Discovery Institute Sees a Big Year Ahead

The Discoveroids are feeling very optimistic these days, or so it appears in the latest post at their blog, written by David Klinghoffer. He and they are described in the Cast of Characters section of our Intro page.

The thing is titled In Colorado, Darwin Activists Fight Academic Freedom with Gross Misinformation. David is writing, of course, about this: Colorado Creationism: New Bill for 2013. Here are some excerpts from his post, with bold font added by us:

It’s been a busy year so far for academic freedom legislation, with activity in state legislatures across the country — including, as far as I’m aware, Colorado, Indiana, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Montana. Of course, from year to year, these bills are of varying quality with the strongest, legally and pedagogically, being those modeled on language that Discovery Institute offers to lawmakers.

It certainly is shaping up to be a crazy year, and yes, most of the creationist legislation we’ve seen is based on the Discoveroids’ model statute. We’ve critiqued it here: Curmudgeon’s Guide to “Academic Freedom” Laws. David continues:

The best such laws, like the ones currently in force in Tennessee and Louisiana, seek to protect instructors in public schools who want to expose their students to legitimate controversy about important but disputed scientific issues, including Darwinian evolution.

Uh huh, those are the “best” laws. When the Discoveroids use that word, you should consider it in the context of how they define their “theory” of intelligent design. They’ve posted that here: Definition of Intelligent Design, and they say:

The theory of intelligent design holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection.

See? The “best” of the creationist laws currently floating around are modeled on the Discoveroids’ work, just as their intelligent designer — blessed be he! — is the “best” explanation of the universe. We must always beware of the Discoveroids’ terminology — they use their own version of Newspeak, and nothing really is what they say it is. Let’s read on:

The biggest obstacles these laws face in getting passed comes from gross misinformation campaigns by Darwin activists, notably our friends at the National Center for Science Education.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! David continues, linking to the NCSE’s article about the Colorado bill (which we’ve already done in our earlier post) and he also links to this article by blogger Phil Plait: Creationism Creeps into Colorado. He aims most of his criticism at Plait. For example:

The post itself is a model — of ignorance, incomprehension, or perhaps deliberate deception.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! In the immortal words of Bert Lance: “It’s like being called ugly by a frog.” Here’s more:

There are three main lines of attack. First, there is the idea that laws like this are “antiscience” and seek to replace science in the classroom with religious indoctrination, that is with “creationism.”

David spends his next few paragraphs wildly spinning and claiming that the Discoveroids aren’t creationists because they’re not young-Earth creationists who base everything on Genesis. We know all that, and we know how the Discoveroids deliberately tailored their version of creationism specifically to work around judicial decisions banning primitive young-Earth creationism from public schools. All of that was vividly exposed in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District. In that case, Judge Jones found that “ID is creationism re-labeled.” We quote that portion of the court’s opinion at length in “Pandas” Publisher Withdraws in Texas. Okay, back to David’s article:

The second line of attack holds that academic freedom is a partisan, Republican, issue. The proposed law in Colorado represents “a clear and obvious attack on scientific fields that disagree with the beliefs of the conservative lawmakers.” So only Republicans believe in a dynamic approach to pedagogy while Democrats insist on rote indoctrination?

Alas, it is often Republicans who promote creationism these days, but a generation ago the creationists were mostly in the other party. We’ve explained all that history here: Creationism and American Politics. There are still plenty of Democrat creationists — the Louisiana legislature had a Democrat majority when it almost unanimously passed that state’s creationism law in 2008. Another excerpt:

The final angle of attack, the most absurd of all, paints a picture of economic apocalypse should the law win passage. Plait warns, “If allowed to pass, we will be cheating our children out of a real science education.”

That’s quite true. But Klinghoffer has a rebuttal:

As to how such legislation would really impact a state’s economy, Louisiana offers the most telling test case. See here and here [links omitted] for Casey Luskin’s reporting on how that state’s tech and biotech industries have, in fact, boomed in the years since Louisiana passed the nation’s first academic freedom law back in 2008.

That’s pure coprolite. We’ve discussed Casey’s nonsensical claims (see Discovery Institute: The Seen and the Unseen).

There are several other goof-ball-isms in Klinghoffer’s article. You can read them for yourself if you’re so inclined. He ends with this, which may be the biggest goof-ball-ism of all:

If for no other reason than that I’m not stupid and I resent being told that I am, I think that if I lived in Colorado, I am ornery enough that I would reject the counsel of the National Center for Science Education and take a careful, not unsympathetic look at the idea of academic freedom.

Not much we can add to that. Anyway, the Discoveroids seem to be looking forward to a big year in creationist legislation. We’ll just have to see how it goes.

Copyright © 2013. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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9 responses to “Discovery Institute Sees a Big Year Ahead

  1. Hey, David Klankleklopper, resent this: you are stoopid!

    That’s why you can’t hold a job. That’s why your boss is Casey “Gerbil” Luskin!

  2. Kling appears to be tossing AiG and ICR out of the big tent of Intelligent Design, calling them creationists. Those clearly non-scientific, silly, young-earthers are purely religious, to paraphrase Kling’s verbiage. I can’t wait for Hambo’s response.

    However, if like Kling, one believes that life was originally “designed”, and existed on the earth for billions of years while evolving to its current form due to the ongoing tweaking of an intelligent designer, then one is not a creationist. In other words, it’s the time it requires to do the creating that distinguishes ID from Creationism. If it takes billions of years for the God/Designer to do his work, then it’s science – but if he does his work in a week or so, then it’s religion. Perhaps the DI should codify that into their academic freedom bills, and come up with a demarkation point (a million years, billion years, what?) to make sure that there is no confusion.

  3. “The theory of intelligent design holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection.”

    The solar system can best be explained by the sun and other planets orbiting the earth, ocean storms by posidon, lightning by zeus, a quarter under my pillow left by the tooth fairy, etc. Klinkhoffer and his creationists live in a fairy tale world, but too many people subscribe to their fairy tale world’s best description ideas.

  4. [i]In the immortal words of Bert Lance: “It’s like being called ugly by a frog.”[/i]

    I imagine that line has to sound great in a slow Georgia drawl… And by the way, kudos for managing to use “Bert Lance” and the phrase “immortal words” in the same sentence — I don’t think he gets too much respect these days.

  5. Colonel Klinkhoffer is a hoot, no doubt. An empty shell in search of a brain.

  6. Does anyone in DI have kids? I’d love to have there teacher begin teaching stork theory, or alien history. Just to see there own words of “academic freedom” thrown back in there faces as they complain.

  7. @DavidK – Please note that they do not tell us what that best explanation is, they only claim that there is a best explanation by an intelligent cause. They don’t describe a best explanation, not even a mediocre explanation.

  8. And I too remember those classes in high school, where questions were asked and we debated the answers. I fondly recall the one time in math class where the teacher asked what the answer of 7 x 9 was, and there much was discussion.

  9. Why, in a galaxy (let alone a universe) that HAS to have much more advanced life than our own, are the intelligent of us forced to stay here on this retarded mudball with religious dolts? Why don’t we have the option of a lift off of this trainwreck? As scientists, rationalists and academics we surely can’t be so disruptive and primitive that we aren’t welcome elsewhere?! Leave the religious morons to this planet – they’ll be overjoyed to start ‘armageddon’ deliberately with global warming.