# We’re doomed.

Harold Camping lets out a hearty chuckle when he considers the people who believe the world will end in 2012.

Yeah, it’s ridiculous, but you knew that all along. This nonsensical 2012 date for an apocalypse is pure numerology: one of the great cycles of the Mayan calendar comes to an end in that year, but it simply means that if you were a Mayan, you’d flip the page on your calendar then (or start carving a new symbol on your stone tablets). Only a loon would attach so much significance to an arbitary magical date that they would think it implies the world will end.

Harold Camping must be a very sensible person.

“That date has not one stitch of biblical authority,” Camping says from the Oakland office where he runs Family Radio, an evangelical station that reaches listeners around the world. “It’s like a fairy tale.”

The real date for the end of times, he says, is in 2011.

Oops.

Camping is completely bonkers: his calculation is more idiotic numerology.

The number 5, Camping concluded, equals “atonement.” Ten is “completeness.” Seventeen means “heaven.” Camping patiently explained how he reached his conclusion for May 21, 2011.

“Christ hung on the cross April 1, 33 A.D.,” he began. “Now go to April 1 of 2011 A.D., and that’s 1,978 years.”

Camping then multiplied 1,978 by 365.2422 days – the number of days in each solar year, not to be confused with a calendar year.

Next, Camping noted that April 1 to May 21 encompasses 51 days. Add 51 to the sum of previous multiplication total, and it equals 722,500.

Camping realized that (5 x 10 x 17) x (5 x 10 x 17) = 722,500.

Or put into words: (Atonement x Completeness x Heaven), squared.

Camping has made thes kinds of apocalyptic predictions before — he apparently thought Christ was going to return on 6 September 1994. The amazing thing is that in spite of his record of failure, in spite of the patent inanity of his calculations, the guy has a following and owns 55 radio stations that are spewing out his drivel to a gullible audience.

And that, I think, is perhaps the only legitimate evidence of the imminent demise of the human race.

1. vanharris says

Christ hung on the cross April 1

I always thought Xian teaching claimed he’d been nailed to it. Whatever, i guess he was really screwed…. Nah, they didn’t have screws then.

2. vanharris says

Except Archimedes! (Doesn’t count.)

3. Michelle R says

Hum… Shit? I guess?

4. paco says

Note that Christ hung on the cross on April Fools Day. How appropriate.

5. says

PZ, you’re not giving Camping enough credit! It’s not just inane numerology that tells him the date of the end of the world. It’s inane scriptural exegesis, too!

See, he also knows that May 21, 2011 is exactly seven thousand years to the day after Noah’s Flood (yes, he knows the date of Noah’s Flood, of course!). With that line of evidence plus all the numerological evidence, how could you go wrong?

6. drgonzo says

(Atonement x Completeness x Heaven), squared

Hmmm the math works but where’s the explanation for the squaring? Is heaven two dimensional? Is gawd a circle a la Flatland?

7. Legion says

Camping then multiplied 1,978 by 365.2422 days – the number of days in each solar year, not to be confused with a calendar year.

Next, Camping noted that April 1 to May 21 encompasses 51 days. Add 51 to the sum of previous multiplication total, and it equals 722,500. Camping realized that (5 x 10 x 17) x (5 x 10 x 17) = 722,500.

Yeah, and if you eat two dozen boiled eggs, consume an entire package of laxatives, stand atop your bathroom toilet and say “Harold Camping” in pig latin, three times, beneath a full moon, while wearing two scuba diving suits, you’ll summon the demon Shitophunkunka’le.

The demon won’t destroy the world, but it’ll be the end of days for your bathroom, for sure.

8. Daniel de Rauglaudre says

Must be in 2011, indeed. 2011 is not only a prime number, but a gaussian prime number. Drawback : it is therefore not a sum of two squares.

9. raven says

See, he also knows that May 21, 2011 is exactly seven thousand years to the day after Noah’s Flood (yes, he knows the date of Noah’s Flood, of course!). With that line of evidence plus all the numerological evidence, how could you go wrong?

Camping is Making Things Up. The Flood is usually given as 4500 BP by xians.

There is independent evidence for this.

4500 BP The Egyptian 3rd dynasty starts building pyramids.

4500 BP God wakes up annoyed and floods the earth with miles of water killing all but 8 people.

4400 BP The Egyptian 3rd dynasty is still building pyramids, apparently not realizing there was a wordwide flood and that they are, in fact, dead.

10. Gordon says

There must be some evidence of the date, did Jesus maybe say as his final words “April Fools”?

11. Armand K. says

I guess similar revelations occur to many half-illiterate lunatics when they learn basic arithmetic. Numbers are soooo nice to play with! And, given enough imagination and patience, you can come up with any combination you please.

BTW, I just realized my pen’s length (capped) multiplied by one trillion gives about exactly the mean Earth-Sun distance… Wow! Now I just need to construct some esotheric theory around that, and I can become myself the head of a new cult.

12. acochetti.myopenid.com says

Hmmm the math works but where’s the explanation for the squaring? Is heaven two dimensional? Is gawd a circle a la Flatland?

Of course it’s squared. Don’t you know what happens when you cross (or in this case square) the streams? Doom!

This Camping guy is really dangerous. People are going to stock up on canned food and bottled water for his pseudo-apocalypse and then by the time December 2012 rolls around it’ll all be bad and everyone will die! So much for the brilliance of Roland Emmerich. His work was undone by a lesser form of media!

13. ralph137 says

A good reason to max out the credit cards in year 10. Might help the economy for those of us that get left behind.

14. Ray M says

I’ve been listening to this goon for a few years now, at least on occasion, usually for entertainment while I’m on a long drive, and he’s utterly nuts. He does, however, know his bible inside out.

Week after week he has people calling in, asking what they should do to be “saved”. He has some of them convinced they should dispose of all their belongings and dress in sack-cloth and ashes. He doesn’t then explain how they are to live until that fateful day. It truly is balderdash, but he has a remarkably strong following.

I can’t wait until May 22nd next year to see how he rationalises his error.

15. Frankencone says

I am 27 years old. So far, I had 27 calendars run out on me. You know what happened? I bought a new one for 99 cent.

How comes that humanity at a scientific developement that would have us recognized as gods by anything even remotely Maya and utterly superior to them in any measurable way *still* has this strong urge to look at X000 years old tribes when it comes to essential topics like the end of the world?

16. 'Tis Himself, OM says

Camping must be bogus. He doesn’t have a website that’s painful to look at.

17. nosupernatural says

This is not the first time Camping makes such a claim. Only god knows how many times he failed.

Hah!

18. Kingasaurus says

Who’s a bigger lunatic? This guy or Brother Stair? It’s a close race.

19. Hurin says

“That date has not one stitch of biblical authority,” Camping says from the Oakland office where he runs Family Radio, an evangelical station that reaches listeners around the world. “It’s like a fairy tale.”

Irony much? I was going to respond to this, but its already a perfect self-parody.

20. Sven DiMilo says

“Now go to April 1 of 2011 A.D

wait…why?

This is so stoopid. He’s lying as he patiently explains. Clearly he had to have started with his little (5*10*17)2 gem and then fucked around via trial and error to get the other numbers–backwards from his explicit, patient claims.
Even then for it to work he has to use 7 significant figures for days per year and then forget about the extra 4 when he’s done multiplying.

*sigh* I need to quit reading stuff written by stoopid people. It’s just not fun anymore.

21. special-k1988 says

Camping: “It’s like a fairy tale.” Said without even a hint of irony.

“That date has not one stitch of biblical authority,” Och, those eejits! Not basing their numerology on the Bible. Of course it’s silly to believe that, but numerology based on the Bible? Oh, spot on. Totally legit.

Okay, Camping, okay…

22. says

Yeah, but his devoted followers will continue to put their faith in this dumbass and wait for his next big pronouncement with bated breath. He was wrong before, he’ll be wrong again. Or he’ll never make it to the end day anyway. If he dies before the big day, what would his followers do then?

23. Cheesis K says

That was a Simpson’s episode.

24. anonymous says

wow, almost the same date algore came up with and he wants money too!

25. Katharine says

I’m starting to think it might just be a wise idea to figure out the neural correlates of right-wing authoritarianism and then select against them somehow.

26. vanharris says

Oh no!… This nutjob was a civil engineer. Why do these religious edjits so often bring my profession into disrepute?

27. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

Oh Noes! He forgot to correct for the switch from Julian to Gregorian calendar!!! He’s what, about 17 days off. That means I’ll have to file for an extension on my taxes again!

28. acochetti.myopenid.com says

“That date has not one stitch of biblical authority,” Och, those eejits! Not basing their numerology on the Bible. Of course it’s silly to believe that, but numerology based on the Bible? Oh, spot on. Totally legit.

Don’t forget Moby Dick, too. Either of these books are capable of predicting the future. Personally I worship Moby Dick. In my Good Book the end of the world results in everyone’s reincarnation as whales.

Numerology is my favorite nonsense, I think. It’s just so silly. Add up a bunch of completely arbitrary numbers, so arbitrary we cannot even hope to begin to pierce the veil of silliness that rended these numbers from the ether, and then claim special knowledge of the future. Anyone can do it, it has a fabulous low barrier of entry with no (physical) price tag. It serves as a gateway drug to more expensive hobbies such as homeopathy and (at the very high-end) Scientology. Act now and get a broken calculator at no charge!

29. Zeno says

I remember Camping’s failed predictions of the end of the world in 1994. It was mildly entertaining listening to his warnings and quite amusing when Jesus apparently decided against returning right then.

I naively thought, “Wll, that’s it for Camping!” Heck, no. The old bugger is still at it sixteen years later and he still has devout followers.

The world is full of idiots.

30. Pierce R. Butler says

And that, I think, is perhaps the only legitimate evidence of the imminent demise of the human race.

So massive overpopulation, nuclear weapons, accelerating disappearance of species, global warming, accumulating genotoxins, terrestrial and marine desertification, and Sarah Palin don’t count any more? Best news I’ve heard all year…

31. dangeroustalk says

I actually know a Christian who really thought the world was going to end in September of 1994 because of Camping. I used to sit with him in his dorm room and listen to Camping. I couldn’t convince him that Camping was a sham, so the night before the end of the world, I sent him an e-mail, “If you are reading this, you were wrong.” He no longer is a Camping follower, but still a wacky Christian.

I’m afraid that none of you understand science.

The “many worlds” interpretation of quantum theory tells us that at every point where a decision is made, the universe splits and there is a universe in which each possible result came true.

EVERY prediction of the end of the earth has come true, but we’ve been lucky enough to live in the version of the universe where the earth survived.

It’s BS of course, but at least it fits with currently understood physics :-)

Heh. In my hometown, there’s still part of a poster on a phone pole advertising his 1994 Rapture prediction. I have no idea how it stayed up so long, but I like it. I think it serves as a nice monument to remind people how reliable apocalyptic predictions have been.

34. neon-elf.myopenid.com says

Isn’t numerology supposed to be non-biblical and all satanic, like every other form of augery?
Naughty Harold. It’s eternal hellfire for you, sunshine.

35. jagannath says

LOL, that crucifixion was one hard-core aprils fool prank.

36. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

@33

“The “many worlds” interpretation of quantum theory tells us that at every point where a decision is made, the universe splits and there is a universe in which each possible result came true.

EVERY prediction of the end of the earth has come true, but we’ve been lucky enough to live in the version of the universe where the earth survived.”

Uh, no. That is not at all what it says. It says that every physically possible outcome has occurred in one or more such universes. Since the rantings of a lunatic do not affect physical reality, that doesn’t constitute a desision point for the Universe. This does not rule out the possibility that in some Universe, Harold could in fact be sane. However, given the massive damage evident to normal thought processes, this subset of Universes would have measure zero.

37. 'Tis Himself, OM says

No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Matthew 24:36 (NIV)

38. Sven DiMilo says

LOL, that crucifixion was one hard-core aprils fool prank.

No shit man! Jesus was a kidder’s kidder. He gets himself “killed,” see, and entombed and everything, with the shroud and all, and then, three days later he shows up, and all of his distraught mourning disciples are like “wtf?” and he’s like “Ha! Punk’d!!!” LOL ROFLMAO ;-)

39. Romeo Vitelli says

This could just be the date when all the True Believers get Raptured. Once they disappear, we can get all their stuff and live happily ever after.

As a favor to his doomed followers I’m willing to take their soon to be destroyed houses and cars off their hands. I’ll give them say… one cent on the dollar, how does that sound?

41. RickR says

I can’t wrap my head around it…. do the people who listen to this and actually buy into it… are they actually functional in the real world? Drive? Have jobs? Vote??(!)

I must live a very sheltered life.

42. jagannath says

Heh, actually thought it out like this. Apostles planned a real good prank for jesus and talked the romans and priests into helping out.

They torture and nail him to cross, while waiting in the bush to jump up and scream ‘April’s Fool’ but then Jesus goes and dies.

Everyone is muttering this and that and promise never to mention what really happened.

43. raven says

No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Matthew 24:36 (NIV)

Mark 13 NIV:

26″At that time men will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. 27And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens.

28″Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. 29Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that it is near, right at the door. 30I tell you the truth, this generation[e] will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 31Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

Naw. Matthew was wrong. According to Mark it has already happened, 2000 years ago. The inerrant contradiction free bible couldn’t possibly be wrong.

44. Carax says

Eschatology is a requirement for all sincere Christian lunatics who follow a bible study curriculum and anyone who believes in the magical supernatural superstitions of religions are susceptible to his brand of brainwashing fairy tale nonsense. The gullible on this planet I think number in the billions. I find it difficult to be optimistic about the survival of human race. Even if religion suddenly disappeared, human beings would still have a fragile grip on reality. But at least that is a more straightforward challenge when you have science to navigate with.

45. Sven DiMilo says

jagannath: Teach the controversy.

46. mattand08 says

WooooOOOOOoooooOOOOOOoooooOOOOOOO

47. Nick (Matzke) says

I think this guy or one of his followers is the guy who sticks signs up around the Valley Life Sciences Building every semester on the Berkeley campus. They are done in weird all-caps handwriting, then photocopied, I have a few. Slightly disturbing, although if I’m still on campus when the day roles around I plan to have a party or something…

48. Forbidden Snowflake says

@ jagannath, #43:

Isn’t that the plot of “Jawbreaker”?

Three of the most popular girls at Reagan High accidentally kill the prom queen with a jaw-breaker when a kidnapping goes horribly wrong.

49. Abdul Alhazred says

Harold Camping is the founder of Family Radio, which is host to a whole bunch of other “independent” preachers.

This is not the first time he has come up with an end of the world date.

I just love the internet :)

50. says

he apparently thought Christ was going to return on 6 September 1994.

Betcha he thought his prophecy was fulfilled when Newt Gingrich arrived on the scene with his Contract ON America™.

51. raven says

The usual. According to the bible false prophets are to be killed. They’ve always been common. It has always been a temptation to pretend to be god’s sockpuppet.

The bible even tells people how to identify false prophets. They are the ones whose predictions are wrong.

There is no such thing as a biblical literalist. If there was, there would be a lot of dead preachers and we would be better off.

52. dustycrickets says

Ftom Wiki on T McKenna

The algorithm has also been extrapolated to be a model for future events. McKenna admitted to the expectation of a “singularity of novelty”, and that he and his colleagues projected into the future to find when this singularity (runaway “newness” or extropy) could occur. Millenarians give more credence to Novelty theory as a way to predict the future (especially regarding 2012) than McKenna himself. The graph of extropy had many enormous fluctuations over the last 25,000 years, but it hits an asymptote in the middle of November, 2012. After his discovery of other doomsday theories that would take place on exactly December 21, 2012, he simply bumped up the date of “doomsday”.[21] This statement is contested, however, by McKenna’s own mouth when during a lecture he said,
“ An astonishing thing about the date I arrived at, by this method is that it’s the same date that the Mayan civilization appointed for the end of its calendar. In all eternity … You know, you may choose not to believe that I didn’t know this when I made this prediction. But I didn’t, know it! I didn’t. Yet I chose not the month, not the same year – the same day, month and year.[22] ”
In other words, entropy (or habituation) no longer exists after that date. It is impossible to define that state. This is also the date on which the Mayan long calendar ends one cycle through the zodiac signs, then it begins a new 26,000 year cycle through the next era, or the Age of Peace. The technological singularity concept parallels this, only at a date roughly three decades later.”

I have a different idea though….

53. Jeffrey P Goldberg says

Every geek should know that the end of the world will be on January 19, 2038. That is when time will run out of bits.

54. Rick S says

Why can’t people be completely enamored with the real universe and its mysteries? Why do they continually need to make up shit to be fascinated with???

55. dustycrickets says

@54….

“Every geek should know that the end of the world will be on January 19, 2038. ”

This seems to coincide with the “Omega Point” and predicted by the technological singularity concept .

Frim Wiki

Omega Point is a term coined by the French Jesuit Pierre Teilhard de Chardin to describe a maximum level of complexity and consciousness towards which the universe appears to be evolving. Teilhard’s term recurs in both intellectual works and popular culture, especially the cosmological theory proposed by the mathematical physicist Frank Tipler.

Heh.

56. jagannath says

#49, thanks, never seen that and will not :) There are levels of depravity even I abhor to approach.

But, the failed prank issue does open up the question whether Judas was trying to tell what happened and had an ‘accident’? Or was he the sacrifice for the truthfulness of the ‘gospel’ created to hide the real truth?

57. The Tim Channel says

I knew you’d get around to this so-called Christian numbnut. Even a tone deaf atheist knows to smite this nonsense with a little Matthew 24:36.

But of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.

Did I just blockquote the Bible? Holy Shit! While I’m busy washing off the taint, perhaps you will find my 2010 tribute page to Peter McWilliams a worthwhile diversion:

http://thetimchannel.wordpress.com/2010/01/02/new-years-tribute-to-peter-mcwilliams/

Enjoy.

58. Dave says

Shall we take our next caller, please.

59. Ticker says

Rick S, I often wonder about that. So many people keep looking “beyond”, to dead relatives, eschatology, extraterrestrial life, and whatever else.

When I ask them, what’s so bad about the people living with you, the world you’re in right now or the blank slate of unknown future, they don’t seem to have much of a coherent answer.

When pressed, they just tell you you’re wrong, should be more open-minded, and hate you for asking.

60. Joffan says

Ah – if the world is not going to end in 2012, does that mean I should stop eating babies?

61. Acronym Jim says

This guy owns 55 radio stations? Does he broadcast in comic sans and a painfully clashing color music scheme?

62. Sean says

I like listening to Christian radio occasionally, strictly for the lols, and Camping has been consistently entertaining since I discovered him about eight years ago. I’ll always tune in to his live call-in “Open Forum” program if I happen to be in the car between 5:30 and 7:00 PM on a weekday. (Other than that, his Family Radio is mostly a wasteland, its other programming consisting mainly of Bible readings, hymns, and instrumental music.)

I am eagerly looking forward to next year to see what Camping will say when his acopalyptic predictions fail to come true. He doesn’t even hedge his bets; he proclaims that the Bible has provided “absolute proof” that he’s correct. Whenever someone brings up his previous 1994 prediction, he says “Well, back then I wasn’t 100% sure, that’s why there’s a question mark at the end of the title” (“1994?”). But he still insists that 1994 was a year of “greeeeeeeat spiritual significance.” I vaguely recall that that might have been what he calls “the end of the church age.”

What really blows my mind is that Family Radio doesn’t air advertisements; all of their operating expenses are paid for by donations. There must be a substantial number of people underwriting his lunacy, yet I’d never have heard of him had I not stumbled across him on the radio.

63. llewelly says

The amazing thing is that in spite of his record of failure, in spite of the patent inanity of his calculations, the guy has a following and owns 55 radio stations that are spewing out his drivel to a gullible audience.

Since the world ends in 2011, he should have no problen signing his 55 radio stations over to the FFRF, effective May 22, 2011. After all, even if he’s wrong, they’ll only have them for about a year and a half.

64. blf says

Isn’t numerology supposed to be non-biblical all satanic, like every other form of augery?

I’ve always understood there’s a long tradition of numerology in certain, possibly even almost respectable, scholarly biblical studies. There are certainly a number of books on the subject, albeit I’ve no idea if any have been written by sane people (excepting some debunking specific aspects, such as the debunking of the nonsensical burbling code of a few years ago (aka the Moby Dick references)).

65. VegeBrain says

Once again it my fervent hope that the good Lord makes good on his promise to take home his faithful followers on May 21, 2011, or December 21, 2012, or whatever. I eagerly await the mass exodus of all his credulous sheep from planet earth so the more sane among humankind can make our own heaven on earth.

66. Crewvy says

Why am I not surprised that April 1 is very significant date in this prediction?

67. wlrube says

Camping is a running joke in my family, since in our non-cable-TV household he’s the only televangelist we’ve had consistent access to—albeit a televangelist who looks, talks, and moves like a 2-day-old corpse. My little sister and I have been making fun of Camping since before we even knew what Christianity was.

68. fred says

hang on, christ ddnt go on the cross in 33 A.D. because A.D.is after death, after he died!!!
fail, but then again, camping was one ginormous pile of nonsense anyway…

69. fellowscientist says

I simply kept an open mind when first hearing Camping on his “Open Forum” in late 2007. And the deeper I dug online, the more I came across arrogance from most people, similar to what fills this blog page. So I kept digging, and find he has a wealth of literature with referenced Biblical verses. Are you going to read it? Of course not. Just like the arrogant PZ Meyers biologist here won’t read the literature of John Jones in Theoretical Chemistry. With H. Camping, there’s simply a lack of interest wrt the Bible. Understandable. But why bash him? Fear? Arrogance?

It’s easy to excuse H. Camping as a quack job. But the fact is this guy has been studying the Bible longer than any of you in your respective sciences. To excuse him because of your faith is one thing, but as a critical thinker you simply are in deep waters w.r.t the Bible. If you seek out Family Radio’s website and look in “Literature Online” section, you’ll see FREE pdf/html literature he has written over the years.

70. raven says

notfellow notscientist:

came across arrogance from most people, similar to what fills this blog page. So I kept digging, and find he has a wealth of literature with referenced Biblical verses. Are you going to read it? Of course not.

How did you get to be a not-scientist without learning to read for comprehension?

Most of us are ex-xians. Most of us know the bible far better than most xians, including Camping.

Two of us posting relevant bible verses above FWIW. Posts 38 and 44.

I’m right and Tis is wrong. The Second Coming was 2,000 years ago and we are all dead. But don’t worry. In my One True PostXian sect, we don’t do holy wars. Since we are all dead, it is sort of pointless.

71. blf says

[Camping] has a wealth of literature with referenced Biblical verses.

Camping’s references could be to Moby Dick for all it matters. It’s not what is referenced—and the number of references is not relevant—it’s the logic of his arguments. Camping’s utterances are illogical; you don’t need to check up his references, be they to Moby Dick or pTerry’s Pyramids, to notice that. He’s a loon.

72. ThirdMonkey says

Fellowscientist @72

We do not deny that Camping may be an expert on the Bible. However, the Bible is not a source of authority or wisdom. It is a collection of contradictory nonsense, myth, legend, and a handful of historical accounts told by ignorant, primitive people that were then manipulated by hundreds of generations of priests to further their particular political agendas.
To claim authority on the Bible is to claim authority on nonsense. Deep waters indeed.
Camping claims to know the nature or mind of God. Anyone doing so is either lying, crazy, or both.
Further, when numerology is in use, the Bible is just as arbitrary and authoritative as Moby Dick or Max Brooks’ World War Z for predicting the future.

73. raven says

The penalty for false prophecy, according to the biblical context, is capital punishment (per Deuteronomy 13:1-5).

“But a prophet who presumes to speak in my name anything I have not commanded him to say, or a prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, must be put to death.

Here is another relevant bible verse for notfellowscientist.

Camping has already been wrong at least once.

74. Dyslexic Insomniac says

fred @71

Okay, I’ll bite. (I’m assuming there’s at least the slight possibility you posted what you did just to see if anyone here would correct you…)

As mentioned in the Anno Domini entry on Wikipedia:

Because B.C. is the English abbreviation for Before Christ, some people incorrectly conclude that A.D. must mean After Death, i.e., after the death of Jesus. If that were true, the thirty-three or so years of his life would not be in any era.

This, of course, is not meant to imply that Camping isn’t a complete fail in so many other ways…

75. Rutee, Shrieking Harpy of Dooooom says

No offense, Fellow Scientist, but I read Lahaye, and I read what’s his face. The jackass that invented the rapture in 1860.

All aspects of numerology in the bible are fucking stupid. Just because he spent more time filtering the bible through his utterly perverse theology and arrived at a numerical answer doesn’t make that answer relevant in the real world. 2012 end of the world predictions are EXACTLY as stupid as any attempt to precisely gauge the end of days from the bible.

76. mikka says

if man is five,
then the devil is six.
And if the devil is six
then god is seven!!
this monkey’s gone to heaven…

77. Knockgoats says

It’s easy to excuse H. Camping as a quack job. But the fact is this guy has been studying the Bible longer than any of you in your respective sciences. – passing Christard

So this fuckwit has been ruminating over a collection of ancient legends for decades? So what? He’s still a fuckwit.

78. Strangest brew says

Condensed version…

79. blf says

[T]he thirty-three or so years of [jezbis’s] life would not be in any era.

Well, given the total lack of evidence for any historical jezbis, that’s possibly correct. The years aren’t in any era, as there aren’t any years to consider.

80. thomas.c.galvin says

@’Tis Himself, OM (#38)

No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Matthew 24:36 (NIV)

I quoted this to a friend of mine once, as proof that, even according to his own scriptures, Jesus was lacking one of the divine attributes: omniscience.

I was politely asked to shut up.

81. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

Fucktard Concern Troll@72,
OK, would you be suggesting we study this idjit’s work if he’d studied the Mahabarata or Ramayana or the Koran? How about the works of L. Ron Hubbard? Or how about that fascinating Dick and Jane reading primer series, huh?

Open mind, my ass! This jackass doesn’t even have a biblical basis for his “prophecy”. Where in the fucking bibble does it equate heaven with the number 17? Would 10 mean completeness if we had 6 fingers on each hand? Frankly, I don’t give a damn if this guy wants to fleece his flock. What pisses me off is asshats like you coming on here pretending to be fucking scientists–as if that lent any validity to the utterly stupid sentiments you expressed. Get back to your numerology, fuckhead. You’ve only go another year and a half to get it all down after all.

82. Patricia Queen of Sluts, OM says

Can I get an award or PhD for my Dick and Jane studies?

See Spot run.

83. says

“See Spot.
See Puff.
See Spot hump Puff.
Hump, hump, hump.
Puff, puff, puff.
Come, Spot, come!”

–as seen in NatLamp

84. raven says

Can I get an award or PhD for my Dick and Jane studies?

See Spot run.

Sure. They give out such Ph.D.’s all the time.

Just surf the internet for a diploma mill with an impressive sounding name. They will want money but prices vary a lot. If you are lucky you can probably pick one up for a few hundred bucks.

85. Pi says

“Christ hung on the cross April 1, 33 A.D.,” he began. “Now go to April 1 of 2011 A.D., and that’s 1,978 years.”

Given that he has put so much thought into this, you would think he would stopped and checked to make sure he hadn’t picked a Wednesday for the crucifixion.

86. boygenius says

Pi@88:

Good point.

87. B166ER says

@ Patricia #85

Actually, if you want a Ph.D on dick and jane studies, you should ask ‘fellowscientist’ what double wide trailer he got his diploma mill degree from. Patriot University probably, because he writes with the skill taught at that ‘esteemed’ institution, as illuminated by the “dissertation” of “Dr.” Kent Hovind. And really ‘fellowscientist’, we all know what you are and you’re not fooling anyone with the science bit. You wouldn’t know science from a hole in the wall even if it double-blindly bit you in the ass .

@ ‘fellowscientist’ #72

“It’s easy to excuse H. Camping as a quack job. But the fact is this guy has been studying the Bible longer than any of you in your respective sciences. To excuse him because of your faith is one thing, but as a critical thinker you simply are in deep waters w.r.t the Bible.”

No Gods, No Masters
Cameron

88. fellowscientist says

>@72 Interesting language so far… from those that deny Camping’s studies because they deny the Bible. But instead of just rejecting the Bible, most go on with pointless ad hominems.

And for those that are interested in the Bible, pull out a verse or two to reject his hypothesis. Fact is, those verses are addressed in his literature, but there’s still a blanket rejection to Camping’s well thought out arguments.

89. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

And for those that are interested in the Bible, pull out a verse or two to reject his hypothesis. Fact is, those verses are addressed in his literature, but there’s still a blanket rejection to Camping’s well thought out arguments.

Why should we be concerned with someone claiming the end of the world due to biblical prediction when the bible is so rife with inconsistencies, contradictions and flat out errors about reality?

90. Malcolm says

Pretend fellowscientist,
You obviously have a different definition of “well thought out arguments” to the rest of us.

91. Cath the Canberra Cook says

Joffan, if the world isn’t ending, it’s just all the more important to keep eating those babies. Think of the overpopulation crisis! Pierce Butler has a point, though personally I think these are all signs of the end of civilisation, rather than of the human race.

92. 'Tis Himself, OM says

fellow something or other,

If you read my post #38, you’ll see that I used the Bible to refute Camping. Matthew 24:36 says that not even Jesus knows when the world is ending. So it appears that Camping thinks he’s better than Jesus. And we’re the arrogant ones?

Furthermore, Camping has the crucifiction happening in 33 AD. While Jesus was supposed to be 33 years old when he was crucified, he wasn’t born in 1 AD. Most Biblical scholars say Jesus was born on or before 4 BC, because Herod died in 4 BC. Matthew 2:1 (NIV) says: After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod…. That was Herod the Great (74 BC-4 BC), not his son Herod Antipas (c. 20 BC-c. 39 BC). So Camping is working with the wrong starting date.

93. 'Tis Himself, OM says

Oops, in my post #96 the dates for Herod Antipas should be c. 20 BC-c. 39 AD.

94. David Marjanović says

At least he’s on sound footing when it comes to his identification of heaven with the number 17

So? In Italy, 17 brings bad luck, because if you rearrange XVII to VIXI, you get the Latin word for “I have lived”.

95. fellowscientist says

@96 you use part of the Bible. Consider this verse w.r.t Christs return and judgement day:

Ecclesiastes 8:5 Whoso keepeth the commandment shall feel no evil thing: and a wise man’s heart discerneth both time and judgment.

…something Camping discusses in his literature you refuse to consider.

96. Owlmirror says

And for those that are interested in the Bible, pull out a verse or two to reject his hypothesis.

Are you saying that the Bible is wrong?

Fact is, those verses are addressed in his literature

Oh! He’s saying that the Bible is wrong?

And you believe him because you also believe that the Bible is wrong?

but there’s still a blanket rejection to Camping’s well thought out arguments.

Well, his “well-thought-out arguments” are made up. You’ve provided no empirical evidence that demonstrates that they are not made up.

97. 'Tis Himself, OM says

That Ecclesiastes quote is pretty ambiguous, but Matthew 24:36 isn’t. Even an dumbshit like yourself should understand it. As I said, according to the BIBLE, Camping is saying he’s better than Jesus. What part of this do you fail to understand?

I notice that you ignored my comment about Jesus not being crucified in 33 AD. After all, why should mere facts sway an ignoramus like you?

I’m an atheist. You and Camping are idiots for believing the Bible as far as I’m concerned. But I know the Bible and Biblical history well enough to recognize that Camping is talking out of his ass. And you’re sniffing his farts and telling us how they smell like roses.

Please don’t whine about my language. I tend to get annoyed when dumbshits go out of their way to show how stupid they are. So if you don’t like my swearing, you can take your objections and shove them up your rosy red rectum.

98. Owlmirror says

Ecclesiastes 8:5 Whoso keepeth the commandment shall feel no evil thing: and a wise man’s heart discerneth both time and judgment.

…something Camping discusses in his literature you refuse to consider.

So Camping is claiming to be a “wise man”, and this magically gives him the right to say that something explicitly in the Bible is wrong?

Oh, and what is this in Ecclesiastes 8:7

Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?

Hahahahahaha! Camping is not a “wise man”. Pretending to be wise, he is become a fool who lies about what’s in the Bible.

99. Benjamin Franklin says

David M-

So? In Italy, 17 brings bad luck, because if you rearrange XVII to VIXI, you get the Latin word for “I have lived”.

And if you modify VIXI to VIXEN, you get the Latin word for “I have loved”>

100. fellowscientist says

@101, an atheist quoting scriptures, and a non-science professional dwelling in scienceblog threads. I’m just a little confused.

I’m sure PZ Meyers didn’t see this attention coming either. PZ? Did you? Although the original SF article is banging out some serious comment counts.

101. Blind Squirrel says

OK, I’ll do it:
fellowscientist, who is this P Z Meyers of whom you speak?

BS

102. Janet Holmes says

Fellowscientist confuses effort with achievement as so many do. Work may be a moral good if you subscribe to that sort of romantic philosophy but just because you have been working assiduously for decades doesn’t mean you have necessarily achieved anything of any value. My kids have a tendency to fall for this fallacy.
In his case Camping has spent much of his life poring over ancient legends to no useful purpose. This is a sad waste of so much energy and dedication, which could have been much better spent. If he wants to fritter his life away delving into magic spells that’s his prerogative, but just cause he worked hard at it doesn’t mean it deserves respect.

103. Owlmirror says

I’m just a little confused.

More than just a little.

104. raven says

@96 you use part of the Bible. Consider this verse w.r.t Christs return and judgement day:

Ecclesiastes 8:5 Whoso keepeth the commandment shall feel no evil thing: and a wise man’s heart discerneth both time and judgment.

…something Camping discusses in his literature you refuse to consider.

Ecclesiastes 8:

2 Obey the king’s command, I say, because you took an oath before God. 3 Do not be in a hurry to leave the king’s presence. Do not stand up for a bad cause, for he will do whatever he pleases. 4 Since a king’s word is supreme, who can say to him, “What are you doing?”

5 Whoever obeys his command will come to no harm,
and the wise heart will know the proper time and procedure.

6 For there is a proper time and procedure for every matter, though a man’s misery weighs heavily upon him.

7 Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?

Notscientist troll and Camping are just playing, “Lets Make Stuff Up using bible passages.”

Ecclesiastes has nothing to do with the Second Coming. It was written centuries before, probably by an atheist.

It just says to obey the King. Since these kingdoms weren’t democracies, people didn’t have much choice.

More relevant is the next few verses.
7 Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?

Camping claims to know even though he was wrong once and his magic book says he can’t know. Xians have been predicting the end of the world for 2,000 years. They’ve always been wrong and always will be.

Xians have been twisting, distorting and Making Stuff Up using their magic book for 2,000 years as well. Camping is the end of a long, line disreputable people. There will always be more.

105. John Morales says

Raven @52 FTW.

106. pcarini says

So I kept digging, and find he has a wealth of literature with referenced Biblical verses. Are you going to read it?

Oh boy am I ever!

(on second thought no, I’m not a masochist.)

107. Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology says

I remember a televangelist on TBN said that 2012 was going to be the happiest day of our lives because that’s when the Lord was coming back to destroy many cities (he listed which ones too) and save us. Is this the same guy?

How lovely that they pray and wish for the death of so many…

108. says

Everyone has their theories. I’m betting on red.

2012prophecy.net

109. 'Tis Himself, OM says

fellowdumbshit,

@101, an atheist quoting scriptures, and a non-science professional dwelling in scienceblog threads. I’m just a little confused.

I wasn’t always an atheist. I had years of religious training and indoctrination. As it happens, reading the Bible cover to cover (including all the begats, leprosy of houses, and the other minutiae) three times was strong evidence to support my atheism. So yes, dumbshit, I quoted scripture as have others here. Just because you’ve only got a nodding acquaintance with the Bible doesn’t mean everyone’s as ignorant as you.

I notice you’ve still not responded to the evidence that Camping is using the wrong starting date for his fantasies. Want to give it a try or are you smart enough to realize you’re too stupid to do it?

110. hznfrst says

A prime example of Holy Shit at its stinkiest!

111. Hurin says

Just like the arrogant PZ Meyers biologist here won’t read the literature of John Jones in Theoretical Chemistry. With H. Camping, there’s simply a lack of interest wrt the Bible. Understandable. But why bash him? Fear? Arrogance?

“Fellowscientist”, as one of the chemistry students on this thread I wanted to hit back regarding the unimpressive misuse of chemistry in you post above. Its trivial to note that PZ won’t read quantum chemistry or the bible to enhance his knowledge of developmental biology, but that isn’t why you included quantum chemistry in your post. You figured that you could slide the comparison past us and get people to agree that numerology has the same scholarly value as quantum chemistry. You aren’t fooling anyone with your bullshit, so stop insulting our intellegence.

112. raven says

With H. Camping, there’s simply a lack of interest wrt the Bible. Understandable. But why bash him? Fear? Arrogance?

Camping is just a quack who distorts, misuses, and lies about the bible. It’s simply a Rorsach blot that some people use to mean whatever they want it to mean.

There is also nothing special about the bible. It is an ancient anthology without all that much relevance to modern humans. It is also a contradictory mass of propaganda and fiction.

It isn’t hard to read or understand. Once you realize Camping is one of myriads of deluded conmen, what bother spending any more time on him? As you failed to notice, for most people, the world’s Campings chief value is as a source of minor amusement.

113. Hurin says

@101, an atheist quoting scriptures, and a non-science professional dwelling in scienceblog threads. I’m just a little confused.

First you ask us to produce bible quotes to invalidate Camping rather than simply observing that the bible lacks empirical veracity, then you are “confused” when some of the atheists here actually do? What are you saying with this exactly? Do we have to be christians to properly use the bible or something? When I try to figure out what you are trying to accomplish on this thread I become “just a little confused” as well. Outclassed doesn’t even begin to describe how you look next to Tis Himself.

Go read a book dude, it’ll make you a better person.

114. Brownian, OM says

Go read a book dude, it’ll make you a better person.

I’m fascinated by the tendency of the profoundly idiotic to try to stuff credentials and authority into their noms d’écran, as if we’ll respond with something like “Well, he’s talking complete shit, but his handle is ‘fellowscientist’, so I guess he must be right. Oh, is there anyone who can debate him? Somebody find nobelpresidentandkingofmensa, stat!”

It’s much more likely that fellowscientist will simply change his login to “librarypatron” than heed Huron’s advice.

115. pipkin1972 says

@tis himself comment 101-you have given me the biggest laugh so far this year 10 out of 10.

116. Miki Z says

Perhaps the registration system bit him and he was really wanting ‘Fallow Scientist’. He seems to be post slash-and-burn and pre-planting, wrt knowledge.

I think Hurin has an insight about the book. I read on topics that interest me, and probably most educated people do the same. (I don’t have a citation for that, but it seems a reasonable assumption.) So if I’m going to be discussing, say, a guy who has been reading the Bible daily for 70 years, I make sure I’ve got at least a passing understanding of what the book says. I’d do the same type of preparation to attend a lecture on knot theory, or panda bears, or supercolliders.

On the other hand, I tend to not read in-depth analysis of a work of fiction before I begin reading the work itself. I want to be sucked in and believe, if just for that moment. Some people can skip the reading and go straight to belief. This seems to prolong the moment.

117. hackerguitar says

If there’s such a thing as numerical pareidolia, this Camping person certainly has it. He’s seeing patterns where there just plain aren’t any. It’s a burnt-toast Mary image