Discovery Institute: Another July 4th Hijacking

THE Fourth of July is coming, so you were probably expecting something slimy from a certain Seattle “think tank.” You will not be disappointed.

Here’s the latest from the neo-theocrats at the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture (a/k/a the Discoveroids): Founding Father Thomas Jefferson on Intelligent Design.

From the title, we immediately know it’s yet another attempt to hijack the reputation of the Founders. The Discoveroids did the same thing last year around this date. We discussed that one here: Discovery Institute: Usurping the Fourth of July.

This time, just like last year, they’re using the revered name of Jefferson to promote intelligent design — the Discoveroids’ closeted version of creationism. This behavior is the flip side of their ongoing campaign to link the name of Charles Darwin to that of Marx, Stalin, and Hitler.

The result is a brutish, bumper-strip ideology “intelligently designed” for its appeal to the creationist intellect: “ID good; Darwin bad.” Propaganda can’t get more primitive than that.

The Discoveroid blog article isn’t very long. It’s only a promotion to get you to listen to a recording by John West. For those who don’t know, West is a winner of the Curmudgeon’s Buffoon Award. He’s a Senior Fellow at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute (the DI), where he is Associate Director of their Center for Science and Culture. That makes him one of the chief Keepers of their Wedge strategy, and the guru of the cdesign proponentsists (a term described here: Missing link: “cdesign proponentsists”).

West has a limited repertoire. He was also the Discoveroids’ Jefferson hijacker last year, and we criticized his effort at that time. For further information about how Jefferson might have thought about evolution — had he lived long enough to know about Darwin’s work — see: The Founders Rejected Evolution?

There’s no need for us to quote from the Discoveroid promotion; and we certainly don’t plan to listen to West’s recording. If you’re willing to subject yourself to that kind of thing, click over there and indulge yourself.

Hey, we have a suggestion for West’s next campaign. Drop the Jefferson thing; it’s not working. How about linking ID to apple pie? Sure it’s dumb, but those who look to the Discoveroids for intellectual leadership won’t know that.

Copyright © 2009. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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6 responses to “Discovery Institute: Another July 4th Hijacking

  1. Benjamin Franklin

    West, I served with Thomas Jefferson: I knew Tom Jefferson; Tom Jefferson was a friend of mine. West, you’re no Tom Jefferson.

  2. I saw video online of a talk PZ Myers gave at Missouri State University last October where he predicted that the Discovery Institute will fold in about ten years. He said the traditional creationist organizations are the real threat. With people like Stephen Meyer and Casey Luskin interfering with state school boards and getting interviewed on FOX, however, I’m less sanguine about it.

  3. James F says:

    I saw video online of a talk PZ Myers gave at Missouri State University last October where he predicted that the Discovery Institute will fold in about ten years.

    It’s easy to under-estimate them because they have no science. But as long as they have lavish funding, they don’t need science. They’ll be around as long as the money’s there. And not a day longer.

  4. West is quote mining the heck out of Jefferson. And it isn’t even necessary, since Jefferson was completely ignorant of modern developments in science. No quote mining necessary! But he does it anyway. What a goofball.

  5. James F wrote: “With people like Stephen Meyer and Casey Luskin interfering with state school boards and getting interviewed on FOX, ..”

    Did FOX do the “fair and balanced” thing by having their critics respond? If anything the truly “fair and balanced” thing is to give mainsteam science the last word if only because they do >99% of the work, while Meyer and Luskin are content to spin and quote mine.

    I ask that noting that, averaging all issues, my views are at least as conservative as those of FOX.

  6. Back to the thead topic, I am very leery of anyone mining the literature to infer the religious/political/scientific views of long-dead people who (1) are not here to defend themselves and (2) lack the benefit of knowledge gained after their lifetimes.

    Thomas Ratliff, if you’re following this thread, I hope you are reading “Washington’s God” with that in mind.