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Saturday, July 30, 2005

New Book Notes: The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science slams Darwinism

Not yet released, journalist Tom Bethell’s
new book promises to cover
evolution, stem cell research, abortion, HIV/AIDS, global warming, and cloning to help you tune up your baloney detector to expose the liberal, anti-religious propagnada we’re being fed.

Bethell has been the Washington correspondent of the American Spectator for twenty years, so he should know a lot about the making and breaking of myths. Still, that’s a lot of ground for 270 pages.

Anyway, a colleague writes, enthusing,
Right on the cover it says that one of the myths busted in the book is Darwinian evolution. The other myths also look very interesting! The way Regnery is selling these days... it'll be a hit for sure!

The cover lists the following myths as definitely busted:

- Most Christians used to think the Earth was flat*

- Darwinian evolution is supported by overwhelming evidence and is the natural ally of political conservatives

- Capitalist countries are destroying the environment and causing global warming

- Religion is the enemy of science

- Human cloning and embryonic stem cell research hold the key to our future health and happiness

* I’m really surprised by this one. Anyone who has read Dante’s The Divine Comedy will know that mediaeval Christians had a very clear sense of the spherical nature of Earth (Hell was imagined to be inside it!) and also of the positions of the other planets in relation to it at any given time. Before the advent of light pollution, this latter sort of knowledge was much more widespread than it is today, as a matter of fact.

(Note: If this is not the story you were looking for, see the Blog service note below or the stories listed in the sidebar.)
If you like this blog, check out my book on the intelligent design controversy, By Design or by Chance?. You can read excerpts as well.

Blog service note: Did you come here looking for any of the following stories?

- the California Academy of Sciences agreeing to correct potentially libellous statements about attorney Larry Caldwell, who thinks that students should know about weaknesses as well as strengths of Darwinian evolution theory, click on the posted link and check the current daily post for any updates. UPDATED!: The retraction and Caldwell’s response have now been published in California Wild.

- The op-ed by Catholic Cardinal Schonborn in the New York Times? Note also the Times's story on the subject, some interesting quotes from major Darwinists to compare with the Catholic Church's view, as expressed by the Cardinal, and an example of the kind of problem with Darwinian philosophy that the Cardinal is talking about.

- the Privileged Planet film shown at the Smithsonian, go here for an extended review. Please do not raise cain about an "anti-evolution" film without seeing it. If your doctor forbids you to see the film, in case you get too excited, at least read my detailed log of the actual subjects of the film. If you were one of the people who raised cain, ask yourself why you should continue to believe the people who so misled you about the film's actual content ...

- the showing of Privileged Planet at the Smithsonian, go here and here to start, and then this one and this one will bring you up to date.
Blog policy note: This blog does not intentionally accept fully anonymous Comments, Comments with language unsuited to an intellectual discussion, URLs posted without comment, or defamatory statements. Defamatory statement: A statement that would be actionable if anyone took the author seriously. For example, someone may say “O’Leary is a crummy journalist”; that’s a matter of opinion and I don’t know who would care. But if they say, “O’Leary was convicted of grand theft auto in 1983,” well that’s just plain false, and probably actionable, if the author were taken seriously. Also, due to time constraints, the moderator rarely responds to comments, and usually only about blog service issues.

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