Expelled: The Hot Topic

Two articles of mine posted on other websites today:

On BreakPoint.com: Handling a Hot Topic (how Christians ought to engage in controversies like the one over Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed).

And on the website for the Center for a Just Society, the first of two articles on the whether there was some connection between Darwinism and Nazism, as the movie claims. This first one looks at Richard Dawkins’s to the matter in his review of the movie Expelled. The second one, to be published around Monday, acknowledges that no legitimate philosophical link can be drawn from Darwinism to Hitler’s ethics. There’s another question, though: was there an historical connection regardless?

I must refer you also to Richard Weikart’s expert article on that topic, published yesterday.

Series Navigation (Darwin to Hitler?):

Why the Darwin-Hitler Link Is So Sensitive >>>

Comments

  1. Steven Carr

    Hitler had some interesting views on the Darwinian concept that man had evolved from other animals.

    From Hitler’s Tischgespraeche for 1942 ‘Woher nehmen wir das Recht zu glauben, der Mensch sei nicht von Uranfaengen das gewesen , was er heute ist? Der Blick in die Natur zeigt uns, dass im Bereich der Pflanzen und Tiere Veraenderungen und Weiterbildungen vorkommen. Aber nirgends zeigt sich innherhalb einer Gattung eine Entwicklung von der Weite des Sprungs, den der Mensch gemacht haben muesste, sollte er sich aus einem affenartigen Zustand zu dem, was er ist, fortgebildet haben.’

    I shall translate Hitler’s words, as recorded by the stenographer.

    ‘From where do we get the right to believe that man was not from the very beginning what he is today.

    A glance in Nature shows us , that changes and developments happen in the realm of plants and animals. But nowhere do we see inside a kind, a development of the size of the leap that Man must have made, if he supposedly has advanced from an ape-like condition to what he is’ (now)

    And in the entry for 27 February 1942 , Hitler says ‘Das, was der Mensch von dem Tier voraushat, der veilleicht wunderbarste Beweis fuer die Ueberlegenheit des Menschen ist, dass er begriffen hat, dass es eine Schoepferkraft geben muss.’

    Hitler was influenced by the ideas of the Reverend Thomas Malthus, as was Darwin, and indeed as was everybody in the 20th century.

  2. Steven Carr

    My response is that Hitler was scathing of Darwin’s ideas that man had evolved from other animals, but had embraced the ideas of the Reverend Thomas Malthus

    http://www.ac.wwu.edu/~stephan/malthus/malthus.0.html

    ‘And when they fell in with any tribes like their own, the contest was a struggle for existence, and they fought with a desperate courage, inspired by the rejection that death was the punishment of defeat and life the prize of victory.

    In these savage contests many tribes must have been utterly exterminated…..The prodigious waste of human life occasioned by this perpetual struggle for room and food….’

    These sorts of sentiments are pretty close to what Hitler expressed in his Zweitem Buch, with its talk of Lebensraum and struggle for existence.

  3. Post
    Author
    Tom Gilson

    Steven, you didn’t respond to Weikart at all here.

    Yes, Hitler probably accepted Malthusian ideas. Malthus was a major contributor to Darwin’s thinking. So if you want to show that Darwin rejected Hitler, you won’t accomplish that by showing that he accepted Malthus.

    But there’s more in Weikart than just that…

  4. Charlie

    Hitler fully embraced the idea that man evolved from other animals. In Table Talk #51 Hitler said:

    But there have been human beings, in the baboon category, for at least three hundred thousand years.

    24th October 1941, evening

    All that is left is to prove that in nature there is no frontier between the organic and the inorganic. When understanding of the universe has become widespread, when the majority of men know that the stars are not sources of light but worlds, perhaps inhabited worlds like ours, then the Christian doctrine will be convicted of absurdity.

    (Table Talk, 14th October, 1941)

  5. Steven Carr

    What reference is ‘Table Talk #51’? What date? What is the original German? Human beings are not baboons, by the way. As a naturalist, Darwin would have known that.

    From Table Talk – 24th October 1941, evening ‘Die zehn Gebote sind Ordnungsgesetze, die absolut lobenswert sind’. ‘The 10 Commandmanents are laws, which are totally praiseworthy’.

    I can’t find your quote for that date. There is nothing that says that.

    Was Hitler really such an idiot that he thought there could be life on stars? Quite possibly…. The guy was not an evil genius. He was an evil moron. Just read Table Talk or Mein Kampf and you will realise just how dumb Hitler was.

    I can find the following for that date, 24/10/2008, ‘Tatsache ist, das wir willenlose Geschoepfe sind, dass es eine schoepferische Kraft aber gibt. Das leugnen zu wollen, ist Dummheit.’

    ‘Fact is , that we are weak-willed creatures, that there must be a creative force. To want to deny that, is stupidity.’

  6. Steven Carr

    I should point out that there is no entry for 14/10/1941 in the most authentic edition of Table Talk, by Henry Picker.

    Which is why I can’t find your quote. It is probably from the version doctored by Genoud and Bormann. Genoud also tried to pass off to David Irving a forged ‘Hitler’s Last Testament’…..

  7. Post
    Author
    Tom Gilson

    Steven, this (2:02 pm) borders on silly. You think that Darwin could have told the difference between a human and a baboon; you might also be able to tell the difference between someone who believes the 10 commandments and one who spouts them for his own purposes.

    I’m not sure what you hope to accomplish here. If you’re trying to show that Hitler was a Christian instead of a Darwinist, let me point out my most recent post. The Darwin Hitler link isn’t necessarily so much about Hitler’s beliefs as it is about the German culture’s beliefs. Hitler may have believed what German Darwinists of that era were saying, or he may have merely co-opted it for his own anti-Semitic purposes. Either way, there was a connection to Darwinism.

    But he did speak in support of Darwinism, as understood by the science of Germany in that day, and he did act consistently with that set of beliefs.

    You say that he never renounced his Catholicism. So what? He wasn’t exactly living the life of a Benedictine monk, either. He was an evil person. Maybe he was also a liar? He wouldn’t be the first person in history to try, with words, to ingratiate himself with religious believers, for purely manipulative purposes.

  8. Post
    Author
    Tom Gilson

    I just googled the first sentence of Charlie’s quote and found this. Maybe it will help you with the source you are trying to find.

    Interestingly enough, it goes on to say,

    Bullock, who reproduces this passage, remarks about it that the vocabulary here is completely Haeckel’s.

  9. Charlie

    I’ve enjoyed many looks at the authenticity of Table Talk, at least as far as a non-German speaker can on the internet.
    There is no evidence that Genoud edited Bormann’s Table Talk. Bormann’s Table Talk is unrelated to the forged diary that Genoud tried to pass.
    What Piker was produced was not another “edition” of Table Talk but notes from a different period. Piker’s is not as reliable as Bormann’s.
    Here is a post I made on this subject a couple of years ago:

    There is some dispute (by Talk.origins, wikipedia and its right arm answers., etc.) that Table Talk is reliable.
    Named as one of the two people who might question some reliability is historian Ian Kershaw. In many hours I find nothing of him questioning Table Talk at all.
    The other critic, who somehow dismisses all excerpts of Table Talk that allude to Hitler’s disavowal of Christianity is Carrier.
    Strange, Wiki does not refer to Hitler’s disavowels, nor to Table Talk in the text, merely in its footnotes.

    A basic and superficial problem comes from lumping various writings in with Table Talk.
    Bormann’s first notes (he actually was in charge, and signed off each page as notated then typed by Heim) , the original Secret Conversations, or Table Talk, are not in question (except by Carrier – he says the anti-Christian passages are not in the German original, but are in later versions, such as Trevor-Roper edition. The Trevor-Roper is a translation to English from Genoud’s French (says Carrier, though Irving talks of it as a translation from the original German), which apparently has the alterations)).
    Piker took over the note-taking (March 21, 1942 to August 2, 1942) (all but one of my quotes predates this) and is considered less reliable…according to Irving, this would not be called Table Talk. Piker was typing up the hand-written notes of Heim’s, found in a desk.
    The Hitler diary is a fake, and is not part of Table Talk. It is largely ammended and sometimes composed by Genoud.
    The 1945 (Feb, and March, or March and April) notes from the bunker are not considered reliable, also are not quoted, and are not part of Table Talk.

    David Irving says this:

    1. HITLER’S Table Talk comes from the original Bormann Vermerke which the late François Genoud purchased from Bormann’s widow Gerda Bormann. They were actually typed from notes taken by the stenographer Heinrich Heim, whom I interviewed and who confirmed the procedure in detail. Each day’s entry was initialled by Bormann at the end. They are genuine, in the first person, and highly reliable.

    2. Henry Picker took over as Bormann’s secretary/adjutant from Heim. He found a lot of Heim’s notes in his desk and rewrote them in reported speech and published them and his own notes as Hitlers Tischgespräche. Good, but less reliable.
    3. After the war, Genoud obtained by a very complex process notes on the final Bunkergespräche of Hitler. Walter Funk was involved. When I visited Geneva in about 1968 (Elke Fröhlich, the Goebbels expert, was with me) Genoud showed us a sheaf of US legal-size paper, closely typed in German. Nobody has ever seen that sheaf since. Hugh Trevor-Roper had published them in English in the late 1950s as Hitler’s Last Testament. In interviews with me, Hitler’s adjutants, especially Karl-Jesko von Puttkamer (on left of picture) disputed their authenticity. Eventually Genoud, meeting me in Paris, came clean and told me he had either written, or enlarged on, the originals himself, in his own handwriting — in French. On two different occasions he said to me, apologetically, “That is surely what Hitler would have said.”

    This explains a number of anachronisms in the text of this latter volume. It also explains why Genoud originally insisted that Hoffmann & Campe, who in the 1970s had a contract to publish the Trevor-Roper edition in German, must work from the French text(!); I told them I had seen a German text in Genoud’s hands when I visited him in Geneva. That firm then abandoned the project, and the book was published by Albrecht Knaus of Bertelsmann Verlag.

    4. One day I bumped into Genoud in Paris, or we met by arrangement, I can’t recall, and he gave me a complete photocopy of the Bunker conversations (1945) in German; they are heavily expanded between the lines in handwriting — his handwriting, and I suspect his typewriter. Useless as a historical source. I donated them to the Institut für Zeitgeschichte.

    http://www.fpp.co.uk/Letters/Hitler/Law200603.html

    Irving (again, a historian of some ill-repute) said that the translation was a good one. He talks of interpolations by the translators as necessary to give the text meaning and context. He doesn’t specifically mention the anti-Christian statements, but is discussing the idea that a wooden, verbatim translation would leave out the real meanings. As we see above, “Christianity is the product of sick brains…” is exactly the intent of the original passage, regardless of Carrier’s concerns over word for word matches.
    Irving:

    Hitler’s Table Talk is the product of his lunch- and supper-time conversations in his private circle from 1941 to 1944. The transcripts are genuine.

    (Ignore the 1945 “transcripts” published by Trevor-Roper in the 1950s as Hitler’s Last Testament — they are fake)….
    François Genoud purchased the files of transcripts from Bormann’s widow just after the war, along with the handwritten letters which she and the Reichsleiter had exchanged.

    For forty thousand pounds — paid half to Genoud and half to Hitler’s sister Paula — George Weidenfeld, an Austrian Jewish publisher who had emigrated to London, bought the rights and issued an English translation in about 1949.

    They were expertly, and literately, translated by Norman Cameron and R.H. Stevens, though with a few (a very few) odd interpolations of short sentences which don’t exist in the original — the translator evidently felt justified in such insertions, to make the context plain.

    Translation is a difficult chore: I have translated four books, including Nikki Lauda’s memoirs — one can either produce a clinical, wooden, illiterate version, like Richard “Skunky” Evans’ courtroom translations of Third Reich documents, or one can produce a readable, publishable text which properly conveys the sense and language of the original.
    The Table Talks’ content is more important in my view than Hitler’s Mein Kampf, and possibly even more than his Zweites Buch (1928). It is unadulterated Hitler.

    ——

    My quotes come from a forum participant called Nova Land, who I think was at first hostile to the Table Talk references.

    Nova Land says:

    No evidence has been presented that Bormann did tamper with the text in this way, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t.

    However, two years ago I learned new details about the publishing history of the Table Talks which lead me to believe that such tampering (( my edit, ‘as Carrier would imply’)) is extremely unlikely to have happened. That is what I was referring to in my February 2004 post.
    and quotes:”Heim began his record on 5 July 1941 and kept it regularly for over eight months; but in mid-March 1942 he was seconded for other duties, and for the next four months his duties as recorder of the Table Talk were assigned to a deputy, Dr Henry Picker. Hein returned to his duties as recorder on 1 August 1942. However, he did not continue them for long, for in September… the record itself was discontinued.

    “Both Heim and Picker were sound Party members, personally known to Hitler and trusted by him, and there can be no doubt that the record was conscientiously made. The final texts, as approved by Bormann, were sent consecutively to Frau Bormann in Obersalzberg, where Bormann had an official residence… There were two copies of them: one was passed to the Party archives in Munich; the other was to be kept by her as Bormann’s personal copy.”

    SaysIf Bormann or anyone else made significant alterations to Hitler’s words, it should be possible to demonstrate this by showing places where one of these published versions is significantly different than the other. I am therefore no longer willing to give much weight to mere speculation that such altering could have occurred.

    In several cases I have seen passages cited which seem to me to take on a different meaning when read in context rather than as snippets. For example, there is a passage (which I cited earlier in this thread) in which Hitler says “We don’t want to educate anyone in atheism.”. This is sometimes offered as an example of Hitler condemning atheism; but read in context, it actually seems more to be expressing admiration for atheism.


    On the other hand, Carrier has provided only 3 examples (out of more than 700 pages of text) and none of those 3 examples seemed very clear or convincing to me. And that was more than 3 years ago; if those 3 examples were simply the tip of the iceberg, 3 years seems to be more than enough time to expose more of what’s hidden in the water.

    On March 22/06 Nova Land concurs with Irving on translations:

    There is a problem with that argument, however. A literal translation is not the same as a good translation. The question is not whether each sentence in a translated passage, when compared with the same sentence in the original, is strictly accurate. The question should be whether the sentences in a translated passage as a whole, when compared to the original passage as a whole, conveys a reasonable sense of what the original said. It is as important to catch the spirit of a passage as to catch the letter, which is what makes translating such a difficult art.

    Start about 3/4 down the page.
    http://forums.randi.org/archive/index.php/t-167-p-2.html

    Here is the start of that good discussion:
    http://forums.randi.org/showpost.php?p=1129057&postcount=454

    Continuing here:
    http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=167&page=12

    —-

    Was Hitler really such an idiot that he thought there could be life on stars

    The quote doesn’t say that.

  10. Steven Carr

    Picker is spelled Picker, not Piker. You clearly have researched this well.

    Only Genoud had Bormann’s Vermerke and Genoud was a forger and hoaxer.

    Picker was the first to be published, and had the involvement of Gerhard Ritter of the University of Freiburg.

    Picker was an actual stenographer, unlike Jochmann, or Genoud or Bormann. It is also not a translation,

    Picker also contains testimonials from fellow bunker officers.

    And as pointed out by ‘Charlie’ , the text of Picker does mostly agree with Jochmann.

    Which makes the differences more interesting.

    The English version of Table Talk is the version doctored by Genoud.

    For example, ‘But I owe nothing to the Church that trafficks in the salvation of souls…..’

    The German of Jochman and Picker has none of that. It reads ‘Abgesehen davon, dass mir zu grausam ist, die seligmachende Kirche…..’

    However, the French of Genoud has this text ‘Mais je ne dois rien a cette Eglise qui trafique du salye des ames….’

    Clearly, the English has been translated from the French, as it must be a bad translation of the French word ‘trafique’, which does not mean to traffic in. It means to tamper with.

    Both Jochmann and Picker have the following ‘Das, was der Mensch vor dem Tier voraushat, die veilleicht wundersbarste Beweis fuer die Ueberlegenheit des Menschen ist, dass er begriffen hat, dass es eine Schoepferkraft geben muss’.

    However Hitler’s belief in a creative Power is missing from Genoud and the normal English translation of Trevor Roper.

  11. Steven Carr

    I should point out that David Irving in his libel trial claimed he had been misled by the English translations of Table Talk….

    From the official court transcript….

    ‘ In his Pleadings, Irving recognises that he is on weak ground because of his constant mistranslations in this case. He tries to rescue his position by arguing that he merely followed the official translation in English, first published in 1953 by Weidenfeld….’

    Irving should have checked the original German!

  12. Steven Carr

    Tom
    You say that he never renounced his Catholicism.

    CARR
    When did I say that?

    CHARLIE
    The other critic, who somehow dismisses all excerpts of Table Talk that allude to Hitler’s disavowal of Christianity is Carrier.

    CARR
    Here is what Carrier wrote ‘…in the actual German of this entry Hitler does attack the Church, Christian dogma and institutional religion….’

    And yet somehow Charlie claims Carrier ‘dissmisses all excerpts of Table Talk that allude to Hitler’s disavowal of Christianity’.

    So much for Charlie’s objectivity….

  13. Steven Carr

    CHARLIE
    Irving (again, a historian of some ill-repute) said that the translation was a good one. He talks of interpolations by the translators as necessary to give the text meaning and context.

    CARR
    Here is the trial transcript,pointing out Irving’s use of such translations.

    ‘As Irving stated in 1983, the German original ‘is completely different from the published English translation’ ….. But while Irving cut out this phrase, which made Hitler appear in a bad light, he deliberately continued to use the other parts of the flawed Weidenfeld translation, if the original German text implicated Hitler in a way that the Weidenfeld translation did not…

    Irving uses both the German original, and the flawed translation, depending on which of the two documents serves his purpose of showing Hitler in a favourable light. Whether or not the Weidenfeld translation is accurate in any given case is of no interest at all to him; all that he is interested in is whether or not it supports his argument’

    It is amazing that Christians quote somebody who was smashed apart in a court of law the way that Irving was, and instead malign an article by Richard Carrier which was published in the prestigious ‘German Studies Review’

  14. Post
    Author
    Tom Gilson

    Steven,

    I made an error when I attributed that to you. I apologize for that. It was on another source that I was reading at about the same time.

  15. Charlie

    Thank you for correcting my misspelling of Picker’s name in the first half of my comment.
    Yes, Genoud forged parts of the discredited diaries, but what is the evidence he forged Table Talk? And especially the few passages in question here?

    CARR
Here is what Carrier wrote ‘…in the actual German of this entry Hitler does attack the Church, Christian dogma and institutional religion….’
    And yet somehow Charlie claims Carrier ‘dissmisses all excerpts of Table Talk that allude to Hitler’s disavowal of Christianity’.

    As he does. Attacking the Church or its dogma, is not a disavowal of Christianity. Carrier makes his denial of Hitler’s disavowals of Christianity explicit when he claims that Hitler was a “god-fearing Christian” and said things that any “Protestant bigot” would say.
    Hitler was clearly not a Christian by any standard of the word. He held to none of the creeds, denied Christ’s divinity, denied the entire Old Testament (which Jesus endorsed), called the teaching of the New Testament lies, denied the tenets of a loving God and of loving one another, denied all of Christ’s teachings as found in the New Testament, etc.
    The fact that he knew Jesus to have lived historically did not make him a Christian, and the fact that he lied about Jesus’ teachings, claimed him as the Aryan sone of a Roman (not of God) and a whore (not the Virgin Mary), made him explicitly not a Christian.
    You yourself admit that Hitler hated Christianity.
    Carrier’s claim that Hitler was God-fearing also fails when you realize that Hitler’s “god” was merely the acting out of the laws of nature. One can only fear them as far as one fears mother nature.

  16. Ahswan

    It is interesting that Expelled has a segment featuring Uta George, the director of the Hadamar Gas Chamber Memorial. Stein asked her specifically about Hitler being influenced by Malthus; she didn’t even know who Malthus was, and stated emphatically that the Nazi’s at Hadamar were Darwinists, and that was the basis for gassing those that were merely food consumers. It was a chilling segment of the film.

  17. Charlie

    By the way:

    What reference is ‘Table Talk #51′? What date? What is the original German? Human beings are not baboons, by the way. As a naturalist, Darwin would have known that.

    Hitler’s evolutionary mentor, Ernst Haeckel, appears to have thought that man (Caucasian) evolved from baboons.
    http://www.helsinki.fi/~pjojala/Haeckels_Faces.htm

    I wonder if Genoud would have known that about Haeckel … ?

  18. Tony Hoffman

    Expelled’s charge and the constant revival of this aspersion on this website — that Darwin leads to Hitler — seems fundamentally wrongheaded.

    Hitler had a mother. Did Hitler’s mother lead to Hitler? Hitler was raised a Catholic, whose bible has whole populations destroyed both by God and by the Israelites at God’s behest. Is there a historical tie to Hitler’s actions and the bible and those who interpreted the bible for him? You could say yes to both of these historical ties, but all that you’ve achieved is vilification of historical entities who (that) are not Hitler.

    Tom, you keep saying that although you concede that there is no philosophical link from Darwin to Hitler there is in fact a historical one. While I agree with you, I have no idea what your point is in raising it. (See above.)

    Three things I think should be kept in mind:

    1) Darwinism (in terms of political and moral outlook) is far too vague a term. In science, there is no Darwinism — just a theory of Evolution that ignores, modifies, reduces, and adds to a theory first put forth by Charles Darwin. Unlike a religious figure, Darwin’s views are not considered pure and perfect, but the first venture on an enterprise that tries to explain biological organisms. What Darwin said and thought about his scientific theory are interesting, but they are by no means definitive — as a scientist, he published his theory IN ORDER THAT IT COULD BE CHALLENGED, CHANGED (IMPROVED), AND EVEN DISPROVEN. What he said and thought about life, politics, music, etc. might be fascinating to some, but they are no more valid or important than your or my views on these topics.
    2) Influencers shouldn’t be blamed for the actions of others that follow. That would be like blaming Thomas Jefferson for the bloodshed in the French Revolution, or Plato for any war initiated by a Republic, or Einstein for the destruction of Nagasaki and Hiroshima.
    3) Scientists in particular are blameless for the implications of their theories. Scientific theories describe how things are, not how human beings ought to behave. If you want to require scientists to posit only those theories that can have a “positive moral” outcome you will have stopped science (this is bad) for something that is unenforceable.

    Does Darwin’s Origin of Species have a historical tie to Hitler? Yes. So do a list of things too numerous to mention. Hence, raising the fact of the historical tie says more about the motives of the “uncoverer” than it does about the thing itself.

  19. Pauli Ojala

    On relations of Darwin and Ernst Haeckel, the father of the vulgar continental evolutionism and eugenics in Europe:

    Regarding the text books recycling the fraudulent embryo drawings, originally it was claimed that human embryos had functioning gills when they ‘climb up their family tree’ in mothers womb via fish stage and amphibian stage. I have scanned some of them in here:
    http://www.helsinki.fi/~pjojala/Koulukirjat.html

    They are, really, the MOST recycled figures at least in the Finnish text books of biology in the 20th century, I’m afraid. And were known to be deliberate fakes to begin with. Talking about indoctrination and popularization of science! Dawkins is Oxford professor on public understanding of science. That species is responsible for a lot of rubbish still recycled.

    I try to bake the issue by few quotes from this article published in the 5th Asian conference for bioethics that I submitted in 2004:
    http://www.helsinki.fi/~pjojala/Haeckelianlegacy_ABC5.pdf

    Gould described how the predecessor in his chair (Louis Agassiz, 1807-1873) disliked
    Haeckel for “his haughty dismissal of earlier work which he often shamelessly ‘borrowed’ without
    attribution” (2000). Richardson and Keuck wrote in one of the above mentioned prestigious
    correspondences:
    “We can make a persuasive case with Haeckel because we have identified some of his sources… he removed the limbs.
    The cut was selective, applying only to the young stage. It was also systematic because he did it to other species in the
    picture… The altered drawings support theories which the originals did not. Therefore, these are not legitimate
    schematic figures.” (Nature 410, 2001, p. 144.)

    Haeckel never listed the sources of his simplified pictures. Filling the gaps in the embryonic
    series by speculation is one thing, but concealing a mere hypothesis from observations is
    something else.

    The consensus seems to be, that the recapitulationary concept of Haeckel is dead thanks to
    developmental physiology and genetics. It is hastily added, however, that it has its value as a
    descriptive statement. Haeckel himself used puzzling phrase “labyrinth of ontogenesis” in his
    most popular Weltraethsel or Riddle (1899 p. 79).
    University-level textbooks elaborate a new concept of “evolvability” and after the
    “unipolar Haeckel” –model, students still face concepts such as by “bipolar Haeckel”, “twodimensional
    Haeckel”, and “three-dimensional Haeckel” -models. Sound criticism of the
    deductive Haeckelian reductionism has been rare in the narrative thread of Ariadne.

    In a sense the situation resembles the paradigm change from the “tree of life” to the “bush
    of life” or “agnostic tree of life” at the emergence of the genome projects and popularization of the
    lateral gene transfer. Likewise, the Biogenetic Law is still supported by several recent studies – if
    applied to single characters only (like in Richardson & Keuck, 2002). Popperian habits would
    wellcome not only verification, but also falsification in order to earn the epithet “scientific” for a
    theory. Biogenetic Law was a straitjacket for a paradigm, and there must be a place for criticism
    before adopting it as a heuristic principle.

    “It is to be recalled that Haeckel had written: ‘Among the Spartans all newly born children were subject to a
    careful examination and selection. All those that were weak, sickly, or affected with any bodily infirmity, were killed.
    Only the perfectly healthy and strong children were allowed to live, and they alone afterwards propagated the race.’
    [The History of Creation, 1883, I, p. 170.]

    In the light of the following comments, is Haeckel “guilt by association” to Hitler only?
    ‘Sparta must be regarded as the first folkish state. The exposure of the sick, weak, deformed children, in short their
    destruction, was more decent and in truth a thousand times more humane than the wretched insanity of our day which
    preserves the most pathological subject.'[Hitler’s Secret Book, p. 18] (1971 p. 164)?
    Let us remember that premature infants have been even operated without local anesthesia or
    analgesic drugs almost until our times. Western countries, generally, have broadly embraced the
    fact that a new-born child can feel pain only at the late 1980’ies.

    Haeckel ascended from infanticide also to genocide: “…the morphological differences
    between two generally recognized species – for example sheep and goats – are much less
    important than those… between a Hottentot and a man of the Teutonic race” (The History of
    Creation 1876, p. 434). He categorized human beings into “Woolly-haired” and “Straight-haired”
    classes. The Woolly-haired people were “incapable of a true inner culture or of a higher mental
    development” (The History of Creation, 1876, p. 310).
    Only among the Aryans was there that
    “symmetry of all parts, and that equal development, which we call the type of perfect human beauty” (The
    History of Creation, 1876, p. 321). “The mental life of savages rises little above that of the higher mammals,
    especially the apes, with which they are genealogically connected. Their whole interest is restricteed to the
    physiological functions of nutrition and reproduction, or the satisfaction of hunger and thirst in the crudest animal
    fashion… one can no more (or no less) speak of their reason than of that of the more intelligent animals.” (The
    wonders of life, 1905, p. 56-7).

    Finally, since: “the lower races – such as the Veddahs or Australian Negroes – are psychologically nearer to the
    mammals – apes and dogs – than to the civilized European, we must, therefore, assign a totally different value to their
    lives… Their only interest are food and reproduction… many of the higher animals, especially monogamous mammals
    and birds, have reached a higher stage than the lower savages” (The wonders of life, 1905, p. 390, 393).

    In his autobiography, Darwin stated: “Hardly any point gave me so much satisfaction when
    I was at work on the Origin, as the explanation of the wide difference in many classes between the
    embryo and the adult animal, and of the close resemblance of the embryos within the same class.
    No notice of this point was taken, as far as I remember, in the early reviews of the Origin”.

    Prior to Haeckel’s mystified doctrines, Charles Darwin (1809-1882) himself acknowledged
    in his letter to his intimate Asa Gray (1810-1888) and Joseph Hooker (1817–1911), that “by far
    the strongest single class of facts in favor of” his theory was the similarity of vertebrate embryos
    in their earliest stages (Churchill 1991 pp. 1-29). Darwin complained that his reviewers and his
    friends had not paid attention to his embryological arguments despite of this. In the Origin,
    namey, Darwin had listed five set of facts in embryology, that could not be explained satisfactorily
    without the idea of descent with modification. “The leading facts in embryology” were “second in
    importance to none in natural history” (Origin, p. 450; Mayr 1982 p. 470).

    Later on, this subject was siezed, indeed. Subsequent editions of the Origin
    stated:“[Haeckel]…brought his great knowledge and abilities to bear on what he calls phylogeny,
    or the lines of descent of all organic beings. In drawing up the several series he trusts chiefly to
    embryological characters.”

    Darwin did not apply his revolutionary theory to the human beings until his Descent of Man,
    and Selection in Relation to Sex in 1871. This was after the ambitious Haeckel had firmly stepped
    in the print, and the old Darwin paid hommage in his introduction:

    “The conclusion that man is the co-descendant with other species… is not in any degree new… maintained by several
    eminent naturalists and philosophers… and especially by Häckel. This last naturalist, besides his great work
    ‘Generelle Morphologie’ (1866), has recently (1868, with a second edit. in 1870), published his ‘Natürliche
    Schöpfungsgeschichte,’ in which he fully discusses the genealogy of man. If this work had appeared before my essay
    had been written, I should probably never have completed it. Almost all the conclusions at which I have arrived I find
    confirmed by this naturalist, whose knowledge on many points is much fuller than mine.”

    € € €
    The evolutionary ideology is one of lobbying and popularization of stuff the Zeitgeist wants to hear. Malthusian model was very important idea and model for Darwin, whose cousin was Sir Francis Galton, inventor of the whole concept of ‘eugenics’ in his book Inheritary genious. The book was full of self indulgence and praised Galton’s (Darwin’s) OWN family tree. According to Malthus worries, the industrial revolution put 12 year old girls to work over 120 hours a week. In order to kill them and to prevent the lower class of society from reproducing more rapidly than the inheritary genious families.

    pauli.ojala@gmail.com
    Biochemist, drop-out (Master of Sciing)
    http://www.helsinki.fi/~pjojala/Expelled-ID.htm

  20. Post
    Author
    Tom Gilson

    Ed wrote at 2:27 am today, quoted here in full:

    Forget Hitler’s views on Darwin for just a moment: Are you familiar with Hitler’s views on struggle? The Breakpoint piece is absolutely frightening. Is that how you intended it?

    This is another charge without any supporting information. It’s just a different kind of ad hominem (in the informal sense of the term described in the comment guidelines), or name calling. There’s nothing there to answer; it’s just a taunt.

    This has gone on long enough. I have marked the comment as spam (I’m still trying to figure out WordPress’s commenter banning function). I copied it in here as explanation for why I have done this, but I want it to be clear that this kind of unsupported argumentation and abusive communication is not going to continue here.

  21. Jennifer Adkins

    Hi guys.

    I’d like to invite all of you to come discuss this further in my Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=27858188856

    I’d really like to have a nice healthy open debate about Evolution and Intelligent Design, but I would like to ask that you keep the Hitler comments to a minimum on there, but please feel free to bring up any valid point you’d like.

    Thanks!

  22. Pingback: Hypocrisy all the way to 11 « Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub

  23. Matt

    Haha.
    Oh, you are a funny man. You don’t like what Ed has to say so you ban him. So much for freedom of speech, academic freedom and the like, hm?

  24. Post
    Author
    Tom Gilson

    See the comment guidelines. Disagreement is welcome, ad hominems and repeated distortions are not. Neither was the scatological reference he left here, which I have deleted.

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