Jerry Coyne has unearthed a few maggoty tidbits about Rod Dreher, the Templeton director of communications. It seems the Templeton Foundation has been padding his credentials a bit, claiming that he is a 7-time nominee for a Pulitzer Prize. Dreher? A Pulitzer? Has the prize become that worthless now?
Only it turns out the operative word in that phrase is “nominee”. Anyone can be a nominee: heck, somebody could write a letter nominating me for a Pulitzer, which, if the committee has any standards at all, would go nowhere. Much like Dreher’s nominations.
The real revelation, though, is much more amusing. Dreher had one of those Templeton Fellowships, and toddled off to England to learn about the intersection of faith and science. Here’s his short summary of the experience:
The truth of the matter is that I turned up in Cambridge knowing a lot about religion, but not much about science. What I saw and heard during those two-week seminars, and what I learned from my Templeton-subsidized research that summer (I designed my own reading program, which compared Taoist and Eastern Christian views of the body and healing) opened my mind to science. It turned out that I didn’t know what I didn’t know until I went on the fellowship.
Rod Dreher is completely ignorant of science. I’d like to know how doing a compare-and-contrast essay between two clueless aboriginal superstitions gave him any exposure to scientific thinking at all. Gosh, I think I’ll go read a book about organometallic chemistry to open my mind to Zoroastrianism.