Wednesday, July 02, 2008


Old Times There Are Not Forgotten

I've been reading Ken Miller's Only a Theory: Evolution and the Battle for America's Soul, about which I'll doubtless have more to say, but one thing caught my eye:

Thinking of the role that Kansas played in the years before the Civil War, it seems only fair to wonder if history has repeated itself. Electoral politics in Kansas, as we've seen, have recently made it a burned-over district in the struggle over evolution. A century and a half ago the issues that divided Kansas went national, and so they have again. And, very much as in the Civil War, the struggle reached a climax, if not a resolution, in a small town in Pennsylvania.

It is a neat parallel. After raging back and forth in Bloody Kansas, first one side ascendant, then the other, both conflicts moved on to precincts not far from Gettysburg, where great battles were fought and decisive victories -- and stinging defeats -- resulted.

Thanks to Abbie at ERV, I found a copy of the first chapter (scroll down to near the bottom for "free downloads") of William (Ol' Blood and Farts") Dembski's new book, Understanding Intelligent Design, with this interesting bit about the bloodletting:

[Judge] Jones's main distinction before being appointed a federal judge was to serve as chairman of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board. As neither a scientist nor a scholar, he was ill-equipped to preside over this case. It won't be the last on intelligent design.

Quite apart from Dembski being reduced to impotently calling the Judge, as Abbie put it, "a poopy head," and despite the Judge being eminently qualified to evaluate the evidence put in front of him (noticeably shy of the testimony of a certain theologian), does anyone else hear another echo out of the past?

"Save your Confederate science, ID will rise again!"
I can't believe Dembski really has the gall to whine about Jones' qualifications after the fact, when before the fact he was gloating that the case was going to be heard by a conservative judge who would likely favor ID. No complaints about the liquor board then.
As in everything else in ID, the "result" is determined by how well it matches the foregone conclusion.
Bad, you said it. We all know full well that Jones' previous position never would have come up had the ruling gone in their favor. IDiots.
Dave S. said...

I can see the parallel in the result, however I can't see anyone on the ID with nearly the gravitas to play the role of Bobby Lee.

Maybe Mike Behe as George Pickett.

And yeah, it's laughable that Dembski of all people is complaining about qualifications. After all, he is not a scientist either, and barely a scholar. If you're generous at what constitutes a scholar.
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