Discoveroid Post Beyond Description


We’ve been tracking the rantings of the Discovery Institute for quite some time now, but today they posted what must be their all-time worst — in our humble opinion, of course. Imagine having a mile-high load of camel dung dumped on your home. That would be infinitely preferable to what we found today at the Discoveroids’ creationist blog.

Their ghastly ark-load of ordure is titled Darwinian Lysenkoism in America.

Let that title sink in for a moment. Roll it around in your mind. You know who Trofim Lysenko was. Wikipedia says:

Lysenko was a strong proponent of soft inheritance [Inheritance of acquired characteristics] and rejected Mendelian genetics in favor of pseudoscientific ideas termed Lysenkoism. … Lysenko did not believe that genes or DNA existed, and only spoke about them to say that they did not exist. …. Unable to silence Western critics, Lysenko tried to eliminate all dissent within the Soviet Union. Scientists who refused to renounce genetics found themselves at the mercy of the secret police. The lucky ones simply got dismissed from their posts and were left destitute. Hundreds if not thousands of others were rounded up and dumped into prisons or psychiatric hospitals.

The Discoveroid masterpiece about “Darwinian Lysenkoism” was written by Michael Egnor — that’s his write-up at the Encyclopedia of American Loons. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Lysenko opposed the Mendelian aspects of the modern Darwinist synthesis, but he embraced much of Darwin’s original theory, which has strong Lamarckian themes. The Soviet Union was quite sympathetic to Darwin’s theory, and in fact Marx and Engels embraced Darwinism enthusiastically.

Verily, dear reader, Egnor has produced something far beyond a Vesuvius of Vomit. It’s like a flash flood of feculence that would fill the Grand Canyon. Oh, if you need any rebuttal to that claim about Marx and Engels, see Marx, Stalin, and Darwin.

Now, just in case your brain is still intact, Egnor says:

Lysenko, good Communist that he was, endorsed a broadly Darwinian understanding of man.

Your Curmudgeon is utterly stumped for a response. There is no analogy, no expletive, nothing we can deploy that will even remotely do the job. But Egnor goes on. He tells us:

The real evil of Lysenkoism is that it was government-enforced science — state-sanctioned science that was exempted by law from criticism. Soviet scientists who questioned the favored theories were Expelled: they were stripped of their positions, driven out of the scientific community, and not infrequently consigned to labor camps and executed.

Egnor refers, of course, to the Discoveroid propaganda film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. Hey — if you think this Discoveroid essay has been bad so far, wait ’til you wee what comes next. The supernova of sewage continues:

Lysenkosim is the use of government power to enforce scientific orthodoxy. It is the use of courts and police power to exempt officially approved scientific theories from critique. Lysenkoism has flourished in America for decades. Questioning Darwinian orthodoxy in America will not merely get you in trouble with the scientific powers-that-be; in certain situations, it is a matter for the courts. See, A Reflection on the Dover Anniversary.

That link was to Egnor’s 2015 rant against Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District. He didn’t say it then, but now he’s claiming that Judge Jones’ triumph of judicial reasoning is an example of Lysenkosim.

Okay, that’s it! We’ve had enough. There’s more, but we’re stopping here. Click over there and read it all, if you like.

Copyright © 2018. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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13 responses to “Discoveroid Post Beyond Description

  1. Christine Janis

    Interesting article about Lysenkoism and “fake science” by Carl ZImmer (and possibly antidote to Egnor)

    View at

  2. Michael Fugate

    The DI is so comically pathetic. The problem is ideology controlling science not Marxism or “Darwinism” whatever that is. Franco did the same thing to Spanish science from the other side of the political spectrum. The problem is believing you possess the truth rather than remaining humble and looking for it.

  3. Egnor claims (my bolding>:

    As an illustration, junk DNA was historically a cornerstone of Darwinian science — the inference that most genomic DNA was evolutionary garbage accumulated over millions of years of undirected mutation and natural selection was considered a major piece of evidence supporting the Darwinian paradigm.

    Alas, Egnor doesn’t provide a source for his claim about this supposed “cornerstone”; can anyone here offer a citation?

  4. About government ordering what is to be taught about life in the USA.
    I’m not going to go into details, but the first case, I bllieve, is the
    1925 Tennessee monkey trial, where the state outlawed evolution
    and the latest court case was
    2005 Pennsylvania where the school board ordered the teachers

  5. Michael Fugate

    Isn’t that sort of like saying, Piltdown Man was historically a cornerstone of Darwinian science….

  6. GretaCyclamen

    Well I never! Egnor contributed copiously to comments on this article on Lysenkoism on Neurologica Blog over Christmas:

    He was obviously inspired to take up his pen.

  7. @GretaCyclamen
    Thank you!
    You avoid Lysenkoism by teaching the controversy, and by allowing open debate in schools and universities about scientific theories.
    A major impediment to doing that is the refusal of the fans of ID to describe what is supposed to happen when ID is involved.
    By any ordinary understanidn of desgin, design is not an explanation for the existence of anything.
    We know that Leonardo designed the “Mona Lisa”. But to answer the question “Why is there that smile on the Mona Lisa” it is no response to say “It is designed”. We know that Leonardo designed flying machines, yet he never produced one.
    What we see is self-censorship of the ID fandom. What, when, where, why, how, who?
    As far as I know, no one has suggested an alternative explanation to the tree of life: taxonomy. No one has suggested what happens so that the human body as its location as a nearest neighbor to chimps and other apes amoong living tings without mentioning common descent with modification. So what is there to discuss?

  8. Is there any difference between Lamarkian and Lysenkoism?
    My understanding is that they are both based on the idea of traits acquired during life which are then passed on to offspring.

  9. Michael Fugate

    Egnor throws out the term “irreducible complexity” as somehow a testable prediction of ID. No explanation – just two words – clearly no idea how science is done.
    Then again, if one looks at his publication record – it is merely descriptive – here’s what I saw when I cut open someone’s brain.

  10. I KNOW for a FACT that there is ALOT of inexpensive office space available in downtown VLADIVOSTOK Egnor. This is your BIG CHANCE TO HIT THE CREATIONISM JACKPOT. Don’t MISS OUT. RENT a spot now and uh, MOVE.

  11. “in our humble opinion of course”
    The title already justifies that opinion.

    “There is no analogy.”
    Oh yes, there is – an abundance. Take for instance the name German Democratic Republic – or Trump’s Healthcare.

  12. Michael Fugate

    In a related story showing that creationists do one thing well – lie. Ok two, lie and plagiarize.

    Volume 41, Issue 1, March 2017, Pages 29-31
    Darwin’s Body-Snatchers?
    John van Wyhe
    •For decades creationists have claimed that Charles Darwin sought the skulls of full-blooded Aboriginal Tasmanian people when only four were left alive.
    •It is said that Darwin letters survive which reveal this startling and distasteful truth.
    •Tracing these claims back to their origins, however, reveals a different, if not unfamiliar story.

    Apparently this story has been repeated by Ham. Good to know he checks his sources.
    Ken Ham, Don Batten and Carl Wieland, One blood: the biblical answer to racism. (Master Books, 1999), chapter 9 ‘Darwin’s body snatchers’.
    Daniel Jappah, Evolution: a grand monument to human stupidity. (Morrisville: Lulu, 2007).
    Ken Ham, A. Charles Ware, Todd A. Hillard, Darwin’s plantation: evolution’s racist roots (2007), p. 25.

  13. Wrong, MichaelF. Creacrappers excel at three things: lying, plagiarizing and quote mining.