A cheap shot from Barney Frank:
“It is, of course, further indication that a fundamentalist right has really taken over much of the Republican Party,” said Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), a leading liberal lawmaker. Noting Bush’s Ivy League education, Frank said, “People might cite George Bush as proof that you can be totally impervious to the effects of Harvard and Yale education.”
Although I should point out that I am in no position to judge cheap shots, since I called him a jackass for his remarks. But on to the more important reactions from Bush’s words:
With the president endorsing it, at the very least it makes Americans who have that position more respectable, for lack of a better phrase,” said Gary L. Bauer, a Christian conservative leader who ran for president against Bush in the 2000 Republican primaries. “It’s not some backwater view. It’s a view held by the majority of Americans.”
While some are continuing to give the President the benefit of the doubt on his statement, it is clear how the ID proponents received his remarks. Very positively:
John G. West, an executive with the Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based think tank supporting intelligent design, issued a written statement welcoming Bush’s remarks. “President Bush is to be commended for defending free speech on evolution, and supporting the right of students to hear about different scientific views about evolution,” he said.
Ahh, the Discovery Institute. Home of the Center for Science and Culture. Now, without the hysterics that have been attached to the ‘Wedge Document,’ (full document here, Discovery Institute’s response here), it is fair to point out the stated goals of the most vocal ID proponents:
– To defeat scientific materialism and its destructive moral, cultural and political legacies.
– To replace materialistic explanations with the theistic understanding that nature and hurnan beings are created by God.
Five Year Goals
– To see intelligent design theory as an accepted alternative in the sciences and scientific research being done from the perspective of design theory.
– To see the beginning of the influence of design theory in spheres other than natural science.
– To see major new debates in education, life issues, legal and personal responsibility pushed to the front of the national agenda.
Twenty Year Goals
– To see intelligent design theory as the dominant perspective in science.
– To see design theory application in specific fields, including molecular biology, biochemistry, paleontology, physics and cosmology in the natural sciences, psychology, ethics, politics, theology and philosophy in the humanities; to see its innuence in the fine arts.
– To see design theory permeate our religious, cultural, moral and political life
It is no secret their intentions- it is not a debate on the issues. A debate on the issues is fine- that is what science wants. But placing ascientific theories at the forefront of science is the goal, and it is not for scientific benefit, but to advance a cultural agenda. And again, for those of you pushing the notion that the ‘designer’ can be anyone, including the Giant Spaghetti Monster, the Center for Science and Culture would disagree:
We are building on this momentum, broadening the wedge with a positive scientific alternative to materialistic scientific theories, which has come to be called the theory of intelligent design (ID). Design theory promises to reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions.
I am not trying to carry the water for materialists or for secularists, but this is a battle of the creationist’s choosing, and I am not going to help them. And Bush should know better.
*** Update ***
It is nice to find someone pissier than me.