Annoying the Discovery Institute at SMU

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The Discovery Institute has long had an interest in promoting itself at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. An early meeting held there featured several of the future DI CRSC Fellows a few years before the 1996 establishment of the CRSC. More recently, the DI tried to browbeat SMU faculty into validating a dog-and-pony show that would put an official imprimatur on DI Fellows appearing there. And in current events, the DI put on an event on September 23rd sponsored by Victory Campus Ministries at the SMU campus, but have been outraged, yes, outraged, by the critical reception they received from various of the SMU faculty.

Lecturer John G. Wise has put up perhaps the most extensive critiques of the DI’s presentation and co-authored a letter to the SMU campus paper, eliciting DI responses from Casey Luskin (1, 2) and a joint response from several of the DI CSC Fellows.

Wise pointed out problems like the claim that stuff published in ‘Bio-complexity’ meets the standard of peer-reviewed literature. Ouch.

Associate Professor Mark Chancey published a letter in the SMU campus paper discussing some of the reasons that the DI doesn’t get a unanimous vote of approval from the SMU faculty despite the religious background of the university. Chancey reviews some of the history of the DI and its enthusiasm for SMU.

Unfortunately, the Discovery Institute has a track record of using SMU’s prestige and academic reputation to bolster its own claims to legitimacy. Consider this quote from Phillip E. Johnson, a chief ID architect: “The movement we now call the Wedge made its public debut at a conference of scientists and philosophers held at Southern Methodist University in March 1992.”

Johnson goes on to characterize that conference as “a respectable academic gathering.” This language implies that SMU sponsored an academic conference in which ID proponents participated as full-fledged scholars. In fact, the 1992 event, too, was sponsored not by any academic unit of the university but by a campus ministry-a detail conspicuously absent from Johnson’s description.

Yes, annoying details like that often go missing in the DI propaganda. Not getting the official recognition they want from SMU and getting unwelcome critical attention of SMU faculty just doesn’t sit well with the DI.

169 Comments

Gee, John Wise seems kind of surprised and disappointed to discover that everything the DI says is dishonest through and through, in every possible way from what is said, to how it is said, to who said it. He seems to suspect that they are doing this deliberately. Imagine that.

I think any journalist could clue Wise in to a fact of the DI’s life: the lies are printed on the front page of the major media. The corrections appear, in fine print, near the back of stuff nobody reads anyway. There is a sort of Gresham’s Law of deceit. Lies will drive out the truth if the lies are easy to grasp and the truth requires education to understand, if the lies are embedded in something already believed but NOT on the basis of evidence, and if the lies are backed by enough money.

And it helps if you have a staff of people gifted at making claims that create such a strong false impression that even determined skeptics armed with the actual facts have to read them twice to figure out how they were phrased, or what was omitted. Those lacking the facts, of course, don’t have a chance. The distinction between “held AT” SMU and “held BY” SMU is admirably subtle.

Flint said:

Gee, John Wise seems kind of surprised and disappointed to discover that everything the DI says is dishonest through and through, in every possible way from what is said, to how it is said, to who said it. He seems to suspect that they are doing this deliberately. Imagine that.

You have to admit, those who weren’t familiar with the DI might well have reason to be startled on observing their tactics for the first time. If one is used to dealing with sensible and honest people, the likes of Casey Luskin might come as something of a shock.

Flint said:

Gee, John Wise seems kind of surprised and disappointed to discover that everything the DI says is dishonest through and through, in every possible way from what is said, to how it is said, to who said it. He seems to suspect that they are doing this deliberately. Imagine that.

I think any journalist could clue Wise in to a fact of the DI’s life: the lies are printed on the front page of the major media. The corrections appear, in fine print, near the back of stuff nobody reads anyway. There is a sort of Gresham’s Law of deceit. Lies will drive out the truth if the lies are easy to grasp and the truth requires education to understand, if the lies are embedded in something already believed but NOT on the basis of evidence, and if the lies are backed by enough money.

And it helps if you have a staff of people gifted at making claims that create such a strong false impression that even determined skeptics armed with the actual facts have to read them twice to figure out how they were phrased, or what was omitted. Those lacking the facts, of course, don’t have a chance. The distinction between “held AT” SMU and “held BY” SMU is admirably subtle.

Indeed the ID/creationist leadership has always been conscious of the fact that they are distorting science deliberately. During their entire history, from the 1970s to the present, they have had plenty of negative feedback. But they never correct or retract anything.

You can go over to the ICR website and pull up exactly the same crap they dispensed from the very beginning and for which they have had over 40 years of feedback that it is wrong.

Yet they continue to lumber on like zombies.

Wait! The Discovery Institute is DEDICATED to fair and balanced reporting on the Evolution Manufactuversity!

Are you telling me they are biased? Be still my heart!

Wonderful summary and rebuttal of the DI propaganda.

The dishonesty institute has always tried to insinuate that the venues where their self-promotional talks are being held is being sponsored by the venue itself. And, like the museum in California, and others, have found, the dishonesty institute will attack, even sue, if anything should be said against them or threaten their event. They really try to schedule their “events” at public venues where there is no choice but to accept anyone who wants to rent space. Up in Seattle they made it look like the Seattle Art Museum was sponsoring their movie when they really only rented the room, but they promoted otherwise.

With their updated strategy they’ve moved from the neighborhood church talks to more “academic” surroundings that appear to give them an air of legitimacy, but the message is always the same, filled with lies and quote-mining, etc.

As for asking questions, a standard tactic of creationists like those at the dishonesty institute is to go full speed ahead, present all information and not allow any quesitons or interruptions lest the rubes become skeptical. It’s disinformation overload, with so many intentional errors that beg so many questions, but preferably their supporters are called on to ask questions. By the time you get to ask your questions, if at all, people have already forgotten the context of the issue you’re questioning, but it’s all part of their game plan.

Yes, this is typical behavior of the DI. The DI twice has scheduled appearances at the University of Oklahoma (OU), not sponsored by any academic unit, but by a student group from a local Baptist Church, student religious group (Pursuit Ministry) and the IDEA Club (now apparently inactive). By convening at a university, they attempt to gain status with the appearance that they are somehow vetted by the institution.

The first visit to OU was by William Dembski, who gave a public lecture that was opposed by many on the campus. A full page ad paid by many faculty and staff opponents of the visit was published in the student paper on the day of his talk that showed his true colors. Dembski spent the first 10 minutes of his talk trying to combat (poorly) the ad. Students gave handouts (an excellent article by Shalitt) to people attending that showed Dembski’s true colors. Most impressively was the way student’s laid into him during the Q and A. The day before Dembski’s talk students at the local Trinity Baptist Church service (where Dembski gave a guest sermon) were asked to kneel around him and pray for his success in the upcoming lecture!

The second visit by DI ‘big shots’ (Dembski, Jonathan Wells, Stephen Meyer) was last year during the Darwin Year celebrations. Again, a talk by Meyer and their film on the Cambrian, and a debate with Dembski (with Michael Ruse, a favorite of the DI for so-called debates) were not sponsored by an academic unit, but by the IDEA club with support from the local Baptist church. The film presentation was at the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History, a venue that the DI hoped would add legitimacy to their program. The Director of the Museum issued a press release that showed clearly the opposition of the Museum to the DI’s supposed ‘science’ and that the Museum did not in any way endorse the DI program. Also, the invertebrate paleontologist on the Museum staff, and an expert on the Cambrian, gave an excellent lecture just before the DI film presentation that refuted much of what was in the DI film. And again, the DI tried to claim that their visit was a major ‘victory’ in a post by Wells on the DI blog entitled ‘Storming the Beaches in Norman,’ a ridiculous account that I countered in detail in reply (I forget which blog). The DI folks tried to manipulate the Q and A by allowing only questions, no ‘comments.’ Most of the questions were rather devastating to the DI drivel. However, it was clear that the DI ‘invasion’ of Norman was not the success that Wells tried to portray.

Truth is not something we can expect from the DI.

You can go over to the ICR website and pull up exactly the same crap they dispensed from the very beginning and for which they have had over 40 years of feedback that it is wrong.

Yes, this is exactly the sort of thing we love to discuss here. One is reminded of Gish’s claim about bullfrogs. He was corrected, but so what? He even admitted privately that he made it up. But even after making this admission, he just repeated the claim.

And so we come, slowly (and maybe John Wise will get there eventually) to understand that the value of a creationist claim has nothing to do with whether it’s true, and everything to do with whether it has the desired effect on an ignorant and unprepared audience. Even AiG, in producing their list of lies not to use anymore, conceded (as I recall) that they weren’t recommending taking these lies out of circulation because they were wrong, but because too many people knew they were wrong, and this diluted their proselytizing persuasiveness.

And finally, we realize that the Discovery Institute exists not to make discoveries or publicize discoveries, but in fact exactly the contrary - to prevent them if possible, and bury them in BS if not.

And even that wouldn’t be nearly so effective, except for the widespread cultural (probably cross-cultural) conviction that the more urgent and necessary the cause, the more forgiveable the untruth necessary to promote it. And what could be more urgent or necessary than the salvation of your eternal soul?

mrg said:

Flint said:

Gee, John Wise seems kind of surprised and disappointed to discover that everything the DI says is dishonest through and through, in every possible way from what is said, to how it is said, to who said it. He seems to suspect that they are doing this deliberately. Imagine that.

You have to admit, those who weren’t familiar with the DI might well have reason to be startled on observing their tactics for the first time. If one is used to dealing with sensible and honest people, the likes of Casey Luskin might come as something of a shock.

I am neither surprised nor am I disappointed. They reacted exactly as I expected with “Falsehoods, deceptions, misrepresentations and misinterpretations” (see the website with this subtitle http://faculty.smu.edu/jwise/big_pr[…]t_design.htm ).

It is how the DI reacted to the facts when they visited SMU in 2007 and it’s how they reacted this time.

No surprises and no science from the DI. Same story every time.

Regards, John

There is only one way to determine if a paper meets the standards of peer reviewed literature, that is to submit it for review. If it is accepted then it was. If it is not accepted then it probably wasn’t. That’s like arguing that someone would have been inducted into the hall of fame, if only they had been drafted. Who cares?

“So if we haven’t found the transitional or ancestral fossils, the theory predicts such fossils won’t be discovered. Wait, we found some? Well, the theory predicts that, too.”

If anyone reads that and thinks it was written by a two year old child with reading problems throwing a temper tantrum… no, you would be wrong. (It was actually written by the noted scholars of the Discovery Institute.)

This is a prime example of how ‘moderate’ religion allows for extremists to prosper. This is one of the main gripes of Sam Harris. Not so much different as Christine O’Donnell trying to pass herself off as a graduate/attendee of several well known colleges. Just make stuff up and KNOW that the vast majority of people will never hear any differently. I think it was Twain who said that a lie could made it half way around the world before the truth had the time to put it’s pants on.

Enjoy.

Oh yeah, and not to go all Godwin’s Law on everybody, but given the latest news about Teatard Republican candidates posed in their Nazi uniforms.….. I think the quote about telling a lie often enough that it becomes the truth fits Faux news perfectly.

Enjoy.

“Bio Complexity”

I thought they were still publishing their crap in Rivista Di Biologia?

*looks*

ah, it’s “new” then?

http://bio-complexity.org/ojs/index[…]poseAndScope

Specifically, the journal enlists editors and reviewers with scientific expertise in relevant fields who hold a wide range of views on the merit of ID

wide…range…of…views…

there are 2 honest views:

It’s nuts.

It’s lies.

I wonder which reviewers fall into which camps?

Hey, check out the new angle:

http://bio-complexity.org/ojs/index[…]BIO-C.2010.2

translated:

“The theory of evolution can’t work because organisms don’t choose the best of all possible fitness pathways in culture media!”

I’m serious. Plow through the jargon, and that’s what they’re trying to say.

It’s like they took their arguments against Dawkins Weasel program, and made a bacterial version of them.

still just as wrong, but at least they can now claim to have done “something” in a lab.

hey, at least it’s “new”!

The Tim Channel said:

I think it was Twain who said that a lie could made it half way around the world before the truth had the time to put it’s pants on.

That’s why we need the naked truth!

Maya said:

The Tim Channel said:

I think it was Twain who said that a lie could made it half way around the world before the truth had the time to put it’s pants on.

That’s why we need the naked truth!

I believe the full quote is “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” and Sir Winston Churchill said it.

But don’t worry - Twain said some really cool things too. ;o)

Get Beckwith to write the Discovery Institute a Big Texas letter of support. It will give him another chance to deny that he ever supported the intelligent design scam.

vhutchison said:

Yes, this is typical behavior of the DI. The DI twice has scheduled appearances at the University of Oklahoma (OU), not sponsored by any academic unit, but by a student group from a local Baptist Church, student religious group (Pursuit Ministry) and the IDEA Club (now apparently inactive). By convening at a university, they attempt to gain status with the appearance that they are somehow vetted by the institution.

Who still pays these guys to come and talk? Their fee used to be something like $3,000 before they started to run the bait and switch back in 2003. After having 100$ of the rubes that bought into the scam getting the bait and switch run on them if they popped up and claimed to want to teach the nonexistent science of ID who would still pay the scam artists to come and give a talk?

Is the Discovery Institute funding their own speaking sesions now?

Ron Okimoto said:

vhutchison said:

Yes, this is typical behavior of the DI. The DI twice has scheduled appearances at the University of Oklahoma (OU), not sponsored by any academic unit, but by a student group from a local Baptist Church, student religious group (Pursuit Ministry) and the IDEA Club (now apparently inactive). By convening at a university, they attempt to gain status with the appearance that they are somehow vetted by the institution.

Who still pays these guys to come and talk? Their fee used to be something like $3,000 before they started to run the bait and switch back in 2003. After having 100$ of the rubes that bought into the scam getting the bait and switch run on them if they popped up and claimed to want to teach the nonexistent science of ID who would still pay the scam artists to come and give a talk?

Is the Discovery Institute funding their own speaking sesions now?

100$ should be 110%. Likely a Freudian slip when it comes to the DI.

Ichthyic said:

“Bio Complexity”

I thought they were still publishing their crap in Rivista Di Biologia?

ISCID’s PCID claims to have published a Nov. 2005 issue. They could revive it and have journal with more than a couple articles published in it.

Ichthyic said:

Hey, check out the new angle:

http://bio-complexity.org/ojs/index[…]BIO-C.2010.2

translated:

“The theory of evolution can’t work because organisms don’t choose the best of all possible fitness pathways in culture media!”

I’m serious. Plow through the jargon, and that’s what they’re trying to say.

It’s like they took their arguments against Dawkins Weasel program, and made a bacterial version of them.

still just as wrong, but at least they can now claim to have done “something” in a lab.

hey, at least it’s “new”!

Summarizing the paper by Gauger et al.: if one selects against maintenance of a plasmid in a bacterial cell, then the plasmid will be lost.

The conclusions the authors draw, apart from the obvious (select against a plasmid, lose the plasmid) don’t match the data. The bottom line is that they designed the experiment very poorly, were not able to make any conclusions regarding their original hypothesis (that an adaptive path involving the trpA gene multiple mutations will be beyond the reach of “Darwinian” processes), and had to state the obvious in terms that made the study acceptable to the journal.

An authentic journal rejects the paper outright because the study was poorly executed, and because the (anti-“Darwinian”) conclusions are not supported by their results.

Arthur Hunt said:

Ichthyic said:

Hey, check out the new angle:

http://bio-complexity.org/ojs/index[…]BIO-C.2010.2

translated:

“The theory of evolution can’t work because organisms don’t choose the best of all possible fitness pathways in culture media!”

I’m serious. Plow through the jargon, and that’s what they’re trying to say.

It’s like they took their arguments against Dawkins Weasel program, and made a bacterial version of them.

still just as wrong, but at least they can now claim to have done “something” in a lab.

hey, at least it’s “new”!

Summarizing the paper by Gauger et al.: if one selects against maintenance of a plasmid in a bacterial cell, then the plasmid will be lost.

The conclusions the authors draw, apart from the obvious (select against a plasmid, lose the plasmid) don’t match the data. The bottom line is that they designed the experiment very poorly, were not able to make any conclusions regarding their original hypothesis (that an adaptive path involving the trpA gene multiple mutations will be beyond the reach of “Darwinian” processes), and had to state the obvious in terms that made the study acceptable to the journal.

An authentic journal rejects the paper outright because the study was poorly executed, and because the (anti-“Darwinian”) conclusions are not supported by their results.

That would be “that an adaptive path involving multiple mutations in the the trpA gene will be beyond the reach of “Darwinian” processes”.

Sorry ‘bout that.

The ID movement had their big chance at gaining legitimacy when they were invited to a debate at the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan in April 2002. It was a controversial move, one that some feared would help the IDM gain traction. So why are the ID folks pretty much silent about this chance of a lifetime? The debate, in several parts, was recently put on YouTube by the NCSE. The Pennock vs Dembski exchange is especially interesting.

See for yourselves: The Great Debate

Arthur wrote:

“Summarizing the paper by Gauger et al.: if one selects against maintenance of a plasmid in a bacterial cell, then the plasmid will be lost.”

Oh man, what a great opportunity. If I do an experiment where I select against red eyes in fruit flies and red eyes disappear, can I publish a paper in their new “journal” claiming to have destroyed the basis of darwinism? I mean man, I could really use some more publications. Maybe then I could get some grant money from these jokers to prove ID wrong! I mean, they can’t reject my paper, right? That would be censorship. Man, I can’t wait to get published in such a prestigious “journal”. I wouldn’t even have to actually do the research, I could just make up some data, or get some from some old paper somewhere. This is great.

Toni M. said:

Bio-Complexity editorial team:

http://bio-complexity.org/ojs/index[…]ditorialTeam

Oh for joy … yet another official-sounding Marvel Cosmic Crossover organization starring Mike Behe, Bill Dembski, and Jonathan Wells. The Renaissance lives on.

Ron Okimoto said:

vhutchison said:

… Idea Club …

Who still pays these guys to come and talk? Their fee used to be something like $3,000 before they started to run the bait and switch back in 2003. After having 100$ of the rubes that bought into the scam getting the bait and switch run on them if they popped up and claimed to want to teach the nonexistent science of ID who would still pay the scam artists to come and give a talk?

Is the Discovery Institute funding their own speaking sesions now?

It has been reported that an insurance multi-millionaire (I don’t recall his name, search PT), funds much of their endeavor. For many of their events they try to charge admission and when they gave church “talks” they milked the rubes and also had them sign up on mailing lists to further hit them up for money. Perhaps even more of their funding comes from religious associations furthering their cause (for religion).

Its somewhat ironic, but the student-written reports on the event - which are more favorable to the DI - explicitly mention the sponsors. For example:

Jerret Sykes, director of PULSE and Victory Campus Ministries, said he organized the event to re-connect conversation on where we came from, bringing about conversation on the meaning of life. [Link]

So the SMU event follows the common pattern: you have more honest, run-of-the-mill fundamentalists highlighting the religious aspects in the media, because to them its a selling point. Meanwhile the DI is doing everything it can to deny the religion connection.

DavidK said: It has been reported that an insurance multi-millionaire (I don’t recall his name, search PT), funds much of their endeavor.

Howard Ahmanson. Technically he’s a multi-billionaire not -millionaire. The DI’s budget is something like $4 million/year so funding it wouldn’t even be a large tax write-off for him.

Wiki has an informative page on the Dishonesty Institute:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discovery_Institute

There is the claim that Guys like Dembski used to get a stipend every year up to $60,000. You have to wonder how much they have paid a total loser like Wells over the years. It has to be sad when the guys books should have stickers in them that say “For propaganda purposes only. Not for educational use.” so that rubes like the Ohio State board won’t try to use the books as references.

These guys didn’t use the money for research. Minnich claimed that he hadn’t gotten around to doing any and Behe claimed that he didn’t have to test his ID claptrap. You have to wonder what the standards are for continuing to get the money. How many lies have you gotten away with? Any useful bogus propaganda that you have generated? Meyer got promoted after he ran the bait and switch scam on the Ohio rubes. What does he get paid? According to Behe and Minnich both claimed under oath that they nor no one that they knew of had published any scientific support for intelligent design, so you know they didn’t get the money for honest and effective research. That has to be sad in anyone’s book.

There is the claim that Guys like Dembski used to get a stipend every year up to $60,000. You have to wonder how much they have paid a total loser like Wells over the years.

The going rate for selling out humanity according to the NT is 30 shekels of silver.

Hard to say what that is in modern US dollars. $60,000 dollars/year sounds about right though.

Dale Husband said: I do suspect Ruby was ordered to kill Osward by someone, but we may never know who because he never told who sent him.

We may never know who because it unlikely in the extreme that there ever was a shadowy “someone” who sent him to do it. Why would you suspect such a thing? There has never been a shred of evidence to suggest it.

tomh said:

Dale Husband said: I do suspect Ruby was ordered to kill Osward by someone, but we may never know who because he never told who sent him.

We may never know who because it unlikely in the extreme that there ever was a shadowy “someone” who sent him to do it. Why would you suspect such a thing? There has never been a shred of evidence to suggest it.

Sorry not to resist the temptation to go off-topic, but Ruby never stopped proclaiming to anyone who would listen: “There was no conspiracy.” Conspiracy theorists cite his paranoid rantings at length, but they are always careful to leave out that particular comment.

The reflexive reaction is to say: “He was lying.” To which the answer is: “If he said anything different, then why believe he was telling the truth?” In the absence of any evidence to contradict Ruby’s testimony, it is not reasonable to simply dismiss it.

Speaking of salaries, John West used to be a professor at Seattle Pacific University. For about a year he was actually head of the political science & geography department (temporary appt I think), then he left for full-time work(?) at the dishonesty institute. Word on the street has it that he kept feeding his classes ID jibberish as well as the supposed Nazi link to evolution and his students complained up the chain. It’s strange that they crave academic positions, yet for some reason he no longer is associated with SPU. He was probably taking home a pretty good salary, too.

tomh said:

Dale Husband said: I do suspect Ruby was ordered to kill Osward by someone, but we may never know who because he never told who sent him.

We may never know who because it unlikely in the extreme that there ever was a shadowy “someone” who sent him to do it. Why would you suspect such a thing? There has never been a shred of evidence to suggest it.

I know there is no evidence to suggest it, nor would I claim there was. But why else would Ruby kill Oswald? I already indicated that Ruby did a contemptible disservice to the Kennedys, law enforcement, and America in general by killing Osward before he could be brought to trial. Ruby himself should have been shot for that act of treachery, with extreme prejudice. At least he got a trial, damn it!

Dale Husband said:

I know there is no evidence to suggest it, nor would I claim there was. But why else would Ruby kill Oswald?

Ruby shot Oswald while he was being transferred from police headquarters to the county jail. Oswald was being transferred because people were phoning in threats against his life and the police wanted to get him in a more secure establishment. They had been keeping him by himself since they feared other prisoners might try to kill him.

Ruby was an unstable and violent sort who was known as a brawler and who, on occasion, would punch people out for trivial provocations. He was volatile to begin with, and in the days following the assassination of JFK everybody found him off his head, even weeping, something a tough guy like Ruby was never seen to do at other times. When he shot Oswald he shouted: “YOU KILLED MY PRESIDENT, YOU RAT!”

Apparently a lot of telegrams were sent to Ruby in jail congratulating him. It would have been better to get Oswald on the witness stand so everybody could have heard the same easily detected lies that he told the cops in interrogation: “Here’s a picture of you posturing with your pistol and rifle that we got from the Paine’s house.”

“That’s not me!”

Again … if Oswald had been killed by a professional assassin who had then disappeared, that would have been very suspicious. But it would have made no sense to simply kill off one loose cannon who might betray the “conspiracy” and then hand the authorities ANOTHER loose cannon who might betray the “conspiracy”. Indeed, it would have made matters WORSE for the “conspiracy” because it would have indicated more links to them.

mrg said:

Dale Husband said:

I know there is no evidence to suggest it, nor would I claim there was. But why else would Ruby kill Oswald?

Ruby shot Oswald while he was being transferred from police headquarters to the county jail. Oswald was being transferred because people were phoning in threats against his life and the police wanted to get him in a more secure establishment. They had been keeping him by himself since they feared other prisoners might try to kill him.

Ruby was an unstable and violent sort who was known as a brawler and who, on occasion, would punch people out for trivial provocations. He was volatile to begin with, and in the days following the assassination of JFK everybody found him off his head, even weeping, something a tough guy like Ruby was never seen to do at other times. When he shot Oswald he shouted: “YOU KILLED MY PRESIDENT, YOU RAT!”

Apparently a lot of telegrams were sent to Ruby in jail congratulating him. It would have been better to get Oswald on the witness stand so everybody could have heard the same easily detected lies that he told the cops in interrogation: “Here’s a picture of you posturing with your pistol and rifle that we got from the Paine’s house.”

“That’s not me!”

Again … if Oswald had been killed by a professional assassin who had then disappeared, that would have been very suspicious. But it would have made no sense to simply kill off one loose cannon who might betray the “conspiracy” and then hand the authorities ANOTHER loose cannon who might betray the “conspiracy”. Indeed, it would have made matters WORSE for the “conspiracy” because it would have indicated more links to them.

And that explanation is enough to satisfy me. Ruby was an idiot with no self-control, we can certainly agree on that.

And now, back to discussing evolution issues.…..

Mary H said:

To return to the original topic. Wesley Elsberry mentioned a “debate” at SMU in 2006, I think I was at that one and asked the ID “scientist” to explain in terms of ID science why birds still had genes for teeth when they don’t even have jaws to grow them in. The answer from this so called scientist was a complete misunderstanding (ignorance of?) evolution. He said the continued existence of the gene proves that natural selection doesn’t work because otherwise the gene would have disappeared.

As most people know nowadays, when you delete a file on a Windows PC, the system just marks the file’s index entry as “deleted” - usually a single bit change. Bill Gates and his minions, whom you’d imagine should be less clever than God, knew it wasn’t necessary actually to delete the file itself. The actual file deteriorates over time as the file’s space gets overwritten - not unlike genes that no longer have any useful expression.

I thought this cartoon was intersting:

http://www.gocomics.com/nonsequitur

sorry, it’s the sunday 10/18 comic that I was pointing to.

DavidK said:

Speaking of salaries, John West used to be a professor at Seattle Pacific University. For about a year he was actually head of the political science & geography department (temporary appt I think), then he left for full-time work(?) at the dishonesty institute. Word on the street has it that he kept feeding his classes ID jibberish as well as the supposed Nazi link to evolution and his students complained up the chain. It’s strange that they crave academic positions, yet for some reason he no longer is associated with SPU. He was probably taking home a pretty good salary, too.

I would suspect that as assistant director of the scam wing of the Discovery Institute that he would get more money than a senior Fellow. They might also allow double dipping. I wouldn’t be surprised if Meyer and West also get senior fellow stipends to do ID research in their spare time.

Does anyone else recall a statement by West, soon after the bait and switch went down on the Ohio rubes in early 2003, the statement was something about intelligent design not being ready for prime time. It was during the Texas textbook fiasco where the ID perps were trying to hide their Discovery Institute affiliations. I recall Dembski left out putting the Discovery Institute senior fellow crud on the written junk he gave to the textbook board, and one ID perp even lied to the board and denied affiliation with the Discovery Institute when asked directly about it. Meyer (who had just perpetrated the bait and switch on the Ohio rubes) was MIA and in hiding and West had to step up and represent the Dishonesty Institute. These guys knew that ID was bogus and that all their “ID is our business” was just a bunch of bull pucky once they decided that they were going to run the bait and switch. Just imagine what the conversations were like leading up to running the bait and switch on the Ohio rubes. Were these guys even honest among themselves?

We must go out of our way to censor and expell all nonEvolutionary claims, so that we are not contaminated with the divine foot. We must keep the divine foot out of the door and not let the 40% of history deniers have a say on Science. Let us no longer promote propaganda, but yet go strongly with as Stephen Jay Gould puts it, the strong imagination of Charles Lyell, and demonstrate true Science out of it!

A little early in the day to be that high and/or drunk Faith.

tresmal said:

A little early in the day to be that high and/or drunk Faith.

He was here a few days ago. I get the impression he’s cycling through the blogosphere and leaving his mark.

mrg said:

tresmal said:

A little early in the day to be that high and/or drunk Faith.

He was here a few days ago. I get the impression he’s cycling through the blogosphere and leaving his mark.

A lot of animals do that (this is mine).

Mike Elzinga said: A lot of animals do that (this is mine).

Yeah, I was visualizing him raising his leg at the telephone poles.

Hey, all I want is for honest inquiry in Science. If I have further evidential support that I’ve found for Evolution, I think I should be more than entitled to share it.

Write it up for a peer-reviewed journal.

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This page contains a single entry by Wesley R. Elsberry published on October 10, 2010 8:21 PM.

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