The newest post at the Discovery Institute’s creationist blog is Tom Bethell’s Rebuke to Fellow Journalists: A Skeptical Look at Evolution Is Not Beyond Your Powers, written by Klinghoffer. He’s gushing like a schoolgirl over something written by Tom Bethell.
Although the Discoveroids publish his writing, and Wikipedia says Bethell advocates intelligent design along with other fringe ideas, he isn’t officially a Discoveroid — at least not yet. The last time we wrote about him was The Discoveroids’ Brilliant Question. Bethell’s question was whether there was even “one modern medical opinion that would be shown to be false if it were generally accepted that bodies are designed.” Before that we wrote Discovery Institute: Natural Selection Is a Fallacy (Bethell claims it’s a tautology).
The hot news today is that Bethell has written something new, and it thrills Klinghoffer. Here are some excerpts from his post, with bold font added by us for emphasis:
The popular media’s attitude on evolution mixes several elements: loathing for the large part of the public that doubts the Darwinian narrative, preening at its own (presumed) superiority in grasping science, and a fawning reverence for evolutionary biologists. Added to this is an unwillingness to weigh the evidence for themselves, offering the excuse that the experts must know best, so why bother?
Journalists have been known to behave like idiots on various issues, but their contempt for creationism isn’t one of those. Klinghoffer then says:
Veteran journalist Tom Bethell’s new book offers a marvelous implicit rebuke on each of these points, but on the last in particular. In Darwin’s House of Cards: A Journalist’s Odyssey Through the Darwin Debates [Amazon link], he records his own investigation of the evidence, including interviews with lions of science and philosophy such as Stephen Jay Gould, Richard Lewontin, Colin Patterson, and Karl Popper. Lo and behold, it’s not beyond the intellectual reach of a reporter to get to the bottom of the controversy and to estimate the plausibility of Darwin’s theory.
[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] How exciting! By the way, Amazon indicates that the book was published by the Discovery Institute Press — a powerful clue that it was rejected by all the non-vanity publishers.
Skipping some embarrassingly gushing paragraphs, Klinghoffer tells us:
He concludes that while confidence in the pillars of Darwinism — common descent and innovation through natural selection [Huh?] — hit their high-water mark at the celebration of the Origin of Species in 1959, the evidence has steadily and increasingly gone against the theory. The whole edifice rested on a 19th century faith in Progress, propped up by a dogmatic commitment to materialism. As the former falters, the whole structure is in danger of collapse.
Klinghoffer thinks that’s so important, he gives us a quote from Bethell’s book:
At the moment, I believe, the science of Darwinism amounts to little more than the “wedding” of materialism and Progress. We have seen that if materialism is true, then Darwinism — or something very much like it — must also be true. But materialism is highly improbable and has been widely challenged. At the same time it only takes one partner to break up a marriage, and as we know, Progress has wandered off the straight and narrow.
Yes, with all the evidence of supernatural phenomena, materialism is highly improbable. Klinghoffer continues:
Bethell’s own view of evolution is as a thoroughly unjustified extrapolation from meager evidence.
The vaunted fossil record is a mystery in evolutionary terms, with almost all known phyla having sprung into existence in a “twinkling” of perhaps five or six million years.
As time goes by, evolution explains less and less. Conundrums abound, and seem increasingly invulnerable to being solved — with any formula, that is, that excludes design.
We can’t take too much of this drivel, but here’s a little bit more:
Evolutionary science is in a depressed condition, despite all that the media do to put a bright face on the situation. They never tell you what biologists say behind closed doors, in their technical literature, or to a journalist with the temerity to ask difficult questions.
In fact, Darwin’s theory, of boundless novelty generated via stuff blindly swishing around together, fits few or none of the facts.
Okay, that’s enough. In conclusion, your Curmudgeon will make a bold prediction: The publication of Bethell’s book will be on the Discoveroids’ list of the Top Ten events for 2017. That means, dear reader, you have to hang around long enough to find out if we’re right.
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