Klinghoffer: His Opponents are Perverse

Klinghoffer has risen! This is wonderful news indeed. The great intellectual has roused himself from the fainting couch where we left him in this post: A Tale of Creationist Frustration. Now he’s back doing what he does best — shattering irony meters all over the galaxy in the service of his Discoveroid masters.

David Klinghoffer holds the exalted title of “senior fellow” (i.e., flaming, full-blown creationist), bestowed upon him 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).

Klinghoffer’s newest post at the Discoveroids’ blog is At New Scientist, the Usual Reportorial Indifference to Facts. We pause at the threshold, so you can enjoy the title. Yes, it’s from a creationist who works at a creationist public-relations shop, claiming that someone else is being indifferent to facts.

The details of Klinghoffer’s complaint against New Scientist are of no significance. If you care about such things, his gripe concerns an article by Peter Aldhous titled “Science in America: Selling the Truth.” According to Klinghoffer, that article is about “the perversity of Republicans with their primitive scientific beliefs on climate change and the rest.” Here’s a bit of what Klinghoffer says, with his links omitted and some bold font added by us:

When you’re a reporter for a liberal publication you can say whatever you like about the ID/Evolution debate, however disconnected from reality, and get away with it. Nicely illustrating this general principle [is the article in New Scientist].

The Discoveroids not only masquerade as scientists, but also as conservatives. We’ve shredded their flimsy political guise before (our past efforts were recently summarized here Discoveroids: Darwin’s Dead Hand of Dogmatism).

But who cares how they style themselves? They’re theocrats, period. Was the Spanish Inquisition left-wing or right? Were the Salem witch trials run by leftists or rightists? It doesn’t matter, does it? But it’s politically expedient for the Discoveroids — who lack any rational argument for their “science” — to posture as the defenders of conservatism and religion against the godless leftists.

Let’s see what else Klinghoffer says:

You don’t have to like the pedagogic model of exposing students to both sides of the debate on evolutionary theory. But in fact, if Discovery Institute’s advice were taken, the teaching of evolution in U.S. schools, far from being “undermined,” would be significantly expanded in breadth and depth with due attention to developing critical-thinking skills. That way it would be genuine education, not merely indoctrination.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Yes, and the school cafeteria should offer foods appealing to those of the cannibal persuasion, in order to develop their critical thinking skills. There should also be offerings prepared according to the principles of coprophilia. All options should be available. Let the children decide! We read on:

Once you get over the sheer smug, offensive laziness of the reporting, you can enjoy the irony that Mr. Aldhous thinks he is informing readers of a secret: Many people decide what they believe on science and other matters not based on a fair, intelligent weighing of factual evidence but rather based on how holding one belief over another makes them feel, socially included or socially excluded: “We have a strong interest in mirroring the views of our own cultural group.”

That strikes us totally accurate. What does Klinghoffer say? It’s the conclusion of his little article:

Yes, exactly. And as Aldhous’s article wonderfully illustrates, we’re most blind to the effect of that dynamic when we are most firmly in its grip.

Sorry, we hate to post and run, but right now we’re going to chase after a street vendor who is offering new irony detectors. We can always use a few spares around here.

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

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7 responses to “Klinghoffer: His Opponents are Perverse

  1. Evidently anyone critical of the DI is a liberal. Even magazines which include articles critical of the DI are now liberal publications. (never mind that this particular article also identified the general anti-vax movement as primarily liberals interested in holistic medicines and other such quackery, showing that the principle applied to people on both sides of the political spectrum)

    I’m sure, that in the eyes of the DI, any blogger with the temerity to criticize them must be flamingly liberal.

  2. Curmudgeon: “Klinghoffer has risen!”

    I’m no grammar expert, and “has risen” sounds more correct to me, but I think it should be “is risen.” Anyway, if any of you “liberals” still doubt that Klinghoffer is the second coming, you will soon see the electromagnetic radiation. 😉

  3. Tomato Addict

    My irony meter didn’t explode this time – it’s still on the fritz from the last visit with The Hoff.

    I’ll go with “has risen” because it implies past-tense. The Hoff falls flat again.

  4. The Kling-on is also at his near best as he comments on the Jerry Coyne/John Haught debate: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2011/11/haught_v_coyne_the_fight_of_th052531.html

  5. Retired Prof

    As for “is risen” and “has risen,” both are grammatical. The meaning difference is so subtle it is almost irrelevant, but here it is, theoretically.

    “Has risen” is a verb phrase expressing the idea that the subject underwent a change some time in the past. Hence the traditional grammarian’s designation “present perfect,” which can be paraphrased as “now completed.”

    “Is risen” emphasizes the current status of the subject instead of the process of getting there. It is not an auxiliary verb plus a main verb, but consists of linking “be” plus a predicate adjectival.

    For an example uncolored by King James Bible style, compare “The color has faded” to “The color is faded.”

    Now ain’t that pedantic?

  6. Retired Prof says:

    As for “is risen” and “has risen,” both are grammatical.

    If it’s any help, I can backtrack on how it got written. I originally planned to begin dramatically, by declaring “He is risen!” But that was over-the-top and I figured it might offend some, so I typed “Klingofffer is risen!” That somehow felt wrong, so I made it “Klinghoffer has risen!”

  7. Retired Prof

    Thanks, Curmudgeon. It’s always interesting to see how another writer makes stylistic choices.