Lame Ducks Weigh In

| 48 Comments

It looks like the lame ducks in Washington have decided to issue an opinion and an appendix accusing the Smithsonian of discriminating against Sternberg and politicizing science. That’s right; anti-evolution politicians are accusing the Smithsonian of being the one responsible for politicizing science. It comes as no surprise that the media complaints division is on the story. Expect WorldNet Daily and other reputable news organizations to run with the story.

The opinion was prepared by congressional staff and was commissioned by Congressman Mark Souder, the chairman of the subcommittee on criminal justice, drug policy, and human resources, and who in 2000 co-hosted a Discovery Institute briefing on intelligent design aimed at persuading congress that ID needed political support. Soon after the briefing, he even read a defense of ID, given to him by the Discovery Institute, into the congressional record. On his website you can find the typical pedestrian arguments against evolution.

So it comes as no surprise that the staff of this friend of the DI has decided that the Smithsonian violated Sternberg’s rights and that new laws need to be passed to establish affirmative action for anti-evolutionists. Because, according to them, judging anti-evolutionists on the merit of their views of science is discrimination. Next they’ll be telling us that Los Alamos should hire people who have doubts about gravity.

Yawn. Can’t they come up with anything original after their devastating loss in Dover?

48 Comments

Mark Souder is an anti-evolution, conservative evangelical. His staff knows what he wants, and gives it to him.

It’s amusing that a staff report prepared for a single Republican congressman became, in Sal Cordova’s hands, a finding by the ‘United States Congress.’

Andrea: we had a discussion on this topic. It seems as though my point of view was correct.

Is anyone contrite on the Darwinian side?

P.S. I’m posting this; but I’m not going to bother to check up on responses, etc.

I’m posting this; but I’m not going to bother to check up on responses, etc.

you are gaining in wisdom, limbless knight.

Blast Wrote:

Is anyone contrite on the Darwinian side?

Of course not. As you know, workplace harassment is a central tenet of Darwinism.

… and we eat our young, too.

Reed wrote

Next they’ll be telling us that Los Alamos should hire people who have doubts about gravity.

Hey! :Intelligent Falling is a perfectly … um … erm … scientifical theory!

RBH

The letter from Sheila Burke ends with:

“Should he[Sternberg] seek an extension of his appointment when it expires in January 2007, his application will receive full and fair consideration.”

Does anyone know what’s up with that?

Blast wrote:

Is anyone contrite on the Darwinian side?

Of course not. As you know, workplace harassment is a central tenet of Darwinism.

That is, when we can find time between church burnings and spreading Ebola.

Oh yeah. And destroying the American Family.

Wears a guy out.

It looks like the lame ducks in Washington have decided to issue an opinion and an appendix accusing the Smithsonian of discriminating against Sternberg and politicizing science.

Hm. Lame ducks? Or just one lame duck?

Andrea: we had a discussion on this topic. It seems as though my point of view was correct.

Is anyone contrite on the Darwinian side?

Actually, I don’t think so. I just read the documents and they do not add one bit of evidence of actual harassment to the faux-investigation the political hacks at the OSC did a while ago. Frankly, if you read the Appendix (have you?), Sternberg is the one who seems comes out the worse, assuming the comments in the e-mails about previous concerns with his mis-handling of collection samples and Smithsonian property, are truthful(and they have not been disputed as far as I know). It even turns out there was precedent of concern for his mishandling peer review of manuscripts!

Meanwhile, the e-mails seem to dispel the nefarious motives attributed to the moving of his office and withdrawing of keys. And Genie Scott and the NCSE are clearly the voice of reason from the beginning.

To fill in the picture, Sternberg apparently even had the gall to recently try to milk the Smithsonian for a $300,000 non-competitive research grant to make up for his lost research time and to hire his own staff, because he does not trust Smithsonian staff. (I guess if the SI staff mistrusts Sternberg it’s harassment, but if Sternberg mistrusts the SI staff, it’s a reason to ask for money.)

Overall, if you read through the DI spin and the political smoke from Santorum and Souder, it seems that we were right from the beginning.

Gerard, our pal Sal is an incoherent babbler with delusions of adequacy. I fear for his sanity, actually.

Wikipedia Wrote:

In 2003, Souder introduced the “Ronald Reagan Dime Act”, to put Reagan’s image on the dime in place of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. “I believe he represents conservative values as we would see them implemented through a president better than anybody else we’ve had in American history,” Souder said. “He, to conservatives, represents kind of the reverse of FDR, who is kind of the liberal icon. Ronald Reagan is the conservative icon.”

Senior DI Fellow Blastfromthepast :

Is anyone contrite on the Darwinian side?

.….ah which side was caught outright lying in Dover? Which side consistently and pathologically lies .….from Jesus is coming ,to WMD’s, to Global Meltdown?

It’s a pity a religious organization like the DI can’t be sued for crimes against truth.

That’s fine Blastfromthepast stay the course, I don’t believe pride is directly exchangeable for contrition in the right wing of the temple, put out more flags and order another case of viagra.

Souder’s efforts carry the exact same weight as McKinney’s recent efforts:

http://gnn.tv/articles/2791/BREAKIN[…]_Impeachment

that is to say, other than media spectacle, none.

Wikipedia, via Coin Wrote:

In 2003, Souder introduced the “Ronald Reagan Dime Act”, to put Reagan’s image on the dime in place of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. “I believe he represents conservative values as we would see them implemented through a president better than anybody else we’ve had in American history,” Souder said. “He, to conservatives, represents kind of the reverse of FDR, who is kind of the liberal icon. Ronald Reagan is the conservative icon.”

Of course Souder, being the as…, er, “conservative” he is, ignores

Wikipedia Wrote:

The Mercury dime was replaced in 1946 by the Roosevelt dime, designed in honor of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who died in April 1945. Although other coins were eligible for an updated design, the dime was chosen due to Roosevelt’s work in founding the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, now known as the March of Dimes.

Liberals presumably approve of the good things Roosevelt did and disapprove of the bad things Reagan did, while conservatives presumably approve of the good things Reagan did and disapprove of the bad things that Roosevelt did. A comparison of those lists is illuminating.

Souder’s efforts carry the exact same weight as McKinney’s recent efforts:

http://gnn.tv/articles/2791/BREAKING_Congresswom

that is to say, other than media spectacle, none.

I can think of quite a number of differences, for instance that a large fraction of Americans support McKinney’s position. According to polls in 2005, a majority of Americans felt that Bush should be impeached if he lied about Iraq. Today, with the 2006 election results, a lot of people would probably agree with Pelosi that it’s enough that they are lame ducks. But it’s quite inaccurate to characterize McKinney’s efforts as “media spectacle”, especially since the mainstream media goes out of its way to marginalize impeachment efforts and label their proponents as “fringe”, pretending that those polls and the broad sentiment they represent don’t exist.

It seems as though my point of view was correct.

Coming from him, that’s a tautology.

I hope everyone here takes some time to read through the Appendix. The disconnect between the report and the evidence (in the appendix) on which it was based is simply breathtaking.

the article contains this line

And it suggests their attacks on a scientist who just edited an article on intelligent design are just the tip of the iceberg of an industry-wide fear of anything that suggests man might not have come from a puddle of sludge.

———

What really annoys me about all this is that for almost all of human history the only reason for how we came to be was “goddditit”. Now, with modern science we can lift the veil a little. Yet these people now talk as if they are the supressed truth holders, when all along religion did it’s best to prevent the truth leaking out. For 99% of recorded history, they had the only game in town. They really dont like being on the loosing side…

They say “goddidit” We say “puddle of sludge”.

Come back in 50 years and tell me how the positions have developed huh?

If only we could leave them to their ignorance.

Not surprisingly, Souder’s idiocy also extends to abstinence (intelligent copulation?):

NIH: Faulty research removed two years ago United Press International - December 5, 2003 Steve Mitchell WASHINGTON, Dec. 5 (UPI) – Despite news reports that recent, federally funded research on the effectiveness of a sex education program may have included fabricated data, the researchers involved actually were exposed more than two years ago and the skewed information was excluded from the final study, the National Institutes of Health said Friday.

“It was found two years ago and the data in question were removed right away from the database and were not published,” Alan Price, associate director of NIH’s Office of Research Integrity in Bethesda, Md., told United Press International.

The study, which appeared in last January’s issue of the journal Pediatrics, found teens who participated along with their parents in an educational program had lower rates of sexual intercourse and unprotected sex than kids who went through the program on their own. The program featured messages about both abstinence and safe-sex practices.

The ORI reported in the Dec. 2 issue of the Federal Register that three data collectors – who were not listed on the study as authors – employed by the University of Maryland at Baltimore’s department of pediatrics admitted to falsifying interviews with some teens.

A story in Friday’s Washington Times quoted Rep. Mark Souder, R-Ind., an abstinence proponent, as saying: “If not caught, the lives of countless children may have been put at risk by ineffective, perhaps dangerous, prevention messages developed from this fabricated research.”

However, the skewed interviews were detected in August 2001 by the study’s own principal investigator, Dr. Bonita Stanton, then at UMBC. Stanton, who now is at Children’s Hospital of Michigan, told UPI she promptly notified the NIH at that time. The institutes had funded the study.

In addition, Stanton tossed out all the interviews the three researchers – Lajuane Woodard, Sheila Blackwell and Khalilah Creek – had conducted.

In an interview with UPI, Souder accused the researchers of “contrived research to try to make an ideological point.” He added: “It’s a fairly significant fabrication because on the abstinence side we don’t have to fabricate the data.”

Stanton rejected Souder’s contentions.

“Absolutely no fabricated data were used in any of these analyses and we went out of our way to make sure any of the (information collected by) these data collectors … was eliminated … even if it looked good,” she said.

Indeed, UMBC temporarily halted the study in 2001 and asked a panel of professors from several different institutions to review it to ensure the questionable data collectors had not tainted the conclusions.

Stanton also dismissed Souder’s accusations she was ideologically driven. “This was not trying to make an argument for or against abstinence or safe-sex education,” she said. “The purpose was to look at ways to bring parents back into the loop to get them to talk to their children.”

Though some of the education program in question did discuss components of safe sex and abstinence, a lot of it was about encouraging parents to talk to their children and find out who their friends are and where they are going, Stanton said.

Souder questioned why the NIH did not inform Congress of the falsified data. Told the NIH had already concluded its investigation into the matter and published it in the Federal Register, a daily publication about federal government activities that is available to both members of Congress and the public, Souder said, “That’s news to me.”

He added, however, whatever was contained in the Register may not be sufficient. “We’re certainly not going to buy without further detail that the rest of study was fine,” he said.

i got down to about pg 14 .….the overall impression i got was that sternberg was incompetant and they were trying to reduce his screwups .….

the penny just dropped ..smalls had an editoral in the smithonian mag recently showing who was on the committee that sorta regulates the smithsonian …some of the politicians are anti-evolutionists

It is just amazing. Nothing that the writers of the report offer to support the report supports the report. I kept looking for the smoking gun in the appendix, there was none. Yes there were harsh things said and harsh questions asked, but I wish my PhD defense had only been that hard.

While 3 Republican incumbents were turned out of office, saddly Souder retained his seat from the 3rd district.

If we really care about the anti-reason, anti-science threat, then active political work must be done to elliminate these people.

The final vote tally in Souder’s district was 54-46%. A shame really.

I see Wingnut Daily, predictably, is misrepresenting the report.

Congress slams Smithsonian’s anti-religious attacks: Report documents ‘invidious discrimination’ in campaign against Darwin dissenters

Of course, Congress did no such thing. The staffers of one fundamentalist subcommittee chairman wrote the report, not ‘Congress’.

Gosh, WND, “Smithsonian’s anti-religious attacks”? I thought ID was scientific, not religious!

These bozos really don’t learn, do they? I hope they never do. They all but ensure that court decisions will continue to go our way, in perpetuity.

I’m curious about a couple of things.

First, the agency with clear jurisdiction over such an investigation is the Smithsonian’s inspector general. That would be clear to anyone reading the Federal Manual, or to anyone with a few months’ experience in Washington. Why didn’t Sternberg take his complaints to the Smithsonian’s IG? Especially after OCS noted that it lacked jurisdiction, why didn’t he file a complaint, then, with Smithsonian’s IG?

Second, it seems to me that, under the canons for ethical behavior of lawyers in D.C., and under federal law, the OCS was obligated to turn over any findings of misfeasance or malfeasance to the appropriate agency – the Smithsonian IG. Generally, their failure to do so should be indicative that the OCS staff found nothing violating any law or regulation. Why didn’t OCS turn over its findings to the Smithsonian IG, if there were, indeed, findings of any violation of any law or regulation? Is OCS completely incompetent, or were there no significant findings of wrongdoing?

As a final set of observations, it appears to me that this report is not for any official purpose, and it was not given in floor debate. Under the well-established precedent of Sen. Proxmire’s Golden Fleece awards, such releases of information are not privileged. If they are found to be defamatory, Souder and others could be held liable for libel. Sheila Burke is a long-time public servant, having served Sen. Bob Dole as staff on the Finance Committee during his long Senate career. Her integrity wins respect on all sides of the political-dividing aisle. The claims that she was less than rigorous in complying with the law are libelous if untrue. I think they are inaccurate at best. The claims against scientists also cross into defamation, especially the raw conjecture that some tried to get Sternberg removed, when the record does not support such a claim.

Souder should be questioned about why his committee staff are working to defend unethical actions by researchers. Congress has long been concerned that federal research be accurate and honest, even imposing criminal penalties on some breaches of research ethics. Sternberg was found to have misused his position at editor of a journal (remember the Society apologized and struck the publication), and while there is so far as I know no claim that federal money was involved, such a misuse is a breach of ethics. In short, should not his fellow scientists have done even more to hold him accountable than merely discuss in e-mails how to protect the integrity of federal research?

Souder’s report is a waste of government money, probably libelous, and a bad defense of what would be crime if Stermberg’s actions had been done on federal time and money. Souder’s anti-evolution history is of no consequence – this report is an abuse of public office. I hope Souder comes to his senses and repudiates the report.

The report, called “Intolerance and the Politicization of Science at the Smithsonian,” suggests that a special federal law giving scientists “freedom of speech” regarding evolution and other theories might be needed to protect Sternberg and others.

“Because of the Smithsonian’s continuous refusal to take action in the Sternberg case, Congress should consider statutory language that would protect the free speech rights regarding evolution of scientists at all federally-funded institutions,” the report recommended.

I for one would be all in favor of a law protecting the “…free speech rights … of scientists at all federally-funded institutions…”

Of course, it would not just apply to evolution.

We could start with the NASA scientists who were not allowed to speak or write about global warming. That’s one “theory” that was muzzled.

We could continue with the DoE scientists who were not permitted to express their skepticism about the aluminum tubes supposedly purchased by Iraq for nuclear centrifuges. That was another “theory” that was muzzled.

Finally, we could finish up with the NOAA scientists who were shunted aside about the catastrophic results of a major hurricane hitting New Orleans. Still another “theory” that was muzzled.

If Souter and the rest of the now-irrelevant right-wing want to co-sponsor a *GENERAL* federal law giving “…giving scientists ‘freedom of speech’…” , I’m pretty sure that they could find someone in the *NEW* majority to bring it up.

But a “special federal law” only pertaining to religious right pseudo-science? No - we don’t do those anymore - not since the “special” Sciavo Law fiasco and definitely not since the last election.

The report, called “Intolerance and the Politicization of Science at the Smithsonian,” suggests that a special federal law giving scientists “freedom of speech” regarding evolution and other theories might be needed to protect Sternberg and others.

“Because of the Smithsonian’s continuous refusal to take action in the Sternberg case, Congress should consider statutory language that would protect the free speech rights regarding evolution of scientists at all federally-funded institutions,” the report recommended.

I for one would be all in favor of a law protecting the “…free speech rights … of scientists at all federally-funded institutions…”

Of course, it would not just apply to evolution.

We could start with the NASA scientists who were not allowed to speak or write about global warming. That’s one “theory” that was muzzled.

We could continue with the DoE scientists who were not permitted to express their skepticism about the aluminum tubes supposedly purchased by Iraq for nuclear centrifuges. That was another “theory” that was muzzled.

Finally, we could finish up with the NOAA scientists who were shunted aside about the catastrophic results of a major hurricane hitting New Orleans. Still another “theory” that was muzzled.

If Souter and the rest of the now-irrelevant right-wing want to co-sponsor a *GENERAL* federal law giving “…giving scientists ‘freedom of speech’…” , I’m pretty sure that they could find someone in the *NEW* majority to bring it up.

But a “special federal law” only pertaining to religious right pseudo-science? No - we don’t do those anymore - not since the “special” Sciavo Law fiasco and definitely not since the last election.

Sorry about that, folks.

I must have hit the “Post” button twice.

My sincere apologies.

From this comment:

There’s some am-a-a-a-a-zing stuff in the appendix to the Rep. Souder staff report that the Discovery Institute is talking up.

The DI spin and the Congressional report spin are each severely divorced from reality. When one looks at the content of the appendix of documents and emails, one learns a lot about the character of Richard von Sternberg that Sternberg probably would have preferred stay out of public sight. Here are some of the things that reading the emails and other documents provided tell us:

  • Sternberg "requested" a grant or "any funding vehicle" from the Smithsonian in the amount of $300,000 to compensate for his claimed year of lost work. (The Smithsonian refused. It’s nice to know that not every part of the government was insane in November, 2005.) [p.11]
  • Sternberg ignored requests to return hundreds of specimens in his office space to the collections. [pp.16,27]
  • Sternberg had failed to properly curate 10 to 12% of specimens in his possession by not replenishing alcohol as the preservative agent. [p.27]
  • Sternberg’s space contained specimens that had not been checked out according to established procedures. [p.16]
  • Sternberg’s office space contained specimens apparently from other institutions without records in the transaction management system. [pp.48-49]
  • Sternberg handled specimens in another person’s office without permission. [p.16]
  • Sternberg ignored requests to return most of the over 50 books and periodicals he had checked out from the Smithsonian library. [pp.27,48]
  • Sternberg falsely told someone that he had notified library staff about his overdue materials. [p.28]
  • Sternberg had removed Smithsonian books from the premises, contrary to Smithsonian policy. [p.48]
  • Sternberg was simply confused when he thought that he had no Smithsonian sponsor. [p.11]
  • The issue about keys that Sternberg raised was a red herring; the Smithsonian had gone to a badge system to control physical access, and Sternberg received a badge. [pp.11-12]
  • Sternberg ignored requests that he return his keys even after the switchover to the badge system. [p.12]
  • Far from losing his research affiliation with the Smithsonian, Sternberg received another invitation for a three-year period to go from 2006 to 2009. [p.13]
  • The issues over moving offices that Sternberg raised are shown to be completely explained by the general and widespread movement of staff to accommodate physical renovation and departmental re-organization. [pp.36,38-39]
  • Sternberg was listed by his Smithsonian affiliation in promotional materials for a talk on ID scheduled in Helsinki in 2004, contrary to Smithsonian policy concerning research associates. [pp.16-17,41,44,48]
  • Sternberg had a prior history as an editor guiding research papers that were substandard into print in PBSW. [p.20]
  • Sternberg’s prior editorial lapses included leaving a submitted manuscript overlong without action. [p.37]
  • Sternberg permitted the Meyer paper to be published even though it did not conform to the PBSW formatting standards. [p.37]
  • Sternberg made "calamitous and inaccurate" statements on his web site. [p.47]
  • Sternberg agreed in a meeting with his supervisor that his possession of a master key to Smithsonian facilities was "unnecessary and inappropriate". [p.48]
  • While Sternberg was the primary editor for PBSW, there was a year in which authors submitted complaints about the handling of 17 different manuscripts. [p.52]
  • Two Mexican authors believed the managing editor, Sternberg, was predisposed against Latin-American authors. [p.52]
  • Sternberg has a history of saying one thing and doing another. [p.57]
  • Sternberg’s access to freshwater crabs in the collections was restricted due to his destruction of many specimens. [p.57]
  • Sternberg failed to utilize on-site Smithsonian expert on Cambrian period paleontology and PBSW Associate Editor Brian Erwin in selecting reviewers for Meyer 2004b. [p.73]
  • Sternberg made "bad judgment calls" in his editorship at PBSW. [p.74]

Does that sound like professional behavior to you?

I have a word for those who will be sure to point out that this stuff isn’t proven, but nevertheless think Sternberg, Souder, and the DI should be given full credence in their claims: Hypocrites.

So, Sternberg had a job where he came in twice a week and did, well, sod all.

Poked crabs.

Hey, for all you biologists out there I’m available to poke crabs twice a week.

Have finger, will poke.

Name your price.

Hey, for all you biologists out there I’m available to poke crabs twice a week.

sorry, Bill, but your own crabs don’t count.

;)

Note the following

BACK TO CAPITOL HILL: INFLUENCING CONGRESS?

The May 10 capitol hill “briefing” drew about fifty visitors, including a small contingent of congressional staffers and, according to AGI, several Members of Congress. Republican Sen. Sam Brownback introduced some CRSC speakers, and remarked on the controversy in his home state of Kansas over evolution – members of a state committee want to insert creationist disclaimers in science texts – and even compared this to the rebellion of antislavery activist John Brown. One hears this sort of martial rhetoric increasingly, especially in regard to culture war issues like creationism, school prayer, or display of the Ten Commandments in classrooms.

“More significant was the appearance of Rep. Tom Petri (R-WI), who warmly introduced several of the speakers.” Petri is slated to become the next Chairman of the House Education and Workforce Committee next year. Others listed in the press release for the Discovery Institute/CRSC “briefing” as “co-hosts” included House Science Committee members Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD), Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX), Rep. Joseph Pitts (R-PA), Rep. Charles Stenholm (D-TX) and Education Committee member Mark Souder (R-IN). Souder, a strong supporter of the religious right agenda inside the beltway, was instrumental last year in introducing legislation (H.AMDT. 201) which would “allow governmental entities that make grants to nongovernmental entities to also make grants or enter into contracts with religious organizations.” Rep. Pitts is a member of Tom DeLay’s “Values Action Team” (VAT), charged with carrying out the social agenda of religious right groups like James Dobson’s Focus on the Family. VAT members have ushered a number of proposals through the congressional legislative process, including bills calling for school prayer, display of the Ten Commandments, and public funding for faith-based social outreaches.

Follow the money I tell you.…

Education Committee member Mark Souder

hmmm, wasn’t Foley on the children’s outreach committee?

Yawn. Can’t they come up with anything original after their devastating loss in Dover?

And the intellectual dishonesty around here mounts…not to mention the denail of reality. Any objective fair reading of the Sternberg affair makes it perfectly clear that Sternberg’s “crime” was to have the audacity to question Darwinism on scientific grounds. For that, he received the worst sort of treatment at the hands of those who were supposed to be colleagues.

The response here at PT? 1.Denial – “That’s right; anti-evolution politicians are accusing the Smithsonian of being the one responsible for politicizing science”…because it would be impossible, for Darwinists to do this!! 2. ad hominem attacks upon anyone who disagrees with the “official” line –“Souder’s idiocy also extends”…blah, blah blah, 3. red herrings “The opinion was prepared by congressional staff and was commissioned by Congressman Mark Souder, the chairman of the subcommittee on criminal justice, drug policy, and human resources, and who in 2000 co-hosted a Discovery Institute briefing on intelligent design aimed at persuading congress that ID needed political support. Soon after the briefing, he even read a defense of ID, given to him by the Discovery Institute, into the congressional record. On his website you can find the typical pedestrian arguments against evolution.” As if any of that has anything to do with whether or not Sternberg was discriminated against. 4. genetic fallacies – “Next they’ll be telling us that Los Alamos should hire people who have doubts about gravity.” 5. The usual attempts to avoid admitting the obvious.

Clearly Darwinists are never ever in error. And woe to anyone who dares question the offical line!

And you expect people to take you seriously? What a joke!!

The fact is Sternberg was treated shamelessly by those who should have known better. Why can’t you guys be honest enough to admit it and call some of your fellow Darwinists to account for some very bad behavior towards a fellow scientist!! What is very clear is that Sternberg was punished for letting the Meyer article get published. That was his unpardonable sin and its plain for all to see.

funny, I just ran accross something Foley said about Bill Clinton during the Ken Starr investigations, which, as it turns out, he might have actually been prophesying about himself:

“It’s vile,” said Rep. Mark Foley, R-West Palm Beach. “It’s more sad than anything else, to see someone with such potential throw it all down the drain because of a sexual addiction.”

http://www.sptimes.com/Worldandnati[…]through.html

go tell it on the mountain, brother.

Is it just me, or has the total and complete hypocrisy stemming from the republican party over the last 10 plus years, and the near complete meltdown resulting from it, seemed damn near scripted by a professional prankster? It’s just hard to believe those words came out of Foley’s mouth, and then he himself watched that very thing happen to his own career.

er, not that he really had potential.

No doubt something similar will happen to Souder.

If they were really looking for proof of a god, I’d say they could find it in the irony of their own actions and repercussions, and that god must be Loki!

It’s like the current joke running around the “water cooler”: How do you tell if a republican is gay? A: They are in favor of banning gay marriage.

apply the same logic to just about anything these idiots expound upon as a “moral” issue.

Clearly Darwinists are never ever in error.

we prefer not to follow in your footsteps, quacky.

Donald M Wrote:

And the intellectual dishonesty around here mounts…not to mention the denail of reality. Any objective fair reading of the Sternberg affair makes it perfectly clear that Sternberg’s “crime” was to have the audacity to question Darwinism on scientific grounds. For that, he received the worst sort of treatment at the hands of those who were supposed to be colleagues.

An objective reading of the Sternberg affair shows that it was all blown out of proportions. Sternberg had the poor judgement to, what appears to be, rushing through a poorly written ‘paper’ which had little relevance to ID but was nevertheless quoted as ‘relevant peer reviewed literature’. When Sternberg complained the OSC found that it lacked jurisdiction, since Sternberg was not an employee of the Smithsonian. Now, Souder has done us a favor by releasing the emails in an appendix which paints an interesting picture.

To claim that Sternberg’s crime was to question Darwinism on scientific grounds is plainly ridiculous.

To claim that Sternberg’s crime was to question Darwinism on scientific grounds is plainly ridiculous.

…but, making ridiculous claims is all quacky does! what are ya tryin’ ta do, put him outta business or sumpin?

Donald M. thinks that the politics of the congressman who commissioned this opinion are irrelevant. However, they are extremely relevant to determining whether this opinion is due to an unbiased, independent investigation or by someone who is one of the DI’s top men in Washington.

The fact is that Souder’s well-known political connections and stances, establish that he and his staff are too biased to issue an independent, non-political opinion on the matter. There is no reason why we should trust his or his staff’s opinion on this topic.

In fact, reading the opinion and the appendix of emails makes it clear that the opinion was written by a very biased person and not supported by the appendix.

Take for instance that DI et al. have been claiming for a while that email from NCSE staff show that NCSE was trying to get Sternberg fired etc., when in reality NCSE staff made it clear that they didn’t want the Smithsonian to repremand Sternberg for his mishandling of Meyer’s paper. Only a very biased eye can see “don’t make him a martyr” and read it as “let’s make him a martyr”.

I guess a few of us wondered about the refereeing of the paper. There are some intriguing hints on p72 of the appendix. This was in an email from Roy McDiarmid, who was involved with the publication of the PBSW, the journal that published the original Meyer article:

I have seen the review file and comments from 3 reviewers on the Meyer paper. All three with some differences among the comments recommended or suggested,publication. I was surprised but concluded that there was not inappropriate behavior vs a vis the review process. Whether one would consider the reviews appropriate is another issue and I would be pleased to share my views on that with you if you so desire.

ROY

Care to read between the lines, anyone?

Bob

PvM

An objective reading of the Sternberg affair shows that it was all blown out of proportions. Sternberg had the poor judgement to, what appears to be, rushing through a poorly written ‘paper’ which had little relevance to ID but was nevertheless quoted as ‘relevant peer reviewed literature’. When Sternberg complained the OSC found that it lacked jurisdiction, since Sternberg was not an employee of the Smithsonian. Now, Souder has done us a favor by releasing the emails in an appendix which paints an interesting picture.

To claim that Sternberg’s crime was to question Darwinism on scientific grounds is plainly ridiculous.

t Yawn…whatever, Pim. Thanks for proving my point! It’s never

Yawn…whatever, Pim. Thanks for proving my point! It’s never

you don’t make “points” ducky, all you do is quack.

quack, quack, quack.

…and of course, next month you’ll be back to quack again.

Donald M Wrote:

Any objective fair reading of the Sternberg affair makes it perfectly clear that Sternberg’s “crime” was to have the audacity to question Darwinism on scientific grounds. For that, he received the worst sort of treatment at the hands of those who were supposed to be colleagues.

No. The immediate and obvious lesson is that a demonstrably shoddy screed got published under the protective eye of a fellow traveller. The interesting question is: How, exactly?

The response here at PT? 1.Denial — “That’s right; anti-evolution politicians are accusing the Smithsonian of being the one responsible for politicizing science”…because it would be impossible, for Darwinists to do this!!

No. Because IDologists have done nothing but politicize science. You don’t have to agree; you only have to grasp the concept of irony to see what the intended point was.

2. ad hominem attacks upon anyone who disagrees with the “official” line —“Souder’s idiocy also extends”…blah, blah blah,

Donald, you have no problem with using harsh words for your interlocutors when you feel them merited. But never mind. Doesn’t your complaint fall under the “red herring” category? Unless you’re here to talk about manners, rather than the accuracy of Souder’s report. Defend the report if you can, by citing specifics rather than by mere dogged insistence that it’s right.

3. red herrings “The opinion was prepared by congressional staff and was commissioned by Congressman Mark Souder, the chairman of the subcommittee on criminal justice, drug policy, and human resources, and who in 2000 co-hosted a Discovery Institute briefing on intelligent design aimed at persuading congress that ID needed political support. Soon after the briefing, he even read a defense of ID, given to him by the Discovery Institute, into the congressional record. On his website you can find the typical pedestrian arguments against evolution.” As if any of that has anything to do with whether or not Sternberg was discriminated against.

Obviously it has everything to do with interpreting this single report from one official’s staff. That a proven DI booster has taken it on himself to do some more tub-thumping for them seems incandescently relevant; in particular it seems to explain the baffling lack of connection between the actual evidence and the conclusions of the “report”. If Hilary Clinton’s office issued a report concluding that Bill never touched Monica, would you be front and centre, shrilling “Red herring!” at those who observed that maybe she’s not an appropriately disinterested party who happened to take an interest in the matter?

4. genetic fallacies — “Next they’ll be telling us that Los Alamos should hire people who have doubts about gravity.”

No. That’s just plain old ridicule. Humor – yes, even from those humorless Darwinismists who just don’t see why repeating Judge Jones’s words in a funny voice with fart sounds is a real knee-slapper. Call it a fallacy, if you want to grasp at straws in order to avoid being utterly wrong about everything you wrote. But it’s not the Genetic Fallacy.

5. The usual attempts to avoid admitting the obvious.

Your mere assertion by itself is worthless, Donald.

What is very clear is that Sternberg was punished for letting the Meyer article get published. That was his unpardonable sin and its plain for all to see.

Now you’re on the right track. Yes, it looks like Sternberg shocked and disappointed people by his incompetence – which the Appendix suggests went a lot deeper than merely his unprofessional publication of a disgracefully bad paper.

Appendix p. 20, an e-mail exchange between Frank Ferrari and Hans SUES, this by Frank Ferrari, 09/08/04:

Rafa gave me a heads up about the Nature - News. What is troubling is the implication in the article that the manuscript was peer-reviewed. I doubt that it was, based on my experience with Sternberg and the infamous Nizinski manuscript, which Sternberg also wanted to publish and also insisted had been peer-reviewed. Prior to publication, I asked him who reviewed the Nizinski manuscript, but he would not give me any names. When I insisted that the manuscript be reviewed internationally, the concensus (sic) of 4 international reviewers was rejection (sadly, Sternberg published it anyway).

And the intellectual dishonesty around here mounts…not to mention the denail of reality.

Yes, each time you post.

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This page contains a single entry by Reed A. Cartwright published on December 15, 2006 1:49 PM.

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