Joined: Oct. 2006
|“We must stop tolerating the rejection and distortion of science.” –Al Gore|
Here is a quote from Al Gore’s The Assault on Reason (I took it from the excerpt from his book in the current Time Magazine):
"In order to reclaim our birthright, we Americans must resolve to repair the systemic decay of the public forum. We must create new ways to engage in a genuine and not manipulative conversation about our future. We must stop tolerating the rejection and distortion of science. We must insist on an end to the cynical use of pseudo-studies known to be false for the purpose of intentionally clouding the public’s ability to discern the truth. Americans in both parties should insist on the re-establishment of respect for the rule of reason."
In writing this, Gore no doubt is thinking about protecting his views on global warming and the environment from criticism. But I expect his intolerance of any attacks on reason, as he understands reason, will apply as well against intelligent design. From the Time Magazine excerpt, Gore comes across as an Enlightenment rationalist who, in the best Jacobin style, won’t tolerate any challenge to his conception of reason.
Gore seems to miss the irony in all this. He bemoans Bush’s intolerance of terrorism and Bush’s willingness to use torture to bring terrorists to heel, and yet is ready to be intolerant of anyone who violates his “rule of reason.” Question: Which would you rather live under: intolerance of terrorism or intolerance of the rule of reason?
OH BOY! I get to choose.
A society that declines to formulate policy on the basis of unsupportable pseudosciences, delusional belief systems (e.g. scenarios of Biblical "end times"), and dishonest mathematical bafflegab proffered in the service of same. A society that protects the rule of law and eschews the use of torture.
A society that formulates policy on the basis of woefully distorted, truncated views of human history and prepares for future threats by means of the hysterical denial of plain facts. A society that discards the rule of law and embraces torture to advance an agenda that devalues rationality and is unchecked by empiricism.
I'll get back to you.
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.
"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace
"Hereâ€™s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington