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  Topic: FTE and Jon Buell's Day in Court, A response to Casey Luskin< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Wesley R. Elsberry



Posts: 4807
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 21 2007,09:37   

The Post

 
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Over on the Discovery Institute’s weblog, Casey Luskin writes:

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   In 2005, a federal judge banned Pandas outright from science classrooms in Dover, Pennsylvania — but only after denying FTE [Foundation for Thought and Ethics] the right to appear before the court to defend the book.


Hmmm. Why does that sound odd?

Maybe because the text “Of Pandas and People” (OPaP) is not explicitly mentioned in the order made by Judge John E. Jones III at the end of his decision:

   NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED THAT:

 
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   1. A declaratory judgment is hereby issued in favor of Plaintiffs pursuant to [290]28 U.S.C. ?? 2201, [291]2202, and [292]42 U.S.C. ? 1983 such that Defendants’ ID Policy violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States and Art. I, ? 3 of the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. 2. Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 65, Defendants are permanently enjoined from maintaining the ID Policy in any school within the Dover Area School District. 3. Because Plaintiffs seek nominal damages, Plaintiffs shall file with the Court and serve on Defendants, their claim for damages and a verified statement of any fees and/or costs to which they claim entitlement. Defendants shall have the right to object to any such fees and costs to the extent provided in the applicable statutes and court rules


so the blunt statement that OPaP is “banned from classrooms” appears to be an unsupported extrapolation. Can a student check a copy out from the library and have it in his or her possession in a classroom? There seems to be nothing to prevent that. Can a science teacher or administrator teach credulously from OPaP in a classroom? That would appear to be against the sense of the order. Can a civics teacher show that egregious hogwash sometimes intrudes into public policy, using OPaP as a noisome example? I see nothing in the order that would prevent OPaP from appearing in the classroom for that purpose. Given the assessment the book received:

 
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   Accordingly, the one textbook to which the Dover ID Policy directs students contains outdated concepts and badly flawed science, as recognized by even the defense experts in this case.


the notion that OPaP is a good fit as an authoritative source in a science curriculum is just laughable. Could a defense by FTE salvage OPaP from that evaluation? That seems quite doubtful.

Maybe Luskin’s statement sounds odd because Jon Buell, President of FTE, did actually appear in the courtroom of Judge John E. Jones III, and there attempted to defend the book. Of course, Buell made a laughingstock of himself, of FTE, and of the sham called “intelligent design” — pretty serious work for just one day in court, I’d say. NOVA’s focus on the bad boys of the Kitzmiller v. DASD case could have been filled out to three “B”s, Bonsell, Buckingham, and Buell, if only Jones had ruled favorably on FTE’s motion to intervene.

Who is to blame for FTE’s inability to take part in the trial portion of KvD? It isn’t Judge Jones. This is a matter of public record, something that Luskin should have been aware of before spinning stuff. One can make a case for either FTE President Jon Buell or IDC advocate and FTE Academic Editor William A. Dembski having tripped up on this one, as becomes clear with just a small excursion to the transcript of the court’s consideration of FTE’s motion to intervene. At the time that FTE finally decided to file its motion to intervene, it was already late in May, 2005. Notably, this only happened about the time that the Thomas More Law Center and the Discovery Institute were apparently having some serious behind-the-scenes disagreements over the conduct of the case. FTE seemed to be far more willing to act on DI orders than the TMLC had proved to be, so having FTE obtain a co-defendant role in the case was likely a high priority for the DI. This may explain the DI’s continuing angst over the exceedingly poor showing that Buell had in court, so much so that they won’t even draw attention to it, but instead place blame — erroneously, of course — on Judge Jones.

Did FTE receive due process? It is hard to argue that they did not, given the copious public record demonstrating that they did. That seems to be why Luskin just tosses off a slur, apparently hoping that no one will take a closer look. There are several elements of interest in Buell’s testimony, including the howler that FTE is not a religious organization, the curious silence of Dembski, and Buell’s ignorance of the one issue that might have given FTE entry to the case.


See the rest at the link.

J-Dog suggested that an entry should be made at AtBC.

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
J-Dog



Posts: 4402
Joined: Dec. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 21 2007,10:17   

Yes I did, and thanks.

On this holiday of thanksgiving, we give thanks for all of you who fight the IDists and creos now, so we don't have to fight them in our own schools later.

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Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
Wesley R. Elsberry



Posts: 4807
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 21 2007,10:47   

IMDB has a list of quotes from the Austin Powers movie, including the segment with Powers denying association with the embarrassing personal item. Look for "my bag, baby"; that will put you at the right spot.

Compare that dialog with the transcript of Buell attempting to maintain the appearance that of course FTE is not a religious organization.

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
Lou FCD



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Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 21 2007,10:59   

Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Nov. 21 2007,11:47)
IMDB has a list of quotes from the Austin Powers movie, including the segment with Powers denying association with the embarrassing personal item. Look for "my bag, baby"; that will put you at the right spot.

Compare that dialog with the transcript of Buell attempting to maintain the appearance that of course FTE is not a religious organization.

perfect.

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Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
I think I might love you. Don't tell Deadman -Wolfhound

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stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 21 2007,18:45   

Reading those Buell selections is just stunning. Reminds me of Casey Luskin. My first interaction with him, a few years ago, was he asked me how on earth I thought the IDEA club had anything to do with creationism. He asked me this despite the IDEA club being the old creationist club renamed, despite the IDEA club web pages still saying things like "Don't be scared of creationism!", and despite the officers of the club being required to be christians. What can you do when someone won't stop telling obvious lies to your face? You can't get them to stop lying, and you can't stop the most clueless people from believing them. What you can do is document why they're obvious lies, and present that evidence to the intelligent, educated segment of culture, such as federal judges.

   
Wesley R. Elsberry



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Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 21 2007,19:28   

Steve, I remember that. But I thought Casey asked why you thought IDEA clubs had something to do with religion...

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I have a few brief questions for you regarding your comment: 1) What made you think we are a religious club? 2) You seemed to imply that the IDEA Club doesn’t understand the science of evolutionary biology. Can you please elaborate on what led you to believe that? Thanks so much for your time. Sincerely, Casey Luskin”


And my reply, which Casey did not like at all:

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In response to Casey Luskin’s questions:

(1) At some point, Luskin or some other higher-up at IDEA made it clear that to be an officer in an IDEA club, one had to be a Christian.

(2) Reading the IDEA FAQs.

For example, let’s take the IDEA FAQ on the fossil record, for instance, and its treatment of ‘punctuated equilibria’. This “FAQ” attributes Eldredge and Gould’s approach as looking at the fossil record and dodging a lack of transitional fossils. Eldredge and Gould tell us, though, that they worked from studies of living populations and derived what the implications of observed speciational change implied for the fossil record. The FAQ claims that PE predicts that no data will be found to support it, yet Eldredge and Gould presented two transitional sequences supporting transitions via PE in their original essay, and cited further examples in their 1977 paper.

When screeds like the IDEA FAQ are presented as if they were science when they fail to meet even the lowest of standards of scholarly conduct, I think it is quite fair to point out that the authors do appear to have a certain lack of familiarity with evolutionary biology.


He was particularly hurt by criticism of his essay on PE.

I appear to have redacted one of your comments in that thread...

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 22 2007,19:37   

Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Nov. 21 2007,20:28)
Steve, I remember that. But I thought Casey asked why you thought IDEA clubs had something to do with religion...

 
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I have a few brief questions for you regarding your comment: 1) What made you think we are a religious club? 2) You seemed to imply that the IDEA Club doesn’t understand the science of evolutionary biology. Can you please elaborate on what led you to believe that? Thanks so much for your time. Sincerely, Casey Luskin”

holy crap that was 3.5 years ago. Has it really been that long? That was over a year before I got to AtBC.

This has been one hell of a ride. Very entertaining.

By the way, I went looking for the UCSD IDEA page I referred to, which mentioned creationism, but the website of the UCSD IDEA club seems to be defunct. Can anyone confirm that the UCSD IDEA club is as dead as the ID journal?

   
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 22 2007,19:43   

Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Nov. 21 2007,20:28)
I appear to have redacted one of your comments in that thread...

You did redact one of my comments. When Casey sent me the first unsolicited email, I posted it to that thread, like "Can you believe this guy is lying like this????" Afterward, he sent me another unsolicited email, in which he was angry that I'd publicly posted his first email, without his permission, and in turn I posted that one. Because he indicated that he wanted the emails private, you redacted that one. And I didn't object. I don't think he has any expectation of privacy for emails sent to a stranger, but my posting the second one might have been unethical.

Now, if he knows he's telling lies, I think that offsets my unethical posting, but I'm not sure he knows. I've seen him. He might actually believe the things he says, poor guy.

   
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