Contra Parrott: The Emptiness of Third-Way Anthropology

By Todd Lewis

This will be a exercise in the reductio ad absurdum and a response to a couple of articles by Matt Parrott at Counter-Currents.com (CC). Mr. Parrott wrote a review of the Bill Nye vs. Ken Ham debate today, Weird Science: Liberal Creationism vs. Christian Creationism, and an earlier work Atheism Plus: the New Culture of Critique, I’ll talk about the two simultaneously.

In his review of the Nye-Ham debate he makes a couple of statements of note:

“Ken Ham begins by confirming that secularists have indeed hijacked the word “science,” concluding that Christian fundamentalists must instead hijack the word for themselves.”

“As a self-professed defender of Christianity, Ham lost the debate before he started because he agreed that a book written, edited, and translated by bronze-age Bedouins can be directly pitted against state-of-the-art scientific knowledge.”

He later claims Nye was too anti-racist and lost on that front:

“Bill Nye deployed just about all the deceptive tropes, insisting that “DNA proves we’re 99.9% the same.” It’s actually a bit closer to 99.5%, but what does that prove? Our genetic similarity to chimpanzees is just under 99%, so there’s a lot of room for very important differences within that one percent.”

“The canard about there being more diversity within races than between races is trotted out. This alone should be enough to have Dr. Nye’s science card revoked.”

We see that both sides lost by default because they implicitly accepted Boasian anthropology. Maybe Mr. Ham would have been declared the winner if he was a Kinist?[2] Mr. Ham, according to Parrott also lost because he believed in Bronze Age Bedouin literature. I guess moronic racial theories based on the works of Madam Blavatsky are more credible[3]?

Mr. Parrott goes on using the Ryan Faulk meme of Race Creationism to discredit Bill Nye and states:

“Watching those two self-important and self-promoting ideologues disguising their pursuit of their agenda as “science” reminded me how fortunate we were to have been blessed by heroic defenders of truth like William Shockley, J.P. Rushton, Arthur Jensen, Richard Lynn, Charles Murray, and Kevin MacDonald. With all due respect to the Royal Air Force, never was so much owed by so many to so few. These torch bearers stood for the forbidden truth in its darkest hour, introducing most of the men and women reading this to a realm of reality which the oligarchs struggled mightily to hide from us.”

Yup, Neo-Nazi kooks are at the cutting edge of science and technology. To borrow an acronym from Harold Covington’s Northwest Quartet, Mr. Parrott is a DM. The first thing we can see is that his response is so scripted, so formulaic, it is as if it were an article written for Mises.org. If I might borrow from Richard Spencer in interview with Paul Gottfried in Paleology, a NPI podcast, one could write a computer algorithm for CC and it would have done a job indistinguishable from Mr. Parrott.

The first and obvious fallacy is this:

“Ken Ham begins by confirming that secularists have indeed hijacked the word “science,” concluding that Christian fundamentalists must instead hijack the word for themselves.”

So both Nye and Ham ‘hijack’ science only for Mr. Parrott to hijack it with Neo-Nazi kookiness. What makes Mr. Parrott think his view of anthropology is better than theirs? Furthermore, Mr. Parrott’s Fascist views are even more of a minority position than Mr. Ham’s. It seems the attack was not out of principle, but jealousy, since the Neo-Nazi-Fascists at CC will always be in the minority and that “Old Time Religion” just won’t die. Parrott hypocritically appeals to scientific ‘consensus,’ whatever that is, to reject creationism, but the scientific consensus on anthropology is Boasian and his view is not.  Why is Mr. Parrott’s rejection of the ‘consensus’ valid and Mr. Ham’s is not? Because Mr. Parrot is a DM and a hypocrite; he cannot think out of a wet paper bag. He appeals to ‘consensus’ to look good (evolution), but when the ‘consensus’ disproves his pet theories on race, bye-bye ‘consensus.’ For Mr. Parrott, it has nothing to do with ‘consensus’ and his attempt to make it so is much sand in one’s eye.

If we had Mr. Ham or Mr. Parrott on stage I wager the left would put Mr. Parrott on a spit before it would Mr. Ham. Mr. Parrott is guilty of the same behavior as many libertarians are as is seen in Robert Murphy’s article Thoughts on Marco Rubio and the Age of the Earth[4]. Mr. Murphy argues that when libertarians ridicule YECs (Young Earth Creationists) and appeal to the establishment to validate their criticism, they are standing in the place of the Paul Krugmans of the world. They are treating the YEC’s the way Paul Krugman treats Rothbardians. The Luke 6:31 anybody?  In Mr. Murphy’s words:

“These complaints were particularly amusing, because Austrian economists are the analog of the “Intelligent Design” scholars. Contrary to the aspersions of Krugman and others, there really are PhDs in various, relevant fields who challenge the “consensus” views on speciation, the origin of life, and the age of the earth. The fundamentalist Christians who believe in a Young Earth don’t merely say, “Well sure, all them pointy heads with their fancy equipment and big brains say one thing, but I’ve got my Bible so they must be wrong.” No, the fundamentalist Christian thinks the secular scientists have overrated the powers of their reason and are misapplying their scientific tools. The works of the academics in the Intelligent Design and Creationist fields (those are distinct concepts, by the way) are full of secular arguments. They give logical objections to carbon dating and geological evidence of an Old Earth. It’s not simply quoting Scripture.

In conclusion, it is entirely understandable that Paul Krugman and other icons in the economics establishment can laugh at the outcasts in both economics and other disciplines. But it is ironic indeed when Austrian economists—who think that the New Keynesian orthodoxy is rubbish—join suit.

Of course the two disciplines are different; it’s possible that the Austrians are right in their criticism of the mainstream “consensus,” while the Intelligent Design and/or Young Earth scientists are wrong in their criticism of their mainstream peers. But from a cultural or sociological perspective, the two situations are quite similar. Unless a particular Austrian economist also has an advanced degree in biology or geology, I don’t think he or she should be complaining too loudly about conservatives paying attention to “crank” scientists in other disciplines. If the conservatives heeded such advice, then they’d tune out the Austrian economists too.”

In his treatment of Mr. Ham as a kook and then pushing his kooky idea of race-realism (read Nazi racial ideology or anti-Jewish prejudice), Mr. Parrott is standing in the place of Guilty White Liberals. He is what he claims to hate. This shows us the chicanery of the so-called New-Right; they are really just anti-social leftoids who, as it suits their purposes, are just as bad as the leftoids and then cry foul when they are misrepresented on the Huffington Post.

We see an evaluation of Mr. Ham’s work that would rival the NYT for stupidity and mendacity. Mr. Parrott states:

“His argument basically consists of trotting out some token scientists who endorse Young Earth Creationism and, more importantly, confirming the false premise that the natural sciences have decisive religious significance.”

“As a self-professed defender of Christianity, Ham lost the debate before he started because he agreed that a book written, edited, and translated by bronze-age Bedouins can be directly pitted against state-of-the-art scientific knowledge.”

The only question here is our DM friend stupid or a liar or both? At the very least he must be deaf, for he did not hear a word Mr. Ham said. Mr. Parrott would likely flunk Philosophy 101, for Evolution and modern science are based on the philosophic proposition of Materialism (all that is or can be known is material). This premise which underlies all of modern science is a metaphysical/religious statement. It implies 1) God does not exist or at the very least if He did it would not change anything; 2) only matter exists or at the very least matter is the only thing that can be known and studied. Such an axiomatic assumption is by definition not scientific; it is assumed before the science is done. Mr. Ham was making the quite reasonable point that the atheist agitprop smearbund propagandists should be called out for smuggling in atheism in the guise of science. This is a concern also shared by the physicist Max Planck:

“Under these conditions it is no wonder, that the movement of atheists, which declares religion to be just a deliberate illusion, invented by power-seeking priests, and which has for the pious belief in a higher Power nothing but words of mockery, eagerly makes use of progressive scientific knowledge and in a presumed unity with it, expands in an ever faster pace its disintegrating action on all nations of the earth and on all social levels. I do not need to explain in any more detail that after its victory not only all the most precious treasures of our culture would vanish, but — which is even worse — also any prospects at a better future.[5]

Next we’ll hear that Mr. Planck is a creationist wingnut! The fact that so many DM’s fail to understand is that modern science is based on a open assumption that GOD DOES NOT EXIST. No wonder you get ‘evidence’ that contradicts God’s existence if you deny His existence before the experiments. The tacit distinction between experimental and historical science is admitted by the Atheist philosopher Thomas Nagel:

“The idea that historical understanding is part of science has become familiar through the transformation of biology by evolutionary theory. But more recently, with the acceptance of the big bang, cosmology has become apart of historical science.[6]

The rest of Nagel’s work is a scathing assault on Neo-Darwinian dogma. The problem with historical science is that it is an oxymoron pushed by mendacious people. History and Science are two methods of knowing that are radically different from each other, using the Merriam-Webster definition for both terms we get:

History: the study of past events.

Science: knowledge about or study of the natural world based on facts learned through experiments and observation.

As a trained historian, ‘historical-science’ is rubbish; it is not history (something I am intimately familiar with) and it is not science. I realize for people educated in public schools this is a hard distinction to make but the past is not observable. By definition science cannot have a historical component. If ‘scientists’ are doing cosmology they are doing metaphysics, not science. This is such a rudimentary logical distinction that only a society devoid of real education could fail to see this relationship. One can only do history if one has the written records of what happened; if no such records exist then no historical knowledge can be gleaned[7]. Given that neither Mr. Nye nor Mr. Parrott were alive millions of years ago, they would have no way of knowing what actually happened millions of years ago, or any past time prior to rational life. Historical-science is a convenient fiction foisted upon the gullible.

Mr. Parrott states:

“His argument basically consists of trotting out some token scientists who endorse Young Earth Creationism…”

Again I don’t know if Mr. Parrott is stupid or a liar or both. Raymond Vahan Damadian, a token creationist in Mr. Parrott’s words, invented the MRI scanner. Next time Mr. Parrott revolutionizes medicine he should call me. This is a clear example of the fallacy known as poisoning the well, actually his whole essay performs this fallacy. The word ‘token’ is meant to prejudice the reader before he has even made up his mind. This kind of trickery is typical of the left and the anti-social people like Mr. Parrott.

In short the two contentions of Mr. Ham are 1) modern science is being used as a Trojan horse for atheism and naturalism (a view shared by Max Planck); 2) science is not history and history is not science. If these two concepts were too difficult for Mr. Parrott to see, irrespective of whether he agrees with them or not, then he might need a refresher course in logic.

His animosity towards creationists is seen in an earlier work, Atheism Plus & the New Culture of Critique. He claims he is no longer an atheist, but his cavalier discussion of metaphysics is reminiscent of a kindergartener. Mr. Parrott states:

“There’s no way to prove whether God exists or not. Some Christians insist that this or that documented “miracle” proves that their specific god exists. Some atheists insist that this or that scientific finding proves that he doesn’t exist. There’s a whole cottage industry of books, blogs, and bullshit purporting to firmly decide this timeless question one way or the other. Personally, I see belief in God as ultimately a matter of faith rather than evidence, and I believe His true nature is necessarily a mystery.”

“Speaking in scientific terms, the question of God’s existence is poorly defined. Who or what are we looking for? How could we devise a test to prove or disprove Him? The assertion is unfalsifiable, outside the realm of the scientific process. It has nothing to do with science. And yet, in the American popular culture and especially on the Internet, ‘atheist’ is the official religious preference of science and ‘Christian’ is the official religious preference of the willfully ignorant.”

First, Mr. Parrott claims the existence of God cannot be proven or dis-proven and that armchair philosophers who claim to have the knock-down argument to settle this dispute are idiots, but putting on his DM hat with equal certainty claims that God is essentially unknowable, a clear contradiction of what he said could not be said. If the Deity is unknowable how does Mr. Parrott know He exists? By retreating to Fideism, Mr. Parrott is leaving the land of rationality to the land of irrationality.  Mr. Parrott must not be familiar with the arguments of Anselm, Aquinas, Descartes and Kant for the existence of God; Descartes’ Meditations produces one of the best Ontological Arguments thus constructed to prove the existence of the Deity.

When Mr. Parrott begins with “Speaking in scientific terms, the question of God’s existence is poorly defined”,  we see that he is immediately a philosophical ignoramus. What scientific evidence does Mr. Parrot have for numbers, information or geometric theorems? None! Mr. Parrott is stuck in a philosophy from the 1930s called Logical Positivism or Verificationism. This theory of knowledge stated: “Nothing that cannot be proven scientifically or mathematically is not meaningful.” The founders of this school failed to realize that their own philosophy violated that rule. Later Ayer did realize it was entirely bogus[8]. I suggest that Mr. Parrott leave the 1930s and come up to the 21st century when it comes to philosophy. Mr. Parrott’s failure to realize that apriori synthetic concepts such as God, ethics, mathematics and geometry are not proven empirically, but rationally, is evidence of his intellectual incompetence. One might wonder if we could rewrite:“‘Christian’ is the official religious preference of the willfully ignorant” as “’race-realist’ is the official religious preference of the willfully vulgar and stupid.”?

The height of Mr. Parrott’s stupidity and hypocrisy is seen here:

“But there are very few little old church ladies on the Internet and even fewer safe spaces.

“Creationism’s discursive bubble has a semi-permeable membrane which only admits ideas that are compatible with a literal interpretation of Genesis. Whether or not it’s factual is entirely beside the point. It’s a worldview within which the facts must fit or the facts aren’t welcome. Creationism thrives within the sheltered little world of quaint neighborhood chapels and in the hearts and minds of tens of millions of little old church ladies. Those are safe spaces for Creationism where nobody is likely to challenge them.

On the rare occasion that Creationists do start arguing for their worldview on blog comments, forums, Reddit, 4chan, and 4chon, they’re immediately besieged by the tsunami of people who strongly disagree with them, the strong passions of those who disagree with them, and the weight of the peer-reviewed scientific evidence stacked against them. The Internet is a sort of discursive mixed martial arts tournament where different ways  of thinking are pitted against one another with virtually none of the rules, restrictions, or taboos that exist in the real world. The Internet is where discursive bubbles go to get popped.”

My reductio:

“Race-realism’s discursive bubble has a semi-permeable membrane which only admits ideas that are compatible with a literal interpretation of Nazi anthropology. Whether or not it’s factual is entirely beside the point. It’s a worldview within which the facts must fit or the facts aren’t welcome. Race-realism thrives within the sheltered little world of squalid city slums and in the hearts and minds of tens of millions of little anti-social and dysfunctional white boys. Those are safe spaces for Race-Realism where nobody is likely to challenge them.

On the rare occasion that Race-Realists do start arguing for their worldview on blog comments, forums, Reddit, 4chan, and 4chon, they’re immediately besieged by the tsunami of people who strongly disagree with them, the strong passions of those who disagree with them, and the weight of the peer-reviewed scientific evidence stacked against them. The Internet is a sort of discursive mixed martial arts tournament where different ways  of thinking are pitted against one another with virtually none of the rules, restrictions, or taboos that exist in the real world. The Internet is where discursive bubbles go to get popped.”

I doubt Neo-Nazi-Fascists like Mr. Parrott would fare any better on the internet than YECs[9].

We see that Mr. Parrott is nothing but a race-realist DM, who pushes for Nazi agitprop. He appeals to the scientific ‘consensus’ only so long as it support his views, but when his unscientific-anti-Boasian views on race, which come from a crazy Russian mystic, bye-bye, scientific ‘consensus.’

In conclusion I could be accused of irreverence, bellicosity, meanness, and misconstruing Matt Parrott, CC and Race-Realism. This might all be true, but this is nothing less than Matt Parrott’s SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). He takes all the leftwing crap and regurgitates it like a good Marxist drone when he is criticizing Christians, but whines when the left returns the favor on race. For more information read Proverbs 26:5.


[1] “Weird Science: Liberal Creationism vs. Christian Creationism,” last modified February 6, 2014, http://www.counter-currents.com/2014/02/weird-science/

[2] “The Reality of Race,” last modified February 6, 2014, http://faithandheritage.com/2011/11/the-reality-of-race/

[3] “Hitler’s Racial Ideology: Content and Occult Sources,” last modified February 6, 2014, http://motlc.wiesenthal.com/site/pp.asp?c=gvKVLcMVIuG&b=395043

[4] “Thoughts on Marco Rubio and the Age of the Earth,” last modified February 6, 2014, http://consultingbyrpm.com/blog/2012/11/thoughts-on-marco-rubio-and-the-age-of-the-earth.html

[5] Frank Taynor, translator., Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers, Philosophical Library; 1st edition (1949)

[6] Thomas Nagel, Mind and Cosmos: Why The Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception Of Nature Is Almost Certainly False, OxfordUniversityPress, USA (August 29, 2012), 8.

[7] This is generally true non-written remains include architecture, pottery and other relics, but they can only communicate so much and that is far less than written source.

[8] “Ayer on Logical Positivism: Section 4,” last modified February 6, 2014, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4cnRJGs08hE

[9] See Fringeelement’s flame-war with the entire youtube community over race realism.

4 thoughts on “Contra Parrott: The Emptiness of Third-Way Anthropology”

  1. Pingback: In Praise of Folly
  2. Hey, I really like your blog, but I am a little confused about your point.

    Your basic argument, if I understand it correctly, is that Parrott has no right to attack creationists because their views are just fringe as those of HBD types.

    But bosian anthropology is not the consensus. Wasn’t margaret mead exposed as a fraud by derek freeman? And anthropology, from what I’ve heard, is not a field where research is held to high standards. Just look at women’s studies courses.

    Researchers and writers like Greg Cochrane, Richard Lynn, Steve Pinker, James Watson, and nicholas wade are not promoting “Nazi racial ideology or anti-Jewish prejudice.”

    Raymond Vahan Damadian could also fairly be described as a token scientist. Ham was not interested in the field he is an expert in; he was using him to make a political point. Damadian may be brilliant, but that doesn’t prevent him from being wrong. Inventing the MRI scanner has nothing to do with whether evolution is true or not.

    Parrott also did not seem to be anti-Christian. YEC is a modern phenomena associated with the anglican church. The medieval scholastics did not interpret the bible literally.

    Their seem to be far more biologists and geneticists who argue that different races have different capabilities and inclinations than biologists and geneticists who argue that god designed humans. If African-Americans are susceptible to sickle cell anemia, why could those differences not extend to mental and physical characteristics?

    I am not a racist, BTW. Zoning laws, occupational licensing laws, and the war on drugs are all grossly discriminatory toward blacks. Culture could play a even greater role than genetics. But those who argue that different races have different genetic traits are not comparable to creationists.

    1. “Inventing the MRI scanner has nothing to do with whether evolution is true or not.”

      True, but that was not the point. The point of Damadian was to refute the culmny that only those who believe in evolution can do good science, which is false.

      “The medieval scholastics did not interpret the bible literally.”

      Yes they did. For example Basil the Great and Thomas Aquinas.

      For example Basil’s Hexaemeron Homily II: “Now twenty-four hours fill up the space of one day— we mean of a day and of a night; and if, at the time of the solstices, they have not both an equal length, the time marked by Scripture does not the less circumscribe their duration. It is as though it said: twenty-four hours measure the space of a day, or that, in reality a day is the time that the heavens starting from one point take to return there. Thus, every time that, in the revolution of the sun, evening and morning occupy the world, their periodical succession never exceeds the space of one day. But must we believe in a mysterious reason for this? God who made the nature of time measured it out and determined it by intervals of days; and, wishing to give it a week as a measure, he ordered the week to revolve from period to period upon itself, to count the movement of time, forming the week of one day revolving seven times upon itself: a proper circle begins and ends with itself. ”

      And Aquinas in the Summa Theologica First Part Question 74 Article 3 Reply to Objection 7: The words “one day” are used when day is first instituted, to denote that one day is made up of twenty-four hours. Hence, by mentioning “one,” the measure of a natural day is fixed. Another reason may be to signify that a day is completed by the return of the sun to the point from which it commenced its course. And yet another, because at the completion of a week of seven days, the first day returns which is one with the eighth day. The three reasons assigned above are those given by Basil (Hom. ii in Hexaem.).

      “Raymond Vahan Damadian could also fairly be described as a token scientist.”

      That might make sense if from Copernicus to Maxwell most scientists weren’t Christian YECs. Neo-Darwinism did not become mainstream until after the 1950s so if anyone is token they are. 1300-1850 for YECs and only 60 or so years for Darwinists.

      The rejection of YEC is christian capitulation to modernism. With friends running of the white flag like that who needs enemies.

      “But bosian anthropology is not the consensus. Wasn’t margaret mead exposed as a fraud by derek freeman? And anthropology, from what I’ve heard, is not a field where research is held to high standards. Just look at women’s studies courses.”

      Of course Mead was a joke and her research discredited, but is really not to the point of this piece.

      The point of this piece was to belittle Parrott in the same way he belittled the YEC position. I was intentionally over the top, to make a point. It is otherwise known as a reductio ad absurdum. I was intentionally acting in an absurd way to show how absurd Parrot was.

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