Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Agape Press Parrots the DI on Dover

So the new secondary meme from the DI is not only that Jones copied everything, but that their charges against them are so spectacular that he’s “clammed up” and fallen silent after a year of constantly defending his ruling. Here’s John West in Agape Press:

However, Dr. John West, Discovery Institute’s vice president for public policy and legal affairs, says now that the judge’s largely copied ruling has been brought to the public’s attention, it appears that “mum’s the word.” West says he finds it “very interesting” that throughout the whole year Jones has been speaking around the U.S. in various venues, discussing his decision, defending it, and even “attacking anyone who criticizes it.”

The judge has even spoken “in some places apparently, from reports that I’ve heard, about how much time he invested in writing the opinion,” the Discovery Institute spokesman notes. And yet, he adds, “now that the study comes out showing that the central part of [Jones’s ruling] was taken virtually verbatim from the ACLU, he doesn’t have anything to say.”

Pure demagoguery, with a few blatant lies thrown in. It is a lie to claim that Judge Jones has gone around the country “attacking anyone who criticizes” his ruling. A flat out baldfaced lie. The only criticism he has ever engaged is the unbelievably ignorant criticism that came from Phyliss Schlafly, and only then in the context of giving a civics lesson on how the courts operate in our constitutional system. The DI has spent almost all of their energy for the last year attacking the ruling and he has never even responded to them, much less attacked him. Isn’t it odd that they’re claiming simultaneously that he attacks anyone who criticizes his ruling and that he’s not responding to their criticisms? Consistency is hardly their strong suit, but hey, whatever it takes to cast aspersions on people. Who cares about little things like the truth?

And I love this breathless revelation that he’s mentioned how long it took to write the opinion. Gosh, John, you’ve sure caught him with his hand in the cookie jar now. You see, one of the questions he’s always asked in interviews is what it’s like to take on such a high profile case. And he’s talked about the fact that this case was much more complex than the average case he has to handle on the Federal bench. It’s very rare that a case involves a dozen expert witnesses and 6 weeks of testimony, just as it’s very rare for a ruling to be 139 pages long. So yes, he’s probably mentioned that this case took up far more of his time than a normal case does. What a shocking revelation you’ve given to the world.

The revelation that Jones’ widely hailed ruling contained little original thought has put opponents of intelligent design on the defensive, West points out. So far, he says, the standard response from the Darwinists seems to be that “judges do this all the time — and in fact, we don’t want judges writing their own opinion because they don’t know what they’re doing.”

Well naturally, when you can’t actually answer the criticisms of your fake “study”, all you can do is present a straw man version of it you can knock down. If West can find a single “Darwinist” (whatever that is) who has said that we don’t want judges to write their own opinion because they don’t know what they’re doing, I’ll crawl to Seattle on my hands and knees and apologize to him. But he’s lying, through his teeth. No one has made such an argument and West damn well knows it. And he is nothing but a shameless liar.

What these evolutionists are suggesting, West explains, is that Judge Jones’s “wholesale, uncritical copying” of the ACLU’s supposed findings of fact in Kitzmiller is actually “the way it ought to be” in such cases. In fact, the intelligent design proponent notes, “there was one Darwinist on a Darwin blog who actually said something like that.”

Really? Quote it for us, John. People may have said “something like that” in regards to findings of fact specifically, but no one has ever suggested that judges should not “write their own opinion”. Findings of fact are distinct from the legal opinion, you lying sophist. And you know that, but you don’t care. Because all you care about is creating the perception of impropriety, and truth and ethics be damned. And yet you want to lecture us about how you’re standing up for God and morality? Yet another lie.


  1. #1 steve s
    December 16, 2006

    John West tards:

    the ACLU’s supposed findings of fact

    LOL! That the ACLU wrote findings of fact could not possibly be in dispute. This reminds me of the Johnny Cochran character on South Park: “Ladies and gentlemen of the supposed jury…”

  2. #2 doctorgoo
    December 16, 2006

    Four more days until the first anniversary of the Dover decision. I think this clearly is the reason these guys have upped their attack on Jones so much recently.

    One would think that they’d someday run out of wind. But unfortunately, their dishonesty knows no bounds.

  3. #3 doctorgoo
    December 16, 2006

    That the ACLU wrote findings of fact could not possibly be in dispute.

    If I remember correctly, only a few of the plantiffs’ lawyers were from the ACLU, most were from Pepper Hamilton. So it might not actually be correct to say that the ACLU wrote the FOF, at least not entirely.

    I think West uses ACLU just because his followers see those four letters and automatically equate them with evil.

  4. #4 Ed Brayton
    December 16, 2006

    doctorgoo is absolutely right. The bulk of the work in this case was done by the attorneys from Pepper Hamilton, not from the ACLU.

  5. #5 nunyer
    December 16, 2006

    This report was featured on the news from the local Christian radio stations as well.

  6. #6 Ed Darrell
    December 16, 2006

    You only call out one bald-faced lie, Ed?

    C’mon. It’s a lie to say that Judge Jones has clammed up since the DI report. The DI’s false claims haven’t been out long enough for a response. In the first place, Jones has always said he wouldn’t engage in a back-and-forth media fight. He speaks at selected events, where there is interest in jurisprudence. John West and his ilk at the Discovery Institute probably haven’t noticed, but we’re rather in the midst of holy days for at least three major religions. While the Discovery Institute has no use for celebrations of faith, it’s slowing down for organizations that might invite Jones to speak.

    Then, of course, there is the issue of whether there is any real claim there for Jones to answer.

    Do I recall correctly that West’s group hired the PR firm of the Swift Boat Veterans to do their dirty work? And since most of the “news” on the DI report is on PR wires, shouldn’t we assume that this is just more dirty politics? Talk about tone deaf — the nation turned away from such politics in the last elections, but West and DI failed to notice.

    Eh, but they didn’t notice the last 160 years of biology, either. When one is so far behind on one’s reading, what’s a few months more?

    Now the study comes out revealing once and for all that creationists and IDists have incompetence for legal advisors, I notice West hasn’t had the time to comment. He’s suddenly clammed up. Why?

  7. #7 Coin
    December 16, 2006

    “there was one Darwinist on a Darwin blog who actually said something like that.”

    Really? Quote it for us, John.

    Actually, I’m not sure, but weirdly enough I think they’re specifically referring to me. One of their recent blog posts incorporated an out of context quote from a comment I made on Larry Moran’s blog, and though I didn’t say what they present the “darwinist on a darwinist blog” as saying, they did try very hard in their blog post at that time to make it look as if I had.

    They speak in awfully vague terms in the Agape Press article, but what they say does seem to indicate that they’re still obsessing over this quote. I kind of wonder if they’re going to obsess over it forever. I guess they have to concentrate on something so that they can ignore the reams of serious debunking of their “study” written by Ed, Sandefur, etc.

    Incidentally, I do still stand by what I said on Larry Moran’s blog: when findings of fact include complex technical issues, it is in my opinion preferable to use the system used in the Dover case (both sides submit proposed findings of facts, both sides issue rebuttals to those findings of facts, and the judge then incorporates the text of those proposed findings with corrections as appropriate into his own findings of facts) to compose those sections of the findings of fact, than it would be to have the judge try to synthesize the trial evidence into a complicated science report with his own original language, as Moran and the DI would prefer. But I’m not really sure how relevant my opinion is, and none this of course has anything to do with the DI’s “judges shouldn’t write their own opinions, some darwinist on some blog said something kind of like this once, totally” straw man.

  8. #8 MTran
    December 16, 2006

    Coin said:
    One of their recent blog posts incorporated an out of context quote from a comment I made on Larry Moran’s blog, and though I didn’t say what they present the “darwinist on a darwinist blog” as saying, they did try very hard in their blog post at that time to make it look as if I had.

    Imagine that, out of context quote mining by the IDiot crowd.

    Coin, You’ll get no argument from me about the contents of your posts. But I have no idea who you are in real life nor do I have any quick way of verifying your credentials. That is the nature of internet postings.

    Still, for the life of me, I cannot understand why any organization would cite an anonymous post to a blog as “proof” of anything. I suppose that’s the abysmal level of expertise, evidentiary verifiability, and research that is typical of their most erudite “thinkers.”

  9. #9 mark
    December 16, 2006

    Ed Darrell is on target:

    Do I recall correctly that West’s group hired the PR firm of the Swift Boat Veterans to do their dirty work?

    The Disingenuous Institute has learned from the recent presidential election: First, tell a bunch of lies. Then spread those lies. Then make sure the lies are repeated. I suppose these steps are what the DI considers science; and perhaps this latest lie is part of the secret research being conducted in the secret science laboratory.

  10. #10 Tyler DiPietro
    December 16, 2006

    You know, it is sheerly amazing what these DI wonks are capable of doing in service to the IDiot agenda. Just think about it for a second, and take a moment for introspection: could you ever be able to be as persistently dishonest as these guys are without eventually contemplating suicide?

  11. #11 RJ
    December 16, 2006

    Yet another data point demonstrating wacky indifference to elementary standards of rationality. I guess it hasn’t occurred to DI and Agape that Mr. Jones has perhaps ‘clammed up’ because he is a busy man, a federal judge having new cases and matters to consider. Or perhaps he’s lost interest: the fact that he was impressed by the pro-evolution side in one case in no way implies that he does or should now become some sort of pro-evolution ‘activist’. No doubt anyone willing to give the matter a few moments of genuine thought could think of many other equally banal reasons Jones has no interest in engaging this issue in public. Even crazier, these people seem to have no clue Jones might already have had enough of their verbal abuse and defamation, and wants to leave the issue behind. Who could blame him?

  12. #12 Boo
    December 17, 2006

    Off topic, for those of you who have debated IDers before, does it always go like this?


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