Home » Intelligent Design » Breaking story: Holocaust museum murderer influenced by evolution theory?

Breaking story: Holocaust museum murderer influenced by evolution theory?

Wouldn’t be any surprise around here.

I wonder if my next Uncommon Descent contest should be about why “it ain’t so, even though it looks like it.”

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64 Responses to Breaking story: Holocaust museum murderer influenced by evolution theory?

  1. 1

    Breaking story: Uncommon Descent writer makes up “Breaking story”?

    Or is there — what’s the word — evidence?

    The part of von Brunn’s book available online is, among other things, deeply anti-materialist.

  2. The second link is broken.

    I followed the first link and found the excerpt from von Brunn’s book. There is no reference to Darwin. There is only one passing reference to evolution – hardly a case to be made that this person was “influenced” by evolution.

    This is overreaching. For somebody who likes to say we need to “follow the evidence” it certainly seems to be in short supply here.

  3. I’m a Christian, and what you would call an ID advocate. But I don’t see the point in constantly pointing out things like this, just like I don’t see the point in atheist blogs pointing out bad things that theists do in the name of theism. It accomplishes nothing in reaching across the dividing line. I don’t know if the guy was motivated by evolution or not, but I don’t think constantly bring up any case that does helps the cause of opening people’s minds to the evidence for ID, the existence of God, Christianity, or anything else in that realm. Atheist blogs are litered with posts about terrorism, bad priest behavior, etc. as evidence of their “correct” stance on the issue of worldview. Both sides are right, that people do bad things in the name of their religion (whether it’s Christianity/Inquisition, Islam/terrorism, atheism/genocide).

    I don’t know how many read cracked.com. It’s a sometimes crude comedy website (although it’s pretty easy to avoid most of the crude material as it is clear in article headlines), but I recently stumbled upon a wonderful article from a couple years ago, “10 Things Christians and Atheists Can (and Must) Agree On”. The author claims to have been raised Christian, then turned to atheism, and “then came back to (religion) later kind of on my own terms”, so he has an interesting point of view. The article is pretty funny (although there is some offensive language, as is customary on that website). But it makes very, very good points. I would recommend reading it. To me, it makes me realize that posts like this probably hurt the cause for ID rather than help it. Yes, it probably reinforces the beliefs of people who already believe in God and are looking for reasons to be even more sure atheism is incorrect, but it almost certainly has the opposite effect on people who disagree with ID. They see this comment, become offended, and are less likely to have open ears to something meaningful ID theory has to say.

    Just my opinion, though

  4. 4

    Most people haven’t fully accepted that ideas can influence behavior that much. At UCF, most students will insist Hitler was simply totally insane (a point Richard Weikartargued against here once with a posted link to his essay).

  5. It’s posts like this that really make the “ID is Science” concept totally convincing. Random anecdotes are all *I* need.

  6. mikev6

    It’s posts like this that really make the “ID is Science” concept totally convincing. Random anecdotes are all *I* need.

    There are aspects to the ID/evolution debate besides science—including the consequences of the Darwinian worldview which has taken over our culture.

  7. JTaylor, 2, you will be happy to know that the second link is now fixed. Thanks for alerting me to the fact that it was broken, due to a wrongly typed character.

    Re other kvetching: Modern racism was deeply materialist and Darwinist, and depended on the assumption that some races were better fitted to survive, in strictly Darwinian terms.

    Like it? Don’t like it? fine.

    You must come up with a vision of Darwinism (yuk!) that incorporates non-racism.

    How about doing that instead of attacking me?

  8. 8

    You must come up with a vision of Darwinism (yuk!) that incorporates non-racism.

    How about doing that instead of attacking me?

    I (we) must? Really? I don’t think so.

    Whatever the historical issues (about which we’ll disagree — I’d say that Darwin was no more, and much less, racist than most white men of his time), they doesn’t matter, because evolutionary biology is not racist.

    How about you make an actual case instead of issuing silly demands?

  9. 9

    “You must come up with a vision of Darwinism (yuk!) that incorporates non-racism.”

    OK Denyse, how about this?

    Darwinian evolution describes life as descending from a common ancestor, and thus all humans are related. Thus the term “races” is meaningless, as Darwin himself said: “the races ought not to be ranked as species, but it shows that they graduate into each other, and that it is hardly possible to discover clear distinctive characters between them.” – The Descent of Man

    And today that has been confirmed on a genetic level. All humans are more closely related than even two chimpanzees in the same tribe. “Races” do not exist.

    Evolution was unique for its time in that it refuted the common anthropological assumptions of different “types” of humans. The civilized Europeans vs the heathen savages.

    One common thought was that the primitive folks had fallen away from God and thus into savagery, and that white Europeans had obeyed God and thus had attained a high level of civilization:“This proves that apostasy is sufficient to explain the existence of the savage races. – Catholic World July 1871

    Darwin came along and refuted all that, saying that even white Europeans had once been “savage,” having evolved from primitive ancestors.

  10. Singbluesilver9, it would be wonderful if Darwin had believed that. But his book, The Descent of Man, makes clear that he didn’t.

    He did NOT believe what you believe. And the fact that he didn’t is significant.

    He thought that white folk would exterminate the others, didn’t he?

    Here is one of the most worthless Wikipedia entries I have ever seen – and that is saying a lot for Wikipedia: Pretending that Darwin was not a racist.

    In Darwin’s day, white folk had guns and others didn’t. It all came out differently when all had guns and the odds were evened.

    I am told by some sources that Darwin systematically misled people about what he really believed. More on that later. Maybe soon.

    Apparently, even in his day, a rev against that kind of thing was brewing. okay? Who, exactly, is surprised? Why? Who needs to defend him? Why?

  11. Denyse,

    He thought that white folk would exterminate the others, didn’t he?

    predicting it and hoping for it are two different things. i predict the lakers will be nba champions this year, but i don’t hope for it. are you saying that Darwin hoped white people would exterminate other races?

  12. 12

    “He did NOT believe what you believe. And the fact that he didn’t is significant.”

    Are you responding to a different conversation?

    I said: “Evolutionary biology refutes racism as evidenced by x y and z.”

    I also said: “Darwin was not an advocate of racism as evidenced by a b and c.”

    You responded: “Darwin was a racist.”

    And you also responded: “Here’s an article of how creationists take Darwin out of context. What a worthless article!”

    Huh?

  13. Denyse,

    Singbluesilver9, it would be wonderful if Darwin had believed that. But his book, The Descent of Man, makes clear that he didn’t.

    He did NOT believe what you believe. And the fact that he didn’t is significant.

    He thought that white folk would exterminate the others, didn’t he?

    All true, but if the challenge is to come up with a vision of Darwinism that incorporates non-racism, then we have to have the freedom to move beyond Darwin’s own views, and I think SingBlueSilver has done a creditable job.

    His post reminds me of my college days when I briefly dabbled in Buddhism. I had a friend that got me turned onto meditation, and although I’m pretty sure I never achieved “satori”, the discipline did give me an appreciation for the unity of

  14. More falsehoods posted here.

    Von Brunn felt that whites were separate species from other people. Darwin did not.

    It sounds to be Von Brunn was very much into ‘micro-evolution’ which most creationist agree with anyways.

    Darwin opposed slavery and felt that the races were pretty much identical in most respects, while some Christians believed:

    Why all this rant about Negro equality, seeing that neither nature or nature’s God ever established any such equality?
    - John Campbell; Negro-Mania, 1851

    On the lawfulness of holding slaves … the right of holding slaves is clearly established in the Holy Scriptures, both by precept and example.
    - Rev. Richard Furman; President, Baptist State Convention, 1822

    We must, of course, acknowledge that Adam is the ancestor of the white race. The scriptures are evidently meant to be so understood, for the generations deriving from him are certainly white. This being admitted there is nothing to show that, in the view of the first compilers of the Adamite genealogies, those outside the white race were counted as part of the species at all.
    - Arthur de Gobineau; An Essay on the Inequality of the Human Races, 1853

    The great Architect had framed them [negroes] both physically and mentally to fill the sphere in which they were thrown, and His wisdom and mercy combined in constituting them thus suited to the degraded position they were destined to occupy. Hence, their submissiveness, their obedience, their contentment.
    - Thomas R. Cobb; An Inquiry into the Law of Negro Slavery in the United States of America, 1858

    Nations and races, like individuals have each an especial destiny: some are born to rule, and others to be ruled. And such has ever been the history of mankind. No two distinctly marked races can dwell together on equal terms.
    - Creationist Josiah Nott, M.D.; Types of Mankind, 1854

    The inferiority of a race can hardly be shown to be a valid reason for its banishment from the presence of the superior, and by its power; the inability of a people to care for or to elevate themselves, does not seem a precisely good argument for sending them to a new land, and to a naked dependence on their own resources; the invincible prejudice of the white does not at once give a very potent, at least a very just reason why the black should be expatriated.
    - Pastor William Aiakman; The Future of the Colored Race In America, 1862

    I believe that the Bible was written for all time, and that its meaning is so deep and so rich that the accumulated learning of the latest generation of men will be unable to exhaust it.

    Let us consider Adam the father of the White and Dusky races. These, then, are Adamites; and have a chronology extending back about 6,000 years perhaps all the time we require. The Black races, then, are preadamites ; and there is no objection to allowing all the time requisite for their divergence from some common stock
    - John T. Roberts; Adamites and Preadamites, 1878

  15. herb:

    There are aspects to the ID/evolution debate besides science—including the consequences of the Darwinian worldview which has taken over our culture.

    Other aspects of the debate are always worth discussing; anecdotes are just anecdotes, however.

    Given that a minority of the US fully accepts evolution, ‘taken over our culture’ appears a bit strong. I’d be interested in any empirical studies that show a rejection of evolution leads to an improvement in society, especially if that has any bearing on the rate of racial attacks like this one.

  16. hdx, you may want to add:

    Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.

    Judge Basil during the Loving vs.Virgina trial 1959.

  17. hdx:

    A simple question: did any of those you quoted cart around a black pygmy in a cage and proclaim him an intermediate between apes and men?

    Would you like to answer this?

  18. “Christians must … give away their personal belongings; eschew knowledge; judge not, despise nature, abandon earthly pleasures, acknowledge that all YHWH’s children are equal; and above all else worship YHWH, the jealous, wrathful, vengeful, unforgiving, genocidal, anthropomorphic tribal god (Jesus’ father) created by Hebrews in their image and likeness. Omnipotent, omniscient YHWH promises Hebrews that they alone shall inherit the earth, that it is commendable to steal from Gentiles, better yet — kill them. Whereas Gentiles, if they fail to worship YHWH, are transported straight to Hell. And it is written, “A little child shall lead them.”

    Ahh, that’s some classic Dawkins right there.

    …Waaaaiiit a minute. That’s not Dawkins. Oh well, could have fooled me.

  19. 19

    You really have to read Benjamin Wiker’s case to see where Deynse is coming from.

    “I’d be interested in any empirical studies that show a rejection of evolution leads to an improvement in society”

    Researchers of many disciplines cannot even agree on why there have been drops in crime. Such experiments would need to somehow done hundreds of times and then there’d be bitter debate.

  20. I find these discussions fascinating because Darwinists never reveal their true belief system so effectively as when they defend the ol’ Brit toff’s least attractive characteristics, the way any cult defends its idol, no matter how weird or ugly.

    Darwin’s Descent of Man was a very long racist tract.

    No one seems to want to just admit that and get PAST it.

    Perhaps because we must then revisit the paltry evidence for the truth of his theory?

    We keep being told that Darwin didn’t really mean it or regretted the superiority of his own race or that he was nicer than most racists because he opposed slavery.

    First, he did really mean it.

    Second, he did not regret what he took to be his own race’s superiority. (Whatever race means. Those who say it is largely a social construct are right, in my view. But it is a construct with consequences nonetheless.)

    People like Darwin were and are often shy and retiring, but they never regret the social and financial superiority that enables them to be so without penalty.

    And – while I am here anyway – if we apply Darwin’s own standards, he was completely wrong about the fate of his own “race” (as I suppose he understood it) which, rather than extinguishing others, is headed for extinction due to low birth rates.

    Third: slavery, briefly, deprives a large working class of any interest in the wealth of the nation and allows young men access to women they need not respect, so they produce children they need not regard.

    It would be hard to think of a more obvious recipe for social problems – or a better refutation of the famous selfish gene thesis.

    Opposition to slavery proves nothing except basic intelligence, and few would say that Darwin wasn’t a smart guy.

    I’ll never forget hearing an atheist tell me that he revered Darwin as a man who proved you could be both a man of wonderful character and an atheist.

    Darwin was NOT a man of wonderful character; he was a man whose social position guaranteed that he wouldn’t be disgraced. The other toffs would certainly see to that.

    Come on, guys. If you can’t do better than this, you will need to screw more money out of flailing, bailing governments to combat widespread public doubts about your Darwin idol in the year that was supposed to be his year of triumph.

    And all you need to do is face up to stuff we all really know. Or else shut down the Internet.

  21. Onlookers:

    There is a regrettable current wave of comments by Darwinist advocates exhibiting a zero concessions rhetorical strategy on a serious issue with darwinism: moral hazard, and here resorting to turnabout accusations [as thought the real and imaginary sins of Christendom should make us give a pass to those of the Darwinists, who hold power in our time . . . ]; instead of fairly and frankly facing and addressing the issue.

    (And BTW, just those hazards alone are sufficiently serious that there are and have always been a lot of highly informed and thoughtful people who will refuse to accept Darwinism on that strength, especially since the proffered “scientific proofs” therefor do not amount to evidence beyond reasonable doubt. The logic involved is If Darwinism, then amorality; but I know beyond reasonable dispute that morality is true and right and inherent to my nature, so Darwinism MUST be deeply suspect.)

    Accordingly, It is proper to put up two necessary correctives:

    _______________

    I. Setting the record on the originator of social darwinism straight:

    First, let us excerpt from Ch 6, Descent, which clearly demonstrates that Darwin was the first social darwinist and that his theory was deeply embedded with racism. Indeed, we know from other sources that he viewed Turks as an inferior race [hence a ground for Mr Oktar's concerns] and that the very subtitle of Origin in its first five edns, was onthe preservation of favoured races inthe struggle for life. Simply reversing the focus tells us that he was thinking on the extinction of unfavoured races in that said struggle, and the explicitly Malthusian roots of the theory on struggle for existence make the application to humanity all too plain.

    So, let us face some unpleasant but necessary facts:

    Man is liable to numerous, slight, and diversified variations, which are induced by the same general causes, are governed and transmitted in accordance with the same general laws, as in the lower animals. Man has multiplied so rapidly, that he has necessarily been exposed to struggle for existence, and consequently to natural selection. He has given rise to many races, some of which differ so much from each other, that they have often been ranked by naturalists as distinct species . . . . [that he later differs from the wish to assign races to diverse species does not undercut the point that he EXPLICITLY believes races are the result of NS acting on the human gene pool]

    At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. [NB: Predicts genocide as the consequence of NS in action among human races - then does not address the exposed moral hazard or suggesxt a remedy; the "remedy" of coruse, was Eugenics, which prevailed up to the post WW 2 era, and which has consequences still] At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla. [NB: Even though Darwin acknowledged the implications of the evidence provided by an American Unitarian minister on his observation of negro regiments of the Union army in the US Civil War, Darwin retained the above wording unchanged in later editions of Descent.]

    ___________________

    II. Why we had better face these facts now, here at UD, in this the year of one-sided hagiographical Darwin 200 celebrations:

    The above — sadly, all too predictable — responses from the current wave of Darwinist advocates here at UD tells us that Darwinists, even in this year in which they are hagiographically celebrating the 200th anniversary of their hero, are unable to face and frankly address the other side of his legacy.

    Now, I am perfectly willing to accept that every movement of consequence in history will have its fair share of problems and sins and even crimes.

    (That is why, on balance I think that Western Civilisation is still worth defending, despite the fact that I am a descendant of the victims of the first great wave of global imperialist aggression by Western powers. [These days, there are a LOT of people out there -- many of whom share the outlook of the advocates above -- who can harp all day on the real and imagined sins of the West and some are gleefully anticipating its demise. Knowing a bit about the history of dark ages, I beg to differ. And, the contrast, of insisting on whitewashing the legacy of Darwin (even while trying to harp on the sins of Christendom, of Western civilisation and of course of "right-wing fundamentalists"), is telling us something; something we had better notice and heed, if we are to so learn the lessons of recent and bloody history, rather than repeat its worst chapters.])

    So, when there is not an honest and frank facing of issues that have in the past century cost upwards of 100 millions their lives, and where in the past 30 or so years in the US alone 48 million unborns — today’s inferiors — have been slaughtered under false colour of law, the above dismissals sound distinctly hollow.

    Especially, when there is the cascade pointed out by Schaeffer and Koop so many years ago now: abortion, infanticide, euthanasia — and, beyond that, genocide.

    For, once the ethics of the sanctity of life have been replaced by the anti-ethics of so-called quality of life, “the survival of the fittest” ever soon becomes the demise of those the power-wielders deem “unfit.”

    And, that triumph of amorality that would provide a critical mass of support enabling the unspeakable, is precisely the point that is at stake in this thread.

    Consequently, we the denizens of the Clapham Bus Stop had better reckon with the refusal to be responsible for and correct the moral hazards of Darwin-inspired Evolutionism.

    _________________

    So, it should be clear that Mrs O’Leary is seeking to clean the poisoned well.

    Turnabout accusations notwithstanding.

    GEM of TKI

  22. 22

    Well said kairosfocus.

    What is with the ‘some Christians have jumped off a bridge so us naturalists have a right to nuke the world’ type mentality?

    I laugh when a materialist tries to defend atheists Pol Pot or Stalin by pointing to the crusades or the Salem witch hunts.

    They routinely ignore critical facts in those examples so they can be ‘intellectually satisfied’ I believe it is.

    Note to Atheists: That “white noise” you here when talking to people that don’t believe as you do is your hands firmly clamped over your auditory sense organs.

    Good grief. It’s like talking to toddlers.

  23. 23

    kairosfocus,

    Especially, when there is the cascade pointed out by Schaeffer and Koop so many years ago now: abortion, infanticide, euthanasia — and, beyond that, genocide.

    You mean Frank Schaeffer?

  24. Re #19

    Denyse

    “Darwin’s Descent of Man was a very long racist tract.

    No one seems to want to just admit that and get PAST it.”

    ….

    “We keep being told that Darwin didn’t really mean it or regretted the superiority of his own race or that he was nicer than most racists because he opposed slavery.”

    I think you will find that the thing you are told most often is that Darwin was racist by the standards of our time but no more so than the majority of his class and nationality at the time he wrote. This has been admitted repeatedly by many of that small subset of “Darwinists” (i.e. biologists) who take part in this debate.

    Could it be that you are the one who is having trouble getting PAST it?

  25. 25

    Mark Frank,

    Could it be that you are the one who is having trouble getting PAST it?

    What you must realize is that Ms. O’Leary cannot get past it because it is all she has. She knows she cannot debate on science because the evidence is overwhelmingly against her. But her worldview doesn’t allow evidence to change her mind (as evidenced by her posts), so every once and a while she trots out a few of these ‘Darwin the racist’ or ‘Darwin is responsible for the Holocaust’ posts. What you will generally find is a few of those like yourself will respond with the appropriate incredulity, a very few IDer’s will back her up, and most people on either side will ignore her and move on to useful topics.

  26. @SingBlueSilver in 9 and 12

    You Rock ! Your Comments FTW !

    @O’Leary, I wish some people would understand that people use whatever is available as an excuse for their behavior, and while some people use the bible as an excuse to LOVE others, it has also been used as an excuse for HATE! (slavery, god hates gays, etc..) This shows me that whatever side of the fence you sit on (love or hate), you use whatever you ‘believe’ (evolution or theism or [insert something here]) to justify their actions.

    As much as O’Leary points how horrible people use darwin as an excuse, how appropriate would it be for me to rant about christian beliefs and how they have been misused in the past? (and everyone reading this should know how easy that would be for me to do that)

    @O’Leary, 19 ” Darwin’s Descent of Man was a very long racist tract.

    No one seems to want to just admit that and get PAST it.”

    Umm, Show us how, stating it is not proof, but I’ve seen many QUOTES on this page showing darwin to be otherwise. And EVEN IF he _was_ a horrible disgusting racsist, so what? His science is still a sound basis for everything that came after, and what we understand NOW as biology is NOT racsist in the slightest.

    and btw, I dont agree Darwin was racsist, but even if you think so, so what !

    but, again, @SingBlueSilver in post 12 for the win!

  27. St. Darwin has been blasphemed. The lamentation and rending of garments has begun.

  28. Surely you should divorce a scientist from his work? Even if Darwin was a racist, and even if he wrote volumes about it, that doesn’t mean evolution is racist.

    Evolution does not make value judgments about anything. It simply tracks the changes that organisms exhibit over time. Some changes lead to a fitter organism, some dont. No animal is more superior or better or on a higher evolutionary plane than any other. To not understand that, is to not understand evolution.

    Even if Darwin felt his theory makes claims of racial superiority, even if others feel that is the case, then, they are simply wrong.

  29. Just to answer a couple responses to my post.

    The article here seems to imply that von Brunn was influenced by Darwin and therefore Darwin/Evolution is bad/wrong and we shouldn’t teach it. My points are that many bad things have been done in the name of religion? Does that mean we shouldn’t allow the teaching of that?

    PaV: Darwin considered all humans to be of the same species. He opposed slavery. He considered all humans to be very similar in many ways, including mental abilities. Secondly, Ota Benga came willingly twice to the US. He was not carted around in a cage. Here is a great description of Ota Benga in the middle of this page. It doesn’t make it out as bad as people here want it to be. http://middled.blogspot.com/20.....chive.html
    Thirdly, people Christian explorers who have wanted to spread Christianity have captured and transported natives for spectacles long before Ota Benga aka Darwin

    angryoldfatman: I notice you can’t even answer the claim that bad things have been done in the name of Christianity can you?
    Big deal if I copy and paste a few select quotes. But since you can’t counter the quotes or my premise, I guess you agree that there are far worse racist quotes from Christians than Darwin
    Creationist want to make the claim that bad things happen in the name of Darwin, and therefore we shouldn’t teach it.

  30. I have to admit an extreme distaste for posting on the agit prop threads here at UD.

    Mrs. O’Leary, you seem to be of two minds as to whether Darwin’s personal beliefs are important. Are they or not? Hom many people do you think care about Darwin’s personal belief compared to his thought?

    Let’s compare with some actual slave owning Brit toffs – George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.

  31. St. Darwin has been blasphemed. The lamentation and rending of garments has begun.

    Darwin was wrong about a number of things, no one considers him a saint.

    But I guess since you can not debate the points being made, you have to resort to comments like this.

  32. Onlookers:

    See what I mean: deflecting from Darwin by turnabout accusations, while not addressing history of the dominant ideology of our day in Western Culture? (And HDX et al should reflect on how closely their reasoning parallels the reasoning summarised here.)

    Maybe, we need to focus the thread on a substantially relevant point or two.

    ______________

    1] A summary on the issue:

    . . . [evolutionary] materialism [a worldview that often likes to wear the mantle of "science"] . . . argues that the cosmos is the product of chance interactions of matter and energy, within the constraint of the laws of nature. Therefore, all phenomena in the universe, without residue, are determined by the working of purposeless laws acting on material objects, under the direct or indirect control of chance.

    But human thought, clearly a phenomenon in the universe, must now fit into this picture. Thus, what we subjectively experience as “thoughts” and “conclusions” can only be understood materialistically as unintended by-products of the natural forces which cause and control the electro-chemical events going on in neural networks in our brains. (These forces are viewed as ultimately physical, but are taken to be partly mediated through a complex pattern of genetic inheritance ["nature"] and psycho-social conditioning ["nurture"], within the framework of human culture [i.e. socio-cultural conditioning and resulting/associated relativism].)

    Therefore, if materialism is true, the “thoughts” we have and the “conclusions” we reach, without residue, are produced and controlled by forces that are irrelevant to purpose, truth, or validity. Of course, the conclusions of such arguments may still happen to be true, by lucky coincidence — but we have no rational grounds for relying on the “reasoning” that has led us to feel that we have “proved” them. And, if our materialist friends then say: “But, we can always apply scientific tests, through observation, experiment and measurement,” then we must note that to demonstrate that such tests provide empirical support to their theories requires the use of the very process of reasoning which they have discredited!

    Thus, evolutionary materialism reduces reason itself to the status of illusion. But, immediately, that includes “Materialism.” For instance, Marxists commonly deride opponents for their “bourgeois class conditioning” — but what of the effect of their own class origins? Freudians frequently dismiss qualms about their loosening of moral restraints by alluding to the impact of strict potty training on their “up-tight” critics — but doesn’t this cut both ways? And, should we not simply ask a Behaviourist whether s/he is simply another operantly conditioned rat trapped in the cosmic maze?

    In the end, materialism is based on self-defeating logic . . . .

    In Law, Government, and Public Policy, the same bitter seed has shot up the idea that “Right” and “Wrong” are simply arbitrary social conventions. This has often led to the adoption of hypocritical, inconsistent, futile and self-destructive public policies.

    “Truth is dead,” so Education has become a power struggle; the victors have the right to propagandise the next generation as they please. Media power games simply extend this cynical manipulation from the school and the campus to the street, the office, the factory, the church and the home.

    Further, since family structures and rules of sexual morality are “simply accidents of history,” one is free to force society to redefine family values and principles of sexual morality to suit one’s preferences.

    Finally, life itself is meaningless and valueless, so the weak, sick, defenceless and undesirable — for whatever reason — can simply be slaughtered, whether in the womb, in the hospital, or in the death camp. [And, sadly, now in the museum on what happened in the C20's most notorious death camps . . . ]

    In short, ideas sprout roots, shoot up into all aspects of life, and have consequences in the real world . . .
    ______________

    2] Will Hawthorne at the Athiesm is Dead blog:

    Assume (per impossibile) that atheistic naturalism [= evolutionary materialism] is true. Assume, furthermore, that one can’t infer an ‘ought’ from an ‘is’ [the 'is' being in this context physicalist: matter-energy, space- time, chance and mechanical forces]. (Richard Dawkins and many other atheists should grant both of these assumptions.) Given our second assumption, there is no description of anything in the natural world from which we can infer an ‘ought’. And given our first assumption, there is nothing that exists over and above the natural world; the natural world is all that there is. It follows logically that, for any action you care to pick, there’s no description of anything in the natural world from which we can infer that one ought to refrain from performing that action. Add a further uncontroversial assumption: an action is permissible if and only if it’s not the case that one ought to refrain from performing that action. (This is just the standard inferential scheme for formal deontic logic.) We’ve conformed to standard principles and inference rules of logic and we’ve started out with assumptions that atheists have conceded in print. And yet we reach the absurd conclusion: therefore, for any action you care to pick, it’s permissible to perform that action. If you’d like, you can take this as the meat behind the slogan ‘if atheism is true, all things are permitted’. For example if atheism is true, every action Hitler performed was permissible. Many atheists don’t like this consequence of their worldview. But they cannot escape it and insist that they are being logical at the same time.

    Now, we all know that at least some actions are really not permissible (for example, racist actions). Since the conclusion of the argument denies this, there must be a problem somewhere in the argument. Could the argument be invalid? No. The argument has not violated a single rule of logic and all inferences were made explicit. Thus we are forced to deny the truth of one of the assumptions we started out with. That means we either deny atheistic naturalism or (the more intuitively appealing) principle that one can’t infer ‘ought’ from ‘is’.

    _______________

    Now, I am not at all saying that professed or even leading Christians across the ages have all been saints, spotless former sinners on rising from the proverbial mourners bench. For, even the NT will explicitly teach us that discipleship is a struggle, and warns against those who would profess and even walk in the faith but turn aside to evil. (But at the same time, the reforming and transforming impact of the same faith is undeniable, save to those who have tanked up on real or even sometimes imagined sins of Christendom to shut their ears to the truths of the gospel and its demand for repentance and reform.]

    What I am raising is that we have a major and unaddressed moral hazard of Darwinist thought.

    One that has a pretty grim history — including the cascade that Rev Dr Francis Schaeffer and Dr C Everett Koop [pediatric surgeon] highlighted in Whatever happened to the Human Race in 1973. [Which BTW was a major, media trumpeted objection made by secularist humanists to Koop's Surgeon General nomination, so Mr Kellogg has no excuse above.]

    So, onlookers, let us observe the response to pointing out the major moral hazard: further turnabout rhetoric.

    That tells us all we need to know to take prudent protective action in defense of the moral foundations of our civilisation.

    At least, if we want to avert a neo-barb dark age, which is already charging repeatedly with a battering-ram at our city gates; with fifth columnists aplenty inside; while many pretend that all is well.

    GEM of TKI

  33. #29 hdx

    Darwin was wrong about a number of things, no one considers him a saint.

    Really now? What was he wrong about?

    As far as considering him a saint, Darwinians were encouraged to tell others about him and his wondrous feats in church pews to celebrate his 200th birthday.

    I thought science was done in laboratories, not in church pews. At least that’s what I’ve been told by ID opponents. I guess they changed their minds.

    But I guess since you can not debate the points being made, you have to resort to comments like this.

    I can debate them just fine. It’s just futile to do so with religious fanatics who deny everything, including the fact that their religion is even a religion.

  34. @kairosfocus,30 : I’d like to apologize mate as I’ve not made any effort to read your long unending posts.

    Sorry.

  35. It just shows you how bad World Net Daily really is
    Their title:

    Darwin-loving museum shooter hates Bible, Christians
    Suspect in death of security guard defies easy stereotyping

    But his manifesto says nothing about Darwin. And his views on species/evolution have nothing to do with Darwinism (he believed Jews and blacks were different species-things Darwinist dont believe). His views seem to favor microevolution. So why does WND say this in their title. Because they LIE.

    1] A summary on the issue:

    . . . [evolutionary] materialism [a worldview that often likes to wear the mantle of "science"] . . . argues that the cosmos is the product of chance interactions of matter and energy, within the constraint of the laws of nature. Therefore, all phenomena in the universe, without residue, are determined by the working of purposeless laws acting on material objects, under the direct or indirect control of chance.

    Lets stop here. Evolution does not say anything about the Cosmos or purposeless laws. You fail.

    If you’d like, you can take this as the meat behind the slogan ‘if atheism is true, all things are permitted’. For example if atheism is true, every action Hitler performed was permissible. Many atheists don’t like this consequence of their worldview. But they cannot escape it and insist that they are being logical at the same time.

    And if there is a God, why does God allow this to be permissible.
    And we know people have killed in God’s name. Sure you can say people will be punished…but this stuff will always happen, even in a world without evolutionary thought. And we know religion is not necessarily about morality. Christianity is not necessarily about morality. If I ask (many) Christians if I can be the most moral person, but not believe in God or Jesus, will I go to heaven, they will say no.

    What I am raising is that we have a major and unaddressed moral hazard of Darwinist thought.

    And this is irrelevant to the whether we share common ancestry with other life on earth.

  36. By the way, the webmaster who ran the anti-Christian website that hosted von Brunn’s rant has taken it down.

    Bad PR, no doubt.

    The replacement page actually mentions the First Amendment, strangely enough, but instead of amending the page with a disclaimer and leaving it up, the webmaster decided it should be expunged.

    von Brunn’s full anti-Christian and anti-Semitic rant can be found via the Internet Archives.

    I also saved the page to my hard drive in case the webmaster figures out how to erase it from the Archives.

  37. angryoldfatman:

    As far as considering him a saint, Darwinians were encouraged to tell others about him and his wondrous feats in church pews to celebrate his 200th birthday.

    Nothing wrong with celebrating a brilliant man who changed the way we looked at the world.

    I thought science was done in laboratories, not in church pews. At least that’s what I’ve been told by ID opponents. I guess they changed their minds.

    Scientists spend plenty of time in the lab, you shouldn’t mind if they are let out once in a while. At least these researches do work in labs. (and even in the field)

    I can debate them just fine. It’s just futile to do so with religious fanatics who deny everything, including the fact that their religion is even a religion.

    I am a Christian and a scientist. I am involved in a lot of activities and do lots of Bible studies. But I don’t take a fundamentalist literal view of the Bible. I actually do biology research and read articles.
    But if scientific realities contradict the bible, that much in the Bible is figurative.
    And if new experiments, invalidate old theories, I’ll change my mind on them.

    I don’t consider evolution a religion, I don’t base my world views on that a lone.

    I realize both bad and good things have been done in the name of religion, and bad and good things have been done in the name of science. It doesn’t validate one or the other. But if people are going to attack science because of some bad things, and therefore try to invalidate it, I need to bring people back down to reality and show them what religion has done.

  38. “JTaylor, 2, you will be happy to know that the second link is now fixed. Thanks for alerting me to the fact that it was broken, due to a wrongly typed character.”

    I went to the second link and interesting though it is, it does provide specific evidence for the Holocaust museum case. I still do not think that O’Leary has provided a single piece of viable evidence for her assertion “Breaking story: Holocaust museum murderer influenced by evolution theory?”.

    As such I have no choice but to view this as an irresponsible piece of journalism, but seems par for the course on this web site nowadays (when is this site going to get back to reporting on ID or presenting evidence for ID?).

  39. 40

    Denyse,

    I am usually reluctant to link this behavior with evolutionary belief because it can backfire and the same argument can be used against sick minded religious people.

    This killer’s kind of thinking is also found in the so called ‘Christian identity’ movements, a perversion of Christianity which believes that God set aside one race as chose and lesser ones have the ‘mark of Cain’.. it is a sick and twisted perversion.

    I’m sure any belief can be twisted beyond its original intent.

  40. Correction to @36

    I went to the second link and interesting though it is, it does NOT provide specific evidence for the Holocaust museum case. I still do not think that O’Leary has provided a single piece of viable evidence for her assertion “Breaking story: Holocaust museum murderer influenced by evolution theory?”.

    As such I have no choice but to view this as an irresponsible piece of journalism, but seems par for the course on this web site nowadays (when is this site going to get back to reporting on ID or presenting evidence for ID?).

  41. 42

    kairosfocus – the very subtitle of Origin in its first five edns, was onthe preservation of favoured races inthe struggle for life.

    *sigh* This is just like playing Whack-A-Mole. OK, AGAIN, “races” in the Nineteenth Century referred to “varieties.”

    In Origin of Species he speaks of “races of cabbage.” To say that Origin had ANYTHING to do with ANYTHING even SLIGHTLY racist at all is to indicate that one has not read the book, but only what others with an ideological agenda have said ABOUT the book. Regardless of how many other quotes from Darwin you can dig up, Origin is about change in time in plants and animals, and their geological distribution on the earth. And what fossils we should find and where. Oooo!!! Hitler’s Handbook!

    kairosfocus – “He has given rise to many races, some of which differ so much from each other, that they have often been ranked by naturalists as distinct species”

    Yes. He was describing the prevailing theory of the time, that most naturalists ranked human races as different species. And then you know what he goes on to say? “But the most weighty of all the arguments against treating the races of man as distinct species, is that they graduate into each other, independently in many cases, as far as we can judge, of their having inter-crossed.” – The Descent of Man

    At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world.

    Another mole! Whack him back down! Darwin was writing in the time of imperialism, and certainly with a Euro-centric bias. He extrapolated what would be the most likely outcome in the future. By the same rationale, Al Gore hates polar bears and wants them to go extinct.

  42. #23

    You are right. Best just to move on …

  43. Mark Frank: “You are right. Best just to move on …”

    Yep, time to move on. I’m removing this from my RSS feed. When ID brings in writers who can focus on the science of ID and evolution, and less on generating ungrounded and factless sensationalism, there is no point reading this blog, let alone commenting. Hopefully those ‘in charge’ here will recognize that some new blood is needed around here. If ID wants to reach out to the fence-sitters, it needs a different strategy – the current one isn’t working.

  44. 45

    I find these discussions fascinating because Darwinists never reveal their true belief system so effectively as when they defend the ol’ Brit toff’s least attractive characteristics, the way any cult defends its idol, no matter how weird or ugly.

    Are you a brick wall? Do ever actually read anything and respond to arguments? I’m not defending Darwin’s comments because he’s my idol. I’m defending Darwin’s comments because he made very, very few racist ones, and his whole theory is anti-racist. I’ve shown multiple times why this is so, with support, and you seem to just ignore it and repeat your original comment like a robot.

    Darwin’s Descent of Man was a very long racist tract.

    ABSOLUTELY and COMPLETELY WRONG, or an outright lie! You have not read it, you have only cherry picked quotes from it to support your contention.

    Descent of Man examines the prevailing anthropology of the Nineteenth Century, that human races are different species, and shows why it is wrong due to the theory of common descent. That humans are indeed ONE species and that there is no such thing as race.

    No one seems to want to just admit that and get PAST it.

    Because you are either gravely mistaken about it, or lying. I won’t admit that Descent of Man is a “long racist tract” when it is ABSOLUTELY NOT. Which you would know if you bothered to actually READ it, instead of reading what other people say about it.

    First, he did really mean it.

    An assertion with zero evidence. Oh wait! I know where the evidence is! He used the term “races” a lot! And “savages!”

    Second, he did not regret what he took to be his own race’s superiority.

    “I was incessantly struck, whilst living with the Feugians on board the ‘Beagle,’ with the many little traits of character, showing how similar their minds were to ours, and so it was with a full-blooded negro with whom I happened once to be intimate.” – The Descent of Man

    Opposition to slavery proves nothing except basic intelligence, and few would say that Darwin wasn’t a smart guy.

    ID: Darwin was racist.
    Biologists: He opposed slavery.
    ID: That doesn’t prove anything except that he was smart.

    What? That doesn’t even compute.

    Come on, guys. If you can’t do better than this…

    You: Darwin was racist Darwin was racist Darwin was racist Darwin was racist.
    Me: No he wasn’t. Look at what he said here, here, and here. And look at his theory here.
    You: Darwin was racist Darwin was racist Darwin was racist Darwin was racist.
    Me: Um, no. Because of this, this, and this.
    You: Darwin was racist Darwin was racist Darwin was racist Darwin was racist.
    Me: Are you even listening to what I’m saying? Check out this, these, and this.
    You: Is that the best you can do? Darwin was racist Darwin was racist.

    I suppose just repeating yourself over and over and not providing evidence for your claims CAN be an effective tactic. Should I quote Joseph Goebbels at this point? Nah. I wouldn’t stoop to that level.

    …you will need to screw more money out of flailing, bailing governments to combat widespread public doubts about your Darwin idol in the year that was supposed to be his year of triumph.

    Public rejection of biology is as egregious as it would be if the public rejected that 2+2=4. Basic education down the toilet is what’s REALLY going to lead to social decay, long before any “gay agenda” does. Sometimes, I almost long for a new cold war so we would have someone to be competitive with again. I could just point to Soviet scientific advancement and that would be that. No arguments.

    And all you need to do is face up to stuff we all really know.

    Like historical revisionism. Like pinning 2,000 years of anti-semitism onto the founder of modern biology. Riiiigggghhhht….

  45. PhilosophyFan (#18) wrote:

    Researchers of many disciplines cannot even agree on why there have been drops in crime. Such experiments would need to somehow done hundreds of times and then there’d be bitter debate.

    So, there isn’t any objective evidence of the damage evolution is doing to society, yet the claim is made anyway? Sociological research is difficult, but I would expect that if evolution is causing serious harm to our culture that there would be some measurable impact.

    Even if the Holocaust shooter was motivated by evolution, that is still just an anecdote and does not by itself support the idea of evolution systematically degrading our society. Since it’s obvious now that evolution wasn’t a motivating factor, that reduces the OP from just an anecdote to a bad anecdote.

  46. 47

    kairosfocus, you write:

    See what I mean: deflecting from Darwin by turnabout accusations, while not addressing history of the dominant ideology of our day in Western Culture?

    That’s just silly. You’re the one raising all sorts of peripheral issues, including Schaeffer and Koop. (And though Francis Schaeffer narrated those movies, his son Frank directed them and convinced his father to focus on abortion — a tactic he now regrets.) Your entire strategy is to raise endless peripheral issues.

  47. hdx [27] ” Darwin considered all humans to be of the same species.”

    Darwin didn’t really believe in species as it was understood by most naturlists of his day, so while what you say may be true, in Descent of Man he suggests that there is a continuume among various races(=incipient species for Darwin), and that some would prevail and others cease to exist.

    As to the Holocaust museum killer, O’Leary mentione ‘evolutionary theory’, not Darwin or Darwinism. In his “manifesto” (don’t communists write “manifesto”‘s?), he views humanity very much in terms of “survival of the fittest”. Now, doesn’t that have just a tinge of “evolutionary theory” to it?

  48. This topic is irrelevant to the (scientific) ID vs. Darwinism debate. How evolution actually occurs, whether by purely RV + NS, or microevolutionary RV + NS plus intervention of some kind is whatever it is regardless of the evil societal outcomes of Darwinism. In my opinion the truth will ultimately out, and it should whatever the social effects. Unless we decide the latter must trump science.

  49. My suggestion is this: I will buy Darwin’s Descent of Man and then we will all read one chapter a week and then discuss where Darwin is a racist and where het seems to be a non-racist. We will agree after a week wether he made racist remarks in the chapter we have read and then we will read the next chapter. We will continue doing this untill all the chapters have been read.

  50. As to the Holocaust museum killer, O’Leary mentione ‘evolutionary theory’, not Darwin or Darwinism. In his “manifesto” (don’t communists write “manifesto”’s?), he views humanity very much in terms of “survival of the fittest”. Now, doesn’t that have just a tinge of “evolutionary theory” to it?

    I was referring to the link from
    kairosfocus, sorry for not specifically saying that. I never said this article did.

    By the way it is 42nd anniversary of Loving vs Virginia that overturned antimiscegenation laws.

    The original court case that sent an interracial couple couple to jail. The judge in that case said

    “Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.”

  51. 52

    “…he views humanity very much in terms of “survival of the fittest”. Now, doesn’t that have just a tinge of “evolutionary theory” to it?”

    No. It doesn’t. And if you knew what evolutionary biology said, you would not make a statement like that.

    Biology says that life passes on traits with modification to it’s offspring. And that the environment and niche of an organism favors certain traits above others. And that over time, organisms change in response to these pressures.

  52. 53

    O’Leary (#7) kvetched: “Modern racism was deeply materialist and Darwinist…”

    Before Darwin (or possibly before “Origin” in 1859), was racism “Darwinist”? That makes about as much sense as saying that anti-Semitism was “Lutheran” based on Luther’s “Lies of the Jews.”

  53. I don’t mean to be harsh, but Kairosfocus, your entire post was rambling nonsense. Do you honestly purport to say that because the facts of the matter–the reality of the situation are grim and disturbing to our pre-conceived ideas of morality, it can’t possibly be true? Denying something solely on the basis that we don’t like it? Seems to be a favorite in creationist circles.

    So even if your amateur strawman-mincing of the moral implications of atheism are true, which they very well might be (and I do give you credit for that), the point remains: so what? How does that change anything?

  54. Onlookers:

    It is sad to see further remarks and attempted rebuttals simply underscore my main point and concerns above.

    1] SBS, 38, and Darwin and human — not cabbage — races:

    It is obvious that many in our day lack a historically contextual understanding of Evolutionary Theory, its history of ideas roots, and the associated philosophy of lewontinian scientific evolutionary materialism. Thus, it is important to put up on the table, the following, from Origin, from Descent, and from a notorious letter to Mr Graham, of 1881:

    _____________

    EXH, A: from intro to Origin: [T]he Struggle for Existence amongst all organic beings throughout the world . . . inevitably follows from the high geometrical ratio of their increase . . . This is the doctrine of Malthus, applied to the whole animal and vegetable kingdoms. As many more individuals of each species are born than can possibly survive; and as, consequently, there is a frequently recurring struggle for existence, it follows that any being, if it vary however slightly in any manner profitable to itself, under the complex and sometimes varying conditions of life, will have a better chance of surviving, and thus be naturally selected. From the strong principle of inheritance, any selected variety will tend to propagate its new and modified form. This fundamental subject of Natural Selection . . . almost inevitably causes much Extinction of the less improved forms of life, and leads to what I have called Divergence of Character . . . . I am fully convinced that species are not immutable; but that those belonging to what are called the same genera are lineal descendants of some other and generally extinct species, in the same manner as the acknowledged varieties of any one species are the descendants of that species. Furthermore, I am convinced that Natural Selection has been the most important, but not the exclusive, means of modification.
    _______________

    EXH, B: From Descent, Ch 6: Man is liable to numerous, slight, and diversified variations, which are induced by the same general causes, are governed and transmitted in accordance with the same general laws, as in the lower animals. Man has multiplied so rapidly, that he has necessarily been exposed to struggle for existence, and consequently to natural selection. He has given rise to many races, some of which differ so much from each other, that they have often been ranked by naturalists as distinct species . . . .

    At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla. [NB: Even though Darwin acknowledged the implications of the evidence provided by an American Unitarian minister on his observation of negro regiments of the Union army in the US Civil War, Darwin retained the above wording unchanged in later editions of Descent. Remember, having derived this moral hazard, CRD, then simply goes on to his next point, as though he has not portended the sad history of too much of C20. By striking and respect-worthy contrast, H G Wells warned subtly on such hazards in his series of Sci Fi novels at the end of C19. Oh, that we had read even just the opening of War of the Worlds or the implications of the upper classes of Britain being reduced to pretty sheep for the tables of the descendants of its lower classes in Time Machine, or the horrors of an ethically -- and so, intellectually -- irresponsible Dr Moreau on his notorious Island, with due moral sensitivity!]

    ________________

    EXH, C: letter to one William Graham dated July 3, 1881: I could show fight on natural selection having done and doing more for the progress of civilization than you seem inclined to admit. Remember what risk the nations of Europe ran, not so many centuries ago, of being overwhelmed by the Turk [And were i in Mr Oktar's shoes, that would get me well vexed, for good reason in light of what we may read in Descent Ch 6 as excerpted above], and how ridiculous such an idea now is! The more civilized so-called Caucasian races have beaten the Turkish hollow in the struggle for existence. Looking to the world at no very distant date, what an endless number of the lower races will have been eliminated by the higher civilized races throughout the world.

    ____________

    What “Race” meant for CRD when applied, not to cabbages but to humans, is sadly plain for all with eyes to see, ears to hear, and consciences to heed. (And, SBS, remember that Mrs O’Leary is an Irish descendant, as am I [and I am also a Jamaican in whose blood the history of 1865 runs]. I challenge you to read Chs 5 – 7 of Descent, noting the import of Saxon = English [with toffs being the upper classes thereof . . . notice what happens to the toffs in CRD's little tale . . . by contrast with in H G Wells' Time Machine], Celt = Irish, and Scot = Scottish (Presbyterian!); with the history of the Irish potato famine in mind. Mrs O’Leary is NOT quote-mining or cherry picking.]

    And, fellow denizens of the Clapham bus stop, SBS’s strawman-laced, ad hominem loaded response — even more sadly — makes the issues Mrs O’Leary has highlighted very seriously unfinished business. Matters that for our own safety and that of our children, we had better heed.

    [ . . . ]

  55. 2] DK, 43: You’re the one raising all sorts of peripheral issues, including Schaeffer and Koop . . .

    That Mr Kellogg sees the issues in the BOOK, Whatever Happened to the Human Race [the movie being derivative . . . ], as “peripheral,” tells us all we need to know. Issues like: the abandonment of the sanct6ity of life ethic based onteh rise of scientific evolutionary marterilaism and associated secular humanism, devalues human life and injects amorality inot the public domain. Consequences like: once human life is defvalued, it hen becomes an easy matter to dismiss and destropy first the unborbn child inthe womb, then the “unsatisfactory” child who has been born, thent o euthanise those who are somehow regarded as deficient. rthen, to commit genocide, once there is an utter breakdown in respect for the vaslue of life.

    A cascade of breakdown of ethics and justice that shoud sound all too sadly familiar in light onoty only of the history fo germany across C19 and into C20, but which sounds suspiciously like recent and current headlines in our own day.

    Let us contrast the Creation-anchored ethics of the US Declaration of Independence (which can be traced onward to Locke and thence Richard Hooker’s Ecclesiastical Polity and the NT and OT teachings on the principles of ethics in light of our common humanity being rooted in the fact of our being jointly made in God’s image):

    When . . . it becomes necessary for one people . . . to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, [cf Rom 1:18 - 21, 2:14 - 15], that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security . . . .

    It is sadly plain that in too many cases, significant sectors of the evolutionary materialist elites of our own day and the as yet unfinished recent past have plainly become destructive to the proper ends of government and civil society, and that this is driven by implicaitons of their a priori imposed philosphy of evolutionary materialism flying under the false colours of “science,” and associated contempt for those deemed less fit to survive.
    Such matters are not “peripheral.”

    3] HDX, 33: Lets stop here. Evolution does not say anything about the Cosmos or purposeless laws.
    HDX, please stop right there.

    Don’t get into equivocations, red herrings and strawman distortion games with me. That will sonly underscore that you have either grossly misunderstood what is going on adn what is thewrefore at stake, or that you are being a rheotorical manipulator.

    Onlookers, if you read more carefully than HDX has (on the charitable interpretation of what he did in 33): I spoke explicitly to the WORLDVIEW of Evolutionary Materialism, which has given rise to the cascade of evolutionary materialist paradigms for science of origins — cosmological evo, planetary system evo, biogenesis through chemical evo, biodiversity through Neo-Darwinian macro evo [and sub-schools of thought on varieties of chance variation and non-foresighted unintelligent selection forces (natural, sexual etc . . . )], and socio-cultrual and “racial” evo of humanity.

    That underlying a priori commitment to materialism has been embedded in recent redefinitions of science like “Science is the human activity of seeking natural explanations of the world around us.” [This is of course the agenda-serving Kansas re-definition insisted on by NAS, NSTA, NCSE etc and hailed in the media.]

    The underlying philosphical agenda that has taken science in our day into babylonian captivity — and I’se be “chanting down Babylon one more time . . . “ here — was aptly summarised by US NAS member Mr Lewontin in his notorious 1997 NYRB article on Sagan’s last book:

    Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.

    In that context, I deduced from the logic of the associated commitment to blind mechanical necessity, chance initial and intervening conditions and assocaied stochastic processes, the following implications:

    . . . all phenomena in the universe, without residue, are determined by the working of purposeless laws acting on material objects, under the direct or indirect control of chance.

    But human thought, clearly a phenomenon in the universe, must now fit into this picture. Thus, what we subjectively experience as “thoughts” and “conclusions” can only be understood materialistically as unintended by-products of the natural forces which cause and control the electro-chemical events going on in neural networks in our brains. (These forces are viewed as ultimately physical, but are taken to be partly mediated through a complex pattern of genetic inheritance ["nature"] and psycho-social conditioning ["nurture"], within the framework of human culture [i.e. socio-cultural conditioning and resulting/associated relativism].)
    Therefore, if materialism is true, the “thoughts” we have and the “conclusions” we reach, without residue, are produced and controlled by forces that are irrelevant to purpose, truth, or validity . . .

    [ . . . ]

  56. 4] HDX, 33, again: if there is a God, why does God allow this to be permissible. And we know people have killed in God’s name.

    Why does God allow evil?

    H’mm, first, we must have a foundaiton for asking the question: that is, materialists need to aswer to — what is the significance of evil as an objectionable reality, for evo mat views? On this, Koukl aptly notes:

    Evil is real . . . That’s why people object to it. Therefore, objective moral standards must exist as well [i.e. as that which evil offends and violates] . . . . The first thing we observe about [such] moral rules is that, though they exist, they are not physical because they don’t seem to have physical properties. We won’t bump into them in the dark. They don’t extend into space. They have no weight. They have no chemical characteristics. Instead, they are immaterial things we discover through the process of thought, introspection, and reflection without the aid of our five senses . . . .

    We have, with a high degree of certainty, stumbled upon something real. Yet it’s something that can’t be proven empirically or described in terms of natural laws. This teaches us there’s more to the world than just the physical universe. If non-physical things–like moral rules–truly exist, then materialism as a world view is false.

    There seem to be many other things that populate the world, things like propositions, numbers, and the laws of logic. Values like happiness, friendship, and faithfulness are there, too, along with meanings and language. There may even be persons–souls, angels, and other divine beings.

    Our discovery also tells us some things really exist that science has no access to, even in principle. Some things are not governed by natural laws. Science, therefore, is not the only discipline giving us true information about the world. It follows, then, that naturalism as a world view is also false.

    Our discovery of moral rules forces us to expand our understanding of the nature of reality and open our minds to the possibility of a host of new things that populate the world in the invisible realm.

    Then, perhaps, one may fairly address the problem of evil in light of Plantiga’s Free Will defense, which has brokent eh deductive/logical form of this problem since the turn of the 1970′s (a few have not got the memo though . . . ), has reduced the inductive form to due proportions,a nd has putt he existential/pastoral challenge of evil into a more manageable framework.

    As to the fact that some have “killed” in God’s name, actually in some cases that is perfectly in order: there is a REASON why God has given the civil authority as his “servants to do [us] good,” the power of the sword of justice.

    For, there are evil doers out there who abuse the power of moral choice — the foundation of virtue especially of love; the cornerstone of all virtue. And so, a world in which virtue andchred by love is possible is one in which evil is also possible. But, a world in which love is possible is arguably superior to one in which it is impossible as it has no creatures capable of the choice to value, respect and cherish.

    Perhaps, what is meant instead is that some have MURDERED by blasphemously abusing God’s name to “justify” their wrong. Indeed, that has happened [as I noted on above . . . notice how often the context and balance of what a theist has to say are so often ignored in the rush to a handy strawman soaked in oil of ad hominems . . . ], and my more precise description reveals at one the root problem: it is ever so seldom that one sees major evil raw and nakedly rampant in its own naked name. That is, the counterfeit proves only one thing: there is good money out there, and someone wants to exploit that fact to gain an improper advantage for what cannot stand up in its own name.

    5] On missing the point tellingly . . .

    [HDX 33, citing GEM;] What I am raising is that we have a major and unaddressed moral hazard of Darwinist thought.

    [HDX:] And this is irrelevant to the whether we share common ancestry with other life on earth.

    HDX, science at its best is an unfettered (but ethically and intellectually responsible) pursuit of the truth about our world based onobservation, experiment, analysis and discussion among the guild of peers.

    When scientists fail to be ethically and intellectually responsible, this has serious implications,a s over 100 million ghosts from the past century remind us.

    In particular, when your theory produces a moral hazard, one has a responsibility to address it, to limit its impact. That is a duty of any profession worthy of its name and the trust of self-governance by the community of peers.

    Unfortunately, ethical responsibility is a duty that origins sciences have manifestly been failing for about 150 years [with some really awful consequences], and so those sciences, duly, have now come in for serious scrutiny by the general public. That may be painful and resented, but the fact is, that generations-length failure to police one’s profession that has brought damage to the world, leads to a proper public interest to curb out of control and destructive behaviour.

    Part of that, plainly, is that the racist legacy of Darwinism has to be faced and fairly addressed.

    And, instead of a whitewashed, hagiographical celebration, Darwin 200 provides a good time for us to show ourselves responsible.

    The above attempted rebuttals and dismissals, sadly, do not show the degree of responsibility required.

    GEM of TKI

    PS: RDK, I trust the above will show the sobering “what” on the “so” . . .

  57. 58

    kairosfocus,

    That Mr Kellogg sees the issues in the BOOK, Whatever Happened to the Human Race [the movie being derivative . . . ], as “peripheral,” tells us all we need to know.

    Not really. The movie was imagined first, and the book was a companion to the movie, as Frank Schaeffer makes clear in his memoir.

  58. kairosfocus: “Unfortunately, ethical responsibility is a duty that origins sciences have manifestly been failing for about 150 years [with some really awful consequences], and so those sciences, duly, have now come in for serious scrutiny by the general public. That may be painful and resented, but the fact is, that generations-length failure to police one’s profession that has brought damage to the world, leads to a proper public interest to curb out of control and destructive behaviour.”

    To me this is an interesting issue, whether the search for truth in science should be limited or policed by social and moral arbiters of what is good for society and what is not. This issue goes far beyond biological origins science, into nuclear physics , chemistry, and of course molecular biology. I don’t pretend to know for certain what the answer is, but it is clear that there is no simplistic answer. A case can always be made for saying “this area is potentially dangerous to society, therefore it is forbidden”, but there is always the risk that this will prevent the development of unpredictable benefits for humanity. The worst problem with this is, “who polices the police?”,that is, policing and controlling directions of research is open to so much abuse by special interests. Who is to be allowed to be the social and moral arbiter? An obvious example is religious interference with stem cell research. I’m not trying to start a debate on stem cell research, just pointing out that this is an example.

    “Part of that, plainly, is that the racist legacy of Darwinism has to be faced and fairly addressed.”

    It is certainly arguable that Darwinism is inherently racist, if this means implying that the races are unequal in abilities due to evolution, and that moral issues of equality are secondary and relative. But from a totally objective standpoint this is irrelevant to the scientific debate. But should the science of the debate be muzzled out of concern for the moral/political correctness of it?

    As a practical matter, the most totalitarian banning of research presently is in the area of ID, not Darwinism. Next would be denial of funding for research in parapsychology. Both areas where there is a challenge to the prevailing paradigm.

  59. This ground has been covered before at length in previous threads. It was pointed out then that Darwin’s personal beliefs have no bearing on whether or not his theory provides an accurate and productive account of how life on Earth has changed over time. Neither can he be held responsible for the fact that his ideas were perverted by others to justify some atrocious behavior after his death. That is as absurd as criticizing Newton for not foreseeing that his theory of gravity would be employed by all sides in wars where bombs were dropped from aircraft on enemy targets.

    The simple fact is that the world is the way it is. Our knowledge of that world is not evil in itself but the uses to which it is put by people can be. Some human illness is caused by viruses or bacteria. Our knowledge of those organisms is of immense value in the treatment of disease but it can also be employed to create biological weapons. Does the evil reside in the organisms themselves, our understanding of how they work or in using that understanding to design weapons of mass destruction? My view has always been that evil lies in the intention and the act not the knowledge or tools used by the evil-doer.

    As for racism, the first step in dealing with it is to admit that we are all at least capable of it at some level since it derives from our instinct to try and make sense of the world by classifying it. It existed long before Darwin formulated his theory and has probably been around for as long as humans have organized themselves into separate social groups.

    And if Darwin and his theory are to be held at least partly responsible for some of tragedies of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, what shall we say of the various religions that have been around for millennia before him? We discussed in previous threads the involvement of the Roman Catholic Church in slavery. We could also consider, as a further example, the appalling consequences for the native peoples of South and North America of the depredations of the Spanish conquistadores, all of whom would no doubt have proclaimed themselves to be good, honest God-fearing Catholics.

    All these points have been raised before with the author of the original post yet she persists with these attacks on the “old Brit toff” – a jibe which itself suggests prejudice based on social class and nationality. She complains above of being attacked but what does she expect? She proclaims herself to be a responsible and ethical journalist yet indulges in the populist jeering of the cheap tabloid hack. Would she prefer that we ignore what she writes?

  60. Onlookers and participants:

    Of the three onward comments, the one that is the most helpful is that by Magnan.

    And so, to that we primarily turn; with it in mind that physics — my home discipline — is forever scarred by the memory of two burning Japanese cities in 1945; burned by unleashed nuclear fire. A fire that arguably was in part unleashed because leading scientists in the Manhattan Project reported a false consensus claim to the decision-makers, instead of giving the duly weighted balanced counsel of the senior scientists.

    And, a lot closer to home, where I sit, the repeated claims of “consensus” among scientists on the state of the Montserrat volcano in the early years of the crisis, helped create a false sense of control of the situation that led to imprudent public policy and foolish individual actions. Officially, nineteen people paid with their lives for that early individual and collective folly; and the official forensic inquiry found the local and metropolitan UK Govts to bear partial responsibility for the deaths of fourteen individuals. (Sadly, it seems the messenger then found himself attacked for the message of unmet responsibility, and an attitude of blaming the victims — not to mention the warners — is still not yet fully rooted out.)

    It was only after the wave of deaths in 1997, that a process of expert elicitation that reports on the credibility-weighted range of scientific opinions, was adopted; so that the majority and dissenting views are more or less built in to the official decision-making process. (Resemblance to my views on the need for balance on origins science is NOT coincidental.)

    I will not elaborate on my own experience as a publicly dissenting scientist here, commenting from the points where my own discipline gave me insights, or that of other concerned citizens. Just, let us say that the personal element gives bite to my observation that:

    “Science at its best is the unfettered (but ethically and intellectuality responsible) pursuit of the truth about our world, based on observations, analysis and discussion among knowledgeable peers.”

    In short, there is indeed a delicate balance of responsibility that a serious profession has, including that of self-policing. (Which is not to be confused with institutional censorship, or suppression of responsible dissent.)

    And, where such a profession fails to address its social responsibilities for long enough, sufficient damage can be done that those whose duty is to protect the public’s welfare, have a duty of intervention in the interests of the public. (Ignorance of this issue is one reason why I have long felt that a Science in Society ethics course should be a compulsory part of an undergraduate major in science, and a similar seminar should be an element of any graduate level programme. Examples should come from all major disciplines, and of course Hiroshima, the Holocaust and the issues of scientific racism should be prominently featured in those case studies.)

    On Mr Kellogg’s remarks, I simply note that the significance of a book — as opposed to a film — should be understood in light of the corpus of Francis Schaeffer’s writings (several of which were based on use of tapes of speeches etc, but which stood in their own strength as a WRITTEN corpus); as may be seen from the five volume “Complete Works” issued even as he battled cancer in the waning days of his life.

    Similarly, Mr Frank[y] Schaeffer’s views of his father as linked by DK should be balanced by those of Os Guinness; who is in effect Francis Schaeffer’s main intellectual heir.

    When it comes to the remarks by Seversky, lamentably, all he has managed to do is to underscore the depth of the now generations-long professional failure to fully and frankly reckon with and properly address the moral hazard uncovered at the heart of Mr Darwin’s work, writings and scientific-cultural legacy.

    Attempts to deflect responsibility and to distract attention from this moral hazard (including blaming the messenger), simply show the weakness of the underlying dismissive argument.

    Of such, the best that can be said, is that it reflects the underling issue that Science is now a major cultural institution and profession in our civlisation.

    As such it now — and in fact, for generations — has a major professional responsibility on matters of ethics and on those of due intellectual balance and humility in light of the inherent limitations of the scientific methods. Sadly, major leaders and institutions have repeatedly failed in this duty, now over generations, but in our day particularly highlighted by issues surrounding the Darwin 200 celebrations.

    Further failure to fully and properly address and correct failings will in the end force the public and their representatives to act in the defense of the safety of the community.

    We have been warned.

    The question now is: will we heed the lessons of sad history, or will we be instead doomed to repeat its worst chapters?

    GEM of TKI

  61. Mr Kairosfocus,

    I see that you say you are a scientist. I thought you were a preacher. My apologies.

    I don’t usually read your posts due to the low information content (in the Shannon sense). however this caught my eye from upthread:

    At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. [NB: Predicts genocide as the consequence of NS in action among human races - then does not address the exposed moral hazard or suggesxt a remedy; the "remedy" of coruse, was Eugenics, which prevailed up to the post WW 2 era, and which has consequences still]

    Three things strike me about this quote and commentary sentence.

    1 – you are consistently using the term ‘moral hazard’ in an odd way. The term has an established meaning – the consequences of information asymmetry on risk taking. I have tried to interpret your text were you use this term in the standard way, it doesn’t work. I can on;y assume you are using it in some private way as equivalent to ‘moral danger’. There is no need to put another barrier in way of communicating with your audience, there are enough.

    2 – you write that Darwin did not propose a remedy to the problem under discussion, and then state that the remedy was eugenics, all in a section trying to tie Social Darwinism directly to Darwin himself. That is pretty self-throat-cuttingly incoherent.

    3 – you write that Darwin predicted genocide as the consequence of NS. That is nowhere in the quoted sentence. He plainly say extermination, which was a process he saw happening around the world by small and individual choices, such white settlers hunting aboriginal peoples for sport, or by economic means. The example of the ethnic cleansing of the eastern North America by the US goverment of its native population was available to him, but I do ot see in this sentence an anticipation of we have come to understand as genocide. Had he done so, he would not have posited that the process would take centuries.

    Further, and more importantly, it is not as a result of the publicatioin of his books that this process of extermination is taking place. Even if Darwin himself saw it as selection, the actors in that process, the Boers and Australians and Americans, were not acting under the influence of his ideas. They had other motivations, perhaps social, economic, or religious, or perhaps their own animal appetites.

    Of course every person who sees such injustice should fight it, and fight it Darwin did, by writing Descent of Man.

  62. I’ll repeat my earlier comment, because no one has responded directly on it. I would be interested.

    “It is certainly arguable that Darwinism is inherently racist, if this means implying that the races are unequal in abilities due to evolution, and that moral issues of equality are secondary and relative. But from a totally objective standpoint this is irrelevant to the scientific debate. But should the science of the debate be muzzled out of concern for the moral/political correctness of it?”

  63. A Ruling Elder in the First Presbyterian Church of Columbia (Associate Reformed Synod), he has served as Chairman of the Diaconate, Superintendent of the Sunday School and President of the Men’s Bible Class, and has represented the church at meetings of Catawba Presbytery and the General Synod of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church

    All this didn’t prevent Rusty DePass from being a racist.

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