Slouching towards stupidity, part II


Who’s a pretty Cthulhu? You are. Yes you are.

I’ve dealt with DI Fellow David Klinghoffer’s special brand of stupid before (here, here and here). Now he seems to think that the concept of convergent evolution (as used by Ken Miller and Simon Conway-Morris) would lead to a H.P. Lovecraft‘s universe populated by “grotesque, obnoxious, loathsome, abhorrent, ghastly” creations and thus invalidates Miller & Conway Morris in some way. Seriously. I am not making this up. It is argumentum ad fictionum.

I’m tempted to get all Socratic with Klinghoffer and ask him to objectively delineate what the phrases “grotesque, obnoxious, loathsome, abhorrent, ghastly” actually mean but since he apparently has a track record of not actually engaging with critics, it is moot. Instead I’ll let PZ makes a nice point:

Besides, if we rewound the tape of life and ran it forward again, and evolution led to intelligent cephalopods, an anthropocentric bigot like Klinghoffer might well regard them as “grotesque, obnoxious, loathsome, abhorrent, ghastly”, but I’d think them pretty cool…and most importantly, these beings would consider their own forms beautiful, and us strangely twisted chordates as hideous.

Beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder and anthropocentrism is central to Klinghoffer’s whole viewpoint on life.