Column 14: “Don’t read a book, write a book!”

Seems like Conservapedia has a new motto!

A motto here, EnFrancaisSVP, is this: “don’t read a book, write a book.” Start with our entry here on the Theory of Relativity and improve it. Learn as your do so, and enter related topics to improve your knowledge and ours. Godspeed.–Aschlafly 22:43, 17 June 2007 (EDT)

I for one think that this is an excellent idea which I can fully support. Throughout my entire academic career, I have been plagued by the misconception that one would need to actually know something about a subject before writing about it. But I realize now that it is, in fact, possible – not to mention much more effective and less expensive in library fees – to simply start writing about a highly advanced subjects and wait for reams of knowledge to spring to life in your mind out of thin air through the Holy Ghost. I shall immediately begin writing that article about the behaviour of top/anti-top quark pairs in Higgs boson fields that I’ve always wanted to write. After that, I expect by tomorrow afternoon, maybe I’ll try squaring the circle with only a compass and a straightedge, just to relax.

It would be overly optimistic to think that there won’t be skeptics. We have to realize that this is rather a novel approach, and many people are quite set in their ways. After all, the great majority of scientists and academics were stupid enough to do their articles the old-fashioned ways, through massive amounts of research and stuff, so they can be expected to be rather biased against this new approach, irrational as it may seem. They are only human, and it is understandable that they’ll be reluctant to recognize that there is a much easier and better method than what they had to go through.

Fortunately, it is easy to refute these atheist nay-sayers. One needs only take a look at the excellent article essay about the “New Ordeal” to see the excellent results that the “Don’t Read, Write” approach can lead to. A fascinating, insightful, one dares even to say groundbreaking analysis of a complex socio-economic subject. Well done! Sure, there are a couple of references listed at the bottom, but we all know those are just there to humor the liberals. It seems quite obvious from the context that the author took the correct and obvious approach and never read those books. As one insightful conservapedian recently noted,

The two new “citations” have no apparent link to the article, any more than the first one does…

I think that you have to recognize that there’s some excellent work going on here. Incidentally, this can also be seen in the author’s bold and novel approach to the use of charts – both of those in the article are completely missing the Y-axis, and it would be hard to respond to that with anything but approval and respect. Unless, of course, you’re an atheist liberal nay-sayer, of course.

Keep up the good work, guys – and good night, and good luck.

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21 Responses to “Column 14: “Don’t read a book, write a book!””


  1. 1 Flippin June 18, 2007 at 4:21 pm

    In addition to the excellet post you made today, I would also like to point out that ideological differences can now be described as subtle trolling. Subtle trolling sounds like “kind of a virgin” to me. 11:39, 18 June 2007 Philip J. Rayment (Talk | contribs) blocked “Omniscience (contribs)” with an expiry time of infinite (subtle vandalism) One look at this guy’s edits shows there was really no harm being done.

    What also bugs me about this block is the correction that took place following it from Andy. No only did he undo the guys “subtle vandalism” he changed a lot of legitimate info as well. I don’t understand that “salting the earth” approach. Bespeaks more fear than deceit, even.

  2. 2 Todd Larason June 18, 2007 at 5:01 pm

    Sysop RobS’s stated policy is “Sockpuppets & trolls have ZERO credibility and all contributions will be removed regardless of content.”

    Of course, that was being used to ‘defend’ the reversion of some edits by Colest and BethanyS, both CPers in good standing, but you can’t break some eggs without occasionally making an omelet.

  3. 3 PalMD June 18, 2007 at 9:33 pm

    If you are going to start trying to inject sex talk into here (“eggs”), you’re in the wrong place, buddy.

  4. 4 lanfranc June 19, 2007 at 9:17 am

    Indeed! This is a respectable blog, and we will not have such Liberal filth infesting these pages. Godspeed!

    -AK

  5. 5 interpreted June 20, 2007 at 11:12 am

    I’m afraid to say that ‘Omniscience’ was a friend of mine, who’s been trying to attribute as many discoveries as he can to the famous Sri Lankan cricketer Sanath Jayasuriah. He’s also a contender for the ‘most obvious sockpuppet award’ (though our friend the wigster might clinch it), having registered ‘sanath121’, ‘sanath122’, ‘sanath123’, ‘sanath124’, ‘sanath125’, and ‘sanath126’ before Karajou spotted him.

  6. 6 conservative June 20, 2007 at 8:17 pm

    I would point out that one of the few entries posted by evolutionists in the Conservapedia theory of evolution article (see: http://www.conservapedia.com/Theory_of_evolution n) appears to have been errant. I am referring to what PalmMD inserted in the article.

    PalMD wrote the following was zero citations:

    This is the basis for there being two major divisions of evolutionary theory, punctuated equilibrium and gradualism. Gould is the best known proponent of the theory of punctuated equilibrium, Richard Dawkins is a partisan of gradualism. See: http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Theory_of_evolution&oldid=192679

    Well I removed what PalMD wrote as I believe it is incorrect and expanded what the article had to say about the theory of punctuated equilibrium.

    Here is an excerpt:

    The Harvard biologist Ernst Mayr comments on Gould’s essay, ‘The Return of the Hopeful Monsters’ by stating the following:

    “ Gould does not clearly distinguish between the magnitude of the structural change and the “locale” where it may occur. As a result, his discussion was seen by many as an endorsement of Goldschmidt’s hopeful monster theory….
    It is now clear that the basic difference between the moderate and drastic version of the theory of punctuated equilibria is that in the moderate version a gradual, albeit rapid and sometimes drastic genetic restructuring of populations takes place, while in the Goldschmidtian version a systemic mutation produces a single individual, a hopeful monster, which starts a new evolutionary tradition.

    Even though some of the statements of Eldredge, Gould, and Stanley, made in the 1970s, sounded as if they had favored the Goldschmidtian version, they clearly distanced themselves from it in their more recent discussions. When postulating saltations, says Gould (1980), “I do not refer to the saltational of entire designs complete in all their complex and integrated features…instead, I envisage a potential saltational origin for the essential features of key adaptions. ” – Ernst Mayr, 1982a. Speciation and macroevolution. Evolution 36, page 1128[69]

    Similarly, creationist scientist Dr. Don Batten concurs with the Harvard evolutionist Ernst Mayr and states that in 1982 Gould distanced himself from “Hopeful Monsters” and cites Gould stating that “Punctuated equilibrium is not a theory of macromutation, it is not a theory of any genetic process” although Dr. Batten also cites Gould admitting to having supported “certain forms of macromutational theory … though not in the context of punctuated equilibrium.” [70] Dr. Batten further states regarding the theory of Punctuated Equilibrium (PE) the following: “By the time of their 21st anniversary review of PE, Gould and Eldridge had retracted to proposing PE as ‘a complement to phyletic gradualism’. This is a rather major backdown on the brashness of their claims in 1972, and especially Gould’s claims up to 1980…”[71]

    So it appears as if Gould and Eldredge eventually did not see PE as a major division of evolutionary theory (PE vs. gradualism) but merely as a complement to gradualism.

  7. 7 conservative June 20, 2007 at 8:23 pm

    In the previos entry I wrote:

    “PalMD wrote the following was zero citations:”

    I meant to write:

    “PalMD wrote the following with zero citations:”

  8. 8 conservative June 20, 2007 at 8:30 pm

    In the above entry previos = previous

  9. 9 lanfranc June 20, 2007 at 11:04 pm

    I’m afraid I don’t know enough about the subject to comment, conservative. However, I’ll point out that since the Theory of Evolution page has been locked since the end of March, evolutionists – or anyone other than yourself, for that matter – have had practically no opportunity to add entries to it at all. So with that in mind, I’d say that the sample size is so small as to be… statistically not very useful.

    –AK

  10. 10 conservative June 21, 2007 at 1:47 am

    lanfranc,

    Did you even try to defend your last statement vis a vis the editing log? I don’t think so. I wonder why you did not refer to the editing log? That would be the rational thing to do. Perhaps RationalWiki is not very rational!

  11. 11 conservative June 21, 2007 at 1:52 am

    lanfranc,

    Please defend your words “practically no opportunity”. Why has their been “practically no opportunity” given that several Sysops edited the article in the time period you mentioned as can be seen here: http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Theory_of_evolution&action=history and http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Theory_of_evolution&offset=20070608014815&action=history and

  12. 12 Tmtoulouse June 21, 2007 at 1:59 am

    Its your pet conservative, there is no other way to view that monstrously ridiculous concoction of typographical masturbation. Your the local schizophrenic, and the article reads as such.

  13. 13 Diabhal June 21, 2007 at 2:12 am

    Besides Ken, anytime anyone did add anything to it you reverted it immediately. What would be the point?

  14. 14 PalMD June 21, 2007 at 3:10 am

    I appreciate Ken being willing to read more detailed analyses, however, my general statement stands, and is really uncontested enough to need no attribution. Open any bio book (pandas doesnt count) or read any of Gould’s works, and you will see that he pretty much has taken ownership of PE. Dawkins has made clear, in his usual abrassive way, that he is a gradualist. Your quote above only goes to show that the disagreement itself is not seen to invalidate evo in toto.

  15. 15 lanfranc June 21, 2007 at 7:41 am

    Conservative: A simple count shows that Theory of Evolution has had 262 edits since being finally locked on 29 March. 173 or 66% of those are yours. The only other substantial contributor has been Hoji with about 50 edits (19%), most of which have been immediately reverted by you.

    Looking at the last month alone, you have made 80 out of 93 edits or a grand 86%, and the other contributors do not exactly seem like strong supporters of evolution. For all intents and purposes, Theory of Evolution is your personal essay, and it should properly be marked as such.

    -AK

  16. 16 lanfranc June 21, 2007 at 8:05 am

    Oh, and just did another count – Creationism is even worse. Last locked on 10 April, 85 out of 90 edits since then are by Conservative. 94%! That’s pretty amazing.

    http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Creationism&limit=500&action=history

    -AK

  17. 17 conservative June 21, 2007 at 8:50 pm

    PalMD,

    Gould’s stance on PE grew less and less bold. I suggest reading the cited material at the Conservapedia article of evolution.

    I also cite the following from Gould and Eldridge’s journal article in Nature which stated:

    “As a complement to phyletic gradualism, its most important implications remain the recognition of stasis as a meaningful and predominant pattern within the history of species, and in the recasting of macroevolution as the differential success of certain species (and their descendants) within clades.” (see: http://www.stephenjaygould.org/library/gould_comes-of-age.html ).

    Thus, this material still stands:

    In 1982 he [Gould] wrote:

    ‘I am not saying that punctuated equilibrium is the only mode of speciation’

    and

    ‘Gradual, phyletic transformation can and does occur.’….

    By the time of their 21st anniversary review of PE,43 Gould and Eldridge had retracted to proposing PE as ‘a complement to phyletic gradualism’. This is a rather major backdown on the brashness of their claims in 1972, and especially Gould’s claims up to 1980, as recognized by Levinton in a response to the review.44 taken from: http://www.answersingenesis.org/tj/v8/i2/punct.asp#r43

    However, I think you are wedded to unsourced sloppy remarks and stubborn. I don’t think you are going to change.

  18. 18 conservative June 21, 2007 at 8:52 pm

    Tmtoulouse,

    Thank you for your armchair psychologist rant. When you find a factual error in Conservapedia’s Theory of evolution article get back to me.

  19. 19 conservative June 21, 2007 at 9:32 pm

    PalMD,

    By the way, over 25,000 students go to the State U of NY at Buffalo and the public in the Buffalo metropolitan area has free access to their internet terminals also. I think you are going to have to obtain a lot more evidence before you can assuredly call me Ken as I have stated at Conservapedia.

    Any further questions See: http://www.conservapedia.com/Talk:Theory_of_evolution/Archive_6

  20. 20 human June 22, 2007 at 2:14 am

    Back on topic, mr. blog writer person – the funniest part about that motto that Andy is spouting is that the person he told to go improve the relativity article had just said that they never passed physics in high school.

    Oh, and who lit conservative’s chair on fire this week? What a strange, strange person.

  21. 21 Gulik3 June 22, 2007 at 6:41 am

    I think Conservative doesn’t quite ‘get’ the difference between Holy Writ and Scientific Theory. Let me try to explain it:

    Holy Writ is delivered directly from God to a Prophet, and from the Prophet to everyone else. It is perfect from the start, and any change will only make it worse. If any part of it were to be disproved, then it obviosuly wasn’t Holy, and needs to be tossed out.

    Scientific Theory is assumed from the start to be defective, tentative, and incomplete. Disproving parts of it lead to it being modified, or (rarely) thrown out completely to make way from new theories.

    Trying to ‘disprove’ scientific theories the way you would ‘disprove’ Holy Writ just doesn’t work.


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