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Myers wishes to have it both ways UPDATED March 20, 2007

Posted by Administrator in Cultural Pessimism, Liberal Hypocrisy, Pharyngulism.

UPDATE: At the bottom, a short note from another Myers post that suggests the Abramic God (if that’s what the unhappy man is castigating) did something personal to the Head Pharyngulist at some point in the past.

UPDATE II: Further down below, Scienceblogs, of which the perfidious Pharyngula leads the pack, shows that it CAN provide at least parts of an intelligent discussion about the intersection of science and philosophy.
On the one hand, he states that “science can prove nothing”:

Finney, a Maryville Republican, said he wants the department to say there’s no scientific proof for the theory of evolution and to let schools teach creationism or intelligent design.

(Myers then says:) That is a fundamental misconception, and one I wish we could somehow hammer into these gomers’ heads. There is no scientific proof of anything…proof isn’t something scientists deal with at all. It’s an inappropriate demand in several ways.

Fair enough. There may be no absolute certainty. Depressing in our rationalist era we live in, but honest. (LINK)
Then today, he changes his tack (Check out the ironic title of THIS link):

It’s a dead giveaway that Helphinstine is steeped in that creationist strategy of ignoring the evidence and doing nothing but sow doubt, especially where there is none.

OK, so on the first hand we have science proving nothing, but then on the other hand we have no doubt at all. In other words, things are proven.

Pick one, Myers.

BTW: The second quote regards a public school teacher fired for supposedly teaching creationism in the classroom. THe teacher claims he was merely trying to teach critical thinking skills.

Personally, I feel he could have taught these skills just as well using slightly less inflammatory material. . .but Myers of course goes totally barking up the wrong tree in crowing about the dismissal.

UPDATE: Myers’ latest label for God:

he is unnecessarily defending from Dawkins’ argument with the righteous anthropomorphic bastard that is actually refuted.

Am I the only one that picks up a bit of personal animus in that italicized phrase? (never mind that he ONCE AGAIN has refuted the existence of God. Where’s the 3rd Act proof, PZ?)
I know. Analysis-at-a-distance is not terribly effective.

But it sure is fun, and I submit that this may be a reflection of how the silly fool really is.

UPDATE II:  Thoughts from Kansas provides a very nice essay on the topic that Myers blunders through above:

What Helphinstine, and I imagine quite a few of the schools that would benefit from Cato’s voucher plan, present as science is closer to the definition provided by Vox Day’s commenter “the organized attempt to disprove the existence of God so we can do whatever we want without feeling bad about it.” In this conception, science is about philosophy, theology, morality and ethics. While those are excellent topics for discussion, they are not science. Indeed, science can say little if anything about those topics.

When you listen closely to the anti-evolutionists, this view of science as moral philosophy consistently emerges as a central objection. Thus, they have no objection to teaching that the roughly 12,000 species of ants come from a single “baramin,” while humans must belong to their very own special category. That is a moral objection, not a scientific one. The genus Homo is more similar to the genus Pan than ants within some single genera in terms of morphology or molecules – the parts science can measure. The moral part is what they think separates us, and science can’t measure that.

He is somewhat onto something here.  But what needs to take place is the understanding that science also cannot preach philosophy, and that is exactly what extremists like Myers et al are preaching.  They attempt to turn the science classroom into the High Priesthood of our time; and this is why parents strive to take their kids out of the science classroom.

It also is why parents demand that their kids be removed from science classes or have ID taught.  The Priesthood of Science is destroying their non-disprovable beliefs.

Much of this could be resolved if schools were to offer proper classes on philosophy. . .but with the back-to-basics push, there is no place to put these sorts of classes.

So, parents rebel.  Or misled teachers like this fellow from Sisters rebel.

Rosenau then goes on to use this as an argument against vouchers, of all things.  I disagree with his arguments. . but that’s another issue.  I suspect that Rosenau and I would disagree mightily on the existence of God, but at least he appears to be brave enough to engage the question, while Myers spends all of his time -I suspect out of fear- screaming it down.



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