A Case Study in Darwinian Ethics: The Ballad of Roy and Silo

So far as I know, there is no name for a particular kind of science article in which an observation is offered of some sort of animal behavior, and then, under the Darwinian assumption that humans are simply advanced animals, concludes that the behavior is somehow indicative of how humans too should be able to act. This week’s model for human behavior comes, via Scientific American, from the Central Park Zoo, and involves two male penguins named Roy and Silo. The first order of business in such an article is to make the behavioral observation. In this case, we find animals engaged in deviant behavior. We go now to the action in Central Park: “Two penguins,” says writer Emily V. Read More ›

None Dare Call it Journalism

Whether the Times will discover the full scope of the threat is uncertain. No one at the Times has yet noticed, for example, that if you play the movie’s interview with Richard Dawkins backward, you can hear Ben Stein saying, “Bill Dembski is dead”

John Derbyshire on “Expelled,” or How to Review a Movie without Really Trying

[Note: For a more comprehensive defense of Ben Stein’s documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, please see: NCSE Exposed at NCSEExposed.org] I have always admired G. K. Chesterton’s dictum that if something is worth doing, it is worth doing badly, but I never appreciated the full scope of its application until reading John Derbyshire’s recent review of Ben Stein’s “Expelled” at National Review Online. “What on earth has happened to Ben Stein?” asks Derbyshire. “He and I go a long way back.” Are the two close? Are they old pals who have been through a lot together? “No,” he says, “I’ve never met the guy.” But wait. How can this be? How can Derbyshire have forged this bond of friendship with Read More ›

Intelligent Design: It’s a Creationist Plot

There are people who apparently have a deep-seated need to believe that Intelligent Design proponents are really creationists in disguise, and that once they have control over the nation’s schools, they’re going to rip off their clever scientist disguises to reveal men in short sleeve dress shirts and horn-rimmed glasses who believe that the earth is only 6,000 years old. Acting on a preordained set of instructions, this view seems to suggest, they will proceed to outlaw any mention of evolution in schools, and will execute plans that involve, among other things, taking students on weekly field trips to Ken Ham’s Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky. It is a frightening vision of the future: a flood of creationism let loose Read More ›

Expelled Critics: So Bored They Can’t See Straight

[Note: For a more comprehensive defense of Ben Stein’s documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, please see: NCSE Exposed at NCSEExposed.org] I saw “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” the controversial new documentary film by Ben Stein on the intelligent design debate, at one of the private screenings that was part of the grassroots marketing for the film, and I was disappointed. That’s right. Here I made a trip all the way to Louisville, Kentucky from my home in Danville (almost 2 hours away), I go get a big bag of popcorn and a drink, climb the steps in the stadium seating at the Tinseltown Theater for the private screening and, as it turns out, not a single, solitary Darwinist tried to sneak Read More ›