I’ve been issued a challenge from Kent Hovind.
Open Letter to self proclaimed “atheist” PZ Myers of U of Minnesota – Morris,
1. Someone sent me the post you have about me concerning my new lawsuit against “Rational” Wiki Foundation. I don’t know the web address your comments are posted on but maybe someone who posts this can add it <here>?
2. In your post you made several errors and false accusations so I thought I’d set the record straight. I am NOT looking for a fight but you wrote first and started this.
3. If you are going to write things about me please add me to your mailing list so I can refute things that are in error (or just dumb). I get email at: email@example.com. TO ALL- In the likely case he does not add me – would one of you reading this blog send me anything he says or writes about me please? PZ qualifies for the Titus 1:11 prize!
4. In your post you said I go home from prison in August, 2015. This is incorrect. I go to Pensacola Feb. 2015 at the LATEST. There are several suits in the various federal courts I could win and bills in congress that could make it much sooner. I also have a lawsuit in the NH fed court to make the BOP obey the 2nd chance law and give me 6 months half way house as well which puts me in Pensacola THIS August when I win.
5. The lawsuit against “Rational”* Wiki is NOT “planned.” It is filed in the Federal Court for the Northern District of Florida Case #3:14cv94/RV/CJK and is on their web site and 2peter3.com. The filing fee was paid last week and two of the authors have been located. *It is NOT “rational” to believe you came from a rock 4.6 billion years ago! It’s STUPID!
6. I don’t “plan” to sue anyone now or when I get out unless they break the law. I didn’t start ANY of these fights including the one that put me here. Anyone who obeys the law will have no trouble from me. Accusing someone of a crime (like “Rational” Wiki did) IS a crime of libel unless they can prove their accusations. The courts will handle that now. If you accuse me of a crime that you cannot prove (libel) I will use the law (I Tim. 1:8) to correct the record and protect myself.
7. I am NOT in prison for “tax fraud.” In the unlikely even you actually are interested in the truth I suggest you go to www.2peter3.com in the legal section and read the complaint I filed with the Committee on Conduct in the federal court in Denver against the Assistant US Attorney in my case-Michelle M. Heldmyer. Filed Dec. 19 , 2013- Case #14-CC-1. It has the 3 items I was charged with spelled out clearly for all to see. I did NOT break any laws but the government probably did. She has not responded yet but her reply to my complaint should be very interesting! Please show me from the 3 charges in my case where I was charged with “fraud” as you allege or apologize for lying about me.
8. I do not lie to children or anyone else as you falsely allege but you do. In your classes at the U of Minnesota you use “evidences” for evolution that have long been proven to be lies. See my DVD #4 “Lies in the Textbooks” for a few examples. Also please show me ONE specific case where you can prove I lied to children.
9. For those who would like to see you admit you are a fish and a relative of a banana (and several other dumb “confessions” you made on camera) I would highly recommend that you get the 35 min. DVD “Evolution vs. God” from livingwaters.com or evolutionvsGod.com/bulk. There the world can see you reveal yourself for a complete fool (Psalm 14:1).
Anyone can (and SHOULD) make copies of this DVD and give it to every one of your students. I may even fund the drive to give a copy to every student on the entire campus with the damages I get paid from the “rational” wiki suit. Hmmm? THAT would be poetic justice!
10. Marianne-please see how many students there are at the U of M Morris campus and check with Ray Comfort to get a cost on that many DVDs. I know people who will gladly distribute them. As a matter of fact-if any of you wish to pass them out at any university campus, Marianne can add you to a list and when I win the $ and if God leads I will seriously consider paying for them.
11. CHALLENGE- PZ, When I get out and can travel I will come to your university at my expense and debate you on the evolution topic. Since you are using tax dollars to promote your religion and the burden of proof is on you I would like you to supply the 5 or 10 best evidences for evolution above the level of minor changes within kinds as the basis for the debate.
12. You can have as many “assistants” on your side as you wish but I get 50% of the total time and we only discuss one topic at a time. I will also pay only you $150/hr up to a max of 3 hrs actual debate time.
13. I will also pay all expenses to have the debate professionally video taped and give you a master copy. The only edits allowed will be adding better graphics and PowerPoint slides in post-production and typical trailers for other materials or web sites you or I wish to promote. You and I will each retain rights to sell copies of the DVD ONLY IF they are unaltered.
14. As a teacher there you should be able to get a hall for 2-3 hrs for free. I suggest one that seats 1500 minimum! Watch any of my other 20 debates on you tube or drdino.com to see why. UC Irvine turned away nearly 3000.
15. You seem to love to promote your religion of evolutionism in class where you have an obvious psychological and academic advantage. You cannot fire me, fail me, intimidate me or bamboozle me. Marianne at firstname.lastname@example.org is keeping a list of any churches wishing to schedule me to speak and any evolutionists willing to debate me. Please contact her to get on the list.
16. If you DO NOT contact her within a reasonable time of say-30 days (April 9) – to tell her you are willing to debate (once a time can be worked out) I will presume (as will any REAL “rational” people) that you are a coward and do not intend to take me up on my offer.
17. You are NOT the enemy PZ. Your father (John 8:44) hates my Father (I Jn. 3) and his attitude has rubbed off on you. I suggest you repent and accept Jesus Christ while you are above room temp. That will not always be the case!
18. The God that you claim not to believe in loves you and told me I’m supposed to try.
Kent Hovind 3-9-14
A few comments from me.
Why the scare quotes around “atheist”? I am one. Are you a “Christian”?
1 & 3. I’m at freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula. I don’t push my views on others; if you want to subscribe to the newsfeed, that’s at freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/feed, and apparently when you’ve registered as a reader here, you can subscribe and have links sent to you as email. You have to do it; I’m not going to make you read it.
4. You’re a convicted felon. Sorry if I don’t pay as much attention to the details of your release as you do.
5 & 6. You’re a litigious twit. I’m also not concerned with the details of your petty legal harassments.
7. You are a convicted fraud. That you now claim that the government was wrong suggests that you haven’t learned a thing from your conviction. Good luck with getting early parole! Your lack of remorse suggests you’re going to get out and commit the same crimes all over again.
8. “Evidence” is already plural, you twit. I’ve seen your “lies” video, and it’s full of lies itself.
9 & 10. Ray Comfort lies and quotemines about as much as you do. Feel free to sink money into spreading that noise at UMM; we have about 1900 students.
11-14. Woo hoo! $450! Sure, we can do that. We can’t do a 1500 seat auditorium, though; we aren’t that big. It’s good that you insist
we only discuss one topic at a time; I know from your recorded talks that you usually insist on superficial and wrong discussions, so a little depth would completely founder your claims.
I will insist on a couple of restrictions, however.
We will define together a small number of specific issues to be discussed — no grand fuzzy declarations that give you room to Gish Gallup your way through the debate.
I insist on choosing the moderator, who will be someone from the science community, given specific instructions to keep the discussion on topic without editorial intrusion of their own. I have had bad experiences with your co-religionists — they have not been trustworthy.
Any and all profits from the debate, such as from the distribution of the “professionally video taped” DVD, will be shared equally between us, in addition to the $150/hour fee you’ll pay me. I will be donating my part of the revenue to a pro-science organization.
15. There is no religion of evolution. In the classroom, my colleagues and I teach the evidence.
16. Oh, please. What are you, twelve years old?
17. Calling my father the devil is not the way to win me over, asshole.
18. I don’t believe that the voices in your head are the voice of a god, so your attempt to usurp divine authority leaves me unimpressed.
I suspect that my demands that diminish the potential for profit to creationism and Kent’s own pockets will completely squelch Hovind’s interest in this debate, but I’ll let you know if he perseveres.
Hmm. Actually, he’s a convicted con artist. I might need to bring in a lawyer to make any agreement between us official and enforceable.
chigau (違う) says
Are you seriously considering this?
PZ Myers says
If he meets my conditions, I would seriously consider it.
If you shake hands on the agreement, count your fingers afterward.
“Everybody’s innocent in here. Didn’t you know that?”
–Andy Dufresne, The Shawshank Redemption
Also, he should have to promise to pay taxes on his half of the proceeds.
chigau (違う) says
Re Sven @ #4
“I spent 5 years in the slammer and I never met an inmate who didn’t claim that he was innocent,” Jim Rockford, Resurrection in Black and White from the Rockford Files.
I’m almost tempted to review my “never debate creationists” stance on this one purely for the comedy.
I’d lawyer up too if I were to do this PZ. Hovind’s slimier than a tapeworm’s codpiece.
Anyone who obeys the law will have no trouble from me.
Sounds like Kent’s planning on making trouble for himself.
You are welcome! :o)
Publishing/distributing a video ostensibly ‘without edits’, by only “adding graphics”, is a technical impossibility. Everything involved with production of a video is editing. That is a big loophole for a snake like Hovind to slither through.
Does Dino Ken realize the irony of his email address referencing a text that is forged?
Marcus Ranum says
From his email address, peter 2:3 is: In their greed these teachers will exploit you with fabricated stories.
Not that a greedy tax evader would exploit anyone with fabricated stories…
– ‘evidences’ is a perfectly valid plural usage, but moreover, the snipe seemed a bit childish to me
– why no response to No.2 ?
P.S. I’m firmly on your side, just a minor quibble, take care.
Marcus Ranum says
slimier than a tapeworm’s codpiece.
Thanks. Now I need an extra helping of brain-wash to get that image out of my mind.
chigau (違う) says
Just like ‘internets’.
In case anybody is interested, check Wikipedia for his bio. His biography is very interesting. It is quite safe to say that his convictions were a catastrophe for his financial status. He was ordered to pay a fine, court costs, restitution, back taxes, and tax penalties that total (from Wikipedia) approximately $3,912,675.
The guy is now 61 years old and his earning years are slipping away steadily. He will be eligible to receive Social Security in January of 2015 when he turns 62. Even then, he will have to begin repaying quite a substantial amount from what little earnings he can muster. He will be dependent on funds and sustenance from his “disciples” and his son Eric for the remainder of his life.
Kroos Control says
The world will be a better place when this guys is out of jail!
(said no one ever)
Have Aron Ra on as a “helper”.
Menyambal --- making sambal a food group. says
Brother Kent has lied to children. I was there.
He may not be currently lying directly to children, what with being in prison and all, unless a child reads this letter.
Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says
Portia is a mixed-practice attorney. For an interstate contract, you can specify a choice-of-law clause in the state where she’s most familiar with the case law, if necessary.
Me, I’d love to see any resulting contract – preferably marked up with your comments about what the contract is intended to do – out of sure curiosity about both to what Kent would agree and what mechanisms your lawyer felt were necessary to hold him accountable.
Well at least the students of UMM will have no shortage of coasters (#9-10).
Howard Bannister says
–why no answer to #2?
…because it’s neither a question now something which can be answered. It’s a declaration of the intention of the rest of the points.
All you can really say when somebody says that is ‘okay, go ahead.’
PZed, I think you should accept his challenge, Bugs Bunny style…..
He actually does mean to imply that you’re not really an atheist with the scare quotes, as reinforced when he says in #18, “the god that you claim not to believe in”. Because, in his world view, there are no real atheists. “Without excuse” (Romans 1:20) and all that rot.
It could just be literalism (everything in the bible must be true, therefore this is true, even if it’s nonsense), but I wonder if perhaps even admitting the possibility of atheism is scary to some people.
Maybe he hopes that he can generate some controversy, and thereby get some debates set up for when he is free, thus allowing him to re-launch his career. The downside to debates with him is it might just help him do that.
What is it with wingnuts and scare quotes? He’s got around a dozen in there.
Hell yes it’s scary. Anybody who tries to take the Bible seriously has to recognize that it’s a crazy quilt of wildly different and often contradictory ideas. If you admit the possibility of atheism you admit the possibility of recognizing that the Bible is just a collection of mental masturbations by a bunch of people so ignorant they thought the world was flat, and then poof! there goes your authority to make proclamations in the name of your god. And how can you fleece your flock if you have no more authority than the guy on the next barstool?
Chengis Khan, The Cryofly says
I am totally baffled. Even reading the names of ‘these’ guys gives them legitimacy. How can one debate and convince a permanent schizophrenic… the multitudes that believe that schizophrenia is form of communication with god?
Area Man says
I think that, in the fundamentalist mind, the Truth of God’s Existence is obvious and overwhelming, so when they encounter non-believers, it causes acute cognitive dissonance. They defuse that dissonance by denying that anyone is truly a non-believer — atheists are either ignorant or they’re “rebelling” against God.
This also explains why they keep yammering away with facile messages about Jesus having died for our sins, as if our entire culture hadn’t heard it already. In their heads, anyone who hasn’t joined them must not know any better, so they need to keep spreading the word as if for the first time.
I would so travel to Morris to see this!!
When I was a Xian, we slipped a smile and a tone of compassion over our righteous indignation and called it “bringing the lost to Jesus”.
In hindsight, it was nothing more than a sugar-coated turd. That can be a hard thing to admit to ones self…even a scary thing.
Christoph Burschka says
Indeed, you may call yourself an “atheist”. But where are the official long-form credentials that verify your alleged status as a non-believer?
Al Dente says
Area Man @30
In amplification of your comments, I once had an argument with a fundamentalist who insisted that I must believe in his god because one of the Pauline epistles said so. I was angry at god or rebellious or something which made me pretend not to believe. Nothing I could say would convince this guy that I honestly, truly did not believe in any gods, let alone his. He even said that non-Christian theists believed in Jesus but didn’t realize it.
Some people should be avoided- because they are the plague. I don’t believe you want to have a working relationship with Kent Hovind.
Re the lawsuit: For those who, like me, like what RationalWiki does, they have a fundraiser on right now. Chip in a few bucks, if you’re able. I did!
If you haven’t been to RW, pay a visit. In addition to keeping me up-to-date on the continuing wackiness at Conservapedia, they are an excellent resource on all sorts of wingnuttery, woo, and religious crackpottery as they are unhindered by Wikipedia’s NPOV requirement.
Marcus Ranum says
Are they going to let you into his prison cell for the debate?
Gregory in Seattle says
@dorcheat #17 – For some odd reason, I did not have his Wikipedia page on my watch list (I’ve been editing there for years.) I have added it now, and look forward to the inevitable wash job as his release gets closer.
He doesn’t get out on April 1st …… or does he?
Reminded me of this ...
Hee. And why is he talking to Marianne in the middle of a note to PZ? That smacks of guys who think they are SO IMPORTANT because they have a secretary, so will refer to her (it’s always a her with them) in the middle of conversations just to show off that they have one, and to indicate that they’re not really even bothering with writing to you themselves, they’re dictating to a secretary, and find even that so boring that they’ll let their minds wander and talk to said secretaries about other things in the middle of their letters.
The posters need to call him “Convicted tax-evader Kent Hovind”.
Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says
Exactly. People like him really believe that atheists are literally satanists, working for satan and worshiping satan in order to destroy christianity but saying we’re atheist in order to deceive those who are “easily fooled” or something. See also “Your father hates my Father”. That’s a clear reference to worshiping satan, and thus satan is PZs “father” who hates Ken’s “Father” (Notice the capital”) who is God. It doesn’t actually refer to PZ’s dad at all, but to satan.
It’s pretty damn whack.
@29 and more generally:
It is possible that those to whom god actually speaks have a bicameral mind….I’m not good at embedding links but google will direct you to a good summary of the idea, and it really does seems to afford an explanation for auditory hallucinations, especially hearing the voice of a ‘god’.
He doesn’t have to pay taxes; it’s all God’s money.
http://www.bop.gov/inmateloc/ has his release date down for August, so it looks like when he claims he’s getting out in February, that’s another lie. He might mean that he’s getting transferred to a halfway house in Pensacola in February, but that will mean he’s still in the system.
I’d carefully consult a “lawyer” before agreeing to ANYTHING with this “fundamentalist” “jailbird” “lunatic.”
Timothy Brannan says
Personally I wouldn’t bother. The guy is a first class tool.
Send him back a note saying his fake Ph.D. isn’t good enough and to come back when has a real one.
Whatever. Even if you slip below 98.6 briefly upon your demise, you’ll soon heat right back up, and then some.
But enough about Cinnabon…
This is a serious tactical blunder for Hovind. He was invited by the local campus Christian student organizations to speak at my undergraduate university while I was a student there (this was a couple of years before his indictment), and I thought it was pretty interesting seeing how he handled questions afterward. There were a large number of science students challenging the lies and distortions he’d presented, and the Gish Gallop was very much on display in how he responded to their questions. In fact, he was pretty successful at making it superficially appear that none of the questions had legitimate basis simply by changing the subject slightly. He definitely succeeded in making me look foolish when I challenged him — I fell for his traps and let myself get distracted by his changing the subject from what I had actually asked about.
This changed with the last question of the night. One of Hovind’s claims during his presentation was that astronomy purports to observe objects farther than thousands of light years away, and that this would suggest that the universe is older than thousands of years. Hovind accepted the premise, but argued that because the parallax is too small for distant objects, astronomers are therefore incorrect in their estimation of the distance of these objects, implying that maybe those distant galaxies are really only a few thousand light years away. So at the end of the Q&A, a member of our astronomy faculty had been waiting patiently in line to ask a question for well over an hour, and finally got to the microphone. He said (I’m paraphrasing, this was years ago now) “I’m an astronomer, and I don’t know much about biology or evolution, but I do know about stars. You’ve said that you are only interested in getting the lies out of the textbooks [this was how Hovind had framed all of his criticisms — he wasn’t anti-evolution, he just wanted to correct factual errors in the textbooks], so I just wanted to point out to you that you have an error in your slides. You claimed that we can’t determine the distance to faraway stars using parallax. You’re right, and in fact the problem is much worse than you suggested. But because of that, astronomers don’t use this method to find the distance to these objects. So your slide that says that parallax is used to find the distance to stars millions of light years away is wrong. Will you agree to remove this error from your slides?”
Hovind, of course, attempted to change the subject, but our astronomer was unwavering. To everything Hovind said, he basically responded, “Yes, that’s fine, but what about the error in your slides? Will you agree to remove it?” Which of course Hovind would not do. It was an incredibly effective strategy which clearly exposed Hovind as intellectually dishonest, irrespective of any of the other points he’d made.
After the end of the event, I got into a discussion with another student who was a Creationist and had thought Hovind was “a genius.” But even he admitted that he was troubled by how Hovind had responded to our astronomer’s question. Of course this didn’t shake his faith (and later in the conversation he made it quite explicit that he rejected evolution not on the basis of evidence, but because he believed morality required biblical literalism, and accepting evolution would therefore mean rejecting morality), but I hope it at least planted a seed of doubt that maybe Creationism wasn’t everything he’d believed.
Anyway, the point of that story is that PZ, if you end up actually having this debate with Hovind and have clear rules of discussing only one topic at a time, you will crush him. He’s freely conceded what, as far as I could tell from seeing him operate, would be his only debate advantage.
Ah, the penny just dropped:
Ken Ham, creationist, debates a real scientist, loses, makes fat stacks of cash to spend on rube-fleecing centre.
Kent Hovind, creationist & convicted mad grabber of Fat Stacks™, watches debate … issues his own challenge to real scientist.
Kent Hovind has a point. All we know is that PZ doesn’t believe in Yahweh and Jesus. What about Zeus? Brahama? Pele? Shango? Tezcatlipoca? Unless he is willing to present signed affidavits showing that he doesn’t believe in each and every god we just can’t take his claims of atheism on faith.
Menyambal --- making sambal a food group. says
Anuran, PZ will have to sign those affidavits in the presence of every person in the world, or those of us who weren’t there will have no choice but to regard them as fake. So I suggest you get crackin’.
It’s always creepy to watch a truly contaminated mind express itself–so many references, but all to the same one document. It’s like that spooky little paragraph floating around the internet about what it would really be like if you could somehow survive inside a black hole–his mind is actually folded in on itself until every thought he has approaches the same point, and no matter where he starts he travels along the same trajectory because logic doesn’t work where his head is.
He’s like a zombie–all his values and ideals are bent to the reproductive imperative of the Yahweh idea, and anything he does is okay as long as he’s convinced that it’s getting what it wants. Which it probably is, inasmuch as an utterly non-anthropic self-replicating pattern can “want” anything. You can’t even call the evangelical compulsion an instinct, really–a god isn’t complex enough to have behaviors per se. You might as well say that water wants to flow downhill, or that sugar instinctively crystallizes out of solution–it’s just doing what the conditions of its environment dictate that it do.
Don’t mind me. Just thinking in pictures. tl;dr, Hovind’s favorite collection of rambling terrorist screeds has jacked him up so badly it’s hard to feel anything but pity for him. This is why I’m only 99% anti-death-penalty; some people are so far beyond our help that it might be a kindness.
PZ — Be careful how you agree to split any proceeds. Accurate accounting may not be your adversary’s strong suit. Remind me again why he is in prison?
With a little creative accounting, any “profits” from the venture may simply evaporate, eaten up by “expenses.”
Suggest instead that you base any split of the proceeds on a more objective standard, such as an agreed percentage of gross sales. And insist on the right to audit the books.
How polite you are. The result of LONG experience, on a personal level, with these stupid, lying shits.
I might reproduce his rambling, stupid letter for other to look at, but either offer no response of post a video clip of Father Jack telling him to “Feck off!”
It’s such a annoyance people like this can’t be entirely annoyed.
This is about the funniest thing I have read in a while.
This part is particularly humorous:
7. I am NOT in prison for “tax fraud.”
Here is the actual court document from Google Scholar (Case law):
Pay particular attention to Part B and what follows after.
Here is list of all the cases (or most of them):
And of course:
8. I do not lie to children or anyone else as you falsely allege but you do.
We know he lies through his teeth to children and anyone else ignorant and gullible enough to listen to him.
Usernames are smart says
I love it!
Huh. Either we’re descended from “Fish-like” “Fish”, or Kent’s “father” (Malachi 2:3) is a blind, bumbling “idiot” (Genesis 3:8-9).
My proof? Inferior Vena Cava: makes perfect sense in a fish, makes little sense in a human, makes absolutely NO sense in Giraffa camelopardalis (in fact, if IVC was “designed”, then said designer should not be “allowed outside” without a football helmet and life jacket).
Usernames are smart says
Do’oh! I had vena cava on the mind from a previous activity and forgot to reset.
I “meant” to say in the “above” that the Recurrent laryngeal nerve crushes any thought of design.
Oh, and your feeble “attempts” to explain it away are “feeble”.
Hovind spent five years and $100,000 in legal costs fighting over a $50 building. And lost.
In court he argued his property belonged to God and cannot be taxed.
Had he cooperated with authorities, rather than fighting them and making bizarre arguments, he probably wouldn’t have faced jail.
I think I know who would win the debate.
*$50 building permit
Noticed that too.
It will be interesting to see how the results of the GAIA spacecraft mission, which is expected to measure stellar parallax of stars up to and beyond 6,500 light years away, impact his argument. I am sure we all expect a full retraction.
And you should get to have a huge buzzer, so that every time he does try to drift off-topic you can buzz him.
I would humbly suggest a topic for the debate such as “Does evidence from the life sciences support a common ancestry for all living things”.
This helps keep the topic away from the sciences that aren’t your specialty (though you could probably destroy his arguments from those other areas as well). It would also eliminate the possibility of flipping to other sciences, such as when you present something like the phylogenetic tree built from the unnecessary differences in cytochrome C, and he turns around and dismisses it because of some misused geology that he claims limits earth’s history to 6k years.
I know you don’t really need advice on this, but I enjoy being involved in this topic, so I’m just throwing out some thoughts.
Nathan Zamprogno says
There’s only one way that this could work. Treat it like a stand-up comedy routine.
“This guy believes there are dinosaurs alive and well in Borneo!” (everyone hoots with laughter).
“This guy thinks fluoride in your municipal water is government mind control!” (everyone points and doubles over).
“This guy thinks SONAR is a part of the electromagnetic spectrum!” (people wipe tears of laughter from their eyes).
“This guy says he was a science teacher but has a fake PhD from a diploma mill operating out of someone’s spare room!” (people slap their thighs and gasp for breath, weakly waving at you asking you to stop).
Then PZ takes pity on his audience…
“But seriously folks… This guy not only spent nine years in prison for tax fraud, he sent his wife to prison as well!” (everyone boos).
“This guy never learned his lesson. He spent a decade refusing he did anything wrong.” (everyone hisses)
“This guy told cancer patients not to get regular treatment because Big Pharma were trying to kill them!” (someone from the back throws a rotten tomato, which narrowly misses Hovind but makes him duck).
“This guy has lied for a living for years and grew fat on people’s gullibility. He thinks he doesn’t have to pay tax. He renounced his U.S Citizenship, and he said ‘Democracy is evil and contrary to God’s law’!” (an old lady in the front row shouts ‘I’m a Christian, but you’re a disgrace!’
Yes. I’d come to see that. Nothing less than what Kent Hovind deserves. Undiluted public scorn. People alternately pointing and laughing, and then realising it’s not that funny and then getting good and angry. Hovind getting a real serve. This pimple, smug and wrapped in self delusion, deserves nothing less.
OK, I know this is far out of my league.
But why even consider debating K. Hotwind?
A Convicted Fraud Felon?
Is that K. Hotwind, CFF on his “card”?
Well, maybe after he has admitted to and atoned for his “slip” it might be taken under consideration to initiate a conversation – but not without vividly recalling his villanous past.
My 2 cents.
Wise words that are attributed to William S. Burroughs:
I thought we weren’t going to debate these people anymore because (1) of all the money they make (Ham claims the debate was responsible for his 73 million) and (2) it gives them the prestige they don’t deserve. Besides he’s a convicted felon and you don’t want to run in that crowd. Just tell him you would have debated him before he became a felon and won’t associate with known criminals.
Robert Allen says
Suggestion: If you get the $450.00 from Hovind, donate it to the National Center for Science Education. I will gladly match half of that.
Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says
Tell KH you will debate him, but only after he acknowledges publicly he did commit fraud by not paying legitimate taxes on his income.
Robert Allen says
Another suggestion. As you do not have a 1,500-seat auditorium, how about offering to debate visit Hovind in prison to debate him.
From not debating creationists to debating Kent Hovind , that’s a big leap.
If you cross the Rubicon, you go all the way, right?
Peter Reilly says
Hovind was not actually convicted of fraud or even tax evasion. He called the people working at DAL “missionaries” and did not do payroll withholding which was good for a few counts. Most of the counts were “structuring” which is taking cash amounts of somewhat less than 10k to avoid currency reporting. The final count was interfering with Tax Administration.
From the Tax Court decisions on himself and his wife it is pretty clear that he was not filing, but there was no criminal case made out of that.
I hate to say it, but I feel a certain duty as a linguist: “Evidence” isn’t plural. If it were plural, we’d say “evidence are”, but we say “evidence is”. For most speakers, “evidence” is non-count, which means that it’s syntactically singular, but doesn’t have a plural. For some speakers, like Kent Hovind apparently, it’s an ordinary countable noun.
OK, so this is a tiny quibble, but you know…
I just don’t see the point in a debate with Kent Hovind. The man is not to be trusted on anything. He is also a through shark. It is pretty obvious from the court case that he is a fanatical worshipper of Mammon and will do about any cheap, shoddy trick to get and keep money. Also this case had example, after example of him lying, and lying. He is not simply deluded he is a shyster and crook on top of being a liar for money. Such a person should be firmly ignored.
Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says
Except for the penalties and back taxes as part of the judgement. Boy, you apologists for criminals are almost as dumb as they are.
This may be as good a place as any to post a note about Kent’s “cellie” Alexander Otis Matthews and his libel case against RationalWiki. I just found it, and “I think we have a problem”!
Alexander Otis Matthews,
The RationalWiki Foundation, et al,
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR
THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA
Complaint For Per Se Libel,Libel,
And Injurious Falsehood
It is about 12 pages long.
I think the biggest problem right now is seeing if the Court can sort out what looks like some bungling in the handling of the case.
On PACER, the above case is filed as an Amended Complaint to another unrelated case that Matthews filed and carries the case number of:
David Gerard says
Here’s the new suit against RationalWiki that Robert Baty mentions in @78: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/File:Matthews_Libel_Suit.pdf
It’s every bit as well-reasoned as Mr Hovind’s.
Sure, PZ can claim to be an atheist, but WERE YOU THERE?
David Gerard says
If atheists came from fundies, why are there still fundies? YOU CAN’T EXPLAIN THAT.
So Kent claims that your father is the devil? …Hey, isn’t that libel? …And doesn’t he also say a bunch of untrue stuff about ‘secular’ biologists, such as you teach that life came from rocks; and that you’re a moral corrupter of youth, etc. etc. …?
Two can play the litigation game… Call the lawyers!
I left RationalWiki a while ago. I don’t remember the specifics, but it was quite frustrating dealing with several moral relativists and others who were very upset with me when I said that the Roman Catholic Church is an international criminal child rape ring, and that anyone who gives money to the church indirectly (but minimally) aids child rapists. Eventually, even the owner came into the discussion. I think he was on my side, but took a Socratic approach, and he did so IMHO to not piss off some of the regulars. So, I left, and good riddance. They have some good work, but I went there to be with sane people, not to be surrounded with child rape apologists and moral relativists.
Alright, Ken, we believe you. We concede you’re not a liar; just another clueless arrogant ignoramus who has no idea what he’s talking about.
Thanks for clearing that up.
Peter Reilly says
Except for the penalties and back taxes as part of the judgement. Boy, you apologists for criminals are almost as dumb as they are.
I doubt I qualify as a Kent Hovind apologist. He certainly does not seem to think I am. The Tax Court does not convict people of crimes. I thought it was worth noting exactly what it was that he was criminally convicted of.
First, this is from my very limited understanding of libel around the US. I know this was probably not a serious question, but let me answer it anyway. It may be libel. Generally for defamation, you have to show damages. However, several specific laws are set up for certain kinds of defamation which allow for suing without showing defamation. It’s called statutory defamation. IIRC, in most US jurisdictions, accusing someone of a crime is one of those codified in law as statutory defamation. Thus, damages are assumed at trial. As far as I know, there is no statutory defamation for being called “the devil”, and in that case you would have to show everything that you would have to show for “he’s a thief”, and in addition you would have to show damages, which I suspect is impossible.
However, several specific laws are set up for certain kinds of defamation which allow for suing without showing damages.
Proofreading. I should do it some time.
EnlightenmentLiberal, if you hate moral relativists, you should check out the live specimen that washed ashore in the Dork Enlightenment thread. Or not, depending on the type of hatred you suffer from.
Didn’t see this discussed already in the comments, though I did skim from ~40 onwards.
I’d recommend a clause dictating that each party is allocated half the seating. Even if you’re not charging money to attend, I’d recommend using tickets to prevent creationists flooding the auditorium. Whether the tickets cost money or not, I would expect Hovind to want to pack the audience by whatever means necessary.
Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says
Yeah, and Al Copone was only convicted of tax evasion, with a sentence acknowledging his other crimes, same as KH.
I love the mature way in which you dismantled this bully. I regularly deal with students and parents who threaten to release their minions upon our school district the minute we start discussing evolution (or the big bang, or sex, or ectopic pregnancies, etc).
I will be sure to save your arguments and use them the next time I get a menacing e-mail, or meet with a cowering administrator.
What a Maroon, el papa ateo says
Re “evidences”: here’s a nice discussion of secular uses of evidences. Granted, all are from the early 20th century or earlier, but if it’s good enough for Shakespeare, Hume, Faraday, and Sapir, it’s good enough for me.
Dear Peter Reilly,
Thank you for the link to your Forbes article. It was quite interesting but I’m afraid my eyes cross whenever someone mentions tax laws which is why I’m so glad there are accountants. My apologies but would you please be willing to explain “structuring”? I know your article says that’s what Mr. Hovind was convicted of but it seems that what he was doing was trying to fly under the IRS radar by deliberately withdrawing slightly under the minimum amount that would be reported to the IRS. Maybe I’m wrong, but it seems to be an obvious and somewhat arrogant attempt at tax evasion.
Anyway, thank you for your time.
I am not Peter J. Reilly, but I have worked with him for a couple of years on issues such as Kent Hovind, and I have confronted Kent directly regarding his problems via his CorrLinks email account and 2Peter3 “Debate Kent” page.
In simple terms, the law requires banks to file certain reports if someone withdraws $10,000 in cash.
Kent knew that.
Kent, based on the evidence and the jury’s finding, willfully “structured” his transaction(s) so as to “evade” the reporting by the bank.
There’s a law against that, and Kent was convicted of violating it.
Kent lies about that!
“I am NOT in prison for ‘tax fraud.'” — Kent Hovind
12 counts of willful failure to collect, pay, and account for federal income taxes under 26 U.S.C. & 7202.
45 counts of structuring transactions to evade reporting requirements outline in 31 U.S.C. & 5313(a) in violation of 31 U.S.C & 5324, 18 U.S.C. & 2, and 31 C.F.R. sec. 103.11.
1 count of attempting to obstruct and impede administration of internal revenue laws under 26 U.S.C. & 7212.
These charges would have been and were explained to him by the court. Magistrate Miles Davis stated that Hovind understood the charges “whether you want to admit it or not”.
Conclusion: Kent Hovind is (still) a hypocritical unrepentant lying little weasel.
Cinzia La Strega says
“Evidence” is a non-count noun. At least that’s what I’ve been teaching my students for the past thirty years.
Not that it matters… (YES IT DOES!)
There was a “go forward” decision recently in the Michael Skakel v. Nancy Grace libel case, and the discussion there has some application here…I think.
Here’s some of the judge’s discussion in the Skakel v. Grace, et al case:
“If a plaintiff claiming defamation is a public figure, he must prove ‘that the defamatory statement was made with actual malice, such that the statement, when made, was made with actual knowledge that it was false or with reckless disregard of whether it was false.”
“A negligent misstatement of fact will not suffice; the evidence must demonstrate a purposeful avoidance of the truth.”
“Defamation is also actionable per se.”
“(1) libels charging crimes”
“(2) libels which injure a man
in his profession and calling.”
“Truth is an absolute defense to an allegation of defamation.”
“Although it is true that for a claim of defamation to be actionable, the statement must be false … and under the common law, truth is an affirmative defense to defamation … the determination of the truthfulness of a statement is a question of fact for the jury.”
“As a defense, truth provides protection against liability, but not against the expense and inconvenience of being sued.”
“A defendant need not establish the literal truth of the allegedly defamatory statement; rather, substantial truth provides an affirmative defense: “[w]here the main charge, or gist, of the libel [or defamation] is true, minor errors that do not change a reader’s perception of the statement do not make the statement actionable.”
“A defendant will not be held liable as long as the statements at issue are substantially true.”
Technically, specifically, Kent Hovind may not have been criminally convicted of “tax fraud” or “tax evasion”, but that is what he was up to and can be quite appropriately and publicly accused of being a career tax cheat/fraud/evader/protestor…
That’s my opinion on some of that.
Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says
And everything else he says, like his imaginary deity exists, and his holy book isn’t a book of mythology/fiction. Welcome to reality, where liars lie….
While I am at it, you might find this worthy of note and as a further support for why I consider Kent’s libel suit against RationalWiki quite frivolous and without merit:
From Jo Hovind’s U.S. Tax Court case:
“(Jo Hovind) contends that any fraudulent intent
during the years at issue was attributable to Mr. Hovind.”
” (W)e find that it is more reasonable to infer from
petitioner’s course of conduct that her true intention
was to conceal substantially all of her income and to
take her chances that the fraud would not be discovered.”
“(T)he record shows that petitioner was an active
participant in the operation of CSE and, along with
Mr. Hovind, engaged in a course of conduct designed
to conceal and mislead.”
Thank you very much for that explanation. It’s pretty much what I thought but as uneducated as I am with anything to do with taxes, I wasn’t sure. What Mr. Hovind did seemed to be deliberate evasion and it looked incredibly obvious even to someone like me. Many thanks again for your time!
You are welcome!
Menyambal --- making sambal a food group. says
Yes, it is stupid. It is even stupider to think that anyone believes that.
Does Kent actually think anybody believes that, or is he just doing a damnably bad job of being poetic? Yeah, much of what we are can be traced back to rocks that coalesced into a planet about 4.5 billion back, but it is an arbitrary point to pick.
And, if it comes to it, much of who I am came from rocks that were broken down into soil a few years back, processed through plants and animals, and eaten by me. I even take mineral pills, some of which are simply rock powder.
Yeah, let’s let this guy make a case for himself.
Karl Goldsmith says
He really is fucking deluded. Can we not just see if Ali G is available again?
I am disappointed beyond belief, had I known that you were no more than a self proclaimed atheist I would have gone elsewhere for my atheist info. If you could take the time to write down the names of a few people who could confirm your atheism it would go a long way toward restoring your credibility. Until such time as I am able to verify said atheistic status I will be forced to consider your atheism as “unconfirmed” and act accordingly. I’m sorry to take such drastic action but I’m sure that you will understand. One cannot be too cautious in times like these.
Hmmm…So those aren’t giant galaxies millions of light years away but are actually teeny tiny galaxies not more then 6000 ly away? Shouldn’t they be rotating a hell of lot faster? And wouldn’t most of the stars they contain be smaller red and even brown dwarfs, if that? And what about the Cepheid variables? Just askin’ . I hope an Arquillian battle cruiser doesn’t show up and demand we hand them over. That would suck.
To those of you who said that Kent Hovind will be washed up and struggle to earn a living once he’s out of jail, have too much faith in the right-wing Christian/creationist community. He will get plenty of speaking engagements, and even if he doesn’t charge an appearance fee, he’ll make plenty from collections and book/video sales. Playing the martyr to anti-Christian big government will only help his sales.
A headlining debate with PZ Myers will probably help in keeping him fed and watered, but it probably won’t make that much of a difference in the long run. He will continue to have an audience for the foreseeable future.
I guess his fortunes mainly depend on how much he still owes the IRS. If he’s free and clear, then he’ll earn a comfortable living. If not, then I guess there will be a whole new set of tax-avoiding/dodging shenanigans he can try.
His answer: “it all comes down to your worldview and the resulting assumptions and interpretations.”
In his worldview, the Universe cannot be more than 6,000 years old, therefore, the Cepheid variables do not give us an accurate representation of distance, no matter what data actually says. It’s science’s “interpretation” that’s incorrect.
Even if an alien spacecraft landed in front of Hovind and proceeded to play him a video summary of their direct recordings and observations of Earth’s history over the last 10 million years, he wouldn’t be persuaded. He would call them demons and be on the phone to Beggin’ Bob Larson to book an exorcism.
Robert Allen says
Please, PZ, offer to meet him in prison for a debate. It’s bound to make national television and thinking of the joy and laughter both you and he could bring to the more intelligent segment of our nation, small as it is, . Perhaps his fellow convicts could serve as an impartial audience–and maybe the warden could moderate. For heaven’s sake (so to speak), strike now while the iron’s not! Meet the devil on his own turf.
Are you pondering what I’m pondering?
(I think so, Brain, but how are we going to get a boxcar of eggplants to the pipe organ?
Be quiet, Pinky, or I will have to hurt you.)
I envision . . . forfeits. After the debate, a simple show-of-hands vote will determine the winner.
Whoever loses will have to wear a dunce cap, and either wear a t-shirt, or carry a sign. I think a sign would be bigger and better.
If PZ loses, his sign will have references to common bible verses, like John 3:16, Romans 1:20, Ezekiel 23:20, and 1 Samuel 6:4-5.
If the convicted felon loses, his sign will say “I am a fish-monkey!”
(And we will engineer the outcome we desire, and then take over the world!)
(Don’t think of it as a debate with an idiotic compulsively-lying fraud, PZ. Think of it as an opportunity to find out what your students really think of you.)
Tony! The Fucking Queer Shoop! says
Does that leave me enough time to erect a wall around the city? Maybe throw in a moat around it too?
1. PZ Myers should test Hovind’s “scientific” background by springing a pop quiz on him (same as what he gives his students).
2. Ask Hovind the question that no creationist has been able to answer: do you have a detailed hypothesis for the mechanisms involved in “speaking” complex living things into existence, independent of parents?
3. Heck, he could suggest one of his students debate Hovind, Jr.
John Pieret says
I might need to bring in a lawyer to make any agreement between us official and enforceable.
Forget it, PZ. Remember Wallace’s experience with the flat-Earthers? Never wrestle with a pig. you both get dirty but the pig likes it.
Thumper: Token Breeder says
… well yes, that would be stupid. But who on Earth believes that? Is this his mangled understanding of abiogenesis?
PZ Myers says
I really don’t think the debate will ever happen. The fact that I’m insisting on a competent moderator, that I’ll make sure I get a share of any profits, and that I would pin him to a single topic for at least 15 minutes of in-depth discussion (have you seen his videos? The man can’t stay on topic for 15 seconds without flipping to a random new slide) all conspire to make this a highly uninteresting opportunity for the silly flibbertigibbet.
quoth the Ham: “[W]e only discuss one topic at a time.”
Some commenters have taken this assertion as evidence that the Ham will forego use of the Gish Gallop tactic, should the Myers/Ham debate actually occur.
These commenters are optimists.
“Gish Gallop? What Gish Gallop? Ya bleedin’ drongo, I did only discuss one topic at a time! I spent ninety seconds discussing the flaws of radiometric dating, and only that specific topic. Then I spent the next ninety seconds discussing the thermodynamic impossibility of evolution, and only that specific topic. Then I spent the next ninety seconds…”
“16. If you DO NOT contact her within a reasonable time of say-30 days (April 9) – to tell her you are willing to debate (once a time can be worked out) I will presume (as will any REAL “rational” people) that you are a coward and do not intend to take me up on my offer.”
This alone is more than sufficient to not debate him. After all, at the very least the debate should be between two adults, and this makes it clear you´d be the only one in that hypothetical.
Kent, if you think the only reason why a respectable human being and a scientist would decline debating a convicted felon known for his extreme dishonesty who is so soaked in bullshit he can´t stop seeing brown, is cowardice, you are more delusional than anyone ever gave you credit for. Oh wait, you don´t actually believe that, you just said it as a cheap, juvenile, “if you don´t show me your dick, it means mine is bigger than yours” attempt at the lowest form of coercion.
The REAL “rational” people bit is hilarious…the quotes just make it so perfect.
What a colossal arsehole this putrid mind is.
@Al Dente #34:
John Pieret says
The fact that I’m insisting on a competent moderator, that I’ll make sure I get a share of any profits, and that I would pin him to a single topic …
The first two are good ideas and are possibly enforceable by contract … assuming you want to spend the time, effort and money pursuing a slease like Hovind (it only took some 20 years for the US government to nail him). The last isn’t really enforceable, I’m afraid.
Still, keep demanding your conditions and I think you may be right that Hovind won’t accept, though he will probably then claim you are afraid of an “open” debate.
If a debate actually does happen, you should get a team of six people with air horns that will use them if Kent goes off topic. Also: you should begin the evening with a musical number about Kent Hovind, Tax Evader.
Please please please keep us posted as this conversation progresses. My girlfriend is from Pensacola and I’ve had the pleasure of visiting one of Hovind’s storefronts. It was too sad and surreal to mock.
re: Cephied variables and astronomy in general.
When I was doing time in KS (I couldn’t call it living….), there was a creationist who liked to give presentations at the local Uni. Unfortunately for him, we had a panel of experts and well educated laymen in the audience. A nuclear chemist who specialized in radioactive decay (and did lots of top secret work for the government, apparently), a couple of paleontologists (who always brought fossils for show and tell), and I was the educated laymen that defended astronomy.
At the third presentation (this guy was a slow learner), I finally got him to admit that based on the evidence, the only conclusion to make about the universe is that it was created with the appearance of age. Once we went into last tuesdayism, I considered that a victory. I think, though, that the best smackdown was when he tried going on about how wrong radioactive dating was. The nuclear chemist offered to take him to the lab and set up some experiments. :)
After the third presentation, he moved his presentations to one of the local churches where he could stack the audience. That was fine. We were mostly there to keep him from using the Uni as a symbol of his legitimacy.
@ PZ Myers
Here’s one suggestion as to how to move the challenge from Kent Hovind along and start resolving some of the logistical details for producing the “debate”.
Kent boasts of having a website where folks can “Debate Kent”, in writing, and I propose you engage Kent there and start to serious negotiations.
Here’s the link:
Kent’s agents are responsible for shuttling the messages back and forth to Kent via his CorrLinks email account.
Kent says to “Debate Kent” there, and I propose you meet him there and proceed, in writing, with the negotiations and debate, if it is ultimately produced.
You can mirror the developments on a separate venue of your choosing.
I suggest the first order of business would be to get Kent to commit to a written debate or his explicit refusal to engage you in writing on his own “Debate Kent” website.
If it is going to be an oral debate, then the negotiations can proceed accordingly, in writing, in public.
My own experience is that such adversaries as Kent will not negotiate in good faith but will make unilateral, unreasonable, take it or leave it demands, and then cut and run. (That’s what Kent did with me, but it did provide an important, historical record regarding Kent and his antics.)
If it is going to be in writing, via Kent’s own “Debate Kent” website, then you don’t need to worry about waiting for his release or setting up an oral debate in Berlin, NH.
Menyambal --- making sambal a food group. says
Yeah, the “radioactive dating is wrong” shtick always makes me laugh.
There are people who can detect and dig up certain rocks from out of the ground, process them in mind-numbingly high-tech ways, install the results in fiendishly complicated devices, transport those devices in the most advanced ways, to create an explosion that requires new terms to even quantify, and new theories for even those people to comprehend.
And those people say that, oh, yeah, they can use the same theories to tell how old stuff is. Kent says they can’t. They can make rocks explode like stars, and Kent Hovind says that they don’t understand their own science.
Why would PZ waste his time doing that? Hovind is the one who wants the debate. It’s up to him to do all the running.
David Marjanović says
…I don’t know what you’re talking about; there’s a First and a Second Epistle of Peter, and 2 Peter 3 is this whole chapter.
And yes, those two letters clearly don’t have the same author. If Peter the Apostle ever existed, he was probably dead by the time number 2 was written.
Titus 1:11, BTW, is: “whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.” Hovind seems to believe you get rich from teaching evolution.
Interesting how Hovind seems to ignore the context: 1:10 is “For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision,”… well, at least I hope he ignored the context as opposed to actually meaning it.
There are several Parts B. I think you mean IV B:
“B. Fraudulent Intent”
Section IV as a whole is titled:
“IV. Section 6663(a) Fraud Penalties”
And its part C is:
Respondent has proven by clear and convincing evidence that petitioner underpaid her tax liabilities for 1998-99 and 2000-06 and that some part of her underpayment for each year was due to fraud. Petitioner bears the burden of showing by a preponderance of the evidence what portion of each underpayment, if any, is not attributable to fraud. See sec. 6663(b). Petitioner has not argued or introduced any credible evidence to prove that any specific portion of any 58*58 underpayment was not attributable to fraud. The record overwhelmingly establishes that she acted with fraudulent intent. Accordingly, we hold that petitioner is liable for the section 6663(a) fraud penalties.
We have considered all the other arguments made by the parties, and to the extent not discussed above, find those arguments to be irrelevant, moot, or without merit.”
However… “Petitioner” is Jo Delia Hovind, Kent Hovind’s wife. She “is liable for […] fraud penalties”; whether he is isn’t mentioned as far as I can see.
That’s when the scientists switched to using it as a mass noun. Today, only apologists and nonnative speakers who simply don’t know English well continue to use “evidence” as a count noun.
PZ has already accepted Kent’s challenge to a debate; subject to resolving reasonable, logistical details.
It’s no waste of time if PZ man’s up to it and up to doing it properly or documenting his good faith effort and Kent’s refusal to cooperate. If PZ isn’t up to it, his side needs to find someone who is.
Personally, I prefer written debates, though oral debates have an entertainment value advantage.
More importantly, in my further opinion, is having public negotiations such as on Kent’s own “Debate Kent” website and at least one venue of PZ’s choosing where the negotiations could be mirrored, preserved, and protected for the historical record.
It would be a simple enough matter to set up a stand-alone subject thread to allow Kent and PZ to negotiate for and produce a written exchange on “one issue at a time”, with a moderator, time/space limitations, etc., etc.
My guess is Kent would never agree to reasonable logistical details or an appropriate single issue proposition.
Kent couldn’t handle my efforts regarding such things.
I don’t suppose Kent can handle such things regarding the proposed debate with PZ.
– “I (Kent Hovind) do not lie to…anyone…as
– you (PZ Myers) falsely allege but you (PZ Myers) do.”
One of Kent’s Lies:
– “While I (Kent Hovind) was in prison the
– ‘Tax Court’ held a trial…without me being
There was no trial before the U.S. Tax Court.
Kent’s case was decided without a trial because Kent failed to properly prosecute his case, the case he brought before the U.S. Tax Court, the case for which he was represented by attorney Jerold W. Barringer up until the very end when Barringer withdrew.
Kent has been repeating his false claim about a “trial in absentia”, and Kent knows there was no trial before the U.S. Tax Court because it was possible to resolve his case without a trial and the U.S. Tax Court did so, for “lack of prosecution” on Kent’s part.
Should this all go down, have the accountant send a copy of the payment made to Kent to the IRS fraud division so they can see if he claims it on his tax return (he’ll probably insist that he be paid cash in increments no greater than $10,000).
Philip Rose says
I had to much to say to our dear friend Kent on the matter of his challenge so I tossed it in a blog format. http://thetruepooka.wordpress.com/2014/03/11/dear-kent-about-your-dear-pz/
Menyambal — making sambal a food group. @ 126:
The only problem with this is that I don’t have an internet shiny enough to present, so you’ll just have to settle for a common garden-variety internet.
William Miller says
In a reply to #51 biogeo. just a quick google search of “How are astronomers able to measure how far away a star is?” the first page is http://science.howstuffworks.com/question224.htm (hardly some crazy sky God worshiping website, and if you dont like that site, http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/ask_astro/answers/970415c.html and THIS is what they say in part. “It turns out that measuring the distance to a star is an interesting problem! Astronomers have come up with two different techniques to estimate how far away any given star is. he first technique uses triangulation (a.k.a. parallax). The Earth’s orbit around the sun has a diameter of about 186 million miles (300 million kilometers). By looking at a star one day and then looking at it again 6 months later, an astronomer can see a difference in the viewing angle for the star. With a little trigonometry, the different angles yield a distance. This technique works for stars within about 400 light years of earth. There is no direct method currently available to measure the distance to stars farther than 400 light years from Earth, so astronomers instead use brightness measurements.”
While researching Kent’s claims, i notice that he only claims that which is stated. Parallax and red shift are the only way they determine star distance. Now it could be that your friend, the astronomer, was trying to throw Kent off and Kent, being the lying, no good hypocrite, was not going to play the game. (or it could be that given he talks hundreds of times a year, and knows that there is always at least one in the crowd, and chooses not to engage in things that are irrelevant) To you it looked as though Kent was not going to change the info on his slide and your friend had him caught. However, just as these two web site state, Parallax and Red shift are INDEED how they determine distance. Thus, no slide(s) needs to be changed. As to the TRUE distance of the stars, no one can run a measuring tape out there to measure, and the red shift is only a theory that can not (at this time) be proven. There are far to many variables between us and a start that might be thousands, millions, billions of light years away.
Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says
You left out Cepheid Varible Stars, which measures luminosity. A recent Hubble study had this result:
Kent’s slide is WRONG.