Kent Hovind Gets Taken Again

Oh, this is just too precious.

The April 2005 issue of Scientific American included an editorial entitled “Okay, We Give Up” and subtitled, “We feel so ashamed”. The editors said they were contrite for ignoring creationism and ID, simply because there’s no evidence for either one.

That’s what makes ID a superior scientific theory: it doesn’t get bogged down in details.

Good journalism values balance above all else. We owe it to our readers to present everybody’s ideas equally and not to ignore or discredit theories simply because they lack scientifically credible arguments or facts.

This was clearly an April Fools joke. Perhaps not the funniest ever, but still pretty blatant. But Kent Hovind fell for it anyway.

Go read his response. I’m not reading so much as a twitch on the Clue-O-Meter. No wonder he’s a laughingstock, even by creationist standards.

This isn’t the first time this has happened, either: in 1999, New Mexicans for Science and Reason awarded Hovind the P.T. Barnum Award for showing a Philadelphia audience evidence of humans and dinosaurs coexisting. He didn’t realize it was NMSR’s April Fools prank.

Anyway, here are some selections from Hovind’s reply to Scientific American. Those of you who are familiar with him may recognize a lot of it. Those who don’t will discover new depths of kookiness.

The magazine treats evolution as if it is a part of science, when there’s nothing further from the truth. It is a religion, masquerading as science. But there is no scientific evidence that would tell us a dog produced a non-dog, let alone that a dog came from a work 4.6 billion years ago.

There’s actually overwhelming evidence that dinosaurs have always lived with humans. We simply called them dragons. Man killed most of them, and there may be a few still alive today.

As for the flood carving Grand Canyon, why don’t they explain to us why the top of the Canyon is 4,000ft higher than where the river (Colorado River) enters the canyon? Why don’t they explain to us how rivers miraculously flowed up-hill for millions of years to finally cut the groove deep enough so they could flow downhill?

The simple answer is uplift, of course. But Kent doesn’t accept continental drift, so presumably the idea of mountains growing is anathema to him as well.

There’s no such thing as a “fossil record”; there are simply fossils in the dirt.

Thanks for clearing that up. In other news, there’s no such thing as the free market; there’s just people buying and selling stuff. There’s no such thing as the National Archives; just a government building with a lot of old papers.

And if you can’t get your point across any other way, compare your opponents to Nazis or Communists:

Try to get a creationist article into a magazine like Scientific American, and see what happens. Ten years ago if a professor in the Soviet Union tried to submit an article to any Soviet magazine claiming that communism didn’t work, and capitalism is a better system, he would be shipped off to Siberia if he survived. Today, if a teacher in a public university, or a writer at any major science magazine (such as Scientific American) dares to suggest that evolution is not true, and maybe Creation is true, he will be sent to academic Siberia in a heart-beat.

One thing, though: ten years ago was 1995. The Soviet Union had formally become Russia four years earlier. I doubt anyone would have been sent to Siberia for saying that the old regime didn’t work.

I can’t believe these guys think there are scientifically credible arguments for the idea that all life came from nothing, 18 billion years ago. What are they thinking?

I agree with Hovind on this point: you’d have to be crazy to think that life on Earth started 4 billion years before the Big Bang. (For those unsure of the timeline: the universe is roughly 14 billion years old. The Earth is roughly 4.5 billion years old. Life appeared somewhere on the order of 1 billion years after the Earth formed, or about 3.5 billion years ago.)

The truth is that many scientists have come to understand who butters their bread. They have to support the evolution theory or lose their grant money. Ask any number of scientists who have not kissed the sacred cow of evolution and have lost their job, grant money, or position at a university. The list grows every day. See video number 7 for much more on this.

Ah, I love a good conspiracy theory!

The Bible says, “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.” Anyone who believes they came from a rock is a fool.

Hovind doesn’t think he came from a rock. He thinks he came from dirt.

You can download MP3s and videos of Hovind’s unique brand of stand-up comedy here.

Update, Sep. 16, 2005: Fixed URL to Hovind’s response. Thanks to alert reader Jamie for the correction.

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293 Responses to Kent Hovind Gets Taken Again

  1. arensb says:

    PCDR:
    How about the Urey-Miller experiment and the ones that followed[1]? How about the discovery of amino acids on a comet? How about the existence of ribozymes, and all that that implies about complex networks of chemical reactions?

    But let’s back up a step. Let’s say that all mainstream ideas about how life might have begun are completely wrong. How would that affect what we do know about how evolution proceeded after that? We still have the fossils; we still win.

    And what’s your beef with the Big Bang? Is it just that as long as scientists haven’t figured out every last detail about the origin of the universe, you can squeeze your god into one of the gaps?

    For that matter, if the Big Bang, abiogenesis, and evolution were somehow disproved tomorrow, how would that provide any support for your brand of creationism?

    Not that I expect you to start answering questions at this point. Or read books, or do any kind of research. All of this is largely rhetorical, for lurkers’ benefit.

    [1] I put that in bold because creationists like to argue that the original experiment got the atmosphere wrong, but always forget about the follow-up experiments in which many different atmospheres and many power sources were tried, finding that amino acids form naturally under a variety of conditions.

    Like

  2. Troublesome Frog says:

    I would ask for anything from the Big Bang that is “at least marginally testable” that does not conflict with observed science. Something besides “here it is, you can see and measure it, therefore it happened”

    Did you try googling “big bang test” to see what comes out? It’s possible that NASA has a site that enumerates a handful of examples. Another possible direction might be this.

    Let’s not confuse, “Has been tested several times and not been falsified” with, “Cannot, even in theory, be falsified through testing.”

    I would also ask for anything from abiogenisis that is “at least marginally testable” that also does not conflict with the observed science of probablity and possible conditions of the early earth.

    1) Let’s try actually suggesting which abiogenesis hypothesis you are wanting to test.
    2) You probably don’t want to get too far ahead of yourself on the probability thing. You will be asked to show your work.

    Like

  3. Fez says:

    Troublesome Frog Says:

    You probably don’t want to get too far ahead of yourself on the probability thing. You will be asked to show your work.

    They haven’t thus far; what makes you think they’ll start now?

    Like

  4. menes777 says:

    They haven’t thus far; what makes you think they’ll start now?

    That is the beauty of a being a xian, you don’t have to show any work. Everything can be summed up with the following.

    God said no, God said yes, God said wait, God did it, Satan’s working overtime and God works in mysterious ways.

    Like

  5. Adam Weishaupt says:

    You know you will never agree, right?
    This discussion can be likened with this: Imagine that there are only two people left in the world. One of them can only speak chinese, and the other can only speak arabic. No matter how much they talk with each other they will never understand each other. That is simply because they do not understand each others language. It is really the same with atheists vs christians or creationists vs evolutionists; the evolutionists leave out the possibility of the existence of God, so they can not understand the “language” of the Christians. On the other hand, the Christians leave out the possibility of the “non-existence” of God, so they can not understand the language of the atheists. Still, atheists try to prove their theories using their own language, and the same goes for the Christians.

    Like

  6. Eamon Knight says:

    It is really the same with atheists vs christians or creationists vs evolutionists; the evolutionists leave out the possibility of the existence of God, so they can not understand the “language” of the Christians.

    Complete bollocks, and considerably confused bollocks at that. “Evolutionists” do not “leave out the possibility of God” any more than any other scientific field does — no one tries to argue that God personally pushes the planets around their orbit, are the astronomers therefore also leaving out the possibility of God? Scientists simply have so far simply found no need to invoke divine action to explain the universe. Neither do we atheists leave out the possibility of God — many of us used to be Christians. Some of us know that religion better than the average current adherent. I understand Christian language just fine, thank you — I just came to realize that the entities it deals with are non-existent.

    Nice try with the “You’re both equally wrong” fallacy; thank you for playing.

    Like

  7. arensb says:

    Adam Weishaupt (if that’s really your name, and you’re not just an agent of the Illuminati):
    You seem to be wrong on just about every point.

    For starters, even using your analogy, I think you underestimate people’s ability to understand each other. A Chinese speaker and an Arabic speaker trapped on a desert island would, I’m sure, quickly work out some way of understanding each other.

    the evolutionists leave out the possibility of the existence of God, so they can not understand the “language” of the Christians.

    This is manifestly untrue. Kenneth Miller, the author of Finding Darwin’s God is an evolutionary biologist, the author of one of the standard High School textbooks in biology, was a witness at the Dover trial for the pro-evolution side, and is also a devout Christian.

    Francis Collins, Obama’s choice to head the NIH, used to be the head of the Human Genome Project, is by all accounts a very good scientist, has said that even if there weren’t a single fossil, the DNA evidence alone would be sufficient proof of evolution, is also an evangelical Christian, and quite a vocal one. In fact, his book The Language of God is subtitled A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief.

    Hell, even in the ID camp, Michael Behe accepts common descent of humans with all other living creatures. I know this because I he told me personally when I sent him email about it.

    It isn’t hard to find evolutionary biologists who are also Christians. You need to look around a bit more.

    the evolutionists leave out the possibility of the existence of God

    As shown above, this is patently untrue. And even if you meant to write “atheist” instead of “evolutionist”, you’d still be wrong. Read The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins, who is both an evolutionary biologist and a vocal atheist. In this book, which is all about atheism, he spends several pages making it quite clear that he does not exclude the possibility of a god’s existence.

    I can’t think of a single atheist, either among the famous published writers or my friends and acquaintances, who categorically excludes the possibility that there might be a god out there.

    You should also google “deconversion story” and read some people’s accounts of how and why they left their particular religion. You’ll find that in many, probably most cases, deconversion doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a long process that takes years. Often people give up each bit of faith only after a struggle.

    Furthermore, most atheists, at least in the US, were raised religious and grew out of it. Many remember being believers quite well, so it’s not a question of never having thought the way a believer does.

    On the other hand, the Christians leave out the possibility of the “non-existence” of God

    Again, this is manifestly untrue. Every church I’ve ever seen has programs to help backsliders, help people strengthen their faith, ceremonies to help those who have stumbled in the faith to rejoin the flock, and the like. What does it mean to have “weak faith”, if not to admit the possibility that the god they were taught about doesn’t exist? In fact, the very existence of such programs and ceremonies tells me that even believers find it hard to believe in gods; that they want to believe, but often can’t manage to do so. After all, plumbers don’t have retreats to relearn to believe in water. Bankers don’t go to seminars to strengthen their belief in money. Yet theists apparently require these sorts of thing.

    Or perhaps you’re saying that you, personally, are unwilling to admit even the possibility that there might not be any gods. That just means you’re closed-minded. You may want to work on that. It’s not a virtue.

    Like

  8. PCDR says:

    Hi, I’ve been quite busy lately but I have been trying to keep up with what is going on here. I hope you missed mocking me.

    I think the biggest problem that people have with the theory of evolution is that it is described as a fact and even a law of nature when that is far from the truth. Case in point: I am a youth pastor, and I deal with kids being lied to in public schools. This angers me. I had a sophmore in high school report that her science teacher told the class “The theory of Evolution has been proven true, just like the theory of Gravity has been proven.” This is a flat out lie from many angles. First off, it is the Law of Gravity because the theory has been proven by science. It is universal, it is predictable, it is unchanging, and it can be used to predict how things will act. It can be used to send space probes to the far reaches of the solar system without crashing into things. It can be used to shoot missles. It can be used to design race cars and buildings. The THEORY of macro-evolution can not be observed in nature. It can not be used to predict things. It can not be repeated by testing. It is NOT a LAW so do not lie about it to support it.

    Also, The theory of macro evolution has a history of lies and faked fossils and unproven/unrepeated lab tests and false drawings and changing theories and disagreeing theories. Since it is not proven, do not present it as such, and if it is so obvious, stop fibbing about facts.

    http://www.scienceagainstevolution.org/v12i6f.htm Has a great list of problems. Not my list.

    Like

  9. arensb says:

    I hope you missed mocking me.

    Nope. Why don’t you come back when you know what scientific laws and theories are? If you had a clue, you wouldn’t think that a law can become a theory (though someone can take a bunch of laws and come up with a theory based on them).

    Also, if you’re going to recommend that site, why don’t you go learn the difference between chance and natural selection? For that matter, why don’t you come up with a few instances when both natural and supernatural explanations were given for some phenomenon, and the supernatural explanation turned out to be correct?

    Oh, I know why: because that would require you to learn stuff, and learning is socialism.

    Like

  10. Fez says:

    pcdr says:

    Case in point: I am a youth pastor, and I deal with kids being lied to in public schools. This angers me.

    And no doubt, somewhere in the world, there’s a group parents and teachers who are angry because they have to keep unbrainwashing the children because their youth pastor keeps lying to them. Not that that bothers you in the least.

    You are a textbook example of someone least suited to have responsibility for children. You’ve bought so completely into your own bullshit you’ve convinced yourself that you, and only you, know “the Truth” and everyone else must be wrong.

    Like

  11. arensb says:

    You’ve bought so completely into your own bullshit you’ve convinced yourself that you, and only you, know “the Truth” and everyone else must be wrong.

    Welcome to the modern GOP!

    Like

  12. Fez says:

    arensb said:

    Welcome to the modern GOP!

    Here’s your sheet; check your brain at the door.

    Like

  13. Troublesome Frog says:

    PCDR,

    I can’t help but notice that rather than engage the (numerous) lines of discussion you’ve opened up already, you’ve decided to start a completely new one. What are the odds that Lucy will let Charlie kick the football this time around if somebody actually takes the time to respond substantively? Will you acknowledge those efforts, or will you disappear, reappear, and start up on something else as if nothing ever happened again?

    Like

  14. arensb says:

    Troublesome Frog:

    if somebody actually takes the time to respond substantively?

    What do you mean, “if”? I gave him two links to tehPedia. If that isn’t more substance than he deserves, I don’t know what is.

    or will you disappear, reappear, and start up on something else as if nothing ever happened again?

    That’s the trouble with creationists (and antivaxxers, and conspiracy theorists, etc.): they don’t see arguments as tools for discerning truth from fiction, but rather as weapons in a battle of ideas. They don’t care what the truth is, because they’ve already decided which answer they like. And so, when arguing with an infidel, all they see is “well, this apologetic didn’t work, so I’ll try the next one and see if it works any better. And the next, and the next, again and again“.

    They also don’t discard bad arguments, because something that doesn’t work on one person might still work on the next.

    Like

  15. menes777 says:

    Also, The theory of macro evolution has a history of lies and faked fossils and unproven/unrepeated lab tests and false drawings and changing theories and disagreeing theories. Since it is not proven, do not present it as such, and if it is so obvious, stop fibbing about facts.

    Substitute theory of macro evolution with creationism and you would be spot on.

    History of Lies? Check – With Kent Hovind being the biggest liar of all.

    Faked Fossiles? Check – Again with Kenth Hovind presenting replicas of fossils that he made based on descriptions, not actual bones. Yet he’s presented them as fact. Not to mention him presenting artifacts as fossils that aren’t really fossils.
    Unproven/unrepeated lab? – What lab tests?
    False drawings? – Again Kent Hovind is a guilty here as well.
    Changing theories? – Versus having a theory that never changes regardless of the evidence against it? Change is good not bad. Creationism is charging ahead saying the same thing over and over regardless of the evidence for or against it.
    Disagreeing theories? – You mean like all of those different branches of Christianity??? That can’t seem to agree on anything?

    How about instead of making a blanket statement about fibbed facts, why don’t you borrow a textbook, present the fact you think is fibbed, and then prove how and why it is fibbed (citing your sources)?

    Like

  16. PCDR says:

    Lies by Evolution:
    Piltdown man
    Nebraska Man
    Java Man
    Orce Man
    Neanderthal
    Lucy
    Ernst Haeckel
    Archaeoraptor Liaoningensis
    Ota Benga
    Brontosaurus
    The Peppered Moths
    Computer Simulations of Eye Evolution

    Like

  17. arensb says:

    PCDR:
    I’ll see your list and raise you a Kent Hovind.

    Also, to quote menes777, above:

    How about instead of making a blanket statement about fibbed facts, why don’t you borrow a textbook, present the fact you think is fibbed, and then prove how and why it is fibbed (citing your sources)?

    Like

  18. Eamon Knight says:

    I take it the gift shop at AiG’s Creation Museum was fresh out of commas today?

    Like

  19. Troublesome Frog says:

    I didn’t know it was possible to perform the Gish Gallop in slow motion. That, at least, may be a breakthrough.

    Like

  20. PCDR says:

    So if science is the truth, and the history and present (see the lemur/monkey/human at http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,520632,00.html?sPage=fnc/scitech/evolution) of evolution “science” is full of lies. To me that says evolution is not yet science. Come with facts.

    Yet rather than defend evolution by condemning the lies and falsehoods, you instead attack the next guy. Kind of sounds like my 5 year old. “Ya I hit him, but he hit me first.” I thought evolution was educated not first grade.

    Do you deny that any of the above list is lies?

    As for the formatting, I had a list with line returns that was reformatted with spaces. But again, rather than deal with the facts of the lies, you choose to mock.

    Like

  21. Troublesome Frog says:

    Yet rather than defend evolution by condemning the lies and falsehoods, you instead attack the next guy. Kind of sounds like my 5 year old.

    The pattern that’s emerging that you’re failing to notice is this: People are trying to nail you down on *one* claim and then explore that claim to its logical conclusion. You are throwing out claim after claim, abandoning each one as soon as somebody responds and the level of detail increases.

    That’s the difference between the two ways of looking at the world. With science, you keep digging and challenging and testing until you’re relatively sure where you stand. With rhetoric, you simply throw out nice-sounding claims and then silently let them drop when it’s clear that they’re not winning the argument. Is your goal to actually get into the science, or is it simply to throw out unsupported claim after unsupported claim and then declare victory when people decide to stop dealing with you?

    In the interest of deepening rather than broadening the discussion, I’d be interested in hearing what “lies” are involved in the computer simulations of eye evolution. If you’re sure of your pieces of evidence, you shouldn’t mind having it judged on quality rather as well as quantity. I think we should start with:

    1) Which simulation(s)?
    2) How did they work?
    3) What was wrong with them?
    4) What causes you to conclude that they’re “lies” rather than flawed experiments?

    Like

  22. arensb says:

    Eamon Knight:

    I take it the gift shop at AiG’s Creation Museum was fresh out of commas today?

    Actually, I’m not going to give picder too much crap over that: I used to have a plugin that allows you to write in a wiki-like syntax, and converts that to HTML. I’m pretty sure it applied to the comments as well. I recently turned it off because it was more pain than it was worth.

    At any rate, the list that picky dear posted was originally formatted as a list, with one
    item per
    line. I think that looks normal in the
    preview, but
    gets converted to a block of text when it’s posted.

    Like

  23. Eamon Knight says:

    Ah, if it’s a posting artefact then I withdraw the snark and apologize.

    However, even properly punctuated, the list is non-responsive to the question asked — a context-free list of words, that we’re all supposed to guess what it means and then refute it. Or I guess PCDR wins the argument, in his own mind. Some of the items (eg. Piltdown) I recognize from long experience — and recall responses at the t.o archive. But I have no idea what it means to claim the “brontosaurus” is a lie — something to do with renaming it to Apatosaurus? (and I vaguely recall some mix-up about the skull of one specimen).

    It reflects a certain obtuseness of many creationists from my t.o years, that they don’t seem to know what an argument even *looks like*.

    Like

  24. arensb says:

    I’ve undone the thing that I did, since it was affecting comments. Now both picky dear’s and Troublesome Frog’s lists look more listy.

    Eamon Knight:

    they don’t seem to know what an argument even *looks like*.

    I am so stealing this.

    Like

  25. arensb says:

    Oh, and for anyone who’s still reading: this thread is becoming unmanageable. As soon as it hits 300 comments, I plan to close it, and open an overflow thread.

    Like

  26. menes777 says:

    PCDR:

    Can you provide us with any information about this “Computer Simulations of Eye Evolution” being a lie? I attempted to use the oracle that is Google to find information but I keep coming up with everything about a simulation but nothing about a lie. Can you provide any information (link, article, etc…) that shows the simulation is a lie. You know something with substance showing how and why the simulation was a lie? Not just a claim that it was a lie?

    You aren’t being attacked for what you believe or who you are. You are being attacked because every time someone calls you to the mat on a particular topic you walk away and ignore them just like the other gentlemen and ladies on this thread have pointed out. If you honestly want to get through to a more intelligent branch of people you are going to have to stop topic hopping and give some real meat on one thing. I challenge you as an individual thinking human to stop taking someone ones word for it and do your own discovering. Do what Socrates said to do, forget everything you know and start over new. You might be surprised at what you discover that you didn’t know but thought you knew.

    Like

  27. Eamon Knight says:

    I third the request for PCDR to outline exactly what he thinks is wrong — so wrong, it deserves the label of “lie” — with “Computer Simulations of Eye Evolution”. He can start with the Anuran Nuisance’s list of questions above, and I’ll even throw in the names “Nilsson” and “Pelger” — the authors of one moderately well-known paper on the subject.

    I further suggest that everyone hold his feet to the fire on this one. PCDR doesn’t get to change the subject, or toss in any other issues, until he has argued this one through, or admitted he was just making crap up.

    PCDR: Put up or shut up.

    Like

  28. Troublesome Frog says:

    I further suggest that everyone hold his feet to the fire on this one. PCDR doesn’t get to change the subject, or toss in any other issues, until he has argued this one through, or admitted he was just making crap up.

    Prediction: As of this post, PCDR is gone.

    Like

  29. Fez says:

    Troublesome Frog said:

    Prediction: As of this post, PCDR is gone.

    I predict he’ll be back in some weeks or months continuing on as before and as clue-resistant as ever.

    Like

  30. menes777 says:

    Either that or he will show back up for one last hurrah. Where he will throw his hands in the air, say we are being willfully ignorant and that we are headed straight for hell. Maybe mixed in with some “I know what I believe is true” style comments.

    Like

  31. arensb says:

    Wow. With you guys on the job, I feel like there’s no need for me to say anything. Thanks!

    Like

  32. PCDR says:

    Richard Dawkins, well-known evolutionist, claimed in his book River Out of Eden that computer models exist that can simulate or recreate the evolution of the eye.
    However, the senior author of the study on which Dawkins based his claim, Dan E. Nilsson, has explicitly rejected the idea that his laboratory has ever produced a computer simulation of the eye’s development.

    Like

  33. arensb says:

    PCDR:

    Richard Dawkins, well-known evolutionist, claimed in his book River Out of Eden that computer models exist that can simulate or recreate the evolution of the eye.

    As an academic, Dawkins almost certainly included references to support his assertion. Could you please give us those references? They should be in the footnotes, endnotes, or bibliography. If the paper’s on the web, could you include a link to that as well?

    However, the senior author of the study on which Dawkins based his claim, Dan E. Nilsson, has explicitly rejected the idea that his laboratory has ever produced a computer simulation of the eye’s development.

    Do you have a reference for this, or are we expected to take your word for it?

    Like

  34. Fez says:

    PCDR Says:

    Richard Dawkins, well-known evolutionist, claimed in his book River Out of Eden that computer models exist that can simulate or recreate the evolution of the eye.
    However, the senior author of the study on which Dawkins based his claim, Dan E. Nilsson, has explicitly rejected the idea that his laboratory has ever produced a computer simulation of the eye’s development.

    Ok, let’s get the checklist out:

    Troublesome Frog said:

    1) Which simulation(s)?

    PCDR: Richard Dawkins, well-known evolutionist, claimed in his book River Out of Eden that computer models exist that can simulate or recreate the evolution of the eye.

    Score: I’ll give you a half-point. You were relevant, but you have not identified the models themselves, you appear to just be copy-pasta using someone else’s words.

    2) How did they work?

    PCDR: [blank stare]

    3) What was wrong with them?

    PCDR: [blank stare]

    4) What causes you to conclude that they’re “lies” rather than flawed experiments?

    PCDR: However, the senior author of the study on which Dawkins based his claim, Dan E. Nilsson, has explicitly rejected the idea that his laboratory has ever produced a computer simulation of the eye’s development.

    Score: I’ll allow the point. You answered the question with, “because someone else said they were wrong” but that is a syntactically correct answer.

    Overall rating: Poor showing. Shows no original thought, no comprehension of the subject matter, responses could have just as easily been assembled via keyword search and a little Perl.

    Like

  35. Fez says:

    As I suspected.

    In The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science, Tom Bethell quotes Berlinksi’s summary of the evidence:

    This notion that there is somewhere a computer model of the evolutionary development of the eye is an urban myth. Such a model does not exist. There is no such model anywhere in any laboratory. No one has the faintest idea how to make one. The whole story was fabricated out of thin air by Richard Dawkins. The senior author if the study on which Dawkins based his claim — Dan E. Nilsson — has explicitly rejected the idea that his laboratory has ever produced a computer simulation of the eye’s development.

    In other words, River Out of Eden is the Darwiniacs’ version of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

    From Godless: The Church of Liberalism By Ann Coulter. Almost verbatim. Without attribution.

    Minus one point for academic dishonesty.

    Like

  36. arensb says:

    Fez:
    I see a lot of wiggle room in there for Coulter to be able to claim that she wasn’t lying. For starters, there’s no such thing as the eye, since they’ve evolved independently at least 20 times. For another, if this is the paper I’m thinking of, it’s plausible for the authors (there’s more than one author, and usually credit is given to all of them, but I note that PCDR has yet to mention Nilsson’s collaborator(s)) saying that the paper isn’t about how eyes evolved, but simply how long it might take.

    So now all that PCDR has to do is to follow the chain of references from Godless to TPIGtS to the original quotation by Nilsson and post it here in full. Oh, and don’t forget to look up the original paper as well. Then we’ll all be able to see who’s right and who’s pulling stuff out of who’s ass.

    Like

  37. Troublesome Frog says:

    PCDR,

    A few questions, here. Have you read River Out of Eden? Have you looked at the study that it references? I did a few minutes if digging based on the information Fez pulled up and found this:

    Mr. Berlinski is right on one point only: the paper I wrote with Pelger has been incorrectly cited as containing a computer simulation of eye evolution. I have not considered this to be a very serious problem, because a simulation would be a mere automation of the logic in our paper. A complete simulation is thus of moderate scientific interest, although it would be useful from an educational point of view.

    The larger response was Dan Nilsson generally smacking Berlinski around for errors in his assessment of Nillson’s paper. I’m actually a little bit surprised to find this on Discovery’s site, given their participants’ nasty tendency toward making criticism disappear. Anyway, it sounds to me like in this case, the problem is the difference between “computer simulation” and “algorithm that could be run as a simulation but whose performance was analyzed mathematically instead.”

    As much as I hate doing other peoples’ homework for them, it looks like the paper in question is referenced here. I don’t see a full text version anywhere, so I can’t comment on the contents. It does, however, look like this discussion is not a new one. It also looks like “explicitly rejected” is a bit strong, at least in its connotation.

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  38. arensb says:

    So why is it that Fez, Troublesome Frog, and others appear to have no trouble providing links to the documents that back up their claims, but creationists seem incapable of doing so?

    I also note that Coulter’s “No one has the faintest idea how to make one”, above, is directly contradicted by Troublesome Frog’s quotation of Nilsson: he isn’t saying he wouldn’t know how to write a simulation, he’s saying he hasn’t bothered because it would be trivial.

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  39. menes777 says:

    PCDR can only quote mine to make to any kind of backups to his arguments. If he were to include links to his references it would become quite apparent he stopped reading (and thinking) after he found what supported his views. Then took that piece out and tried to pass it off as a point of rebuttal. That’s even given him the credit of actually getting the quote himself instead of copying and pasting it from some creationist book (website, blog, etc…) and passing it off as his own.

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  40. menes777 says:

    I should know better, but is that all the great PCDR has to offer? Not even a weak rebuttal to anything he has attempted to argue? I almost expected something along the lines of “well you wouldn’t understand since you don’t believe in god” or maybe a “there’s point in continuing, you always obviously hate god”. It’s sad that people will tow the line of dogma so long and so thoughtlessly that they ignore the truth around them.

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  41. menes777 says:

    I should know better, but is that all the great PCDR has to offer? Not even a weak rebuttal to anything he has attempted to argue? I almost expected something along the lines of “well you wouldn’t understand since you don’t believe in god” or maybe a “there’s no point in continuing, you all obviously hate god”. It’s sad that people will tow the line of dogma so long and so thoughtlessly that they ignore the truth around them.

    Like

  42. arensb says:

    Taking that known factor and tracking that back 300 billion years to the time of the dinosaurs and you’d find the sun was so large that it’s surface would be touching the earth’s surface.

    I was going to say “show your math”, but clearly you’re not on speaking terms with numbers.

    Case in point: dinosaurs appeared 231 million years ago. When you say “300 billion”, it’s as if you had said that a football field is 30 miles long.

    Thank you for demonstrating the levels of erudition and intellect that I’ve come to expect from fans of Kent Hovind.

    Like

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