Saturday, May 03, 2008


In Which I Hit the Big Time

Sniff ... success at last!

David Klinghoffer is over at the Discoveryless Institute's Ministry of Misinformation, in a post entitled "Lying for Darwin," complaining about "the juvenile name-calling" directed at him for supporting Expelled. Of course, he immediately goes on to claim that no one can reasonably disagree that "Hitler in Mein Kampf and elsewhere used transparently Darwinian arguments [whatever the heck that's supposed to mean] to motivate fellow Jew-haters to actuate the Final Solution" "if your powers of reading comprehension rise above sixth-grade level."

You just know it's going to be amusing when someone so un-self-aware begins to whine.

Lo and behold, Klinghoffer links to my post noting his willingness to "participate in this demonizing of the atheist 'other'" in Expelled, which I found especially craven, given the lessons of the Holocaust. Now, I hold no illusions about where I fall in the spectrum of the "variety of fancy-pants professors along with prominent and obscure bloggers" he complains of (Josh Rosenau at Thoughts from Kansas gets by far the most attention) but it is illuminating that Klinghoffer is playing the "elitist" card while apparently out Googling obscure blogs for mentions of his name. People with such fragile egos should perhaps refrain from becoming "pundits" in the first place.

One giggle is Klinghoffer's attempt to be condescending in describing one of his tormentors as "Somebody called Sahotra Sarkar ... a professor of 'Philosophy and Integrative Biology' at the University of Texas." Besides the fact that Professor Sarkar is a rather prominent academician, he is an old acquaintance of, fellow graduate student with and drinking buddy of the "Issac Newton of information theory" himself, Wild Bill Dembski.

But this was perhaps the funniest of all:

In fact all I said was that Hitler drew on Darwinian theory, and yes, that should give us pause about what Darwin wrote. No more than that.

A picture of reality, after all, such as the one Darwin offers in his books, naturally suggests ethical corollaries.

So, there is no objective knowledge, just "pictures" of reality that we can choose or cast away depending on whether we find them ethically pleasing? But that would mean that the views of those people who think he is a "self-hating Jew," "Hitler sympathizer," "Jewish Uncle Tom," "hired hit-pen and journalistic hatchet job expert," aren't "lies" but, instead, equally objective and correct "pictures" of his character as whatever Klinghoffer's own self-assessment might be.

Since we get to choose, I opt for the picture of Klinghoffer as a shallow and disingenuous thinker and a more than a little ridiculous poseur.

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