Watch the following video without reading any context. Listen to what the guy says. Note that he says that evolution and embryology are lies from hell. Note that he claims that these lies have one purpose: To keep us from knowing that we need a savior. Note that he claims that the earth was create in 6 literal days about 9,000 years ago (why not 6,000 is a topic of another post some time, perhaps). Note that he claims that the Bible teaches us how we run our lives, our families and our churches, but most importantly, note that this man is saying that the bible, which he takes absolutely literally, teaches us how to run our public policy and everything in society.

Also note that this man is a member of the United States Congress. And, while you are at it, also note that this particular congressmember was appointed by the Republican leadership to be on the Science Committee.

This is Paul Broun, from Georgia. He is a Republican running for re-election to congress. I would love to suggest a link for you to follow so that you can donate to the Democrat who is running against him, but there isn’t one.

Are you a Christian? Fine. You can certainly be a Christian in America and still be pro-science, politically progressive, and not scary like this guy. But please do understand that this man is your kin. Every morning when you wake up and finish your prayers, it is your obligation to do something about this, other than praying, something that will work. If you don’t, you’re just one of his people. That is not cool.

If you are one of thole Olde Timey Republicans who thinks guys like this are crazy and are sort of embarrassed by your party these days, this man is still your kin. By remaining a member of the Party of Batshit Crazy, you are endorsing him, whether you like it or not, because not only are parties parties, but the Republican Party in particular is a lockstep party, regardless of your personal opinion on the matter. The beliefs this man is professing in this video are your beliefs if you are a Republican. I might suggest that it is time for you to cut bait. You might consider balancing between the chagrin of casting your lot with guys like this vs. making the very strong statement of walking away.

And no, it is not the case that Paul Broun is an outlier. In this video, he is giving us the party position. There is no real science in the Republican Party. It is not allowed.

Hey, here’s a petition you can sign!

Comments

  1. #1 John Pieret
    October 7, 2012

    And here we thought Scientific Storkism was a parody (h/t Tom S).

    Thinking that the Earth is only 9,000 years old is ordinarily moronic. A Congressman not knowing what the Constitution says is just another example of what Mark Twain said:

    Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.

    - Mark Twain, a Biography

    But for a medical doctor to deny embryology? That takes a special kind of stupid!

  2. #2 Eric Lund
    October 7, 2012

    By remaining a member of the Party of Batshit Crazy, you are endorsing him, whether you like it or not, because not only are parties parties, but the Republican Party in particular is a lockstep party, regardless of your personal opinion on the matter.

    And nobody in the Republican party is going to rein in folks like Broun, because if any Republicans were willing and able to do so they would have done so 20-30 years ago. That’s how long (at least) this faction has been rising in the Republican party. Maybe in the early 1980s one could be forgiven for thinking of them as a lunatic fringe. By the 1990s it was clear that, while they were still lunatics, they were no longer a fringe group. That’s when sensible old time Republicans like my mother bailed out on the party. Heck, even Barry Goldwater turned against this group in the late 1980s.

  3. #3 megan
    Iowa
    October 7, 2012

    The problem is with ONLY 2 parties the fringe groups join either and work to change or control them. The Dems barely were socialist but after Clinton the Republican crazies were recruited and selected as brownshirt leaders to push back anything the Democratic party supported, reasonable or not. The old core Republicans finally realizing the pandora’s box they opened went independent or Blue Dog Democrat. You’d be surprised how many moderate Republicans are running for positions and votes as Dems now.

    What’s worse is that Ayn Rand types with the fringe religious have seen how education, media and publications/books have been the change in society so they have concocted parallel universe systems and schooling to grow children up into this worldwide cultlike thinking = anti public schools and govt supported science research. Just discovered this ‘science magazine’ with BS articles by ‘PHD/doctors’? From what matchbook cover school?

    IMHO, No different than the Wahhabism cult/schools spread and paid for by Saudi Arabia. The cross purposes foreign policy control that the US answers to between Israel & oil controlling Arab/Islamic states is what is even crazier. Coalescing down to the three Moses myth desert tribe antagonist religions trying to destroy the world in God’s name by co-opting government through corrupt democracies. Jesus himself said the devil would use his own follower’s children spouting his words to fight his attempt to enlighten the world.

    Humans are no different than any other animal, rushing towards cliffs and extinction from uncontrolled growth and expansion. Boom/bust economics with humanity’s gift of self denial and obfuscation to ignore the truth yet still nature gets the needed result – mass death and slaughter culling our numbers as the environments needs to rebalance.

  4. #4 megan
    October 7, 2012

    not for publishing – just fyi, while I trying to figure out just how creationists explain gas and oil, check out this wonderful publication online and in print. ‘Answers in Genesis’. http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/am/v2/n1/origin-of-oil

    But may you’ve seen it for years. If it isn’t the worst of misinterpreted and nonfactual science ever concocted. The only thing making your position as a respected scientist HARDER is the greed for funds and grants and ‘first to publish’ race going on in science research and countries with less peer review are publishing stuff too clouding science and making it seem untrustworthy. The study showing retracted papers are due now mostly to fraud was a letdown too. Allows religious denialists, known for baseless assumptions and facts, to announce they are now equal and should be allowed to get back into fucking up humanity.

  5. #5 tjman
    October 8, 2012

    I agree with your concern about the narrowness of his views. However, why are your generalities (aiming this at all republicans, Batshit Party…) and narrow convictions (no science, Paul Broun reps the total party) any less egregious than his narrow convictions?

  6. #6 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    tjman, my views are not at issue here at all. What is at issue here is the Republican Party. You seem to be unaware of the position this party consistently take.

    I dislike, even resent, having to repeat the clearly made point of a post in a comment, but sometimes I have to say things more slowly to be understood. The Republican Party is the anti-science party and is the party that supports creationism. If you happen to be a Republican and disagree with those positions, then you are in a sense giving support to positions you don’t agree with because Republicans do not have internal dissent.

  7. [...] Broun also stated that the Bible – and his wacko interpretation of it – should be used to run our government.  Any candidate for president should denounce this call for theocratic [...]

  8. #8 sailor
    October 8, 2012

    Having this guy on the science committee along with Akin (women can stop rapists impregnating them) does make the US rather a laughing stock. Laugh until it hurts, because this level of craziness does hurt.

  9. #9 John Kwok
    October 8, 2012

    As a science-literate Republican, I am appalled by Broun’s sanctimonious mendacity. He needs to listen to Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Jon Huntsman, all of whom recognizing the robust evidence for biological evolution and that current evolutionary theory remains the best scientific explanation accounting for it. However, if you think the Republican Party is the only one with science denialist issues, then let me remind you what physicist Lisa Randall recounts in her latest book, “Knocking on Heaven’s Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World”. She describes an airplane conversation that she had soon after President Obama’s inauguration with a young Obama supporter who, though trained in molecular biology, refused to acknowledge that humanity was the product of Natural Selection, insisting instead that GOD was responsible for our creation. We should condemn not only Representative Broun’s absurd, repulsive commentary, but those of anyone – conservative, liberal or moderate – who rejects the overwhelming evidence of biological evolution for all life on Earth, including humanity.

  10. #10 dean
    October 8, 2012

    That’s already done JK. Note the subject of this article is a republican on a science committee. Do you see why that warrants its own discussion?

  11. #11 John Kwok
    October 8, 2012

    Dean,

    There are Democrats who are creationists. The most prominent of these is Arkansas Senator Mark Pryor who is the Chairman of the U. S. Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance. He favors Young Earth Creationism but has also said that he could see himself supporting evolution.

    But I agree with you that it is rather disturbing to have someone as delusionally ignorant as Representative Broun sitting on a key House Committee.

  12. #12 Roger
    October 8, 2012

    There are 242 Republicans in the House. Broun is an outlier. You will get different opinions from different politicians. It is simply not true that the Republican Party consistently takes a position in agreement with Broun.

  13. #13 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    What is true is that when the Republicans are in charge the committees that have to do with energy, science, etc. get stacked with science denialists. What is true is that the Republicans are in charge in the house now, there are as you say hundreds of options to chose from, and Broun is on the science committe, appointed by the Republican leadership.

    Sorry, denial of the reality that the Republicans are very very anti science is not working.

  14. #14 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    John, until you mentioned it, we really weren’t talking about denialism among Democrats. That’s an entirely different topic.

    The implication of some kind of equivilance is itself a bit of denialism, by the way.

  15. #15 Eric Lund
    October 8, 2012

    Broun is an outlier.

    [citation needed]

    Broun is on the science committee. So is Todd Akin, who thinks that pregnancy cannot result from “real” rape. There are several other crazies in the Republican House Caucus, including Michelle Bachman and Steve King (and probably several more who at least have the sense to stay quiet on this subject while cameras are rolling). You can find Republicans (even Congresscritters) who aren’t quite this crazy, but I don’t see evidence that the latter group is the majority of Republicans, and I certainly don’t hear them objecting to Broun’s position.

  16. #16 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    Eric, exactly.

  17. #17 Stephan
    Germany
    October 8, 2012

    I’m a 34 year old german, who is watching those things going on in the USA. I can’t express with words my amazement, my irritation and the kind of shock, I’m in.
    I apologize, if I might insult someone, but I just can’t believe, what I saw the last months and years from inside the USA.
    My worldview seems to be lightyears away from the ordinary US-citizen. I’m a realistic, critical rationalist, skeptic, naturalist, secular humanist and of course atheist.
    The republican party is a shame! Forget G.W. Bush. Forget his gut feelings, there are people who are much more insane (I can’t believe me saying this).
    Paul Broun is no scientist, he doesn’t even know how to spell “science”. He would also believe in a flat earth, if the bible says so. Religion and faith seems to be a virus, kind of a disease. Critical thinking skills and skepticism are the cure. Do something for your education system, teach those skills and explain why they are so important.
    Poor America, how sad is this!

  18. #18 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    For Stephan, to horrify you even more, and for John, to annoy you just a little, I recommend my latest post on The X Blog:

    Republicans, have you no shame?

  19. #19 dean
    October 8, 2012

    jk:

    I never said there were not – I merely referred you to the today’s topic. I would also note that the bigger share of these dishonest loons can be found scurrying around with the Republicans: implying that the problem is evenly split between right and left is ludicrous.

  20. #20 Eric
    October 8, 2012

    I am: 1st a die hard Atheist. 2nd a disabled USAF VET. 3rd a Libertarian. 4th a social liberal. 5th a fiscal conservative. With that said, this man is an idiot, but no more an idiot than Joe Biden is. Most politicians are corrupt, lairs, who are unintelligent, and out to make as much money as they can on the tax payers dime. But if you paint Republicans this or Democrats that, you are no better then the person you are attacking is.

  21. #21 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    Nice try at misdirection, Eric.

    First, Paul Broun is not Joe Biden, note even close.

    Second, there is blood dripping out of that bowl that is on your head. Why is that? What’s going on there?

  22. #22 Greg Laden
    October 8, 2012

    Note that there is now a petition link above.

  23. [...] 2012/10/07: GLaden: This is why Republicans are scary dangerous, and separation of church and state … [...]

  24. #24 Stephan
    Germany
    October 9, 2012

    @Greg Laden:
    You did a great job, because you really horrified me even more. Charles Fuqua, however this is pronounced (I like your recommendation), seems to be even more insane than Paul Broun. To be honest, my English is not good enough to raise adjectives. What is the highest escalation of “crazy”? Completely crazy? Abolute insane? Batshit insane? What comes next? I can’t think of an appropriate description of those woldviews. If he wants to establish stoning to death, as the bible says (for rebellious childs), why not establish Islamic law (shari’a)? I guess the justification would be, that the USA are a nation under a/the christian god, not any other god. Where are the USA going to? Becoming a theocracy instead of a democracy?
    I agree, that there are also democrats, who make crazy statements. But this is trivial, of course you can always say this, but this doesn’t make the insane statement of those republicans better. This is just the try to sidetrack people, so this stuff doesn’t get the attention and discussion it deserves.
    I claim, that the average statement of a republican is more stupid than that of a democrat, because as you said (and I agree), the likelihood that a republican is anti-science, blinded by faith and just doesn’t have the slightest clue what he/she is talking about, is much higher.
    I’ve never heard anything of Jerry Brown before, don’t know this guy, have no idea what else his opinions are, but this is great:
    http://www.thejournal.ie/california-bans-gay-therapy-617372-Oct2012/
    Note that I am heterosexual, but I completely agree with him and this reasoning:
    “[…] the bill’s effects would be to ban “nonscientific ‘therapies’ that have driven young people to depression and suicide. These practices have no basis in science or medicine, and they will now be relegated to the dustbin of quackery. No one should stand idly by while children are being psychological abused, and anyone who forces a child to try to change their sexual orientation must understand this is unacceptable.”
    Seems to be a great and cool Guy!

    “The most formidable weapon against errors of every kind is reason. I’ve never used any other and I trust I never shall.”
    Thomas Paine

  25. #25 Stephan
    October 9, 2012

    I remember Rick Perry, do you too?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PAJNntoRgA
    This is better:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=NtFzuGeCfkc

    “I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a Christian, but you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school.
    As President, I’ll end Obama’s war on religion. And I’ll fight against liberal attacks on our religious heritage.
    Faith made America strong. It can make her strong again.
    I’m Rick Perry and I approve this message.
    I think it’s time for us to just hand it over to God, and say, “God: You’re going to have to fix this””

    This is really the kind of stuff, we always hear from republicans. So I have to think, that’s the opinion of the majority of them. I do not hear that from democrats, really.

  26. #26 Stephan
    October 9, 2012

    Faith didn’t make America strong. Science did that job.

    Actually faith makes no one strong. Faith means accepting a claim/idea without having evidence or a good reason to accept it as true. Faith isn’t a pathway to truth. Faith is the last excuse you can give, for thinking something is true, but probably isn’t. Faith is a “sin” not a virtue. If you believe something on faith, you’ve already lost and given up.

    The problem with “the” republicans is, that they don’t value “doubt” and “critical thinking”. They are so damned sure of their opinion, that nothing, literally nothing, is able to question their opinion.
    They are poor people, because they are not even able to realize how wrong and stupid they are…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2%80%93Kruger_effect

  27. #27 Stephan
    October 9, 2012

    By the way, because i introduced this topic:

    Lady Gaga is so much wiser and deserves much more respect than this stupid german pope.

    “Pope says gay people are not fully developed humans”
    http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/pope-says-gay-people-are-not-fully-developed-humans280912

    She said: ‘What the Pope thinks of being gay does not matter. It doesn’t matter to the world. It matters to the people who like the Pope and follow the Pope.

    ‘It’s not a reflection of all Christians. It is not a reflection of all religious people. It’s a point of view of one person.’

    ‘And to all the gay people here,’ she added. ‘May you live and love each other until the end of time.

    ‘I hope you will have the human right to breed as an entirely equal, valuable and special member of society.’

  28. #28 Eric
    October 10, 2012

    Greg, no attempt at misdirection form me, I simply stated my views and a fact, The picture is a screen grab from the end of this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqwIZNECRoU

  29. #29 dude
    October 10, 2012

    You just report about a small group of people that have an extreme point of view. I don’t know any christians that think the earth is a literal 6000 years old. Church teaches other things than science and often simply defers to science on such matters, finding ways to understand their teachings around apparent facts. I don’t support religious rules being forced as law and neither does anyone I am close to. I even oppose such things.

    People like you are full of hate and venom and do not mind spewing propaganda to increase prejudice and discrimination. This does not represent us any more than Hitler’s work represents jews. Separation of church and state is important because without it prejudice assholes would find a reason to try to kill or institutionally discriminate against a group. Any time someone tries to scapegoat a group of people and inspire fear of them from isolated cases, you should question that person and reject what they teach you.

  30. #30 Stephan
    October 10, 2012

    @dude
    “I don’t know any christians that think the earth is a literal 6000 years old. ”

    Are you kidding? Are you denying facts?

    Have you ever checked some polls in the US? A significant percentage of us citizens believes the world is less than 10.000 years old! The rate is higher and correlates with being a republican. By the way, the crime rates are higher in “repbublican states”. So are the abortions.

    Just think a while about that.

  31. [...] In terms of initial plausibility, which is more likely: that the vast majority of the world’s scientists (including many Christians among them) who have helped provide insight into and treatments for [...]

  32. #32 Navi
    October 19, 2012

    Mark Pryor, a creationist democrat, is “Chairman of the U. S. Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance. ” That is QUITE different from a creationist being on a science committee, who refuses to acknowledge science. If the science committee creationist kept their religion out of it, (and yes, many people do), it’d be a different story. But this obviously isn’t the case.

    Non batshit crazy creationist Christians would speak up more, though, but not only do we have the creationists telling us we’re not Christian and going to hell, we have Atheists who try to convert us.

  33. #33 Navi
    October 19, 2012

    (in other words don’t tell me I’m stupid for my religious beliefs if and when I do speak up.)

  34. #34 Navi
    October 19, 2012

    (can’t edit in moderation – that should be religious)

  35. #35 Greg Laden
    October 19, 2012

    Fixed it