Dispatches from the Creation Wars

One of the great things about the internet is that it provides a place for inexpensive self-publishing, acting as an amplification on the first amendment – anyone can speak their mind and get their views heard. The downside, of course, is that anyone can speak their mind and get their views heard. But sometimes the results are so mind-numbingly idiotic that it makes for a considerable amount of amusement and March’s winner of the Robert O’Brien Trophy is no exception.

Michael Westfall, editor of a webpage aimed at “Conservative Worker’s (sic) of America”, is one of those delightful wingnuts blissfully typing away out on the fringes of the net. Though his writing is often little more than a string of cliches placed end to end (“A hard hitting, cutting edge perspective which is straight from Americas (sic) heartland”), it more than makes up in sheer lunacy what it lacks in quality.

Wesfall has even taken to writing a series of letters from Satan to his “supporters” in America – beginning, of course, with a letter to the ACLU, praising them as “delusional liberal disciples.” The letter includes inanities like this:

To you my ACLU, I want to give my highest commendation. How you locate and manipulate liberal judges for my purpose and to do my bidding would warm my heart, if I had a heart.

The bucketful of legal troubles that you dish out to any group or power fighting against me is like an ongoing deep breath of rank stagnant air.

You have been on fire for me and have advanced my cause to such a degree that I don’t know where to “stop thanking you”. How could I function without you? “Just consider the shape America would be in without you”?

One of the sure signs of wingnuttery, in my experience, is the random use of quotation marks where they don’t belong, like how the Worldnutdaily always puts the word “gay” in quotation marks – as though they weren’t really gay. Then there’s this passage from Satan’s letter to the music industry:

MTV and its fellow music channels now reach hundred’s of millions of households. They are the best-known channels among people from the ages of 11 to 35 years old. Their music videos use strong violence, have tobacco or alcohol use in 25% of their videos and 75% of their videos involve sexual imagery. Keep up this great liberal work in my name, MTV!

I don’t think he’s been paying attention. MTV hasn’t played an actual music video in years. The programming is now nothing but pseudo-reality shows designed to bore to death anyone with an IQ over 9. And best of all, Westphal lives right here in Michigan. Go read his page. I promise you’ll find hours of amusement in it.

Comments

  1. #1 t.f.
    March 5, 2006

    Sounds like a child’s attempt at replicating CS Lewis’ Screwtape Letters

  2. #2 Grumpy
    March 5, 2006

    One of the sure signs of wingnuttery, in my experience, is the random use of quotation marks where they don’t belong…

    As well as apostrophes. Or so it would seem, except that the latter affliction has spread into the general population.

    Recommended treatment: quarantine & sterilization. Release the hound’s!

  3. #3 Matthew
    March 5, 2006

    That’s great, this is why I love the internet. Where else can you find straight-face satan impersonations.

  4. #4 J-Dog
    March 6, 2006

    DON’T forget the CAPITALIZATION of IMPORTANT stuff ala Connie Morris, NOTED wingnut from KS!

  5. #5 Carol Gr
    December 9, 2006

    Such an arrogant and silly site you have.You use foolish adolescent one-liners because you can’t put two intelligent sentences together to begin to keep up with Westfall. Westfall’s site is one of the most followed and quoted sites on the web because of his smartly written papers. Your unknown, negative and degenerate site, which is dead, is a clear example of stupidity taking on genious….and losing.
    You are not in Westfall’s league.

    Carol…

  6. #6 Ed Brayton
    December 9, 2006

    Carol GR wrote:

    Such an arrogant and silly site you have.You use foolish adolescent one-liners because you can’t put two intelligent sentences together to begin to keep up with Westfall. Westfall’s site is one of the most followed and quoted sites on the web because of his smartly written papers.

    You’re defending a nut who writes letters to movie directors pretending to be Satan, for crying out loud.

    Your unknown, negative and degenerate site, which is dead, is a clear example of stupidity taking on genious….and losing.

    What I find really funny about this comment is that, while criticizing me for “adolescent one liners”, that’s all you’ve left here. And you misspelled “genius”. As for this being an unknown site, that’s just funny. At an average of about 7000 hits a day, that easily puts this blog in the top 1% of all active blogs.

  7. #7 Carol Gr
    December 11, 2006

    Previewing your Comment
    Carol GR wrote:
    Such an arrogant and silly site you have. You use foolish adolescent one-liners because you can’t put two intelligent sentences together to begin to keep up with Westfall. Westfall’s site is one of the most followed and quoted sites on the web because of his smartly written papers.

    You’re defending a nut who writes letters to movie directors pretending to be Satan, for crying out loud.
    …It may come as a surprise to you Ed Brayton, but you sir are the nut. In what library are your silly comments archived? Westfall’s papers are archived in the University of Michigan Library. Westfall’s site documents his work through the years with American icons such as Ralph Nader who has called Westfall one of the smartest people he has ever met. If you were bright enough to comprehend you would clearly see that the movie people and others are reaching out and furnishing material to Westfall to publish on their behalf. How many of these people furnish material to you to publish on your little site?
    You claim to work to prevent faith-based curriculum from entering Michigan’s schools. It may come as a surprise to you but not everyone agrees with you.
    Your unknown, negative and degenerate site, which is dead, is a clear example of stupidity taking on genius…. and losing.
    What I find really funny about this comment is that, while criticizing me for “adolescent one liners”, that’s all you’ve left here. And you misspelled “genious”. As for this being an unknown site, that’s just funny. At an average of about 7000 hits a day, that easily puts this blog in the top 1% of all active blogs.
    …A misspelled word, is that the best you can come up with?7000 hits a day? Do you actually think that anyone would believe those numbers for your tiny site? It has been said that liars can figure but figures don’t lie. I would never be so insensitive as to call you a liar but your 7000 number is most difficult to believe. 7 would be a more believable number.
    Recognizing that this conversation is going nowhere positive I will allow you your final disparaging word.I know you will take it but I doubt that many will be listening.
    CAROL

  8. #8 Squiddhartha
    December 11, 2006

    Hey, Carol — I’m listening, despite the fact that this is a nine-month-old post. If you were posting on a current thread, I dare say you’d see even more evidence that people are listening. Welcome to the reality-based community!

  9. #9 Carol
    December 12, 2006

    Hey Sqiddhartha–I decided to do one more comment and this one is it.
    Since you chose to be Brayton’s mouthpiece, there is no such thing as a dated message once something is posted. The one comment posted was by you. So much for Brayton’s preposterous 7000 hits a day fallacy.
    Brayton and the pathetic others of his ilk lack traditional biblical moral convictions as they hide behind the Internet. They are cowards. They wolf pack and attack the Michael Westfalls of America who have the backbone to speak out for so many of us with biblical moral convictions. We are the people that built this nation and the Brayton’s are the people who are degrading it. If a person stands for Christian principles and mentions that homosexuality is called an abomination in the Bible or that they believe that our children should be brought up on good Christian ethics these deceivers automatically target, slander and take out of context what their perceived adversaries say.In short they are liars.
    The only thing sadder then the worthless empty-headed Brayton’s on the web are the brainless morons who would actually believe their idiocy.
    Brayton calls himself a self-appointed business leader and writer. Thousands of people publish on the web and yes Brayton does self-publish his cheap Internet babble on the web but so what? What business is Brayton in and what are his credentials? After reading even a few of Brayton’s pitiful sentences anyone with an IQ higher then a rock quickly ascertains that his boring words and one-liners are a waste of time and not worth the effort.

    Carol

  10. #10 Squiddhartha
    December 12, 2006

    And here we see the difference between the faith-based and reality-based communities in a nutshell. Carol needs desperately to believe that Ed’s 7000 hits per day are a “preposterous fallacy”, and so she simply asserts that it’s true, and that the lack of activity on an ancient post proves it (although it proves nothing of the kind). End of story.

    Ed, on the other hand, just checks his web logs.

    I would not presume to be Ed’s “mouthpiece.” Just one of the 7000 hits per day, who finds a large degree of consonance between my independently-derived philosophies and Ed’s.

    I’m highly amused by your assertion that Ed, posting under his real name and with many references to his real-life activities, is “hiding behind the Internet.” Hiding in plain sight, it would seem.

    But, of course, since Ed’s “pitiful sentences,” and his readers like myself with IQs at rock level, are “a waste of time and not worth the effort,” I’m sure you won’t be returning to provide us with further amusement. Aloha!

  11. #11 doctorgoo
    December 12, 2006

    Carol said:

    So much for Brayton’s preposterous 7000 hits a day fallacy.

    She’s right you know. I just linked to Ed’s sitemeter link, and it currently lists 8436 page views per day.

    Of course, in all fairness to Ed, his approximation of 7000 is much more accurate than Carol’s 7.

  12. #12 Ed Brayton
    December 12, 2006

    Actually, she’s not right. The sitemeter is there only because it allows me to look at recent referrals. We do not use Sitemeter to measure our hits at ScienceBlogs; we use Google Analytics, which is more accurate and comprehensive (it just lacks an easy way to check recent referring pages specifically). And according to sitemeter, here are the most recent few weekday hit totals: 6696, 6788, 6700, 7354. And if you look at pageviews rather than hits, the numbers are much higher: 9215, 9682, 9630 and 10,213. There’s no point in answering the rest of her lunatic raving.

  13. #13 kehrsam
    December 12, 2006

    In what library are your silly comments archived? Westfall’s papers are archived in the University of Michigan Library.

    I wonder how much his family had to donate to gain the distinction? If what he has on the website is any indication of the general quality, I’m looking forward to the first Conference of Westfall scholars, should be a blast.

  14. #14 Ed Brayton
    December 12, 2006

    By the way, I got a good laugh out of the argument that I should take Westfall seriously because he wrote a book with Ralph Nader. Nader is, in my view, a windbag and a fraud. If you don’t believe me, ask anyone who has ever worked for a PIRG office.

  15. #15 DuWayne
    December 12, 2006

    Ed -
    Nader is not much of a windbag, though I have to agree with the fraud part. I saw him speak at MSU when he was running for president, he was opened by Phil Donahue, of all people, who was great. Phil was followed by Michael Moore, who (no matter how one feels about his politics) is just a great speaker. Then, after all the momentum was built, Nader spoke and managed to slam all that momentum into a brick wall. He is one of the very worst public speakers I have ever heard.

  16. #16 Glen D.
    December 12, 2006

    Ed, why do you fight so hard against the teaching of intelligent design to our children in Michigan classrooms? Also, why do you speak so loudly for the rights of the people who practice homosexuality? Are you not concerned with what God thinks of your actions?

    Glen D.

  17. #17 DuWayne
    December 12, 2006

    Glen –

    Have you read much of Ed’s blog? It doesn’t take much reading to notice that Ed is not in fact concerned about what God thinks of his actions.

    I am a little more leary though. I do consider how God might feel about my actions. The fact that I wouldn’t worship a God who would make gay people and them condem them for being, well, what he made them. So I strongly support family – by supporting gay marriage. And I also wouldn’t worship a God that would “poof” the world into existence,
    chock full of evidence to support a theory like evolution and a multi-billion year old earth – just to condem those who believe what the evidence suggests. That smacks of dis-honesty and I wouldn’t worship a god of lies like that.

    So while I am leary of what God might say about my actions, I think my actions speak well of me and my sense of justice. The God that I worship, is a God of equality and justice. A God of unconditional love, something I try to mirror. Is that really God? I don’t honestly know, but worshiping my notion of God brings me joy, as does exploring my world and my universe, trying to find God in or around it.

    I would ask you this; Why do you speak out against the rights of any person? In what way do you think this will bring anyone to Christ? How is being able to fire someone from their job because of their sexuality, bringing anyone to God’s grace?

  18. #18 Skemono
    December 13, 2006

    And here we see the difference between the faith-based and reality-based communities in a nutshell. Carol needs desperately to believe that Ed’s 7000 hits per day are a “preposterous fallacy”, and so she simply asserts that it’s true, and that the lack of activity on an ancient post proves it (although it proves nothing of the kind). End of story.

    Ed, on the other hand, just checks his web logs.

    Not to mention that Carol attacks Mr. Brayton’s intelligence (and that of his readers) while insisting that “genious” is a real word.

  19. #19 Glen D.
    December 13, 2006

    Ed, I simply asked you two easy simple questions and you hide behind one of your mouthpieces. You are such a coward. You call Ralph Nader a fraud and a windbag, you slander Michael Westfall and you rewrite the Bible to suit yourself and by doing so you blaspheme God himself. Your small realm of influence with the non-thinkers who read your degenerate garbage is leading each of them personally down the road to hell itself.
    You have a blog of trash and are not a respected writer. Quite the contrary, you and your pathetic articles that mock God show you as the contemptible example of the man that you really are.
    Glen

  20. #20 kehrsam
    December 13, 2006

    Glen D:

    You nailed it! None of us other comnmenters really exist, we are just sock puppets Ed uses when he is too scared to take a tough question head on.

    As for your questions not being answered, all you need to do is look around the blog a bit. Ed is not exactly shy about his views, so I think you can get a pretty good idea.

    The answers themselves are fairly trivial, and boil down to one thing: It is all part of the world-wide Jewish Communist Homosexual Agenda (TM). Don’t you feel better now?

  21. #21 MJ Memphis
    December 13, 2006

    Hey now… I thought Ed was part of the Freemason Socialist Carlyle Group Conspiracy, not the Jewish Communist Homosexual Agenda.

  22. #22 G Barnett
    December 13, 2006

    Wow, so, Ed’s leadin’ me on down the road to Hell itself, is he? As opposed to the Heaven where “right-thinking” and “holy men” like Falwell, Robertson and Dobson are headed?

    Let me think about this for a second. Yeah, ya know, compared to bein’ forced to spend all eternity with the likes of them, Hell suddenly doesn’t seem so bad, after all.

  23. #23 Martin Grant
    December 13, 2006

    I don’t believe the recent posts above are attacks on Ed are meant to be serious, by people who legitimately disagree with him. I think it’s more likely some misguided individual is laughing that his troll post was taken seriously and provoked a response, thus validating their otherwise boring and lonely day.

    It’s more like an anonymous graffiti tag of a wall post, than any attempt at serious discourse.

    But maybe I’m wrong.

  24. #24 Anuminous
    December 13, 2006

    Oh, and Glen D. — you should note that when speaking of The Great I Am, you usually capitalize pronouns as well, so that should have read: “you rewrite the Bible to suit yourself and by doing so you blaspheme God Himself”

    Troll or not, you should get this sort of thing straight.

  25. #25 Glen D.
    December 14, 2006

    Ed,
    Some of the few buffoons that offer their written support for your dim-witted writing are most likely you, yourself and your alter ego under various contrived names. Even though it is your site and you have that ability it is still called lying.
    It is easy to ascertain that you hype your twisted little site with false and exaggerated viewer hits. Again, even though it is site related this is still called deception.
    You may have a couple of academia associates but it is common knowledge there are those in academia land that are considered educated eggheads. Anyone connected to you would certainly qualify for that particular definition.
    You lack the credentials, ability and life experiences to be the self-appointed verbal guru that you self-proclaim you are. Anyone that would be so easily fooled as to take anything you mutter seriously is to be considered mentally challenged… end of my argument. You may again release your phony wolf pack.
    Glen

  26. #26 Ginger Yellow
    December 14, 2006

    I’m perfectly capable of walking down the road to Hell on my own, thank you very much.

  27. #27 Aaron M
    December 14, 2006

    I can’t help but notice that both Glen and Carol describe non-Ed commenters as “mouthpieces” and a “wolf pack”, the latter of which seems particularly uncommon in such a context. Perhaps this silly accusation of sockpuppetry is just so much projection? Michael, is that you? ;)

  28. #28 Jim51
    January 1, 2007

    Aaron M,

    It seems rather clear to me that Carol and Glen D are the same person. I think you called it right.

    Jim51

  29. #29 SmellyTerror
    January 2, 2007

    Seriously, what are the chances two people who just happen to love Westfall and who write suspiciously like Westfall just happen to turn up at the same time to defend Westfall?

    C’mon guys. As hilariously inept at this fellow is, it’s mean to poke fun at people who can’t help what they are. Poor guy has to be himself for the rest of his life. Isn’t that punishment enough?

The site is currently under maintenance and will be back shortly. New comments have been disabled during this time, please check back soon.