GECOM Chairman should not have affiliation/allegiance to any party

first_imgDear Editor,The Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association welcomes the ruling on the consequential orders and more so, the commitment by all of the political players to abide by the said ruling and have a speedy resolution to the unprecedented situation faced by Guyana.We are cognisant of the importance placed by the Court with respect to the need for a functioning Elections Commission in order for credible elections to be held as soon as possible. In this context, we exhort the leaders of the two political parties to be fully engaged in a continuous and meaningful basis until a consequential solution is arrived at.In so doing, we also exhort the political leaders to abide by the constitutional requirements and conditionalities as it relates to the criteria for the selection of nominees of a Chairman who should not have affiliation/allegiance to any party.We do so given the grave consequences that could result in other local, regional and international judicial matters.Sincerely,GuyanaManufacturing andServices AssociationLtdlast_img read more

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Italian giants identify Southampton striker as prime summer transfer target

first_imgItalian giants Lazio are allegedly interested in offering Southampton striker Graziano Pelle a return to Italy.Pelle settled seamlessly at the south coast club after a £9m summe move from Feyenoord, scoring nine goals in his first 12 games under Ronald Koeman.The goals have dried up since and the Italian is yet to register for the Saints in 2015, but did score in the 1-1 draw with England on Tuesday night.According to Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport, the Serie A Champions League chasers have identified Pelle as a prime transfer target, although the 29-year-old may have to take a pay cut.Pelle could replace German striker Miroslav Klose at Lazio, whose future is uncertain amid rumours of a move to the Premier League. Graziano Pelle 1last_img read more

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Exclusive – Burnley legend unsurprised by interest in Clarets’ striker Danny Ings

first_imgBurnley legend Robbie Blake believes current Clarets’ striker Danny Ings deserves a big money move if, as expected, he leaves Turf Moor at the end of the season.Ings netted the winner in Burnley’s 1-0 victory at Hull yesterday but was powerless to stopping the Clarets becoming the first team to be relegated from the Premier League after other results went against them.The England Under-21 forward is out of contract at the end of the campaign and has been linked with a move to Liverpool and Manchester United, and Blake is unsurprised by the level of interest in Ings.“Danny has not signed a contract so you’d understand if he’s got offers – he’s a top striker. He’s scored goals and done very well in games that have really mattered for his own personal side of it,” said Blake.“I watched him against United at Old Trafford and he was unplayable. I’m pretty sure he’ll be sought after and they [Burnley] will have to bring in someone else.”While admitting Burnley’s relegation to the Championship always seemed likely, Blake has backed his former side to hit back immediately due to their stable financial situation.“We knew virtually all season with the budget and players they had that they would be in or around the drop zone,” added the 39-year-old.“They could have gone out and spent a little more but it would be a big risk for the football club. It’s disappointing but they are in a great financial situation so they could come straight back up.”last_img read more

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first_imgPaul McVeigh for Letterkenny IT pictured on attack against Blanchardstown IT in Letterkennny on Wednesday, the game ended 2-1 in favour of Letterkenny with McVeigh scoring the winning goal. (photo Paddy Gallagher)The Division 1 Colleges and Universities League has Letterkenny IT on 9 points having defeated Blanchardstown IT 2-1 on Wednesday in match 4 of the CUFL competition.The opening goal came on the 13th minute from Blanchardstown’s Curtis Durning, converting from close range, as a result of a corner conceded by the home team.Martin Doherty clears a Blanchardstown attack for Letterkenny IT in the CUFL game in Letterkenny , as Feargal Harkin and Ryan Connolly watch closely. (Photo Paddy Gallagher)The 27th minute saw one of Letterkenny’s two valid penalty claims turned down , as Paul McVeigh appeared to be taken down in the area while in pursuit of a through pass from Daire McDaid, the team captain.Indeed the Termon man’s passing was influential throughout the entire game, crossing superbly for Liam Doherty who just failed to connect at the Blanchardstown post. A few minutes later. Liam Doherty’s attempt was rewarded shortly afterwards with a finish courtesy of a through pass from Dean Larkin, on the half hour mark, to bring the score level.The half time score remained 1-1, and Letterkenny, making one change at the break ,pursued their second goal with renewed vigour.Attempts from McVeigh, who worked tirelessly up front, and from Dean Larkin were finally rewarded with Paul McVeigh’s winning goal following a passing move by Kevin Doran, who came on as a replacement for Ryan Connolly.The Rathmullan man passed from midfield to Dean Larkin who sent Paul McVeigh through on goal to slot home the winner from 12 yards. It was a fitting reward for the forward’s work throughout the game. LYIT: Mark McElhinney, Jamie Boyle, Fearghal Harkin, Peter Doherty, Ross Coughlan, Daire McDaid, Kevin Doherty, Marty Doherty, Paul McVeigh, Dean Larkin, Ryan Connoly Subs: Daren Gallagher for Marty Doherty, (HT), Kevin Doran for Ryan Connolly, Cian Mulligan for Liam Doherty, Keelan McElwaine for Dean Larkin, Keelan McDaid, Conor Doherty.SOCCER : LYIT ON VERGE OF LEAGUE SUCCESS was last modified: November 4th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegalLYITsoccerlast_img read more



first_imgThe Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin has called for a clear commitment from the Minister for Health James Reilly on the supports that will be provided to Letterkenny General Hospital in the coming months to get it back up and running to full capacity.Deputy Martin visited the hospital today and described the damage caused by last week’s flooding as ‘devastating’. He commended the remarkable work of staff and management in keeping all patients safe and comfortable during what is an unprecedented crisis.“The sheer scale of the devastation following last week’s floods has to be seen to be believed. This level of damage is unprecedented for any Irish hospital in living memory, and there are serious implications for health service provision right across the North West,” said Deputy Martin. “I want to commend the remarkable efforts of staff who have worked tirelessly since last Friday in the face of extremely difficult conditions to look after patients and keep the hospital going. They must be given every support possible as the recovery effort continues.“I am calling on the Minister for Health James Reilly to clearly outline the supports that will be provided to Letterkenny General Hospital in the coming months. It is crucial that this goes beyond the current emergency phase. Letterkenny General Hospital is one of the busiest hospitals in the country and is critical to the health services of the North West region. The Minister must commit to providing the necessary resources in the medium and longer term to ensure that all services available at the hospital prior to this crisis are fully restored.”Mr Martin was joined on his visit today by local Fianna Fáil representatives Charlie McConalogue TD, Pat the Cope Gallagher MEP, Cllr Ciarán Brogan, Cllr Dessie Larkin and Cllr Victor Fisher.  MICHEAL MARTIN CALLS FOR ‘CLEAR COMMITMENT’ TO LETTERKENNY HOSPITAL was last modified: July 31st, 2013 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:MICHEAL MARTIN CALLS FOR ‘CLEAR COMMITMENT’ TO LETTERKENNY HOSPITALlast_img read more



first_imgMinister James Reilly officially opens the new Emergency Department and Medical Block today. (Tullygay Pictures)HEALTH Minister James Reilly promised today that he will change the status of Letterkenny Hospital from a general facility to a Regional Hospital.Mr Reilly was in the hospital today to officially open €24M facilities.Asked if he was not prepared to give the hospital regional status, the Minister promised the change “during my tenure as Minister.” He wouldn’t say exactly when he would introduce the measure which would see funding to the hospital increase significantly, allowing management to increase charges for private patents.The Minister also met Betty Holmes from Donegal Action for Cancer Care who handed him a letter complaining that he had refused to have a meeting with her organisation.“Are you going to give the new hospital the staff it needs?” Ms Holmes asked the Minister as unveiled a plaque.She told Donegal Daily the Minister later promised a longer meeting with her. “The impact on vital health services as a direct result of budget shortfalls and the recruitment embargo at Letterkenny hospital must be discussed,” said Ms Holmes.The Minister later said the new facilities was a “hugely positive step forward.”He said the Government investment in cancer services at Altnagelvin Hospital was one of the many cross-Border developments in health care which would deliver better services for the people of Donegal.This would include cross-Border air ambulance services, working more closely with Enniskillen Hospital and developing services in Lifford that could serve the people of Strabane.    ‘I’LL GIVE LETTERKENNY HOSPITAL REGIONAL STATUS’ – MINISTER was last modified: March 22nd, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more


Crowds brave heat to attend last day of L.A. County Fair

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 “She’s just fantastic,’ Grijalva said. “There’s something for ev erybody.’ Yearwood is among the top in her industry, Fair spokeswoman Wendy Talarico said. “It’s a nice way to finish the Fair,’ she said. “We’re thrilled to have her here.’ No attendance figures were available, Talarico said, but they received positive feedback on the new schedule. The Fair opened on an additional fourth weekend and was closed Mon days and Tuesdays. Business is slow on Mondays and Tuesdays and picks up on the weekends, so the new schedule worked out well, said Tony Fiori, marketing director for Ray Cammack Shows, Inc., which operates the carnival rides. Sunday lived up to its name, but the heat didn’t keep people away from the last day of the Los Angeles County Fair. The closing concert also brought out fans. “We’re here because of the Trisha Yearwood concert,’ Whittier resident Gloria Grijal va said. “It’s the only reason I’d come out into the heat and the crowds.’ She had never seen Yearwood in person, although Grijalva said she’s been a fan through out her career. “We commend them for that risk- taking,’ he said. “We’re very pleased going into the last Sunday.’ The new schedule gave them an extra week to sell and also al lowed a break early in the week, said Kevin McPherson, sales representative for Bert’s Mega Mall in Covina, which had a booth at the Fair. Many people stop by just to look, but coming to the Fair is good exposure for the company, he said. He didn’t try out any rides at the Fair, but did enjoy some food. “The food is always good here,’ McPherson said. “Everyone raises the prices for food. We come here and lower our price.’ A new attraction at the Fair, SportsFest!, gave visitors a chance to clock their fastball, shoot hoops and get in the bat ting cage. Servando Villalobos, 29, of Lyn wood didn’t have much luck hitting a 60-mph fastball. “I thought it would be easy, but it’s not,’ he said. He spent the day eating and drinking, and had a simple rea son for coming out on the last day of the Fair. “It’s my only day off from work,’ Villalobos said. Rodney Tanaka can be reached at (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2230, or by e-mail160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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Another life in Arnold’s hands

first_img Schwarzenegger, however, is fitting the pattern of modern-day governors, as the life-and-death power bestowed on the kings of England and transferred to governors of the United States has become a little-used option in the three decades since states resumed executions. “His thinking seems at odds if one of his concerns for clemency is to make sure you don’t execute an innocent man,” Satris said in an interview. “That you are gonna require an applicant to confess or admit their guilt means the truly innocent wouldn’t qualify for clemency.” In Williams’ case, Schwarzenegger said the condemned inmate did not atone for his sins because he neither said he was sorry nor admitted guilt. “If ever there were a case for clemency, this was it,” said state Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero, D-Los Angeles. Schwarzenegger, however, didn’t agree. “Stanley Williams insists he is innocent, and that he will not and should not apologize or otherwise atone for the murders of the four victims in this case,” the governor wrote. “Without an apology and atonement for these senseless and brutal killings, there can be no redemption.” Such a philosophy places condemned inmates in a paradoxical situation, defense lawyers said. Courts normally entertain last-minute appeals based on claims of innocence. All of which means a condemned inmate who argues his innocence is likely doomed under Schwarzenegger, which increases the possibility of someone being wrongly executed, attorneys said. “Clemency is a safety valve for what the courts can’t fix, and to die because you don’t admit your guilt is not what clemency is about,” said Stephen Greenwald, a capital defense attorney and president of Metropolitan College of New York. “Clemency is looking at other facts outside the court record and making a judgment from the concept of mercy for some larger idea of justice.” Allen was sentenced to death for hiring a hit man who murdered three people at a Fresno market. Allen, who was already in prison for murder, had the trio killed because he feared their testimony would hurt his chances of prevailing on appeal, prosecutors said. The convicted hit man, Billy Ray Hamilton, also is on Death Row. Prosecutors said Hamilton was following Allen’s orders when he killed Bryon Schletewitz, Douglas Scott White and Josephine Rocha. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! SAN FRANCISCO – The state’s oldest convict on Death Row asked Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger for clemency Tuesday, a day after the governor rejected a similar bid and let Crips co-founder Stanley Tookie Williams die by lethal injection. Clarence Ray Allen, who ordered the hits of three people at a Fresno market while he was behind bars at Folsom State Prison in 1980, said he’s too frail to be put to death as scheduled Jan. 17. Allen, 75, says his physical infirmities, including a recent heart attack, have left him nearly deaf and blind and warrant a reprieve. He is also in a wheelchair. “He prays for that mercy because he is aged and infirm, suffering from chronic diseases that have been aggravated by the grossly inadequate medical treatment he has received at San Quentin and that have left him unable to walk, nearly blind, hard of hearing, and so physically incapacitated that his execution for the purpose of incapacitating him from the commission of further crime is manifestly unnecessary,” attorney Michael Satris wrote Schwarzenegger. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake While Satris also questions Allen’s guilt, the petition presents Schwarzenegger – who has rejected all three petitions for clemency that have come before him – with a far different claim: that physical infirmities are grounds for clemency. The three condemned inmates whose bids for clemency were rejected by Schwarzenegger either asserted their innocence or claimed they should be spared because they behaved well in prison or, in Williams’ case, argued both. Williams maintained his innocence in the shooting deaths of four people in a pair of 1979 Los Angeles County holdups and also claimed he was redeemed in prison because he preached peace, wrote children’s books and urged young people to turn away from gangs. Schwarzenegger suggested in Williams’ refusal letter Monday that admitting guilt and apologizing are necessary for clemency to even be considered. Williams was executed and declared dead at 12:35 a.m. Tuesday. That has left legal experts wondering whether clemency, which in California was last granted in 1967 by Gov. Ronald Reagan, is even attainable under the Schwarzenegger administration. In the first two clemency petitions, Schwarzenegger ruled it out entirely, saying the courts had spoken – positions taken by all California governors confronted with the issue since Reagan. last_img read more

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first_imgThe Beach Hotel in Downings.Three people have been hospitalised after a fire at the Beach Hotel in Downings overnight.The fire started in a bedroom of the hotel just before midnight but it is understood that smoke spread through the building quickly.The alarm system was raised and staff and members of the fire service rushed to the scene. Donegal Daily understands that staff were forced to form a human chain to help rescue a resident just before the emergency services arrived.The emergency services are investigating the cause of the fire.Three people, understood to be all staff from the hotel, were hospitalised for smoke inhalation.However, their injuries are not understood to be seriously hurt. The hotel remains open for business and the owners are stressing that the fire was confined to one bedroom. THREE HOSPITALISED AFTER FIRE AT DONEGAL HOTEL was last modified: October 7th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:BEACH HOTELdonegalDowningssmokelast_img read more


Texas Press Perpetuates ID Myths

first_img Debating:  We need more well-educated, prepared people like Casey Luskin to hold their own against the bigots in debates, for one thing.  Be sure you can articulate the ID position with clarity, without getting sidetracked or flustered by the anti-ID talking points.  The debate will usually not change the bigot, but will impress those overhearing the conversation. Stick to the issue!  So many arguments get dragged off onto tangents, because people opposed to ID typically have a lot of other hot buttons about religious people or conservatives.  Don’t dodge their questions, but return immediately to the issue.  If you can just get agreement on what the definition of intelligent design is, consider it a victory.  It will get the ball rolling, and get the person thinking along new lines. It is especially important at school board meetings not to get sidetracked onto religion, the Bible, age of the earth, and other topics that are not part of the issue being debated.  Such tangents play right into the bigots’ hands.  They drool when well-meaning Biblical creationists toss them religious red meat (conveniently blinding themselves to their own religious premises; explore the Darwin’s God blog).  Next day your quote will be taken out of context and blasted all over the newspapers as proof that “intelligent design is religion.” At school board meetings, or in private conversation, when responding to someone who ignorantly presents the evolutionist talking points, learn the art of parry.  Turn the evolutionary talking points against themselves.  Turn a red herring back to the trail; talk about “separation of dogma and state.”  When the leftist clergyman says “True religion can handle truth in all its forms,” respond that “True science can handle all the evidence.”  When they say, “ID is creationism in a thin veneer of pseudoscience,” respond that “Evolutionism is atheism in a thin veneer of just-so stories.” Use satire: “Yes, you’re right; we need to defend the rights of students to see fraudulent embryo drawings.”  Use humor: “On this issue, ‘mainstream science’ is up the creek without a paddle.”  Notice: parrying propaganda is not propaganda when it deflates the propaganda and returns the focus back to the issue.  That is rhetoric, one of the classical arts, in the most honorable sense of the word. In private conversation: “do not cast your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces” (Matthew 7:6).   This proverb by Jesus from the Sermon on the Mount is good advice for everyone.  Don’t waste your time with bigots.  Try to have rational conversations with those willing to listen.  Win the honest inquirers over – and get them to vote. In each of these articles, Luskin not only quoted his opponents accurately and demonstrated knowledge of their arguments, but refuted them with detailed references, quotes, and arguments, refraining from ad hominem attacks. Luskin is no stranger to anti-ID talking points.  Earlier this month in a radio interview, hot talker Thom Hartmann used all the tricks of the trade to portray him as an uneducated, religiously motivated, creationist zealot.  Hartmann’s strategy may have backfired.  Many listeners believe Luskin won the day, responding with clarity and reasoned arguments.  Readers of mainstream press articles such as Vertuno’s miss out on this lively debate.  They get their information handed to them by reporters who reprint old boilerplate talking points, and know how to massage the presentation for a desired outcome. If you want to be informed and forearmed in the evolution controversies, it is imperative you know Baloney Detecting.  Vertuno’s ignorant presentation shows that he didn’t do any homework on the issues.  He failed as a reporter – someone who should stick to the issue, the whole issue, and nothing but the issue.  He tailored every word, every quote, every paragraph to make his bias look good and ID look bad.  Propaganda tricks are everywhere: loaded words, red herrings, fear-mongering, glittering generalities, big lies, half truths, unsupported broad-brush assertions.  His definition of intelligent design was lifted right off the NCSE talking points.  Where else does a reporter quote the enemy’s definition of someone’s position?  The Discovery Institute defines ID as the view that “certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, rather than an undirected process such as natural selection.”  That’s it – no God, no Jesus, no “Higher Power.”  You can use that definition to infer the cause of an arrowhead, a sculpture, a mysterious death, an alien signal, a message in a string of bits, or an intelligent cause behind DNA.  Legitimate science uses intelligent design already – is it “bad science” to infer an intelligent source for skywriting in a cloud?  What does this have to do with religion?  What does this have to do with the worn-out long-misunderstood cliché, “separation of church and state”?  Nothing!  Yet the anti-ID forces continue to trot out their tired, old, thoughtless talking points. Critics will argue that Casey Luskin is not a reporter, and has an agenda, because his job is defending intelligent design.  So what?  There is nothing wrong with having an agenda, per se; every corporate board meeting has one.  Better to face your day with an agenda than with undirected, purposeless causes!  The issue is not whether one has an agenda, but whether one can support one’s position with facts and reasoned arguments from those facts.  Who did the better job, everyone?  Vertuno or Luskin?  No contest. The evolutionists and their lapdog media succeed in keeping ID at bay not by the strength of their case, but their power.  That’s vital to understand.  Advocates of ID are not (in many cases) dealing with rational people.  They’re dealing with intolerant bigots.  We use that word advisedly.  The dictionary defines bigot as “a person who is utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion.”   It has been this editor’s personal experience that the evolutionists who have knee-jerk opinions against intelligent design know nothing about ID, and they don’t want to know.  They refuse to learn about it, even when a mild, cordial invitation to a conversation, or material to read or look at, is presented.  The knee-jerk response is, “That’s religion, that’s creationism in a cheap tuxedo, and you people need to be silenced because of separation of church and state.”  If that isn’t ignorant, intolerant bigotry, what is?  Is this the kind of society you want to promote, Eugenie Scott and Joshua Rosenau?  Are you proud of your disciples?  Compare that with this site; we continuously read and report from the top evolutionist writers and papers.  Same is true for many ID advocates and creationists.  We are interested in trying to figure out how anyone can justify thinking that blind, unguided processes can produce butterflies and human brains. Assuming most readers of this site are reasonable people, even if opposed to the views presented here, we offer the pro-ID readership some suggestions for strategy.  Some reporters refuse to listen.  Advocates of intelligent design (ID) have clarified their definitions, their evidences, and their goals for years now, with numerous books, essays, web articles, papers and lectures, but the secular mainstream press continues to misrepresent their positions, and divert discussion from the issues to red herrings.  A vote by the Texas School Board concerning supplementary materials to match science standards offered the latest example.  The Associated Press story is filled with talking points and generalities; the Discovery Institute response is detailed and to the point, citing scientific journal references for support.  Will intelligent design ever get a fair hearing in the mainstream media? PhysOrg republished Jim Vertuno’s AP report.  Bias against ID was evident from the opening photo of a protestor holding up a sign, “Keep Church & State Separate.”  The board’s action had nothing to do with religion; it was about removing inaccuracies in textbook evidences for evolution, and keeping critical thinking, a core value in science, intact.  Later in his article, Vertuno did mention board member Ken Mercer offering anyone $500 who could find Jesus or God in the state science standards, but a picture is worth a thousand blurs.  Vertuno either stated or quoted typical anti-ID buzzwords and talking points throughout his short article, Finally, a word to Christians.  (At this point we take the discussion beyond intelligent design.)  We know that the real problem is not lack of information, but rebellion against the Creator.  Paul explained to the Corinthians that the reason he did not come to them with great swelling words of oratory, like the sophists and philosophers of his day (notice; their wisdom is long defunct), was that the real power to change lives is in the cross of Christ (I Corinthians 1-4).  At the core, people need to get saved.  Only then can the Holy Spirit illuminate their dead souls, and transform them from the inside.  Putting people in right relationship to their Creator “turns on the lights” in their darkened minds.  Then intelligent design makes obvious sense, while the folly of wrong paths will fall like the scales from Saul’s eyes (Acts 9), leading to a new mission in life that has lasting impact.  Christianity is not anti-intellectual.  It is not mystical.  It is grounded in history and evidence.  Christians recognize that unbelievers have a fallen remnant of the image of God; therefore, it is necessary to refute false arguments using reason, knowing that deep down, people still know in their heart of hearts that reason is valid somehow.  Christianity is the true intellectualism, recognizing the real problem, and the real cure, grounding reason in the Source it requires.(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Sidetracking the issue to politics: “The Republican-dominated board…” Tossing a red herring: “…a move some creationists hailed as a victory.” Using discredited definitions: “…intelligent design, the theory that life on Earth is so complex it was guided with the help of an intelligent higher power.” Quoting offhand slap from pro-evolution group, inferring that ID is “bad science”. Depicting evolutionists as “mainstream scientists”. Whitewashing Haeckel: “some biology materials that used drawings of embryonic similarities between species,” omitting to point out the drawings were frauds. Sidetracking to politics again: “One conservative group, Texans for a Better Science Education, had put out a call to pack Thursday’s public hearing….” Portraying evolutionists as the good guys to the rescue: “But they were outnumbered by witnesses urging the board to adopt the materials with few changes.”  Vertuno did not identify the “witnesses” or who put out a call to them. Offering platform to anti-ID voices: “I don’t want my children’s public school teachers to teach faith and God in a science classroom,” said the Rev. Kelly Allen of University Presbyterian Church in San Antonio. [Note: the vote had nothing to do with religion.] “True religion can handle truth in all its forms.  Evolution is solid science.” Offering platform to anti-ID voices, continued: “Intelligent design is creationism, wrapped in thin veneer of pseudoscience,” [Tom] Davis said. “Creation isn’t really science at all.  It’s philosophy.”  [Note: the vote had nothing to do with intelligent design.]  Vertuno did not tell who this speaker was, or what his credentials were for analyzing science standards, ID, creationism, pseudoscience, or philosophy. Using scare quotes and genetic fallacy:  Vertuno set up one proponent of the changes for debunking, by first tying him with religion, and then using scare quotes for his points:  “David Shormann of Magnolia, who runs a Christian-based math and science education software company, said evolution has too many ‘untestable’ components and can’t provide a real look at ancient life without a ‘time machine or a crystal ball.’” Giving anti-ID the last word:  Vertuno followed Shormann’s points with a professor making broad-brush accusations: “But Lorenzo Sadun, a math professor at the University of Texas, said those opposing evolution overstate gaps in the fossil record and other areas when trying to discredit the theory.” Ending with a stinger: “‘‘The theory of evolution is based on almost as much evidence as the theory of gravity,’ Sadun said.”  This confuses a physical theory with a historical theory, and begs questions about what constitutes evidence, and simply makes an assertion, not an argument. Disarm your opponent by undermining his or her basis for argument .  A materialist, for instance, has no grounds for using reason, because reason is not made of particles or forces, does not obey natural laws, and refers to logical truths that are universal, necessary, timeless and certain.  As such, reason is “supernatural” by definition.  If an evolutionist argues that creation is disqualified because it is supernatural, or starts listing all the things that make evolution “solid science,” interrupt gently and say, “Excuse me, are you trying to reason with me?”  Probable answer is, “Of course.”  Next question.  “I’m confused; can you tell me how you got reason out of a big bang, or out of an unguided, undirected, purposeless process of evolution?”  At this point, it’s game over; you just have to get your interlocutor to realize it.  Tell him, “I’m sorry, but since you cannot justify reason, I cannot allow you to use it.  I can justify it for me, because my premise is that it derives from a truthful, intelligent cause, whom I believe is God.  So I will use reason on you, but you cannot use reason on me.”  Every time he tries to argue with you, stop him.  “Sorry, you know the rules.  You cannot use reason if you cannot justify it.  It is part of my world view, but not part of yours.  Now if you want to become a theist, and affirm the existence of a personal, truthful source of reason, I will be happy to reason with you; otherwise, all you can say is nonsense, so you will have to allow me to do all the talking.”  The purpose of this tough love exercise is to hold a mirror up to the person’s self-refuting position, to expose it for the folly it is. The bias continued in Vertuno’s follow-up Associated Press story that described a compromise vote later in the day.  There, he gave the pro-evolution anti-ID group a prominent victory parade over the “ultra-conservatives” who had hoped for more accuracy in the teaching of evolution (no ultra-liberals were referenced on the pro-evolution side).  The picture painted was one of victorious scientists pushing back the forces of evil: “Today we saw Texas kids and sound science finally win a vote on the State Board of Education,” said Kathy Miller, president of the Texas Freedom Network, a group that supports mainstream scientists in the teaching of evolution and has repeatedly sparred with board conservatives over education standards. “We saw the far right’s stranglehold over the state board is finally loosening,” Miller said. The Discovery Institute is a well-known ID advocacy group, but it is instructive to compare the reporting by the anti-ID press with their coverage written by spokesman Casey Luskin on Evolution News and Views: In “Eugenie Scott Misrepresents the Law on Evolution Education,” Luskin focused on the issue before the board, that of allowing accurate teaching of evolution, including critical thinking.  He cited case law and standards in 11 other states. In a second post, responding to the mocking ad hominem attacks of a local professor.  In “University of Texas Evolutionary Biologist Andy Ellington Mocks Fellow Texans as ‘Idiots’ and ‘Laughingstocks’ for Doubting Darwin,” Luskin argued three points that show the Texas Board standards for critical thinking about evolution would actually increase scientific literacy.  Luskin refrained from name-calling against Ellington. In a third post, Luskin checked the original literature to refute claims by Ellington that the Miller-Urey Experiment was scientifically valid material for inclusion in textbooks.  Luskin quoted the actual paper Ellington cited to show that it did not, in fact, offer evidence that the Miller experiment reproduced conditions on the early earth.last_img read more

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