Monster Hunter Nation

Movie Review: Expelled, no intelligence allowed

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1091617/

 

Yes, I am the kind of nerd that will go to see a documentary on its opening night, and in this case, I’m glad that I did.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed Expelled.  Many “conservative” documentaries are pretty badly done, dull, witless, and just preach to the choir.  (guilty of it myself) but Expelled is well done, paced well, extremely interesting, and actually entertaining. 

 

You’ve probably heard the critics harping on it, about how it is biased, unlike other successful documentaries like an Inconvenient Truth, because according to critics, it was the BEST THING EVAR! 

 

Yes, Expelled is biased.  Good.  Sometimes the underdog side needs to get a turn too. 

 

As somebody who has tangled with the self-righteous world of Academics (‘cause guns in school are baaaad), it was really interesting to see the parallels between this topic, and other topics that I’m more familiar with.  The MO stays the same.  They misstate what you believe in to make it absurd, then they throw up every barrier they can think of, including threats and bullying, fire you if they can get away with it, vilify you in the press, then sue you.  Now where have I seen that before?

 

The best part of Expelled was when Ben went to Germany to look at the dark underbelly of Darwinian thought.  The Eugenics movement.  That part was actually very moving.

 

The most entertaining bit was when Ben interviewed that prick, Richard Dawkins, and made him look like a complete buffoon.  Word to the wise, Dick, you shouldn’t have underestimated somebody who has like 75 more IQ points than you do.  You’re being interviewed by a man that wrote speeches for presidents and knows more trivia than anybody.  He made you look like a tool, Dick.  Go back on O’Reilly, you fared a lot better there. 

On gun safety and getting your feelings hurt
Sold out on Amazon, so that's all folks

Leave a Reply

27 Comments on "Movie Review: Expelled, no intelligence allowed"

Notify of
avatar

Pederson
Guest
Pederson
8 years 2 months ago

I guess I’ll have to check it out if it ever shows up locally.

Nick
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
Having not actually seen this film, I’ll withhold judgment on what he says in the movie. But I will say this: Using the arguments of eugenics to imply that everyone who believes in evolution (thanks to the actual, observable evidence, as well as pure logic) is a Nazi is like saying that all firearms instructors are just fronts for Scientology a la Front Sight. From what I’ve read and what little I’ve seen, this movie looks to be up there on the Bowling for Columbine level of “let’s make a lot of overblown arguments that sound really good until you… Read more »
Jim
Guest
Jim
8 years 2 months ago
Ben Stein is a genius. Verifiable. He is a staunch supporter of the right. There was an essay that he penned making its way around the web that exposed the lefts political correctness for what it was. I had always thought he was entertaining before, but at that moment I gained thorough respect for the man. Thanks for profiling this movie, it really needs to get out that we may have a voice, even if the the critics flog it. And as far as implying that anyone who believes in evolution as nazi, I am kinda scratching my head on… Read more »
MadRocketScientist
Guest
8 years 2 months ago

I can’t comment to the quality of the documentary, although what I’ve heard is less than complimentary, much in the same way that the Goredom piece was.

However, the Nazi references Godwinned the whole damn thing in one shot. Any credibility Ben might have had was shot the moment he did that. I mean, the Nazis can be linked to Christianity just as easily and effectively as the can to the works of Darwin, and a lot of the quotes they took from Darwin were plucked piecemeal and presented without context.

MadRocketScientist
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
Don Gwinn
Guest
8 years 2 months ago

Eugenics =/= “Darwinism.” Eugenicists didn’t understand Darwin or the theory of evolution. You might as well tell people to beware of “Mendelism’s” dark underbelly.

Dylan Biery
Guest
Dylan Biery
8 years 2 months ago

I love Ben and his ideas most of the time. However, Expelled did not make a strong case for why ID should be taught, rather it spent to much time on the inequity of ID not being taught. Add to that the several errors already reported in the media, Expelled fails to make a point stick without overstaying it’s welcome. Ben could have made his argument better in a series of essays and left this medium to Penn and Teller.

MadRocketScientist
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
Larry I have great respect for you as a writer and as a shooter and trainer and advocate of the 2A, but in this I find you to be running on your biases and emotions, not logic and rational thought. Now, Darwin did not believe in Eugenics, or promote it (follow that link I provided, read what Darwin really said). Evolution is merely a mechanism that provides a scientific explanation for how the diversity of life came about on this tiny little mudball. Eugenicists take their bigotry and prejudices and use Darwin and evolution to justify them. There is no… Read more »
Cambo
Guest
Cambo
8 years 2 months ago
When I was in high school, I asked my biology teacher how land animals evolved from fish. All we were taught about Darwinian evolution was the natural selection process, i.e., species that are, say, harder for predators to locate will survive when others die off and will come to dominate. But natural selection doesn’t explain how water-breathing creatures devloped lungs. Lungs aren’t really necessary for the survival of a fish. Nor does it explain how land-borne animals learned to fly, nor how plants, which usually survive by photosynthesis and absorbing nutrients from the soil, can evolve to lure, capture, and… Read more »
Madrocketscientist
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
Cambo The Theory of Evolution is a little more complete than that, but you are right, there are still lots of gaps because there is not complete evidence in the fossil record. Regarding mutation and such, visible changes do not happen in a single generation, but rather minor changes occur at the DNA level until enough changes happen to cause an external adaptation/mutation. I don’t think they know what the mechanism for change exactly is, but I do believe they’ve gotten fruit flies to adapt to new environments in the lab. As for the gaps, I don’t care if a… Read more »
Nick
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
Well, Madrocketscientist pretty much said everything that I was going to. The Godwinning of the evolution debate is only the most blatant of the issues I have with the film. My more central problem is that what ID proponents are doing is saying that because there are gaps in a theory that nonetheless has at least some supporting evidence, another theory that is taken entirely on faith is just as legitimate. Want to believe in ID, or teach your kids about it? Fine, that’s your right. But science classes should be teaching science, not faith, and until there is some… Read more »
Don Gwinn
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
I’m sure I’ll see it on DVD and equally sure it’ll never play on a theater screen in this area, so I’ll just have to wait and see. I do find it interesting that Dawkins and one of the other eeeevil atheists interviewed in the film (and thanked in the credits!) showed up to a screening, having arranged their presence beforehand just like everyone else, and were told to leave. They were later accused of “crashing” the event and of “showing up without tickets” even though there were no tickets and they had phoned ahead to arrange seats just like… Read more »
Cambo
Guest
Cambo
8 years 2 months ago
Fruit flies adapting to new environments and moths changing colors are fine. It’s still a far, far cry from an organism which has no genetic traits for breathing air spontaneously being born with a lung, or land-based organisms with no particular need nor genetic traits for flight being born with wings and learning to fly. There really isn’t any middle ground here. You can either fly or you can’t. You either have lungs or you don’t. Moreover, in addition to your new wings, you have to have the inclination to use them. If you grafted eagle wings onto your Yorkshire… Read more »
Nick
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
Cambo: You’re misunderstanding the theory of evolution–as are most proponents of ID/creationism, though many seem to do so deliberately. One animal does not change into another. There is no place where “a log becomes a frog becomes a dog” as the fundamentalist crusading on campus last year put it. What there is, is tiny changes to each successive generation, over (as you said) an unfathomably long time. The idea that microevolution and macroevolution are two different things is false–macroevolution is just a whole lot of microevolution. You say that you can accept moths changing color. Presumably, that means you could… Read more »
Vaarok
Guest
Vaarok
8 years 2 months ago

Evolution is not survival of the fittest, it is culling of the least suited. Anything that survives propagates in proportion with its success.

Now, may the blessings of His Noodly Appendage be upon y’all.

http://www.venganza.org/

Vaarok
Guest
Vaarok
8 years 2 months ago

Cambo
Guest
Cambo
8 years 2 months ago
Logic dictates that saying that logic dictates your position doesn’t validate it. It implies, obviously, that if you don’t agree, well you’re just silly. Two species of birds are both still birds. At some point, however, a land or marine animal learned how to fly. Flight is not necessary for the survival of land animals. Air-breathing is not necessary for the survival of aquatic animals. Beaks are part of a bird’s genetic makep. At some point, species began to develop entirely new traits, spontaneously, successfully, and against all odds. What are the odds of a random mutation allowing a marine… Read more »
NC
Guest
NC
8 years 2 months ago
First: I CAN’T be the only one that thinks a flying Yorkshire Terrier would make an awesome pet. Second: Good lord, did someone actually make a ten-MINUTE YouTube video to argue with intelligent design people? Honestly, considering how much contempt folks have for the ID crowd, they certainly spend a lot of time thinking about them. I wish I had that kind of free time. I’ve been falling WAY behind on my Half-Life. Third: Before things get heated, let’s all remember: whether or not life evolved at random chance or God said “let there be” and it happened doesn’t change… Read more »
Mike
Guest
Mike
8 years 2 months ago
All of those in the ‘pro evolution’ camp on this thread have one thing in common: They haven’t seen the film and therefore have no idea what is actually said. A quote from the film (kinda, from memory) I think it was Ben who asked one of the scientists: “Do you think Evolution is true” (something like that) scientist: “That depends on your definition of Evolution. If you mean simply “change over time”, yes, we can see a good bit of that. But if you mean that somehow life just happened from things that were totally inorganic, than no.” Like… Read more »
Mike
Guest
Mike
8 years 2 months ago

“let’s all remember: whether or not life evolved at random chance or God said “let there be” and it happened doesn’t change your day-to-day life one iota.”
– It is not possible for you to be more wrong than you are right here.

But, I’ll just bite my tongue, because as you said, we shouldn’t turn his blog into an arguement.

Nick
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
I use the phrase “logic dictates” only in situations where one belief leads directly to another. For example, if you believe that the right to bear arms is essential to liberty, and you believe that Hillary Clinton will infringe upon the right to bear arms, logic dictates that you won’t vote for Hillary. But that’s semantics, I suppose. As for wings or lungs or whatever, you only have to look at the physical structure of animals. An x-ray of a bird’s wing looks like an exceptionally long arm, with exceptionally long fingers. Is it so hard to believe that, say,… Read more »
Kristopher
Guest
8 years 2 months ago

Yep … that is why it is science.

Science IS fallible. If a theory is wrong, it will get chucked out with the trash. This is a feature, not a bug. Theists have problems understanding this, and think it is some kind of weakness … the notion of voluntarily accepting fallibility is alien.

Religion is not fallible. You either believe, or you do not.

Miguel
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
It is called Theory, not Law and that on itself should be enough. However I do not see any inconsistency by using BOTH currents to explain life. There was a BBC TV miniseries in 1973 called The Ascent of Man by Jacob Brownoski. It was the first time I saw the conjunction of Science, Humanism and Religion as one and not mutually exclusive. Yes, Science gives us an explanation of things and the more Science shows the complex poetry of Life (from photosynthesis to gravity to conception, to how the brain works), how can any reasonable human being think it… Read more »
LabRat
Guest
8 years 2 months ago
I have no issue with the basic idea that maybe God IS the ultimate author of life. I may be an atheist/agnostic type, but I don’t find the notion fundamentally threatening, and I readily admit that maybe, at the end of the day, once we’ve covered everything science CAN cover, maybe that’s the truth. Where I have a problem with Expelled is not that it takes on academia (a target-rich environment), and not that it involves omgreligion, and certainly not that it tweaks Dawkins and his ilk, but that it is every bit as much a piece of staged, fundamentally… Read more »
Vaarok
Guest
Vaarok
8 years 2 months ago

You have lungs or you don’t? Never heard of an axolotol, a book-lung?

It’s all about gradual changes and lucky breaks. The idea of such an incomprehensibly random and uncaring system being not only functional, but successful to such a degree of complexity as we see around us grates almost antithetically on creationistic orderly-universe theory.

Doug
Guest
Doug
8 years 2 months ago

While I wasn’t going to see this film because it’s “pro-Intelligent Design” I will have to see this film now, if only because I WANT to see Ben Stein kick richard Dawkins to the curb like a narc at a biker rally.

Because I believe in God AND Evolution, and Dawkins is an annoying sack of fertilizer atheist with nothing constructive to give to society.

Evolution has a fossil record basis going back hundreds of millions of years. If such subtle development of species isn’t a magnification of the Creator, what is?

wpDiscuz