Nick Matzke posted Entry 2442 on July 11, 2006 01:40 PM.
Trackback URL: http://www.pandasthumb.org/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb.fcgi/2437

I know this is just a part of their shameless election strategy for the Kansas Board of Education primaries coming up on August 1, but it is still gratifying to see the Discovery Institute frantically running from ID in an attempt to avoid an election defeat for the “Critical Analysis of Evolution” “intelligent design” crypto-creationist science standards they are attempting to push onto students in Kansas. Check this out:

Critical Analysis of Evolution is Not the Same as Teaching Intelligent Design

A favorite Darwinist conspiracy theory is to claim that education policies requiring critical analysis of evolution are simply a guise for teaching intelligent design (ID). Right now anti-science groups in Kansas are claiming that the state’s new science standards are pushing intelligent design.

The Kansas science standards do not include intelligent design. In spreading this falsehood, opponents of the standards ignore the following clear statement by the Kansas Board of Education in the standards. “We also emphasize that the Science Curriculum Standards do not include Intelligent Design….” (emphasis added) Which part of “do not include Intelligent Design” can’t opponents of the standards understand?

[formatting original]

First, the obvious one-liner: “No, the standards don’t include ‘ID’, they really just include creationism.” But apart from that, I would like to look at the claim that this ID-in-the-Kansas-science-standards idea is a conspiracy theory.

[Note: Some comments have expressed confusion about what I am quoting below, so to be clear: the bits from the Kansas standards that I quote below are in the Kansas Science Standards right now. They were passed into the Kansas Science Standards by the creationists on the Kansas Board of Education on November 8, 2005. The quotes are specifically from the February 14, 2006, version of the standards, which passed minor edits to avoid copyright infringement after the NAS and NSTA denied Kansas permission to use text from the national model standards. However, because it takes a while for school districts to receive the standards and write up science curricula, these new standards are probably not “in effect” anywhere until the next school year starts. Between now and then 4 of the 6 creationists on the Board of Education face reelection this fall, which is why the antievolution groups are gunning up the propaganda.]

Is it a “conspiracy theory” to note, for example, that this post was put up on the “Intelligent Design The Future” blog, which is run by the Discovery Institute’s Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture, which just happens to be the dominant institution promoting ID? Is it a conspiracy theory to note that this same institution just happened to help assemble a huge team of ID proponents and outright creationists to attempt to put evolution on trial in the fake Kansas Kangaroo Court, while at almost the same time the leading ID proponents were chickening out of testifying in an actual real court case with actual rules of evidence? It’s a “conspiracy theory” to note that the local group behind the crypto-creationism in the Kansas Science Standards calls itself the “Intelligent Design Network“?

Is it also a “conspiracy theory” to note that the Kansas Science Standards include a big advertisement for ID on the first page of text in the standards – the Preface (p. ii), where the creationists on the board declare, in their official capacity as authorities on science, that:

The Board has heard credible scientific testimony that indeed there are significant debates about the evidence for key aspects of chemical and biological evolutionary theory.

(Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, p. ii, bold added – standards will be quoted in italics for the rest of this post)

Hmm, and what “scientific” debates might they have in mind? Not, by any chance, the only one they actually mention on page ii? It happens to be Intelligent Design:

Intelligent Design, the scientific disagreement with the claim of many evolutionary biologists that the apparent design of living systems is an illusion.

(Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, p. ii)

There you have it: Intelligent Design = criticism of evolution.

Sure, the Science Standards Preface says, “We also emphasize that the Science Curriculum Standards do not include Intelligent Design” and “these standards neither mandate nor prohibit [wink wink!] teaching about this scientific disagreement.” But when you actually look at what’s in the creationist version of the standards, what do you see? I quote the changes passed into the current version of the standards in November 2005:

1.c. The sequence of the nucleotide bases within genes is not dictated by any known chemical or physical law. (Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, p. 73)

This is just Stephen Meyer’s silly argument that evolution cannot produce new genetic information (mind you, Stephen Meyer is the Director of the Discovery Institute’s Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture).

Taken scientifically, the statement makes about as much sense as saying “The structure of the Grand Canyon is not dictated by any known chemical or physical law.” It only holds if you exclude mysterious things like “erosion” from the category of “known chemical or physical law.” Similarly, the above statement about DNA in the Kansas Science Standards only holds if you exclude things like gene duplication, mutation, population genetics, and natural selection. If you include those, then we have a perfectly good explanation for new genetic information, which is explained in detail in many places, particularly this paper:

Manyuan Long et al. (2003). “The origin of new genes.” Nature Reviews Genetics 4(11): 865-875. [PubMedJournalDOIGoogle ScholarSeveral places with free PDF downloads]

Moving on:

1.a. Biological evolution postulates an unguided natural process that has no discernable direction or goal.

[…]

c. Patterns of diversification and extinction of organisms are documented in the fossil record. Evidence also indicates that simple, bacteria-like life may have existed billions of years ago. However, in many cases the fossil record is not consistent with gradual, unbroken sequences postulated by biological evolution.

[…]

f. The view that living things in all the major kingdoms are modified descendants of a common ancestor (described in the pattern of a branching tree) has been challenged in recent years by:

i. Discrepancies in the molecular evidence (e.g., differences in relatedness inferred from sequence studies of different proteins) previously thought to support that view.

ii. A fossil record that shows sudden bursts of increased complexity (the Cambrian Explosion), long periods of stasis and the absence of abundant transitional forms rather than steady gradual increases in complexity, and

iii. Studies that show animals follow different rather than identical early stages of embryological development.

2. a. Genetic changes occur only in individual organisms. New heritable traits may result from new combinations of genes and from random mutations or changes in the reproductive cells. Except in very rare cases, mutations that may be inherited are neutral, deleterious or fatal.

(Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, pp. 75-76)

Let’s see, in this section, we have:

1a. Evolution, if true, means life is purposeless. (wrong)
1c. No transitional fossils (wrong)
1fi. Molecular phylogenies show that common ancestry is false (wrong)
1fii. No transitional fossils, especially in the Cambrian Explosion (wrongety-wrong)
1fiii. Differences in embryo development show that common ancestry is wrong (wrong)
2a. Mutations are basically always neutral or bad (wrong)

Anyone familiar with creationist arguments can immediately see that these are all just common half-baked creationist talking points. In fact, they have all already been debunked on TalkOrigins.org (see links above).

3d. Whether microevolution (change within a species) can be extrapolated to explain macroevolutionary changes (such as new complex organs or body plans and new biochemical systems which appear irreducibly complex) is controversial. These kinds of macroevolutionary explanations generally are not based on direct observations and often reflect historical narratives based on inferences from indirect or circumstantial evidence.

(Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, p. 76)

Yet more non-creationist, non-ID “critical analysis”? Yeah, right. Here we have:

3d. (claim 1): Microevolution is fine, but macroevolution is speculative. This is decades old, completely standard creationist code for “We accept microevolution within the specially created ‘kinds’ of Genesis, but we do not accept ‘macroevolution’, the evolution of ‘new’ ‘kinds’ of organisms.” (This is usually accompanied by the assertion that creationists aren’t quite sure what the created kinds are, but they are working real hard on figuring out the boundaries.) The argument, of course, is wrong.

3d. (claim 2): “Irreducible complexity” is a problem for evolution. Hello? I thought the standards “do not include Intelligent Design.” Even if you want to argue that all of the standard bogus creationist objections to evolution are critical analysis and not “intelligent design”, there is no way that “irreducible complexity” can be associated with anyone other than Michael Behe, leading ID advocate and Discovery Institute Senior Fellow. Again, the problems with the IC argument are well-known, and the argument was employed by the creationists long before Behe got to it, and furthermore IC fizzed out when it was tested in court.

6c. Natural selection, genetic drift, genomes, and the mechanisms of genetic change provide a context in which to ask research questions and help explain observed changes in populations. However, reverse engineering and end-directed thinking are used to understand the function of bio-systems and information.

(Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, pp. 77)

Translation: Wink wink! Nudge nudge!

The student…

7. explains proposed scientific explanations of the origin of life as well as scientific criticisms of those explanations.

7. Some of the scientific criticisms include:

a A lack of empirical evidence for a “primordial soup” or a chemically hospitable pre-biotic atmosphere;

b. The lack of adequate natural explanations for the genetic code, the sequences of genetic information necessary to specify life, the biochemical machinery needed to translate genetic information into functional biosystems, and the formation of proto-cells; and

c. The sudden rather than gradual emergence of organisms near the time that the Earth first became habitable.

(Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, pp. 77)

7a. (claim 1) Translation: No evidence for a “primordial soup.” Considering that there are no almost no rocks left from the relevant time period (3.5 billion years ago and before), this wouldn’t exactly be surprising, but even so, it is wrong, because meteorites have shown that organic molecules were present in the very early solar system.

7a. (claim 2) Translation: Prebiotic oxygen in the atmosphere blocked prebiotic chemistry. This is also wrong. The standard view of the evolution of earth’s atmosphere has, for decades, been the view that life is what has produced the oxygenated atmosphere of earth. Before life, everyone thought, earth’s atmosphere would have been anoxic, like all other known planetary atmospheres. In the early 1980’s, however, some geologists temporarily proposed the idea that the prebiotic atmosphere of earth might have had significant amounts of oxygen. This would have oxidized organic molecules to carbon dioxide, blocking prebiotic chemistry. But, this prebiotic oxygen proposal didn’t persist in the scientific community because the geological evidence was against it, but creationists picked up the talking point back in the 1980’s and have been spouting it ever since, for example in Of Pandas and People and Icons of Evolution.

7b. Translation: the origin of life is unexplained. While everyone agrees that the origin of life is not completely solved, this creationist standard completely ignores the massive amount of progress scientists have made in the scientific literature, in understanding the origin of the genetic code (which is the same question as where the “biochemical machinery needed to translate genetic information” came from), the non-mystery of where new genetic information comes from, and the work on the lipid world.

7c. Translation: “Poof!” Unfortunately for the creationists, at a minimum, in this context “sudden” means 100 million years. And as for “sudden emergence”, I believe that we heard about that during the Kitzmiller trial.

[edited for a few typos etc.]

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Comment #111590

Posted by Stephen Erickson on July 12, 2006 2:06 AM (e)

The irony is that “intelligent design” has always been a trojan horse for religion (see, for example, the Wedge document). So now that ID has met its Waterloo (http://www.google.com/trends?q=intelligent+design) they are falling all over themselves coming up with new jargon. (What was Dembski’s oh-so-brilliant phrasecoinage?)

Another irony is that an honest, truly critical analysis of evolution would be a great thing, but hardly what the DI would want. Imagine, for example, a high school AP biology class that actually read The Origin of Species, and compared Darwin’s ideas and conjectures with what has been discovered since its publication.

Comment #111610

Posted by Chris Hyland on July 12, 2006 5:03 AM (e)

However, reverse engineering and end-directed thinking are used to understand the function of bio-systems and information.

This is terrible. Firstly I’ve never seen the phrase bio-system used like that before. Also it seems to be completely backwards, surely you have to understand the system before you can reverse engineer it. And in all the systems biology conferences I have been to I have never heard anyone say ‘we used end-directed thinking to understand the function of this bio-system’, end-directed thinking sounds like management speak to me.

Comment #111623

Posted by Frank J on July 12, 2006 5:32 AM (e)

Right now anti-science groups in Kansas are claiming that the state’s new science standards are pushing intelligent design.

(sound of exploding irony meter) Anti-science groups?!?

That’s what they call groups that want students to learn and truly critically analyze evolution in science class? Groups that also encourage students to read about potential new theories such as “self organization?” Groups that even encourage students to read what the real anti-science activists (creationists, IDers and other misrepresenters of evolution - “ID activists” for short) say, and the refutations from mainstream science that the ID activists effectively censor?

That’s what they call groups that actually do the research and publish in real peer-reviewed journals? Groups that actually discover and correct fraud and error committed by a small minority, as opposed to the ID activists, who try to cover up any fraud, error, contradiction and disagreement between any competing anti-evolution group?

Comment #111626

Posted by Reed A. Cartwright on July 12, 2006 6:06 AM (e)

I was looking for a list of anti-science groups, and I eventually found one: iap statement on the teaching of evolution.

Comment #111633

Posted by Mephisto on July 12, 2006 6:53 AM (e)

I’m a little confused. Are those the standards that are actually going to be adopted by the Kansas Board of Education?

If so, that’s simply shocking. It’s so demonstrably untrue that any reasonably competent scientist would find it hard to keep a straight face when reading them.

I can’t believe they’re willing to try and [bleep] with children’s heads like that. It really is child abuse.

Comment #111636

Posted by Michael Suttkus, II on July 12, 2006 7:09 AM (e)

Chris Hyland wrote:

…end-directed thinking sounds like management speak to me.

Of course it’s management speak. The purpose of mangement speak is to make nothing appear like something so that you can expand your list of accomplishments without actually accomplishing anything more. ID has accomplished nothing, so the same technique works for the DI.

For final proof of my theory (because creationists assure me theories need proven), we need to see if Dembski has pointy hair.

Comment #111639

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on July 12, 2006 7:23 AM (e)

I really really really hope that some sucker school district in Kansas begins teaching those standards. I *love* the smell of ID/creationists frying themselves in court in the morning.

And I’d especially like to hear the Kansas Kooks explain all the religious statements that they’ve made in print, and how those really don’t refer to their, uh, “scientific criticisms of evolution”….

Comment #111640

Posted by mark on July 12, 2006 7:25 AM (e)

This Famous Darwinist Conspiracy Theory (FDCT) fits hand-in-glove (or, I might say, head-in-butt) with that other FDCT, the contention that Intelligent Design has something to do with religion. For refutation, one need only read all of the Intelligent Design research articles that appear in Nature, Science, Evolution, &c.

Comment #111645

Posted by Jack Krebs on July 12, 2006 7:43 AM (e)

Without reading past the intro, I was struck that Kansas Citizens for Science (not mentioned by name, but the obvious referent) is called an anti-science group. That’s a new twist. These guys are absolutely shameless, and would call the sky green if they thought they could get away with it.

Comment #111659

Posted by Erasmus on July 12, 2006 9:13 AM (e)

Syntax Error: mismatched tag 'kwickxml'

Comment #111660

Posted by Erasmus on July 12, 2006 9:14 AM (e)

DAMMIT

anyway end-directed thinking huh. sounds JUST LIKE an apologetic for them having their head squarely up in their ass. indeed.

lenny i’m with you. sounds like they will be slain by the court. where do the jesters keep coming from? someone check the janitors closet for a hydra farm.

Comment #111662

Posted by Shaffer on July 12, 2006 9:31 AM (e)

Surreal. How much contempt for other peoples’ intelligence does it require even to consider such a strategy? As if we’re not going to notice that this supposedly “new argument” consists of the same people making the same arguments as those that pushed for ID. At least when creationism morphed into ID, they made substantial changes to the surface - removing everything all of the overtly religious verbiage from their official position (although the underlying religious motives were still clearly visible). If ID was creationism in a cheap tuxedo, this is just ID in a funny hat. Pathetic.

For that matter, I emphatically support critical analysis of evolutionary biology (in the root meaning of those terms), just as I support critical analysis of all sciences. Just one caveat: the “critical analysis” must consist of actual, you know, analysis, and must be backed by actual, you know, evidence.

Comment #111663

Posted by minimalist on July 12, 2006 9:36 AM (e)

The post title got me to thinking: we saw “cintelligent design proponentists”, so what will the next intermediate be?

“criticintelligent design proponentistalysis”?
“cintelligitical design analproponentists”?

Pretty convoluted, but hey, no more so than the DI’s increasingly entertaining contortions.

Comment #111668

Posted by Torbjörn Larsson on July 12, 2006 9:52 AM (e)

“Without reading past the intro, I was struck that Knasas Citizens for Science (not mentioned by name, but the obvious referent) is called an anti-science group.”

The argument is probably that “education policies requiring critical analysis” is anti-science. Since science has builtin critique, one could probably make a good case that the argument is uneducated at best, and antiscience and antieducation at worst.

This standard has probably been discussed before, but I found an older proposed version and there seems to be some more changes. ( http://www.kansasscience2005.com/ProposedRevisions_KSstandards.pdf )

- The addition of “informed and” to the “Mission Statement” remains. (New rev p iii, old prop rev p 2.)

- The changes to “Nature of science” remains:
Science is a systematic method of continuing investigation, that uses observation, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building, to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena. [Added ] *Science is the human activity of seeking natural explanations for what we observe in the world around us.* [Text between *’s deleted.] Science does so *through the use of observation, experimentation, and logical argument* [Text between *’s deleted.] while maintaining strict empirical standards and healthy skepticism.
(New rev p ix, old prop rev p 3. [] contains my comments.)

The purpose of the addition is to support introducing “critical analysis”. The main purpose of the changes to “Nature of science” are all too clear - and humanising science doesn’t sit well with creationists.

Comment #111670

Posted by Mephisto on July 12, 2006 9:55 AM (e)

The post title got me to thinking: we saw “cintelligent design proponentists”, so what will the next intermediate be?

“criticintelligent design proponentistalysis”?
“cintelligitical design analproponentists”?

Pretty convoluted, but hey, no more so than the DI’s increasingly entertaining contortions.

Maybe they’ll stick with “pro-science,” in the implication that scientists are “anti-science.”

It worked for abortion. After all, if someone isn’t “pro-life” it naturally follows that they’re “anti-life.” It never ceases to amaze me that abortion-rights advocates allowed themselves to be trapped into the pro-life/pro-choice dichotomy. I can’t imagine what it looks like to the ordinary person who takes no interest in politics.

Anyway, this isn’t particularly on topic so I’ll let it go. ;)

Comment #111671

Posted by Torbjörn Larsson on July 12, 2006 9:57 AM (e)

“The argument is probably that “education policies requiring critical analysis” is anti-science.” - The argument is probably that critiquing “education policies requiring critical analysis” is anti-science.

Comment #111673

Posted by DragonScholar on July 12, 2006 10:03 AM (e)

Simpler headline: Intelligent Design Supporters Lie Again.

Erasmus’ question of where they come from is worth considering - frankly, I think their goal is to try as win as many victories as possible. Once they get a few, they can move on to other areas, arguing “see, THAT state does it.”

I have come to the conclusion that ID is something of a cult. Lying, slander, deliberate deception, conspiracy theories, propigating proven untruths and bad science - nothing matters except the cult.

Comment #111677

Posted by Torbjörn Larsson on July 12, 2006 10:08 AM (e)

I also noted that the text “Whether microevolution can be extrapolated to
explain macroevolutionary changes (such as new complex organs or body plans and new biochemical systems which appear irreducibly complex) is not clear. These kinds of macroevolutionary explanations generally are not based on direct observations and are historical narratives based on inferences from indirect or circumstantial evidence.” in the old proposed version was attributed to “Ernst Mayr, “Darwin’s Influence on Modern Thought,” p. 80, (July 2000, Scientific American)” ( http://www.kansasscience2005.com/ProposedRevisions_KSstandards.pdf , p 15).

I’m not spending 8 $$$ to Sci Am archives for the argument, but the same titled speech delivered when Mayr received the Crafoord Prize 1999 doesn’t contain anything like it. ( http://www.biologie.uni-hamburg.de/b-online/e36_2/darwin_influence.htm ) Perhaps they were caught lying?

Comment #111678

Posted by Morgan-LynnLamberth on July 12, 2006 10:18 AM (e)

Creationist evololutionists also have an intelligent design notion ,but they do not claim it is scientific as well as they should as it is otiose and contradictory to natural causation. Theirs is the new Omphalos notion that god faked it so that it would appear that natural selection does the creative job , but by faith ,we know that god did it . Thus like any other creationists , they have a problem : god did it explains nothing , in effect, and begs the question in the first place. See Amiel Rossow’s essay @ Talk Reason on the Yin and Yang of Kenneth Miller to see the contradiction exposed and Miller’s pathetic attempts at apologetics. The two category argument is question begging as Malcolm Diamond in his philosophy of religion shows . Gee, is this not pellucid ,reverend? Anyone ,it is Rossow and Diamond to refute , not me .

Comment #111679

Posted by Richard Simons on July 12, 2006 10:20 AM (e)

As far as I can tell, ‘Intelligent design’ consists only of continually repeated, long-refuted criticisms of the Theory of Evolution, plus throwing one’s hands up in horror and exclaiming ‘It’s too complex for us to understand!’ So what’s the difference between teaching ID and ‘critical analysis of evolution’?

Anyway, it’s questionable whether high school science gives one enough knowledge to perform any critical analysis of evolutionary theory. On the other hand, critical analysis of ‘Intelligent Design Theory’ should be possible as soon as a student learns what is meant by a theory.

Comment #111680

Posted by steve s on July 12, 2006 10:27 AM (e)

On the page where they claim it’s not Intelligent Design, without even scrolling down, I count ten mentions of Intelligent Design, including the URL http://intelligentdesign.podomatic.com/entry/2006-07-11T09_38_44-07_00

These guys really lost their minds at Doverloo.

Comment #111684

Posted by Glen Davidson on July 12, 2006 10:34 AM (e)

Is there really anything wrong with a conspiracy theory involving genuine conspiracies to smuggle religion into the science curriculum? I know it’s not a great slogan (“We have a theory about the IDist conspiracy), but among friends perhaps we can admit that we do have a rather solid conspiracy theory, one that the court backed up at Dover.

Of course ID is nothing but word games, hence the term “conspiracy theory”, usually targeted at loonies and their imaginings, comes in handy for another round of name-calling in lieu of any genuine science. But the fact that the IDists really are conspirators of a sort does somewhat justify the label of “conspiracy theory” when we call them on it, hence complete denial of same may not be the best strategy.

It’s the same old exploitation of naivete and warped sense of equality going on. We call them conspiracy theorists when they either say or imply that science conspires to suppress ID. There’s a crucial fact behind our labeling of them as (false) conspiracy theorists, however, which is that there are no conspiracies to suppress any truly scientific ID concept. Then we finger the conspiratorial work of the DI, and get called “conspiracy theorists”, by which IDists imply that we are incorrect in detecting their conspiracies. Again the false standards, as if noting real conspirings to “fakify” science is the equivalent of false charges of conspiracy leveled at us by the IDists.

Since they never do deal with our “pathetic level of detail”, the details that support our charges of a kind of conspiracy on the part of the DI don’t affect their “judgment” of the matter. Has anyone ever tried to count up the number of questions asked of IDists that are never answered, particularly those involving the facts and proper inference from those facts? The “details” which have always pointed toward evolution are exactly what they will never address “in detail” (never critically analyze). Only vague BS about designers “utilizing other designs”, etc., are vollied against the actual evidence, without any sort of detailed analysis whatsoever.

“Critical analysis” for them only means criticism of evolution, not critical analysis of homology and analogy in morphology and in genetics–since this would devastate any ID claims. Can, for instance, Salvador tell us why it is that “similar designs” which are analogous happen to be genetically homologous with functionally “dissimilar designs” (bird wing and vertebrate front leg)?

IOW, the whole “critical analysis” nonsense fails in multiple ways, from their lack of desire for critical analysis of their own bankrupt concepts, to the fact that charges of conspiracy by the DI do bear critical analysis. They simply do not bring any critical analysis to the table, rather we have to supply all of it.

Glen D
http://tinyurl.com/b8ykm

Comment #111690

Posted by Glen Davidson on July 12, 2006 10:59 AM (e)

Matzke wrote:

1.c. The sequence of the nucleotide bases within genes is not dictated by any known chemical or physical law. (Creationist version of the Kansas Science Standards, p. 73)

This is just Stephen Meyer’s silly argument that evolution cannot produce new genetic information (mind you, Stephen Meyer is the Director of the Discovery Institute’s Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture.

Taken scientifically, the statement makes about as much sense as saying “The structure of the Grand Canyon is not dictated by any known chemical or physical law.” It only holds if you exclude mysterious things like “erosion” from the category of “known chemical or physical law.” Similarly, the statement in the Kansas Science Standards only holds if you exclude things like gene duplication, mutation, population genetics, natural selection. If you include those, then we have a perfectly good explanation for new genetic information, which is explained in detail in many places, particularly this paper: …

Meyer is playing with words here. The fact of the matter is that nucleotide sequences are not dictated by any known law, rather they are the result of contingency, mutation and selection (usually “natural selection”).

Matzke is correct to suggest that “lawful” processes are responsible, however he does not fully address the strawman fallacy that is introduced by Meyer’s/Kansas’s silly statement. No law dictates any event on earth in full, instead laws tell us how various phenomena will interact in their various aspects.

No law dictates that the Grand Canyon should form, yet the “laws of motion” and gravity play a considerable role in explaining how a confluence of forces and events did carve the Grand Canyon. Likewise, we insist on using science to tell us about life because we are unwilling to give up the “laws” that apply to physical systems and thus to resort to unknown entities who “designed” life. Newton’s “laws of motion” play a role in mutation events that are a part of the story of evolution, while gravity and other forces (plus Newton’s laws of motion) are influential in forming the bird’s wing via natural selection. That is to say, we are paying attention to laws when we study evolution, the exact opposite of Meyer’s “poof, God made the bird’s wing”.

But of course not even gravity plus the laws of mothion are fully responsible for the nucleotide sequences in the genes directly coding for wing development. The contingencies that gave us the genetic code are partly responsible, vertebrate leg evolution is also responsible, while gravity and “lawful motion” are only partly responsible even for the shifts in forelimb development that produced the bird wing. Chance played some role in supplying the material for evolution, gravity, and aerodynamics to “naturally select” into the exquisite structure of the swallow’s wing.

This is what science is all about, understanding complex developments out of the regularities and “laws” that we understand in the abstract. We understand life via evolution because we are unwilling to discard the “laws” governing phenomena, while Meyer and the Kansas board are only too happy to dispatch with laws and the phenomena that these govern whenever these conflict with their dogmas.

Glen D
http://tinyurl.com/b8ykm

Comment #111703

Posted by k.e. on July 12, 2006 11:45 AM (e)

Erasmus said:
….where do the jesters keep coming from? someone check the janitors closet for a hydra farm.

In the old days hydrae came from swamps (there was one at the back of every mythical little village…actually the unconscience of the unaware), in our post literate, nuclear family world they reside under little Johnie’s and little Janie’s beds. They go by various nick names…Hubris, Vanity, Fear, Tautological Solipsism or lust of Biblical proportions for a fable.

In our Elysian suburban dystopias they are regularly stroked to full tumescence by the worlds oldest profession. The meetings are on Sundays and the parking covers acres…at least one day a week they are off the streets.

Comment #111708

Posted by Bill Gascoyne on July 12, 2006 11:53 AM (e)

The Board has heard credible scientific testimony that indeed there are significant debates about the evidence for key aspects of chemical and biological evolutionary theory.

Hmm, and what “scientific” debates might they have in mind?

[sarcasm mode]
No, no; you’re misquoting the statement. The testimony was scientific and credible, the debates are “significant.” As the definition of “significant” is open to interpretation, I would argue that if one considers the debates to be culturally significant, then the Board might easily have heard legitimate, credible scientific testimony (e.g. from an anthropologist) that a significant cultural debate exists regarding scientific evidence.
[/sarcasm mode]

Now, of course, the scientific validity of culturally significant debates should not be of much interest to high school physics, biology, and chemistry classes. Nor do I believe there’s any evidence that the Board heard testimony of this sort from any anthropologist.

Comment #111714

Posted by Bilge Prophet on July 12, 2006 12:08 PM (e)

They’re still flailing irreducible complexity?

From Kitzmiller v Dover:

Professor Behe admitted in “Reply to My Critics” that there was a defect in his view of irreducible complexity because, while it purports to be a challenge to natural selection, it does not actually address “the task facing natural selection.” (P-718 at 695). Professor Behe specifically explained that “[t]he current definition puts the focus on removing a part from an already functioning
system,”

Comment #111715

Posted by steve s on July 12, 2006 12:20 PM (e)

1995:”ID is not creationism!”
1996:”ID is not creationism!”
1997:”ID is not creationism!”
1998:”ID is not creationism!”
1999:”ID is not creationism!”
2000:”ID is not creationism!”
2001:”ID is not creationism!”
2002:”ID is not creationism!”
2003:”ID is not creationism!”
2004:”ID is not creationism!”
2005: Doverloo
2006:”Teach the Controversy is not ID!”

Comment #111720

Posted by Nick (Matzke) on July 12, 2006 1:19 PM (e)

A few replies:

I’m a little confused. Are those the standards that are actually going to be adopted by the Kansas Board of Education?

I have added a note clarifying that the quotes are from the passed version of the standards, and are currently in effect (although all schools are on summer break until the fall).

I also noted that the text “Whether microevolution can be extrapolated to explain macroevolutionary changes (such as new complex organs or body plans and new biochemical systems which appear irreducibly complex) is not clear. These kinds of macroevolutionary explanations generally are not based on direct observations and are historical narratives based on inferences from indirect or circumstantial evidence.” in the old proposed version was attributed to “Ernst Mayr, “Darwin’s Influence on Modern Thought,” p. 80, (July 2000, Scientific American)” (http://www.kansasscience2005.com/ProposedRevisio… , p 15).

Yes, the creationists have been quoting evolutionists on microevolution/macroevolution ever since the Seventh-Day Adventist creationist Frank Lewis Marsh latched onto the distinction in the 1960’s as a way to express his “evolution is fine within specially created kinds” vs. “evolution cannot produce new ‘kinds’” argument.

I have the PDF of that article, and the text strings “extrapolate” and “circumstantial” (let alone “irreducibly complex”), etc., do not appear anywhere in the article AFAICT, so it’s not a direct quote (surprise, surprise). On page 80, we find this instead:

For example, Darwin introduced historicity into science. Evolutionary biology, in contrast with physics and chemistry, is a historical science—the evolutionist attempts to explain events and processes that have already taken place. Laws and experiments are inappropriate techniques for the explication of such events and processes. Instead one constructs a historical narrative, consisting of a tentative reconstruction of the particular scenario that led to the events one is trying to explain.

For example, three different scenarios have been proposed for the sudden extinction of the dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous: a devastating epidemic; a catastrophic change of climate; and the impact of an asteroid, known as the Alvarez theory. The first two narratives were ultimately refuted by evidence incompatible with them. All the known facts, however, fit the Alvarez theory, which is now widely accepted.

[Mayr, Ernst (2000). “Darwin’s Influence on Modern Thought.” Scientific American, July 2000, p. 80.]

Gasp, you mean historical explanations are testable? What an idea!

Comment #111721

Posted by Nick (Matzke) on July 12, 2006 1:28 PM (e)

1995:”ID is not creationism!”
1996:”ID is not creationism!”
1997:”ID is not creationism!”
1998:”ID is not creationism!”
1999:”ID is not creationism!”
2000:”ID is not creationism!”
2001:”ID is not creationism!”
2002:”ID is not creationism!”
2003:”ID is not creationism!”
2004:”ID is not creationism!”
2005: Doverloo
2006:”Teach the Controversy is not ID!”

LOL! This deserves some kind of award for funniness.

Comment #111723

Posted by Curious Farker on July 12, 2006 1:33 PM (e)

FYI, this page will be linked on Fark.com (under the Politics tab), sometime around 4:15pm EST today. There’s already quite the *ahem* vigorous discussion going on in case anyone wants to jump in.

Thanks for all the info.

Comment #111741

Posted by Henry J on July 12, 2006 2:29 PM (e)

Re “For example, Darwin introduced historicity into science.”

He did? I thought geologists were already doing historical type stuff before Darwin’s wrote a book or several.

Henry

Comment #111742

Posted by Joe Shelby on July 12, 2006 2:34 PM (e)

Question - Are there any states that actually have abiogenesis in their k-12 public school standards? It seems to me that its highly unlikely, given the amount of chemistry, biochemistry, and micro-biology knowledge that’s necessary to even begin to talk about it.

It seems we can infer that Kansas has no intention of teaching the real science of abiogenesis (given that no student is ready for it at those pre-collegiate levels) and thus the only reason they want to introduce their strawman version of it is to sow the seeeds of doubt in students’ minds before they can even begin to address the real science?

Rather than criticise the lack of facts about abiogenesis and the inclusion of Wells’s standard talking points, we should first criticise the fact that its been brought up at all where it doesn’t belong.

Comment #111794

Posted by Ron Okimoto on July 12, 2006 6:40 PM (e)

Steve S wrote:

1995:”ID is not creationism!”
1996:”ID is not creationism!”
1997:”ID is not creationism!”
1998:”ID is not creationism!”
1999:”ID is not creationism!”
2000:”ID is not creationism!”
2001:”ID is not creationism!”
2002:”ID is not creationism!”
2003:”ID is not creationism!”
2004:”ID is not creationism!”
2005: Doverloo
2006:”Teach the Controversy is not ID!”

What is so funny about this is look who is pushing the creationist replacement scam. The Discovery Institute that used to claim that ID was their business, and something they can’t run from, Calvert’s organization that happens to be called the ID Network. The same perps that got caught peddling the ID creationist scam are dishing out the replacement scam.

What did Judge Jones say about the next scam? What future does the creationist replacement scam have when the same dishonest perps that got caught with their hand in the cookie jar are the ones pushing the new scam? Shouldn’t the rubes, at least, look for a pristine bunch of scam artist to lie to them?

Everyone should recall that guys like Meyer, West, Dembski and Johnson always claimed that they were not scientific creationists. They can’t claim that they are not the same guys that ran the ID Wedge scam.

Comment #111797

Posted by Erasmus on July 12, 2006 7:17 PM (e)

In a perfect world science would wrangle head on with Mayr’s life-long issue, which was ‘Is macroevolution extrapolable to microevolution’. I am not sure about the source that the creationists were citing but from my reading of Mayr’s writings I think it is perfectly legitmate to say that he considered this one of THE burning questions in evolutionary biology (species concepts aside). That has nothing to do with goddidit but as so many have lamented one needs a conceptual framework and large vocabulary to investigate these questions and a collection of sacred texts compiled by coprophagous (aha read ezekiel, thou shalt take man dung for cows dung and bake thy bread therewith my children) sheepherders. so if there is no understanding of what a species MIGHT be or the relevance to speciation to vertical evolution then it’s like saying ‘my orc can defeat your necromancer since i have a 2d10 bonus roll’.

so in the meantime the good question is an untouchable simply because some stone-age demented fackwit solipcists believe general revelation is a satanic chimera. i don’t think that mayr’s challenge has sufficiently been taken up and that is probably because we waste so much time pouring boiling oil on the peasants attempting to storm the gates with nerf bats. alas politicization of science and the commercialization of good bluegrass music two travesties of the world and proof of original sin indeed.

Comment #111798

Posted by Erasmus on July 12, 2006 7:18 PM (e)

sorry let me insert ‘sacred text written by coprophagous (…)…’ just doesn’t cut it.

i say throw timecube at these assholes and let them implode.

Comment #111802

Posted by steve s on July 12, 2006 7:48 PM (e)

Comment #111721

Posted by Nick (Matzke) on July 12, 2006 01:28 PM (e) | kill

LOL! This deserves some kind of award for funniness.

Like Will Rogers said, “I don’t tell jokes. I just watch Uncommonly Dense and report the facts at AtBC.”

Comment #111824

Posted by Michael J on July 12, 2006 9:52 PM (e)

“Are there any states that actually have abiogenesis in their k-12 public school standards? It seems to me that its highly unlikely, given the amount of chemistry, biochemistry, and micro-biology knowledge that’s necessary to even begin to talk about it.”

We were taught this in Australia in High School. Not the detail chemistry but at the level of talking about the theory and some of the experiments that had been done.

Michael

Comment #111840

Posted by Michael Hopkins on July 12, 2006 11:34 PM (e)

[quote]1995:”ID is not creationism!”
1996:”ID is not creationism!”
1997:”ID is not creationism!”
1998:”ID is not creationism!”
1999:”ID is not creationism!”
2000:”ID is not creationism!”
2001:”ID is not creationism!”
2002:”ID is not creationism!”
2003:”ID is not creationism!”
2004:”ID is not creationism!”
2005: Doverloo
2006:”Teach the Controversy is not ID!”
[quote]

1960: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1961: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1962: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1963: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1964: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1965: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1966: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1967: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1968: Eppersonloo
1969: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1970: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1971: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1972: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”

1979: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1980: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1981: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1982: McLeanloo/”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1983: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1984: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1985: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1986: ”Creation science is not based on the Bible.”
1987: Aguillardloo
1988: Whine
1989: ”ID is not creationism!”

1996:”ID is not creationism!”
1997:”ID is not creationism!”
1998:”ID is not creationism!”
1999:”ID is not creationism!”
2000:”ID is not creationism!”
2001:”ID is not creationism!”
2002:”ID is not creationism!”
2003:”ID is not creationism!”
2004:”ID is not creationism!”
2005: Doverloo
2006:”Teach the Controversy is not ID!”

I am sure someone can fill this in with even more detail. :-)

Comment #111850

Posted by Nick Matzke on July 13, 2006 2:04 AM (e)

Heh, this is getting good. We need to come up with a snappy way to express the difference between pre- and post-McLean creation science. After McLean they made it much more vague, dropping the age of the earth etc., in an attempt to have it survive the Edwards case. This was basically what was relabeled “ID” after Edwards came down.

Comment #111871

Posted by Frank J on July 13, 2006 6:29 AM (e)

Nick Matzke wrote:

Heh, this is getting good. We need to come up with a snappy way to express the difference between pre- and post-McLean creation science. After McLean they made it much more vague, dropping the age of the earth etc., in an attempt to have it survive the Edwards case. This was basically what was relabeled “ID” after Edwards came down.

I have been calling the “proto-ID” of the ’80s (e.g. the early “Pandas” drafts) “don’t ask, don’t tell” creationism. While nearly everyone seems to want to focus on how the court rulings affected the various anti-evolution strategies, especially with regard to the designer, another, and IMO much more important history was concurrent:

YEC claims were completely unsupportable, and even people with only moderate science backgrounds could see it. Meanwhile OEC, which is, AIUI, where creationism was headed before YEC came along with a scientific pretense (and a “Goldilocks” compromise between FEC and OEC), was gaining popularity among those who wouldn’t fall for YEC’s outrageous claims. But YEC-OEC debates were threatening to expose the flaws and contradictions, not to mention the total lack of science, in both. So a sneakier strategy was needed to preserve the big tent.

Comment #111879

Posted by Ron Okimoto on July 13, 2006 6:55 AM (e)

Hopkins missed Ohio in 2002. People may recall that after Ohio West stepped forward as the Discovery Institute’s front man, Meyer sort of faded from view after his performance in Ohio, and the ID scam artists like Dembski tried to lay low. All the rubes in Ohio wanted to do was teach the scientific theory of ID, but they found out that there was no such thing. Nelson came out with his admission that there never was a scientific theory of ID. The Texas fiasco happened and the Discovery Institute tried to show some influence, but no one wanted them around. One of the Discovery Institute guys even lied to the board about his affiliation with the Discovery Institute. Dembski didn’t list the Discovery Institute on the junk that he gave the Texas board.

The IDiots still needed ID as smoke to make it look like their replacement scam was legit, but they knew that they were cooked. Just recall what Meyer left the Ohio board with, he didn’t recommend teaching ID at the state level, but Meyer claimed that the decision should be made at the local level. Dover was at the local level, but the smoke couldn’t be thick enough. Look what the Discovery Institute had to say about teaching ID at the local level. Dover just made the demise of intelligent design apparent to all but the clueless.

Now they are claiming that the ID creationist replacement scam is not ID. If you read the Ohio model lesson plan that the Ohio rubes took when they found out that they had been lied to about ID, you will find no mention that ID ever existed. You have to go to the final draft for this because the earlier drafts tried to sneak in ID/creationism. Without ID what controversies are they talking about?

You don’t see the Discovery Institute putting forward their own lesson plan demonstrating that they have something valid to teach. Just like ID they are letting the rubes take the heat. The rubes should take a clue from the past. The Discovery Institute never put up their ID lesson plan. What should it tell any rube that wants to be conned by the replacement scam that they haven’t put up their lesson plan for this one either?

Comment #111901

Posted by Henry J on July 13, 2006 10:05 AM (e)

Re “What should it tell any rube that wants to be conned by the replacement scam that they haven’t put up their lesson plan for this one either?”

If that could tell them anything they wouldn’t be rubes in the first place.

Henry

Comment #111923

Posted by Tom English on July 13, 2006 12:55 PM (e)

Michael Hopkins wrote:

1967: ”Don’t teach evolution.”
1968: Eppersonloo

Here in Lubbock, Texas, we have “more churches than trees,” as the Dixie Chicks sing in “Lubbock or Leave It.” The Lubbock Independent School District does not teach evolution. When I mentioned my displeasure to my son’s biology teacher, a man standing nearby interjected that he thought excluding evolution from the curriculum was a perfectly democratic compromise. When I suggested that the course did not deserve the label of “biology,” he began yelling at me, over and over, “Do you have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ?” Unfortunately, I did not have the presence of mind to point out that Jesus is my half-brother. ;)

There are many communities where evolution is not in the biology curriculum. I think this is actually a greater victory for anti-evolutionists, completely eliminating exposure of tender young minds to “godless Darwinism,” than is getting the countering force of ID into the curriculum. Yet it seems to get almost no attention.

I wonder if (and how) the ACLU is going to take a shot at one of the evolution-free public school systems, 38 years after Epperson.

Comment #111997

Posted by Frank J on July 13, 2006 6:25 PM (e)

Tom English wrote:

There are many communities where evolution is not in the biology curriculum. I think this is actually a greater victory for anti-evolutionists, completely eliminating exposure of tender young minds to “godless Darwinism,” than is getting the countering force of ID into the curriculum. Yet it seems to get almost no attention.

Not only that, but I keep reading horror stories where teachers are afraid to teach evolution even where only a vocal minority of citizens might cause trouble. If that’s not enough, I keep reminding everyone that most people over 20 have forgotten what little evolution they learned in high school, because it has been supplanted with a false caricature that pervades the media and pop culture. And anti-evolution activists are more than glad to feed that caricature, which is infinitely easier to refute than the real thing.

Thus, while efforts to restrict the “supply” of anti-evolution arguments or “effective censorship of evolution” in public schools are necessary, that is at best the tip of the iceberg. What is desperately needed, yet rarely addressed, is to discourage the “demand.” Granted, some radically fundamentalist communities are essentially hopleless. But a far greater percent of the public is not fundamentalist, yet has some sympathy for one or more anti-evolution scams, including those who say “I have no problem with evolution, but students should hear ‘both sides’.” If they knew that there is no “both sides” (other than evolution and misrepresentation) that anti-evolution activists are the real effective censors, and that anti-evolution is not just bad science but bad theology, most would change their tune.

Comment #112004

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on July 13, 2006 6:58 PM (e)

I wonder if (and how) the ACLU is going to take a shot at one of the evolution-free public school systems, 38 years after Epperson.

Sue the bastards.

It’s already established in Supreme Court case law that it is illegal to drop evolution out of deference to community religious beliefs.

If school districts are doing it anyway, it’s because we, collectively, are letting them get away with it.

Comment #112086

Posted by Nick Matzke on July 14, 2006 2:12 AM (e)

Here in Lubbock, Texas, we have “more churches than trees,” as the Dixie Chicks sing in “Lubbock or Leave It.” The Lubbock Independent School District does not teach evolution. When I mentioned my displeasure to my son’s biology teacher, a man standing nearby interjected that he thought excluding evolution from the curriculum was a perfectly democratic compromise. When I suggested that the course did not deserve the label of “biology,” he began yelling at me, over and over, “Do you have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ?” Unfortunately, I did not have the presence of mind to point out that Jesus is my half-brother. ;)

There are many communities where evolution is not in the biology curriculum. I think this is actually a greater victory for anti-evolutionists, completely eliminating exposure of tender young minds to “godless Darwinism,” than is getting the countering force of ID into the curriculum. Yet it seems to get almost no attention.

I wonder if (and how) the ACLU is going to take a shot at one of the evolution-free public school systems, 38 years after Epperson.

The ACLU might be able to do something, but they can’t file a lawsuit by themselves in this sort of situation because they don’t have something called “legal standing”. There has to be a plaintiff with standing in order to have a lawsuit. In the situation you describe, the plaintiff would have to be a parent with custody of children who are taking, or are going to take, the evolution-free biology class. There are many other hurdles to bringing a lawsuit – e.g.: (a) the plaintiff has to be willing to take heat from the community, and (b) the ACLU has to be convinced that it is a legally winnable case – but those are the basics.

So if this is a serious problem in your town, and particularly if attempts at political solutions fail, (a) look for plaintiffs and (b) call the ACLU or other civil liberties organizations.

Comment #112239

Posted by bob@hotmail.com on July 14, 2006 5:15 PM (e)

The problem is that you actually read the standards instead of taking the board’s word. It may look like a swim like a duck, it may fly like a duck, it may quack like a duck, and heck it may even look like a duck. But as long as we call it a turtle, a turtle is what it is. It’s not the school board’s problem if you get hung up over a “critical analysis” analysis of their standards. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions and interpretations of the facts. Or do you not believe in academic freedom? That’s it. You are all just a bunch of turtle hating commies!!!!

Comment #112297

Posted by Henry J on July 14, 2006 9:50 PM (e)

It’s turtles all the way down!!!

Henry

Comment #112405

Posted by Wheels on July 15, 2006 8:59 AM (e)

It’s not a real turtle. It’s a Trojan Turtle to hide the Trojan Horse of ID, which harbors Creationism in its bowels to unleash upon the gullible.
A Trojan Turtle to hide their trojan horse! It’s Trojans all the way down!

Comment #112416

Posted by Ron Okimoto on July 15, 2006 10:30 AM (e)

Not only are they Trojans, but they are leaky Trojans. Just look at the example of Philip Johnson and his latest admission that there never was any science worth mentioning behind the ID wedge scam. I just wonder if that admission makes Johnson feel better about a decade of running the scam?

Comment #112447

Posted by Bruce Thompson GQ on July 15, 2006 2:43 PM (e)

We need to come up with a snappy way to express the difference between pre- and post-McLean creation science.

Maybe snappy but you can’t dance to it. Apologies to EH Harburg and Harold Arlen.

Ha Ha Ha, Ho Ho Ho and a couple of tra la la’s.
That’s how we laugh the day away in the Merry Ole Land of Oz!

Bzz Bzz Bzz, Chirp Chirp Chirp and a couple of la di da’s.
That’s how the crickets crick all day in the Merry Ole Land of Oz!

We get up at twelve and start to work at one,
Take an hour for lunch and then at two we’re done!
Jolly good fun!

Ha Ha Ha, Ho Ho Ho and a couple of tra la la’s.
That’s how we laugh the day away in the Merry Ole Land of Oz!

Ha Ha Ha, Ho Ho Ho, Aha Ha Ha Ha Ha!
That’s how we laugh the day away with a Ho Ho Ho, Ha Ha Ha
In the Merry Ole Land Of Oz!

Front load here, front load there there, And a couple of brand new straws,
That’s how we keep ID young and fair In the Merry Ole Land of Oz!

A news release here, a news release there, Whether it makes any sense,
That’s how we keep ID in repair In the Merry Ole Land of Oz!

We can make a dimple smile out of a frown!
Can you even change loss into a win? Uh-Huh!
Jolly Ole Town!

Assume this here, assume that there, We give the strangest stats
That certain air of savoir faire In the Merry Ole Land of Oz!

Ha Ha Ha Ha, Ho Ho Ho, Ha Ha Ha Ha,
that’s how we laugh the day away in the Merry Ole Land of Oz!
That’s how we laugh the day away with a Ha Ha Ha, Aha Ha Ha
Ha Ha Ha, (hee hee) Ha Ha Ha, Ha Ha Ha, (hee hee) Ha Ha Ha,
In the Merry Ole Land Of Oz!

Ha Ha Ha Ho Ho (interrupted with gasps from the sight of the a testable hypothesis!)

Delta Pi Gamma (Scientia et Fermentum)

Comment #112656

Posted by wamba on July 16, 2006 1:37 PM (e)


Everyone should recall that guys like Meyer, West, Dembski and Johnson always claimed that they were not scientific creationists. They can’t claim that they are not the same guys that ran the ID Wedge scam.

Think about this: you’re saying that they can’t lie. Why would they stop now?

Comment #112688

Posted by Ron Okimoto on July 16, 2006 4:17 PM (e)

I never said that they can’t continue to lie. Who would claim that, I see no evidence that they have stopped. All that it means is that even their most clueless supporter would know that they are lying. Somehow their supporters keep giving them the benefit of the doubt, but everyone should have limits. I admit that we haven’t seemed to have seen this limit at this time, but one can hope.

Comment #115109

Posted by Alli on July 27, 2006 4:05 AM (e)

I have been amusing myself by watching the evolution of the anti-evolution meme:
1. Don’t Teach Evolution, begat
2. Young Earth Creation Science, begat
3. Old-Earth Creation Science, begat
4. Intelligent Design, begat
5. Teach the Controversy, begat…

At this rate they’ll be teaching evolution classes in church in another 20 years or so :-)

Natural Selection at work. It’s wonderful to behold :-)