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But, David, the New York Times will go under before it gets ID right.

Evolution News and Views

It’s a tiresome but time-limited problem.

Darwin in the schools lobbyist Eugenie Scott is retiring at the end of this year I kind of thought that would happen because, age apart, the new emphasis on climate change activism at her National Center for Science Education would mean a whole new desk to learn after a lifetime doing something else. Over at Evolution News & Views, David Klinghoffer complains about the misrepresentation of the Discovery Institute in the New York Times profile of the energetic lobbyist:

An admiring profile by New York Times reporter Cornelia Dean, in praise of Eugenie Scott of the National Center for Science Education, contains this egregious falsehood (emphasis added):

To organizations like the Discovery Institute, which backs the teaching of intelligent design in schools, Dr. Scott actually is “stifling legitimate scientific dissent,” as the group says on its Web site. It has also accused the N.C.S.E. of misrepresenting its work.

Actually there’s more than one falsehood there. Can you count them? Discovery Institute has consistently opposed, not “backed,” trying to get intelligent design taught in public high schools. We’ve been absolutely clear about that — see our policy here.

Moreover, the phrase Ms. Dean quotes in our name, about NCSE’s “stifling legitimate scientific dissent,” not only does not appear on Discovery Institute’s main web page to which the reporter links. It doesn’t appear anywhere on any of our web pages. A Google search for it produces only the NY Times article by Ms. Dean and blog posts derivative of that article.

Notice that: Dean’s apparent quotation, for example, is apparently fiction.

But reporter Dean isn’t really distorting the record. What she claims is the record because she claims it on behalf of the Times, the “paper of record”. It’s just that today the record no longer needs to be factual. The record needs to be what the dwindling numbers of Times readers want to believe. And it mustn’t contain what they do not want to know about. That is so on a large and increasing number of issues, actually.

These days, many people wring their hands over the egregious shaping of the news that goes on at dying red ink-a-saurs like the Times.. But the handwringers miss the point that most people who actually want to know what is going on do not use or need the mediasaurs any more. The bottleneck of news they used to exploit has become a flood tide. News and analysis aggregation sites are where to look now. If you are still reading the New York Times to find out what is happening in the world, you have a doubtless admirable taste for contemporary popular fiction. I’ve been following this trend for years, by the way, on a variety of issues.

Of course Dean could easily have discovered the facts, as they have been the same facts for many years. But Dean’s job is to maintain in print, not in fact, a world in which Darwin was right, virtuous and noble Darwinists are assailed by evil creationists who want to corrupt school kids, and the reader is so very, very clever to be a follower of Darwin himself. Subscribe if you want. Fewer do all the time.

None of this will change. The Times will close its doors sooner.

Along with every blogger and tweeter, we are the new media. We’re not better. We are just the survivors who can live in the new reality.

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9 Responses to But, David, the New York Times will go under before it gets ID right.

  1. Semi related as to censorship by Darwinists:

    Granville Sewell, Professor of Mathematics University of Texas – El Paso, details the attempts to censor him by Darwinists, and his success in finally overcoming that censorship by them, in the following article:

    How the Scientific Consensus is Maintained — and How it Can be Challenged
    Granville Sewell September 3, 2013
    Conclusion: the journal BIO-Complexity has just published my new article “Entropy and Evolution,” which I believe contains the strongest and clearest presentation of my viewpoint to date. The first thought that will occur to many people who read it will be, how could this illogical compensation argument have gone unchallenged for so long in the scientific literature? Well, now you know how.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....76101.html

  2. Notice that: Dean’s apparent quotation, for example, is apparently fiction.

    I went to the DI website – took the Google search option to search the site for “NCSE”. The first document I came across was this one:

    How the NCSE Uses False Charges of “Misquotation” to Stifle Scientific Debate. The third sentence is:

    “They are an intimidation tactic employed by the NCSE to stifle legitimate scientific debate over neo-Darwinism”. I guess you could nitpick over the difference between stifle and stifling.

  3. And “dissent” and “debate”

  4. Well then, why didn’t she do what you did? In the age of cut and paste, why place quotation marks around what is not in fact a direct quote? The subject is only worth noting for what it reveals about the mindset of the dying Gray Lady. What used to matter doesn’t now.

  5. #3 Joe

    Fair enough – but I suggest not a significant error.

  6. #4

    I imagine she was quoting what Scott said about the web site rather than the web site itself. Is it really a significant error – compared for example to claiming that the placebo effect is not widely recognised when 97% of UK GPs have prescribed placebos at one time or another :-)

  7. On the Fundamental Difference Between Darwin-Inspired and Intelligent Design-Inspired Lawsuits – September 2011
    Excerpt:
    *Darwin lobby litigation: In every Darwin-inspired case listed above, the Darwin lobby sought to shut down free speech, stopping people from talking about non-evolutionary views, and seeking to restrict freedom of intellectual inquiry.
    *ID movement litigation: Seeks to expand intellectual inquiry and free speech rights to talk about non-evolutionary views.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....50451.html

    Though the evidence against neo-Darwinian evolution is overwhelming, anyone who dares question the sufficiency of Darwinism to explain all life on earth in the public school classroom is persecuted, as this following movie/documentary, book, and article, clearly point out:

    EXPELLED – Starring Ben Stein – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-BDc3wu81U

    Slaughter of Dissidents – Book
    “If folks liked Ben Stein’s movie “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” they will be blown away by “Slaughter of the Dissidents.” – Russ Miller
    http://www.amazon.com/Slaughte.....0981873405

    Origins – Slaughter of the Dissidents with Dr. Jerry Bergman – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6rzaM_BxBk

    Slaughter of the Dissidents – Dr. Jerry Bergman – June 2013 – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2v5nAYU2GD0

    “In the last few years I have seen a saddening progression at several institutions. I have witnessed unfair treatment upon scientists that do not accept macroevolutionary arguments and for their having signed the above-referenced statement regarding the examination of Darwinism. (Dissent from Darwinism list)(I will comment no further regarding the specifics of the actions taken upon the skeptics; I love and honor my colleagues too much for that.) I never thought that science would have evolved like this. I deeply value the academy; teaching, professing and research in the university are my privileges and joys… ”
    Professor James M. Tour – one of the ten most cited chemists in the world
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....evolution/

  8. Off-topic but I see I’m not the first offender ;)

    Kevin Miller expelled

    If that’s Denyse up there as News, I am surprised you haven’t already got your teeth into this injustice already.

  9. Alan,

    It would only be an injustice if he already taught it there and for some unknown reason they cancelled it.

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