Everybody’s talking about Unscientific America ’round these parts lately. I’ve almost finished reading it and will post a review of my own sometime soon. In the meantime…Isis has a post up where she makes note of ERV’s displeasure with the book. In response, ERV comments thusly on Isis’s blog:
Isis– I havent read Unscientific America. I called foul on some shit Mooney wrote in 2006 he has yet to address, I would have been shocked if he sent me a copy.
My issue with Mooney initially had nothing to do with atheism, nor does my problem with him today have anything to do with atheism.
PZ defended Mooney against all kinds of shit in the past, yet Mooney made the decision to attack PZ in a dead-tree format– No links to posts so readers can analyze what happened themselves, no trackbacks so readers can see PZs response, no comments section for commentors to come in with their perspectives– the portion on PZ might as well have been posted on ‘Evolution News and Views’ or ‘Uncommon Descent’. Luskin and Mooney can go on a speaking tour together, calling me a male sexual pervert and PZ a ‘destructive’ site-hit slut.
Assuming Luskin would even agree to tour with a backstabbing bitch.
If my views on Mooney must be connected to religion, let me be clear that I too dont give a fuck what you believe. While I think its interesting you get mad at SciBlogs for having mail-order-bride ads, yet you financially and socially support an organization that institutionalized child rape, I wouldnt ‘call you out’ on this by name in a print book where you couldnt defend yourself.
But Mooney might in his next book.
Okay. So, I know these young ‘uns today are all about the new hip forms of communication and nobody reads books anymore and what do old farts like I know anyway.
But seriously. If you are going to badmouth someone, loudly, for what they have written in a book, could you not take the trouble to read the damn book? At least glance through a borrowed copy of it? Wherein, it might become clear to you, that links to blog posts are in fact provided in something called the “Notes”. Admittedly, this is an archaic form of collecting and referencing information that cannot be compared to the vastly superior “link” – we all know how ever-stable and permanent those entities are – and it exists on paper, rather than a computer screen, which makes it suspect right from the start, but hey, they were working within the limitations of their medium.
readers can [not] see PZs response…in a print book where you couldnt defend yourself
You know, back in the olden days, before the internet, when I had to walk uphill in the snow to school both ways, books and articles and letters to the editor were the ways in which people communicated information and ideas and responses. ERV may think it’s her god-given right (ha ha) to have everyone in the world who is ever going to say anything that she might possibly be interested in, say it on a blog so that she can instantaneously leave a bit of arch commentary, but she would be wrong on this point. Books allow one to engage in a more sustained, reflective, integrative, and wider-ranging discussion than is ever going to be possible in a blog post. People who feel strongly about what they read in books are always free to blog about them online – and I believe in this case, PZ has already done so, several times. They can thus incite a vigorous back-and-forth discussion of the book. Hell, I’ve been blogging about a book, The Gender Knot, in several posts and will continue to do so, and we’ve had great discussions about it.
But it is always helpful to have actually read the book first, prior to such commentary.
Online discussions of books are great things; what’s going on at Isis’s blog is wonderful, and Janet has spurred some thoughtful discussion, too. But to refuse to read the book, and then go ahead and plop down a sweeping critical analysis predicated on the basis that the mere act of writing books is itself a crime because people discussed in the book can’t leave comments on it is so preposterous one can hardly believe that it has been made by a literate human being.
Though one does have to wonder what it means to be a literate human being in an age where books are sneeringly disparaged as “dead-tree format”.