Home » Intelligent Design » Randy Olson plugs Ben Stein’s EXPELLED (actually, the trailer for EXPELLED)

Randy Olson plugs Ben Stein’s EXPELLED (actually, the trailer for EXPELLED)

Responding to PZ Myers’ usual commenters, Randy Olson, of FLOCK OF DODOS fame, remarks:

Are you folks really this clueless? You make me think of a baseball team that finishes the season in last place, then spends the off season criticizing all the other teams, as if that will address the problem.

I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but that is an excellent trailer they have produced. Not some amateurish clunky mess that you would expect from a science organization. The music cue, “Bad to the Bone,” would have cost them $25,000 at least (assuming they have paid the rights — someone might want to look into that, but I’m guessing they have). Rights for music in a trailer is more than for using it in the movie.

Take the pain. Accept it. It already appears to be a much more powerful piece of mass communication than anything from the world of evolution for a long time (much slicker than my humble little movie, light years better than anything from PBS or AIBS). The science world is being out-gunned, both financially and in terms of cleverness.

What are you gonna do about it? Complain it’s not fair?

Posted by: Randy Olson, Head Dodo | August 22, 2007 03:14 PM

SOURCE: go here.

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50 Responses to Randy Olson plugs Ben Stein’s EXPELLED (actually, the trailer for EXPELLED)

  1. “The science world is being out-gunned, both financially and in terms of cleverness.”

    I love that. They are being outgunned because they have ape-brains.

    Let them protest about the movie, as loud as possible, and as loud and violent as PZ Meyer did.

    We will thank them for giving the film free publicity, just as they did for the Passions of Christ.

  2. Poor Olson. He swam through the feeding frenzy that is Pharyngula and suffered a few bites before being properly and completely recognized. Maybe his own movie was a little too Chamberlainesque for that crowd.

  3. Randy is taking the heat for saying the obvious. I hope that movie makes it big, specially here in Europe

  4. This is FANTASTIC, I love the producers thinking. Take the case for academic freedom to the American public. When the issue is seen in its true context by the American people, as a case of freedom of thought in academia, then Darwinists will be seen in their true light, as impediments to true scientific progress, not the defenders of science as they would like people to believe. This is truly a joyful day for ID and for science!!!

    Off topic: Whoever does the Global warming topics may want to look at this:

    Belching moose add to global warming
    OSLO (AFP) – A grown moose belches out methane gas equivalent to 2,100 kilograms (4,630 pounds) of carbon dioxide a year, contributing to global warming, Norwegian researchers said Wednesday.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20.....wayclimate

  5. “The science world is being out-gunned, both financially and in terms of cleverness.”

    Firstly, it’s not the science world but the dogmatic materialists.

    Secondly, it’s not really that they are out-gunned –at least w/regard to financing, condsidering the budgets of places like the Smithsonian, NPR and the NY Times — but that they are a far, far, far more target-rich environment.

  6. Trib 7:

    it’s not really that they are out-gunned –at least w/regard to financing, considering the budgets of places like the Smithsonian, NPR and the NY Times — but that they are a far, far, far more target-rich environment.

    True, true!

    Compare the budgets of just the major media institutions dominated by evolutionary materialist thought to DI’s or that of an indie documentary producer. (NB: The Darwin Quote Mining, originally humorous, thread seems to be showing why EM makes for so target-rich an environment.)

    On the methane-burping moose — poor moose! [BTW, I think they are called "elk" in Europe.]

    GEM of TKI

  7. Three or four years ago one of the cable nets (I think it was Discovery) had a really stupid documentary (or something) based on how life would continue to evolve on Earth in millenia to come if the human race should migrate from it.

    It blatently assumed Darwinian evo to be a fact, and, IIRC, the conclusion was insects would take over.

    I don’t want to be unfair to this show. (I certainly did not watch the whole thing and it was several years ago.) But if my memory is correct, the Insects take over. Ponder that. According to TOE, mammals, birds, reptiles all evolve after insects. Yet insects are the more survivable paradigm.

    Maybe one of our sleeper-cell IDists was behind the production, after all :-)

    I’ll concede they are outgunned on cleverness :-)

  8. The Darwinists really ought to spend their time doing research to support their dying theory rather than worrying about some movie being made.

  9. People, people, the film is coming out in FEBRUARY, for Maude’s sake. That means its distributors expect it to do crappy business. February is the cinematic wasteland for movie releases.

    This comment was from Phyrangula. I think the point of the February release is to poop in the punchbowl of Darwin’s birthday celebration and get some free publicity as a result.

  10. OK wait- didn’t Paul Allen (microsoft) finance the PBS series “Evolution”?

    Do IDists really have more $$ than that?

    Movies like “Expelled” is what happens when one group tries to stifle academic freedom and scientific inquiry.

    The anti-IDists are the minority and cannot afford a culture war. Reap the whirlwind PZ and followers…

  11. I am somewhat surprised that there seems to be no reservations about this. I fear this may lend far more credence to the idea that Intelligent Design is “trojan horse creationism” in a lot of people’s eyes if the movie talks about “God”.

  12. Hi LT,
    Of course, not having seen the movie or how it will be perceived, there have to be reservations. The makers will have their own interpretations and their editing will reflect that. The viewer will have his own interpretation and his reaction will reflect that. I, too, am bothered whenever I see this conflation of God and Designer.
    But a few things ought to mitigate your/our/my fears:
    The IDists interviewed, editing aside, will likely talk about science when talking science and personal interpretation when not.
    Whatever conflation occurs, the producers of this film are not the ones who define what ID is.
    Regardless of conflation, exposing the stories of Sternberg/Gonzalez/Kenyon/Behe/Dembski (any or all) to the public is a good unto itself.

    I think.

  13. This movie will cement in the public’s opinion the fact that ID is creationism, and is a religious belief system. It will be loved by people who already agree with creationism, and won’t change anybody’s mind who thinks otherwise.

    Why does anyone here care what PZMyers thinks or says. Do you think you will change his mind?

  14. ID, or some form of teleology is going to win out and become an acceptable framework within biology at some point in the not too distant future. If someone in the general public wants to continue believing that ID = creationism (whatever the definition du jour of that is), then fine. Big deal.

  15. Changing PZ and friends minds is not the purpose of this movie. The purpose, IMO, is to expose the venomous rhetoric and tyranny of the materialist establishment and is aimed at those who aren’t in the extremes, but in the middle. They are the ones who need persuading.

    PZ said he would have given a bigger and better rant if he knew he was going to be in this movie. I say bring it on! It just gives more support to the movie’s premise.

    Slighty off topic: did anyone else notice that PZ had to be told he was in Expelled some time AFTER he first posted on it? That PZ gives a knee-jerk reaction without truly examining the subject he’s talking about is worrisome since these are the guys in the ivory tower. That doesn’t say much for the state of academics.

  16. The use of “venomous rhetoric” and “tyranny” is pretty strong language. It makes you sound angry and desperate, as if you are arguing from a weak position. People who are confident of their position don’t need to be so vehement.

    So if ID is not creationism, then exactly who is the designer? Isn’t he the same as the creator? Creator (a person who creates), designer (a person who devises or executes designs, esp. one who creates), they sound the same to me. Can you tell me how they are different?

    Is the designer a person, a supernatural being, an energy force, a deity, or what? Help me out here. Persuade me.

  17. Rocket,

    Your argument is beyond stupid. It is not necessary to know the identity of the designer to know something is designed and it never has been. This whole idea that the identy of the designer must be known to detect design is such a blatant logical fallacy it is laughable. It is clearly a bad argument thought up by people without a good argument in order to convince the gullible.

  18. Rocket,

    To answer your question from a layman’s point of view, if you are wanting to find out who the designer is, ID will not answer that question. ID looks for the effects of design by examining an object or event. Asking who did the design is not a scientific question, but a philosophical and/or theological question.

    I think “tyranny” was the right word. Drs. Crocker, Sternberg and Gonzolez work(ed) for public institutions, and were fired because they did not agree with the majority. This is comparable to the Sovient Union when scientists who disagreed with the state-supported theories of Lysenko were persecuted. While no one is dyingot imprisoned, threatening one’s livelihood and destroying one’s career, that I would called tyranny. (Note: the above is not a comprehesive list; I’m sure there are a lot more out there).

  19. Rocket is no longer with us. –WmAD

  20. Rocket — Is the designer a person, a supernatural being, an energy force, a deity, or what? Help me out here. Persuade me.

    ID is an attempt to determine design not a designer.

    You really can’t see the distinctiion and its significance?

  21. Rocket is no longer with us.

    Dang it. I really wanted to put him on the spot!

    Was he honestly ignorant and hence worthy of enlightenment and education?

    Or was he willfully ignorant and hence a potential source of amusement as a dead mouse is to a bored cat?

    We shall never know.

  22. ““The science world is being out-gunned, both financially and in terms of cleverness.”

    Firstly, it’s not the science world but the dogmatic materialists.”

    D*mn! Someone always makes my own thoughts public before me. Speaking of “Rocket” being gone, it’s easy to tell you’ve hit a soft spot when the randomly mutated creatures venture from their materialist swamps onto the intelligently designed dry land here at UD. And really, I wish they’d come up with something better than ID = creationism…borriinnggg.

  23. “Or was he willfully ignorant and hence a potential source of amusement as a dead mouse is to a bored cat?”

    LOL!!!

  24. it’s easy to tell you’ve hit a soft spot when the randomly mutated creatures venture from their materialist swamps onto the intelligently designed dry land here at UD.

    And DIE!!!

    Without reproducing!!!

    BWHAHAHAHAHAH

  25. There was a time when I’d watch Bill boot people out of here and I’d think…hmmm, that doesn’t quite seem fair.

    But, after being in this debate for a few years, I better understand the mind set of the opposition, and their repeated rhetoric that has been addressed ad naseum becomes nearly maddening. So when I see these little one liners:

    “Rocket is no longer with us. -WmAD”…

    I actually feel like applauding because justice is being served…go get’em, Bill!

  26. This may warrant a new topic on your blog Dr. Dembski:

    New Fossil Ape May Shatter Human Evolution Theory,,,,from National Geographic News no less.

    http://news.nationalgeographic.....l-ape.html

  27. This comment was from Phyrangula. I think the point of the February release is to poop in the punchbowl of Darwin’s birthday celebration and get some free publicity as a result.

    It will begin airing exactly on Charles Darwin’s birtday. What a marvellous random chance coincidence. :-)

  28. This may warrant a new topic on your blog Dr. Dembski:

    New Fossil Ape May Shatter Human Evolution Theory,,,,from National Geographic News no less.

    I saw this earlier as well. Predicted Darwinist spin: Now Darwinian processes have almost twice as much time to work with so now it “must” have occurred.

    Note that I’m not knocking intelligent evolution.

  29. The ape skull story is an excellent example of Jehu’s Law, which is that new discoveries will always push evolutionary events further back in time. For example, if you google “evolved” and the phrase “earlier than expected” you will get over 40,000 hits.

  30. Oh, by the way, the article states that, In terms of size and proportion, it’s impossible to tell the difference between the teeth from these “proto-gorillas” and teeth belonging to some modern gorilla subspecies, the researchers write. Right now the entire tree of primate evolution has been demolished to yet another instance of sudden appearance and stasis.

  31. Forthekids:

    But, after being in this debate for a few years,

    And after running your own blog for a few weeks with Darwinists relentlessly spamming, one gets a whole new perspective. :-)

  32. Continuing off-topic (re: gorilla find),
    If we can trust the dating, and the ability of paleontologists to construct a specimen from its teeth (never in doubt when favouring the paradigm), then we just might have modern gorilla at 10 million years ago.
    As the article said, molecular analysis (coinciding nicely with theory) has the common ancestor to the chimp/human line and the gorilla line living between 7-10 million years ago. A 10 million year old gorilla may just double the length of time back to this divergence.
    Something here will have to give.

    When/if the new thread starts would somebody be able to recount the cytochrome C evidence and explore how the possible implications of this find might impact its significance.

  33. Sal,

    “And after running your own blog for a few weeks with Darwinists relentlessly spamming, one gets a whole new perspective.”

    LOL…NO KIDDING. After blogging for a whole year now, I’ve completely shut down and I’m regrouping. I’m not allowing repetitive rhetoric in any more – I’m going into the DaveScot moderation mode. I don’t have time for the crap. I’m working on a FAQs site that I’ll send repetative questioners to and to heck with the rest of their worthless banter.

  34. Has anyone been to the Expelled blog to check the comments on Ben’s first entry.

    Yikes. What an ignorant mess.

  35. Has anyone been to the Expelled blog to check the comments on Ben’s first entry.

    Yikes. What an ignorant mess.

    Actually, that’s empirical evidence supporting the attitudes Stein reports on in the movie.

  36. Agreed. It still shocks me how confidently (and arrogantly/vitriolically/derisively) many people speak on this issue while simultaneously being very uninformed.

  37. JJS P.Eng. (18): “Asking who did the design is not a scientific question, but a philosophical and/or theological question.”

    Well, for what it’s worth, those of us who are not demarcationists would not say that exactly. What we’d say is that identifying design is a separate task from identifying the designer. Where one thinks empiricism ends and philosophy begins is another issue. For me and I suspect many here there is no fine line separating the two. Remember, the purpose of demarcationist dogmas (such as Logical Positivism) was never so much to keep pseudo-science out as to bring materialist philosophy in and redefine it as science.

  38. It seems wikipedia is giving its two cents too:

    “Stein is also the star of the upcoming documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, a documentary arguing in favor of Intelligent Design, due to be released in February of 2008. Although not yet released, the movie has been criticized for misrepresentation of science, and also for interviewing scientific figures under the pretense that they were being interviewed for an apparently completely different film, supposedly named “Crossroads” “

  39. Rude, thank you for your comment. As a layman, I find there is a lot to learn about the ID and this site is a great place to do that. However, most laymen/women out there would probably agree that identifying the designer is a philosophical/theological issue. I think the issue is convincing the laymen/women that identifying design can be a scientific endeavour. IOW, to us schmoes, there does appear to be a fine line and in the opinion of this particular schmo (sp?), ID is on the science side.

    By the way, “Randy Olsen” is getting skewered at pharyngula. Is “verbal cannibalism” a logical outcome of Darwinism? It sure looks like it.

  40. I know that ID doesn’t say anything about the designer.

    But if the designer turns out to be the “God” of the Bible, so what?

    If science is interested in the reality behind our existence then there shouldn’t be any problem with that.

    If science isn’t interested in reality then it is science-fiction.

    And if this movie is going to portray ID as the same as Creation there is a problem.

    ID is OK with universal common descent and Creation is not. Hopefully that will be made clear in the movie.

  41. Has anyone been to the Expelled blog to check the comments on Ben’s first entry.

    Yikes. What an ignorant mess.

    Agreed. Funny thing is cookie-cutter responses like that are flung around by Darwinists all the time…it’s like they’re chatbots. That’s the type of nonsense we filter on UD.

    We really ought to write a FAA: Frequently Answered Assertions

  42. If this film opens up the failures of gradualism to a wider audience then this will be a good thing. After all, most people I have encountered still think the fossil record shows a detailed progression of intergrading forms; more specifically they think the missing link means they have found the chain, or the best part of it.

    Yet, ironically in my specialty, insectivorous plants, I have yet to meet even one person who genuinely believes such complex capture mechanisms evolved gradually, step by step as the orthodox theory would have us believe. Decent, it seems to me, is rife within the scientific community – it just doesn’t get printed out in mainstream journals or popular tabloid newspapers.

    Incidentally, does anyone know what arguments this film will use to question orthodox evolution?

  43. Yep, those Darwinists can’t help themselves. They are addicted to asserting the illogical. It gives them an endorphin rush. A thread without a moderator is like crack to those guys. They’ll keep spamming until they are weakened by dehydration and malnutrition. Then they’ll pass out until their mother comes down to the basement to do a load of laundry and finds them slumped over at their desk. She’ll call an ambulance but as soon as they get discharged its right back to spamming threads again. Hey it’s a free country!

  44. 44

    Folks,

    To satisfy popular demand, I started a thread on the gorilla teeth.

    The Scubaredneck

  45. WHOA! Confirmed!!!! I was filmed by the same group of individuals that filmed PZ Myers. I was not 100% sure until just now.

    The name of the company that filmed me was not Rampant, but I recognized the names in the staff. It turns out there is indeed a film named “Crossroads – The Intersection of Science and Religion”

    See: http://www.rampantfilms.com/

    Crossroads – The Intersection of Sciens and Religion:

    It’s been the central question of humanity throughout the ages: how in the world did we get here? In 1859 Charles Darwin provided ….

    Will there be two films after all? Hmmmm…. the plot thickens. :cool:

  46. Yep, those Darwinists can’t help themselves. They are addicted to asserting the illogical. It gives them an endorphin rush. A thread without a moderator is like crack to those guys. They’ll keep spamming until they are weakened by dehydration and malnutrition. Then they’ll pass out until their mother comes down to the basement to do a load of laundry and finds them slumped over at their desk. She’ll call an ambulance but as soon as they get discharged its right back to spamming threads again. Hey it’s a free country!

    LOL!

    Reminds me of the bumber sticker that says “Hire a teenager while they still know everything”.

  47. “Rocket is no longer with us. –WmAD”

    You had him killed for disagreeing with you ?

    Maybe there is a conspiracy after all !!

  48. JJS P.Eng. (18):

    Asking who did the design is not a scientific question, but a philosophical and/or theological question.

    Not for me. It’s a matter of not having enough data to make any reasonable inferences. Design can be reasonably inferred from the properties of the designed object. Minimal capabilities of the designer can be inferred from the properties of the designed object. If the object can be dated then a temporal inference can be made. It’s the temporal inference that stymies identifying any purported designer in regard to living things as the designed objects under consideration predate the only known instance of intelligent agency.

  49. Wikipedia just changed the entry to Ben Stein again, this time cutting out some of the fluff:

    “Stein is also the star of the upcoming documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, a documentary arguing in favor of Intelligent Design, due to be released in February of 2008.”

    DaveScot(48), that’s a good point. I would counter that by saying “minimal capabilities of the designer” is an incomplete description of the designer’s identity, and in order to do obtain such, one must ask “why” instead of “how”. Since science can answer the “how”, but not “why”, the complete identity of the designer is thus beyond the reach of science.

  50. Watching the group therapy sessions at pharyngula is kind of like watching American Chopper: the fighting, sniping and swearing are humourous and entertaining at first, but it becomes old quick. At least American Chopper has cool bikes (the black widow being my fav!)

    As for my last comment on the reaction to Expelled, I present to you the precognitive powers of P.Z. Myers!

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