Kingdom of Priests

Kingdom of Priests

Boston Globe, Den of Theocracy!

posted by David Klinghoffer

There must be a nest of theocrats over at the Boston Globe, ready to spring Christianist rule on us all. Someone call Andrew Sullivan! On today’s op-ed page they publish Stephen C. Meyer who argues that if you like the Declaration of Independence, you have intelligent design to thank. Thomas Jefferson, how could you? Oh! The horror, the horror. 

Key quote:

DNA functions like a software program. We know that software comes from programmers. Information — whether inscribed in hieroglyphics, written in a book, or encoded in a radio signal — always arises from an intelligent source. So the discovery of digital code in DNA provides a strong scientific reason for concluding that the information in DNA also had an intelligent source.

Design is an inference from biological data, not a deduction from religious authority. [Thomas] Jefferson said just that, and based his political thinking on it. The evidence for what he presciently called “Nature’s God” is stronger than ever. Our nation’s existence, with its guarantee to protect each person’s “inalienable rights,” may be counted among the fruits of Jefferson’s belief in intelligent design.

Read the rest and weep.

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posted July 15, 2009 at 10:42 am

The Thomas-Jefferson-as-IDer meme doesn’t make any more sense here than it did the first time you mentioned it, and the DNA-as-software has been debunked here, too, already. The Founders did believe that man’s “inalienable rights” derived from God. But you know what? Many of us (most, I’d say) who are theistic evolutionists also believe that, as much as you seem to think we don’t or shouldn’t.
That the Boston Globe published this just shows that like many large newspapers it too publishes its share of absurdity, silliness, inanity, and tripe.

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Glen Davidson

posted July 15, 2009 at 11:34 am

First, it’s an op-ed, David. Any number of inane pieces of junk end up on op-ed pages, this being a prime example of same.
Secondly, Meyer only begs the question of how the DNA code arose by writing “DNA functions like a software program. We know that software comes from programmers.” Well, duh, we don’t see DNA codes arising in the environment today. Nor, of course, is the DNA code thought to be more than basically adequate to the task, certainly not revealing any exquisite intelligence behind it.
Here’s the question: Could life as we know it exist without a code something like DNA’s, something that is somewhat like what humans produce? Quite likely it could not. Unless I am wrong in the foregoing sentence, Meyer has made the most startling of discoveries, that life actually functions. Seems as though we already knew that, and real scientists follow the clues to find out how it functions, and how it arose.
And Jefferson wasn’t a prophet who could anticipate an actual theory that explained life’s rather amazingly derivative and contingent features, and lack of real design features. My my, David and Meyer are on their game lately, able to state the bleeding obvious over and over again, while completely begging the questions that real scientists address.
It’s par for ID’s “science.”
Glen Davidson

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Alan Stillman

posted July 15, 2009 at 12:21 pm

obviously Jefferson’s reference to “Nature’s God” was a thinly veiled reference to The Goddess. Jefferson was totally Wiccan.
anyone can read anything they want to in anything. doesn’t make it true.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted July 15, 2009 at 12:36 pm

David, when are you going to get around to addressing Maimonides and God’s image? You know, that other thing you’re totally wrong about, and you keep keep promising to get back to?
When are you going to explain how ID, which doesn’t have God in it, Your Honor, I swear, is theologically superior to believing that God created man using natural laws?
Too busy writing snark about Thomas Jefferson, crucified octopi, and early twentieth century pulp writers?
I know better than to expect anything substantive from you at this point, but when strangers wander in they can form their own conclusions from your behavior.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted July 15, 2009 at 12:47 pm

By the way, David, since “Intelligent design” wasn’t invented until the 1990′s, how could Thomas Jefferson be a part of it?
Thomas Jefferson believed God created the Universe using natural laws. According to you that means he believed in Cthulhu, right?

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Gabriel Hanna

posted July 15, 2009 at 1:25 pm

Dembski, 1999. Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology, p. 210.
Christ is indispensable to any scientific theory, even if its practitioners don’t have a clue about him. The pragmatics of a scientific theory can, to be sure, be pursued without recourse to Christ. But the conceptual soundness of the theory can in the end only be located in Christ.
David, do they give you some kind of waiver then? Are you allowed to substitute the Jewish Messiah for Christ? Any awkwardness around the water cooler in the mornings over this?
Seems like this leaves Jefferson out too, as he regarded Christ as human and not divine.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted July 16, 2009 at 5:49 pm

How interesting! Once again David drops a steaming pile of smears, ridicule, and unsupported statements, without engaging anyone!
You are stealing that DI fellowship money, David.

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Glen Davidson

posted July 16, 2009 at 6:45 pm

How interesting! Once again David drops a steaming pile of smears, ridicule, and unsupported statements, without engaging anyone!

It’s nothing that can’t be projected onto others who actually do understand the issues, and respond intelligently to people:

Responses from the Darwin faithful to anything touching upon intelligent design are often so thoughtless it takes your breath away. I guess this is how they manage to stay impervious to the evidentiary challenge to their religion — they just don’t think it through, or even read it. A single article in a newspaper or journal taxes their ability simply to read what a person says and respond to that, rather than to what they imagine he would say. Consider the cases of Ewen Callaway and Jerry Coyne.

I won’t bother to deal with it beyond this, other than to note that it’s the usual poorly-thought-out dreck.
Glen Davidson

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posted September 16, 2012 at 5:09 am

Rather, rather

P.S. Please review our icons for Windows and windows13icons.

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