Monday, August 22, 2005

New comic is up. Still too groggy to make much sense of the news, but here's a screen grab from the Cincinnati Enquirer from a few weeks ago: Okay, never mind: here's the debonaire Bill Decker on Intelligent Design. I suppose I shouldn't expect much from the Daily, but I still do. I expect a community newspaper to be a guiding force and an example. I expect it to look behind the noise and find the truth, or at least get as close as it can. But the Advertiser has failed for years and years and years in the most basic functions of a newspaper: from incompetent editing to refusing to cover the Catholic Priest sex scandals of the 80's to waffling, moronic editorials like this one. Can you tell what Bill's opinion is? Can you even tell which thoughts are his, which are restatements of another's idea, or which are sarcastic? Here, try:
The argument will be over intelligent design. The concept is based on the idea that nature abounds with organisms and biological processes that are far too complex to be explained by Darwin's evolutionary accidents. The possibility that an intelligence designed the physical world can't be ruled out and may even be probable, scientifically speaking. Therefore, intelligent design should be taught in schools along with evolution. At least.
Even when I can tell what I'm reading, it's enough to give me a custer headache:
Darwin's natural selection says plants and animals with useful biological processes succeed. These processes evolve over eons by accident, recombination, mutation, whatever.
Yeah, by "whatever." This is not hard, you know. Successful traits don't evolve by "accident" or "recombination" (I think Bill remembers the word "recombinant" and knows that it has something to do with genetics, so he just threw it in there, because otherwise I have no fucking Idea what he's talking about); successful traits evolve in response to environmental pressures, Turtle didn't go through other options before arriving at shells; it wasn't some blind, groping effort. Ad don't get me started on that stupid goddamn mousetrap bullshit. Does Michael Behe think that the mousetrap just sprang fully formed from its inventor's forehead? That there were no prototypes, no failed experiments, no refinements over time? And if you take away some of the parts, what you have left surely *is* a mousetrap; it's just a mousetrap that doesn't work Oh god where's my medicine. (MOOD: DIGITALIS) Well, I should know better than to expect reason and insight from a newspaper that prints stuff like this on the editorial page. I don't have much to say about this. I know John Copes and have always liked and respected him, but I have to say this is just dumb. And kind of sad; if the Governor's Office or the Louisiana Democratic party thinks setting up some kinds of Tokyo Rose-cum-Mod Squad blog (oop, bad word!) is going to change any minds or effectively respond to Republican smears ... I just ... and written by staffers? Really? You thought that would work? By the way, has anyone found out which little weasel leaked this? In other news, whore. I had a professor who once told me that he wished I would use "the scalpel as well as the lash" when engaging in criticism. I thought about that for a long time, and decided that, while the scalpel is a fine and necessary tool, some people don't understand anything but the lash. Some people don't deserve the scalpel. So it is that we come to another condescending editorial about how immature and shrill the left is, with fabricated and/or out of context quotes from Cindy Sheehan, tossed-off ignorance like this:
The Sheehan Left wants swift withdrawal from Iraq, whatever the consequences. It wants Democrats back in power. It can't wait for another election; and it still believes that something was rigged about the last one. When you read the anti-war blogs or a New York Times columnist, you get the sense it actually wants Iraq to fall apart, or al-Qa'ida to regroup, or another terrorist atrocity to succeed. Hurting Bush is the overwhelming, empowering imperative.
and a fascinating refusal to acknowledge the plummeting poll numbers of the president and the chorus of protesting voice rising around the country. It's not a mass movement yet, but it's not just hippie radicals and pinko-com-symps. But not according to the Australian: it will be the grown-up, measured and sensible Republicans who will lead us from this mess and WIN the War on Terrorism! Nigga, please.

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