Friday, 25 July 2014

Reviewing CMI's Review of a Book on Nazism and Darwinism

1) HGL's F.B. writings : Some of these men deserve death, 2) New blog on the kid : Reviewing CMI's Review of a Book on Nazism and Darwinism, 3) I am shocked by the evil of the Lithuanian Minister of Health.

CMI / Woodmorappe* on page:
It is incorrect to suppose that Darwin merely emulated the racist culture around him. As Professor David Hull has pointed out, Darwin was an independent thinker, not one who merely absorbed and echoed the attitudes of his society (p. 97). [Ironically, were Darwin merely an absorber and echoer of Victorian culture, he would not have promoted a view that denied creation.]
HGL comment:
Wrong. Old Earth was rampant. Denying Biblical inerrancy was rampant. A close to hundred errors against the Catholic Faith - many gross enough to be sensed as errors against the faith even by non-Catholic CMI - were rampant in 19th C. Hegel was a kind of emanationist semi-theistic close-to-deist, and if the atheistic version went into Marxism, the deistic / theistic one went into mainstream bourgeois non-revolutionary culture.

This was the climate in which Pope Pius IX issued the Syllabus of Errors. His defence of Papacy CMI is not agreeing with, obviously, likewise his loathing of Protestantism. But this Protestantism was largely already Modernist. Here is the Syllabus:


Some of the errors listed herein (it is an appendix to an encyclical that specifies all of the following are errors) were expressed and condemned by this Pope prior to Origin of the Species.

Darwinism is not the only way one can motivate racialism. A pantheist would perhaps argue (and 19th C. pantheists sometimes did argue, like certain Southron readers of Emerson, perhaps) that the divine though present in all the universe was differently present in different things, and though more present in man was less present in some men than in others. And a few more.
CMI on page:
While it is correct that racism long predated Darwin, racism never expanded and flourished as much as it did in the 19th and 20th centuries—now elevated and legitimized by the imprimatur of scientific authority.
HGL comment:
No doubt Darwinism helped to give a boost to very many of the errors of the Syllabus.
CMI on page:
Some atheists have advanced the silly argument that Darwin was banned in Nazi Germany. The exact opposite is the case. After the Nazis came to power, they promoted the teaching of Darwinism in the classroom as never before in Germany (see Bergman’s Chapter 16, pp. 265 on).

Historian Daniel Gasman points out that in no other nation did the ideas of Darwin develop as seriously (p. 79).
He could have added this was less true of mainly Catholic Austria and Bavaria than of Catholic/Calvinist Hungary perhaps (including Burgenland) and Lutheran Saxony, certainly, but even more, Prussia.

Chesterton in his book The Barbarism of Berlin describes Prussia as having well before WW-I, already at the time of the Franco-Prussian war of 1870, an essentially Atheistic culture. OK, not as Atheistic, he was not foreseeing that, as Sweden has become since, but Atheistic enough.
CMI on page:
For instance, Luther called the pope the anti-Christ, and then-faithful Catholic King Henry VIII returned the favour by calling Luther ‘the worst wolf of hell’. Luther also exchanged scatological vitriol with King Henry’s Catholic adviser, Thomas More (author of Utopia).
HGL comment:
Was Henry VIII and Thomas More perhaps right?

In Luther's Saxony, the Landesbischoff - of the Lutheran-Evangelical Church! - of that time was a Nazi "Deutscher Christ" denying Christ was ethnically Jewish. An admirer of Harnack and such.

The present Landesbischoff of Saxony is, I think, a woman.
CMI on page:
Detractors of Christianity commonly point to certain of Hitler’s pronouncements that were favourable to Christianity as proof that Hitler was friendly towards Christianity, if not an active Christian himself. What are we to make of this?
HGL comment:
Not less, not more than a pre-Darwinian pro-Christian statement in not-so-Orthodox Christians, such as the Syllabus I linked to above targetted.

Jacob Grimm was certainly no Orthodox Christian, any more than Hegel:

Φιλολoγικά/Philologica : "If God spoke a language" - to correct Grimm
CMI on page:
Politicians are prone to tell people what they want to hear, and what they say is commonly an act of posturing.
HGL comment:
Sure, but same was true of Lutheran early 19th C. clergy. Or most of it.
CMI on page:
Although the Nazis certainly used the teachings of Martin Luther when it served their purposes, it is manifestly incorrect to portray Luther as some kind of forerunner of Hitler.
HGL comment:
Chesterton disagreed. He considered that Luther was an impatient monk who had no patience for scholastic finesse, who burned the intelligent Thomas Aquinas with as much relish as Nazis burned books more intelligent than those of Rosenberg and Hitler, not to mention Harnack.
CMI on page, miscellaneous:
a) At least 400 German doctors are known to have conducted heinous acts against human beings, but only 20 of these were ever tried for these crimes (p. 142). No German doctor was ‘following orders’. Pointedly, no doctor was forced to participate in euthanasia. In fact, Hitler’s original 1939 memo, in this regard, was an empowerment (Vollmacht), not an order (Befehl) (p. 139). The physicians’ participation in the Nazi Darwinian program was hardly accidental. Already in 1933, according to Professor Michael Kater, German physicians had been overrepresented in the Nazi Party and its adjunct organizations (p. 133). Were these physicians, in spite of all their training in biology and related fields, all ‘misunderstanding’ Darwin?

b) What would have happened had Germany won WWII? Interestingly, Bergman calls attention to a lengthy item, dating from the Nuremberg Trials, documented by prosecutor William Donovan, found in the Cornell University archives. Called the Nazi Master Plan, it planned the eventual elimination of churches in Germany (p. 9).

HGL comment:
Thank you! Good points.

* CMI : The Darwinian core, and fundamentally anti-Christian character, of Nazism
A review of Hitler and the Nazi Darwinian Worldview by Jerry Bergman Joshua Press, Ontario, 2012
Reviewed by John Woodmorappe

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