Hi all, a few years ago I lacked the skill and resources to implement a full-scale, dedicated project to host the "Museum of Ignorance" a project to rebuke the lack of education brought about by creationists, bozos, pathological liars, snake-oil salesmen, well-meaning celebs, politicians and the like. In fact, anything that spreads by lack of knowledge: ignorance in other words. You might think of it as an antidote to Conservapedia but I'd like to think this project will be more leveled than that trash.

Remember: an ignorant person is not necessarily stupid; although stupid people are often mind-beggaringly ignorant too.

For example, under the entry for Origin of Species, we'd explain that the word speciation is different to abiogenesis: a red-herring brought about by ignorance of the work - AND doesn't remove the need for a god. Similarly, under Theory, we will discuss the difference between an idea and a scientific theory.

Sure, this has been done before, but MoI replaces entries with "exhibits" just like a real museum and it's aimed at poorly educated people; unlike Wikipedia & talkorigins which can get raveled in techno-babble.

The museum's job will be to effectively and above all, simply debunk any crazy meme no matter how old it is: from Jesus's promises to return (before 100AD) right through to Andrew Wakefield's idiotic research into MMR. No topic is off limits but everything should be accessible to a person of average intellect and poor general knowledge.

Right, so I have the domain - and the space on a dedicated server of our own running LLMP stack (Lighttpd in place of Apache) so it's capable of handling a very busy site: and one that can grow.

This is its genesis. In order to succeed it's going to need some participation from people like you. If Dr. Meaden will forgive my indulgence, I would like suggestions for:

* A Logo.
* Software to drive it - TikiWiki is the front runner right now, but I do have a proprietary engine we might be able to use.
* Volunteers to provide the articles.
* Anything else...

This will be a god-free zone! Articles on faith (it's negative and positive effects) would also be welcome provided they're not intended to alienate those who cling on to these ideas. Much as I respect Prof. Dawkins, he has actually helped to give us a bad name. Perhaps this site can help, in some small way, to redress that balance.

This is the sort of clever tomfoolery we're out to prove is a pack of stinking B/S!


Where computer expert and author, Perry Marshall writes:

"But communication theory shows us that Evolution by Random Process is a hypothesis without proof."

Which is wrong in more ways that I can imagine. This is going to be a fun ride!

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The exhibits are examples of ignorance, yes.

The discussion under each exhibit explains how the error is drawn and corrects it.

Sample exhibits: Ken Ham; George W Bush; Perry Marshall (see post for his wisdom); Dr. Andrew Wakefield; Theory; and so on... Does that clear it up (and thanks for joining this discussion - I value every comment).
Much as I respect Prof. Dawkins, he has actually helped to give us a bad name

How is that?
Prof. Dawkins gives them a target to aim for: they hold him up as the high priest, intransigent and self-righteous.

As right as Richard is and as wrong as they are, this gives them a traction I don't like.
That's not his fault though, that would be done, and is done, to anyone that stands up for atheists skeptics and rationalists. Should we all just cower so there is no one to point at?
Not at all. Quite the opposite in fact. But I have to admit (and Prof. Dawkins is a hero of mine second only to Prof. Sagan) that he's made me cringe once in while. Since he started writing these books, things have gotten worse, not better.

However, in times when he has been able to actually help, he's just vanished into the ether.

For example, take Sir Peter Vardy. His people promoted creationism in UK schools. The place is still run by rampant Xians. Dawkins makes occasional mention of this - but why didn't he add his weight to the campaign to get Vardy OUT of education?

The NSS and BHA are doing that - but only Prof Dawkins wields sufficient power to get something done; and he hasn't, preferring instead to make millions writing page-turners that preach to the converted.
Calling people Nazi's isn't going to help any. I stopped reading your post at that point.
I think Larry has a point, Susan, even if he is being blunt.

It's matter of historical record that Ratzinger was a member of the Hitler youth - perhaps an unwilling conscript, I really don't know and we cannot rely on the RC church to clarify that point as its record on honesty is anything but.

Ratzinger was, nevertheless, the man (while still a Cardinal) who set out the church's method for dealing with child abuse by its clerical staff - basically by silencing those involved. I have to wonder if this is one of the reasons he now holds the papal post. That treatise must have made a lot of his brethren sleep a little easier.

I certainly won't censure Larry for speaking his mind on MoI.com - but as a wiki others might well choose to. I think we have to consider that without embracing the most extreme views (among our peers) we cannot arrive at a decent middle ground.

Consider the group's ability to accurately guess the weight of an animal just by looking at it. When all guesses are averaged out, the result is usually remarkably accurate. A place where the ridiculous can be openly as clearly ridiculed is necessary.
There may not be a single thing I agree with the Pope. However, using the single "... was a member of the Hitler youth" fact as an argument for their agreement to Nazis beliefs is utter bullshit!

I'm sorry. I don't care what country you're from but if you are an impressionable youth surrounded by overwhelming and effective propaganda while your country is at war, you're very likely to very patriotic towards your nation. And unfortunately the means to so was to join the Hitler youth. Maybe Ratz some how everything the Nazis were doing - I highly doubt it - then that's a whole other discussion. And yes I known Hitler started the war.

How many young Americans were eager to join the the Mexican War? How many young Englishmen were eager to support the English colonization of the world? I don't know but I'm pretty sure it was significant.

Note, this post only regards that particular statement. It does not regard any other comments by Marc, Susan, or Larry.

Note, this is not a defense of 'I was just following orders' defense. That is a completely different issue regarding adults who should known what they were doing.

Note, I realize this is some what of a knee jerk reaction but I think a fair one.
About the Hilter Youth: I met a German citizen who had grown up under the Nazi regime. Yes, she had been a member of the Hilter Youth, but not by choice. She explained it to me that it was like going to school in America; you just had to, or you and your parents got in trouble with the government. She also told me it was like the Girl Scouts; they spent their time learning about how to live in the wild, camp out, hike. I'm sure they got the Nazi propaganda preached at them, but she didn't discuss that.

I met this woman when I was 13 in 1971; I believe she and Ratzinger are about the same age.

Though I don't agree with anything the present pope has said or done, he was not a Nazi. Like the woman I met when I was a young teenager, he just joined the Hitler Youth because he had to do so.
I think the Pope's involvement in the Nazi movement is another indication that the "evil-atheist-nazis" were actually a bunch of gullible Christians who had been indoctrinated by centuries of Christian anti-semitism from both Catholic and Protestant (Luther) sources. An important point to bring up with those who claim that Hitler was an atheist, and by implication, so were all his followers and hench-people.
Excellent point, Louis.

It brings to mind the excellent humanitarian 'author's message' of the recent film "Letters from Iwo Jima".

I do not want to derail this thread by summarizing the plot. But I believe that it beautifully reduces the experience of a young Japanese soldier to the common denominator of all young men compelled into service and treated like cannon fodder by the megalomaniacs who control their sovereign nations.

A must see.

Not only was Hitler a Christian he was also a creationist.




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