Ron Bailey flunks Ben Stein. He find's Stein's movie Expelled "free of scientific content: It gives no scientific evidence against biological evolution and none for "intelligent design." Instead, host Ben Stein spends most of the movie asking various proponents of evolutionary theory for their religious views." But it gets even worse:
The most egregious part of the movie is the attempt to link evolution with Communism and Nazism. The claim that Communism was motivated by Darwin is just silly. Official Soviet biological doctrine was Lysenkoism, and Russian Darwinists were denounced as "Trotskyite agents of international fascism" and thrown into the Gulag for their scientific sins.
And Nazism? In the film, the mathematician David Berlinski says, "Darwinism is not a sufficient condition for a phenomenon like Nazism, but I think it was a necessary one." Berlinski is suggesting that scientific materialism undermines the notion that human beings occupy a special place in the universe. If humans aren't special, goes this line of thinking, then morals don't apply.
But people through the millennia have found all sorts of justifications for murdering each other, including plunder, nationalism, and, yes, religion. Meanwhile, insights from evolutionary psychology are helping us understand how our in-group/out-group dynamics contribute to our disturbing capacity for racism, xenophobia, genocide, and warfare. The field also offers new ideas about how human morality developed, including our capacities for cooperation, love, and tolerance.
At one point in the film, the science studies gadfly Steve Fuller archly poses the question: Which comes first, worldview or evidence? Fuller aims his question at the proponents of evolutionary biology. As this dreary film itself makes it painfully clear, the question is far more relevant to the supporters of intelligent design.
I'm glad Ron sat through the movie so we don't have to.