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What do Design Detection and Nazis Have in Common?

Perhaps someone can explain to me what the science of design detection has to do with Nazis, the Holocaust, or Hitler.

I sure can’t think of anything. Help me out here.

It’s things like this that undermine ruin the effort to get ID accepted as good science. It gives our critics the ammunition they need to convince people that ID is nothing more than a tool being used to promote social reform.

Science has left the building once the Nazi card gets played. As far as science is concerned it doesn’t matter if Hitler and Darwin were the same person. The only thing that matters is whether his theories can stand up to scientific scrutiny.

It’s a crying shame that people just can’t seem to drop this obsession with Darwin and Nazis. If we can stick to the science we can win this thing. Evolution solely by unintelligent causes doesn’t have a leg to stand on when put under the microscope of math & physics. The only legs it has are the ones we intelligent design proponents give it when we wander off the reservation of science and reason and start waving our hands in the air shouting that Darwinism is evil, Darwin led to the holocaust, and Darwin is killing God. Those are not scientific arguments, they never will be scientific arguments, and if we keep doing it we’re never going to get ID accepted as scientific argument. Period. End of story. Keep it up at your own peril and don’t say I didn’t warn you.

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128 Responses to What do Design Detection and Nazis Have in Common?

  1. The big problem is that the opposition won’t address the science, or allow the science to be addressed, no matter what. Check out this recent article at LGF:

    http://littlegreenfootballs.co.....nal_Review

  2. Dave,

    It is like tilting at windmills to do what you want to do. Look at the preponderance of comments on this site that are non scientifically oriented vs. those that are. People here in general are not interested in science. They want to vent or discuss theology or social issues, not science. To the people here the science is settled or there exist a consensus that there is no issue.

    Besides the main science involved with ID is not pro ID but anti naturalistic evolution. And that is anti Darwin and if you are in the anti Darwin mode, why not talk about its other shortcomings which is really what is driving most of the people here, not its scientific shortcomings. If Darwin had nothing to do with social or religious problems, the whole movement would disappear. There are no movements for the other areas of science that are not settled but for which a dominant model has been put forward. It is only evolution that generates this fervor. An exception is SETI which has fanatical adherents from the other end of the spectrum of belief.

    I love the science and the mystery that surrounds evolution and that is what drives me personally but people like myself are a very small minority here or elsewhere in the ID whatever you want to call it. And I too have moral concerns about Darwinian evolution.

  3. Kudos to you, Dave, for your clear and right-on statement.

  4. jerry:

    I think it would nice to turn some of that around — maybe have hard science people stop dabbling in philosophy and epistemology; or rather educate them to some nominal level of epistemological self consciousness. Believing in evolution is one thing, but turning around and then dogmatically stating what may or may not exist, is another — and an inane “other” at that.

    But then admitting that no one has [de]constructed a Knight’s tour of any organism’s development, and then putting the belief in evolution into some — going out on a limb here — context, might do in a pinch, too.

    Or wouldn’t that be the same thing?

  5. Oy veh! Dembski is not just a scientist but a theologian as well. And this is his site!

    The list of scientists who were not just scientists but also theologians or philosophers includes all of the most famous scientists of the past five hundred years. Now why is that? Gosh, let’s all put our thinking caps on and see if we can figure this really, really hard question out. Then let’s tackle another really tough question; like, why is there so much sex on TV? Or why do people like Diet Coke?

    In case we hadn’t noticed, famous scientists are not content to be mere scientists. If they were, they would have toiled in Mere Anonymity. No, famous scientists become famous specifically by bursting the narrow confines of pure science and seeking a voice in the public square; in the arena of culture that includes philosophy and religion.

    The most famous scientist of the 19th century was Charles Darwin. Why? Because his theory of evolution was highly congenial to the cultural elite of the day and their eagerness to do away with God; for example, to Marx and Nietzsche. Anyone who thinks Darwin was not aware of this had better go back and reread him. He knew full well that he was not merely doing science.

    The most famous scientist of the 20th century was Einstein because the notion of relativity had connotations that had nothing to do with science. Einstein was used in a culture war against Transcendental Idealism and its universals of Time and Space. And anyone who thinks that Einstein didn’t see himself as a philosopher knows nothing about Einstein.

    Now it is true, on the one hand, that experimental science points to a designer. An easy argument to win is the mousetrap argument. Science does indeed show that nature is irreducibly complex and is highly unlikely to have come into being through purely natural causes, as Darwin’s tall tale would have us believe; and picking the low-hanging fruit is a good strategy.

    It is also true, however, that the wedge strategy goes beyond science per se. Breaking the stranglehold of Darwinism on modern culture requires making arguments that are not likely to endear one to the Darwinists. But if it is legitimate to use the Crusades and the Inquisition to critique Christianity, then it is also legitimate to use the Holocaust to critique Darwinism.

    Or if the Holocaust example makes some of our nicer spirits uncomfortable, what about the mass murder committed in the name of Marxism? Are we going to ignore the fact that Marx and Darwin had a mutual admiration society? That Marx stated that the Origin provided the natural history for his own work? That Lenin, Stalin and Mao were all Darwinists?

    Why? Because it’s inconvenient? Because it isn’t nice? Are PZ, Richard and Sam playing nice? Ideas have consequences. Forget “follow the money.” Follow the idea.

    http://www.jaytrott.com/

  6. No one has ever claimed that pointing out the connection between Darwinism/materialism and Nazism is a scientific (i.e. biological) argument, just as the evos have never claimed that their rants against God and religion are scientific arguments. But it doesn’t seem to have hurt the evos much to engage in their ranting, except insofar as they have exaggerated and lied and discredited themselves in the process. The Nazism argument is neither an exaggeration nor a lie, however, so there is no parallel danger on the other side.

    The reason the argument is brought is that it points up the Dostoyevskian consequence of an amoral universe: if there is no God, all is permitted. This is, whether you like it or not, a scientific argument–not scientific in the restricted modern sense, but in the broader Aristotelian sense of rational demonstration.

    I understand your desire, from a tactical standpoint, to suppress such arguments. But the fact is, ID is an argument in favor of teleology, and teleology necessarily involves the assertion of objective order in the world, where objective order both demands an orderer and establishes an objective good as the ground of the moral order. So while ID itself is not concerned with moral arguments, indicating to people the consequences of positing a world in which nothing is intended beyond the strong surviving is a powerful argument in favor of ID, inasmuch as the world, as a matter of fact, is ordered to a further purpose, and people know this intuitively.

  7. Ooooohhhhh Weeeeee! Good points there, allanius. You tell ‘em.

    Dave’s right in the sense that these discussions only feed the fire of discomfort and fury, but it’s absolutely true that science crosses the threshold of many other disciplines.

  8. Dave: “Perhaps someone can explain to me whatthe science of design detection has to do with Nazis, the Holocaust, or Hitler”
    The answer is not much at all.
    The question is a bit strange though.
    Darwinism has a LOT to do with Nazi ideology – not ID.

  9. Each time this subject comes up, the rudimentary issue is never discussed. In fact, if Darwinism is pure science, then the attempt to link Darwin to Hitler is misguided and unfair. If, on the other hand, Darwinism is part science and part metaphysics posing as science, then the link is reasonable and fair. We do know that “social Darwinism” clearly did play a role in eugenics, and we also know that social Darwinism is not pure science. So the real question is this: is Darwinism pure science and therefore immune from the present charge being made against it.

    For my part, Darwinism is not pure science. What is important about it is false (mind arose from matter) and what is true about it is trivial (things change and adapt). The former is a metaphysical formulation and the latter is a scientific observation. In fact, Darwinists are peddling metaphysics as science, and that is why they impose so many metaphysical rules on non-Darwinists, including the intrusive and arbitrary rule of methodological naturalism. So, if Darwinists will abandon their philosophical materialism, which, by definition devalues life, then I will suspend my charges concerning their inhumanity to man.

    By the way, this is one reason why it is important to discuss philosophy as well as science on this blog. Like it or not, ID and Darwinism take us to the intersection of science and theology/philosophy. The idea that the two disciplines ought not to be discussed in the same context is a carry over from the Kantian split from years ago. Those three subjects (theology, philosophy, and science) are distinct, but related. They overlap in important ways. Any attempt to draw a hard line of demarcation reveals a naïve conception of history and ignorance about how one subject relates to another. Indeed, that is the problem. Many among us think of science as the highest form of knowledge, and treat its subject matter as if was a single little bottle on a shelf. Both assumptions are false and naïve. In fact, science is but one part of a hierarchical network of knowable subjects, each of which influences and illuminates the other.

  10. Thanks, StephenB.

    Epistemology models ontology.

  11. 11

    I agree with DaveScot. This Nazi/Communism/Spanish Inquisition/witch hunts/Crusades back and forth is getting tiresome to me. I say we leave it behind.

    Besides, getting rid of Darwinism out of guilt for the Holocaust will turn out to be bad for science because it’s entirely the wrong reason. Doing the right thing for the wrong reason is often just as bad as doing the wrong thing.

  12. you guys are missing the point. Dave asks not what Darwinism has to do with Nazis etc. but what design detection has to do with it.

    That is a completely different question. Pay attention now class! ;-)

    Of course then Dave switches the question to Darwinism and says, “Science has left the building once the Nazi card gets played.”

    That’s true in this context.
    Nevertheless, the whole point of the Darwinism to Nazism discussion is that ideas have consequences – science is ideas just as much a ideology is ideas. Science has no more claim to absolute truth or objectivity than does ideology.

    Scientists are just as subjective and subjectively influenced & motived as are philosophers or theologians.

    Personally I fail to see the interest in discussing what either design detection or Darwinism have to do with Nazis as science.

    ID has nothing to do with Nazis except that some of them very intelligently designed a lot of war machines.

    Darwinism is related to Nazis by historical and ideological fact. But that isn’t science – it’s history and morality.

    But so what? It’s still worth discussing under a moral consequences paradigm, since Darwinists blindly continue to deny any relationship between Darwinism and Nazi ideology.

    What’s yer point Dave? You’ve asked two very questions in one.

  13. 13

    I think he’s saying the horse has been beaten to death and maybe it’s time to move on. Let’s face it: We make the Darwinism/Nazi connection as a repartee to the atheist arguments about the Crusades and Spanish Inquisition. Both points have been made. Ideas have power and that power can be abused. IMO it’s not worth discussing further.

  14. bravo to Dave, I concur completely.

    Like him I am sick to death of this Darwin=Hitler conceit, as Dave has pointed out before it has no relevance to the science either for or against both ID and neo-Darwininism. However more to the point (and Dave has mentioned this before as well) the other side has at least as much ammunition to use against theists of all stripes and all denominations when it comes to the abuse of ideas in fuelling racism, fascism and outright genocide, heck if anything they have more ammunition in this regard. It is much worse than the usual oft-repeated litany of Inquisition/Crusades, much much worse if truth be told.

    As an IDist myself, I find this relatively recent excessive blaring of Hitler=Darwin posture, not only unfortunate and counter-productive but the most negative of anything bearing on ID as a cultural/sociological “phenomenon” (for lack of a better word). In fact I would go so far as saying that future historians of science who may even be sympathetic to ID or at least neutral, will rightly see this “culture war” aspect of ID as a black mark on our side. I know I do, and let me stress, this Darwin leads to Hitler blather wins us no friends among the neutral fence-sitters out there who are undecided as far as the controversy of evolution is concerned, in fact it will only turn many otherwise thoughtful people away from ID, and without them being bothered to look at our actual scientific arguments. In other words it is tremendously counter-productive.

  15. —Borne: “you guys are missing the point. Dave asks not what Darwinism has to do with Nazis etc. but what design detection has to do with it.

    You are right in that limited context, but Dave has presented three themes concurrently:

    [A] ID has nothing to do with Nazism. (Obviously true)

    [B] Darwinism has nothing to do with Nazism (Debatable) and

    [C] Frequent violations of Godwins law undermines IDs efforts at public relations. (Debatable)

    I was responding to [B}and [C] because I don’t think [A] matters much.

  16. 16
    CannuckianYankee

    GilDodgen: “The big problem is that the opposition won’t address the science, or allow the science to be addressed.”

    I sense though, that the opposition is even less approving of the “moral arguments” coming from the ID movement.

    Dave is correct in pointing out that our moralizing over the Darwin Nazi connection is not advancing the cause.

    I sense also that there are 3 (perhaps more) levels of argument for ID, which register greater or lesser approval by Darwinists:

    Empirical Level
    Philosophical Level
    Moral Level

    Darwinists might listen to Empirical Level arguments for ID.

    Darwinists will probably not listen to Philosophical Levels of arguments for ID.

    Darwinists will most definitely not listen to Moral Levels of arguments for ID.

    The Nazi / Darwin connection argument therefore fits in the “Darwinists most definitely will not listen” category.

  17. 17
    CannuckianYankee

    I noticed also another dynamic going on. Darwinists have their own Philosophical and moral levels of argument against ID. I was looking over the customer reviews of Dr. Dembski’s new book “Understanding Intelligent Design.” One reviewer wrote the following “Understanding Intelligent Design” is intellectual child abuse aimed at the hearts and minds of children who lack ample appreciation and understanding as to what constitutes valid mainstream science; nothing more and nothing less.”

    So one Darwinist’s evaluation of ID as “intellectual child abuse” is the same sort of moralizing tactic. It is a tactic that is obviously not working with us, so when we employ the tactic, we cannot expect any fruitful outcome.

  18. 18
    CannuckianYankee

    Sorry for one more post, but another dynamic occured to me. There is more than one target audience for ID. There are of course Darwinists, who won’t listen to Philosophical or Morel level arguments.

    But there are also those who are not Darwinists, and yet do not understand ID. YECers, etc. For them, Philosophical and Moral arguments for ID are legitimate.

    One needs to ask the question “what was the target audience for the movie ‘Expelled’ (for example)?”

    If the target audience was one sympathetic to ID, then the use of the Nazi / Darwin connection sequence may have been legitimate. If however the goal of the movie was to convince Darwinists that that they are being discriminatory, then the premise of the entire movie becomes a moral argument to which the Darwinists will not pay attention anyway.

    I think it’s clear that ID theorists and symmpathizers have target audiences, and depending on that audience, the use of less empirical levels of argument may be legitimate.

    An example is Dr. Dembski’s “Design Inference,” a highly technical entreaty directed towards perhaps a wide audience of Darwinists and non-Darwinists, but since Darwinists are included in that audience, there’s no moral level argumentation.

    Philip Johnson’s books, on the other hand seem to be directed towards sympathizers of ID, and therfore employ less empirical level arguments.

  19. tragicmishap
    “I think he’s saying the horse has been beaten to death and maybe it’s time to move on. ”
    Probably true, but then why does he bring it up again himself?

  20. I brought a group of friends to watch “Expelled”. They weren’t that interested in the science. But I think the notion that destructive philosophy was being packaged as science got their attention.

    Everyone has a stake in the ID/Darwin debate, because its about how we all got here, and whether there is any point to it all. Non-scientists shouldn’t be expected to sit quietly in the lobby while science wonks decide their fate in some lecture hall or university lab.

  21. 21

    Why blame just Darwin for Naziism’s trespasses? How about the founders of modern chemistry, metallurgy, aeronautics, and psychology, Certainly their sciences bear as much responsibility for Nazi crimes as does Darwin’s.

    All scientific ideas have the potential for abuse, independent of their veracity.

    Michael

  22. From Discovery.org

    Dawkins Flip-Flops on Link between Darwinism and Fascism
    According The New York Times, arch-Darwinist Richard Dawkins is now asserting that the new film Expelled perpetrates a “major outrage” because the film suggests there is a link between Darwinian ideology and ideas like Nazism.

    Say what?

    In 2005, Dawkins himself declared that such a link existed, responding to an Austrian interviewer that “a Darwinian State would be a Fascist state,” which is why he says he opposes trying to run a society “according to Darwinian laws”:

    No self respecting person would want to live in a Society that operates according to Darwinian laws. I am a passionate Darwinist, when it involves explaining the development of life. However, I am a passionate anti-Darwinist when it involves the kind of society in which we want to live. A Darwinian State would be a Fascist state.
    What is interesting in the above comment is not that Dawkins rejects fascism, but that he apparently believes that Darwinism logically applied to government would lead to fascism. This is a far stronger claim, by the way, than the one made in the preliminary cut of Expelled that I’ve seen. The experts interviewed for the film—including historian Richard Weikart and mathematician David Berlinski—are careful to point out that there is no inevitable connection between Darwinism and what happened in Nazi Germany. But that does not cancel out the fact that Darwinian ideology provided the Nazis with one of their key justifications for sterilizing the “unfit” and killing the handicapped. Darwinism similarly provided a rationale for eugenics crusaders in America, which I write about in my recent book Darwin Day in America.

  23. I’d agree with Dave. Whether or not it’s true is another matter, and has already been discussed in detail. It’s just an unwise strategy based upon my experience. I brought friends with me to see Expelled. I asked them what they thought: “It was dishonest.” was their response. I asked what they meant. This reaction was entirely provoked by the section on the Holocaust. They felt like it was an attempt to emotionally manipulate the audience.

  24. I still continue to hold that we are not making the necessary distinctions. There are two issues here, not one.

    RE: The proposition that Darwinism lead to Nazism

    [A] Is it true?

    [B] If true, does dramatizing the point help our cause?

    Most here who say yes to [A] also say yes to [B] and most who say no to [A] also say no to [B].

    Is there anyone here who says yes to [A] but says no to [B]? That is the person I want to hear from.

  25. This may be more of a case of not being forthright with each context — evolution “typically” put forth within a framework of nonbelief expressed in various Enlightenment motifs — and theism “typically” put forth within some form of Christianity. In terms of a “what have you done for me lately” argument, those Enlightenment motifs were of hideously little restraint for the cultures that applied them consistently: millions dead pursuing messianic Statist dreams.

    In term of that then, yes, the context that led to strident Darwinism — denying that God may exist, is the same base of motivation that put the State in God’s place. (Salvation not through Christ, but through political organization.) Wherever that was pursued consistently, it led to one bloodbath after another.

    There’s a classic line Berlinki’s last book:

    In the early days of the German advance into Eastern Europe, before the possibility of Soviet retribution even entered their untroubled imagination, Nazi extermination squads would sweep into villages, and after forcing villagers to dig their own graves, murder their victims with machine guns. On one such occasion somewhere in Eastern Europe, an SS officer watched languidly, his machine gun cradled, as an elderly and bearded Hasidic Jew laboriously dug what he knew to be his grave.

    Standing up straight, he addressed his executioner. “God is watching what you are doing,” he said.

    And then he was shot dead.

    What Hitler did not believe and what Stalin did not believe and what Mao did not believe and what the SS did not believe and what the Gestapo did not believe and what the NKVD did not believe and what the commissars, functionaries, swaggering executioners, Nazi doctors, Communist Party, theoreticians, intellectuals, Brown Shirts, Black Shirts, gauleiters, and a thousand party hacks did not believe was that God was watching what they were doing.

  26. Patrick:
    “I brought friends with me to see Expelled. I asked them what they thought: “It was dishonest.” was their response. I asked what they meant. This reaction was entirely provoked by the section on the Holocaust. They felt like it was an attempt to emotionally manipulate the audience.”

    I’m not sure exactly where I stand on the issue discussed in this post, however I do know that people’s feelings [of emotional manipulation] do not negate the veracity of an argument or connection. Sometimes people need a little shock to wake them up or at least make them think. Problem is, too many people rely on their feelings first, so they completely ignore the arguments made.

    As to the statement that “it was dishonest,” how do they know this? Have they done any research on the topic themselves? If so, how much? It at least seems that some research has been done on the flip side of the coin as briefly shown above in comment 22.

    Doesn’t the Expelled movie merely show what happens when scientific ideas are applied in a materialistic/anti-ID framework?

  27. The answer to the last question is, “No, that is not what Expelled shows.” It makes the claim, but it does not “show” that the claim is true – in fact, the claim is not true. That it is why it is dishonest.

    My 2 cents.

  28. What do Design Detection and Nazis Have in Common?

    Maybe that’s not how to ask the question. Better would be, What does Design Detection have to do with history?

    Winston Churchill, as no doubt I’ve quoted him here before, said “that he must indeed have a blind soul who cannot see that some great purpose and design is being worked out here below of which we have the honor to be the faithful servants. It is not given to us to peer into the mysteries of the future.”

    But is it given to us to detect design in the flow of history that has passed? And how might we do that? ID proposes to detect design in biological history. Someday, as design detection matures, I suggest we will learn to see the hand of God in human history.

    But as for the Nazis—is it wrong for historians to chronicle the ideas that gelled in that evil movement just because it might offend a lot of folks today who might in one way or another have entertained those very same ideas?

  29. Ah, messed up again. The link to the Churchill quote was http://www.jewishvirtuallibrar.....22641.html.

  30. Jack Krebs, thanks for the 2 cents.

    Now, just hold that thought for 2 seconds.

    Is Expelled “dishonest” because it made a claim that you disagree with or because it did not satisfactorily back up the claim in your eyes? Can you define “dishonesty” or is this more of the same “they lied because they don’t agree with me” intellectual dishonesty?

    Expelled *did* show how a leader took a scientific idea and applied it to society. Now, would that leader have made the same application from within a non-materialist/pro-ID framework or would he have had the tendency to have a higher regard for life? What does history show? Sure, people who claimed to represent Jesus made up some pathetic and horribly selfish excuses to “Crusade.” However, they went completely against the foundational teaching of the One with who’s name they identified themselves. They represented Jesus’ teaching in no way, shape, or form!

    From which framework was Hitler approaching the science and application of evolution? Was it from a pro-ID/anti-materialist or an anti-ID/materialist framework? Does Expelled discuss this at all? Which framework is more likely to hold itself accountable for its applications of science? What does the past and present unfolding of scientific applications show?

    BTW: I’m coming from a viewpoint that has no problem with a completely natural evolution of life consisting of variation, selection, cooperation, and law [which definitely contains yet is not restricted to Darwinian elements and is open to ID concepts].

    PS. It seems to me that “Darwinism” as it is defined and used in Expelled is explicitly materialistic. Since materialism is a philosophy, Expelled is showing what evolution combined with the materialistic philosophy [of lack of purpose and accountability] has accomplished as evidenced in Hitler’s application of Darwin’s materialistic hypothesis to society.

    My 2 cents is that if natural law rules above purpose and accountability (which can only be even implied within an ID framework) then nature will take its course in society. If society is part of nature, why would not Darwin’s theorizing of survival of the fittest and natural selection apply to society? If humans are a part of nature than human selection is ultimately natural selection. Enter “natural” eugenics …

  31. I think Expelled is dishonest because 99.99% of all the people who accept evolutionary theory are just as appalled as those who have an “ID framework” about the beliefs and actions of the Nazis, and I think it is dishonest to ignore this fact.

  32. The case of Expelled’s “dishonesty” is laughable and bogus — they showed what happened and nothing more — even had the tour guide on record making their point for them.

    Flattening spirituality — denying humans have souls — then processing them, meat-grinder style, to fit the needs of the State is not arguable as to the outcome. That’s what happened — over, and over and over and over again.

    Maybe this isn’t about the information, but the paradigm.

  33. Sure they are appalled, but in light of what I have said above, are they being logically consistent? Is there any basis for being appalled?

  34. I think Expelled is dishonest because 99.99% of all the people who accept evolutionary theory are just as appalled as those who have an “ID framework” about the beliefs and actions of the Nazis, and I think it is dishonest to ignore this fact.Jack, you totally miss the point. The question to ask is would the Holocaust have happened without Darwin. It is more reasonable to believe that it would not have. Expelled (and others) explain why.

  35. People did atrocious things to other people for centuries before Darwin, and always with some type of institutional rationale. Blaming the tendency of human beings to band together in violence against others who are seen as different on Darwin is absurd – the ugly motivations that drove Hitler have surfaced in human societies time and time again since the dawn of recorded history.

  36. Further, Jack Krebs, a materialist can be appalled at how the materialist/anti-ID framework has effected the application of science in history and in the present, but that doesn’t make the facts of how the materialist/anti-ID framework mixed into science leads to specific horrible applications of science any less real.

    Again, in light of the logical consistency of what I have briefly mentioned above, does he have any basis for being appalled? Is the materialist/anti-IDer being consistent when he is appalled at the logical reach of his framework?

  37. My 2 cents is that if natural law rules above purpose and accountability (which can only be even implied within an ID framework) then nature will take its course in society. If society is part of nature, why would not Darwin’s theorizing of survival of the fittest and natural selection apply to society? If humans are a part of nature than human selection is ultimately natural selection. Enter “natural” eugenics …

  38. “I think Expelled is dishonest because 99.99% of all the people who accept evolutionary theory are just as appalled as those who have an “ID framework” about the beliefs and actions of the Nazis, and I think it is dishonest to ignore this fact.”Wow, that’s an interesting take on the flick. The film is dishonest because it doesn’t mention something that is obvious? Where in the movie did it present modern scientists as Nazi sympathizers? Obviously, the point was that Darwinism has social implications, and it has been used to justify heinous acts that virtually no one in these debate discussions would ever consider as morally sound.

    But, that doesn’t mean that the concept of natural selection hasn’t been abused in the past, nor does it mean that it will never be abused again. It’s something to be cautious of.

    I don’t really get why we have to go around and around and around and around about this issue.

    Fr’ crap’s sake, people…both Darwinism and religion can be used to try to justify heinous acts! Everybody knows that, so why keep arguing about it?

    Sheesh. Maybe we need an 12 step program to get past this.

    I’ll go first…

    [Hi. I'm FtK, and I realize that religion can and has been used to justify horrific acts in the past. I am personally blessed to be part of a Christian environment where killing, torture, and other abuses are not done in the name of my God.]

    There…Jack, you’re next.

  39. I think it misses the point to not keep things in context. When was the last time Christians murdered people for nothing more than expediency?

    The latest I’m coming up with is the exploration of the New World — or I guess the persecution of the Puritans by the Church of England — and some of that is iffy as to the “Christian” motivations. Even granting that — it’s 300-500 years in the past.

    We are talking about entire countries who until 20-30 years ago [some still are] systematically followed[ing] Kant, Hume, Hegel, Marx, etc.; who scientifically applied the latest and greatest technology, the latest and greatest understanding of Psychology.

    And it ended in one bloodbath after another. No exceptions.

  40. “When was the last time Christians murdered people for nothing more than expediency?”

    Murder is murder regardless of how or why it’s done.

  41. People did atrocious things to other people for centuries before Darwin, and always with some type of institutional rationale. Blaming the tendency of human beings to band together in violence against others who are seen as different on Darwin is absurd – the ugly motivations that drove Hitler have surfaced in human societies time and time again since the dawn of recorded history.

    In America, racism provided a moral justification for slavery that for a time overcame the Judeo-Christian conscience of the nation. But racism was not just a fig leaf “institutional rationale” for slavery. It was a powerful argument that if believed, made it reasonable to perpetuate injustice. “If a man is not really a man, then I may treat him like an animal”.

    I think that “Expelled” argues that Darwinism is this kind of idea. A racist might recoil from slavery, even though racism gives him permission to indulge in it.

  42. —-Jack Krebs: “the ugly motivations that drove Hitler have surfaced in human societies time and time again since the dawn of recorded history.”

    Yes, and those ugly motivations can be scaled down and softened to fit any agenda. The real problem is the lust for power and the consuming passion to dominate.

    If Darwinists are going to renounce Hitler’s Nazi-like policies in government, then they also ought to renounce their own Nazi-like tactics in academia.

    If they are going to express disdain about Hitler’s proclivity for murder and genocide, then they also ought to be embarrassed by their own proclivity for intimidation and slander.

    If they are truly scandalized by Hilter’s attempt to rule the world, then they also ought to abandon their own attempt to rule science.

  43. Folks:

    Pardon an intervention: I think a little facing of the chain of historical facts and trends in ideas that tie Darwin’s thought and books [read esp chs 5 - 6 of his 1870 Descent of Man . . .] to the mass murderers over the past 100 years, will be wise. (Nor, is drawing attention to these potentially all too relevant historical facts “dishonest.” Just the opposite, for we had better learn from sad history lest we repeat it — the precise point Expelled was trying to make.)

    The first key observation is that in the past 150 years, “Science” has been in key quarters “redefined” in evolutionatry materialist terms.

    Fact, obvious — even “celebrated” (though historically and philosophically ill-founded) — fact. Cf here the notorious Judge Jones Dover “ACLU copycat” ruling.

    Fact no 2:

    These terms have lent themselves — as a matter of well-documented [though often hotly dismissed] history — to the rise of statist, racist, classist etc totalitarianisms, which have in turn led to the as yet unfinished mass slaughters of the past 100 years. Death toll, well in excess of 100 millions — not counting the ongoing abortion holocaust.

    Fact no 3:

    It is equally plain that evolutionary materialism, in itself lacks a framework that adequately grounds morality and mind. Indeed, it — by its explanatory programme — reduces mind and morals to purposeless, blind chance + necessity acting on matter + energy, thus undermining responsibility.

    As the recent Provine thread documented, through citing a debate with Philip Johnson in 1994, Prof Provine aptly summed this up (as he also did in 1998, and as many other leading materialist thinkers have stated or conceded in significant contexts or works):

    There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which Darwin came quite clearly. (Stanford University, April 30, 1994)

    But, if there is no real freedom to choose, then it immediatrely follows that we can neither truly think nor know nor be moral. In short, we have here an issue of reductio ad absurdum.

    Also, let us note how closely Prof Provine ties the rejection of design to the breakdown of foundations for ethics and responsible choice.

    Fact no 4:

    Sadly, it is not a very big step from that to the sort of reasoning we can see in comparing Darwin, Nietzsche and Hitler — note the trend-line from the scientist, to the philosopher and on to the politician:

    DARWIN: 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 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. [Letter to Wm Gray, July 3, 1881. That is, yes, Virginia, Darwin was in key respects a Social Darwinist . . . and drew it out of his understanding of his theory.]

    NIETZSCHE: The biblical prohibition “Thou shalt not kill” is a piece of naïveté compared with the seriousness of Life’s own “Thou shalt not” issued to decadence: “Thou shalt not procreate!”Life itself recognizes no solidarity, no “equal right,” between the healthy and the degenerate parts of an organism… . Sympathy for the decadents, equal rights for the ill-constituted—that would be the profoundest immorality, that would be anti-nature itself as morality!ll to Power]

    HITLER: A stronger race will supplant the weaker, since the drive for life in its final form will decimate every ridiculous fetter of the so-called “humaneness” of individuals, in order to make place for the true “humaneness of nature,” which destroys the weak to make place for the strong. [Mein Kampf]

    (NB: Materialists can indeed be “moral” but as Provine highlighted, they lack a coherent and solid foundation for morality; as was argued out at length in the Charles Darwin thread of about a year ago, from about 46 on, here. Note, this intuitive struggle to be moral is a foundational claim of the Judaeo-Christian framework, as say Rom 2:1 – 15 will explicitly document.)
    __________

    IMPLICATIONS & FAIR COMMENT:

    So, even while often boasting of their superior enlightenment, evolutionary materialism-based [or influenced (i.e here, Nazism)] ideologies have not been self-restraining or self-correcting on matters of morality; until mass slaughters and oppressions have become so undeniable and so plainly a hazard to the community that there has been either a collapse or a recoiling in instinctual horror. (An instinct for morality that reflects, on the Judaeo-Christian frame, the candle of the Lord within, cf. Prov 20:27 — and Locke’s use of this with 2 Pet 1:2 – 4 in his introduction to the essay on Human Understanding, section 5.]

    It is true that the madness of crowds and rage-driven hysterical politics can too often find some way to pervert even the best principles to sustain horrors that now stain our history books [for, we are plainly finite, fallible, too often ill-willed and evidently morally fallen], but that does not detract from the force and relevance of the point Expelled is making.

    Namely, that there is abundant evidence that points to a very dangerously oppressive trend in contemporary Darwinism, a trend that as comment 22 above shows, even a Dawkins recognises.

    A trend that anyone committed to liberty should acknowledge, expose and resist. And, sadly, one to which far too many people are blind to the point of enabling behaviour. (Remember Burke on what it takes for evil to triumph: that good men stand by and do nothing.)

    GEM of TKI

  44. PS: Ouch, I seem to have left an open italics tag. Pardon.

    PPS: Stephen and Russ: well said.

  45. PPPS: On looking closer, it seems that there is now a “text-skipping” technical problem at UD. For, Will to Power is skipped, and there is where the closed off italics vanished. I have now seen this problem with several posts by various commenters. GEM]

  46. “When was the last time Christians murdered people for nothing more than expediency?”

    Timothy McVeigh comes to mind. He was a Catholic. Murdered 168 people not long ago.

    “Murder” is a legal term. A better way to ask the question is to phrase it as killing instead of murder. Then we get to examine a lot more subject area as Christians are just as warlike as anyone else, more proficient at it than most, and have killed uncounted millions in this century alone. One dramatic example is Christian president Harry Truman ordering the death of tens of thousands of Japanese women and children via atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. That was strictly for expediency in ending the war.

    People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

  47. Pardon . . .

    But I think there are a few points that need to be cleared up in light of the3 just above:

    1] McVeigh:

    Wiki:

    Religious beliefs

    After his parents’ divorce, McVeigh lived with his father; his sisters moved to Florida with their mother. He and his father were devout Roman Catholics who often attended daily Mass. In a recorded interview with Time Magazine[4] McVeigh professed his belief in “a God”, although he said he had “sort of lost touch with” Catholicism and “never really picked it [back] up”. The Guardian reported that McVeigh wrote a letter claiming to be an agnostic.[5] He was given a Catholic ritual before his execution . . . .

    McVeigh claimed that the bombing was revenge for “what the U.S. government did at Waco and Ruby Ridge.”[25] McVeigh visited Waco during the standoff, where he spoke to a news reporter about his anger over what was happening there.[26]

    In short, Mr McVeigh was plainly not a practising Christian in the period leading up to his attack, nor was his murder motivated by specifically Christian beliefs; but by a most un-Christian motive: revenge (probably against perceived Gov’t tyranny — the shooting of the wife of the man besieged at Ruby Ridge, and the undoubtedly questionable circumstances of the deaths of 80+ people at Waco — think about the gross irresponsibility of using 60 ton tanks to push into the sides of an occupied building largely made of wood and lighted by lamps, on a day of high winds . . .).

    2] “. . . A better way to ask the question is to phrase it as killing instead of murder.”

    But that is to precisely beg the specific question at stake!

    MURDER is unlawful, unjust shedding of innocent blood.

    There are, by contrast, specific circumstances that may well make the taking of life excusable, being the lesser of evils.

    And, in light of Rom 13:1 – 7 [cf discussion], Christians [or pagans for that matter, Nero being in view in the specific NT text] who are agents of legitimate states would be justified in taking life under approproiate circumstances of acting in defence of justice. Abuse of that power is known as TYRANNY, and under certain circumstances warrants the orderly removal of said authorities, preferably by ballot; but sometimes the ballot is not enough. [Thence, we get to the issue of what may justify war. (For a first level look, cf here.]

    (Whether Mr Truman fits in under that may be a matter for debate [e.g. the realistic alternative of invading Japan may credibly have cost over an order of magnitude more lives . . .], but it is not at all the same as a simple question of murder.)

    The situation of the Nazis and their use of Darwiniam as “Science” to “justify” euthanising of cripples [including WW I veterans], the mentally retarded etc [including bed-wetting children . . .] and their onward genocide of Jews, Poles, Gypsies, Russians and others, amounting to 12+ millions is simply not in the same league.

    Similarly, the wider wave of totalitarian regimes with ideologies incorporating significant elements of Darwinist and/or evolutionary materialist thought across the past 100 years, accounting for in excess of 100 millions through democides, is a significant issue for the moral implications of evolutionary materialism.

    That issue, I already addressed in part, this morning at 43 above. Kindly, cf again the key 1994 statement of Provine, and the historical and ideas chains from Darwin to Nietzsche to Hitler.

    Yes, people will sometimes abuse their principles and power to do awful things [from which we all need to learn so that wee may prevent it from happening yet again], but that is not at all to justify turning a blind eye to such a chain of ideas and associated history. For, the classic “you’re another” fallacy does not justify what was done, or how people were led in the cases in view to do great evil. It may indeed intimidate into silence, but silence in the face of evil soon becomes enabling behaviour.

    Worse, the real link between these issues and the inference to desigfn lurks right there in Provine’s statement of his evolutionary materialism and the onward ideas it makes plausible:

    There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which Darwin came quite clearly. (Provine, Stanford University, April 30, 1994)

    So, StephenB has a very serious point:

    If Darwinists are going to renounce Hitler’s Nazi-like policies in government, then they also ought to renounce their own Nazi-like tactics in academia.

    If they are going to express disdain about Hitler’s proclivity for murder and genocide, then they also ought to be embarrassed by their own proclivity for intimidation and slander . . .Let us think again.

    GEM of TKI

  48. Timothy McVeigh comes to mind. He was a Catholic.

    Actually, you it looks like McVeigh was simpatico with PZ in 1995

    Science is my religion.

    Now, he attended Mass in his youth and he was given Catholic rites at his death, but in the middle there when he planned and carried out the bombing he clearly wasn’t being guided by Christ or anything the Catholic Church taught.

  49. It look like tag isn’t working

  50. Jack — the ugly motivations that drove Hitler have surfaced in human societies time and time again since the dawn of recorded history.

    That is true. But check this list. Note that most of the bloodiest wars and greatest genocides were post-Darwin or were instigated by non-Chrsitians or anti-Christians.

    Now, two on the noncombatant list that occurred with Christian-professing nations in control of events — the Atlantic slave trade and the slaughter of Native Americans use tallies obtained over three and four centuries and included deaths involving circumstance beyond the control of governing powers i.e. African tribal wars and disease.

    The same holds true in the genocide category.

    The point is that while someone who holds (not just professes) Christian values may be just feel greed, envy and other things that could lead to murder, those values provide a check, and an apparently measurable one at that.

    When Christian values are undermined — whether individually or institutionally — you have the 20th Century.

    Christianity — and that is its greatest merit — has somewhat mitigated that brutal German love of war, but it could not destroy it. Should that subduing talisman, the cross, be shattered, the frenzied madness of the ancient warriors, that insane Berserk rage of which Nordic bards have spoken and sung so often, will once more burst into flame. …
    The old stone gods will then rise from long ruins and rub the dust of a thousand years from their eyes, and Thor will leap to life with his giant hammer and smash the Gothic cathedrals. …
    … Do not smile at my advice — the advice of a dreamer who warns you against Kantians, Fichteans, and philosophers of nature. Do not smile at the visionary who anticipates the same revolution in the realm of the visible as has taken place in the spiritual. Thought precedes action as lightning precedes thunder. German thunder … comes rolling somewhat slowly, but … its crash … will be unlike anything before in the history of the world. …
    At that uproar the eagles of the air will drop dead, and lions in farthest Africa will draw in their tails and slink away. … A play will be performed in Germany which will make the French Revolution look like an innocent idyll.
    — Heinrich Heine (1832)

  51. Italic! The new standard!

  52. I am guiltless of italics abuse this time.

    DaveScot:

    I’ve heard the McViegh issue raised in the past, and it just doesn’t have legs in that it doesn’t rise above statistical noise. If we examined every serial killer, every terrorist incident, school shooting, I don’t think we would end up with a trend of “A-Ha!, we have a Christian problem here.” I suppose if you took the combined actions of people who perpetrate criminal acts in America in general you might be able to make a case — but once you look at countries abroad, it becomes ambiguous. There is crime everywhere, and it is hardly large groups of people going to college, following complex philosophical arguments, going through years of academic jousting, then finally self-consciously taking those ideas and implementing them across entire nations — and every single time they did it, they ended up, as Czeslaw Milosz said:

    Soon enough, many from Jassy and Koloshvar, or Saigon or Marrakesh
    Would be killed because they wanted to abolish the customs of their homes.

    Soon enough, their peers were seizing power
    In order to kill in the name of the universal, beautiful ideas.

    The same with Truman — if there was a Just War in the history of man, it was heading off The Axis in WWII. Taking the rates that we lost men (on both sides) in the island hopping campaign, it is easily demonstrable that the nuking of two cities caused the least amount of lives taken. In any case, it was a “stick with shit on both ends,” not something you can attribute to consistently applying Christian principles to public life.

    Now, if you want to go back and draw attention to, say, the fact that the same guy who headed up the translation team of the King James translation, took time out to hang/imprison the odd Puritan, then, fine, I hear you — but that was over 300 years ago, and it hasn’t been a systemic problem since. You then have to look at the fact that we have scientific evidence that ANY time unbelief as it is exhibited in Enlightenment motifs, is consistently applied to society, you have a bloodbath or police state in succession. And in terms of real threats to humanity, the secular state has no rivals that we rationally need to be concerned with. The Tim McVeighs of the world don’t represent any sort of philosophical drift, or “new understanding” of Christianity.

  53. DaveScot asks:

    “Perhaps someone can explain to me what the science of design detection has to do with Nazis, the Holocaust, or Hitler.”

    Nothing. No-one is saying it does.

    On the other hand, whether Darwin’s ideas contributed, to a greater or lesser extent, to the Nazi regime is a factual question. If they did, then they did. If someone, including Dave, has decent evidence to the contrary then let it be heard. So far, it seems Weikart and those of his views have the more presuasive argument.

    Thinking that a discussion of what contributed to the Nazi regime is an example of Godwin’s law is simply wrong. If someone is using references to the Nazi regime to cast stones at proponents of Darwinism and avoid discussing the science, then yes, it would be an example of Godwin’s law and should be avoided. However, if the question itself is what contributed to the Nazi regime, then one of course must discuss the Nazi regime. This has nothing whatever to do with Godwin’s law.

    I thought Expelled was somewhat one-sided in its presentation of the connection of ideas from Darwin to Hitler, but contrary to what Dave seems to be concerned with, the discussion of the Nazi regime in Expelled was precisely in the context of what contributed to the Nazi regime — certainly a legitimate topic for debate and discussion. Otherwise, we would be in the catch 22 of never being able to discuss the Nazi regime or what led to it — an absurd perversion of what Godwin was trying to point out.

  54. BTW, nice to see another viewpoint above disputing the McVeigh meme . . .

  55. “has decent evidence to the contrary then let it be heard”

    Tell me what about the science behind the Nazi plan to produce a “super race” wasn’t known from animal husbandry, a science that preceded Darwin by hundreds if not thousands of years.

    Darwin’s theory is about natural selection leading to speciation not about selective breeding of animals to produce superior stock of the same species.

    The premise that Darwin was a necessary factor for the holocaust is sheer speculatin. We can’t go back in time, kill Darwin, and see if the holocaust still happened can we? So we can’t say it was a necessary factor.

    Darwin’s science wasn’t needed and we can’t demonstrate that Darwin was necessary. Pretty big flaws in the Darwin-was-necessary-for-the-holocaust assertion if you ask me.

  56. “Darwin’s theory is about natural selection leading to speciation not about selective breeding of animals to produce superior stock of the same species.”

    The question isn’t what Darwin actually said in the specific area of a theory regarding speciation. (In my view he certainly didn’t say much of consequence — at least from a scientific standpoint.) The question is whether there is a broader thesis.

    It is clear that materialism has larger social and philosophical implications, to wit, Dawkins, Provine, et al. One can suggest that Darwin’s ideas and materialism are completely separate. Logically, perhaps, we should view them as completely separate. It is then very much a curiosity, however, that there is such deep reverence for Darwin’s ideas among committed materialists. Certainly far more than is warranted for a simple idea about how selective pressure might affect existing organisms.

    The fact is that Darwinism also has a social/psychological component, which has a life of its own. You are right that we “can’t go back in time, kill Darwin, and see if the holocaust still happened.” Of course, we also can’t do that with any other historical event. Allowing that the effort to study history and understand the trends and impacts of ideas on historical events in the past is a legitimate intellectual endeavour, what then do we do? Look at writings. Look at what was said by those involved in the events. Look at threads and currents of ideas that were percolating at the time.

    I’m not sure Berlinski is correct to assert that Darwin was a necessary condition; and it certainly was not a sufficient condition. But did it play a role, did it have an influence, was it an important part of the mix of the times? Berlinski and Stein may both be less than partial, due to their family backgrounds. However, precisely due to that background, I suspect they also have a bit more familiarity with the issues than many of us do.

    I have no idea whether the holocaust would have occurred without Darwin, but trying to tease apart the influences of the day, what people were reading and discussing, and how those trends were manifested in historical events is certainly a legitimate endeavour.

    I personally would have liked a film that was more about design in biology and less about the potential implications of Darwinism in society. But if Stein wants to make a movie about those implications, it seems that is a legitimate topic for discussion.

    Well, enough ink spilled on that. I disagree with the idea that discussions of either the Nazi regime or the implications of Darwinism, or both, are inappropriate. However, if what you are suggesting is that the focus for ID proponents should be on the science and the exquisite design in biology, then I certainly agree.

  57. off-topic: this post is an attempt to end the runaway italics.

  58. Didn’t work — the offending tag is near the text “Thou shalt not procreate!” in KF’s #43 and looks like this: <i<i <i>

  59. Eric

    So Darwinian biological science isn’t to blame because the only biological science the Nazis used as justification was animal husbandry which predated Darwin.

    Now it’s some sort of social influence as in man is an accidnet of nature not a creation by God?

    That won’t wash either. David Hume established natural philosopy in the modern era a century before Darwin and William Paley the modern era design argument.

    So what, exactly was Darwin necessary for? I’m not convinced Darwin was even relevant to say nothing of necessary.

  60. Kill italics attempt #2… Testing…something’s gotta work…

  61. “So Darwinian biological science isn’t to blame because the only biological science the Nazis used as justification was animal husbandry which predated Darwin.

    Now it’s some sort of social influence as in man is an accidnet of nature not a creation by God?

    That won’t wash either.”

    Dave, no-one is changing the subject. No-one was saying, certainly not the Expelled folks nor Berlinski, that the Darwinian “science” had anything to do with it. It always has been about the cultural/philosophical baggage that came along with it. Are you suggesting that the Nazis did not read Darwin, did not write about Darwin-inspired ideas, did not use Darwin to justify some of their atrocities? Is it your position that the Nazi regime could not possibly have found support in either Darwin’s ideas or the extra Darwinian-inspired baggage that came along with it? No-one is claiming Darwin single-handedly caused the holocaust. But was there a contribution? If it is possible, then it is a legitimate area for discussion and research and one way or another the facts will ultimately speak for themselves.

    As I said, I agree with you that ID proponents should focus on the science. I also said that I would have preferred the movie to spend more time on the science and less on the Darwinian cultural baggage. Nevertheless, I find your insistence that there is no demonstrable link and that it is not even a legitimate topic for discussion a bit strange. It is this procedural aspect I am responding to — not the factual question of whether or not there is a link.

  62. Dave, I hope I’m not trying your patience with my (so far) futile attempts to hack and end to “italics hell” through off-topic comments…/i> /i> /i> /i> /i> /i>/i>/i>/i> Test number 3.

  63. Apollos

    Thanks for your tries to fix the problem.

    There is however a deeper problem that caused the offending italics — there is a text skip problem at UD for some weird reason. (You can see the gap in the middle of a quote from Nietzsche. I have seen the same in several other posts too.)

    GEM of TKI

    BTW, great job on Blender Underground!

  64. Dave et al:

    As plumbers well know, sometimes, we do have to muck around in a rather unpleasant mess, if we are to fix it or avert an even worse mess.

    Sigh . . .

    I think there is need to look at the basic fact that Darwin produced two major books, not only Origin [1859] but Descent of Man [1870] — not to mention letters that reveal his inner patterns of thought as the one I cited in 43 did].

    In the latter he explicitly applied the thinking in the former, to the human race. Weikart et al have drawn and abundantly substantiated the lines of influence from the associated rise of Darwinist scientism that run, sadly, to the onward eugenics and genocide. We may view it as an abuse of science, but we must never forget that the abusers were thinking in terms of the science as was generally accepted in that day, and that that science undermined those who were trying to object to the emerging social darwinist policies. The end of that unequal context is a matter of historical record, and its consequences are equally the record of a horror of a century just past.

    In that context and in that light, kindly read again the revealing words of Professor Provine, from a key early public debate with one of the founders of the modern design movement, prof Phil Johnson.

    IMO, these are words that should be as memorialised and just as often repeated in public as the evolutionary materialist secularists do when they try to put up a distorted view of the Wedge Document, one that in the end, frankly, boils down to grossly irresponsible slander [or worse, in some cases, plain outright malice].

    So, let us look closely, again:

    . . . There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which Darwin came quite clearly. (Stanford University, April 30, 1994)

    Then, consider how Provine closely ties together the claim that there is no design in the natural world to the materialist agenda, which entails that there is no foundation for ethics of fro freedom of the will. That is, mind, responsible freedom, personhood and morality are decisively undercut.

    In that context of an underlying power struggle over resources and reproduction, anything that promotes one’s faction seems justified. That is, might makes right and the end of survival justifies any means, in a context where there is no inherent dignity of the human person that demands respect.

    Then, listen to 100 million moaning ghosts on the on- the- ground consequences of that sort of will to power thinking. (Cf. here the selections from Darwin, Nietzsche and Hitler in 43 — even after the text truncation problem.)

    And if you doubt that Darwin foresaw the consequences, consider this extract from this second major work, ch 6:

    . . . 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.

    Read the context, and see if you can find there any twinge of moral compunction on what was likely in his estimation to happen, or any note of warning and suggestion that something should be done to avert such. (I, with regret, found none.)

    Then, compare the destructive tyrannical consequences of that sort of thought once it acquired the powers of the state without effective checks and balances.

    Then, look at the current ruthless patterns of disrespect, slander, abuse, contempt, career busting and oppression being far too often used by evolutionary materialist advocates in the current disputes over ID.

    In such a context, a warning of what can happen if such trends spin further out of control or check, by reference to rather grim lessons of history, is — regrettably, and painful though it be to ask such ghosts to moan out their story for us to hear — sadly well warranted.

    (That is why Stephen B is right to raise the points he did at 42. And, it is why he is right to raise those points to JK, who was personally and professionally involved in the agendas of the Kansas Citizens for Science, as was debated at length here a few months ago. [FtK’s remarks here, for instance, are utterly telling given what was being claimed by JK before her intervention.)

    Sigh . . .

    GEM of TKI

  65. Dave,

    You said

    “Darwin’s theory is about natural selection leading to speciation not about selective breeding of animals to produce superior stock of the same species.”

    The main argument in Darwin’s OOS was artificial selection and its power to produce so called superior versions of the same species. Darwin extrapolated these ideas to what nature could do if it had lots of time. (Darwin’s idea is both true and false but that is another argument.) What Darwin did was to open Pandora’s box and let loose a bunch of ideas that had not been tied together before but which existed separately. It directly led to eugenics even if all the pieces had been there before. Darwin tied them up in a neat package and thus changed thinking patterns. He made eugenics respectable.

    Darwin did not create the anti Jewish feeling that led to the holocaust. That had been around for centuries. His ideas may not have been necessary for the holocaust to happen but it certainly gave it some sort of distorted legitimacy in Nazi minds. The idea of a master race definitely flowed from Darwin’s thinking even though the pieces were theoretically there before. I am not sure if the idea of master race existed before Darwin but if it didn’t it definitely flows from OOS and Descent of Man.

  66. Kairos

    Darwin’s *theory of evolution* is being indicted as a necessary factor in the holocaust for an intended effect of making it appear that modern belief in Darwin’s theory of evolution may lead to bad things.

    THAT is a bogus claim easily refuted by pointing out that the only scientific theory that Nazis employed in their quest for a super race of man were drawn from the very old science of animal husbandry.

    If other things that Darwin wrote that aren’t part of neo-Darwinian theory today are believed to have influenced the Nazis then it should be made clear that those writings aren’t part of neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory as it exists today.

    But you see, that wouldn’t serve the purpose of casting aspersions on neo-Darwinian theory as it exists today. Remember, the intention is to smear neo-Darwinism and its proponents today with the blood of holocaust victims. Anything less than that doesn’t serve the purpose so wouldn’t be worth making into a talking point.

  67. Jerry

    No, you’re wrong. Miscegenation laws predated Darwin by hundreds of years in colonial America. Those were the real roots of the eugenic movement. And by the way, eugenics was heavily promoted by both individual Christians and Christian churches both in its roots in miscegenation law but also when it became a national movement in the United States in the early 20th century.

    Using the same logic used to indict Darwin we can indict Christianity as a “necessary” factor in evolution. Without the backing of the major western world religion the eugenics movement would never have gained any traction.

    However, that would still be a bogus claim because we can’t turn back the clock, erase the promotion of racism and eugenics by Christian people and Christian organizations, and see if the holocaust still happened. The point remains though that indicting Christianity is just as valid (or as invalid) as indicting Darwinism in fomenting the holocaust.

  68. kairosfocus wrote:

    BTW, great job on Blender Underground!

    Thank you/i>/i> very much. :o

  69. Anyone who hasn’t seen this review of Darwin to Hitler should see it. It is one of 15 reviews at Amazon and carries a 3-star (middle of the road) rating for the book.

    Weikart’s “Darwin to Hitler” conveniently glosses over the American eugenics movement. Long before Hitler came to power, eugenicists in the U.S. had enacted laws, promoted a social agenda for “Human Betterment,” and waged war against the weak. Gays and “sexual deviants” were the first to be targeted by Hitler, and “Paragraph 175″ was the law easily enforced because gays did not have political support. After that, Hitler closed many enlightened hospitals for the mentally and physically handicapped, and then sterilized the patients.

    Then came the death camps.

    His policies were influenced by, if not inspired by, American sterilization and commitment to prisons of the “feeble-minded” – the mentally and morally weak. These U.S. laws were struck down at first as “cruel and unusual” punishment, but the eugenicists, through trial and error, soon learned how to get around the Bill of Rights.

    Harry Laughlin, of the Eugenics Society in Cold Springs Harbor, was most involved. He, along with most eugenicists, believed in a racism that promoted a better, stronger race. They thought weak individuals, the welfare state, and immigration were destroying the good American stock. It was Laughlin that helped craft the bill in Virginia that went to the U.S. Supreme Court. In Buck v. Bell (1927) the court ruled it was legal to sterilize the unfit for the sake of society – the same reasoning Hitler would use about 10 years later. Carrie Buck, the woman who lost the case and was sterilized, was defended by I.P. Whitehead, one of Laughlin’s cronies who supported eugenics and also just happened to be on the Board of the Colony where Carrie was committed. So eugenics promoters wrote the law, charged Carrie Buck, and then defended her all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. They wanted Carrie Buck to lose, so eugenics could win.

    Other books are more valuable, like “Preaching Eugenics,” by Christine Rosen (the documentation of the strong religious support of eugenics during the Progressive Era), “In the Name of Eugenics,” by Daniel J. Kevles (documenting the conservative, liberal and radical support of eugenics, and their varying reasons ), and “Creating Born Criminals” (a study on the use of criminology to promote eugenics by claiming some criminals were just born that way). All these books depict America’s role in eugenics long before Hitler came to power and crafted some of his laws based on ours.

    Weikart doesn’t gloss over this, he ignores it. Reading about eugenics closer to home may be more painful, but it is more honest. What the logical conclusion of the Holocaust is and how it came about in Nazi Germany is indeed worthwhile information, but so is how it almost happened here in the United States. We cannot, as American citizens, become too overly self-righteous over Hitler. “There but for the grace of God…”

  70. Dave:

    I see your:

    Darwin’s *theory of evolution* is being indicted as necessary factor in the holocaust for an intended effect of making it appear that modern belief in Darwin’s theory of evolution y lead to bad things.

    I think it is fairer comment to respond that Darwinism is being indicted — by me and by others, including others in this thread — as an HISTORICAL key factor in the rise of several destructive totalitarianisms, and that in a context where it is strongly associated with and gives “scientific” cover to materialism; as Provine stated in his 1994 debate with Johnson.

    Indeed, I recall that above some of the other commenters explicitly denied making any claim about necessary or sufficient conditions, but spoke to lines of significant history of ideas and consequences of ideas influences. [One even drew lines of influence further back to the wave of anti-Christian skepticism that swept Germany in the general enlightenment period, naming several key names. look at that 1832 prophecy again, and see if it does not chill your bones . . .]

    Further to this, it is really unfair of the — frankly, rather amateurish or even sophomoric — review at Amazon to say that Weikart in tracing trends in Germany does not spend much time and effort on the American Eugenics movement. That movement, under that name, was of course explicitly Darwinian in its foundation, and INFLUENCED Hitler’s rhetorical and legal agenda.

    Here is Wiki:

    Opponents argue that eugenics is immoral. Historically, a minority of eugenics advocates have used it as a justification for state-sponsored discrimination, forced sterilization of persons deemed genetically defective, and the killing of institutionalized populations. Eugenics was also used to rationalize certain aspects of the Holocaust. The modern field and term were first formulated by Sir Francis Galton in 1883,[3] drawing on the recent work of his cousin Charles Darwin. From its inception eugenics was supported by prominent people, including H.G. Wells, Emile Zola, George Bernard Shaw, John Maynard Keynes, William Keith Kellogg and Margaret Sanger.[4][5] [6] G. K. Chesterton [a Christian . . .]was an early critic of the philosophy of eugenics, expressing this opinion in his book, Eugenics and Other Evils. Eugenics became an academic discipline at many colleges and universities. Funding was provided by prestigious sources such as the Rockefeller Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation, the Carnegie Institution of Washington, and the Harriman family.[7] Three International Eugenics Conferences presented a global venue for eugenicists with meetings in 1912 in London, and in 1921 and 1932 in New York. Eugenics’ scientific reputation started to tumble in the 1930s, a time when Ernst Rüdin began incorporating eugenic rhetoric into the racial policies of Nazi Germany.< [In fact in Hitler's 1923 or so Mein Kampf, eugenics ideas are quite, quite prominent! (That's part of why every married couple in Germany was expected to have a copy . . .) Here we see Wiki's infamous materialistic bias showing up again . . .]]

    Since the postwar period, both the public and the scientific communities have associated eugenics with Nazi abuses, such as enforced racial hygiene, human experimentation, and the extermination of undesired population groups. However, developments in genetic, genomic, and reproductive technologies at the end of the 20th century have raised many new questions and concerns about what exactly constitutes the meaning of eugenics and what its ethical and moral status is in the modern era . . .

    What I find very interesting is that Wiki adroitly uses the term “philosophy” for eugenics.

    The founders and practitioners, I am sure, would term it an applied science — as say the tree diagram on the very Wiki page illustrates — note the definition as “self-direction of HUMAN EVOLUTION.”

    In short, eugenics was/is the polite form of what Darwin spoke to in Ch 6 of Descent, as already cited:

    . . . 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.

    Indeed, Hitler used the American Eugenics Laws as a start-point for his own. in the4se laws, he by the way primarily targetted RACIAL inferiors, most notoriously Jews — the cited review distorts the notorious primary focus with its emphasis on homosexuals. (Recall that his mentor Rohm, was homosexual. It is only when the Brownshirts posed a credible threat that Rohm was shot partly on the excuse of that homosexuality, during the infamous night of the long knives.)

    And, the American cases of Eugenics were ALSO associated with horrors, some of them up to implicating the US Supreme Court.

    Worse, yet, similar patterns played out in other “advanced” countries; all in the name of “Science” applied to racial hygiene or the near-equivalent.

    Indeed, as Wiki acknowledges, it is after the Nazi holocaust that Eugenics began to fall out of favour over several decades.

    So, please, go back again to 43 and look at the lines that run from Darwin to Nietzsche to Hitler.

    Come back to the excerpt from Darwin’s second major work, and look at how cooly and without qualms he predicted the extinction of “inferior” races; as a claimed implication of his theory. (As one of largely negroid ancestry, I find the words I am forced to cite repeatedly, utterly offensive: Darwin means that he expected people like me to be wiped out by our racial superiors . . .)

    Now, look again at Provine’s remarks and see what the implications of denying foundations to ethics and to the power of responsible choice are, and how closely they are connected to the Darwinism-anchored evolutionary materialist worldview:

    . . . There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which Darwin came quite clearly. (Stanford University Debate with Phil Johnson, April 30, 1994)

    In short there is clearly a significant moral implication to and/or inference form the rejection of the well-warranted scientific conclusion that certain important empirical entities show traces of design.

    So, while there is a scientific question on empirical detection of design, one that absent the predominance of evolutionary materialism as an institutionalised worldview would long since have been accepted as “obvious” [cf my always linked], there is a serious issue of moral questions and the like tied to institutionalised science and what such quasi-official science makes seem more or less plausible.

    GEM of TKI

  71. PS: Sigh — The clipout- on- posting problem seems to have caused further problems on formatting above. (The preview certainly did not look like that and there were no unclosed tags as far as I could see!) Apologies.

  72. PPS I try a hack: hope it closes off . . .

  73. All I can say, Dave in 69, is that whoever wrote that review didn’t read the book.

  74. Dave,

    We are going have to disagree. I believe the modern eugenics movement directly flowed from Charles Darwin’s writings. From wikipedia

    “The modern field and term were first formulated by Sir Francis Galton in 1883,[3] drawing on the recent work of his cousin Charles Darwin. ”

    The logo used on wikipedia says “eugenics is the self direction of human evolution.” Or how to apply animal husbandry to humans. From wiki pedia, “The publication by his cousin Charles Darwin of The Origin of Species in 1859 was an event that changed Galton’s life. He came to be gripped by the work, especially the first chapter on “Variation under Domestication” concerning the breeding of domestic animals.”

    So I still believe that Charles Darwin’s writings was a major cause of the modern eugenics movement. His son succeeded Galton as head of the British eugenics movement. This does not mean that similar ideas never existed before but they never had the same influence with the enlightened as they did until Darwin published his books and they pushed by his relatives and his followers. I find it kind of hard to deny this.

  75. 75
    CannuckianYankee

    “I brought friends with me to see Expelled. I asked them what they thought: “It was dishonest.” was their response. I asked what they meant. This reaction was entirely provoked by the section on the Holocaust. They felt like it was an attempt to emotionally manipulate the audience.”

    I think it is a common rhetorical vehicle to accuse one’s opponents of being similar to Nazi’s, with the goal of gaining the moral upper-hand. I havent’ yet seen “Expelled,” (yes, there are a few of us) so I can’t really make the judgment as to whether this is the case. But it seems clear that the point of the movie is to show how Intelligent Design theorists are being discriminated against by the Darwinist science establishment. What that has to do with the Nazis, I’m not sure.

  76. “All scientific ideas have the potential for abuse, independent of their veracity.”

    Ah, but you cannot ab-use something for which there is no use–or teleological cause. As technology is an extension of man’s evolved ability to create it, it is an adapted trait. As such it has no purpose.

    Without anti-teleology inherent in Darwinism, I can argue that Wernher von Braun’s brainchild was an ab-use of technology. Thus if science if the bedrock of confirmation, you can have no confirmation that those things are “abuse”.

    Of course, I know this will fall on deaf ears because it isn’t that revolutionary from what any intelligent theist has said before. We understand it, they don’t–that doesn’t make it like claiming that something that looks nothing like child abuse is child abuse. (There’s that word again.)

  77. Jack Krebs, I think your principle is dishonest. Most “Creationists” of the ID ilk wouldn’t agree to be called “creatonists”. So is that dishonest to call them that?

    Self-identification does not create a fact against which to be “dishonest”. It’s the “Yes I am” or “No I’m not.” that competes with the “No really.”

    Very few Creationists or ID-ist find themselves “anti-science” and very few long for the “Dark Ages” where I understand all our tactics are supposed to land us. I might describe it as horrified–but only the progressive truly knows what is in each man’s heart–so I’ll let you be the judge.

  78. Here’s an idea: An irony. It’s as if the proponents of significant-but-unintended change require that we must detect in Darwin a design to cause the holocaust. Incidental causation is not important or enough.

  79. JJCassidy:

    How about: “ideas have — often unintended (but almost as often quite predictable) — consequences”?

    As in — and it pains me to have to cite this yet again:

    . . . 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. [C Darwin, Descent of Man, ch 6.]

    Now, let us compare Nietzsche:

    The biblical prohibition “Thou shalt not kill” is a piece of naivete compared with the seriousness of Life’s own “Thou shalt not” issued to decadence: “Thou shalt not procreate!” —Life itself recognizes no solidarity, no “equal right,” between the healthy and the degenerate parts of an organism… . Sympathy for the decadents, equal rights for the ill-constituted—that would be the profoundest immorality, that would be anti-nature itself as morality! [Will to Power]en, the key notion of that — after the fact of genocide — discredited applied science, Eugenics: “eugenics is self-direction of human evolution . . .”

    And, last but not least, Hitler:

    A stronger race will supplant the weaker, since the drive for life in its final form will decimate every ridiculous fetter of the so-called “humaneness” of individuals, in order to make place for the true “humaneness of nature,” which destroys the weak to make place for the strong. [Mein Kampf]

    Weikart of course gives far more details, but the lines of influence should be clear, and the implications were plainly foreseen by no less a figure than Charles Darwin himself in his second major book.

    So, when we see the likes of a Provine saying:

    . . There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which Darwin came quite clearly. (Stanford University Debate with Phil Johnson, April 30, 1994)

    [NB: Wiki says of him: "Professor William B. Provine is an American historian of science, particularly of evolutionary biology and population genetics. He is the Andrew H. and James S. Tisch Distinguished University Professor at Cornell University."]

    . . . We should be very, very concerned indeed.

    For, ideas have consequences.

    So, let us ask and think:

    1] What are the consequences of thinking that there is no “ultimate” foundation for ethics?

    2] Could this have something to do with how Nietzsche dismissed as “slave morality” the concept that — even due to endowment by our Creator — all of us, even the least powerful have fundamental rights, that make binding claims for respect of life, liberty, etc? [How does this relate to the ongoing global abortion holocaust?]

    3] What were the practical consequences of the resulting will to power/ might makes right “morality,” for Germany and for the world between about 1900 and 1945?

    4] What would a practical application of Provine’s claims in the hands of charismatic and powerful, politically messianistic statesmen and movements look like? What would its consequences be?

    5] Similarly, what are the consequences of thinking and teaching in the name of “knowledge” and “Science” that responsible, real choice is “merely a human myth”?

    6] Further to this, what are the existing and likely onward consequences of the attempted redefinition that science may only explain in evolutionary materialistic terms, i.e. the issue of inference to design is subverted once it might challenge the atheistic, evolutionist worldview?

    7] In that light, what is the significance of the rise of a new research programme — namely, Design Theory — that identifies a question-begging inconsistency in such a redefinition, and instead posits that design is empirically detectable and probably has been detected in several cases that decisively undercut the evolutionary materialist agenda?

    8] When we therefore compare the sort of PR, courtroom, education policy and institutional politics campaigns that have been waged to discredit ID and have far too often issued in “Expelling” genuine scientists working on genuine advances, what then should we conclude?

    9] And, how, then, should we think, speak and act in light of history and current trends?

    10] For, if we fail — or, refuse — to learn from history, are we not doomed to repeat it? [How, then should we rethink the way ideas such as the so-called Godwin's Law, are used?]

    GEM of TKI

  80. PS: Yet another tag failure . . . sigh

  81. PPS: Tags seem to be there, just, not working; and I see a triple bolding imposed, paragraph by paragraph . . .

  82. KF

    Darwin may have been a racist but that has nothing to do with “Darwinism” as it applies to neo-Darwinian theory. Darwin’s personal life and prejudices have nothing to do with natural selection acting on heritable variation to produce new species. Neo-Darwinian theory, that which is being attacked by playing the Nazi card, does not incorporate anything that Darwin contributed except for his theory that natural selection acting on heritable variation is responsible for the orgin of species. What part of that don’t you understand?

  83. KF

    If Christ said it was okay for one human to kill another for any reason, justified or not, I must have missed where he said it. I didn’t miss where he said “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”. Please provide a reference to where Christ defines justifiable killing. Good luck.

  84. Eric

    The claim is being made that without Darwin there would have been no holocaust. That’s what is meant by *necessary factor*.

    Did the Nazis quote mine Darwin to justify the holocaust? Probably some did and I’m not arguing that they didn’t. I’m arguing that evil people do evil things and can twist anything to rationalize their behavior. Did the Nazis model their eugenics laws after laws enacted earlier in the United States by God fearing Christians? You bet. Did those God fearing Christians twist the teachings of Christ to justify their eugenic programs? Absolutely.

    Singling out Darwin and claiming him a necessary factor while ignoring just as important factors like the Christian-backed eugenics movement in America, Christian-backed anti-miscegenation laws in America, is both counterproducive and misleading in the extreme.

  85. “If Christ said it was okay for one human to kill another for any reason, justified or not, I must have missed where he said it”

    A bit OT, but this very idea is explored in the 1941 Classic movie: Sergeant York. (Played by Gary Cooper).

    It’s the type of movie that would be impossible to make in Hollywood today as the hero is both virtous and Christian. He also rejects the revenge motif that motivates your more typical hollywood hero.

    He says:
    “War is killin’, the Book is agin’ killin’.” Therefore, “The Book is agin’ war.”

    The movie progresses through his different conversions on his path to becoming a (real-life) decorated war hero. Part of the final conversion was in his believing that

    “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.”

    Was in the first part not just referring to coinage.

  86. KF

    Darwin also wrote in the Descent of Man (my emphasis):

    The aid which we feel impelled to give to the helpless is mainly an incidental result of the instinct of sympathy, which was originally acquired as part of the social instincts, but subsequently rendered, in the manner previously indicated, more tender and more widely diffused. Nor could we check our sympathy, even at the urging of hard reason, without deterioration in the noblest part of our nature. The surgeon may harden himself whilst performing an operation, for he knows that he is acting for the good of his patient; but if we were intentionally to neglect the weak and helpless, it could only be for a contingent benefit, with an overwhelming present evil.

    So the Nazis, if they used Descent of Man for justification, either had to acknowledge they’d let the noblest part of their nature deteriorate or present the “inferior races” as an overwhelming evil. I believe they took the latter course. The term “useless eaters” comes to mind in support of the latter course. Their rationalization of inferior races as an overwhelming evil was not a rationalization that Darwin made in any way.

  87. Lest anyone get the wrong idea here a quote from Shakespeare should make it clear:

    I come not to praise Ceasar, but to bury him.

    Similarly, my intent is not to praise Darwin, but rather to bury him.

  88. Dave:

    Notes on points:

    1] Darwin may have been a racist but that has nothing to do with “Darwinism . . .

    Please examine chs 5 – 7 of Darwin’s Descent of Man. I am confident you will see that in these chapters, he understood himself to be APPLYING natural selection and related ideas to the human species.

    Galton, his cousin [and a mathematician carrying out early research on achievement of children etc on a family-linked basis], was inspired by the scientific ideas in Darwin’s work.

    Eugenics, the movement he founded [and which was later headed by Darwin's son Leonard] specifically self-identified itself as “self-direction of human EVOLUTION.”

    That is, as applied evolutionary biological science.

    2] Darwin’s personal life and prejudices have nothing to do with natural selection acting on heritable variation to produce new species . . .

    In fact, I am hardly citing things from his personal life and prejudices. Observe again ent, ch 6, but this time the chapter’s second paragraph:

    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 is the underlying theoretic context for the excerpt I have cited. Indeed, the point Darwin is making rests on a continuum between apes down to baboons and the more “advanced” “races.” In that context, he is inter alia seeking to explain the gaps that occur in that continuum.

    He did so by means of induced extinction through competition between races [evidently viewed as sub-species or the near-equivalent; indeed he suggests that the divergence is in reality of different species of man!]. It is in that context, that he then went on to lead up to and state what I have already cited, as a prediction of his scientific theory:

    . . . 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. [C Darwin, Descent of Man, ch 6.]

    3] Neo-Darwinian theory, that which is being attacked by playing the Nazi card, does not incorporate anything that Darwin contributed except for his theory that natural selection acting on heritable variation is responsible for the orgin of species . . .

    Kindly observe that I am not playing rhetorical cards, but am laying out lines of ideas and hisoptrical trends, with citations of key sources. I am not making an emotional appeal but am calling on us to look at sobering history and learn from it on pain of reliving its worst chapters.

    So, please observe above EXACTLY how Darwin envisioned and predicted the onward action of the selection processes he envisioned, for the special case of human races/[sub-] species.

    4] If Christ said it was okay for one human to kill another for any reason, justified or not, I must have missed where he said it . . .

    Now, this argument gains force from a fallacious division of the Biblical basis for the Christian tradition: in effect, if Jesus did not explicitly say it then it does not really count . . .

    By contrast, the orthodox, historic, Christian view is that the Scriptures were given by the guidance and inspiration of the Spirit of God, sent by Father and Son. This specifically includes the inspiration of ALL of the Apostles as ones specifically given to the church and world by the risen Christ as his special emissaries and Spirit-anointed teachers.

    So, first of all, to try to dichotomise what Jesus says as reported by one Apostle, from what another writes in an epistle, is a fundamental error of Biblical interpretation. [But one that is quite popular today.]

    Second, Jesus did not live, teach and work in a theological or historical or cultural vacuum. (there are other fallacies on this one, such as underlie the current buzz of spin over the ink-inscribed stone tablet found in Jordan. Jesus stood explicitly in the Hebraic tradition, cf say Isaiah 53 and 1 Cor 15:1 – 11.]

    Indeed, in the Sermon on the Mount and elsewhere he explicitly supported the general framework of the Mosaic Law, which he viewed himself as coming nor to destroy but to fulfill. In that law and associated scriptures and history [including that of the Lawgiver, Moshe], it is very clear that there is justifiable homicide, in defence of the community, in self defence and in the carrying out of justice. This is by sharpest contrast with the abuse of such power, directly or indirectly (such as David and Uriah the Hittite).

    Next, observe how John, forerunner of Jesus, spoke to soldiers who came to him for guidance:

    LK 3:14 Then some soldiers asked him, “And what should we do?”

    He replied, “Don’t extort money and don’t accuse people falsely–be content with your pay.” . . .

    We see here a clear C1 Christian [and underlying Jewish] view of the profession of soldiering: it is recognised as legitimate, but prone to certain abuses that should be restrained. The soldiers are not told to leave their profession of arms, but to do justice and avoid greed. The same occurs with other soldiers throughout the NT, and even gaol warders. Indeed, we may even observe the Apostle Paul accepting the protection of a Company sized combined arms force of Romans and auxiliaries when a plot against him in Jerusalem was exposed.

    This is of course all of a piece with the way Centurions of the Roman army are UNIFORMLY positively reported on in the NT. (True, they were the best of the ranks of the Roman army, but that selection has to be deliberate.)

    Now, observe therefore how the Apostle Paul, commissioned by Christ and here in scriptures inspired by the Spirit of Christ, speaks on the role of the state in defence of justice — and here, with pagan officeholders specifically in mind:

    RO 13:1 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. 4 For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer . . .

    Here, the Magistrate is viewed as being God’s sword-bearing servant to do us good. This is of course the general principle, and as the Reformers long since highlighted, there is abundant scriptural warrant for showing how rulers who abuse that stewardship are to be responded to, as I discuss here.

    So, absent a fallacious dichotomising of the scriptures, it is clear that there are occasions where the use of force, even lethal force, is justifiable; in defence of justice. If you wish to, you are free to pick and choose what texts you wish to accept from the Bible, but that choice is not at all representative of the tenor of the whole; such a dichotomising may also expose you to the issue of selective hyperscepticism in your general hermeneutic.

    5] I didn’t miss where he said “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” . . .

    This is a passage in which Jesus rebuked hypocrites who were using a woman caught in the act of adultery to trap Jesus. If he said follow Moshe, he would be a rebel against Rome and subject to t6he death penalty. If he said do not stone her, he would be a heretic against the Law and so would be lynched in short order.

    His breakthrough was to bring up the issues of hypocrisy, by contrast with the mercy and forgiveness of God towards penitent sinners.

    This has nothing to do with legitimate authorities and their agents defending the basic safety of the citizens of a community against violent — and most impenitent — brigands or invaders!

    Or, for that matter, the right of self-defence, which was established long since in the Law that Jesus said he came not to destroy but to fulfill.

    I trust these notes are helpful

    GEM of TKI

    PS: On a cross-threade point, Acts 17 makes irt clear that the nations are of one blood, so racial discrimination is wrong. And in a context of the hardness of hearts principle, ameliorative regulation of or advice in the face of slavery is not at all to be taken as Biblical warrant for the institution. Kindly, read on to see the underlying Christian attitude to the institution.

  89. Dave

    Darwin was trying to explain the basis of empathy and compassion, in light of NS. One feels empathy for one’s neighbour. [I am deliberately alluding to the parable of the Good Samaritan.]

    However, the Nazis were in effect saying that Jews and other UNTERMENSCH — more or less, subhumans — were NOT their neighbours, but more like pests that had to be eliminated to foster the improvement of the race.

    Compare that with the already repeatedly cited prediction from the Descent, ch 6.

    And, I am not saying that the holocaust or something like it [obviously, it itself would not have happend, as lines of influence from Darwin, as a mater of fact were involved] COULD not have happened absent the Darwinist theory and its extensions into eugenics, but like others above I am pointing out what it served to enable historically, through lending the credibility of “Science” to eugenics, thence to attempted extermination of “lesser” races.

    I am sure you are well aware that the general public support for the former became a context in which a much smaller number of the utterly radicalised were able to act in secret to carry out the latter. [Recall the fate of the White Rose movement for trying to expose the slaughter.]

    It is ever so with tyranny: warped thinking gains public support or at least passivity, which then serves as the context in which a much smaller number of the deeply radicalised will carry out evil in the name of good.

    And, in a “Scientific” era, “science says” is a most persuasive claim.

    So, look again at what prof Provine is telling us “Science says” since Darwin:

    There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which DARWIN came quite clearly. (Stanford University Debate with Phil Johnson, April 30, 1994)

    Notice the historical anchor for this agenda-laced, deeply question-begging claim: Darwin.

    Then, ask yourself, what the undermining of morality and of resposible choice as a basic power of human behaviour, portend if unchecked.

    Then, compare with the behaviour of the party of Darwin in the institutions of science, education, courts of law and public policy in our day, as for instance the controversies and incidents of expulsion surrounding the ID movement exemplify.

    GEM of TKI

  90. KF

    Your attempt to defend killing human beings as something sanctioned by Christ seems to be the old “I was just following orders” excuse. Forgive me for being less than impressed with your argument.

    Following through with that tortured logic all the attempts to get creation science back in public school classrooms should be abandoned as legitimate authorities have declared it a violation of the law of the land. Evidently, in your logic, the law of the land takes precedence over individual conscience and new testament teachings.

    You can’t have your cake and eat it too.

  91. Dave

    I have said nowhere that befel ist befel or the current equivalent.

    Notice the explicit citation from John and the context of the statement by Paul in Rom 13 on the statesman as swordbearer in defence of justice. Notice the case selected where David abused his power to indirectly murder Uriah.

    Nor have I said anywhere that human authorities are absolute — I explicitly pointed you to an extensive discussion on precisely the limits of human authority. [You may wish to look up the reformation concept of interposition by lower mnagistrates in defence of justice and liberty . . .]

    As for Creation Science and the classroom in the US, my thought is that the current state of US law is utterly absurd and in fact unjust. (The extension of this smear to the smearing of the very different movement, intelligent design, simply multiplies the travesty. And that is before we get to my issues on what is legitimately scientific or legitimately biblical on the part of Creation Science as a movement. I think the CS folks have some points, but I have some concerns, scientific and biblical. I have met Ken ham, and respect him. I corresponded with henry Morris, and respected him. As to what my own position is, it is that on some matters I suspend judgement pending clarification. But also, I accept that we cannot properly simply read the biblical text as scientific raw data, without serious investigation and responsible addressing of major issues on the underlying scientific investigations and results, as well as major hermeneutical concerns. Intelligent Design is a major part of that serious investigation; one that is INDEPENDENT of the Biblical data.]

    So, then, when people see a long train of abuses and usurpations pursuing a tyrannical design, they have a right to act with their representatives [established or newly chosen] to seek redress, or, failing that, to seek reformation, or failing that to restructure the current abusive forms of government, including removing the abusive officials.

    The ballot box is the first means to that end, thanks to the victories won by earlier generations; who had to resort to the bullet box.

    My own opinion is that Christians should long since have removed their children from the evolutionary materialist secularism indoctrination centres that are improperly called schools and colleges, and should have long since established an independent education system.

    Similarly, the cable and similar television and media- entertainment-public education systems should have long since been boycotted, as well as the blatantly biased and deceitful major news and views media.

    Advertisers who promote immorality and deception by placing ads and sponsorships should have been similarly boycotted.

    As for the politicians who promote these agendas, they should have long since been voted out. (And, in situations like the US it is criminal irresponsibility for serious Christians to not register to vote in days like these.)

    Next, if the radical secularists try to further abuse state power to seize control of the independent school system, the people should act in the defence of their liberty, by the ballot box, in the court room and through their chosen representatives.

    If the tyrants then resort to force in advancing evil, then police and soldiers and their commanding officers are individually servants of justice under God, and should disobey such illegitimate orders however given under claimed colour of law.

    In the end, if further force is used, then the people and their legitimate representatives may well face the situation so eloquently — and with biblically based justification — recorded in the US Declaration of Independence:

    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 . . . .

    We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions [Cf. Judges 11:27 and discussion in Locke], do, in the Name, and by the Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

    Since you asked my opinion, I have given it, again.

    GEM of TKI

  92. KF

    So when Hitler (and I guess you would apply the same logic to Christian eugenicists) uses Christian philosophy to justify their actions they’re twisting it but if they use Darwin writings they’re not twisting it.

    I don’t suppose there’s any chance of you acknowledging the double standard you’re employing.

    Similarly when following the law of the land which may order killing in defense of the realm (or even offense for the benefit of the realm) those orders are okay to follow yet when much less egregious laws like keeping creationism out of public schools that’s a law of the land that can be ignored.

    I don’t suppose there’s any chance of getting you to acknowledge the relative morals employed in choosing which laws of the land to obey and which to ignore.

  93. 93

    I haven’t read any of the comments, so my apologies if I’m interrupting the flow here in any way.

    Just wanted to applaud DaveScot for this post. I don’t actually agree that ID “can win this thing” based on scientific arguments, but I’m certain that “playing the Nazi card” is a devastating error, especially for a Christian commentator.

    Design is interesting and worthy as a topic of discussion among thinking Christians. The Holocaust as a polemical tool is not.

    Thanks, DaveScot. Nicely said.

  94. 94
    [email protected]

    I saw Expelled! and saw nothing claiming that Darwinism was a *necessary* component for the evil perpetrated by Hitler. It simply (and honestly) pointed at the fact that it WAS a component. That is indisputable. Whether Hitler could have or would have found a way to achieve his ends without Darwinism is completely irrelevant. The FACT is that he DID use Darwinism and the movie fairly and honestly points that out.

    The movie was about discrimination and free-speech suppression of those that disagree with a strictly materialistic view of life origins and development. (It wasn’t intended to make a scientific case for ID, by the way.) Pointing out the obvious, indisputable link between Darwinism and the evils perpetuated by Hitler, eugenics, etc. is WHY the point of the move matters so much. No idea such be unassailable. Darwinism (as interpreted and applied by Hitler, etc.) unchallenged and unchecked HAS contributed to horrors in the past and CAN lead to horrors in the present and future. It’s that simple.

    Now if you want to say that we should ignore the obvious link between Darwinism and Hitler, eugenics, etc. for tactical reasons, fine — but let’s not commit intellectual suicide as well by siding with those that claim the link doesn’t exist. That’s just stupid. Me personally? The link IS there and it matters. We are not (and should not) wage a purely scientific battle. We need to do the science while simultaneously explaing why it matters. It’s the “why it matters” that gets us into other areas — Darwinism leading to a complete absence of a moral foundation, for example. Irrespective of which moral foundation you choose, to conclude that there is NO possibility of a moral foundation is important and has indisputable consequences. I say it ALL matters.

  95. Dave,

    If this debate was merely about science it would be long over. RM+NS — as the definitive, and lone, explanation for the development of biodiversity — has more holes in it than the floorboard of a 1973 Ford Maverick left parked in salt marsh since 1974.

    So why is it fanatically defended? It’s because it buttresses a value system that allows for expediency relating to issues involving one’s material comfort and other persons.

    You get a young girl pregnant? You find a Constitutionally protected abortionist. Grandma’s not doing so well? You let her starve to death (and say it’s for her own good). Your neighbors are struggling to raise a retarded kid? Hey, you have no obligation to help. In fact, you insist they be forced to put that kid to sleep (for his own good)

    And those who have this approach to life — and they are not a few — are 99.99999999. . . percent certain to be Darwinists.

    And it’s not wrong to point this out.

    And it’s also appropriate, and necessary, to point out that atrocities in Nazi Germany — which are still recognized as examples of obvious evil– can be shown to be the fruits of Darwinism.

    Would the 20th Century genocides have happened without Darwinism? That’s an interesting thing to ponder. But Darwinism happened and it was followed by genocides and those committing them used ideas flowing from Darwinism as a justification.

  96. Darwinism was a decidedly necessary component but it should not have made the Holocaust inevitable. That is, contra the materialists, there really is such a thing as free will.

  97. 97

    Ummm,

    I can go away if I’m not wanted, but I’d like some closure, please.

    Apparently, all of my messages suddenly got deleted, and I don’t recall ever using profanity, or attacking people with ad hominems, or doing any of the kinds of things that bad users do. I was conducting fair and decent conversations with people.

    So please, can I at least be given the exact reason that I got deleted?

    Thanks!

    The reason was the blog you were advertising “Fundamentalist Deceit” which I see you have now removed so you must have already guessed the reason and are now trying to hide it. Through your blog(s) it was determined you have a chip on your shoulder which compels you to gratuitously accuse fundamentalist Christians of all kinds of unscrupulous actions. That attitude doesn’t fit into our community here so you’re gone and so are your previous comments. -UD admim

    David W. Irish

  98. Dave, It’s not a double standard. Christianity maintains itself as a message. That is, express content over a medium. It can be misinterpreted, but as long as it is arguably content it is not just the downstream effect.

    Darwinism on the other hand is not express in any form and acts in a world of force and effect only.

    Look, I appreciate what you’re trying to do. I for one would never say that you are trying to praise Darwin, but only maintain the standard of decency that you would like a conversation to have. We both agree that Darwin was overtly sensitive and was distressed at what he saw was a natural trend toward extinction. I also acknowledge that Darwin was expressly optimistic that higher values would trump appetite.

    But he put into motion the new basis by which the “high” and the “low” would be judged. Ultimately they’ve been found to be insensible or even a unreasoning bias toward what had been classified as “low”. Darwin’s exceptions have not been selected for propagation.

  99. —–Darwin: “The aid which we feel impelled to give to the helpless is mainly an incidental result of the instinct of sympathy, which was originally acquired as part of the social instincts, but subsequently rendered, in the manner previously indicated, more tender and more widely diffused. Nor could we check our sympathy, even at the urging of hard reason, without deterioration in the noblest part of our nature. The surgeon may harden himself whilst performing an operation, for he knows that he is acting for the good of his patient; but if we were intentionally to neglect the weak and helpless, it could only be for a contingent benefit, with an overwhelming present evil.”

    So, which is it?” Does a good doctor harden himself for the long term benefit of the patient or not? Why is it that a good doctor should harden himself for what’s best for the individual in the long run, but a good doctor should not harden himself for what is best for society in the long run?

    It might make more sense to examine the entire context. Darwin was quite good at putting a smiley face on his most outrageous statements. So he [A] makes his case, [B] cushions the blow with a euphemism, and [C] then makes the point again.

    [A]—–“No one who has attended the breeding of domestic animals will doubt that this must be highly injurious to the race of man. It is surprising how soon a want of care, or care wrongly directed, leads to the degeneration of a domestic race, but expecting in the case of man himself, hardly anyone who is so ignorant as to allow his worst animals to breed.”

    [B]—– Nor could we check our sympathy, even at the urging of hard reason, without deterioration in the noblest part of our nature……………..

    [C]—–“Hence we must bear with complaining the undoubtedly bad effects of the weak surviving and propagating their kind but there appears to be a least on check in steady action, namely the weaker and inferior members of society not marrying so frequently as the sound; and this check might be definitely increased, though this is more to be hoped for than expected, by the weak in body or mind refraining from marriage.”

    So, what’s the message:

    [A] To allow bad breeding is “wrongly directed” and “ignorant,” and “injurious to the human race.”

    [B] However, we have a noble nature that fosters that ignorance and discourages us from doing what is best for our race.

    [C] Therefore, given our nobility, we must remain ignorant and continue to injure the human race. However, we can at least discourage the less fit among us from marrying. On the other hand, it is really wishful thinking to expect that they will do that so………………….

  100. StephenB

    Flaws in your argument:

    1) None of that is incorporated into the modern synthesis (neo-Darwinism).

    2) None of it is new for the time it was written. It is all obtained through knowledge of animal husbandry.

    If anyone who wants to blame the holocaust on Darwin carefully points out that:

    1) it was not Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection that was utilized but rather his comparing ancient knowledge of animal husbandry to human reproductive habits, and

    2) if they further are careful to point out that anti-miscegenation laws written by Christians long before Darwin came along were common in America, and

    3) that modern era Christians in the United States paved the way for the Nazis by using the same reasoning to establish eugenics programs in the United States that predated Nazi eugenics by many years.

    If all that is included to give a balanced picture of what led to the holocaust I wouldn’t have any objection left other than the whole point of my article which is

    4) None of this has anything to do with the science of design detection so it doesn’t belong here or anywhere where the mission is the advancement of intelligent design as a scientific hypothesis.

    In other words, take your stupid Nazi cards and play with them somewhere else, out of sight, where they won’t embarrass me or harm the advancement of the science of intelligent design.

  101. Dave, I was responding to your selective quote, not mine. Nevertheless, I will silence myself before I get silenced, if that hasn’t happened already.

  102. StephenB

    If I banned everyone who thinks Darwin’s theory of evolution was a necessary factor in the holocaust I’d have to ban about 50% of the ID supporters here. It seems to be a group psychosis closely associated with a refusal to believe the earth is more than 10,000 years old. So don’t worry it. If it was MY blog I would definitely throw that crowd overboard so the ship doesn’t sink under the weight of it, but it isn’t my blog so I don’t – I’m just following orders letting the young earth Nazi card players have a voice here.

  103. Anti-miscegenation laws are a weak fit. Under those laws, we don’t produce any less of the “undesirable” races, necessarily. We just keep anybody from mistaking “one of them” for “one of us” by mandating that racial demarcations remain clear. Sterilization and euthanasia are efforts to stop the input and to cull from the crowd lesser breeding stock.

    There is an entirely different focus. Also, as well, current neo-Darwinian terminology must find “selection” as a misnomer. In fact, it was recently the subject of a very well done essay that Darwin’s appeal was accomplished a bait-and-switch on the word “selection”. He leveraged the commonly understood livestock method of “selecting”, to explain how nature accomplished the modification of breeding with it’s own “selection” (which modern Darwinists must find as antithesis of all that they imply).

    American euthanasia came at a time of greater American secularism than what exists today. Widespread evangelicalism to some extent is a reaction to the complacency of secular, progressive societies to the development of Eugenics and WWII. Just listen to how a number secularists bemoan that “God” wasn’t on the money or in the pledge until the 1950s.

  104. 104

    Back at 92, Dave wrote

    So when Hitler (and I guess you would apply the same logic to Christian eugenicists) uses Christian philosophy to justify their actions they’re twisting it but if they use Darwin writings they’re not twisting it.

    I don’t suppose there’s any chance of you acknowledging the double standard you’re employing.

    Similarly when following the law of the land which may order killing in defense of the realm (or even offense for the benefit of the realm) those orders are okay to follow yet when much less egregious laws like keeping creationism out of public schools that’s a law of the land that can be ignored.

    I don’t suppose there’s any chance of getting you to acknowledge the relative morals employed in choosing which laws of the land to obey and which to ignore.

    Back in the beginning of this thread I supported the claim that Expelled is dishonest, as is much of the social IDism of which it is a part. One of the reasons is the point made by Dave: that people have been rationalizing atrocious behavior by referring to various philosophies, most of which have been religious, for centuries. To not acknowledge the wholesale twisting of various beliefs in the service of evil, and to somehow believe that social darwinism (which is not the science of evolution itself) is uniquely to blame among all the other twisted beliefs throughout history, is dishonest.

  105. Jack Krebs (quoting Dave):
    “So when Hitler (and I guess you would apply the same logic to Christian eugenicists) uses Christian philosophy to justify their actions they’re twisting it but if they use Darwin writings they’re not twisting it.”

    The questions here would be:

    1. What is the philosophy that Jesus taught? What happens when one applies that philosophy?

    2. What applications are a logical extension when evolution is *combined with* a materialist/anti-ID framework.

    Let me expand upon this with some relevant question I asked earlier in this post …

    It seems to me that “Darwinism” as it is defined and used in Expelled is explicitly materialistic. Since materialism is a philosophy, Expelled is showing what evolution combined with the materialistic philosophy[/anti-ID framework] has accomplished as evidenced in Hitler’s application of Darwin’s materialistic hypothesis to society.

    Expelled *did* show how a leader took a scientific idea and applied it to society. Now, would that leader have made the same application from within a non-materialist/pro-ID framework or would he have had the tendency to have a higher regard for life? What does history show? Sure, people who claimed to represent Jesus made up some pathetic and horribly selfish excuses to “Crusade.” However, they went completely against the foundational teaching of the One with who’s name they identified themselves. They represented Jesus’ teaching in no way, shape, or form!

    From which framework was Hitler approaching the science and application of evolution? Was it from a pro-ID/anti-materialist or an anti-ID/materialist framework? Does Expelled discuss this at all? Which framework is more likely to hold itself accountable for its applications of science? What does the past and present unfolding of scientific applications show?

    It seems obvious that Hitler viewed natural law of survival of the fittest to be on higher ground than the inherent value of life (as the result of pre-existing purpose). Materialistic philosophies require this to be the case whereas a pro-ID framework leaves room for a possible pre-law purpose in life.

    My 2 cents [and the most important point] is that if natural law rules above [and is pre-existent to] purpose and accountability (which can only be even implied within an ID framework) then nature will take its course in society. If society is part of nature, why would not Darwin’s theorizing of survival of the fittest and natural selection apply to society? If humans are a part of nature than human selection is ultimately natural selection. Enter “natural” eugenics …

    Jack Krebs:
    “To not acknowledge the wholesale twisting of various beliefs in the service of evil, and to somehow believe that social darwinism (which is not the science of evolution itself) is uniquely to blame among all the other twisted beliefs throughout history, is dishonest.”

    Who said that darwinism (as the materialist/anti-ID version of evolution) is uniquely to blame for twisted beliefs throughout history? It is only one out of many horrible and twisted ideas with very real and horrible consequences that need to be faced up to lest these inhumane blunders in the application of science are repeated.

  106. Jack — is uniquely to blame among all the other twisted beliefs throughout history, is dishonest.

    Jack, not uniquely but specifically, and not for throughout history just for of the 20th century.

    You are not suggesting that all cultures are equal and worldviews and philosophies are irrelevant, are you?

  107. Dave, I will give you this, the Nazi card has been overplayed, but I don’t understand why it is such a public relations liability. The general public is already on our side and the academy will hate us no matter what we do. For any honest seeker of truth, separating the social commentary from the science doesn’t present that much of a challenge. Anthony flew had no trouble navigating through the maze. I just can’t picture the most feared scenario: A Darwinist or a TE, who is on the verge of accepting “specified complexity,” suddenly changes his mind after discovering to his everlasting shock, that most ID enthusiasts are attracted to Jesus Christ and suspicious of Charles Darwin.

  108. Dave:

    I think I must first of all observe that you have now several times seriously misread what I (and others) have said, in ways that suggest that a timeout to calm down is in order, to restore objectivity.

    I think that needs to be pointed out first of all.

    Now on specific corrective points, for the record (and for reflection during the timeout):

    1] DS, 92: So when Hitler (and I guess you would apply the same logic to Christian eugenicists) uses Christian philosophy to justify their actions they’re twisting it but if they use Darwin writings they’re not twisting it.

    Where on earth does that idea come from?

    Above, I noted on — and can detail — how Hitler set out to deceive a German public spiritually adrift after over a century of accelerating apostasising from the biblically based Christian faith. Just to name one instance of that, in the 1840′s in reviewing Fuerbach, Marx starts from the premise that “The criticism of Religion is the premise of all criticism, and in Germany that criticism is finished.”

    That’s 100 years before Hitler’s Holocaust, and 90 years before Stalin’s.

    Hitler and many who associated with him objectively distorted the Christian faith, in service to the ethics of power and the creation of an anti-Christian idolatry of political messianism. It should not surprise us that such a system would have in it some objectively demonstrable counterfeits of things that are genuinely Christian.

    By sharpest contrast, I have shown (at least in sampling outline) where Hitler FOLLOWED the trends of social darwinism and racism that can be traced to Darwin himself in his second major work. He attempted to carry out precisely a form of the program of targetted extinction of inferiors that Darwein envisioned, through applying and extending the principles of “self-directed human EVOLUTION.” AKA, eugenics, multiplied by the breakdown of ethics that were a natural outcome of Darwinism’s “scientific” support for materialism and undermining of the sanctity of life, morality and responsibility.

    The difference between Hitler and Davenport et al in the US, and a lot of others in other places around the world was that Hitler was characteristically more consistent and less restrained. (And it is not without significance that a part of the reason for that is that in Germany, the process of rnist apostasy of Christendom that now so dominates the lands of the North was then the farthest advanced. Indeed, by and large, that is where it began and first gained strength.)

    I AM NOT USING AN INTELLECTUAL DOUBLE STANDARD.

    And, when it comes to so-called Christian eugenicists — note this term, sadly,they were conforming to the apostasising spirit of their time. They tried — in the name of “Science” and “modernity” — to mix the unmixable: materialism and a Creation and resurrection anchored faith, and ended up in immoral chaos and, frankly, intellectual suicide. [Cf the just above link on modernism as a movement in the churches, post enlightenment era, for initial details.]

    2] when following the law of the land which may order killing in defense of the realm (or even offense for the benefit of the realm) those orders are okay to follow yet when much less egregious laws like keeping creationism out of public schools that’s a law of the land that can be ignored . . .

    Again, a scroll up will substantiate that, sadly, you have again utterly misunderstood what I have said.

    First, I have pointed out that the civil authority, biblically is God’s servant to do us good, and that in that context he is charged to protect justice, being given the power of the sword in defence of same. This is of course not a mandate for wars of aggression or the like, nor is it a mandate for abuse of the power of the sword to oppress the citizenry. And, to kill the innocent (or even the genuinely surrendered enemy) is murder [cf David and Uriah, as already noted], even if one wears a uniform.

    That is why there are such things as war crimes tribunals.

    I also pointed out that there is a whole theology of interposition of lower magistrates acting with and for the people, in correction — or if necessary removal — of civil authorities gone bad. A biblically anchored theology that ppens to be foundational to the rise of modern liberty and democracy, and which just happens to be deeply reflected in the foundational documents of your own country.

    On Scientific Creationism, you will note that, first of all, I have identified that this movement has a serious challenge to address relevant scientific and hermeneutical issues before it can properly present Biblical texts as raw record of the actual past, in an educational context or otherwise.

    Neither have I said one thing about subversively insinuating Creationism, whether general scientific or biblical — and these are in fact different — into public schools under their current rules and court rulings.

    ***Walking away from a for- now irretrievably corrupt and failed system and creating a new one is, plainly, a very different order from what you accuse me of above!***

    What I did say on education is that we need to soberly recognise that “schooling” has now by and large become indoctrination in highly dubious — and destructively incoherent — evolutionary materialist secularism, and that this extends to the media, policy, courtrooms etc. I therefore put up that those who are concerned should by now have removed their children from the schools and colleges that are propagandising them [and this extends to for instance Global Warming etc too] and set up an alternative system.

    Similarly, we should all remove our support from the propagandistic so-called mainstream media, and boycott those who put advertising money into supporting such systems.

    By now there should be a comprehensive K – College alternative education system in place,and in effect a large scale, well-supported alternative economy and media. [Cf Eta Linnemann's prescription for Germany, for how this could be practically done, including reconceptualising subject areas. With web technologies such as Moodle that can bring the leading experts right into each and every classroom, this is even more doable today!]

    On politics, I first of all spoke to the responsibility of all Christian citizens of the US to register and vote their biblically instructed consciences. That could in principle be enough to fix the rot, and peacefully. For the general election is in fact an institutionalised potential — thankfully, peaceful — revolution and point of accountability of officialdom before the people they serve under God.

    But if, and when, such reforming actions are confronted with oppressive force and attempts to subvert or destroy the alternatives — totalitarians, historically, seldom yield power without fighting — then I pointed to the precedent set by the principles of interposition by lower magistrates, using the USD DOI of 1776 to make my point.

    ****I think it is fair comment to say that your reading of the above, is very, very wide of the mark.****

    You have been setting up and knocking over strawmen.

    That’s not cricket!

    3] I don’t suppose there’s any chance of getting you to acknowledge the relative morals employed in choosing which laws of the land to obey and which to ignore.

    I have said nothing whatsoever about ignoring laws!

    [I have spoken to the exercising of the ultimate reserve right of reformation (and beyond that, of revolution, cf US DOI 1776), in the face of resistance to petitions and reforming actions to redress grievances and abuses.]

    Specifically, I have spoken to the limits of human government and authority [and thence the said ultimate reserve rights of petition, withdrawal, reformation and revolution (hopefully by peaceful ballot box), not at all to relativistic morality.

    How to deal with Government gone horribly and irretrievably bad -- a state that, thank God, does not yet obtain in the USA -- is under the principles of objective, self-evident Creational truth anchored public morality, not those of relativism.

    4] And, on “None of that is incorporated into the modern synthesis (neo-Darwinism). . .”

    The first problem is that the modern synthesis continues to provide “scientific” cover to the evolutionary materialist worldview and agenda, as Provine amply indicates:

    There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which Darwin came quite clearly. (Stanford University Debate with Phil Johnson, April 30, 1994)

    And, there are many, many other equally sobering statements.

    Second, the modern macrovevolutionary synthesis is still prone to give “scientific” cover to the same will to power ethics, as say bioethicist Peter Singer currently exemplifies. Observe again Provine’s inference from evolutionism that there is no ultimate foundation for ethics, or for responsible choice. If that does not chill you, it should.

    That, BTW, is why eugenics keeps on rearing its ugly head — wood stake through the heart circa 1945 notwithstanding.

    5] animal husbandry . . .

    This indeed has been known and used for millennia, for breeding of animals and plants.

    Its principles were also indeed abused by Christians who should have known better [cf Ac 17, and even how God intervened decisively against Miriam when she accused her brother Moshe of such cross-racial miscegenation!] to support so-called anti- miscegenation laws, which were evidently intended to prevent mixing of the races, but that is not at all the same as the intentional wiping out of races in the name of their supercession by a master-race, all duly instituted through the political-legal system and premised on the morality of will to power ands nature red in tooth and claw.

    At least, not until until through the evolutionary materialist tide unleashed and/or lent far greater reach by Darwin et al acting in the name of “science,” Western civilisation began to decisively move away from the Judaeo-Christian ethical framework.

    Having said that, let me note: NOW OF COURSE, SADLY, PEOPLE HAVE MASSACRED AND CONQUERED AND ENSLAVED OTHERS ACROSS HISTORY,BUT THAT HAS BEEN IN DEFIANCE OF UNIVERSAL MORAL PRINCIPLE, NEVER ON ACCOUNT OF A NEW “MORALITY OF POWER” THAT REPLACES SUCH TRADITIONAL PRINCIPLES AND UNDERMINES THE VALUE OF THE INDIVIDUAL HUMAN BEING. In short, I am here pointing out that Nietzsche’s point on the implications of the death of biblically anchored morality in the West is telling:

    The biblical prohibition “Thou shalt not kill” is a piece of naivete compared with the seriousness of Life’s own “Thou shalt not” issued to decadence: “Thou shalt not procreate!” —Life itself recognizes no solidarity, no “equal right,” between the healthy and the degenerate parts of an organism… . Sympathy for the decadents, equal rights for the ill-constituted—that would be the profoundest immorality, that would be anti-nature itself as morality! [Will to Power]

    And, Doresaw and predicted the consequences of his system, laying it out as a “scientific” prediction. An examination of its context will reveal that nowhere do we find any sense of a need to find a counterbalance to prevent the genocide of entire continents:

    . . . 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. [C Darwin, Descent of Man, ch 6.]

    And by the way, DARWIN USED THE SUCCESS OF ANIMAL BREEDING AS AN EVIDENTIARY UNDERPINNING FOR HIS CLAIMS ON THE TRANSFORMING POWERS OF NATURAL SELECTION. In short,the implication was there that we could use intelligence to augment what would naturally occur: the extinction of lesser breeds by superior ones.

    Next step: “the self-direction of human EVOLUTION,” aka eugenics.

    A few steps beyond that?

    Euthanasia, voluntary and forced.

    And thence the death camps and starving millions of Ukrainians and Chinese and the slaughtered people of Cambodia.

    6] . . .everyone who thinks Darwin’s theory of evolution was a necessary factor in the holocaust

    KINDLY NOTE, in the above, I and others have spoken specifically to demonstrable historical factors, trends and influences, not claimed necessary or sufficient causal factors.

    People — self-evidently — can choose, decide and act, and so “necessary” and/or “sufficient” mechanical causes of history are not even credible or coherent as explanatory concepts.

    We may be influenced [and even manipulated], but we face the fact of individual responsibility for how we respond to such influences, and the alternatives that we could have taken. Starting with our intuitive sense of moral duty as Locke cited from theologian Richard Hooker in grounding the principles of liberty in Ch 2, section 5 of his 2nd essay on civil government:

    . . if I cannot but wish to receive good, even as much at every man’s hands, as any man can wish unto his own soul, how should I look to have any part of my desire herein satisfied, unless myself be careful to satisfy the like desire which is undoubtedly in other men . . . my desire, therefore, to be loved of my equals in Nature, as much as possible may be, imposeth upon me a natural duty of bearing to themward fully the like affection. From which relation of equality between ourselves and them that are as ourselves, what several rules and canons natural reason hath drawn for direction of life no man is ignorant.

    _________

    Let us think again, very, very carefully.

    Goodbye for now.

    GEM of TKI

    PS: CJY, thanks on the response to Mr Krebs.

    PPS: JJC, similarly, thanks for as very thoughtful post.

  109. PS: I see the formatting and text cut out gremlins are still busily at work. Goodbye for now.

  110. 110

    kf writes,

    I think I must first of all observe that you have now several times seriously misread what I (and others) have said, in ways that suggest that a timeout to calm down is in order, to restore objectivity.

    I think that needs to be pointed out first of all.

    Now on specific corrective points, for the record (and for reflection during the timeout):

    and then proceeds to write a couple thousand words. Who exactly is supposed to take this timeout? Does this mean kf gets to talk but no one else should respond? And why exactly are kf’s “thoughts for reflection” objective and others are not?

    For example, kf writes,

    What I did say on education is that we need to soberly recognise that “schooling” has now by and large become indoctrination in highly dubious — and destructively incoherent — evolutionary materialist secularism … e reflected on this a bit, and find it non-objective baloney.

    I’ve taught for 30 years in the public education system, including working as a curriculum director and in other semi-adminstrative positions, and I can’t even begin to find an example of how my school has done any of those things. Kf’s statement is extremely overblown political rhetoric, not something that accurately nor objectively describes what goes on in the vast majority of public schools every hour of the day.

  111. 111

    Oops: the last paragraph above is mine, not kf’s. It should read

    For example, kf writes,

    What I did say on education is that we need to soberly recognise that “schooling” has now by and large become indoctrination in highly dubious — and destructively incoherent — evolutionary materialist secularism … e reflected on this a bit, and find it non-objective baloney.

    I’ve taught for 30 years in the public education system, including working as a curriculum director and in other semi-adminstrative positions, and I can’t even begin to find an example of how my school has done any of those things. Kf’s statement is extremely overblown political rhetoric, not something that accurately nor objectively describes what goes on in the vast majority of public schools every hour of the day.

  112. 112

    Hmm. some end tags don’t appear to be working. The preview looks correct, but the final post doesn’t

    My statement is:

    I’ve reflected on this a bit, and find it non-objective baloney.

    I’ve taught for 30 years in the public education system, including working as a curriculum director and in other semi-adminstrative positions, and I can’t even begin to find an example of how my school has done any of those things. Kf’s statement is extremely overblown political rhetoric, not something that accurately nor objectively describes what goes on in the vast majority of public schools every hour of the day.

  113. Onlookers:

    It’s a good thing that I decided to pass by one last time, just in case . . .

    It should be clear that I have identified some significant problems with how the original poster has been reading what I and several others have written, which has been sustained for several days now.

    I, and others, have offered corrections in vain.

    So, I have now re-stated my corrections for the record and for reflection.

    Beyond this, onlookers have been alerted on what is going on.

    Mr Krebs knows, or should know, that.

    Goodbye, again. [That should be plain enough.]

    GEM of TKI

    PS: Kindly look here on and here on for Mr Krebs’ track record. (FtK is of course an eyewitness to events on the ground.)

    –> I repeat: it is high time to remove our children from the hands of indoctrination centres operating under the colours of being “schools” or “colleges” — and from the manipulations of those who operate or manage them. [Cf Rom 1:18 - 32, esp 28 ff.]

  114. —–karisofocus writes: “What I did say on education is that we need to soberly recognise that “schooling” has now by and large become indoctrination in highly dubious —and destructively incoherent — evolutionary materialist secularism

    —–Jack Krebs responds: “I’ve taught for 30 years in the public education system, including working as a curriculum director and in other semi-adminstrative positions, and I can’t even begin to find an example of how my school has done any of those things. Kf’s statement is extremely overblown political rhetoric, not something that accurately nor objectively describes what goes on in the vast majority of public schools every hour of the day.”

    Jack, If you want evidence of your own tyrannical exploits, simply hearken back to your own defense and explanation of “methodological naturalism,” which is your main tool for oppression. Methodological naturalism is simply an arbitrary rule that limits a scientific investigation to natural causes and forbids the scientist to go where the evidence leads. That is not science; it is tyranny. In spite of your claims to the contrary, there is no precedent for this.

    You have tried to justify this intrusion by alluding to scientists in the middle ages who, in many cases, “preferred” to search for natural causes. Obviously, you always fail to point out that “to prefer” is not “to rule out” or “to demand,” which, of course, makes all the difference. Those men made a provisional judgment based on the best information available, but they would never have dared to presume that they knew enough to close off all other options.

    Indeed, it was their love of truth and the disinterested search for it that made them great. They were always ready to challenge rigid conventions and seek new answers. They were wise enough to know that any new fact could change the entire scientific landscape. One thing is for sure, they would have been open to such facts as the presence of information in living organisms or the patterns found in a DNA molecule. Can you conceive of someone like Galileo, Sir Issac Newton, or even Francis Bacon ignoring those kinds of facts or refusing to consider their implications? Maybe you can, but I can’t.

    There is a mile-wide gap between explaining that science is “primarily” about natural causes and demanding that science be “exclusively” about natural causes. In fact, science is never exclusively about anything except a systematic search for the truth. Like your Darwinist colleagues, you have arrogated unto yourself the right to define, codify, and institutionalize your own arbitrary definition of science and impose it on everyone else.

    The decision about which methods to use belongs to the scientist, not to social activists or even to other scientists. As long as you refuse to face that fact, you will be part of a problem that needs to be solved. You simply have no intellectual warrant or moral right to impose your arbitrary definition of science on anyone.

    (For those [Dave Scot] who want to know why the problem of tyranny [Nazism] is related to the science of ID, I hope this will serve as a partial response.)

  115. StephenB said – “You simply have no intellectual warrant or moral right to impose your arbitrary definition of science on anyone. ”

    Luckily there are many places in the world where the influence of such people has yet to be felt.
    Have hope! The stakes are high but it’s only just begun.

  116. While I disagree with DaveScot when it comes to biology I guess he’s absolutely right that equating evolution theory with materialism and Nazism, especially put forward at UD by Denyse O’Leary, is stupid and won’t help the case of ID. E.g., CJYman at 30:

    Expelled *did* show how a leader took a scientific idea and applied it to society. Now, would that leader have made the same application from within a non-materialist/pro-ID framework or would he have had the tendency to have a higher regard for life?

    I won’t call the 25 point program of the NSDAP a pro-ID framework but at least it claimed to be chrisitan / non-materialistic:

    19. We demand substitution of a German common law in place of the Roman Law serving a materialistic world-order.

    24. We demand freedom of religion for all religious denominations within the state so long as they do not endanger its existence or oppose the moral senses of the Germanic race. The Party as such advocates the standpoint of a positive Christianity without binding itself confessionally to any one denomination. It combats the Jewish-materialistic spirit within and around us, and is convinced that a lasting recovery of our nation can only succeed from within on the framework: The good of the state before the good of the individual.

  117. 117
    Vladimir Krondan

    [DaveScot] “It’s a crying shame that people just can’t seem to drop this obsession with Darwin and Nazis.”

    Why was Darwin’s cousin Francis Galton having Alfred Ploetz over for tea-time? This is a legitimate historical question.

  118. 118
    Vladimir Krondan

    “The influence primarily responsible for the modern eugenics movement was the establishment of the doctrine of organic evolution following the publication of Darwin’s Origin of Species in 1859.”

    - Samuel J. Holmes, Human Genetics, 1936, ch.25.

  119. Readers (incl. Sparc et al):

    I have taken a timeout here over a few days to see if some balance would emerge.

    It seems it has not, and so, I now make a general remark and comment on a few specific points, especially in Sparc at 116 above.

    A: In General

    I observe that it is now a commonplace among the so-called new atheists and their fellow travellers to attempt to reassign the roots of Nazism to “creationism” [as if Hitler et al looked to the Bible for their worldview's ideological and ethical foundation!] and more particularly to”Christianity,” often by making reference to obscure texts or facts out of context. In commenting on this tendentious practice, historian Richard Wiekart, an expert on the Nazi era and its roots, has aptly remarked:

    The reason why people care about Hitler being a Darwinist was because his version of Darwinism influenced his murderous ideology. [NB: Cf above all the way back to 43, including t6he chain Darwin, Nietzsche, Hitler, one of many networks of ideational influence that connect Hiter to Darwin's thought] It wasn’t incidental to his mass murder . . . Darwinists have to distance themselves from his social Darwinist views, so they campaign against it as against heresy. Also, it’s remarkable how many websites run by atheists and anti-religious people prominently feature articles about Hitler being a Christian, and they blame Christianity for Hitler and the Holocaust.

    It’s also remarkable that many Darwinists idolize Darwin so much that they cannot come to admit that he was a social Darwinist (though many scholars, to their credit, have conceded this).

    Observe, again: “. . . IT’S REMARKABLE HOW MANY WEBSITES RUN BY ATHEISTS AND ANTI-RELIGIOUS PEOPLE PROMINENTLY FEATURE ARTICLES ABOUT HITLER BEING A CHRISTIAN, AND THEY BLAME CHRISTIANITY FOR HITLER AND THE HOLOCAUST.”

    Now, across the 2,000 year history of Christianity, there have been many sins and abuses condoned or carried out by people who have named Christ’s name, or who have claimed to be acting in his name. None of these can find any grounds for their misbehaviour in the teachings of Christ and his duly sent out apostles. Indeed, just the opposite. For instance, in Rom 13:8 – 10, Paul explicitly teaches, in a civil society application of the Golden Rule: “he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law . . . LOVE DOES NO HARM TO ITS NEIGHBOR. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

    No-one setting out on oppressing or harming his neighbour — a concept that Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan shows extends across racial, religious and political lines of enmity – can properly claim to be following Christ’s teaching. And, even more specifically, John teaches: “12 Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous. . . . 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. 15 ANYONE WHO HATES HIS BROTHER IS A MURDERER, AND YOU KNOW THAT NO MURDERER HAS ETERNAL LIFE IN HIM.” [1 Jn 3:12 – 15]

    It is plain, then, that Hitler, whose life was in large part shaped by hate and manifested itself in mass murder, was precisely not a disciple of Christ. Indeed, his very concept that Jesus — whose claim to be a Messiah, biblically, necessarily rested on descent from David [cf Rom 1:1 – 4 etc] – was an “Aryan” not a Jew, is itself highly revealing on where Hitler got his ideas from.

    Indeed, let us now cite Ch XI of his notorious Mein Kampf, which I of course refuse to link:

    ___________

    Any crossing of two beings not at exactly the same level produces a medium between the level of the two parents . . . Consequently, it will later succumb in the struggle against the higher level. Such mating is contrary to the will of Nature for a higher breeding of all life . . . The stronger must dominate and not blend with the weaker, thus sacrificing his own greatness. Only the born weakling can view this as cruel, but he after all is only a weak and limited man; for IF THIS LAW DID NOT PREVAIL, ANY CONCEIVABLE HIGHER DEVELOPMENT OF ORGANIC LIVING BEINGS WOULD BE UNTHINKABLE.

    The consequence of this racial purity, universally valid in Nature, is not only the sharp outward delimitation of the various races, but their uniform character in themselves. The fox is always a fox, the goose a goose, the tiger a tiger, etc., and the difference can lie at most in the varying measure of force, strength, intelligence, dexterity, endurance, etc., of the individual specimens. But you will never find a fox who in his inner attitude might, for example, show humanitarian tendencies toward geese, as similarly there is no cat with a friendly inclination toward mice . . . .

    In the struggle for daily bread all those who are weak and sickly or less determined succumb, while the struggle of the males for the female grants the right or opportunity to propagate only to the healthiest. AND STRUGGLE IS ALWAYS A MEANS FOR IMPROVING A SPECIES’ HEALTH AND POWER OF RESISTANCE AND, THEREFORE, A CAUSE OF ITS HIGHER DEVELOPMENT.

    IF THE PROCESS WERE DIFFERENT, ALL FURTHER AND HIGHER DEVELOPMENT WOULD CEASE AND THE OPPOSITE WOULD OCCUR. For, since the inferior always predominates numerically over the best, if both had the same possibility of preserving life and propagating, the inferior would multiply so much more rapidly that in the end the best would inevitably be driven into the background, unless a correction of this state of affairs were undertaken. Nature does just this by subjecting the weaker part to such severe living conditions that by them alone the number is limited, and by not permitting the remainder to increase promiscuously, but making a new and ruthless choice according to strength and health
    ________________

    To see the telling roots of this discussion, we need only read Descent of Man, chs 4 – 7; especially Darwin’s discussion of the contrast between the Irish, the Scots and the English [“Saxons”], with a glance back at the impact of the Irish potato famine.

    But of course, from time to time, it suited Hitler to try to manipulate Christian terms and texts to try to gull the German people. This brings us to . . .

    [ . . . ]

  120. B: NSDAP platform vs Corpus Juris Civilis and Barmen Declaration

    I had hoped that someone else would have taken this up from Sparc at 116. No-one has, so I note on select points:

    1] “We demand substitution of a German common law in place of the Roman Law serving a materialistic world-order”

    This first runs into Justinian’s opening of the Corpus Juris Civilis:

    PREAMBLE. OF THE INSTITUTES OR ELEMENTS OF OUR LORD THE MOST HOLY EMPEROR JUSTINIAN.
    IN THE NAME OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST . . . . It is expedient that the Imperial Majesty not only be distinguished by arms, but also be protected by laws, so that government may be justly administered in time of both war and peace, and the Roman Sovereign not only may emerge victorious from battle with the enemy, but also by legitimate measures may defeat the evil designs of wicked men and appear as strict in the administration of justice as triumphant over conquered foes. [cf Rom 13:1 – 10.]

    [That is, CJC was a specifically Christianised (of course, rather imperfectly so . . .) precis of some 1,000 years of Roman case law, digested into a more or less coherent whole. Also, we should understand that “spiritual” in Hitler's conception has very little to do with the same term in a Christian context.]

    2] “The Party as such advocates the standpoint of a positive Christianity without binding itself confessionally to any one denomination . . . The good of the state before the good of the individual.”
    This is of course highly manipulative language, and embeds within the ellipsis a denunciation of Jews that is profoundly un-Christian. But, the underlying deceptive and manipulative agenda is aptly brought out by excerpting the 1934 Barmen Declaration of the Confessing Christians:

    In fidelity to their Confession of Faith, members of Lutheran, Reformed, and United Churches sought a common message for the need and temptation of the Church in our day . . . . In opposition to attempts to establish the unity of the German Evangelical Church by means of false doctrine, by the use of force and insincere practices, the Confessional Synod insists that the unity of the Evangelical Churches in Germany can come only from the Word of God in faith through the Holy Spirit. Thus alone is the Church renewed . . . . We publicly declare before all evangelical Churches in Germany that what they hold in common in this Confession is grievously imperiled, and with it the unity of the German Evangelical Church. It is threatened by the teaching methods and actions of the ruling Church party of the “German Christians” and of the Church administration carried on by them [i.e. Under Nazi leadership]. These have become more and more apparent during the first year of the existence of the German Evangelical Church. This threat consists in the fact that the theological basis, in which the German Evangelical Church is united, has been continually and systematically thwarted and rendered ineffective by alien principles, on the part of the leaders and spokesmen of the “German Christians” as well as on the part of the Church administration. When these principles are held to be valid, then, according to all the Confessions in force among us, the Church ceases to be the Church and th German Evangelical Church, as a federation of Confessional Churches, becomes intrinsically impossible . . . . In view of the errors of the “German Christians” of the present Reich Church government which are devastating the Church and also therefore breaking up the unity of the German Evangelical Church, we confess the following evangelical truths . . .
    In short, as soon as he attained power in 1933, Hitler was actively subverting the Church through injecting Nazi ideas and requiring a racialist and ideological loyalty that is alien to the historic Christian Faith. In this deception, sadly, he had the support of apostate church leaders forming a false church hierarchy.
    So, the cited words from the declared Nazi party platform, in proper historical context, do not at all carry the weight that Sparc would put upon them, but instead reflect a counterfeiting of the historic Christan faith by the Nazis and their henchmen.
    3] Implications and issues of evolutionary materialism . . .

    I have, of course, several times, cited Provine’s chilling words in his 1994 debate with Phil Johnson:

    There is no intelligent design in the natural world. When mammals die, they are really and truly dead. No ultimate foundations for ethics exist, no ultimate meaning in life exists, and free will is merely a human myth. These are all conclusions to which DARWIN came quite clearly. (Stanford University Debate with Phil Johnson, April 30, 1994)

    The underlying issue, I have long summarised:
    ________
    . . . [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 . . . . Thus, evolutionary materialism reduces reason itself to the status of illusion . . . .
    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 . . .
    _______

    Perhaps, then, it is time to rethink?

    GEM of TKI

  121. PS: The gremlins, sadly, are still with us.

  122. 122
    Vladimir Krondan

    Hello Kairo. Some people think that Darwinism is purely a scientific question, and, because of this, the activities of prominent Darwinians should not be examined too closely. Neither should evolutionary scientists be examined in the light of history. Such examination, they argue, does not help to determine the truth or falsity of Darwinism. However, it is a little odd to press the notion that a certain group of scientists — Darwinians — are so far above reproach that they cannot be examined this way. Furthermore, many of us have already rejected Darwinism as a science long ago. We view it more as a social ill than a scientific hypothesis. So it is only natural to subject Darwinism and Darwinians to historical scrutiny. And to us, the argument that historical scrutiny does not prove evolution right or wrong and therefore no one should examine too closely the activities of Darwinians in the past, is just silly.

    On this page you will find sufficient reason to open up and pursue the historical examination of Darwinism, Darwinians, and their role in the social ills of the last 150 years.

  123. Vladimir

    Thanks.

    Your just linked is especially intersting when it discusses the contributions of key figures linked to Darwin. I note here (I will now use double square brackets for blocks, given the busy gremlins]:

    [[Galton: "I take Eugenics very seriously, feeling that its principles ought to become one of the dominant motives in a civilised nation, much as if they were one of its religious tenets." - Galton, Memoirs

    "[Eugenics] has indeed strong claims to become an orthodox religious tenet of the future, for Eugenics co-operates with the workings of nature by securing that humanity shall be represented by the fittest races… The first and main point is to secure the general intellectual acceptance of Eugenics… then let its principles work into the heart of the nation, which will gradually give practical effect to them in ways that we may not wholly forsee.” – Galton, Eugenics, its Definition, Scope, and Aims.

    It strikes me that the Jews are specialised for a parasitical existence upon other nations” – Galton to de Candolle, 1884 (Pearson’s Life and Letters of Galton, vol.2, pg 209). ]]

    –> Rather interesting, no?

    Now, I have long understood, through Lakatos’ extension to Popper, that research programmes have cores and surrounding belts. Core theories and ideas have in them a considerable worldview level element, and the belt of surrounding models and subsidiary theories and approaches serves in part as a belt of protective armour.

    Lakatos therefore spoke in terms of progressive and degenerative paradigms/programmes.

    He highlighted the importance of predictive success, and of situations where in effect a research programme begins to find itself making ever more ad hoc patches to meet onward eme3rging observations. Beyond a certain point, things break down as they did with Ptolemaic astronomy.

    In the case of the grand scale evolutionary materialist research programme, the materialism is obviously a worldview and hte narrative of cosmological then planetary then chemical then biological then socio-cultural evolution is a chain of deeply worldivew-tinged explanatory models. And, the rot reason why inference to design once it might cut across the chain of evolutionary models just outlined, is forbidden, is because of the begged worldview level question. (Newbies, kindly cf. basic discussion here.)

    As my excerpt from my always linked APP 6 just above shows, I believe that evolutionary matrerialism has run into serious trouble when it sought to explain mind [and morals] on reductionistic materialistic grounds. Indeed, that is precisely what Provine implied when he asserted that there is no free will and there is no ultimate foundation for ethics. For, with no power of responsible choice there is no foundation for reasoning and knowing, much less choosing to do the right.

    Such “reasoning” immediately cuts its own throat. It CANNOT be correct, given the basic facts of our experience of the world as thinking, choosing, reasoning, knowing, morally bound creatures.

    But, if we turn evolutionary materialistic “Science” into a god, then we lose our ability to think straight: Per logic, if one accepts error as truth, then if one sees real truth, one is often inclined to reject it as contradicting what one knows.

    Next, given the undermining of morality, and the easy excuse for ignoring the plea of the powerless, it fosters the sort of thinking and behaviour that easily become tyrannical. In short, through its worldviews core, “science” can easily become a component of an ideology that may reveal its inner incoherence and dangers.

    Worse, given the etymology: “Science = knowledge,” those who do not know enough to understand just how provisional scientific knowledge claims historically and philosophically are, can then become absolutists who in zeal for “science” become blind to the errors and abuses they carry out.

    I guess over in Russia — as I recall — you know all about that already.

    GEM of TKI

  124. KF & all,

    Here are some resources that conclusively rebut any claim that Hitler was a Christian. Note that they are from Cornell’s School of Law. They are PDF files.

    Relationship of the German Churches to Hitler (they were against him.)

    The Nazi Master Plan: The Persecution of the Christian Churches (they wanted them gone).

  125. Trib:

    Thanks, as always.

    Quite significant; and indeed, I did not know of the direct, in-office involvement of church delegates in Admiral Canaris’ Abwehr opposition movement, specifically Muller [who by "luck" survived], and Bonhoffer [also one of the key figures of Barmen], who of course did not survive.

    Your linked articles are a test for the sincerity and seriousness of any who still retain the idea that Hitler’s nightmare was a product of his attachment to the Christian Faith.

    Vladimir also gave a link which on following up, I ran across an old work by William Jennings Bryan. (Thanks, Vladimir.)

    On reading it, I see that in his view the trends in the Nazi era were prefigured by the influence of Nietzsche et al in the WW 1 era, as reflected in Imperial Germany’s propaganda. This much despised, caricatured and dismissed man — BTW, I have gained significant respect for him on now being able to directly read his writings — raised some very, very serious points that 86 years later sound all too prophetically relevant.

    I found this bit of a gem in the preface:

    [[The special reason for bringing to the attention of Christians at this time the evil that Darwinism is do-ing is to show that| atheists and agnostics are not only claiming but enjoying higher rights and greater privi-leges in this land than Christians; that is, they are able to propagate their views at public expense while Chris-tianity must be taught at the expense of Christians . . . . Is there any reason why atheists and agnostics should not be compelled to do likewise? . . . The question in dispute is whether atheists and agnostics have a right to teach irreligion in public schools—whether teachers drawing salaries from the public treasury shall be permitted to undermine belief in God, the Bible, and Christ by teaching not scientific truth but unproven and UNSUPPORTED GUESSES [NB: Bryan points out just how many hundreds of times Darwin acknowledged that he was more or less supposing or guessing ("hypothesis" is a 50c word for "guess") in his key works, noting that for instance he used "we may well suppose" over 800 times in his two main works] which cannot be true unless the Bible is false.]]

    Nearly ninety years later, the point still stings.

    Similarly, in the main text, p 20 [pdf 27] Bryan notes:

    [[Darwin does not use facts; he uses conclusions drawn from similarities. He builds upon presumptions, probabilities and inferences, and asks the acceptance of his hypothesis not-withstanding the fact that connecting links have not hitherto been discovered" (page 162). He advances an hypothesis which, if true, would find support on every foot of the earth's surface, but which, as a mat-ter of fact, finds support nowhere.]]

    Again, nearly ninety years later, the point still stings. And, on reflecting on how a principal means of rejecting the inference to design is the imposition of a question-begging “redefiniton” that in effect science on origins must only infer to chance +/or necessity, we see the same issue still operates.

    Last, on looking back in my vaults, I also ran across this summary. It is of course by a “Creationist,” Bergman, but raises such serious issues and documents such serious points that it is sobering reading indeed, reading that demands to be answered, not dismissed.

    GEM of TKI

  126. KF, my pleasure as always.

    I like your link:

    “While the theistic evolutionist does not affirmatively deny God, he is more dangerous to the Christian faith than the atheist, because, while claiming to believe in a Creator, he puts God so far away that consciousness of God’s presence loses its power to comfort.”

    Here’s another link to covers of a German women’s magazine during the Nazi era. Note the one for December 1943.

  127. Ah Trib

    The Bryan article is well worth the reading; in many respects, it seems almost more relevant today than 86 years ago.

    And, the Nazi Women’s mag is revealing!

    The 1943 December cover is almost comically revealing: “Winter Solstice” issue indeed!!!

    (I also don’t like the play on the Creche, with the idealised, growing Master Race family. The conjoined Soldier’s sacrifice on the plains of Russia panel suggests a very different version of “blood atonement” to me too . . .)

    This is all so blatantly post-Christian.

    GEM of TKI

  128. PS: Looking a bit closer at the sun figure at the foot of the image, it looks a lot like a swastika, with four curly gas surges to me . . . cf the swastika upper left corner. (Note too how most of the rest of the sun is with linerar rays, but there are these four large prominences, all flaring out the same way as in the swastika, all noticeably kinked. No star on the top of the tree too!

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