The New Southeast Asia Invasion: Dawkins, Krauss & Uncle Sam

Mekong River

“I certainly don’t want to do anything remotely approaching indoctrination”.  —Richard Dawkins, The Guardian.

It is not enough that British biologist Richard Dawkins‘ foreign interference promoting Darwinian natural selection in America’s schools via TIES and NGSS has infected school systems in 26 US states.  Running out of places to spread scientifically discredited natural selection and selfish gene dogma—on January 6-18, 2020, Dawkins will attempt to further introduce the malaise to traditional villages along Southeast Asia’s Mekong River. However, the Vietnamese have already hosted two major mechanobiology conferences in Quy Nhon:  “When Physics Meets Biology” (2019) and “Mechanobiology, from Molecules to Tissue” (2016).  So Dawkins et al. will have a lot of proselytizing to do. . .

The cruise-ade ($9,950 a boat ride/double occupancy + travel expenses) is being sponsored by the Origins Project Foundation, a public charity headed by physicist/science popularizer Lawrence Krauss—a longtime pal of sex predator Jeffrey Espstein. 

Krauss organized science conferences for Epstein on Epstein’s “Isle of Babes.” Epstein supported Krauss’ work during his time at Arizona State University.

“I don’t feel tarnished in any way by my relationship with Jeffrey [Epstein]; I feel raised by  it,” Krauss told The Daily Beast.

Accused of sexual misconduct himself, Krauss resigned last year as head of Arizona State University’s Origins Project, a post he held for a decade as its founder.  He also resigned from his $265,000 a year ASU teaching position.  And he resigned from the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists as well. 

He was removed from various roles in the American Humanist Association, Freedom from Religion Foundation and the Center for Inquiry.  The American Physical Society cancelled its invitation for him to speak at its April 2018 meeting.

However, Krauss has now managed to wrestle the Origins Project name from ASU for his own use, grown a beard to accent his celebrity wardrobe, and gotten Uncle Sam to grant 501(c)(3) status to his Origins Project Foundation.  He’s also recruited these familiar names for his advisory board:  Steve Pinker (another former Epstein pal), Martin Rees, Ian Tattersall, Gerry Ohrstrom—and somehow Noam Chomsky, among others. 

Here’s the foundation’s mission:

“to enrich your perspective of your place in the cosmos by providing access to the people who are driving the future of society in the 21st century, and to the ideas that are changing our understanding of ourselves and our world.”

OH REALLY? Thanks so much for letting us know. . .

But just why is Krauss still catering to Richard Dawkins’ drivel when his own scientific perspective appears to deviate from the natural selection script?  For the record, this is what Krauss told me in our 2012 conversation for The Origin of Life Circus: A How To Make Life Extravaganza:

Lawrence Krauss: Whether you call it life or not, it’s just the laws of physics and chemistry. There’s nothing beyond the laws of physics and chemistry that allow for the origin of life.  We are just a bunch of chemicals subject to forces and laws.  It’s electromagnetism and quantum mechanics and how those laws of electromagnetism and quantum mechanics produce chemistry.  And how chemistry produces biology.  And then once biology is produced, how do those laws impact on how biological molecules evolve.  It’s a continuum.

To say it’s physics is ok, because it is all physics.  Ultimately the laws of chemistry are just an application of physics.  And so at some fundamental level physics determines the evolution of organic molecules but we call it chemistry because of the way physics manifests itself in the nature of atoms and atomic levels.  Biology is an application of chemistry with a certain set of molecules that have certain interesting properties including ultimately to self-organize and produce consciousness and intelligence and affect the planet.”

I also engaged Richard Dawkins about the new evolutionary thinking emerging a decade ago. Here’s our dialogue during his 2008 Barnes & Noble book talk in Manhattan:

Suzan Mazur: recently picked up my story [“Altenberg! The Woodstock of Evolution?“], about a meeting at Altenberg in July called “Toward An Extended Evolutionary Synthesis,” which is believed will move us a bit away from the gene-centered view. Natural selection is under attack and the feeling is that the really interesting evo stuff has to do with form, which we currently have no theory for. I wondered whether you were asked to participate in the Altenberg symposium and what your thoughts are about a remix of the Synthesis?

Richard Dawkins: The question is about a recent symposium at Altenberg in Austria.

Suzan Mazur: No. It’s coming up in July. I was wondering if you were invited?

Richard Dawkins: Sorry, it hasn’t happened yet are you telling me?

Suzan Mazur: No, it’s coming up in July, to remix the theory of evolution essentially.

Richard Dawkins: About development was it as well?

Suzan Mazur: It seems a move away a bit from the gene-centered view.

Richard Dawkins: You’ve been taken in by the rhetoric.

Suzan Mazur: You posted it on your web site — my story.

Richard Dawkins: You asked the question: Have I been invited?  I’m sorry to say I get invited to lots of things and I literally can’t remember whether I was invited to this particular one or not. [some laughter]

Suzan Mazur: But it’s being viewed as a major event.

Richard Dawkins: By whom I wonder. [some  more laughter]

Suzan Mazur: You might have a look at the story I put up.

Richard Dawkins: No. I’m sorry I’ve got to answer the question now.

I gather that it’s an attack on the gene-centered view of evolution and a substitution of the theory of form.

The theory of form I presume dates back to D’Arcy Thompson, who was a distinguished Scottish zoologist who wrote a book called On Growth and Form and who purported to be anti-Darwinian. In fact, he never really talked about the real problems that Darwinism solves, which is the problem of adaptation.

Now D’Arcy Thompson and other people who stress the word form emphasize the laws of physics. Physical principles alone as on their own adequate to explain the form of organisms. So for example, D’Arcy Thompson would look at the way a rubber tube would get reshaped when crushed and he would find analogies to that in living organisms.

I see a lot of value in that kind of approach. It is something we can’t as biologists afford to neglect. However, it absolutely neglects the question where does the illusion of design come from? Where do animals and plants get this powerful impression that they have been brilliantly designed for a purpose? Where does that come from?

That does not come from the laws of physics on their own. That cannot come from anything that has so far been suggested by anybody other than natural selection. [emphasis added]

So I don’t see any conflict at all between the theory of natural selection—the gene-centered theory of natural selection, I should say—and the theory of form. We need both. We need both. And it is disingenuous to present the one as antagonistic to the other.”

Force-feeding America’s youth myths of natural selection and selfish genes as an explanation for evolution—the bedrock of our civilization—is unconscionable.  It is an issue that should be on the lips of all 2020 contenders for US President. 


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