Monday, July 06, 2009
Pledging In the Creationist Fraternity
There is an advantage to having a curmudgeon around, sensuous or not. Curmudgeons have a need to read stupid stuff to exercise their curmudgeonerliness on. Thus, the rest of us are spared the pain of reading really stupid stuff but still get the chance to laugh at the sillier bits.
And speaking of sillier, there is always Casey Luskin, who is quote-mining people who are trying really hard not to be quote mined. Unfortunately for those people, they are rational and think that the way to keep others from quote-mining them is to make it really, really clear that they are not saying what the quote miners want them to say which, of course, is no deterrent at all to the sort of people who want to quote mine them because they think rationality is a bad thing anyway. So, go see The Sensuous Curmudgeon curmudgeonize all over Casey.
But this silly bit leapt out at me. It seems that Casey believes (for some approximation of "believe" that includes "lying through one's teeth") that all his quote mining is evidence that the dissent from neo-Darwinism that he claims is rampant in the scientific community is tolerated "only if one pledges allegiance to materialism." Knowing that no good conspiracy theory is complete without some made-up "evidence," I thought it only right and proper to provide a copy of the super-secret, never-to-be-revealed, materialists' pledge of allegiance:
of the intelligencia of materialism,
and to the Academia for which it stands,
a one-world order under Godlessness, invisible,
with liberty and justice for all atheists
(and nobody else!).
Firstly, Luskin seems not to appreciate the difference between epistemological and metaphysical presuppositions -- materialism is a metaphysical view with implications for epistemology, but hardly itself an epistemological view.
Secondly, Luskin assumes that 'materialism' is the correct answer when any non-IDeologue would say (I would think) that the epistemological presupposition in question is testability -- or, if you prefer, 'empiricism.'
Presumably Luskin cannot so much as acknowledge this without giving away the entire game, so he has to commit some fairly basic argumentative gaffes instead.
Nice description of his error/sleight of hand.