The Postmodern Darwinist
Much good sense has been written of the intellectual harm caused by daft-as-a-brush postmodern notions that nothing is certain or objective and that all "truth" is simply a subjective social construct (see Gross et al 1996), which is then thought by postmodernists to be rationally and equally open to any self-servingly favourable human interpretation they or anyone else wishes to deploy, no matter how irrational.
This month (September 2015) I discovered the existence of a particular variety of Postmodern Darwinism. It's not that I had not earlier discovered weirdly anomalous pseudo-scholarship of Darwinists on the subject of Patrick Matthew's (1831) prior-published discovery of natural selection. It was that I have only just realised their thinking on the "Matthew question" is the same type of thinking that is shared by those who promoted and those who continue to promote the ludicrous and pseudo-scholarly Postmodern Project.
My research revealed that the father of this particular variety of the postmodern movement is Charles Darwin. He kick-started it with a series of published lies about Patrick Matthew's (1831) prior discovery of natural selection being buried solely in the appendix to his book 'On Naval Timber and Arboriculture' where it [according to Darwin] remained unread by any naturalists until Matthew brought it to his notice in 1860 - the year after Darwin replicated Matthew's discovery, without citing its originator. And Darwin's self-serving lies, discoverable as such when published in the 19th century, have been disseminated by the World's leading Darwinists, as the truth, ever since.
In her exceedingly good essay Concern for Truth: What it Means, Why it Matters (in Gross et al 1996), Susan Haack writes (p. 59):
'Commitment to a cause and desire for reputation can prompt energetic intellectual effort. But the intelligence that will help a genuine enquirer figure things out will help a sham or fake reasoner suppress unfavourable evidence more effectively, or devise more impressively obscure formulations. A genuine inquirer, by contrast, will not suppress unfavourable evidence, nor disguise his failure with affected obscurity; so, even when he fails, he will not impede others' efforts.'
And [the genuine inquirer]:
'...is not, like the sham reasoner, unbudgeably loyal to some proposition, committed however the evidence turns out. Whatever question he investigates, he tries to find the truth of that question, whatever the color of that truth may be.
And [on the subject of why truth matters]:
'Intellectual integrity is instrumentally valuable, because, in the long run and on the whole, it advances inquiry, and successful inquiry is instrumentally valuable.'
Haack is surely right. Her last point is particularly important for those interested in the history of discovery. Because veracious knowledge about the process and context of great discoveries is essential for instrumental advance of our knowledge regarding how we might increase the probability of making others. Postmodernism, with its inherent licence to disregard rationality and plain common-sense hard-evidence-led truth, disregards inconvenient facts - both old and new - and disregards objective inquiry and it disregards the premise that it is, over all, beneficial and intrinsically desirable for human beings to make instrumental progress.
Humpty Dumpty Masterplan
Today, in light of the new Big Data discovery that 100 per cent disproves the old Darwinist fixed-false-belief that Patrick Matthew's prior published full discovery of natural selection was not read pre-1858 by any naturalist, biologists, or by anyone known to Darwin or Wallace, the Postmodern Darwinist can be found in its natural habitat on The Patrick Matthew Project.There it can be observed claiming that the words and terms “absolutely” “any other” “no single person” “no one” and “none at all” are, anomalously, not to be interpreted in either the context in which they were used by Darwin and his Darwinists, or by their objective meaning. Instead, if they represent data that proves Darwin lied and the World's leading Darwinists published deliberate and credulous Darwin-parroting falsehoods then they must be interpreted as meaning the opposite to what was actually written.
Such willful refusal to engage with the facts of the everyday accepted meaning of words and phrases and the specific context in which they are used is something we might call the 'Humpty Dumpty Masterplan'. named after what Lewis Carrol (1872) wrote in Through the Looking Glass:
'When I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, 'it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.'
'The question is,' said Alice, 'whether you CAN make words mean so many different things.'
'The question is,' said Humpty Dumpty, 'which is to be master—that's all.'
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Punchinello (AKA Punchanello) is inspirational 1701 source of Humpty Dumpty and also for Mr Punch
And we all know what happened to Humpty Dumpty. But not many yet know from where he came. He evolved from Punchinello - whose traditional temperament was to be mean, vicious, and crafty clown deploying a main mode of defense that involves pretending to be too stupid to know what's going on.
The existence of postmodernism as an identifiable movement allows us to see that those who wish stupidly to believe, or like Humpty Dumpty to pretend they stupidly believe that words no longer hold their unambiguous meaning - but can be reasonably believed to hold their opposite meaning even when used in an unambiguous context that makes their unambiguous meaning unambiguous - are engaging in a sham inquiry that is no different to post-modernist thinking. Such sham-inquirers are effectively postmodernists who don't even know it because they can't see the egg on their faces.
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Patrick Matthew: The Biological Father of the Theory of Natural Selection
On which note, the 'Patrick Matthew Project', was set up in the wake of the Daily Telegraph Newspaper's reporting on my original discoveries in my book Nullius in Verba: Darwin's greatest secret. It is owned and operated by Dr Mike Weale, Reader in Statistical Genetics at Kings College London. Apart from serving as an excellent repository of everything so far discovered that Matthew wrote (some of which was first found by your's truly) what exactly is the Patrick Matthew "project"? For one thing, its comments section contains a wealth of evidence that Darwinists, as a group, have been anomalously engaging in pseudo-scholarship over the question of Patrick Matthew's right to be considered an immortal great thinker and influencer in science for 155 years - from 1860 to the present day.
The question a genuine inquirer should ask is why?
Is the Patrick Matthew Project a Darwinist postmodern project? Is it evidence of an anomalous Darwinist flight from science and reason on the question of Patrick Matthew's right to be considered an immortal great thinker and influencer in science - with full, complete and appreciable priority over Charles Darwin?
As a 'genuine inquirer' you might care to check out the comments section and discover whether or not one senior academic Darwinist is, arguably, (decide for yourself) engaging in stubborn resistance to the inevitable paradigm change brought about by new, independently verifiable, disconfirming evidence for Darwin's and Wallace's claimed independent discoveries of Matthew's prior published hypothesis.
Nullius in Verba dear readers.
The evolving story of Darwinist resistance to the paradigm change brought about by the new data can be followed on my website: