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Monday, 23 February 2009

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"...Those of us in the edumacated classes, with eclectic reading habits and a collection of Stephen Jay Gould books on the shelf, may regard overt creationism (as distinct from mushy unclarity on the subject of evolution) as an unacceptable quality in a candidate.

But what of the masses? The ones whose exposure to biology was one ill-taught required class in high school, and who simply have no interest in the matter?..."

Really? Count me as one of your edumacated clan, with eclectic reading habits and a collection of Stephen Jay Gould books on the shelf...but without the smug sense of self-congratulation in that self-description which informs your post.

I never cease to be amazed at the growing sect of Scientism, the adherents of which have such a charmingly simple, childlike faith that they can accept in the face of all rational capacity that evidence of evolution somehow majically and necessarily precludes a creator. More, that they rarely are able to admit theirs is in fact just as much a belief system as any they deride. I've simply never understood why it is that so many of those who worship the Goddess Scientia seem not so much convinced of the non-existence of a creator as they are enemies of the idea of a creator - anti-theists instead of simple atheists. Thus by their very actions they can be said to cede the existence of that creative force they seemingly abhor, and in response swear themselves its eternal mortal enemy. Strange, that.

When predicting which way the electorate will jump, something to believe in is a safer bet than something that's aligned with the facts.

Indeed, as the current occupant of the Oval Office quite amply demonstrates.

79% of Americans think that "creationism" should be taught alongside
evolution in public schools; only 20% thought evolution should be
taught
without mentioning creationism.
--"Survey Finds Support Is Strong for Teaching 2 Origin Theories,"
James
Glanz, The New York Times, Mar. 11, 2000.

Candidates will embrace religion when it suits their purpose. Obama, for one, and even Hillary Clinton, wrapped themselves in the flag of religion while on the campaign trail. In a recent TV item (where the woman asks him for help), Obama said that he, too, believes in the power of prayer.

Let's take an extreme example. Suppose a Scientologist got as far as the primaries. Would belief in giant clams be enough to make people turn away? (OK, yes, but that is an extreme example.)

JFK was Catholic (at least, nominally), and some people worried that he'd be taking orders - or at least guidance - from Rome. It didn't happen.

Anybody bright enough to want to be President (but evidently not bright enough to turn the job down) isn't going to let his religious beliefs get in the way of governance. (Bush had science on his side when he rejected funding for embryonic stem-cell research.)

Obama's 20-year connection with a pastor and a church that was - and still is - extreme in its condemnation of our country seems to have had little effect on people's willingness to trade Hope and Change for common sense.

Number me among those who do not want to see faith-based science.

But, personally, I find the notion that an executive might want to cuddle up to some creationist voters to be less troubling, less likely to have an adverse impact on my life, than all the climate crackpots that Obama's stuffed his cabinet and advisory ranks with:

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090223/AUTO01/902230327

So Obama's got a 'climate czar' an EPA head, and a secretary of energy that between them have...a Prius. These people do not live in my world.

Phoo, what Randy Barnett knows about how plain folks choose their Presidents could be written on a 3x5 card, with room left over for the Declaration of Independence and the Gettysburg Address, in long-hand.

Nice last para, by the way. Well said.

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