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Saturday, April 19, 2008

The REAL Inconvenient Truth: Expelled the movie




"A preference for natural explanations could be reasonable. But it is impossible to prove the contention that "miracles may not happen" or that there is no supernatural realm. Therefore, a willingness to adopt such an a priori position, and hold that as superior to facts, reflects a philosophical fundamentalist position as rigid as a religious fundamentalist position." - Lawrence Selden




I went to the opening night of the movie: Expelled - No Intelligence Allowed. The last showing at the local Kerasotes theater was half-filled with viewers and, at the end, applause broke out through the theater while a few folks seemed to smirk or scowl in response. It appeared that true believers, the unconvinced and the diametrically opposed all showed up.

I think Expelled is the flipside of Al Gore's deliberately deceitful movie. Gore and his ilk seek to shut off debate, calling those opposed to his views "global-warming deniers" and seeking to paint them as ignoramuses unable to see the truth. Even green-friendly folks have big problems with the whole man-made global warming premise on the basis of science:

There is no Greenhouse Effect as defined in An Inconvenient Truth. Greenhouse gases are not being trapped, they’re being released. When surface temperatures do rise, they’re not rising due to man-made causes because nothing is trapping them.

Al’s examples of impending doom both on his web site and in the movie, tend to be snap shots of normal, cyclical environmental behavior that, when grouped together, paint a foreboding picture. Professor Phillip Stott of the Univesity of London noted that, when these 'snap shots' are placed in the context of history, over 10, 30 or even 50 years, these events are quite ordinary.

But why are Glaciers in northern most latitudes receding? Is this normal? If it is, why? Is it cyclical? If so, what's the cycle? Unless Al Gore, his proponents and all his Carbon Footprint programs get out of the way and allow these climate conditions to be exposed to real scientific analysis, we may never know. That’s the great Environmental Crime here.

Expelled is not a creationist-apologist movie. It is not an attack on science. It will surprise you, just as it surprised Brent Bozell III:

"...Evolution is another one of those one-sided debates. We know the concept of Intelligent Design is stifled in academic circles. An entire documentary to state the obvious? You can see my reluctance to view it.

I went into the screening bored. I came out of it stunned.

Ben Stein's extraordinary presentation documents how the worlds of science and academia not only crush debate on the origins of life, but also crush the careers of professors who dare to question the Darwinian hypothesis of evolution and natural selection.

Stein asks a simple question: What if the universe began with an intelligent designer, a designer named God? He assembles a stable of academics — experts all — who dared to question Darwinist assumptions and found themselves "expelled" from intellectual discourse as a result. They include evolutionary biologist Richard Sternberg (sandbagged at the Smithsonian), biology professor Caroline Crocker (drummed out of George Mason University), and astrophysicist Guillermo Gonzalez (blackballed at Iowa State University).

That's disturbing enough, but what Stein does next is truly shocking. He allows the principal advocates of Darwinism to speak their minds. These are experts with national reputations, regular welcomed guests on network television and the like. But the public knows them only by their careful seven-second soundbites. Stein engages them in conversation. They speak their minds. They become sputtering ranters, openly championing their sheer hatred of religion.

PC liberalism has showered accolades on atheist author Richard Dawkins' best-selling book "The God Delusion." But when Stein suggests to Dawkins that he's been critical of the Old Testament God, Dawkins protests — not that Stein is wrong, but that he's being too mild. He then reads from this jaw-dropping paragraph of his book:

"The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."

Dawkins has a website. Its slogan is "A clear-thinking oasis."

It's understood that God had nothing to do with the origins of life on Earth. What, then, is the alternate explanation? Stein asks these experts, and their very serious answers are priceless. One theorizes that life began somehow on the backs of crystals. Another states electric sparks from a lightning storm created organic matter (out of nothing). Another declares that life was brought to Earth by aliens. Anything but God.

The most controversial part of the film follows Stein to the Dachau concentration camp, underlining how Darwin's theories of natural selection led to the eugenics movement, embraced by Adolf Hitler. If there is no God, but only a planetary lab waiting for scientists to perfect the human race, where can Darwinism lead? Stein insists that he isn't accusing today's Darwinists of Nazism. He points out, however, that Hitler's mad science was inspired by Darwinism.

Now that the film is complete, the evolutionist prophets featured in the film are on the warpath inveighing against it, and the alleged idiots who would lower themselves to watching it. Richard Dawkins laments how the film will solicit "cheap laughs that could only be raised in an audience of scientific ignoramuses." Minnesota professor and blogger P.Z. Myers predicts the movie is "going to appeal strongly to the religious, the paranoid, the conspiracy theorists, and the ignorant —— which means they're going to draw in about 90 percent of the American market." Myers and Dawkins now both complain they were "duped" into appearing in the movie (for pay).

Everyone should take the opportunity to see "Expelled" — if nothing else, as a bracing antidote to the atheism-friendly culture of PC liberalism. But it's far more than that. It's a spotlight on the arrogance of this movement and its leaders, a spotlight on the choking intolerance of academia, and a spotlight on the ignorance of so many who say so much, yet know so very little. "

The segment where Stein interviews Dawkins is particularly telling - Dawkins actually agrees that intelligent design could be true, if the designers were an alien race that had seeded life on earth, a race that had evolved elsewhere in the universe by some means agreeable to evolutionists. So if you peeled the layers off, Dawkins is not afraid of the idea that life was designed, as long as it wasn't by a Higher Being. He reveals in this that it is his worldview that rules his opinion, rather than the science.

Algebraic rendering of the workings of the Dawkins brain:

ET + Spaceship + One-celled-organism = Science
God + Noah's Ark + Animal Kinds = Fantasy

It is telling that people like P Z Myers and Dawkins are now complaining about being "deceived" into doing interviews for the movie:

"...three scientists — Richard Dawkins, author of The God Delusion; Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education; and P.Z. Myers, a biologist at the University of Minnesota, Morris — told the Times that they felt deceived by producers of Expelled.

Premise Media Corporation, the makers of the film featuring television personality Ben Stein, responded Thursday to accusations, denying any wrongdoing.

"There is some serious mistreatment and downright reprehensible behavior going on here,” said Executive Producer Walt Ruloff, “but I can assure you it's not coming from us.

“We're just the ones exposing it.”

In Expelled, Stein – best known for his role in Visine eye drops commercials – highlights the long-standing controversial debate between supporters of Darwinism, which suggests the universe was created by chance, and Intelligent Design, which argues that the creation of life and the universe are results of an intelligent “designer.”

Through interviews with both Intelligent Design and Darwinian Evolution proponents, the movie is said to expose “the intimidation, persecution and career destruction that takes place when any scientist dares dissent from the view that all life on earth is the mere result of random mutation and natural selection,” according to producers.

“When our audience sees the stories of the real victims of scientific malpractice they're going to be outraged,” said Ruloff.

Dawkins, who has earned the label “Darwin’s Rottweiler” from the media, protested that makers of the movie did not inform him that they were representing “a creationist front,” in an e-mail written to the Times.

He also shared similar complaints with fellow atheist Meyers over the film’s title change from Crossroads: The Intersection of Science and Religion to of Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. Both Dawkins and Meyers claim that changing the film’s title amounted to deception.

Mark Mathis, one of the film's producers, countered their allegations and said that they were a “bunch of hypocrites.”

According to the makers of the film, even Dawkins admitted that the title of his anti-religion documentary (Root of all Evil?) was chosen as a replacement for the original title late in the process. They maintain that movie's title was changed on the advice of marketing experts.

Furthermore, Expelled producers pointed out that Dawkins is involved in a documentary that attacks Intelligent Design theory. It is the makers of A War on Science who are deceptive, according to Expelled producers, since they approached Discovery Institute as objective filmmakers and then portrayed the organization as religiously-motivated and anti-scientific.

Mathis, who set up the interviews for Expelled, said the scientists who were interviewed were well-informed beforehand.

“I went over all of the questions with these folks before the interviews and I e-mailed the questions to many of them days in advance,” said Mathis. “The lady [and gentlemen] doth protest too much, methinks.”"

The problem is that Dawkins thinks a balanced look at ID versus evolution would be pro-evolution. He cannot abide the idea that he could possibly be wrong. Besides, the movie isn't primarily about science. IT IS ABOUT FREEDOM!!!!

Expelled uses images of the Berlin Wall very tellingly in the opening and then interspersed throughout the movie. There truly is a Berlin Wall of thought that has been erected in the arena of origins, a wall that stretches throughout the scientific and academic community and, sadly, America's classrooms.

"Dr. Paul A. Nelson, a biology professor at Biola University in La Mirada, lauds the documentary, and not just because he’s one of the Intelligent Design advocates interviewed by Stein.

“Long before there were any Christians by name, people were debating the issue of design,” he said in a telephone interview from his home in Chicago. “It’s a question that’s as deep as humankind.”

Nelson, a fellow with the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture, said he believes the issue of academic freedom often collides with First Amendment issues, giving alternative science theories a distinct disadvantage.

“It creates this funny, tilted playing field,” he said. “So we have this weird asymmetry in American high schools, especially, which is quite unnatural. All theories are equal, but not as equal as others.”

The result, he believes, short-circuits inquiry and could ultimately be counterproductive to Darwin enthusiasts.

“They need to recognize that something has gone tremendously wrong,” he said. “The open-ended inquiry of science has been distorted.”

Despite the attempt to thwart Intelligent Design in higher education, Nelson said students “get a little inoculation” and learn just enough to become skeptical about evolution.

“The educational establishment has failed to persuade most Americans that they are right when it comes to evolution,” Nelson said.

Nelson said he’s hopeful the documentary will serve to keep the debate before the public and, by default, on school campuses.

“At the end of the day I am encouraged,” he said. “Human curiosity is so powerful that it will win out. Intellectual freedom will win out the day. The message of ‘Expelled’ is that the Berlin wall did come down.”"





Tellingly, the opponents of the free discussion of ideas use derision rather than evidence to try to counteract this movie. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune labels the movie, "propaganda" and says:

"A hard-core, fundamentalist bit of right-wing propaganda, "Expelled" slyly appropriates its style from liberal and left-wing sources, sending Ben Stein out to do deadpan interviews of a grab-bag of experts and wack jobs, while intercutting old movies, new animation and newsreel footage."

I wonder who are the "wack jobs", the degreed scientists who advocate the discussion of ID, or those who are opposed? Virtually every interviewee on both sides is a degreed scientist. The Star-Trib has nothing worthwhile to say but certainly screeches while saying it.

We are sure to soon hear cries of outrage from evolutionists who will decry the way the movie demonstrates the links from Darwin to Eugenics to Hitler to mass slaughter. I hope to address that issue in my blog later on. It is a valid argument to be discussed. But it is not the main focus of the movie.

The Tragedy of Higher Education in America is this: In the field of science, free discussion of ideas is not only discouraged, it is banned! As Ben Stein says, "There are people who want to keep science in a little box where it can't possibly touch God." These are the people who are so afraid of the evidential consideration of Intelligent Design because it might cause people to consider that God exists. It is all about worldview rather than science.

The Darwinian Fundamentalism blog writes the following:

"

Richard Lewontin's January 9, 1997 article, Billions and Billions of Demons, which is a review of Carl Sagan’s book, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark contains the oft-quoted line about not allowing “a Divine Foot in the door.” The entire paragraph in which this line appears is worth quoting. It seems to me to be the best statement of the philosophical foundation for the Darwinian fundamentalist perspective:

Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door. The eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may happen.

Empiricism is subservient to philosophy. Facts are subservient to a priori presuppositions.

What distinguishes this statement is how forcefully he insists on not being open to the possibility that there may be a supernatural realm or that miracles may happen. A preference for natural explanations could be reasonable. But it is impossible to prove the contention that "miracles may not happen" or that there is no supernatural realm. Therefore, a willingness to adopt such an a priori position, and hold that as superior to facts, reflects a philosophical fundamentalist position as rigid as a religious fundamentalist position."


In the two or so years I have published this blog, I have raised all sorts of questions relative to origins and never have I gotten a truly reasonable response from any Darwinist on any subject. Darwinism has no explanation for the origin of the Universe, or the origin of life, or the amazing complexity of living organisms, nor the fine-tuning of Earth and the Universe or the remarkably uniform rock layering found around the globe or any other major question.

In terms of religion, it isn't about whether religion is part of the discussion, but rather will only one religious worldview (naturalistic materialism) be allowed to stifle all other lines of inquiry?

Darwinism is The Great and Mighty Oz. They fear that we will look behind the curtain, so the Darwinists are working hard to ban the curtain from being investigated. Some are simply brain-washed idealogues and some, small-minded and fearful zealots. But I believe and hope that many are just people who haven't really taken the time to truly consider the situation from more than one point of view. Someday the scientific community will have the guts and the integrity to let real science back into the study of origins and the instruction of our young people. It cannot be one minute too soon!

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

When this comes out on DVD, I'll definitely check it out. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

2 quick comments:

First, I don't know why Hitler and the holocaust are even in this discussion. To me (not having seen the film), this seem like it will be some bizarre attempt to discredit evolution on something other than its scientific merit.

Second, you mention how darwinists have no explanation of the origins of the universe or of life. Nobody has proof of these. Nobody. You may have an explanation, but can't back it up with any proof.

Also, didn't creeper make a comment on your last blog? What happened to it?

~lava

Steven Carr said...

What must it have been like to be a Jewish child growing up in a Nazi Germany?

For some reason, the wise words of Paul Copan come to mind ””What then of the children? Death would be a mercy, as they would be ushered into the presence of God and spared the corrupting influences of a morally decadent culture.”’

radar said...

I wouldn't delete creeper unless he was swearing like crazy, so if he was deleted it was probably that he thought better of whatever he said. I don't remember seeing anything from him lately.

You probably need to either see the movie or read a book like "Liberal Fascism" by Jonah Goldberg to see the connection between Hitler and Darwin. But that connection is not used to discredit Darwinism as a theory.

Yes, no one has proof of origins, so Darwinists have no business claiming that they have the only answers and the rest of us must shut up. This movie is about the stifling of freedoms more than anything else.

Lava, I hope you see it soon and tell me what you think then. Again, I wouldn't delete creeper and it would be cool to hear from him again, now that I am healthy and ramping up the old blog thing again...

Taxandrian said...

Radar, since you seem to claim that Expelled is all about free thought and free speech, I'm sure you will applaud me for posting these links:

Expelled Exposed

Creation, Power and Violence

Six Things Ben Stein doesn't want you to know

Expelled movie promotors expel critics

Expelled: no screenings for critics

Expelled: John Lennon's music used without permission?

radar said...

sure, tax, it is pretty fun to watch the darwinists scrambling trying to convince people not to see the movie and making false accusations just to muddy the waters.

Taxandrian said...

Radar said:

sure, tax, it is pretty fun to watch the darwinists scrambling trying to convince people not to see the movie and making false accusations just to muddy the waters.

My dear Radar...did you even read the articles the links pointed to? Did you even think for a minute before posting this comment?

What you did in your comment is EXACTLY the thing 'Expelled' claims to fight: the ridiculing and disregard for those who are critical towards a certain point of view. The links I posted are all critical of the movie 'Expelled' and the message it tries to convey. Why is it all of a sudden a bad idea to be critical, to be skeptical, to think differently?

Really, Radar. Now, honestly: did you read the articles?

Just a question for you: do you personally think there's nothing contradictory, irrational or even hypocritical about the fact that the makers of a movie that's about critics being silenced and/or expelled, engage in expelling those who criticize them? How do you feel about the fact that the makers of the movie try to suppress free thought and open inquiry about the adequacy of Intelligent Design and creationist presuppositions?

And if you are really concerned about free speech, surely you must be outraged by the fact that some were expelled because of their ideas, like shown in the article Creation, Power and Violence? Like the article states: many of these are faithful Christians. If you really are for free speech, and support the message 'Expelled' claims to convey, this must anger you. Surely you don't discard this information as 'false accusations'?

Or is it only outrageous when creationists are being 'expelled'?

Indeed, it's pretty funny to see how people claim to be in favor of 'free speech' until this free speech is used to criticize their own convictions, like you just proved.

Anonymous said...

Radar, I'll definitely let you know when I see it and let you know what I thought of it. It isn't something I'm willing to spend 10 dollars on (or 20, with the wife), so I'll have to wait for the DVD release.

It is good to hear you are feeling better.

It is tough to talk about the movie without having seen it, but the quote below (from tax's link to "6 things...") got me thinking. I'm an agnostic, not atheist. I believe in evolution. I believe we evolved. When it comes to the origin of the universe and life, I have no idea. It could be that a higher being set everything in motion, it could be that humans were in his plan. It could also be that the makings of life were just there. It could also be that humans don't have the ability to truly comprehend the universe, and there is no beginning.

It sounds like the movie is just trying to paint evolution as an atheist construct. The quote below shows that just isn't true. Unless, of course, the atheist have just brainwashed the entire scientific community...but, that is pretty laughable.

Nevertheless, the film is wrong to imply that understanding of evolution inevitably or necessarily leads to a rejection of religious belief. Francisco Ayala of the University of California, Irvine, a leading neuroscientist who used to be a Dominican priest, continues to be a devout Catholic, as does the evolutionary biologist Ken Miller of Brown University. Thousands of other biologists across the U.S. who all know evolution to be true are also still religious. Moreover, billions of other people around the world simultaneously accept evolution and keep faith with their religion. The late Pope John Paul II said that evolution was compatible with Roman Catholicism as an explanation for mankind's physical origins.

During Scientific American's post-screening conversation with Expelled associate producer Mark Mathis, we asked him why Ken Miller was not included in the film. Mathis explained that his presence would have "confused" viewers. But the reality is that showing Miller would have invalidated the film's major premise that evolutionary biologists all reject God.

Inside and outside the scientific community, people will no doubt continue to debate rationalism and religion and disagree about who has the better part of that argument. Evidence from evolution will probably remain at most a small part of that conflict, however.


~lava

radar said...

Taxandrian,

Do you intentionally not get it? Expelled is about people losing their jobs, having their careers ruined, simply for wishing to follow a line of inquiry which a fundamentalist majority desires to ignore. It is therefore about free thought and freedom of inquiry in the worlds of science and academics.

It is true that PZ Myers was expelled from a prescreening of the movie, which was ironic in the extreme. It was bad form on the part of the people in charge but in fact that has nothing to do with the movie itself. Myers and the movie have probably both wound up coming out ahead on the free publicity scale as a result of the incident.

How does one guy being kept from attending a screening equate to large numbers of people being expelled?

Movies can use a small sound bite from songs (less than 25 seconds, I believe) without specific permission from the artist. That is the case with the sound bite of "Imagine." Furthermore, it was used in context as reflecting the views of the author.

Anyway, I posted your links as you asked and also went to them, where I found them to be a wealth of disinformation and propaganda. You will be very glad to know that I am going to use at least one of them as a basis for a post refuting the charges made on the "six things" link.

On the other hand, one link is worth mentioning in a different light. Creation, Power and Violence. While on the one hand, a University that is private and Christian has every right to demand that the faculty teach Christian ideas, the UT and KU examples given are quite similar to the ones Ben Stein used - people being hated and perhaps losing their jobs because they seek to express their views on origins. I don't see how that link helps your case against the movie at all, it is oppo actually.

radar said...

Lava,

That the movie producers chose not to include Ken Miller did not "expell" him from anything. He still does what he does. They were under no obligation to choose any particular people to interview and use in the film, so any discussion of Miller is quite moot.

Since you haven't seen the movie, you cannot know what it consists of and I can assure you it is not a religious propaganda piece. Christianity isn't the aim of the movie and, hey, Ben Stein is Jewish, remember? It is all about the attitude of the academic and scientific community, which is in general a fundamentalist darwinist point of view that not only opposes all other views but attempts to end the careers of all those who dare to question.

Religion is a red herring here, used by haters who wish to convince people to not bother to see the movie.

I am sorry you don't think it is worth the investment because I truly believe that, if you did go, you would consider it money well spent.

Taxandrian said...

Radar said:
Do you intentionally not get it?

Exactly what I thought when I read your reply.

Expelled is about people losing their jobs, having their careers ruined, simply for wishing to follow a line of inquiry which a fundamentalist majority desires to ignore.

Then why are none of the people from the Creation, Power and Violence article mentioned? Really, this should get you to start thinking. Radar, take it or leave it, but let me give you this piece of advice: always be cautious of people who say EXACTLY what you want to hear. Clearly, the makers of 'Expelled' only want you to hear one side of the story.

It was bad form on the part of the people in charge but in fact that has nothing to do with the movie itself.

Actually, it was outright dumb.

How does one guy being kept from attending a screening equate to large numbers of people being expelled?

Free speech and critical examination are not confined to the scientific world. It doesn't matter if the movie is about 'free thought and freedom of inquiry in the worlds of science and academics', free thought and freedom of inquiry is universal, yet the makers of 'Expelled' seem to think differently. It has in fact everything to do with the movie.
And this shouldn't be a numbers game.

Anyway, I posted your links as you asked and also went to them, where I found them to be a wealth of disinformation and propaganda.

Well, a lot of people think of 'Expelled' to be a wealth of disinformation and propaganda, but I take it you don't agree with them? In short: don't be so quick to call something 'disinformation' or 'propaganda' out of hand.
Anyway, I'm looking forward to you proving the people from Scientific American totally and completely wrong.

Movies can use a small sound bite from songs (less than 25 seconds, I believe) without specific permission from the artist.

Are you really sure? Any link or reference, maybe?

Furthermore, it was used in context as reflecting the views of the author.

Like in 'Imagine there's no Heaven, no hell below us, and no religion too'?


On the other hand, one link is worth mentioning in a different light.

Why all of a sudden this 'different light'? Not so long ago it was all in the same light: 'false accusations to muddy the water'. What did you make you change your mind all of a sudden?

I don't see how that link helps your case against the movie at all, it is oppo actually.

Like I said above: if this movie really is about 'free thought and freedom of inquiry in the worlds of science and academics', at least some of these people would be included. There aren't. Chris Comer lost her job at about the same time as Guillermo Gonzalez was denied tenure. Yet she isn't mentioned in the movie, while Gonzalez is. Why is that, Radar? Couldn't it be that the makers of the movie try to push a certain agenda, try to influence you in a certain way? At least it should make you suspicious.

Again, Radar: free thought and inquiry are NOT the monopoly of science; everyone has a right to it. Don't be so quick to agree with someone because he happens to say exactly what you want to hear. That's all I want to say. I'm not against the movie, I'm simply saying that it claims to be something it clearly isn't.

Think about it. Be critical.

DQ said...

One last thought from me:

I love how the cartoon you post above really butchers what it means for something to be a theory. I believe this has been mentioned before somewhere by some commentator on your blog, but the term 'theory' in science has a different meaning than 'theory' in everyday usage.

~lava

cranky old fart said...

For fundamentalists, evolution MUST be false or their entire world comes crashing down.

No literal Adam, Eve, snake, etc. means no original sin and the whole need for the Jesus thing goes out the window. Talk about your motivator!

Am I wrong radar?

radar said...

DQ - Enlighten us, then...how can the untestable and unobservable hypothesis known as evolution be a theory while the untestable and unobservable creation hypothesis not qualify? Don't tell me because it is "accepted" and that makes it a theory...


Cranky, you are wrong, lots of Christians believe in some form of macroevolution. I believed in evolution when I became a Christian, as I have often posted previously. I then began to research to see if the creation tale in Genesis was symbolic or faulty or whether evolutionists had it wrong. Over the course of a few years I came to realize that the Darwinists had far less evidence for their side than the Creationists had for theirs.

Along came the ID movement, in which people said phooey on religious views like Christianity and Naturalistic Materialism, lets look only at the evidence. The evidence points to design.

cranky old fart said...

"Cranky, you are wrong..."

Ah, there is hope! Could you please enlighten me on your personal view of original sin absent a literal "original sin"?

cranky old fart said...

"Along came the ID movement, in which people said phooey on religious views like Christianity..."

LOL

Who's the designer?

radar said...

What does original sin have to do with this conversation? I am confused here...Maybe you want to nail down whether I believe that the Genesis account was literal and I do believe that. I came to Christianity and the Bible with an opening and questioning mind and investigated it thoroughly before deciding. You might check out Lee Strobel's books, he was an investigative reporter who began looking into Christianity to tear it to shreds and wound up being a whole-hearted believer.


ID doesn't consider who or what the designer would be, but simply that the evidence points to design. In fact, the evidences do point to design and pretty well demand it. Shouldn't science concentrate on evidence, and shouldn't that be across the board? In science, who the designer is wouldn't matter, but rather whether or not things are designed. If designed, you research and test with that as one given you begin with. If not designed, it changes the way you research or test in many ways, depending on what the discipline may be.

Microengineers go on the assumption that various miniature biological machines are designed and seek to copy those designs to manufacture smaller and more efficient man-made machines. In fact, most scientists will admit that they tend to expect that when they find a new structure or system, it will turn out to have a purpose and not be some randomly mutated vestige.

patrick said...

just saw Expelled... Ben Stein's goal in making Expelled (i gather) is to promote free thought, especially more thinking about motivations that drive American academia and a lot of other behind-the-scenes worldview that we tend to take for granted.

radar said...

Patrick, you get it...scientists and academics placing their own personal worldview above the pursuit of truth and free speech and inquiry and making those who disagree pay a hard price.

Tax, if you think that the Creation, Power and Violence site has merit, you would still applaud Ben Stein for pointing out similar situations. Instead of deriding the movie, you should be clamoring for a sequel!

BTW - the examples from private, religious colleges are just not the same thing, as I will explain in the next post.

cranky old fart said...

"ID doesn't consider who or what the designer would be, but simply that the evidence points to design."

Oh please. Ever wonder why it's fundamentalist Christians who promote this drivel? Of course you don't. It's just that obvious.

radar said...

Cranky, even if that is true, what difference does it make? The evidence is what is being discussed here. Darwinists need to try to make their points with evidences rather than getting involved in personal matters.

Taxandrian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Taxandrian said...

Oh my, Radar, you did it again. If there's one thing I've learned, it's that I should stop drinking hot coffee while reading your comments. :-D

Let's see:

Radar said:
Tax, if you think that the Creation, Power and Violence site has merit, you would still applaud Ben Stein for pointing out similar situations. Instead of deriding the movie, you should be clamoring for a sequel!

You still didn't answer my question, Radar: WHY is it that none of these people got attention in Expelled? Why is it that only people who criticized the Evolution Theory were depicted as martyrs?
The answer is simple, and you know it: because this movie wants to plug Creationism, dressed up as Intelligent Design. That's why it would be 'confusing' if Ken Miller appeared, that's why all professors who support the Evolution Theory in the movie are atheists.
And that's why there will never be a sequel. Expelled isn't interested in people like Chris Comer, because it isn't about 'free thought and freedom of inquiry in the worlds of science and academics'.

But I'll tell you what, Radar. You have a blog, so why don't you do something about it. If you are really so concerned about freedom of inquiry and freedom of thought, why don't YOU post an article here about how outrageous it is that Chris Comer was expelled for executing her right of free inquiry and free thought. You DO think that's outrageous, right? After all, like you stated in your article:
"Besides, the movie isn't primarily about science. IT IS ABOUT FREEDOM!!!!"

Radar said:
Religion is a red herring here, used by haters who wish to convince people to not bother to see the movie.

Is that really so, Radar? Let's see:

Ben Stein, as quote in your article:
"There are people who want to keep science in a little box where it can't possibly touch God."

To which you comment:
"These are the people who are so afraid of the evidential consideration of Intelligent Design because it might cause people to consider that God exists. It is all about worldview rather than science."

Hmm, Radar, it seems that Ben Stein himself is waving your big red herring. Are you REALLY SURE that Expelled has nothing to do with religion?

Here's another article:

Expelled's Intelligent Design theory: this IS your daddy's creationism:
Part I
Part II


Or download the Leader's guide (pdf) from the Getexpelled.com website and count the number of times God is mentioned there.

So please, Radar, if you wish to say that Expelled has no Judeo-Christian creationist agenda to push, you're horribly misinformed. Like I said: think about it, be critical.

Movies can use a small sound bite from songs (less than 25 seconds, I believe) without specific permission from the artist.
Maybe you are right. In that case you will have no problem backing your statement up. Still waiting for the link or the reference.

Darwinists need to try to make their points with evidences rather than getting involved in personal matters.

And this deserved a quote for its pure irony and entertainment value.

radar said...

"Yoko Ono and others have now filed lawsuits challenging the film's use and critique of John Lennon's song 'Imagine.' One of the suits seeks to ban free speech through preliminary injunctive relief, which essentially means that they are trying to expel 'Expelled' as it is now being shown in theaters," the company said in a statement released to WND.

"If you really listen to the lyrics of 'Imagine' then you realize that it represents everything that the Neo-Darwinists want. 'Imagine there's no Heaven … No hell below us … Nothing to kill or die for And no religion too…' That's exactly what the Darwinist establishment wants to do: get rid of religion," said Walt Ruloff, CEO of Premise Media. "And that's what we point out when we play less than 15 seconds of the song and show some of the lyrics on screen."

Premise Media Chairman Logan Craft said, "The fair use doctrine is a well established principle that gives the public the right to freely use portions of copyrighted materials for the purposes of commentary and criticism. While some may not like what we have to say or how we say it, we have the free speech right to do so – just as other political and social commentators have been doing for years."

Officials said the company did not ask for a license to use the song, because there was no obligation to do so.

"Unbiased viewers of the film will see that the 'Imagine' clip was used as part of a social commentary in the exercise of free speech. The brief clip – consisting of a mere 10 words – was used to contrast the messages in the documentary and was not used as an endorsement of 'Expelled,'" the company said.

Ben Stein, himself, weighed in on the controversy.

"So Yoko Ono is suing over the brief constitutionally protected use of a song that wants us to 'Imagine no possessions'?" he asked. "Maybe instead of wasting everyone's time trying to silence a documentary she should give the song to the world for free. After all, 'imagine all the people sharing all the world … You may say I'm a dreamer But I'm not the only one I hope someday you'll join us And the World can live as one.'"

from http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=62489

radar said...

one more time...if other people have lost jobs due to viewpoint that would be a good topic for another movie. It doesn't change the veracity of the stories presented in Expelled at all.

radar said...

oh yeah, and I am still waiting for a darwinist to make their point with evidence.

Of course, the makers have a point of view...duh. But is what they say true?

Taxandrian said...

Ben Stein, himself, weighed in on the controversy.

I wonder how consequent Ben Stein is prepared to be when talking about freedom of speech and fair use: it seems that the ID-promoting Discovery Institute has no qualms about filing DMCA-claims against a YouTube user called ExtantDodo who made a critical analysis of the DI-'documentary' Icons of Evolution.

Discovery Institute vs Copyright

ExtantDodo's YouTube channel

Any comments?

one more time...if other people have lost jobs due to viewpoint that would be a good topic for another movie.

One more time...why not THIS movie? Why only feature those that criticise evolution? You know the answer, Radar; why not just say it?

oh yeah, and I am still waiting for a darwinist to make their point with evidence.

Which point?