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I gathered these up from multiple chat room and e-mails over the years ... The winner recieves the presitigious Golden Gould Award. A fine trophy in 14K plated gold which shows the late esteemed evolutionary biologists in obvious olfactory distress holding his nose with one hand and holding an unidentified object at arms length with the other.

# 10
 "I feel sorry for you. You're all blinded by the TRUTH!"

# 9
 "If Noah didn't cause the seashells to be mountins then how do u
think the fishes got up there by walking on the fins or flying or what? And I'm
not ignorent I just want to show if you can't answer."

Under the "woops" category #  8
"If people evolved from monkeys why are there still people?"  

Under "unclear on the concept" Top Ten Worst Creationist Args # 7
"You're the one who is doing the assuming here. It says in the bible that God made Adam fully formed and the stars the same way. So the
light was already on the way to Earth. Anything else is pure guesswork on your part"

# 6
"My claims are valid and easy to understand once you free yourself from your prision of LOGIC"

# 5 and the winner of the Utter Lack of Logic Award! Also known as "The Hovind Award"
"You just said theories can never be proven. Since creation is the only theory that has been proven creation wins again!"

# 4
"Science shows God even holds the atoms together though some of the partcicles have been positive charges and would push on each other. So making the Earth would be a lot easier for him than you think."

# 3
"Tell me how nothing came from nothing?????"

Top Ten Worst Creationists Statements of all time runner up! Remember that if our grand prize winner is unable to fulfill his or her duties as poster child for creationist stupidity, the runner up will step in ...
"If the ape and man had a common ancestor, that makes the ape the common ancestor by DEFAULT!"

And the #1 Worst Creationists Argument for Sept. and winner of the coveted Golden Gould Award.....
"How do evolutionists explain the Carribean Explosion?"

Originally posted to DarkSyde on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:14 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  You Forgot... (4.00)
    That the remains of dinosaurs are a trick to test the faith of true believers. Planted either by Satan or God himself depending upon the version.
    •  You should check out (4.00)
      Fafblog on this!  Hysterical and made me want some tacos!
      •  HEY AUTHOR! (none)
        thanks for the list (& the fafblog. funny).

        what sites do you use to hunt this stuff?  no, dammit!  i'm not trying to steal your idea.

        i want to see these enlightened people for myself.

        fuuuuuunnnny!

        •  Refute Creationists (none)
          They [creationists] are increasing in numbers, they are in increasing in ignorance.  Just about everyone one of their claims can be debunked.  Check out ,to debunk or follow the discussions

          "Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?" -George Washington

          by House on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:20:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Most of these (4.00)
          were gathered in the MSN Evolution Vs Creationism Community Chat Room, which is now sadly no more because MSN turned it into a subscription service.
          •  So did those friends (none)
            actually take classes at college?
            Or did they just sit in their dorm rooms blindfolded and earplugged?
            How did they prevent the transmission of knowledge whilst in a center of higher learning?
          •  asdf (4.00)
            I always enjoy your post DarkSyde.

            It's a strange GOD that creates a Universe of 100 billion galaxies each with 100 billion stars just so he can wait 14 billion years for a small primate to evolve and worship him.
            What is so intelligent about that?

            •  You know (4.00)
              This is one of the things that has always bothered me about religion, and specifically monotheism.

              The number one commandment is, essentially, to worship the Creator.  So does this mean that God is just basically an enormous, cosmic egotist?  What's so all-powerfully great and moral about that?

              I apologize to religious Kossacks if the question seems flip.  But it really bothers me.  What's so great about a God who constantly demands praise?  Shouldn't He be above that sort of thing?

              ...feeling pretty psyched...

              by BrooklynRaider on Tue May 03, 2005 at 01:43:21 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  yeah but (none)
                Glemkor, the Allmighty for planet AigbondVIXXX is a real mooch for the praise
              •  God: praiseworthy or praise-wary (none)
                Yes, as I transitioned away from being an Evangelical Christian a couple decades ago, one of the reasons was that it made no sense that God should be such a "praise-o-holic."  Nowadays I see the praise phenomena in those churches as being a technique to bind people together doctrinally and emotionally.  It's very powerful for that purpose.

                Praise can be a positive emotion, unless one is praising God for some bad thing that happens to a non-Christian.  If wingnuts calling themselves Christians could only stick with positive praise -- and perchance even with Divive Love -- their faith wouldn't be so destructive.  

                They'd at least have the second term of this basic equation:

                Reality-base + Love = a vibrant society & healthy planet.

                Civil society is our collective creation. It's an honorable source of growth, mutual satisfaction and fulfillment. It's yours and mine to nurture, or nix.

                by Civil Sibyl on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:13:25 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Hence... (none)
                  Re: "the praise phenomena in those churches as being a technique to bind people together doctrinally and emotionally"

                  I hate to say it, but organized religion is nothing more then a cult of sorts. A cult that demands you devote your self to God and they only way to achieve that is through your absolute dedication to the church, etc.

                  •  some find spirit (none)
                    I agree with you for the most part, but there are also many congregations where they are more relaxed and humane in their demands for dedication, and where there is a focus on personal growth and caring.  These churches get less press and the religious faith of their members are less noticeable because they don't wear god on their sleeve so much, or on their bumpers.  Personally I'm not interested in even this type of church, plus I'm deeply agnostic -- but I know several people for whom such a church community is positive for them, and even for their progressive activism.

                    But mostly we're subjected to the tinny blast of the rabid hornblower type Christians.  It's enough to make Jesus turn over in his grave, or on his throne!

                    Civil society is our collective creation. It's an honorable source of growth, mutual satisfaction and fulfillment. It's yours and mine to nurture, or nix.

                    by Civil Sibyl on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:58:00 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

              •  You're right (none)
                I don't think you should feel the need to apologize over such a simple question.  People who get offended over questions like these tend to overreact because, I think, they intuitively know the doctrines are wrong.

                An egotist God and eternal hellfire are two doctrines I can not accept in a spiritual faith.  They are two of the biggest things that drove me away from the church of my youth into an early atheism (which I fortunately managed to outgrow). I still can't get over how many people uncritically accept eternal damnation from a supposedly omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent deity.  There are some branches of Christianity that do not believe in this concept though.  I think it hinges on the translation of the Greek 'aion' which is loosely 'an age'.  It was, according to some, mistranslated as eternal in the case of punishment of sinners.

                I do think there is a lot of good to be found in Christianity, mostly concentrated in the recorded words of Christ as opposed to his predecessors or followers.  Quite a few "Christian" churches are actually (ironically? sadly?) some of the most un-Christ-like places on the planet.

              •  Simply... (none)
                ...a mechanism for protecting the rest of the message from being overwritten by other memes. "You shall have no other Gods before me."

                And to guarantee that the message gets regularly reinforced. "You shall remember the Sabbath and keep it holy."

              •  I am a jealous God (4.00)
                What's so great about a God who constantly demands praise?  Shouldn't He be above that sort of thing?

                I'll take a whack at this one, it's a fine question.  I think if you leave the personification aside, i.e., that God feels jealousy, the exclusivity is really for our sake, not God's.  

                It's really the same thing a Platonist would say, I think, which is that it's better for us, more moral, more authentic, whatever you want to call it, to worship (or appreciate, if you prefer) truth to falsity.  

                Put it in completely secular terms.  Do you think it's more humane to worship (or respect or seek after or appreciate) beauty or money?  Obviously the former, if you ask me.  And the more exclusive your commitment to it, the deeper and more rewarding it ultimately is.  

                The idea of a source of all being (as Augustine would conceive of God) or even being itself is a pretty awesome thing, I'd say, and demanding of exclusive attention to really be appreciated.  It's just a way of focusing attention on the one rather than the many, a pursuit that (so far as I can tell) most religions believe can lead to inner peace.  

                Does that make any sense?  

                ...But Achilles, weeping, sat down at a distance far from his companions, beside the whitening waves, his eyes fixed upon the boundless sea.

                by weeping for brunnhilde on Tue May 03, 2005 at 05:50:41 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  It also depends on whether you percieve it as (none)
                  a law or a personal obligation.  i.e. is God telling you to do this because God wants you to do this or is God telling you to do this because that is what you need to do to be spiritually close to God.

                  Just on that sense, I think it makes perfect sense. It has nothing to do with a jealous God and everything to do with a conciousness that is limited (aka humans).  

                •  Okay (none)
                  That does make a good amount of sense.

                  Interesting how you mention the focus on the one rather than the many.  I suppose my problem is with the personalized God, YHWH the Character.  There is a version of the Christian God who is a very specific "person," if you will.  I have a problem with that "person's" motives and character.

                  However, God the essentual unity, the source of all things, I can get.  It's almost intuitive - it almost  transcends religion.

                  All things are one and the unity is all things.  It's just interesting how the monotheistic religions tend to emphasize the "person" of the oneness, while Buddhism, for instance, identifies precisely the opposite: the emptiness of the person - the everthing-elseness of oneness.

                  ...feeling pretty psyched...

                  by BrooklynRaider on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:24:23 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  14 billion years?? (none)
              But Earth is only 5000 years old! (duh)
            •  The other stars and galaxies were created by Satan (none)
              To confound us.

              A true believer once made that argument to me, and got flustered when I pointed out that the stars were created by God according to genesis.

              Genesis doesn't cover galaxies though.

        •  Classic! (none)
          I have posted it elsewhere on a site frequested by all sorts, hope you do not mind....I cannot wait for the reaction of the nutjobs.....

          "The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie"

          by Little Hamster on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:23:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

            •  Guardian Unlimited Talk (none)
              The Guardian is a UK paper that has a great website. On their website they also have discussion forums that are poorly moderated, much to the delight of right-wings who frequent it.

              Be warned there are some serious nutcases on some of the forums, it's not for the faint-hearted!

              (However, it's highly amusing for those with a strong constitution and a thick skin though)

              "The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie"

              by Little Hamster on Sun May 08, 2005 at 04:28:10 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Guardian Unlimited Talk (none)
              The Guardian is a UK paper that has a great website. On their website they also have discussion forums that are poorly moderated, much to the delight of right-wingers who frequent it.

              Be warned there are some serious nutcases on some of the forums, it's not for the faint-hearted!

              (However, it's highly amusing for those with a strong constitution and a thick skin though)

              "The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie"

              by Little Hamster on Sun May 08, 2005 at 04:29:14 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Creation Theory (none)
      Is for people who:

      a) Flunked math

      b) Don't know what math is

      c) Dispute math answers

      d) Think William Holden is the anti-Christ.

      Rev Dr LTC X

    •  They died in the flood (none)
      In college, I had a neo-con friend who is a strict constructionist of the Bible. He believes that the dinosaurs lived after man was created and that they died in the flood (you know, the one with Noah's Ark).

      Signature goes here.

      by lalawguy on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:23:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I can top that (none)
        I went to college with a guy whose home town had a church that taught that people survived the Flood by riding on the backs of dinosaurs.  Really.  I'm not sure where they got this from, since it doesn't seem to match the Bible or explain what happened to the dinosaurs, but there you have it.
        •  yes, that is a popular view .... (none)
          its not my line, I always try to refer to dinosaurs as Jesus-horses.
          •  There were no dinosaurs. (none)
            Down here in GA, the accepted wisdom outside the Atlanta Perimeter of Godlessness is that what we think of as fossilized dinosaur bones are actually DEMON bones left over from when Satan waged war on God. I am not freaking kidding; I've heard this a dozen times or more by now.
            •  Redshift, Felagund (none)
              I just don't believe you!!

              "The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie"

              by Little Hamster on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:25:46 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Believe it! (none)
                and why "redshift"?
                •  Unbelieveable. (none)
                  I guess I just don't believe it as I am from the UK and people holding such beliefs in the UK would pretty much be regarded as certifiable!

                  I wasn't even aware that evolution was questioned until fairly recently. It was an eye-opener I can tell you. I watched a programme on creationists and sat through the whole thing in complete disbelief.

                  "The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie"

                  by Little Hamster on Sun May 08, 2005 at 04:21:46 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  I hear you, Felagund!!! (none)
              I know about that one on dinosaurs from a former schoolteacher; she also asked, when the Hubble telescope was launched, in all seriousness:

              "but, where is heaven?"

              25 years in public schools.  So many minds turned off science.  No wonder it's bread and circuses!

              "...we want to burn out the poison of immorality which has entered into our whole life and culture as a result of liberal excess during the past years." Hitler

              by quartzite on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:33:14 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Glen Rose! (none)
          In Glen Rose, Texas, there's a fossilized imprint of a dinosaur foot right next to an imprint of what looks like a human foot.  Highly religious people tell me that this is evidence that dinosaurs existed at the same time that human beings existed.  Worse yet, they say "This is proof that those guys were wrong!  Humans did exist at the same time as dinosaurs."  Sort of a all or nothing view of the universe - they're so willing to discount two hundred years of substantial scientific theory on the basis of a fossil imprint that looks vaguely like a human foot.

          And of course, scientific theory goes right out the window when you're talking to these guys.  This link:
          http://www.bible.ca/tracks/ryals-track.htm
          talks about how the human foot didn't quite fit because of 'clay deposits' but once the clay was removed, it fit just fine.  So what - they chipped away at it until it fit their view of the universe?  Typical.

          Here's a grouping of similar tracks compiled by the same assholes:
          http://www.bible.ca/tracks/tracks.htm

          Take a look at the tracks for yourself, and make up your own mind.  To me, it looks like there aren't any toe impressions aside from what they're calling the big toe.  I think this was a dinosaur with a human-sized foot.  But there's no convincing some people.

          BTW - I've heard that too, felagund, but it wasn't the bones of demons - just bones created by Satan to deceive and confuse the righteous.

          A libertarian believes consenting adults have the right to do whatever they want... except band together for power.

          by Jensequitur on Tue May 03, 2005 at 06:49:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  So why... (4.00)
        didn't Noah take all the dinosaurs with him on the Ark? Did they piss God off or something?

        US Dead in Iraq = 1586
        WMD Found = 0 (And that's final!)

        by Glenn in NYC on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:22:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It's true! (none)
        I know because I once saw Raquel Welch carried off by a pterodactyl.
      •  Why didn't Noah save the smaller dinosaurs? (none)
        And what happened to the aquatic dinosaurs?
      •  it's the Flintstone hypothesis (none)
        Too many of these people sat in front
        of the tv watching the flintstones. I bet if someone was able to do accurate survey, most fundies would have watched flintstones as children

        republican hypocrisy will cause God and Jesus to be as Dead as our Democracy

        by demnomore on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:01:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Currently (none)
      The smart money is on them sexular humansist demmycrats!

      DFooK

      Strange and beautiful are the stars tonight, that dance around your head.

      by deepfish on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:13:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And God created... (none)
      dogs and dinosaurs.

      And the dogs ate the dinosaurs, and buried their bones.  But not too deep.

      Of course he's written in the Lamb's Book of Life. He's the Antagonist.

      by ultrageek on Tue May 03, 2005 at 02:25:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  No. 3 (4.00)
    How, how, Cordelia? Mend your speech a little,
    Lest you may mar your fortunes.
  •  God bless Stephen Jay Gould. (4.00)
    I interviewed him one time. He reminded me of a happy bat. Alas, we shall not see his like again.

    A Stephen Jay Gould quote to remember:

    every spectacular incident of evil will be balanced by 10,000 acts of kindness, too often unnoted and invisible as the "ordinary" efforts of a vast majority

    The less a man knows about how sausages and laws are made, the easier it is to steal his vote and give him botulism.

    by SensibleShoes on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:19:15 AM PDT

    •  a great man (none)
      and a great writer. I recommend his essays to my law students as a model for critical thinking and analysis - and clear writing on a technical issue.
    •  I had the chance to meet him twice (none)
      A really personable guy, and a great conversationalist.  Years after we had met the first time, he surprised me by showing up as the speaker at my wife's college graduation (for her third... no, fourth, college degree).

      Stephen made even the painful statistical roots of evolution easy to grasp.  It's become fashionable among those in the field to downplay his contributions to evolutionary theory, but no one can downplay his contributions to spreading science in popular thought.


      TwoTaboos -- Politics and Religion.

      by Mark Sumner on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:18:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  a happy bat? :-) (none)
      explain?

      I have read a couple of his books of essays, Hen's Teeth and Horses' Toes and The Panda's Thumb, and I was blown away. What a genius thinker; it is a joy just to experience his thought processes. He also happened to be a very talented writer.

      •  He was like a bat. (none)
        If you've ever been trapped in a room with a bat, you know just what I mean.
        You have to duck outta the way a lot.
        But unlike the many other bats I've been in small rooms with, he was happy.
        He was the person who first gave me the impression that intelligence was largely a matter of energy.

        The less a man knows about how sausages and laws are made, the easier it is to steal his vote and give him botulism.

        by SensibleShoes on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:51:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Actually, (4.00)
          being a former (and hopefully future)spelunker, my experience is that if you stand still, the bat's echolocation wil tell him EXACTLY where you are, and he will avoid you.  You don't need to duck out of the way.

          9/11 was the Neocon's Reichstag fire.

          by Bulldawg on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:58:08 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  How to Confuse a Bat ! (none)
            I got trapped in my small music practice room with one once. I was renting an apartment at the time, and so I'd had to carefully pad the ceiling and walls with sound absorbing carpeting.

            After escaping the bedroom where he got in through an open window, he flew into the practice room because it sounded like open space to him.

            Poor bugger hit the walls about a dozen times before I got into the corner opposite the door and made enough noise to flush him out!

            We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

            by Gooserock on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:59:02 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I know you don't NEED to. n/t (none)
            n/t

            The less a man knows about how sausages and laws are made, the easier it is to steal his vote and give him botulism.

            by SensibleShoes on Tue May 03, 2005 at 02:46:26 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  well (none)
          I can't say I've ever been trapped in a small room with a bat, but I can imagine it! And for that matter my grey parrot is flying around my head like a happy bat for no apparent reason.
        •  Bats in the room! (4.00)
          I love being in the room with bats!

          I was once called by a co-worker who was freaked out by about 6 or 7 bats in her apartment. Me and some friends, some of us a little drunk or stoned, went to help her. We left one room dark (the bedroom) and turned on the lights in the rest of the house and drove the bats into her bedroom, chosen because it had three really big windows.

          For some reason, they wouldn't fly out of the room on their own. So I threw a towel over each, one at a time, and then tossed it out the window. This would freak them out and all the rest of the bats would fly around and I would wait until they had calmed down to use the towel. (I was the only one involved in this part of the operation. Everybody else was drinking beer and watching TV in the living room.)

          I would stand in the dark and watch 5 or 6 bats fly in circles in this little space. One would fly straight at my face and then veer off at the last moment. It was great!

          Toni, the girl who called us, came to check on me and bring me a beer, and the cat got in when 3 or 4 bats were circling around! Wow! That cat was the happiest cat I've ever seen for a few seconds as it bounded in and hopped up and knocked a bat out of the air! I don't imagine I will ever again see a cat catch a bat. I quickly rescued the bat, it seemed none the worse for wear, and shoved the cat out of the room. To the cat's credit, it seemed to bear no ill will toward me later on.

          It took a while, but I finally got all the bats out. Toni had called the police before calling me and a cop showed up right after I finished. We explained how we got the bats out. The cop thought it was very ingenious, adding "Well, that's good. When I have to get rid of bats, I just whack 'em with my nightstick and people get mad cause it leaves holes in the walls."

          This was in Muncie, IN, about 1986.

          (Sorry to go OT. Um, Gould is great and all, but we all know that and I think this is a great bat story you're not likely to hear anywhere else.)

          America: It's a good IDEA for a country ...

          by Tony Seybert on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:51:49 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The Carribean Explosion (4.00)
    Was that Ricky Martin, or Gloria Estefan?

    In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for. As for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican. -HL Mencken

    by sq1 on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:20:59 AM PDT

  •  What's all this.. (4.00)
    about a Carribean Explosion.  Why doesn't everyone accept the existance of a delicious rum and fruit juice concoction served with a cute little umbrella and a slice of pineapple?  What?  Cambrian? What? .... Never Mind.

    Emily Latella

    Massachusetts: 1st in Baseball, 1st in Footbal, 47th in Support for Public Higher Education

    by mcinma on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:21:00 AM PDT

  •  'The jury is still out' - the Education President (4.00)
    which brings to mind Mark Twain:
    We have a criminal jury system which is superior to any other in the world; and its efficiency is only marred by the difficulty of finding 12 everyday men who don't know anything and can't read.
  •  Spiritual balm... (4.00)
    Those in need of a little inspiration after this little list might want to check out this survey in which prominent scientists and science writers were asked, "If you could teach the world just one thing..."

    Makes me feel better, anyway...

  •  LMAO! (none)
    Oh.  My.  God.

    This is proof of de-evolution if there is such a thing!

    This one would make my high school chemistry teacher (who was a priest and a brilliant chemist) tear out what was left of his hair:

    Science shows God even holds the atoms together though some of the partcicles have been positive charges and would push on each other. So making the Earth would be a lot easier for him than you think.
    •  De-evolution (4.00)
      Are we not men?

      But do not reject these teaching as false because I am crazy. The reason that I am crazy is because they are true.

      by kenjib on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:05:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No wonder God needs a day of rest... (none)
      She must get really tired of holding all those atoms together.  That explains why there's so much hydrogen in the universe; she doesn't have to worry about multiple positive charges and can leave those alone.

      US Dead in Iraq = 1586
      WMD Found = 0 (And that's final!)

      by Glenn in NYC on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:27:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Quick tip (none)
      I always tune out after "Science shows...".  This is never followed by anything of worth.
    •  It is my favorite. (4.00)
      "...making the Earth would be a lot easier for him than you think."

      In fact, I think is the key to the whole debate. Morons like the easy explanation. They don't have to learn stuff or follow a reasoning path. They can instantly relate to a wave of the hand: that's what they'd do.

      It isn't that scientist think  "making the earth was difficult" (viz: weedwhacking, stowing firewood, taking out the garbage, etc., etc.)but that the process is inherently interesting.

      It opens up a new world.

      •  Have to say that (none)
        "making the earth was difficut (viz: weedwhacking, stowing firewood...)" deserves at least a 5.
      •  Exactly... (none)
        Its not that they go for easy answers - but that they are fixated on answers to begin with.

        Faith is not about answers, but about doubt and questions. If you KNOW the answer, then its not faith but certainty.

        Science is not about final answer either - or it shouldn't be. This makes the creationist fundies feel dizzy. They really really want science to be a good little doggy and underwrite their claims to certitude.

        DFooK

        Strange and beautiful are the stars tonight, that dance around your head.

        by deepfish on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:57:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Faith (none)
          Faith is not about answers, but about doubt and questions.

          Not for fundamentalists/creationists:

          "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen."  (Hebrews 11:1, NASB)

          Their definition/understanding of faith is quite different from your own--for them, faith is certainty, as in the bumper sticker "God said it, I believe it, and that settles it."

          All of life is an unanswered question, but let's still believe in the dignity and importance of the questions. - Tennessee Williams

          by Leslie in CA on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:45:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  not just morons.... (none)
        ...leaders, too. That's their strength. And that's why they're often morons :)

        Don't try to heal the world: you may be its disease.

        by gongo on Tue May 03, 2005 at 12:33:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It's hard work (none)
        makin' the world. Just look it up on the internets.

        but that the process is inherently interesting

        This is why so many rational people of faith have no problem with science. Closer be to God those who study His ways. Science does not necessarily seek to debunk religion, merely to understand the world. It's a shame that the nutters have the bullhorn these days.

  •  DS, I think you have judged them to harshly and (4.00)
    too soon.  I think there is some scientific validity to their comments.  In fact, I am writing a research proposal to the Creation Institute asking for a $5 million grant to study the Carribean Explosion.    I think it will take several years of research and at least two scantily clad native graduate assistants.

    I will post the results of my studies when they are completed.

    •  Actually (4.00)
      I myself am teaming up with a crew from the Panda's Thumb to write a devastating rebuke of the atheist materialist communist fascist Global Darwinist Mason/Illuminati Conspiricy and we're going to blow the cover off of that secret plot to Keep YVHW Down. We expect ringing endorsements from 'values' voters and the money and sports cars will simply rain down like Noah's Deluge. So you better hurry up with that grant proposal ;)
      •  It's YHVH (4.00)
        you've been exposed. The spelling error earlier on almost had me believing you were one of the faithful, but not to know yhvh!
          •  It's actually a cool acronym (none)
            It more or less maps to will-be-is-was. Kinda cool.
            •  The God of Popeye (4.00)
              That what everyone thinks of as God's "name" really amounts to no more than "hey, mind your own business."

              When Moses scoots out of his shoes at the burning bush, the dude behind the flames makes a point of saying "yeah, I know Abraham called me something else, but trust me, I'm the same guy."  Then, when pressed to provide a moniker, our bush burner tosses Moses the "I am who I am" -- which I think of the Popeye defense.  More or less the ancient Jewish version of "get lost."  Then, for four thousand years, we go around repeating this "Can it buddy, I'm not telling" phrase as if it's a name.

              Deep theological implications at the time (many groups worshipped by calling the name of a deity over and over to "force" the god to do something).    Now more in the area of fun facts.


              TwoTaboos -- Politics and Religion.

              by Mark Sumner on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:27:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  If God (none)
                had appeared to Moses in Brooklyn, he would have said, "Fuhgeddaboudit."

                US Dead in Iraq = 1586
                WMD Found = 0 (And that's final!)

                by Glenn in NYC on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:45:07 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Very nice summing up. (none)
                Yet I am entranced by The Thunder poem (psalm?) from the Nag Hammadi manuscripts. It's the one I really (really) dig.
                •  Yes, very cool (4.00)
                  Though, like most things in the Nag Hammadi manuscripts, it's been listed as Gnostic, I'm not sure that applies.  To me this seems like echos of "Asherah" or whatever name you think once belonged to Yahweh's carefully eradicated female companion (mother, sister, wife).

                  I'm always pulled back to Psalm 82.  Most translations make it seem pretty tame.

                  God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.  

                  How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked? Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy. Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked.

                  They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness: all the foundations of the earth are out of course.

                  I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.  But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.

                  Even in this watered down version, you can see that this Psalm is a survivor when a time when the Israelites thought of Yahweh is their god, but not the only god.  Digging at the original makes this even more clear:

                  Yahweh takes his place in the council of El to pass judgement on the gods.

                  "How long will you be unjust?" he asks.  "How long will you help those who do wrong?  You should defend orphans and the poor.  You should help the sick and needy."

                  "Help the poor and needy instead of the evil," said Yahweh.  But the other gods don't know what he means.  They're lost in their own darkness, and everything is out of alignment.

                  "I used to call you gods," said Yahweh.  "You are all the children of El, the high god.  But you're not gods.  You're going to die like men."

                  Now, you want to talk about transitional forms in evolution?  To me, this is the archaeopteryx of monotheism, the very point where other gods are being dismissed, not just from the personal pantheon, but from divinity.

                  I love this stuff.


                  TwoTaboos -- Politics and Religion.

                  by Mark Sumner on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:15:04 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  We notice as we read through those (none)
                    Prophets et tutti quanti enormous evolution in the shape, form, persona and connotation of The Big Guy, Popeye, there.

                    In fact I think what happened is that those tribes were still in the stone age (Mt Sinai) when waves of invaders brought them defeat, slavery - and writing, and that an unusual opportunity to record beliefs extinguished elsewhere occurred. The words of many gods.

                  •  whose translation (none)
                    is the quote in that second box?
                    •  That would be me (none)
                      With Hebrew scriptures and dictionary in one hand,  Young's Literal Translation in the other, and a little dash of "readability" in the third hand.

                      Want to know how the literal text reads without the coating of what-the-heckness?

                      Yahweh did stand in the company of El.  In the midst Yahweh does judge. Till when do you judge perversely? And the face of the evil lift up?  Judge the weak and fatherless you, the afflicted and the poor declare righteous. Let the weak and needy escape.  From the hand of the evil send them.

                      They knew not, nor do they understand.  In darkness they walk habitually.  Moved are all the foundations of earth.

                      I have said, gods you, sons of El -- all of you, but as man you die.  As one of the heads you fall.

                      And that, by El, is from the translated version.  Try to do the Hebrew straight, and it reads more like double acrostics.


                      TwoTaboos -- Politics and Religion.

                      by Mark Sumner on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:50:50 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  yours is better! (none)
                        in fact, it's very good
                        thanks
                      •  The Yoda version.... (none)
                        Why is it that I hear Yoda saying these words in my head when I read it?


                        They knew not, nor do they understand.  In darkness they walk habitually.  Moved are all the foundations of earth.

                        I have said, gods you, sons of El -- all of you, but as man you die.  As one of the heads you fall.

                        Picture a little wizened Muppet saying that, with Fozzie Bear's voice. Puts it all into perspective, it does.

                        Welcome to Planet Baka. Enjoy your stay. Spread the meme: Borrow-and-Binge Republicans.

                        by MamasGun on Tue May 03, 2005 at 04:14:37 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

              •  Actually, it should be "Harold," imho (none)
                Our Father, who art in heaven, Harold be thy name"
      •  If it is raining sports cars, (none)
        I recommend a very strong umbrella.

        Massachusetts: 1st in Baseball, 1st in Footbal, 47th in Support for Public Higher Education

        by mcinma on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:43:31 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "Global Darwinist Mason/ (none)
        Illuminati Conspiricy"

        Now, now, now, someone's been reading Pastor John's spittle flying ravings again.  That can cause blindness and dain brammage you know.  

        I agree that we should further study the Caribbean Explosion, and I intend to begin my thesis research with several pina coladas, a daiquiri or three, some margaritas, and a case or two of Corona extra with a crate of limes.  I may even fire up a fine Cuban cheroot.  Do you think Tom Delay could cop me some?  My Historical Geo and Invert Paleo Professor, Tom Grasso, would approve.

        You put de lime in de coconut and drink it all up...

        Oh Luuuuuuucccccccyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!

        9/11 was the Neocon's Reichstag fire.

        by Bulldawg on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:13:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "Global Darwinist Mason (none)
        /Illuminati Conspiricy"

        Now, now, now, someone's been reading Pastor John's spittle flying rants!!!  That can cause blindness and dain brammage you know.  

        I personally want to join in the $5m research grant mentioned above to study the Caribbean Explosion.  I think I'll start my thesis research with some pina colladas, a couple of daiquiris, and a case or two of Corona Extra with a case of limes. My Historical Geo and Invert Paleo Prof. Tom Grasso, would probably like "in" to. (You know how Geologists are.)  

        And then I'd like to fire up a fine Cuban.  I wonder if Delay can cop me some?

        Oh Luuuuuuuuuccccccccyyyyyyyyyyyyy!  Jew got some 'splainin' to do!!!!!  

        9/11 was the Neocon's Reichstag fire.

        by Bulldawg on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:24:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  wo-wo-wo-woah (none)
      hold it right there.  do you think you can procure more funding and coeds?  i could really stand to be jahmming in jamaica mahn.

      "It says in the Bible that the morning-after pill is wrong. I believe the passage is Pharmaceuticals 3:16." -Adrian Roy, Systems Analyst

      by mediaprisoner on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:40:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  for many years i too have been fascinated by (none)
    the carrob bean explosion.  i'm not saying that it answers all of huxley's questions about how darwin could state that human beings evolved from monkeys who had previously willed themselves to evolve from the more primitive creatures on display in the burgess shale formations found in the galopagos islands.  nor does it explain how dinasaurs evolved into birds millions of years before the competitive pressures applied by colonel harlan saunders existed.  (kentucky fried archeopterix? don't make me laugh!)

    or was that lamark?

    anyway, its nice that dr. gould should be recalled by the public.  after all, punctuated equalibrium may only be a theory, but it does tend to prove that god didn't make the little green apples after all, and that's something, even if its nothing.  

    and good luck with your new awards show (hope you can get ed mcmahon or pat sajac to emcee it!)

    for further inflamation please don't go to my blog cuz i don't have one

    by 2nd balcony on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:48:45 AM PDT

  •  I Like My Humor Dry, Thank You (none)
    Yes, these are good ones in the sitcom genre. But, I don't know, call me part of the cultural elite or whatever, but I like my humor dry.  No, actually, I'm a gall durn pluralist and I lahks all kahnds of humour.  

    Anyways, my favorite has got to be--because it's so damn ubiquitous, "Evolution is a theory, not a fact."
    I mean, it's hysterical!  It's like saying, "Gravity is a theory, not a fact."  And they way they deliver it!  The sheer pomposity!  Dry humor with absurdist delivery, nothing like it!

  •  What's with (4.00)
    the technique of capitalizing the last word in a SENTENCE?  Does that somehow make your argument STRONGER?  Or is it just bad words like TRUTH and LOGIC that get the capslock treatment?

    Here's the best argument for creationism: How can you explain that these people control the most powerful nation on the planet without the hand of a divine being?

  •  Actually, No. 3 (4.00)
    is a valid philosophical question. It was posed, among others, by Lucretius in Book I of his De rerum natura ("On the nature of things"):

    Principium cuius hinc nobis exordia sumet,
    nullam rem e nihilo gigni divinitus umquam.              
    quippe ita formido mortalis continet omnis,
    quod multa in terris fieri caeloque tuentur,
    quorum operum causas nulla ratione videre
    possunt ac fieri divino numine rentur.

    Let us take this as our first principle:
    nothing ever came to be from nothing by divine action.
    For all the many things that can be seen to exist
    on the earth and in the heavens contain mortal seeds,
    Thus there is no reason to believe
    they could arise for no reason or come to being
    Through any divine action.

    (My rough translation from the Latin; I've got a better one at home, but I'm doing this one on the fly.)

    Lucretius later gives his reasons for thinking that way:

    Nam si de nihilo fierent, ex omnibus rebus
    omne genus nasci posset, nil semine egeret.
    e mare primum homines, e terra posset oriri
    squamigerum genus et volucres erumpere caelo;
    armenta atque aliae pecudes, genus omne ferarum,
    incerto partu culta ac deserta tenerent.
    nec fructus idem arboribus constare solerent,              
    sed mutarentur, ferre omnes omnia possent.

    For if they could come from nothing,
    Everything could come from anything, needing no seeds.
    First of all, men could arise from the sea, or
    scale-bearing creatures from the earth,
    and birds erupt from the sky;
    Cattle and herd animals, all kinds of beasts,
    Would suffer uncertain births and haunt the wastelands.
    Nor would the trees give their accustomed fruits,
    but rather be changed, and all things could bear all things.

    •  I think (4.00)
      the commentator was trying to say something we see more often which is "Tell me how something came from nothing" as opposed to "how nothing came from nothing". I mean, while something coming from nothing is an interesting Q in both Quantum Physics re virtual particles, or in philosophy, I don't find the idea of nothing producing nothing all that mysterious ;)
      •  dr. william preston md, phd, bmf, obe &5th b (none)
        spoke to these very concerns c. 1970.

        for further inflamation please don't go to my blog cuz i don't have one

        by 2nd balcony on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:17:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  dr. william preston md, phd, bmf, obe &5th b (none)
        spoke to these very concerns c. 1970.

        for further inflamation please don't go to my blog cuz i don't have one

        by 2nd balcony on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:19:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Philosophically... (4.00)

        ... There's quite a lot of kinds of nothing. Not-being, for example, caused a great deal of unrest for ancient Greeks. They did not see, philosophically, how something could be and then not-be, or how something could not-be and then be. They got it wrong, of course, but it was still interesting fumbling around with the idea of "you need stuff to make other stuff" or "matter and energy are conserved". Then they poked around some more and dreamed up the idea of the void, which was being that simply happened to be empty right now, but served as a convenient container for other things that weren't empty.

        I'm of the firm opinion that everyone - or every scientist, at least - should study ancient philosophy, even if just to see the forms ideas we take for granted took a couple thousand years ago when some sun-baked old Greek guy named Thales first innocently asked, without any idea where this would go, "What is it that makes stuff happen?"

        Monsters think it's all right to be a monster, after all. - Hitherby Dragons

        by RHunter on Tue May 03, 2005 at 04:58:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Or, in the words of Billy Preston (none)
      Nothing from Nothing Leaves Nothing...

      Massachusetts: 1st in Baseball, 1st in Footbal, 47th in Support for Public Higher Education

      by mcinma on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:12:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Or in the words of Oscar Hammerstein... (4.00)
        "Nothing comes from nothing
        Nothing ever could
        So somewhere in my youth or childhood
        I must have done something good."

        Rage, rage, against the lying of the Right.

        by Maryscott OConnor on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:15:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Bonding with an SOM Fan (none)

          While reading this thread, I too heard Julie Andrews voice.

          Here's a 4 for knowing the lyrics to my favorite song from SOM!

          Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds - Albert Einstein

          by Dillie Taunt on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:31:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Which, in fact... (none)
            was written for the movie.

            Not in the original musical -- many people think it's the worst thing about the movie.

            Me, I think the worst thing about the movie is the fact that they cut the Baroness's songs.

            (I played the Baroness on stage, and let me tell you, that movie bitch couldn't hold a candle to me.)

            Rage, rage, against the lying of the Right.

            by Maryscott OConnor on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:42:49 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Beware: Hills are alive!!!! (none)

          "The hills are alive with the SOUND OF MUSIC
          With songs they have sung for a thousand years
          The hills fill my heart with the sound of music
          My heart wants to sing every song it hears"

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." - FDR

          by Vitarai on Tue May 03, 2005 at 04:09:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  agreed (none)
      something coming from nothing is probably the only half-decent argument they have.

      Among politicians the esteem of religion is profitable; the principles of it are troublesome. - Benjamin Whichcote

      by hazydan on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:22:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And don't forget (none)
      William de Preston:

      "Nothin' from nothin' leaves nothin'"

      Thus endeth the lesson.

      (Amen)

      9/11 was the Neocon's Reichstag fire.

      by Bulldawg on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:33:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Damn, I just refreshed (none)
        and saw that EVERYONE else made the same joke before me.  >sigh<

        9/11 was the Neocon's Reichstag fire.

        by Bulldawg on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:40:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  its ok (none)
          there's still funky worm ("do we get paid for this?")

          which brings us back to the original question (as originally enunciated by dr. james brabender of black earth wi. (by way of baltimore and seattle) "if you're going to tell me that we could go from a funky worm to george w. bush in only five million milenia without the assistance of a devine and supremely snarky being, well...i just don't buy it."

          and that's from a real scientist.

          for further inflamation please don't go to my blog cuz i don't have one

          by 2nd balcony on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:10:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  And by Aristotle in the Metaphysics (none)
      where he finally had to postulate the original existence of a 'prime-mover-unmoved' after he'd worked his way back to the creation of the cosmos.  You can tell that Aristotle was frankly embarrassed by the idea, even more so than by his own dull prose.  I'll take Lucretius any day (I say that as a world authority on dull prose).
  •  Great for chuckles or groans (2.50)
    but the ill-informed comments heard at the church potluck neither add nor take away from the discussion.  I also ignore ill-informed comments from evolutionists.  People use such comments to laugh at each other and shut down discussion.  As long as evolution plays free with ever-fluctuating definitions in order to support questionable conclusions, there will be plenty of room for discussing evolution's shortcomings. The problem of even defining speciation comes to mind.
    •  Evolution (4.00)
      os often used interchangebly with common descent, mechanisms of change, and even at times abiogenesis, the Big Bang, or an ideology. Baiclaly what most creationists refer to when they object to 'evolution' is common descent. Common descent is so storng it's now considered an inferred fact, much like Continental Drift is an inferrred fact and Plate tectonics the  theoretical mechanism which explain how continents move. We can see that continents do move, we can measure very small rates of movement in our may fly lives. We can infer much greater movement in the past.
      Like wise can see that species change in our lifetimes, we can infer much greater change in the past.
      But the evidence for common descent of say humans and chimps is so powerful that it is considered a fact, despite any disagreements over how, where, or when, that common ancestor lived and events leading up to the divergence of human ancestors from chimp ancestors. We can prove this in the legal sense using the same techniques which are accepted in paternity courts and criminal cases every day. Comparison of mitochondrial and nuclear genetic material (Similar research is now being done on other endosymbiotic organelles, such as hydrosomes).
      It's a fairly common tactic for those who find evolution distastful to attack theoretical mechanisms of change, and then announce or imply they have refuted common descent. This is an invalid claim. The evidnece for common descent is independant of the evidence for mechanisms of change. Natural Selection, the definition of species, the definition of speciation, all could be dead wrong, and the evidence for common descent would remain unaltered.
      •  asdf (none)
        I started reading your comment and then discovered I had not ingested enough caffeine yet today.

        "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

        by catnip on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:24:40 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I read your earlier essay on common descent. (none)
        I usually avoid Talk Origins except to find out what apologists are saying. I have found Talk Origins to be especially guilty of adjusting definitions to suit the purpose at hand.  My family is in the middle of a major move right now, but maybe after we settle in, I write a piece on common descent.

        While conceding most of your points, for right now I will just address the place of "inference."  No matter how compelling an inference, it may or may not be a fact.  An inference may or may not be an accurate explanation of the facts.  A new fact may render a previously accepted inference invalid at any time.

        I give my students a set of facts from which they infer an explanation.  Like a murder mystery, they are sure they have found the most compelling solution of inference.  I probe a little more, and they wonder if I haven't cheated by keeping a few facts to myself.  No, I have given them all the known facts, but where might they look for additional facts?  Are the facts they have circumstantial or not?  

        When I express skepticism to creationists, they brand me an evolutionists.  When I express skepticism to evolutionists, they brand me a creationist or "a danger to humanity."  I have no loyalty to either side, and I dislike the idea of sides.

        •  Well (none)
          in my book an inference can anything from a fact or just a plausible dicey assumption. But an inferred fact is not merely an inference, it's an inferred fact. For example I infer as a fact you have a liver. I've never seen it, but I'm confident enough of the inference I'd call it a fact.
          We can diretly test for relatedness between you and I. We could for example determine using genetic testing if you and I are long lost siblings, separated at birth. We would not need to know the details to determine this factually. You and I wuold not need to know the name of our common ancestor, or how we got separated, for us to determine as a fact, or a high robability at least, that we are siblings. We can do the same between humans and other species.
          •  Well (none)
            Definitions are definitions are definitions, not really an "in my book" thing.  A good example is the definition of inference.  Tecnically speaking, there is no such thing as an inferred fact.  Though you have not directly observed my liver, there is plenty of circumstancial reason to infer that I have one with a high degree of confidence.  Though we have not directly observed continental drift of the magnitude we believe happened, we extrapolate observed rates and hope with a lesser degree of confidence than the liver example that we are right.

            When students defend their master's thesis or doctoral dissertations, they are commonly asked about their definitions.  A definition that won't hold still may render its associated hypothesis unfalsifiable.

        •  Nothing Wrong With That... (none)

          Most evolutionists readily accept that their theories and inferences could be wrong. In fact, the academic ones generally welcome it, because it means more grant money for them. The problem is that it's incredibly difficult to find evidence against modern evolutionary theory - there simply isn't any. It's turned out that evolution is one of those foundational building block theories. While it looks complicated, it's really absurdly simple, and a huge number of other things depend on it.

          On the other hand, Creationists generally refuse to admit that their pet mythology could be in any way incorrect. Convenient for them, as it doesn't actually produce any falsifiable predictions and, thus, are not science.

          Monsters think it's all right to be a monster, after all. - Hitherby Dragons

          by RHunter on Tue May 03, 2005 at 05:06:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I thought (none)
        the common fallacy creationists subscribe to about evolutionary theory was "Men are descended from apes" as opposed to correctly understanding common descent, and that was the concept that really bothered them?
        •  The concept that really bothers them (none)
          is that man evolved at all rather than being created human.

          All of life is an unanswered question, but let's still believe in the dignity and importance of the questions. - Tennessee Williams

          by Leslie in CA on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:24:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Who cares what you think? (4.00)

      The whole point of science is understanding, i.e. perfecting a theory i.e. fitting newly discovered facts into the theory.

      Calling this "ever-fluctuating" reveals that you don't even know what science is, therefore making you totally unsuited to criticize it at all.

      People like you are a danger to humanity.

      •  AND he killed my buzz. (4.00)
        This was a funny fcuking thread until that post.
      •  Definitions are more than modifications (none)
        Speciation is a great example.  It is not that the definition has progressed through modification.  The problem is that the definition pivots, depending on the purpose at hand.  Sometimes the definition involves reproductive isolation, but when that proves inadequate to defend the cause as in the case of pesticide-resistant cockroaches, it is amended to mean nothing more than genetic difference.  The biologists at my university frankly admit there is no agreed-on definition for speciation.  They say they have not even worked out a definition for species.  The concern is that speciation, as currently fluctuating, may not testable and thus not falsifiable
        •  Not really a problem? (none)
          No matter which definition is used of "species", speciation is observed. The fact that there is no one definition of "speciation" isn't really all that important, and given the fact that evolution explains, and allows for, pretty much continuous variation, and "species" are merely artificial imposed categories for human convenience, its not a big deal.

          Actually, IMO, the absence of clear species boundaries and the inability to clearly delineate species is arguably a bigger problem for Creationism, which posits that God created species separately and rather strongly implies that species ought to have crisp, well-defined boundaries, unless God is just sloppy. Of course, here, Creationists will fudge and say "well, God wanted it that way", but that doesn't explain anything.

          •  Creationism does imply crisp boundaries, and (none)
            could be a problem for them.  Are species really artificially imposed by humans?  At what point are differences significant enough?  Definitions are the foundation of testable hypotheses, and the more rigorous the definition, the more confidence we can have in the empirical conclusions.
        •  Well if (none)
          you have a diploid sepcies, and you have descendants at some point form that spcies who cannot interbreed with the original parent stocl, then by most definitions-no matter how loose-that would certainly qualify as speciation. And that has been observed to happen, mostly with plants undergoing polyploidy. We can also see what appears to be speciation in prgress, again even if you definiiton is fairly loose. For exmaple Polar Bears and brown bears can interebreeed, but they don't do so in the wild, to many difference in mating cues. Polar bears diverged from brown bears less than a million years ago. Tigers and lions can interbreed, but the offspring sometimes-not always-sterile. Lions and tigers diverged longer ago in phylogenetic terms. Horses and donkeys can produces mules which are almost always sterile, every now and then, very rarely they produce a fertile offspring. Horses and donkeys are right on the edge we might say of speciating.
          In addition there are such things as ring species, where A can breed with B, abd B with C .... to Z, but Z cannot breed with A.  There are also phyiscal barriers which could be called a ring species. Great Danes cannot breed directly with Chiuhahas. The male Chi can't impregnate the female Dane with articificial insemination, the female Chi can't even carry hybrid Dane pups to term. Take out the intermediate sizes, and thse animals could be called separate species. What we do know though is that species can change over time. We've observed this, we can even make it happen in domestication. We can confirm as an inferred fact that species are related, for example humans and chimps, or humans and dogs, or humans and rats, using precise genetic methodologies which are accepted in criminal and paternity courts everyday. So we know common descent is an inferred fact, we know species can change, we know selection can greatly affect how they change, and we know species can become more and more reproductively isolated through a variety of emans some of which I'[ve discussed until they can no longer meaningful produce fertile offspring. <shrug> The Modern Synthesis is therefore highly plausible as a broad mechanism to explain common descent. If another theoretical mechanism which can explain common descent is brought to light, it will be adopted as well. Bear in mind, creationists don't reject the theoretical mchanisms of change, they reject the inferred fact of common descent itself, and often they reject all of natural science icluding geology, astronomy, and physics.
          •  sorry for the typoes (none)
            male chi can impregnate female dane but only with AI. (I have a horrid case of spyware I picked up from someone's Blog in this very community. It'ssssaulting me with pop-ups that I can't seem to get rid off despite multiple apps of various proggies. I've had several attacks just since I started writing this ... I know who the offender is and I know what Blog it was. Warning: Better fix that fucking shit pronto pal, I don't care how much they're paying you, or I'll say who you are and take action to protect everyone else )
          •  Please read the links (none)
            in my original comment. I deal with pre-zygotic and post-zygotic barriers there. Many people say speciation is occurring, or has occurred, but biologists have rejected nearly all proposed cases as separate species in the taxonomy for one reason or another.  The cases just don't stand up to scrutiny.

            To say that evolution is a fact, but we just don't know "how, where, or when," might be construed as not very different fron creationism, in that creationists cannot explain much either.  

            •  I'll run that (4.00)
              by several evolutionary research biologists and see what they have to say.

              To say that evolution is a fact, but we just don't know "how, where, or when," might be construed as not very different from creationism, in that creationists cannot explain much either.  

              Natural Selection makes testable predictions as does common descent. Classic Natural Selection is built on a series of testable statements

              1. Species often reproduce geometrically until they encounter the carrying capacity of the biome producing competition for resources
              2. There is variability in the population.
              3. At least part of that variability is heritable
              4. Those traits which confer a positive, nonrandom differential will be selected for
              5. The trait will become widespread in the population over time

              Natural Selection is now incorporated into the Modern Synthesis.

              Point is, those are all testable statements. They're either true or false and can be observed and tested directly by experiment. They happen to be valid.

              The inference is that over time, morphological change will build up and species will change. Isolated populations might thus diverge. If so, then we would expect to observe evidence for common descent between now diverse taxa which are no longer interfertile and may exhibit large morphological differences between one another.

              We observe: 1) Biostratification of the fossil record 2) Transitional fossils 3) Molecular analysis and comparison of mt and nuclear DNA 4) Vestigial structures 5) Observed speciation 6) Comparative anatomy/physiology/homology

              Common descent is on rock solid footing.

              Creationism has nothing even remotely approaching that kind of testability as far as I know. If you disagree, what is the scientifically testable theory of creationism; what testable predictions does it make; what kind of evidence would in principle falsify it; how does the scientifically testable theory of creationism explain the aforementioned evidence for common descent and Natural Selection?

              If you can provide that, I'll agree that creationism and natural are not very different. If you cannot, I'll expect you to concede that they're very different indeed. Fair enough?

              •  I have never held that creationism is science. (none)
                But I am more than willing to expect evolutionists to employ rigorous definitions. Evolutionists tend to fall back on weak definitions when in a quandary. If speciation cannot hold up under scrutiny (as it has apparently failed the tests of taxonomy), then another explanation will have to be found for all the other so-called collaborative evidence.  If that explanation is to be science, it won't be creationism.  
                •  That's odd though AZ ... (none)
                  Bill Dembski and Micheal Behe, both legitimate Ph D's in hard science, claimed there was a scientific theory of Intelligent Design in the context of evolutionary biology in an Op-ed in the New York Times. So I'd like to know, what the heck is it? Are you saying they were lying in a national newspaper?

                  On speciation, we have observed parent stock producing offspring which are not interfertile with the parent. I'm wide open to any term you wish to employ, provided it is restricted in this discussion to refer only to the above. Stemming? Budding? Candy Bar? Make up any word you wish and we'll use it.

                  My offer stands in the spirit of goodwill and openminedness: You said To say that evolution is a fact, but we just don't know "how, where, or when," might be construed as not very different from creationism, in that creationists cannot explain much either.

                  If you can't provide the scientific theory of creationism, I expect you to concede that evolutionary biology and creationisn are very different, OK?

                  •  Nope. Read Karl Popper. (none)
                    •  I appreciate you (none)
                      taking the time to comment on my post so don't get the idea I'm antagonistic or anything. Dissent is welcome and it's the lifeblood of science imo.

                      Having said that, I don't understand how you can maintain that Natural Selection or common descent doesn't explain anything better than creationism. Creationism, unless someone can provide a scientifically testable theory which explains and unites the observed evidence under an explanatory framework as least partly as well as evolutionary biology, explains nothing. OTOH natural selection does offer an explanation for how species might change over time and diverge, it's built on valid testable statements, and it explains the huge consensus of data confirming common descent. That's what a scientific theory is, an explanation. So, to say that evolutionary biology doesn't explain something any better than a claim that explains nothing at all doesn't make any sense to me.

                      •  I actually got the idea (none)
                        from you.
                        But the evidence for common descent of say humans and chimps is so powerful that it is considered a fact, despite any disagreements over how, where, or when, that common ancestor lived and events leading up to the divergence of human ancestors from chimp ancestors

                        I recently read a 1000-page recent college biology text that was chock full of Order-to-Species common descent diagrams.  When you synthesize the diagrams, you find the book was making a much, much wider claim than the one you made in the above quote (actually Kingdom to Species). I am probably conflating both ideas.

                        •  Ahh I understandWell think about that (none)
                          But the evidence for common descent of say humans and chimps is so powerful that it is considered a fact, despite any disagreements over how, where, or when, that common ancestor lived and events leading up to the divergence of human ancestors from chimp ancestors

                          I wasn't talking about evolutionary biologists, I was talking about creationists disagreeing and I was being subtle ... nice. Which is, as Pistol will tell you further down the page, something I should be doing more of. Clarification, "We" meaning scientists/paleonathropologist do have an idea of how, Natural Selection and the Modern Synthesis, we have an idea of when, 5-7 million years ago, and we have an idea of where, Central-East Africa. We have a decent series of transitional hominids which supports all that, and we have genetic analysis which supoprts it as well. Despite creationist who disagree with the above, and some much more minor points which are still unclear among those who study human origins, the evidence for common descent is stand alone evidence. That's what i was trying to say there, sorry if it was poorly worded.

                          I'll happily give you the benefit of the doubt if you state that was the original source of your misunderstanding.

        •  What's Fuzzy About That? (none)

          Speciation - creation of a new species through evolution. Generally a new population that cannot produce fertile offspring with an existing population, but not always, as genetics is Really Bloody Weird. And it's no surprise that evolutionary processes do not conform to a clean definition of species, as the definition of species is an externally-speified constraint that attempts to keep things reasonable.

          An excellent example of how and why this occurs is found by examining genetic programming. In canonical GP, there is no concept of species. Any individual may be "bred" with any other individual, and non-viable" offspring are simply those whose fitness (which we can measure semi-precisely) is (significantly) worse than their parents. One measure that attempts to correct this is the introduction of a "speciation threshold", which attempts to track whether two individuals are "similar enough" to be the "same species" and, thus, likely to have a productive crossover.

          It's also totally and completely arbitrary. Just like real-world definitions of "species".

          Speciation is not particularly relevant to natural selection. It's simply an easy metric that we have available for gauging the effects of mutation and reproduction, and of inter-generational adaptation to environmental factors. Like any metric applied to such a large and chaotic system, however, it is imperfect and must be adjusted to suit circumstances.

          Monsters think it's all right to be a monster, after all. - Hitherby Dragons

          by RHunter on Tue May 03, 2005 at 05:13:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  But.... but.. I believe in intelligent design. (4.00)
    And I can prove it!

    Ok, guys try this experiment.
    Relax,  totally relax.
    Rest your arm.  Put it in it's most relaxed position.
    Now rest your hand.  Put IT in it's most relaxed position.

    Now, get your hand OFF your dick.

    Are opposing thumbs great or WHAT?!?

    Now that's intelligent design.
    Dumb design would have made your arms much shorter.

    God IS NOT a special interest group, Dammit!

    by God loves goats on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:12:43 AM PDT

  •  One I had thrown atme way back... (none)
    "Evolution violates the second law of HYDRODYNAMICS"
    •  The Laws of Hydrodynamics (4.00)
      Rule 1: Every body into the pool!

      Rule 2: Bodies at rest float, unless they're witches.

      Rule 3: Don't pee in the pool.

      Rule 4: Hot tub should be set to 104 degrees F.

      Rule 5: A tub of hot water will cool below body temperature unless you keep the heater running.

      Rule 6: Gas and liquid should not mix... in the swimming pool.  There are plenty of bubbles at the jets.

      Rule 7: Not all bodies are created equal.  That's why there's a mature swimsuit with that little skirt attached.

      Rule 8: Supervise children.

      Rule 9: No diving in shallow end of gene pool.

      Rule 10: For every stupid creationist idea, there is an equal and opposite parody of that idea.

      Chaos, fear, dread. My work here is done.

      by madhaus on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:25:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  question from the back of the room (none)
    If, according to Pat Robertson, God(tm) doesn't cause tsunamis, why does God(tm) get the credit for the big flood (see "Noah" in The Bible)? I am obviously a prisoner of LOGIC.

    P.S. I didn't know that Noah caused seashells to be mountains. Learn something new every day!

    "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

    by catnip on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:18:52 AM PDT

    •  Robertson (4.00)
      is quite frankly a lying, hypocritical, sack of shit.

      From Ed Brayton's Blog  Robertson /5/1/05 This Week With GS: "Um...I don't think he reverses the laws of nature, uh, the reasons for that tsunami was the shifting of tectonic plates in the Indian Ocean. I don't think he changes the magma in volcanoes and I don't think he changes the wind currents that bring about hurricanes. Uh, so I don't attribute that to God or his lack or otherwise. But in terms of human affairs, I do think he answers prayer. And I think there have been literally millions of people praying for a change in the Supreme Court. The people of faith in this country feel they're a tyranny, uh,

      Wow. Now let's hit the rewind button back to September 17, 2003 when Robertson prayed on the 700 Club for God to change the wind currents and move a hurricane away from Virginia Beach:

      Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson today prayed on his Christian Broadcasting Network, based here, that Hurricane Isabel would turn from the coast. He asked God to put a "wall of protection'' around Virginia Beach and the East Coast.

      "In the name of Jesus, we reach out our hand in faith and we command that storm to cease its forward motion to the north and to turn and to go out into the sea,'' Robertson prayed on ``The 700 Club'' program.

      And this was not the first time he had done so. In 1985, he claimed to have used prayer to turn away Hurricane Gloria (which of course continued up the coast and slammed into Long Island, causing more than a billion dollars in damage) and in 1995 he claimed to have prayed away Hurricane Felix (which instead turned north and killed 8 people when it slammed into New Jersey). And remember that in the past, Robertson has claimed innumerable times that God sends natural disasters as punishment for sin. In responding to Disney World's "gay day" in 1998, Robertson warned: "We're not in any way, shape or form hating anybody," said Robertson. "This is not a message of hate; this is a message of redemption. But if [pause] a condition like this will bring about the destruction of your nation. It'll bring about terrorist bombs; it'll bring earthquakes, tornadoes and possibly a meteor, it isn't necessarily something we ought to open our arms to.

      "And I would warn Orlando that you're right in the way of some serious hurricanes," Robertson continued, "and I don't think I'd be waving those flags in God's face if I were you."

      •  why does Robertson hate New Jersey? n/t (none)

        "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

        by catnip on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:26:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Robertson and hurricanes (none)
        Well, it seems God hates NASA a lot more than Disneyworld.  Florida received an unprecedented four hurricanes this year, and two of them slammed into Kennedy Space Center.

        Robertson would also claim the prayerific wall of protection worked exactly as he claimed.  After all both New York and New Jersey are blue states and deserve the pain.  If pushed into a corner, Robertson could also explain red Florida's four hurricanes by admitting the election tallies were given some prayerful adjustment by God's agents in the GOP.

        But don't forget that Hurricane Gloria (1985) did hit red North Carolina even if it spared Virginia Beach.  And then it went on to smack into Long Island, NY.

        Let's not forget that Hurricane Charlie ignored the prayer wall and hit the entire east coast in 2004.

        Chaos, fear, dread. My work here is done.

        by madhaus on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:38:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "Robertson (none)
        is quite frankly a lying, hypocritical, sack of shit."

        What was your first clue?

        9/11 was the Neocon's Reichstag fire.

        by Bulldawg on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:42:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Did you call Pat Robertson ... (none)
        "a lying, hypocritical, sack of shit?"

        You are being way too nice.

        America: It's a good IDEA for a country ...

        by Tony Seybert on Tue May 03, 2005 at 12:44:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  About that hurricane (none)
        It's kind of interesting.  I live between Richmond and Charlottesville and the hurricane passed directly over my house.  Most the people around us lost power for days (even people a few doors down) and trees were knocked down and houses damaged.

        My wife and I had only been married a month after shacking up for three years.  We didn't invite god to the wedding (her parents did say a prayer - since I was the only one facing back, I was the only one who saw the lightning strikes during the prayer).  Yet somehow, God saw fit to preserve the house and electricity of us evil, amoral, atheists.

        The wonders never cease.  Maybe he was thanking us for not asking for too much.

        "The room was dark as an honest politician's prospects." -- Dashiell Hammett

        by being released on Tue May 03, 2005 at 02:49:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  My favorite creationist (none)
    volunteers at the Carnegie Museum's Paleolab with me.  She's very into archaeology and paleontology.  It was, for me, a fun and amusing day when she asked me, "What do think about that evolution stuff anyway?" and also said, "I just don't understand how an animal can decide to become another animal!"  Well, she finally called over one of the paleontologists to explain it to her.  He was a bit daunted by the task.  I believe he said, "You want me to explain a topic about which shelves of books have been written in under five minutes?"  Poor guy.  She did eventually promise to check out a book in the library about it, so there's hope.
    •  learning -anything- takes time (none)
      that's their failing... they don't even have the attention span (they would simply claim "the -time,- i just don't have -the time!!-") to take in the day's news.

      there's been a few good pbs series that might be on vid at the local library. but she has to start with an open mind to get anywhere.

  •  Objective: Christian Ministries (4.00)
    Parody is almost unnecessary given the self-parody of these folks, but there's also some great actual parodies of creationism, courtesy of Objective: Christian Ministries, including Project Pterosaur and this fascinating article on kangaroos of the ancient Middle East.

    "Never underestimate the power of very stupid people in large groups." -- John Kenneth Galbraith

    by GreenSooner on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:29:25 AM PDT

  •  DS-great laugh of the day. (none)
    I have to say- I frequently come into contact with creationists, and so far the discussions have been polite, but they are resolute.  I am certain that there is a disconnect between what science has to say, that is the mechanism, from the implications.  Many are college graduates, that simply shut off their biology class somehow, and I have also heard among the more open-minded is that its not evolution per se they deny, only HUMAN evolution.  

    The problem as I see it is an indication that for some, science is just too hard to learn, so the bible becomes an easy way to explain the natural world.  I would venture that that is how myths got started to begin with.  The Christian science textbooks I have seen are simple, easily read and understood, and concepts are glossed over, while terms and definitions are emphasized.

    When ancient cities suffered hardship, it was always due to corruption, or morals, such as the tower of Babel (God's judgement on arrogance, rather than an earthquake)Sodom and Gomorrah, due to the acceptance of various "perversions", homosexuality among them.  (Never mind that there are oil fields in the area that could have caught fire and devastated the cities, it was God).

    Today we have Reverand Fallwell creating similar myths, that AIDS is a plague from God, in judgement of sinners, and the World Trade Centers were a judgement on New Yorkers somehow.  

    It is not a failure of society, education systems, scientists or administrators that for a large number of people, the bible explains it all.  It is simply, a human trait to seek simple explanations. It explains the state of our country, and others.   If you took away the bible, these same people would say aliens brought us here.  

    Knowledge, understanding, and the ability to comprehend (not talking about pure knowledge, or education, I mean the implications of comprehension)are at the core of the challenge.

    How do you introduce a topic within a framework so people can understand something, accept it, and not compromise their basis of existence, or the content?

    I think that is the challenge that we face.  If I was to go to a tribe in the Amazon, or likewise to  the Inuit and say , "hey I have something to teach you", would it not carry the same implications for their established ideas about life, the role of their existence in the universe? Of course they would say thats ridiculous, the sun created us (or some other explanation)!  And we would spend years trying to change their views. I think it is easy to get frustrated, throw your hands up, and get baited into the discussion.

    However, a simple idea, that evolution is the mechanism, (if you choose to believe) by which God created life.  Offers a stepping stone, without compromising the theory or the faith.

    If anything believers are challenged, not on their faith, but on the complex nature of God.

    •  Gven (none)
      How do you introduce a topic within a framework so people can understand something, accept it, and not compromise their basis of existence, or the content?
      If you're dealing with a theist whp percieves a conflict between science/evo and his faith, it's a waste of time until you can draw that out of him, and make sure he accepts that his deity could have used evo. Othwerwise you're wasting your time trying to use science and reason to address and emotional argument. Most theosts won't come out an admit it. Inf act some will never admit it either pretending or truly deluded that theirr ationale is built on legit scientific issues rather than emotional attachment and fear. But some will, and once you get past that you have a chance. I'll put up a story of a freind of mine who 'recovered' from creationism tomorrow, and you'll see that it wasn't really a scientific struggle, it was an emotional one.
    •  Specialness (4.00)
      When people reject evolution in general...or especially human evolution in particular, it's more a symptom of their desire or need for humans or themselves to be "special" in some way. For them, believing that there is no reason for their existence beyond chance and environmental pressure, theyfeel that life isn't worth living. So, it's not only an emotional attachment, its also a deeply held  psychological attachment.
      •  true (none)
        and that's kind of odd. I mean obviously we are pretty damn special in terms of awareness and technical intelligence-allspecies have their areas of skill. We happen to be very, very, conscious and technically smart(All species who are having an online discussion across continents using light beams and electrons as information carriers raise your hand or nearest equavilent appendage). It's like not enough to be special for these people, they have to superior and that sense of superioty has to be validated for some freaky reason.
        •  Exactly (none)
          for too many people, religion is a justification for believing that they have a special relationship with the Divine, which makes them extra special.  The more they can differentiate themselves in their own minds from others who do not uphold this special relationship to the same degree, the more they feel superior.  Thus they always know precisely what the scriptures mean (no matter what the scriptures say).
    •  similar to my argument (none)
      I like to point out that to deny that God could possibly have used evolution as a means, is being disrespectful to God.

      It implies that the believer cannot accept that God works in ways that we only try to understand, and  believes God is limited by our own puny understanding.  I would suggest that is an affront to God.

      ...At least that's what I was taught as a little kid in MY Southern Baptist church (and what my wife learned in HER Catholic school)...how times do change...

      Anyway, there are a lot of interesting creationist's statements here:  
      Creationism Museum
      Though several have been changed since I first saw the site.  I can't find the quote stating that man walked the earth with dinosaurs anymore.  now it just says things like , "how is this possible?  find out soon".

  •  from their mouths (none)
    to God's ear...evolution is not working as planned
  •  Lots of funny stuff here (4.00)
    http://objective.jesussave.us/propaganda.html

    However, these propagandists aren't just targeting the young. Take for example Apple Computers, makers of the popular Macintosh line of computers. The real operating system hiding under the newest version of the Macintosh operating system (MacOS X) is called... Darwin! That's right, new Macs are based on Darwinism! While they currently don't advertise this fact to consumers, it is well known among the computer elite, who are mostly Atheists and Pagans. Furthermore, the Darwin OS is released under an "Open Source" license, which is just another name for Communism. They try to hide all of this under a facade of shiny, "lickable" buttons, but the truth has finally come out: Apple Computers promote Godless Darwinism and Communism.

    But is this really such a shock? Lets look for a moment at Apple Computers. Founded by long haired hippies, this company has consistently supported 60's counter-cultural "values"2. But there are even darker undertones to this company than most are aware of. Consider the name of the company and its logo: an apple with a bite taken out of it. This is clearly a reference to the Fall, when Adam and Eve were tempted with an apple3 by the serpent. It is now Apple Computers offering us temptation, thereby aligning themselves with the forces of darkness4.

    This company is well known for its cult-like following. It isn't much of a stretch to say that it is a cult. Consider co-founder and leader Steve Jobs' constant exhortation through advertising (i.e. mind control) that its followers should "think different". We have to ask ourselves: "think different than whom or what?" The disturbing answer is that they want us to think different than our Christian upbringing, to reject all the values that we have been taught and to heed not the message of the Lord Jesus Christ!

    Given the now obvious anti-Christian and cultish nature of Apple Computers, is it any wonder that they have decided to base their newest operating system on Darwinism? This just reaffirms the position that Darwinism is an inherently anti-Christian philosophy spread through propaganda and subliminal trickery, not a science as its brainwashed followers would have us believe.
    ...
     It appears we have entered a terrible new phase in the Evolutionism propaganda campaign that Apple Computers has been waging. Apple has just announced the "eMac", a Macintosh computer designed specifically to smuggle Darwinism into our schools! According to their propagandistic sloganeering, the "e" in "eMac" ostensibly stands for "education", although it should be obvious to readers by now that it's really a cryptic tipping of the hat to their true agenda: "Evolutionism". However, this isn't the only thing hiding behind this choice of moniker; according to my research, the name eMac is also a referrence to "Emacs", a program that is a standard-bearer for the Communistic Open Source movement mentioned above and whose mascot is some sort of effeminate-looking, horned devil-man. Is there no end to this tangled web of evil?

    •  yeah, and it doesn't matter what the specs say.. (none)
      They all run at 666 mz.

      God IS NOT a special interest group, Dammit!

      by God loves goats on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:18:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Because (none)
      there is nothing quite as tempting as an apple with a bite already taken out of it.

      Silent consent or active dissent, the choice is OURS.

      by Alphakafka on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:10:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Wow (none)
      Oh.  My.  God.

      I can't decide whether this is real or not, so I sent it to a friend of mine with some fundie friends.  He told me that he's heard similarly crazy things from them, so it's probably real.

      Yikes.  Just yikes.

      All your vote are belong to us

      by Harkov311 on Tue May 03, 2005 at 04:37:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And plenty more on the rest of the site (none)
        http://objective.jesussave.us/creationsciencefair.html

        1st Place: "My Uncle Is A Man Named Steve (Not A Monkey)"

        Cassidy Turnbull (grade 5) presented her uncle, Steve. She also showed photographs of monkeys and invited fairgoers to note the differences between her uncle and the monkeys. She tried to feed her uncle bananas, but he declined to eat them. Cassidy has conclusively shown that her uncle is no monkey.
        ...
        1st Place: "Life Doesn't Come From Non-Life"

        Patricia Lewis (grade 8) did an experiment to see if life can evolve from non-life. Patricia placed all the non-living ingredients of life - carbon (a charcoal briquet), purified water, and assorted minerals (a multi-vitamin) - into a sealed glass jar. The jar was left undisturbed, being exposed only to sunlight, for three weeks. (Patricia also prayed to God not to do anything miraculous during the course of the experiment, so as not to disqualify the findings.) No life evolved. This shows that life cannot come from non-life through natural processes.
        2nd Place: "Women Were Designed For Homemaking"

        Jonathan Goode (grade 7) applied findings from many fields of science to support his conclusion that God designed women for homemaking: physics shows that women have a lower center of gravity than men, making them more suited to carrying groceries and laundry baskets; biology shows that women were designed to carry un-born babies in their wombs and to feed born babies milk, making them the natural choice for child rearing; social sciences show that the wages for women workers are lower than for normal workers, meaning that they are unable to work as well and thus earn equal pay; and exegetics shows that God created Eve as a companion for Adam, not as a co-worker.

  •  The earth ain't moving, you know. (none)
    Check out fixedearth.com.

    The guy's name is Marshall Hall, and his book is The Earth is Not Moving.

    Testimonials from his readers:

    "I found it to be chuck full of fresh ideas.... Your best coverage was of relativity and Einstein. That stuff is riddled with flaws and you made the most of them."

          R.G. Elmendorf, Engineer, Pitt.PA

    "I just finished reading your book The Earth Is Not Moving. It's a real eye-opener. I never believed in evolution. Now, I don't believe the earth moves."
          Donald Self, Norfolk, VA

    "I read The Earth Is Not Moving  two years ago.  Your dissection of Einstein et al was excellent.  I've had my suspicions for years.  This same phony science plus psychology produced the man-made religion of "Ecology".... [Wanted geocentric model of movement of solar system.... Sent one.]

         David Peers, Gibsons, B.C., Canada

    Wow.

  •  Jeebus save us (none)
    >>> However, a simple idea, that evolution is the mechanism, (if you choose to believe) by which God created life.  Offers a stepping stone, without compromising the theory or the faith <<<

    Well, that's pretty much where my head is at.  But I know it's a matter of Faith, not logic or science.

    THAT is where the danger starts - when peeps try to promote God/Unmoved Mover as something scientific...and thats what makes me irk to throw myself into the "believer" catagory.

    It's so embarrasing to read this shit... I mean dinosaurs are a tool of the Devil and/or God to tempt mankind.  Jeebus!!  What are they so afraid of...

    Then again, I find it fantasy that anyone would suggest that we are so advanced that there is no wonder left in the world... the greatest minds of our world used to believe a lot of silly shit... so current science SHOULD NOT think that we've unlocked every truth.

    But Creationists shouldnt blindly cast aside what we have learned about science and logic over the past few HUNDRED years.

    Oy, makes my head hurt.

    •  Wonder (none)
      Just because you understand something, doesn't make it no longer wonderful. Flowers are pretty, amazing things, don't you think? Does it make them less wonderful to know that they evolved 120 million years ago, and their colors evolve in parallel with the color receptors in the eyes of the pollinating birds and insects?

      I got troll rated by Bill in Portland Maine

      by Rupert on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:29:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I Believe... (none)

      ... That God created the world.

      I also believe that this belief is totally irrational and unscientific, and potentially just something to make me feel better. Which is why I believe it, as opposed to knowing it.

      Monsters think it's all right to be a monster, after all. - Hitherby Dragons

      by RHunter on Tue May 03, 2005 at 05:29:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Here's a good one: "In 1969 Neil Armstrong (none)
    landed on the moon, did he not?"

    "Yes," I replied.  "He did."

    "And do you know what he found when he got there?"

    "What?"

    "One inch of dust.  One inch of dust!"

    "So."

    "Well don't you think that if the Earth and moon were millions of years old there would be more than one inch of dust?"

    The above is a real conversation I had one day in Coast Guard bootcamp in 1995.

    I honestly did not know how to respond.

    •  Moon dust (none)

      "Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?" -George Washington

      by House on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:54:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No way. (none)
      Im calling bullshit on that Neil Armstrong comment.

      No way did someone really say that.

      Did they?

      •  Well, Jeez (4.00)
        ...of course there's only an inch of dust.  The MoonMaid vacuums once a week, but she was on vacation during the Apollo program...

        Rubus Eradicandus Est.

        by Randomfactor on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:11:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I've heard... (none)
        ...the same thing, and seen it many times in online discussion groups. Its apparently a popular creationist line.
      •  It sure did happen (none)
        A group of us were in the head shining our boots and polishing our belt buckles and two guys from South Carolina began talking about religion and how evolution was nonsense.  We had a friendly argument of which I remember very little.  But the Neil Armstrong moondust story stuck with me.
        •  Yes (none)
          It's a common Young Earth Creationist chestnut. If I recall, I believe it started from Young Earth Creationist Henry Morris, cofounder of the Institute of Creation Reserach who took some data gathered by a fellow named Hans Peterson in the 1950s or early 60s. That data showed that the amount of dust falling on a mountaintop was below a certain limit, which Hans then used as an upper bound for further, more precise estimates of the influx of dust from small, micrometeorites. What Morris did of course was take an upper limit which was understood to be the total amount of particulate matter at relatively high altitudes, and extrapolate that as if it were all due to space dust. Worse, he then assumed the moon, a smaller body with less gravity would attract the same quantity of dust. Later measurements by high altitude research aircraft such as the U-2 and balloons, and eventually detectors on the surface of the moon, gave us the actual rate of accrual. Which, as you can probably guess works out to exactly what we measure on the moon. Needless to say a retraction was never issued by Henry Morris or the ICR. Kent Hovind took up the battle cry putting moondust in as part of his standard pitch, claiming the reason the Apollo LEM "Eagle" had such large pads was because they expected huge amounts of dust and were embarrassed when it wasn't there...
          So yes, it's entirely plausible that this individual had heard this argument in some form and regurgitated it.
          •  Or... he might have read some old SF stories. (none)
            Before the first moon landing, I do remember some fairly respectable-sounding speculation about how dust might turn out to be quite deep on the moon... or might be hiding craters, which could cause landing problems. Maybe that was junk science even then, but I don't think so. The fact was, until people actually went there and checked, nobody could be quite sure. Wouldn't be the first time somebody's prediction missed a factor. That's why scientists don't just develop theories; they also do experiments.

            And I distinctly remember some Walter Cronkite-type interview in which a NASA scientist expressed relief that the dust was only an inch deep.

            There was at least one pre-Apollo hard SF story I read that was based on the premise -- What if the dust turns out to be ten feet deep?

            Massacre is not a family value.

            by Canadian Reader on Tue May 03, 2005 at 07:17:52 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Personally... (none)
    ...I think Devo pegged it:  "God made man, but he used a monkey to do it."

    "...your grasp has exceded your reach/ And you put all your faith in a figure of speech..." -- Warren Zevon

    by Roddy McCorley on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:13:48 AM PDT

  •  I am smart. You are funny. They are stupid? (none)
    Everyone who asks questions is our friend, and anyone who wants us to stop asking questions is not our friend. I've got that right, yes? We're against the censors and theocrats?

    It's okay to laugh at ignorant people who think they know everything. They're funny! But every scientist is ignorant about everything. Especially about the big mysteries, like the origin of life. That's what science is -- the art of measuring your ignorance. If you can't measure your ignorance, you're not a scientist.

    So we'd damn well better be able to laugh at ourselves, too. Otherwise we're just another bunch of censors and theocrats, and everyone but us will know it.

    We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are. - Anaïs Nin

    by Valentine on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:15:24 AM PDT

    •  That approach doesn't work. (none)
      Ideas are not equal. It is a fascist canard which has become deeply embedded in all types of discourse.
      •  Don't be ridiculous. (none)
        I never said anything like, "All ideas are equal." If "balance" means that all ideas are equal, it's literally impossible to be "fair and balanced." I don't strive for balance, I strive for fairness.

        Rather than simply harass you, I'll give you an opportunity to restate your complaint against me. What did you really disagree with in my post? Aside from those Nazi ducks that got stuck in my words?

        We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are. - Anaïs Nin

        by Valentine on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:49:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I read you to be saying (none)
          That batting for inquiry and knowledge had to make room for ingnorant scourges on grounds of "fairness" and "balance".

          It's like saying that democracy has to make political space available for fascists.

          That's how I read it, but of course I would not even think of harassing you because I failed to grasp your meaning. I merely pointed out that you may have underspoken yourself.

          Thanks for your note.

    •  Creationists have no questions (none)
      The great failing of any attempt to impose doctrines on areas of scientific interest is that doctrines don't have room for questions. Ignorance is excusable and can be remedied. Doctrinnaire religious rejection of knowledge cannot be remedied until that person gives up their delusions that their doctrine is more accurate than scientific observation.

      Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

      by freelunch on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:44:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  True.... (none)
        ...so our challenge is to open their minds to the benefits of doubt and questioning, as opposed to theocratic certainty.

        How do we do this by mocking the most ignorant representatives of Creationism? Have you ever seen anyone's mind opened by mockery and abuse? They don't listen to what we say we believe, they pay attention to what we appear to be. And this is really a question about who we want to be, not what we think is true.

        Let's say you believed in Creationism. What part of this discussion would lead you to think you'd be smarter, happier or nicer if you gave up your absolute faith?

        Remember, this is all built on false dualism; Darwin's theory of the origin of species has bupkis to do with the origin of life. No theory of the origin of life has ever been confirmed by experiment. It's possible that our whole disagreement is based on failures of communication.

        We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are. - Anaïs Nin

        by Valentine on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:05:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The difference is... (none)
          That I (and most scientificallly inclined folks I know), are happy to admit that the actual origins of life haven't been confirmed yet (and may be unconfirmable--although I suspect we'll have a pretty good idea of how it happened).  However, most creationists I know--that is, 90% of family members, will NOT admit that the origins of life haven't been confirmed.  They will point to Genesis for their proof.  And so it continues...

          (That being said, the origin of life question is an exciting field of research--but if you're a Creationist, why would you want people to look into this?)

        •  Open Minds? (none)
          If someone asks me why I accept the theory of evolution rather than the doctrine of Young Earth Creationism, I'll be happy to engage them in a discussion that includes education. If someone asserts, contrary to fact, that YEC has something to do with science, is true, or makes some other foolish, close-minded statement that shows that they refuse to accept the evidence that has been gathered, I see no reason to treat them with respect. They have already shown that they refuse to respect the ability of humans to learn.

          Context matters.

          Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

          by freelunch on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:17:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I think it's more the arrogance (none)
      It's one thing to be ignorant.  It's quite another to be beligerant about it.
    •  You can either (none)
      laugh at these clowns, engage them politely (Which I do quite a bit and it never helps in the least, they just keep on psewing the same shit) or you can pop a couple of xanies and hit yourself over the head with a cinder block a few times. I personally find all the above reasonably effective.
  •  The third one is kind of brilliant (none)
    "Tell me how nothing came from nothing?????"

    I'm pretty sure it's not intentional...but it may be the most zen thing I've ever heard.

    "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

    by jbeach on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:24:27 AM PDT

  •  You will be delighted to learn (none)
    That the liver is an organ at least 450 million years old.

    This fossil fish has one that is actually visible after all these years.

    BEEB story.

  •  Here's a good one (none)
    "But how do you explain Adam and Eve?"
  •  Haha (none)
    I dunno whethere to laugh because it's sad or because it's funny.

    How do people continue to believe the crap those people spout?  Are they incapable of logical thought?

    All your vote are belong to us

    by Harkov311 on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:52:59 AM PDT

  •  Hold on... (none)
    Now... you see... you see... you are blind to the truth, because the truth becomes self-evident once you make the leap of faith of belief required to see it clearly...

    you see... God made it this way because it would be the only way you could believe the truth when you saw it.

    Hence... you are blinded by the truth!

    Goes into basement, fashions a cross, does a lap around the block with it, poses on cross martyr-like, gets off cross, drives to WAL-Mart, buys crap, mocks homeless man with "will work for food" sign.... etc... etc...

    Silent consent or active dissent, the choice is OURS.

    by Alphakafka on Tue May 03, 2005 at 10:56:01 AM PDT

  •  How about the eyeball? (none)
    Apparently the eyeball is too complex for us to understand, so it must have been constructed by God.
  •  I'm not making this up... (none)
    Did you see the news report (maybe 60 minutes or Dateline) about this Creationist Museum they're building in Kentucky.

    The most amazing thing was that they're building life size dinosuars with saddles on them, insinuating that men domesticated Dino's in Olden times.

    Ahhhh!!!

  •  carribean explosion (none)
    well, somebody has some splaining to do about it!

    we can't just have unexplained explosions in the carribean... it's not right.

  •  Creationist brainwashing (4.00)
     I went to a private Christian elementary school where they used to teach us that the earth was only a few thousand years old and that fossils were all fakes created by a cabal of Satanic scientists. Darwin and the Leakey's in particular were singled out has major players in this evil conspiracy to destroy Christians. Similiar things were taught the two years of Christian high school I went to, except instead of explicit Satanists they were secular humanists now with the Satanism heavily implied. It's really some crazy stuff. My chemistry textbook was full of bible quotes and stuff about Jesus.
  •  Ahem. (none)
    "If people evolved from monkeys why are there still people?"

    The Freudian slip is lovely, but i'm still going to comment as though this person got the line right.

    WRONG:
    Monkeys -------------> Humans

    RIGHT:
    Monkeys -------------> Monkeys
             |-----------> Humans

    The Shapeshifter's Blog -- Politics, Philosophy, and Madness!

    by Shapeshifter on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:47:14 AM PDT

  •  No more levity! (none)
    I can't take it anymore!

    I think I have appendicitis!

    "You don't lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case." - Ken Kesey

    by Glinda on Tue May 03, 2005 at 11:53:59 AM PDT

  •  Awesome, can we see the top 100? (none)
  •  Creationism is not... (none)
    What creationists don't seem to get is that creationism is not, never has been, nor ever will be, a valid scientific theory.  

    Even if scientiests eventually discover physical evidence that seems to indicate Earth shaped up out of formless void into a functioning worldwide ecosystem, including human beings, in a mere matter of days, and that all this happened about 10,000 years ago, it still wouldn't make creationism a valid scientific theory.

    Creationism necessitates a supernatural entity -- by definition, outside the boundaries of science. It doesn't matter what aspects of evolutionary theory scientists are currently wrong about. Creationism will never be science. Ever.

    •  there's a story on raw story (none)
      about the 10 questions that people are giving high school students to ask their biology teachers about Darwin's theory of evolution.  here they are, along with the response I would give to a student asking such a question (I am an engineer, not a biologist, so if you see anything that is incorrect, please let me know):

      # The origins of life. Why do textbooks claim that the 1953 Miller-Urey experiment shows how life's building blocks may have formed on Earth - when conditions on the early Earth were probably nothing like those used in the experiment, and the origin of life remains a mystery?  

      my answer:  in which way where they different. the experiment tried to model early earth conditions - high radioactivity, electrical currents to model lightning, high ambient temperature, and gaseous conditions.  the result was a combination of amino acids and proteins which are the building blocks of life.  can you tell me in which way you disagree with the early earth modeling?

      # Darwin's tree of life. Why don't textbooks discuss the "Cambrian explosion," in which all major animal groups appear together in the fossil record fully formed instead of branching from a common ancestor - thus contradicting the evolutionary tree of life?  

      my answer:  Stephen Jay Gould was actually the one who posited that most evolutionary changes occur in large steps, during conditions which are most propitious to mutations.  the fact that we think that these mutations sprung up overnight is just because it is hard to find evidence of soft tissue that happened so many millions of years ago.  

      # Vertebrate embryos. Why do textbooks use drawings of similarities in vertebrate embryos as evidence for common ancestry - even though biologists have known for over a century that vertebrate embryos are not most similar in their early stages, and the drawings are faked?  

      my answer:  the drawings are not faked. that is quite an accusation.  why don't you look for yourself instead of just parroting someone else's accusation.   there is, in fact,  a large resemblance between many vertebrate embryos.  just check out the tail and fins on the human embryo for example, a picture we are all familiar with.    

      # The archaeopteryx. Why do textbooks portray this fossil as the missing link between dinosaurs and modern birds - even though modern birds are probably not descended from it, and its supposed ancestors do not appear until millions of years after it?  

      my answer:  actually, scientists now believe that many dinosaurs were warm blooded creatures, much more closely related to birds than we previously thought.  we are discovering more and more every day on the subject.  

      # Peppered moths. Why do textbooks use pictures of peppered moths camouflaged on tree trunks as evidence for natural selection - when biologists have known since the 1980s that the moths don't normally rest on tree trunks, and all the pictures have been staged?  

      my answer:  can you prove that moths don't rest on tree trunks, and more importantly, saying that someone faked these photos is quite an accusation.  Can you prove it?

      # Darwin's finches. Why do textbooks claim that beak changes in Galapagos finches during a severe drought can explain the origin of species by natural selection - even though the changes were reversed after the drought ended, and no net evolution occurred?  

      my answer:  the changes were not reversed on the same birds, but after the drought ended, the mutation of the beak became less helpful and those without it had more success and thus survived.  evolution has no forward or backward direction, so it's hard to say if any "net" evolution occurs.  it's just the survival of the fittest at any one time.  

      # Mutant fruit flies. Why do textbooks use fruit flies with an extra pair of wings as evidence that DNA mutations can supply raw materials for evolution - even though the extra wings have no muscles and these disabled mutants cannot survive outside the laboratory?  

      my answer:  the fact that new wings can spring up is a mutation.  they don't have to be working wings.  maybe these flies with mutant non-functioning wings will have another mutation in their off-spring which will allow them to work, or perhaps another set of flies will have another mutation which will give them functioning wings.  there is no design.  non-functioning wings can be an advantage one day, a disadvantage the next, or not make any difference at all.  that is the only thing which will decide whether the mutant will be able to survive and have offspring.  

      # Human origins. Why are artists' drawings of apelike humans used to justify materialistic claims that we are just animals and our existence is a mere accident - when fossil experts cannot even agree on who our supposed ancestors were or what they looked like?  

      my answer:  actually, there is good DNA evidence to show that Eve, an austropethicus (I believe) was a common ancestor to many alive today.   because soft tissue rots away, we must use the same techniques that pathologists on CSI use to model facial features.  The bones give us good idea as to intelligence, tool-making ability, walking patterns, age, child-bearing capacity, cause of death, nutrition etc.

      # Evolution as a fact. Why are students told that Darwin's theory of evolution is a scientific fact - even though many of its claims are based on misrepresentations of the facts?  

      my answer:  which facts are misrepresented?  prove that they are misrepresented.  just because you disagree with it, you can't just say someone is lying.  you have to prove it.  that's why it's called science.  

      •  Talk Origins Answers (none)
        While I agree with most of your answers, there is some leeway in them from what should be said.  In that I mean, the creationists have one set of answers to evolutionists claims, and this is a strong unified sentiment held by all creationists.

        The evolutionist's answers should be the same, unified.

        Answer #1
        Answer #2
        Answer #3
        Answer #4
        Answer #5
        Answer #6
        Answer #7
        Answer #8
        Answer #9

        I know I am pimping Talk Origins; but it is the best laid out site I have found that is able to refute even the most timely new creationist claim.

        "Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?" -George Washington

        by House on Tue May 03, 2005 at 01:09:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Evolutionists... (none)
          ...are capable of thinking for themselves, and therefore will not have rigidly, dogmatically defined "right answers".

          And if they did, those wouldn't always be them. Answer #1 doesn't completely answer the question, for instance, though it relates to it. The common questions get restated in different ways, or slightly different questions posed about the same answer, so its important to adapt the answer to the particular question.

        •  A humble request ... (none)
          If it's not already there, can you (or some kind soul) please put the RawStory piece (which actually points to a Christian Science Monitor story) and those Talk.origins answers from above into a diary.

          We should get this info out there and on the recommended list and maybe some dKos teacher (teacherken maybe?) might be able to put these answers on some high volume education website for teachers and we can head those MoFos off at the pass!

          I'd do it but I shot my wad for the day. Besides, I write crappy diaries.

          "You don't lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case." - Ken Kesey

          by Glinda on Tue May 03, 2005 at 02:07:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Actually, (none)
            the reply to my post links to a web site with all the whacky contorsions in logic that creationists are using and responses to them - like Adolf Hitler based his beliefs on Darwin

            Have a look at it, and send it around.  You'll be doing some overtired, underpaid high school biology teacher a favour if he/she finds out about it.  

            •  So ... ahem ... ANY TAKERS ON THIS! (none)
              Since neither mishimishi nor I am willing to get off our "tukasses" to do it? (Gee ... how do you spell that word?)

              "You don't lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case." - Ken Kesey

              by Glinda on Tue May 03, 2005 at 02:19:02 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  This is the web page (none)
                http://www.talkorigins.org/origins/outline.html#arguments

                send it to everyone you think could use it

              •  It's Yiddish (none)
                Spelling is optional.

                Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

                by freelunch on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:26:22 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I know it's Yiddish (none)
                  This Irish Catholic shiksa has spent the last 30 years in NYC. I'm "Jewish by digestion".  ;-)  

                  "You don't lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case." - Ken Kesey

                  by Glinda on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:55:35 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Comment was about spelling (none)
                    My comment was referring to the fact that Yiddish words are never spelled consistently, nothing else.

                    I guess I'm the one turning my wife into a shiksa if digestion has anything to do with it, since I make the vast majority of meals.

                    Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

                    by freelunch on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:10:35 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Oh I see! But I wasn't even close ... (none)
                      with "tukasses". I finally figured out how to "google an answer up" properly: I found 5,660 web pages with "tuchis" and 990 with "tochis". So those'll have to do.

                      It's funny but my husband does all the cooking too. I do dishes. It works out better that way. The other way around, we poison each other.

                      But he's Italian. The "digestion" part comes from all the Jewish food we've consumed at or from delis, kosher restaurants, weddings, brisim, seders,  friend's houses, and our own kitchen over the years. My husband even has a killer matzo ball soup recipe and his potato kugel is dee-lish!

                      So he and I are part Jewish by "digestion" ... but ... if I am allowed to be bawdy in the spirit of Laura Bush' recent performance ... I am Italian by "injection"!

                      "You don't lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case." - Ken Kesey

                      by Glinda on Tue May 03, 2005 at 09:26:08 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

          •  Done (none)

            "Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?" -George Washington

            by House on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:35:37 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  thank you for this set of (none)
        highly organized (leafleted?) quack-quack questions.
  •  creationist humor (none)
    Comedian Bill Hicks passed thru in 1994, but much of his humor still seems relevant because of bush41/saddam/Iraq. Look for some on the internet & have a great laugh.

    Here's some of his thoughts on creationism.

    You ever noticed how people who believe in creationism look really unevolved? Ya ever noticed that? Eyes real close together, eyebrow ridges, big furry hands and feet. "I believe God created me in one day" Yeah, looks liked He rushed it.

    "You believe the world's 12 thousand years old? "That's right." Okay I got one word to ask you, a one word question, ready? "Uh huh." Dinosaurs. You know the world's 12 thousand years old and dinosaurs existed, they existed in that time, you'd think it would have been mentioned in the fucking Bible at some point. "And lo Jesus and the disciples walked to Nazareth. But the trail was blocked by a giant brontosaurus...with a splinter in his paw. And O the disciples did run a shriekin': 'What a big fucking lizard, Lord!' But Jesus was unafraid and he took the splinter from the brontosaurus's paw and the big lizard became his friend."

    "Get this, I actually asked one of these guys, OK, Dinosaurs fossils - how does that fit into you scheme of life? Let me sit down and strap in. He said, "Dinosaur fossils? God put those there to test our faith." I think God put you here to test my faith, Dude. You believe that? "uh huh." Does that trouble anyone here? The idea that God.. might be.. fuckin' with our heads? I have trouble sleeping with that knowledge. Some prankster God running around: "Hu hu ho. We will see who believes in me now, ha ha." [mimes God burying fossils] "I am God, I am a prankster." "I am killing Me."

    Don't take any guff from those goddam swine. HST

    by elkhunter on Tue May 03, 2005 at 12:30:11 PM PDT

  •  Evolutionist humour (none)
    They asked Stephen Jay Gould what he would infer about God by looking at all the species that exist or have ever existed (creation, in other words).   His answer:  "An inordinate fondness for beetles (there are over 100,000 species of beetles in existence today)".

    I think it's funny.

  •  Tasteless (none)
    Its a shame that so many people here feel the need to mock others who have different beliefs. Do you really need to cultivate your own sense of superiority by tearing others down?  Do you really want to create an atmosphere of hostility for people who believe in creationism, but still hold progressive political beliefs?  A diary like this does nothing but make people who reject creationism feel better about themselves, and people who believe in creationism angry.  
    •  It's not their belief system (none)
      It's their stupidity.  They revel in it.  

      One can be intelligent and have faith, in which case, one would be much more tolerant of others than these creationists are.

      But, to be tolerant to the intolerant?  Isn't that just letting them win?

      •  as James Wolcott says in his blog today: (none)
        As Christian fundamentalism becomes more intrusive and oppressive, Pat Robertson's odious discharge being just the latest example, it is up to us adherents to reason, law, and unchained thought to revive and sustain the reputations of America's great individualists and nonconformists. It's understandable that Democratic candidates, sincere and insincere, feel they have no choice but to drag faith around with them like a little red wagon, but the we non-office-seeking nonbelievers are under no such obligation, and have been accomodating for too long.

        As Sam Harris writes in The End of Faith, religious moderates and lukewarm irreligious liberals are the enablers of fanaticism, because fundamentalists refuse to acknowledge moderation as anything other than weakness and equivocation. For them, it's good vs. evil, right vs. wrong, grace vs. sin, all or nothing. All the Ten Commandants into the public square, and the stocks and whipping posts will eventually follow. Theocracy is tyranny.

        www.jameswolcott.com

      •  So.. (none)
        By believing that the earth was created I am stupid?  By believing the earth was created I am intolerant? For believing the earth was created I should be mocked and have my faith system ridiculed?

        What happened to the party of tolerance? We'll stand up and fight for gay rights.  We'll stand up and fight for your right to get an abortion.  We'll stand up and fight for your right to say a Wicca prayer in a court room.  But, if you believe in creation, sorry you're just a fundamentalist dumbass.

        •  Well, (4.00)
          sorry but that's kind of the way it is...but it's not our fault you misinterpret your Scripture as literal fact.

          Many facets of the Bible were borrowed from other oral traditions - the virgin birth (which is not mentioned in Luke), the flood (Epic of Gilgamesh)...

          The problem is when people insist that their interpretation of a metaphorical/symbolic document is insisted as the Truth.

          Look, even the most ardent aetheist believes the earth was created, but the notion that it was created by a being seperate from the universe who exists out there somewhere is absurd.  You could explore space forever, and you'll never find god.

          It's not our fault Christians seperated the creator from the creation...

        •  let's try again: (none)
          science has very little to say about "creation" (i.e. origins of the universe, or origin of life on earth) as such.  we don't have alot of data about those issues yet (as i understand it.)  nor can science say much about a god who sets up a universe whose processes invariably obey discernable physical laws.

          science uses evidence, data etc.  to test and "prove" theories. the evidence is that living species on earth share common ancestors, that the earth is @4.5 billion years old, that the universe has been here for 15 or so billion  years, etc.

          if you understand the basis for a rational view of the universe, even granting all the gaps in evidence and unexplained phenomena, but prefer to believe that god created the world at 9 am on october 23, 4004 bc, and if you want to make sure that my kids are exposed to this view as part of their public school science curricula, then, yes, i'm afraid you are a dumbass.

          but, sincere thanks for being a socially progressive dumbass.

          for further inflamation please don't go to my blog cuz i don't have one

          by 2nd balcony on Tue May 03, 2005 at 03:44:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  No ... (none)
          you can believe whatever you wish. That's your Consitutionally mandated right. You can believe God created the world. it makes the most sense to accept that if so, He did it using science, we see a great deal of science in nature. It stands to reason that any Creator that may exist is quite a briliant scientist, and brilliant is saying midly.
          What you cannot do, according to the same Consitution which protects your right to believe as you wish, is have the government at any level endorse you beliefs. You cannot for exmaple, at least according to the Constitution, have the government decree that the earth was created 6000 years ago and that the scientific evidence supports this. YOyu can talk about that all you wish at church, at home in private schools, over the fence with neighbor, online, and so forth. You cannot however force science teachers to lie about what the scientific evidence does or does not support under the guise of legit science, especially concerning religion. If you want certain principles taught as fact or theory in science in public schools, it must pass the same muster that all science passes.
          That's a pretty tolerant set-up imo, and it should be tolerant in anyone's definition.
          •  That's not what this diary is about (none)
            I haven't said the specifics about how I believe God created the world, because in the grand scheme of things it doesn't matter that much. I don't believe there is a VIP line to get into heaven if you believe God created the earth in six human days 6000 years ago and a slow line if you believe God used macro evolution.  

            Regardless, the point of this diary was not to promote an agenda of reaching out to creationists and or tolerance within the party.  The point was to ridicule a segment of the population and Democratic party for their religious beliefs.  This sort of inflamatory rhetoric will only serve to make things worse.  No religious wing-nuts are ever going to read this diary, and if they did it would only serve to fuel misunderstanding and anger.

            •  Pistol (none)
              For crying out loud. The religious fanatics aren't going to be won over to the democratic side by acting concilatory about creationism. And frankly, why the hell should we pretend that their ignorant antiscientific shit makes a shred of sense?

              You have no way to know this, unless you read many of my prior diaries, but I've often gone to great lengths to accomodate theists and help them climb out of the pit of ignorance foisted on them by creatonist hucksters even though I frankly think religion is all based on highly implausible claims with no supporting evidence.

              You think I'm being mean by repeating what creationists have said to me in chat rooms and e-mails? Buddy, I have been threatened by e-mail, had people call my phone all hours of the day and night, been called a Stalinist, a Nazi, every kind of derogatory name you can imagine, been compared to Hitler and told I harbor an ideology that was responsible for the Cambodian Massacre. I once had a boss who openly ridiculed me in meetings in front of the entire office for accepting evolution. This from the group of ideological extremists who control both Houses of Congress and the WH of the most powerful nation on the effin planet.
              So don't go pouting to me about who is being nice and who is being mean. Hell yeah I'm an asshole to creationists shills. They're liars, and they're thugs, and they've hooked up with the Theocons and greatly magnified their lying and thuggery. What would you have us do? Be nice? We are nice, we're nice as hell. I have about half a dozen e-mails going right now with creationists I'm trying to help. But there's a whole core group of shitheads who aren't just ignorant, they're proud of being ignorant and they want to make their ignorance the State mandated Standard of Knowledge. And if you disagree with them, they want to be able to arrest you. So cut it out. This diary was aptly named, no one could have possibly read the title and thought it was going to be an olive branch extended to creationism. If you don't like that kind of thing, you shouldn't have read it.

              •  What you dont get.. (none)
                is that you are just as much a part of the problem as the "theocons" are.  You are think you have science your side.  They think they have God on their side.  You call them "thugs" and "liars", but guess what?  They are somewhere on their web discussion board calling you the same thing.  You think you are in email discussions trying to "help" them, but I'm sure they are just as convinced they are trying to "help" you.  

                So what do you propose we make the "state mandated standard of knowledge"? Your version of the origin the universe? Forbid any mention of creationism in public schools? Guess what, its not going to work. Do you know why?  Because there are BILLIONS of people in this world who believe the earth was created by an intelligent being. To simply pretend such theories do not exist once you step into a public school would be negligent on the part of educators. Creationism can be acknowledged and discussed intelligently and without mandating a belief system much the same way macro evolution can be discussed without mandating students believe it. Intelligent people are going to analyze the information and come to their own conclusion. I had teachers in high school and professors in college on both sides of the issue.  I was never damaged by being exposed to evolutionary or creationist theories.

                So, if you want to do something more positive with your time than fighting with a bunch of people who aren't going to change their mind anyway, why don't you start working towards a compromise that will make reasonable folks happy, instead of focusing hate and ridicule at one small, vocal segment of creationists?

                •  N/t (none)
                  I have no problem with people believing or saying whatever they wish about creationism in general. Creationism of all kinds is taught in the US in private schools, colleges and modresso's, there are online resources from every kind of creationist available, there are books on every kind of creationism available. Seminars and minicourses are taught in Churches and Sunday Schools. You can take classes in which various creation myths are compared and contrasted, or you can take classes in which only a narrow version of one of them is taught. Creationism is not banned as a topic in this country, and I haven't met a single person who seeks to ban it, burn it, or arrest people for talking about it; and if I did I would disagree with them strongly. To imply I've done so is quite simply absurd Pistol.

                  What I work very hard to prevent is the passage of legislation which forces science teachers to lie to children and endorse creationism as scientifically valid in public schools. Current incarnations of such legislation make it illegal to even question the separation of Church and State issue. IOW, if passed, no Federal Court could even hear the case. Challenging it, pointing out the religious motivations, and refusing to teach it as scientifically legitimate would result in losing your job as a teacher, editor, or legislator, and if you keep it up, being arrested. That kind of language is in Bills right now making their way through various State Congressional bodies. That is thuggery Pistol and if history is any guide it's the tip of the iceberg of what one group of bible thumping Dominionists would do given half a chance-shred our Constitution and impose their own version of a theocracy in which science was done by Fatwa.

                  So, if you want to do something more positive with your time than fighting with a bunch of people who aren't going to change their mind anyway, why don't you start working towards a compromise that will make reasonable folks happy, instead of focusing hate and ridicule at one small, vocal segment of creationists?

                  Pistol, you don't know anything about me, you haven't even bothered to read any of my prior diaries or you never would have made such implications that I'm not doing precisely as you counsel above. I've been involved with this issue for years. I've repeatedly in past diaries right here on DKos in the last month alone suggested theistic evolution as a compromise. I currently have over half a dozen creationist in various stages of private e-mail discussion doing exactly what you suggest. And I've gone to battle over allowing creationists to air their claims on public message boards  I moderate even when they refuse to abide by the rules and continuilly say the same stupid shit like a broken record never even aknowledging that anyone has challengedrefute4ddon't But you thought it would be more fun to pretend that I and everyone else who nervously laughs at the idiocy being downloaded in the national psche wer monstrous didn'tr you? I hav the screen names of the people who initially said all of those funny things. If I hated them, I'd have published those authors instead of doing so anonymously.

                  I titled this diary Top Ten Funniest Creationist Statements of all time. And put a warning and description of the contents above the fold. I did all that for a reason; so that no one would feel I just blurted out insults by screen name right at the top of the piece with no warning.

                  Lastly, you seem to insist that I and others operate with utter nobility, as defined arbitrarily by you, never have a good laugh at the stupidity and willful ignorance of our opponents, and never point out or call them out for what they are. Open dialogue and compromise is a two-way street my friend, and if someone says something funny as hell in the course of an open discusssion it's free game to repeat it and they're lucky if I don't attribute the author by name. And that goes for everyone else here. If you don't want to see your own inane comments up in lights someday down the road, then don't make inane comments on my threads or in e-mails to me, cuz I do save them. Capiche Pistol?

                •  creationism has no place in science class (none)
                  sorry, but science class is to teach science.

                  next, we will be skipping lessons on germs and viruses, because it will show people on  how to avoid getting sexually transmitted diseases.

                  the fact is, this society depends on people who are intelligent.  religion doesn't teach you that - it doesn't teach you how to think critically.

                  we need one class in school where that is being taught, because lord knows, there are enough stupid people out there.  

            •  Open and Critical (none)
              It's meaningless to claim to have an open mind if you have no ability to distinguish between good ideas and utter nonsense, 'the wheat and the chaff'. Young Earth Creationism is utter nonsense. Some forms of Old Earth Creationism are consisent with science, some are not. I see no reason to accept any religious claim that has been demonstrated to be false. I don't argue about claims that can neither be supported or shown to be wrong.

              Young Earth Creationists are enemies of knowledge. One of them said to me that I would lose my faith in God if I became too educated. America will not prosper physically or spiritually with religious attitudes like that.

              Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

              by freelunch on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:22:27 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  But that's the problem. (none)
              Are you saying that Democrats aren't allowed to be smart enough to laugh at this (sorry, inherently ridiculous) stuff, because that would offend stupid people?

              Man, if we can't make fun of young-earth creationists, who deliberately make fools of themselves by insisting on patent nonsense -- who can we make fun of? Next you'll say we shouldn't even have a giggle at the expense of the Flat-Earth Society.

              Massacre is not a family value.

              by Canadian Reader on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:25:42 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Depends (none)
          Do you accept the evidence about the age of the universe, the earth, life on earth and evolution? If you do, you are probably accept theistic or directed evolution. Scientists aren't bothered by that. What bothers them is people who ignorantly proclaim that the evidence carefully gathered, analyzed and synthesized by scientists over centuries is false. If your claims about your faith are that the earth is flat or that there was no evolution or that everything was created 6,000 years ago, the evidence shows that you are wrong and your claim has no meaning.

          So, before you pick a fight, tell me whether I should tolerate your religion or stand up against a religious doctrine that is demonstrably false.

          Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

          by freelunch on Tue May 03, 2005 at 08:16:21 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  yes you are (none)
          you are stupid and intolerant.

          science has an open mind.  it is always willing to tolerate new ideas.  whether or not they are accepted depends on the evidence.

          to be so sure of how the universe started, shows that you are not willing to entertain any other theories.  that is stupid and intolerant.

          i, on the other hand, am more than willing to listen to your evidence that God created the universe, even if you show that he indeed did it in 6 days, 6,000 years ago.  

    •  Yeah.. (none)
      well, tell that to all the homosexuals who have been ostracized by Christian teachings or the pregnant mothers who are called sluts and whores because they have to make a terribly difficult decision.

      Look, believe whatever being you want created the Earth...but, frankly, many Christians have kicked around a lot of people just to make themselves morally superior.

  •  Yeeeehaaaa, woooooheeeee, etc. (3.25)
    At the heart of every creationist is a grade school dunce who only felt confused and angered by the strange words and diagrams the science teacher used to show them.  Much easier for someone of that mental capacity to believe that a giant hand came down from the clouds and plopped two people onto an otherwise barren earth.  Plus, there's the whole fact that Adam and Eve's offspring would have had to engage in some serious inbreeding which is another topic I'm sure these people know a lot about...

    "Who is the bigger fool? The fool? Or, the fool who follows him?"

    by Magnus Greel on Tue May 03, 2005 at 02:00:55 PM PDT

  •  I'm surprised no one's beat me to this... (none)
    "The question is this - Is man an ape or an angel? My Lord, I am on the side of the angels. I repudiate with indignation and abhorrence these new fanged theories."

    -Benjamin Disraeli

  •  My Favorite (none)
    A creationist once explained to me that the mountains were formed when all the water from the Biblical Flood came up from the center of the earth.

    Silly me...I thought it was plate tectonics and such.

    •  Let me add... (none)
      that everyone picks & chooses from the Bible, even the most orthodox.

      It's an absolute book of rubbish with a few good moral teachings, some interesting historical sidenotes, but very little relevance on the modern world.

      Unfortunately, we are dealing with the victorious proto-orthodox Christians who triumphed in the first 3 centuries CE, beating back Gnostics, Ebionites, Marcionites and many other diverse Christian groups.

      They simple put in the books that supported their doctrines, and threw the rest away - literally in many instances.

      •  Let me also add... (none)
        that Jesus was never a Christian.  

        And most of the people who wrote what we call the Bible believed that Jesus would return not long following his death.  They thought he was coming back rather soon, not thousands of years down the road.

        No doubt this required church leaders to adapt their writings after Jesus failed to come back.

  •  The Devil Needs (none)
    to teach these people a lesson. These people make no sense.

    They are fallen angels misguided by their leaders for the ugliest of reasons.

    spin positive... inspire change

    by missliberties on Tue May 03, 2005 at 05:04:35 PM PDT

  •  Oh god (none)
    That's really sad.

    One thing though -- do, pray tell, how nothing came from nothing, how order came from chaos?

    I think we should all be aware that there is a philsophical discussion going on among scientists and theologians and rational philosophers attempting to explain how on earth everything could have happened so perfectly to produce a very delicate life-sustaining balance. In a way, "creationism" is a line of thought that they're pursing, at least as far as I've read/heard, it's just nothing like what these wackos are yelling about.

    If th' meek ever do inherit th' earth some one'll git it away from 'em before they have it an hour

    by NorthStarDemocrat on Tue May 03, 2005 at 06:00:40 PM PDT

    •  It isn't (none)
      a perfect balance. There is nothing that is a 'delicate balance' for example about leprosy. Your skin and body parts rot off ... until you die. Good for the leprosy microbe, bad for the afflicted.

      Species are extinguished in great and small numbers. Populations crash, bloom, and crash again. Chaos Theory has shown that even simple population models often find no equilibrium, but bounce around haphazardly from one value to another.  This is the history of life on earth. That life could be the result of some kind of intelligent agency. There is no direct evidence against that idea, there is no direct evidence for it. The question if one stipulate that such an entity exists then would be to determine how said entity went about creating biodiversity. The evidence strongly supports common descent, and so we need an explanation for how species would diverge from common ancestors. The Modern Synthesis is our best, broad, current approximation of such a process.

  •  It's finally time for the human race (none)
    to take the inevitable step forward and let go of ALL fairy tales (ie religions) and deal with what is...is....here...now.
  •  There are a number of scientists... (none)
    who question the theoretical basis of evolution. I wonder if you would ever be willing to debate one of those, rather than make fun of creationists.
    •  The debate is ongoing (none)
      in science. The scietists who critize evolution are mostly the same ten guys year after year, a new face every now and then. Just to give you and idea, there are over six hundred scietists named Steve who accept evo...

      Thing is, creationists are welcome to participate in scientific debate. That's what peer reviewed journals are. Some, like Hovind flat out will not agree to a written debate. And there aren't that many who are even halfway competent. It's like thousands of us chasing down the same dozen of them. I've had exchanges with several YEC's and IDCists of higher than average caliber. And you have to understand, those guys don't want to 'debate', they want to work their PR angle, period. The only debates they agree to are 'shows' put on in front of layman, often in churches, and almost always live rather than in written format.
      What little we can get out of them you can see debates on the Panda's Thumb, or Pharyngula, or UTI. I'll even send you some if yu want I've had in e-mail.

      •  I too, question the theoretical basis... (none)
        of evolution. There are simply too many missing links. We are taught that evolution is "fact", yet essentially, we are taking it on faith, much like the creationists are taking their beliefs, on faith.

        Attacking someone's fundamental belief in how the universe, our world, got here, is not going to help to bridge the divide between ourselves and people of faith.

        Perhaps at times we need to be "in their face", but I think more on issues that we actually have control over, such as the war, social security, etc.

        The ACLU here in New Orleans keeps going after local schools for initiating prayer. Would that they would try to protect the hundreds who are being forced from their homes as the housing projects are demolished.

        The attack on prayer, in such a manner, is generating  bad feelings on all sides, and accomplishing nothing.

        You catch my drift?

        •  My understanding (none)
          is that the ACLU goes after prayer which is led by teachers during classtime. Children are free to pray whenever they want provided they don't use it as an excuse to avoid follwing the lesson plans at hand. Children are allowed to congregate udring their free time and pray their brains out. And children are allowed to create prayer clubs and use school property for those clubs, the latter was argued and won on behalf of chirstian prayer clubs by the ACLU. The ACLU protects the Bill of Rights. I agree they go overboard occasionally in my opinion, for exmaple I personally don't care if Courthouses have a statue of the Ten C's. or the Scales of Justice with Ises standing over head. But generally speaking ... I'd rather be overly cautious when it comes to delegating my rights out to the state than overly permissive.

          On evo fact vs theory, I have mentioned a number of times as have others that there is a factual and theoretical aspect to evolution. The facts is species change over time and that change can be a function of variable differentials in fertility of mortality or morbidity. Common descent is considered a provisional fact, soemtimes evo biologists call it an iferred fact. Natura; Selection of a theoretical mechanism which explains how species change over time. No one actually saw most of that change happen, but the idea of how it may have come about is built on valid testable statements and makes valid predictions; that's why it's considered a scientific theory as opposed to a guess or a hypothesis.

          •  Believe me .. (none)
            if a law was passed allowing teachers to lead childen in prayer in public schools, the first time an Islamic teacher or a Hindu one lit into a nice long surra or vedic the local parents would go totally fucking-a ballistic and that would be the end of that law.
          •  Inferred fact? (none)
            Again, based on belief. I prefer not to call it inferred fact. You have faith in evolution. Many don't. It's not worth the debate, unless you are willing to consider other theories as to how the human species came to be what it is.

            As far as prayer, a teacher made the mistake of writing a prayer for a student to use in a school ceremony. The ACLU is raging war against this school, and dredging  bad feelings up as well. In the meantime, I'm part of a group, Hands off Iberville, and we are trying to keep the city and HANO from demolishing the housing project.

            The availability of low income housing is at crisis levels in this city. Not a peep out of the ACLU, and there are constitutional issues in this one issue.

            Let the people have their religion, because ultimately you can't take it from them anyway. Feed them in other areas, vital, necessary areas that religion won't touch, and we could actually all get along.

            •  I'm not trying (none)
              to take religion away form anyone. I'm trying to keep personal religions opinions out of science classrooms in public schools, and for a very good reason. Take a look at Iran if you want to see how living under a theocracy might be.

              To call evolution and creationism both a belief is to imply that they occupy the same rung on the ladder of uncertainty which is utterly absurd. Natural Selection and common descent stand on a foundation of testable statements. Creationism does not. If someone believes the sun will rise above the eastern horizon tomorrow morning, and another believes it will turn purple and rain cheeseburgers it would be silly to pretend that both are 'beliefs' and thus both are equally plausible. If someone wants to believe the sun will turn purple and ain down cheeseburgers, that's fine with me, as long as they don't try to force that screwy belief into an astronomy class and have it taught as it it's equally valid to traditional heliocentric models.

              On the ACLU, they protect the Bill of Rights buddy from being eroded by the government-that's kind of the whole diea behind democracy really is to prtect the governed from those in power. The question I have to answer isn't why I'm a member, it's why the hell aren't you?

              •  We're talking about a prayer... (none)
                someone wrote in a classroom, and gave to a student. We're not talking about compelling students to pray everyday in the classroom and study fundamentalist religion in public school. I'm well aware of the fundamentalist theocracy present in our government, and its influence on decision making.

                I hardly think though, that bullying a student and teacher is the way to combat this. There is bigger fish to fry, that aren't being fried, but I suppose you and I will just have to disagree on that one.

                You're very angry at people who do not believe in evolution. Concerning fundamentalists, it's the wrong end to combat, in my view. Their belief in creationism doesn't change public policy one iota. But they do hold beliefs, some of them not very religious in the traditional sense, that do affect public policy.

                But by all means, rant on about evolution and creationism if you so desire. But please don't question my commitment to outing and ousting this administration, and returning compassionate sense to government. I'm fighting the battle here, in my own way.

                You have strong beliefs in the theory of evolution. I have strong beliefs in its failure as a theory to explain how we as a human race arrived here. I believe both evolution and creationism are way off the mark in explaining the presence of the human species on this planet.  

                I believe there are some good people who profess a belief in creationism, but who may be becoming disillusioned with this administration, and the war. They may have loved ones who have been killed or who are in harm's way over there.

                Personally, I don't want to lose the opportunity to bridge a gap with anyone, and questioning someone's basic religious belief may not be the way.

                There is common ground for everyone to stand on.

                •  I'm really not (none)
                  angry about creationism. I'm more irritated by folks who should know better but who choose to mislead their fellow theists for various, mostly self-serving, reasons. As far as the politics, I'd give lectures on the more reasonable bullets points of ID myself if it was part of a compromise to get the theocons off everyones back and get BushCo out of power. But that's not going to happen. The same folks who are the most ardent supporters of Bush for religious reasons also embrace creationism and a suite of other unconventional ideas tied up with mythology mostly.

                  But if you want to discuss your understanding evolution and IDC, I'm your guy. For example you said you are skeptical about the ability of science to explain how humans arose-evolution isn't limited to humans of course. But give me an idea what you mean ... for example do you accept the evidence showing that humans are related genetically to other lineage's?

  •  The creationists defence (none)
    against evolution: Cover your ears and hum loudly. In extreme cases one must close their eyes as well! Whew! That was a close one. Long Live Ignorance! Oh and hey, that is also the best way to continue to beleive in what a great president Bush is!

    They want the federal government controlling Social Security like it's some kind of federal program - George W. Bush

    by kitebro on Wed May 04, 2005 at 04:34:25 AM PDT

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