Discoveroids: The Internet Is Mean to Us

We are being insulted, dear reader. Take a look at this thing Klinghoffer posted a couple of days ago at the Discoveroids’ creationist blog: Evolution’s Online Mob. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Megan McArdle at Bloomberg, reflecting on the James Damore story that’s already receding from memory, points out that “We Live in Fear of the Online Mobs.” Yes, we do:

Damore is the Google guy whose memo went viral and he got fired. Klinghoffer quotes extensively from that article. Here’s a wee bit of it:

I find myself in more and more conversations that sound as if we’re living in one of the later-stage Communist regimes. Not the ones that shot people, but the ones that discovered you didn’t need to shoot dissidents, as long as you could make them pariahs — no job, no apartment, no one willing to be seen talking to them in public.

The people I have these conversations with are terrified that something they say will inadvertently offend the self-appointed powers-that-be. They’re afraid that their email will be hacked, and stray snippets will make them the next one in the internet stocks. They’re worried that some opinion they hold now will unexpectedly be declared anathema, forcing them to issue a humiliating public recantation, or risk losing their friends and their livelihood.

Klinghoffer is clever enough to find something useful in that. He tells us:

She doesn’t mention self-censorship in biology and certain other design-relevant science fields. But the study of evolution obviously comes to mind. Because we’re in touch with some of them, we know how scientists who are skeptics on Darwinian theory maintain a studious, indeed fearful public silence to avoid coming to the attention of evolution’s online mob.

You are part of “evolution’s online mob,” dear reader. Klinghoffer continues:

As a friend points out, ID advocates and Darwin doubters were the canary in the coal mine. They were the first to experience the brunt of today’s version of informal yet highly effective free speech suppression in liberal academia. In theory, there’s perfect freedom of thought and research in biology. But take one step in the direction of heresy on evolution, and you are instantly rendered a “pariah,” with all that implies about your future career and other prospects.

We’re not sure, but the Time Cube may have been first. No, that appeared on the internet in 1997, a few years after the Discoveroids. And unlike the Time Cube, the Discoveroids were actually making some progress getting their nonsense into public schools — until the Kitzmiller case. Anyway, let’s read on:

As McArdle understands well, our precious online existence is key to the censor’s power to shame. Email, social media, and the Internet furnish amazing tools for keeping expressed opinions in line.

So why don’t creationists use the internet to do the same thing to those who understand and defend science? Actually, they do. There are probably more creationist websites than those defending science. And some of them — e.g., the Discoveroids and Hambo — have all the funds and staff they need at their disposal. Klinghoffer never addresses that issue. His post ends with this:

We must never stop reminding people that this is how evolution’s scientific “consensus” is maintained.

So that’s the Discoveroids’ latest excuse to their generous patrons. They’d be much further along, were it not for “evolution’s online mob.”

History tells us that an anti-science consensus was once maintained by institutions like the Inquisition, who tortured and killed anyone who dared to stray from approved religious teachings. In a few cases, like the Galileo affair, the heretic was “merely” forced to recant his scientific work and then kept under house arrest — for life — and his books were banned. Surely the internet is preferable.

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

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13 responses to “Discoveroids: The Internet Is Mean to Us

  1. Actually, Klingie, I never hesitate to remind people how evolution’s scientific consensus is maintained: it’s supported by an overwhelming amount of evidence.

  2. But there are plenty of media available to say what you want. And creationists make use of those media to say whatever without being censored. Television channels, books, and the internet.
    But they have not made use of those media to present an alternative explanation for the variety of life.
    There is no suggestion for the undeniable fact that the human body has its place in the taxonomy of life, as the closest neighbor to chimps and other apes. That all of the forms of life, including humans, are in a complex predictable nested hierarchy – that there is no known explanation for that which does not mention common descent with variation.
    It cannot be because of censorship.
    There are plenty of examples of negative complaints, but no one has shown how the world of life is in this particular pattern, rather than something else, without mentioning common descent with modification.

  3. Michael Fugate

    If I were working for DI or AiG and wrote a memo questioning the intelligence of my colleagues, claiming they were only hired to meet some organizational goal I thought stupid, I wonder what would happen to my job? Would they keep me around because they valued my “honesty”?

    I can see why DI might like McArdle; she seems to prefer hypotheticals over facts.

  4. Kankerwanker lies again:

    Because we’re in touch with some of them, we know how scientists who are skeptics on Darwinian theory maintain a studious, indeed fearful public silence to avoid coming to the attention of evolution’s online mob.

    Like Michael Behe, tenured professor at Lehigh University, writer of popular books, frequent public lecturer and star expert witness for the plaintiffs at Kitzmiller. (I think we can agree that Behe did more for the plaintiffs than he did for the defense.) And Jon-boy Wells and Little Billy Dembski, to name a couple of Tooter fellow travelers. Shaking in their boots, they are!

    Klinkerklanker’s story is just that – total fiction. The least worry of a “Darwin doubter” would be Twitter or a blog comment thread. They’d be sort of looking out for their job security first and foremost.

    False persecution is just one of the rusty tools in the Tooters bag of hammers and doorknobs. Strange, isn’t it, that the only professors who we actually know got terminated for their beliefs taught at Christian Bible colleges. Ironic that Klumperstumper never gives the actually persecuted a shout out.

  5. Michael Fugate

    What I don’t understand is why these guys are fighting science when they could easily absorb science into their theology and move on to more important things. They seem to believe their entire self-worth hinges on an accident of birth. If Adam weren’t a direct creation of God in God’s image, then humans are mere meat puppets and life is meaningless. The God or nihilism gambit.

    Damore’s argument boils down to much of the same.
    Males on average are better at some forms of mathematical thinking.
    I am a male.
    Therefore I am better than average.
    Or likely not.
    Even if he were, it is merely an accident of being born male and nothing else. Why spend your life being proud of something you had no part in? Hubris by definition? I far as I know the “American Dream” is not a guarantee.

  6. The Dover trial presents an example.
    Anti-evolutionists were given an opportunity to present their case. Indeed, there was some pre-trial boasting how it would be victory. Yet, for some reason, the supposedly great numbers of experts sympathetic to ID didn’t show up at the trial. (I have to mention that Behe followed up on his conviction and testified. I don’t know why any particular possible person chose not to appear. But there should have been some who have nothing to fear, with whoiare already well-known for their views. And there should have been people who are professors in Christian schools. How about some who
    have already retired from secular schools.)

  7. “In theory, there’s perfect freedom of thought and research in biology. But take one step in the direction of heresy on evolution, and you are instantly rendered a “pariah,” with all that implies about your future career and other prospects.”

    Can’t say that’s completely untrue not only for evolution but also for some other now commonly accepted ideas in biology, and indeed all of science, though no example is perfect. The prion (infectious protein, Mad-Cow Disease) comes to mind, as does the idea of catalytic RNA. BUT, and this is where science and ID/creation part ways, evidence eventually won. Overwhelming evidence backed by solid observation and experiment. The folks involved in these examples won Nobels. ID advocates, creationists never present evidence. Just whine, complain, redefine, lie…

  8. Regarding Dover, most of the Tooters backed out because the Thomas More Law Center representing the defendants said “no.” TMLC was looking out for their clients and the Tooters were only looking out for their own mangy hides.

    Stephen Meyer, in particular, was loathe to testify because he knows he’s all bluff and bluster, and doesn’t really know anything about anything. He would have been unmasked as a fool, as was Behe.

    Dembski backed out after witnessing Barbara Forrest’s devastating deposition prior to the trial. Dembski, too, knew that he was nothing but bluster and feathers, while Forrest had spent 30 years researching and documenting the creationist movement including “intelligent design” creationism.

    Dembski himself took a major credibility hit, going from zero-point-one to zero, after boasting that Darwinists would be “unmasked” by withering cross-examination. However, it was Ken Miller who came out of that looking pretty good and Behe who came out the fool, literally handing victory to the plaintiffs by declaring, in so many words, that “intelligent design” creationism was merely a supernatural god of the gaps argument.

  9. While the issue decided in the trial was that “god of the gaps” is religion, we can observe that it is all about “gaps”. it does not have anything positive to offer.
    Even if the anti-evolutionists had identified something which “scientific naturalism” couldn’t explain, the argument would remain negativism Given a chance to tell the court what they have to offer, once again they show that they have nothing to offer.
    If they complain that they would have something to offer, we see that when given a chance, they have shown that they do not.
    Just as when we see in all of the media that they have free access to, they have never offered an alternative to evolutionary biology.

  10. The Internet: Where Religion Goes To Die

  11. Michael Fugate

    I am wondering why the DI hasn’t condemned the decisions by Iraq and Turkey to drop evolution from the curriculum. I am sure there are other countries where it is excluded.

  12. As a friend points out, ID advocates and Darwin doubters were the canary in the coal mine. They were the first to experience the brunt of today’s version of informal yet highly effective free speech suppression in liberal academia. In theory, there’s perfect freedom of thought and research in biology. But take one step in the direction of heresy on evolution, and you are instantly rendered a “pariah,” with all that implies about your future career and other prospects.

    Academia isn’t kind to Galileo-doubters, either. Pure ideological tyranny!