From the superior English torturers smirk we now arrive at the uniquely French pout of smug vanity. Going to the Egyptian “to speak of the dead is to make them live again” we’ll perform a vivisection on the reanimated nose of René Descartes returned to life as a cat:


“I find it almost impossible to believe that René Descartes, not known as a monster, carried his philosophical belief that only humans have minds to such a confident extreme that he would blithely spread-eagle a live mammal on a board and dissect it” -Richard Dawkins

Well, one might nearly give Dawkins credit *BUT* this appears mere matter of degree when it comes to the philosophers. Did Dawkins note Francis Bacon was a torturer of men? I didn’t actually look into the question but will note Dawkins musings on Descartes was certainly not informed by fishing with live bait:

Plants cannot think, and you’d have to be pretty eccentric to believe they can suffer. Plausibly the same might be true of earthworms” -Richard Dawkins

Well, Mr Dawkins, I can assure you, earthworms writhe mightily in pain, while being skewered the length of their bodies on a fish-hook, where technique requires the shank of the hook must be entirely concealed in the worm’s living flesh. And plants can’t think? That is one ‘almighty’ (Descartes God?) assumption. Let’s call Dawkins ‘Descartes lite.’ Where Descartes (and Dawkins) philosophy dies, is in the modern lab:

“The doctrine that the world is made up of objects whose existence is independent of human consciousness turns out to be in conflict with quantum mechanics and with facts established by experiment” -theoretical physicist Bernard d’Espagnat 

Last time I checked, plants & trees were still objects for purposes of science and yet are known to communicate  by land and by air … Dawkins might rather have considered how close he is to Descartes.


Perverts of Western Philosophy

The Satires