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Seriously funny: Ben Stein takes on the debate-phobic Darwinian establishment
WORLD ^ | April 5, 2008 | Marvin Olasky

Posted on 04/01/2008 12:21:24 PM PDT by Zender500

"The shot heard round the world" that started the American Revolution came on April 19, 1775. On April 18 this year, a seriously funny documentary is scheduled to hit 1,000 theaters across America and fire a shot that will go unheard if debate-phobic Darwinists get their way.

The 100-minute documentary, Expelled, is perfect for adults and children of middle-school age or above: It should be rated R not for sex or violence but for being reasonable, radical, risible, and right. (It is rated PG for thematic material, some disturbing images, and brief smoking.) The expelling of Intelligent Design (ID) proponents from universities is not a laughing matter, but star Ben Stein is amusing as he walks, in dark suit and bright running shoes, from interview to interview with scientists and philosophers on both sides of the evolution debate.

Expelled rightly equates Darwinian stifling of free speech with the Communist attempt to enslave millions behind the Berlin Wall. One Expelled scene shows Stein, mathematician David Berlinski (a sophisticated Paris resident), and nuclear physicist Gerald Schroeder (wearing a yarmulke), all now ID advocates, discussing the importance of freedom as they visit a remnant of the Wall. All three are Jewish, and they don't look or talk like the hicks portrayed in Inherit the Wind.

Stein, giving the Darwinists he interviews plenty of time to make their case, is particularly effective in his conversation with Richard Dawkins, atheistic author of the best-selling The God Delusion. Dawkins astoundingly admits that life on earth could be the result of ID, as long as the designer was a being from outer space who was himself the product of atheistic evolution. No God allowed!

Expelled's showing of the connection between evolutionary doctrine and Nazi eugenics has already infuriated some in academia and the media: University of Minnesota professor P.Z. Myers blasted Expelled as "ludicrous in its dishonesty," and Orlando Sentinel reviewer Roger Moore raged about "loaded images, loaded rhetoric." But since a movie is not a dissertation, films show linkages by juxtaposing clips rather than pages of footnoted type. The real question is: Did Darwinism bulwark Hitlerian hatred by providing a scientific rationale for killing those considered less fit in the struggle for survival?

The answer to that question is an unambiguous yes. When I stalked the stacks of the Library of Congress in the early 1990s, I saw and scanned shelf upon shelf of racist and anti-Semitic journals from the first several decades of the last century, with articles frequently citing and applying Darwin. If you read an anti-Expelled review that dodges the issue of substance by concentrating merely on style, you'll be seeing another sign of closed minds.

April 18 will bring an interesting test of whether Expelled, or any other documentary so conceived and so dedicated, can endure in movie theaters past the first weekend. Michael Moore's fatuous documentaries have done good box office with the help of sympathetic reviewers and network news producers. Ben Stein's excellent one might rely on evangelicals and others who are tired of being ridiculed by the closed minds of the Evolution Establishment.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: darwin; evolution
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1 posted on 04/01/2008 12:21:26 PM PDT by Zender500
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To: wagglebee

2 posted on 04/01/2008 12:22:11 PM PDT by Zender500
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To: Zender500

That is why there was Gould and his magic evolution.


3 posted on 04/01/2008 12:23:28 PM PDT by junta (It's Poltical Correctness stupid! Hold liberals accountable for their actions, a new idea.)
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To: Zender500
"Poems are made by fools like me, but only GOD can make a tree". Kilmer Still true today.
4 posted on 04/01/2008 12:25:28 PM PDT by Don Corleone (Leave the gun..take the cannoli)
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To: Zender500

I love Ben Stein.


5 posted on 04/01/2008 12:27:40 PM PDT by svcw (I reject your reality and substitute my own.)
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To: Zender500

I understand that Ben Stein is a smart man, and quite knowledgable about various subjects. I don’t know if he is qualified to debate Evolution, however.


6 posted on 04/01/2008 12:30:49 PM PDT by Paradox (Politics: The art of convincing the populace that your delusions are superior to others.)
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To: Zender500

Hubris.


7 posted on 04/01/2008 12:33:24 PM PDT by DoctorMichael (Teach the Raelian Controversey!)
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To: svcw

I wouldn’t mind if they brought back “Win Ben Stein’s Money”. That was an entertaining show, and I like his articles on yahoo.com’s finance page.


8 posted on 04/01/2008 12:33:29 PM PDT by VA_Gentleman (Does Mars have global warming too? Is that why they had a polar cap avalanche?)
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To: VA_Gentleman

It was a great show. Did you know the money the contestants won was actually his? Saw him on an interview, and thats what he told the host. Except the shows I watched he never lost.


9 posted on 04/01/2008 12:37:12 PM PDT by svcw (I reject your reality and substitute my own.)
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To: Paradox
Thats an interesting comment. Now pray tell what qualifies a person to debate “evolution”?
10 posted on 04/01/2008 12:38:48 PM PDT by svcw (I reject your reality and substitute my own.)
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To: Paradox

He doesn’t debate, he narrates and hosts the movie. He let’s the Darwinists and neo-Darwinists string themselves up on their own words.


11 posted on 04/01/2008 12:40:01 PM PDT by LiteKeeper (Beware the secularization of America; the Islamization of Eurabia)
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To: Zender500
The God Delusion. Dawkins astoundingly admits that life on earth could be the result of ID, as long as the designer was a being from outer space who was himself the product of atheistic evolution. No God allowed!

I don't think its fair to the Darwinists to lump them all in with nut jobs like Dawkins.

12 posted on 04/01/2008 12:41:43 PM PDT by AndyTheBear (Disastrous social experimentation is the opiate of elitist snobs.)
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To: svcw

The only people that are allowed to debate evolution are those who have already committed to a philosophy which assumes naturalism and are committed to evolution.

Those who don’t, obviously aren’t qualified to debate it....


13 posted on 04/01/2008 12:41:45 PM PDT by ConservativeDude
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To: Paradox
I don’t know if he is qualified to debate Evolution, however.

Am I "qualified" to debate global warming?

14 posted on 04/01/2008 12:43:16 PM PDT by xjcsa (Has anyone seen my cornballer?)
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To: ConservativeDude

Why don’t I just make this easier on everyone and get this out:

“Ben Stein is an idiot lackey for a bunch of dumb a&*$ creationists.”

There.

Now that that has been said, those of you who were dying to say that can just move along.

The rest of us can discuss this rationally.

Anyone seen the movie? I have. It is fantastic.


15 posted on 04/01/2008 12:43:21 PM PDT by ConservativeDude
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To: Zender500

You Tube Super Trailer:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGCxbhGaVfE


16 posted on 04/01/2008 12:44:00 PM PDT by 11th Commandment (Elect Conservatives- if you don't vote for McCain, at least work to elect conservatives!)
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To: ConservativeDude

Very nice def.
It is all clear now ;>)


17 posted on 04/01/2008 12:44:07 PM PDT by svcw (I reject your reality and substitute my own.)
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To: svcw

Heh. Yeah. And that is pretty much the conclusions of the atheists in the movie.

You should see it. You will find yourself laughing out loud at them. Stein doesn’t have to trick them or anything. He just lets them talk, and they look like fools.


18 posted on 04/01/2008 12:45:15 PM PDT by ConservativeDude
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To: ConservativeDude

Kind of like the interviews with the Code Stinkers.

When your opponent is in the process of destroying himself, don’t stop him.


19 posted on 04/01/2008 12:47:30 PM PDT by MrB (You can't reason people out of a position that they didn't use reason to get into in the first place)
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To: Zender500
Did Darwinism bulwark Hitlerian hatred by providing a scientific rationale for killing those considered less fit in the struggle for survival?

Absolutely.

Darwinism helped them philosophically, just as the combustion engine helped them build tanks. It doesn't necessarily mean that Darwinism always supports evils such as Nazi eugenics. What it does is show that it lends itself to support such evil.

An objective philosopher or scientist should not object, unless they have some kind of unexamined emotional attachment to Darwinism...which it turns out many do, as is commonly manifest by them getting offended when this obvious connection is pointed out.

20 posted on 04/01/2008 12:49:30 PM PDT by AndyTheBear (Disastrous social experimentation is the opiate of elitist snobs.)
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To: Zender500
Seriously funny: Ben Stein takes on the debate-phobic Darwinian establishment.

That's like saying Michael Moore takes on the reclusive heath care industry in "Sicko".

21 posted on 04/01/2008 12:50:18 PM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: Zender500

“Anyone? Anyone? Anyone seen this before? Bueller? Bueller? Burller?”


22 posted on 04/01/2008 12:55:24 PM PDT by mc5cents (Show me just what Mohammd brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman)
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To: ConservativeDude

“Anyone seen the movie?”

I’ll wait for the DVD.


23 posted on 04/01/2008 1:04:54 PM PDT by tumblindice
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To: ConservativeDude
I just spewed Dr. Pepper all over my keyboard...

That's too funny.

I actually may make the effort to go see this movie. What a RARE treat!!!

To take the documentary format and hoist these folks on their own petard with their favorite propaganda format!! With their own words, no less!

Ben Stein bump!

24 posted on 04/01/2008 1:08:50 PM PDT by elk
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To: AndyTheBear

Exactly


25 posted on 04/01/2008 1:11:21 PM PDT by valkyry1
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To: Paradox

Who really is?


26 posted on 04/01/2008 1:12:51 PM PDT by stuartcr (Election year.....Who we gonna hate, in '08?)
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To: Zender500

Bump to remind myself to go see it! Thanks for the heads up!


27 posted on 04/01/2008 1:20:19 PM PDT by VRWCer (Barack Hussein Obama - The Pied Piper of stupid people.)
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To: Zender500

I’d take Ben Stein more seriously if he would send a contribution to Norm Coleman for US Senate - Minnesota. Instead he donated to Al Franken, just because Al is a show business friend.

Al Franken is the last person we Minnesotans want or need foisted upon us as our US Senator.


28 posted on 04/01/2008 1:24:57 PM PDT by Gumdrop
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To: Non-Sequitur
Dude. This movie is going to make thousands of dollars.THOUSANDS.
29 posted on 04/01/2008 1:27:19 PM PDT by Shryke
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To: Zender500
of Minnesota professor P.Z. Myers blasted Expelled as "ludicrous in its dishonesty," and Orlando Sentinel reviewer Roger Moore raged about "loaded images, loaded rhetoric."

And yet Roger Moore, at least, is a big fan of Michael Moore.... Go figure.

30 posted on 04/01/2008 1:29:17 PM PDT by r9etb
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To: xjcsa
I don’t know if he is qualified to debate Evolution, however.

Am I "qualified" to debate global warming?

Didn't you hear Al Gore, "the debate is over."

31 posted on 04/01/2008 1:34:46 PM PDT by MooseMan
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To: svcw
Now pray tell what qualifies a person to debate “evolution”?

No-one. There is no debate.

Most science theories are subject to falsification, and have scientists using experiments designed to disprove them.

But not "special" science theories. These darlings are really just philosophical views that envy the credibility of science theories, and are thus willingly confused with the later.

Neither ID nor Darwin's theory of Common Origin are falsifiable by us mortals. Neither are scientific theories. Neither should be promoted as such.

Evidence should be examined, reason should be applied, and the subject should be debated objectively, with neither getting the magical lab coat of "science". If sufficient logic and evidence supports Darwin's position, then Darwin's position should not need to have the exalted "science" label in order to prevail.

Finally I make a preemptive plea not to repeat the tired old fallacy of siting what "THE" evidence "SAYS". There is no "THE" evidence. And if there was a "THE" evidence, it is not something that talks. Where some allowance for inexact speech is reasonable in such discussions. This kind of statement is unforgivably sloppy, and I can't imagine any thinking person justifying this kind of statement as part of critical analysis.

32 posted on 04/01/2008 1:35:15 PM PDT by AndyTheBear (Disastrous social experimentation is the opiate of elitist snobs.)
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To: Zender500

33 posted on 04/01/2008 1:36:51 PM PDT by js1138
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bttt


34 posted on 04/01/2008 1:40:46 PM PDT by ELS (Vivat Benedictus XVI!)
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To: Zender500
The real question is: Did Darwinism bulwark Hitlerian hatred by providing a scientific rationale for killing those considered less fit in the struggle for survival?

The answer to that question is an unambiguous yes.

Or was it Hitler's Christianity?

35 posted on 04/01/2008 1:50:17 PM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: svcw
Thats an interesting comment. Now pray tell what qualifies a person to debate “evolution”?

It would start with an understanding of the definition of evolution.

It does not refer to the origin of life.

36 posted on 04/01/2008 1:51:10 PM PDT by corkoman
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To: AndyTheBear
I'm not in the least offended when anyone describes the way in which racists and eugenicists have used their readings of Darwin to evil ends.

I am offended when someone asserts that those uses are in any way relevant to the question of whether or not natural selection is a scientifically valid theory.

37 posted on 04/01/2008 1:53:21 PM PDT by Notary Sojac (Can we cap and trade John McCain for a free market conservative?)
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To: Zender500

Evolution is way more than an academic theory. It is a huge money-maker. Evolutionists have a huge enconomic stake in their theory, and will do just about anything to protect that money flow.

Evolution-related research rakes in billions of dollars every year from government and private sources. Those sources WANT evolution to be proven for a variety of personal desires... not reasons... just desires, some of those also being money-motivated.

If Intelligent Design was accepted by the academic world, all that money would stop flowing. All that research would be replaced with a simple statement: “Superior intelligence created it.”

As long as money rules this world, people are going to believe what makes money, period, end of story. Effort’s like Ben Stien’s “Expelled” will have no measurable impact.

The quoted statement above reveals another motivation behind evolution. Academia cannot bear the thought that they might not be the most superior intelligence around.

Academia is all about arrogance. Admitting there might be an intelligence superior to theirs is unthinkable. Admitting they might be wrong is unthinkable. Admitting they have been wrong for 150+ years is unthinkable.

Truth has no place in academia. Academia doesn’t care about truth, facts, and demonstrable reproducible science.

It’s all about arrogance with them. Their theories are right simply because THEY say those theories are right. They don’t need demonstrable reproducible scientific proof. Their collective belief in those theories should be enough for anyone, since they are the highest intelligence... in their minds.

“How DARE you question what WE say?!?!?!” is the only argument they can bring to the table.

That is why they won’t come to the table.


38 posted on 04/01/2008 1:55:36 PM PDT by gpk9 ("Fairness" is the new Constitution and Bill of (no) Rights for America... I mean Amerika.)
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To: gpk9
All that research would be replaced with a simple statement: “Superior intelligence created it.”

Pretty much sums up the entirety of intelligent design.

"Excuse me Dr. Smith, but this bacterial infection seems oddly resistant to previously effective drugs, have you noticed?"

"Must be a new bacterial strain."

"Where do you suppose it came from?"

"A superior intelligence created it."

"Oh. Ok. Wanna' play some golf?"

39 posted on 04/01/2008 2:08:58 PM PDT by atlaw
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To: ConservativeDude
Anyone seen the movie? I have. It is fantastic.

Since you've seen the movie, maybe you can answer the $64 dollar question -- who was "Expelled"?

40 posted on 04/01/2008 2:40:27 PM PDT by atlaw
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To: atlaw

Well I think that is referring to the large group of pro ID scholars who are censured, fired or otherwise intimidated by the establishment. Many of them are interviewed and they share their stories.


41 posted on 04/01/2008 2:55:12 PM PDT by ConservativeDude
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To: Notary Sojac
I'm not in the least offended when anyone describes the way in which racists and eugenicists have used their readings of Darwin to evil ends.

Good. It seems a lot of people are though.

I am offended when someone asserts that those uses are in any way relevant to the question of whether or not natural selection is a scientifically valid theory.

Very few would argue that "natural selection" is a valid scientific theory. The controversy is about the more ambitious subset of that theory called common origin. The doctrine that all life on earth descended from a single common organism. Indeed, folks like Dawkin are elated and rejoice in such a doctrine, and are more then a little anxious to have it confused with the former.

I'm not sure if you meant "common origin" or "natural selection". To clarify, I use the term Darwinism to describe the philosophical doctrine of "common origin" rather then the verifiable scientific theory of natural selection.

Also, I'm assuming you don't really mean "in any way". Obviously that is literally untrue, because both are related to human experience, moreover the impact Darwinism has on philosophy is certainly tied to anything that bears on its veracity -- or its perceived veracity. Which certainly has something within the realm of "any relation" to "whether natural selection is a valid scientific theory".

So I'm left unable to make logic sense of your position.

42 posted on 04/01/2008 2:56:27 PM PDT by AndyTheBear (Disastrous social experimentation is the opiate of elitist snobs.)
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To: Zender500
Dawkins astoundingly admits that life on earth could be the result of ID, as long as the designer was a being from outer space who was himself the product of atheistic evolution.

LOL - now why didn't I think of that?

Oh yeah, I forgot - because they're so much smarter than us hick religious folk.
43 posted on 04/01/2008 2:59:42 PM PDT by reagan_fanatic (feh)
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To: atlaw
Here is the correct way to say it:

"Excuse me Dr. Smith, but this condition we BELIEVE is caused by a 'bacterial infection' seems oddly resistant to previously effective drugs, have you noticed?"

"... bacterial infection ..."

Another theory similar to evolution. No demonstrable reproducible scientific proof whatsoever to support it. Said theory is right simply because THEY say it is right.

I've debated these people before. "How DARE you question what WE say!!!" is the only argument they can come up with.

Like evolution, this theory is also a huge money-maker, and like evolutionists, these people will do everything necessary to protect that money flow.

They don't care about facts, they don't care about science, and they absolutely don't want to know the true causes of illness. They avoid the subject at all cost. They won't go near it.

That is why I no longer debate them. I finally learned what people like Ben Stien have learned. Supporters of these theories care only about money and maintaining their lofty status.

You can't have a factual debate with arrogant money-motivated people who don't care about facts.
44 posted on 04/01/2008 3:04:53 PM PDT by gpk9 ("Fairness" is the new Constitution and Bill of (no) Rights for America... I mean Amerika.)
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To: AndyTheBear
I used "natural selection" as a placeholder based on the title of Darwin's book and his own comparisons of his theory with Wallace's. I'm quite happy to use "common origin" or "common descent" as an alternative.

Can we agree that Darwin's theories would be equally valid (or invalid) if eugenics and Nazism had never come to pass?

45 posted on 04/01/2008 3:06:55 PM PDT by Notary Sojac (Can we cap and trade John McCain for a free market conservative?)
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To: reagan_fanatic

My issue with ID proponents is that, having posited that the origin of life is complex beyond the capacity of science to understand, they resolve that dilemma by .... introducing a creator more complex still, by several orders of magnitude!!


46 posted on 04/01/2008 3:10:07 PM PDT by Notary Sojac (Can we cap and trade John McCain for a free market conservative?)
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To: Notary Sojac
Can we agree that Darwin's theories would be equally valid (or invalid) if eugenics and Nazism had never come to pass?

Sure. As far as hypotheticals go, that's pretty reasonable.

47 posted on 04/01/2008 3:13:41 PM PDT by AndyTheBear (Disastrous social experimentation is the opiate of elitist snobs.)
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To: Paradox

And someone who allows for a designer only if he is a space alien is qualified?


48 posted on 04/01/2008 3:17:05 PM PDT by count-your-change (you don't have to be brilliant, not being stupid is enough.)
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To: Notary Sojac
My issue with ID proponents is that, having posited that the origin of life is complex beyond the capacity of science to understand, they resolve that dilemma by .... introducing a creator more complex still, by several orders of magnitude!!

I'm not sure they do either.

If I understand their position correctly (presuming the view of the most erudite among them) then they would say science can show that the origin of life is so complex that there must be a creator. This is different then saying its to complex to understand.

And they would not try to define the creator.

Seems valid as far as it goes (I don't consider it science though). Its like saying "some intelligence must have done this". Saying this does not require that you completely understand what kind of creature, spirit, demon, imp, gremlin or human interfered. Nor does it require you to know exactly how it was done.

For instance, the famous crop circles that some think were made by extra terrestrials appear to be made by some intelligence. Though defining and understanding extra terrestrial is not necessary in order to deduce this (my own inclination would be toward human pranksters in such instances).

49 posted on 04/01/2008 3:22:25 PM PDT by AndyTheBear (Disastrous social experimentation is the opiate of elitist snobs.)
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To: Zender500

Jew Hate existed for centuries before Darwinism. Darwinists invented the term “Anti-Semitism” in order to give a “scientific” explanation for Jew Hate.


50 posted on 04/01/2008 3:24:28 PM PDT by Alouette (Vicious Babushka)
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