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Jan 24 2008

Nothing but liars

Those of you who were, like me, children of the 80′s might remember that song by Thompson Twins: “Lies lies lies yeah…” Here it is in all its 80′s cheesy retro glory. With a chorus like that, they might as well have been writing about creationists.

There are three certainties in this life: death, taxes, and that when a creationist opens his mouth a flood of lies will pour out. Their lie du jour at the moment appears to be trying to link Charles Darwin and evolution to racism and Nazi ideologies. Even for born pathological liars like creationists, it’s pretty low to stoop. Over at the Texas Citizens for Science site, Steve Schafersman has published a handsome rebuttal to this calumny, so the next time you hear this bullshit from some creo swine, kick his lying ass over there for some schooling.

Imagine living a life in which you cannot help but lie all the time, a life in which reality itself must be fought and warred with and denied all the time. Really, if creationists didn’t sicken me so, I’d pity them.

14 comments

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  1. 1
    Tommykey

    Damn that Tony Campolo is stupid.Darwin is to blame for racism? Strange then that the transatlantic slave trade preceded Darwin by centuries.The British Empire didn’t have Darwin’s Origin of the Species to inspire it when it flooded China with opium, which addicted countless numbers of Chinese people. The British then declared war on China for having the temerity to enforce prohibitions against the sale of British supplied opium.European colonialism and racism far predate Darwin’s writings on evolution. If they reached a peak in the latter half of the 19th century, by which Darwin’s theories had been in general circulation, it is because the Industrial Revolution had propelled Western Europe ahead of the rest of the world technologically by leaps and bounds.

  2. 2
    Steve

    Well, it’s not a lie, if they actually believe it. It’s just untrue.

  3. 3
    NAL

    lie1 : to make an untrue statement with intent to deceive Well, the statements are certainly untrue, the question then is regarding their intent. The creationist’s complete disregard for intellectually honesty leads me to the conclusion that not deceiving, is not one of their priorities. One might call it negligent deception.

  4. 4
    Martin

    Well, when they come right out and say things like the scientific evidence more strongly points to creationism than evolution, they’re lying. The question of whether, deep down inside, they know the truth but are yet determined to spread their fictions for whatever ideological reasons is moot. The net result is that disinformation about science has been spread yet again to a gullible public. I notice dictionary.com defines the noun “lie” as both “a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth,” and simply as “an inaccurate or false statement.” So whether or not the person telling the lie is knowingly distorting the truth, or just cluelessly continuing to spread their received ignorance, the statement itself can be called a lie either way.

  5. 5
    Luis

    “I have not the slightest doubt that truth possesses inestimable moral value. In addition, as Mr. Nixon once found to his sorrow, truth represents the only way to keep a complex story straight, for no one can remember all the details of when he told what to whom unless his words have an anchor in actual occurrence. Oh, what a tangled web we weave When first we practice to deceive!”Stephen Jay Gould, “Bully for Brontosaurus”, p385

  6. 6
    Luis

    “One might call it negligent deception.”Yes, come to think of it, I think it rather likely that it’s not so much the case that the creationist propagandists know that they’re spouting bull crap, it’s that they don’t care, if that’s even a distinction worth making. As long as their claims can be made believable (and that doesn’t take much in an anti-intellectual climate) then they are deemed good enough to be used. As Martin says, the net result is the same: lies pervade public discourse and distort the way people think about science. Creationist propagandists are undoubtedly involved in a despicably and viciously dishonest enterprise, and I have nothing but contempt for them.

  7. 7
    TS

    Side note: A former member of Thompson Twins, Michael White, is now a science writer and have written a biography called: “Darwin, A Life in Science”.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_White_%28author%29

  8. 8
    Carlie

    I think there are some semantic differences. “That is a lie” would be true no matter what the intent of the person telling it, as would be “You are telling a lie” (whether you believe you are or not). That puts the onus of the falsity on the statement itself, not the person telling it. Saying “You are lying”, on the other hand, seems to be different; to me at least it implies that the person is actively creating the falsehood that they are telling, and therefore knowledgeable and complicit in the fact that it’s not true.

  9. 9
    D.A.N.

    “scientific evidence more strongly points to creationism than evolution”It does, the problem is the presupposition of the scientist that receives the data. The presupposition of secular scientist is so biased that the misinterpret the data.Want proof this is happening? I can’t wait for the Movie Expelled the Movie to show the truth.

  10. 10
    Thomas

    “The presupposition of secular scientist is so biased that the misinterpret the data.”Exactly what data is being misinterpreted in what way? So far, all I have seen from the creationist camp is conspiracy theories, and attempts to poke holes in the evidence for evolution.”The presupposition of secular scientist is so biased”I will grant you that. Scientists are biased in favor of science. Creationism is not science because there is no way to apply the scientific method. There are no tests, and no claims that can in any way be verified. The supernatural is incompatible with science because the heart of the belief is that the universe does not work in a logical, consistent way. That leaves creationists with nothing to do, because when they look at something they don’t understand, they simply chalk it up as evidence. When a scientist sees something he or she doesn’t understand, it is a question to be answered, and an opportunity to learn more about the universe we live in.

  11. 11
    Martin

    Speaking of liars…I see everybody’s favorite mindless idiot is back. Note the writing typical of an uneducated creationist: false statements written in third-grade level incorrect English. I’ll be moderating comments to see if he behaves himself. Might be time to fumigate again.

  12. 12
    D.A.N.

    Martin,Someday you might admit that you missed me as much as I have missed you. For now I will cherish these fleeting moments together however you see fit. Thank you for the opportunity to voice my side of the subject.“Note the writing typical of an uneducated creationist: false statements written in third-grade level incorrect English.” That may be so Martin, I don’t claim to have a PhD by any stretch of the imagination, that is how God works though as it says in 1 Corinthians 1:27 “But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;”To prove God with evidence is a pointless endeavor, I must admit. Let’s just say AE’rs that I stump you with powerful arguments, using archaeological and scientific evidence. I have even intellectually dwarfed you.Now all I have to do is convince you that Noah actually built an ark and brought in the animals two by two, that Jonah was swallowed by a whale, that Samson killed a thousand men with the jawbone of an ass, that Daniel was really in the lions’ den, that Moses really did divide the Red Sea, and that Adam and Eve ran around naked…and ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Do you really think I can prove all of that to you?Look at what Paul said about how he persuaded men about God: “And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:1) Why didn’t Paul dazzle his hearers with eloquent speeches and intellectual wisdom? Bible scholars who have studied his letters tell us that he was extremely capable intellectually. First Corinthians 2:5 tells us why he deliberately stayed away from worldly wisdom: “That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.”If sinners are converted by the intellect (the wisdom of men), they will fall away by the intellect. If they are merely argued into the faith, they will just as easily be argued out of it whenever a respected scholar reports that ‘the bones of Jesus” have been found. However if sinners are converted by “the power of God,” they will be kept by the power of God. No intellectual argument will cause them to waver because they will know the life-changing reality of their conversion, and their faith will be secure in the eternally solid and secure Rock of Ages.Science is a wonderful and cherished tool, it makes our lives better and more exciting, without operational science and engineering we would be a lost species. What really frustrates me is these origin scientists that push their presuppositions on the world as fact and tries to push God out of ALL equations. It wasn’t so difficult for Sir Newton and many others and it shouldn’t be that hard for scientist of today.”1. Operation science uses the so-called “scientific method” to attempt to discover truth, performing observable, repeatable experiments in a controlled environment to find patterns of recurring behavior in the present physical universe. For example, we can test gravity, study the spread of disease, or observe speciation in the lab or in the wild. Both creationists and evolutionists use this kind of science, which has given rise to computers, space shuttles, and cures for diseases.2. Origin science attempts to discover truth by examining reliable eyewitness testimony (if available); and circumstantial evidence, such as pottery, fossils, and canyons. Because the past cannot be observed directly, assumptions greatly affect how these scientists interpret what they see.So, for example, how was the Grand Canyon formed? Was it formed gradually over long periods of time by a little bit of water, or was it formed rapidly by a lot of water? The first interpretation is based on secular assumptions of slow change over millions of years, while the second interpretation is based on biblical assumptions about rapid change during Noah’s Flood.” (AIG)There is ample evidence of the Flood. Just one example, to see the Grand Canyon’s rapid erosion you only have to look at a very recent event to see that the same thing happen, such as Mount St. Helens.If you are looking for more study on truth besides just trueorigins.org there are others, such as:ISCID Origins.orgDiscoveryIntelligent Design NetworkAccess Research NetworkTake care and respectfully I look forward to discussing things further with everyone, however Martin desires or allows.Dan

  13. 13
    Martin

    Someday you might admit that you missed me as much as I have missed you. For now I will cherish these fleeting moments together however you see fit.I admit that every once in a while, I do think to myself, “It sure was fun beating up that silly little clown Dan Marvin. Wonder what’s he’s up to these days?” They aren’t thoughts that last very long. On the whole, I’m reminded of a scene in Casablanca between Peter Lorre and Bogart, which almost perfectly reflects Dan’s long-standing attempts to get attention from us. Peter Lorre plays this no-account small-time hood who is desperate for the respect of the worldly and popular Rick, played by Bogart. In one scene, Lorre says to him, “You despise me, don’t you?” Bogart, without even looking up from his work, says, “If I gave you any thought I probably would.” That’s pretty much the Dan Marvin/AE relationship right there. You were a fun punching bag for a while, Dan, but then you just got lame and annoying. You even tried to attack me personally on other atheist blogs, leading to your banning there as well. Like the least popular kid in class, you couldn’t find anyone to play with any more, and didn’t have the brains to see your own behavior was at fault for that. So yeah, if we think about you here, it’s like thinking about the class reject: scorn mixed with humor and pity.I don’t claim to have a PhD by any stretch of the imagination…Based on the things you’ve written here, I don’t see that you have much beyond a high school education. And whatever education you might have had certainly hasn’t won over your Christian brainwashing, which allows you to think you’re some kind of expert on fields of which you know nothing. See my earlier post on Christianity’s faux-intelletualism for more on that.“But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;”Only fools are confounded by foolish things. The wise (which in this context I take to mean “educated”) quickly see how foolish they are and toss them aside.To prove God with evidence is a pointless endeavor, I must admit.Good, so then we’ll hear no more of you, right? Coming back here is clearly a waste of your time.Let’s just say AE’rs that I stump you with powerful arguments, using archaeological and scientific evidence. I have even intellectually dwarfed you.HeheheheHAHAHAHAH! Well, I suppose that if by “stump you with powerful arguments” you mean you’ve cracked us all up with mindless creationist idiocy, and by your last sentence, you mean to say that you are an intellectual dwarf, then you’re absolutely correct!I suppose when all you have to fall back on is self-flattery, then flattery will get you everywhere, won’t it, Dan?If, at some point in your life, you choose to set that kind of behavior aside and actually become an adult, then you might say something of interest to us.Now all I have to do is convince you that Noah actually built an ark and brought in the animals two by two, that Jonah was swallowed by a whale, that Samson killed a thousand men with the jawbone of an ass, that Daniel was really in the lions’ den, that Moses really did divide the Red Sea, and that Adam and Eve ran around naked…and ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Do you really think I can prove all of that to you?Wait a minute…if even you don’t think you can prove those things to us, what were the “powerful arguments…archaeological and scientific evidence” you seem to think you stumped us with? See, Dan, this is why we laugh at you. You’re too stupid even to know how stupid you are. You say one thing to bolster your position in one paragraph, then, in the next (see what follows), you try to bolster it with exactly the opposite approach. You cannot even get a handle on what it is you think you believe, and how to argue for it, let alone defend it coherently. If God really does exist, you’re embarrassing him!If sinners are converted by the intellect (the wisdom of men), they will fall away by the intellect. If they are merely argued into the faith, they will just as easily be argued out of it whenever a respected scholar reports that ‘the bones of Jesus” have been found. However if sinners are converted by “the power of God,” they will be kept by the power of God.Essentially by all this blather you are admitting that your beliefs are anti-intellectual and that you cannot convert anyone with reason. So again, why are you back? In all the months last year that you were allowed to comment before your behavior became intolerable, you certainly didn’t provide evidence of this “power of God,” except, perhaps, to show that people like you who believe yourselves to be invested with such power become impossibly obtuse, ill-mannered, and pathologically dishonest cretins. You have never been a terribly good pitchman for the presumed character virtues of being Christian, Dan. Your behavior was consistently the most abhorrent that the contributors to this blog have ever seen. Since most of us have long experience dealing with Christian apologists and creationists, that’s really saying something. Couple your unlikable personality with your ignorant habit of copy-pasting long debunked, pseudoscientific creationist claims (like this low-rent crap from the idiots at AiG you’ve offered today), and the only “power of God” you displayed to us was the “power” to turn his most faithful sycophants into dopes.Perhaps you are sincere in wanting to turn over a new leaf, behaviorally speaking, and present us with polite comments in the hopes of civilized back-and-forth conversation. Based on your past behavior, I greet that notion with, shall we say, considerable skepticism. But I’ll save you time and say that if you’re hoping that in coming back here, you’ll be able to bypass our educations, our understanding of the world, and our very intellects, and present us with some glorious series of emotional epiphanies that will be so great that “no intellectual argument will cause [us] to waver,” just remember that we’re all smarter than you here, and aren’t quite so receptive as you to the idea of being stupid on purpose just so that we may join the Christian fold. I mean, I listen to Tom Cruise’s wacky Scientology recruitment video, and he’s basically making the same pitch you are. And it’s just as vapid and ridiculous.So if you admit you have no evidence, admit you don’t use reason, admit your educational deficits, and finally admit that all you’ve got are desperate emotional appeals to sell your feeble religion with — indeed, even admit that the only way we can be converted is by an expressly anti-intellectual approach……then, as a courtesy, I must tell you: you’re wasting your time. Go find someplace else to play. Admitting that a cause is lost is a hallmark of growing up. Read Proverbs 12:1 to yourself, and apply it to your life. Every once in a while the Bible does cough up a nugget of wisdom, and this is one that can probably help you out more than anything we say.Adios, Dan.

  14. 14
    Luis

    “”scientific evidence more strongly points to creationism than evolution”"It does” Sorry, but it does nothing of the sort. Within the scientific community, there is no serious debate about whether evolution occurs, only over how it occurs. “the problem is the presupposition of the scientist that receives the data”That is precisely the case with creationists, who think that science somehow has an obligation to vindicate their cherished myths. They are forced to twist everything so that it will fit with their unalterable dogma that Genesis is literal truth. But in the process, the whole edifice becomes so convoluted and tortuously incoherent that it rapidly degenerates into an exercise in farce. No wonder the propagandists have to constantly lie: their edifice is already such a shaky house of cards that if it isn’t defended from even a whiff of truth, it will utterly collapse. Lying isn’t so much a choice for the propagandists; it’s an absolute necessity. Movies like “Expelled” are not scientific critiques of evolution or honest commentary over the so-called controversy (which exists only in the minds of creationists, not among most serious scientists, who see people with your mindset as nothing but a collective nuisance), they are propaganda ploys designed to smear the men and women who actually dedicate their professional lives to exploring how the world works. The producers even had to trick two prominent biologists into being interviewed (by concealing the fact that they were filming for a creationist propaganda film). Those are the sorts of tactics that “scientific” creationists are prepared to stoop to in order to bamboozle the public with their lies and distortions. “The presupposition of secular scientist is so biased that the misinterpret the data.”And yet, it’s these “secular scientists” whose knowledge and expertise yields discoveries that can actually be put to practical use. In genetics, pathology, disease control, fisheries management, ecology, farming: it’s not the creationists who are providing solutions, it’s the real scientists using the scientific method, out there in the field, studying, collating, theorising and advising other practitioners about implementing workable programs. The collaborative nature of science is such that bad ideas eventually get weeded out, because they must face reality, and reality is usually unforgiving. The knowledge and expertise of these “secular scientists” is the knowledge and expertise that gets used because it actually work. Creationism is rightfully seen as the equivalent of flat-Earthism by serious biologists; indeed, by most scientists, from chemists to astronomers, for not only is it at war with the entire scientific community, it is at war with the whole enterprise and spirit of science. Contra to creationists’ claims of of bias and scientists “misinterpreting” the data, the scientific enterprise isn’t even close to collapse; in fact, it’s never been so vibrant. Stunning new discoveries come in all the time, and they have nothing to do with a literal interpretation of the Bible. The evidence laughs at Genesis, and it will continue to do so. I’m not a mystic, but sometimes I get the feeling that there must be some underlying organising principle to the universe that prevents it being as boring as the creationists would have it be. “To prove God with evidence is a pointless endeavor, I must admit.”Hang on a bloody minute. What was this then: “scientific evidence more strongly points to creationism than evolution”"It does”?So you admit that God can’t be verified by scientific evidence…yet he can? Which one is it? Martin, is this what you meant by creationists talking out of both sides of their mouthes?”Now all I have to do is convince you that Noah actually built an ark and brought in the animals two by two, that Jonah was swallowed by a whale, that Samson killed a thousand men with the jawbone of an ass, that Daniel was really in the lions’ den, that Moses really did divide the Red Sea, and that Adam and Eve ran around naked…and ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Do you really think I can prove all of that to you?”No, because all that stuff didn’t actually happen. The story of Noah’s ark, for example, isn’t even remotely possible. Only someone with no semblance of respect for science and logic could actually subscribe to it. “Look at what Paul said about how he persuaded men about God: “And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:1) Why didn’t Paul dazzle his hearers with eloquent speeches and intellectual wisdom? Bible scholars who have studied his letters tell us that he was extremely capable intellectually. First Corinthians 2:5 tells us why he deliberately stayed away from worldly wisdom: “That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.”"Sorry, what’s all this got to do with evolutionary biology? Are you admitting that the evidence doesn’t count – except, of course, when you say it does? This is the lurid arrogance and hypocrisy of the fundamentalist literalist: he dares to talk about humility, but he thinks himself qualified to sweep aside decades of scientific research and start throwing around accusations about scientists (get this) misinterpreting the data, which the fundamentalists himself knows nothing about (save for what AIG or a pastor tells them, two entities which are completely irrelevant to science). Which part of this are you expecting us to take seriously? “No intellectual argument will cause them to waver because they will know the life-changing reality of their conversion, and their faith will be secure in the eternally solid and secure Rock of Ages.”You present that as though it’s a virtue, but it’s actually contemptible and pathetic. You’re saying that regardless of the evidence, you’re still going to believe as you do. Is that how an intellectually honest adult thinks? Or is that how a spoiled child thinks? Unlike you, we’re actually open to having our minds changed – IF you present compelling evidence for your case. Otherwise, expect to be looked down upon. It isn’t for you to talk to us about evidence; you detest evidence. “What really frustrates me is these origin scientists that push their presuppositions on the world as fact and tries to push God out of ALL equations.”I see what you’ve done: you’ve equated evolution with the study of the origin of life. Actually, evolution would still be a fact if an intelligent designer planted the first life on this planet. The subsequent billions of years of change would still be as secure as anything else in science. And by the way, just because we don’t know how life first arose DOESN’T mean that you have an open door to preach your beliefs as though they were proven fact. That we don’t know how the first life arose means exactly that: we don’t know. It doesn’t mean that “therefore” you’re right. There’s no actual evidence that God did in fact plant the first life forms on Earth; unlike creationists, scientists are actually trying to determine how it happened. But even if they fail (which would be no disgrace, since science – unlike mindless faith – is actually difficult) that would give you no room to say that we should sneak God into the equation. “So, for example, how was the Grand Canyon formed? Was it formed gradually over long periods of time by a little bit of water, or was it formed rapidly by a lot of water? The first interpretation is based on secular assumptions of slow change over millions of years, while the second interpretation is based on biblical assumptions about rapid change during Noah’s Flood.” (AIG)”That’s absolutely pathetic. The idea that the Grand Canyon was formed by a massive flood is so stupid that one need only look at one thing to completely discredit it: the cultures that were around at the time
    of the supposed global flood didn’t seem to notice that they were being inundated with billions of tonnes of water. Or were they also “biased”? Try actually reading a scientific account of the formation of the Grand Canyon, not just what AIG tells you. It’s no wonder you’re so ignorant; all your “evidence” comes from creationist sources, rather than from the people who actually bother to do science. Why do creationists fret so much about evolution? If the human soul – which is, they claim, immaterial and not reducible to the physical – is the most exalted of God’s creations, then what difference does it make whether we arose through direct divine creation or natural selection? In your haste to affirm the spiritual, you proceed to tie it inexorably to the physical, and end up losing on both counts. You demonstrate your underlying insecurity in your faith, when you feel compelled to strong-arm science (an enterprise you have neither any respect or interest in) in order to bolster it – and to top off the absurdity, you do this whilst claiming that evidence doesn’t count anyway! Wouldn’t true faith be to believe in God despite acknowledging evolution? A lot of Christians have done that, but I guess, in your bigoted worldview, they won’t qualify as “true” Christians.

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