This is not what scientists do


Say you’ve discovered something you think is really neat-o. You decide to submit an abstract of your discovery to an unrefereed meeting.

So far, so good. This is something scientists do all the time, and then they get together and discuss and criticize.

Here’s the additional step you take if you’re a crackpot: you buy an advertisement in the Washington Post, announcing that you’ve overthrown all of physics in favor of a Seventh Day Adventist literal interpretation of the book of Genesis, and that pandemonium among big bang cosmologists is soon to come over this discovery, because the world will soon recognize the greatest cover-up ever conceived by physicists.

As a bonus, you also announce that you’ve discovered the location of God’s Throne.

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Searching for love in all the wrong places


Greta Christina does a marvelous job of rebuking American Atheists for their presence at CPAC. I agree completely with it. Go read it.

Nick Fish of American Atheists does a very good job of replying. In particular, he tries to put their efforts in a different light.

I want to clarify one thing right out of the gates: American Atheists did not attend CPAC with the purpose of “recruiting” conservatives into the broader atheist community. This is a misconception that I have seen repeated on Twitter, in the blogs, and in person. That this needed be clarified is likely a failure to clearly articulate it on our side. So, we’ll take our licks there.

It is much more accurate to say that we were there to empower atheists who already exist within the conservative community to be more vocal about their opposition to the theocratic elements of Republican Party orthodoxy.

Good try. Falls apart with a moment’s thought.

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There go my plans for creating an atheist thinky-tank


I had it all planned out. I was gonna get a spiffy name — how about the “Establishment Atheist Establishment”? — and a website, and then I was going to sign up my cat as the first member, because she’s a cat and an atheist and everyone loves cats and she’s evil, and then I was going to put my zebrafish on the roster to pad it out, and then with all those credentials established, I was going to lecture everyone else from my lofty perch on how to be a True Atheist™…

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Creationists ♥ Hitler

I thought Expelled was the king of creationist Godwins, but a new challenger has stepped forward: a biography titled “Kent Hovind : An Atheist’s Worst Nightmare”. The trailer has to bee seen to be believed: it’s all Hitler, interleaved with shots of Obama (what?) and George W. Bush (double what?). HE EXPOSED THE LIES OF ATHEISM AND EVOLUTION. HE IS IN PRISON FOR PREACHING THE TRUTH. HE OBEYED ALL LAWS AND THEY STILL THROUGH [sic] HIM IN PRISON. Shrill music. Hitler Hitler Hitler.

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Cody Carson is an inventor, and he’s also one of those weird fundamentalists who believes in that load of unbiblical nonsense that is the Rapture (this is not to imply that if it were Biblical, it wouldn’t be nonsense). He has invented a device to detect when Christians magically disappear.

A Spring Clamp Switch was the type of vanishing sensor I built to demonstrate a working model of a Rapture Alarm in a demonstration given to a church congregation a few years ago. I used this type because it is easy to understand and can be built for less than $7. I purchased a medium size spring clamp and a pull chain switch from a local home center. I then drilled two holes in the handle of the clamp. I mounted the switch in one hole and mounted the pull chain in the other hole. Squeezing the clamp once cocked the switch. Releasing the handles cause the chain to be pulled, thus activating the switch. I then hooked the switch up to a light and placed the clamp onto a broom handle. When I snatched the broom handle out of the clamp, the light came on. When mounted to an arm or leg of a deceased Christian, the sensor would activate when the body vanishes, thus detecting the rapture.

In my demonstration, I clamped the sensor to a cow’s leg bone to represent a bone surgically removed from a Christian organ donor. This was to demonstrate that rapture related devises could be constructed in controlled lab settings and would not require the use of a grave or tomb. That sensor was wired to a computer tower and when the bone was removed from the clamp, the congregation heard an audible alarm.

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What did leopard seals eat before the Fall?

Ken Ham is such a disappointment. He has this regular series of short radio-style bits of apologetics, and they are dreary and boring. I had hopes for this one, about “Carnivores Before the Fall (Leopard Seals)” — I expected some juicy stories about what these big, large-fanged predators ate before the Fall. This, for example, is what a leopard seal looks like before it bites your face off. (But don’t worry, there are very few examples of them attacking people.)


Big, hungry, sharp-toothed animals — what did they eat if all animals were vegetarians, once upon a time? Let’s ask Ken Ham!

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