Creationism means never having to admit you know nothing, but you still get to pretend to be an expert

The core value of creation science is dishonesty. I was reminded of this yet again by an account by Todd Feeley of a RATE conference. RATE means “Radioisotopes and the Age of The Earth”, and they are an excuse for creationist frauds to get together and spout off misleading pseudoscientific babble to a gullible audience. There’s always trouble when someone who is not gullible and actually knows something about a subject attends, as in this case. Feeley asks the organizer a question:

I asked why no recognized experts on radiometric dating were
invited to participate in the conference, given that none of the
speakers had any training or experience in experimental
geochronology. He was candid enough to admit that they would
have liked to included one on the team, but there are no young-
earth geochronologists in the world.

Umm, duh?

These conferences have no competent qualified speakers; in fact, they always have the same tired old crackpots (Humphreys, Baumgardner, Snelling) saying exactly the same falsehoods over and over. These guys are in the business of selling humbug, and when you see their names you should simply ignore their work — it’s laced with lies.

Here’s another revealing moment: bogus data.

I also told him that he had a problem because the core
sample he showed in his talk from where his zircons were
separated was clearly a gneiss and not a granodiorite (‘with
schist veins through it’), as he claimed. I could see this from the
back row, as could the undergraduate geology students in

I don’t know schist and I can’t tell my gneiss from a hole in the ground, and I wouldn’t have been able to recognize these rocks if they were flashed at me on a screen; I do know that you shouldn’t confuse igneous with metamorphic rocks if you’re trying to date them, and that fudging your observations that badly means your whole argument is crap.

I’m reminded of the time a creationist tried to invite me to a creationist geology talk — that would have been a waste of effor. Expertise is real and it matters, and I have none in geology at all … but I do have a Ph.D. I’m sure my glazed-eyed bafflement at what any geologist would have recognized as truly stupid mistakes would have been taken as an affirmation, and that’s exactly what they want, to confuse their audiences and declare victory. They win when we’re all as ignorant as they are.


  1. says

    …but there are no young- earth geochronologists in the world.

    Man, this part REALLY cracked me up…
    Ever wonder why that is, Sparky?…

  2. says

    And having experts at a creationist seminar is the best way to have good fun!

    A local presentation here in Dumbfuckistan, I mean, Kansas, as described here was particularly amusing, as we had a nuclear chemist, a few of his PhD students, at least one biologist, physicist, and a paleontolgy professor. It was quite the show.

    Needless to say, when all of us continued to come to every presentation they had at WSU and every time we hammered them on their complete lack of knowledge, they gave up after the third meeting (or they stopped advertising).


  3. Mooser says

    You use the term “creation science”. Wouldn’t it be better to never use the words “creation” and “science” together without the word “hoax”?

    As in “creation science hoax”

  4. says

    Ignorance, I guess, is the sort of starry-eyed bliss that comes from knowing your soul is saved for all of eternity to the power of infinity and therefore must be protected at all costs.

  5. llewelly says

    ..but there are no young- earth geochronologists in the world.
    Man, this part REALLY cracked me up…
    Ever wonder why that is, Sparky?…

    They all died 4,499,994,000 years ago?

  6. Jim Baerg says

    I might have known the creationists would take too much for granite. (& we know that’s not gneiss)

    I suppose if creationist were studying seabirds they would take too much for gannet.

  7. Alex says

    OK, fine.

    …”I do know that you shouldn’t confuse igneous with metamorphic rocks if you’re trying to date them…”

    So you’re saying that someone who confuses igneous with metamorphic rocks is being disenignious?

    Sorry, it was beckoning.

  8. says

    Anyone who attributes the slightest amount of moral integrity to creationists is being too magma-nimous. Everything they say is wrapped in a mantle of lies with a thin crust of false piety; at the center lies a core of ugliness.

    Anything which feeds their authoritarian power fantasies is fair game. They’ll even insist that a circle’s circumference divided by its diameter is exactly three, thanks entirely to Second Kings — and we all know the value of pyrite.

  9. VJB says

    Do you remember geology punch…a sink-full of lab alcohol, a can of frozen Hawaiian punch concentrate, and a block of dry ice? Goes down like a geosyncline, hits you like a rockpick.

  10. jimmiraybob says

    — and we all know the value of pyrite.

    Well, let’s just hope – for the sake of the children – that we can get this properly ironed out and that we don’t have to sulfide through endless debate.

    I believe that we should all turn to diaGenesis for the one true answer.

  11. says

    I’ve got too much on my plate to be spending my time inventing more of these puns, if you get my drift. . . . But there’s that ever-present temptation to go in deep — see, venting isn’t always healthy!

  12. says

    Uh-oh. A pun series — is this place turning into now?

    More like Eschaton…. they know that punning schist isn’t gneiss, but they can’t seem to help themselves.

  13. MikeM says

    My family and I went to Zion over spring break. So, let’s see, in 2005, Death Valley; 2006, Grand Canyon; 2007, Zion.

    Anyone who thinks these features were created as a result of Noah’s flood, well, they have rocks in their heads.

    I’m rarely this subtle.

    The observation about “no young-earth geochronologists” is really on the mark. You really, really have to utilize twisted logic to think Death Valley, Grand Canyon and Zion could have been created in a short period of time (and yes, I know that Grand Canyon is a relative baby, but come on, 40 days and 40 nights?).

    I would urge creationists to get out in the world and actually observe. Then be honest with yourself and try to answer these questions:

    1) Where’d the water from Noah’s Flood come from?

    2) Where’d it go?

  14. says

    I fissure we’ll go too far with these puns pretty soon….just as soon as someone does something cute and witty with limestone, like cracking that its a very holy rock or something.

  15. Kseniya says

    Q: Where in Geriatrics will you find the Depends?

    A: On the incontinental shelf!

  16. Elf Eye says

    My Tethys hurt from trying to clamp my mouth shut to keep from laughing out loud. I hope it’s not Permiant.

  17. xebecs says

    — and we all know the value of pyrite.

    Now, now. It’s much too early in the year for Talk Like A Pyrite Day.

  18. Steve_C (Secular Elitist) FCD says


    I seem


    I’ve seemed to have found myself…

    I really am trying to work on my speed editing.

  19. Carlie says

    Oh, come on, it would be un-seamly not to join in – dont’ be a nonconformist!

  20. Thinker says

    But is there really any objective truth in this geology stuff – isn’t all just in the gneiss of the beholder?

  21. Carlie says

    Augh – couldn’t fix my typo quickly enough. I need to alluviate my typing difficulties or I won’t get many fans.

  22. says

    Thinker, don’t put the karst before the horst.

    (@ Rich – burn me if you can! Burn me, I dare you! Anti-woo shimmy witch says Bring It On!)

  23. jimmiraybob says

    Through no fault of my own, I refuse to participate in this foolishness.
    Posted by: Zeno

    Shear madness I tells ya! Not normal atoll.

  24. Stephen Wells says

    I’m strongly disynclined to deposit any contribution to what seams to be nothing but a geological series.

  25. says

    Okay! Okay! I think we’ve all had enough pumice-ment for today. We should all just start over with some clean slate. You know, bauxite up and store it in the basement.

  26. J-Dog Joel says

    Kristine – It may sound funny, but your shimmy is still rock and roll to me.

  27. Thinker says

    Kristine: I guess it’s alright to love geology, at least if it’s purely plutonic…

  28. says

    Is John Wilkins feeling okay? It’s not like him to leave a pun cascade like this alone for so long, so I hope he’s not ill.

  29. RavenT says

    I need to alluviate my typing difficulties or I won’t get many fans.

    Don’t be siliCa rlie; we still lava you.

  30. Foggg says

    Wilkins’ still suffering the effects of deciding to plagioclase feldspar with Harter.

  31. Ken Mareld says

    Ow, Ow, Ow! That made my teeth hurt. I pumice not to tell anyone what this thread has metamorphed into.


  32. Floyd Carinci says

    Best thread I’ve read in a loooong while, my coworkers complained of my loud laughing!!!

  33. stogoe says

    I’m not going to tell the one about the glacial surge and the flow cleavage. It’s just not appropriate. I can’t a-fjord to.

  34. Kseniya says

    Ok, enough is enough. I’m going to go back outside and enjoy the beautiful weather before we get moraine. Later, I’ll be going to a French restaurant for some eskargot, then it’s off to see the Cirque de Varve, which features exotic music played entirely in the Eolian mode. My date will be former Red Sox hurler and part-time rock guitarist Bronson Arroyo. I can’t wait!

  35. BlueIndependent says

    “He was candid enough to admit that they would have liked to included one on the team, but there are no young- earth geochronologists in the world.”

    Ahh, bask in that lucid yet ignorant, undetected revelation of true purpose. “I would’ve liked to have fulfilled your requirement, however I haven’t found a proper head-nodder yet.”

    Honesty works in mysterious ways…

  36. Carlie says

    I have to say, this thread illustrates one of the joys of this particular blog. Here you have a blog marginally dedicated to icky animal development (I mean, they’re squishy, eww), yet at a brief provocation the commenters are broadly versed enough to sound like a bunch of drunken geology grad students out in the field. Not that I know what those would sound like or anything. I’ve only heard stories. Kicks the butte out of other Minnesota blogs, you breccia.

  37. Kseniya says

    Carlie, that WAS a “butte” – just when I thought you were being completley serious! LOL!

  38. Carlie says

    I was being entirely serious; one might say concrete rather than abstract (the better to avoid going around in cirqueles).

    But what I’d like to know is, does the glacial erotic have seismic moments?

  39. Rex says

    Once saw a truck parked in front of the liquor store with a bumper sticker that read “All of my faults are normal”

    Also, “Lateral stream piracy” is an amusing term

  40. Fernando Magyar says

    Sheesh! You guyz sound like you’ve bin quaffing too many quartz of Bombay Sapphire or somethin.

  41. says

    At the BookCrossing convention in Toronto last year, someone was wearing a T-shirt that said “STOP PLATE TECTONICS.” I don’t know where she got it.

  42. says

    See! See! I was right not to get involved. This thread devolved into utter chaos. Like everyone was stoned, man!

  43. Godless McHeathenpants says

    27 Mike> Goddidit.

    See how much simpler things are when you don’t need evidence? (or logic)

    Shale I taunt you a second time? If I could get off the fluorite come up with more puns.

  44. says

    The blind faults of geologists cause their disconformity with the lavas of God. The plane people were therefore encrusted with the truth graben in God’s word. Syn-rifts us from God, and simple faulting of the Bible means that scientists slip away from true geology.

    Aside from the series of bad puns, that essentially is the “reason” why all of these ignorant folk believe that their “truth” trumps all of the “wisdom of men”.

    Glen D

  45. JohnnieCanuck says

    Plagioclase is that mandatory English 101 course you have to take in first year science, whereas labradorescence is clearly a biology term involving pheromones.