Saturday, May 25, 2013

Sneery O'Leary Returns to Uncommon Descent

I am very happy to see that Denyse "Sneery" O'Leary, the world's worst journalist™, is back as a daily contributor to the creationist site, Uncommon Descent.

We can now look forward to months of mangled syntax, non sequiturs, sneers and defamation against legitimate scientists, vapid and effusive praise of anyone she thinks is a Darwin denier, and relentless plugging of her books. It promises to be a real cornucopia of stupidity.

In just her first week back, she

What you will never see, however, is Denyse actually interviewing anyone other than her favorite anti-evolutionary crackpots. Because that, you know, would actually involve real journalism. Why do real work when you can just summarize pop science?

Welcome back, Denyse! Get the popcorn.


Luke Barnes said...

Does Darwinism make claims about the timescale of a species survival? More precisely (perhaps) ..

For a particular species, how long before either the species goes extinct, or evolves into a different species? There seem to be a few relevant timescales: length of generation, timescale for environmental change, length of generation of predators and prey, rate of mutation ...

Turning the question around, does the fact that a certain species hasn't changed much in 100 million years let us predict something about its environment? Should we expect to see that other species living nearby also haven't changed much, or that it lived in a particularly stable environment?

More to the point, know a good book on mathematical biology for the clueless physicist? (I don't hold out much hope for the clueless journalist in question.)

Curt Cameron said...

Denyse seems to think that neuroplasticity refutes materialism, but don't give her too much credit - she didn't come up with that weird idea herself.

I've previously heard this claimed by another DI stooge, Jeffrey Schwartz (UCLA, Psychiatry). I have searched for the reasoning that gets you from the fact of neuroplasticity, to the idea that it is incompatible with a material basis for consciousness, but have never heard it explained. I've also asked for an explanation from two different people on web forums who have made the same assertion, but have come up empty-handed.

I honestly cannot fathom how you could figure that the brain being able to do some rewiring of itself implies that consciousness is non-material. My guess is that since they never explain it, they don't know either. However, if someone could help me out, I'm willing to listen.

Pugh Trust said...

1. "She doesn't explain why, of course." She gives a reason in her second paragraph. Not great, but it's there anyway. I'm not a fan of her writing, either, by the way.
2. "compares critics of philosopher Thomas Nagel to Nazis " -- May I ask where? Did you take a snapshot of the page, because I don't see it there now. I'm definitely against people comparing just about anyone to Nazis.
3a. "apparently thinks there is a certain length of time that species should survive and any deviation from this falsifies "Darwinism". -- I interpreted her as saying that the many examples of stasis ought to make evolutionists rethink some of their positions. I guess her readers are free to read into her words whatever we wish.
3b. "She also apparently thinks that Darwin is somehow paying the salaries of today's evolutionary biologists." -- I didn't take her so literally.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

May I ask where?

I am not responsible for your incompetence in reading. What, exactly, do you think "Night of the Long Weasels" is a reference to?

I'll give you a hint.

hazmat said...

Why do you have to be a prick? I had never heard of "Night of the Long Knives", despite reading scores of WWII books.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

I had never heard of "Night of the Long Knives", despite reading scores of WWII books.

I am not responsible for your ignorance, either.

Diogenes said...

Hazmat: Why do you have to be a prick?

Jeff did not answer the question.

For the record, I recognized the reference to "Night of the Long Knives" so Jeff can't call me ignorant. It is in fact an obscure point. When I say it's obscure I don't mean I never heard of it.

However, for Jeff to lord it over his readers that he picked up on this obscure reference, and they didn't, is kind of a dick move.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

One man's obscure reference is another man's obvious allusion.

And thanks for the support, Dio. I knew I could count on you.

hazmat said...

Well, thanks to you, I've read up on the Night of the Long Knives, which I didn't know was another name for the Röhm-Putsch, and I'm no longer ignorant. I wonder if you knew a certain fact that was stated in the link you shared: "The phrase "Night of the Long Knives" in the German language predates the massacre itself and refers generally to acts of vengeance." Thus, your 2nd accusation against "Sneery" is not on solid ground, since you don't know for sure whether she knew that fact. Carelessly accusing someone of comparing people to Nazis ranks right up there with comparing people carelessly to Nazis.
Well, you helped cure me of my ignorance. Now, about the cure for your prickiness...

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Thus, your 2nd accusation against "Sneery" is not on solid ground, since you don't know for sure whether she knew that fact.

The lengths that ID advocates will go to excuse misconduct of their allies is truly grotesque. Congrats, hazmat, you're the winner of today's "creepiest excuse for bad behavior" award.

SLC said...

Re Diogenes

I don't think that the phrase, night of the long knives is obscure. Any book on the history of the Third Reich will mention the events of 1934 and will refer to the elimination of Ernst Roehm and his fellow travelers as the night of the long knives.