It hasn’t been a good week for my blood pressure. Reading stupid things written by people who know nothing is fine. Reading stupid things written or said by people in a position of authority who really should know better is just upsetting.
First up, NASA chief executive Mike Griffin.
First of all, I don’t think it’s within the power of human beings to assure that the climate does not change, as millions of years of history have shown. And second of all, I guess I would ask which human beings — where and when — are to be accorded the privilege of deciding that this particular climate that we have right here today, right now is the best climate for all other human beings. I think that’s a rather arrogant position for people to take.
I’m not sure where to begin with this, so I’ll let the Bad Astronomer say it for me, and move on to something more local.
Step forward the Rev Jan Ainsworth, the Church of England’s new head of education, who according to the Guardian said about intellegent design
You would get howls of protest from the scientific community, which would say there is absolutely no place for it in the curriculum. But you could do it in history of science,” she added, pointing out that religious education lessons in CofE schools include discussions of different beliefs.
This is just utterly wrong, so consider this my howl of protest. Would it be possible to include discussions of the alternatives to evolution that were considered in the late 19th and early 20th centuries? Yes, and such a discussion might even be a useful way of demonstrating the evidence in support of evolution. Is intellegent design such an alternative? No. It was invented 20 years ago when the US supreme court ruled that teaching ‘creation science’ breached the ban on mixing state and religion. See this and much else on the Panda’s Thumb for more details.
I’m writing to the Guardian right now.