Not this again…

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In South Carolina, things were mostly quiet after last year’s election and defeat of creationist candidate for state superintendent of education Karen Floyd, and the defeat of the pro-creationism language that the Discovery Institute tried to worm into the curriculum standards.

But you knew they wouldn’t give up. Now a young-earth creationist named Kristin Maguire has been elected as the chairperson of the State Board of Education. Her qualifications? She home-schooled her four children. And that’s it.

The South Carolinians for Science Education blog has more on this, both about Maguire’s election and about a new assault on the textbook selection process. Best stock up on the headache medicine now. It’s going to be a long 2008.

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Posted at The Panda’s Thumb: n South Carolina, things were mostly quiet after last year’s election and defeat of creationist candidate for state superintendent of education Karen Floyd, and the defeat of the pro-creationism language that the Di... Read More

119 Comments

It’s like a never-ending parade of stupidity.

Ugh! It’s like they all live in some alternate reality. If they accepted the critiques from the creationists then nothing of the underpinnings of modern biology would be left. Might as well bring the Bible back as a textbook (which is what they’re after, of course).

Well if she’s a YEC, then it would be only fair that she have a debate with an OEC and an IDer who accepts (or at least doesn’t rule out) common descent. If there really is a potentially competing theory, then they should come to some consensus on the the basic questions - IOW just what set of facts does the theory explain. OTOH, if they show even the slightest signs of wanting to gloss over their differences, it’s not unreasonable to think that, deep down inside, they know that mainstream science is right.

tacitus Wrote:

It’s like they all live in some alternate reality.

The question is “Which of the 2 alternate realities?” Before I read up on Maguire, a good guess is that, if she’s truly a YEC (I haven’t ruled out an all too common unwarranted jump-to-conclusion by critics), then her alternate reality is probably one of compartmentalization, i.e. where her brain will tune out any information that’s inconvenient. In the case of Texas BOE chair Don McLeroy, who “sees the light” of the ID “big tent strategy,” the alternate reality is more likely one of “let’s do whatever is necessary to keep the ‘masses’ believing their fairy tales.”

it saddens me that 51%+ of voting south carolinians voted for this yahoo

The “textbook selection process” link in turn has links to reviews by creationists (one associated with the Institute for Creation Research and one with Bob Jones University) of two mainstream actual biology textbooks. Here are are some choice quotes from their four page review of Miller & Levine:

“Charles Darwin shifted his thinking on origins after he became anti-God.”

“Hitler, Stalin, Planned Parenthood, racists, and others have cited Charles Darwin in their genocide programs…”

“…Louise (sic!) Pasteur disapproved (sic!) spontaneous generation…”

…and from their four page review of Raven, Johnson, Losos & Singer:

“Charles Darwin’s only degree was in theology…”

“If the fossil record is so rich, then authors should give one example of evolution from a simple cell to one complex organism. And show how much of each fossil is real versus how much is man-made.”

“Statement that earth was formed about 4.5 BYA is speculation.”

And so it goes. These reviewers are flaming Young Earth Creationists, not intelligent design creationists. Their review is utterly no match for Dr. Francisco Ayala’s scholarly 34-page review of the bogus Bob Jones University text, Biology for Christian Schools (the link to which I can’t find at the moment).

Isn’t South Carolina being targeted for takeover by theocrats?

To clarify for jasonmitchell, the chair-of-the-board of education position is not popularly elected. Maguire was originally a governor’s apppointee to the board, and then the board itself recently elected her chairwomen-elect by a close vote of the members of the board, 9-7. Or I guess to be precise, her opponent was voted down 9-7, and then she was elected by a voice vote.

If it had been a popularly-elected position, I’m afraid it wouldn’t have been even that close.

And so it goes. These reviewers are flaming Young Earth Creationists, not intelligent design creationists. Their review is utterly no match for Dr. Francisco Ayala’s scholarly 34-page review of the bogus Bob Jones University text, Biology for Christian Schools (the link to which I can’t find at the moment).

I just happen to have it bookmarked – it’s a very entertaining read.

http://www.universityofcalifornia.e[…]ts/ayala.pdf

We should make certain that the Board of Education knows that they will be sued if they insert creationism into the public school curriculum. We should also make certain that the taxpayers can force them to pay the court costs out of their own pockets. I’m not sure how this could be accomplished, but it would probably put an end to this idiocy once and for all. Perhaps if they were sued as individuals instead of as representatives of the government. After all, they are pursuing their own religious agenda in violation of the Constitution they have presumably sworn to uphold.

Paul Burnett Wrote:

Their review is utterly no match for Dr. Francisco Ayala’s scholarly 34-page review of the bogus Bob Jones University text, Biology for Christian Schools.

Nor is it a match for Dr. Miller’s response.

Bill, perhaps bubbling at the back of your mind is the fact that Christian Exodus‘s resettlement destination is South Carolina :)

Ritchie Annand:

Bill, perhaps bubbling at the back of your mind is the fact that Christian Exodus‘s resettlement destination is South Carolina :)

Yup, that’s the bunch. Theocrats, like I said. Are they making any headway, or is this happening in spite of them?

What I find most entertaining about Ayala’s synopsis of the Bob Jones textbooks is the sheer, rock-headed determination to remain stone ignorant. Page after page, chapter after chapter, these “biology texts” say, in essence: We know the Truth, where reality conflicts, reality is wrong. Anything contradicting our interpretion of scripture is simply not evidence; analysis and conclusions from what is not evidence is not science. Therefore, our literal biblical interpretations are fully scientific, and nothing in science conflicts with the bible!

I’m getting increasingly convinced that, whatever its cause, we’re looking at organic brain damage. These people are no more capable of learning from reality than they are of flapping their arms and flying to the moon. So long as they are permitted to become parents, the battle will never end.

@Frank J

Do you have a link for the review itself that Miller was responding to? Miller’s response makes be believe that the review would be entertaining (but definitely not educational) reading.

BGT asked Frank J: “Do you have a link for the review itself that Miller was responding to?”

It’s indirectly reachable from the top of this article (“Not this again…”), via the link to “textbook selection process” - here is the direct link to the review by the creationists that Miller was responding to:

http://www.thewilsonshouse.com/scie[…]critique.pdf

It’s not the most scholarly thing you’ve read - but what can you expect from an ICR member and Bob Jones U “scholar”?

Holy mackerel! I read the Ayala review and I thought those books sounded familiar. They were the ones that Michael Behe reviewed a while back.

I didn’t scrutinize Behe’s review then, and just skimmed it now, but neither time did I get a hint the books were so blatantly Biblical literalist. From Ayala’s review at least one is plainly YEC. Behe compared the two books to two mainstream texts (whether they are good or bad is another matter) and all that stood out was that all four books contain material that was “not strictly science” in Behe’s opinion. Now we know that Behe both rejects YEC and the versions of OEC that deny common descent, and he even went so far as to say that reading the Bible as a textbook was “silly.”

Is there anything that the DI gang won’t do for the “big tent”?

Intelligent Design, alive and well:

Synthetic DNA on the Brink of Yielding New Life Forms

By Rick Weiss Washington Post Staff Writer Monday, December 17, 2007; A01

It has been 50 years since scientists first created DNA in a test tube, stitching ordinary chemical ingredients together to make life’s most extraordinary molecule. Until recently, however, even the most sophisticated laboratories could make only small snippets of DNA – an extra gene or two to be inserted into corn plants, for example, to help the plants ward off insects or tolerate drought.

Now researchers are poised to cross a dramatic barrier: the creation of life forms driven by completely artificial DNA.

Scientists in Maryland have already built the world’s first entirely handcrafted chromosome – a large looping strand of DNA made from scratch in a laboratory, containing all the instructions a microbe needs to live and reproduce.”””

Wow, intelligent beings creating life, go figure. that could never happen. Hope we don’t get the gright idea of sending it into space to grow on other planets.….

I drop by your site from time to time to see if you have moved on. NEVER. It seems all that is ever done here is spend time worrying about what others are doing.

A scientific theory ‘worth its salt’ will be able to stand quite easily on the reliable evidence shown by research. It seems you rely solely on discrediting and silencing others.

Why are you so afraid of having the Intelligent Design argument heard?

If I did not already know that we have not an Intelligent Creator and Designer, One who created each species after it’s own kind, your web-site would help convince me.

What “intelligent design” argument?

And, by “after it’s own kind,” Jan, do you mean the One is a cockroach?

I thought the One was Neo.

Rats.

Jan wrote, “Why are you so afraid of having the Intelligent Design argument heard?”

Jan, we are still waiting for the proponents of intelligent design to state ID in the form of a hypothesis; e.g., phenomenon A caused phenomenon B. But all we hear from ID proponents is the opinion that ID is the “best” explanation for “certain features of the universe and of living things.”

When are YOU going to put ID into the form of a hypothesis? Put up or shut up!

Jan:

I drop by your site from time to time to see if you have moved on. NEVER. It seems all that is ever done here is spend time worrying about what others are doing.

A scientific theory ‘worth its salt’ will be able to stand quite easily on the reliable evidence shown by research. It seems you rely solely on discrediting and silencing others.

Why are you so afraid of having the Intelligent Design argument heard?

If I did not already know that we have not an Intelligent Creator and Designer, One who created each species after it’s own kind, your web-site would help convince me.

Heard by whom, and where?

“Give me the children until they are seven, and anyone may have them afterwards.”
Saint Francis Xavier

No real science has as its “tour-de-force” a high school textbook and nothing else.

This is not the effort of one scientific paradigm to overthrow another. If it were, evidence alone would speak, and we would listen. If the others you speak of worry us, it is because they are not scientists who play by the rules of science, they are theocrats who seek the overthrow of science in the political and social arenas.

Admit it, you see science as a threat to your faith, and your aim is to “pollute the well” so that no one will ever accept science as a more reliable way of knowing than (your particular) religion. As science, ID and each of its predecessors have all regularly lost the battle in the scientific arena again and again over the last 150 years. Yet you refuse to admit defeat, you persist in pursuing your war in the wrong arena by putting the same old wine in one brand new bottle after another, all with the aim of snatching victory from the jaws of defeat, with the effort renewed in each generation forever. Unfortunately, your victory would mean a great leap backward for humanity. And you wonder why there is a growing backlash against religion of all kinds.

“There once was a time when all people believed in God and the church ruled. This time was called the Dark Ages.”
Richard Lederer, “Anguished English”

“If the liberties of the American people are every destroyed, they will fall by the hands of the Clergy.”
General Marquis de Lafayette, 1789

Anyone ever notice that absolutely none of these Intelligent Design proponent idiots ever bother to demonstrate how Intelligent Design is even a science?

Hi, Jan.

Are you the Jan who frequented PT 2-3 years ago?

If so, please refresh my memory if I asked similar questions before. If not, please answer them anyway, just so we know where you stand. So there’s no misunderstanding, we agree that a Creator/designer is the ultimate cause, though I think “merely intelligent” is an insult to the Creator/designer I have in mind.

But I’m not interested in your opinion of the Creator/designer. Rather, I’d like to know:

Do you you think that, whether or not “evolution” is the driver, that humans are biologically related to (share common ancestors with) dogs? Dogwoods? Both (like some IDers)? Neither? (please clearly pick 1 of the 4 choices - a best guess will do)

Also, do you agree (as many creationists and most IDers do) that life on earth has a ~4 billion year history? If not, how long a history do you think it has? Be specific, again, a best guess will do

I drop by your site from time to time to see if you have moved on. NEVER.

You should talk. Creos have been pretending that 2 pages of 4,000 year old mythology explains the universe for 4,000 years now. Despite the fact that it was known almost 2 millenia ago to be just mythology.

But the creos have made progress. Only 26% of the American ones believe the sun orbits the earth, 400 years after Copernicus. You do know that the sun is the center of the solar system, don’t you? Even fewer still believe the earth is flat. At this rate in another millenia or two the creos will still be…well, probably still creos. But there will be fewer of them.

And BTW, Intelligent Design has been around in one form or another for a few millenia itself. The modern form predates Darwin by 50 years. In all that time, it has gone absolutely nowhere. A century here, a century there, and pretty soon it will be year 3000 AD. And in another 1000 years, ID will accomplish exactly what it has accomplished in the last 1000 years, nothing.

Bach, the Moronic Troll, muses:

Intelligent Design, alive and well:

Synthetic DNA on the Brink of Yielding New Life Forms

By Rick Weiss Washington Post Staff Writer Monday, December 17, 2007; A01

It has been 50 years since scientists first created DNA in a test tube, stitching ordinary chemical ingredients together to make life’s most extraordinary molecule. Until recently, however, even the most sophisticated laboratories could make only small snippets of DNA – an extra gene or two to be inserted into corn plants, for example, to help the plants ward off insects or tolerate drought.

Now researchers are poised to cross a dramatic barrier: the creation of life forms driven by completely artificial DNA.

Scientists in Maryland have already built the world’s first entirely handcrafted chromosome – a large looping strand of DNA made from scratch in a laboratory, containing all the instructions a microbe needs to live and reproduce.”””

Wow, intelligent beings creating life, go figure. that could never happen. Hope we don’t get the gright idea of sending it into space to grow on other planets.….

If you’re trying to once again unsubtly imply that this is “Intelligent Design,” you are, once again, dead wrong. This is Bioengineering, which is a science involving lots of genetic engineering, which, in turn, requires lots of intelligence, something you, and the Discovery Institute, which originally coined the term “Intelligent Design,” all collectively lack.

Speaking of the Discovery Institute, in their textbook, Of Pandas and People, they specifically defined “Intelligent Design” as being:

“Intelligent design means that various forms of life began abruptly through an intelligent agency with their distinctive features already intact: Fish with fins and scales; birds with feathers, beaks and wings; etc. Some scientists have arrived at this view since fossil forms first appeared in the record with their distinctive features intact and apparently fully functional rather than gradual development.”

In other words, Bach, you can not scientifically prove Intelligent Design by redefining it to include other things. Thinking that you can get away with such a semantics shellgame only proves that you are both foolish, and deceptive, two qualities that are never tolerated in a scientific setting.

I’m getting increasingly convinced that, whatever its cause, we’re looking at organic brain damage.

It’s funny to remember back a few years ago when such comments were loudly derided in these parts.

Now: not so much.

Perhaps it’s because most of us can see now that these people are, in fact, incapable of “learning” in the way reasonable humans understand the term. Rather, like zombies or psychopaths, they just keep going and going and going as long as there are a sufficient number of people willing to put up with their baloney or buy wholesale into their sick schtick.

In addition, we know that treating them with the level of “civility” that they demand but are themselves incapable of maintaining achieves precisely nothing. We will remain pawns in their game forever because their strategy involves only moving the pieces around until the moment we turn our backs.

Do you accept the Theory of Evolution? It’s the number one poll on this site: http://www.apopularitycontest.com/p[…]t%20or%20Not

Bach sez… Wow, intelligent beings creating life, go figure. that could never happen.

Um, I don’t get it. Some Biologists create an artificial organism simply by putting some amino acids in a jar together and demonstrate that for all its apparent mystery, the actual mechanics of getting something to “live” are reasonably straightforward after all.

And, in Bachs world the fact that creating life out of inorganic molecules is easier than it looks makes evolution less likely?

I’m confused.

(I do like all his cool fugues, though)

No, no, Bach is saying these same scientists invented a time machine and went back and did their experiment on the primordial earth. Or that they will in the future. I mean in the past… Time travel is so confusing.

And Jan is saying that it’s about the science, definitely NOT religion.

“When you consider music, beauty, self-sacrificing love, and the things that are unexplainable in scientific terms, it just amazes me that anyone gets so angry over the idea of intelligent design which seems so obvious.”

It is so obvious that ID is almost 2,000 years old. The Paley version predates Darwin by 50 years and he read it in college.

What ID lacks is any proof whatsoever. In 2,000 years it has gone nowhere. As you say, time to move on.

Evolution has 150 years of proof, mountains and mountains of evidence. With more being added every day. It is critical in medicine and agriculture, fields that only matter to people if they visit a doc or eat. This is why our lifespan has gone up 30 years in the last century and why food is cheaper and more abundant than anytime in our history.

What has ID ever done for anyone? Other than keep a few evil pseudoscientists in paychecks while draining scientists attention in a pointless attack on science, nothing much.

Jan, if you don’t like modern civilization, it is a free country. Just move to an area without electricity, running water, cars, the internet, and modern medicine. And develop an interest in subsistence agriculure and hunting and gathering.

Just move to an area without electricity, running water, cars, the internet, and modern medicine. And develop an interest in subsistence [agriculture] and hunting and gathering.

Speaking of diminishing gaps, such areas and peoples are rapidly disappearing, and of your five hallmarks of modernity, the one making the fastest inroads into such places is the internet.

“This summer one third of the nation will be ill-housed, ill-nourished, and ill-clad. Only they call it a vacation.”
Joseph Salak

Jan, why do you think God(s) might be a problem for a scientist?

Jan:

I am wondering if I should apologize for upsetting so many people here or just go away and forget the whole thing. My purpose here isn’t to begin an argument or insult your beliefs. One thing that I would like to say is that science and faith are NOT mutually exclusive and recognizing and acknowledging that there is a Creator God should not be a problem for a scientist. When you consider music, beauty, self-sacrificing love, and the things that are unexplainable in scientific terms, it just amazes me that anyone gets so angry over the idea of intelligent design which seems so obvious. We miss so much when we miss this. I wish I could communicate better with you, but I realize that is impossible. You don’t hear or understand what I am trying to say.

If there is a Creator God, it will pose no problem for scientists in general. Science is pursuing for knowledge that can be verified through observations. Science tries to explain phenomena by building hypotheses and trying to verify or falsify their predictions. Science is not against gods or against religions.

Intelligent design has been marketed as science. Quite clearly, it has nothing to do with science, since it lacks almost all the basic elements to become a part of science. This fact needs to be stated clearly.

The beauty of a snowflake does not diminish, just because we happen to think that we understand the basic processes involved.

The vast majority here, I think, agrees with you “that science and faith are NOT mutually exclusive”. On the other hand, neither of them should be justified by using concepts from the other. Neither of them should be negated by using concepts from the other, either.

Regards

Eric

Nigel D:

Pole Greaser Wrote:

Evolutionist whine when Christians don’t just give up after defeats in minor skirmishes such as the one in Dover.

No. Supporters of science get fed up when ignorant dimwits like you fail to recognize that what they claim contravenes reality. Despite repeated rebuttals and defeats, you still try to pervert science education in public schools. Why do you wish to abuse so many children?

You teach children that men came from monkeys, life came from a rock, and everything came from nothing. Nobody has seen any of those things. When an orangutan couple has a baby human, or if the same orangutan spontaneously emerges from a rock, then you will have evidence. Until then, you have none.

The Lord Jesus Christ is our captain and he will lead us to victory!

Not when your idea of victory involves the denial of reality. Jesus wasn’t a scientist. He was a carpenter.

When you stand before him, he will be much more than a carpenter!

Evolutionists control the media, the schools, and the courts

Hah! That is so funny. Have you forgotten that George W. Bush himself supports ID? Or are you just lying?

The President is an elected official. The people elected him, not the Harvard faculty or the New York Times editorial staff. Evolutionists are incapable of winning an election anywhere in America outside of the Bay area or perhaps Massachusetts; so, instead, they control the terms of discussion through their stealth dominance of academia, the press, and the courts.

In addition, the President is something of an evolutionist himself, for only the religion of evolutionism could lead to something so absurd as the debacle in Iraq. Bush is trying to maintain secular order across the globe while the real enemies are right here. How could a Christian President allow Christopher Hitchens to become a citizen and Sam Harris to roam free?

Certainly, if supporters of rational inquiry controlled the media, there’d be a hell of a lot less crap on TV.

but their power will wane because it is our hand that rocks the cradle and will eventually rule the world!

Well, if that is true you will rule a world of ignorance and prejudice. Well done.

One biological fact we can all agree on is that sodomy makes no new children.

And this is relevant how, exactly?

Isn’t this the paradigm of evolutionistic sexual activity? Look how our ladies spend have their married lives pregnant while your lesbos are lucky to squeeze out one baby at around forty via in-vitro fertilization. Re-read your Darwin and tell me who this favors long-term!

While we are creating new life in our families the lineages of sodomite evolutionists end with themselves!

What, are you saying that rational thought is hereditary?

Or are you just randomly ranting now?

see above

Ultimately, our numbers will become so overwhelming that your institutional power will eventually give way and you will be forced to accept Jesus as Lord or else!

Erm … this actually sounds psychopathic. You should get help. Seriously.

The President is an elected official. The people elected him, not the Harvard faculty or the New York Times editorial staff.

“Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.”
H.L. Mencken (1880-1956)

“Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just.”
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)

Pole Greaser:

Wow.

Let’s just take one of your beliefs here – you maintain that apparently the science of evolution is somehow connected with homosexuality. Ummmmmmm, being a married scientist with two kids, in a department where all of the faculty are married and most have kids, and most live in normal neighborhoods, having come from a department where most of the faculty were married and had kids, and in a profession where most of my colleagues are married and have kids, it occurred to me that you need to think long and hard about trying not to base your perception of reality soley on your imagination.

As an interesting aside, the father of one of my graduate students works as a professional child psychologist dealing with child sexual abuse. Among the most popular jobs for child molesters is church youth group leader, and of course minister. This is well documented stuff. These are jobs that expose them to a lot of victims. The reason that you hear a lot about catholic priests in particular is because they have an organization. Protestant ministers, however, are apparently just as lascivious as any of them.

And one last thing on this topic – are you aware of the double entendre of your name?

Eric, Having said that, perhaps you are ready to go one step further and say: Neither should deny the other. Science can be taught in a classroom where children are allowed to maintain faith in a Creator God. Only when science is taught as a belief system do I see a conflict.

And to Bill, no, Christianity does not teach that to doubt is to sin. Perhaps you and I both have faith, just in different things. Every science text that I read, when I reach the section on evolution, I find it is marked with phrases such as, “might be”, may be”, or “possibly”.

You have faith in random selection. I have faith in the God of the Bible.

Let’s give it a rest for the holidays. I do hope that each of you have a good Christmas and New Year.

Jan:

Eric, Having said that, perhaps you are ready to go one step further and say: Neither should deny the other. Science can be taught in a classroom where children are allowed to maintain faith in a Creator God. Only when science is taught as a belief system do I see a conflict.

Science is not a belief system. Evolutionary Theory is not a belief is not a belief system. Virtually all creationists allege that Evolutionary Theory is a religion, a rival religion, even. Hell, some creationists allege that science is a religion, and that “scientist” is a synonym for “atheist,” which, in turn, is a synonym for “devil-worshiper.” I don’t know about you, you haven’t made your position terribly clear, but, I’m of the position that religion should be taught in history or religious classes, and that science and only science should be taught in a science class, and that Creationism is not a science.

And to Bill, no, Christianity does not teach that to doubt is to sin. Perhaps you and I both have faith, just in different things. Every science text that I read, when I reach the section on evolution, I find it is marked with phrases such as, “might be”, may be”, or “possibly”.

Then how come Christians have taught that doubt is a sin, if not a crime? Creationists pride themselves on how their view is the only view that’s right, and that to doubt them is enough to be cast into hellfire to burn for all eternity.

You find so many weasel words in evolution because we find new information all the time, what with taxa being revised and new species being discovered, and because there is just simply very little information on some fossil organisms. You don’t seem to realize that the ability to assimilate new information and change as a direct result of this new information is a good thing for science. Creationists apparently take pride in the fact that the Bible is apparently unchanging, and point out that science is untrustworthy as a result, nevermind that the Bible has been rewritten and retranslated, and that I doubt that even creationists would wish to be treated for an illness by having their bad humors bled from their bodies.

You have faith in random selection. I have faith in the God of the Bible.

No faith is needed to accept a scientific fact, and do realize that there is much more to Evolutionary Theory than random selection.

Let’s give it a rest for the holidays. I do hope that each of you have a good Christmas and New Year.

Forgive me if I am suspicious, I’ve had too many Creationists pray that God will send me to Hell to burn for all of eternity simply because I don’t believe that the Bible was meant to be a scientific textbook that was to be read literally word for word as per the Creationist’s choosing.

Science can be taught in a classroom where children are allowed to maintain faith in a Creator God.

Jan, this makes no sense whatsoever. Science has been taught in classrooms for hundreds of years. In case you haven’t noticed, our entire US civilization is based on science and technology. You don’t really think modern medicine and your computer were created by people sitting around and praying do you? And in that time, today in 2007, 90% of the US population self identifies themselves as religious. 82% of the US population self identifies themselves as Xian.

If science and Xianity were incompatible, western civilization wouldn’t exist and we would all be learning Mandarin or Arabic or some other language and the rich would be sending their kids to some other country for a state of the art education. Instead it is the other way around.

You are mixing apples and oranges or creating a straw man or finding bogeymen in your closet or something.

And BTW, the Pope, Catholics, and the majority of the world’s Xians have no problem with science, evolution, or an old universe.

If you mean that your cult nonsense about Big Boats, 6,000 year old universe, and flat earth is incompatible with what we know of reality, well it is. That is your problem.

The scientologists believe that Xenu, the galactic overlord, imported billions of Thetans to year before the dinosaurs died out, and killed them with nuclear bombs. Supposedly, the billions of Thetan ghosts are still with us as psychic vampires sucking soul energy from the living. There is no proof whatsoever that any of this happened.

Your cult beliefs are just as well supported as those of scientology or any other cult. It is OK, in a free country you can believe in Odin, Thor, fairies, or lepruchuans. We don’t care. What you can’t do is tell lies about elves or Intelligent Design to our kids in public schools. It is specifically prohibited by the US constitution. And expecting educated scientists to believe obvious lies is impossible. Acceptance of the fact of evolution among biologists runs around 99% in the US. It is higher in Europe.

Really, If living in a free, scientifically and technologically advanced country is making you miserable leave. Plenty of third world trash heaps run by religious fanatics are available and many victims from there would trade places with you in a heartbeat.

Pole Greaser Wrote:

You teach children that men came from monkeys,

This is a lie.

Humans and monkeys share a common ancestor.

Can you see the difference?

life came from a rock,

Another lie.

It is the creationists that teach that man came from dust.

Abiogenesis is a fertile field of scientific research, but it does not currently have a firmly-founded set of conclusions.

and everything came from nothing.

Curiously, this is one point where science and OEC agree. Big Bang theory, when it was first proposed, was hailed by some as a means of reconciling cosmology and religion.

By contrast, you have not mentioned what your own personal belief is, Pole Greaser. Or are you actually incapable of uttering anything positive at all?

Nobody has seen any of those things.

This is irrelevant for two reasons:

(1) Has anyone seen the occurrence of what you choose to believe instead?

(2) The theories of modern science are logically inferred from evidence that we are able to examine here and now. Or do you deny the ability of a person to make inferences and deductions about the past from evidence examined in the present?

When an orangutan couple has a baby human, or if the same orangutan spontaneously emerges from a rock,

I can make a firm prediction here: neither of these specific events will ever happen.

How do I know this?

Because my knowledge of chemistry, biochemistry and evolutionary theory allow me to understand how the processes of biological change proceed.

All you have here is a couple of rather feeble and obvious strawman arguments.

Why is it, Pole Greaser, that you are so afraid of actually trying to understand evolutionary theory?

then you will have evidence. Until then, you have none.

You are spouting nonsense again. However, my view of the world is at least positive and affirmative. You have yet to suggest any alternative with which you wish to replace evolutionary theory or Big Bang theory.

So, what is your theory to explain the similarities and differences we observe in biological entities? Why does my RNA synthase possess so many specific similarities to that of, for example, Saccharomyces cerevisiae? And why does it possess, at the same time, so many differences?

I have a question for Jan, in two parts:

1. Do you believe that the scientific account of evolution is true (just the facts, regardless of any philosophical conotations)?

2. If you don’t, how would the world look if evolution WAS true? In what way would it be different from the world we have now?

Pole Greaser Wrote:

When you stand before him, he will be much more than a carpenter!

But you will still be an ignorant imbecile.

Pole Greaser Wrote:

The President is an elected official. The people elected him, not the Harvard faculty or the New York Times editorial staff. Evolutionists are incapable of winning an election anywhere in America outside of the Bay area or perhaps Massachusetts; so, instead, they control the terms of discussion through their stealth dominance of academia, the press, and the courts.

Erm, well, no. Bush has appointed a great many anti-science individuals to positions of authority. Authority that they did not earn in the way that (for example) a University science faculty earns their authority - by hard intellectual graft. Anyway, if “evolutionists” controlled the “terms of discussion”, where the hell does the DI’s freedom of speech come from?

No, Pole Greaser, you are just being incoherent. You (and the DI) cannot have it both ways: you (and they) loudly trumpet antiscience from the rooftops, and simultaneously claim that you (and they) are being censored.

That is obvious rubbish.

In addition, the President is something of an evolutionist himself, for only the religion of evolutionism could lead to something so absurd as the debacle in Iraq. Bush is trying to maintain secular order across the globe while the real enemies are right here.

And you have just eclipsed all of the other creationists in posting the stupidest thing I have ever read. Do you guys have, like, stupidity award ceremonies or something? I mean, seriously, if you actually expect anyone to swallow that crap, you are deluded. If you sincerely believe it yourself, you need to get back on the medication.

Bush and his administration are plainly antiscience.

The war on Iraq is an unjustifiable mess, but not because Bush listened to scientists. Probably the opposite is true: he would have listened to his political advisors, who would only hold their present posts by being as strongly antiscience as Bush himself.

would a Christian President allow Christopher Hitchens to become a citizen and Sam Harris to roam free?

I have absolutely no idea.

Does that have anything remotely to do with the topic at hand??

Pole Greaser Wrote:

Isn’t this the paradigm of evolutionistic sexual activity?

As you are obviously well aware, no.

Look how our ladies spend have their married lives pregnant while your lesbos are lucky to squeeze out one baby at around forty via in-vitro fertilization.

!!!

Re-read your Darwin and tell me who this favors long-term!

Erm … the winners of the libel suits that you are quite clearly asking for!

Pole Greaser, I occasionally encounter a commenter on this or another blog that makes me think, “well, hang on just a second; this person is genuinely confused about what to believe and seems to be entirely sincere with their questions”.

Then I encounter one of your posts, and I think - this person has no interest in learning anything; this person has no interest in engaging in any kind of rational or honest exchange of views.

Pole Greaser, you appear to be filled with nothing but hate. You spew venom in a seemingly random and incoherent manner, and then lash out vituperatively at anyone who expresses an opinion contrary to yours, or who criticises the pathetic attempts you make at argumentation. Do you really think you’re going to make Jesus proud?

Nigel D:

Pole Greaser, you appear to be filled with nothing but hate. You spew venom in a seemingly random and incoherent manner, and then lash out vituperatively at anyone who expresses an opinion contrary to yours, or who criticises the pathetic attempts you make at argumentation. Do you really think you’re going to make Jesus proud?

Given the double-entendre of “Pole Greaser,” coupled with the fact that Pole Greaser alleges that President Bush is a (sic) “evolutionist,” a hypothesis is going around implying that he’s actually just a troll who’s parodying a rabid, frothing at the mouth creationist for his own little jollies.

My guess is that he’s the same troll as The Ghost of Paley over at AtBC.

Stanton

… a hypothesis is going around implying that he’s actually just a troll who’s parodying a rabid, frothing at the mouth creationist for his own little jollies.

I’m sure this is correct, which is why I do not bother responding to his taunts.

Gosh, what a sad, lonely individual Pole Greaser must be!

Pole Greaser extruded:

… the religion of evolutionism…

“Evolutionism” exists to the same extent that “Trombonism” exists.

I speak as a former Trombonist (third chair).

And you have just eclipsed all of the other creationists in posting the stupidest thing I have ever read.

i gotta admit, saying that the war in Iraq is due to evolutionary biologist does rank right up there with the dumbest things I’ve ever heard somebody say.

are we sure this guy isn’t just pulling chains?

Ichthyic:

And you have just eclipsed all of the other creationists in posting the stupidest thing I have ever read.

i gotta admit, saying that the war in Iraq is due to evolutionary biologist does rank right up there with the dumbest things I’ve ever heard somebody say.

are we sure this guy isn’t just pulling chains?

That he alleges that a) God is punishing Christians who masturbates by afflicting people in other countries with malaria, and b) that President George W. Bush, friendly friend and personal supporter of the Intelligent Design movement, is a (sic) “evolutionist,” must mean that he’s just a pathetic troll out to pull chains.

Not even FL is that abysmally detached from reality. Of course, that’s like saying that drinking a glass of fresh cobra venom is less deadly than jumping off the roof of a ten-story building into a pick-up truck filled with rabid porcupines.

Jan Wrote:

I am wondering if I should apologize for upsetting so many people here or just go away and forget the whole thing.

Speaking only for myself, you do not have to apologize for anything. And I hope you do stay. But I do think that you owe others, especially lurkers, answers to my questions that you keep ignoring. Even FL had the decency to do that, though I had to ask some questions ~3 times to get an answer.

Pole Greaser. I hope that you are just ‘poking the possum’ to see what comes back. Sadly I think that this may not be the case, and that you truly are an obstinate, narrow-minded, self-absorbed and deluded individual.

Before superimposing your bigoted personal beliefs onto your Creator you might like to consider her/his other creations, for example, the over 450 vertebrate species that engage in homosexual behaviour.

Quote: The Lord Jesus Christ is our captain and he will lead us to victory!

A revolutionary thinker and a political activist, Jesus was a very influential figure for his time, but he wasn’t a scientist of any description.

Quote: When an orangutan couple has a baby human, or if the same orangutan spontaneously emerges from a rock

Now you are being deliberately obtuse! A rudimentary biology course will help.

Quote: Look how our ladies spend have their married lives pregnant while your lesbos are lucky to squeeze out one baby at around forty via in-vitro fertilization.

I take it you meant “‘half’ their married lives pregnant.” What does this mean? Mice are constantly pregnant and breed in their thousands! To quote a well-known band, “quality not quantity, don’t tell me they’re the same”. My point is that large numbers of progeny don’t contribute to the global good if they are raised with ignorance, selfishness and a hatred of others.

I agree with Nigel D, you are seriously in need of help.

The analysis of evolution vs creation has a global laboratory for its operation, and it seems that all evidence points to evolution:

Since an omnipotent Creator can fashion his creations in an instance, does it not hold then that he could repair or refashion these creations equally quickly?

The very complexity that Creationists cite as reason for a Creator indicates the highly evolved, intricate relationships symbiotically maintaining the global balance referred to by Fritjof Capra as the Web of Life. The components of the web, including ourselves, have evolved to take advantage of our environment however this requires varying amounts of time; it’s not instantaneous.

Why then are the frogs, penguins, polar bears and butterflies dying from the increased temperatures of global warming? Why are we set to lose more than one million plant and animal species within the next 50 years? Would a Creator not instantly correct this imbalance; would he watch his creation self-destruct? Unless someone can prove a very spiteful entity it makes sense to pay heed to the evidence that we have collected through application of the scientific method.

BTW, I have read a book entitled ‘Telling Lies for God’ by Dr Ian Plimer, an Australian Professor of Geology, which addresses reason vs creationism and the teaching of science in Australia. It is a great read and is very entertaining.

Nice comment, Stanton.

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This page contains a single entry by Steve Reuland published on December 16, 2007 11:13 PM.

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