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Aug 27 2012

But…but…is it Biblical?

Answers in Genesis is so fiercely committed to the idea of taking every jot and tittle of the bible as strictly literal that they, for instance, argue that dinosaurs had to be on Noah’s big boat because the Bible uses the word “all” to describe the creatures that were brought on board. But otherwise…well, raving mad fantasies are perfectly OK. They’re now suggesting that the ark managed animal waste using sophisticated methods.

One low-tech solution rarely mentioned is the “methane digester.” All Noah would have needed was a simple airtight container to hold the manure, the proper bacteria, and a way of piping the resulting bio-gas to places where it could perform useful work—like a heating, cooking, and lighting inside the ship.

The gas pipes might have been as basic as hollow reeds sealed with natural latex from the rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensses. Methane at ambient temperature and pressure is lighter than air and would flow naturally from the lowest point of Noah’s ship (where the digesters would be located), to the decks above, providing reliable gaslight illumination in what must have been an otherwise dark environment.

The Ark was being designed about 4,450 years ago, when mankind was still highly intelligent (Noah’s ancestor, Adam, possessed a nearly perfect brain as God created him), and Noah could easily have mastered this simple technology.

Uh, yeah. OK. Funny how no one in 2400 BC was using this clever technology in all these cultures that were full of pooping livestock, and it all came together in making one boat, after which our capacity for progress was all downhill, through Athens and the Ionian Greeks, to the Roman Empire, to the Renaissance, to the Industrial Revolution, we’ve just gotten stupider.

That might be true of the creationists, actually.

146 comments

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  1. 1
    TonyJ

    That’s some pretty impressive bullshit right there!

  2. 2
    pembroke529

    Why Occam something when you can create elaborate processes to support your delusions?

  3. 3
    DrewN

    That’s just silly. Real biblical scholars know Noah used a shiny garnet as a lantern.

  4. 4
    richardelguru

    They well may deal with that, but what about this?
    http://www.gocomics.com/pcandpixel/2012/08/26

  5. 5
    azportsider

    It’s been a long time since I read the wholly babble, but I sure don’t remember any chapters and verses pertaining to methane digesters.

  6. 6
    Dick the Damned

    So, i guess that monument to stupidity, the Creation Museum, will have the same process running at its washrooms. And they’ll want to pay the engineer they consult with to design this simple system just peanuts. Yeahhhh.

  7. 7
    Cas

    *head desk* As an archaeologist currently studying a site that dates back to 7400 BCE… Can I safely call bull**** on this?

    *sobs*

  8. 8
    jakc

    If you’re going to make stuff up, why not just say all the animals hibernated for the entire voyage?

  9. 9
    qwerty

    Using the materials they thought were used on the original ark, AiG should recreate this in their new ark park.

    After all, they’ll have to provide facilities for all the waste that their visitors will generate; so, they can easily test out their hypotheses. Yea, sure, like this will actually happen.

  10. 10
    ChasCPeterson

    among the macrostupidity, a humorous bit of microstupidity: not only is it spelled wrong, but they don’t seem to know what ‘brasiliensis‘ means.

  11. 11
    jasonnishiyama

    The thought that ships have just been heaving waste overboard for millennia didn’t occur to them?

  12. 12
    procyon

    Wait….people have been getting more stupid since Noah’s time? That would go a long way towards explaining the brain trust over at AIG.

  13. 13
    eurosid

    I’d love to see a Chic Tract with this. I seem to remember one where he had a fire breathing dinosaur.

    Noah would need to stabilize his ship by steering in to the wind. Sails would suck in that kind of downpour, and a rudder is pretty useless without some kind of propulsion. With the amount of methane available, he could have had a primitive rocket attitude control system going. The fire breathing dinos would serve as igniters.

    Methane fuel thrusters would be just the thing.

  14. 14
    No One

    ” ‘e wasn’t fit, to shovel shit, from one end to another!”

  15. 15
    Nick Gotts

    Just when you thought creobots had plumbed the depths of stupid.

  16. 16
    busterggi

    You’d think Noah’s kids would have remembered how to do this stuff, especially as they supposedly lived for centuries in which to learn it.

    But then, Noah was a drunk so he probably just contracted out to some poor sucker whom he left to drown.

  17. 17
    hexidecima

    everytime I see creationists desperately trying to use science to excuse their myth, it just underlines how weak their faith is, no matter what they claim.

    I do like how they claim Adam had a “near perfect brain”. Guess their god can’t get anything actually right.

    and eurosid, you get one shiny internet as a prize for your excellent idea :)

  18. 18
    YOB - Ye Olde Blacksmith

    Srsly? Steampunk Noah?

    Bwahahaha!

  19. 19
    jamessweet

    It’s somewhat cute, in a way… There is something beautiful in the creative ways they try to make this story work.

    If only they weren’t such insipid hateful assholes, it might actually be entertaining.

  20. 20
    Makoto

    Not just steampunk – methanepunk, it’s a whole new level if you ask me.

  21. 21
    madtom1999

    The simple gas pressure from the decomposing dung would have driven the gas along the pipes. If they used the fact that methane is lighter then presumably air would have been allowed into the system so at some point the arc would have ceased to exist even in a desperate imagination.

  22. 22
    gworroll

    I suppose that this sort of technology could go a long way to solving the waste problem. I’m skeptical that it would solve all of it- that’s a lot of waste to burn through. Still, it would make a dent in the waste of any number of animals that could plausibly fit on the ark.

    But… as mentioned, it doesn’t show up anywhere else in that time period. Having it on the Ark would be exceptional, and a strong sign that there was an advanced intelligence involved in the design and construction. While not proof in itself, it would be anomalous enough to help support the God hypothesis(I’d find ETs more plausible if this data point is all we have to go on though, and even that would require some proof that the event happened at all).

    So why wasn’t it mentioned in the Bible? Hell, even if the story couldn’t be confirmed, a clear description of such a system dating that far back would be extremely bizzare. It would be one of the key pieces of evidence atheists would like to see- science and technology clearly beyond what humans could have accomplished on their own at the time the texts were written. But the “divinely inspired” writers don’t think to mention it? Not even a mention of a “magic box that makes light from the poop”?

  23. 23
    TonyJ

    It’s amazing that the writer goes from “it could have been done this way” to “it was done this way” in less than three paragraphs.

  24. 24
    Glen Davidson

    How smart do you have to be to make a wooden boat with the dimensions that only work with steel?

    I guess Noah was too busy with making methane to worry about, say, how to get all of that shit to the digester and making the boat seaworthy.

    Glen Davidson

  25. 25
    Bronze Dog

    I’ve got to agree this is both beautiful and absurd. Someone call Japan so they can make a series out of this. If they can turn The Count of Monte Cristo into a space vampire, they can do some awesome weirdness with this.

  26. 26
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Sofistikated Theologie question here:
    Couldn’t God just prevented the animals (and the Noah family) from shitting all over the place for 40 days? You’re not ging to convince me of your omnipotence if you’re forcing a dude on a leaky boat to jury rig an impossible waste disposal system instead of taking care of that crap before it becomes a problem.

  27. 27
    kreativekaos

    TonyJ@1, KG@15:
    Those statements pretty much say it all. Jeez, the efforts to legitimize the incredulous never seems to stop with the fundamentalist schmucks!

  28. 28
    atchitamo

    Didn’t the Professor build something using bamboo and goop to pipe gas in an episode of “Gilligan’s Island”?

  29. 29
    thisisaturingtest

    I see the AIG School of Reverse Engineering is chugging right along.

  30. 30
    garnetstar

    Rubber trees don’t grow in the Middle East: they require heavy rainfall and tropical climates.

    Noah must have figured out greenhouse and irrigation techonology too.

  31. 31
    No Unicorns were harmed in the making of this comment

    Hmm. Here’s my hypothesis what I just made up. There were TWO arks. The first was Noah’s ark, the second was The Other Ark, captained by Noah’s brother. It carried breeding pairs of dinosaurs, unicorns, dragons, terror birds and such like. It also had a methane system. But Noah, busy on the first ark, hadn’t been able to check that thing met the specifications. After the two arks had been out on the water for a few weeks, there was a leak and an ignition source.

    It was sad, really.

    God and Noah always pretended the whole thing never happened, so it didn’t make it into the Old Testament account. The whole digester and methane system was decided to have been a Dangerously Bad Idea and no one pursued it after the ark landed, so the technology was lost.

  32. 32
    Antiochus Epiphanes

    If only the ability to generate power with dung still existed! Answers in Genesis could keep Vegas lit in perpetuity.

    Alack. The blood of Numenor is all but spent.

  33. 33
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Audley:

    Couldn’t God just prevented the animals (and the Noah family) from shitting all over the place for 40 days?

    He couldn’t decide if he wanted the Flood to last 40 days or 150 days. So he threw his hands up and said “let the shit fall where it may”.

  34. 34
    Dr Marcus Hill Ph.D. (arguing from his own authority)

    Piping flammable gas through reeds and lighting it to create heat and light? That seems like the most sensible idea AiG have ever had. They should build a working replica from the original materials in the Ark Park.

  35. 35
    Red-Green in Blue

    jakc:

    If you’re going to make stuff up, why not just say all the animals hibernated for the entire voyage?</blockquote
    ZOMG – that's it! The animals' faeces fuelled a methane digester; the resulting methane was burned to produce steam and run a turbine to produce electricity, which ran the cryogenic preservation system which held the animals in suspended animation during the Flood. Therefore they didn't produce any waste, which meant there wasn't any need for any waste processing plant like a methane digester, and…

    Er… oh.

    Well, the reasoning is every bit as good as AiG's! :-)

  36. 36
    Red-Green in Blue

    Oh dear, blockquote fail. Trying again:

    jakc:

    If you’re going to make stuff up, why not just say all the animals hibernated for the entire voyage?

    ZOMG – that’s it! The animals’ faeces fuelled a methane digester; the resulting methane was burned to produce steam and run a turbine to produce electricity, which ran the cryogenic preservation system which held the animals in suspended animation during the Flood. Therefore they didn’t produce any waste, which meant there wasn’t any need for any waste processing plant like a methane digester, and…
    Er… oh.
    Well, the reasoning is every bit as good as AiG’s! :-)

  37. 37
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Tony:

    “let the shit fall where it may”.

    Have I ever mentioned how much I ♥ you, man?

  38. 38
    saguhh00

    Herra brasiliensis is from Brazil, a ploace that was not touched by people from the Middle East until Pedro Alvares Cabral, in 1500 AD, finally got there.

    Couldn’t they just say, “hey, the Debbil buried those fossils to test our faith!”.

    Wait, 4,540 years ago was the fourth dynasty of Egypt. The egyptians didn’t drown to death!

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  39. 39
    Sastra

    hexidecima #17 wrote:

    everytime I see creationists desperately trying to use science to excuse their myth, it just underlines how weak their faith is, no matter what they claim.

    Yes, their faith is weak — and I think that’s a good thing, longterm.

    Creationists and other literalists who believe in things which directly contradict secular evidence are usually sneered at by more liberal, savvy believers. They’re seen as making a critical mistake in the way they use faith: they’re being too specific, too clear, too honest. If you want to “keep your faith” in a world where you interact and engage with nonbelievers and try to remain reasonable, then you need to be too vague to be wrong.

    You don’t have to keep to Noah’s Ark. Whenever anyone starts trying to analyze the supernatural and get into exactly what they think God/Spirit is and how it works, it breaks down into ignorance and incoherence. Start to explore or explain the mechanism, composition, or process of spiritual beings and events and you’re making your idea open to critique and criticism. You start babbling pseudoscience like a New Ager — or like one of these goofy creationists. It all eventually falls apart for anyone who continues to think about the issue.

    That’s why the more liberal faithful want to stop it. YECs who start twisting themselves into knots in order to find a reasonable way for the nonsense of religion to make secular sense are venturing into humanist territory. They will lose. They’re so blinded by their faith that they’ve thrown caution to the wind and treat their belief in religious truth like their belief in every other objective truth. In a way, that’s having a lot of faith.

    But in a way, they’re throwing out faith by laying themselves on the line. They’re trying to harmonize religion with reason through the direct method — and the cardinal rule of religious faith apologists is to never, ever be that direct. Don’t be curious, don’t be consistent. Don’t place your concepts in a position which can be rationally attacked. Obfuscate, obscure, poetize, wave your hands and change the subject or slip the whole issue into some other category. Make belief come down to a moral choice, and wax ecstatic about it. Yeah.

    Which is one reason why I view our alliance with the more liberal theists warily. Yes, they’re fighting creationism and standing up for scientific evolution. But their biggest weapon and complaint against the literalists is that they’re harming religion. They’re doing faith wrong.

    I think they’re doing faith “right” … because they’re doing it in a way that will self-destruct. “Methane digester?” Ha. Goooood. It’s a start.

  40. 40
    terrellk70

    Interesting note, on the website they have turned off comments. One of my problems with religion is you can never question.

  41. 41
    Doubting Thomas

    Makes you wonder why they bother trying to deal with mundane things like shit if all they have to do is say that god dealt with it. God can make “all” of the animals fit and not shit. He’s god, after all.
    Why say they had a poop system instead of “god made the shit go away”? He just made it rain so hard that he flooded the entire planet, a boat load of shit should be no problem.

  42. 42
    holytape

    Once again Answers in Genesis got it mostly right. Noah did use methane, and did have air tight method of capturing it. However, since iron or aluminum smelting was not a “simple technology,” nor were emergency pressure relief valves a simple technomology, the ark and everyone in it died a horrible death in a giant ball of fire. Which would have been really bad news, if the crew and all the animals hadn’t all died of a variety of diseases three weeks earlier. Which in an of itself would have been bad news if the ark had sunk taking everyone and everything with it, because of inherent design faults and material limitations. Which would have been itself bad news if everything wasn’t steamed sterilized due to the friction caused by the vast amounts of falling water. So Answers in Genesis got everything right, but the one fact that everyone and everything died during the flood. Which explains why our planet is the barren, depopulated rock it is today.

    The true story of Noah

  43. 43
    David Marjanović

    among the macrostupidity, a humorous bit of microstupidity: not only is it spelled wrong, but they don’t seem to know what ‘brasiliensis’ means.

    But… but… but… the earth was only divided in the days of Peleg, because God liked that pun so much. And “divided” clearly refers to the origin of the Atlantic Ocean.

    Not just steampunk – methanepunk, it’s a whole new level if you ask me.

    QFT!

    The simple gas pressure from the decomposing dung would have driven the gas along the pipes. If they used the fact that methane is lighter then presumably air would have been allowed into the system so at some point the arc would have ceased to exist even in a desperate imagination.

    One more miracle must have happened!!!!! Praise the Lord!!!eleventyeleven!!

    It’s amazing that the writer goes from “it could have been done this way” to “it was done this way” in less than three paragraphs.

    Nope, it’s still “could have” in the third.

    Piping flammable gas through reeds and lighting it to create heat and light? That seems like the most sensible idea AiG have ever had. They should build a working replica from the original materials in the Ark Park.

    I can’t stop laughing…

  44. 44
    holytape

    Couldn’t God just prevented the animals (and the Noah family) from shitting all over the place for 40 days?

    Have you ever had to deal with a constipated Rhino? They are not the most friendly creature to begin with…..

  45. 45
    kreativekaos

    jasonnishiyama@ 11:

    I hear ya. They’re probably tying biodigestion into their myth for the rhetorical updated purposes of being politically correct and environmentally responsible at the same time; the biodegradation route would be ‘sexier’ and more acceptable in today’s more environmentally-aware age, and who know,… it may flip a few people to converts in the process!!!.
    Looks like they’re trying to have their cake and eat it too: trying to keep their myth intact by slickly incorporating a popular low-tech solution to dealing with organic waste.
    ( Gee, they must have had all the science down that’s involved in producing successful biodigestion-to-methane: proper temperature ranges, proper viscosity for a slurry, proper pH levels, good balance of nitrogen/carbon ratios, etc.)

  46. 46
    Richard Smith

    In Mel Gibson’s film version of the story of Noah:

    NOAH: For God’s sake, what now?
    THE MASTER: Who run Noah’s Ark?
    NOAH: Dammit, I told you, no more embargos.
    THE MASTER: More, Blaster.
    [the Blaster puts all power out]
    THE MASTER: Who run Noah’s Ark? Who… run… Noah’s Ark?
    NOAH: …You know who.
    THE MASTER: Say.
    NOAH: Master Blaster.
    THE MASTER: Say loud!
    [the Master turns on the ark's loudspeakers]
    NOAH: Master Blaster.
    THE MASTER: Master Blaster… what?
    NOAH: Master Blaster runs Noah’s Ark.
    The Master: Louder!
    NOAH: Master Blaster runs Noah’s Ark!
    THE MASTER: Lift embargo.

  47. 47
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Holytape:

    Have you ever had to deal with a constipated Rhino? They are not the most friendly creature to begin with…..

    So, Noah had access to safe, reliable waste disposal/lighting/heating technology, but not enemas?

  48. 48
    Menyambal

    Open flames on a wooden boat? Well, as someone who has lived in a building with open-flame propane heaters, I can tell you there’d be enough water vapor in the air to keep the place nice and soggy.

    Didn’t the ark have a window?

    At least they are acknowledging that there are problems with the ark story as told. The biblical account causes more problems than it solves—well, it doesn’t solve any problems—and should just be abandoned.

    As I have said before, at the time of the alleged flood, the biblical humans were only in the Middle East. Flooding only that just enough to kill all humans would have been fairly trivial. But then it sounds a lot like a flood on the Euphrates ….

  49. 49
    Ray, rude-ass yankee (now in HD-3D!)

    If Adam’s mind was so perfect, why did he eat the apple?

    And really, an air tight container big enough for all that crap? Sure, a stone age dude could whip one right up, no problem.

  50. 50
    raven

    In for a penny, in for a pound. If you are just going to make up a bunch of unbelievable stuff, might as well make up a lot.

    They’ve got fire breathing dragons on the Ark and now in the Kentucky Ark shrine as well. Which are at least in the bible.

    The Ark was being designed about 4,450 years ago, when mankind was still highly intelligent (Noah’s ancestor, Adam, possessed a nearly perfect brain as God created him), and Noah could easily have mastered this simple technology.

    Adam had a nearly perfect brain. So did Eve I guess, although they forgot to mention her for deliberate reasons. Not that it did them much good as they made a simple mistake and doomed the the entire human race to millennia of silliness and horror from xians.

    If they are going to just make things up and they are, might as well do it right. Noah’s Ark was made of gopher wood, an alloy of Unobtainian known as Skrith and powered by a powerful fusion reactor. Robots took care of the animals while Noah and his family worked on their tans.

  51. 51
    funkyderek

    Dim lights powered by bullshit. That’s creationism for you!

  52. 52
    raven

    Investors of the Lost Ark | Louisville’s Alt-Weekly | LEO Weekly
    leoweekly. com /news/investors-lost-ark

    1 Aug 2012 – As we turn to walk past the “Dragon Hall Bookstore” — featuring a new T-shirt proclaiming God created fire-breathing dragons on the sixth day, … and I are here to see speak: Ken Ham, CEO of Answers in Genesis ministry.

    FYI.

    AIG is now featuring dragons on their billboards. Just so you know the latest in religion driven silliness.

  53. 53
    One Hand Clapping

    That must be the real origin of the phrase “Now you’re cooking with gas!”

  54. 54
    Owlmirror

    Has no-one else put together this methane digester and the much-beloved fire-breathing dragons, and gotten the inevitable?


    Shem : Dad?
    Noah : Yes, son?
    Shem : You know that thing we put together, to get the air-that-burns from the animal dung?
    Noah : Yes. Clever, isn't it?
    Shem : Yes, Father. Very clever. But... You know how the air-that-burns makes a very large bang when a lot of it catches fire at once?
    Noah : Is there a problem? We've taught everyone to be very careful with open flame near the air-that-burns.
    Shem : Well, with all the rain and chill... the dragons have caught colds.
    Noah : Oh. Oh, dear.

  55. 55
    nohellbelowus

    The gas pipes might have been as basic as hollow reeds sealed with natural latex from the rubber tree.

    The condom was also invented during this time by Noah’s son Ham, who was inspired during his long nights in the stables, caring for the farm animals.

    Latex-sealed valve failure, leading to a tremendous methane explosion which blew shit everywhere, is now a leading proposal for why the Ark has never been found.

  56. 56
    lorn

    Weeeeel ….. why not go all out.

    Methane can be used as a refrigerant sooo … it is clear that the arc had air conditioning and freezers. They could solve all sorts of problems by dropping the temperature. They obviously used temperature control to put unruly and problematic animals into hibernation or torpor. It also helps with food storage and humidity problems … and who wouldn’t like a little AC when traveling in those areas.

    It is also obvious that Noah knew about boiling water. And you know what you get when you boil water … that’s right … steam. With steam power, running on wood, or methane, they could have a steam engine. Laugh all you want but they had copper and knew about iron. Metals and steam gets you steam engines. Everyone knows that.

    And you know what else uses steam, nuclear power plants. THE ARK WAS NUCLEAR POWERED. I JUST PROVED IT.

  57. 57
    tbp1

    I guess I shouldn’t be, but I am still surprised that actual adults, with IQs above room-temperature level, in some cases reasonably well educated, really seem to believe in the literal truth of the Flood and Ark story. It’s exactly the same as believing in Santa Claus in adulthood.

  58. 58
    nohellbelowus

    Sorry holytape @42… just now saw your valve/explosion reference. Didn’t mean to plagiarize.

  59. 59
    Glen Davidson

    Then too, the animals probably cleaned up after themselves, because no doubt God either genetically re-engineered them while on the ark to have fingers and human-like intelligence, only to change them back before they left the ark, or he just did it all miraculously without the limitations of all you materialist doubters. Think of Balaam’s donkey (ass in KJV, as we were happy to note in 6th grade) speaking, after all. I mean, God is God, what limitations does he have?

    See, that’s how a true believer would think, not these low-life half-believers like Ken Ham.

    Glen Davidson

  60. 60
    kagekiri

    @57:

    Well, I was a YEC Bible literalist through college, and I managed to do well in school (3.6 GPA). Heck, my sister is still a creationist and got an MD with no issues.

    Deliberate ignorance and childhood indoctrination is a hard thing to shake.

  61. 61
    tim rowledge, Ersatz Haderach

    but they don’t seem to know what ‘brasiliensis‘ means

    Isn’t that where you shave the fur off all the animals to save some space (ever noticed how skinny a lot of furry critters are under all that magnificent waving furriness?) and reduce the problem of overcrowding causing heat prostration? And of course the hair would have been woven to make fabric for the observation balloon that was filled with hydrogen cracked from the methane by {insert magic here}.

    access to safe, reliable waste disposal/lighting/heating technology, but not enemas?

    With friends like BabbleGod who needs enemas?

  62. 62
    Rev. BigDumbChimp

    Heck, my sister is still a creationist and got an MD with no issues.

    So she went through all that science thinking the whole thing was rubbish?

  63. 63
    Rev. BigDumbChimp

    Speaking of creationism has everyone seen this Bill Nye Video?

    Evolution is the fundamental idea in all of life science, in all of biology. According to Bill Nye, aka “the science guy,” if grownups want to “deny evolution and live in your world that’s completely inconsistent with everything we observe in the universe, that’s fine, but don’t make your kids do it because we need them.”

  64. 64
    Menyambal

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/08/27/13506461-some-cosmic-crapshoot?lite

    The Rachel Maddow blog has an article about the the Creation Science Hall of Fame, and quotes the web site:

    We seek to educate those who would not otherwise know that “creationism,” as the public delights to call creation advocacy today …

    I like the persecution complex there.

  65. 65
    AlanMac

    @jasonnishiyama #11

    The thought that ships have just been heaving waste overboard for millennia didn’t occur to them?

    Since it is creationist dogma that the Earth is a closed system (2nd Law of Thermodynamic = no evolution), maybe they are claiming that the Ark was a Quantum ship and had to be kept sealed to prevent decoherence.

  66. 66
    Menyambal

    http://creationsciencehalloffame.org/

    The Creation Science Hall of Fame website is worth a look. They appear to have open comments …..

  67. 67
    Paul

    So she went through all that science thinking the whole thing was rubbish?

    How much of the MD curriculum do you think is counteracted by a shallow creationist understanding of the Bible*? kagekiri doesn’t explicitly say the sister was a literalist, but even if so most people have not read the Bible in detail, nor gone from reading specific passages to try and pin down all the possible logical implications from such. It’s trivial for most people to ignore most conflicts unless they have someone actively pointing them out to them.

    If I sound defensive it is not my intent, but I was considered a somewhat gifted student in High School and was nominally a literalist until probably some time in college (belief to disbelief was a rather gradual thing for me; hard to pick out a point where I passed over). I just never really focused on any place where there may be a contradiction. Learned the religious stuff in church, and school stuff in school.

    *Recall that creation being 6000 years ago is not in the Bible. It was an extra-biblical calculation performed some time ago. Also, many “literalists” subscribe to “day-age creationism”, so there is not even any challenge against evolution (unless one notes that the Biblical order doesn’t match with evolutionary evidence, which is something many people would never notice unless they took a particular interest in evolution and read Genesis very closely, when most people focus on the NT nowadays).

  68. 68
    Christoph Burschka

    So essentially they’re saying that the Ark, much like Answers in Genesis itself, was powered by compressed bullshit.

  69. 69
    Menyambal

    No, Noah could not just have shoveled the shit overboard. There were hundreds of millions of dead people floating around there. It would have been disrespectful.

  70. 70
    Larry

    Heck, my sister is still a creationist and got an MD with no issues.

    Scary thought, indeed! So she basically regurgitated all the science she was taught in her classes and tested on in her exams, knowing that she didn’t believe any of it.

    Please tell me she isn’t practicing medicine in the SF Bay Area so I don’t have to worry about inadvertently getting her as my doctor.

  71. 71
    Larry

    So, just like the internetz, Noah’s ark was run on a series of tubes?

  72. 72
    Dutchgirl

    How long before this is taught as biblical fact at sunday schools all over? While it is easy enough for us to laugh at this and break it apart, there are many people (and I have met them) who read this and go ‘oh, that kind of makes sense, I think little Johnny would be really interested in this’ and little Johnny, being 6, would think it was true.

  73. 73
    Lynna, OM

    Following up on the post @64

    Inductees [into the Creation Science Hall] include Leonardo da Vinci, George Washington Carver, Sir Isaac Newton and other famous scientists who, were they alive today, might very well have it another way.

    Still, squabbling among creationists over who is inducted into the Hall will not be tolerated.

    Ahem:

    We also expect all creationists to support this project collectively and without bias nor any regard to politics or past disagreements. True enough, many creationists do not agree with one another’s theories. But this will not determine who enters the Hall of Fame. We want our Lord to be proud of us and this project.

    Organizers hope the Hall will be up and running in five years, but they should be warned: the Creationist tourism business isn’t what it used to be. Only 280,000 people visited the Creation Museum last year — compare that to the 404,000 who took in the sights the first year it opened in 2007. Plus plans for a lavish Noah’s Ark theme park, also in Northern Kentucky, have slowed.

    Nonetheless, the Creation Science Hall of Fame’s convictions, like those of the Creation Museum, remain unshaken. Said a Hall of Fame spokesman:

    Certainly, it’s fair to say that we share with them the belief that we did not get here by accident or through some cosmic crapshoot.

    I guess it all depends on what you mean by “we” and “here.”

    Repeating the link: http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/08/27/13506461-some-cosmic-crapshoot

  74. 74
    dianepatyjewicz

    Found a major error on the page.

    Noah ark according to them was 4500 years ago. “The Ark was being designed about 4,450 years ago..”.

    The oldest wheel known however, was discovered in Mesopotamia and probably dates back to 3,500 B.C.
    Big difference.

  75. 75
    unclefrogy

    wel I do not have time just now to read all the posts and I’ll be damned if going to read a bunch of creationists crap but how do they supply all the food and water required for all the animals to eat so they can generate all this CH4? that would be a sizable pile just the hay
    just fantasy!

    uncle frogy

  76. 76
    Kagehi

    Snort.. Why not just suggest that the cartoon Titan A.E. is an accurate portrayal of how all the animals where actually loaded, and they only got the whole evil energy based space aliens and that it was a brand new planet wrong? It makes about as much sense as the bullshit these people are using to ‘illuminate’ the Ark.

  77. 77
    sockeyesalman

    Yes, God made all the critters as told in the Genesis creation stories. They were initially herded onto and assigned staterooms on Noah’s Ark. The poop digester worked just fine as did the methan-powered heating, cooling, cooking and lighting systems. Many of the animals on Noah’s ark, however, did not cooperate with the prescribed poop-handling procedures (they crapped all over the forecastle and the poopdeck) established by Noah, his wife and their sons (Shem, Ham and Japeth) and their wives. Therefore, Noah and his sons forced the non-compliant critters to “walk-the-plank.” These bad creatures all drowned and were subsequently buried in sediments and quickly fossilized. This fully explains why there are so many animals, especially the dinosaurs, became extinct. They were fossilized only 40 years after they were rapidly buried by sediments. Yeah, riiiiight!

  78. 78
    F [i'm not here, i'm gone]

    And then Gawd sent a Baywatch actor to find Noah’s ark, and to fall down the mountain.

  79. 79
    Stella

    jakc;

    If you’re going to make stuff up, why not just say all the animals hibernated for the entire voyage?

    I’ve actually heard creationists make this claim.

  80. 80
    radpumpkin

    I’m half tempted to write a nice rebuttal involving lots of equations for this hilarious pile of tripe, but I’m kinda busy with real world stuff. So instead I’ll explain in simple terms what would happen if an open flame were placed next to a pipe carrying a flammable gas from a very high concentration to an oxygen rich environment. Due to the mechanics of this hilarious Flinstone-esque setup, the pressure of the methane inside the pipe cannot exceed ambient pressure by any significant amount. Secondly, no long term storage at high pressure is possible due to the building materials supposedly involved. Ergo, only continuous venting is possible.

    Light candle.
    3..
    2..
    BOOM!

    Another spectacular fail by AiG and the shit-for-brains brigade!

  81. 81
    sockeyesalman

    I forgot to mention that the dinosaurs had to be punished (made extinct) ‘cuz they wouldn’t stop preying on the good mammals and birds.

  82. 82
    hypatiasdaughter

    #77 sockeyesalman

    They were fossilized only 40 years after they were rapidly buried by sediments. Yeah, riiiiight!

    There is an average 1/2 mile of sediment on the Earth. Where did it come from? Did the primary rock get eroded by the flud – enough to create and then deposit 1/2 mile of sediment in less than a year?
    All plants would not only would have been soaked on water for a year but buried under a 1/2 mile of silt. How could any animal from the ark even have walked around with that much soft sucking silt on the ground?
    How long does it take sediment, lifted to the mountain tops (and full of future fossils), to turn into stone, with no heat or pressure to help the process along? How long does it take for a bone to completely fossilize?
    And where did the pitch that was used to seal the ark come from? Pitch, or tar, is a petroleum product, like coal, gas and oil, that was made BY the flud burying plant life (according to most creationists). T’weren’t any around BEFORE the flud…..

  83. 83
    robro

    jakc:

    If you’re going to make stuff up, why not just say all the animals hibernated for the entire voyage?

    Perhaps old Noah’s constant praying and sermonizing bored the animals into a deep sleep. But hey, when you’re rationalizing a world-wide flood caused by God, why not just postulate that “God did it. End of story.” Of course, if God was doing all these miracles, why not wipe out all the bad people except Noah and company without all that messy flood business and having to save animals. Or even better, with just a simple flick of his magic wand, the G-man should have been able to change all the sinners into righteous believers.

  84. 84
    F [i'm not here, i'm gone]

    hypatiasdaughter

    Actually, a lot of pitches and tars are plant resins. But I wouldn’t put it past a creationist to claim both that Noah used petroleum products, and that petroleum was formed after the phlud.

  85. 85
    pointinline

    Methane has a density of 1.013, compared to air with a density of 1. It is heavier than air, not lighter

  86. 86
    Zinc Avenger (Sarcasm Tags 3.0 Compliant)

    So if you take the Ark as a truth and insert any technology required to make it work (regardless of possibility or accuracy) you might as well say that Noah preserved embryos of every species in cryogenic sleep pods, that the Ark was supported by structural integrity fields, and Noah and his family were sustained by replicators making food and drink…

  87. 87
    Ring Tailed Lemurian

    Heh, I was reading Genesis just yesterday.
    And I worked out where yetis come from.

    Genesis 6:4 “There were giants in those days …”
    Genesis 7:20 “Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains were covered”. This supposedly means that the flood reached “only” 15 cubits (about 20 feet) above the top of Everest. No problem for a giant, surely? No lack of oxygen, being at sea level, and lots to eat floating about.

    Of couse, they’ve degenerated since (like everything) and now they’re only about 6 foot tall.

  88. 88
    Doug Little

    I guess god has a sense of humor after all. I could just see the conversation between him and Noah when god is explaining how to build the methane generator while Noah sits there quietly trying to interject that such a system will basically turn the arc into a massive ticking time bomb, but not wanting to bring the wrath of god down on him he begrudgingly agrees to do it.

    Later after the arc explodes and the waters subside god just re-populates the world with the animals in their correct spots, but he keeps this embarrassing mistake out of his history book.

  89. 89
    jimnorth

    pointinline – you got your densities wrong. Air is around 1.2 g/mL; methane about 0.668 g/mL at 25 C and 1 atmosphere pressure. (source – I teach college chemistry … And google)

    Therefore, methane floats on air. (density is not the same as weight, no heavier or lighter than comparisons allowed in my class when speaking of densities)

  90. 90
    Ragutis

    The people making jokes about the ark being destroyed in a methane explosion are overlooking that this in fact could help explain the dispersal of species post-flood.

  91. 91
    ChristineRose

    When I was a little God-botlet I used to try and work through this stuff but my train of thought always ran off the cliff of “Why didn’t the all-powerful being just smite everyone (humanely) dead?”

  92. 92
    Naked Bunny with a Whip

    Every desperate attempt to rationalize the Ark myth is another indication that even the supposed believers don’t buy it.

  93. 93
    Paul

    When I was a little God-botlet I used to try and work through this stuff but my train of thought always ran off the cliff of “Why didn’t the all-powerful being just smite everyone (humanely) dead?”

    It’s not adequate punishment if it’s humane.

    Also, because of all the wickedness, God decided to empty the water barrier that was around the earth (recall the firmament separating the waters above from the waters below), which had been to that point artificially acting like an ozone layer on steroids prolonging lifespans (which is why “dinosaurs” existed, they were just normal lizards and lizards never stop growing, and also explaining how Methuselah and everyone else in the Bible got so old).

    At least, that’s what I was taught in youth group.

  94. 94
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Air is around 1.2 g/mL; methane about 0.668 g/mL at 25 C and 1 atmosphere pressure. (source – I teach college chemistry … And google)

    Since water is 1.0000 g/mL at 4 degrees C, I think your densities are off quite a bit. After all, 16 g of methane at STP occupies 22.4 L.

  95. 95
    Paul

    I think your densities are off quite a bit.

    That methane value would be correct in kilograms per cubic meter. It’s left as an exercise for the reader to determine where he goes wrong.

  96. 96
    echidna

    Paul,

    That methane value would be correct in kilograms per cubic meter. It’s left as an exercise for the reader to determine where he goes wrong.

    No, that’s not true. That methane value would NOT be correct in kilograms per cubic meter. In the metric system, the digits say the same as you change units, only the powers of 10 change. I expect pointinline got his figure from wikianswers, which gives the wrong value.

  97. 97
    chigau (違う)

    tim rowledge #61
    …brazilian…
    …fur removal…
    har!

  98. 98
    Grimalkin

    God either genetically re-engineered them while on the ark to have fingers and human-like intelligence

    And lo, furries.

    I guess I shouldn’t be, but I am still surprised that actual adults, with IQs above room-temperature level, in some cases reasonably well educated, really seem to believe in the literal truth of the Flood and Ark story. It’s exactly the same as believing in Santa Claus in adulthood.

    I’ve heard before (And I’m not sure from where or whether this is truly reliable) that people with higher IQs are are very good at rationalizing delusions as opposed to just dismissing them as you would think. So while very intelligent Creationists certainly aren’t really rational, their high intelligence is helping them to create more explanations that seem rational to them.

    …of course, I’m putting this particular rationalization under “Too many methane fumes” as opposed to being crafted by an intelligent person desperately trying to delude themselves, but as an explanation for intelligent creationists in general it makes sense to me.

    Anyways, if Noah was so brilliant at utilizing his animals to create energy-generating technologies unknown to anyone else at the time, he wouldn’t have stopped at poopfumes. Clearly he would have given every animal a hamster wheel hooked up to a dynamo and used the resulting electricity to power the ship.

    Then god sends him a laptop and he doesn’t notice the rising mountain of poop for the entire forty days.

  99. 99
    kagekiri

    @62:

    Yeah, it’s pretty much as Paul said. She was already iffy on the fundamentalism/literalism going into college, but you can pretty easily compartmentalize/ignore creation/Old Testament problems or inconsistencies; you just assume since people are scientists and believers, someone must have figured it out already. It’s basically trusting the wrong authorities about things you’re not an expert on.

    Understanding biological systems didn’t make me more atheist, because I ultimately attributed the wonders and intricacies to God, whether or not evolution was involved. So I believed both biology/medicine and the Bible. I assume she was/is the same. There’s so little science is in the Bible that you can still easily shove God into scientific gaps, like just make him the source of biogenesis.

    As for her “believing means she’s a crap doctor”, she’s anti-woo, pro-vaccination, doesn’t rely on prayer alone or even primarily, etc, so it hasn’t affected her ability to be a good doctor at all. And she’s not getting a degree to use it FOR creationist ends or anything dishonest like that.

  100. 100
    PaulJ

    I think you’ll find the Bible states that the Ark was powered by cold fusion and lit by laser beams distributed via fibre-optic cable. (There may some disagreement about this, but scriptural translation can be tricky….)

  101. 101
    moarscienceplz

    Jimnorth’s (#89) values would be correct if his units were g/L rather than g/mL.

    I wonder how many times he’s chewed out a student for not checking his units carefully. Too bad we don’t know where he teaches. ;-)

  102. 102
    vaiyt

    Humans are not rational creatures, they’re ratonalizing creatures. They’re good at finding answers, but they’re way way way better to find justifications for the answers they already made up.

  103. 103
    vaiyt

    @me, 102:
    *at finding justifications…

  104. 104
    echidna

    Ah, Paul, clearly I goofed thinking you were talking about pointinline rather than Jim North.

  105. 105
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Dim lights powered by bullshit. That’s creationism for you!

    Sorta makes sense.
    Creationism is powered by bullshit.

  106. 106
    Kel

    Imaginary solutions to imaginary problems. It’s instances like this that remind me that The Courtier’s Reply is greatly under-appreciated.

  107. 107
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    When I was a little God-botlet I used to try and work through this stuff but my train of thought always ran off the cliff of “Why didn’t the all-powerful being just smite everyone (humanely) dead?”

    Or why-in HIS infinite perfection-did he not get humanity right the first go ’round?
    Is he new this whole omnipotence thing?
    I see the problem [forgive me the following sexist stereotype-which I do not believe is true, except in my case]:
    God, being a male, doesn’t read instruction manuals. He created humanity without knowing what he was doing and screwed things up. Then he got mad a few times and instead of hitting the blue reset button, he hit the red genocide button. Then he promised not to do it again. Guess he figured the whole ‘killing myself/my son in an act of human sacrifice/suicide’ was the best way to help out his wayward widdle creatures.

  108. 108
    DLC

    Excuse me, Parson, but . . . why not just shovel the shit overboard ?

    Excuse me, Parson, but how do you provide feed for those animals, two of each kind ? What do the Tigers eat ? How about the snails ?
    The Zebras ? What happens, oh Parson, if one of the horses happens to have it’s way, so to speak, with one of the Zebras ?
    Parson ?

    Oh Dear. the Parson seems to have fainted.

    /pearlclutch.

  109. 109
    Lofty

    Explains why the high church is known as “bells and smells” by the low church, they’ve been using cowbells on their herd and incense to mask the smell of their presence since, oh, elebny BC or so.

  110. 110
    jimnorth

    I stand corrected. kg/m3. I blame the drinking. and the iPad. too used to solids and liquids. heh.

    The values are close to correct. and my students love me.

  111. 111
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Excuse me, Parson, but how do you provide feed for those animals, two of each kind ? What do the Tigers eat ? How about the snails ?
    The Zebras ? What happens, oh Parson, if one of the horses happens to have it’s way, so to speak, with one of the Zebras ?
    Parson ?

    There was no need to worry about feeding the animals. They were in cryo sleep the whole 40…errr, 150 days.

  112. 112
    Nes

    When talking about the ark, everyone seems to forget that the whole ordeal lasted a year, not 40 days. The 40 days is just how long it rained. It started when Noah was 600, on the 17th day of the second month (Gen 7:11), and all of the flooding had dried up (and they actually left the ark) when Noah was 601, on the 27th day of the second month (Gen 8:13-14). I think that the 150 days is just how long the mountains were covered, but it’s not entirely clear.

    Not that any of it is true, of course, but it just makes it that much more absurd when you’re more accurate about just how long it supposedly lasted.

  113. 113
    chigau (違う)

    Everything was vegetarian before the Flood.

  114. 114
    Paul Coddington

    Feeding the animals a problem? Have you not seen the goat in Futurama?

    “What do you feed it?”

    “Whatever comes out one end we feed to the other!”

    “Also, Indian food.”

    Problem solved.

  115. 115
    grumpyoldfart

    Millions of American Creationists will believe that story.

  116. 116
    Suido

    I’m sorry, I seem to have forgotten… when did we discover the existence of bacteria? That discovery would seem to be integral to this ‘simple’ solution, and yet I think bacteria was discovered somewhat after Noah’s time. Probably even after Jesus’ time…

    I guess we could look through the bible until we find enough letters to make an anagram of the word, that would prove everything.

    PS 10 seconds on google tells me 1674. That’s CE, not BCE, in case you were wondering. :P

  117. 117
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Nes:
    Let there be no doubt how long the flood lasted. We shall consult the Good Book:

    Genesis 7:17
    And the flood was forty days upon the earth.
    Genesis 7:24
    And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.
    Genesis 8:3
    And the waters returned from off the earth continually: and after the end of the one hundred and fifty days the waters were abated

    http://www.skepticsannotatedbible.com/contra/flood.html

    See, no doubt there. Nope. No confusion at all. It’s clear for all to see.

    /the above absurdity doesn’t just make my eyes roll, it makes my head bobble

  118. 118
    johnmarley

    Methane has a density of 1.013, compared to air with a density of 1. It is heavier than air, not lighter

    Hammy has postulated an airtight container (make of bronze, I assume. The babble doesn’t mention Noah’s mad brazing skillz). As long as the entire system was completely airtight (how likely is that with wooden pipes and natural rubber seals? Even if Noah had access to rubber.), methane would flow to the pipe outlets. Any leaks in the system (letting methane escape to pool in the bottom of the arc and letting air into the system) would cause… let’s call it catastrophic failure.

  119. 119
    eleutheria

    “Gaslight illumination” on the ark …

    … because, on an entirely wooden ship, what’s not to like about numerous, continuous open flames?

  120. 120
    Ing

    So how many rungs down the ladder is this from an ancient astronaut theory?

  121. 121
    WhiteHatLurker

    That’s an awful lot of methane for two bacteria to produce.

    (Methane producing bacteria would be a kind of animal, right?)

  122. 122
    Menyambal

    Speaking of the ark, what was with Noah’s sons and their wives? Did they have kids before they got on the ark? If not, how not? What about while on the ark? Did they not boink, or did God provide birth control?

  123. 123
    jayray

    Forget the steampunk invention. Ken Ham doesn’t appear to realize that with this article, AIG has solved the problem of free swill!

  124. 124
    Rey Fox

    Somebody better mention Kent Hovind or Ken Ham so that his minions descend upon this post and try to defend the Bullshit Engine.

  125. 125
    josephnobles

    How was the satellite TV reception?

  126. 126
    theophontes (恶六六六缓步动物)

    @ Ken Ham ¹

    Methane digesters are actually really easy to make. You essentially need a drum, open at the bottom, that fits into a slightly larger diameter drum with its opening on the top. You pour water into the gap to make a seal. Other than that, one just needs an outlet pipe and a feed pipe through the top of the inner drum (the feed pipe is longer to reach below the water level in the digester. All one needs do is feed the digester with animal poop and ensure the water remains sufficient to ensure a seal. Gas pressure is controlled by placing weights on the digester.

    One does not need reeds and Hevea brasiliensses (I would strongly advise against this). All the pipework can be made in clay, with joints sealed with bitumen (which the lands around were famous for). The drums could be made with clay, wood or bronze.

    For the love of GAWD ™ make sure that no condoms or animal fur (from the “Brazilians”) gets into the system – digesters are hell to clean.


    ¹ I am hoping Ken Ham² takes notes of all the suggestions I make wrt the Ark. He really could build a digester on his boat. I don’t advise it though – they should be buried externally and well ventilated. (Even though they are fairly safe.)
    ² Ken, if you are reading this, I am more than happy to help³ you with the design of low-tech historically “believable” solutions to such issues. How about a gravity-driven, fluidised bed, water purification system? (You can’t just drink seawater you know… recycle!)
    ³ Obviously my fees will be extortionary.

  127. 127
    rwgate

    If they could figure out how to string together bamboo to make pipes, why couldn’t they figure out how to make a catheter, thereby eliminating the problem of waste disposal by going direct? Of course there might be a problem trying to pop a cork into a dinosaur’s ass.

    One of my favorite pieces on Noah’s Ark is a fairly long narrative, designed to please a scientists heart. I hope this link is still active: http://www.grahamkendall.net/Unsorted_files-1/A130-Noah_Ark.txt. A better discussion of Noah’s Ark I’ve never seen.

    Does anyone remember Bill Cosby’s riff on Noah? When Noah finally rebels against god and goes off on a rant, God pulls him up short:

    God: NOAH!!

    Noah: Whaaat!

    God: How long can you tread water?

  128. 128
    theophontes (恶六六六缓步动物)

    Animal methane: Cowfire.

    It is not just the digester that is a fire hazard!

  129. 129
    Colin J

    Speaking of the ark, what was with Noah’s sons and their wives? Did they have kids before they got on the ark? If not, how not?

    Silly Menyambal. Didn’t you read the original post? It’s been proven that Noah’s people had latex.

    Condoms didn’t become sinful until Catholic days – long after Noah’s time.

  130. 130
    Amphiox

    If they could figure out how to string together bamboo to make pipes

    The bamboo having been hand delivered by the pair of pandas, seeing as it isn’t native to the middle-east.

  131. 131
    rwgate

    Well, apparently the Graham Kendall site is gone. Unfortunate as I can’t find my copy of the great article on Noah’s Ark. Does anybody know where it can be found?

  132. 132
    theophontes (恶六六六缓步动物)

    @ Amphiox

    The bamboo having been hand delivered by the pair of pandas, seeing as it isn’t native to the middle-east.

    Eek no!

    There is a lot of bamboo in Africa. (I’ve built a 45m suspension bridge with the stuff!)

    Noah could easily have placed a large order of Oxytenanthera abyssinica and had it floated down the Nile. This could then be towed (interestingly, a lot of freight was towed along the coast of the Levant in the good old days, it wasn’t just ships, but also a very large number of towed barges and rafts – most of Egypt’s supplies of lumber arrived along the same route in such a manner – but in the opposite direction to Noah’s bamboo supply route, of course…) to the Palestinian coast and then brought onto site by mule caravans. Logistically no biggy.

  133. 133
    pointinline

    Jimnorth “Air is around 1.2 g/mL” Are you sure? I thought water only had a density of 1, so according to your figures air is denser than water. My figures came from a google source in which air was standardised as 1 and the methane figure is relative to it.

  134. 134
    pointinline

    From what I remember of my A level physics only two gases are less dense than air, Hydrogen, and Helium. Don’t wish to be rude Jim but if you’re a teacher I’m glad my kids are home ed.

  135. 135
    blf

    only two gases are less dense than air, Hydrogen, and Helium.

    A quick check also finds Ammonia, Coal gas, Methane, Natural gas, and Water Vapor (steam) as having listed densities less than air at either STP or NTP. Also Neon and Hot Air.

  136. 136
    Nick Gotts

    pointinline,

    Evidently you don’t remember your A level physics very well. The density of dry air is 1.293 grams per liter at 0° Celsius at average sea level barometric pressure (i.e. at standard temperature and pressure, STP). The density of methane is .717 grams per liter at STP. Among other common gases, the density of ammonia is also considerably less than that of air at STP. So is that of neon. See here.

  137. 137
    bcskeptic

    Angels dancing on the head of a pin…what a bunch of stupid wankers sitting around speculating about stupid fairy tales.

    The obvious question is why the creator of the Universe would have to go through all this nonsense when, with one fell swoop of his/its hand, he could just erase it all and start over. Oh, right, it’s because it’s all a bronze age myth with events and possibilities limited by bronze age thinking. Duh.

  138. 138
    davem

    That’s an awful lot of methane for two bacteria to produce.

    (Methane producing bacteria would be a kind of animal, right?)

    Ah, yes, but it would be a ‘clean’ animal, since it’s hooves were not of the unapproved variety, so there would have been 7 of them. (Mr Ham seems to have forgotten that minor detail – he needs to multiply some of his digesters by 3.5). After 150 days, 7 bacteria could have turned into squillions. Big question of the day is: did Noah then only allow 7 of them off the boat, or did they eat it afterwards, thus explaining its disappearance?

  139. 139
    Owlmirror

    Well, apparently the Graham Kendall site is gone. Unfortunate as I can’t find my copy of the great article on Noah’s Ark. Does anybody know where it can be found?

    When a site disappears, the first place to check is the Internet Archive.

    Thus, Voila!

    http://web.archive.org/web/20081122004405/http://www.grahamkendall.net/Unsorted_files-1/A130-Noah_Ark.txt

  140. 140
    Menyambal

    A quick check also finds Ammonia, Coal gas, Methane, Natural gas,

    I once stumbled across an old book titled “Balloon and Airship Gasses”. I sat there in the back of that library and read the whole thing. Now, it’s just a click on the internet …

  141. 141
    David Marjanović

    Collection of all teh win:

    Dim lights powered by bullshit. That’s creationism for you!

    With friends like BabbleGod who needs enemas?

    No, Noah could not just have shoveled the shit overboard. There were hundreds of millions of dead people floating around there. It would have been disrespectful.

    So, just like the internetz, Noah’s ark was run on a series of tubes?

    Perhaps old Noah’s constant praying and sermonizing bored the animals into a deep sleep.

    structural integrity fields

    The people making jokes about the ark being destroyed in a methane explosion are overlooking that this in fact could help explain the dispersal of species post-flood.

    Then god sends him a laptop and he doesn’t notice the rising mountain of poop for the entire forty days.

    Forget the steampunk invention. Ken Ham doesn’t appear to realize that with this article, AIG has solved the problem of free swill!

    Somebody better mention Kent Hovind or Ken Ham so that his minions descend upon this post and try to defend the Bullshit Engine.

    The bamboo having been hand delivered by the pair of pandas, seeing as it isn’t native to the middle-east.

    ░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░

    God, being a male, doesn’t read instruction manuals. He created humanity without knowing what he was doing and screwed things up.

    That’s pretty much it.

    two of each kind

    No, two of each kind and two of every treyf, fourteen of every kosher kind, at the same time.

    the whole 40…errr, 150 days

    No, both at the same time, see comment 117.

    Everything was vegetarian before the Flood.

    No, before the Fall.

    Well, apparently the Graham Kendall site is gone.

    It’s all still in Google, so I hope it’s temporary.

    But anyway, I found it elsewhere! Praise Google!!!

    average sea level barometric pressure

    1013 hPa, where 1 Pa is the pressure of 1 N/m².

    Among other common gases, the density of

    Even pure nitrogen is slightly less dense than air (a mixture of nitrogen with some oxygen, basically). Pure oxygen, of course, is slightly more dense.

    Ah, yes, but it would be a ‘clean’ animal, since it’s hooves were not of the unapproved variety, so there would have been 7 of them.

    Nonono: 7 pairs – 7 male, 7 female.

    Which could be a problem. I’m just saying.

  142. 142
    allytude

    I just cleaned out my single kitty’s offerings from his litterbox. If Noah’s animals produced waste in the same quantities as this cat does, the worlds energy problems would be over forever and ever. On a related thought, I wonder if they have ever seen elephant poop- just like horse poop only loads more…….

  143. 143
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    @142:
    Between my roommates and I, we have 3 dogs and 4 cats. Cleaning up the poop is an ongoing, annoying and smelly task. I would *not* want to be in that damn Ark for 2 minutes, let alone however many days Noah and co. were stuck in there.
    BTW, what did they eat while they were onboard? I’m guessing the animals were off limits.

  144. 144
    NitricAcid

    C’mon, people- PV=nRT (pronounced “pivnert!”) rearranges to d=MRT/P. The density of any gas is directly proportional to its molar mass. The effective molar mass of air is a weighted average of its components, mostly nitrogen (M = 28 g/mol) and oxygen (M = 32 g/mol). If we call it 28.5 g/mol, you can find lots of gases lighter than that- not only hydrogen and helium (don’t capitalize the names of elements or compounds; they’re not people), but also water vapour (18 g/mol), methane (16 g/mol), neon (20 g/mol), carbon monoxide (28 g/mol) hydrogen fluoride (20 g/mol) hydrogen cyanide (28 g/mol), acetylene (26 g/mol), diborane (27.6 g/mol), ammonia (17 g/mol)…

    Admittedly, some of these are “just barely”.

  145. 145
    rafaelruiz

    Noah’s Ark is a true story, I have just found the helm yesterday in Xochimilco Lake…

  146. 146
    Nes

    Tony @ #117,

    Sorry for the late reply, got busy at work.

    I see now where the confusion arises, though it seems to be a matter of how it’s translated. The version of the Bible that I looked at said 40 days of rain, though the 150 days was still something along the lines of the earth being covered in water (though the context around it seems to indicate that it meant completely submerged, as opposed to partial flooding). I’m hardly a biblical scholar, so I wouldn’t know which is the more accurate translation.

    In any case, I still think it’s best to go with the year-long voyage, simply because it makes all of the issues that they would need to deal with that much more absurd. :-)

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