Saturday, December 04, 2010


Pulp Fiction

The inestimable John Lynch has a review at Whewell's Ghost of the book, The Darwin Myth: The Life and Lies of Charles Darwin, by the all too estimable (all beginning with "hack") Benjamin Wiker:

Wiker begins by telling us “[i]t is high time we understood who Darwin really was, and what he really did” (ix). To Wicker, Darwin was a serial liar and cheat whose “triumph has been to set ideological atheism as the default position of science” (xi). Darwin apparently lied about the motives for his investigations, the evidence for his theory, and the originality of his ideas. He was engaged in a long-term plot to remove God from Victorian science and culture and lied about his own religious belief. ...

Chapter 4 is titled "Hatching the Evolutionary Plot" and offers no substantive discussion of Darwin's work between 1835 and 1859. There is neither mention of why he rose to prominence in scientific circles, nor of his various geological and biological studies (particularly his award-winning and meticulous work on barnacles). One can only wonder whether these omissions are necessary to solidify Wicker's depiction of Darwin as a slacker with little scientific talent but an overarching plan to remove God from sight.
If you want to read fiction dressed out as history, the least you should demand is that it be entertaining. Therefore, instead of wasting your time reading low-class trash by Wiker, you should waste it reading high-class trash, as in:

The TRUTH: Being a TRUE and IMPARTIAL account of the history of that damnable religion, the great EVIL of DARWINISM, also called EVOLUTIONISM and its attempts to bring the downfall of all moral and TRUE CHRISTIANTM virtue. Based on accounts of the events which form this evil history written by the best historians of the evil devices of DARWINISM and EVOLUTIONISM, and based on the best scientific principle of SUBJECTIVITY, and rejecting utterly the ATHEIST doctrine of OBJECTIVITY which clouds the mind of mankind and leads to the rejection of TRUE CHRISTIANITYTM. Written by a TRUE BELIEVER [and unearthed by the inestimable Richard Forrest].
You'll get every bit as accurate a picture of Charles Darwin from either but you'll have a lot more fun reading the latter.

I'm shocked, shocked to find dissembling going on there!

An unethical theological ethicist, why am I not surprised?

It's amazing how elastic that Ninth Commandment can be for some Christians.
I really don't want to think of "theological ethicist" as an oxymoron but Wiker and his Discovery [sic] Institute cronies make it hard sometimes. Of all the possible lies about Darwin that could be told, portraying him as a slacker has to be the grossest.
And yet, strip out the hyperbole and you can reduce it to "Darwinism supports atheism." Which isn't different from what some evolution defenders are comfortable in saying.
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