1. says

    Saying “it’s a cracker” stretched out the debate for weeks and thousands of comments on here. Making that last 15 minutes should be a breeze.

  2. Nerd of Redhead says

    Just speak slowly and pause often. :-)

    After listening to the Galapagos talk I don’t see any problem. You’ll do fine.

  3. Qwerty says

    Crackers, Catholics, and Canada. Nice mixture.

    I was at my very orthodox Catholic mother’s house on Saturday and she had misplaced her glasses. While looking for them, I found a plastic card with bumps for the rosary on it. The card was the same size as a charge card and looked almost like one.

    Who knew? You can charge your way into heaven!

  4. says


    I’m in Edmonton, really it is only the very rural parts of alberta (which there are plenty) where the bible thumpers reside, Calgary is on its’ way to establishing a CFI

  5. Lluraa says

    Well PZ, I guess since you can’t make it as a scientist, you can always draw attention to yourself by your childish, antireligious behavior

  6. Patricia says

    #6 – Trish – Gee thanks! Now I’ve got Gene Wilder stuck in my head. ;o)

    Has anyone else noticed letters dropping in or out of your posts?

  7. LisaJ says

    Wow, Llauraa can’t even spell her own name properly anymore. If you’re trying to present us with an intelligent argument dear you should start by at least getting the basics right.

  8. Sven DiMilo says

    What exactly does one have to do to qualify as having “made it as a scientist”? Tenure at the University of Minnesota doesn’t count?

  9. says

    Aww, now c’m on, PZ, admit it: You ARE enjoying the fame that cracker-nailing brought you! And I can’t blame you; as a matter of fact, I’m a wee little bit envious.
    Anyway, by what I can tell from their website, that radio station seems to be a pretty ok bunch of guys.
    As for how to stretch it to fifteen minutes, well, do a bit of huffin’ and puffin’ and blowing some houses down. If one of the houses happens to be a fundie church, all the better for the local economy (they’ll have to rebuild it after all).

  10. says

    Well, hey, lots of ways to stretch it out:

    – your favorite type of crackers

    – whether you put crackers in your soup

    – do we need a cracker tax cut

    Ummm… that’s all I’ve got.

    Anyway, looking forward to it – you’re on after the Catholic League, by the way. Here’s hoping lightning doesn’t strike before you come on.

  11. Jason says

    And yeah Calgary is kind of a bible belt Conservative place; but surprisingly Christianity isn’t too big of a problem in the area, at least for the moment:

    You see, Christianity has been surplanted by the other major religion of the region: Money. Alberta (where you will find Calgary on a map) has oil, so everyone in this province is getting rich, and most of them are too preoccupied with buying cheap useless crap to care what some book has to say: Empire Strikes Back in on HDcable, and your average Calgarian just got his brand new 51″ television.

  12. Jason says

    (Thanks for the link IvanM)

    Man, these idiots are trying to compare the cracker thing to buring a cross on a black person’s lawn! [actual quote!]

  13. says

    Jason @#19:
    “Empire Strikes Back in on HDcable, and your average Calgarian just got his brand new 51″ television.”
    I’m all for some more socialist experiments, but if the other major religion (money) gets me a 51 inches TV set I can watch The Empire Strikes Back in HD on – that’s… tempting.

  14. JPS, FCD says

    Listening right now online to the “previous guest,” Susan Something, spokeswoman for the Catholic League. Jeebus, what a wackaloon. Says PZ blogs instead of attending to his professional duties, promotes “his faith of atheism,” yada yada yada ad nauseam. Program host challenged none of her statements. I’ve been thinking for years that it would be bliss to be a “Molson-swilling Zamboni driver” (the Weekly Standard’s caricature of all Canadians); now I’m not so sure. PZ is on now . . .

  15. says

    Head, meet wall. And again.
    Obviously, my comment was a reply not to Jason @#19 but to Jason @#17. All dese numbers, dey hurt me brain.

  16. Edward says

    Since when is blatant, racist, hate crimes comparable to mocking stupidity and nonsensical beliefs? Even defecating on host (the cracker, not a person :P )does not even come close to cross burning. WACKALOON!!!!!!!

  17. nefari says

    Thanks PZ! Your calm voice of reason was like a salve on the brain after sitting through the Catholic League spokeswoman’s emotional and irrational tirade.

    I am appalled she used the analogy of burning a cross in someone’s yard and compared that to desecrating a cracker. It’s clear that any parallel of ‘symbolic protest’ is greatly overshadowed by the history of violence and intimidation with burning crosses. If she does not know that, she is woefully ignorant. If she does, she is blatantly dishonest. Either way she discredits herself and the group she is trying to represent.

  18. Holbach says

    Llauraa @ 9

    You are getting in over your head here. Better call your imaginary back-up, your god, to beat the crap out of us for making it look like excrement, er, shit. Why is it that this cannot be done? If I was a non-existent god and one of my pathetic creations invoked me to smite the rational hordes, I’ll be down there to give them a little smoke. Seriously, you have as much chance in producing your imaginary god as I have in retrogressing to a religious moron, present company included. Let’s see your god, in whatever form it chooses; a cracker, a stain on a window, or enmeshed in a pile of shit.

  19. Patricia says

    Holbach – If she dares pop off at PZ again, or answer you she is committing a grave sin and bound for hell.
    But she will. Proverbs 9:13 – A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing.
    By believing in the unicorn producing gawd she proves she is foolish.

  20. says

    Posted by: Truenorth | #7
    I’m in Edmonton, really it is only the very rural parts of alberta (which there are plenty) where the bible thumpers reside, Calgary is on its’ way to establishing a CFI

    What, they’re getting a Certified Flight Instructor? Really, civilization can’t be far behind.

  21. says

    Off topic, what’s happening with the Evolve series on History Channel? I was going to watch tonight’s episode about communication but got Sandhogs instead. I go to the site and it’s hardly mentioned. Was it not getting good ratings or were there protests or did HC drop the ball in how they were treating this series? At this point, nothing surprises me.

  22. Trish says

    Damn, too late, but this could have been Forrest Gumped:

    “cheese crackers, saltine crackers, ham crackers, spinach dip crackers, plain crackers, butter crackers, tasteless cardboard jesus crackers, peanut butter crackers, Animal Crackers!, …..”

  23. Johnny says

    Damn, I live in Calgary and I missed it. Is there any way to hear it again?

    The Bible Belt has loosened considerably, but it certainly used to exist. We don’t get nearly the religious tomfoolery you Americans get. If, for example, someone tried to roust up support for something like ID in public schools they would be laughed out of town. The provincial government is actually run by “The Conservative Party”, so it’s not hard to figure where they come from, but even they wouldn’t go near the subject with a 10 foot pole.

    This cracker nonsense, I don’t know if it would have had much play here at all. We don’t seem to have quite the mainstream reverence for things churchy that you do.

  24. Tristan says

    Jams @ #35:

    Yeah, I know that, but the board software kept adding rel=”nofollow” to it, making the link unusable. I’ve seen others avoid it, just not sure how.

  25. Zetetic says

    I live in Calgary, so I had to listen.

    I think it was nice that the host allowed both parties to talk. In most of the radio debates I’ve heard on this and similar issues the host allows one side to talk at length and cuts the other side off repeatedly. However, it would have been nice to have a bit more of a debate between the two guests. That might have been quite interesting. It would also have been better to follow up immediately with questions from callers, rather than having 10 – 15 minutes of other topics before allowing feedback. (Though, maybe they didn’t get any callers.) I listened for quite a while, but I didn’t hear anyone call in to talk about the crackers. Also, I think the host trailed off rather badly at the end, asking a bunch of questions… pausing like he almost expected an answer… asking more questions… I guess he was giving us homework?

    Good job, PZ. For a moment, it was almost like having you in town. Almost.

  26. says

    Fergawdzakes, PZ… this time, spend some time telling the story of how and why you were moved to ask for the cracker in the first place. Tell the story of the guy before you who started the whole thing and what happened to him.

    You didn’t do this on the Irish interview, and I cringed all the way through it, knowing how it would play before the audience of that show.

    Please please please do it right this time. kthxbai.

  27. Johnny says

    Re: Rob’s post #42

    Ugh, that’s a good point.

    I honestly have a hard time believing those numbers though, but I can’t base it on anything but anecdotal evidence, and that “evidence” is simply that I can only think of two people out of every person I know in this province who believe in the creationism crap. They are also the only two people I know who go to church on a regular basis.

    Maybe it’s just the circles I travel in, or maybe the poll is flawed. Or maybe a bit of both.

    Despite our deserved reputation for social conservatism and general hick-ness, Calgary at least is a city with a lot of educated people, and educated people don’t generally go in for this stuff.

    This province is built on pulling oil out of the ground. I just can’t see such a large proportion of us believing that this oil was formed in the last 10 thousand years. It’s like saying “I depend on the geologists for my livelihood, but they really don’t know what they are talking about, but I’ll still listen to them”.

    Our most prominent “ID believing” politician over the last few years was (and still is) a certified idiot named “Stockwell Day”. He buys the creationism line but it was somewhat famously “covered up”, and he was eventually ousted/demoted partly because nobody could take him seriously (not just for his religious quackery, but his general dumbness).

    The best line out of that whole thing was “I’d just like to remind Mr.Day that the Flintstone’s was not a documentary” from a political opponent on national TV

    Oh and Rob, if you are a Canadian and know all this, sorry for the goofy history report. It was a long winded excuse to get the Flintstones crack in there.

  28. says

    Yeah, I know that, but the board software kept adding rel=”nofollow” to it, making the link unusable. I’ve seen others avoid it, just not sure how.

    Um, links with the rel=”nofollow” attribute are still usable. Watch as I shamelessly promote my own blog: upon viewing the source, you’ll find a rel=”nofollow” stuck in the <a> tag, but the link will still point to me.

  29. Dan J says

    Regarding the “nofollow” attribute in the link tags: This is to prevent search engines from following those links, not to make the links behave in any unusual manner. This helps to deter spamming blog comments in order to provide backlinks to another web site (a black-hat SEO tactic.)

    And now, back to our program already in progress…

  30. zaardvark says

    Cracker. Nail. Crazy people.

    Oh, you want to stretch it out? Ack.

    Cracker. Nail. Really crazy people.

    Shit. Maybe just talk about your new book. You are writing a book aren’t you??

  31. Steven Carr says

    Take 2 beefburgers in.

    Ask the interviewer if the cow is sacred to Hindus, and then offer him a beefburger.

  32. BobC says

    We just ask that our religion be respected.

    Translation: We are batshit crazy and we want our breathtaking stupidity to be respected.

    I bet the Muslim terrorists also want their religion to be respected. Sorry religious assholes, respect must be earned, and the only thing you retards have earned is ridicule and contempt.

  33. BobC says

    If he had burned a cross on a black family’s yard in his off time and if he filmed it and put it on the internet he would not have a job.

    This shit-for-brains Catholic is comparing abuse of a cracker in a private home to what Christian racists used to do to African Americans.

    To any Catholic reading this: what is wrong with you idiots? For goodness sake grow up Catholic morons. Not everyone believes your crackers are sacred just because a child molesting priest says some magic words.

  34. TomK says

    I will make you all popes. Spectacles, Testicles, Brandy, Cigars. You are all popes, completely infallible in your religious judgements. Any one of you can now bless not just crackers but anything else you want, with the same authority the catholic pope. However, you are on your own for finding a ridiculous hat.

    I think I’ll make some cannibal crackers right now. Presto Schmesto Magic Jesus Cannibalism Cracker. Magic cannibal jesus cracker save me from how bad my peepee makes me. Have mercy on me and my bad bad naughty peepee. I’ll drink the blood and eat pieces of your skin, like a sick serial killer, if you’ll send me a priest that shrieks about freaky sex until I have to drink blood and eat flesh to feel normal. I promise that I will never question the perversity inherit in this ritual, or the obviously sadomasochistic undertones of the entirety of the rituals of my church. May I never have to think. Baaaaa. Baa Baaaa. Bleeat! Bleeat! Baaaaaaaah. In jesus name, Amen.

    I’m saved, brothers and sisters! You can be saved too!

  35. BobC says

    She said “You can make comments about Catholicism.

    OK. Here’s my comments about Catholicism.

    The Catholic religion is a collection of the most batshit crazy beliefs ever invented. The people who believe in it are the most gullible assholes in world history. The Catholic religion is good for nothing but genocide, stupidity, violence, misery, and child abuse (mental and sexual). The sooner the world rids itself of Catholic insanity the better.

  36. Atticus_of_Amber says

    I thought the interview went well. The interviewer was certainly unsympathetic to the Catholic league’s “overreaction’ as he put it and didn’t let their representative get away with her crazy analogy with cross-burning.

  37. Nick says

    Disappointing to see some of those statistics in the article Rob linked to. I’ve always assumed that, as an oil town, our dependence on geology to make the bulk of our money had necessitated an understanding of uniform and gradual natural processes. Ah well, call me naive. I guess only a couple guys need to know that to figure out where to stick the pipe in the ground.

    Though, I do commend our government (though, sadly for our environmental concerns, conservative in both name and policy) for not capitulating to wackloonery the way some have in the states. For example: when I was getting off a plane the other day, I noticed a government-sponsored display, advertising the Royal Tyrell Museum of Paleontology, and featuring several life-size dromaeosaurids. The placard described the transition of sauropods to birds without mincing words about evolution. A very affirming sight.

    I’ve lived in Calgary all my life, and while I still hope to edge the people of this town a little farther toward my own position on the left, I don’t think I’ve ever encountered a militant creationist here. I was fortunate enough to be taught virtually everything I know about evolution by some wonderful professors at the University of Calgary, and in all the years of my degree, throgh anthropology, genetics, embryology, and paleozoology courses, I never once heard a student raise a creotarded argument against evolution. I find it hard to believe, from my own experience, that so few people accept the realities of nature, and I hope that stems only from having had the concept poorly or incompletely explained to them, rather than the willful ignorance typical of most creationists.

  38. Savagemutt says

    Anthony @ #58 raises a valid theological point. Once Jesus is eaten, is his flesh transformed back into cracker, or does one actually poo Jesus?

  39. Simon Scott says

    Well, they do say “god is everywhere”. And Jesus is god. So Jesus is everywhere.

    Including my large intestine.

  40. says

    Savagemutt #60: This is the same argument I used ages ago on here concerning holy water. To summarise: Why can’t a priest simply bless the whole Pacific Ocean and be done with it?

    (I’ll see if I can find my original comment; if I can I’ll post a link)

  41. LeeLeeOne says

    I went into the radio archives for 09/09/2008, and chose the 7 o’clock option. This particular discussion starts at 8 minutes into this program. It comes in only windows media player format from AM770 CHQR radio vault.

  42. Patricia says

    Loony Llurra could be a Poe. But, ever the potty mouth, I’m gonna call her a ‘one shit wonder’.

    @El Herring – see your little typo ^ by instead of my? That is happening to me all the time now. Sometimes vowels added. I’ve seen dis-emvoweling here. Something seems fishy to me.

  43. theinquisitor says

    This catholic representative says they’re not trying to force anyone to believe anything, but they explicitly are expecting us to believe that this cracker is a person. What about my right to believe that it’s NOT a person because that offends my values as a person?

    If the argument can be made that any person has the right to believe anything they want, and all beliefs must be respected, then catholics MUST tolerate the belief that this cracker is not a person. The fact that they don’t even realise their arrogant presumption at expecting their metaphysics to trump the beliefs of atheists is almost hate speech :P

  44. David C. says

    Making derogatory remarks about crackers is one thing but you better not say anything bad about matzahs.

  45. says

    Johnny #44, unless I’m mistaken, Stockwell Day (Young Earth Creationist, not just ID-believer) wasn’t ousted/demoted per se, rather, he was given the portfolio of Minister of Public Safety (the Canadian version of the Department of Homeland Security) in Stephen Harper’s government:

    or the more manageable

    Granted he doesn’t hold that portfolio now because Harper dissolved this session of Parliament to call an election …

  46. IceFarmer says

    Right in my own backyard and I got stuck at work late with a bloody waste of time client. Sorry PZ, catch ya next time.