Posts Tagged ‘Expelled’

Is there a living individual more reviled by the creationist movement than Richard Dawkins? Many come close, but I think Dawkins’s combination of genius, balls, and penchant for attacking nonsense have really made him the biggest target of creationist pot shots alive today. Guess what, Joe has seen Expelled. You know, the creationist movie with Ben Stein which whinged its way across theaters nation wide at some point in the past. Joe Cienkowski believes that what Expelled says is gospel. Joe says repeatedly the following:

Richard Dawkins clearly states many times that he does not believe in ID of any kind.

Here is that clip from Expelled that Joe likes to link to over and over and OVER again:

The fun part about this post is that I don’t actually have to do any thinking to expose and rebut this filthy lie. I’ll just let Richard Dawkins do the talking.

And just for good measure, here is a lengthy rebut by Richard Dawkins from his own website:

Toward the end of his interview with me, Stein asked whether I could think of any circumstances whatsoever under which intelligent design might have occurred. It’s the kind of challenge I relish, and I set myself the task of imagining the most plausible scenario I could. I wanted to give ID its best shot, however poor that best shot might be. I must have been feeling magnanimous that day, because I was aware that the leading advocates of Intelligent Design are very fond of protesting that they are not talking about God as the designer, but about some unnamed and unspecified intelligence, which might even be an alien from another planet. Indeed, this is the only way they differentiate themselves from fundamentalist creationists, and they do it only when they need to, in order to weasel their way around church/state separation laws. So, bending over backwards to accommodate the IDiots (“oh NOOOOO, of course we aren’t talking about God, this is SCIENCE”) and bending over backwards to make the best case I could for intelligent design, I constructed a science fiction scenario. Like Michael Ruse (as I surmise) I still hadn’t rumbled Stein, and I was charitable enough to think he was an honestly stupid man, sincerely seeking enlightenment from a scientist. I patiently explained to him that life could conceivably have been seeded on Earth by an alien intelligence from another planet (Francis Crick and Leslie Orgel suggested something similar — semi tongue-in-cheek). The conclusion I was heading towards was that, even in the highly unlikely event that some such ‘Directed Panspermia’ was responsible for designing life on this planet, the alien beings would THEMSELVES have to have evolved, if not by Darwinian selection, by some equivalent ‘crane’ (to quote Dan Dennett). My point here was that design can never be an ULTIMATE explanation for organized complexity. Even if life on Earth was seeded by intelligent designers on another planet, and even if the alien life form was itself seeded four billion years earlier, the regress must ultimately be terminated (and we have only some 13 billion years to play with because of the finite age of the universe). Organized complexity cannot just spontaneously happen. That, for goodness sake, is the creationists’ whole point, when they bang on about eyes and bacterial flagella! Evolution by natural selection is the only known process whereby organized complexity can ultimately come into being. Organized complexity — and that includes everything capable of designing anything intelligently — comes LATE into the universe. It cannot exist at the beginning, as I have explained again and again in my writings.

This ‘Ultimate 747’ argument, as I called it in The God Delusion, may or may not persuade you. That is not my concern here. My concern here is that my science fiction thought experiment — however implausible — was designed to illustrate intelligent design’s closest approach to being plausible. I was most emphaticaly NOT saying that I believed the thought experiment. Quite the contrary. I do not believe it (and I don’t think Francis Crick believed it either). I was bending over backwards to make the best case I could for a form of intelligent design. And my clear implication was that the best case I could make was a very implausible case indeed. In other words, I was using the thought experiment as a way of demonstrating strong opposition to all theories of intelligent design.

According to Joe, none of that matters. Joe repeatedly suggests that Dawkins believes in ID, that he believes in aliens, that he believes that there is a signature in the cell of these aliens. This is a filthy lie and Joe knows it. Joe is a filthy liar.


I seized on a mis-tweet by Joe to drive this point into his filthy lying brain:

Really? "There IS NO FOSSILS?" Really?

I simply restated the obvious conclusion that one would get from this single tweet. Joe Cienkowski clearly thinks that no fossils have ever been found. This is clear from this tweet and completely in context. What did Joe do when confronted with the EXACT same kind of argument he makes? He cut and ran. He called me names and refused to acknowledge me for the rest of the day. It was glorious and I highly recommend that you regularly remind Joe that it’s stupid not to believe that humans have found fossils.

UPDATE because JoeCienkowski is such a filthy liar about this. This is the transcript of the interview in Expelled:

BEN STEIN: How did it get created?

DAWKINS: By a very slow process.

BEN STEIN: Well, how did it start?

DAWKINS: Nobody knows how it got started. We know the kind of event that it must have been. We know the sort of event that must have happened for the origin of life.

BEN STEIN: And what was that?

DAWKINS: It was the origin of the first self-replicating molecule.

BEN STEIN: Right, and how did that happen?

DAWKINS: I told you, we don’t know.

. . .

BEN STEIN: What do you think is the possibility that Intelligent Design might turn out to be the answer to some issues in genetics or in Darwinian evolution. [note question asks for a hypothetical answer]

DAWKINS: [note answer is entirely hypothetical] Well, it could come about in the following way. It could be that at some earlier time, somewhere in the universe, a civilization evolved, probably by some kind of Darwinian means, probably to a very high level of technology, and designed a form of life that they seeded onto perhaps this planet. Um, now that is a possibility, and an intriguing possibility. And I suppose it’s possible that you might find evidence for that if you look at the details of biochemistry, molecular biology, you might find a signature of some sort of designer.

. . .

And that Designer could well be a higher intelligence from elsewhere in the universe. But that higher intelligence would itself have had to have come about by some explicable, or ultimately explicable process. It couldn’t have just jumped into existence spontaneously. That’s the point.

Note the hypotheticals in Dawkins’s answer. It could be that aliens. If it was aliens then we might find the signature of that hypothetical designer by looking at our biochemistry. Joe staunchly refuses to accept this. According to Joe, what Dawkins said was “I believe that aliens created us and we can find evidence for this at the cellular level.”  Joe is, of course, a filthy liar. He will never admit that he is wrong about this despite the fact that everyone can clearly see that he is. Joe is trying to pass off a lie, trying to say up is really down that all rectangles are squares. If he can’t be straight about this, how can anyone trust him to be straight about anything? Joe is a filthy liar. Period.