I didnt know what to say about Venter & Crew making a bacterial genome from scratch.

No such luck from the BASTION of child rape, homophobia, misogyny, and flat out stupidity human morality and ethics, the Catholic Church:

Church warns cell scientists not to play God
Catholic Church officials said Friday that the recently created first synthetic cell could be a positive development if correctly used, but warned scientists that only God can create life.

heh.

“It’s a great scientific discovery. Now we have to understand how it will be implemented in the future,” Monsignor Rino Fisichella, the Vatican’s top bioethics official, told Associated Press Television News.

Whos ‘we’? You got a turd in your pocket? Who the hell is this asshole? “Rino”? Wat?

A top Italian cardinal, Angelo Bagnasco, said the invention is “further sign of intelligence, God’s gift to understand creation and be able to better govern it,” according to Apcom and ANSA news agencies.
… “Pretending to be God and parroting his power of creation is an enormous risk that can plunge men into a barbarity,” Mogavero told newspaper La Stampa in an interview. Scientists “should never forget that there is only one creator: God.”

Awwww! Theyre so cute when they talk out both sides of their mouths!

But I mean, who cares right? Who the hell gives a rats ass about what a cult of men who are utterly useless to society think about science? Oh wait…

Comments

  1. #1 Sili
    May 21, 2010

    Funny, they all use “to play God” as if it was something to aspire to. I’m pretty sure that noöne would much appreciate a scientist being the capricious, petulant and bipolar.

  2. #2 Jared
    May 21, 2010

    They’re not “playing god” because:
    1) they really exist
    2) they are doing something

  3. #3 Dave
    May 21, 2010

    I suppose employing a rhino’s fistula as a bioethicist makes about as much sense as listening to a bunch of celibate old men in dresses give advice on sexuality.

  4. #4 Katharine
    May 21, 2010

    Playing at being a deity requires one to suddenly not exist, because deities do not exist.

    The cat-lickers are such turds.

  5. #5 Vene
    May 21, 2010

    I’ll take ethical and moral lessons from the Catholic church when they stop fucking little boys.

  6. #6 eddie
    May 21, 2010

    +1 Jared.

  7. #7 Dustin
    May 21, 2010

    The Catholic Church thinks condoms are a greater evil than HIV. I’ll take pointers on bioethics from them right after I’m done on taking pointers on civics from Pol Pot.

  8. #8 D. C. Sessions
    May 21, 2010

    Pretending to be God

    Neat trick. There have been times I’ve wanted to be invisible and impossible to track down.

  9. #9 Dustin
    May 21, 2010

    “further sign of intelligence, God’s gift to understand creation and be able to better govern it,”

    Govern it? We’re the gardeners of the cosmos now? I don’t think Monsignor has the faintest grasp of how big the universe is, how long it has been here without us, and how long it will persist after we’ve croaked. Creation doesn’t care that we’re here. In their rush to condemn the hubris of scientists who “play God”, I think they forgot to pull the mote from their own eye first.

  10. #10 Pierce R. Butler
    May 21, 2010

    The frustrating thing is, in general terms they’re right.

    No major new technology has ever emerged without an accompanying disaster. Synthetic life (whatever it ends up being called) is guaranteed to produce its own version of heroin or thalidomide, asbestos or DDT, timecube or botnets, 9/11 or Hiroshima. We can’t say what form it will take, but sooner or later something hellacious will come from this.

    Which is not to say that the Vatican offers anything helpful to avoid, ameliorate, or even analyze the potential problems here, but their cautionary note is not inappropriate.

  11. #11 TheSlat
    May 21, 2010

    Dustin – exactly

    I cant get over this news. I have been calling all my friends. but barely anyone knew (except the blog readers of course). I think its gotten about 5 minutes of news coverage so far.. wtf? it’s like splitting the atom for biology.

  12. #12 Knight of the annoy a liberal table
    May 21, 2010

    Maybe the scientists will create a lifeform that feeds on marxist socialist atheist assholes like you. I guess there will be plenty to eat considering the State of california is so large. God help you all if this new lifeform gets into the Black House in D.C. If you talked like this to me, I’d fart in your face and leave a fresh turd in your special little “science” lab for you to discover on a Monday morning. maybe you could create life from a turd. Looks like this website beat the real scientists to it though. I hate militant marxist turdlickers humanists. They are the lowest on the scale of creationism.

  13. #13 Jason Thibeault
    May 21, 2010

    Someone needs to figure out a way to prevent child rape, by, say, creating bacteria that benignly lives in little children’s colon, dies out automatically when the kids reach 16 or so (so as not to harm their partners later in life), and makes people’s dicks fall off if they go buggering them.

    There are a lot of problems with this scenario of course (not the least of which being they could wear rubbers), but if any scientific path is going to manage it, it’s Venter’s research.

  14. #14 Licky Sticker
    May 21, 2010

    Here’s a real science project for the Godophobic bigots here:

    I’ll place a nicely formed turd in your lunchbowl, you then take it back to the lab where you give it life, it grows up and eats you and all conseravtives everywhere live happily ever after.

    Turdlicker leftists have no brains only wrinkled turds. Where’s the evidence for that? Look no further than washington D.C. How many asshole socialists are running this country? Who cares, we’re going to throw the treason piss ants out in November anyway. May they lick the turds from out boots as we marvel at our victory over evil.

  15. #15 DCBob
    May 21, 2010

    It’s funny how ‘playing God’ is a terrible thing but claiming to speak for God is, after all, the entire point of the Catholic church. How different is ‘playing God’ from claiming God’s authority to tell people exactly how they should live their lives down to eating fish on Friday?

  16. #16 Kemanorel
    May 21, 2010

    …to eating fish on Friday?

    That was a political ploy to get catholic money because there were so many catholic fishermen. It was just a subtle way to increase catholic income.

    …their cautionary note is not inappropriate.

    Yes it is. They have no place butting into subjects they shouldn’t be, particularly on a subject about ethics.

    I’d rather a 10 year old tell the guy, “Hey, I’m gonna be here a while, mind not fucking it up with some super bacteria or some shit?” rather than the catholic church saying some stupid shit which is going to end up in a political backlash about funding the progression of said scientific discovery.

    Fuck the church. They have no place to say anything to science.

  17. #17 Optimus Primate
    May 21, 2010

    I put about as much stock in the Church’s views on artificial life as I do NAMBLA’s official position on stem cell research.

  18. #18 Reynold
    May 22, 2010

    So, while real scientists do actual lab work, those idiots are basically telling them not to do it.

    Typical. And again, while real scientists do lab work, this is the kind of thing that the ID people do: Publish “rebuttals” to their “work” that has never seen the inside of a friggen’ laboratory.

  19. #19 Paul S.
    May 22, 2010

    That was a political ploy to get catholic money because there were so many catholic fishermen. It was just a subtle way to increase catholic income.

    Actually, a lot of the fish eaten in Catholic Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries came from Protestant New England, so if it was a ploy, then it was benefiting Protestants.

    Re: the risks of “playing God”, that’s generally good advice if you take it as meaning that everyone involved should be mindful of the dangers involved and not assume that they will be in complete control of everything.

  20. #20 Ritchie Annand
    May 22, 2010

    To play God properly, Venter needs to put the critters on a dish, tell them not to eat the substrate in the corner, and when they do, fling them out of the plate into the snow or something.

    I dunno; it’s hard to be enough of a jerk to Mycoplasma.

  21. #21 Never Was An Arrow II
    May 22, 2010

    Well observed, Pierce R. Butler!

    But, Pierce, c’mon, you know that most pagans, atheists, and science nerds, are far too impulsive to consider there are others in the world besides them. Nice try though! Full marks for the attempt.

    We know full well what amoral scientists are quite capable of: http://www.remember.org/educate/medexp.html

    As we pass through this world, on our journey to the next, it is intoxicating to realize that the Church’s judgment, specifically the Catholic Church, is the only viewpoint that will matter. Has mattered.

  22. #22 Sili
    May 22, 2010

    I put about as much stock in the Church’s views on artificial life as I do NAMBLA’s official position on stem cell research.

    Iono. NAMBLA at least show so much restraint that they don’t actually rape little boys. They ‘only’ want to. So in that respect they’re already miles ahead of the RCC on ethics.

  23. #23 Jesse
    May 22, 2010

    As bad as the Catholic church is, Fundamentalists piss me off far more. Fundamentalists are far less likely to have a rational side than Catholics.

    But yeah, it does annoy me when some idiot bishop overseas wants the US to ban a movie or dictate science. I also believe that if the Catholic church were to allow priests to marry and lighten up on homosexuality, you’d see a downward change in the frequency of little boy buggering.

  24. #24 Pierce R. Butler
    May 22, 2010

    Never Was An Arrow II @ # 19 – pls re-read my closing ‘graf in # 10 about the utter uselessness of Catholic doctrine in real-world situations.

    Going Godwin on “amoral scientists” is not exactly a positive contribution to serious dialog, either.

  25. #25 Azkyroth
    May 22, 2010

    Someone needs to figure out a way to prevent child rape, by, say, creating bacteria that benignly lives in little children’s colon, dies out automatically when the kids reach 16 or so (so as not to harm their partners later in life), and makes people’s dicks fall off if they go buggering them.

    There are a lot of problems with this scenario of course (not the least of which being they could wear rubbers), but if any scientific path is going to manage it, it’s Venter’s research.

    I’d be more concerned about the unintended side effects, for instance those connected to kids under 16 buggering each other…

  26. #26 Azkyroth
    May 22, 2010

    Actually, a lot of the fish eaten in Catholic Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries came from Protestant New England,

    Given that refrigeration wasn’t developed until the late 19th/early 20th century and humans have a finite salt tolerance, I’m having a hard time envisioning this.

  27. #27 dvrvm
    May 22, 2010

    I love the comments here <3

    They’re not “playing god” because:
    1) they really exist
    2) they are doing something

    The Catholic Church thinks condoms are a greater evil than HIV. I’ll take pointers on bioethics from them right after I’m done on taking pointers on civics from Pol Pot.

    #

  28. #28 windy
    May 23, 2010

    Given that refrigeration wasn’t developed until the late 19th/early 20th century and humans have a finite salt tolerance, I’m having a hard time envisioning this.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockfish
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dried_and_salted_codfish

  29. #29 qetzal
    May 23, 2010

    The frustrating thing is, in general terms they’re right.

    No, they’re really not. Venter et al. are not “pretending to be God,” they’re not “parroting his power of creation”, and it’s not “an enormous risk that can plunge men into a barbarity.” That’s a big load of baloney.

    Sure, creating artificial life will undoubtedly have some potential for harm. But guess what: not creating artifical life will also have some potential for harm.

    No major new technology has ever emerged without an accompanying disaster. Synthetic life (whatever it ends up being called) is guaranteed to produce its own version of heroin or thalidomide, asbestos or DDT, timecube or botnets, 9/11 or Hiroshima. We can’t say what form it will take, but sooner or later something hellacious will come from this.

    More baloney. This is only true in the trivial sense that hellacious disasters are an unavoidable consequence of existence.

  30. #30 Gabriel Hanna
    May 23, 2010

    I think that for the most part the Church is on the right side of science. I know of no other religion that sponsors an academy of sciences (of which Steven Hawking is currently a member, most of the last century’s Nobel Prize winners have been members as well).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontifical_Academy_of_Sciences

    The Church seem a lot more happy about cosmological research than they do about biological research, but every one of you has a prejudice against something. There is a difference between being anti-science, and being anti-doing-something-with-the-results-of-science. I seem to remember a lot of demonstrations in Berkely against the research at LBNL, not that any of the hippies had the faintest notion of what it waas about.

    Much of the comments I’ve read to this post are just feces-flinging. It seems everyone just knows that Catholics hate science and love child rape.

  31. #31 Tyler DiPietro
    May 23, 2010

    “I think that for the most part the Church is on the right side of science.”

    They aren’t, aside from their tepid endorsement of evolution. They constantly obfuscate the scientific reality behind the efficacy of contraception, for instance. And even the statement that evolution was “compatible with faith” emphatically stated that a materialist view of the mind was incompatible with such.

    “I know of no other religion that sponsors an academy of sciences…”

    So they sponsor scientific research regardless of whether the results are favorable or unfavorable to the church doctrine? You should be smart enough to know that that’s bullshit.

    “Much of the comments I’ve read to this post are just feces-flinging. It seems everyone just knows that Catholics hate science and love child rape.”

    There’s a difference between Catholics in general and the Catholic clergy, your desire to blur the distinction and paint us as bigots notwithstanding.

    BTW, there is no God and the Pope is just some guy with a funny hat.

  32. #32 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    @Tyler diPietro

    So they sponsor scientific research regardless of whether the results are favorable or unfavorable to the church doctrine? You should be smart enough to know that that’s bullshit.

    Clearly you haven’t bothered to read anything that PAS has put out. Clearly you haven’t looked at the list of members (some of them aren’t even Catholic–Vera Rubin is Jewish and Paul Berg does not consider himself religious, and you should have heard of Stephen Hawking by now).

    I hold in my hands a copy of Large-Scale Motions in the the Universe: A Vatican Study Week. Other than the Preface and Introduction, there’s nothing in it whatever about God. It’s a run-of-the-mill astrophysics conference.

    You never bothered to look.

    your desire to blur the distinction and paint us as bigots notwithstanding.

    You painted yourself as a bigot when you shot off an ignorant and uninformed comment based on your cartoon version of how the Vatican behaves.

    BTW, there is no God and the Pope is just some guy with a funny hat.

    Think I don’t know that? What’s the point of saying that to me, except you assumed I must be religious or Catholic just because I brought up the PAS, which you never heard of, know nothing about, yet saw fit to contemn anyway?

  33. #33 Tyler DiPietro
    May 24, 2010

    “You never bothered to look.”

    You never bothered to answer my question: Do they sponsor and/or publish research regardless of whether it’s favorable to church doctrine? Everyone supports science when it confirms their preexisting beliefs.

    “You painted yourself as a bigot when you shot off an ignorant and uninformed comment based on your cartoon version of how the Vatican behaves.”

    Which you probably can’t refute, given that you didn’t even bother to address either of the facts I referred to.

    “Think I don’t know that?”

    You might. But then again, you appear to feel some degree of solidarity with the institution. Thus, it is worth reminding people that the institution is worthless and based on false beliefs.

  34. #35 Cain
    May 24, 2010

    @32 Tyler
    Yeah…I’m not clicking on that. Whatever it is, I don’t want the thumbnails on my hard drive or even associated with my ip address.

  35. #36 Prometheus
    May 24, 2010

    RE: Fish exchange 24 26 etc.

    Herring was and is the most abundant food fish in the sea with very high oil content making it easily preserved by smoking or light salting.

    They love the Atlantic passage between New England and Northern Europe and Cod being their principle predator, the colonies did a land office business in both. As for salinity, almost all salted herring is soaked in fresh water and spices thus every country and ethnicity in Europe has their own version of “pickled herring”.

    RE: Catholic Science

    A lot of brilliant scientists (and lawyers for that matter) have been Catholic clergy. It is not safe to assume that this is what the church wants so much as what sort of personality it attracts.

    The church has sustained a scholastic tradition (mostly through the Jesuits) that was originally intended to control not merely the teaching of doctrine but teaching anything. When you have enormously curious people (about their world cosmology etc.) without a lot of resources to have their questions answered the church seems to be an open door.

    You only confront the proposition of another room full of doors, all but one of which are locked, when you make that initial commitment. By then you have given up so much it is hard to go back.

    Many of the Clergy/Scientists find their role to be:

    1. Understanding the science and working with it in direct contravention to the will of the church.

    2. Crawfishing for the church when in order to stay viable and pertinent it accepts the science.

    3. Producing ludicrous statements to the effect that some father of the church “invented” the science before the non-catholic scientist.

    The church unfurled gigantic banners with Darwin’s picture on them in St. Peters square with the accompanying press release congratulating St. Thomas Aquinas for having advanced the theory first.

    Ratzo runs around flogging poor Pierre Teilhard de Chardin as a catholic uber-genius and people are making noises about canonizing him as a scientist saint.

    The sad part of that is they forgot to lift the ban on Teilhard de Chardin’s fucking books.

    Don’t be fooled by the brilliant people working for the church. They are no different than Stalin’s cages full of scientists who were expected to perform on cue and simultaneously demean and plagiarize the work of non-Soviets.

    The Roman Catholic Church was and remains the antithesis of the Western Intellectual Tradition.

  36. #37 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    @Tyler:

    You never bothered to answer my question: Do they sponsor and/or publish research regardless of whether it’s favorable to church doctrine?

    That you ask the question at all shows your ignorance of what an academy of science is. I don’t know that the Church sponsors any research at all; the PAS membership is generally made up of very eminent scientists. They have conferences where scientific papers are presented, and they advise the Church on the current scientific understanding. The scientific research is presented and published in exactly the same way it would be presented and published at any scientific conference. I’ve read some of the cosmology papers–YOU HAVEN’T. They never talk about God kicking off the Big Bang, or any thing like that. It’s all galatic rotation this and dark matter that.

    They also have conferences about evolution. Here’s a list of some of the members of PAS who are biologists:

    Werner Arber
    David Baltimore
    Paul Berg
    Gunter Blobel
    Luigi Cavalli-Sforza
    Suzanne Cory

    Maybe you are too ignorant to know these names. I bet Abbie knows them. All you had to do was CLICK ON THE LINK, but you chose to remain in cartoon-land. The names I know are physics and astronomy–Cohen-Tannoudji (wrote my grad quantum text), Stephen Hawking, Tsung-Dao Lee, Vera Rubin, Edward Witten.

    You’re not arguing with me. I already know you know nothing whatever about what you’re talking about. Other people are reading what you say and what I say, and some of them will click on the link, and discover that you’re a blowhard.

    You might. But then again, you appear to feel some degree of solidarity with the institution.

    Right. And anyone who speaks up for the civil rights of an accused terrorist must feel some degree of solidarity with them, right?

    I thought we were rational and informed people here, but some of us can’t rise above feces flinging. I disagreed with you, so I must not be on your SIDE, and so you throw shit at me.

    BTW, here is a bunch of artistic representations of what Catholic priests do.

    I expect you think Muslims are all suicide bombers too.

    @Prometheus:

    Don’t be fooled by the brilliant people working for the church. They are no different than Stalin’s cages full of scientists who were expected to perform on cue and simultaneously demean and plagiarize the work of non-Soviets.

    Because Stephen Hawking does that ALL THE TIME. Seriously, please cite one member of PAS who has done that. They don’t “work for” the Church. They are members of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in addition to whatever else it is they do. I don’t know if the Vatican pays them anything, or pays for the conferences, or what. Neither do you, but it didn’t stop you from making a completely baseless accusation.


    The Roman Catholic Church was and remains the antithesis of the Western Intellectual Tradition.

    I think they show a level of engagement with science not demonstrated by any other faith. Now fling away.

    Every time I start to think religious people have a monopoly on irrationality, I get a new lesson that they don’t.

  37. #38 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    @Tyler:

    You never bothered to answer my question: Do they sponsor and/or publish research regardless of whether it’s favorable to church doctrine?

    That you ask the question at all shows your ignorance of what an academy of science is. I don’t know that the Church sponsors any research at all; the PAS membership is generally made up of very eminent scientists. They have conferences where scientific papers are presented, and they advise the Church on the current scientific understanding. The scientific research is presented and published in exactly the same way it would be presented and published at any scientific conference. I’ve read some of the cosmology papers–YOU HAVEN’T. They never talk about God kicking off the Big Bang, or any thing like that. It’s all galatic rotation this and dark matter that.

    They also have conferences about evolution. Here’s a list of some of the members of PAS who are biologists:

    Werner Arber
    David Baltimore
    Paul Berg
    Gunter Blobel
    Luigi Cavalli-Sforza
    Suzanne Cory

    Maybe you are too ignorant to know these names. I bet our hostess knows them. All you had to do was CLICK ON THE LINK, but you chose to remain in cartoon-land. The names I know are physics and astronomy–Cohen-Tannoudji (wrote my grad quantum text), Stephen Hawking, Tsung-Dao Lee, Vera Rubin, Edward Witten.

    You’re not arguing with me. I already know you know nothing whatever about what you’re talking about. Other people are reading what you say and what I say, and some of them will click on the link, and discover that you’re a blowhard.

    You might. But then again, you appear to feel some degree of solidarity with the institution.

    Right. And anyone who speaks up for the civil rights of an accused terrorist must feel some degree of solidarity with them, right?

    I thought we were rational and informed people here, but some of us can’t rise above feces flinging. I disagreed with you, so I must not be on your SIDE, and so you throw feces at me.

    BTW, here is a bunch of artistic representations of what Catholic priests do.

    I expect you think Muslims are all suicide bombers too.

    @Prometheus:

    Don’t be fooled by the brilliant people working for the church. They are no different than Stalin’s cages full of scientists who were expected to perform on cue and simultaneously demean and plagiarize the work of non-Soviets.

    Because Stephen Hawking does that ALL THE TIME. Seriously, please cite one member of PAS who has done that. They don’t “work for” the Church. They are members of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in addition to whatever else it is they do. I don’t know if the Vatican pays them anything, or pays for the conferences, or what. Neither do you, but it didn’t stop you from making a completely baseless accusation.


    The Roman Catholic Church was and remains the antithesis of the Western Intellectual Tradition.

    I think they show a level of engagement with science not demonstrated by any other faith. Now fling away.

    Every time I start to think religious people have a monopoly on irrationality, I get a new lesson that they don’t.

  38. #39 Prometheus
    May 24, 2010

    With all due respect Gabriel Hanna,I am familiar with Villa Pia and what its function is versus its mission statement.

    The PAS like most of the Pontifical Academies is an “outreach”. It functions as a convention host and award mill for academics in order that the church may have plausible deniability for the accusation of being antithetic.

    At this juncture you have asked several times if Tyler DiPietro et al have any idea how the Vatican works I am starting to wonder if you do.

    The PAS for instance has the audacity to claim descent directly from the patronage(nobili and urbi) of Galileo.

    Ummmmmmm it was formed over 200 years after he died under house arrest and has blinked in and out of existence a couple of times since then.

    To be honest the present incarnation of PAS is not as old as I am.

    The reason that its members are so prominent is because they are chosen for public relations and every plenary assembly begins with a direct warning from the pope couched in the form of a greeting.

    The publications of the Vatican whether they purport to be science, social science, law etc. are subject to approval by the censors librorum which you probably know do not review accuracy but only dogmatic conformance.

    The clergy with science qualifications are at first thrilled to attend the various study groups circulating through Villa Pia until they realize that they are not really there as scientists but as sort of doctrinal hall monitors.

    I’m not just flinging crap. I know a lot of clergy and more than one who has received a terrifying remonstration from The Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faithful for treating science as anything more than hypothetical conjecture pending dogmatic approval.

  39. #40 Tyler DiPietro
    May 24, 2010

    So the Catholic Church sponsors some science club for PR purposes and that’s supposed to impress me. Right.

    “Right. And anyone who speaks up for the civil rights of an accused terrorist must feel some degree of solidarity with them, right?”

    Fuck you, we’re not talking about civil rights, which can be defended on principle. You’re defending a specific institution here, at least have the guts to admit it.

    “I expect you think Muslims are all suicide bombers too.”

    Some people can’t take a joke, lol.

  40. #41 Prometheus
    May 24, 2010

    P.S.

    “I don’t know if the Vatican pays them anything, or pays for the conferences, or what. Neither do you, but it didn’t stop you from making a completely baseless accusation.”

    Uh, before your ass hangs out further…. I have that T-shirt.

    Dependent on their prominence(celebrity), they may or may not receive an honorarium. The Pontifical Academies provide accommodation for those invited to plenary assemblies through arrangements with their National Colleges at Rome if non-clergy, if clergy through the office of their representative bishop.

    The Plenary Assemblies are held within the holy see at a former papal palace connected to the Vatican Gardens (modern sculpture section).

  41. #42 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    @Prometheus:

    The PAS like most of the Pontifical Academies is an “outreach”.

    Hence my statement, “I think they show a level of engagement with science not demonstrated by any other faith.” Outreach and dialogue with real scientists is a hell of a lot better than what the Discovery Institute does.

    The PAS for instance has the audacity to claim descent directly from the patronage(nobili and urbi) of Galileo.

    Ummmmmmm it was formed over 200 years after he died under house arrest and has blinked in and out of existence a couple of times since then.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accademia_dei_Lincei

    Galileo was inducted to the exclusive academy on December 25, 1611, and became its intellectual center. Galileo clearly felt honoured by his association with the academy for he adopted Galileo Galilei Linceo as his signature. The academy published his works and supported him throughout his disputes with the Roman Catholic Church. Among the academy’s early publications in the fields of astronomy, physics and botany were the study of sunspots and the famous Saggiatore of Galileo, and the Tesoro Messicano (Mexican Treasury) describing the flora, fauna and drugs of the New World, which took decades of labor, down to 1651. With this publication, the first, most famous phase of the Lincei was concluded.

    back to Prometheus:

    The publications of the Vatican whether they purport to be science, social science, law etc. are subject to approval by the censors librorum which you probably know do not review accuracy but only dogmatic conformance.

    You can tell me, I’m sure, which cosmology papers were rejected for not conforming to dogma.

    I’m not just flinging crap. I know a lot of clergy and more than one who has received a terrifying remonstration from The Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faithful for treating science as anything more than hypothetical conjecture pending dogmatic approval.

    You make accusations, but you don’t give me evidence. What am I supposed to do? You said that scientists who “work for” the Vatican are smear-artists and plagiarists, but you don’t give any examples.

  42. #43 Tyler DiPietro
    May 24, 2010

    OMG THE CATHOLIC CHURCH IS SO AWESOME THEY SPONSOR A SCIENCE CLUB AND DON’T COVER UP CHILD RAPE AT ALL OMG I LOVE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH THANKS FOR ENLIGHTENING ME GABRIEL.

  43. #44 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    All I’m trying to say is that the relationship between the Catholic Church and science is not as simple as some people are ideologically invested in its being. All I said was that the Church is better about science than any other religion of which I am aware.

    And you guys are flinging feces at me for it. Nice.

    If you want an echo chamber, keep it up.

  44. #45 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    @Prometheus:

    I think you’re right about Galileo and the Academy of Lynxes, and I’m wrong. The connection between the New Lynxes of 1847 and Galileo’s seems pretty tenuous; if there’s any other besides the name I’m not finding it.

    I still think the stuff in #42 is still valid, and you don’t, so we can leave it there, sir. I don’t think PAS is a PR scam, and I do think the Church is sincerely trying to find a way to accommodate science, even though they don’t always succeed, and that they are doing better than other faiths in that regard. I thank you for being civil, and not resorting to LOL-HURR-OMG-tl;dr.

  45. #46 Gabriel Hanna
    May 24, 2010

    @Prometheus, and everyone else here:

    Join me in a moment of silence for Martin Gardner, would you?

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/23/AR2010052304271.html

  46. #47 Prometheus
    May 25, 2010

    I saw that.

    Actually Martin would have preferred a moment of conversation (or laughter).

    Hey ERV if Penn and Teller come to the service can they crash at your place?

    How bizarre is it that this is the second time somebody I know has died ten blocks from by office and I found out about it in the NYT obits.

    Makes me nervous.

    Time to call Clyde Snow and buy him a scotch. The worlds funniest anthropologist turned 82 in January

  47. #48 cynical1
    May 25, 2010

    @ Gabriel: “I think they show a level of engagement with science not demonstrated by any other faith.”

    I think you’re forgetting about Scientology. They have Science right in their name!

    Sorry, couldn’t resist……………

  48. #49 Prometheus
    May 25, 2010

    By the way Gabriel Hanna, not so fast on the agree to disagree button.

    You accused me of talking out of my blow hole on a couple of very specific points and I think you do so because my experience with the church is from an historical administrative perspective. A lot of people have the impression you have but its because that is precisely the line of yard goods they are selling. Be careful.

    1. I couldn’t point to any publications that were rejected by censor librorum……think about that for a minute…..Big Hint: They were not published if they were rejected..

    2. I couldn’t identify any of the captive intellectuals of the Roman Catholic Church.

    Well. Ahem. *cracks knuckles*

    Throw a dart at the pages of Templeton Foundation Press.

    You’ve got about a 50/50 chance of hitting a Jesuit.

    I’ll save you some time and stick with your area….

    Just look at this hooey,

    Robert J. Russell, “Special Providence and Genetic Mutation: A New Defense of Theistic Evolution,” in Evolutionary and Molecular Biology: Scientific Perspectives on Divine Action”

    “If it can be shown scientifically that quantum mechanics plays a role in genetic mutations, then by extension it can be claimed theologically that God’s action in genetic mutations is a form of objectively special, non-interventionist divine action. Moreover, since genetics plays a key role in biological evolution, we can argue by inference that God’s action plays a key role in biological evolution. . . .”

    Vatican City: Vatican Observatory Publications, 1998

    That is one of the Vatican’s Science Publications, Specola Vaticana is arguably the oldest observatory in Europe.

    Its present director Fr. José Gabriel Funes, S.J. has three degrees, a doctorate and is doomed to spend the rest of his career conjecturing about original sin and little green men to peals of laughter from his scientific peers.

    He was a quick replacement when the pope shipped the former director Fr. George Coyne SJ an Astrophysicist with dazzling scientific qualifications and an amazing background (I want an asteroid named after me) out to the middle of the Arizona desert for publishing this :

    Coyne, G (2005). “The Church’s Most Recent Attempt to Dispel the Galileo Myth”. in McMullin E. The Church And Galileo (Studies in Science and the Humanities from the Reilly Center for Science Technology and Values). University of Notre Dame Press. pp. 340–359.

    Poor Padre George has been in the cone of silence ever since. He has denied the church forced his retirement but it isn’t like priests have IRAs and when the guy who retired you was a former Grand Inquisitor…..well you just thank the stars that Torquemada let you keep the collar and move someplace warm …..but not toooo warm nudge nudge.

    I’m saying before you defend the churches apparent policies regarding science you need to take a closer look at how those policies function in application and to what end.

    The Church gives out awesome treats, but the smart dog looks at the hand not holding the treat. He is looking for a whip, fist, leash or muzzle. Unlike other religions the RCC is still a governing body and Splendide Mendax applies in its diplomatic efforts.

  49. #50 Prometheus
    May 25, 2010

    P.S. If I made anybody jumpy about Clyde Snow he’s fine and still hilarious. Turns out I’ll probably be hanging out with him at a movers and shakers convention at OKC Skirvin next week.

    Maddy Pickens is speaking, Want me to get Clyde loaded and see if he’ll pants her?

  50. #51 Gabriel Hanna
    May 25, 2010

    They were not published if they were rejected..

    Absence of evidence is evidence? I’ve had a paper rejected from a journal, and I can provide evidence that the paper exists and was rejected. I can name the jouranl and show the email from the reviewers. Show me something that one of the PAS membership submitted which was rejected on doctrinal grounds.

    Throw a dart at the pages of Templeton Foundation Press.

    You’ve got about a 50/50 chance of hitting a Jesuit.

    Since I was talking about the Pontifical Academy of Science, and not the Templeton Foundation, this is not relevant. The Templeton Foundation is explicitly religious.

    OF COURSE the Church has apologists and people who promote religion over science. I’m not saying the Church NEVER subordinates religion to science, of course that’s absurd. I’m saying that PAS is not that. PAS is made up of mainstream scientists who don’t even have to be Catholic.

    PAS is how the Church connects with mainstream science.

    Again, “a level of engagement not shown by any other faith”.

    Robert J. Rusell’s paper on theistic evolution is not science and is not claimed to be. It says right in the title what it is. What’s your point? Religious people believe in God and try to reconcile it with science if they can? Because I already knew that.

    Of course the Church is going to publish religious works. They also publish astrophysics conference proceedings that are not even implicitly religious. There’s no point in telling me that they don’t, I have a copy in my office.

    He has denied the church forced his retirement but it isn’t like priests have IRAs and when the guy who retired you was a former Grand Inquisitor…..well you just thank the stars that Torquemada let you keep the collar and move someplace warm …..but not toooo warm nudge nudge.

    Paranoid, silly, and hundreds of years out of date. Inquisition has really lost its edge if depriving you of a pension is all you get nowadays.

    I can read The Awful Disclosures of Maria Monk elsewhere.

    The Church gives out awesome treats, but the smart dog looks at the hand not holding the treat. He is looking for a whip, fist, leash or muzzle.

    This is a little dramatic; the Church has no power over anyone who doesn’t let them.

    I’m saying before you defend the churches apparent policies regarding science you need to take a closer look at how those policies function in application and to what end.

    Yeah, you’ve really got to go through the looking glass, take the red pill… Let’s talk about Freemasonry next.

  51. #52 Prometheus
    May 25, 2010

    Once again you don’t understand ANYTHING about Vatican administration.

    The present pope was the Prefect of the prosecutorial arm of the church(CDF of the Curia) which is why people are up in arms over the molestation cover ups. He condoned relocating those he was sworn to punish.

    At least you have proven you are not Catholic.

    For about 400 years the CDF was known as the Supreme Sacred Congregation of the Roman and Universal Inquisition.

    It’s why when a pope issues a scary edict it is “Urbi et Orbi” City and World = Roman and Universal to wit: Threat of excommunication.

    The publication you keep flapping about is directly overseen by a former member of the Hitler Youth and a Grand Inquisitor who defrocked priests that married or pointed out that, with regard to condoms, “venial sin is better than Irish twins” while protecting child rapists from secular prosecution.

    That’s pretty creepy and I still think you are being hustled. Your call, but try reading some of the papal introductions to plenary assemblies.

    I’m not a conspiracy theorist, I just like five card and stud poker. When 60 year old virgins drink and play cards, they gossip about the head office and bitch about their jobs just like everybody else.

  52. #53 Gabriel Hanna
    May 26, 2010

    I still think you are being hustled. Your call, but try reading some of the papal introductions to plenary assemblies.

    Grand Inquisitor Ratzinger is no doubt twirling his mustache right now at the thought of conning more rubes like me.

    See why I wanted to leave the subject earlier?

    Here it is: when the Church tries to engage with science, you insist that it’s really a cover for its efforts to undermine science, and try to scare me with the Spanish Inquisition.

    It’s the hallmark of the conspiracy theorist, and telling me more rumors just makes me less likely to listen to you.

    So let’s leave it there. I don’t see any other church making the effort that the Catholic Church does; you’re convinced that it’s all a scam. But I have a different set of bees in my bonnet from yours and I’m not impressed by your bugaboo.

  53. #54 Prometheus
    May 26, 2010

    The Popes former job is not a rumor.

    The Chancellor/Bishop (Not Scientist, an Aquinan Theosophic Cosmologist) of the PAS choosing not to publish 1/3 of the papers presented at a medical plenary assembly of the PAS the year after Ratzinger was elected is not a rumor.

    The mass Retirement of science qualified Jesuits in 2005-2006 who had published outside of PAS, VCP, CTNS, Acta, Scripta Varia, Documenta and Comentarii is not a rumor.

    I am not whispering secrets in your wax clogged ear, these are patent fact merely repeated to you by a Vatican certified inscriptoral and liturgical translator, published medievalist, and former consultant to the Goddamn Holy See.

    They are a matter of Global public record. These issues have been discussed everywhere from L’Osservatore to the New York Times.

    Your entire opinion however is based on some complimentary expurgated collection of PAS presentation papers and Wikipedia.

    Since the entirety of your observations are based on laziness I’m done, with a parting gift.

    Your PAS publication is produced under the auspices of what is now cheerfully called Typografia Vaticana which is operated by an old congregation in the Vatican. Before @ 1911 all of those publications bore the prominent stamped name of the congregation in papal red.

    It’s where the popular meaning of the word Propaganda came from.

    Have fun with your catholic approved heliocentrism.

The site is currently under maintenance and will be back shortly. New comments have been disabled during this time, please check back soon.