November 20, 2012

Serious question for Jim Geraghty re: “The Nasty GOP?” [UPDATED: Jim responds]

Why is it that conservative “contempt” for many in the electorate is so often posited as a reason why the GOP loses, while progressive vituperation and outward contempt — indeed, widespread mockery — of conservatism doesn’t seem to cost them many votes and lead to a lot of naval-gazing about how their messaging?

One answer, naturally, is that the left, by way of the media and the academy and popular culture reinforce the caricature of conservatism, while treating the most vulgar attacks on conservatives and conservatism from the left as a necessary corrective to the right’s awful hateyness.

But let me posit another answer, one that operates in conjunction with the first to bring us to the point you describe in your column:  rather than being asked to fight back against the caricature, we’re consistently counseled to moderate our tone, massage our messaging, and sell ourselves in ways that the left can’t find offensive — to the point of scapegoating our own –even though the offense they take is largely feigned and mostly driven by rhetorical cynicism.

I’ve long detailed why I believe this is a faulty strategy provided you want to do more than merely win elections, creating the vicious cycle whereby even when you win you must do so by the left’s rules, and to keep power you most certainly can’t risk moving rightward, lest you open yourself up to charges of extremism (which, incidentally, is a state of being you already occupy by way of being to the right of progressives).  At which point you’ve managed a Pyrrhic victory — one that creates absolutely no mandate for serious change and merely protects the status quo of big government.

The only difference is the speed by which we move left. And the tax rates we pay while doing so.

At least, that’s what I argue.  I’m curious to hear your response.

****

update:  Jim offers a response, which I greatly appreciate.  Now to parse it for areas of agreement and disagreement:

Jeff Goldstein asks a couple questions in response to today’s piece, focusing upon, “Why doesn’t progressive contempt cost them many votes?”

First, are we so certain it doesn’t? Would anyone argue the Left’s constant mockery and sneering at rural America, and characterization of the South as a bunch of ignorant hicks, contribute to why Democrats usually run poorly in rural counties and in the South?

I suppose this is a fair point if we wish to bracket the fact that Democrats long ago gave up on such folks, and having been largely unsuccessful at buying them off or winning them over on substance,  feel it is safe to taunt them — that taunting of such a demographic helping to shore up their credibility with the soi dissant set, who ironically group identify based largely on a willingness to sneer at those who won’t vote for them or with them.  That is to say, this is less a chicken and egg question than it is a result of having first lost the demographic, then taking that loss and, by way of caricaturing those who rejected them electorally, winning the support of those already predisposed to believe in such caricatures.

Jim continues:

I wholeheartedly endorse Goldstein’s call to “fight back against the caricature.” But don’t conform to it, either. Part of the problem is that the Right has given the Left and its allies just enough examples to further those caricatures.

If the average voter is hearing from the Democrats that folks on the Right are racist, we cannot afford to have anyone associated with our causes advocating genuine racism (as opposed to the insane insistence that “golf” and “Chicago” are code words for racism). If the average voter is hearing from the Democrats that folks on the Right are ignorant, we cannot afford to have a Senate candidate justifying his position on abortion by completely misunderstanding Biology 101.

Here, we run into problems I’ve addressed before.  If we find actual racists on the right, then we should loudly and resoundingly reject them; if we find instances of candidates who believe dinosaurs roamed the earth 6000 years ago, we need to decide if that belief — as opposed to, say, the belief in seance or the healing power of crystals — precludes them from voting for conservative principles or being an effective legislator.  However, what Jim is citing specifically here, without mentioning it directly, is the idea that women who are raped are less likely to conceive — an assertion grounded at least partially in the idea that trauma / anxiety is often a detriment to successful pregnancies even among those who are actively trying to conceive.  As I wrote at the time, the answer to Todd Akin’s assertion was to query him on the dubious science and perhaps engage in an intellectual conversation that may have yielded a useful reversal on the matter — a sign that even social cons can learn, and aren’t the hidebound extremists they are often portrayed to be.  Too, a follow-up that went to the substance of the assertion — rather than one that played out as a game of Who on the Right Can Show The Most Outrage — would have had the positive effect of suggesting that the problem with soundbite politics is our tacit acceptance that, once the statement has been made and caught on tape, there is no way to expound on it, amplify it, discuss it in an intelligent way, etc., which is of course only the case if you listen to consultants and immediately issue your perfunctory apology.

Refuse to accept such conditions, insist upon your right to clarify, and apologize only for the misunderstanding of those in a hurry to make superficial condemnations for political purposes.

[...]

One of the frustrating and predictable responses to the piece was the characterization that I’m saying “be nice to Democrats” (which is not quite how Jeff describes it). No, I’m saying be “nice,” or at least respectful, to those who you want to persuade, or recruit into our movement, or vote for our candidate.

Point taken.  But we Hobbits and Visigoths and “purists” sometimes lack the social graces that many more pragmatic Republicans exhibit when trying to woo moderates and independents — and yet don’t seem to apply to the very base they count on to carry the often moderate nominee across the finish line.

That being said, Jim is talking about tone and rhetorical approach here, and I would answer that there is a time to be respectful and a time to be indignant.  Being respectful of those you are hoping to win over on the merits of your principles is one thing; being respectful to those who declare you racists and nativists is quite another.  We need to stop accepting that we’re always and forever consigned to the posture of defensiveness — and this begins politically by being willing to refuse to play in the left’s sandbox.  Reject the premises of questions. Point out the bias.  Romney ran by noting he would not go after the press. But it was exactly Newt Gingrich’s willingness to do so that for a moment propelled him into the lead in the primaries.

Of course, some of those folks may be Democrats at the moment, or have voted for Obama in 2008 or 2012. Do we want to persuade these folks or do we want to berate them? Do we want to demonstrate to them why our ideas and policies look better, or will we just feel better about ourselves if we dismiss them as hopelessly lazy and selfish and incapable of much better?

Want to win over votes in the Arab-American and Sikh community? Don’t use the term “raghead” and when someone does, loudly emphasize that it’s an un-American, un-Republican, and un-conservative thing to do.

Want to win over gays and lesbians and members of their families? Don’t compare their relationships to bestiality, and object when someone does.

Want to win over women? Don’t begin the discussion of the abortion issue by declaring that if you had your way, rape victims will carry their attacker’s child to term. Don’t begin your objection to a legal mandate to force religious institutions to  cover the cost of contraception by arguing that the primary problem is the promiscuous sex life of young women.

First, let me say that if you’ve voted for Obama twice, you are not interested in conservatism, and the persuasion you receive will come in the form of the proverbial mugging by reality.  As someone who espouses the benefits of liberty, the free market, individual autonomy, and the necessity of a stable rule of law nearly daily, I don’t think I have to defend having made positive, intellectual, and politically cogent arguments for classically liberal principles.

Having said that, the facts are what they are.  Not everyone who requires some form of government subsidy is lazy or useless, and I know of no conservatives or classical liberals who would make that case or would deny a social safety net for the truly needy.  Still, the instances of people gaming the system, of fraud, abuse, and the growing of entitlements and expanding welfare roles, is a very real, statistically provable thing.  And we shouldn’t run from that truth because it will offend those who, just because they are poorer, don’t of necessity get to lay claim to nobility. This is, again, a leftwing trope, a romantic nod to Rousseau’s noble savage, and it is a political expedient that requires us to avoid truth in order to save feelings.

The other examples are all straw men.  Those who compare homosexuality to bestiality, though they are outliers (and many may be Democrat voters, given how the black community seems to feel about homosexuality), don’t often do so to suggest that homosexual sex is akin to having relations with your bull terrier.  Rather, they bring up the example to suggest that gay marriage opens up all sort of legal issues — many of which are talked about openly by same-sex marriage proponents.  For instance, conservatives long ago brought up the arbitrary number of participants in a legitimate marriage as allowed by the state, noting that a redefinition of marriage may give rise to attempts to promote the legality of polyamory or polygamy.  And in fact, Jonathan Turley is  making that case now in the courts. And ironically, Peter Singer (and others) are beginning to broach the interspecies love that hitherto would not speak its name.

Interestingly, I find the kinds of question that go to consensual arrangements to be libertarian in bent — and I may be inclined to support such arrangements as polyamory among consenting adults were they merely given the status of civil contracts, and were steps taken to protect the children of such unions — but that’s not at issue here.  What is at issue is the role of the state in re-defining marriage.  As one of my late (and brilliant) readers would say, you don’t get to call a hamburger a carrot and then call yourself a vegetarian for eating only carrots.  Which is to say, the issue of gay marriage to some conservatives is not about homosexuality per se.  It’s about a fear of the courts and a tendency of judges to extend precedent beyond its immediate subject matter, and that potentiality is amplified by a definition of marriage that is broader and less specific than the traditional one.

On the question of winning over women, the pro-life position is what it is.  Followed to its natural intellectual conclusion, of course a committed pro-life advocate would declare that the “baby” is an innocent and shouldn’t be terminated as a result of the sin of the parent.   Knowing this, the media likes to draw out such extreme positions, and we in turn run from them — even when they appear in our Party platform.  And yet the real extremist position we can use to juxtapose against the suggestion that “rape baby” support is fringe crank kookiness is one held by the current President: that a baby who survives a botched abortion should not be given medical care.

I assume that, in addition to old white men, some women may come out strongly against infanticide.  But the case has to be made.  Just as the case has to be made that, even were Roe magically overturned, abortion isn’t outlawed. The question of what is or isn’t legal is then returned to the states.  That is, the abortion question has implications for more than merely social conservatives.  It has to do with bad law, federalism, and the tricky question of when life begins and who the law must necessarily protect.

The Lilly Ledbetter act did nothing to promote workplace pay equality; contraceptive rights are already established law; the “slut” comment was taken out of context intentionally and used cynically, and there is no way to guard against that in a soundbite culture other than to adopt the later Beckett aesthetic and just say nothing.

The GOP, because they spent so much time denying they hated women, didn’t take the time to sell women on liberty — instead opting to again fight for the demographic on the left’s terms alone.

Jim concludes:

Jeff seems to suggest that these sorts of rules — “don’t compare homosexuality to bestiality,” “don’t use the term ‘raghead’”, “don’t call women ‘sluts’” are some sort of liberal trap to cut off discussion and force us to have the debate on their terms. I think they’re just a basic reflection of how we ought to treat people, left, right and center. Dare I say, looking back over the tradition of Reagan and Buckley, this is a very conservative approach.

Well, Jeff suggests no such thing, aside from providing a caveat that there are rhetorical situations in which such constructions might prove very persuasive and useful (irony or parody or comedy or prosopopoeia being what they are), and so I of course wouldn’t preemptively rule out such phrasings as in and of themselves untoward.  Context is an aid here — and it is precisely what is often left out of the soundbite culture that I DO suggest forces us to have a debate on the left’s terms.

How we ought to treat people will often be determined by how they treat us.  After all, we only have so many cheeks and so much time to turn them.  And I need not remind Jim that while he’s looking back over the tradition of  Reagan  and Buckley, he might stop for a moment to consider “evil empire” and “listen you queer, stop calling me a crypto Nazi or I’ll sock you in the face, and you’ll stay plastered.”

To everything there is a season.  And we are not in the season, I submit, for getting into a bidding war over votes, or adopting a defeatest posture while we beg to have our arguments heard.

Instead, we need to beat back the gatekeepers who foil us, and if that requires calling them out forcibly, we need to be willing to do so. No matter that it might prove offputting to those who detest confrontation.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 10:46am
283 comments | Trackback

Comments (283)

  1. In his previous column Geraghty castigated the constitutionally conservative right — so presumably he knows they exist — for not lending their votes to the GOP.

    All “one percent” of them.

    It’s their right; every vote has to be earned, and surely a Romney presidency would have offered its own disappointments to the Libertarian worldview. But it may be a continuing liability for the GOP that roughly one percent of the electorate believes strongly in limited government, but votes in a way that does not empower the GOP to do anything to limit that government.

    Too many obvious falsehoods to debunk, there. Jim.

    Including you wishing spinelessness from an insignificant minority, who, even by your dim lights, are not spineless, that being the fucking point.

    But: How can the socialist-activist GOP possibly help limited government types insisting on passivity from the Collective State if they won’t help the GOP? Goes the bullshit.

  2. Everyone knows that the best way to let your daughter’s boyfriend know that he’s dead if he touches her is to have your daughter tell him for you!

    “Tell him I’ve got a shotgun for him if he touches you.”

    “He says if you touch me you get to ride in the front seat!”

  3. Wow. We lost Geraghty.

  4. - Its the new smart. If you can’t beat them, outbid them!

  5. - On a similar note, but in the other parties lounge, I watched a seminar on ME policy on Cspan, from the Woodrow Wilson international center for scholars.

    - There was somew inciteful comments from all the panel members but one comment caught my ear by a fellow named Mahwah.

    - In essense he was asked about Obama’s ability to deal with the current crisas in Gaza, and he said he did not think Obama was prepared to deal with it at all, and did not have a clue as to what to do about it, but moreover, he would fail badly in influencing a positive outcome if he tried to approach a resolution based on picking winners and losers, or trying to inpose Democratic Liberal governance on the ME countries in general.

    - Which says that whatever the Left has been able to accomplish in America with the “narrative”, the ME isn’t buying it at all.

    - He said that if Obama insists on pursuing that approacjh America will simply continue to lose influence and power to resolve issues in the region.

    - All the panelists mentioned how surprised everyone of the foreign leaders are at what a hawk Obama has tirned out to be, particularly with respect to Afghanistan and the Clone wars. Apparently to date more than 6000 militants ahve been killed by clobes, and three times that many have been seiously crippled.

    - So much for the “peace president”, which raises the qiestion, where the hell are all the peaceniks, and Sheehan, etc. Once again the Left shows its hypocricies.

  6. The reason is pretty obvious, which is, coincidentally, why it may not occur to you. The Republicans seem very happy leaving the impression that:

    * Brown people who are police and fire fighters are an aberration, because most of them are benefit mooching criminals

    * It’s perfectly reasonable, a benefit to the nation, and a good use of tax dollars, to deport someone who’s been here for 10 years. This is reasonable even if they’re a kid, who doesn’t even remember their birth country and may not be fluent in the language there.

    * Women who use birth control are probably sluts.

    * If you’re going to have women in the work place, you need to make accommodations so they can hustle home and cook dinner for the family

    * If an employer is concerned that employees will use their salary or benefits for something the employer doesn’t approve of, they should be able to do something about that. Elsewise, the religious liberty hath been trampled upon.

    * Global warming isn’t real. We’re not causing it.

    * Fossil fuel = good. Renewable = bad.

    * If we just opened up drilling, we could stop importing oil.

    * Still not 100% sure Obama’s a US citizen.

    * The government really needs to be involved in issues like abortion. Don’t let people make these choices

    * Traditional marriage needs to be defended against gay marriage (although no one really says how letting gays marry interferes with straights marrying)

    * Evolution is “just a theory” (said with a straight face by people who claim to know something about science. And other (non scientific) theories hypothesis should be taught alongside of it.

    The list goes on and on. So who do Democrats denigrate and mock. Mainly just people who believe the above. Does it cost them anything? Well, it costs them the entire South, and a swath up through Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, etc. But winning Georgia by a wider and wider margin doesn’t really help the Republicans. They need to win new states. And more and more people in places like Colorado recognize that positions like those above are just laughably stupid.

    Now all that is plenty good enough from the perspective of a liberal Democrat like me, but it gets even better. The thing I’m increasingly hearing from people like Jeff is that if the Republicans soften on the stupid shit, there’s nothing left. They just become Democrat Lite – the Republicans have no compelling value proposition for the American people outside of increasingly losing issues like those above.

    Let that thought detonate in your mind for a minute.

    There’s an unwillingness to let go of the issues above because no one knows what would replace them. Which is great. Hanging on to those issues will keep people in the Republican party from asking what the Republicans have as a compelling offer to the American public. And from where I sit, that’s a beautiful thing.

  7. * Fossil fuel = good. Renewable = bad.

    what good is “renewable” energy source when it needs a back up provided by fossil fuel?

  8. What really makes me nauseous is the comment thread to that tripe. Either it’s infiltrated with liberals, or we really are doomed. 2/3 actually agree with the column.

  9. Let’s begin with your first misrepresentation, slipperydick: “The Republicans seem very happy leaving the impression[...]“. This is, of course, nonsense. What is true is that the progressives, as they must, have to caricature their opponents in order to demonize them, and are therefore the authors, facilitators, and reinforcers — through media, pop culture, and the academy — of the “impressions” they wish to leave, perception, to the left, being the same as reality. (This often works, by the way, until reality refuses to play along and collapses the whole house of rhetorical cards).

    Once we establish the fact that it is the left creating the impression by building straw men to rail against, the rest of what you have to say becomes mindless accoutrement, the babble of a useful idiot so tied up in his own biases and hatreds that he can’t see how he’s committing suicide.

    As proof of this, just quickly glance at your examples, none of which are accurate representations of what conservatives believe, save perhaps for the global warming bit (which incidentally is now “climate change,” because the warming argument was failing); and the truism that evolution is just a theory, scientifically speaking, because it isn’t falsifiable.

    It is boors like you who are awash in progressive propaganda and who don’t bother to understand conservative arguments — or rather, you do, but it’s easier to mock the strawmen than take on any of the actual arguments, and you are inherently lazy and entitled and filled with a self-esteem you haven’t earned and convinced of a brilliance you simply don’t possess — who do the very work which will in the end bring nothing but misery, if history is any guide.

    Which of course it isn’t, because YOUR generation of wannabe liberal fascists are unique and special snowflakes who can somehow make the Utopian dream work.

    Here’s a challenge to you, slipperydick: pick one of your bullet points above and agree to engage in an actual debate on the issue of your choosing, one in which you are met with the actual conservative / classical liberal argument rather than the caricaturish version you cling to to make yourself feel morally superior, even as you advocate for government theft and the robbery of our natural rights.

    I wonder how long you can last until you fall back on the triumvirate of “racist, sexist, homophobe”.

    As for this –

    The thing I’m increasingly hearing from people like Jeff is that if the Republicans soften on the stupid shit, there’s nothing left. They just become Democrat Lite – the Republicans have no compelling value proposition for the American people outside of increasingly losing issues like those above.

    – the problem seems to be that you can listen to Jimmy, but you can’t really hear Jimmy.

  10. This is, of course, nonsense. What is true is that the progressives, as they must, have to caricature their opponents in order to demonize them, and are therefore the authors, facilitators, and reinforcers — through media, pop culture, and the academy — of the “impressions” they wish to leave, perception, to the left, being the same as reality.

    Which, ironically, is exactly what slipperyslope did by listing those bullet points.

  11. I Callahan –

    NR has become a house organ of the GOP establishment, with a few exceptions.

  12. Not ironically on purpose, though. He lacks the self awareness.

    But it is a situational irony, I’ll grant you that.

  13. It’s little wonder the left slowly abandons its use of Liberal as a self-applied moniker though, since the more perceptive among them realize the disconnect between their policy preferences and the sense of liberty is so stark. The dullards among them, on the other hand, are necessarily slow to catch on. Forward!

  14. Oh Jeff, I’ve done it here many times. So much so that I could play both sides of the argument. But I do love the fact that you’re happy – chomping at the bit really – to argue against allowing gays to marry, that some alternative to evolution be taught in science classes, and that AGW isn’t real.

    We could have the argument, but we both know where it would end up. Rather, let me cut to the chase. On each of those issues, what evidence would you need to see to cause you to change your mind?

  15. - slipperyslope, the problem at the core of the entirety of the Lefts “reasons” for anything and everything it supports is that there is no “reason” in any of it, other than the childs imperious thinking that “I want it”.

    - Every issue is miscast, and every idea is “feel good”, over simplistic, and tortures the language to the point that all meaningful communications is lost.

    - In what ways the Republicans react to the patent childishness of the Left has no bearing on the lazy thinking, junk science, and rationalization the Left itself practices, nor does pointing out the weak minded thinking on the part of the GOP speak to the enptyness of the Lefts entire agenda.

    - But thanks for playing.

  16. The real problem with Romney’s remarks is that they’re the truth.

    Oh, and look who drops the race card! The troll. How surprising.

  17. Oh Jeff, I’ve done it here many times. So much so that I could play both sides of the argument. But I do love the fact that you’re happy – chomping at the bit really – to argue against allowing gays to marry, that some alternative to evolution be taught in science classes, and that AGW isn’t real.

    We could have the argument, but we both know where it would end up. Rather, let me cut to the chase. On each of those issues, what evidence would you need to see to cause you to change your mind?

    So does that mean no, you won’t argue against actual positions, but rather wish to suggest that you already have (I assert, therefore I am!), dismiss the challenge, continue taking comfort in the strawman you keep tucked away for your self-esteem, and then, with a sneer you hope protects you, sneak off, only to return later with more hit-and-run bullshit?

    I called you out. Others here will happily engage as well, I’m sure. So. What’s it going to be? It’s put up or shut up time.

  18. Oh, the “I’ve already won, and I don’t want to hurt you byu doing it again, so I won’t debate you” bit is just darling!

    So precocious. So clever! You’ll be a force to be reckoned with when you make the high school debate team, Champ.

  19. So shut up it is, then.

    That’s what I thought you’d choose.

  20. “Slipperyslope” – under what names have you made the arguments you claim to have made?

  21. “Renewable = bad”

    Renewable energy doesn’t suck because it is morally evil.

    It sucks because it is a poor inefficient, unreliable, expensive, and unsuitable technology for our (and your ) energy needs. Depending on poor energy sources makes us all poorer and weaker. Assigning artificial costs to good energy sources (nuclear and fossil right now) also makes us poorer and weaker.

    If there was any good renewable source energy that was cheap and plentiful and easy we’d love it. But there isn’t. And there isn’t one close at hand that we can grow into it either. Solar is weak and fragile. Wind is weak, fragile, and often dead due to no wind. Water kills fish in rivers. Geothermal doesn’t work unless you have steam nearby. Differential engines (like stirling pump engines) are weak. Biodiesel is expensive to produce AND works like fossil fuel in terms of pollutants and we don’t have enough of it. Nuclear power terrifies timid idiots. Corn as a gas additive wears on engines, lowers fuel efficiency, raises animal feed prices boosting all food prices, and is expensive to produce. Fuel Cell isn’t ready for prime time. Electricity and good batteries/super capacitors has to come from a power plant that can’t be a nuke, so necessitates consumption of fossil fuels and is less efficient than simply using fossil fuels in a vehicles.

    Nothing actually competes with fossil fuels right now. Renewable energy is objectively bad because the state of technology is bad and forcing a switchover and subsidizing it and making fossil sources of fuel is very unlikely to bootstrap an advance that will make renewables viable as a replacement.

    The only tolerable alternative renewable energy source is nuclear power and that is so stigmatized as to have become a legendary devil.

    This kind of scientific ignorance (and in the case of AGW deceit) is what makes the left’s claim that it is on the side of “science” so laughable.

  22. If there was any good renewable source energy that was cheap and plentiful and easy we’d love it. But there isn’t.

    Actually, there is one that’s emission free and the greenies despise it. It’s working pretty well for France, though.

  23. ” * Women who use birth control are probably sluts. ”

    Women who use $3000 of birth control in two years, when birth control is around $9 a month, and who want other people to pay a portion of the $3000 as part of insurance premiums, while these women are going to an expensive catholic law school, just to prove that birth control (which is around $9 a month) is avaible, are shills.

  24. “* Brown people who are police and fire fighters are an aberration, because most of them are benefit mooching criminals”

    I see you that made up nonsense and raise you with a true one from your side:

    *Brown/black congressmen, secretaries of state, actresses, mayors, former pizza restaurant chain executives running for a primery, etc. who don’t tow the democrat line are corrupt/deluded race traitors.

  25. I would like to read where “slipperyslope” made those arguments, but a search for same yields no results to support its claim.

  26. A lot of people voted for Romney that otherwise would not have, because they knew the election was of critical importance. The GOP also claimed the election was critically important.

    Evidently, the GOP didn’t even believe their own press.

  27. “* Global warming isn’t real. We’re not causing it.”

    The global warming science is based on consensus from people who cooked the consensus and the experimental evidence for it is awful. It got so bad that the term AGW became Climate Change which is not an actual prediction. Computer modeling of proposed feedback mechanism fails to predict any real effects. Studies of polar ice shrinking are quietly walked back as unsubstantiated or inconclusive. The proposed remedy is a huge tax that makes everybody poorer except those who collect it and use it to seek legal injunctions, damages, seizure or land, and other authoritarian nonsense without ever showing a consistent warming trend without excessive manipulation or tying it to any man made agency and suppressing research into whether the solar variation might play a much more dominant role in climate than any man made activity.

  28. - They also have a talent of drawing crowds of 12 people to hear them speak on why others should be expected to pay for their lifesryle expenses.

    - Appaewntly even their “susters” in the regressive movement weren’t too thrilled with that idea.

  29. “* The government really needs to be involved in issues like abortion. Don’t let people make these choices”

    It’s actually a federal government vs. state government issue and always has been. Now It’s about federal subsidy and unfunded mandates that others subsidize it.

  30. What is true is that the progressives, as they must, have to caricature their opponents in order to demonize them, and are therefore the authors, facilitators, and reinforcers — through media, pop culture, and the academy — of the “impressions” they wish to leave,

    It’s exactly the same impulse that motivated whites back in the day to demonize blacks. The whites liked to think of themselves as industrious, therefore blacks were lazy. The whites fancied themselves as clean and orderly, therefore blacks were filthy and messy. The whites needed to see themselves as moral, therefore blacks were thieves and oversexed maniacs.

    None of the demonization of blacks was predicated on what blacks actually did or who they actually were: it was all about the whites’ moral vanity.

    Wasn’t it?

    Learn to recognize patterns, slippery, and learn to self-examine. The Left fancies itself compassionate, therefore the Right is selfish and cold-hearted. The Left needs to see itself as enlightened, therefore the Right is full of ignernt rednecks. The Left wants to see itself as tolerant and open-minded, therefore the Right is full of biggits and Church Ladies.

    Ask yourself, slip: why do you self-identify as left-of-center? Because you’re not a moron? Because you’re tolerant and compassionate? Because you’re not a racist? Because you’re not greedy and judgmental?

    On the other hand, if you ask people why they self-identify as conservative, they’ll cite a belief in limited government, the Constitution, Enlightenment ideals, liberty, and the free market.

    Notice how the right describes itself in terms of Theory of Governance, whereas the Left just rattles of their personal virtues?

    No red flag there? None at all?

    But of course, why would you notice it? Self-examination is painful and complicated and you might have to recognize that the world isn’t so easily divided into Good and Evil, that the people you hold in contempt might possess virtues that you do not, or that you have darker impulses and motives than you’d like to admit.

    So turn over and go back to sleep. Smugness is cozy enough for the arrogant and simple-minded.

  31. “The global warming science is based on consensus from people who cooked the consensus and the experimental evidence for it is awful.”

    When I say that the consensus was cooked I mean that efforts were made to exclude and marginalize any dissenting voices and it was suggested that there should be career ending punishments for supporting or doing dissenting research. Attempts were made to control the literature peer approval process of scientific journals and e-mails discussing their tactics were released to the public.

  32. Something about “. . . are benefit mooching criminals . . .” is utterly unintelligible to cogent interpretation — like the phrase is in need of a missing preposition or other to resolve the number conflict — hence I wonder how you supply what’s in want paleo?

  33. palaeomerus, abortion is, arguably, subsidized racism, considering the disproportionate effect abortion has on minorities.

  34. BTW, I scattered some comments in Geraghty’s thread, for all the good it will do. It’s sad to see so many who are willing to agree that they need to stop burning the peas in exchange for fewer beatings.

  35. I think I’ve demolished more than my share of slippery’s silly little agitprop crap-wall.

    Or maybe I just hogged the low hanging fruit.

    Whichever.

  36. “Blake says November 20, 2012 at 12:53 pm
    palaeomerus, abortion is, arguably, subsidized racism, considering the disproportionate effect abortion has on minorities.”

    Margaret Sanger said publicly and explicitly that she saw that as it’s primary virtue.

  37. Attempts were made to control the literature peer approval process

    Attempts were successful. People don’t understand how few people it takes to skew things this badly, especially when the raw data is controlled by only a few sources: NASA-GISS, East Anglia, and maybe one more.

    Thermometer arrays and satellites are expensive. Universities can’t afford them, especially when another uni or organization already has one.

  38. it’s primary virtue -> its primary virtue.

    Yes I did the pronoun possessive as if it were a contraction of “it is”.
    I grammatically shot the sheriff but I did not shoot the deputy.

  39. palaeomerus, slippery is pretty much all low hanging fruit. Slippery’s talking points have all the intellectual heft of a John Grisham novel.

  40. *Brown/black congressmen, secretaries of state, actresses, mayors, former pizza restaurant chain executives running for a primery, etc. who don’t tow the democrat line are corrupt/deluded race traitors.

    You neglect to mention that brown female US reps to the UN can’t be questioned because they are brown and female, and those poor types have to be held to a much lower standard to protect their fragile sensibilities and lesser intelligence.

  41. My point was, outside of defending losing issues, the modern Republican party seems unable to think of anything to offer the electorate. The response here, so far, has been to defend such issues. In fact, your retort was, “Let’s argue them!” Which does, in fact, prove my point.

    So with that out of the way, sure Jeff, let’s start with teaching evolution in public schools and work our way out from there.

  42. “Something about “. . . are benefit mooching criminals . . .” is utterly unintelligible to cogent interpretation — like the phrase is in need of a missing preposition or other to resolve the number conflict — hence I wonder how you supply what’s in want paleo? ”

    He said that he thinks that republicans are okay with democrats assuming that republicans hate brown firemen and cops and consider them criminals who mooch benefits. I assume that at heart that’s about us supposedly:

    1.) not liking non white races
    2.) not liking them being in civil service or positions of local authority
    3.) not liking them being payed well or receiving good benefits
    4.) assuming that hey must be corrupt, abusive, incompetent, and nepotistic types thus “criminal”
    5.) probably disliking them being in public sector unions

    Cogent or not that’s what I assume he meant.

    He”cunningly” phrased it in such a way that in his portrayal republicans actively leave the impression for him to innocently and in good faith gather, rather than a more likely scenario where he generates and attempts to advance and reinforce a broad brush cartoonish composite slander that serves his political interests and suits his prejudices.

  43. “My point was, outside of defending losing issues, the modern Republican party seems unable to think of anything to offer the electorate. ”

    Oh is THAT were the goal posts have wandered off to now?

  44. palaeo, if you read what I said, you’ll see that’s what I said. I know, a high bar, and yet I set it before you anyways.

  45. slippery, what makes you think the modern GOP has any real interest in defending any conservative values?

    You are starting from a false premise, you idiot.

    The GOP, as it is currently constituted, has absolutely no interest in conservative values. The GOP is interested in maintaining institutional control and power. The real selling point of the GOP is “we’re not quite as statist as the Democrats” which is an obvious lie, but no matter.

  46. the modern Republican party seems unable to think of anything to offer the electorate

    In terms of what?

    Junkies ALWAYS resist efforts to get the monkey off their backs until they hit bottom (and often not even then). We’re telling the populace that they’ve got an addiction problem, and the populace doesn’t want to hear it.

    So, what? We should offer cheaper crack? Groovier pipes? Better weed?

    What?

  47. You clearly don’t have any high bars to set before anyone slippery. Just tripe.

  48. I was just looking for the word or words you supplied to insert in his sentence to make the sentence itself make sense as a sentence — apart from his insubstantial assertions — but thanks for the expansion anyhow.

  49. the modern Republican party seems unable to think of anything to offer the electorate.

    keeping more of the money you earned is a start

  50. - If Black Americans as a group ever decides that self-determination and true civil liberties are more important than free phones, the Left will become just a cipher in the history of politics.

  51. “newrouter says November 20, 2012 at 1:13 pm
    the modern Republican party seems unable to think of anything to offer the electorate.
    keeping more of the money you earned is a start”

    Nope. Boehner’s already talking about reaching a deal. He said republicans not conservatives.

  52. But seriously, slip, you ought to grapple with Jeff’s primary objection to your statements, and that is that your characterization of the right has more to do with moral vanity than with reality.

    To start, you might want to articulate the reasons why you are on the Left. See if you can do it without self-congratulation.

  53. My point was, outside of defending losing issues, the modern Republican party seems unable to think of anything to offer the electorate. The response here, so far, has been to defend such issues. In fact, your retort was, “Let’s argue them!” Which does, in fact, prove my point.

    No. It just “proves” that some of us are capable of walking and chewing gum at the same time we beat down faulty arguments from phony concern trolls.

    You assigned to us certain faulty assertions. That we’ve determined to correct you on those doesn’t mean we have nothing to offer but corrections to your intentional and cynical attempts to place us constantly on the defensive. In fact we do, and it begins with the very idea of promoting natural rights, individual autonomy, and a return to the blueprint that protects all those things from would-be tyrants, the Constitution. Among other offerings.

    So now its on to pulling apart your puerile agitprop one argument at a time, in the order of your choosing. You chose “teaching evolution in public schools.” Fine. Very few conservatives or classical liberals, including social conservatives, disagree with the teaching of evolution. What they disagree with is the teaching of evolution (Darwinian) to the exclusion of other scientific theories explaining the origins of the species, from crystal formations and chemical reactions to intelligent design.

    Note two things, as you read the following: first, the distinction is drawn between Darwinian evolution as a description of adaptation, survival of the fittest, etc., and attempts made by secularists to suggest that Darwinian evolution has any kind of impact on questions of first causes (separating out science and philosophy for purposes of teaching what comes to count as the scientific method by juxtaposition); and that secondly, many of those taking the opposite approach to mine are in fact conservatives and libertarians, putting the lie to your cartoonish characterizations that conservatives are all lockstep, “anti-science” dullards.

    Next!

  54. NR has become a house organ of the GOP establishment, with a few exceptions.

    One of those exceptions is now a former NR contributor. Sadly so.

    Paleo, you cannot win arguing with slipperydick. He/she will continue to assert that “I won” and anything you say will be in direct contradiction to observed reality, which means you’re a racist, homophobic RethugliKKKan. And goalposts never get moved. They were always where they are now and shut up, racist.

  55. I have contempt for a large portion of the electorate because a large portion of the electorate is eminently contemptible. The “Occupy” assholes, to start with. And SEIU and their commie cronies. And the AFL/CIO, and the entire population of NYC…

    What’s unreasonable?

  56. - This is just too easy, but then debating with children generally is.

    - I’m still waiting for some Progressive to ecplain the total silence from the “oh-so-caring” party in view of Jug ears Atilla the hun hawkisness, and why NO ONE on their side has said a word about his total betrayal of all the promises he made concerning the war to get elected.

    - Originally that was their main, and only reasonably thought out issue, and now they’ve abandoned even that without so much as a peep.

    *crickets*

  57. Okay, you guys take over for a bit. I need a nap.

  58. Doing the right thing (no pun intended) is not always doing the popular thing.

    I’ll grant slippery the point for his fellow winning the election. Have fun with that. I’m done with the hand-wringers trying to trying figure out what we did ‘wrong.’ It doesn’t matter. It won’t ever matter since no matter what we do, even if it were exactly what the dems do, it would be wrong because we were doing it. And doing it a racist, sexist, homophobic sort of a way.

    I’m done with it. Ponce around telling us ‘We won! Neener neener!’ until you get tired of the lack of response because we still have families to raise and lives to live beyond politics.

    If you want to live your life as a pander bear, knock yourself out.

  59. the primaries were pretty nasty mitt and cain had obscene hardons primed for spit roasting some illegals

    perry tried desperately to work up a two-minute hate on gay soldiers

    and the pelosi-besotted newt had severe emotional issues with venture capital

    meanwhile bachmann invented tardasil

    And santorum… oh my goodness

  60. - Adolph’s Socialist party won also, and look how well that turned out.

    - If ypu’ve ever wondered how a large segment of a society could be so completely mesmerized and hoodwinked by a cult of perdonality figure, you now have your answer.

  61. So, I re-upped my subscription to Ricochet early to get a year’s free digital subscription to National Review because… ?

    Ah, well.

  62. We have a deep bench, unlike the opposition.

  63. BBH, I was under the impression that a Cult of Personality was actually headed by someone who had a personality.

    BO doesn’t even know who he is as a human being. What does that say about his mindless followers? Nothing good, that’s for sure.

  64. that’s only cause christie sat on it

  65. - Yes, but apparently they’ll always have Twinkies and Dew Leigh.

  66. Heh. Christie should come out of the closet as a dem anytime soon.

  67. How long until everyone has to take their Soma™?

  68. - Cults of personality are “erected”, and have nothing to do with reality. Just like the Lefts “narrative”. There’s a rreson the Progressives are so closely aligned with CommieWood.

    - Nothing they say “means” anything. Just like their refusal to say a word about their war mongering idol. It was never about the war, it was about fear of the draft. Everything they say they stand for is pure agitprop bullshit.

  69. Leigh, they won’t be able to mass distribute mind altering pharmaceuticals in 25 years. There is no one to catch us when we go full Euro-tard. Huxely’s calm, emotionless, sexless forever mall is simply not something an incompetently administered play-radical fabian command economy can manage. Your soma will be smuggled pulque and patch shine made from corn mash or some kind of tater gin (really dirty vodka). If you get lucky you might find one those toads that has the hallucinogen on its back every now and then.

  70. “Slipperyslope” – that is a tacit acknowledgement that you have never laid out your principled arguments for those position, under any of the many names you have used?

    Goalposts are heavy. Don’t you ever get tired?

  71. Jeff, evolution is a study of changes in inherited characteristics in populations over generations. On of the things it explains is diversity of species. Evolution is not a study of how life began. Something that middle schoolers with a good science curriculum learn every year in the US and around the world.

    You then go on to say, in the little ditty you linked to, “ID and evolution do not necessarily contradict one another, and that—if evolution is taught properly—the controversy itself disappears,” which is patently false. In the case of differentiation of species, evolution is the best explanation for observed phenomena. ID is not. It’s not even close to a robust, experimentally supported hypothesis.

    You go on to say, “Similarly, I have no problem with Intelligent Design being taught alongside evolution in the context of questions concerning the origin of life.” In which class? A science class or a comparative religion class? Because if you mean a science class, you’re dead wrong, as again, ID simply doesn’t qualify as science. It’s not falsifiable. It makes no predictions. It has no experimental support.

    But you’re fine with it – and why is that?

  72. We addressed all those questions seven years back, ss.

    Go read.

  73. You should probably let Jeff know. He wanted to go through it again.

  74. slippery, I’m sorry I called you a dumbass in another thread.

    In reality, you’re a tiresome dumbass.

  75. No. Jeff said this:

    Note two things, as you read the following: first, the distinction is drawn between Darwinian evolution as a description of adaptation, survival of the fittest, etc., and attempts made by secularists to suggest that Darwinian evolution has any kind of impact on questions of first causes (separating out science and philosophy for purposes of teaching what comes to count as the scientific method by juxtaposition); and that secondly, many of those taking the opposite approach to mine are in fact conservatives and libertarians, putting the lie to your cartoonish characterizations that conservatives are all lockstep, “anti-science” dullards.

    Next!

    Your reading comprehension is wanting, son.

  76. But you’re fine with it – and why is that?

    - Because the entire “Evolution versus God” meme is a non-starter.

    - Evolution, the ability to comprehend our existanxe, and to some extent our history, is just another gift from the God whp made us and everything else.

    - As is the want of all small minded arrogant people, Progressives think too small.

  77. Big, you want something like that taught in a science class?

  78. That robably explains their need to micromanage everything and the lack of understanding of the big picture, BBH.

    Children are like that.

  79. leigh – so if you restrict evolution to the differentiation of species, and not the origin of life, then you’re cool with it (because evolution is already limited to that). But that’s still no justification for the introduction of ID to the curriculum.

  80. Running around with the goalposts is soooooooooo cute.

  81. evolution helps explain why come americans used to be able to build dams, pipelines, win wars, and put people in space even though there’s no oxygens there and it’s very cold but through natural selections they became a failshit food stamp ghetto trash people that mostly just sit on damp urine-soaked couch cushions watching cnn propaganda sluts patronize them

  82. Why do you hate honesty, slipperyslope?

  83. It would be interesting to see if slipperysophist could accurately describe our positions on any of its laundry list of caricatures above.

  84. So far I’m just hearing that ID and God should be taught in science classes. Hell of a way to clear up my caricatures.

  85. He can’t. You can ask him questions until the cows come home and he won’t answer them.

    OT: This is awesome and timely,

    Here’s the complete excerpt at the Wall Street Journal, from Mark Twain’s 1893 essay “The Moral Statistician”:

    I don’t want any of your statistics; I took your whole batch and lit my pipe with it.

    I hate your kind of people. You are always ciphering out how much a man’s health is injured, and how much his intellect is impaired, and how many pitiful dollars and cents he wastes in the course of ninety-two years’ indulgence in the fatal practice of smoking; and in the equally fatal practice of drinking coffee; and in playing billiards occasionally; and in taking a glass of wine at dinner, etc. etc. And you are always figuring out how many women have been burned to death because of the dangerous fashion of wearing expansive hoops, etc. etc. You never see more than one side of the question.

    You are blind to the fact that most old men in America smoke and drink coffee, although, according to your theory, they ought to have died young. . . . And you never try to find out how much solid comfort, relaxation, and enjoyment a man derives from smoking in the course of a lifetime (which is worth ten times the money he would save by letting it alone), nor the appalling aggregate of happiness lost in a lifetime by your kind of people from not smoking. Of course you can save money by denying yourself all those little vicious enjoyments for fifty years; but then what can you do with it? What use can you put it to? Money can’t save your infinitesimal soul. All the use that money can be put to is to purchase comfort and enjoyment in this life; therefore, as you are an enemy to comfort and enjoyment where is the use of accumulating cash?

    It won’t do for you to say that you can use it to better purpose in furnishing a good table, and in charities, and in supporting tract societies, because you know yourself that you people who have no petty vices are never known to give away a cent, and that you stint yourselves so in the matter of food that you are always feeble and hungry. . . .

    What is the use of your saving money that is so utterly worthless to you? In a word, why don’t you go off somewhere and die, and not be always trying to seduce people into becoming as ornery and unlovable as you are yourselves, by your villainous “moral statistics”?

    I love Mark Twain. What a mensch.

  86. Sorry, I went back looking for a question mark and didn’t see one. What’s the question that I’m supposedly not answering?

  87. Your unwillingness to hear what is being said to you is a reflection on your asshattery, and proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that your performance art is just that.

    Maybe, as a sign of good faith, since you are running a marked deficit in that department, you could lay out just the last 5 names you have used to comment here. Then, maybe attempt to accurately describe our position on any 2 issues from your list of Caricatures.

    GO!

  88. evolution helps explain why come americans used to be able to build dams, pipelines, win wars, and put people in space even though there’s no oxygens there and it’s very cold but through natural selections they became a failshit food stamp ghetto trash people that mostly just sit on damp urine-soaked couch cushions watching cnn propaganda sluts patronize them

    Which also explains why Romney said they’re addicted to the teat. Me, I’m proudly behind that curve.

  89. - ss, you already put yourdself in an inescapable hole when you used the term “setteled science”. It shows ,many things concerning your ignorance in general, but most of all the very meaning of the word “science”, which is “the never ending search for truth”.

    - Settled science is another one of those Progressive “play phrases” that are in fact, meaning;ess. There is no settled science, and a true scientist would imediately correct you on this.

    - That is why true scientists that have had their work hijacked and used so falsely by the Left will eventually give up trying to explain the realities to your cult of starry eyed followers and simply disabuse themselves of any connection with you or your claims, as has happened so much recently.

  90. Well said, BBH.

  91. Is slipperydick still fucking that straw chicken?

  92. He has am entire barnful, Ernst.

  93. I don’t remember the names, but Jeff pointed to at least some of them a while back. He can get them easily as I haven’t change my IP. Generally, he bans me when you guys start losing, and I point out how he offers to ensure you “win” so long as you keep paying him.

    Positions on issues. Since I couldn’t remember a name, I’ll give you three rather than two. You let me know where I’ve got it wrong:

    1. If someone was brought here illegally at age 10, and that has been identified now that they are age 20, they should be deported.
    2. It’s reasonable to teach Intelligent Design as an alternative to Evolution.
    3. Global warming isn’t happening. AGW is junk science.

    So where am I wrong?

  94. - The facts in life are always messy, but choosing to take a “who cares” approach doesn’t change anything in reality. We can barely make a good educated guess as to weather three days from now, but you’d aver we can devine said weather decades or mellinia from now. If it wasn’t so silly and childish people might take you seriously.

    - The worst of it is, your falsehoods act as an obsticle to real reasearch and discovery. We’ll probably be set back untold lengths of time in any real understanding because of your strawman natterings.

    - An agenda that cares not for facts or any real achievements in polution control, but just seeks to halt human expansion, period.

    - Why can’t your cult just admit to that and call it a day?

  95. What they disagree with is the teaching of evolution (Darwinian) to the exclusion of other scientific theories, as proof that the Bible is a buncha garbage and that anyone who believes in the fairy sky god deserves the height of contempt.

    FTFY.

    This isn’t about science: it’s about ensuring that religious people feel so ashamed that they’ll shut the hell up.

  96. BBH, when did I use the term “settled science”? Seriously, you put shit in quotes that I never said? Hallucinate much?

    And, you didn’t answer my question. Do you want God and ID taught in science classes?

  97. Actually, dicentra, it’s about ensuring that science is taught in science classes. If you’re feeling any shame it would only be because you want something else taught in science classes.

  98. people get ready there’s a train a-coming and the tow truck what pulled the car out of the ditch is stuck on the tracks and

    I can’t watch

  99. I’d settle for teaching Darwin’s theory of Pangenesis. Or how influenced he was by Malthusianism. Or that he learned his “shocking” theory mostly from British dog breeders. Or that, given the even of current science, the Darwinian theory of evolution might as well be taught alongside Intelligent Design, since they’re both more arguments of Science interpreted by Faith than Science itself.

    Shoot, I’d even happily let you raise Darwin’s funding of atheist pamphlets in America if you’d let me explain how hopelessly naive Lady Hope’s deathbed conversion was.

    But I’ve only read a 1000+ pages of his life and written a play based on his life. I’m sure you’ve watched a History Channel special.

  100. Defensive much, slipperyone?

  101. So where am I wrong?

    - Weather/climate is a maximally comples process, coming as close to a true chaotic system in nature as we could even invent if we had to.

    - Since this is the case it makes the perfect foil for a Progressive strawman. No one is an expert, and everyone is an expert. (Alinsky; page 134, para 3, ibid)

  102. Global warming isn’t happening. AGW is junk science.

    Is that two statements or one? Because the second one is demonstrably true: all you have to do is look at how the pro-AGW crowd has conducted itself. They refuse to share data and methodologies, they don’t correct actual mistakes, they refer to their detractors as “flat earthers” while also refusing to publicly debate them (“I don’t joust with jesters,” said James Hansen), they fudge their data and when caught, pretend like it’s no biggie, they don’t stop basing their theories on studies or data sets that are questionable or undoubtedly wrong, they’re not troubled by the fact that East Anglia’s raw data has been DELETED, they conspire to keep their critics’ papers from being published (and have the clout to do it), they didn’t laugh Michael Mann off the planet for his ludicrous Hockey Stick methodology, they claim to have won the Nobel Prize when they have done nothing of the sort, and they file lawsuits against people who question their integrity.

    In short, they have not behaved like men who have the truth OR science on their side but rather like a bunch of petty mean girls who are determined to keep their clique at the top of the pile.

    Science is as science does. If they’re not rigorously transparent (and the skeptics very much are), nothing they say counts as science.

  103. They taught me about phlogiston, the void, mercuric transformation via rituals and procedures of alchemical philosophy, and the theory of the four humors in chemistry.

    They taught me about geocentrism and the pyretic ether in astronomy.

    Biology was great. They taught me about a system of homonid anthropology that has since been thrown out. They illustrated evolution rather badly by showing me a wood cut of a size comparison of horse ancestors in a german museum that did not represent their chronological sequence nor in fact were they all ancestors of the modern horse. They also made sure that I heard about theories of spontaneous generation of vermin, descriptions of various chimerae encountered by sailors, pilgrims, and caravaners, Lamarckism, Lysenkoism, there was even a brief mention of ESP from a skeptical point of view.

    It being elementary school quality and detail were quite lacking.

    ID is not really a religion. It is a skeptical position against current levels of complexity arriving via natural selection and mutation in the time frames seen in the fossil record. I agree that it is not science but then really neither is string theory or therapeutic acupuncture. So what? It’s not religion either. There are no rituals, no real belief system no dogma moral or otherwise, no gods, no angels, no revelation, or anything specific implied. ID doesn’t even conflict with the idea of mutation and selection driven evolution. ID just proposes that life is awfully complex and specialized to have arisen entirely by natural coincidence in the time frame suggested. It doesn’t say who or what did the designing.

    The REAL reason it is included in the curriculum is obvious. It says “Don’t be a dick. Some people believe in a created cosmos instead of a cold mechanistic reaction that just happened to spit us out at some point by following simple rules in some chemical puddles and a few billion years. Some of them are Christians and muslims and other things. They have an alternative view as to the origin of the universe (in the big bang case of ID) and life. Don’t shout them down and assume that you are brilliant because you don’t believe what they do. ” And of course cosmology and the origin of life have changed a few times since I was in school which means that they are not science so much as suppositions that find support for some of their elements via scientific observation and experimentation.

    And of course that highly general elementary science education prepared me for pretty much NOTHING. It was baby shit. Watered down. Some facts to toss about here and there in conversations. It was not real science at all. It was layman’s pap.

    And I’m not sure that the left (being mostly humanities driven) has a very good record of scrupulously avoiding pseudo-science or hokum that sounds right to them.

  104. dicentra, in slippery’s “mind” it is creating separation of church and science, when in reality, slippery worships at the alter of a religion that calls itself science.

  105. I don’t remember the names, but Jeff pointed to at least some of them a while back. He can get them easily as I haven’t change my IP. Generally, he bans me when you guys start losing, and I point out how he offers to ensure you “win” so long as you keep paying him.

    You can’t even be honest when you act like you as trying to. So many names you cannot even keep track of them, priceless

  106. If you’re feeling any shame it would only be because you want something else taught in science classes.

    Bullsplat.

    I want science taught in science class, not religion and certainly not anti-religion. Show the facts, talk about the current explanatory models, but don’t act like you’ve proven the Christers to be a bunch of ignoramuses. Don’t extrapolate answers to religious questions from scientific data, such as “hey, we’re all animals anyway, so why not be selfish?”

    All questions regarding ethics, the meaning of life, the possibility of extra-mortal life, and other similar questions CANNOT and SHOULD NOT be derived from the fossil record or the sequenced genome or any other scientific data set.

    It’s not my fault that people can’t keep the two realms separate.

    But thanks for attributing motives to me without knowing jack about me: it warms the cockles of my heart.

  107. - They worship at the feet of a non-existant God, even as they dispise what for them is a non-existant God.

    - Maybe the star chamber inhabitants get it honest, When you’re that awash in self-unawares irony reality must seem like some bizzar abstract dream.

  108. “ID is not really a religion. It is a skeptical position ”

    I should ad that skepticism is not the same as being impervious to being decived or confused. Not all skepticism is founded in science or in rationality. Plenty of skeptics find reason to doubt even empirical things on various bases. René Descartes was famous for it. and he wasn’t a scientist. He was a mathematician and natural philosopher though which proved very valuable to founding some of the principles of what we now call our age of scientific progress.

  109. - And no ss, I did not respond to your ID question. Another non-serious non-question question ment to keep the idiocies going.

    - If some want to believe in Carrot top as their savior, let them, thats their choice. Just stop using science as your cover for your crackpot narratives and we’ll be fine.

  110. Dicentra – I will be in SLC and Park City the rest of the week

  111. Quiet, Palaeo! You’re suggesting that the best way to teach Science is to point out both the facts, and how our understanding of the facts has evolved through history!

    Everyone knows that Science can only be viewed as an ID of understanding the facts! And that the only reason Scientists didn’t preach truth back in the day is because Christians had so many pitchforks at the ready.

  112. * Don’t believe in gods or spirits expect for occasional light workers and an inevitable progress towards utopia by history through dialectic clashes.

    * Property is assigned solely by authority which is assigned by necessities of the age through which one is passing. Ultimately property is just material resource.

    * Power flows from the mob and barrel of a gun

    * Dogma is mutable to suit the needs of the age and all perspectives are false perspectives if they impeded or resist the flow of history

    * The people cannot consistently recognize or meet their own needs and so a champion does the will of the people in their stead and cannot allow obstacles to

    * So long as they do not serve the will of the age the people are enslaved and must be freed at any cost including chaining them together and dragging them where they need to be and even breeding them or culling them as necessary

    * any artificial narrative that motivates the people to move with the flow of the era is not false nor inaccurate even if it is made up out of whole cloth

    * all people are equal

    * some people are more equal than others

    * People must be united or divided as serves the will of the age through violence if necessary

    * the revolution must proceed even if the revolution must overthrow itself to proceed

    * the revolution cannot fail

    * if the revolution fails then the failure is illusory and the revolution was not properly attempted or maintained

    etc.

  113. So far I’m just hearing that ID and God should be taught in science classes. Hell of a way to clear up my caricatures.

    Define “science class”, slope.

  114. palaeomerus says November 20, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    That was epic.

  115. * Socialism would work if only it was peoperly applied, and with enough of other peoples wealth and work to support it.

  116. I want science taught in science class, not religion and certainly not anti-religion.

    I don’t. I want science classes to be as open-ended as reality itself, and the market of ideas to sort all of them out. I especially want sciences class to resume its place as a subset of philosophy class and philosophy class to be entirely open-ended.

    Eek!

    What I mean is that I suspect slope has already inherently defined science class wrongly.

  117. - That’s because they cling to science improperly, seeking legitimacy they know they lack.

    - Think of it as hiring Martha as a nuttrition expert, and then claiming she’s pro- fat based foods. No matter how much she demures and says they’re twisting her words, the narrative is al they care about.

    - Repeated often enough, and the lie becomes the perception, and soon you have Stewart as a fat loving bitch.

    - Easy as pie! Piece of cake! Fake but accurate!

  118. Jim Geraghty responds with a new column. My reply is in the update to the original post.

  119. Okay this is a bit rantish and informal and sloppy but here goes.

    The typical ‘leftist’ grasp of science is well illustrated by a silly movie: It’s basically a well advertised brand name meant to carry water for today’s agenda and do so with its head bowed and it should speak only when spoken too. Science is to be flashed like a badge to get into a swanky club or out of a situation, and then it is to be hidden away in a coat pocket for the rest of the night. Science is a subservient bureaucratic process managed by humanities majors who know what it means. It is a good to have confidence builder that can be declared or suspended by an arranged vote of a properly accredited committee.

    It is Sex Panther.

    But you have to believe for it to work. Otherwise it suddenly stinks and you don’t like it and its illegal in some countries.

    ——–

    “Brian Fantana: I’ll give this little cookie an hour before we’re doing the no-pants dance. Time to musk up.

    Ron Burgundy: Wow. Never ceases to amaze me. What cologne you gonna go with? London Gentleman, or wait. No, no, no. Hold on. Blackbeard’s Delight.

    Brian Fantana: No, she gets a special cologne… It’s called Sex Panther by Odeon. It’s illegal in nine countries… Yep, it’s made with bits of real panther, so you know it’s good.

    Ron Burgundy: It’s quite pungent.

    Brian Fantana: Oh yeah.

    Ron Burgundy: It’s a formidable scent… It stings the nostrils. In a good way.

    Brian Fantana: Yep.

    Ron Burgundy: Brian, I’m gonna be honest with you, that smells like pure gasoline.

    Brian Fantana: They’ve done studies, you know. 60% of the time it works, every time.

    Ron Burgundy: That doesn’t make sense.”

  120. Dicentra – I will be in SLC and Park City the rest of the week

    And I’ll be driving to Boise on Wednesday.

    Any overlap?

  121. Jeff, evolution is a study of changes in inherited characteristics in populations over generations. On of the things it explains is diversity of species. Evolution is not a study of how life began.

    Funny, that’s what I said in the post I linked!

    Something that middle schoolers with a good science curriculum learn every year in the US and around the world.

    Actually, that distinction is not clearly made, which is why I advocated for the juxtaposition. Darwinian evolution is taught as a way to suggest a logical and materialist start to life. But it doesn’t answer the question of first causes, which isn’t in its purview.

    You then go on to say, in the little ditty you linked to, “ID and evolution do not necessarily contradict one another, and that—if evolution is taught properly—the controversy itself disappears,” which is patently false. In the case of differentiation of species, evolution is the best explanation for observed phenomena. ID is not. It’s not even close to a robust, experimentally supported hypothesis.

    I said that ID and evolution don’t contradict each other on the question of first causes, namely because ID deals in that bailiwick and evolution does not. If you wish to argue against my position, it helps to read and understand it.

    You go on to say, “Similarly, I have no problem with Intelligent Design being taught alongside evolution in the context of questions concerning the origin of life.” In which class? A science class or a comparative religion class? Because if you mean a science class, you’re dead wrong, as again, ID simply doesn’t qualify as science. It’s not falsifiable. It makes no predictions. It has no experimental support.

    But you’re fine with it – and why is that?

    In both classes. And I’m fine with it because if you teach ID in order to show that it isn’t science, while simultaneously pointing out that the science behind Darwinian evolution doesn’t answer metaphysical questions about first causes (more properly addressed by ID), you’ve teased apart a manufactured controversy, separated out areas of knowledge that aren’t in any necessary tension, and also have a perfect in for teaching the scientific method.

    Learning, uncompartmentalized! YES WE CAN!

  122. I don’t see what place poking holes through theories and teaching how to interpret facts through logical processes has in the Science room, myself.

    Isn’t it about teaching that Science is something that can be “settled” and to trust your betters because they watch the Daily Show and read NYT?

  123. William – What? I have no idea what you’re talking about. Do you think that class rooms are using Darwin’s original Origin of Species as a text book?

    palaeomerus – You do a marvelous job of listing a number of things that were once thought to be true, and taught in science classes, but were later proven to be false and are no longer taught. How were they proven to be false? Experimentation. Those hypothesis resulted in predictions which didn’t hold up to experimentation. The thing – the only thing – that eliminated those was the scientific process. They were replaced by better, more true explanations of observed phenomena. Let me put it another way, Ether wasn’t eliminated because religious people took over school boards and forced the teaching of alternatives to Ether because they knew from their scriptures that Ether was incorrect.

    palaeomerus you go on to say it quite well.

    “The REAL reason it [ID] is included in the curriculum is obvious. It says “Don’t be a dick. Some people believe in a created cosmos instead of a cold mechanistic reaction that just happened to spit us out at some point by following simple rules in some chemical puddles and a few billion years. Some of them are Christians and muslims and other things. They have an alternative view as to the origin of the universe (in the big bang case of ID) and life. Don’t shout them down and assume that you are brilliant because you don’t believe what they do.”

    That’s fucking priceless. Your whole argument seems to boil down to, “Hey, we can be pretty sure that some of the things taught in science class will turn out to be false, so let’s improve science by inserting a bunch of made up bullshit like ID. Rather than pointing out that String Theory is not currently supported by experimentation, let’s take something like evolution – something with a enormous amount of experimental support, something that’s extremely unlikely to be completely thrown out – and teach a made up alternative because, well, evolution is unpopular with some people, and they kind of like ID.”

    That’s a magnificent way to put together a science curriculum. Because empiricism is a dick, and “some people believe…”

    dicentra says: I want science taught in science class, not religion and certainly not anti-religion. Show the facts, talk about the current explanatory models, but don’t act like you’ve proven the Christers to be a bunch of ignoramuses. Don’t extrapolate answers to religious questions from scientific data, such as “hey, we’re all animals anyway, so why not be selfish?”
    All questions regarding ethics, the meaning of life, the possibility of extra-mortal life, and other similar questions CANNOT and SHOULD NOT be derived from the fossil record or the sequenced genome or any other scientific data set.
    It’s not my fault that people can’t keep the two realms separate.

    We must have taken different science classes. I don’t remember ever being taught, “Hey, we’re all animals anyway, so why not be selfish?” in my Science classes.

    And, if you’re interested in ID being taught in science classes, then it is your fault that people can’t keep the two separate.

    I just don’t see scientists running to take over school boards so they can “fix” the curriculum of comparative religion and philosophy courses.

    BBH – We’re taking about science classes, so it’s giggle-worthy that you talk about using science as a cover. Did you lose track of the conversation again?

    And on to Jeff:

    Darwinian evolution is taught as a way to suggest a logical and materialist start to life.

    No, evolution doesn’t. But science does operate from the core assumption that there are natural causes for observed phenomena.

    I said that ID and evolution don’t contradict each other on the question of first causes, namely because ID deals in that bailiwick and evolution does not. If you wish to argue against my position, it helps to read and understand it.

    ID deals with first causes and the differentiation of species. It does step all over evolution. You can look this stuff up.

    And I’m fine with it because if you teach ID in order to show that it isn’t science…

    If you’re really suggesting that ID be shown in a science class as a perfect example of how not to do science, then I’m all with you, but that’s gonna piss off a lot of people on your side of the fence.

    while simultaneously pointing out that the science behind Darwinian evolution doesn’t answer metaphysical questions about first causes (more properly addressed by ID), you’ve teased apart a manufactured controversy

    But here the scientist would disagree. The scientist would say, “We don’t know about the origin of life on Earth. We should, therefor, keep looking and researching.”

    Instead, you are advocating that we teach kids, “If there’s an area that isn’t currently understood, it’s perfectly acceptable to just make shit up, believe it, advocate for the teaching of it, and quit researching the area.”

  124. “If there’s an area that isn’t currently understood, it’s perfectly acceptable to just make shit up, believe it, advocate for the teaching of it, and quit researching the area.”

    pretty much sums up global warming climate change

  125. I thought science was about making sure we don’t let Guam capsize.

  126. If you’re really suggesting that ID be shown in a science class as a perfect example of how not to do science, then I’m all with you, but that’s gonna piss off a lot of people on your side of the fence.

    I’m on my side of the fence. And there are many like me. In fact, many on my side of the fence disagreed with my idea and told me they didn’t want ID taught in science classes even as a way to juxtapose the scientific method from a question of metaphysics.

    So you see, your entire caricature was wrong. Which is what I started off telling you.

    Adjust accordingly.

    But here the scientist would disagree. The scientist would say, “We don’t know about the origin of life on Earth. We should, therefor, keep looking and researching.”

    Look to your heart’s content. I never spoke against finding the origins of life on earth, nor of forestalling any such investigations. We’re talking first causes — the beginning of what we observe as the universe and beyond. And science can’t answer that question, and to my understanding doesn’t even try to. For instance, before the Big Bang, eg., what was there and how did it come to be?

    Instead, you are advocating that we teach kids, “If there’s an area that isn’t currently understood, it’s perfectly acceptable to just make shit up, believe it, advocate for the teaching of it, and quit researching the area.”

    Uh, no I’m not. In fact, that doesn’t describe my position in any conceivable universe, be it the one that follows the particles or the waves. It is simply an absurd and dishonest restating of what I actually argue, which is in keeping with your desire to cartoon conservatives, many of whom I’m quite certain are far more versed than are you in areas you feel you own intellectually.

  127. I don’t remember ever being taught, “Hey, we’re all animals anyway, so why not be selfish?” in my Science classes.

    Oh, so now you’re going to get overly literal with me and pretend that many science teachers don’t sneer at the Godbotherers.

    And, if you’re interested in ID being taught in science classes, then it is your fault that people can’t keep the two separate.

    I’m not interested in ID, which is bad theology as well as bad science. Talk about not keeping things separate.

  128. Slipperysophist is getting angry.

  129. Oh, Slippery. That just… that’s just beautiful. You don’t even know what I’m talking about, but you DO know that you can skip past my 101 to argue against the adults in the room.

    Isn’t there some “I believe in settled Science, why doesn’t the government fund SETI?!?” forum you can thrust your codpiece around?

  130. let’s take something like evolution – something with a enormous amount of experimental support

    Any examples?

  131. I don’t remember ever being taught, “Hey, we’re all animals anyway, so why not be selfish?” in my Science classes.

    You’d think such an avid defender of Darwinian evolution would have run across Dawkins’ “The Selfish Gene” at some point in his vast studies.

    Me, I came across it when my holy man was burning all the copies he could find. I managed to save one from the cleansing fires of righteousness.

    Or maybe it was in a university course, can’t recall.

  132. “That’s fucking priceless. Your whole argument seems to boil down to, “Hey, we can be pretty sure that some of the things taught in science class will turn out to be false, so let’s improve science by inserting a bunch of made up bullshit like ID.”

    No, that’s not my argument. My argument is that your “science class” and” bullshit” labels are absolutely worthless because you are incompetent to apply them or even defend them.

    Science is not truth as a finished indisputable product. It is a process that attempts to get at or close to the truth specifically empirical detectable/observable truths. It has to able to admit that it was wrong. Sometimes it even has to admit that it was a lie created to push forward a political movement or support cultural preferences. To approach the truth, science this it must confront and coexist with other attempts to get at the truth and it must convincingly stand with them or defeat them. That is why I was taught about pholgiston and other failures of scientists that were presented as science until they were discredited.

    Declaring that ID has no place in a science class because you call it bullshit (as if there are only categories of science! and bullshit! Oddly you had it confused with a distinct religion not long ago indicating you are far from an expert on the matter) is about as scientific and relevant to a science education’s validity as the king of Siam sending President Lincoln a lot of male elephants so they can breed and help him win the civil war in a musical. So, whatever. Let me know when your objection is more substantial than a matter of your own very pedestrian taste.

    Also while you are fucking around with spin, explain to me the harm of ID being covered briefly as a survey topic in a science course, especially a kiddie middle school science course and what are the advantages of excluding it ? If it’s just bullshit you face then it should be an easy slam dunk for Darwinism or the big bang to kick ID to the curb right?

  133. The Left has always had many fantasies that they think are perfectly rational and scientifically based positions but which in truth are only posited as means to gather more power into the hands of government. As I said before.

    It is said if neither the law nor the facts are on your side pound the table. The Left has perfected pounding the table by introducing false or deliberately misleading “facts” while pounding the table furiously. They have done so so well over the years that there are any number of “facts” that everybody knows which on close inspection show their core of “truthy”-ness.

    I have no wish to quote at length so these two links are for Mr. Geraghty on what our side could have used to push back against the Left in the Akin matter. Yes I know they quoted “studies” too however the ones they did had one major flaw. They all conflated a number of other types of sexual activity that are legally considered rape when what was being discussed was what one female pundit/comedian of the Left called “rape-rape”.

  134. “experimental support” for evolution? You mean like a billion years of time lapse photography of a Coelacanth morphing into Russell Brand? Or are you talking about some very incomplete fossil records that have required hypothesis about sudden jumps, etc?

  135. ” beemoe says November 20, 2012 at 5:01 pm
    I thought science was about making sure we don’t let Guam capsize.”

    You take that back! Hank Johnson is a good man! A GOOD MAN! Geologists could learn a lot from that man! He is a saint!

  136. Gee. And to think he probably picked his strong one to come out fighting on.

    I’m off to son’s wrestling practice. After that, it’s travel time. Utah, with wife’s family. Will talk to you all later. Have a great Thanksgiving!

  137. Utah, with wife’s family.

    Swell. You and JD come to my stomping grounds just as I vacate them.

    Not that it would matter. I haven’t the faintest idea where to go to toss back a cold one.

  138. “experimental support” for evolution?

    i’m thinking slippey means
    Piltdown Man

  139. “But here the scientist would disagree. The scientist would say, “We don’t know about the origin of life on Earth. We should, therefor, keep looking and researching.””

    There is no “the scientist”. There are scientists, some corrupt, and some confused, and some angry, and some who are men and women of various faiths, and they do not agree uniformly on your design of a science course or even on ID even within the restricted framework of cosmology, physics, or biology. Why would they? A scientist does discard all other modes of thought in all areas of life. They do not all adopt an un-creed of enlightened atheism. Some do not even seek a state of near objectivity as they are supposed to in designing experiments, collecting, analyzing or reporting their data. Some of them are hacks. Some are nuts. And Science is a field full of real people with ambitions and biases intended and unintended. It is not some naive platonically pure jack off of an ideal that transcends humanity. It is dirt and hard and a lot of scientific works gets thrown out for being shit and unfortunately a lot of it doesn’t get thrown out despite being shit until it is protected more by consensus than experimental results and repeatability.

  140. Those who compare homosexuality to bestiality, though they are outliers (and many may be Democrat voters, given how the black community seems to feel about homosexuality), don’t often do so to suggest that homosexual sex is akin to having relations with your bull terrier. Rather, they bring up the example to suggest that gay marriage opens up all sort of legal issues — many of which are talked about openly by same-sex marriage proponents.

    I’d be inclined to point Jim to NRO (via, quite pertinently, the Daily Caller): Peter Singer Strikes Again

    Once an Ivy League professor is known to be a proponent of infanticide, perhaps nothing he says or writes should thereafter raise eyebrows. Still, Peter Singer’s latest writing is worth noting — if only so someone at Princeton University takes notice.

    In the online magazine nerve.com, Peter Singer writes an opinion piece, “Heavy Petting” — part a review of Dearest Pet: On Bestiality by Midas Dekker, “a Dutch biologist and popular naturalist,” but really more of a statement about the last sexual taboo — sex with animals.

    If you’ve not yet identified the battle lines, and can’t identify them for others, you’re not going to win the battle for hearts and minds. And speaking of NRO, they’ve got a fellow by the name of Goldberg over there who’s written a book or two on the subject that might come in handy.

  141. Take it easy Jeff. I better go start thawing out the bird. And the ham. I’m not doing the big curled up sausage link on the smoker this year. I’m too chicken shit with these mild-fall 2nd gen of wasps in my yard.

  142. “experimental support” for evolution? You mean like a billion years of time lapse photography of a Coelacanth? Or are you talking about some very incomplete fossil records that have required hypothesis about sudden jumps, etc?

    I was just about to ask for some elaboration on the observable in realtime support for evolution, myself.

    Unlike slippery, I have an answer.

  143. They all conflated a number of other types of sexual activity that are legally considered rape when what was being discussed was what one female pundit/comedian of the Left called “rape-rape”.

    Right. One decidedly progressive comedian. And the rape she was speaking of really was “rape-rape” along with it being the statutory sort. But when Akin called the latter “legitimate rape”, out came the fainting couches. I’m still of the mind that his “fight it off” comment was dopey, but still overblown. What was done to Richard Mourdock was more disturbing. Now, expressing the basic Christian notion of the sanctity of life is political suicide. Ain’t that right, slippery slope?

  144. I was just about to ask for some elaboration on the observable in realtime support for evolution, myself.

    Chaz Bono, amirite?

  145. The scientist would say, “We don’t know about the origin of life on Earth. We should, therefor, keep looking and researching.”

    Unless we’re talking about AGW, in which case the “scientist” says: “Shut up, you stupid flat earther! I don’t have to show you shit! You’re killing the planet because you hate brown people and thus you have no standing to even question my authority!”

  146. Well we’ve seen mutations be induced and we’ve seen a few of them passed on to offspring and we’ve watched bacteria (where sex is not about reproduction but about swapping DNA) exchanging traits and the ones that got a better set of traits reproduced more than the ones that did not. So yeah in microevolution there is experimental evidence for the principle of a mutation-natural selection mechanism by which populations of organisms can change traits over time and benefit that supports it being a process that happens in nature and can be observed to some degree. There is also observation to support it happening in similar isolated species that diverge over time in a way that gives them an advantage in their environment.

  147. Meh. I’m typing worse than usual tonight. I think I’m dozing off at the PC a little.

  148. That was my answer, palaeo. We’ve seen the evolution of life on a bacteriological level in nosocomial settings for quite a few years now.

    We’re all the way up to vancomiacin resistant strains of stapholococcus now.

  149. Happy trails, dicentra and Jeff. Drive safe and don’t argue with your idiot brother-in-law (we all have one).

  150. Yeah, I didn’t want to bring up that ingrown hair that turned staph infection I got in my shoulder (skin really, not deep tissue) that ignored all the spectrobid my doctor threw at it. They don’t sew those up after they irrigate them either! You just walk around with what looks like a smooth point arrow head injury for a month and change! Sheesh. I don’t even remember what the second med he sent me was but it sure taught my guts a lesson or two.

  151. Sounds like the same stuff they gave my son last year when he got a staph infection on his forearm from a mat-burn he got during wrestling practice. It looked like he had a knife wound when it was unwrapped.

    Naturally, he blames me for it since he also had an ingrown hair that I plucked out of his arm and the staph was off to the races.

  152. “don’t compare homosexuality to bestiality,” “don’t use the term ‘raghead’”, “don’t call women ‘sluts’” are some sort of liberal trap to cut off discussion and force us to have the debate on their terms.

    because we’re racists,sexists,islamohomophobes say the proggtards

  153. You’d think such an avid defender of Darwinian evolution would have run across Dawkins’ “The Selfish Gene” at some point in his vast studies.

    If you think “The Selfish Gene” argues for personal selfishness then you might want to read it again.

    Science is not truth as a finished indisputable product. It is a process that attempts to get at or close to the truth specifically empirical detectable/observable truths. It has to able to admit that it was wrong. Sometimes it even has to admit that it was a lie created to push forward a political movement or support cultural preferences. To approach the truth, science this it must confront and coexist with other attempts to get at the truth and it must convincingly stand with them or defeat them. That is why I was taught about pholgiston and other failures of scientists that were presented as science until they were discredited.

    You say all this and somehow manage to argue for the inclusion of ID. Why? Just to ensure that we have something to jettison in the future?

    Also while you are fucking around with spin, explain to me the harm of ID being covered briefly as a survey topic in a science course, especially a kiddie middle school science course and what are the advantages of excluding it ? If it’s just bullshit you face then it should be an easy slam dunk for Darwinism or the big bang to kick ID to the curb right?

    For exactly the same reason that science classes don’t do a survey on astrology, tarot cards, “the science of vampires”, and all the other topics that aren’t supported by evidence. Last time I checked, schools were facing shortened school years, and higher student teacher ratios, and if you include every bullshit topic just to say, “another example of Not Science” you end up with less time left for actual science.

    Things get included in curriculum because there’s a case to be made for covering it at the exclusion of something else.

    But it doesn’t really matter, because Jeff thinks it should be included just so kids know junk science when they see it. Palaeomerus, you cool with it being covered just for that reason?

    But now we’ve reached the point in the conversation where y’all scoff at the notion of evidence and experiments related to evolution. If the evidence in favor of evolution isn’t sufficient for you, then there is insufficient evidence for anything you would want taught. You live in a land where nothing is known, and you need not question anything you believe – which is exactly where you live – which is why I told Jeff long ago in this thread that the entire conversation was pointless.

    Again I’ll ask, what evidence would you need to believe the theory of evolution is correct?

  154. Jeff, good stuff (at least so far) but I couldn’t wait to comment on this:

    “Romney ran by noting he would not go after the press.”

    I missed that but admittedly it makes sense. WTF was he thinking? I’ts like he decided to play hookie for the first time in his life and that’s when they gave the national election strategy 101 class.

    The only chance a team R candidate has is to give the media a wedgie and kick them continuously in the jimmy. Give Americans every reason to reinforce the belief that the LSM is a corrupt, hypocritical and self-serving bunch. Expose every lie and inconsistency, putting them on the rhetorical waterboard until they beg for mercy.

    Even if you end up losing two things occur:

    1. They deserve it
    and
    2. It makes the next guys work a little easier.

    Ok, back to the rest of the post.

  155. Richard Dawkin’s takes great pride in being an asshole. Kind of like Peter Singer does in being a human monster.

  156. Ok, stupid slope:

    Explain to me why are their still monkeys?

  157. Things get included in curriculum because there’s a case to be made for covering it at the exclusion of something else.

    say like global warming, heather has two mommies, putting condoms on bananas, environmentalism et al

  158. palaeomerus says November 20, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    Well we’ve seen mutations be induced and we’ve seen a few of them passed on to offspring and we’ve watched bacteria (where sex is not about reproduction but about swapping DNA) exchanging traits and the ones that got a better set of traits reproduced more than the ones that did not. So yeah in microevolution there is experimental evidence for the principle of a mutation-natural selection mechanism by which populations of organisms can change traits over time and benefit that supports it being a process that happens in nature and can be observed to some degree. There is also observation to support it happening in similar isolated species that diverge over time in a way that gives them an advantage in their environment.

    So any actual experimentation has been mutations induced by man.

    Or by an intelligent designer, in other words. Kind of a Catch 22, huh?

  159. Explain to me why are their still monkeys?

    Republicans won’t pay for their contraceptives.

  160. ot levin is hammering orangeman tonite

  161. “But now we’ve reached the point in the conversation where y’all scoff at the notion of evidence and experiments related to evolution.”

    Nope. We reached the point in the conversation where you were quizzed on the experimental evidence you reference to see if you even knew what it was you were trying to yap about, and then you held off until it was presented FOR you by someone else.

  162. Slippery is congenitally dishonest

  163. “So any actual experimentation has been mutations induced by man.
    Or by an intelligent designer, in other words. Kind of a Catch 22, huh?”

    No they were not all induced by man. Bacteria are pretty good at doing it all by themselves if you have a decent sized sample of them. Some of them may have been induced by an invisible unverifiable ID though. Or not. Whooo Eeeeeeee oooooohhhhh.

  164. “But now we’ve reached the point in the conversation where y’all scoff at the notion of evidence and experiments related to evolution.”

    I will scoff at just about anything at the drop of a hat, personally. In fact, scoffing is one of the few things I am really good at.

    Right now I am scoffing at the notion of you.

  165. boehner is stale

    whereas twinkies stay fresh forever if you don’t open them

    but if you do open them do NOT feed the bears

    a fed bear is a dead bear

  166. “irony or parody or comedy or prosopopoeia being what they are”

    Confession time; I had to take a google time-out on that one ;)

    OMFG Clint Eastwood was a what?

  167. “Republicans won’t pay for their contraceptives.”

    I didn’t know scoffing could be so funny!

  168. Ok,
    Finished reading the post and the only thing I could add would be:

    Darn Skippy Mr.!

    Oh and using ones name in third person should only be used sparingly (you have one lifeline left this week;)

    Now, I’ve got some catching up to do on the comments.

  169. “You live in a land where nothing is known, and you need not question anything you believe – which is exactly where you live – which is why I told Jeff long ago in this thread that the entire conversation was pointless.”

    I live in a land where what was known was discarded sometimes for bad reasons and sometimes for good by those that call themselves scientists, and I don’t pretend to live in a land where I have been handed all the answers I will ever need by some self important lying leftist clown who confuses the silly childish pantomime straw men he knocks down for the actual arguments and their champions. I am faced with an ignorant snob trying to pass as a wise man merely because he has adopted a cartoonish neophyte’s version of the “correct” assumptions and rhetoric.

  170. * Brown people who are police and fire fighters are an aberration, because most of them are benefit mooching criminals

    * It’s perfectly reasonable, a benefit to the nation, and a good use of tax dollars, to deport someone who’s been here for 10 years. This is reasonable even if they’re a kid, who doesn’t even remember their birth country and may not be fluent in the language there.

    * Women who use birth control are probably sluts.

    * If you’re going to have women in the work place, you need to make accommodations so they can hustle home and cook dinner for the family

    * If an employer is concerned that employees will use their salary or benefits for something the employer doesn’t approve of, they should be able to do something about that. Elsewise, the religious liberty hath been trampled upon.

    * Global warming isn’t real. We’re not causing it.

    * Fossil fuel = good. Renewable = bad.

    * If we just opened up drilling, we could stop importing oil.

    * Still not 100% sure Obama’s a US citizen.

    * The government really needs to be involved in issues like abortion. Don’t let people make these choices

    * Traditional marriage needs to be defended against gay marriage (although no one really says how letting gays marry interferes with straights marrying)

    * Evolution is “just a theory” (said with a straight face by people who claim to know something about science. And other (non scientific) theories hypothesis should be taught alongside of it.

    So far, going in reverse order, slipperysophist has proven itself unable to honestly debate a topic of its own choosing. And it goes without saying that it is constitutionally incapable of understanding and portraying our position in an accurate and honest manner.

  171. Stuck on stupid -> ignorance is strength-> Nanny nanny boo boo! I am so grea-eeee-eat!

  172. Actually, you can learn a lot about how the mind uses archetypes to come up with life patterns from tarot. Especially if you base it off of the Catholic Medieval philosophy it came from, not the “make sure your crystals are attuned and begin sorting your fairie deck,” of modern life. Though I have a certain amount of respect for the pagans and their attempts to reconnect with nature.

    But I know looking for kernels of wisdom even in siller philosophies is, shall we say, heretical to some.

  173. * Evolution is “just a theory”

    that part i like. if slippey has a few billion years he/she could reproduce the “experiment”

  174. One of my childhood friends is a Pagan priest. I have no clue what that means other than he is a really mellow guy with great kids.

  175. I was just about to ask for some elaboration on the observable in realtime support for evolution, myself.

    MRSA

    All avian => porcine => human influenza viruses

    Polar bears (brown bears with cold-weather adaptations that are nevertheless still really just brown bears)

    Spotted owls vs. barred owls, spotted being a recessive spur of the barred that broke off during the last ice age. The decline of the spotted owl as it reintegrates with the barred owl population (leading envirofreaks to call for killing barred owls).

    BTW, slip: people’s insistence on sticking with Creationism or ID instead of just letting evolution have its way is motivated by LOYALTY to their God rather than ignorance or stupidity. You’ll notice that the Godbotherers don’t object to the notion that schizophrenia is an organic brain disorder instead of possession by the devil, nor do we object to a heliocentric universe (or the idea that the Milky Way is one galaxy among many), nor do we resist the germ theory of disease.

    It’s just one scientific theory that people resist, and it’s the one used to “prove” that God doesn’t exist. All too often, the issue is presented as “either God or Darwin,” so people reckon that they owe no fealty to Darwin the mere mortal, whereas God did that creation thing and promises that salvation thing, and so they choose God and reject Darwin, those being the choices.

  176. Typically, that they believe in the brotherhood of man through nature and the worship of whatever pagan god you like to get your goals. They skip over Christianity a lot, but still include it.

    It’s a little like fundamentalist Christianity, in that you ignore some more difficult issues to focus on the good of worship itself.

  177. Worst you can say is their recommendation of talking to Satan to really get what you want, but that’s obviously only a branch of the belief.

  178. http://assets.nydailynews.com/polopoly_fs/1.1204356.1353306087!/img/httpImage/image.jpg

    Jenny McCarthy gives cougars a bad name. Bleach my eyes. She looks like she’s parasitizing him with an ovipositor in her mouth. Meanwhile Justin Beiber gives fore-arm tattoos of owls a bad name. And feathered man-bangs.

  179. the whole point of teaching evolution is to teach about how theories are constructed

    it happens to be a particularly elegant theory with an engaging and colorful backstory

    nobody cares if the socially backward kids reject the theory as long as they understand how the theory of natural selection developed through fairly simple observations that anyone what was clever and observant could have made

    if the little monkeys are scared to learn how to hypothesize about stuff they’re gonna suck at this whole education thing anyway

  180. Beiber’s look has really been bothering me lately, though I can’t put my finger as to exactly why.

  181. “slipperysophist has proven itself unable to honestly debate”

    Whaaat? (said with much angst).

    Here I am working protractor over compass trying to square slipshod’s circular reasoning just to have JD breeze through and proclaim: No dinner for me I’ll just get drive-thru on my way to the movies.

    And he doesn’t even return my calls (man they grow up so fast;).

  182. also it’s important to learn how not to make an ass out of yourslf in science class if you’re hoping to go anywhere in life

  183. “I can’t put my finger as to exactly why”

    After breaking up with Selena Gomez I’m expecting him to intorduce his fabulous boyfriend next.

  184. “happyfeet says November 20, 2012 at 7:33 pm
    also it’s important to learn how not to make an ass out of yourslf in science class if you’re hoping to go anywhere in life”

    They’ll never write any Hemingway stories about emotionally distant fuck-buddy couples on permanent vacation in spain thinking about an abortion while waiting on a train though. Because they can’t. Not a enough neurons in their puny science skulls to pull THAT kind of work off. Stick to simple crap like bridges ya light weights.

  185. “After breaking up with Selena Gomez I’m expecting him to intorduce his fabulous boyfriend next.”

    Justin gives me more of a Dorian Grey vibe. He’s probably 110 years old and has been running the whole music underworld with daggers and dropped sand bags since the 1920′s.

  186. hills like fabulous white elephants what did you say this wine was

  187. also it’s important to learn how not to make an ass out of yourslf in science class if you’re hoping to go anywhere in life

    Only if you use magic. If you can figure out how to evolve into an ass you would probably get an A.

    ;p

  188. Dorian Gray. I checked my shelf.

  189. Beemoe,

    Weekend after next party’s in your backyard so get your red Solo cup primed Mr!

  190. Beiber looks like a girly-man trying to look like Eminem. Epic fail.

    I hope Selena Gomez drops her babyfat and finds herself a masculine looking guy who doesn’t want to wear her shoes.

  191. these are the same kids what aren’t even allowed to read harry potter cause of it contains elements of the occult mr. moe

    bless their hearts

  192. For some reason, I read Hiccup! at the end of your remark, palaeomerus.

  193. “They’ll never write any Hemingway stories about emotionally distant fuck-buddy couples on permanent vacation in spain thinking about an abortion while waiting on a train though.”

    Hey, Im still waiting for Slippery to explain how monkey’s missed the evolution train so let’s not get ahead of ourselves;).

  194. Keep me updated, Danger.

  195. Wilco!

  196. BTW, slip: people’s insistence on sticking with Creationism or ID instead of just letting evolution have its way is motivated by LOYALTY to their God rather than ignorance or stupidity. You’ll notice that the Godbotherers don’t object to the notion that schizophrenia is an organic brain disorder instead of possession by the devil, nor do we object to a heliocentric universe (or the idea that the Milky Way is one galaxy among many), nor do we resist the germ theory of disease.
    It’s just one scientific theory that people resist, and it’s the one used to “prove” that God doesn’t exist. All too often, the issue is presented as “either God or Darwin,” so people reckon that they owe no fealty to Darwin the mere mortal, whereas God did that creation thing and promises that salvation thing, and so they choose God and reject Darwin, those being the choices.

    I’m having trouble remembering a science teacher saying, “God or Darwin. Choose!” The Catholic Church has no trouble believing both.

    Now, if you want to believe that the Earth is 6,000 years old, then you need to expect your kid’s science class to say otherwise. Because the world is not 6,000 years old, and this isn’t a “Well who really knows” question.

    Ok, stupid slope:
    Explain to me why are their still monkeys?

    Again I say, I’m so happy y’all stomp your feet and insist on being taken seriously while, in the very same sentence, demonstrate why no one with a brain should associate with you. The future’s bright for the Democrats.

    So any actual experimentation has been mutations induced by man.
    Or by an intelligent designer, in other words. Kind of a Catch 22, huh?

    Bwahaha. Yes, my caricatures are so inaccurate and exaggerated.

    So let me summarize, I characterize your position as, “Evolution is “just a theory” (said with a straight face by people who claim to know something about science. And other (non scientific) theories hypothesis should be taught alongside of it.”

    You screamed the shrill scream that I had grossly mischaracterization you and then went on for more than a hundred posts to call into question the theory of evolution and argue in favor of the teaching intelligent design in science classes. In other words, you did exactly what I characterized.

    You are who I said you are.

    You spent your energy denying it in word while proving it in deed. There’s a name for that too.

    Well done. (golf clap)

    Jeff, you can ban me now. My work is finished here.

  197. everything resets at midnight mr slope

  198. You’re not all there, slipperyone.

    Several of us here are scientists by trade.

  199. I love it when they are too stupid to realize they are being fucked with, makes their pretensions all the more hilarious.

  200. “Evolution is “just a theory” (said with a straight face by people who claim to know something about science.

    true you got 6 billion years to recreate it. can you recreate the universe? unicorns are wondering.

  201. I work here is done. Epic flounce, coward. Now that you have proven yourself incapable or unwilling to honestly debate your first chosen topic, which one of your Caricatures should we move on to.

    Note, you are utterly incapable of honestly portraying your opponent’s position. It is as though you are scared to actually debate our positions, so you attribute positions to us that you feel morally superior to. No wonder you kneel and bob at the feet of Teh One.

  202. It’s amazing, isn’t it BMoe?

  203. My work is finished here.

    nah your blathering is finished. proggtards don’t do useful work

  204. “Because the world is not 6,000 years old, and this isn’t a “Well who really knows” question.”

    Apparently Slippery slope’s crowd has the Earth’s birthdate marked on their planners so I guess they do know.

    “The Catholic Church has no trouble believing both.”

    As Dicentra alluded, there is a difference between adaptation and evolution. The Catholic Church (at least last time I attended mass) does not believe that man evolved from a single cell amoeba like creature.

  205. Tell me this, slope. If evolution is what got us to where we are today, the top of the food chain, and is so important as to be the ultimate arbiter of intelligence among political schools of thought, why do you support a party whose policies are so counter-evolutionary?

    We should outlaw all abortion and contraception and encourage as much breeding as possible to diversify the gene pool. We should stop supporting the weak, lazy, stupid and non-productive. Survival of the fittest, strong shall survive and all that. Limiting reproduction and spending all our resources on the weak and failing is a sure path to extinction, don’t you think?

    Do you think you are qualified to play God and try to intelligently design the future?

    Limiting reproduction and spending all our resources on the weak and failing is a sure path to extinction, don’t you think?

  206. JD, you’re back early!

    So how bout meetin up with us in Hotlanta a week from Friday?

  207. Slate, of all places, had an interesting piece on how Rubio’s comments were nearly identical to comments made by Teh One.

  208. Do you think you are qualified to play God and try to intelligently design the future?

    Of course he does.

  209. Good work beemoe, he’s surrounded. I expect he’ll be crying and running home to momma soon.

  210. ” My work is finished here.”

    You’re ‘work’ was at best gossamer tangle of failure and mendacious, pedantic, ignorant, pseudo-intellectual bullshit. I suspect that is the only work you can manage. Pussy.

  211. Slate, of all places, had an interesting piece on how Rubio’s comments were nearly identical to comments made by Teh One.

    New best answer: “That’s above my pay grade.”

  212. I’m having trouble remembering a science teacher saying, “God or Darwin. Choose!”

    Right. A science teacher never said that exact phrase in your presence, ERGO, the culture (and/or academia) does not present the question thusly. People don’t feel pressure to abandon God in favor of “being one of the smart ones” or of not being dumb. Atheists don’t point to scientific data to “prove” that God doesn’t exist. No religious kid has EVER gone to college and been persuaded by his professors that only a moron would cling to that fantasy sky god and special book, because LOOK AT THIS DATA DAMMIT, LOOK!

    Furthermore, no TV show or movie or novel or other pop-culture format ever sneers at those ignoramuses who believe in the Bible instead of science. The Left, especially, does not characterize itself as pro-Science as opposed to being pro-Faith, and reporters never shove microphones in the faces of politicians to ask about the age of the earth in the hopes of exposing the hapless fool as a KOOK AND A FREAK KEEP HIM AWAY FROM THE CHILDREN!

    You’re lying about the existence of the dichotomy. What for? What’s the purpose?

    Now, if you want to believe that the Earth is 6,000 years old, then you need to expect your kid’s science class to say otherwise.

    How young is the kid? Elementary school kids should be pinning butterflies to styrofoam and making baking-soda volcanos. No reason to get into the hairy stuff with the really young.

    My college freshman class was shown the DNA of chimps next to the DNA of humans. The minute difference was pointed out. The differences were shown by themselves and the teachers said, “look, this fragment looks like it was snipped off and flipped horizontally and then reattached,” and “see how the arms on this human chromosome pair are exactly the reverse of the arms on the chimp chromosome pair.”

    Later, they loaded us on buses to take a trip through time with a geologist who identified all of the rock formations as we passed by, according to the accepted age. We stopped at the side of the road and found the fossils of segmented plants that had lived in an ancient sea, which aeons ago had evaporated, leaving an immense sandy desert, which aeons ago became the petrified dune formation known as Navajo Sandstone.

    We were at Zion National Park, having driven down Utah’s backbone. Nowhere else in the country is the earth’s staggering age more evident.

    That college? Brigham Young University.

    The LDS Church’s position on evolution? Doesn’t have one. On account of it being a church and not the National Science Association.

  213. “leigh says November 20, 2012 at 8:16 pm
    You’re not all there, slipperyone.
    Several of us here are scientists by trade.”

    No Leigh, Slippery is the sole arbiter of what is and is not science. Because he says so. QED. Like a boss. In the penthouse elevator. On a Sunday night in Apsen. With a bottle of chilled Dom Pérignon and a hooker named Candy. Who has an air-valve in her neck. And doesn’t weigh very much. Or charge money. In a video game level. For a game that isn’t out yet. That he’s dreaming about. Before he has to get up and go make the donuts. In the real world. Sigh. He really should wash the bed spread. It kind of smells.

  214. Maybe he’s thinking of a hypothetical science-y class. Or just another bong hit.

  215. “We were at Zion National Park, having driven down Utah’s backbone. Nowhere else in the country is the earth’s staggering age more evident.”

    Maybe the grand canyon in Arizona? They have some pre-cambrian (about 1.7 to 2 billion years old) Vishnu basement metamorphic stuff at the bottom with some igneous (basalt) intrusions forced through it. That’s pretty deep. I’m not sure about Utah’s formations. I only ever went to Utah for Arches National Park and the dinosaur beds near Vernal.

    Obviously I went there because I’m obviously the science hating rabid creationist young flat-earther that Slippery, by reflex or training, doltishly takes his opponents for.

    Honestly, though, I only went to Arizona to visit the Canyon, the Painted Desert, the Meteor Crater, Sunset Crater, Flagstaff, and Saguaro National Park.

  216. Obama is a new Earth creationist

  217. That’s a lame old American 10^9 billion by the way, not a fancy Euro 10^12 billion.

  218. Ok peeps time for the rack. Try to leave a marker where you plant the silly slope.

    The targeteers are prolly gonna need to reattack when he comes back to life and repeats the same trope unaware of the trouncing he received the night before.

  219. I would like to ask some questions of leftists.

    Is the Earth a self organizing entity resembling an organism that is composed of all life and properly called Gaia?

    Is man capable of killing Gaia and how would they do it? How long would it take? Who calculated the energy budget for this?

    Is ‘nature’ a random or progressive and motivated self organizing system of processes? Is it fragile? Evidence from prior mass extinctions suggest that biodiversity has collapsed more than it has expanded. Thus is life evolving in a direction? Is it specializing, generalizing or just pushing to fill any “niche” that it can and disappearing when it fails?

    Please make up your fucking mind. Are we pushing catastrophism, uniformitarianism, or a blend of the two?

    How many advanced civilizations has the human race raised up. Are the the first?

    Why is maintenance of a biostasis proposed as a responsibility of man? Is this even possible?

    What are the long term consequences of a “mean” species extinction and how do we know?

    Why are Christians stupid but New Agers open minded and Muslims to be respected and deferred to even when they are threatening you?

    Does Utilitarianism represent an enlightened advanced superior scientific ethical principle? Why or why not?

    Why is Marx still taught today almost un-critically despite his bizarre claims of a Hegelian march of a utopia? Does Marx’s concept of a Utopia seem like a utopia to the whole human race or just certain segments of it? Why?

    Is there a natural inevitable movement of human development and activity towards progress and what constitutes progress and why is that the definitive concept of it ?

  220. “We were at Zion National Park, having driven down Utah’s backbone. Nowhere else in the country is the earth’s staggering age more evident.”

    Maybe the grand canyon in Arizona?

    It’s all the same gig. They call it The Grand Circle: Zion, Grand Canyon (North Rim), and Bryce. The top layer of the Grand Canyon is the bottom layer of Zion, and the top layer of Zion is the bottom layer of Bryce.

    They didn’t drive us to the other parks, but on the way down to Zion, we saw all of the formations in north and central Utah, which belong to different geological areas entirely. I grew up in the shadow of mountains that very visibly consist of layers upon layers upon layers, having very obviously been thrust upwards and tilted and folded and eroded.

    As for Vernal, some of my earliest memories involve walking past the stegosaurus statue near the curved walkway up to that vertical wall o’ dinosaur bones with the paleontologist perched upon it, tinking away with their delicate instruments and brushes.

    Utah is lousy with dino bones, petroglyphs, and exposed geological history. It’s a glorious thing.

  221. “Ok peeps time for the rack. Try to leave a marker where you plant the silly slope.”

    Oh he’s up in space looking down on the imaginary cartoons of us feebs from his 70 mile high plinth where his rooting for science (what ever he thinks it is) has placed him. He’s basically a son of Zeus except he didn’t need a Zeus to make him one.

  222. We have Dino bones here, too. Dinosaurs loved flyover country.

  223. Is there a natural inevitable movement of human development and activity towards progress and what constitutes progress and why is that the definitive concept of it ?

    Aaaand there’s the rub. A very bad interpretation of Darwin gave us Marxism’s false notion of “progress” (via the mere passage of time) and all of its hellish drop.

    Why a poley bear is “more evolved” (superior) than a brown bear? Or a horseshoe crab is, what, well evolved? Or does “more evolved” only apply to the most recent morph of a species?

    Defend yourself, man. Does evolution denote progress or only adaptation?

  224. For Leigh and Palaeomerus. George Carlin’s best monologue.

  225. “As for Vernal, some of my earliest memories involve walking past the stegosaurus statue near the curved walkway up to that vertical wall o’ dinosaur bones with the paleontologist perched upon it, tinking away with their delicate instruments and brushes.”

    I didn’t get to see that until I was nine. I bought one of the first ‘Tyrannosauruss not dragging his tail like Godzilla anymore’ posters in the gift shop there. (When the late seventies popculture dinosaur update happened and brachiosaurs stopped living under water with their nose as a snorkle, and dinoneichus got popular and they started calling Brontosaurus an Apatosaurus because the bronto specimen had the wrong head on it and so lost its officialness according to the guide ). Now they have feathers, down, soft crests, combs, and jowls. Because you can’t argue with science. Until you do. And win. And the books change. Cough.

  226. - The whole problem with evolution as a so-called theory was Darwins use of the word “origin” in the title, and that was done for purely financial reasons because no one was going to pay to hear yet another theory on the “developement” of the species, so it had to be an earth shattering important idea like “origins” to satisfy his benefactors. Unfortunately for the Progressive narrative dream factory, he ultimately admitted same in some of his memoirs.

    - Evolution has not shown the ‘origins’ of any species as of yet, but is a perfectly workable process for evplaining developement to a degree, also incomplete so far.

    - It doesn’t matter how much Progressives sneer, shout, argue, mock, ridicule, and stamp their little Progressive feet. none of that has the slightest bearing on reality.

    - Evolution continues to be refined almost daily, and some of the refinements at times are downright embarrassing.

  227. Robert Bakker, paleontologist

    http://scienceblogs.com/laelaps/2008/04/07/paleontological-profiles-rober/

    “[Switek] Finally, as someone who works with the “bones of contention” and the fossil record, what do you think about the current controversy surrounding evolution in the United States? How can we do a better job of communicating science to the public?

    [Bakker] We dino-scientists have a great responsibility: our subject matter attracts kids better than any other, except rocket-science. What’s the greatest enemy of science education in the U.S.?

    Militant Creationism?

    No way. It’s the loud, strident, elitist anti-creationists. The likes of Richard Dawkins and his colleagues.

    These shrill uber-Darwinists come across as insultingly dismissive of any and all religious traditions. If you’re not an atheist, then you must be illiterate or stupid and, possibly, a danger to yourself and others.

    As many commentators have noted, in televised debates, these Darwinists seem devoid of joy or humor, except a haughty delight in looking down their noses. Dawkinsian screeds are sermons to the choir; the message pleases only those already convinced. Dawkins wins no converts from the majority of U.S. parents who still honor a Biblical tradition. [Edward] Hitchcock is a far better model. He had his battles with skepticism. He did worry that the discovery of Deep Time would upset the good people of his congregation. But Hitchcock could view three thousand years of scriptural tradition and see much of value – and much concordance with Jurassic geology. “

  228. oh my slippey vigorous debate

  229. - I would bet that ss doesn’t even know the origins of his own cult movement, much less anything about the origins of man.

    - But, then again, as we’ve seen so often over the years, reading comprehension is frowned upon in the Progressive establishment.

  230. Slippery Sloth: Yyyou can can ban me now Jeff! Because I have done the work of reason, laid low the forces of darkness, and won immortality! I can see my new constellation rising into the heavens….right beside the rear hoofs of mighty Taurus the bull! See the fierce intellectual gleaming of these newborn stars! From now on all men shall graze the heavens with their eyes and behold the majesty of the Copramundi the great bullflop!

    Crap! Wait! I need a do over! Call it a mulligan?

  231. I can see my new constellation rising into the heavens….right beside the rear hoofs of mighty Taurus the bull! See the fierce intellectual gleaming of these newborn stars! From now on all men shall graze the heavens with their eyes and behold the majesty of the Copramundi the great bullflop!

    #win

  232. Thanks, Blake!

  233. Hey, Im still waiting for Slippery to explain how monkey’s missed the evolution train so let’s not get ahead of ourselves;).

    Monkeys didn’t “miss” the evolution train. Just because one species (us) gained sentience doesn’t mean there can’t be others that didn’t.

    Sliptwit will use your misunderstanding as an excuse to sneer and preen, but then he’s a jackass.

  234. still waiting for Slippery to explain how monkey’s missed the evolution train

    Monkeys and apes aren’t our ancestors. Our genomes show a common ancestor, that’s all. That ancestor is extinct, but its descendents (primates) still exist, all having taken different evolutionary paths.

    I’m sorry, but it’s dumb to try to find holes in evolution and stuff like that and then think that you’ve found proof that God exists or at least that scientists are up in the night. All you’re doing is staking out the territory for the God of the Gaps, who is, I’m afraid, not the God of Abraham.

  235. That, and when someone tries the “how monkey’s missed the evolution train” sort of quips they’re doing the same thing Slipperyslope was with his list of strawmen about conservatives.

    Probably not something to emulate.

  236. I always get a kick out of people who insist that the “science is settled”

    Riiiiiight

  237. Another branch of science that can’t be reproduced in a lab…. and I’d really appreciate if no one tried to do so on this planet.

    :-o

  238. Is man capable of killing Gaia and how would they do it? How long would it take? Who calculated the energy budget for this?

    While it’s not exactly the same question, and is, of course, wildly off-topic, I’ve always loved this How to Destroy the Earth site, which applies actual science (SCIENCE!) to the problem. Short answer: it’s well-nigh impossible. But given that it’s been here for 5 billion years or so, you’d have to empirically come to that conclusion even without knowing the math.

    Similarly the short The Physics of the Death Star article is amusing for the same reason. The comments are worth reading, if you’re into this sort of thing.

  239. Is man capable of killing Gaia and how would they do it?

    That would make a helluva Epic Boss Battle in an mmo. It would take several raiding parties I would think, with plenty of healers.

    Good luck finding tanks.

    How long would it take?

    I wouldn’t attempt it with less than a case of energy drinks and several bags of trail mix.

  240. Again I say, I’m so happy y’all stomp your feet and insist on being taken seriously while, in the very same sentence, demonstrate why no one with a brain should associate with you. The future’s bright for the Democrats.

    This from the cat unwilling to define “science class”. Lots of kindly folks will debate slope on slope’s terms, the site host among them — and given slope’s irrelevance and tired, debunked old tropes, quite generously I’d add.

    See, I just want to get a good look at how slope sees the tone of education in the USA before getting in too deep with such a bad faith argument as his or hers.

  241. I always get a kick out of people who insist that the “science is settled”

    Yup.

    Hey, what’s this?

    Testing theories through experimentation has always been the basis for scientific progress. The philosopher Karl Popper called this the notion of falsifiability of scientific theories.

    Hmmm…

  242. I’ve no problem with evolution; as a tool for understanding ‘how’ biological entities come and go, it seems to have worked out well, broadly and generally speaking, helping humans and scientists map this little mudball’s fleeting collection of flora and fauna. But there’s more to understanding our existence than mastering any particular tool.

    We’ve been lucky, we humans, to have ‘come about’ on a planet perfectly situated in it’s orbital mechanics, to allow occurrence of the triple point of water. And also a perfectly situated satellite orbiting in just the right place that gives us nicely proportioned tides. And that tilt in Earth’s axis? Without that, we’d have no seasons. There would be very little of this planet’s surface habitable if we were a million miles either direction, with no moon, no axis tilt, and no molten iron core that helps keep that Van Allen Belt working, shielding us from the sun’s breath and other cosmic belches. If you were a gambling man, you’d bet against such odds occurring with any one of those elements; to have all of ‘em happening together, in such a perfectly timed fashion?

    Modern humans rose to ‘enlightenment’ by benefiting from nicely placed reservoirs of what seems to be fossil fuels; we wouldn’t be so ‘enlightened’ if we weren’t able to avail ourselves of their existence. Another lucky quirk. They won’t last forever, we do have to figure out how to get our energy needs elsewhere. Nuclear energy use needs to be mastered. We just can’t get past the burns; but we must. None of the left’s favored sources of energy can supply our current needs.

    Back to our ‘why’: put all of these lucky physical quirks together, shake well, and we get to where we are right now. All were necessary to get us out of caves and into space. Almost seems purposeful, doesn’t it? If there is a grand designer, he’d have to get plenty of kudos and ‘atta boy!’s for his efforts.

    Bottom line: there’s more to what we are and how we got here than what any science class can ever explain. Pure science is math and mechanics, explaining the movements of particles that can barely be registered and only inferred by their traces, to the epic movements of galaxies as their centers are consumed by black holes. Purely math and mechanics, our science-as-a-how-tool, one that is no where near good enough to or even purposed to tell us the ‘why’ of why things work.

    As someone mentioned, science is now used by moon-struck leftists to bash any reasoning for understanding the ‘why’ things are working; ‘why’ life sparked and keeps working; ‘why’ humans are here. There are huge questions that science doesn’t understand and can never explain.

    Oh, and Bacon…”Without God, humans are but animals”. Lucky, lucky, lucky animals.

  243. Jeff, you can ban me now. My work is finished here.

    Thanks! for coming around and inspiring an epic comment thread. Useful idiots are useful.

  244. So now the trolls are giving the host permission to ban them?

  245. Patrick, Dicentra,

    My monkey question was in reference to slope’s question/challenge:

    “Again I’ll ask, what evidence would you need to believe the theory of evolution is correct?”

    It wasn’t a contention that monkeys and apes are our ancestors just an observation of a species that has stopped “evolving” and a request for slippery slope to explain it.

    “Sliptwit will use your misunderstanding as an excuse to sneer and preen, but then he’s a jackass.”

    This was his response to my query:

    “Again I say, I’m so happy y’all stomp your feet and insist on being taken seriously while, in the very same sentence, demonstrate why no one with a brain should associate with you. The future’s bright for the Democrats.”

    So you were right about the jackass part but that was actually the point. He was incapable of discussing the topic in the manner that the you and Dicentra were. In fact he’s incapable of arguing any of the things he contends. If I had to guess (and Geoff b could probably find evidence if he were around) I’d say he’s just cutting and pasting lefty talking points from some web site.

    Ok,

    Off to work were I promise that I’ll strive to defend America’s freedom of evolution. For the children… and the monkeys;)

  246. nobody cares if the socially backward kids reject the theory as long as they understand how the theory of natural selection developed through fairly simple observations that anyone what was clever and observant could have made

    Heh. ‘feets, you might understand the theory, and, so knowing how it works, how do you feel about your placefitting in’t ?

  247. Modern monkeys and apes and humans all shared a common ancestor. That’s the tie-in. Each evolved to what you see now; humans of course stopped evolving when our thin veneer of civilization stopped the natural selection process.

    Of course, leftists wanted to accelerate human evolution with their ‘eugenics’ programs. Now all that remains of those are the human fetuses that are aborted; mostly of impoverished females of color. And leftist liberal women who have degrees in the humanities. And Chinese females, of course. Malthus would be so very proud!

    But I suspect eugenics will return, if and when leftists can obtain absolute sway over our destinies. As they strongly desire to attain, a one-Party control system, as has China.

    Without Conservatism, eugenics will return with a vengeance.

  248. Hey, just a matter of time before the SCOTUS decides that you can’t ban irritating Leftist trolls (*) from your site, ’cause, you know, commerce clause or some such. Like they even need a reason. I mean, you have to rent hotel rooms to anyone, and you have to photograph gay weddings, so why shouldn’t you have to give assorted nozzles of douche a free public forum for them to get their hate on.

    Stare decisis, baby!

    —-
    * Obviously, you can always ban rightwingers. They’re trolls by definition, and shunning them from the public square is a time-honored practice that will enable Our Betters to finally build that Most Glorious Workers Paradise thingy they’ve been promising.

  249. I”’m sorry, but it’s dumb to try to find holes in evolution and stuff like that and then think that you’ve found proof that God exists”

    Dicentra,

    I made no references to God (although he was discussed by others in the thread) and I don’t need to find a loophole to prove his existence but serr8d makes a pretty good case above.

    “or at least that scientists are up in the night.”

    I have no idea what you meant by that but that whole sentance was poorly phrased (“and stuff like that”?).

    “All you’re doing is staking out the territory for the God of the Gaps, who is, I’m afraid, not the God of Abraham”.

    I threw a softball question at an internet idiot and he responded exactly how I expected, NOTHING MORE!

  250. nobody cares if the socially backward kids reject the theory

    “socially backward”? By whose definition?

    If Paris Hilton is “socially forward” that says more about the definer then it does about the people who don’t want to be Paris Hilton.

  251. And if slipshit is lurking … guess who said this handwringing, anti-science, worthy of tar and feathers, quote:

    I believe that God created the universe and that the six days in the Bible may not be six days as we understand it . . . it may not be 24-hour days, and that’s what I believe. I know there’s always a debate between those who read the Bible literally and those who don’t, and I think it’s a legitimate debate within the Christian community of which I’m a part. My belief is that the story that the Bible tells about God creating this magnificent Earth on which we live—that is essentially true, that is fundamentally true. Now, whether it happened exactly as we might understand it reading the text of the Bible: That, I don’t presume to know.

  252. The future of the democrats is “Obamaphone! ” then “wreckers!” then ” the government is going on strike” then ” riots outside DC” then “farming collapse and a critical number of people emigrating until critical regions are no longer bound together well enough for security” then ” neo-viking* invasion” because who can stop them? Easy meat on a picnic table.

    *Neo-vikings are not necessarily scandinavian. Just periodic waves of people who’ll band together to kill other people for space and stuff and only leave when they are beaten in a bad fight.

  253. humans of course stopped evolving

    Nobody has stopped evolving. We evolved tolerance for lactose. The Black Plague killed off the weak and left the European population marginally more resistant to it than before. Same with Native Americans and smallpox or summat.

    Other adaptations may follow when Big Changes affect the environment.

    Adaptation, that is: not progress.

  254. But the point I was making, Di, is that we are not evolving as quickly as the rest of the animals, given our insulating coat of ‘civilization’. Oh, yes, we are still evolving, but the fastest-evolving biota are the viri and bacteria; many becoming resistant to the antibiotics &c. we’ve thrown at them.

    How long before a super bug does a ‘Black Plague’ on our worldwide population? Hate to bring up this guy, but he was dead-on.

  255. Yes, we are ripe for another “harvest” by the itty bitties. God help us all.

  256. More than 80% of adults are lactose intolerant. If we do not actively consume dairy products over our lifetimes, we lose the enzyme neccesary for digestion of milk sugars.

    The same thing happens to persons who are strict vegetarians. They will lose* the enzyme necessary for the digestion of animal products. This is why persons who are vegetarian and decide to embrace the cow once again, often develop stomach cramping and discomfort until the body readjusts to the new diet and reactivates the enzyme for digestion of meats.

    The ability to survive the Black Death is sourced to a gene mutation that is present in the DNA profiles of persons who are descendants of those Caucasions of Olde who didn’t succomb.

    Smallpox will kill just about anyone, Native American or no. Thankfully, it has been eradicated Gaia-wide and is only kept under lock and key for the dread biological warfare.

    *The enzyme is not ‘lost’ technically. It is on hiatus.

  257. Who is that guy, serr8d? His webpage is making my eyes hurt.

  258. The invasion of the milk drinking mutants.

  259. Thanks, geoff. I love stuff like that.

  260. leigh, he’s a evolutionary biologist and herpetologist. He’s opinionated, but aren’t we all?

    Where Doc Pianka goes wrong is in leaping to solutions that are bound to an ideology. The Left believes they have all the answers to our problems (and many times they offer the only answers proffered; we of Conservative bent seem to be always on the defensive). Then little stupidish mouthy shits like slippery come along and repeat endless, distilled talking points created by their ideological handlers, without even thinking.

    Pianka is like many musicians. More of these scientist-actors just need to shut up and weigh (data). Publish just the facts, don’t embellish for any ideology. Universities are known as hives for minds that trend to Left.

  261. Thanks. I kind of skimmed him for buzzwords and saw several before I just left.

  262. One thing that was interesting and somewhat instructive was watching the political left attack the scientists who ventured to study the evolutionary path of human psychology. Talk about a freak out. Ol’ E. O. Wilson could hardly dodge the on-slaught quick enough, though granted the missiles were fairly harmless in themselves. Still, the political resistance to an avenue of research was a crazy flag worthy a description as the flip-side of intelligent design.

  263. Is man capable of killing Gaia and how would they do it?

    Come on, hasn’t anyone seen Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country? You destroy your planet by mining too much and having too big a military budget.

    Everyone knows that…

  264. Pingback: They Blinded Me With Science « The Camp Of The Saints

  265. I think this Matt Lewis piece on Rubio offers a far better response to this “don’t conform to the caricature” stuff that’s making the rounds. And I would love to see a Sarah Palin talkshow.

    http://dailycaller.com/2012/11/21/theyre-trying-to-palinize-marco-rubio/#ixzz2CrZWsixR

  266. “Come on, hasn’t anyone seen Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country? You destroy your planet by mining too much and having too big a military budget.
    Everyone knows that…”

    So that moon of Quonos blew up because of space-fracking?

  267. Wow. I can’t believe I read the whole thing!

    Y’all are being played. The slipperyslope hipster was getting everyone sidetracked on evolution as the very definition of science, with a nod to global warming as a like example, and the presupposition that the people that deny evolution as the defining theory of life(despite the glaring omission of origin) and AGW, are the very same people that want to deport ten year old children.

    On the grounds that religion mustn’t mess education. It is to laugh.

    I’m one of the more upfront socons around, but I don’t really spend time thinking about whether ID should be taught in high school biology.

    Mostly ‘cuz I’m too busy thinking how the DOE should be disappeared allowing education to be a state and local responsibility, science shouldn’t be taught by rank and file union memebers, and high school graduates should be able to read and write at college entrance level.

    NOT teaching ID sure hasn’t worked…

  268. I think everyone was amusing themselves watching slipperysolipsism argue with himself before declaring that it was beneath his dignity to continue to argue with himself.

    Victory!

  269. Well, one thing I’ve noticed about the trolls these days, they’re big on demanding explanation, while never acknowledging when they get it. Also, they make no effort at even pretending to defend any position of their own.

    Maybe I’m just jaded beyond redemption, but to me, no one on the left deserves intellectual engagement. It’s just wrestling with a pig, as George Bernard Shaw put it.

  270. Well said Jeff! Very well said. At some point we’ve got to stop bending a knee and tugging a lock to everyone who claims to be our better….

  271. Not that it matters.

  272. I think that people who want ID taught in “science” classes are misguided. The idea that young smart asses can be convinced not to be young smart asses and to respect and try to understand people who observe different traditions than them is naive.

    I also think that people who don’t want ID taught in “science” classes are misguided. A middle school science education is completely worthless. It’s good for nothing. It will get you nothing. It is a waste of time, effort, and money. It is a worthless middle step created because someone thought there should be one and it should be easy enough that anyone can pass it. It does not convey any real skills. It does grant even a basic command of simple everyday scientific principles. Kids regularly fail simple conceptual physics tests which indicates that they can’t tell velocity from acceleration from displacement from momentum from force and don’t know that heat flows from hot to cold and cold isn’t a thing that flows, nor can they explain what osmosis is. It is an advertisement for real science courses and a bad one because most kids are bored stiff by it. The most you can hope for is that the kids learn “don’t play with fire, stay away from electrical stuff, don’t put strange things in your mouth, avoid snakes and other wild animals, don’t look at the sun, stay out of water if you can’t swim, don’t jump off the roof, don’t jump through a window, don’t mix ammonia bleach and chlorine bleach, don’t play with fire crackers, and don’t put a plastic bag over your head”.

    ‘Real’ science classes are those that actually teach the theory and practice and history of a field of science usually at the undergraduate college/qualified for employment level.

    If anything elementary middle school science seems to exist to drive kids away from science. That repulsive effect may look like a form of screening, to keep those without an aptitude away, but it is not. A lot of kids who CAN do very well in real science classes don’t bother to try because it looks like it isn’t any fun, and a lot of kids who can’t do it, but love documentaries and knowing science facts, will charge in and get shocked and demoralized the moment they need more than a half assed grasp of single variable algebra.

    So the people who want ID taught in school want tolerance and respect for their own beliefs and an admission that secular humanism and materialism should not be indoctrinated on top of science classes and that science classes should not be used as a crutch to propagate philosophical ideas that are not actually founded in science since science says nothing about them. These people keep ID vague so it does not point directly to any one religious or cosmic tradition. And frankly science does NOT tell us what the origin of life is definitively nor does it tell us how the universe happened. It just tells us how to make simple predictive models of how things function here and now, provided our observations and metrics are correct. You can tell me that things work the same way in another galaxy as they do here only because you assume or take on faith that the universe is uniform. You have not observed things in another galaxy. You may have some light from another galaxy, that you think took a hundred million years to reach your sensor, because you think you experimentally and theoretically know the top speed of light in a vacuum uninterrupted by a gravity well through out the entire universe. But who knows? You can’t observe the entire universe. You can’t even be sure that the definition for vacuum is as simple as you think it is.

    The people who don’t want it taught want to isolate religious people and those who believe in external forces guiding life and or humanity at some point. They want to lead students to an idea that science is on their side even when science does not even examine their the topics of their philosophical beliefs.

    Both sides need to quit riding science if they want science to function as what it was meant to be. Both are full of shit. Science doesn’t CARE who created the universe or started life. Scientists do, specially when they are also philosophers who wish to bolster their own philosophy. Science cares about studying nature to model how the universe, matter, animal tissues, or whatever works. The big bang is a story rather than an observation and it just says that something that is expanding must have expanded from smaller state and the smallest state would be a singularity, a point. It is a story that had to be heavily modified to explain the irregularity in the density of background microwave radiation and the appearance that the universe is much bigger than it should be given its ‘determined’ age and the speed of light, (which matter cannot travel at).

    Teaching science as a ‘finished product’ that is dogmatically and eternally correct is absolutely stupid. Science doesn’t stop making observations or throw out observations that make prior scientists look bad. It is constantly being revised as a product by both honest and dishonest actors. It is unfinished and subject to ever more revision when analysis, methods, and observations improve. ‘Science as a product’ is only as good as the work and the people that went into recording it. When it is distorted for profit, for fame, for piety, for political correctness, to fit in with the zeitgeist, because it does not match expectations, etc it loses its ability to model the universe and thus it loses its utility. When it is used a crutch for promoting aggressive atheism or eugenic culling, or tribal unity, or economic realignments the science product is suspect.

    Thus I think the ID inclusion is a little bit stupid but ultimately harmless because elementary science education is a joke in the frist place and will not get the student much of anything later in life. The student’s meaningful relationship with science will occur later in life and the elementary school education will not much affect that one way or the other. Kids will learn most of it by watching TV anyway if they have any interest in the subject at all, and those that don’t will never learn it. Most just don’t learn it. The case for excluding ID is ideological, philosophical, and founded in dishonesty. Since the elementary “here is a map of our solar system not to scale” science education is essentially worthless, a miniscule exposure to ID will have no effect on the value of the course. Which is close to zero.

  273. Fuck. I missed the whole thing.

    Oh, well. Someone that comes to preach is going to be a little miffed when you interrupt his sermon with inconvenient facty stuff.

  274. Excellent. More Goldstein, less Geraghty.

    I remind you all that on Geraghty’s Three Martini Lunch podcast, he predicted both Martha Raddatz and Candy Crowley would be fine moderators. Enough said.

  275. Ace chimes in, see thought #3.

  276. I read the ace comments, some of which referenced my piece here (h/t geoffB). Apparently, I’m the GOP cheerleader for having said we shouldn’t savage our own candidates for making dubious comments — that the left will do it for us, even when the only reason the comments are dubious to begin with is because the left controls the parameter for acceptable public utterance.

    We lose b/c we’re too stupid even to understand the problem. And by “we,” I don’t mean most of the people here.

  277. You’re a faster and braver reader than I. I usually skip the comments there as it’s a swamp where anything of quality vanishes in the high level of muck. YMMV

  278. Ahyep, it’s the proverbial pea soup you’ve heard tell.

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