Klinghoffer Dreams of a “Darwinist” Reformation

We often encounter the sad phenomenon of a creationist who imagines that science — especially “Darwinism” — is some kind of wicked religion that competes with his own.

A good example is given to us today by the neo-theocrats at the Discovery Institute‘s creationist public relations and lobbying operation, the Center for Science and Culture (a/k/a the Discoveroids, a/k/a the cdesign proponentsists).

The author of the latest Discoveroid rant is David Klinghoffer — a Discoveroid “senior fellow” (i.e., flaming, full-blown creationist). We won’t bother to repeat our description of his creationist oeuvre here, but you can check it out in this recent post. Suffice it to say that Klinghoffer is very experienced at whipping out his “Darwin = Hitler–Marx-Stalin-Mao-Mengele-Manson-etc.” rhetorical device and waiving it around with merry abandon at any provocation.

We continue to be amazed that Klinghoffer gets paid to write his little essays. Is he just playing with his readers or does he really believe what he writes? It’s difficult to know. It doesn’t really matter, does it? He does what he does, and he seems to enjoy it.

Having observed Klinghoffer’s intellectual output, it’s an easy prediction that yesterday’s Tuscon killer will soon be added to the growing list of murderers he claims were inspired by Darwin.

Klinghoffer’s latest is Of Darwinism and Islamism. The title alone is sufficient to alert us to what lies within. Nevertheless, although the rational mind recoils at the threshold, your Curmudgeon proceeds. But why?

Because we must know the adversary. The Discoveroids want their degenerate, pre-Enlightenment, anti-rational, anti-scientific, theocratic beliefs to dominate our society. That’s why we care. Now then, here are some excerpts, with links omitted and bold added by us:

This is not a blog about foreign affairs, but I came across a refreshing and illuminating piece on the New Republic website that, in the context of talking about Islam and terrorism, suggested to me a reason for hope in the Darwin debate.

You see, dear reader? That’s what we’re dealing with. Let’s read on:

In the current culture of science, where the 19th-century materialist Church of Science rules and the congregation bows obediently, what’s needed is a modernizing reformation. Doubts about Darwinism are part of that. We can draw a parallel to past reformations in the religious sphere, and future ones.

When playing chess, it’s wise to understand the opponent’s mind to figure out his strategy. Here, however, all we can see is writhing snakes, wiggling worms, and exploding pustules. But let us continue, at least as long as we’re able:

Most of us in the West agree, for example, that Islam urgently requires a reformation.

The next portion of Klinghoffer’s little essay discusses that subject. We’ll skip it, because we know nothing about Islam or its potential to reform. Klinghoffer mentions some alleged expert on Islam who thinks things will eventually get better in the Islamic world because the Islamic inner circles are eager to reform. We have no idea whether that is so, or even if Klinghoffer is accurately presenting the man’s views. What’s important is Klinghoffer’s use of that potential for reform as an analogy to “Darwinism.” That brings us to his final paragraph, which we’ll take a little bit at a time:

In the world of science, oddly, it’s much the same way. Reading professional scientific journals, you come across far franker talk of holes in Darwinism than you’ll ever find in the general-interest media, or on screechy, sarcastic Darwinist blogs aimed at angry laymen and the unemployed (judging from the amount of time commenters seem to have on their hands).

We have no problem brushing aside Klinghoffer’s remarks about “screechy, sarcastic Darwinist blogs” aimed at unemployed commenters. That is of supreme insignificance. But we’re amused by his hints of a conspiracy among the inner circle of “Darwinists” to suppress information about the “holes in Darwinism.” Is anyone (except perhaps Klinghoffer) surprised that presently-unresolved technical questions are discussed by professionals in specialized journals and not in high school textbooks?

To use a non-biological example, a high school science class will be taught the general principles that explain how aircraft fly, but the texts they use are virtually certain to omit mention of the technological problems that currently challenge aeronautical engineers who labor at the cutting edge of aircraft design. Despite such omissions, airplanes still fly, the Wright Brothers were splendid lads, and there’s no conspiracy to mislead the kiddies about anything.

Now we come to Klinghoffer’s final sentence:

Perhaps the same will prove to be true of scientists — the real ones, I mean, not the furious bloggers.

Ah, Klinghoffer has hopes that (as it may be with Islam) the “Darwinist” inner circle — those who are now suppressing knowledge of the problems with their theory — will bring about the Reformation. Okay, David. Keep the faith.

Copyright © 2011. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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4 responses to “Klinghoffer Dreams of a “Darwinist” Reformation

  1. Science, and especially biology, modernizes at a rather brisk pace. The trouble for the ought-to-be unemployed ranter Klinghoffer is that it never supports his dogma. Hence the shrillness, the usual ad hominem attacks to cover his complete lack of substance, and a thoroughly false picture of all of those he despises.

    Gee, I’d like to see the holes. They’re there, don’t you worry. David just can’t point to anything actual, even though he implies that he’s seen them in the literature. What do you want to bet that he’s been listening to Wells’s ignorant screeds?

    David seems to actually move backward knowledge-wise. He used to write things that, to the uninitiated, might seem to make sense. Now it seems that he can never break free from the rutted cant of the true science haters.

  2. If Kling were a “real scientist”, as he admiringly refers to those who work on the unanswered questions in evolutionary theory (holes, in Klinghofferese), he would be working on ID and attempting to solve the riddles and challenges therein. ID would be his area of interest, and he would apply his intellect to finding ways to test it and explore it’s limits, and increase his knowledge of it.

    But….Klinghoffer is unfortunately not a scientists, but is a propagandist. To use one of his favorite rhetorical devices, he would have prospered well in the Hitler regime; taking the events of the day and attributing them to a Jewish conspiracy, and spinning inconvenient facts to reflect the viewpoint of the Reich. He writes well, and is creative in linking together totally unconnected events or stories to support completely invented conclusions.

    I agree with SC that we will soon see a story linking the Tuscon killings to Darwin. Klinghoffer is the natural choice to write it. Bets, anyone?

  3. Klinghoffer, IMHO, does not write well. He is plodding, dishonest and incoherent which is why the only job he can get is with the Disco Tute where dishonesty is a job description. He thinks he’s a great comedian. Newsflash, Dave-o, we’re laughing AT you.

    Klankhoffer doesn’t even get the Reformation right! The Reformation opened up northern European countries to the concept of redemption through good works, ushering in the Age of Enlightenment and, ultimately, science as we know it. Thus, I argue, the Reformation lead to what Klunkhoffer and his fellow theocrats call the “materialistic worldview” they hate so much.

    Seriously, Klunghoffer, you want another Reformation?

    And, finally, since Klunkerhoffer is a stranger to the truth, regarding his claim to read the primary literature I call Bu11Sh1T and don’t believe that for a second. Perhaps Klinkerhoffer would be so kind as to ask his pal Paul Nelson, who is at least semi-literate, for a few citations of holes in “Darwinism.” We’ll wait patiently for that. A long, long time I suspect.

  4. It seems gratuitous to add that one of the problems of most Islamic societies is their lack of respect for science, most notably evolution. Nevertheless, not everyone knows this, so I won’t leave it without mentioning it.

    A huge problem with Islam is precisely the problem that David has, a great reverence for their interpretations of “holy text,” which feeds into gross ignorance of science. The vicious cycle is closed as their ignorance of science leads to more preference for their prejudices, as science is not allowed to inform their ignorance of the world.

    I hasten to add that this is not true of all Muslims, nor of most Western adherents of religion.