Kingdom of Priests

Kingdom of Priests


Religion’s Dark Side, and Evolution’s

posted by David Klinghoffer

Over at Evolution News & Views, I reflect on the question of whether it’s “beyond the pale” to read, quote from, and reflect on the worldview implications of James von Brunn’s addled thoughts on evolution and eugenics. Excerpt (keep reading after the jump):

Our culture is very comfortable reminding us often of atrocities committed in the name of religion — whether it’s the Crusades, the Inquisition, or 9/11. Ironically, the day of the Holocaust Museum shooting, an interesting new Jewish web magazine, Tablet, published a fascinating scholarly essay by Paula Fredriksen about how under the Nazis, some German theologians tried to fit Jesus into a Nazi mold. They drew on anti-Jewish writings widely available in Christian tradition.

Is it “beyond the pale” to point this out? No, of course not. So what’s the difference? 

I would say it’s not only appropriate to document the dark side of religion. It’s necessary. The Anti-Defamation League commented on the Holocaust Museum shooting, pointing to this “reminder that words of hate matter, that we can never afford to ignore hate because words of hate can easily become acts of hate, no matter the place, no matter the age of the hatemonger.”

Exactly. It’s also the case that ideas have consequences and knowing those consequences can rightly prompt us to look with renewed skepticism at a given idea, whether religious or scientific. 9/11 was a good reason to go back and take a second look at Islam. Not to reject it, but to consider it critically. The Crusades are a good reason to do the same with Christianity. Not to reject it, but to think twice. That’s all.

Why would the incredibly popular and influential work called Mein Kampf not be a reason to think twice about Darwinism? Not to reject it, but to get yourself properly informed and make up your own mind rather than simply go along with the prestige culture and media view.

The legacy of Mein Kampf included the murder of 6 million Jews. As Richard Weikart meticulously documents in From Darwin to Hitler, Hitler’s book was part of a stream of intellectual influence that began with Darwin and continued through to Hitler. It’s with us today and it played a part in the demented thinking of James von Brunn, “a peripheral but well-respected figure among American white supremacists,” as the ADL notes.

If you want a good chill, Google the phrase “natural selection” as it appears on the popular neo-Nazi website Stormfront.org. Here, I’ve done it for you.



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Christopher Liles

posted June 12, 2009 at 8:41 pm


Eugenics has been proven false in Evolution. Stop grasping for straws to help ease you mind that you are truly delusional.



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Turmarion

posted June 13, 2009 at 12:58 am


Repeated from the previous post, since I still haven’t got a response to my questions, it’s pretty far down on the last, and I think the point bears repeating:
David: Why would the incredibly popular and influential work called Mein Kampf not be a reason to think twice about Darwinism? Not to reject it, but to get yourself properly informed and make up your own mind rather than simply go along with the prestige culture and media view.
Here David is fully (and falsely) equating a scientific theory with religion. In fact, further down, he says:
It doesn’t negate the point to remind me that Hitler put his own wicked spin on kindly Charles Darwin’s words…Nor that today’s evolutionary scientists, unlike their fairly recent predecessors, do not truck with racism (though some certainly do truck with anti-religious agitation, reserving special venom for the God of the Hebrew Bible). All these same things could be said about religion-based haters of today and centuries past. They too distort their tradition. Yet they emerge from it, and so, again, that’s a sound reason to give a second, skeptical look to the relevant religious traditions. (emphasis added)
This paragraph makes it completely clear that David views scientific theories (and like many Americans, he erroneously identifies “theory” with “hypothesis”, which he further misunderstands as “mere guess”) as pretty much no different from religions. It’s especially ironic that he comments on those who “reserve special venom for the God of the Hebrew Bible”, and then three sentences later says that distortion of religious tradition is a “sound reason to give a second, skeptical look to the relevant religious traditions.” Given that the Hebrew Bible itself mandates
genocide (“kill every one that pisseth against the wall”–I’m not going to bother to give specific quotes, since I’ve done it before–just read Joshua, Judges, I and II Samuel, and I and II Chronicles for highlights, and Google “Amalek”), this is, to say the least, either hilarious, droll, inconsistent, or way out there, depending on one’s point of view.
By the way, as a Christian myself, I’m not attacking Christianity or Judaism. It’s just that if the less savory aspects of the Hebrew Bible were brought up to David as an attack on his faith, he’d take issue with it, no doubt, but is at the same time claiming that negative fallout from religion merits a second look at those traditions. Can’t have it both ways!
In any case, the equation of scientific theory and religion is totally specious. Evolution or any other scientific theory, regardless of any social, moral, or metaphysical implications, good or bad, stands or falls solely based on empirical grounds rooted in the scientific method. One might “make up one’s own mind” about a religion, since no religion can be either proved or disproved empirically or philosophically; better or worse reasons for adherence might be put forth, but that’s not the same as proof. On the other hand, regardless of evolution’s reputed socio-cultural effects, “making up one’s own mind” on it makes no more sense than making up one’s own mind on the spherical shape of the Earth, or heliocentrism, or the speed of light. These are ; one may choose to reject them, just as one may insist that 2+2=743.1, but that doesn’t alter the way the world is.
I’ve pointed out to David before, in this regard, that some historians of ideas have argued that the socio-cultural effects of the heliocentric cosmos were largely negative, and yet no one suggests it should be given “a second, skeptical look” or that geocentrism is true for these reasons. Of course, he has yet to address this.
Once more, this is just another example of David’s using subtle and disingenuous rhetorical techniques to argue that evolution’s truth or falsity depends on its social effects, real or otherwise, and to equate it with a religious belief. What’s worse, he makes all these provocative statements linking evolution causally with Nazism, eugenics, and now murder, and then when he’s called on it, he retreats back to a “I’m just sayin’” defense and saying it’s not about rejecting evolution, but taking a second look at it and making up one’s own mind. This is disingenuous and deceptive.
Finally, I notice that David still hasn’t answered the questions I explicitly directed to him. If he is sincere in wanting dialogue, he should come clean. Otherwise, he is just engaging in talking points and ugly slurs that might play well with the ID/creationist community, but will only alienate anyone else.



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Your Name

posted June 13, 2009 at 1:44 am


Wow, owned.



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salome

posted June 13, 2009 at 2:14 am


Truly think you need to pray hard for some real wisdom and maybe an equal amount of knowledge.



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Charles Cosimano

posted June 13, 2009 at 3:22 am


We do not reject data because someone may use it to do something nasty.
The fact of evolution is in no way influenced by the misuse people may inflict upon it.
It does not matter who did what in the name of evolution. Evolution stands as reality. As well to decry the fact of the Earth being round because someone used that to do evil.
The arguments are worse than merely specious, they are pernicious in that they would have humanity live in superstition rather than reality.



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Alchemist

posted June 13, 2009 at 11:37 am


Richard Weikart, funded by the Discovery Institute, is hardly a reliable source. Indeed, the book you’ve recommended is reviewed thusly:
“Unlike the claims regarding Haeckel’s embryology, Weikart’s claims regarding a lineage from Darwin to Hitler via Haeckel have been examined by historians of science and indeed have generally been found lacking. Numerous reviews have accused Weikart of selectively viewing his rich primary material, ignoring political, social, psychological, and economic factors that may have played key roles in the post-Darwinian development of Nazi eugenics and racism. Since there is no clear and unique line from Darwinian naturalism to Nazi atrocities, useful causal relationships are difficult to infer; thus, as Robert J. Richards observes, ‘it can only be a tendentious and dogmatically driven assessment that would condemn Darwin for the crimes of the Nazis’.”
“Does Science Education Need the History of Science”. Isis. 2008, 99: 322–330. http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/588690.
I suppose you DI folk have to stand up for each other since you have nothing empirical to stand upon.



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Alchemist

posted June 13, 2009 at 12:04 pm


I must laugh at your citation of the imbecilic and totally false representation of natural selection on the neo-Nazi website. They state, “Natural Selection, the strong survive and the weak die out” EVERY evolutionary biologist knows that this is nothing more than a popular, late nineteenth century misinterpretation of Darwin (just like Social Darwinism). It does NOT invalidate a theory just because some crackpots misinterpret it in a certain way. By analogy, would a stop sign’s meaning or usefulness be changed because someone used it as a racist slogan?
Natural selection, correctly summarized, is the process by which those with a genetic trait that helps them get more food, outrun predators, and have more babies than those without the trait. It has NOTHING to do with physical strength (indeed, a sub-dominate male chimpanzee can still reproduce and produce perfectly fine offspring despite the dominate male’s presence).
Natural selection may also favor less numerous members of a species who have some trait that may be useful if environmental circumstances change. If and when such change occurs, those bearing the genetic advantage will become dominate even as the formerly well-adapted members of the species decline.
Darwin’s natural selection is beautiful in its simplicty — as opposed to the convoluted loops and flagrant leaps of illogic creationist/ID thinking requires.



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Turmarion

posted June 13, 2009 at 3:19 pm


I notice David still hasn’t responded to my questions, so I repeat them yet again on the (apparently slender) chance that he might actually answer them.
1. Do you, David, believe that the teaching and promotion of evolution is somehow creating a milieu that is breeding killers like von Brunn or potential Hitlers?
2. If the answer to 1. is “no”, then what is the relevance of von Brunn’s beliefs?
3. Do you think that all the nasty things you mention (eugenics, shootings, etc.) are the necessary and inevitable outcome of evolution; or are you willing to admit that these may be mere twisted interpretations that are not representative of current thought among current biologists?
4. Do you understand the analogy I’ve made with Christianity and anti-Semitism, i.e. that some want to argue that Christianity necessarily and inevitably leads to anti-Semitism, when in fact this is not representative or true of most modern Christianity? If you don’t accept the analogy, what’s the difference?
5. Do you understand how your statements are seen by those who support evolution as vicious smears and slurs despite your repeated insistence that you don’t intend that? Do you understand how this poisons any possible dialogue?
6. Given stuff like this and this, are you willing to concede at least the possibility that much of the Nazi atrocities, eugenics, etc. might have happened anyway, or at least that there are pre-Darwinian sources for them?
The longer David continues to make incendiary posts like these and then refuse to come clean about his belief, while copping to a “Gee whiz, I’m just trying to make all this stuff known! Why are you all jumping on me?” attitude, the more he appears to be a propagandist who is not interested in the dialogue he claims to seek and who sees no problem in the perpetuation of smears and slurs against people with whom he disagrees but whom he fails to prove wrong on their science!



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Unapologetic Catholic

posted June 13, 2009 at 5:48 pm


“Is it “beyond the pale” to point this out? No, of course not. So what’s the difference?”
The difference is that some relationships are valid and others are not.
Your referral to stormfront is more than telling. Go to any of these white power websites (no chance I will link to them) and you will see some form of a Christian crucifix onthe first page of the website. I’m Christian–and I don’t like it at all–but they draw many of their theroris from a corrution of biblcial sources. They often cite biblical sources for their positions.
Their thoughts on evolution…not so much.



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N.Schuster

posted June 14, 2009 at 10:36 am


Darwin made it abundantly clear in “The Descent of Man” that he flet that the more advanced races would exterminate the the less evolved races. Hitler, in Chapter 13 of “Mein Kampf” to the end of the book. said quite clearly that his core belief system was Darwinian Racism. He sounds so close to Darwin that he almost quotes verbatum. You can’t have a clearer connection than that.



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Alchemist

posted June 14, 2009 at 2:47 pm


N.Schuster:
1)The personal views of Darwin are irrelevant to the fact of evolution. Evolution is based on empricial evidence, not on a person’s opinions. This is hardly unknown. Einstein rejected much of what is found in quantum mechanics; nonetheless, quantum mechanics is a fact, regardless of Einstein’s opinion otherwise.
2)Abundant evidence demonstrates that Hitler was a Creationist. He repeatedly invokes God as a source for his racist ideology. In Mein Kampf, Hitler inequivocally states: “Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord” (1943 text, p. 65).
Darwin was a product of nineteenth century Victorian Britain, so he does exhibit attitudes towards race that were WIDELY held in his era and were hardly unique to him. However, at no point does he ever adocate eugenics or genocide. Indeed, he abhorred the imperialistic actions Britain inflicted on colonial peoples, especially slavery.
The only people who see connections between Hitler and Darwin are ID Creationists who vainly, like you, grasp at straws and build straw-man arguments to support fallacious ideologies.



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Your Name

posted June 15, 2009 at 11:32 am


Turmarion
June 13, 2009 3:19 PM
Questions. Tumarion – you can stop holding your breath. People like Klinghoffer from the Dishonesty Institute have no intentions of answering your probing questions on a public forum.
N.Schuster
June 14, 2009 10:36 AM
“Darwin made it abundantly clear in “The Descent of Man” that he flet that the more advanced races would exterminate the the less evolved races.”
Sir, consider the invasion of the Americas by the religously minded Europeans from 1492 on. The N. American continent saw wave after wave of white Protestants/Catholics/et. al ruthlessly subdue, and exterminate when they felt so inclined to do so, the native populations of N. America so’s they could claim this land that “God gave to them!”
Please don’t forget the Mayan, Aztec, and Incan civilizations of central and S. America that were likewise decimated by those religously minded Spanish conquistadors like Pizarro, Cortez, et. al who likewise claimed the lands, and gold, for themselves in the name of your Lord God.
Darwin was quite observant of history and his remark quoted above points to what humans are prone to do, even/especially in the name of their Deity for holy justification. Please take a moment to study the real history of the world, unlike Klinghoffer, who presents himself more like a neo-nazi than he realizes.



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William Woods Higgins

posted June 15, 2009 at 1:09 pm


In founding modern theology the unanswered question Hegel left was whether or not the Third Reality of Spirit meant The Christian Religion of the Abrahamic Cults or a new age of spirituality. What Hegel referred to a a new universal moment marked by a new universal individual.
If he had finished it,which I have taken the liberty to do forallthe philsophers and theologians who have missed it isuniversalmoments refer to 2000 year cycles and universal individuals refer to the persona the new universal indivividual must be objectified in terms of a Master Class Medium. This concept of how certain human beings in certain secret socieities create god for a given 2000 year period.
The offspring of Egyptian Mystery Religions arethe Greco-Roma and the Abrahamic. The universal moment we are feelingthe wane of is -60BC to 2100AD, whose persona is The Martyr (Age of Pisces) based on Arcanum XII, in the Kabalah and Egyptian Mystery Religions.We are on the cusp of the node, due to the precession of the equinoxes, the transition into the 2000 year cycle of Aquarius, ruledby the archetype (ruling form) and/or universal individual of Arcanum IX, The Wiseman/Sage. This onset explains the affinity ofthe western religious community to the East,whose goal of spiritual transformation has always been to attain the spiritualconsciousnessofthe Wiseman/Sage. In this sense itis the ecumanical principle so sought for by modern religoin.
The Martyr in Greco-Roman Religions is Prometheus Bound,symbolically expressed in the MasterClass Medims of Poetry and Drama; in the Abrahamic Religions they created Jesus Christ. The restis history, excep,Hitler was also an artistanunderstood by this that God is Dead referred to this waning 2000 year cycle.He realized western man had been possessed by spirits of a foreign tribe and he turned iton the Jewish people.
A Author’s Preface and Intro
This is the second edition of Religious and Symbolic Game Theory: Scripting A Chapter In The Mind Of God. It is long overdue, but I feel the conceptis now much more understandable and communicable. Human beings create religion. How Christ became the god of one of these now dominant religions is one of those secrets everybody is curious about, whether it is The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons,or The Passion of the Christ. We are interested in understanding of our past, as well as a foundation for spiritual transformation, Spirit, and God for the future of humanity. What these recent attempts lack is an applicable and adequate answer to the questions they purport to investigate. In essence, there is nothing the least bit difficult in understanding the basics of western religions portrayed in this manuscript; they are based on three basic rules of religion, human beings who create these religons understand, which anybody can apply and understand, if they are given them, namely: Three trans-historical1 rules that govern individuals involved with the adequate and applicable dominant shape of Spirit in their creation of Western Religion are:
I The normally invisible, internal pole governing the applicable and adequate shape of Spirit is determined by the archetype (ruling form) indigenous to the constellation the sun rises through at the Vernal Equinox. Western religion undergoes metamorphosis to a different constellated archetype2 every two thousand to twenty-two hundred years.
II The external complement to the normally invisible and unconscious archetype in the visible spectrum is Its symbolic expression in a Master Class Artistic Medium. Giving this normally invisible shape of Spirit a visible magnetic pole, as the stimuli for the cathartic response, comes by way of Master Class Mediums and Master Class Artists/Prophets. It is created from a specific shape of Spirit corresponding to the archetype (ruling form) indigenous to the constellation the sun rises through at the Vernal Equinox.
III The modes of production form the basis of whether or not deities are either a natural shape or a human shape. They must correspond respectively to the economic basis of self-preservation in the said culture. These modes of production are either agrarian or non-agrarian. Although all human societies rely on a combination of the two, the mode of production that is dominant determines the specific shape. In this sense it becomes more applicable and adequate than others. A shape of Spirit that is both applicable and adequate, substantiates activities in the visible spectrum of Spirit, especially those furthering the self-preservation of the group. God must be the Sustainor and/or the Artificer of the group. If God is not this S/substantiator of R/reality, the religious community requires a metamorphosis towards a more applicable and adequate shape of Spirit. In astronomy, two thousand to twenty two hundred-year cycles have to do with the constellation in the background of the sun as it rises on March 21st, the Vernal Equinox. This phenomenon, known as the precession of the equinoxes, is a physically verifiable phenomenon due to the wobble of magnetic North. This movement involves transiting the nodes of these cycles approximately every two thousand to twenty-two hundred years, and bringing into position a new constellation in the background of the rising sun at the Vernal Equinox.3 To many schooled in modern philosophy, psychology, religion, theology,and science, these rules present aperpsective foreign to the modern intellect. We are not trying to understand the perpsective of religion from the standpoint of the modern mind; they are obviously incapable of this understanding. We are understanding religion from the point of view of the individuals who created it, who were not nuclear physicists, astronomers, modern theologians, logicians or psychiatrists, they were artists and prophets in certain symbolic cults. I might want to remind those who maintain the ultimate mystery of Spirit that it is the designed goal of every religion to raise the level of their adherents to the level of their prophets. This is the same goal as that of Religious & Symbolic Game Theory. I have added this so we can all start on the same page, literally and figuratively. The primary question to be answered: How did Christ become God for the past two-thousand-year cycle?



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David Klinghoffer

posted June 15, 2009 at 1:27 pm


If I don’t answer a question, it’s likely because Turmarion’s query got lost amid much other material to read and respond to. If he would like to formulate it briefly here, I would be happy to take a shot.



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John Pieret

posted June 15, 2009 at 2:03 pm


“If I don’t answer a question, it’s likely because Turmarion’s query got lost amid much other material to read and respond to. If he would like to formulate it briefly here, I would be happy to take a shot.”
Heh. The questions are right above in these comments … twice. Would you like our other leg to pull?



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Glen Davidson

posted June 15, 2009 at 2:20 pm


Turmarion covers Klinghoffer’s inappropriate treatment of evolution as if it were a religion rather well, but I’ll go ahead and re-post the remarks I made on the other thread, too, to punctuate David’s failure to address anything of consequence:

This from the Klinghoffer remarks linked in my previous post is particularly egregious:

Ironically, the day of the Holocaust Museum shooting, an interesting new Jewish web magazine, Tablet, published a fascinating scholarly essay by Paula Fredriksen about how under the Nazis, some German theologians tried to fit Jesus into a Nazi mold. They drew on anti-Jewish writings widely available in Christian tradition.
Is it “beyond the pale” to point this out? No, of course not. So what’s the difference? I would say it’s not only appropriate to document the dark side of religion. It’s necessary. The Anti-Defamation League commented on the Holocaust Museum shooting, pointing to this “reminder that words of hate matter, that we can never afford to ignore hate because words of hate can easily become acts of hate, no matter the place, no matter the age of the hatemonger.”

Yes, what’s the difference? We all know that Darwinists have pledged loyalty to Darwin like Christians pledge their lives to Jesus, so it’s exactly the same thing, you know.
And don’t get me wrong, I’m not gunning at Christianity, or meaning to comment on it at all beyond what is necessary. What I’m pointing out is the extreme absurdity of the notion that evolutionary theory, “Darwinism” in David’s parlance, is anything like a religion, any more than relativity is.
Einsteinism was practiced when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, you know.
Have any “Darwinists” ever done anything in the name of Darwin, or in the name of “Darwinism”? Of course not, what a stupid concept. Christians have committed acts for the sake of Christ/Christianity, and Jews have done things in the name of G-D/Judaism, by contrast, and we can judge adherents of either religion on what they have done for their religion, good or bad. Muslims to, etc., etc.
But that’s why David and the other IDiots (I use that in retaliation for his name-calling) keep calling evolutionary theory “Darwinism,” exactly in order to pretend that it is like a religion, that it should be judged morally. Because that is what he does, rather than looking at it open-mindedly like a person acting in good faith would do. It’s also why he wrote this yesterday:

In Darwin’s own writing the theory and its implications/application are all entangled. The great man himself set down his thoughts that way. In understanding his legacy, that’s what we have to deal with. Trying to disentangle the threads for him, tossing out the applications of the theory as Darwin himself saw it as if they didn’t exist, amounts to a whitewash and a coverup.

He treats Darwin like he does rabbis when discussing religion. The latter is fine, of course, because that’s what one often does in religion, cites authorities.
That is not what we do with science, of course. Darwin is not who we turn to in order to decide things, we look to theory to guide us, and to evidence to inform us.
He can never treat science right, though. His latest on the DI blog is just so much pretense that “Darwinists” do such and such, when I have never known anybody who did anything except science (rarely even then) as a “Darwinist.” None of us is a “Darwinist,” and only call ourselves “evolutionists” for the sake of convenience in these battles (realistically, we aren’t “evolutionists” any more than we are “relativists” or “quantumists,” we simply don’t deny the reasonable inferences in physics and biology).
But to David we will always be labels, specifically, “Darwinists,” because he does not judge evolutionary theory or the people who don’t deny them on the merits of evolutionary theory, rather he judges evolution and us morally on the basis of his religion. That he cannot cease from doing, or he’ll have to admit that he has been ignorantly and horribly wrong.
And you see just how good he is at admitting that he was wrong.
Glen Davidson
http://tinyurl.com/6mb592



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Glen Davidson

posted June 15, 2009 at 2:45 pm


David writes more useless junk on the DI’s blog:
http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/06/darwins_failed_predictions_an.html#more
CH is Cornelius Hunter, another egregious know-nothing. For instance:

CH: Well, I like the way you phrase the question. Evolution certainly does make successful predictions, but meaningful and interesting ones are difficult to locate. For instance, evolution predicts many similarities in species that are close together in the evolutionary tree, and few similarities in species that are far apart in the evolutionary tree. And we find such evidence in biology. But we routinely find significant contradictions as well. So the prediction becomes a soft prediction rather than a hard prediction. The prediction predicts the pattern where the pattern is found, but not where the pattern is not found. So the prediction is really not very meaningful or interesting.

Oh right, evolution predicts “less similiarities in species that are far apart in the evolutionary tree.”
What an ignorant load of nonsense! Evolution predicts less similarity, not “few similarities,” as clades (not species as such) diverge. There are features which connect each clade, but they are not the same thing as “similarities” in the pathetically stupid way Cornelius discusses them.
And what significant contradictions do we find? None that I know of, none that the appalling Cornelius Hunter or David Klinghoffer can tell us. While it’s true that certain organisms which share genes laterally do break the “vertical patterns” of evolution that once were expected (when we knew of nothing else–science changes, pseudoscience like ID does not), that is well within the explanatory framework of evolutionary theory (obviously evolutionary theory is best understood at the gene/DNA level today).
Could we even determine what a transitional fossil is without our specific mechanism’s of evolutionary theory? No, of course not, Archaeopteryx, while likely being two to four branchings off from the ancestral line to modern-day birds, is highly recognizable as a “transitional fossil” under the usual meaning of that term. With ID or some such thing, the platypus would be as likely a “transition” between reptiles and mammals as anything else, since there’s no telling what a “designer” might do (hint, one would expect something more like car models, than what we see in life).
Cornelius blathers on about “failed predictions” involving altruism and other nonsense.
Let’s see, which theory explains altruistic patterns best? Is it ID (pretend for now that it’s a theory, rather than a blank statement)? Obviously altruism has been explained as successfully as it has only within evolutionary theory, while ID doesn’t even present any possibilities for explanation.
David is about as good at interviewing about evolution as he is at blogging about it, he lets the most egregious claptrap get by without any challenge whatsoever.
Well, why would he, when he considers “Darwinism” to be morally wrong, and tells us that we should reconsider it based on its supposed moral legacy. Yet he has no honest scientific critique of evolutionary theory at all, nor does the fatuous nonsense of Cornelius Hunter, so that all we could possibly do if we did abrogate our far more honest consideration of science and reconsider it over mindless linkages made by neo-Nazis and creationists, we’d simply have to decide once again that it is good science.
Glen Davidson
http://tinyurl.com/6mb592



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Steve Shay

posted June 15, 2009 at 2:47 pm


I simply want to caution folks that when you log onto http://www.stormfront.com you may get on the radar of government agencies monitoring white supremacists. I was told this by someone I view as quite informed in his military intelligence career.
As a Jew I have viewed this site to help me grapple with why my people are hated, and what sort of frame of mind white supremacists have. One oddity is that, based on that Web site, many of them seem to be fascinated with militant Muslims for obvious reasons without realizing that Muslims are Semitic. Also they credit Hitler for his quest to rid the world of Jews yet also deny the Holocaust. So on some sick level they are saying Hitler was not that bad with his treatment of the Jews and at the same time laud him for almost ridding the world of us. It makes no sense.
In any case, I realize I may be monitored for clicking into Stormfront and others should take this into consideration as well.



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Steve Shay

posted June 15, 2009 at 2:52 pm


I meant to write: stormfront.org, not stormfront.com



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Bill

posted June 15, 2009 at 3:50 pm


No, of course not, Archaeopteryx, while likely being two to four branchings off from the ancestral line to modern-day birds, is highly recognizable as a “transitional fossil” under the usual meaning of that term……..Cornelius blathers on about “failed predictions” involving altruism and other nonsense.
Another failed prediction?



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Glen Davidson

posted June 15, 2009 at 4:53 pm


Another failure to comprehend by a creationist, in this case Bill.
In context, evolution predicts one thing, that birds will have evolved from reptiles by some transitional form have features of both reptiles and birds. Archaeopteryx has always been that, although whether the reptiles were dinosaurian or more related to crocodiles is a long-standing dispute.
There is, of course, absolutely no “design reason” for something a rather inferior flier like Archaeopteryx to exist, much less for any designer to utilize the forelimbs of a terrestrial animal to make bird wings, rather than, say, modifying pterosaur wings for the purpose, or beginning with first principles. Evolution, by contrast, has nothing else to modify into wings (in context), hence something like Archaeopteryx had to exist if evolution is true. Under any reasonable design scenario, no designer would ever go through such an undesign-like stage.
Lately, the dinosaur hypothesis has tended to have the most adherents, partly due to feathers in both–previously the crocodylomorphs were thought more likely to have evolved birds. Yet recently, a dinosaur not closely related to the line thought to give rise to birds has been inferred to have feathers, so that feathers are considered to possibly have appeared much further back than previously thought. In that sense, the claim that birds may have evolved from a line which diverged from the dinosaur line does not seem so unreasonable, although much remains to be looked at before the bird femur knowledge is properly situated.
As usual, of course, the creationist misunderstands evolutionary theory, and how science works. A creationist who does not is the exception, little encountered. Oh, and one other thing, creationists like Bill, David, and Cornelius never even try to come up with actual evidence in favor of “design” or other magical ideas, implying that on some level they know that it’s pseudoscience that will never have any evidence for it.
To reiterate, whether Archaeopteryx evolved from one particular line of reptiles, or a different one, is not the prediction of evolution. That it had to evolve from some extant line, and could not “borrow” features from genetically separate lines (since lateral gene transfers are largely absent from most vertebrates), is the prediction of evolution. Archaeopteryx fits that prediction superbly, while such a relatively poorly designed bird suffering from only partial modification of terrestrial traits is certainly not what a reasonable person would expect from design.
Glen Davidson
http://tinyurl.com/6mb592



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Glen Davidson

posted June 15, 2009 at 5:19 pm


That it had to evolve from some extant line

Or more precisely, it “had to evolve from some then-extant line.”
Glen Davidson
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William Woods Higgins

posted June 15, 2009 at 5:53 pm


In an earlier comment I included an intro tothe second edition of Religous & SYmbolic Game Theory.As anybody could tell who read it,itwas a draft; the second edition to be published with the title Scripting A ChapterIn The Mind of God will not be out until September or October.I am notacademically affiliated or a grant junkie and spend the majority of my timeusingthe medium of oils and canvas tomake statements about Spirit. My Apologies. Thank you for your understanding.



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Your Name

posted June 15, 2009 at 6:06 pm


Alchemist:
Darwin did wise than advocate it genocide. He said it was inevitable. And while Hitelr was a creationist, he was also a Darwinist.
And the Spanish were nasty to the Aztecs, but it for the most part, they were happy to make slaves out of them, not exterminate them. Darwin, on tyhe other hand talk abotu extermination.



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N,Schuster

posted June 15, 2009 at 6:37 pm


Sorry, typo
Should say “Darwin did worse.”
And Darwin wrote in “The descent of Man”, chapters 4 and 5 that the European races will exterminate the non-European races. Hilter wrote in “Mein Kampf” that the Aryans will exterminate the non-Aryans. how could it be any clearer?



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N.Schuster

posted June 15, 2009 at 6:49 pm


Didn’t Richard Owen predict that a transition between birds and dinosaurs would be found? But it turns out that birds couldn’t have descended from dinosaurs. So that was a prediction that didn’t come true.



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Alchemist

posted June 15, 2009 at 7:53 pm


N. Schuster:
Thanks for demonstrating you nonscientific parroting of typical ID Creationist mumbo-jumbo.
Evolution’s existence owes nothing to Darwin’s personal opinions. Abundant biograpical data demonstrates that while he did share the usual Victorian misunderstandings of racial matter, it had no bearing upon the simple law of evolution–species change by adapting to alterations in their environment. Those best suited to change survive and reproduce, those who aren’t decline and fade.
I have a question for you: Is all Creationism racist because Henry Morris, of the Institute for Creation Research, demonstrated racist attitudes in his interpretation of the Bible:
“Sometimes the Hamites, especially the Negroes, have even become actual slaves to the others. Possessed of a genetic character concerned mainly with mundane, practical matters, they have often eventually been displaced by the intellectual and philosophical acumen of the Japhethites and the religious zeal of the Semites” (Morris “The Genesis Record: A Scientific and Devotional Commentary on the Book of Beginnings” 1976, 241).
So, using your logic, Creationism = Nazism because Morris holds racists attitudes like Hitler. What could be clearer?
As for your statement regarding R. Owen, well others have already addressed that in other posts. Birds are the descendants of dinosaurs and there are abundant physiological and genetic evidence to demonstrate their relationship to their forebears.
What has ID Creationism predicted?



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Alchemist

posted June 15, 2009 at 8:10 pm


Your Name (June 15):
Writing reasonably coherent sentences would help us interpret your utterances.
Your Name stated, “Darwin did wise than advocate it genocide. He said it was inevitable. And while Hitelr was a creationist, he was also a Darwinist.”
Ludicrous. A first-grader could debunk your flimsy claim. Far more Creationism is found throughout Nazi thought (Hitler frequently and repeatedly states his mission is from God), and they even denigrated Darwin’s ideas:
“Writings of a philosophical and social nature whose content deals with the false scientific enlightenment of primitive Darwinism and Monism (Häckel).” (Die Bücherei 1935, 279)
Sure sounds like the Nazis liked Darwin, eh? Please provide conclusive and plausible evidence from Hitler’s writing where he unequivocally declares himself a “Darwinist.”
Your Name stated, “And the Spanish were nasty to the Aztecs, but it for the most part, they were happy to make slaves out of them, not exterminate them. Darwin, on tyhe other hand talk abotu extermination”
Oh, my! Let’s celebrate the brutal murder, rape, and enslavement (with rape and murder) of the Aztec people! Gosh, just where did deciding to enslave rather than exterminate a people make that a morally more acceptable choice?
Oh, by the way, Hitler did use SLAVE LABOR extensively. What do you think concentration camps were for besides killing folk? I guess all the well-documented use of slaves in Nazi industry must have gone right by you in history class.



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N.Schuster

posted June 15, 2009 at 8:37 pm


According to this article:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090609092055
bords could not have evolved from dinosaur because of differences in biomechanics. the real ancestor remains unknown.
And i do believe your quote is form the German Libary Association. I don’t think that they represented the consensus of mainstream Nazi thought. That’s to be found in the book Hitler wrote, “Mein Kampf” were he almost quotes Darwin’s “The Descent of Man” verbatum.
And the Nazis did practise slavery, it was different than the type practised by the Spaniards, IMHO. Nazi slavery was another means of exterminating members of inferior races. that was the focus. The Spaniards didn’t build gas chambers. (And I never said what the Spanairds did was nice, just that the Nazis were worse.)



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Alchemist

posted June 16, 2009 at 8:08 am


N Schuster:
Mein Kampf, Vol. II, Ch. 10: “For it was by the Will of God that men were made of a certain bodily shape, were given their natures and their faculties. Whoever destroys His work wages war against God’s Creation and God’s Will”
Sure sounds like he is preaching evolutionary theory. Besides, Hitler had no true understanding of evolution since it is all about biodiversity in the gene pool. Besides, you have yet to demonstrate a single instance of a verbatim quotation from Darwin in Hitler. Also, you have yet to indicate any predictions ID Creationism makes. Science is waiting eagerly!
As for your paltry attempt to diminish the Conquistador genocide, David Stannard notes
“On the island of Espanola, under Columbus’s governorship,
50,000 native people died within a matter of months following the
establishment of the first Spanish colony. That is the
proportional equivalent of 1.5 million dead Americans today–more
than twice the number of U.S. battle deaths in the Civil War,
World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War
combined. When the Caribbean holocaust exhausted itself around
1535, the extermination, in number of deaths and proportion of
the population affected, vastly exceeded that of any of the
hideous genocides that have occurred in the twentieth century
against Armenians, Jews, Gypsies, Ibos, Bengalis, Timorese,
Cambodians, Ugandans, and others” (The Nation, (October 19, 1992 pp. 430-434)).
Furthermore, Stannard found that “The life
expectancy of Indians forced to labor in the South American
silver mines was, therefore, about the same as that of Jewish and
other forced laborers at Auschwitz–three to four months” (The Nation, (October 19, 1992 pp. 430-434)).
Your arguments are devoid of any semblance of historical validity, just like the consistent broken-record attempts of ID Creationists to falsely equate Hitler’s actions with evolutionary science. Neither have a leg to stand upon.
Again, as many of us have asked, where is the science to back up your claims? Where is the abundant ID evidence often touted but mysteriously missing from any reputable scientific institute?



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 9:53 am


Interestingly my comment regarding the christian takeover of N. America from the Indians and Central/S. America from the Aztecs, Mayans, etc., all make an interesting point, that all happened long before Darwin came upon the scene. Now these instances of genocide are not unique in history – they happen over and over as I stated that it is man’s inherent ‘struggle for existence’ that drives him to do this.
But how can this all possibly predate Darwin, whom Klinghoffer seeks to scapegoat as the cause of all the world’s woes. Yes, everywhere there was Eden before Darwin per Klinghoffer’s philosophy, and that nasty Darwin introduced original sin into the world, and so now every evolutionist is in Klinghoffer’s eyes a Nazi or Nazi sympathizer?
But Klinghoffer’s tact is understandable – demonize those whom you wish to destroy, and that indeed is the goal of his Dishonesty Institute, destroy evolutionists, evolution, and science within the United States of America. That’s what this attachment to Hitler is all about.
Replace evolution/science with divinely inspired rulers, e.g., like Klinghoffer, who can cut open the stomachs of sheep and predict the future from their entrails as they have done for centuries past.



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Bill

posted June 16, 2009 at 10:34 am


This Nazi document is interesting.
Page 10…..
“For the preservation and further evolution of a race, the necessary foundations for life must be present or be created.
Hence are derived the following determinations:
1. Each person is formed by the cross-effects of hereditary factors and surroundings.
2. The environment and its influence remain without effect on the descendants.
3. Acquired abilities are not inherited. (Only through natural selection are traits passed
between generations.)”

Page 12 is a good one…..
We have gained knowledge about the development of life on earth largery through sedimentation and fossils. The examinations show again and again: in the oldest layers of the crust of the earth, very simply designed, basic creatures appear; in later layers we find
more highly developed life forms, and finally in the most recent layers the most most highly developed organisms. Development means change, growth, reproduction, expansion, etc. Each development requires huge spans of time and knows no standing still. The life of the individual disappears completely in the evolution of the species…….How does nature (NOT GOD!!!) intervene in events and direct? If we go through the world with open eyes, we see that there is hard struggle everywhere. A struggle for existence or nonexistence.

On page 14 the evolution class continues….
Artificial, often unnatural selection takes place on a large scale in every culture-folk(culture-folk appears to refer here to political states, as opposed to ethnic-cultural states,or folks). Intellectual inferiors, criminals and sickly people are frequently saved from
destruction. Thus bad hereditary make up is not only preserved, but also passed on to future generations. Medical accomplishments especially prevent a selection that once also applied to man. With nature-bound people of a similar culture – as we must view our
ancestors – the same selective forces were in effect as with animals. This selection developed man more highly. But the rise of culture and especially of civilization allowed the laws of nature to be forgotten. Man can perhaps postpone their effect, but never eliminate it. Just as many species of animals and plants have become extinct over the course of history, so have entire folks been destroyed because they violated the laws of nature. Hereditary changes and environmental influences (natural selection) pushed evolution continuously onward. The formation and splintering off of new races was kept within bounds by nature through selection. In nature, those creatures unsuited for the preservation of each race were eliminated, while the carriers of favorable qualities remained………The death of the individual creature has nothing to do with the essence of selection, but is only a means for it. Traits are gradually eliminated when they are no longer passed along to the same degree. Then in the next generation this trait is no longer strongly enough represented. The effect is the same whether this elimination is achieved through sterilization or abstinence, through death or otherwise.



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N.Schuster

posted June 16, 2009 at 12:49 pm


In chapter 11 of “Mein Kampf” to the end of the book Hitler goes on and on about his racist theories. Like I said he was a Creationist and a Darwinist.
And most of the native Americans died from disease. They Spanish certainly didn’t intend that.



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N.Schuster

posted June 16, 2009 at 12:57 pm


I’m not going to quote from “Mein Kampf” because the whole chapter is about Darwinism and race but here is a link:http://www.hitler.org/writings/Mein_Kampf/mkv1ch11.html



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Bill

posted June 16, 2009 at 3:07 pm

Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 7:21 pm


I did a little research. All the examples of protofeathers are from cretaceous dinosaurs. But the Archaeopteryx had fully formwed feathers in the Jurassic. The timing is off.



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Alchemist

posted June 16, 2009 at 8:35 pm


N. Schuster:
In Ch. 11 of Mein Kampf, Hitler spends the first couple segment gibbering about how it is only natural for races to mate with their own kind and tries to imply that other human races are essentially different species. Then he moves on to Aryan superiority and berating the Jews.
At no point does he quote, cite, or apply evolutionary theory (which is about species alteration by environmental adaptation). Indeed, he wastes his time trying to imply that the Aryans are the superior race based on the long debunked ideas which no reputable biologist or geneticist believes now.
ABUNDANT evidence, easily found, demonstrates Hitler’s Creationist and non-Darwinian orientation.
As the British Center for Science Education notes:
“Hitler was a self-taught man and his system was his own, concocted piecemeal from the leavings of others, filtered at third- and fourth-hand through the cheap pamphlet and leaflet literature of Viennese politics and elaborated in the endless arguments on the Meldeannstrasse, arguments which nearly brought about his permanent exclusion from the hostel on the complaints of the other inmates. Moreover, the section of Mein Kampf which sets out Hitler’s ideas on racial issues are couched in historical rather than biological-mystical terms and they represent only a section of his total ideological structure. His ideas on the primacy of race…came much more from Houston Stewart Chamberlain and the German nationalists, such publicists as F. Lange and Klaus Wagner, for example.”
Hitler was also a young-earth creationist:
“This planet will, as it did thousands of years ago, move through the ether devoid of men.”
“The result of all racial crossing is therefore in brief always the following: To bring about such a development is, then, nothing else but to sin against the will of the Eternal Creator.”
The goal of the “folkish government”, then, Hitler declares is to “finally to put an end to the constant and continuous original sin of racial poisoning, and to give the Almighty Creator beings such as He Himself created.”
“The folkish-minded man, in particular,” Hitler concludes, “has the sacred duty, each in his own denomination, of making people stop just talking superficially of God’s will, and actually fulfill God’s will, and not let God’s word be desecrated. For God’s will gave men their form, their essence and their abilities. Anyone who destroys His work is declaring war on the Lord’s creation, the divine will.”
Hitler was not an evolutionist or “Darwinist” as any rational individual can readily ascertain. He’s spewing Creationist garbage consistently throughout. Try to peg him as a “Darwinist,” but as all rational, educated historians and scientists know, you are plouging the tide.
As for the Native Americans and the very nice Conquistadors consider the following information, for instance: “A Spanish missionary, Bartolome de las Casas, described eye-witness accounts of mass murder, torture and rape. Author Barry Lopez, summarizing Las Casas’ report wrote:
“One day, in front of Las Casas, the Spanish dismembered, beheaded, or raped 3000 people. ‘Such inhumanities and barbarisms were committed in my sight,’ he says, ‘as no age can parallel….’ The Spanish cut off the legs of children who ran from them. They poured people full of boiling soap. They made bets as to who, with one sweep of his sword, could cut a person in half. They loosed dogs that ‘devoured an Indian like a hog, at first sight, in less than a moment.’ They used nursing infants for dog food.” ( cf. http://www.religioustolerance.org/genocide5.htm)
Sure sounds like those Spaniards were SO nice, doesn’t it? They couldn’t give horse spit if the sub-human Native Americans, in their opinion, sickened and died. They’d just say, “Ad Majorum Dei Gloriam!”
If you ID Creationists had paid attention during school, maybe you’d have learned something useful besides Conquistador Apologetics.



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