Friday, November 11, 2005

Never be so stupid   posted by Razib @ 11/11/2005 10:52:00 PM

Well, see this comment. I'm an atheist, but I'll pray for Derb if this is the caliber of gibberish that he gets whenever he posts about evolution. If you are as wilfully ignorant as this individual, never read this weblog again, you make me ill (OK, lightheaded with disgust). If you (dear readers) think putting this on the front page is unseemly, never read this weblog again, I have little patience for people lecturing me on how to run my weblog. I can't believe that standard Creationist tracts are debunking Fisher's Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection, this has to be coming out of a quasi-intellectual Intelligent Design publication, but I don't know which. Just one more reason to be a believer. It is often said the more you know, the more you know how little you know. The converse is certainly true, the less you know, the less you know how little you know. Thank Sophia that Eugenie Scott, Michael Ruse and Ken Miller bear the cross of having to preach to the pagans in the dark heathen demon haunted lands. To tear believers from the contemplation of Truth is a vile thing that the heathens do with their falsehoods....

Update: I looked again at the comment again, and I couldn't help but wonder if the individual wasn't foreign. The second comment is really incoherent, it looks like it was produced by a really shitty AI that's still trying to learn English. Well, when I traced the IP, it was an AOL account (no offense to those of you with AOL accounts who are regular readers or friends, there can be virtuous pagans in heaven, never fear). So that explains it....

Update II: Alexandra has responded. Says:

I don't feel a need to defend my IQ....I will share that we have graduates of Brown, Julliard, Harvard, Purdue and Oberlin in my immediate family. I will also share that I send my children to a college prep Christian Academy who teach both ID and evolution and most of their graduates are not harmed by exposure to ID......they are accepted even at Yale.

You have nothing to fear from us.......but the way you have talked about me, people would think I have some contangeous disease and somehow just got off the boat from some 3rd world country.
It is important to note that intelligence is a necessary, but it is not sufficient, condition, to banish ignorance. Alexandra is clearly not familiar with the literature in evolutionary genetics, and is propogating patently false assertions when she contends that "most biologists believe that advantageous mutations become fixed" (it depends on how advantageous, most biologists would not assent to such an unqualified statement). The problem on this weblog tends to be that people spout off on things they don't know about (i.e., making a very weak analogy between historical and ecological processes and not willing to concede that that analogy was weak), not that they don't have innate intelligence. Smart people can be stupid, and in fact, they are stupid in a more verbally impressive and coherent fashion than the innately dumb. To speak specifically to Alexandra, would you trust the conclusions of a Harvard physicist as to the character and historical validity of the Bible if he had only read snips and a small number of exegetes? That is very close to what most advocates of Intelligent Design engage in, you know a few critiques very well, but the whole forest is a deep dark mystery.

As for whether Alexandra and her ilk have a disease, to some extent, yes, they do. The disease threatens the intellectual edifice that the West has created over the past two centuries which I percieve to be singular in the history of our species. The threat is minimal now, but if realized, the implications are catastrophic. I am currently satisfied with the rebuttals put forth by the missionary monks I pointed to above, but it seems that each iteration of the counter-meme is getting stronger and stronger. More later.