of similar parts in different organisms; repeated use of common design elements.
    4. That biological structures have a purpose [evolutionism predicted vestigial organs, but that hasn’t exactly panned out the way they wanted it to.]

    Here’s a larger discussion from my Favorites Tabs: FAQ: Does Intelligent Design make predictions? Is it testable?
    –Sirius Knott

  4. matt says:

    In reality, atheists/evolutionists know that God exists. Yes, they know. In the inner being, the atheist knows God exists. The atheists denies God’s existence as an act of rebellion. The athiest willfully deceives himself by attempting to bury that knowledge under layers of lies such as evolution, humanism, destorted scientific interpretatios of the world around him. The truth is, the atheist hates God and so tries futile attempts to erase Him as if God were just a figmant of imagination.

    Questioning the existence of God is absurdity in and of itself. God is existence and the author of your very existence. So therefore the universe is, therefore you are a concious being able to ponder the observable universe and discover and understand the scientific laws God has mandated to uphold the physical universe and the higher heavens beyond our capacity to observe. How dare we bring God’s being into question. He is the I AM, meaning he transcends time/space and the higher demensions beyond. This incomprehensively vast physical universe is just the tip of the iceberg when pondering the works of God Almighty.

  5. gl says:

    @”Reverend,”
    Are you saying Darwin wasn’t “pushing the envelope” when he went up against Big Religion in the 1860s. I’m sure he was after tenure. And grants. Even though his theory was and still is arguably the most controversial theory proposed in the history of biology. (Which the existence of your blog is helping me to prove. Thanks!)
    Not that this matters, but I find it interesting that even your offhand remarks have absolutely no basis in reality.

    1. gl,

      You’re comparing apples to oranges.

      I have never said that Darwin wasn’t pushing the envelope. Darwin actually advocated a fair and balanced presentation of both sides of the argument. In fact, my comments aren’t about Charles Darwin at all; they’re about modern-day evolutionists… which is why your accussation that my “offhand comments have no basis in reality” are irrelevant.

      Please refrain from attacking straw men arguments in the future and stick to what I’m actually claiming. Also, you may wish to consult my Rules of Engagement if you wish to comment on this site in the future.

      -revTony

  6. Havok says:

    Today, they would be ostracized, criticized and generally ridiculed by the likes of PZ Myers and his rather rabid fan base.
    Garbage. They would be asked for the evidence.
    People like Lynn Margulis challenged established biology. Unlike the ID crowd, she didn’t whine, she went away and did the work. She produced the evidence to support her hypothesis, and it is now accepted science.
    The ID crowd could learn a thing or two from people like Margulis (and Galileo, Darwin, etc – all of whom did the work to show they were on to something).

    If they were smart, they’d stop attacking people and start testing their ideas.

    They do so. Perhaps you should consult the scientific literature on this instead of making statements in ignorance?
    It seems to be the ID camp who do nothing to test their ideas. After 15 years of bloviating there is still no research program. The DiscoTute’s budget seems to go into PR rather than research.

    They’re using censorship to keep any criticism of evolutionism out of public school textbooks.

    Public school text books are not the place to place untested scientific hypothesis, which is what ID is (assuming you don’t think it is simply failed science). The whole textbook thing is a PR strategy to try to indoctrinate people for Jesus rather than a legitimate scientific concern.

    They’re using straw men of their opposition’s actual views, equating OEC with YEC and ID with Creationism in general.

    The whole “cdesign proponentists” debarkle from the “Of Panda’s and People” text book makes a fairly solid case the ID is simply reincarnated creationism, as does the DI’s wedge strategy.

    Now compare this to the desire of creationists and intelligent design advocates to engage in open debate.

    If you mean open debate as in staged formal debates, then creationists and ID’ists love them because they give the appearance of legitimacy to their views, due to the nature and constraints of the format.
    If you mean open and public discourse on the facts, methods and hypothesis of a field, then biology already does this.

    One of these is saying, “I’ve got nothing to hide. Test me!” The other is saying, “We have the truth. Shut up and fall in line!”

    You have things backwards here. It is the biologists who do the tests. The ID folk simply assert things and never seem to bother to do the work. ID’ers like Dembski seem to claim certainty of their position, even in the face of contrary argumernts. Biologists on the other hand, due to the nature of the scientific enterprise, tend to be less certain of their positions, and actively try to demonstrate the falsity of their claims (after all, that is the purpose of testing a scientific hypothesis).

    blockquote>I wonder what would happen if we were allowed to simply follow the evidence wherever it leads?

    Well, you’d end up with something very much like the modern theory of evolution. Unless you had some a priori reason to believe in a designer, there would be no reason given the current evidence, to postulate one – this is why all of ID’s arguments are negative in nature, arguments from ignorance rather than positive claims.

    1. Havok,

      Your comments are in blockquotes with my response following. Italicized remarks in the blockquotes are to differentiate where you quote me. Here is my response:

      ’Today, they would be ostracized, criticized and generally ridiculed by the likes of PZ Myers and his rather rabid fan base.’
      Garbage. They would be asked for the evidence.”

      The origins argument isn’t about evidence. We have exactly the same evidence – the same rocks, fossils, biology, chemistry, planet, universe, physics… the same facts. Facts are not self-explanatory. Facts must be interpreted. And we generally interpret that evidence according to our presuppositions: Creationists interpret the evidence in a manner consistent with Biblical revelation and evolutionists interpret the evidence in a manner consistent with pure naturalism; neither side is willing to consider evidence which contradicts their basic presupposition.

      “People like Lynn Margulis challenged established biology. Unlike the ID crowd, she didn’t whine, she went away and did the work. She produced the evidence to support her hypothesis, and it is now accepted science.
      The ID crowd could learn a thing or two from people like Margulis (and Galileo, Darwin, etc – all of whom did the work to show they were on to something).”

      Lynn Margulis challenged a subset of ideas concerning how evolution works. Like Gould’s punctuated equilibrium, her work was not mainstream, but it was still evolutionary and still adhered to the assumption of pure naturalism. Unfortunately, the ID undercuts the grand presupposition of pure naturalism, suggesting that some things might be the result of non-uniform directed processes resulting from an intelligence. Dr. Scott Todd pretty much sums up the intolerant nature of pure naturalism’s war with intelligent design: “Even if all the data point to an intelligent designer, such a hypothesis is excluded from science because it is not naturalistic.” So much for the “Show me the evidence” canard.

      If they were smart, they’d stop attacking people and start testing their ideas. They do so. Perhaps you should consult the scientific literature on this instead of making statements in ignorance?
      It seems to be the ID camp who do nothing to test their ideas. After 15 years of bloviating there is still no research program. The DiscoTute’s budget seems to go into PR rather than research.”

      You’re simply repeating propaganda here, so I’m not quite sure how seriously I should take your arguments. The all-natural bias of modern science has kept it from considering the validity of ID’s claims; in doing so, science has cut off its nose to spite its face, for in rejecting the exploration of ID on the grounds that it might provide evidence for a Grand Designer, science has also prevented itself from being able to objectively distinguish between the natural and the artificial.

      “They’re using censorship to keep any criticism of evolutionism out of public school textbooks.Public school text books are not the place to place untested scientific hypothesis, which is what ID is (assuming you don’t think it is simply failed science). The whole textbook thing is a PR strategy to try to indoctrinate people for Jesus rather than a legitimate scientific concern.”

      You’ve committed a common fallacy here. You’re warning folks that ID should be rejected because it could be used in support of Christianity. Oddly enough, this is a double-standard since evolution and pure naturalism are central tenets of humanism, which is recognized by the US Supreme Court as a religion, yet no one objects to teaching evolution or pure naturalism in schools even though teaching these concepts can be used in support of the humanist religion.

      “They’re using straw men of their opposition’s actual views, equating OEC with YEC and ID with Creationism in general.
      The whole “cdesign proponentists” debarkle from the “Of Panda’s and People” text book makes a fairly solid case the ID is simply reincarnated creationism, as does the DI’s wedge strategy.”

      To say that ID is simply re-incarnated creationism is willful ignorance. Yes, the authors of “Of Pandas and People” found that changing some sections of their text from creationists to design proponents to be rather easy with minimal editing, but this is because the argument from design has long been used by creationists. Again, you’re conflating an argument which can be used in support of a religious view with the religious viewpoint itself. ID in and of itself never identifies the designer and cannot comment on whether evolution is true or not. This is why it has been used as a supporting argument, but Christians have always acknowledged that other arguments are needed to get to the Biblical worldview. Likewise, what the Discovery Institute intends to do with the ID argument is irrelevant to the point of whether it is valid or not.

      “Now compare this to the desire of creationists and intelligent design advocates to engage in open debate.
      If you mean open debate as in staged formal debates, then creationists and ID’ists love them because they give the appearance of legitimacy to their views, due to the nature and constraints of the format.
      If you mean open and public discourse on the facts, methods and hypothesis of a field, then biology already does this.”

      What you’re advocating is a one-sided “discussion” of the evidence, which amounts to preaching evolution and misrepresenting your opponent’s views.

      “One of these is saying, “I’ve got nothing to hide. Test me!” The other is saying, “We have the truth. Shut up and fall in line!”
      You have things backwards here. It is the biologists who do the tests. The ID folk simply assert things and never seem to bother to do the work. ID’ers like Dembski seem to claim certainty of their position, even in the face of contrary argumernts. Biologists on the other hand, due to the nature of the scientific enterprise, tend to be less certain of their positions, and actively try to demonstrate the falsity of their claims (after all, that is the purpose of testing a scientific hypothesis).”

      Thank for the blanket denial. When you shut IDists out of peer-reviewed journals, you don’t get the right to claim that IDists don’t do the work. Likewise, your credulity when it comes to the lack of certainty you claim biologists treat their positions does not extend to evolution which has more statements of dogma backing it up than I can count.

      “‘I wonder what would happen if we were allowed to simply follow the evidence wherever it leads?’
      Well, you’d end up with something very much like the modern theory of evolution. Unless you had some a priori reason to believe in a designer, there would be no reason given the current evidence, to postulate one – this is why all of ID’s arguments are negative in nature, arguments from ignorance rather than positive claims.”

      Or we might just see that the evidence for a designer is compelling enough to make folks wonder why anyone ever considered an assumption of pure naturalism a good idea in the first place.

      Think about it,
      revTony

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