Why science literacy is in trouble

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The signs are all over, but here is a particularly insidious one from Canada. Woo Fighters points to a review of a book on evolution for children in a publication of the Manitoba Library Association. The review, by no less than an Assistant Professor of Science Education, includes this paragraph:

Although the text is very good in describing the theory of Evolution, there are points in the book where the author makes comments that could imply that Evolution is more than a theory. For example, “…Charles Darwin revealed the solution to the mystery of evolution” (p. 7). He also makes the comment that Evolution is the most important idea in all of biology (p. 7). Such phrases may lead the reader into thinking that scientists completely understand the theory of Evolution which would be incorrect, else Evolution would be a principle or a law and not a theory. As well, it is a bit bold to claim that evolution is the most important idea in all of biology - biology is a huge field of study with other key discoveries.

Read it and weep. That reviewer, who seems to specialize in mathematics, physics, and chemistry education, is busily teaching Canadian college students about science education at a university that advertises itself as “one of Canada’s Best Universities.” Since she’s on the physics side of things, someone might mention to her that Einstein’s theory of relativity has not yet been ‘promoted’ to a principle or law.

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87 Comments

That would be demoted to a principle or law. Which is more important to science, Boyle’s Law or Relativity?

John Pieret said:

That would be demoted to a principle or law. Which is more important to science, Boyle’s Law or Relativity?

Yeah, I forgot the inverted commas on “promoted.” I’ve added them now.

I keep saying the creationists are coming for your children. And Canadian, British, Australian or anyone else’s are fair prey for them as well.

Probably this professor is a creationist and perhaps a member of one or another fundie xian cult.

People outside the USA like to point and laugh at our problems and our world’s largest lunatic fringes. While ignoring their own. Without eternal vigilance, it can happen anywhere.

“He also makes the comment that Evolution is the most important idea in all of biology (p. 7). Such phrases may lead the reader into thinking that scientists completely understand the theory of Evolution which would be incorrect, else Evolution would be a principle or a law and not a theory.”

How does it follow logically that being “…the most important idea in all of biology…” implies that “…scientists completely understand the theory…”? How does it follow logically that if scientists did completely understand everything in evolution that it would automatically be considered a principle or a law? Name one “law” that is completely understood. Name one theory that is completely understood. Name one thing that is completely understood. Nome one theory, law or principle that is better understood than evolution.

“As well, it is a bit bold to claim that evolution is the most important idea in all of biology - biology is a huge field of study with other key discoveries.”

Name one other theory, law or principle that is more important to biology than evolution.

Since she’s on the physics side of things, someone might mention to her that Einstein’s theory of relativity has not yet been ‘promoted’ to a principle or law.

I think atomic theory would be even more of a zinger.

Well, this brings out the curmudgeon in me. The reviewer wrote:

This is a non-fiction text that describes the theory of Evolution. The text is divided into two parts, the first being more content driven and presented in a transmissive or textbook style, the second being more conversational or transactional whereby the author answers frequently asked questions posed by various people concerning the topic of Evolution.

And they we see this:

Her areas of interest include physics educational research (PER), and the incorporation of science, technology, society and environment (STSE) outcomes into science courses at all levels to help students understand the relevancy of science, increase scientific literacy, and to promote citizenship.

While I have generally supported the goals of the Physics Education Research Community – they have done a fairly decent job of cataloging misconceptions that were formerly only anecdotal – I have also been bothered by a disturbing trend that suggests this community has become over laden with the jargon known as “educationeze.”

I see it in PER sessions at the national and state meetings of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT). It makes many physicists in the research community extremely uncomfortable and suspicious of the value of PER.

I think most people have recognized this phenomenon in which bloated vocabulary is substituted for substance in thinking. It makes the person doing the bloviating sound deep and profound to the uninitiated.

However, this is precisely the kind of hyper-inflated vocabulary and shallow thinking that further exacerbates the existing problems with conceptual understanding; and it leads to remedies that are worse than the original misconceptions themselves.

Mike Elzinga said:

Well, this brings out the curmudgeon in me. The reviewer wrote:

This is a non-fiction text that describes the theory of Evolution. The text is divided into two parts, the first being more content driven and presented in a transmissive or textbook style, the second being more conversational or transactional whereby the author answers frequently asked questions posed by various people concerning the topic of Evolution.

And they we see this:

Her areas of interest include physics educational research (PER), and the incorporation of science, technology, society and environment (STSE) outcomes into science courses at all levels to help students understand the relevancy of science, increase scientific literacy, and to promote citizenship.

While I have generally supported the goals of the Physics Education Research Community – they have done a fairly decent job of cataloging misconceptions that were formerly only anecdotal – I have also been bothered by a disturbing trend that suggests this community has become over laden with the jargon known as “educationeze.”

I see it in PER sessions at the national and state meetings of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT). It makes many physicists in the research community extremely uncomfortable and suspicious of the value of PER.

I think most people have recognized this phenomenon in which bloated vocabulary is substituted for substance in thinking. It makes the person doing the bloviating sound deep and profound to the uninitiated.

However, this is precisely the kind of hyper-inflated vocabulary and shallow thinking that further exacerbates the existing problems with conceptual understanding; and it leads to remedies that are worse than the original misconceptions themselves.

You’re saying that it makes you want to go BLAAAAAAARG?

I know what you’re talking about, and it’s not just limited to education, although it may be (probably is?) a product of education. Think of the words “goal oriented” on resumes. There is no meaning, but if you ignore that part, it kinda sounds good.

I have been exposed to a large quantity of educational lingo. Some of it is backed by meaning and some of it not. Some of the jargon that has meaning is rather misguided, often because it has been stolen from other areas and isn’t exactly applicable to education or because it is straight out of politics.

Don’t get me started on the word ‘accountability.’

Question: Just a plain ‘ole curmudgeon or a carboniferous curmudgeon?

Jesse said:

Question: Just a plain ‘ole curmudgeon or a carboniferous curmudgeon?

Well, as an old fossil …

raven Wrote:

I keep saying the creationists are coming for your children. And Canadian, British, Australian or anyone else’s are fair prey for them as well.

Probably this professor is a creationist and perhaps a member of one or another fundie xian cult.

In all fairness there’s also a chance that she just misunderstands the meaning of the terms. I too fell for the “only a theory” nonsense, even the “teach both sides” nonsense, well after getting a degree in chemistry. And I was agnostic-leaning-atheist at the time.

Rather than brand her a “creationist” or “fundie” can’t someone inform her of those misconceptions? She’ll either have a “D’oh” moment as I did, or make excuses. If she does the latter, then one should ask her what she thinks the evidence supports in terms of the age of life and common descent. It’s unlikely that she’ll want to admit that she thinks that 99+% of biologists are wrong about such basic questions, even if she keeps insisting that they don’t “know it all.” So she’ll either concede that mainstream science is correct, or evade those simple questions. If she does the latter, then it would be fair to call her an anti-evolution activist.

Mike Elzinga said:

Jesse said:

Question: Just a plain ‘ole curmudgeon or a carboniferous curmudgeon?

Well, as an old fossil …

There’s only one true curmudgeon. ;-)

I e-mailed her a link to here. Maybe we’ll get an answer.

Frank J said:

There’s only one true curmudgeon. ;-)

At your service.

Has anyone looked at the biology curriculum review documents for one of her courses (this computer doesn’t have any software to open them)?

http://people.stfx.ca/kamacleod/EDU[…]0Review.docx

http://people.stfx.ca/kamacleod/EDU[…]0Review.docx

If you go to the referenced review site above you can input your feedback to the publisher, which I strongly recommend you do.

It doesn’t seem too far from the ‘only a theory’ nonsense. A bit of history and philosophy of science might be the cure…

j a higginbotham said:

Has anyone looked at the biology curriculum review documents for one of her courses (this computer doesn’t have any software to open them)?

http://people.stfx.ca/kamacleod/EDU[…]0Review.docx

http://people.stfx.ca/kamacleod/EDU[…]0Review.docx

I just skimmed them (maybe 2 minutes for the 1st one and 1 minute for the 2nd,) but I didn’t see any creationist material. I could have missed something. The 2nd one mentions evolution, but the 1st one talks about biodiversity and does not mention evolution once.

I also noticed that a lot of her material is youtubes of Bill Nye.

BTW, you can open those with openoffice.org. It’s free, but you’ll want a broadband connection if you’re going to download it.

As said above, send email to the publisher; SFX U here in Canada is not one of our more stellar universities and while I am not certain Prof. Macleod is such, there’s a fair number of creobots on faculty there.

This fellow Canadian is right if she is suggesting evolution is not a fact like gravity ideas but only a theory(or to creationists a untested hypothesis). As posters here say new information could change or overthrow this “theory” like everything every year in origin issues. Its not settled as great opposition and opinion in North America loudly proclaims. This woman possibly is very intelligent (being Canadian its very possible like yours truly) and knows exactly the issue. Evolution can not live on claims of infallibility in conclusions. It must make its case on the evidence. its a great idea so it needs great evidence in great amounts. Piegan and dog breeds ain’t going to convince anyone who sees a very complex and brilliant universe.

About a 4. Disappointing. Not as incoherent as usual, and admits that evidence has some value. Not acceptable.

Newtonian gravity was superceded by Einstein and Lorenz’s later work, and even now, anomolies are being found that require further examination, so there is STILL no “Law” of gravity. It is, as it should be, a theory.

2.6

Evolution is an untested hypothesis!

Evolution claims infallibility!

Poppycock and horse feathers. Pure schizophrenia.

The germ theory of disease is still a theory too.

Doesn’t mean that 5 or 10 million people every year don’t die from HIV, TB, and malaria.

The theory of internal combustion is just a theory. Cars run just fine.

DS said:

2.6

Evolution is an untested hypothesis!

Evolution claims infallibility!

Poppycock and horse feathers. Pure schizophrenia.

I’m not certain, but I think that the scoring system that was devised (I believe by Just Bob) for Byer’s inane bullshit was something like a range of 0=reasonable and logical to 10=outright crazy - or something like that. I’ll have to try and find it again. If I’m correct, DS, you might want to up that score a bit :). Personally, I give it a 7.1.

In fact, I propose a redefinition of the Byers ranges from:

0 = Just Plain Stupid

to

10 = Profoundly Batshit Insane

I’ve yet to see Byers write anything that falls outside those two parameters and no expectations that he ever will. The majority of his rambling seem to fall between 9.1 and 9.9 on the “Keelyn Scale of get this NUT committed quick.”

Keelyn said:

DS said:

2.6

Evolution is an untested hypothesis!

Evolution claims infallibility!

Poppycock and horse feathers. Pure schizophrenia.

I’m not certain, but I think that the scoring system that was devised (I believe by Just Bob) for Byer’s inane bullshit was something like a range of 0=reasonable and logical to 10=outright crazy - or something like that. I’ll have to try and find it again. If I’m correct, DS, you might want to up that score a bit :). Personally, I give it a 7.1.

We need at least 2 more rating systems. One goes from 0=Old-Earth-Old-Life-Common-Descent-but-not-“Darwinism” to 10=Flat-Earth-Geocentric-YEC. On that scale Steve P. rates 0 and Robert Byers rates 8-10 depending on his belief on the shape and position of our planet.

The more important scale goes from 0=likely-an-honest-believer to 10=likely-a-Poe. There I’d put Steve at about 2 and Byers at about 8. They could shoot for a 0 by debating each other.

Robert Byers said: very intelligent (being Canadian its very possible like yours truly)

Evidence, please.

Before people go running off making accusations, or engaging in name calling, etc. (I mean, “creobots”? Come on!) it is worth stopping to reflect that MacLeaod’s review of my brother’s book was *positive* (read the whole thing). Yes, she did show an distressing lapse on the definitions of ‘theory’ and ‘law’, and regarding the centrality of evolution in biology, but these lapses are common even amongst practicing scientists. (And with a BSc and MSc physics, as well as a BEd and an in progress PhD, this lapse is the fault of HER instructors, not of herself). The solution is not ridicule, but education.

When I read the review, I sent a (I hope) nicely worded email with a couple of references to relevant literature. I should expect the misconception is fixed now, and problem solved.

Yes, MacLeod was wrong on a couple of minor, but important, points, but remember (in email interactions, etc.) that she is one of the good guys, i.e., someone who is dedicating her life to academic and public science education, and also someone who went out of her was to review (and thereby publicize) a children’s book on evolution. If you contact her, be courteous.

As an aside: StFX is a secular school, and one of Canada’s top ranked undergraduate universities, with a stellar science research faculty (I know, I just spent the last 3 years resident there as part of my PhD in paleontology).

Apologies. I should have edited that post more thoroughly. You guys get the point, I am sure. : )

Jason

See my comment below.

Jason Loxton said:

Apologies. I should have edited that post more thoroughly. You guys get the point, I am sure. : )

Jason

I got the point, and thanks.

I’m as annoyed as you are with the habit of many (most?) of my fellow “Darwinists” to assume the worst of anyone who repeats common misconceptions about evolution.

A classic example is George W. Bush. In 2005 he repeated a common sound bite that students should learn ID (or “the controversy” - I forget which). But so did I, with a chemistry degree and 30 years after accepting evolution, but before I learned how hell-bent anti-evolution activists are at misleading their audience, evading questions about their own “theory” and covering up contradictions among the various failed versions. GWB is not even a scientist, and probably has many “friends” feeding him feel-good sound bites (the DI is especially fond of “courting” politicians). He may be an evangelical Christian, but so are many “Darwinists” like Francis Collins.

GWB’s comment came just before Kitzmiller v. Dover, so a year or 2 later I searched the web and “asked around” to see if anyone had tried to correct his misconceptions, or had asked whether he agreed with the decision made by a judge that he appointed. To my knowledge no one bothered.

How many creationists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

None, electricity is just a theory.

Anybody can home school their children, which is what some creationists have done since the 1960’s.

True. It is a free country. Who cares all that much?

If the creationists just sat under their rocks and fed lies to their kids and each other, no one would care. They don’t do that though. They want everyone else to believe their nonsensical mythology is real. They really are (trying to) come for your kids.

One of my minor problems with fundie creationists is that they set their own kids up to fail. We live in a complicated, technological, science driven civilization. It shows. Fundies are lower in education and socio-economic status than the general population They live in on average more dysfunctional families. OTOH, someone needs to mow our lawns and do our laundry.

raven said:

True. It is a free country. Who cares all that much?

If the creationists just sat under their rocks and fed lies to their kids and each other, no one would care. They don’t do that though. They want everyone else to believe their nonsensical mythology …

These facts provide a great advantage in an argument with creationists. When they cry “CENSORSHIP!” the response is: “What censorship? You are free to write your tracts, to set up your websites, you can teach what you like to your kids in your private schools and in your home schooling. Like it or not, in the USA nobody’s even seriously thinking of taking away those rights.”

“What you actually are after is to force your trash on everyone else’s kids.” They invariably ignore this response and change the subject, to then trot out “CENSORSHIP!” later when they think they won’t get busted again.

MrG said: These facts provide a great advantage in an argument with creationists. When they cry “CENSORSHIP!” the response is: “What censorship? You are free to write your tracts, to set up your websites, you can teach what you like to your kids in your private schools and in your home schooling.

They are also free to do their own R&D. This is another critical argument. There’s loads of money going into ID, but no discoveries coming out. Ken Miller was absolutely right about ID being a science stopper; we have only to look at Behe’s and Dembski’s scientific output to see what adopting the ID hypothesis does to scientific productivity.

Not only Ken, eric:

eric said:

They are also free to do their own R&D. This is another critical argument. There’s loads of money going into ID, but no discoveries coming out. Ken Miller was absolutely right about ID being a science stopper; we have only to look at Behe’s and Dembski’s scientific output to see what adopting the ID hypothesis does to scientific productivity.

Nick Matzke was quoted (NOTE TO NICK: If I’m wrong about this, please let us know) immediately after the Kitzmiller vs. Dover ruling was issued, saying that ID needs to do its own science and to try getting it published in mainstream scientific journals if it wants to demonstrate its validity. That Dembski, Behe and others have yet to do this, should force anyone who is truly objective to recognize that ID is not valid science, period, nor was ever valid science, at least from the perspective of modern 20th and 21st Century science.

They are also free to do their own R&D. This is another critical argument. There’s loads of money going into ID, but no discoveries coming out.

The xians have a lot of money.

We estimated that the creationists take in and spend around $50 million/year. The US churches take in around $70 billion/year.

In a democracy, anyone can spend their money any way they want. The creationists could spend their money on “Creationist or Theistic Science.” There are no science police, no one is going to stop them or even care.

That 50 million or 70 billion USD would fund a lot of research.

They don’t do that, most likely because they know their Fundie Xian research will go nowhere. After one says goddidit, what is left to do? Instead that creationist $50 million all goes to propaganda and lies against real science.

We all know what ordinary science has done. It created the modern Hi Tech 21st century civilization with abundant food, long lifespans, and an array of technological products.

John Kwok said: Nick Matzke was quoted (NOTE TO NICK: If I’m wrong about this, please let us know) immediately after the Kitzmiller vs. Dover ruling was issued, saying that ID needs to do its own science and to try getting it published in mainstream scientific journals if it wants to demonstrate its validity.

The creationist counter-argument is that mainstream journals are biased against them. I don’t believe that for a second, but were it true, being shut out of journals would still not prevent creationists from making new discoveries.

Most biotech research in the U.S. today is private: funded by venture capitalists and corporations who intend to make money off the results. Publications may be a feather in their cap, but publication is not the goal. This route is always open to ID, even if they think there’s a giant science conspiracy against them. Yet, there are no buyers except Ahamson, and no products except trade books and lectures. ID does not appear to be able to convince either the mainstream scientific community or the market of its scientific value.

eric said:

The creationist counter-argument is that mainstream journals are biased against them.

Well of COURSE they are! As a friend of mine used to like to often put it: “I’m bigoted. I hate stupid people.”

eric said:

Most biotech research in the U.S. today is private: funded by venture capitalists and corporations who intend to make money off the results. Publications may be a feather in their cap, but publication is not the goal. This route is always open to ID, even if they think there’s a giant science conspiracy against them. Yet, there are no buyers x …

Oh that’s a good one, I’ll have to remember it.

Then again, evolutionary biologists as such aren’t generally involved in startups either – biochemists and the like yes, but it would be hard to conceive of how, say, Dawkins or Ken Miller or PZ Myers could leverage their particular expertise into venture-capitalist meat.

I actually know of a few, and the most prominent one I can think of is botanist Paul Mankiewicz of the Gaia Institute here in New York City:

MrG said:

eric said:

Most biotech research in the U.S. today is private: funded by venture capitalists and corporations who intend to make money off the results. Publications may be a feather in their cap, but publication is not the goal. This route is always open to ID, even if they think there’s a giant science conspiracy against them. Yet, there are no buyers x …

Oh that’s a good one, I’ll have to remember it.

Then again, evolutionary biologists as such aren’t generally involved in startups either – biochemists and the like yes, but it would be hard to conceive of how, say, Dawkins or Ken Miller or PZ Myers could leverage their particular expertise into venture-capitalist meat.

Walabio said:

Robert Byers said:

> “This fellow Canadian is right if she is suggesting evolution is not a fact like gravity ideas but only a theory. … ”

Our understanding of gravity is the Theory of Gravity. A theory is an explanatory model. It is pretty solid but needs a little revising because it does not take into account quantum-effects. The theory started with Newton and Einstein revised it. Gravity is an observed fact too.

Biological evolution is an observed fact also:

we also have the Theory of Biological evolution which explains the observed biological evolution. Darwin devised the theory and it has been tested for 150 years. It has survived thousands of tests. It has been modified a little by inclusion of Mendellian Genetics and developmental biology, but it is still basically as Darwin described it.

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

Please show any physical or chemical laws that evolution violates. And no, don’t mention the Second Law of Thermodymanics for that was debunked a looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong time ago. Also, your assumption that applying those laws to deep time to generate natural history is unscientific is sheer nonsense.

Robert Byers said:

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

eric Wrote:

The creationist counter-argument is that mainstream journals are biased against them. I don’t believe that for a second, but were it true, being shut out of journals would still not prevent creationists from making new discoveries.

I forget if it was this on thread, but someone recently noted (referring to a particular evolution-denier or troll) how they always seek a “heads I win, tails you lose” situation. It’s the same with any brand of pseudoscience. Unfortunately their claim of being “expelled” when they clearly “flunk” or “refuse to take the exam” still fools many people, not just committed evolution-deniers.

One question that the average evolution-denier on the street probably never thought of is, if they are being “expelled” because they invoke a designer, then why is Ken Miller - who is even more open about the designer’s identity than the average IDer - not also “expelled”? The answer is simple. Miller makes testable claims and supports them on their own metits, not on “weaknesses” of something else, whereas the IDers publish only incredulity arguments that misrepresent the one explanation that we have.

A fun exercise for intro level physics students is to read a paper that came out in scientific American a few years ago (I’m sorry but I don’t have the title handy) on MOND. It’s an alternative gravitational theory that also tackles dark matter. It leads to some great discussion about what makes a theory good and how scientists look at real alternatives, in this case very skeptically waiting to see if it will in fact yield better explanatory power. Their heads also practically explode at the notion that everything they just learned about gravity maybe “wrong”. And for those keeping score at home that would mean that there is in fact one more viable theory for gravity than there are viable scientific alternatives to evolution.

The Curmudgeon said:

Frank J said:

There’s only one true curmudgeon. ;-)

At your service.

Now, we all know it’s curmudgeons all the way down.

Robert Byers said: Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

There are stars in the sky that are visible only from the Southern Hemisphere*. Since you have never seen them, does that mean they do not exist?

*I just realized “hemisphere” is probably not in Byers’ vocabulary, since his earth is not a sphere, but flat. But what would the cognate word for “hemisphere” be for a Flat Earther? Hemiplane?

Paul Burnett said:

*I just realized “hemisphere” is probably not in Byers’ vocabulary, since his earth is not a sphere, but flat. But what would the cognate word for “hemisphere” be for a Flat Earther? Hemiplane?

A Möbius strip?

Robert Byers said:

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

3.7

I give up. Maybe it’s time we collect all of his nonsensical screeds and edit them as the “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Bob”:

Just Bob said:

Robert Byers said:

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

3.7

Sorry Just Bob, that wasn’t meant to insult you. I meant to say “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Booby Byers”:

John Kwok said:

I give up. Maybe it’s time we collect all of his nonsensical screeds and edit them as the “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Bob”:

Just Bob said:

Robert Byers said:

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

3.7

John Kwok said:

Sorry Just Bob, that wasn’t meant to insult you. I meant to say “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Booby Byers”:

John Kwok said:

I give up. Maybe it’s time we collect all of his nonsensical screeds and edit them as the “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Bob”:

Just Bob said:

Robert Byers said:

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

3.7

Thanks, John. I recommended long ago that he be universally Bathroom Walled. He NEVER contributes anything worthwhile, even from a creationist perspective. That’s why I just went to scoring his performances for hilarity and entertainment value–although I suppose it’s sort of cruel laughter at the mentally defective.

Well that’s why I remarked earlier at another PT thread today that I can’t wait for the SNL skit parodying him with someone like David Spade - or maybe better yet, the current cast member who plays MacGruber - as a really over-the-top version of “Chairman” Booby Byers:

Just Bob said:

John Kwok said:

Sorry Just Bob, that wasn’t meant to insult you. I meant to say “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Booby Byers”:

John Kwok said:

I give up. Maybe it’s time we collect all of his nonsensical screeds and edit them as the “Collected Thoughts of Chairman Bob”:

Just Bob said:

Robert Byers said:

Not the same thing. Gravity ideas are not defined by these words. Its rock solid evidence that it is operative and is the basis of clear endless examination and testing. Biology origins are not like this. They are imperfect forensic type of studies which with evolution need great evidence for such great unlikely claims. Its not the same thing. Seeing something work is not like hearing something worked but not seeing it.

3.7

Thanks, John. I recommended long ago that he be universally Bathroom Walled. He NEVER contributes anything worthwhile, even from a creationist perspective. That’s why I just went to scoring his performances for hilarity and entertainment value–although I suppose it’s sort of cruel laughter at the mentally defective.

John Kwok said:

Well that’s why I remarked earlier at another PT thread today that I can’t wait for the SNL skit parodying him with someone like David Spade - or maybe better yet, the current cast member who plays MacGruber - as a really over-the-top version of “Chairman” Booby Byers:

Quit calling him booby, you’re insulting Sulidaes.

Nah, I wouldn’t think of insulting Sulidaes:

Alex H said:

John Kwok said:

Well that’s why I remarked earlier at another PT thread today that I can’t wait for the SNL skit parodying him with someone like David Spade - or maybe better yet, the current cast member who plays MacGruber - as a really over-the-top version of “Chairman” Booby Byers:

Quit calling him booby, you’re insulting Sulidaes.

However, since others do refer to him as Booby, and since I have some very intelligent Canadian relatives, then Booby is a most apt sarcastic nickname. Until and unless he can demonstrate that he is truly intelligent, he will be referred to as Booby by yours truly.

And Jefferson said: that the impious presumption of legislators and rulers, civil as well as ecclesiastical, who, being themselves but fallible and uninspired men, have assumed dominion over the faith of others, setting up their own opinions and modes of thinking as the only true and infallible, and as such endeavoring to impose them on others, hath established and maintained false religions over the greatest part of the world, and through all time

John Kwok said:

Nah, I wouldn’t think of insulting Sulidaes:

Alex H said:

John Kwok said:

Well that’s why I remarked earlier at another PT thread today that I can’t wait for the SNL skit parodying him with someone like David Spade - or maybe better yet, the current cast member who plays MacGruber - as a really over-the-top version of “Chairman” Booby Byers:

Quit calling him booby, you’re insulting Sulidaes.

However, since others do refer to him as Booby, and since I have some very intelligent Canadian relatives, then Booby is a most apt sarcastic nickname. Until and unless he can demonstrate that he is truly intelligent, he will be referred to as Booby by yours truly.

I agree with Alex: addressing Mr Byers as “Booby” is a slur against gannets and all other seabirds. A far more accurate term would be “Idiot Byers”

You’ll have to aim your protest at others here who have adopted the nickname “Booby” for our ever delusional Canadian “friend”:

Stanton said:

John Kwok said:

Nah, I wouldn’t think of insulting Sulidaes:

Alex H said:

John Kwok said:

Well that’s why I remarked earlier at another PT thread today that I can’t wait for the SNL skit parodying him with someone like David Spade - or maybe better yet, the current cast member who plays MacGruber - as a really over-the-top version of “Chairman” Booby Byers:

Quit calling him booby, you’re insulting Sulidaes.

However, since others do refer to him as Booby, and since I have some very intelligent Canadian relatives, then Booby is a most apt sarcastic nickname. Until and unless he can demonstrate that he is truly intelligent, he will be referred to as Booby by yours truly.

I agree with Alex: addressing Mr Byers as “Booby” is a slur against gannets and all other seabirds. A far more accurate term would be “Idiot Byers”

Unless and until they agree with your assessment, he shall be Booby:

And he shall be Booby And he shall be a good man And he shall be Booby In tradition of the Almighty’s plan And he shall be Booby And he shall be a good man He shall be Booby

(with apologies to Reggie Dwight and Bernie Taupin)

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This page contains a single entry by Richard B. Hoppe published on May 14, 2010 1:38 PM.

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