Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Ben Stein: Coolest Dude EVER?

... or complete ass?

When asked if he was worried about being labeled the right wing Michael Moore for his appearance in "Expelled", a film about how horribly fairy tales are treated when passed off as science, Stein replied,

"I don't purposely try to make myself look goofy..."

So it's purely by accident, or he was dressed by a tornado while standing in a junkyard, then.


Benjamin Franklin said...

Expelled begins with a deception. The opening scene of the movie is a fraud. It purports to show Mr. Stein giving a lecture to an adoring crowd of students at Pepperdine University. But the production company for the movie literally bought the audience: there were very few students there, the audience having been created from what is known in movie jargon as “extras.” What a way to start a “documentary”, the purpose of which is to supposedly unmask deceptions and conspiracies.

It doesn’t get better. The films’ main thesis, that anyone in the science community who believes in God, or is a Darwin dissenter is being “expelled” is false at its core.

In a New York Times interview, Walter Ruloff (producer of Expelled) said that researchers, who had studied cellular mechanisms, made findings suggestive of an intelligent designer. “But they are afraid to report them”.
Mr. Ruloff also cited Dr. Francis S. Collins, a geneticist who directs the National Human Genome Research Institute and whose book, “The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief”, explains how he came to embrace his Christian faith. Mr. Ruloff said that Dr. Collins separates his religious beliefs from his scientific work only because “he is toeing the party line”.

That’s “just ludicrous,”
Dr. Collins said in a telephone interview. While many of his scientific colleagues are not religious and some are “a bit puzzled” by his faith, he said, “they are generally very respectful.” He said that if the problem Mr. Ruloff describes existed, he is certain he would know about it.


Similarly, Dr. Ken Miller is a professed Christian who wrote “Finding Darwin’s God” (which I suggest you read). Dr. Miller has not been “expelled” in any fashion for his belief in God.

The movie tries to make the case that “Big Science” is nothing but a huge atheist conspiracy out to silence believers, but only presents a very one-sided look at some Discovery Institute “martyrs”.

Carolyn Crocker “expelled”? - No.
Her annual teaching contract was not renewed. Was she “fired” for daring to bring God into research? - No. She was hired to teach Biology, and she decided to ignore the schools’ curriculum and substitute her own curriculum.


Guillermo Gonzalez “expelled”? - No.
He was not granted tenure. The film doesn’t bring up the fact that in all his years at ISU he had only brought in only a miniscule amount of grant money. Nor does it bring up the fact that in all his years at ISU he failed to mentor a single student through to their PhD. Nor does it mention that in his career at ISU, his previous excellent record of publication had dropped precipitously.


Richard von Sternberg “expelled”? - No.
Sternberg continued to work for NIH in the same capacity. Of course the movie doesn’t bring up his underhanded tactics in getting Meyers work published.


This movie attempts to influence it’s viewers with dishonesty, half-truths, and by a completely one-sided presentation of the facts.

If a scientists’ research is not accepted by the scientific community, it isn’t because the scientist either believes or doesn’t believe in God, it is usually because they are producing bad science.

Benjamin Franklin

vesti said...

Oof. I think I just expelled.