Quote# 38580

(from his interview on Craig Ferguson's show)

STEIN: We want to say that Darwinism doesn't explain the laws of gravity, Darwinism doesn't explain the laws of thermodynamics, Darwinism doesn't explain why some joints are better than some of the other joints [...] We don't want people to be fired if they say that the planets stay in their orbits maybe by something other than Darwinism. And we don't think Darwin, we don't think Darwin explained how the planets stay in their orbits.

FERGUSON: To be fair, I don't think Darwin claimed to know that.

STEIN: That's exactly right! [...] He didn't claim it explained too much, but his followers claim it explains everything, including astronomy, and we say that's very hard to prove.

Ben Stein, YouTube 46 Comments [4/30/2008 9:45:27 PM]
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Return of Rob

His followers say that, huh?


6/7/2008 5:45:54 PM


Ben Stein = moron

6/8/2008 3:28:19 AM


For fucks sake...

7/29/2008 8:45:16 PM


He's not an intellectual, he just plays one on tv

7/30/2008 1:58:16 AM


And he's been fuckin' that up a lot lately

7/30/2008 1:58:55 AM


Darwin's followers? You are a moron Ben Stein. Darwinism isn't a thing! Atheists don't worship Darwin you goober, that would be a religion. Seriously, who is claiming that evolution has anything to do with astronomy? Are you lying perhaps?

You know nothing about science, that much is clear. You don't know the difference between a theory and a law, you don't comprehend that in science you don't 'prove' something and you obviously don't understand evolution.

Just, go to college or something. A real one. Take philosophy of science and bio 101.

7/30/2008 5:03:06 AM


"He didn't claim it explained too much, but his followers claim it explains everything, including astronomy [...]"

I didn't know Darwin's followers were the creationists and Ben Stein himself. Because, you see, they're the only ones making such a claim.

7/30/2008 5:29:44 AM


And Genesis doesn't explain the laws of thermodynamics or the theory of gravity either. You were saying?

7/30/2008 9:05:28 PM


Of course Darwin didn't explain the laws of gravity. They've got nothing to do with biology.

7/30/2008 10:29:25 PM


They really do think that 'Darwinism' is some kind of all encompassing religion, don't they?

7/31/2008 2:45:58 AM


So what you are saying is that you would call an electrician to fix your plumbing and an auto-mechanic to fit your carpets.
This is a conversation between 2 nodding dogs masquerading as intellectuals.

7/31/2008 4:42:36 AM


Whatever joint you have been smoking can't have been one of the better ones...

7/31/2008 12:27:16 PM


"his followers claim it explains everything, including astronomy"

See, this is what we call a lie.

7/31/2008 12:43:22 PM


Christopher Lee called... he wants his massive straw man back.

11/22/2008 3:29:44 AM

a mind far far away

I used to think Ben Stein was funny. Now I think his humor is based on the fact that he's a grade a dumb ass. Evolution doesn't work that way, you moron. Evolution is biology. It's not supposed to explain astronomy or physics. That's what astronomy and physics are for. Grow a brain, stick to comedy, and leave the science to the scientists.

11/22/2008 5:14:11 AM

Auntie Christ

This is the retard who made "Expelled:No Intelligence Allowed"? He is this stupid and he had the gall to make a film about Evolution? Incredible.

I think I know where he got this from. Dawkins and I expect perhaps others have speculated that the reason that we have a universe that has the right physical properties to create solar systems with life on is that possibly there might be some kind of evolutionary process involved among multiverses. He acknowledges it to be pure speculation and is certainly not wedded to the idea from what I read, and of course, the vast majority of evolutionary ideas are entirely in the realm of biolgy.

11/25/2008 8:23:09 PM


Friends, I got one massive idea. Let's really make a "mock religion" called Darwinism. People that believe in Darwinia, the video game. And one called evolutionism. All pray to great Evol Uti, the creator of the atols!

11/25/2008 8:36:36 PM

Ken R.

I don't think that anybody is actually arguing that Darwinism has anything to do with the subjects you're speaking of.

11/25/2008 8:38:10 PM

Auntie Christ

That wouldnt be Ken Ragge, would it? It's a small web...

I think it's in 'The God Delusion' that Dawkins speculates that there just might be an evolutionary explanation for the 'life-friendly' universe (my expression). I know I've read it in one of his books, and that's the most likely.

11/25/2008 8:43:19 PM

Ken R.


No, but I approve of his work.

11/25/2008 8:49:04 PM


"his followers"...
This one always gets me. Darwin's theories have been severely revisitated and corrected the more data we gathered. He is not some sort of prophet.
This is the same people who think Darwin formulated the big bang theory ( Yes, I heard people saying this).

11/25/2008 8:57:43 PM

Auntie Christ


Hmmmm.... Ken Ragge isn't AFAIK all that well known - the chances of the first Ken R. I come across having heard of him is pretty small... and those who have heard of him are more often haters of him than supporters. I suspect you are the fundie anti-psychiatry nutcase himself. Yeah or nay, some of the intellectual property thief's comments on psychiatry wouldnt look out of place here on FSTDT. I might sub back to 12-step-free and start submitting a few.

11/25/2008 9:18:06 PM

Auntie Christ


Yep, Mendelian principles werent even known when Darwin wrote OoS, let alone where and how genetic information was stored and passed on. As a result, Darwin endorsed Lamarckianism at one stage. Modern Evolutionary Theory is neo-Darwinian, and is always up for modification or even complete rejection in the face of contradicting evidence. Punctuated Equilibrium was proposed despite being a challenge to Darwin's idea of continuous gradualism - I understand it's no longer thought likely but the point is that Darwin' original conceptions are not holy Writ.

Having said that,I actually think *some* scientists do in fact almost have a "religious" type of attitude toward Darwin and/or Evolution that impair their judgement, and imho, make hypotheses that are implausible. This phenomonon affects all science, including astronomy/cosmology. apparently a lot of them would really like the amount of matter in the universe to be exactly the right amount so that the universe expands to a limit, being neither insufficient to prevent continuous expansion or sufficient to produce a big crunch. What the hell does it matter if its too little or too much? It would be an interesting coincidence, and perhaps might suggest that there is some physical reason as to why it is - but I dont really think it more aesthetically pleasing (myself I'd prefer a crunch) and even if were, imo it should be so insignificant as to not be worth a mention. The danger of hoping for an "elegant" universe is there will be unconscious and even conscious bias in examining it to try and make it so. One of sciences greatest minds insisted "The Great One does not play dice" - atheist he may have been, but that quasi-religious thinking made him turn his back on the truth for the rest of his life. The truth is "He" does play dice, and there is no earthly (or heavenly) reason why he shouldn't - except for misguided religious aestheticism.

11/25/2008 9:45:21 PM

Ken R.


My mistake. I did a quick google of him, saw that he was against Twelve Step programs (which I am, because they don't often work and require that one believe in a "higher power"), and didn't investigate further. I'll admit my mistake and wear this egg on my face for a while.

11/25/2008 9:49:44 PM

Auntie Christ


Aha. Given my tendency to paranoia, I would almost certainly be mistaken if I did not believe your explanation. Despite the fact that Ragge is an anti-psychiatry nutcase, and he has stolen my intellectual property, I do accept that he has made valuable contributions to 12-step skepticism. However, fundamentalism is not confined to the religious. I have been banned from multiple 12-step skeptical sites (including the one Ragge stole off me) because they are almost all controlled by a handful of individuals who are incapable of understanding the concept of uniting in a common cause while being in disagreement about others - and imho, a forum that bills itself as being about only one issue has no business demanding conformity on others (however closely related) - especially when the forum owner was not the original owner (let alone stole it).

Extremism and intolerance seems to be the norm rather than the exception, even among supposed atheist "freethinkers". In fact, I didn't get banned for my opinions, I got banned for referring to facts and asking open questions in the spirit of scientific and philososphical enquiry.

It is hard to be optimistic about humanity when prejudice and ignorance seem to rule the world.

11/25/2008 10:38:15 PM

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