John Calvert lies about KCFS at AEI

| 27 Comments

I don’t use the word “lie” loosely. I know it means deliberately saying something that one knows not to be true.

But in this case, I am willing to claim that John Calvert lied to the audience at his presentation at a conference hosted by the conservative American Enterprise Institute in Washington D.C. this past week. I hope to write more about Calvert’s presentation there, which was in conjunction with a speech by Barbara Forrest, but here I want to concentrate on one comment made by Calvert concerning Kansas Citizens for Science.

Here’s what Calvert said at the AEI Conference.

The strategy of the opposition was revealed in a memo that was accidentally published in February by the media and public relations office of Kansas Citizens for Science, the organization which has cloned itself around the country and works very closely with the National Center for Science Education.

(my emphasis)(Audio captured from a video clip on the CSPAN website.)

Now the “memo” in question was actually a post on the KCFS Public Discussion forum. It was not “accidentally published,” but rather was a personal post by KCFS Board member Liz Craig as part of a discussion about the Kansas Board of Education. (The discussion was not even about Calvert’s ID Minority – it was about the six creationist state BOE members.)

Calvert knows this was not an “accidentally published memo”, because he and his ID Minority group published a “To Whom It May Concern” paper about this on May 2 in which they clearly quoted the post, which ends with

Posted by Liz Craig, Member no 70 KCFS .org Discussion Forum Posts: 171 | From: Kansas | Registered: Jan 2005 | IP: Logged

Furthermore, during Bill Harris’ testimony at the Kansas Hearings, Calvert directly pointed out that Harris had given a copy of the above post to the state Board of Education, and Harris put the post on the overhead.

For Calvert to now be telling people that this was an “accidentally published memo” is a lie. He knows what is was – a post by an individual on a public discussion forum. It was not a “memo” and it was not “accidentally published.”

There is no excuse for this. My hope is that by making this public here, Calvert will perhaps be dissuaded from continuing to embellish this story with false statements.

27 Comments

My hope is that by making this public here, Calvert will perhaps be dissuaded from continuing to embellish this story with false statements.

Don’t count on it.

Thanks for this correction of the erroneous info put out by Calvert. I was at the AEI seminar. Calvert’s presentation was disorganized, rambling, and some of his slides were amateurish and crude, and he had repeated technical difficulties with his brief. He was highly ineffective, especially when compared to the outstanding presentations given by Ken Miller, Barbara Forrest, Lawrence Krauss, and Father George Coyne of the Vatican Observatory.

The mileage these people can get out of A POSTING ON A PUBLIC FORUM! It kills me.

Can we make Sal Cordova’s entire “body of work” on ARN the official voice of the ID movement and get this over with?

Thanks to Dick Lesserd for that feedback. I’ve never heard - or seen - Calvert speak. From the amount of mischief associated with him, I formed the presupposition that he must be “slick”, if nothing else. But perhaps the damage he does has more to do with the receptiveness of the audience than with the persuasiveness of the presenter.

Calvert is anything but slick. I’ve never seen him live but seen some video, read quite a bit of his stuff, and heard audio. If he had any sense he’d be embarrassed by himself. He’s a buffoon.

I’ve actually noticed that in local creo events, where Calvert goes the DI tends to stay away. They know he’s no asset to their cause.

He’s to the DI what Kent Hovind is to AiG.

What’s most interesting in this whole situation is that Calvert has been caught doing exactly what he and the Authors of the Minority Report were complaining about when they originally publicized Ms. Craig’s post.

In the “To Whom It May Concern” paper that Jack Krebs linked to in the opening post, they complained that “the opposition to the Minority Report is built on a campaign of misinformation.”

Woe to you, John Calvert.

If he had any sense he’d be embarrassed by himself. He’s a buffoon.

*sigh* yeah, that’s almost word for word what most rational folks (including myself) said about GW before he got elected, twice.

pardon the attack on the english language but “buffonery” and “non-slickness” are apparently positive character traits for most americans.

I guess that makes them “real” somehow…

you can examine some of the thousands of pages out there documenting what americans had to say about why they voted for GW (or voted against Gore and Kerry) if you don’t believe me.

it isn’t possible to win a majority argument in america simply by pointing out the obvious ridiculousness of the opposition (the typical american will simply view this as “typical elitist attitude”.

such is the way things are, unfortunately.

John Calvert has a letter on Dembski’s site responding to this.

Are We Liars? By John Calvert:

http://www.uncommondescent.com/docu[…]we_liars.pdf

He lies in the first sentence and says the argument is “issue about teaching origins.” The criticisms of evolution in the Pandas text are not dealing with just how the first cells came to be, they are hitting at the evidence of the on going process of evolution.

The ideology charge is thrown back at us, yet we’re the mixed group here that represents more diverse religious views.

Thanks Norman - that is most interesting, and puzzling, news. Calvert’s paper is not at all about the issues raised by my post, but it seems strangely coincidental that he would publish a post entitled “Are We Liars” on the same day I would expose this situation about KCFS. How odd.

not odd at all, Jack.

Think about it for a sec:

he literally CAN’T address the accusation of yours specific to the case in point, because it is so easily trackable and documented.

However, he CAN deflect the whole argument of “lying” in general by bringing up a more amibiguous, unrelated issue that he can then use to claim he isn’t a liar.

then he will just use the amibiguity involved to claim all you are doing is throwing out ad-hominem attacks “so typical of darwinists” and put the matter quickly to rest amongst his sycophants, who won’t bother to question whether he is lying in the case he posts in defense.

am i wrong?

One wonders why he did it, surely the very great risk of exposure and subsquent mockery on the blogsphere would have dissauded him from an action which could at best provide marginal benefits for his case. His almost surreal dissasociation from the truth disturbs and disgusts me, he wasn’t even lying to acheive some massive end, he just lied to “win” a point, and this while he was undoubtedly also preaching his slant on family values! The sleaze buckets of American politics, and especially American conservatives, worry me, but what really terrifies me is that guys like this are currently in charge of the largest nuclear aresenal on the planet.

welcome to the dark side, god.

Jack Krebs wrote: “Calvert’s paper is not at all about the issues raised by my post,…”

Well not directly. It’s not about the post becoming a memo in his mind. (I think they want to catch our side with a “Wedge Document” type exposure.)

“… strangely coincidental that he would publish a post entitled ‘Are We Liars’ on the same day I would expose this situation about KCFS. How odd.”

Like Sir_Toejam said; “…he literally CAN’T address the accusation of yours specific to the case in point, because it is so easily trackable and documented. - However, he CAN deflect the whole argument of ‘lying’ in general by bringing up a more ambiguous, unrelated issue that he can then use to claim he isn’t a liar.”

Is it a lie – or an exaggeration?

You know our side is a mix of motives, maybe the ID side is mixed motivationally too.

I actually do like to use natural selection as an argument for philosophical naturalism and materialism. But I do have to admit that it’s not a knock out punch to theism.

Like it or not, philosophical issues are at stake for many of us, just not all of us. We are a much more mixed and divided group than the IDers.

The ID sycophants will be reached by it.

You say: “For Calvert to now be telling people that this was an ‘accidentally published memo’ is a lie. He knows what is was — a post by an individual on a public discussion forum. It was not a ‘memo…”

What exactly is a memo? Is there some hard and fast technical definition of a “memo”?

This could get into more word games.

“My hope is that by making this public here, Calvert will perhaps be dissuaded from continuing to embellish this story with false statements.”

I doubt it. IDers love word games and changing the definitions. They love to set up semantic traps for us.

“Like it or not, philosophical issues are at stake for many of us, just not all of us. We are a much more mixed and divided group than the IDers.”

I like it, it’s a sign anti-ID isn’t under the control of a set of dry intellectual orthodoxies, from the perspective of an observer it also makes the debate more interesting, and it gives everyone an opportunity to overcome there differences and decide what’s really important.

“Is it a lie — or an exaggeration?”

It’s a fine line, but as someone whose very careful about calling people liars I’d say the lines been crossed, the only situations I can imagine in which Calvert aren’t lying are very improbable.

“I actually do like to use natural selection as an argument for philosophical naturalism and materialism. But I do have to admit that it’s not a knock out punch to theism.”

Hey, I am proof that theism is true!

“The ideology charge is thrown back at us, yet we’re the mixed group here that represents more diverse religious views.”

Much as I’d like to agree with you I can’t, you’ve largely got religious atheists ( Dawkins) Atheists ( Scott) and christians ( Miller). They’ve got Raelians, Hindu’s, Christians ( from fundamentalist protestant to catholic), Muslims, Jews and even at least one atheist ( Berlinski). The whole debate is a mixed bag at both ends of the spectrum.

Has anyone noticed this is one of the few debates in which extreme’s don’t touch?

ID = meddlers and quacks

AEI = meddlers and quacks

Birds of a feather.…..

Well not directly. It’s not about the post becoming a memo in his mind. (I think they want to catch our side with a “Wedge Document” type exposure.)

Indeed, it has always been an odd penchant for ID/creationists to accuse “the other side” of doing the things that it, itself, has been doing all along.

The Wedge Document crushed them, fatally. They would all give their left gonads to hit “the other side” in the same manner.

Even if there isn’t any.

Much as I’d like to agree with you I can’t, you’ve largely got religious atheists ( Dawkins) Atheists ( Scott) and christians ( Miller).

I’m a Buddhist/Taoist.

I know lots of Jewish anti-IDers. I also know several anti-ID Muslims.

And we have at least one Hindu anti-IDer here.

Syntax Error: not well-formed (invalid token) at line 30, column 11, byte 2737 at /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/5.16/mach/XML/Parser.pm line 187.

don’tgiveadamnist

hey, I rather resemble that remark!

don’tgiveadamnist

hey, I rather resemble that remark!

Nobody gives a damn. ;>

exactly.

I was struck by this particular paragraph: “It seems that adversaries of ID are particularly guilty of this. They claim to want to do good science but they actually want to promote the ideology of materialism. We know this to be the case because the EFFECT of their behavior is to allow only a materialistic explanation at the expense of doing bad historical science (science that does not allow objective consideration of the principle competing possibility).”

Given the missing word or misspelling in the final sentence, it’s difficult to parse exactly what he’s saying, but in effect he SEEMS to be saying that ID advocates determine the motivations of their adversaries by what they see as the effect of the viewpoints their adversaries advocate. But this is nothing save another example of the fallacious post hoc reasoning that infects their movement as a whole. Their are numberless examples of individuals with only the best intentions who nonetheless make mistakes or end up being the cause of something contrary to those intentions.

Not only that, but it completely ignores the very real possibility that the reason why “good science” (as the adversaries of ID would have it) “allows only a materialistic explanation…” is precisely because a materialistic explanation is the truth of the matter. Not guaranteed but certainly a possibility and therefore the inference of motive from effect is doubly wrong.

I was struck by this particular paragraph: “It seems that adversaries of ID are particularly guilty of this. They claim to want to do good science but they actually want to promote the ideology of materialism. We know this to be the case because the EFFECT of their behavior is to allow only a materialistic explanation at the expense of doing bad historical science (science that does not allow objective consideration of the principle competing possibility).”

Given the missing word or misspelling in the final sentence, it’s difficult to parse exactly what he’s saying, but in effect he SEEMS to be saying that ID advocates determine the motivations of their adversaries by what they see as the effect of the viewpoints their adversaries advocate.

Just WATCH how quickly this tune changes when the judge rules that the EFFECT of “design theory” is to advance religion and thus it fails the second prong of the Lemon test.

(snicker)

what twaddle!!..as expected your links to the “evidence” dont work.…typical…just like the evidence for evolution.….where is it??? nowhere!! ha ha

Whose links, Harold? The ones in the main post work for me, and always have.

why is it that all the IDiots who post here follow mostly the same pattern:

show up, post some irrational nonsense, and then leave before even clarify what the hell they are talking about.

or

they post irrational nonsense, and when we call them on it, claim “prejudice” on our part.

are all of these folks really that pathetic?

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This page contains a single entry by Jack Krebs published on October 23, 2005 7:39 PM.

Ask Prof. Steve Steve #1 was the previous entry in this blog.

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