Show me the money.

| 25 Comments

The Discovery Institute is (still, and predictably) in an uproar over Iowa’s decision to reject Intelligent Design proponent Guillermo Gonzalez’s tenure application. The DI is claiming that the decision could not possibly be anything other than an example of discrimination against a brave non-Darwinian scientist by the Darwinian Orthodoxy. Personally, I think it’s something different. I think it’s about the money.

According to an article that was just published in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Gonzalez has not received any major research grants since arriving at Iowa. Casey Luskin of the DI points out that the tenure guidelines written by the department do not specifically mention funding as a requirement for research. That is true, but irrelevant. I’ve never heard of a tenure committee at a research university that does not look at outside funding.

Casey claims that if Iowa is using funding, it’s clearly just an ad-hoc reason invented to deny an otherwise qualified candidate tenure. It’s not. A professor’s ability to get outside research funding is a very good indicator of how well they will perform at a research university. Here’s why:

Read more (at The Questionable Authority):

25 Comments

Mike Dunford Wrote:

Since landing at Iowa, Gonzalez has only managed to bring in a Templeton Foundation grant to pay part of his salary while he wrote his pro-ID book.

Form what I have read, Templeton has lost interest in funding ID, thanks to its lack of productive research. Iowa must be aware too.

True or False -

If any professor anywhere claims to “support ID”, then the DI and other shills will claim that any career setback, including not getting tenure or not being promoted fast enough, is due to “bias”, regardless of the professor’s relevant work performance.

Answer - True.

True or False -

Any mainstream science professor who becomes a creationist will like be given a do-little, six-figure job at the DI or some other stink tank if he loses or quits from his real job.

Answer - True.

Could these circumstances themselves create a certain type of bias?

Grady -

Many religion departments are headed by clergy of one faith or another, and some of them are paid by tax dollars. Having a religious opinion doesn’t disqualify someone from teaching about religion. Would you disqualify only atheists from teaching comparitive religion? Didn’t think so.

Also, in the words of that great American Benjamin Franklin, and I want you to read carefully because this logic is tricky, two wrongs don’t make a right. “Wahhhh an atheist did something wrong too” is not a logical defense of creationist wrongdoing.

Grady,

Is Avalos tenured? Good luck with that. Now you see why it is such a big deal, no?

Iowa is a state university, They have a little professor there named Hector Avalos,

How do you know he’s ‘little’, Grady?

and he is head of the religion department and helped lead the petition drive against Gonzales. (which is odd, since Mirecki at KU was also an atheist head of the religon department: why not have a creationist head of the biology department for that matter.)

Because creationism is not science, Grady.

A little slow, I see.

He is a militant atheist who appeared at the national meeting of the Atheist Alliance here in Kansas City last year and I had the pleasure of asking his a couple of questions…until I was told to shut the f…up, that is.

You poor man. Based on your behavior here, I can imagine how obnoxious you must have been acting.

My question was about his book Fighting Words in which he calls for the elimination of religion.

Elimantion, not separation.

‘Elimantion’?

And he is a professor at a state university, getting Federal money.

Horrors.

The lawsuit is brewing; it is being worked on by some fellows in Overland Park.>

We’re terrified.

Well, since IDC can’t/won’t do research, then I guess lawsuits are a good substitute, eh, Grady?

Except here’s the thing: perhaps you haven’t been paying attention, but IDCers have lost every time they were foolish enough to go to court. Every time.

That’s why you guys might try science and research some day instead of litigation. It’s what college professors normally do.

BTW, thanks for not posting under multiple names anymore, Grady. It’s the polite thing to do.

“Except here’s the thing: perhaps you haven’t been paying attention, but IDCers have lost every time they were foolish enough to go to court. Every time.”

Which is why I hope they try. :)

“So heres the rub, if the state can’t advocate religon, it clearly can’t attack it either.”

It’s not the religion that’s being attacked. It’s the fact that fundies want it rammed down people’s throats (ie: sneaking it into school classes, trying to find a legal loophole through the courts etc) - THAT is being attacked.

Like others have said, try doing the science first.

According to CHE, the Templeton grant was $58 K over three years. That’s barely a blip on the screen.

I came to the same conclusion as Mike a week ago. Major funding is de facto the overriding requirement for tenure. Unfortunately, out of a false sense of delicacy, or perhaps an anachronistic view of what a ‘scholar’ is, we seldom explicitly say so.

http://homepage.mac.com/gerardharbi[…]WP_blog.html

According to CHE, the Templeton grant was $58 K over three years. That’s barely a blip on the screen.

I came to the same conclusion as Mike a week ago. Major funding is de facto the overriding requirmetn for tenure. Unfortunately, out of a false sense of delicacy or perhaps an anachronistic view of what a ‘scholar’ is, we seldom explicitly say so.

http://homepage.mac.com/gerardharbi[…]WP_blog.html

Going in circles on this one and getting repetitious. To summarize, IMO, Gonzalez seemed to show a decline in quantity and quality of scientific research over time. Coupled with this decline was an increase in pseudoscience and affiliation with a notorious group of reality deniers who have publicly called for the destruction of science, the IDers. That wedge document, read it yourself on wikipedia.

Doesn’t look like ISU had any choice. We’ve all seen people get tenure and then go inert or go lunatic fringe, or both. At my old U., one guy had a nervous breakdown, joined an obscure eastern cult, and never once touched a test tube again. Another had some adverse life events but nothing out of the ordinary. He then developed an improbable drinking problem. End of research forever. Gonzalez was heading down the well worn path and ISU wouldn’t take the risk. Don’t blame them.

May be the guidelines don’t specifically mention “money” but I bet that in the job description for the position the University; 1) Mentioned is a tenure track position. 2) Mentioned responsibilities with students (teaching), research and involvement with the community at large. 3) Mentioned the requirement of acquiring outside funding (resources) to establish an independent original research.

By not been able to graduate PhD candidates (teaching, research and mentoring responsibilities) and securing outside funding for independent/original research, Gonzalez failed 2 out of 3 requirements for his position. No wonder he was not granted tenure.

Just more dishonest and cynical maneuvering at the DI, you ask me. Gonzalez had every opportunity to know he was not going to be granted tenure. He knew, and the DI knew. That’s why he set himself up as the victim of discrimination.

Pretty sad times for the Swift Boat Veterans for Jesus, when the only way they can conceive of to get in the news and potentially score political points is by hanging one of their own out to dry.

I have a feeling I know who that is… (from extremely unpleasant online communication, not in person, praise the FSM)

If I’m right, there’s a connection to PT. He’s banned here, but Grady, Clarissa, Emmanuel Goldstein, to name a few (and I’m honestly not sure how many individuals are represented by these screen names) who post ill-mannered insinuations here and elsewhere, are sort of like his little interweb minions, spewing vile insults for Truth, Justice, and the Anti-atheist Way.

If it is the same guy (who is a lawyer, I believe), trust me, do not say anything to him. He is a deranged and possibly dangerous man.

cue snide teenager on a library computer in 10…9…

[offtopic] CJO, from the sentence structure betcha “Pete” is another incarnation of that same troll. Same stink.

Grady, Clarissa, Emmanuel Goldstein,

I’d forgotten about the legendary ‘Emmanuel’. Don’t know if EG is the same person as Grady/Clarissa/Diana, but if not, they sure sound a lot alike.

And if they are all one person, yes, he’s a venomous, shrill troll with no social skills and no interest in conversing, who basically can’t be reasoned with.

Gonzalez seemed to show a decline in quantity and quality of scientific research over time. Coupled with this decline was an increase in pseudoscience and affiliation with a notorious group of reality deniers who have publicly called for the destruction of science, the IDers.

Has anyone ever tested to see if there is a correlation between the two? How has the research record of Dembski, Behe et al changed after they began publishing books, and how does this compare to the same data for scientists like Dawkins and other popular science writers?

In my casual observation, it seems as though they get the ID research flu. However little they may have published before getting it, they publish less afterwards.

This is mainly a test post; I’m having problems posting on talk.origins.

Couldn’t the Biologic Institute just Give GG a big grant to do some of the research they have been promising us, and make all this moot?

You guys are all correct about Grady/Emmanuel Goldstein/Diana, etc, although they are a few people and not just one. Pete, I think, is someone else though, because of the details he discussed.

Kansas Sen. Brownback weighs in here

Brownback Alarmed by Tenure Denial in Iowa

“Such an assault on academic freedom does not bode well for the advancement of true science.”

DES MOINES, Ia— U.S. Senator Sam Brownback, Republican candidate for President, today commented on the denial of tenure to Iowa State University Professor Guillermo Gonzales.

“When I was informed that Professor Guillermo Gonzalez was denied tenure, I was puzzled given his excellent academic record of achievement and faithful service. I understand that now two of Dr. Gonzalez’s colleagues have indicated that Gonzalez’s interest in intelligent design theory was, at least in part, responsible for this denial of tenure. This is rather alarming.”

Dr. Guillermo Gonzalez is currently an Assistant Professor of Astronomy at Iowa State University, and has authored more than 65 scientific papers and articles. Dr. Gonzalez developed the concept of the Galactic Habitable Zone and co-authored “The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery, which was published in 2004.” The Privileged Planet provides scientific evidence for intelligent design theory, which challenges neo-Darwinism’s claim that the development of the universe is the result of an unpredictable and purposeless process. Intelligent design theory rather explores recent discoveries in the fields of physics, cosmology, biochemistry, genetics, and paleontology that logically point to an intelligent cause in the development of life and the cosmos.

Brownback continued, “Observation, testing, and the development of reasonable hypotheses have long been integral to good science. Scholars, such as Professor Guillermo Gonzales, ought not to be intimidated nor silenced by those in the academic community who would rather dismiss a well-reasoned hypothesis than debate it on its merits. Such an assault on academic freedom does not bode well for the advancement of true science.”

When is that Iowa presidential primary, again?

Brownback was informed by whom?

Isn’t it amazing that these politicians who don’t know squat about science or science education keep mindlessly repeating the sound bite that students should hear “both sides,” which means granting equal time to a fringe minority of sell-outs to pseudoscience. Yet they refuse to give themselves equal time to listening to mainstream science, and seek out only the feel-good nonsense from the activist fringe. All Brownback needed to do was spend a few minutes here, and at the very least would have thought “They have a point too; I’m better off not commenting on the situation.”

Pete is a weasel.

And Jack has only met a couple of us, so he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

Grady! Were your ears burnin’ little guy?

Trolls are so cute before they grow up and get all smelly and hairy!

Grady, congratulations on the unprecedented intellectual content of your last post. May current trends continue.

Does anyone know if Gonzalez listed his Discovery Institute fellowships as research funding? He might have pulled a couple hundred thousand out if the Discovery Institute just in the last 4 years.

Apparently he did list his Templeton fondation funding, so were is DI fellowships listed?

Why isn’t Luskin bragging about all the money that the DI gave to Gonzalez for his ID research?

And Jack has only met a couple of us, so he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

A couple of you? Shoot, how many personalities do you have, Clarissa Diana Grady?

Grady, please pick one name and stick to it.

Re “Grady, please pick one name and stick to it.”

Would some duct tape help? ;)

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Mike Dunford published on May 21, 2007 10:19 PM.

Basu: Bias over views or credentials? was the previous entry in this blog.

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