Wednesday, March 30, 2005

A Non-Scientist and his Unscientific Blog

PZ Meyers has one of the most repulsive blogs on the web. It is allegedly a science blog, but like its mother Panda's Thumb and its twin sister evolution blog, it is essentially a political blog.

Panda's Thumb has some interesting posts, and is about 50% successful at keeping the insults and name calling under wraps. That is, on PT you'll find that sort of thing mostly confined to the comments section. Some of its writers, such as "Dr. GH" are horrible, while others are quite good. An excellent PT contributor is Ed Brayton (who also writes for the stellar In The Agora, which, as a political blog, actually covers science better and in a more reasoned manner than Panda's Thumb).

Ed, if my praise, coming from the enemy camp, is embarrassing, I apologize.

PZ Meyers, on the other hand, makes not even the pretense of intellectualism. His form of writing would receive a failing grade, for being too juvenile, from any middle school English teacher. Scan his main page and you’ll see a number of beauties, viz.,
  • Scarborough [A reporter?] [is] "a swarmy little snake."
  • A call to "mock stupid conservatives until they show some shame."
  • A description of some children as "these kids are actually rather stupid."
  • "the obsessive stupidity of anti-evolutionary zealots."
  • "silly Christian malarkey about a dead god being resurrected."
  • "These arrogant pissants are egregious idiots."
  • "It's [evolution debate] an argument with a shameless liar."

This incomplete list is the result of a quick scan.

This is on a science blog? I don't think so. It's not science, and no scientist that I know writes like that. I have to question Meyer's credentials. When he does post science, it is, at least in the month or so I've been visiting, a report on someone else's work. I can't find a CV online. I would love to know if he has an active research program and a continuous record of peer-reviewed publications.

Today PZ reports on the critical illness of Jerry Falwell, a man whose theology I have criticized often. PZ cannot hide his glee over Rev. Falwell's illness, and mockingly says he’ll pray for him.

But if you want to know the substance of a man, one way to do it is by the company he keeps. So I invite you to go to PZs blog, hold your nose, abandon all hope of encountering intelligent, rational, critical, or scientific thinking, and read the comments from his buds. (I can only read, having been banned from leaving comments.)

But first, I urge you you to say a prayer for Rev. Falwell and his family.

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