Klinghoffer Disgorges a Creationist Gusher

OUR last post about this tenacious creationist was Where’s David Klinghoffer? Here’s some background information about him, which most of you can skip:

David Klinghoffer, is a “Senior Fellow” (i.e., full-blown creationist) among the neo-theocrats at the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture (a/k/a the Discoveroids). David has his own blog, where his posts often duplicate what he says at the Discoveroids’ blog, or which are often praised by his comrades at the Discoveroid blog.

He has written a series of essays attempting to link Charles Darwin to: Hitler, and communism, and Stalin, and the Columbine shootings, and Charles Manson, and Holocaust Museum shooter, James von Brunn, and the Ft. Hood Massacre, and Mao Tse-tung, and Dr. Josef Mengele, Angel of Death and “Devotee of Darwin”, and most recently the Occult.

The notorious creationist propagandist has surfaced again, this time in the Huffington Post, where we read The Dark Side of Darwinism. It’s pure creationist trash, the sort of thing we’ve learned to expect from Klinghoffer, and there’s really nothing new in this essay — just recycled nonsense. The only notable aspect is the venue where it appears. The Huffington Post is one of the most popular blogs on the internet. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:

Between 1934 and 1939, in the interests of evolutionary hygiene, the eugenic program in Nazi Germany forcibly sterilized about 400,000 people.

Blah, blah, blah — Darwin and eugenics. Let’s read on:

While barbarism has been going on for as long as there have been human beings, there was something different about the 20th century. The world had never seen anything quite like Hitler, Stalin, Mao, or Pol Pot. And it was not only a matter of the technology available to them. Treating people as vermin to be exterminated was a new thing under the sun. Eugenics programs in United States and later Germany were warm-up acts for the mass slaughters that were to come.

Blah, blah, blah — Darwin and Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot. We continue:

Evolutionary thinking inspired modern scientific racism. For Darwin, evolution explained the phenomenon — so he saw it — of racial inferiority. Some races were farther up the evolutionary tree than others. Thus, in his view, Africans were just a step above gorillas.

Blah, blah, blah — Darwin and racism. Typical Klinghoffer blather. And typical of Discoveroids and creationists in general.

These falsehoods have been refuted thousands of times. We’ve done quite a bit of it too. For example: Marx, Stalin, and Darwin, and also Hitler and Darwin, and also Racism, Eugenics, and Darwin.

There’s not much else to be said here. As long as Klinghoffer can make a living doing what he does, he seems delighted to do it. Those who subsidize this kind of thing are getting exactly what they deserve — they’ve got Klinghoffer.

Update: See Hitler, Darwin, and … Winston Churchill? (Churchill, who was Hitler’s principal opponent, actually read Origin of Species.)

Copyright © 2010. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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20 responses to “Klinghoffer Disgorges a Creationist Gusher

  1. Seems to me that Klinghoffer is still missing. This is nothing more than a rehash of some of his old articles and says nothing new. I’m not a big HuffPo fan but allowing this kind of tripe on their site doesn’t improve their image in my mind. At least the reader comments seem to show that they recognize BS when they see it.

  2. In the comments section below Klinger’s childish book report there are no supporters.

    Not one.

    Quick, someone wake up Crowther! Klinger’s fallen into a well!

  3. There may be no supporters of K. commenting, but there are some who do accept the line that Hitlerites made some reference to Darwin – that there was an abuse of evolutionary biology involved.

    But Hitler, as far as I can tell, made no Hitlerian reference to Darwin. I rather suspect that Hitler wouldn’t have liked the idea that he shared common ancestry with chimps. And the idea of random variations and natural selection – rather than forced selection – wouldn’t have been very welcome.

    No, I don’t think that Hitler could be said to have any favorable attitude toward even a stupid misunderstanding of Darwin.

    Hitler did make some reference to the germ theory of disease, to the extent that he compared himself to Koch. And there were other intellectual trends that were abused by the Hitlerites. But Darwin is far down on the list, if there at all, of the scientists and other thinkers whose ideas were misappropriated.

  4. I particularly like this point:

    “Hitler did nothing more than translate the competition of species into obsessively racial terms.”

    Woo! Way to downplay the sins of one of the most evil men to walk the planet!

  5. Doc Bill says:

    In the comments section below Klinger’s childish book report there are no supporters. Not one.

    Klinghoffer hasn’t posted at his own blog since 16 March. It looks like he’s getting tired of exposing his “work” to comments. So he tried a bigger audience at HuffPo. Not working out too well.

  6. TomS says:

    But Hitler, as far as I can tell, made no Hitlerian reference to Darwin.

    He never mentioned him in Mein Kamph. And no serious biographer has detected any such influence. Only creationists.

  7. And no serious biographer has detected any such influence. Only creationists.

    But Curdge, you forget that these people have God on speed dial who can easily fill in those inconvenient blanks with warm fuzzies that HAVE to mean they are right and true.

  8. As a p.s. to Klingers, he loves to stir the pot and be outrageous. Sort of like Ann Coulter but without the charm. Like Glenn Beck but without the academic depth. Like Rush Limbaugh but without the piercing insight.

  9. Albanaeon says:

    But Curdge, you forget that these people have God on speed dial…

    Yeah, I’m always forgetting that.

  10. no serious biographer has detected any such influence

    What I am suggesting is a rather stronger statement, namely that the Hitlerites did not even pretend to have any darwinian justification for their policies.

    Hitler claimed Koch. Hitler abused the germ theory of disease. No reasonable person could blame Koch for the abuse of the germ theory of disease. No reasonable person would say that Koch was an “influence” on Hitler. But it is reasonable to say that Hitler pretended Koch as a forerunner.

    The case of Darwin is even less. Hitler and the Hitlerites didn’t even favorably mention Darwin, didn’t even pretend that random variations, natural selection, or common descent meant anything (positive) to them. If anything, they repudiated those ideas.

    Yes, the Hitlerites would grab anything that they could which would give them the appearance of having something scientific or intellectual. But evolutionary biology was not among the things that they did this with – as far as I can tell. I am not well read on the Hitlerites, I must say, but what I have read leads me to believe that they didn’t even want to mis-represent Darwin as being on their side.

  11. Gabriel Hanna

    Klinghoffer has been confronted on the quote mining, for this particular quote, many times now, including by me on his beliefnet blog.

    He knows full well what he is doing–he is telling lies for money and he knows it.

    He is not someone with whom you can engage meaningfully; he is not honest.

  12. This is my favorite part:

    Hitler’s ideas, Dr. Berlinski carefully notes, “came from many different sources but no honest account will omit Darwin.” A reading of Mein Kampf makes that clear.

    Mein Kampf is publicly available on line. Darwin is not mentioned once. You can actually search the text for this. I wish I could say I find this level of dishonesty surprising, but one must consider the source.

  13. Gabriel Hanna says:

    He is not someone with whom you can engage meaningfully; he is not honest.

    It’s much simpler merely to say that he’s a professional creationist.

  14. Gabriel Hanna
  15. Gabriel Hanna

    I’d point out too that the Huffington Post is a decidedly leftist place, which has a big soft spot for pseudoscience of several varieties (Deepak Chopra, anti-vaccination, and now intelligent design). Probably due to its having been founded by an airhead.

  16. Gabriel Hanna says:

    This thread … is about when I decided I was going to stop engaging this man.

    That’s a classic thread. I particularly liked: “David, did Darwin have a time machine?”

    As for the Huffington Post, they’ve been putting up some good articles about The Controversy lately. Klinghoffer’s contribution is the only one I’ve seen lately on the other side.

  17. For the cause and with a cup of coffee, I went through the comments on the Klinger HuffPo article once more: 49 negative, 0 positive.

    The most recent comment from a HuffPo “super user” reads:

    “I wish we had the option of flagging an article as abusive. When will the word get all the way around to the likes of Discovery Institute fellows that Darwinism and Social Darwinism are two completely different things, that Darwin fought against the srupid racist attitudes of his time?

    I guess when you’re opposed to someone but you have no real arguments, you have to either cease your opposition, or make stuff up.”

    Truer words were never written.

  18. Doc Bill says:

    I went through the comments on the Klinger HuffPo article once more: 49 negative, 0 positive.

    Maybe the people who run HuffPo will learn a lesson from this. Or maybe they’re just happy about the traffic.

  19. Dear Huffpo,

    The antivax thing was disappointing. Deepak Chopra articles were a worry.

    But this is just lazy – and massively stupid. You obviously have low standards. And no fact checking in place.

    I am never reading this site again. You have well and truly jumped the shark. This empirically minded liberal has had a gut full.