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Religion & Culture / Creation vs. Evolution


Subject:  Re: Expelled Date:  5/3/2008  1:41 PM
Author:  centromere Number:  14522 of 26626

No more insults from you, please. I don't deserve them.

Sure you do. People who continue to spread misinformation deserve insult.

The report you quote from as being completed was from Representative Mark Souder staff. Mark Souder is an admitted anti-evolution advocate and is hardly an unbiased source. If Hillary Clinton's staff came out with a report critical of a conservative organization, would you consider it objective?

I don't consider Souder's report to be objective or authoritative in any way as there is no requirment that it should be nonpartisan. In that sense it is like the Expelled movie. There is not even a claim or pretense of an objective investigation.

The congressional report that I referred to as being preliminary was from The Office of Special Council, a presumably more objective investigative body as it should be nonpartisan. They interviewed Sternberg, made a preliminary finding that further investigation was merited, but then dropped the case when it found that Sternberg misrepresented his position as an employee. OSC did not complete its investigation and made no official report on the case. To base an opinion on the OSC preliminary finding that was obviously incomplete is to be unfair.

So as far as I can see your entire case rests on 1) a movie funded by anti-evolution folks; 2) a report from the staff of an anti-evolution congressman; and 3) the incomplete preliminary findings (which in fairness shouldn't have been made public until complete) of the OSC, who shortly thereafter dropped the investigation. I'm not impressed

Here are the facts of the case that you have not provided any rebuttal for.

1. Every scientist who has read the Meyer paper and made a public statement has said that it is not up to publication standards. They have provided detailed reasons to justify why they believe the paper to be substandard. An editor who allows a substandard paper to be published should at the very least be reprimanded. Especially when there is evidence that the reason for the publication was to promote a religious belief shared by the editor.

2. The editorial board of the Journal in question are unanimous in their belief that Sternberg acted inappropriately.

3. Sternberg retired from the editor position 6 months before the Meyer article was published. Therefore any claim that he lost the editorship because of that event is false and should be retracted.

If you or the Expelled movie made that claim, then it should be retracted. Otherwise credibility and integrity are suspect.

4. No one has provided any evidence that Sternberg was more deserving than any of the research associates chosen by the Smithsonian in 2007. In the absence of such evidence, there is no indication that Sternberg not receiving a research associate position in 2007 was unfair.

Unless you can tell me which successful candidate was less deserving than Sternberg and why, the charge that Sternberg lost his research associate position because of bias should be retracted.

5. Every major scientific organization in the world that has expressed an opinion on the subject say that ID is a religious assertion rather than a scientific theory. A federal court presided by a Bush appointed federal judge ruled that ID is religion not science. Yet Sternberg allowed the publication of a paper promoting ID in a scientific journal. The impropriety seems pretty obvious.

Suppose an editor of a medical journal allowed the publication of a paper asserting that HIV was created by Europeans to kill Africans. Furthermore, suppose every major scientific organization subsequently denounced that paper as being substandard and non-scientific. Furthermore, suppose it was shown that the editor believed the assertion of the paper and was a member of organizations that espoused that belief. I think most would agree that that editor should be fired and it would not be a controversial decision. It's not about free speech, it's about meeting the rigorous standards of scientific publication.

But of course, Sternberg wasn't fired. He retired before the event occurred, sly devil. He deserved to be reprimanded and, frankly, got off too easy.
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