Goodenough Gismo

  • Gismo39
    This is the classic children's book, Goodenough Gismo, by Richmond I. Kelsey, published in 1948. Nearly unavailable in libraries and the collector's market, it is posted here with love as an "orphan work" so that it may be seen and appreciated -- and perhaps even republished, as it deserves to be. After you read this book, it won't surprise you to learn that Richmond Irwin Kelsey (1905-1987) was an accomplished artist, or that as Dick Kelsey, he was one of the great Disney art directors, breaking your heart with "Pinocchio," "Dumbo," and "Bambi."

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Intelligent Design is just a criticism of neo-Darwinism. Teaching neo-Darwinism, as though it has been proven, is NOT scientific.
The truth is that no one knows what drives evolution. People like Dawkins say that the origin and evolution of life can be explained with existing scientific theories, but they are wrong.

If you only teach one theory, and do not mention any criticisms of that theory, the implication is that the theory has been proven. Or at least that the theory is backed up by some kind of evidence. The neo-Darwinist explanation of evolution is nothing but a guess, or a hope.

Should students be made aware that it has not been proven? Not if the goal is to continue indoctrinating them into secular humanism.

Tom Strong

Teaching neo-Darwinism, as though it has been proven, is NOT scientific.


There is no conspiracy to indoctrinate kids into "neo-Darwinism". Creationists claim this, but it's sheer bullshit. High schools science teachers do not teach that there is no God and evolution proves it.

All they teach is the theory of evolution. Find me a textbook that does otherwise, in use in multiple public schools, and I'll retract my opinion.


"All they teach is the theory of evolution."

That is not true. They teach neo-Darwinism, which is one theory of how evolution works.

This is Dawkins' definition of Darwinism:

“Natural selection, the blind, unconscious, automatic process which Darwin discovered, and which we now know is the explanation for the existence and apparent purposeful form of all life, has no purpose in mind."

This version is taught in biology classes. It says that mutations are always random errors, never purposeful responses to environmental changes. And it is taught as proven fact, not as a hypothesis.

Evolution is as good as proven, neo-Darwinism is merely a hypothesis about how evolution works.

Charlie (Colorado)

I swear, this whole argument makes me wish I still drank.

The whole argument depends on people on both sides being ignorant about the other, and sometimes about their own sides' histories'.

Evolution doesn't explain "biogenesis" but it doesn't purport to. It says there is a mechanism by which complexity emerges. That mechanism is well understood, has been observed in practice, and can be simulated computationally. There is nothing to suggest any reason to think that, in the presence of liquid water, some other gunk, and sufficient time, life won't always arise.

So what? If that's what happens, and there is a Designer, then that's the way the Designer built it.

On the other hand, if there's no Designer, and that's the way it happens, isn't that pretty astonishing in itself?

michael reynolds

The Catholics are the smart Christians. They play the long game. And because they play the long game they understand that it is destructive to faith to reach for empirical support. Scientific theory can shift -- it's supposed to -- and the Catholics want faith to be untouched by the winds of change. They understand that faith is not supposed to have evidentiary support.

Catholics have been at the game for a long time, they've survived, they have some skills. They carry the weight of Christendom, even to this day. By comparison, evangelicals are pretty much idiots and Jehovah's Witnesses, of course, are a dumb as Labrador Retrievers.

In fact, here's my helpful list of Christian denominations matched with average IQ's among church heirarchy:

Roman Cathholic: 130
Episcopalian: 125
Lutheran: 110
Presbyterian: 100
Methodist: 100
Mormon: 95
Southern Baptist: 90
Assemblies of God: 85
Hillbillies-with-Snakes: 64
Jehovah's Witness: 19
Jews For Jesus trace

This list is entirely reliable and accurate.

Schonborn Site

If you are interested in more information on Cardinal Schonborn, as well as his views and ongoing contributions to this debate, you might be interested in visited the site/blog I direct:




"Jews for Jesus, trace" -- I love it.

I actually know a very bright Methodist and (are you ready for this?) a very bright Mormon (convert). But then, they're not in the church hierarchy.


I was, altho the consensus is that I look less of a Yid than my siblings, approached on the street 25 years ago by a Jew for Jesus. I responded with a big smile, "My son's baptised Catholic." None of them have bothered me since.

Tom Strong

Most Mormons are bright. They do a very good job of encouraging their kids to be educated, well-informed citizens. Though they do seem to have a marked cultural disposition towards science-fiction.


"There is nothing to suggest any reason to think that, in the presence of liquid water, some other gunk, and sufficient time, life won't always arise."


Give me one reason to think that it will.
And first you say there is no reason to doubt life could just create itself, just like that. And then you go on to say it would be astonishing.
Well yeah, it would be astonishing, because there is absolutely no reason to think it could happen.
How can you be astonished at something you believe is so easy and probable?

"On the other hand, if there's no Designer, and that's the way it happens, isn't that pretty astonishing in itself?"


If it can happen "by itself," then there is something about the basic nature, the "design" of matter and energy, that predisposes it to happen. How did that happen?



I think there is a natural "law of complexity," and this is related to the idea of a universal intelligence.
If the universe is intelligent, if it is made out of information (whatever exactly information is), then we might expect it to evolve towards higher levels of complexity.

If there is a natural law of complexity, then neo-Darwinism is wrong. The mutations are not just random errors -- they are the result of an intelligent and creative striving.

michael reynolds

They're living in Salt Lake City. How bright can they be? Contrast that with the Roman Catholics and Rome.

My problem with the Mormons is that they apparently didn't think the story of the Bible was quite crazy enough. Virgin birth, a God who is exterminating people one minute and running on about meekness the next, resurrection, the schizo raving of Revelations. Not enough for the Mormons, they need buried tablets, magic decoder stones, an angel named Moroni (seriously, how tough was middle school for that guy?) and wars between Indian tribes over who would be the beta version of the Jews?

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