"Yes, many [members of the Discovery Institute] are guilty of Christianity. But something can be true even if Bill Clinton says it."

ANOTHER TORCH SONG

I really enjoyed Chris Nelson's list of critic-baiting song lyrics ["I wanna bite the hand that feeds me," April 19]. Please add the Young Fresh Fellows' "Mr. Salamander's Review" (1985), in which they torch some anonymous goon from the music industry. Key lyric: "Now he's the picture of elegance with his broken brain/that pours shit from his mouth like rain from a drain/I just snap to attention at his telephone ring/so I can tell him how much he gets paid when I sing."

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest,

Lance C. Lindell

Bellingham

CAMPAIGN: DIG DEEPER

Although it is of passing interest that candidates for mayor are (gasp!) raising money, it is a great disappointment to me that this paper—the one we count on for getting under the headlines and really COVERING the news—is resorting to a judgement-by-bank-balance criteria for political candidacy [see "4th and James," April 19].

James, you can do better than this! The number of contributors might be helpful. Average donations? How about looking at where the money is coming from? Are most of Nickels' dollars coming from the light-rail lobby as some have charged? Do any of Schell's contributions arrive from folks not typically found in Ivory Towers? It is very early in the campaign to be declaring contenders dead-on-arrival if they aren't in the big money hunt.

Here is a novel idea—how about talking about what these folks stand for? Please?

Katherine Baxter

Seattle

LAZY? OR CORRUPT?

I am in shock, then rage, and finally protest. How could you possibly neglect to include Still Life in Fremont? [See "100 Best Restaurants," April 26.] This restaurant has been a neighborhood institution for 15 years. It has been well reviewed by local and international press. When The New York Times wants to get their finger on Seattle's pulse, they call Still Life.

Granted, Seattle has many good restaurants, but some of your inclusions are very questionable as to their ranking in the top 100. Your list is suspect. Maybe it is just a list of recently reviewed restaurants or maybe it is just a list of recent advertisers. Whatever, it is a travesty of journalism to make a list of "favorite" restaurants and not include Still Life.

Larry Larsen

Via e-mail

TAKING UP THE SLACK

Great article about Botch ["Square pegs," April 19]. It's nice to see that you guys have picked up some of the local music slack from The Rocket trajectory problems. Your variety in coverage is interesting and keeps us readers on our toes.

Thomas Cunningham

Graduate student UW

LET THEM TEACH FOOLS

By design, you can only teach a fool to accept foolish ideas. Free thinkers aren't fooled, arriving at their own version of the truth after drawing from a broader base than what they're taught verbatim. The Discovery Institute should be given the freedom to alter the thinking of fools. I say let them teach design theory [see "The new creationists," April 19]. Students inclined to think freely will get a glimpse of zealots at work, and perhaps an understanding of what makes them tick.

Jay Goldtrap

Seattle

SARCASM: NOT SCIENCE

As a Discovery Institute senior fellow who's neither religious nor conservative, I've watched the development of the Intelligent Design movement with a certain benevolent curiosity. Much of the opposition the movement draws can be described as, well, more heat than light. Yes, many are guilty of Christianity. But something can be true even if Bill Clinton says it. In any event, sarcasm is not science. And whatever else Darwinism may be, it is not a fact—an empirically reproducible and observable phenomenon. It's the best guess of a 19th-century scientist, buttressed in some ways by later work, called into question by others.

Scientific objections to new ideas—global warming as well as intelligent design—go through three phases: There's no evidence. There's no consensus. How dare you disagree? Intelligent design has moved beyond the "no evidence" stage and is about to enter the "no consensus" stage. It will stand or fall as science. Deconstructing Darwin is relatively easy; the more you look at it, the greater grow the holes and errors. More positive contributions, subject to rigorous peer review—that's tricky.

Those who expect to get the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jerry Falwell out of this may be in for a long wait.

Philip Gold

Via e-mail

TRUTH: ON ITS SIDE?

It takes courage and intelligence to question the philosophical basis of naturalism. I think your piece was balanced. The movement will prosper because it has truth on its side.

Stephen Carmichael

Via e-mail

PHOTOS OF GOD?

Thank you for your article on the Discovery Institute. To understand [that organization] it helps to know about the right-wing political and religious agenda that your article says drives these zealots.

Intelligent design is just the latest mutation in the ever-evolving creationist movement. At least some of the advocates willingly admit they're driven by religion and not science. To prove their belief in intelligent design the advocates need to do good research instead of engaging in handwaving and polemics. To date, the intelligent design advocates have done nothing except follow the classic creationist tactic of attacking evolution. Attacking evolution won't get intelligent design accepted in the scientific community. For starters, these latter-day creationists need to prove that an intelligent designer exists. It would help to have scientific photographs and other scientific data that can pass muster from real scientists.

However, there is one important question the intelligent design advocates will have answered if they ever prove there is an intelligent designer: We'll finally know who designed the AIDS and Ebola viruses.

Gary L. Bennett

Idaho

HAPPY THEY'RE NOT PARANOID

This is one of the best articles relating to home user computer technology to come down our crumbly version of the Alaskan Way Viaduct in a long time. [See "The Browser," April 26.] I have forwarded it to everyone on three continents I know who is "An Aware One" regarding computer privacy issues. The article was an encapsulation of some of our worst fears regarding computer privacy issues. And, there was a light at the end of the tunnel: a potentially efficacious product to assuage our fears and what some people consider, quite very wrongly, our collective paranoia regarding our personal home e-mails.

I plan on talking to the people at Zendit within the next week and will be lining up at my nearest retail outlet with other Aware Ones once the Zendit PGP user-friendly software hits the marketplace.

And all this, from little Ballard.

William E. Totten

Seattle

OPPOSITION TO EXPLOITATION: IRONIC

It was ironic reading Pete Knutson, the man who has led the fight for continuing mass destruction of water ecology with gillnets, saying "Like some of our fish, we can become endangered species" in the Seattle Weekly [see "Fisherman Terminal?" April 26]. It is especially ironic coming from a man who should be an expert on profiting from exploitation of resources.

Dick Pelto

Kenmore

Get it off your chest. Write to Letters Editor, Seattle Weekly, 1008 Western, Ste 300, Seattle, WA 98104; fax to 206-467-4377; or e-mail to letters@seattleweekly.com. Please include name, location, and phone number. Rarely do we print anonymous letters or ramblings unrelated to material in the Weekly. Letters may be edited.

 
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