I'm from Missouri

This site is named for the famous statement of US Congressman Willard Duncan Vandiver from Missouri : "I`m from Missouri -- you'll have to show me." This site is dedicated to skepticism of official dogma in all subjects. Just-so stories are not accepted here. This is a site where controversial subjects such as evolution theory and the Holocaust may be freely debated.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

My biggest motivation for creating my own blogs was to avoid the arbitrary censorship practiced by other blogs and various other Internet forums. Censorship will be avoided in my blogs -- there will be no deletion of comments, no closing of comment threads, no holding up of comments for moderation, and no commenter registration hassles. Comments containing nothing but insults and/or ad hominem attacks are discouraged. My non-response to a particular comment should not be interpreted as agreement, approval, or inability to answer.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Review of final decision in ACSI v. Stearns

I have a new post label for ACSI v. Stearns. Post labels are listed in the sidebar.

Previously, I said that I was not going to do any more analysis of ACSI v. Stearns because I concluded that the case should be declared non-justiciable and that the court should require that no special viewpoints -- including non-Christian viewpoints -- be allowed in any sole or main textbooks in UC-accredited high-school courses and that special viewpoints in those courses be allowed only in supplemental materials. My reasons for this conclusion are given here. However, I have now decided to post an analysis here. The reasons for my change of mind are: (1) a lot of misinformation about the decision is being posted on the Internet, particularly on Kevin Vicklund's blog; and (2) it is another opportunity to take a swipe at lousy judges, something I just love to do.

The only rejected textbook that I investigated very much was the Bob Jones Univ. 2-volume biology textbook. I finally agreed with UC's decision to reject this textbook -- I feel that the textbook's introduction just went too far when it said, "If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them." That statement discourages critical thinking and promotes spoonfeeding Christian dogma to the students. Even if one thinks that the bible is always right, it can be a useful mental exercise to try to figure out why the bible could be wrong. In the introduction, that statement not only attacks evolution but even attacks the possibility that a "'scientific' explanation of the biblical locust (grasshopper) plague in Egypt" could be correct. At least the more commonly quoted statement from the introduction, "The people who have prepared this book have tried consistently to put the Word of God first and science second," is open to the possibility that science could be correct and the bible wrong. I never liked the BJU biology text's introduction and I now feel no need to defend it because I decided that the case should be declared to be non-justiciable.

The final opinion is here. The review here is not intended to be complete -- I just touch upon what I consider to be the most important points:
.
Plaintiffs

The plaintiffs were: Calvary Chapel Christian School ("Calvary"), five Calvary students, and the Association of Christian Schools International ("ACSI") (page 1)

Definition of "summary judgment"

IMO the definition of "summary judgment" (page 2) is too vague and the term "summary judgment" should be eliminated from the law. "Summary judgment" supposedly means that there are no "genuine" issues concerning claims or material facts. But it is often necessary to thoroughly review facts and claims to determine that they are not "genuine" issues, and this thorough review is not "summary." There is no clear dividing line between summary and non-summary judgments. This decision here is called a "summary judgment," yet the decision thoroughly reviews five UC course rejections (pages 12-18). IMO all motions for final decisions should be titled "motion for final decision" to distinguish them from other kinds of motions.

Some plaintiffs' expert reports rejected as untimely

Defendants rejected more than 175 courses proposed by ACSI schools during the relevant time period -- only 38 rejections were challenged by the ACSI (page 8). The plaintiffs' expert witness reports analyzing each of the 38 challenged course rejections were rejected as untimely -- the reports were submitted in June 2008 and the discovery deadline passed in July 2007 ("Plaintiffs recently disclosed expert conclusions" -- pages 8-9). Plaintiffs conceded that they did not prepare for the 38 as-applied challenges (i.e., challenges to UC rejections of individual courses) because they expected the court to rule in their favor on the facial challenges (i.e., broad principles).(page 9). That was really careless. Only four challenged Calvary course rejections and one challenged non-Calvary course rejection were left for the court to review -- plaintiffs' expert reports for these courses were timely. (page 9)

ACSI's "associational standing"

After a lot of convoluted legal reasoning (pages 3-7), the opinion concludes (page 7),

Accordingly, ASCI does not have associational standing to pursue as-applied claims based on individual course rejections.

IMO this is just plain wrong -- IMO this was just a consolidation of 38 individual claims by ACSI members and ACSI has a right to be a legal representative on these claims. Anyway, this issue of ACSI's associational standing was rendered moot when the plaintiffs' expert reports on the 38 UC rejections were rejected as untimely.

Animus

The opinion said,
Defendants argue that Plaintiffs waived any animus argument when Plaintiffs' counsel stated "We do not intend to argue the case based on proving animus" at the hearing on the parties' first round of summary judgment motions (Tr. of Feb. 14, 2008 MSJ Hearing 39.) Plaintiffs dispute this argument, explaining that they did not intend to argue animus until this Court used that term to describe the punishment of disfavored viewpoints prohibited by National Endowment for the Arts v. Finley, 524 U.S. 569, 587 (1998). (page 10)

Now I am really confused -- why did the plaintiffs waive any animus argument at the first round of hearings on summary judgment motions in February 2008? A news article said,

The lawsuit against UC alleges that the university accepts courses from other schools taught from a particular viewpoint, such as feminist, African-American or countercultural, so the school can't discriminate against "a viewpoint of religious faith."

The original complaint goes into further detail on pages 44-55.

Wasn't this claim of discrimination against Christian viewpoints -- and also Christian content -- an animus argument? And this claim seems to me to be one of the best animus arguments that the plaintiffs could make. I thought that this claim was central to the lawsuit.

The opinion said,

Regardless of whether Plaintiffs waived this issue, they fail to present evidence of animus sufficient to raise a genuine issue of material fact . . . . .

Here, Plaintiffs provide no evidence of animus
(pages 10-11)

Well, as I said, I thought that UC's general pattern of approving textbooks and courses with narrow non-Christian viewpoints and content while rejecting textbooks and courses with Christian viewpoints and content was evidence of animus.

Plaintiffs essentially argue that Defendants had no rational basis for their actions and therefore they must have been motivated by animus. (page 11)

The opinion does not counter this argument.

This argument adds nothing to the constitutional analysis; if Defendants had no rational basis, the Court need not reach the issue of animus.(page 11)

Well, the Court has here reached the issue of animus by deciding that the Plaintiffs provided no evidence of animus, so contrary to the above statement, the Court reached the issue of animus without first deciding that the Defendants had no rational basis.

Anyway, the reason why the Court would not reach the issue of animus if the defendants' had no rational basis is that the lack of rational basis would be sufficient to decide the case, not that the animus issue is unimportant.

Accordingly, there is no genuine issue of material fact as to this issue. Defendants' decisions to reject the courses challenged by Plaintiffs were not motivated by animus.

As noted above, the judge said that he was not even supposed to decide the question of animus, and here he is ruling that the Defendants were not motivated by animus. The judge wants to have his cake and eat it too. I don't know what charges of animus the plaintiffs made now, but I am disappointed that the judge did not rule here on the original complaint's charge that UC discriminated by accepting textbooks and courses with narrow non-Christian viewpoints and content while rejecting textbooks and courses with Christian viewpoints and content.

Rational basis review of five UC course rejections

Here is where the opinion reviews the five UC course rejections -- four Chapel courses plus one non-Chapel biology course -- where the plaintiffs' expert reports were accepted as timely (pages 12-18). I lost interest in this section when I decided that the case should be declared non-justiciable. However, I may later read and maybe review Michael Behe's expert report on the biology textbooks. Kevin Vicklund got screwed up on this section of the opinion -- he said, "The untimely expert witness reports excluded as untimely, ACSI had no admissible evidence that any of the four [actually five] courses were unreasonably rejected" (the "reasonableness" section on Kevin's blog). The judge held that plaintiffs' expert reports for 38 other courses were untimely but held that plaintiffs' expert reports for these 5 courses were timely. Anyway, I am glad to see that pettifogging troll and cyberbully (he is always trying to get me kicked off of other blogs) Kevin Vicklund has his own blog now -- hopefully this means that he will have less time to troll this blog.

The National Center for Science Education's website has a good collection [1] [2] of documents for ACSI v. Stearns up to October 2007. To see later documents other than the final decision, a PACER account may be needed.

Well, we had Judge "Jackass" Jones (Kitzmiller v. Dover), Judge "Blooper" Cooper (Selman v. Cobb County), Judge TJ "Mad" Hatter (Fafarman v. Calif. and US EPA -- smog impact fee case), and now we also have Judge "Bozo" Otero (ACSI v. Stearns).
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37 Comments:

Anonymous Kalzeri said...

Ahh yes, another article in which Larry gets pompous about something in the news as though he has any expertise or knowledge of the subject, and as though his opinion carries any weight whatsoever. Really, look at the tone he uses. It is almost like he thinks he is a judge! How precious! It is nice to see a 62 year old who can still play make believe.

By the way Larry, did you "investigate" the ASCI text book further than the introduction? If not, you should admit that your examination is cursory, but that even a cursory examination was necessary to agree with the verdict's finding. That is what a rational person would do.

Isn't it wonderful that Larry now will spend the next several years complaining about yet another case he doesn't understand, attacking a judge for no real reason, calling that judge more juvenile names, and pontificating even more about legal issues he doesn't grasp (did you notice the section where he attacks the idea of "summary judgement"? Anyone else get a laugh at how Larry has found yet more of the American legal system Larry disagrees with because it was involved in a judgment he doesn't like?), taking statements out of context and completely misunderstanding them, and generally being the ignorant, insulting, and unpleasant jerk we know and mock.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 8:12:00 AM  
Anonymous Hector said...

Thank you for the link to Kevin's blog. It is notable and non-crappy. Perhaps Wikipedia will be citing it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 1:19:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

David Berlinski has called Darwinism "the last of the great 19th century mystery religions," and it certainly is that. It takes not a leap of faith to embrace Darwinism, but vast pole-vaults of blind faith. For Darwinism never has had any better evidence behind it than the other two mystery religions that emerged from 19th century materialism, i.e., Marxism and Freudism.

Ignorant buffoons are in the habit of imagining, absurdly, that anyone who doesn't swallow the pseudoscientific dogmas of the conventional evolutionary biologists whole, must be a creationist, a Christian fundamentalist, etc. It never occurs to them that there are those who want to see good evidence before they swallow some doctrine about how all species supposedly appeared, and that the "evolutionary biologists" have no such evidence.

So it's no suprise that the Christian fundamentalists might prefer their own religion to that which is pressed upon them by the Darwin-fan biologists. And meanwhile, the Darwin-addicts sustain their fading pseudoscience by absurdly shouting "You must be a fundy," whenever anyone at all dares to question their dogmas.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 1:48:00 PM  
Blogger Nada Platonico said...

Jim Sherwood wrote, ".." well, does it matter? It was completely off topic and had nothing to do with the ACSI v Stearns decision.

By definition this makes Jim Sherwood a troll (off topic postings). Maybe he'll be arbitrarily censored soon.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 2:09:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 2:10:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

The clash between a mystery-religion called Darwinism, and another religion called Christian fundamentalism, is IMHO the cause of the dispute over textbooks. Hence it's well to look at how the two faiths interact. It's an issue that invites careful reflection, and I don't claim to have all the answers.

There is, for instance, a certain symbiosis between the two doctrines. Darwinists habitually support their so-called "science" by claiming, ludicrously, that everyone who doubts it must be a "fundie" or a "creationist;" and even more bizarrely, that "the fundies" will establish a "theocracy," somehow, if the Darwin-faith falters. Meanwhile Christian fundamentalists gain considerable support for their religious views by pointing out the horrors which Darwinism helped to foster in the 20th century, such as the bloody Communist and Nazi dictatorships.

So the two faiths seem to foster each other, in a certain way.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 3:39:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Yes, Jim, the statement "evolution is the fundamental concept underlying all of biology" (Florida science standards) is as dumb as the statement "If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them" (fundy biology text). Both statements are the views of crackpots.

People are rebelling against the evolution education policies that the Darwinists are pushing -- dogmatic, hard sell, constantly in-your-face, evolution-is-central-to-biology, no weaknesses, no disclaimers, intolerant, no-ifs-ands-buts-or-maybes, all-criticism-of-evolution-is-just-unconstitutional-religion, mindless, brainwashing, spoonfeeding, I-love-Darwin, no compromise, take-no-prisoners kinds of policies.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 4:43:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

Darwin-addicts should thus take note, if they have any capacity to think rationally and to grasp reality, that I am not a creationist, a "fundie," a Christian, or even a theist or a deist. Nor am I a right-winger, or a conservative of any variety: I actually voted for Ralph Nader in 1996, since at least at that time I thought Clinton too conservative for my taste. Anyone who bothered to investigate on their own, instead of stupidly swallowing every piece of crap put out by PZ and by Eugenie, would soon discover that I am not at all unique: that there are a sufficient number of liberals and non-theists who lack faith in the old dogmas of the Darwin-fan, conventional "evolutionary biologists." But it's also true that some conservatives have in this instance largely led the way in questioning the Darwin-creed; and I do give them proper credit for doing so: they certainly deserve it. Meanwhile those liberals who still cling dogmatically to zealously materialist and/or Darwinist notions, are not IMHO advancing their political cause in any way. And let's add, there are many conservatives, such as George F.Will, who are as ignorantly Darwin-addicted as any liberal Darwin-booster.

I apologize to Larry if I have drifted off topic at this point. I simply wish to point all this out for the benefit of those who must properly be called Darwinitwits, i.e., those trolls who wish to imagine that, somehow, I must be commenting on this post as a "fundie" a "creationist," a Christian, or a conservative: i.e., with the intention of advancing some particular religious or political cause.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 4:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And here comes Jim Sherwood, Larry's resident yes man! A guy who thinks mindless assertion, hyperbole, name-calling, and doggerel limericks constitute some sort of refutation of a 150 years of research work supporting evolutionary theory! You know what an evolutionary biologist would think if he or she were to wander by here? He or she would think, "May God grant that my field be forever blessed with such ridiculous "enemies"!"

Saturday, August 23, 2008 6:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Michael said...

"If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them." That statement discourages critical thinking and promotes spoonfeeding Christian dogma to the students. Even if one thinks that the bible is always right, it can be a useful mental exercise to try to figure out why the bible could be wrong.

I wonder if Larry practices what he writes in this blog. Does Larry really try and figure out how wrong his opinions are to help him understand his own viewpoints and the viewpoints of others?

Ok, he disagrees with the introduction of the text book. But what about the text book teaching biology in general or is this an debate because the conclusions are different but the information are basically the same? Scientific facts in evolutionary science are a relative thing any...Are you really endorsing the concept of, "Even if all the data point to an intelligent designer, such an hypothesis is excluded from science because it is not naturalistic."

Here is the difference between a private school and a government school telling students what to believe in. When I considered going to a private school, all the basic subjects were accepted as "credit" even though some of it was based on evolution. Accepting something as "credit" from a different school doesn't mean the school endorses everything in it, what is really important is the basic or advanced understanding of it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 6:24:00 PM  
Blogger Nada Platonico said...

Jim Sherwood wrote, "I must be commenting on this post as a "fundie" a "creationist," a Christian, or a conservative"

Don't worry Jim, I don't think you any of those things. I just think you're a total moron. Or smart enough to have read a few books, allowing yourself to be deluded. In other words, if you and Larry were a version of Beavis and Butthead, you would be Butthead -- the kid who was smart enough to come up with really stupid ideas -- and Larry would be Beavis, who is evidently mentally retarded (though mental retardation is, unfortunately, not Larry's problem).

Saturday, August 23, 2008 8:33:00 PM  
Blogger Nada Platonico said...

Sorry to double post; just decided to respond to Michael's post.

Michael wrote, "Scientific facts in evolutionary science are a relative thing any (sic)...Are you really endorsing the concept of, "Even if all the data point to an intelligent designer, such an hypothesis is excluded from science because it is not naturalistic." "

First, "scientific facts in evolutionary science are a relative thing" is false; scientific knowledge is not "relative."

Second, I'm not sure what you're getting at when you write, "such an hypothesis is excluded from science because it is not naturalistic" because science follows rules and produces knowledge. Science cannot prove or disprove the existence of God per se -- it can (and has) show(n) that God is not necessary, but that is not the same thing (while Richard Dawkins and PZ Myers, among others, would disagree). Evolution is not based on faith or belief; it is based on evidence (and lots of it).

When you say, "the difference between a private school and a government school telling students what to believe in" you conflate the evidence that science has with a personal belief system. What the public school system is supposed to do is present science without consideration of its impact on religion -- just as science makes no comment on religious questions, the teachers are not supposed to agree with or disagree with religious questions. If the private school teaches ID it's obviously not breaking the law, but it's deceiving people into thinking that it's teaching science when it's not. It's fine by me if you don't want to accept that as long as you recognize that your beliefs are not science. Also, if anyone is telling anyone to believe something, it's the religious private school telling you to believe its religion's doctrine. I know, I went to Catholic schools. I know my 5th grade teacher had no problem supporting evolution -- and the school was run by nuns. I don't remember what my 9th biology teacher did regarding evolution; as far as I know he avoided the subject (but I am not willing to trust my memory completely yet). Beyond that, the school taught religious doctrine and history and whatnot in religious classes and science, math, history, etc., in their respective classes (without paying special attention to Catholics in history or literature, though I was in a public school for my American history courses).

Saturday, August 23, 2008 8:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Michael said...

First, "scientific facts in evolutionary science are a relative thing" is false; scientific knowledge is not "relative."

For the most part it is, the basics like gravity, motion, certain other laws are not relative...However, how much to you really want to expand your statement? As you most likely believe science knowledge grows, correct? And if science grows, changes in what was deemed as fact in the past might now be in the future, thus it's relative.

As far as private schools are concerned. Private schools have every right to teach any conclusion they so desire as long as it doesn't physically hurt the local population. This goes for atheist private schools if they are any. However, government schools are accountable to the taxpayers. To tell a private school there courses must be Jesus free, embraced with secularism or otherwise your course will not be credited and it could affect your admission as well is outrageous.

Multiculturalism has been embedded in my local University, in all the subjects including math and science. Is it still science and math by putting different cultures into it?

My point is this if a private teaches God is the sole creator, yet the rest of the course deals with the study of animals, there should not be a problem with it just because the conclusion is different. The government schools should not be concerned about the beliefs in the text book unless it's going to physically harm someone. If you know what I mean.

Saturday, August 23, 2008 10:27:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Kalzeri barfed,
>>>>> Ahh yes, another article in which Larry gets pompous <<<<<

Look at your comment -- and you have the nerve to call my article "pompous," dunghill

>>>>>> Really, look at the tone he uses. It is almost like he thinks he is a judge! <<<<<<

How many IMO's and IMHO's are in Darwinist blog articles about the case?

>>>>> By the way Larry, did you "investigate" the ASCI text book further than the introduction? <<<<<<

If you had bothered to read my several posts about the case, you would know that I investigated the BJU biology textbook further than the introduction.

Are you trying to defend the textbook by complaining that I rejected it on the basis of the introduction alone? I just could not bring myself to accept the statement, "If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them." That statement discourages critical thinking and suggests that the book just spoonfeeds fundy dogma to the students (though I cannot determine whether there is such spoonfeeding because I have not seen the book). It is not just a matter of developing critical thinking skills -- doing critical thinking helps students learn the material. The statement also discourages learning about evolution theory or anything else that conflicts with the bible. When Jesus was asked if it was OK to pay tribute to Caesar, he answered approximately, "whose image is on the money? Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, and unto god what is god's." IMO the biology text is Caesar's if the fundy schools want it to be accepted by UC. Anyway, my opinion about the book is moot because I decided the case should be declared to be non-justiciable.

>>>>>> attacking a judge for no real reason, calling that judge more juvenile names <<<<<<

As a result of my own bad experiences in the courts, I have particularly good reason to attack judges when they do bad things. As the Earl of Kent said in King Lear, "anger hath a privilege." For example, I had a very strong case in my federal lawsuit against the smog impact fee, but there was no oral hearing and no opinion! The state courts declared the fee to be unconstitutional and my claim that it was a federal case was vindicated when an expert testified in state court that the fee required the approval of the US EPA -- I argued that the state lost its federal-court tax-suit immunity by "leaving the sphere that is exclusively its own" (Parden v. Terminal Railway) by basing the fee entirely on the state's special status under federal emissions rules. Why should an argument have any less validity because it was made by me instead of some bigshot attorney? Meanwhile, I see judges lavish hundreds or even thousands of hours on other cases. I pay the same court fees as the rich and/or famous. Judges make time for high-profile cases by giving short shrift or no shrift to low-profile cases. In judges' allocations of time to different cases, the losses of many fund the payoffs for the lucky few, just like at any honest racetrack. You are just another lousy fink who takes the side of the courts against the little guy.

>>>>> did you notice the section where he attacks the idea of "summary judgement"? <<<<<<

I explained why I attacked the idea of "summary judgment" -- because "summary judgments" often aren't "summary."

You have not even attempted to counter any of my arguments. You are just a big bag of hot air.

Hectoring Hector barfed,

>>>>> Thank you for the link to Kevin's blog. It is notable and non-crappy. <<<<<<

Wrong -- Kevin did not correct his big error after I pointed it out to him. My post is much better in general. I give page-number references to the opinion. I don't use unexplained high-falutin legal jargon like Kevin does -- for example, he says "objections to standing cannot be waived" without explaining exactly what that means in the opinion's context, which Kevin does not provide.



Michael drivels (Saturday, August 23, 2008 6:24:00 PM) --

>>>>> I wonder if Larry practices what he writes in this blog. Does Larry really try and figure out how wrong his opinions are to help him understand his own viewpoints and the viewpoints of others? <<<<<<

It's very easy to say someone is wrong without saying why. You're wrong! See? There's nothing to it.

>>>>>> Ok, he disagrees with the introduction of the text book. But what about the text book teaching biology in general or is this an debate because the conclusions are different but the information are basically the same? <<<<<<<

Are you, like Kalzeri, trying to defend the book by saying that I should not have rejected it on the basis of the introduction alone?

>>>>>> When I considered going to a private school, all the basic subjects were accepted as "credit" even though some of it was based on evolution. <<<<<<

No fundy K12 school would ever deny transfer credit for a biology course in which evolution was taught. And what matters is what UC accepts, not what a fundy K12 school accepts. I suppose that you don't even need a high school diploma for regular UC admission -- you just need the a-g courses.

Michael said (Saturday, August 23, 2008 10:27:00 PM) --

>>>>>> To tell a private school there courses must be Jesus free, embraced with secularism or otherwise your course will not be credited and it could affect your admission as well is outrageous. <<<<<<

As I said, IMO the BJU textbook went too far when it said, "If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them." The statement discourages critical thinking and also discourages learning anything that conflicts with the bible.

>>>>>> Is it still science and math by putting different cultures into it? <<<<<<

Math is one subject in which there is no conflict. An article says,

The lawsuit is about theological content in "every major area in high school except for mathematics," says Wendell Bird, a lawyer for Calvary Chapel.

Jim Sherwood said,

>>>>>>> I apologize to Larry if I have drifted off topic at this point. <<<<<<

Please don't apologize, JIm. Your comment was not off-topic and I don't mind off-topic comments once in a while anyway. I am going to make an open-forum post to give visitors a chance to sound off on any topic of interest to them.

Sunday, August 24, 2008 8:01:00 AM  
Blogger Nada Platonico said...

Michael wrote, "Private schools have every right to teach any conclusion they so desire as long as it doesn't physically hurt the local population"

Yes, they can teach what they want.

Michael continued, "To tell a private school there courses must be Jesus free, embraced with secularism or otherwise your course will not be credited and it could affect your admission as well is outrageous."

No -- it's fine that they have beliefs that contradict science, common sense, grammar, etc. -- but there's no reason why others should have to accept that they're educated as a result. If they teach, for example, that the moon is made of cheese, why should any university official assume that they have a good science education; it's obvious that they don't. Freedom has consequences. You're free to believe dumb things if you want and even express your stupid opinions -- that's the First Amendment in a nutshell -- but everyone else has the right to criticize those opinions. They have the right to do so.

Also, the standards in this case applied to UC admissions. The students are still eligible for admission to the Cal State system where competition is less fierce. They can also demonstrate knowledge through a subject test or maybe even a high general SAT score (I think this was an option). Or they can take enough other classes to fulfill the requirements despite their school not offering an acceptable biology, literature, etc., course.

Michael wrote, "My point is this if a private [school] teaches God is the sole creator,"

This isn't a problem per se. If taught as science, then the students are not learning science.

"yet the rest of the course deals with the study of animals, there should not be a problem with it just because the conclusion is different."

Depends if they are teaching science, including the scientific method (in this case). Since the book says that the Bible trumps scientific knowledge, then no, it's not teaching science. It teaches about animals and plants and living organisms but not biology since biology is guided by evidence -- anything regarding God is not scientific. Sorry (not really, but no hard feelings).

"The government schools should not be concerned about the beliefs in the text book unless it's going to physically harm someone."

The government schools are not concerned about the beliefs of students per se. They are worried that they aren't learning proper science (or literature, or history) because of the interference to the scientific method that the religious beliefs of the textbook writers.

What they are saying is that the private school can use the book it wants -- but if it wants to be accredited, then they have to follow certain rules, including using a valid textbook.

Sunday, August 24, 2008 8:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Larry said:
the statement "evolution is the fundamental concept underlying all of biology" (Florida science standards) is as dumb as the statement "If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them" (fundy biology text). Both statements are the views of crackpots.
_______________________
Still spouting your drivel that evolution is not the conceptual heart of modern biology? Even though tens, if not hundreds of thousands of biologists, indeed very nearly all biologists are quite convinced and certain it is? So, you hold yourself smarter and more informed than those who actually study the field, when you are too lazy and scared to read even a single scientific paper? Wow. Larry, that is some nice crazy you got there.

Not surprising, though. You seem incapable of learning. After all, you still consider yourself a "legal genius" after displaying a woeful ignorance and lack of understanding of the law, as well as having all your frivolous, wasteful lawsuits thrown out of court. Oh yeah, I forgot, aren't you the idiot who purgered himself in federal court over a fine you didn't even have to pay? You sad, sick little old man.

Sunday, August 24, 2008 9:10:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

>>>>>> Still spouting your drivel that evolution is not the conceptual heart of modern biology? Even though tens, if not hundreds of thousands of biologists, indeed very nearly all biologists are quite convinced and certain it is? <<<<<<<

That's because they have an ax to grind. As I said, they are waging a prestige war against other branches of science by boasting that biology has something that the other branches don't have, a grand central unifying principle, evolution. They are also using the "central to biology" idea as an argument against criticism of evolution.

Evolution is just supposedly the means by which living things were created. Similarly, design and manufacturing are the means by which engineered things are created. Saying that evolution is central to biology is like saying that design and manufacturing are central to engineering.

>>>>> purgered himself in federal court over a fine you didn't even have to pay <<<<<<

Learn how to spell "perjured" -- your spelling is not even close. It was a fee, not a fine. And I never perjured myself -- no one ever asked if I paid the fee.

"I'm always kicking their butts -- that's why they don't like me."
-- Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger

Sunday, August 24, 2008 12:36:00 PM  
Blogger Nada Platonico said...

Larry again reveals he doesn't know what he is talking about. He wrote, "Evolution is just supposedly the means by which living things were created."

While many certainly agree with this conclusion, evolution is strictly about how life forms have evolved once life exists (it offers no direct comment on the origin of said life). Maybe this is why Larry hasn't evolved -- he has yet to find his life.

Sunday, August 24, 2008 1:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Larry said:
That's because they have an ax to grind. As I said, they are waging a prestige war against other branches of science by boasting that biology has something that the other branches don't have, a grand central unifying principle, evolution. They are also using the "central to biology" idea as an argument against criticism of evolution.
______________________
You don't know any scientists, do you? You don't know anything about science, do you? You honestly think every biologist on the planet "has an ax to grind" with the other branches of science? I can't say that any scientist I have ever known (and I work with biologists every day) actually thinks in these terms. I like how you conveniently ignore the mountain of empirical data supporting evolution, the fact that science has grown much more interdisciplinary in recent decades, with biologists, chemists, and physicists working closely on many topics and issues, and the fact that biologists don't claim that biology is unique in having a unifying phenomenon (this is not to mention the fact that virtually all biologists would readily tell you that biology is in many ways a subset of chemistry, which is in turn a subset of physics). You really are an idiot.

Larry also said:
Evolution is just supposedly the means by which living things were created. Similarly, design and manufacturing are the means by which engineered things are created. Saying that evolution is central to biology is like saying that design and manufacturing are central to engineering.
_______________________
Nada took the first part quite well. The origin of life is a separate field of study primarily worked on by biochemists. As to the second, do you grasp that biology and manufacturing are separate things? Evolution is the central fact and unifying concept of biology because biological organisms do, in fact, evolve, and this fact influences their traits, distributions, patterns of relation, interactions, and so on. All organismal populations have histories that determine their current and future characteristics. They can't be understood fully without understanding evolution. You would realize this if you knew anything about biology, but you don't. Heck, you don't even know that manufacturing and biology are different things!

Larry correct me:
Learn how to spell "perjured" -- your spelling is not even close.
_______________________
Thank you, Larry. I didn't spell it correctly, and I appreciate you correcting me. (you see, Larry, this is how rational adults respond to being corrected)

Larry then said:
It was a fee, not a fine. And I never perjured myself -- no one ever asked if I paid the fee.
____________________________
So you went to court over a fee you didn't have to pay?!? That is even sadder and battier than I had understood. You actually wasted the court's time and the tax-payers' money on a law suit concerning a fee you didn't have to pay! Wow. Just wow. You are one sick, pitiful old man. No wonder you were laughed out of court (and then likely provided the court clerks with weeks of jokes).

Sunday, August 24, 2008 5:31:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Nada Platonico (Sunday, August 24, 2008 8:38:00 AM) --

>>>>> If they teach, for example, that the moon is made of cheese, <<<<<

It is not necessary to make such straw man arguments -- it is bad enough that the introduction said, "If the conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them." That statement just stuck in my craw. Some fundies actually oppose scientific (or pseudoscientific) arguments against evolution because those arguments suggest that the word of god needs scientific support, and that statement encourages that kind of attitude.

>>>>> Also, the standards in this case applied to UC admissions. The students are still eligible for admission to the Cal State system where competition is less fierce. <<<<<<

I believe that the Cal State system has adopted the UC accreditations of high school courses.

>>>>>> They can also demonstrate knowledge through a subject test or maybe even a high general SAT score <<<<<<<

If the fundy biology course is satisfactory, then these are just "let them eat cake" arguments. The availability of alternatives is not a justification for arbitrary discrimination.

Special admission on the basis of high test scores generally requires applicants to be in the top 2-4% of high school grads instead of the top 12½ -- 15% for general admission.

>>>>> Or they can take enough other classes to fulfill the requirements despite their school not offering an acceptable biology, literature, etc., course. <<<<<<

Again, if the fundy biology course is satisfactory, this is just a "let them eat cake" argument.

Nada Platonico barfed (Sunday, August 24, 2008 1:35:00 PM) --
>>>>>>>Larry again reveals he doesn't know what he is talking about. He wrote, "Evolution is just supposedly the means by which living things were created."

While many certainly agree with this conclusion, evolution is strictly about how life forms have evolved once life exists (it offers no direct comment on the origin of said life). <<<<<<<<

In the context, it is obvious what I meant by "created," bozo. OK, I will change the statement to read, "Evolution is just supposedly the means by which species originated."

Anonymous driveled,

>>>>>> do you grasp that biology and manufacturing are separate things? <<<<<<<

Do you grasp that design & manufacturing play the same role in engineering as evolution plays in biology? And design & manufacturing are irrelevant in most of engineering -- most of my engineering courses did not include design or manufacturing at all.

>>>>>> the fact that biologists don't claim that biology is unique in having a unifying phenomenon <<<<<<

Other branches of science don't have unifying principles -- physicists, for example, are still searching for one -- they think that string theory may be a unifying principle but a lot of physicists do not consider string theory to be scientific. Central unifying principles in science and technology are very rare and generally exist only in very narrow fields -- for example, it can truly be said that Fourier's Law is the central unifying principle of heat conduction in solids.

>>>>>> So you went to court over a fee you didn't have to pay?!? <<<<<<

No one knew that I didn't pay the fee, dunghill. I just don't accept the "injured-in-fact" rule because I consider it to be a misinterpretation of the "cases" and "controversies" terms in Article III of the Constitution -- anything can be a controversy, including a hypothetical question.

Monday, August 25, 2008 5:00:00 AM  
Anonymous Voice in the Urbanness said...

> It is not necessary to make such straw man arguments <

Then why do you continue to do so?

> The availability of alternatives is not a justification for arbitrary discrimination. <

Again Larry has a problem understanding the word "arbitrary".

> Do you grasp that design & manufacturing play the same role in engineering as evolution plays in biology? <

No. Bad analogy as usual.

> And design & manufacturing are irrelevant in most of engineering <

Design is irrelevant in most engineering? No wonder you can only afford a dial-up connection!

> most of my engineering courses did not include design or manufacturing at all. <

It looks like you might have not understood engineering any more than you do law.

Monday, August 25, 2008 6:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Larry said:
Do you grasp that design & manufacturing play the same role in engineering as evolution plays in biology?
___________________________
That is a really, really bad analogy, and fails because engineering is not comparable to biology. You made a truly idiotic statement here. Had you any actual knowledge of evolutionary biology, or biology in general, this would be clear. Evolution is central to biology because living things have evolved over four billions years, and this long evolutionary past touches all aspects of their biological character. Evolution is a fact in the past of all organisms, and has determined those organisms. Organisms and their interactions cannot be understood without recognition of that fact. You would know this if you knew anything about biology.

Larry also said:
>>>>>> So you went to court over a fee you didn't have to pay?!? <<<<<<

No one knew that I didn't pay the fee, dunghill.
_______________________________
So you went to court knowing you didn't have a case under the law? That you had no standing at all? If you weren't asked going in if you had paid the fee, that is because people are generally expected to be more honest than you. You wasted the money of the taxpayers and the court's time. That is despicable. There is no excuse for such a wanton abuse of the legal system, and I hope you have suffered for doing something so egregiously wrong.

On a side note: No wonder you decided not to believe Blount when he told you that Cit+ wasn't a goal: you assumed he is like you and thus dishonest.

You pathetic, addled old man.

Monday, August 25, 2008 7:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>>>>> the fact that biologists don't claim that biology is unique in having a unifying phenomenon <<<<<<

Other branches of science don't have unifying principles -- physicists, for example, are still searching for one -- they think that string theory may be a unifying principle but a lot of physicists do not consider string theory to be scientific. Central unifying principles in science and technology are very rare and generally exist only in very narrow fields -- for example, it can truly be said that Fourier's Law is the central unifying principle of heat conduction in solids.
_________________________
Most, if not all biologists, even if they agreed with you that physics and chemistry and other sciences did not yet have a central, unifying concept (though chemistry certainly does), would point out that the theory just hasn't arrive at the point of unification yet. However, what you are missing is that evolution is the central, unifying fact of biology. Living things evolved from earlier living things, going all the way back to the progenote (the hypothetical first common ancestor of all life). This fact touches all aspects of biology. Biologists must recognize this, and understand their fields of study in light of this. It is an essential aspect of the phenomenon, life, studied by biology.
The thing you don't understand is that science is not slip up into warring sub-disciplines. There is always recognition that each of the large divisions of science study fundamentally different sets of phenomena, different facets of the universe. However, they also recognize that there is but one universe they study. You can dream all you want of political arguments within science being behind the community of biologists supporting evolutionary theory, but it is just a dream. You would know this if you did even a little research into biology, how biology works, or science in general. Try emailing a philosopher of science who studies things like this. You will rapidly find out how wrong you are in your assertions.

Monday, August 25, 2008 8:15:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Anonymous (Monday, August 25, 2008 7:53:00 AM) --
>>>>>>>That is a really, really bad analogy, and fails because engineering is not comparable to biology. <<<<<

No, it is a very good analogy. When are you Darwinists going to get it through your thick skulls that Darwinism is not relevant to everything in biology? Just saying that evolution was the means for the origin of species does not mean that Darwinism is relevant to everything in biology, just as the fact that design & manufacturing are the means of the origin of engineered objects does not mean that design & manufacturing are relevant to everything in engineering. One can believe that Darwinism is as true as gravity and still not believe that Darwinism is central to biology.

The statement that evolution is central to biology is what Jonathan Wells called "intellectual larceny." Wells said, “Darwinists steal credit for scientific breakthroughs to which they contributed nothing." He said,

. . .most of the fundamental disciplines in modern biology were pioneered by scientists who lived before Darwin was born. These pioneers include the sixteenth-century anatomist Andreas Vesalius, the sixteenth-century physiologist William Harvey, and the seventeenth-century botanist John Ray. They include the seventeenth-century founders of microbiology, Robert Hooke and Anton van Leeuwenhoek; the eighteenth-century founder of systematics, Carolus Linneaus; and the eighteenth-century founder of modern embryology, Caspar Friedrich Wolff. Even paleontology, which Darwinists now treat as theirs, was founded before Darwin’s birth by Georges Cuvier . . . .

Generations of breeders have been darwined. Mendel has been darwined. Jenner and Semmelweis have been darwined. Fleming, Florey, Chain, and Waksman have been darwined. So have the real pioneers of modern biology. They’ve all been darwined.
(from page 81 of "The Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism and Intelligent Design").

>>>>>> So you went to court knowing you didn't have a case under the law? That you had no standing at all? <<<<<<

Well, let's just call it a "citizen suit," 42 USC §7604, that was not filed as such. In citizen suits, you don't have to allege personal injury, you just have to allege that the US EPA failed to perform a non-discretionary duty. An expert testified in state court that the smog impact fee required approval of the EPA, hence it could be charged that the EPA failed to enforce this requirement. Citizen-suit statutes are arguably unconstitutional because they don't satisfy Const. Art. III's alleged requirement of "injury-in-fact."

Anonymous (Monday, August 25, 2008 8:15:00 AM) --
>>>>>> The thing you don't understand is that science is not slip up into warring sub-disciplines. <<<<<<

Lord Rutherford once said, "all science is either physics or stamp collecting." And fanatic Darwinist Steven Schafersman of the Texas Citizens for Science wrote an article about a prestige war between the different branches of science.

Monday, August 25, 2008 12:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Larry said:
The statement that evolution is central to biology is what Jonathan Wells called "intellectual larceny." Wells said, “Darwinists steal credit for scientific breakthroughs to which they contributed nothing." He said,
______________________
You're taking arguments from Jonathan Wells? The guy whose book is riddled with very basic errors of fact, as well as shoddy thinking, logical errors, and outright idiocy? The guy who proclaimed that he had been directed by Reverend Moon himself to bring down evolutionary theory? The devout Moonie who believes Moon is God? Good choice there, Larry my boy.

You might try reading some actual biology rather than absurd propaganda.

Thank you, by the way for the clarification: You don't understand that biology and engineering are not comparable. Thank you for parading your stupidity before everyone on this. I accept your surrender and wish you well. You will get over it eventually. After all, you don't have much longer in general, do you?

Monday, August 25, 2008 12:40:00 PM  
OpenID W. Kevin Vicklund said...

>>>Well, let's just call it a "citizen suit," 42 USC §7604, that was not filed as such. In citizen suits, you don't have to allege personal injury, you just have to allege that the US EPA failed to perform a non-discretionary duty. An expert testified in state court that the smog impact fee required approval of the EPA, hence it could be charged that the EPA failed to enforce this requirement. Citizen-suit statutes are arguably unconstitutional because they don't satisfy Const. Art. III's alleged requirement of "injury-in-fact."<<<

Larry is incorrect about the nature of citizen suit provisions. Citizen suits do require standing, including "injury-in-fact" - though injury-in-fact can be quite broadly interpreted. Rather, a citizen suit provision is an explicit waiver of sovereign immunity, including the conditions under which the waiver is and is not applicable. See FRIENDS OF THE EARTH, INC., et al. v. LAIDLAW ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES (TOC), INC. for proof the Supreme Court requires injury-in-fact for citizen suits.

It should interest people to know that Larry requested a refund of the fee in his court cases.

A far as my blog goes: it is certainly non-notable. Whether it is non-crappy is an exercise for the reader. Also, I was waiting for Larry to note his objections on my blog so that he could get due credit for the corrections. Unfortunately, his comment was caught by the automatic anti-spam program. His comment and my correction are now at my blog.

PS, this is W. Kevin Vicklund, I'm seeing what the OpenID login looks like.

Monday, August 25, 2008 3:43:00 PM  
OpenID W. Kevin Vicklund said...

Cool, it works the way I want.

I'll have to wait until tomorrow to address on-topic issues. Got a late meeting. Overtime on the first day of the week...

Monday, August 25, 2008 3:46:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Kevin Vicklund said,
>>>>>>Larry is incorrect about the nature of citizen suit provisions. Citizen suits do require standing, including "injury-in-fact" - though injury-in-fact can be quite broadly interpreted. <<<<<<

Here are the opening provisions of 42 USC §7604 -- there is nothing about "injury-in-fact," so the statute is facially unconstitutional --

(a) Authority to bring civil action; jurisdiction
Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, any person may commence a civil action on his own behalf—

(1) against any person (including (i) the United States, and (ii) any other governmental instrumentality or agency to the extent permitted by the Eleventh Amendment to the Constitution) who is alleged to have violated (if there is evidence that the alleged violation has been repeated) or to be in violation of (A) an emission standard or limitation under this chapter or (B) an order issued by the Administrator or a State with respect to such a standard or limitation,

(2) against the Administrator where there is alleged a failure of the Administrator to perform any act or duty under this chapter which is not discretionary with the Administrator, or

(3) against any person who proposes to construct or constructs any new or modified major emitting facility without a permit required under part C of subchapter I of this chapter (relating to significant deterioration of air quality) or part D of subchapter I of this chapter (relating to nonattainment) or who is alleged to have violated (if there is evidence that the alleged violation has been repeated) or to be in violation of any condition of such permit.


>>>>>>> See FRIENDS OF THE EARTH, INC., et al. v. LAIDLAW ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES (TOC), INC. for proof the Supreme Court requires injury-in-fact for citizen suits. <<<<<

The Supreme Court said in that decision,

Here, injury in fact was adequately documented by the affidavits and testimony of FOE members asserting that Laidlaw’s pollutant discharges, and the affiants’ reasonable concerns about the effects of those discharges, directly affected those affiants’ recreational, aesthetic, and economic interests.

"Aesthetic" interest is such a broad category that virtually anything can qualify. Anyway, my economic interests were affected by the smog impact fee even if I didn't have to pay it -- it affected my right to bring in an out-of-state vehicle or buy an out-of-state vehicle without being subjected to that abominable fee.

The "injury-in-fact" rule should be scrapped -- it is based on the "cases" and "controversies" provisions of Art. III of the Constitution, but anything can be a "controversy," including a hypothetical question.

>>>>>> It should interest people to know that Larry requested a refund of the fee in his court cases. <<<<<<

That's a lie, you despicable dunghill. And it shows a lot of ingratitude towards my big selfless effort to defend our Constitution.

Monday, August 25, 2008 4:27:00 PM  
OpenID W. Kevin Vicklund said...

Failure to cross-reference does not constitute facial invalidity. By the way, here is the opening of the citizen suit provision that FOE sued under and that the Supreme Court ruled required injury-in-fact:

(a) Authorization; jurisdiction
Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section and section 1319 (g)(6) of this title, any citizen may commence a civil action on his own behalf—
(1) against any person (including (i) the United States, and (ii) any other governmental instrumentality or agency to the extent permitted by the eleventh amendment to the Constitution) who is alleged to be in violation of (A) an effluent standard or limitation under this chapter or (B) an order issued by the Administrator or a State with respect to such a standard or limitation, or
(2) against the Administrator where there is alleged a failure of the Administrator to perform any act or duty under this chapter which is not discretionary with the Administrator.
The district courts shall have jurisdiction, without regard to the amount in controversy or the citizenship of the parties, to enforce such an effluent standard or limitation, or such an order, or to order the Administrator to perform such act or duty, as the case may be, and to apply any appropriate civil penalties under section 1319 (d) of this title.


Sound familiar. Again, no mention of injury-in-fact. In fact, I doubt you will find any provisions that mention standing (unless they add prudential standing requirements). It is required by the constitution, therefore, there is no need to mention it in the law.

>>>>>> It should interest people to know that Larry requested a refund of the fee in his court cases. <<<<<<

>>>That's a lie, you despicable dunghill.<<<

I have a copy of the document, as you well know. I tell the truth.

Monday, August 25, 2008 4:53:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

>>>>>> Failure to cross-reference does not constitute facial invalidity. <<<<<<

The citizen suit statutes imply that injury-in-fact is not required, perhaps giving people false assurances about their rights, and that is unconstitutional. Also, the Supreme Court so broadly interpreted "injuries" under the citizen suit statutes -- even saying that injury to "aesthetic" sensibilities qualified -- that injury-in-fact is virtually not a requirement. Also, lower courts might be unaware that the Supreme Court requires alleged "injury-in-fact" in citizen suits.

BTW, the citizen suit provision you cited was slightly different from mine -- mine was "clean air" and yours was "clean water."

>>>>>> I have a copy of the document, as you well know. I tell the truth. <<<<<

What do you mean, as I well know. There is no such document, you lying dunghill. Why would I request a refund if I never paid the fee.

Monday, August 25, 2008 5:59:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Larry said:
"Why would I request a refund if I never paid the fee."

Why do you do anything you do? Because you are full-on, bat poop crazy.

Monday, August 25, 2008 6:22:00 PM  
OpenID missingthepoint said...

This is from the following document:

United States Court of Appeals,
Ninth Circuit.
Lawrence FAFARMAN, Plaintiff/Appellant,
v.
State of California and United States Environmental Protection Agency,
Defendants/Appellees.
No. 96-55384.
May 9, 1996.
DC# CV-95-06906-TJH (BQRx) (Central District of California)
On Appeal From the United States District Court for the Central District of California Honorable Terry J. Hatter, District Judge


Appellant's Opening Brief
Lawrence Fafarman, [address and phone number redacted to avoid claims of gossip] Plaintiff/Appellant, pro se.


On page 4, appellant Lawrence Fafarman stated the relief requested:

The plaintiff demanded the following relief...(3) full refunds of the fee, including interest.

This is a matter of public record. For a minimal fee, anyone can access these files. (I had a coupon that was expiring and nothing better to use it on.) That you insist on lying about this case when it is a matter of public record absolutely destroys any semblance of credibility you may have once had.

Monday, August 25, 2008 10:50:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Kevin, you lousy, despicable sack of #+$#@, you just went too far this time. You are a despicable liar. You figure you can get away with it because most readers won't be able to verify your false statement because they don't have access to the records, and because I cannot give disproof to readers who don't have access to the records.

>>>>>> That you insist on lying about this case when it is a matter of public record absolutely destroys any semblance of credibility you may have once had. <<<<<<<

I don't depend on credibility here, dunghill, because I back up almost all of what I say with links to references.

Those who lack credibility are Darwinist bloggers like Fatheaded Ed Brayton, Sleazy PZ Myers, Wesley "Ding" Elsberry, other Panda's Thumb bloggers, Florida Citizens for Science, Wickedpedia, etc., and yes, even the anti-Darwinist Uncommon Descent, because they all resort to arbitrary censorship, whereas there is no arbitrary censorship on this blog.

Answer the following questions:

Why would I demand, let alone expect to receive, a refund of a fee that I never paid. Why would I risk getting in trouble for making a false claim for a refund of a fee that I didn't pay.

Why would I spend hundreds -- even thousands -- of hours and thousands of dollars in several federal lawsuits against the smog impact fee, including two appeals to the US Supreme Court, just to pursue $300 plus interest, which I could never collect because I never paid the fee, with no hope of compensation for my time, even if I could be reimbursed for court costs. Those lawsuits occupied a good part of my life over several years. It was a federal case because California "left the sphere that was exclusively its own" (Parden v. Terminal Railway). It was the principle of the thing -- it was outrageous that Judge TJ "Mad" Hatter gave no oral hearing or written opinion and that there were none from the appeals court. Meanwhile, lousy, despicable judges lavish hundreds and thousands of hours on cases involving the rich and famous. I pay the same court fees that the rich and famous do. You and the other trolls here are just a bunch of lousy finks who take the side of judges against the little guy.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008 12:11:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Hey Kevin, while you are at it, could you provide evidence of the following:

(1) There was no oral hearing and no written opinion from either district judge TJ "Mad" Hatter or the appeals court judges

(2) California did not answer my argument that the state "left the sphere that was exclusively its own" (Parden v. Terminal Railway) by basing the fee entirely on the state's special status under federal auto emissions rules.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008 1:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Voice in the Urbanness said...

> I back up almost all of what I say with links to references. <

Which you often admit you haven't read and you clearly don't understand.

> they all resort to arbitrary censorship, whereas there is no arbitrary censorship on this blog. <

That is an outright lie.

> Those lawsuits occupied a good part of my life over several years. <

What life?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008 8:07:00 AM  
Anonymous W. Kevin Vicklund said...

>>>The only rejected textbook that I investigated very much was the Bob Jones Univ. 2-volume biology textbook.<<<

By investigated, Larry means he read an op-ed by a non-science journalist, the impression of an ACSI staffer of a single meeting with UC, and the introduction of the book and a sample chapter. He ignored or refused to read the opinions of over a dozen biologists who actually read the text and provided specific examples of major errors, as well as UC's official position on the books. It is refreshing that he does agree with at least part of the position of the biologists.

>>>At least the more commonly quoted statement from the introduction, "The people who have prepared this book have tried consistently to put the Word of God first and science second," is open to the possibility that science could be correct and the bible wrong.<<<

No, its a preface to an apology if the writer gets the bible wrong.

Definition of "summary judgment"

Larry doesn't appear to understand what is meant by summary - he is using the commonplace meaning, rather than the original, legal meaning. Webster's 9th defines it as a proceeding "without delay or formality." A summary judgment is simply a judgment that is reached without waiting for a formal trial. Or if you wish to look at it in the way summary is commonly used, it is a judgment on the summary of the parties' arguments, rather than a judgment that summarizes the parties arguments. By the way, the judgment did not give a thorough review of the rejections - it only considered those facts most pertinent to the decision.

>>>IMO all motions for final decisions should be titled "motion for final decision" to distinguish them from other kinds of motions.<<<

Final decisions on the merits are called judgments. Final decisions not on the merits are called dismissals. Why should we distinguish motions for final decisions from other motions, yet not distinguish the types of final decisions from each other?

Some plaintiffs' expert reports rejected as untimely

Mostly good, but here's a clarification (in bold):

Only four challenged Calvary course rejections and one challenged non-Calvary course rejection were left for the court to review -- the original plaintiffs' expert reports for these courses were timely.

Animus

>>>Now I am really confused -- why did the plaintiffs waive any animus argument at the first round of hearings on summary judgment motions in February 2008?<<<

Stupidity or ignorance. With Wendell Bird, it's about a 50-50 split.

>>>Wasn't this claim of discrimination against Christian viewpoints -- and also Christian content -- an animus argument? And this claim seems to me to be one of the best animus arguments that the plaintiffs could make. I thought that this claim was central to the lawsuit.<<<

Yes, yes, and yes. However, it is an argument against the alleged facial policy. However, the judge ruled in the first partial sumary judgment that no such policy existed, because UC not only approved classes which taught from non-Christian viewpoints, they also approved courses with Christian viewpoints. Starting on page 7, and also the low 30s and mid 40s, the first ruling addresses this argument.

>>>Plaintiffs essentially argue that Defendants had no rational basis for their actions and therefore they must have been motivated by animus. (page 11)

The opinion does not counter this argument.

This argument adds nothing to the constitutional analysis; if Defendants had no rational basis, the Court need not reach the issue of animus.(page 11)

Well, the Court has here reached the issue of animus by deciding that the Plaintiffs provided no evidence of animus, so contrary to the above statement, the Court reached the issue of animus without first deciding that the Defendants had no rational basis.<<<

Larry is performing a variant on quotemining here. The first and second sentences he quotes are consecutive - the second is the counter to the first. Larry even reaches exactly the same conclusion the court did:

>>>Anyway, the reason why the Court would not reach the issue of animus if the defendants' had no rational basis is that the lack of rational basis would be sufficient to decide the case, not that the animus issue is unimportant.<<<

Precisely - the animus issue is important, which is why the court reached a decision on it.

>>>I don't know what charges of animus the plaintiffs made now<<<

And that's the point. They didn't make any, beyond "unreasonableness must mean animus." Or to be precise, the only animus charges they laid were dealt with in the previous ruling, as I discussed above.

Rational basis review of five UC course rejections

>>>Kevin Vicklund got screwed up on this section of the opinion -- he said, "The untimely expert witness reports excluded as untimely, ACSI had no admissible evidence that any of the four [actually five] courses were unreasonably rejected" (the "reasonableness" section on Kevin's blog).<<<

Larry should be pleased to know that my blog now correctly states (removing stricken text)

"The supplemental expert witness reports excluded as untimely, ACSI had no admissible evidence that any of the five courses were unreasonably rejected"

>>>The judge held that plaintiffs' expert reports for 38 other courses were untimely but held that plaintiffs' expert reports for these 5 courses were timely.<<<

Correction: it should read "33 other courses" and "plaintiffs' original expert reports"

Unfortunately for ACSI, the original reports didn't directly address the reasonableness of the individual course rejections, and didn't provide the evidence that would be necessary to allege unreasonableness. I go into this further in a follow-up post on my blog.

BTW, Larry is lying when he claims I am always trying to get him kicked off blogs. All I do is point out to the blog owner when Larry is commenting on a blog where he has already been kicked off. In fact, I have in the past tried to give Larry incentive to stop behavior guaranteed to get him kicked off a blog.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008 5:18:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Kevin Vicklund insists on continuing to post comments here, even though he knows that he is not wanted.

>>>>>> By investigated, Larry means he read an op-ed by a non-science journalist, the impression of an ACSI staffer of a single meeting with UC, and the introduction of the book and a sample chapter. He ignored or refused to read the opinions of over a dozen biologists who actually read the text and provided specific examples of major errors, as well as UC's official position on the books. <<<<<<<

That is simply not true -- in this post, I consider the opinions of biologists other than the biologists who rejected the textbook.

And what "dozen biologists"? Where?

>>>>>> At least the more commonly quoted statement from the introduction, "The people who have prepared this book have tried consistently to put the Word of God first and science second," is open to the possibility that science could be correct and the bible wrong.<<<

No, its a preface to an apology if the writer gets the bible wrong. <<<<<<

That apology is still not a claim that the bible could never possibly be wrong.

>>>>>> Larry doesn't appear to understand what is meant by summary - he is using the commonplace meaning, rather than the original, legal meaning. Webster's 9th defines it as a proceeding "without delay or formality." <<<<<<<

A decision that took five years was "without delay or formality"? LOL

>>>>>> A summary judgment is simply a judgment that is reached without waiting for a formal trial. <<<<<<

What constitute's a "formal trial"?

>>>>>> Or if you wish to look at it in the way summary is commonly used, it is a judgment on the summary of the parties' arguments, rather than a judgment that summarizes the parties arguments. <<<<<<<

????? That is a vague and arbitrary distinction.

>>>>>> By the way, the judgment did not give a thorough review of the rejections -- it only considered those facts most pertinent to the decision. <<<<<<

OK -- the judgment gave a thorough review of the facts most pertinent to the decision.

>>>>>> Final decisions on the merits are called judgments. <<<<<<<

Final decision, final judgment, final opinion, what's the difference? They all mean the same thing.

>>>>>> Why should we distinguish motions for final decisions from other motions, yet not distinguish the types of final decisions from each other? <<<<<<

A motion to dismiss is called a "motion to dismiss" -- that distinguishes it from a "motion for a final judgment."

Anyway, my point is that there is no clear dividing line between summary judgments and non-summary judgments, so the term "summary judgment" should not be used.

>>>>>> However, the judge ruled in the first partial sumary judgment that no such policy existed, because UC not only approved classes which taught from non-Christian viewpoints, they also approved courses with Christian viewpoints. <<<<<<<

But this final, dispositive judgment (or decision or opinion or whatever) didn't say anything about that. This was the final judgment and it therefore should have said something about that. Just reading the final judgment gives a reader the impression that the judge arbitrarily decided, for no reason at all, that there was no animus.

Not having all the information, I can't judge the fairness of the judgment that there was no discrimination against the Christian schools. There may have been a pattern of discrimination against the Christian schools.

>>>>>>> the animus issue is important, which is why the court reached a decision on it. <<<<<<

Again, that issue should have been discussed in the final judgment.

>>>>>> Unfortunately for ACSI, the original reports didn't directly address the reasonableness of the individual course rejections, and didn't provide the evidence that would be necessary to allege unreasonableness. <<<<<<

But that is not explained in the final judgment.

>>>>>> I go into this further in a follow-up post on my blog. <<<<<<

That is more detail than I care to go into. I just feel that the case should be declared to be non-justiciable and that the court should simply require that the sole or main texts in all UC-approved courses not present special viewpoints -- including non-Christian viewpoints -- and that any special viewpoints be restricted to supplemental materials. This kind of litigation is turning the courts into textbook accreditation agencies.

>>>>>> All I do is point out to the blog owner when Larry is commenting on a blog where he has already been kicked off. <<<<<

Trying to get me kicked off again is cyberbullying.

>>>>>>I have in the past tried to give Larry incentive to stop behavior guaranteed to get him kicked off a blog. <<<<<<

Disagreeing with the blogger is often sufficient to get one kicked off of many blogs.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008 7:52:00 PM  

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