Creationism and Marxism, Together at Last

From time to time we find a creationist article that makes us think: “This is the wildest, craziest, most ridiculous pile of [BLEEP] we’ve ever seen!” And so it is with what we found today in the Southern Times, a newspaper with offices in several countries in southern Africa. The title is Daring to invent a better future. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:

Among the people whose ideas have changed the world, Charles Darwin is right up there with the most influential characters to walk this Earth. From a very young age, most of us are taught the theory of evolution, and in many cases it is a subject that does not sit well with our upbringing on Creationism. [Sad, but true!] It is more than a little ironic that Darwin started out early adulthood with the intention of making a career in the church, but ended up setting out the theory that is more often than not is used to attack religion, the Divine spark and intelligent design.

Yeah, Darwin was a bad dude. Then the newspaper says:

Proponents of evolution parade their claims as cold, hard science and their root text is Darwin’s “The Origin of Species”. Few people are aware that the full title of the Darwin text that provides the basis for evolutionism is “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or, the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle of Life”. [Gasp!] Do we need to point out the racial, pseudo-scientific underpinnings of the theory?

The madness begins. As we said in Racism, Eugenics, and Darwin, that book’s title is often the only thing by Darwin the creationists ever read, and they mindlessly misinterpret it. Darwin, like his contemporaries, uses the terms “race,” “sub-species,” “variety,” and similar expressions interchangeably in connection with a great number of animals (dogs, horses, etc.) and also plants (flowers, cabbages, etc.), sometimes intermixing them in the same context. Aside from that, Origin of Species doesn’t even talk about the evolution of humans.

The article’s first blunder was a good one, and we’re just getting started. Next they tell us:

That said, among evolution’s highly unscientific and grossly unprovable premises is that at some point in the past, inorganic matter became living matter. To put it bluntly, the claim is that given enough time and the “right conditions”, a rock will one day sprout legs and walk, or grow fins and swim.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! We love this article! It continues:

But here’s the catch, inorganic matter stopped changing into organic matter at some point, and species stopped changing into different species at some point. [Yeah, it all just stopped!] This is something we are told to accept as scientific proof, but it really can only be accepted as an article of faith! [Faith? Egad!] All real scientific inquiry will tell you that a rock will never walk inasmuch as a dog will never become a cat. In short, evolution is a matter of faith rather than of science.

Wowie — evolution is insanity! Let’s read on:

So what’s the point? The point is something cannot evolve into an entirely new species. [Yeah!] Which is why the developing world has for many years now agonised about why the United Nations has not evolved into anything other than a club in which five countries have arrogated for themselves the right to tell more than 185 other countries how the world should be run.

We’ll skip all the UN bashing. Actually, that means skipping the rest of the article, but you can click over there and read it all if you want to. Here’s a taste of what we’re omitting:

Evolution is not going to spawn the United Nations that the oppressed people of the world are clamouring for. On the other hand, revolution has tended to birth new political species.

Phooey on evolution, hooray for revolution! The thing ends by quoting someone we never heard of, but Wikipedia has an article on him: Thomas Sankara. They say he was a “Marxist–Leninist and pan-Africanist,” who was President of Burkina Faso from 1983 to 1987. Well, good for him and for his lucky subjects. Anyway, here’s a quote from him that the newspaper thinks is important in this context:

“You cannot carry out fundamental change without a certain amount of madness. In this case, it comes from nonconformity, the courage to turn your back on the old formulas, the courage to invent the future. It took the madmen of yesterday for us to be able to act with extreme clarity today. I want to be one of those madmen. We must dare to invent the future.”

Or to put it in more familiar words: Creationists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your brains.

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14 responses to “Creationism and Marxism, Together at Last

  1. Michael Fugate

    Here’s my question to the free marketeers and Christians, why do almost all of the right wing think tanks in the US link the two together? My limited understanding of both economics and Christian theology can’t see the connection, but every single one of them links them. Seems like exceptionalism to me.

  2. I would not assume anything about wbat this writer believes, but they tell us that they are interested in how evolution explains a couple of things, so it seems fair to ask how they think that creation or intelligent design explains:
    1. How does creation or intelligent design account for rocks growing legs or fins, so that they walk or swim?
    2. How does creaton or intelligent design account for do dogs turning into cats?
    Evolution, of course, doesn’t say anything about changes like those. Yet the writer seems to think that it is a fault of evolution not to say anything about such, so, surely, the writer doesn’t fail in that way, and they can tell us about rocks and dogs and cats.

  3. Not that I like marxism (and especially its spin-off leninism, which is indistinguishable from stalinism, trotskism, maoism and the North-Korea misery, except for the question who should be in charge) more than anyone else here (social-democrats and anarchists were the first to be invited for Dzerzhinksy’s party at the Lubyanka Hotel) but I fail to see how the article connects creacrap to marxism.
    But connecting speciation to the UN and its Security Council is already quite an achievement.

  4. So since a cat will never become a dog is complete proof that the chrisANALs DO NOT believe their psychotic gawd is omni-anything.

  5. chris schilling

    “You cannot carry out fundamental change without a certain amount of madness.”

    That’s just what the horse said right before St Paul had his big conversion on the road to Damascus.

    Everything following on from that now made perfect sense to the artist formerly known as Saul.

  6. “You cannot carry out fundamental change without a certain amount of madness.”

    Never were truer words spoken. Mind you, the “certain amount” required is very great indeed. You also need a comprehensive ignorance of history and monumental hubris.

    The effects of fundamental change are very nearly invariably deplorable. The more fundamental, the more so. Reform, certainly, by all means. Often that is best accomplished by asserting the real fundamental values of the society, and showing how the reforms accord with them.

    But asserting that those fundamental values are just plain wrong, that they must be entirely replaced, and the whole structure must be torn down to the roots and remade according to some new set of rules that I have here – that’s madness. The results will be agony, misery and chaos to begin with, culminating in any expedient, any authority, that promises a remedy. In those events, the radicals who precipitated them will suffer worst of all.

    FrankB states, rightly, that it was the anarchists and social democrats who were the first to the torture chambers in Stalin’s Russia. The old Bolsheviks soon followed. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn records of his time in the gulag that there were many good Communists there who were certain that their condemnation was a mistake, a mere aberration; that certainly the Comrade Secretary did not know of it. It was no mistake. Far from being an aberration, it was inevitable, and Stalin knew with perfect certainty who and where they were and what was being done to them. Not as individuals, of course, but as a class of people that it was in his interest to liquidate.

    Propose fundamental change, promise radical means, and I don’t give a toss what direction it’s in, or what is actually proposed. Over my dead body. Better that, than life in the abomination that will result.

  7. @DaveL: “The effects of fundamental change are very nearly invariably deplorable.”
    Yup.

    “But asserting that those fundamental values are just plain wrong ,….. that’s madness.”
    Some of the prevailing fundamental values of our days are just plain wrong indeed, as the ongoing climate change and 6th mass extinction shows. We face a terrible dilemma: changing them and turning to madness or not changing them and heading for a catastrophe. I don’t have the answer.

    “The old Bolsheviks soon followed.”
    If about 15 years is “soon”, yes. It’s typical for terror systems: if one source is exhausted (like those social-democrats and anarchists) it looks for another. Marxism (including all its offspring), that has predicted a classless society, has failed. There are two simple reasons for this.

    1. Building a free, classless society via a dictature (of the proletariat) is an incoherent idea, as Bakunin already pointed out in 1871.
    2. State socialism with its detailed planning (a requirement in a dictature of the proletariat) doesn’t work. See the British economy up to 1979 for a democratic example.

    On top of this economic equality in former marxist countries was larger than in liberal-capitalist ones; nor did they better regarding environmental issues.

  8. Have I entered Bizzaro World? I agree with every word posted above. Who are you, and what have you done with FrankB?

  9. Michael Fugate

    Does this mean intelligent design doesn’t work in economics? Or do we need a more intelligent designer than us?

  10. As the advocates of ID have pointed out for centuries, there are limits to what design can do.

  11. FrankB is pessimistic about the chances that any governing system can work the way its proponents hope: “On top of this economic equality [typo for “inequality?] in former marxist countries was larger than in liberal-capitalist ones; nor did they better regarding environmental issues.”

    Probably the reason is evolution. We evolved as small-group animals organized hierarchically. The alphas had it pretty easy because they got first choice of food, shelter, and mating opportunities. The omegas lived in deprivation and constant peril of being eliminated from the gene pool.

    When a group grows beyond about 150 individuals, it divides. Among most primates the resulting subgroups remain separate. Among human beings the resulting smaller groups tend to form nested hierarchies and replicate the pecking-order structure on a larger scale, then repeat the process as the population grows further. Eventually the lowest caste find themselves at the bottom of several layers of individuals all of whom get to pick their food and mates ahead of them, and oppress them in many other ways as well.

    Whatever structure is devised to stabilize such a stack, it will eventually become top-heavy and excessively oppressive, and it will collapse.

  12. @DaveL: “Have I entered Bizzaro World?”
    No, but perhaps I have. I had given up hope that you would learn that there are more kinds of socialism than just marxism. Eg in the UK, well before Marx wrotes his books, there were Robert Owen and FD Maurice.

    @RetiredP: “FrankB is pessimistic about the chances that any governing system can ….”
    Not really, but I thoroughly suspect anyone or any movement that claims to embody the will of the people (or worse, the silent majority). It’s a specific anarchistic statement that nobody can represent anyone but him/herself.

    “When a group grows beyond about 150 individuals, it divides.”
    That’s a serious problem indeed, but all the more reason to suspect anyone in a position of power, whether in governments, in companies or in any other organization. That’s the big difference between our dear SC and me: I think “the unintended social benefits of companies’ self-interested actions” utterly naive. Hence I fail to see why Separation of Powers only should apply to the state and not to Shell and Walmart, which are essentially totalitarian organizations.

    You were right about my typo.

  13. @FrankB
    In re the varieties of socialism. It seems that a person who has been suggested for the Supreme Court of the USA may be considered a socialist of some sort.

  14. I repeat. although I grow weary of repeating: I am perfectly well with some varieties of what FrankB and others might regard as socialism of some kind. Once again, it depends upon definition. I have several times appealed for a working definintion – not even of what “socialism” absolutely means, but what the term means to the luminaries of our little circle here -, and have been summarily dismissed as a mere chop-logician and weaponiser of wordplay.

    But if you won’t say what you mean when you use a term, but the meaning is clearly somewhat divergent from the common definitions one finds in a dictionary such as: “a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.” (www.dictionary.com), then there’s no possibility of mutual understanding. If I can’t be allowed to know what you are actually advocating, how can I say whether I agree with you or not, and what exactly are our differences, if any? As a tactic for shutting down debate, it works perfectly, but is that what you intend?