Evolution is a fact

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Terry S. Collins

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Aug 31, 1991, 9:08:37 AM8/31/91
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Darwin didn't come up with the "theory of evolution". ....There is no such
thing as the "theory of evolution" because its not a theory.Its a fact.
Darwin finally came up with a theory that held up to explain the fact of
evolution. This theory is called the "theory of NATURAL SELECTION".

There are are also other types of selection that effect evolution.One
of
the most important is sexual selection.

Ron Graham

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Aug 31, 1991, 2:26:00 PM8/31/91
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In article <1991Aug31.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu>,
am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu writes...

>Darwin didn't come up with the "theory of evolution". ....There is no such

>thing as the "theory of evolution" because its not a theory. It's a fact.

Hold on here. First let's define terms. When you say "evolution," do
you mean "development of environment-related characteristics within a
given species," or do you mean "process by which advanced life-forms
(e.g. mankind) developed from time, chance, and matter?"

If you choose the first, I applaud you. If you choose the second, I
shall await proof. You can't have a fact without proof. Get going on
it, sport. You made the claim, let's see you back it up.

>Darwin finally came up with a theory that held up to explain the fact of
>evolution. This theory is called the "theory of NATURAL SELECTION".
>There are are also other types of selection that effect evolution. One
>of the most important is sexual selection.

Are we going to be graded on this ;-)?

RG

BUMBLE

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Aug 31, 1991, 1:57:14 PM8/31/91
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In article <1991Aug31.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu>,

am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Terry S. Collins) says:
>
>Darwin didn't come up with the "theory of evolution". ....There is no such
>thing as the "theory of evolution" because its not a theory.Its a fact.

Wrong. It's a theory, just like gravity is a theory and nearly anything in
the science books is theory (even if it's called a Law). The reason for this
is that facts are indisputable, perfectly and utterly correct. Theories,
however, can never be PROVEN to be fact. They can only be proven wrong. Sure,
mounds of evidence indicate that Evolution occurred, much in the way that we
understand it. I certainly believe it. But no one can prove WITHOUT A DOUBT
that it is true, so it's just a theory.


----------------------------------- 'Hope is epidemic
Larry Rossi | optimism spreads
Internet : LPR100.PSUVM.PSU.EDU | bitterness breeds irritation
Bitnet : LPR100.PSUVM | ignorance breeds imitation'
----------------------------------- -Peart

jrs@netcom.com (John Switzer)

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Aug 31, 1991, 2:28:11 PM8/31/91
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In article <1991Aug31.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu> am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Terry S. Collins) writes:
>
>Darwin didn't come up with the "theory of evolution". ....There is no such
>thing as the "theory of evolution" because its not a theory.Its a fact.

Ah, someone who is "familiar" with the scientific method - evolution is NOT
a fact and there are still a great many unaswered questions about this THEORY.
What we have is a large number of supporting evidence that points to Darwin's
theory. There are still many other possible explanations for the evidence.

Science has been a continual process of trying to explain what we observe.
And every few generations or so, things get turned around because we suddenly
are able to observe things differently. Thus we go from Copernicus to Newton
to Einstein to Hawkings to ... etc. etc.

It never ceases to amaze me that people are so convinced that "their facts"
are the right ones and will never, ever change. And people call Rush
"narrow-minded."

--
John Switzer | "I'm safe and sound. My family
340 Mathilda #3 | also. Borland's products sell as
Goleta, Ca 93117 | well as usual." - msg from Borland
j...@netcom.com | rep during Soviet coup

nathan engle

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Aug 31, 1991, 3:38:16 PM8/31/91
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In article <31AUG199...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov> eca...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov
(Ron Graham) writes:
>In article <1991Aug31.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu>,
> am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu writes...
>
>>Darwin didn't come up with the "theory of evolution". ....There is no such
>>thing as the "theory of evolution" because its not a theory. It's a fact.
>
>Hold on here. First let's define terms. When you say "evolution," do
>you mean "development of environment-related characteristics within a
>given species," or do you mean "process by which advanced life-forms
>(e.g. mankind) developed from time, chance, and matter?"

I would say that those are both the same thing.

>If you choose the first, I applaud you. If you choose the second, I
>shall await proof.

What if we choose both? It sounds to me like you're willing to
concede the existance of grains of sand, but you don't want to concede
the existance of a beach.

Life is a beach, son.

--
Nathan Engle Software Juggler
Indiana University Dept of Psychology
nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu

Ron Graham

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Aug 31, 1991, 5:14:00 PM8/31/91
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In article <1991Aug31....@bronze.ucs.indiana.edu>,
nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu writes...

Something wrong with our news software - insists on chopping off names %-(.

>In article <31AUG199...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov> eca...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov
> (Ron Graham) writes:

>>>Darwin didn't come up with the "theory of evolution". ....There is no such
>>>thing as the "theory of evolution" because its not a theory. It's a fact.

>>Hold on here. First let's define terms. When you say "evolution," do
>>you mean "development of environment-related characteristics within a
>>given species," or do you mean "process by which advanced life-forms
>>(e.g. mankind) developed from time, chance, and matter?"

> I would say that those are both the same thing.

That's not what I meant. When I say "development of environment-related
characteristics within a given species," I meant "species" to be narrowly
defined. Am I using the wrong word? I'm talking about pigmentation
development, etc., not metamorphosis from "ape" to "man."

>>If you choose the first, I applaud you. If you choose the second, I
>>shall await proof.

> What if we choose both? It sounds to me like you're willing to
>concede the existance of grains of sand, but you don't want to concede
>the existance of a beach.

That's a good analogy, when you find those few grains of sand on a concrete
sidewalk in the middle of Cleveland, as opposed to "near" a beach, and you
have nothing else to point you to the beach.

> Life is a beach, son.

Not in this sense, pop. Do we need follow-ups to talk.origins, or will
we stay a safe distance from there?

RG

jrs@netcom.com (John Switzer)

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Aug 31, 1991, 5:40:16 PM8/31/91
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You know, no one has considered the possibility that God may have a sense of
humor and simply put all those neat bones and fossils in the ground just to
confuse us. I can imagine God with Michael and Gabriel up there in heaven
laughing their heads off:

"Oh, wait, they've just found Peking man."

"Oohh, I can't wait to see how they explain him."

"And when they finally find Noah's Ark, hoo boy, I wonder how
they'll explain those laser discs I put there?!"

Makes as much sense to me as some of the other "science" that's come
down the pike over the years.

Terry S. Collins

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Sep 2, 1991, 3:30:23 PM9/2/91
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Mr graham's o called development of environmentaly related adaptations within
a species is a theory of evolution developed by a man named Lemark. This theory
to explain the fact of evolution has been disproven.

The theory goes like this. Say you're a ....professional football player.A
wide receiver.You've discovered that by practicing stepping through tires
that you become more agile. All this agility through stepping in tires makes
you a great receiver.After ten years of workouts, this tire stepping agility
somehow cements itself in your genes through mutation and you pass it on to
your children. Never mind that you were originally terrible at stepping through
tires and had no apparent talent for this act.Your children are born great at
it.

I suggest anyone that is interested in evolution(be they pro or con) read
"THE PANDA"S THUMB" by Stephen Jay Gould. Its in your local library.

Terry S. Collins

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Sep 2, 1991, 3:37:02 PM9/2/91
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So gravity is only a theory?
How do you explain the fact that you aren't floating around the room?
There are only theories to explain gravity,none of the theories have been
proven but none the less...gravity exists.

Reminds me of the Calvin and Hobbes cartoon.Calvin is sitting on his bed and
suddenly stars floating around the room.The next day he tells his teacher
he didn't do his homework cause his parents didn't pay the gravity bill!

(stars should read starts)

jrs@netcom.com (John Switzer)

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Sep 2, 1991, 4:38:37 PM9/2/91
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In article <1991Sep2.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu> am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Terry S. Collins) writes:
>
>So gravity is only a theory?

Yes, gravity is only a theory - if it's a fact, please explain the mechanism to
me and prove it. Is it that elusive graviton? Some remnant of the Unified
Theory that I haven't heard of? Or perhaps that other idea on the fringe that
gravity is due solely to the acceleration produced by the continually expansion
of all matter in the universe, including yourself and your computer.

One of the basic rules of science is that if you're going to replace one
theory with another, the new theory must explain and somehow incorporate all
that was explained by the previous theory. Thus Newtonian physics
is incorporated
into quantum physics as a "special case" when the bodies in question are
so large in mass. Therefore, it should be obvious that the future may very
well show that gravity and our beliefs about it are only a special case of
yet another force we don't yet recognize.

Ron Graham

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Sep 2, 1991, 5:38:00 PM9/2/91
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In article <1991Sep2.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu>,
am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Terry S. Collins) writes...

>Mr graham's o called development of environmentaly related adaptations
>within a species is a theory of evolution developed by a man named Lemark.
>This theory to explain the fact of evolution has been disproven.

Possibly. But you still haven't done anything to prove the "fact" of
evolution. Are you going to? Are you even going to define your terms,
as I requested? Or are you already doing it in talk.origins, as I also
requested. Until you do something, yer hot air, mate.

The professional foolball player theory is about, oh, several thousand
generations off the theory I brought up before ;-).

RG

>I suggest anyone that is interested in evolution (be they pro or con) read
>"THE PANDA"S THUMB" by Stephen Jay Gould. It's in your local library.

Maybe I will. But you still have to back up your own claims.

Ron Graham

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Sep 2, 1991, 5:40:00 PM9/2/91
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In article <1991Sep2.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu>,
am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Terry S. Collins) writes...

>So gravity is only a theory?

Not in the same sense as evolution. Gravity is, at least, measurable
and experiments using it are repeatable. Evolution of one species to
another *new* species is neither.

>How do you explain the fact that you aren't floating around the room?
>There are only theories to explain gravity,none of the theories have been
>proven but none the less...gravity exists.
>Reminds me of the Calvin and Hobbes cartoon.Calvin is sitting on his bed and
>suddenly stars floating around the room.The next day he tells his teacher
>he didn't do his homework cause his parents didn't pay the gravity bill!

Mocking me doesn't establish yer point. Yer still hot air, mate.

RG

nathan engle

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Sep 2, 1991, 6:13:23 PM9/2/91
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In article <1991Sep02.2...@netcom.COM> j...@netcom.COM (j...@netcom.com
(John Switzer)) writes:
>In article <1991Sep2.1...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu>
>am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Terry S. Collins) writes:
>>
>>So gravity is only a theory?
>
>Yes, gravity is only a theory - if it's a fact, please explain the mechanism to
>me and prove it.

Well, much against my better judgement, I am going to enter this
discussion with the hopes of guiding the topic of discussion back to the
subject of the guy in the newsgroup name.

Gravity is not a theory, it's a fact. Newton's Law of Universal
Gravitation *is* a theory; Einstein's General Relativity is also a
theory. But gravity is not a theory. Gravity existed before Einstein and
Newton were even born, and it is measurable by reproducable experiments.
If you don't believe me then you can jump off the Tower of Pisa. That'll
show you. Gravity is a fact.

There isn't now and may never be a theory which completely explains
the mechanism that makes gravity work, but if you jump off a tower in
Pisa or anywhere else on this planet then you will achieve a direct and
personal experience of gravity that you will probably find very convincing.

We don't have to be able to explain it to make it a fact. All that's
required is that it's measurable and reproducable.

Now then. Can we please get back to Rush Limbaugh and leave the
scientific arguments in sci.physics?

John Kim

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Sep 2, 1991, 9:13:42 PM9/2/91
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Okay, all of us creationists and pure evolutionists can argue
a LONG time on this, or we can all go read David Brin and still
wonder.

But a different question. Witht he advent of modern civilization,
can mankind still evolve? Obviously those who are more successful
at looking good, making money, or not tripping over the curb
have a better chance at marrying who they want. But I think
that with technology to fix or amend a lot of our genetic
problems, bad genes will keep getting spread around.

My best example is my own eyesight. In a hunter gather
society, I would have died years ago. Of course, in a society
without books, my eyesight might still be 20/20.

Do the increasingly high salaries paid professional athletes
have the effect of improving our species?
-Case

John Kim

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Sep 2, 1991, 9:16:02 PM9/2/91
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...13478@netcom.COM> j...@netcom.COM (j...@netcom.com (John Switzer)) writes:
>You know, no one has considered the possibility that God may have a sense of
>humor and simply put all those neat bones and fossils in the ground just to
>confuse us. I can imagine God with Michael and Gabriel up there in heaven
>laughing their heads off:
>"Oh, wait, they've just found Peking man."
>"Oohh, I can't wait to see how they explain him."
>"And when they finally find Noah's Ark, hoo boy, I wonder how
>they'll explain those laser discs I put there?!"
>--
>John Switzer | "I'm safe and sound. My family

No! It was the mice! I swear, the integalactic pan-dimensional
mice did it!
-Case

jrs@netcom.com (John Switzer)

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Sep 3, 1991, 11:00:45 AM9/3/91
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In article <1991Sep2.2...@bronze.ucs.indiana.edu> nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes:
> Gravity is not a theory, it's a fact. Newton's Law of Universal
>Gravitation *is* a theory; Einstein's General Relativity is also a
>theory. But gravity is not a theory. Gravity existed before Einstein and
>Newton were even born, and it is measurable by reproducable experiments.
>If you don't believe me then you can jump off the Tower of Pisa. That'll
>show you. Gravity is a fact.

Sorry, if you can't explain it, it's not a fact - simply because we as humans
have never observed any other conflicting behavior on the macro scale doesn't
mean that what we observe is fact. For all we know, our little corner of the
universe is just one of several different possibilities. Geez, we don't even
know if matter is the same across our own galaxy - we assume it is, but we
have no way of knowing whether the charge of an electron is Alpha Centauri
is the same as what we experience here. We *think* it is, but ...

By your logic, Newtonian physics was fact until it was superceded by
the next couple of generations of physics. Facts are facts and can't be
changed by our perceptions - that's why we have to explain them before
they can be recognized as facts.

And this does have to do with Rush Limbaugh in that Rush encourages his
audience to *think* and not accept blindly everything that he or anyone
else states.

Alan Filipski

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Sep 3, 1991, 10:58:54 AM9/3/91
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In article <1991Sep2.2...@husc3.harvard.edu> ki...@husc9.harvard.edu (John Kim) writes:
>But a different question. Witht he advent of modern civilization,
>can mankind still evolve? Obviously those who are more successful
>at looking good, making money, or not tripping over the curb
>have a better chance at marrying who they want. But I think
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Thus makes no difference. "Fitness", in the sense of evolutionary
biology, means having many children who survive to reproduce.
Attractiveness is irrelevant in a monogamous society with balanced sex
ratio. Attractive people are not necessarily good breeders.

>that with technology to fix or amend a lot of our genetic
>problems, bad genes will keep getting spread around.
>
>My best example is my own eyesight. In a hunter gather
>society, I would have died years ago. Of course, in a society
>without books, my eyesight might still be 20/20.
>
>Do the increasingly high salaries paid professional athletes
>have the effect of improving our species?

Maybe-- if the high salaries allow them to buy enough cocaine so that
they kill themselves before they reproduce. But seriously,
"improvement" relative to what? who is to say what constitutes
"improvement"?

Like it or not, the "fittest" segment of our U. S. society are the
welfare mothers who have 10 children. People in the Catholic countries
of South America are much more "fit" than people in most of Europe or
China. Childless yuppies are completely unfit, as is (for now) the childless
Rush Limbaugh.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
( Alan Filipski, GTX Corp, 8836 N. 23rd Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85021, USA )
( {decvax,hplabs,uunet!amdahl,nsc}!sun!sunburn!gtx!al (602)870-1696 )
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Jerry Tomko

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Sep 4, 1991, 2:30:42 AM9/4/91
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Anyone who believes gravity is a theory and not a fact has not
taken enough Physics, and Mechanics classes. Any two bodies of
mass exert a force on the other. The Earth is actually gravitationally
attracted to you Ron, but it is nearly unmeasurable.

Jerry Tomko

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Sep 4, 1991, 2:36:34 AM9/4/91
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First of all, stepping through tires for ten years is not going
to "cement itselfiin your genes." Your spacial abilities and
eye had/foot coordination will improve, but that is it.
Second, A child of a gifted athlete will not inherit those traits.
The child will, hover, have a better chance at being a good
veathlete due to the environment he was exposed to. In this
example, stepping through tires, and playing football.

Most genetic mutations tend to appear rather quickly in relation
to the life of a particular species.

Larry Cunningham

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Sep 4, 1991, 11:31:18 AM9/4/91
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Rather poorly stated, Jerry, for someone who I assume has taken Physics and
Mechanics classes.

Actually, the gravitational force between two masses m and M separated by
distance r is porportional to the product of the masses and inversely
porportional to the square of the distance:

m*M
Force = K * ----- , where K is a constant.
r*r

If M is the mass of the earth, and r is the radius of the earth, then this
becomes the familiar equation:

Weight = m*g , where g is the acceleration of gravity,
about 32 ft/sec**2 at sea level.

or, as Newton said of forces in general:

Force = mass * acceleration;

The point here is not the equation for weight or gravitational force, but
that two masses are not attracted to each other by different amounts. As
per Newton's laws, the same force affects both masses.

Fortunately, scientists don't have near the trouble that alt.rush posters
do with the semantics of facts, theories, and laws.

Calling gravity a fact is a misnomer. Gravity is a phenomena, and
we observe that it obeys a physical law. Theorys of gravitation are
something else entirely, which represent ideas about the actual physical
mechanism responsible for gravity.

So I guess we should forgo any discussions about curvature of the time-space
continuum, gravitons, or black holes in this news group. Leave that to the
=evil= scientists Rush is always bitching about the government giving grants
to.

"Yeh, Buddy.. | lcun...@nmsu.edu (Larry Cunningham) | _~~_
I've got your COMPUTER! | % Physical Science Laboratory | (O)(-)
Right HERE!!" | New Mexico State University | /..\
(computer THIS!) | Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA 88003 | <>
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are CORRECT, mine, and not PSLs or NMSUs..

Jerry Tomko

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Sep 4, 1991, 2:30:39 PM9/4/91
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Yes, I was about to state it in like terms but I did not want to
confuse anyone. But, you have not stated why gravity is not a fact.
Calling gravity a
phenomena does not prove your case.
Anyway, now that gravity is not a fact, we can now say that nearly
any natural or unnatural occurance is not a fact, since nearly every
object reacts to the gravity theory.

David A Andrews

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Sep 4, 1991, 9:38:21 PM9/4/91
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In article <91247.123...@uicvm.uic.edu> U47...@uicvm.uic.edu
(David E. Thomas) writes:

>I find very little evidence that Rush Limbaugh encourages his audience to
>think for themselves about anything. If he was really interested in this
>he would not present such biased views of the issues, he would have a lot
>more serious opposing viewpoints on his show, and he would refrain from
>a whole lot of the tired 'let me tell you what to think' routines.

Points:
a) There is more than enough "serious opposing viewpoints" coming over the
airwaves these days. Inviting them on to the show would only decrease the
amount of "conservative" (read "correct" :-) ) view point available on the
airwaves. And there is precious little of it these days (name me one other
radio-talk show host that gets to as many people as Rush does, or even half
as many).

b) Rush never says "'let me tell you what to think'". He says "this is what I
think, and why." And he (almost) always gives some damn good reasons -- which
is a lot more than some of the other liberal-media mamby-pambies can say for
themselves. Also, he wouldn't be growing at the rate he is if he told people
what to think. His is the "thinking man's talk show," hands down.

(Obviously, it help if you come from the same side he does, but I understand he
has made a lot of "converts" through his sound reasoning and level-headed
thinking. More power to him!)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
David A. Andrews and...@ecn.purdue.edu
Graduate Student Purdue University

nathan engle

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Sep 4, 1991, 7:22:15 PM9/4/91
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In article <91247.123...@uicvm.uic.edu> U47...@uicvm.uic.edu
(David E. Thomas) writes:
>In article <1991Sep03.1...@netcom.COM>, j...@netcom.COM (j...@netcom.com

>(John Switzer)) says:
>>
>>And this does have to do with Rush Limbaugh in that Rush encourages his
>>audience to *think* and not accept blindly everything that he or anyone
>>else states.

[some stuff deleted]

>The best you can say about Rush is that he wants to make you laugh at
>the liberals. He certainly doesn't want you to think unless you think
>just like he does.

I don't suppose anybody caught what may have been the best and last
appearance of "Bill the PETA Wacko" on Rush's show today? Bill was in
rare form today, yelling into the phone and trying to shout down Rush.
Eventually Rush just cut him off and issued a point-by-point rebuttal.
That's a thing I believe Rush claims that he never does, however in
this case it was obvious that Rush wasn't going to get his say as long
as Bill was on the line. So Rush cut him off and called him an SOB
(honestly, folks, I could barely believe it myself).

One of Rush's comments was that it was "no fun" talking with Bill
anymore since he had just gotten too outrageous and overbearing. And,
of course, since only Rush is allowed to be outrageous and overbearing
on his show I think that may be the last we hear from Bill.

Too bad really. You don't get that many real, raving loonies that
are willing to call a show like Rush's. Heaven knows I'm not interested.

David E. Thomas

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Sep 4, 1991, 1:31:03 PM9/4/91
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In article <1991Sep03.1...@netcom.COM>, j...@netcom.COM (j...@netcom.com
(John Switzer)) says:
>
>And this does have to do with Rush Limbaugh in that Rush encourages his
>audience to *think* and not accept blindly everything that he or anyone
>else states.
>
I find very little evidence that Rush Limbaugh encourages his audience to
think for themselves about anything. If he was really interested in this
he would not present such biased views of the issues, he would have a lot
more serious opposing viewpoints on his show, and he would refrain from
a whole lot of the tired 'let me tell you what to think' routines.

The best you can say about Rush is that he wants to make you laugh at


the liberals. He certainly doesn't want you to think unless you think
just like he does.


David E. Thomas
University of Illinois at Chicago

David E. Thomas

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Sep 4, 1991, 1:17:51 PM9/4/91
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In article <1991Sep03.1...@netcom.COM>, j...@netcom.COM (j...@netcom.com
(John Switzer)) says:
>
>Sorry, if you can't explain it, it's not a fact - simply because we as humans
>have never observed any other conflicting behavior on the macro scale doesn't
>mean that what we observe is fact. For all we know, our little corner of the
>universe is just one of several different possibilities. Geez, we don't even
>know if matter is the same across our own galaxy - we assume it is, but we
>have no way of knowing whether the charge of an electron is Alpha Centauri
>is the same as what we experience here. We *think* it is, but ...
>
>By your logic, Newtonian physics was fact until it was superceded by
>the next couple of generations of physics. Facts are facts and can't be
>changed by our perceptions - that's why we have to explain them before
>they can be recognized as facts.
>
And by your logic there exist no facts whatsoever, with the possible
exception of Descartes' 'I think therefore I am'. Nothing else can
be proven in any way without some assumptions regarding frame of
reference.

'Facts' are NOT facts isolated from our perceptions. The underlying
realities may not change, but once we use words to express them we
are unalterably bound by our perceptions.

At some point we must establish some criteria by which we will call
something 'true' and something else 'false'. We should never delude
ourselves by thinking it is the TRUTH, but merely our best attempt
at it. The most we can hope for is consistency and some level of
predictability. We can also hope to remain openminded enough to
alter our perceptions when that becomes necessary. Even so, at
some point, we must start to act as if our assumptions are 'facts'
or we will never be able to do anything.

By all relevant reasonable criteria, evolution is a fact.

Larry Cunningham

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Sep 4, 1991, 4:46:13 PM9/4/91
to

Huh?

Never mind.

Alan Filipski

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Sep 5, 1991, 7:24:22 PM9/5/91
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Gravity is neither a theory or a fact, but a force. If you measure the
attraction between two bodies, the data point you get is a fact. If
you extrapolate this phenomenon to the entire Universe, as Einstein and
Newton did, and set up a model describing it, you get a theory.

By the way, the Earth is attracted to Ron by a force exactly equal to
his weight, (but oppositely directed)-- far from unmeasurable.

David E. Thomas

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Sep 5, 1991, 11:08:45 AM9/5/91
to
In article <1991Sep5.0...@noose.ecn.purdue.edu>,

and...@rainbow.ecn.purdue.edu (David A Andrews) says:
>
>a) There is more than enough "serious opposing viewpoints" coming over the
>airwaves these days. Inviting them on to the show would only decrease the
>amount of "conservative" (read "correct" :-) ) view point available on the
>airwaves. And there is precious little of it these days (name me one other
>radio-talk show host that gets to as many people as Rush does, or even half
>as many).
>
It's his show. He can devote as much time as he wants to whatever viewpoint
he wants. But given the massive balance toward conservative content you
normally hear on the show and the routine lampooning of liberal viewpoint
one can hardly support the assertion that he is interested in having his
listeners think for themselves.

>b) Rush never says "'let me tell you what to think'". He says "this is what I
>think, and why." And he (almost) always gives some damn good reasons -- which
>is a lot more than some of the other liberal-media mamby-pambies can say for
>themselves. Also, he wouldn't be growing at the rate he is if he told people
>what to think. His is the "thinking man's talk show," hands down.
>

I don't know what show you listen to. He says it all the time. Of course
the net.ditto-heads will be quick to point out that it is all in jest.
Perhaps. But if he were indeed interested in having us think for ourselves
he would not push this routine as far as he does. In any event, whether
he intends it as humor or not, he must be aware that many of the ditto
heads take him seriously on it. If he wanted us to think he would be
appalled by that.

I truly fail to understand how you can think that a growing popularity
makes him the 'thinking man's talk show'. It really does not follow.
If anything, popularity would seem to indicate a lack of 'thinking'
content. Time and time again the American public has showed that as
a whole they are really not interested in 'thinking for themselves'.
If Rush put really difficult thought provoking questions before them
they'd turn him off in a minute. (Most of them would at any rate).

David A Andrews

unread,
Sep 5, 1991, 4:58:04 PM9/5/91
to
In article <1991Sep5.1...@umbc3.umbc.edu> al...@umbc4.umbc.edu
(Alex S. Crain) writes:
>If you belive that you can get accurate news from a sound bite, then Rush
>sounds great: crisp, clean ideas wraped for easy digestion. If you believe
>that you should devine your perceptions from a variety of sources and
>absorbing different points of view, then Rush is only going to provide a
>small piece of what you take in. The best dittohead is one who always agrees
>with the host (isn't "ditto" an abbreviated way to say "we love your rush"?),
>hardly constructive thought.

Ok, ok. I was taking things a bit far in being a "ditto-head". I guess I'm
overwhelmed at a little bit of fresh air sometimes. I do try to get balanced
opinions on each issue, etc. However, you should take a walk in an
"conservative's" shoes sometime. These days there seems to be nothing but
liberal trash - on TV, on the Radio, etc, etc. All the major evening news
programs, all the major news magazines, all the radio talk shows (except for
one notable exception!), everything I see and hear over major media broadcasts
seems to be shot through-and-through with liberal opinion. Just imagine how
infuriated you'd be if Rush was a news anchor on one of the major networks --
that's me when I listen to Brokaw (?), Rather & Co. -- well, that's a bit of an
exaggeration, but *not* that much! And then there's those damn "entertainment"
shows that are so full of the liberal agenda, that I've come to call them
Sitcoms (for Situation Communists!)

It has become so bad that we've turned off the boob-tube, don't subscribe to
any newspaper, and I only get "Newsweek" to keep me on my toes, keep abreast of
the competition, as it were.

So you see that there is a reason we "ditto-heads" act like complete
nincompoops sometimes. It's 'cause we don't feel alone (as I so often do these
days -- especially on a college campus!), 'cause we feel there is someone out
there who feels the way we do and is trying to do something about it (and,
believe me, I don't mean Mr. "Read-my-lips" Bush, et al -- I was betrayed!).

Ah, you must be saying now, there IS a sight. A call for compassion from a
right-wing, ultra-conservative "ditto-head"! Well, we conservatives are really
full of compassion, and need it just like the rest of y'all! And since we find
no solace in the media, in the government, etc., Rush really helps us through
the day. Yes, he's opinionated. Yes, he's bull-headed. But, by God, he's
right (and proud of it) and he's ours!

Phew! Enough already! Who wants the soapbox next? :-)
And, if this did make you puke, well, you're probably better off without that
extra candy bar you had at lunch today!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
David A. Andrews and...@ecn.purdue.edu

---------------- Purdue University
Graduate Student School of Industrial Engineering

nathan engle

unread,
Sep 5, 1991, 9:25:13 AM9/5/91
to
In article <1991Sep5.0...@noose.ecn.purdue.edu>
and...@rainbow.ecn.purdue.edu (David A Andrews) writes:
>
>b) Rush never says "'let me tell you what to think'". He says "this is what I
>think, and why."

Rush also says "The opinions expressed by the host on this show are
right, which makes everybody who disagrees with them wrong."

You're right that he doesn't tell people what to think. He just
tells them that they're wrong unless they believe X, Y, and Z. And then
he tells people that they shouldn't hang onto ideas if they're wrong, so
by implication, why not just go along with good old Rush (He's just a
harmless little fuzzball, after all)?

> And he (almost) always gives some damn good reasons -- which
>is a lot more than some of the other liberal-media mamby-pambies
>can say for themselves. Also, he wouldn't be growing at the rate he
>is if he told people what to think. His is the "thinking man's talk
>show," hands down.

Come on, guys, you can't have it both ways. Rush's show is growing
because it's entertaining, not because of any lofty intellectual
content. Why does your "thinking-man"'s talk-radio host report on
teenagers who steal hundreds of pairs of panties? Why did he spend so
long telling Peewee Herman jokes? Why does he play weighty and serious
songs like "The Phylanderer" and "Bomb, Bomb, Iraq"? Is it to promote
intellectual discussion? Not on your life.

>(Obviously, it help if you come from the same side he does, but I understand he
>has made a lot of "converts" through his sound reasoning and level-headed
>thinking. More power to him!)

He has also turned a lot of people who just mildly disagreed with him
into all-out opponents. Rush's show was the primary reason I registered
to vote this year. Guess who I'm voting for (hint: not any Republicans).

Will Bralick

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Sep 5, 1991, 11:33:39 PM9/5/91
to
In article <1991Sep5.2...@noose.ecn.purdue.edu> and...@rainbow.ecn.purdue.edu (David A Andrews) writes:
|
| It has become so bad that we've turned off the boob-tube, don't subscribe to
| any newspaper, and I only get "Newsweek" to keep me on my toes, keep abreast
| of the competition, as it were.

So we're not the only ones to have contemptuously rejected the major media.
We keep our tee-vee (rhymes with pee-wee and is the pseudo-intellectual
analogue of pee-wee's latest adventure...) in the closet and wheel it
out for `family movie day' once (or twice) each month. We watch
classics (e.g. King Lear) or the great family films which used to be
produced, e.g. Sound of Music.

For news, I listen to BBC or VOA on shortwave -- it seems that these two
tend to have better journalistic balance than the commercial media.
Perhaps because they are operated by democratically elected governments
they tend to be more scrupulous about their balance.

| ... It's 'cause we don't feel alone (as I so often do these


| days -- especially on a college campus!), 'cause we feel there is someone out
| there who feels the way we do and is trying to do something about it

Well, the left has seized most of the institutions in this country
because conservatives (the middle-of-the-road in America is further
right than the media will ever want you to know) have not been paying
attention -- we took our eyes off the ball and the leftoids smoked
a couple past us.

The problem now is that conservatives are having a difficult time
getting organized ... As Jefferson said in the Declaration of
Independence, "...all Experience hath shewn, that Mankind are more
disposed to suffer, while Evils are sufferable, than to right
themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed."


Regards,

--
Will bra...@cs.psu.edu with disclaimer;
use disclaimer;
Not to seem aposiopetic, but

Alex S. Crain

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Sep 5, 1991, 10:20:31 AM9/5/91
to

>And there is precious little of it these days (name me one other
>radio-talk show host that gets to as many people as Rush does, or even half
>as many).

Name me one other performer group that sold as many records as
Michel Jackson. Can't? Does that imply the Michel Jackson speaks the gospal
truth? Rush is good at his job (entertainment), that doesn't make him right.

>b) Rush never says "'let me tell you what to think'". He says "this is what I
>think, and why." And he (almost) always gives some damn good reasons --

Which are (almost) always incomplete. If you belive that you can get


accurate news from a sound bite, then Rush sounds great: crisp, clean ideas
wraped for easy digestion. If you believe that you should devine your
perceptions from a variety of sources and absorbing different points of
view, then Rush is only going to provide a small piece of what you take in.
The best dittohead is one who always agrees with the host (isn't "ditto"
an abbreviated way to say "we love your rush"?), hardly constructive thought.

--
################################# :alex.
#Disclaimer: Anyone who agrees # Systems Programmer
#with me deserves what they get.# University of Maryland Baltimore County
################################# al...@umbc3.umbc.edu

Joanne Green-Blose

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Sep 5, 1991, 8:22:49 AM9/5/91
to
>
>>And this does have to do with Rush Limbaugh in that Rush encourages his
>>audience to *think* and not accept blindly everything that he or anyone
>>else states.
>
>I find very little evidence that Rush Limbaugh encourages his audience to
>think for themselves about anything. If he was really interested in this
>he would not present such biased views of the issues, he would have a lot
>more serious opposing viewpoints on his show, and he would refrain from
>a whole lot of the tired 'let me tell you what to think' routines.

I somewhat agree with you. The only thinking Rush wants going on is for
people to think like him. After all, he's ALWAYS right about EVERYTHING
(just ask him, he'll tell you!). I have worried myself that Rush may be
generating a slew of lopsided people who have heard only one viewpoint
(kind of like hearing only the Prosecution side in a trial) and will
start to think that this is the ONLY viewpoint. It certainly would be
more interesting to hear more of the opposing points of view. However
we can't blame Rush entirely for this. He does claim that he doesn't
"stack" his phone calls and that anyone is allowed to call in.

>The best you can say about Rush is that he wants to make you laugh at
>the liberals. He certainly doesn't want you to think unless you think
>just like he does.

Rush many times goes beyond the "make you laugh" stage. He is downright
cruel and nasty sometimes at the opposition. He is quite liberal with
his use of name-calling (and this is amusing since he commonly accuses
the Liberals and Democrats of resorting to this and character attacks
when they run out of arguments). Witness the term "FemiNazi" (being a
woman myself I take offense with this - and I'm not Jewish but I suppose
if I were I'd be even more offended).

I also heard him call Bill from PETA an idiot, hick, SOB (which reminded
me of something Morton Downey Jr. would say - that's the level he usually
sticks at). Though in defense of Rush, I guess Bill was out of line
too.

Joanne Greene-Blose
j...@ssd.kodak.com

Brett J. Vickers

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Sep 6, 1991, 2:08:50 PM9/6/91
to
bra...@guardian.cs.psu.edu (Will Bralick) writes:
>For news, I listen to BBC or VOA on shortwave -- it seems that these two
>tend to have better journalistic balance than the commercial media.
>Perhaps because they are operated by democratically elected governments
>they tend to be more scrupulous about their balance.

If you only listen to government radio, then you're only hearing what the
government wants you to hear. Hardly what I would call balanced.

--
bvic...@ics.uci.edu | "Only a large-scale popular movement toward
br...@ucippro.bitnet | decentralization and self-help can arrest the
| present tendency toward statism." - Aldous Huxley

William Kucharski

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Sep 6, 1991, 2:56:39 PM9/6/91
to
In article <28C7C4...@ics.uci.edu> bvic...@ics.uci.edu (Brett J. Vickers) writes:
>bra...@guardian.cs.psu.edu (Will Bralick) writes:
>>For news, I listen to BBC or VOA on shortwave -- it seems that these two
>>tend to have better journalistic balance than the commercial media.
>>Perhaps because they are operated by democratically elected governments
>>they tend to be more scrupulous about their balance.
>
>If you only listen to government radio, then you're only hearing what the
>government wants you to hear. Hardly what I would call balanced.

For VOA, yes, as it is run by the U.S. Information Agency, although it is
nowhere near a Radio Peking or Radio Havana in their tack on things.

As far as the BBC goes, it's VERY independent, by LAW. The BBC is generally
regarded around the world to be THE impartial source on world news.
--
| William Kucharski, Solbourne Computer, Inc. | Opinions expressed above
| Internet: kuch...@solbourne.com Ham: N0OKQ | are MINE alone, not those
| uucp: ...!{boulder,sun,uunet}!stan!kucharsk | of Solbourne...
| Snail Mail: 1900 Pike Road, Longmont, CO 80501 | "It's Night 9 With D2 Dave!"

Will Bralick

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Sep 6, 1991, 3:13:10 PM9/6/91
to
In article <28C7C4...@ics.uci.edu> bvic...@ics.uci.edu (Brett J. Vickers) writes:
| bra...@guardian.cs.psu.edu (Will Bralick) writes:
| >For news, I listen to BBC or VOA on shortwave -- it seems that these two
| >tend to have better journalistic balance than the commercial media.
| >Perhaps because they are operated by democratically elected governments
| >they tend to be more scrupulous about their balance.
|
| If you only listen to government radio, then you're only hearing what the
~~~~
Well, "only" is really too strong. I have been known to read a newspaper
(e.g. the NYT -- the fishwrap of record) every once in awhile.

| government wants you to hear. Hardly what I would call balanced.

Well, I also catch Rush's show when I can ... how's that for balance ;-)

Actually, my point is that the choice is between getting what the media
wants me to hear or what the government wants me to hear. The government
radio in the U.S. and the U.K. will be sensitive to charges of unbalanced
news reporting and thus try to maintain balanced coverage. I really don't
recall hearing any blatant propaganda. Also, unlike the commercial media,
coverage of controversy generally includes _both_ sides. I suspect that
this is because both sides form part of the polity and skewed coverage
would tend to result in visits to VOA HQ by congressional staffers, etc.

Now, it's true, the editorials on VOA provide the official position of
the US government, but, frankly, this provides me more information than
the commercial media's efforts to predigest and "interpret" the position
of the US government for me. I am interested in what the government's
official positions are ... they are more important than the media's
opinion of them.

Terry S. Collins

unread,
Sep 6, 1991, 7:48:36 PM9/6/91
to

In a previous article David Andrews says;

b) Rush never says "'let me tell you what to think'". He says "this is what I

think, and why." And he (almost) always gives some damn good reasons -- which


is a lot more than some of the other liberal-media mamby-pambies can say for
themselves. Also, he wouldn't be growing at the rate he is if he told people
what to think. His is the "thinking man's talk show," hands down.

I say;

This is total hogwash.Rush is continually saying"you don't have to think,
I'll do it for you.You don't have to read the papers,I'll read them for
you and tell you what you need to know."

Rush is growing at the rate he is cause this is a nation of undereducated
bores.With education falling apart like it is,this doesn't surprise me.

Jerry Tomko

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Sep 6, 1991, 10:12:23 PM9/6/91
to

Terry says;
>Ruch is growing at the rate he is because this is a nation of
>uneducated bores.

I think you are wrong. People listen to Rush because he is one
of the FIRST conservative Republicans to break out on the national
scene. Now, since the liberal press has dominated the media for such
a long time, you have not heard the side that supports people like
Rush, who are predominately educated, do it your selfers.
When you accuse Rush listeners of being uneducated bores, you
must have had a momentary laps of brain power. Those that follow
a man such as Ted Kennedy, who lacks one shred of moral fiber are
the ones that worry me.

Marc R.

unread,
Sep 7, 1991, 11:40:52 AM9/7/91
to
In article <1991Sep7.0...@usenet.ins.cwru.edu> am...@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Jerry Tomko) writes:
>
>Terry says;
>>Ruch is growing at the rate he is because this is a nation of
>>uneducated bores.
>
> I think you are wrong. People listen to Rush because he is one
........

>must have had a momentary laps of brain power. Those that follow
i

Jerry,

Considering your statements that "Rush doens't tell his listeners
to think" was YOUR statement, your thoughts have no validity.

When you have a valid statement, please consider posting such.

Or are you like the pear-shaped one? Not a valid thought ever exists
your mouth?

--
Marc Rassbach ma...@marque.mu.edu If you take my advice, that
MS-DOS - it's not ma...@milestn.mke.wi.us is your problem, not mine!
my problem! If it was said on UseNet, it must be true.
Unix - It's a nice place to live, but you don't want to visit there.

Ron Graham

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Sep 8, 1991, 3:52:00 PM9/8/91
to
In article <1991Sep5.1...@bronze.ucs.indiana.edu>,
nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes...

Regarding The Big Blowhard...

> He has also turned a lot of people who just mildly disagreed with him
>into all-out opponents. Rush's show was the primary reason I registered
>to vote this year. Guess who I'm voting for (hint: not any Republicans).

???????

I dunno, Mr. Engle, but this sounds to me a little like the kid who
sez he's gonna take his ball and go home because the other kids
aren't playing the game his way. I can see going back and looking at
the issues a second time after Rush caricatures them (and those who
are involved in them), and maybe finding you disagree with Rush at
that point.

But to say you only registered to vote, and that you only intend to
vote Democratic, because The Big Blowhard turned you off, well, that
sounds a little issue-neutral for you. Why not say what you meant?

RG

Ohio's State Motto: "Be Prepared to Stop."

Jerry Tomko

unread,
Sep 8, 1991, 8:04:48 PM9/8/91
to

Marc Rassbach says;

> Considering your statements that "Rush doens't tell his listeners
>to think" was YOUR statement, your thoughts have no validity.
>
> When you have a valid statement, please consider posting such.
>
> Or are you like the pear-shaped one? Not a valid thought ever exists
>your mouth?
>

Marc, is this really directed at me? I never said
'Rush dosn't tell his listeners to thin.' Perhaps you
have the wrong person in mind. Hmmmm.

David E. Thomas

unread,
Sep 6, 1991, 12:06:45 PM9/6/91
to
In article <1991Sep5.2...@noose.ecn.purdue.edu>,

and...@rainbow.ecn.purdue.edu (David A Andrews) says:
>
>Ok, ok. I was taking things a bit far in being a "ditto-head". I guess I'm
>overwhelmed at a little bit of fresh air sometimes. I do try to get balanced
>opinions on each issue, etc. However, you should take a walk in an
>"conservative's" shoes sometime. These days there seems to be nothing but
>liberal trash - on TV, on the Radio, etc, etc. All the major evening news
>programs, all the major news magazines, all the radio talk shows (except for
>one notable exception!), everything I see and hear over major media broadcasts
>seems to be shot through-and-through with liberal opinion. Just imagine how
>infuriated you'd be if Rush was a news anchor on one of the major networks --
>that's me when I listen to Brokaw (?), Rather & Co. -- well, that's a bit of
>an
>exaggeration, but *not* that much! And then there's those damn
>"entertainment"
>shows that are so full of the liberal agenda, that I've come to call them
>Sitcoms (for Situation Communists!)
>
I hear this complaint fairly often (i.e. the popular media has a decidedly
liberal bias); sometimes with convincing arguments to back it up. The
thing is: You will hear the opposite argument from the liberals (i.e. the
media has a conservative bias) and the agruments they use are every bit
as convincing. This leads me to believe that in general things are split
pretty much down the middle. There are some issues that take a pretty
obvious liberal slant in the media and there are others that take a
just as obvious conservative slant. For the most part though the media
takes a safe middle of the road view which of course infuriates anyone


I believe that studies have shown that the people who actually report
the news tend to be a fairly liberal bunch. Conservatives try to make
a great deal out of this. But the usually fail to acknowledge that
the owners of the media and those executives in a high enough position
to really influence policies and directions tend to be a fairly
conservative bunch. I believe for the most part, however, each of
these points is moot. In general the people responsible for bringing
us 'the media' are not trying to grind any ideological axe, but trying
to make money or a name for themselves through the ratings or
circulation figures (or whatever). In 99% of the cases this will
take a back seat to political implications in the presentation of any
issue.

Eli Messinger

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Sep 9, 1991, 5:06:05 AM9/9/91
to
Terry says...

> Rush is growing at the rate he is because this is a nation of
> uneducated bores.

Jerry Tomko...

> When you accuse Rush listeners of being uneducated bores, you

> must have had a momentary laps of brain power...

The irony thickens.

Perhaps we should have had Mr. Libo read Terry's article and digest
it for you first?
--
Many A Forest / Used To Stand / Where A
Lighted Match / Got Out Of Hand / Burma Shave

CSNET: e...@ibm.com / USENET: ...!uunet!ibm.com!ebm / BITNET: ebm@almvmd

Marc R.

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Sep 9, 1991, 7:26:11 AM9/9/91
to
>'Rush dosn't tell his listeners to thin.' Perhaps you

That's rich Jerry..... Rush Limbaugh telling his listeners to thin.
Yea, the pear-shaped one on a diet....... HA!

nathan engle

unread,
Sep 9, 1991, 10:25:37 AM9/9/91
to
In article <8SEP1991...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov> eca...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov

As a matter of fact I did say exactly what I meant. If you didn't
get the gist the first time around I'd be happy to restate it for your
benefit, and for the benefit of readers from Rio Linde.

I'm not usually a very political person, and I've ignored what was
going on in the American political process for a long time (too long,
probably). However, I have recently had a political reawakening,
prompted mostly by listening to Rush Limbaugh and his descriptions of
how America would be run if he had his way.

It is not Rush's humor which offends me. A lot of the time I find
myself laughing with Rush rather than at him. However when it comes to
issues like the environment and abortion rights, I think that Rush's
opinions are shallow, narrow-minded, partisan, and poorly researched.
I think his show is entertaining, but it reflects the basic problems
that I have with his views and with what passes these days for
"conservative thought" (an oxymoron if ever I heard one).

In short, easily-digested words, I think Rush is wrong and I plan to
do whatever I can to stop him from achieving his goals.

Now then, are there any other statements you would care to have me
clear up?

aaron j heller

unread,
Sep 9, 1991, 11:18:45 AM9/9/91
to
I love it.

Terry says...

> Rush is growing at the rate he is because this is a nation of
> uneducated bores.

Jerry Tomko...

> When you accuse Rush listeners of being uneducated bores, you
> must have had a momentary laps of brain power...


Then, right on cue, Chris chimes in:

> Rush is awesome! [...]
> he is awesome.. [...]
> Have a good day all!

Aaron Heller (hel...@crd.ge.com ...!uunet!crdgw1!heller)

P.S. Actually, I think Rush is growing at the rate he is because we
are a nation of people with two-minute attention spans and ten-minute
memories.

For example, has anyone noticed that Bush has recently appointed
Frederic Malek to be one of the top aides in his re-election campaign.
This is the same Frederic Malek who, in 1971, happily complied with
Nixon's request to assemble a list of Jews at the Bureau of Labor
Statistics.

I'm sure that Rush would reply to this, as I have heard him do many
times, by saying, "But, noooooobody cares!"

Ron Graham

unread,
Sep 9, 1991, 1:16:00 PM9/9/91
to
If there's one thing I *cannot* stand, it's being talked down to. If
this is what being "Politically Correct" is like, count me out. I
prefer treating adults as adults over treating them as children.

In article <1991Sep9.1...@bronze.ucs.indiana.edu>,
nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes...

>In article <8SEP1991...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov> eca...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov
> (Ron Graham) writes:

>>In article <1991Sep5.1...@bronze.ucs.indiana.edu>,
>> nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes...

>>> He has also turned a lot of people who just mildly disagreed with him


>>>into all-out opponents. Rush's show was the primary reason I registered
>>>to vote this year. Guess who I'm voting for (hint: not any Republicans).

>>I dunno, Mr. Engle, but this sounds to me a little like the kid who

>>sez he's gonna take his ball and go home because the other kids
>>aren't playing the game his way. I can see going back and looking at
>>the issues a second time after Rush caricatures them (and those who
>>are involved in them), and maybe finding you disagree with Rush at
>>that point.
>>But to say you only registered to vote, and that you only intend to
>>vote Democratic, because The Big Blowhard turned you off, well, that
>>sounds a little issue-neutral for you. Why not say what you meant?

> As a matter of fact I did say exactly what I meant. If you didn't
>get the gist the first time around I'd be happy to restate it for your
>benefit, and for the benefit of readers from Rio Linde.

Get a load of this guy. He thinks he's the only clear thinker around.
A Politically Correct version of the Big Blowhard himself. I ask him
to explain himself in a little more detail, giving him credit for having
examined the issues somewhat, and he rails on me. Well, I guess I won't
make that mistake again, Mr. Engle. You're just like Rush: too smug
for me.

> I'm not usually a very political person, and I've ignored what was
>going on in the American political process for a long time (too long,
>probably). However, I have recently had a political reawakening,
>prompted mostly by listening to Rush Limbaugh and his descriptions of
>how America would be run if he had his way.

There's a positive result of listening to the program, anyway.

> It is not Rush's humor which offends me. A lot of the time I find
>myself laughing with Rush rather than at him. However when it comes to
>issues like the environment and abortion rights, I think that Rush's
>opinions are shallow, narrow-minded, partisan, and poorly researched.
>I think his show is entertaining, but it reflects the basic problems
>that I have with his views and with what passes these days for
>"conservative thought" (an oxymoron if ever I heard one).

Instead of referring to oxymorons, why not *demonstrate* Rush's (shallow,
narrow-minded, partisan, poorly researched)-ness? Use the environment
and abortion rights issues if you want to, since you care about those.
A demonstration is always more convincing than a mockery.

> In short, easily-digested words, I think Rush is wrong and I plan to
>do whatever I can to stop him from achieving his goals.
> Now then, are there any other statements you would care to have me
>clear up?

Arrogant little chicken- awww, what's the use? Once people think they're
better than everyone else, there's no convincing 'em otherwise.

nathan engle

unread,
Sep 9, 1991, 2:28:18 PM9/9/91
to
In article <9SEP1991...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov> eca...@ariel.lerc.nasa.gov
(Ron Graham) writes:
>If there's one thing I *cannot* stand, it's being talked down to.
>If this is what being "Politically Correct" is like, count me out.

Into each life a little rain must fall.

[lots o' flames ommitted]

>> As a matter of fact I did say exactly what I meant. If you didn't
>>get the gist the first time around I'd be happy to restate it for your
>>benefit, and for the benefit of readers from Rio Linde.
>
>Get a load of this guy. He thinks he's the only clear thinker around.

Oh, stop your whining. You asked me to clarify my statements and
that's what I did. Furthermore, I used some of the same words and
mannerisms that Rush uses, so if you don't like the words then please
direct your flames to Compuserve account 70277,2502.

>A Politically Correct version of the Big Blowhard himself. I ask him
>to explain himself in a little more detail, giving him credit for having
>examined the issues somewhat, and he rails on me. Well, I guess I won't
>make that mistake again, Mr. Engle. You're just like Rush: too smug
>for me.

Does that mean the honeymoon is over? Hey, you know, this is the
first time that I've ever been accused of being "Politically Correct". I
kind of enjoyed it, although I don't think that the local Gay Rights
chapter would agree with you. According to at least one of their members
I'm a politically incorrect homophobe.

[more stuff deleted]

>> It is not Rush's humor which offends me. A lot of the time I find
>>myself laughing with Rush rather than at him. However when it comes to
>>issues like the environment and abortion rights, I think that Rush's
>>opinions are shallow, narrow-minded, partisan, and poorly researched.
>>I think his show is entertaining, but it reflects the basic problems
>>that I have with his views and with what passes these days for
>>"conservative thought" (an oxymoron if ever I heard one).
>
>Instead of referring to oxymorons, why not *demonstrate* Rush's (shallow,
>narrow-minded, partisan, poorly researched)-ness? Use the environment
>and abortion rights issues if you want to, since you care about those.
>A demonstration is always more convincing than a mockery.

None of those words were intended to mock Rush. If I wanted to mock
Rush Limbaugh then I'd refer to him as "the pear-shaped one" or the "Big
Blowhard". I believe that in my postings I treat Rush with more respect
than you do. Try calling the man by his real name for a change, and then
talk to me about mockery.

As far as issues go, I guess I could go back and quote all of the
articles I've ever posted on the subject of the environment, etc. but
there have been more than a few of them and I don't see any point in
repeating them. If people sat through them once then that's more than
enough.

>> In short, easily-digested words, I think Rush is wrong and I plan to
>>do whatever I can to stop him from achieving his goals.
>> Now then, are there any other statements you would care to have me
>>clear up?
>
>Arrogant little chicken- awww, what's the use? Once people think they're
>better than everyone else, there's no convincing 'em otherwise.

Especially not when you call them "Arrogant little chicken"'s. I
just don't find your arguments either substantial or convincing. Sorry.

John Simmons

unread,
Sep 10, 1991, 1:15:18 AM9/10/91
to
Comments on a post by Mr. Nathan Engle:

I doubt Rush would deny his opinions are partisan. After all, aren't
most? But ... shallow, narrow-minded, and poorly researched? That is
not my impression at all.

You mention especially abortion rights and the environment. So: why
is it more narrow-minded to say that abortion is killing (which it
clearly is) than to say it is not? And by the way, I have never seen
the term "abortion rights" in our founding documents. But I have seen
something about "certain inalienable rights, chief among which are
life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

It is a bit harder to follow Rush's thinking on the environment. But
this is only because we have allowed ourselves to develop a mindset
that says that if you don't support the latest environmental political
correctness, you must be out to foul the air, dirty the water, and in
general destroy the planet.

And "conservative thought" an oxymoron? Didn't I hear Rush say
something about liberals being arrogant and condescending? Statements
like this of yours certainly don't help to prove him wrong.
--
John Simmons (Sailor)

nathan engle

unread,
Sep 10, 1991, 8:53:03 AM9/10/91
to
John Simmons <simm...@iuvax.cs.indiana.edu> writes:

>I doubt Rush would deny his opinions are partisan. After all, aren't
>most? But ... shallow, narrow-minded, and poorly researched? That is
>not my impression at all.

Let's start with poorly researched since it's the easiest to
address. In actual fact neither Rush nor me nor any of the rest of us
really do our own research to the extent of having our own private
laboratories, etc. We have to rely on the research of others. It's not
uncommon to hear Rush deride the "liberal press" for poor research;
generally he claims that they take any gloom-n-doom prediction and slap
it right up on the front page. Yet sometimes Rush himself will report
news items with the exact opposite slant (examples: the 20 yr old grad
student from LA who claims that trees are a major cause of smog, Rush's
friend from NASA who says that the rainforests of Brazil are *not*
visible from orbit at night, the conservative researcher from the
midwest who says that global warming is *not* anything to be concerned
about, etc).

Now, I'm not here to say that any of those researchers are wrong.
All I would say is that Rush grabs onto their stories and repeats them
long and loud on his program as though they were the gospel truth. I'm
sure that most of us are aware that he's just trying to point out how
the "liberal press" does the same thing, but the end result is that
Rush's program, in order to make a point, uses the same "research"
methods as the rest of the media. Obviously, since I listen to Rush but
not the evening news, I'm more willing to forgive that form of
"research" on radio talk-shows than on national news programs, but the
fact remains that as far as research goes, Rush isn't any better or
worse than the news programs he's trying to counterbalance.

>You mention especially abortion rights and the environment. So: why
>is it more narrow-minded to say that abortion is killing (which it
>clearly is) than to say it is not?

I actually don't think that either of those 2 viewpoints are
"narrow-minded" per se. I also don't think that either is
particularly broad-minded. I would say that Rush is most accurately
defined as "narrow-minded" when it comes to issues like the forest
industry. One time I heard him make a point to a caller (in all
seriousness) that it would be Ok to cut down all the trees in Oregon
from north to south, because by the time you got to the southern border
there would be trees growing back in the northern part of the state.

I think that's narrow-minded because it assumes that trees are the
only thing that environmental people are worried about. In a sense he's
right that trees will grow back. However, the original habitat and all
of the animals, insects, plants, soil composition, and even the face of
the land would be changed. The issue is not just trees.

> And by the way, I have never seen
>the term "abortion rights" in our founding documents. But I have seen
>something about "certain inalienable rights, chief among which are
>life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

I have also never seen the term "right to privacy" in our founding
documents but I've heard a lot of people use the term (including Rush).
Let's face it, the founders of our country were great and forward-
looking men, but they could never have foretold the information age.

A lot of the problems we're faced with today just didn't occur to
our founding fathers, so it's up to us to work them out today. Our
political process may decide that there is no such thing as "abortion
rights", but until Roe vs. Wade is overturned I think it looks like
we currently do have some form of "abortion rights" no matter what the
Constitution or Bill of Rights say.

>It is a bit harder to follow Rush's thinking on the environment. But
>this is only because we have allowed ourselves to develop a mindset
>that says that if you don't support the latest environmental political
>correctness, you must be out to foul the air, dirty the water, and in
>general destroy the planet.

This brings to my mind one of Rush's favorite "Jacksonisms", "The
Solution to the Pollution". It's a line that Rush uses quite a bit
maybe because he likes the way it sounds. I would say that this habit of
personal lampooning of Jesse Jackson and Molly Yard is the best example
of how I think that Rush is shallow. It makes for good radio, since
talk-radio hosts are naturally limited to the images they can convey
with sound, but lampooning of personalities doesn't make for anything
like a deep treatment of the issues. That's the main reason that I avoid
the issue of Rush's weight when posting in this newsgroup. Personal
attributes like weight, amount of hair, or infestation with maggots
have nothing to do with my disagreements with Rush.

>And "conservative thought" an oxymoron? Didn't I hear Rush say
>something about liberals being arrogant and condescending? Statements
>like this of yours certainly don't help to prove him wrong.

That's true, I suppose they don't. However I also heard Rush say
just yesterday that "he couldn't understand how any intelligent person"
could be an atheist. Sounds like Rush himself is a little condescending
towards those of us who don't believe that some Higher Power goes around
saying where all the trees grow and where rocks come to rest when they
fall.

I guess that sometime humor just depends on your point of view.

>--
>John Simmons (Sailor)

John Trivelli

unread,
Sep 10, 1991, 9:40:40 AM9/10/91
to
>From: simm...@iuvax.cs.indiana.edu (John Simmons)
>Subject: Re: Who you votin' for again? (was Re: Rush thinks)
>Date: 10 Sep 91 05:15:18 GMT
>
>[...]

>
>You mention especially abortion rights and the environment. So: why
>is it more narrow-minded to say that abortion is killing (which it

>clearly is) than to say it is not? And by the way, I have never seen


>the term "abortion rights" in our founding documents. But I have seen
>something about "certain inalienable rights, chief among which are
>life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
>

You don't see the term "abortion rights" in our founding documents
because abortion was well beyond the capabilities of our founding
fathers (safe abortions, that is). Also, the document to which you
are refering to is one of those finite texts that generate infinite
discourse. The reason for this is simply that the answer to many
questions (such as abortion) is not to be found there. We have to
rely on our own resources as a society to find the solution. By this
I mean we require further philosophical development. It is not at all
practical to treat the founding fathers as some kind of miraculous oracle
that knew all the answers, we were a very very different society 200
years ago.

And yes, there are certain unalienable rights (life, liberty and the P.o.H.).
But the idea is double edged. What about the life, liberty and P.o.H of
the woman?? I say the government ends where the body begins, and that
abortion is an ethical decision for the mother and no one else.


>
>It is a bit harder to follow Rush's thinking on the environment. But
>this is only because we have allowed ourselves to develop a mindset
>that says that if you don't support the latest environmental political
>correctness, you must be out to foul the air, dirty the water, and in
>general destroy the planet.
>

You have tried to explain why it is hard to follow Rush's thought on
the environment by providing a sentence that comes straight out of his
thought.

Everybody, including the environmentalists, knows that everybody
wants clean air/water etc. It is the means and interpretation that is in
question. Rush's description of what HE THINKS the environmentalists
think is simply a cheap shot designed NOT to convince anyone, but
to create a feeling of ease, comfort and smugness among those
who disagree with environmental action.

In other words, by saying "Hey guys, we want clean air and water,
but those stupid greenies think we want dirty and dirty water," Rush
takes a detour and avoids the real issues in favor of comforting
his agreeable listeners and making them feel as though they are
normal.

Rush does not help find any solutions when he takes it as an AXIOM
that the environmentalists and socialists and animal rightists
are all connected and are all out to destroy America and capitalism.


>
>And "conservative thought" an oxymoron? Didn't I hear Rush say
>something about liberals being arrogant and condescending? Statements
>like this of yours certainly don't help to prove him wrong.
>


Hmm, it would be very interesting to see if, in fact, "conservative
thought" IS an oxymoron. I consider that to be topic open for debate! 8-)

However, I'll wager that if you made a list of all the greatest thinkers,
scientists, artists, etc. in 20th century America, you would find most
of the list to be ideologically liberal. But never mind, it would be
totally impossible to come up with a list that would please everyone.


---Angelo Trivelli
jt...@andrew.cmu.edu

Will Bralick

unread,
Sep 10, 1991, 11:17:14 AM9/10/91
to
In article <nengle.684507183@copper> nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes:

| John Simmons <simm...@iuvax.cs.indiana.edu> writes:
|
| >You mention especially abortion rights and the environment. So: why
| >is it more narrow-minded to say that abortion is killing (which it
| >clearly is) than to say it is not?
|
| I actually don't think that either of those 2 viewpoints are
| "narrow-minded" per se. I also don't think that either is
| particularly broad-minded.

We are becoming so broadminded that we are becoming vacuous. Note that
there is a distinction to be drawn between open-mindedness and broad-
mindedness. While maintaining an open mind is a good thing (tm) there
is little to recommend being "broad-minded" if that means that one accepts
everything anyone argues as the truth. Life is much more interesting
when people actually believe in their own positions.

| I think that's narrow-minded because it assumes that trees are the
| only thing that environmental people are worried about. In a sense he's
| right that trees will grow back. However, the original habitat and all
| of the animals, insects, plants, soil composition, and even the face of
| the land would be changed. The issue is not just trees.

And Mt. St. Helens cut down trees and changed "even the face of the land."
Why is Mt. St. Helens a part of the environment and we aren't? Why should
the snail darter halt the Telleco Dam project? Isn't the message of
natural selection "adapt or die?" Rush turns the natural selection argument
on the eco-enthusiasts, viz. we are a part of the environment, too, and if
there are species out there which cannot adapt to _us_ then it is un-
surprising that they become extinct. The dinosaurs were not able to
survive because they couldn't adapt to _their_ environment.

| >And "conservative thought" an oxymoron? Didn't I hear Rush say
| >something about liberals being arrogant and condescending? Statements
| >like this of yours certainly don't help to prove him wrong.
|
| That's true, I suppose they don't. However I also heard Rush say
| just yesterday that "he couldn't understand how any intelligent person"
| could be an atheist. Sounds like Rush himself is a little condescending
| towards those of us who don't believe that some Higher Power goes around
| saying where all the trees grow and where rocks come to rest when they
| fall.

I don't find that statement condescending in the least (perhaps because
I can't hear _how_ Rush said it). Rush states that _he_ doesn't understand
this, not that atheists are ipso facto unintelligent.

The deeper point is that Rush is arguing that the existence of God is
revealed in His creation and that an intelligent person is _able_ to see
and understand that. That an intelligent person doesn't see and under-
stand must somehow be related to his not _wanting_ to see. This is not a
startling statement from a religious perspective -- why can't Rush argue
this position without coming afoul of the Tolerance Police?

Andrew C. Aiken

unread,
Sep 10, 1991, 1:38:00 PM9/10/91
to
nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes:

True. But it bothers me that media report "news" with no
background information. It is not the "liberal slant" of the media that
bothers me, rather their astounding gullibility. The most preposterous
items are crowned with importance simply because "a scientist" or "a
leading expert" gives them his cachet. The news media in this country
are so unschooled in any field but journalism that their inherent
stupidity looks like innate bias to an educated observer.
For example, why was the prospect of "cold fusion" given such
prominence? Did many physicists actually ever consider it as anything
but a hoax? After I heard Dan Rather say (on national TV), "The coup
plotters are on the run... like Thelma and Louise..."(what mind-numbing,
amazing illiteracy!) , I would not be
surprised to see a special CBS news flash on how if you put a horsehair
in a jar of water, it will turn into a snake...

> A lot of the problems we're faced with today just didn't occur to
>our founding fathers, so it's up to us to work them out today. Our
>political process may decide that there is no such thing as "abortion
>rights", but until Roe vs. Wade is overturned I think it looks like
>we currently do have some form of "abortion rights" no matter what the
>Constitution or Bill of Rights say.

The Constitution does not say anything about abortion, so why
should the federal government have anything to say about it?

>Nathan Engle Software Juggler
>Indiana University Dept of Psychology


Andrew Aiken
Indiana University
aaiken@silver

nathan engle

unread,
Sep 10, 1991, 3:34:02 PM9/10/91
to
In article <aaiken.684524280@silver> aai...@silver.ucs.indiana.edu
(Andrew C. Aiken) writes:

>nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes:
> True. But it bothers me that media report "news" with no
>background information. It is not the "liberal slant" of the media that
>bothers me, rather their astounding gullibility. The most preposterous
>items are crowned with importance simply because "a scientist" or "a
>leading expert" gives them his cachet.

I think that's a good point but I'm not sure how we get around it.
On the one hand we have a competitive free press feeding the technology
appetite of a voracious readership, all trying to avoid being "scooped"
by their competitors. On the other hand we have a population of
increasingly obtuse, specialized scientist-types who derive a certain
amount of pride (and even job security) from the fact that people don't
quite understand what they're saying.

So who's gonna give ground? Do we make all the journalists get PhD's
before writing their stories, or do we make the PhD's speak English?
Neither option seems very likely to me. The journalism industry can't
afford to pay PhD's to be writers, and (as has been noted of computer
programmers) it's not necessarily the case that they'll even be able to
write in English. At the same time, I'd be reluctant to restrict
researchers to words of three syllables or less because you never know
what you'd be missing. After all, how many syllables are there in
"Relativity"?

>>political process may decide that there is no such thing as "abortion
>>rights", but until Roe vs. Wade is overturned I think it looks like
>>we currently do have some form of "abortion rights" no matter what the
>>Constitution or Bill of Rights say.
>
> The Constitution does not say anything about abortion, so why
>should the federal government have anything to say about it?

Well, I think the first and best reason is to try to keep those
people out in Kansas from tearing each other limb from limb. And as the
date for opening of the new abortion clinic in Bloomington draws nigh
we'll start to see the same thing on our own doorstep. I have no doubt
that the federal government has at least some say in this matter
since people have such strong and divergent opinions. If it wasn't their
business before, then it should be now. I wouldn't care to be the one to
say how things are going to be settled because I have a feeling that
nobody is going to be satisfied with the outcome no matter what
happens.

--


Nathan Engle Software Juggler
Indiana University Dept of Psychology

nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu

Marc R.

unread,
Sep 11, 1991, 9:19:20 AM9/11/91
to
In article <+?dHj...@cs.psu.edu> bra...@ada.cs.psu.edu (Will Bralick) writes:
>In article <nengle.684507183@copper> nen...@copper.ucs.indiana.edu (nathan engle) writes:
>the snail darter halt the Telleco Dam project? Isn't the message of
>natural selection "adapt or die?" Rush turns the natural selection argument
>on the eco-enthusiasts, viz. we are a part of the environment, too, and if
>there are species out there which cannot adapt to _us_ then it is un-
>surprising that they become extinct. The dinosaurs were not able to
>survive because they couldn't adapt to _their_ environment.

And if the human species does to it's environment what yeast does to
its that's ok. (Yeast will grow and live WHILE poisoning their own
environment. Poison it to the point where the yeast dies.)
His pearness will not have to worry though, he has money and could buy
his way to a 'safer' environment if need be.

>| >And "conservative thought" an oxymoron? Didn't I hear Rush say
>| >something about liberals being arrogant and condescending? Statements
>| >like this of yours certainly don't help to prove him wrong.
>|
>| That's true, I suppose they don't. However I also heard Rush say
>| just yesterday that "he couldn't understand how any intelligent person"
>| could be an atheist. Sounds like Rush himself is a little condescending
>| towards those of us who don't believe that some Higher Power goes around
>| saying where all the trees grow and where rocks come to rest when they
>| fall.

Liberals are arrogant and condesending..... Rush just admitted he's a
LIBERAL here folkes.
The Higher power Rush sees is mathamatics. Having never seen a laplace
x-form or a diffy-q, I can see where one might say there is a god.
(I'm surprised Rush hasn't made the leap from "God is a
superior being. I've been a superior being for years (I've said so
myself on my radio show.) Ergo, I am God!)

>I don't find that statement condescending in the least (perhaps because
>I can't hear _how_ Rush said it). Rush states that _he_ doesn't understand
>this, not that atheists are ipso facto unintelligent.

Could this be you have some kind of adjenda?

>The deeper point is that Rush is arguing that the existence of God is
>revealed in His creation and that an intelligent person is _able_ to see
>and understand that. That an intelligent person doesn't see and under-
>stand must somehow be related to his not _wanting_ to see. This is not a
>startling statement from a religious perspective -- why can't Rush argue
>this position without coming afoul of the Tolerance Police?

Yup.

David A Andrews

unread,
Sep 12, 1991, 1:03:06 AM9/12/91
to
In article <15...@spool.mu.edu> ma...@marque.mu.edu (Marc R.) writes:
>Liberals are arrogant and condesending..... Rush just admitted he's a
>LIBERAL here folkes.

Uh, you'd better check your logic again...

Liberalness implies Arrogance and Condescension... However,
Arrogance and Condescension DOES NOT imply Liberalness...

If you aren't arrogant and condescending, you aren't liberal, however... That
opens a lot of interesting avenues of thought, no? Nice guys are always
conservative, so Rush's message is "Let's all be nice..." Hmmm... Not very
convincing, is it?

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
David A. Andrews and...@ecn.purdue.edu
Graduate Student Purdue University
--
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
David A. Andrews and...@ecn.purdue.edu
Graduate Student Purdue University

David E. Thomas

unread,
Sep 11, 1991, 10:44:31 AM9/11/91
to
In article <1991Sep10.0...@news.cs.indiana.edu>,

simm...@iuvax.cs.indiana.edu (John Simmons) says:
>
>And "conservative thought" an oxymoron? Didn't I hear Rush say
>something about liberals being arrogant and condescending? Statements
>like this of yours certainly don't help to prove him wrong.
>--
Rush called the LIBERALS 'arrogant and condescending'????

Well I suppose the Elephant Man can call Mel Gibson ugly too if he
wants.

Peter Alan Dutton

unread,
Sep 13, 1991, 2:38:10 PM9/13/91
to
In article <McnAhM600...@andrew.cmu.edu> jt...@andrew.cmu.edu (John Trivelli) writes:
>
>You don't see the term "abortion rights" in our founding documents
>because abortion was well beyond the capabilities of our founding
>fathers (safe abortions, that is). Also, the document to which you
>are refering to is one of those finite texts that generate infinite
>discourse. The reason for this is simply that the answer to many
>questions (such as abortion) is not to be found there. We have to
>rely on our own resources as a society to find the solution. By this
>I mean we require further philosophical development. It is not at all
>practical to treat the founding fathers as some kind of miraculous oracle
>that knew all the answers, we were a very very different society 200
>years ago.

They knew that they didn't know everything, which is why they left they
Constitution open for amendment!

>And yes, there are certain unalienable rights (life, liberty and the P.o.H.).
>But the idea is double edged. What about the life, liberty and P.o.H of
>the woman?? I say the government ends where the body begins, and that
>abortion is an ethical decision for the mother and no one else.

So what about the life of the fetus? And what about all matters not
explicitly mentioned in the Constitution being left for the states to
decide?

>
>However, I'll wager that if you made a list of all the greatest thinkers,
>scientists, artists, etc. in 20th century America, you would find most
>of the list to be ideologically liberal. But never mind, it would be
>totally impossible to come up with a list that would please everyone.
>

Maybe, maybe not. Please don't include artists in with people that can make
a real difference. They don't matter as much as they'd like us to think they
do.

And for some reason, most artists ARE liberal-leaning. Does anyone know why?

PADjr

Alex S. Crain

unread,
Sep 13, 1991, 4:03:51 PM9/13/91
to
In article <1991Sep13.1...@wpi.WPI.EDU> padu...@wpi.WPI.EDU (Peter Alan Dutton) writes:

>Maybe, maybe not. Please don't include artists in with people that can make
>a real difference. They don't matter as much as they'd like us to think they
>do.

And who does matter exactly? Rush? George Will, maybe?

>And for some reason, most artists ARE liberal-leaning. Does anyone know why?

Because conservatives have no imagination, of course. Or taste ...


--
################################# :alex.
#Disclaimer: Anyone who agrees # Systems Programmer
#with me deserves what they get.# University of Maryland Baltimore County
################################# al...@umbc3.umbc.edu

nathan engle

unread,
Sep 13, 1991, 5:28:04 PM9/13/91
to
[lots of deletions]

In article <1991Sep13.1...@wpi.WPI.EDU> padu...@wpi.WPI.EDU
(Peter Alan Dutton) writes:

>>However, I'll wager that if you made a list of all the greatest thinkers,
>>scientists, artists, etc.
>

>And for some reason, most artists ARE liberal-leaning. Does anyone know why?

Probably nobody really does, however my father (now deceased) was an
artist and a teacher so I may be able to offer some interesting
speculations.

As a kid I used to go to a lot of "Art Fairs". In the course of
this experience I noticed that there were 2 distinct groups of people
displaying and selling stuff. The most numerous were "craftsmen" -
potters, weavers, glass workers, blacksmiths, wood carvers, instrument
makers, etc. The rest of the people were what we usually think of as
artists - painters, sculptors, etc. Just as an aside, I actually got to
meet Walt Kelly, the author of the "Pogo" comic strip, and Martha Nelson,
a stuffed toy designer who made dolls upon which the infamous "Cabbage
Patch" dolls were subsequently patterned.

I don't want to get into a discussion about the difference between
arts and crafts because in many cases the distinction was vague (for
instance, if a wood worker makes ornamental furniture and carves 6 foot
cigar-store indians on the side, is he an artist or a craftsman? He was
a funny old man without a doubt. His favorite line was "There's an
indian _in_ every tree in the woods".)

However, I noticed that very few of the people like potters and
candle-makers who produced everyday, useful items were really considered
to be artists. I think the line that divided the artists from the
craftmen was an admittedly subjective question of whether the end
product was distinguishable as the work of a particular person purely
on the basis of the style in which it was done. In order to meet a
criterion like that, a potter (for example) would have to have invented
or developed a personal style of bowl or mug. A potter could have been
so skilled that every single bowl he/she (lots of them are women, I'm
not just trying to be PC here.) made looked like a piece of Corelleware,
but it wouldn't be considered art unless it was distinguishable in
some way.

So maybe the reason that artists tend to be "liberal" is that in
order to be considered artists they have to do things a little
differently than what came before. This may make them more open to
trying to do things in different way, and it may also make them more
apt to study, value, and "borrow" from other cultures (like "fusion"
jazz musicians do all the time).

Sorry to ramble on so long on this one; the question just stirred up
a lot of pleasant memories.

John Trivelli

unread,
Sep 14, 1991, 12:36:11 AM9/14/91
to
>From: padu...@wpi.WPI.EDU (Peter Alan Dutton)

>Subject: Re: Who you votin' for again? (was Re: Rush thinks)
>Date: 13 Sep 91 18:38:10 GMT

>
>
>>However, I'll wager that if you made a list of all the greatest thinkers,
>>scientists, artists, etc. in 20th century America, you would find most
>>of the list to be ideologically liberal. But never mind, it would be
>>totally impossible to come up with a list that would please everyone.
>
>
>Maybe, maybe not. Please don't include artists in with people that can make
>a real difference. They don't matter as much as they'd like us to think they
>do.
>
>And for some reason, most artists ARE liberal-leaning. Does anyone know why?
>
>

This does not have much to do with Rush-bashing but it is a very interesting
topic to explore. Why is it that the art world leans to the left in so
many ways?

I have thought about the above a lot and I think I know the answer. "Artists"
and the "art-world" have more or less been on bohemian track since the 19th
century. Bohemian ideals have very much to do with finding limits, extremes,
and all things that are NEW. This characteristic leads to all kinds of
results-- such as the liberal positions that artists often take.

To be more specific the, at times rabid left-wing attitude in art schools
and art in general, has its roots in 19th century Bohemian culture. In the
19th century artists discovered that they could participate in all kinds
of areas outside of formal aesthetics. In fact, you will find that an
increasing number of art-works from the 19th century on have political,
social and critical elements-- not unlike what has almost always been the
case in literature.

In other words, art has its hooks in politics (and many other places)
because it is a creative intellectual activity in much the same way as
literature. Artists often take a leftist view because of the exploratory
and experimental characteristics of what they do. The exploratory nature
of art lends itself easily to leftist ideologies whose main source of
energy is social change. This is why you will find "Marxist" art theory
journals such as "October." There is a lot of art, art theory and art
criticism that is based strongly and self-consciously upon dialectical
materialism, which is one of THE foundations of Marxism.

This not at all unusual because if all you physical scientists out there dig
up some philosophy of science you will find that science itself is often
understood (idealistically) as a process of dialectical materialism. So,
dudes, fragments of leftist ideology are all over the place including our
heads.

Okay, back to art, why is it then that there is seemingly so little art
that leans to the right? The answer is that there ARE tremendous quantities
of images and objects that preserve, protect, and defend interests that
can be described as right-wing. By this I mean that the design of the
objects all around you, mass-produced objects, is the media of kitsch art--
the realm of the bourgeois. In other words, institutionalized art more
or less keeps its leftist edge while EVERYTHING ELSE on the outside that
deals with images, aesthetics and art maintains a right-wing edge. But
don't worry, some artists from the left edge have worked hard to infiltrate
mass culture (see Joseph Beuys, Warhol, Hans Haake, etc).

Joseph Beuys, for example, was the first man to run for the Green party
in German parliment in the 70's. He didn't make it and was eventually
kicked out of the party for saying non-sequitor things having to do with
the green party being a "sculpture" (He actually ment this literally, not
metaphorically). In any case, it just goes to show that (avant-garde/leftist)
artists are capable of participating in some very big pieces of mass culture

As for the issue
of whether or not artists can make a difference in society, I'd say that
human culture could not exist without art and that art is a fundamental
part of culture. If you disagree with this, I refer you to any anthropology
or cultural studies textbook that you can find.

The same holds true for 20th century art/artists, it is just a matter
of WHOSE culture and WHOSE definition of art. The "WHOSE" make things
exponentially more difficult, but such is life. Anyhow, art theory
happens to be my pet topic, if anybody wants to discuss anything further
than the