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Aug 31 2012

Anybody who resorts to tactics of desperation like this

A blast from the past at the Richard Dawkins Foundation (of which Paula Kirby is the UK head), December 15, 2006.

The following is an email sent by William A. Dembski to Richard Dawkins along with other prominent Darwinists, particularly those who defended Darwinism during the Dover Trial.

There’s a Christmas present for you at my website.

– a flash animation that features each of you prominently (some of you are probably aware of it already). We’re still planning a few enhancements, including getting Eric Rothschild in there and having Judge Jones do the actual voiceovers himself (right now it’s me speeded up though it’s his actual words). In return for the judge doing himself, we’ll drop some of the less flattering sound effects. We would have included Prof. Padian, but the images of him on the internet weren’t of sufficient quality (I’m copying Prof. Padian — if you send me a hi res jpg of yourself, I’m sure we can work you in — you were after all the expert witness at the trial).

Best wishes, Bill Dembski

How festive. What a pleasant friendly winter solstice joke.

Or was it. The recipient didn’t think so.

Reponse from Richard Dawkins:

Anybody who resorts to tactics of desperation like this has to be a real loser. Dembski is a loser, and it now looks as though he KNOWS it. My guess is that he will try to take it down when he realizes how foolish it makes him look. Josh, can we can keep a copy, after he tries to remove it from his own website?

Hmm.

Update: Here it is, on the original site, where Dembski found it. Apparently it had farts, but the hosts came over all adult and removed that aspect. What’s left is totally adult and clever.

H/t Gerry.

14 comments

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  1. 1
    Philip Legge

    Oh dear, I hadn’t been exposed to that before. What on earth have I just seen? And it had extra sound effects that have now been expunged? (I suppose these are now silent and deadly.)

    By the way, a few of us (Aratina, supernorbert, and myself) said on the previous thread that this isn’t likely to be Paula’s work, but that she has just tweeted something that has been Photoshopped by someone else:

    @Dianora_1 Thanks Diane. Wish I could take the credit for the pic, but glad Sisterhood of the Oppressed resonated with you.

    (Astute observers will notice the vacuous Entity highlighted earlier in that Twitter conversation.)

  2. 2
    Ophelia Benson

    Yes, I thought it was probably someone else’s. I took care not to say she’d created it. She didn’t bother to say that in the tweet though. I can’t explore the antecedents because she has me blocked on Twitter.

  3. 3
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Well, she promotes it, she sees it as the mature argument of the month, apparently (no that ain’t no quote), so the only aspect in which the question “is that her creation” matters is in respect to her skills with Photoshop.

  4. 4
    Raging Bee

    Yep, that’s how the Isaac Newton of “information theory” rolls.

  5. 5
    Don Quijote

    As my old dad used to say. “With friends like these, who needs enemies.”

    I think I’ll stick with debating the catlicks in my dark corner.

  6. 6
    Paul Durrant

    You do know that that silly flash animation was created by William A. Dembski (et al.), not by The Richard Dawkins Foundation, don’t you?

    Dembski didn’t find it, he created it.

    Or have I just missed a big in-joke somewhere?

  7. 7
    Ophelia Benson

    …What?

    Did you read the post at all? Obviously RDF didn’t create it. Dembski didn’t either, though, he got it from the third site, which I linked to.

  8. 8
    Paul Durrant

    I read the post carefully. I also read other information about this silly animation. And I’ve read the comments here.

    I’m obviously missing something, or you’re missing something.

    The quoted email from Dembski says “at my website” and “We’re still planning a few enhancements” and says that the voice for the judge is his own (Dembski’s) voice speeded up. Clearly the flash was made by Dembski.

    (looks around for other info)

    Ohhh…. now I understand. I hadn’t read your previous post. You’re making a comparison between this silly animation which the RDF rightly derided, with the silly photoshopped image that Paula Kirby has publicised.

    Yes, Paula does seem to be shooting herself in the foot over this.

  9. 9
    nicholasmatzke

    As a bit of trivia, when it was originally announced Dembski didn’t let on that it was his own voice in the animation, that was discovered later when some clever person slowed it down:

    http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2006/12/bwa_ha_ha.html

  10. 10
    Ophelia Benson

    Ha! That’s some amusing trivia.

    Beg pardon, Paul, I thought the other site was non-Dembski.

  11. 11
    Arthur

    I think it was clear from her “Sisterhood” essay that Paula wasn’t the most thoughtful figure in the atheist movement.

    This latest offering, and those childish tweets, are very disappointing.

    It occurred to me while observing the rapid expansion of members and interesting reading material appearing on the Atheist+ forum that when the dust finally settles on this fractious business, people like Paula Kirby and Phil Mason (“Thunderf00t”) are going to be left feeling and looking stupid.

    And they’ll only have themselves to blame. They’re on the wrong side of history.

  12. 12
    Deepak Shetty

    Anybody who resorts to tactics of desperation like this has to be a real loser.
    Ah, the irony.

  13. 13
    NateHevens, resident SOOPER-GENIUS... apparently...

    *facepalm*

    Talk about a lack of mirrors…

  14. 14
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