Klinghoffer: ‘A Special Kind of Blindness’

It used to be fun to follow the antics of the Discovery Institute. For years, they were an amusing variation of the typical creationist website — carefully avoiding biblical references and referring to their deity as the “intelligent designer” — in the silly hope of slipping past the well-established barrier separating church and state so they could restore the teaching of creationism in public schools. We explained their motives and methods in Intelligent Design, the Great Incongruity.

But lately they’ve been drifting into incoherence, and it’s difficult to make any sense out of their posts. Well, their “science” never made any sense, but at least we knew what they were trying to accomplish. Now it’s difficult to understand what’s going on.

A good example of the Discovery Institute’s new style — if one can call it that — is the latest post at their creationist blog: On Human Fire Use, Anthropologists Miss the Point. It was written by David Klinghoffer, a Discoveroid “senior fellow” (i.e., flaming, full-blown creationist), who eagerly functions as their journalistic slasher and poo flinger. We’ll give you a few excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis.

If you follow popular and scholarly writing on anything to do with evolution, the massive gaps in what these people say, what they allow themselves to see, are unsurprising. At [What Are Our Best Clues To The Evolution Of Fire-Making?] [g]uess what gets left out?

What omission did the Discoveroids notice? Klinghoffer says:

If you’re been around the block with evolutionists, you’d likely predict: This will largely be about the timing of our primordial fire use. There will be comparisons with chimps. Nothing will be said about the remarkable set of circumstances – from chemical, to anatomical, to planetary – that make our use of fire possible in the first place and that biologist Michael Denton [a Discovery Institute “senior fellow”] identifies in his work. There will be nothing about how fire, the key to the rise of civilization and modern technology, gives every evidence of being intended, carefully planned, for our discovery.

[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] Those godless evolutionists don’t mention that fire was intended and planned for our use! How could they be so blind?

After that, Klinghoffer quotes from the godless evolutionist article which says that new evidence in human evolution is being announced at a “dizzying rate,” and he tells us:

What’s really dizzying is the consistency with which mainstream science blinkers itself to hard, factual evidence of design in nature.

Mainstream scientists are fools! Klinghoffer continues:

As [Discoveroid] Michael Denton explains in a brilliant monograph, Fire-Maker Book: How Humans Were Designed to Harness Fire and Transform Our Planet, and in an excellent video that summarizes his thinking [link omitted], we and the world we live in appear deliberately contrived to make the use of fire possible, by humans and only humans. The “path” to this development in our history was “already built into nature.”

[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] Then he quotes something about metallurgy written by Alfred Wallace, who is admired by the Discoveroids because he became a bull-blown mystic late in life — see Discoveroids Adopt Alfred Wallace as Godfather. After the Wallace quote, which doesn’t seem particularly relevant, Klinghoffer says:

Wallace was ahead of his time in, ultimately, arriving at a conclusion that anticipates the modern theory of intelligent design.

Yes, in his late-life descent into madness, Wallace anticipated the “modern theory of intelligent design.” Klinghoffer wraps it up with this:

To miss these things requires a special kind of blindness that seems to affect academics in our culture almost universally.

The only sense we can make out of posts like that is that they are somehow pleasing to the Discoveroids’ generous patrons — who provide them with about $5 million each year. If you, dear reader, can figure out any other reason for such material, perhaps you could enlighten us.

Copyright © 2017. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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16 responses to “Klinghoffer: ‘A Special Kind of Blindness’

  1. Christine Janis

    If a forest fire starts spontaneously, does it burn if there is no human to witness it?

  2. Richard Bond

    Fire is an inevitable consequence of the second law of thermodynamics: any source of free energy (such as wood) will tend to dissipate.

  3. For an audience in the UK, where this week news has been dominated by the appalling Grenfell tower fire, for which the only thing certain about the death toll is that it will rise, it would take a ‘special kind of blindness’ to read this tripe from Klinghoffer without vomiting.

    I can at least agree with the DI that the tower block certainly exhibits Design! What it may also exhibit–as it is beginning to appear was the case here–is the impact of reducing safety regulations, and giving priority to saving money over protecting life.

    Grenfell tower, designed in 1967, did not have to conform to EU standards as the UK was not a member at that time–and it was deemed that retro-fitting sprinklers (required for new builds) to existing structures would be an unacceptable burden on the public purse.

    And, as we well know, Klingy and Co. were very loud in their cheerleading last year for Brexit, in order to free the UK from the tyrannical shackles of &c &c and make the country safe for idiocy.

  4. Why would a researcher comment on whether or not fire was “intended” for humans? The NPR article was focused on ideas about when, where and maybe how humans first made use of fire. It doesn’t change the paper at all whether fire was intended or not. Humans, apparently, still had to figure it out.

    In any case, it clearly took humans a long time to adopt fire as a tool. If humans were designed to use fire from the beginning, the process should have been much shorter. Maybe instant – as soon as the designer poofed humans into existence.

  5. I appreciate any insight Klinghoffer has to offer on the subject of Fire, as I surely will be immersed in a lake of it before very long!

  6. I long to know what else the Discoveroids believe

    gives every evidence of being intended, carefully planned, for our discovery.

    Like maybe: gunpowder? Napalm? Zyklon-B? Sarin?

    Or maybe what things are “intended, carefully planned” for us not to discover? Maybe the Grand Ole Designer doesn’t intend for us to crack nuclear fusion on a commercial scale?

  7. Michael Fugate

    Isn’t it funny how many other cultures have fire-from-the-gods myths, but it isn’t any the OT? Why is that? Or does someone have a “fire” proof text that I missed?

  8. Silly Klinghoffer, we have divine evidence that Prometheus gave humans fire! That is a far sight better than the Christian deities, who did no such useful thing.

  9. Did he ever read ‘Bears discover fire’?

  10. Charles Deetz ;)

    Fire was created for use by humans? This is freakin nuts! And this is supposed to be a scientific idea? I have to read a WHOLE BOOK on the subject to understand why this is justified? Good freakin’ grief.

  11. Charles Deetz is dumbstruck by the Discoveroids’ latest claim:

    Fire was created for use by humans? This is freakin nuts!

    Their claim here is far more lunatic than you indicate here. Fire wasn’t simply “created” for our benefit, it was “created” in such a cunning fashion that it could only be discovered and used by “by humans and only humans”. If it had been too easy to discover, those damned monkeys would be burning down everything; too hard, and we’d all still be eating raw meat in chilly caves….

    Can anyone doubt that such Creationism is anything other than a severe psychological delusion worthy of inclusion in the DSM-5?

  12. sorry, meant “Fire wasn’t simply ‘created’ for our benefit”.

    O Great Hand of Correction, which was so cunningly created that only we dyslexics could discover Thee, I yet again humbly plead for Thy miraculous intervention!

    [*Voice from above*] As with fire, the keyboard was not intended for Neanderthals to use, so you stumble through a world which has passed you by.

  13. Rikki_Tikki_Taalik

    If only Intelligent Design was an actual scientific theory that could tell us anything about the who, what, where, or when concerning the design and it’s designer. You know, instead of being an transparently neutered apologetics program in a hijacked lab coat.

    One must do better, Klinklepooter.

  14. If ID were any sort of theory, or even if it had any positive content. Rather than just “something’s wrong with evolution”.

    If Copernicus had just said that there is something wrong with Ptolemy, he would be forgotten. What he did was propose an alternative.

  15. techreseller

    What was that you just said Mr. Klinglepooper? Excuse me, Klinghoffer? Why that is just plain bananas. You are aware of that are you not Mr. Klingepooper? You are not? Well dear me. I do not know what to say.

  16. So, the yellow star we orbit is a ball of fire created for our use. Mr. Hinkleklopper, why are there so many other “great balls of fire” in the universe that we CAN’t use?