Science makes his head hurt

Once upon a time, I was very fond of the Blogs for Bush blog. I believed it was important for America that Bush was re-elected, as I had no trust in John Kerry’s ability to hold a thought long enough to act on it, any thought, any action. And if I had it to do all over again, I would still vote for Bush over Kerry. But that’s because we live in an imperfect world with a political system that gives us poor choices. If I had my way, we’d have presidential candidates like Rudy Giuliani and Bob Kerry. But we don’t, and there we are.

The chief honcho of Blogs for Bush, Mark Noonan (no relation to Peggy) has shown his colors and branded himself a fool with this idiotic attack on science:

Not too long ago the blogosphere was rocking with the great debate of Intelligent Design vs Darwinism. It was an interesting debate, though I doubt much that anyone had the mind changed. Be that as it may, the whole thing got me thinking, and today ii occured to me: science is dead. We have reached the end of the Age of Science – what will come after, I don’t know, but I don’t think that we’ll ever again have a time when Science is enshrined as some sort of god-like arbiter of right and wrong. The question now: what killed science?

It’s a nice little rip-off. Nietzsche (and others) said God died in the 19th century, a victim of the enlightenment, global exploration, rational inquiry, and yes, science. But Mark’s having none of that high-falutin’ science that gives us hoaxes like Piltdown man (and then exposes them), the old-time religion is good enough for him, so he stands Nietzsche on his head.

This nonsense is not worth refuting in detail. We’ll simply note that church attendance is in decline, especially in Western Europe. In another fifty to a hundred years, science-deniers will be an even smaller and more marginal group than they are now, and this sort of thing will be taught in the history books as the last throes of a doctrine that couldn’t adapt itself to the information age.

There doesn’t really need to be a war between religion and science, and if there is one, religion will lose every time. That’s because science can feed people, heal their diseases, extend their lives and enable them to fulfill their wishes.

Science can’t answer all of our metaphysical questions about meaning and purpose, so religion can still have a role, as long as it doesn’t get too uppity. In the hands of fanatics like Noonan, it does and is therefore firmly in the ash bin of history.

Certainly, there are wackos at the margins of science who insist on a war with religion, people who insist that descent with modification proves there is no God. And there are wackos who insist that science can instruct us in morality, but they don’t represent the spirit of rational inquiry.

Noonan wants school children to be taught that the pseudo-scientific Intelligent Design construct is on the same footing as the entire apparatus of evolutionary biology, invoking the Ann Coulter arguments. This is simply nonsense. The evidentiary basis for DWM is enormous, and you can certainly find this out in a few minutes of honest research on the web.

3 thoughts on “Science makes his head hurt”

  1. Bob Kerrey? Rudy Giuliani? I voted for the latter once. For president though, neither would be really suitable. Giuliani’s disregard for civil liberties alone disqualifies him for the presidency, and Kerrey… well… he endorsed Lieberman. Enough said about him.

    Richard, beneath that slowly decaying neocon exterior of yours beats the heart of…dare I say it? A true Kossack.

    As Darksyde said:

    If you don’t like sleeping naked in the dirt and bashing open pig skulls with a stone hand-ax, until you keel over from old age or kidney stones before your fortieth birthday, science is the breath of life. If you want to keep breathing, you might have to vote against the Republicans, or just not vote at all.

    Keep up the good work.

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