Category Archives: Science

Progressivism, Eugenics, Hubris, and Strength through Diversity (the original)

(This is the original version of this post, which I believed was gone, and was very depressed about, but then set out to recreate, the result of which is here.  But, then I found this lying in my drafts folder, and thought I’d post it here.  My information on Margaret Sanger is better in the other version, but I still like the feel of this one.  My ideal form would probably be to merge the two, but I don’t think anyone will care that much)

This grew out of a comment in a thread on FB to the point that it is virtually guaranteed to earn tl;dr response from most anybody.  But it says some things I’ve been thinking about a lot, lately, and I prefer writing when the Muse strikes.

Progressivism (as in, the dominant thinking behind the Progressive Era, not the more recent usage synonymous with Liberalism, although there is a connection) and Fascism (as in, the dominant thinking behind the Nazi and Fascist movement in Germany and Italy), are both based in the notion that massive, centralized power in the State can and should be used to alter the nature and state of humanity and improve it. Continue reading Progressivism, Eugenics, Hubris, and Strength through Diversity (the original)

Progressivism, Eugenics, Hubris, and Strength through Diversity

This is the second attempt to create a post that explains some things I’ve been thinking on for a while now. The original version was essentially complete, and I was just ready to push “publish,” but I decided to spell-check it first, and spell-check crashed FB, and I lost the whole thing. I was very, very sad. And angry. But I really, really liked what I said, so I’m going to try this again. But I’m going to write it in OOo Writer, and paste it in here when I’m done, because I don’t want to try a third time. It came in response to a comment connecting Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood and her ideas about eugenics and Adolph Hitler and his ideas about eugenics, where another commenter said that that comment displayed ignorance and lack of insight.

There is more merit to the comparison than you might think. Progressivism of Sanger’s time shares some key core beliefs to the Fascism of Hitler: the biggest of which is a belief that centralized political power, concentrated in the hands of the “better” people (defined, essentially, as the more-enlightened) could alter and improve the world, nature, humanity and human nature. Their differences, when it came to eugenics, were primarily those of method and means. Sanger preferred to keep the less “fit” from breeding by means of contraception, while Hitler preferred to gather them into camps, taking what he could that he wanted from them, and killing them in startling numbers. Clearly, these differences are very significant, and the latter are very (correctly) repugnant by today’s standards. But the goal was the same – improve the human race by stopping the less desirable from breeding. Sanger also shared Hitler’s belief that lighter-skinned people were superior to darker skinned people, but is, evidently, miscast as a vicious racist by several misattributed quotes or quotes out of context.
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Religion and Science

Richard Dawkins, who nominally started this whole conversation, and whose picture is here to allow me to post this to Pinterest.

This is a collection of excerpts from a conversation I took part in with some other uncorrelated Mormons on Facebook  (some with 5+ scores on the Dawkins Scale), in response to an article pointing out how Richard Dawkins had “admitted” that he wasn’t totally certain of the nonexistence of God (which was determined by several in the thread to be neither news nor as significant as the person posting the link seemed to think).

My part began quite innocently, in response to the person who originated the thread saying “I think it is foolish to believe that we can see, or have access, to everything that is.”  I said:

It’s also unscientific. Science is limited to things we can see or have access to. It has nothing of value to say about anything beyond that, [n]or can it predict how long or far we will be able to mine the pile of things we can see or have access to to bring us further understanding or technical progress.
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