Pharyngula

Creationist e-mail

I’m going to go fire up the grill in a little while, so here’s something for those of you not yet doing the traditional Fourth of July thing to chew on…a tasty scrap of the kind of email I get.

EVOLUTION IS ENTIRELY
FALLACIOUS.
MEIOSIS CASTRATES
EVOLUTION.KARYOTYPES DISPROVE
EVOLUTION. THE
BASIC MECHANISMS SAID TO BE DRIVING EVOLUTION ARE ENTIRELY INADEQUATE,UTTERLY
INCAPABLE OF PRODUCING NOVEL KARYOTYPES,NOVEL FEATURES,NOVEL
FUNCTIONS.
1)EVOLUTION’S
PHYLOGENIES ARE TOTALLY INCOMPATIBLE WITH
KARYOTYPES;
2)THERE IS NO MECHANISM TO GENERATE NOVEL
KARYOTYPES THAT ARE FERTILE(meiosis,homology,synapsis,centromeres etc.); MEIOSIS
CASTRATES EVOLUTION BY FAILING TO PROCEED IF ANY CHROMOSOMES FAIL TO PAIR
UP WITH HOMOLOGOUS PARTNERS.SEXUALLY REPRODUCIBLE KARYOTYPES THEREBY
FIXED!EVOLUTIONARY PROGRESSION OF CHROMOSOME NUMBERS IS TOTALLY INCOMPATIBLE
WITH THE MECHANISMS OF MEIOSIS.

“Wha…,” you may be saying as you taste that little sample. He goes on and on, though, in some of the most ghastly html ever. I’ve stripped out quite a bit here; if you really want to see the whole incredible indigestible thing, I’ve sequestered it and put it in a separate file you can view (no way am I pasting it intact here—the formatting would almost certainly scramble the page. I know for sure there are unbalanced div tags in it.)
Click on this link to see the whole crazy rant in a new window.

My eyes glazed over and I scrolled quickly through the whole mess—although the section where alternate letters of his screed were in different colors did briefly catch my eye—to his closing babble.

In the beginning was the LOGOS and the LOGOS was
with the THEOS.All things came into being through him and without him not even
one thing came into being.
Evolutionism is a pseudo-religion masquerading as
science.The science of evolution is defective
EVOLUTION HAS BEEN UNEQUIVOCALLY DISPROVEN BY
FACTS!
THE ONLY LOGICAL CONCLUSION IS THAT SPECIES DID NOT
ORIGINATE BY EVOLUTION.

“BLUNDER”-of Scandinavian
origin,compare Old Norse
blunda ‘to close one’s eyes’ ,Norwegian
dialect
  blundra ; see BLIND

P.S.if you have noticed any factual errors in
this presentation please inform me of them

Well. Factual errors? Sure, I noticed a few. So I sent him a one-liner back that said his whole premise was in error, and included a link that shows karyotype variation occurs all the time.

It was a mistake, as you’ll all tell me now. He’s since sent me two more letters insisting that I’m all wrong and that I’m trying to “intimidate” him “with typical evolutionary bluster.”

I’m not going to bother with him, but since he’s feeling like he now has permission to pester me, I’m going to let you have fun with him instead. You can email him at jacksprat@netconnect.co.zw. Be nice, but show no mercy. Watch out, though…he throws a mean word salad, and he won’t shut up.

I think I’d rather go fix some steaks and chicken breasts and corn on the cob.


By the way, he claims to be a “medical practitioner.” I’m guessing, oh, chiropractor. Or maybe an iridologist or reflexologist.

Comments

  1. #1 afarensis
    July 4, 2006

    I tried to read it all they through but didn’t get much past the part you quoted. Scrolled through the rest and this caught my eye:

    Evolutionism appears to have overlooked the fact that survival of the fittest requires the origin of the fittest.

    Now I can’t stop laughing…How do you stay sane with emails like that?

  2. #2 Zeno
    July 4, 2006

    Cranks can be so entertaining, but also time-wasting and exasperating. Math types should check out Underwood Dudley’s Mathematical Cranks for a detailed examination of a particular subspecies of crank. Fascinating.

  3. #3 quork
    July 4, 2006

    My eyes glazed over and…
    By the way, he claims to be a “medical practitioner.”

    Are you sure he didn’t claim to be a “media practitioner”? He could be using some sort of subliminal hypnosis technique on you.

  4. #4 RutabagaPie
    July 4, 2006

    I really hate the “you’re using SCIENCE to disprove me, it’s not fair!” type arguments. If logic “intimidates” you, maybe you shouldn’t debate issues in the first place, Mr. Creationist …

  5. #5 David Harmon
    July 4, 2006

    It’s a pity you can’t bundle up the crank E-mail and use it to fuel the grill…. But hey, at least they can’t send you crayon drawings and boxes of junk labeled “perpetual motion machine”….

  6. #6 Sean Foley
    July 4, 2006

    Judging by his formatting and typographical preferences, I’m surprised he didn’t claim that evolution is also impossible because of Time Cube.

  7. #7 AedeagusDei
    July 4, 2006

    The more it’s repeated, the truer it must be!

    Ugh…that was a painful read.

    A while ago, I got an e-mail from a Creation Science “teacher” my father had recruited to deprogram me of the post-Enlightenment hegemony that had seized and blinded me. In it, he put forward the argument that mutations could not accumulate because any changes in the DNA would be caught by some “human genome compliance” filter at the G2 checkpoint, resulting in immediate apoptosis.

    I had to give him points for originality, at least. I hadn’t encountered that one before.

  8. #8 shoeless
    July 4, 2006

    I don’t understand the sharp increase in “go get them” behavior across the blogosphere, but I’m truly disappointed to see it from you, PZ, no matter how “nice” you instruct your readers to be as they turn and stalk that schmuck out of your establishment (literally), onto the street and to his home (figuratively), all the while being sure to “show no mercy.”

    I agree with everything you said but that: In my sense, it’s a bright line ethical wrong and I am ashamed for you. Good grief, is your goal to become more like them?

  9. #9 Michael Hopkins
    July 4, 2006

    That email’s formatting is horrid. It would be difficult on the eyes regardless of content. And of course the content is lame.

  10. #10 Charles Winder
    July 4, 2006

    Here’s my favorite line:

    “I have employed various modifications of text type simply to facilitate the process of communcating the direction of my thoughts.”

  11. #11 Phil Studge
    July 4, 2006

    PZ, Doesn’t seem very nice, posting his email address. What’s up with that?

  12. #12 Corey S
    July 4, 2006

    I do not understand what the creationist is saying. For someone like me who has cannot understand scientific terms like karotypes, meiosis, and centromeres, it is not very helpful.

    And if you have reason to disagree with my conclusions let’s discuss such matters

    Apparently, he does not want to discuss with you, PZ.

  13. #13 ck
    July 4, 2006

    I have to agree with shoeless. I haven’t commented here before, but have been enjoying your posts. This one, though funny, was disappointing in its conclusion. The individual in question hasn’t consented for you to give his email address out, nor has he consented for it to be put online for spammers to mine.

  14. #14 T_U_T
    July 4, 2006

    I had to give him points for originality, at least. I hadn’t encountered that one before.

    I’ve encountered a creationist of similar breed. He claimed almost the same thing but instead of apoptosis, he claimed that immune system would kill the whole body if it got some mutations inherited.

  15. #15 Buffalo Gal
    July 4, 2006

    What he’s really saying is that scientists don’t really see what they say they do when they observe, do experiments, etc. He can only comprehend science in the same terms as he does religion – a dogmatic belief in the non-observable.

  16. #16 HPLC_Sean
    July 4, 2006

    This clueless crank actually asked to be corrected for any factual errors in his awful excuse for a refutation of evolution! PZ is doing him a favor by allowing the widest possible audience to review his work. This intellectual streaker should be chased right back down the rabbit hole he poked his impotent garbage out of.
    Who runs the asylum? The doctors or the patients?

  17. #17 PZ Myers
    July 4, 2006

    A mere creationist doesn’t get his email posted. This fellow has crossed over the line with a flurry of mail sent my way — he’s a spammer. Spammers don’t get treated with any consideration at all.

  18. #18 Djur
    July 4, 2006

    Oh, please. The worst thing that can happen from posting this kook’s email address is a few dozen nasty emails. That’s what he’s expecting, anyway.

    Email addresses are not state secrets. You don’t need anyone to consent to post them.

  19. #19 shoeless
    July 4, 2006

    PZ is doing him a favor by allowing the widest possible audience to review his work. This intellectual streaker should be chased right back down the rabbit hole he poked his impotent garbage out of.

    Now I know for sure where your ethics on stalking are, HPLC. I hope PZ disagrees with you and realizes he has made a mistake. The only reason I spoke up was a sharp sense of how abnormal this behavior seemed, coming from PZ.

    Nevertheless, I’ve had my say and I will desist with my nagging.

  20. #20 shoeless
    July 4, 2006

    Okay, PZ, understood. Sharply disagreed with, but understood.

  21. #21 Carlie
    July 4, 2006

    The thing that really gets me about this type of person is how stupid they think the rest of us must be. Meiotic crossing over! It disproves evolution! Gee, none of the rest of the scientists in the world must know about meiosis, then. Never came up. You really got us there! Sheesh. Oh, I mean, holy fucking Jesus.

  22. #22 Ergle
    July 4, 2006

    I’m not terribly au fait with a lot of the “science” here, but skipping through his quagmire of colors and fonts, I did spot a couple of things that amused me, this one in particular:

    “ANIMAL DATA CANNOT THEREFORE BE SAFELY EXTRAPOLATED TO HUMANS”

    … then later …

    “THE INFERTILITY OF MULES AMPLY DEMONSTRATES THAT CHROMOSOMES WILL NOT SYNAPSE IN PROPHASE-I OF MEIOSIS IF THEY ARE NOT HOMOLOGOUS,AND,THEREFORE,DEMONSTRATES THAT MEIOSIS/GAMETOGENESIS FIXES KARYOTYPES .THE MULE IS LIVING PROOF OF THE IRRATIONALITY OF EVOLUTION.”

    I’d say this was written proof of the irrationality of this particular creationist…

  23. #23 Alexander Kjerulf
    July 4, 2006

    if you have noticed any factual errors in this presentation please inform me of them…

    This reminds me of Fermi’s classification of science mistakes:
    Wrong
    Completely wrong
    Not even wrong

    The last one is reserved for statements so badly formulated that it becomes meaningless to talkm about whether they’re right or wrong.

    This guy is “not even wrong”.

  24. #24 mena
    July 4, 2006

    My favorite (well, pretty much all I read since it wasn’t in capitals):
    “Why such reluctance to relinquish cherished errors?.”
    to which the obvious response is
    “I dunno, why don’t you tell us?”
    Why can’t these people EVER make a logical argument?

  25. #25 adoreilly
    July 4, 2006

    Um… at least in the parts of the blogosphere I tend to frequent, it’s commonly understood that if you e-mail the owner of a blog regarding something they’ve written, the blog owner is free to post it, unless you specifically request otherwise.

    It’s rather like writing a letter to the editor and then being upset when your name is on page 12A.

  26. #26 kmarissa
    July 4, 2006

    MY favorite part is,

    “THIS ARTICLE IS WRITTEN FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE.”

    That one cracks me up every time I read it.

  27. #27 shoeless
    July 4, 2006

    Okay, I said I wouldn’t comment further, but this is just too precious:

    Um… at least in the parts of the blogosphere I tend to frequent, it’s commonly understood that if you e-mail the owner of a blog regarding something they’ve written, the blog owner is free to post it, unless you specifically request otherwise.

    It’s rather like writing a letter to the editor and then being upset when your name is on page 12A.

    Because of your sarcastic beginning, I’m assuming you intentionally elide the distinction between the content of a letter to the editor and the street address of the sender…between the content of unsolicited email and the email address of the sender.

    Using his own account, let’s review PZ pressure point for publicly posting someone’s email address without their permission:

    He receives an unsolicited, perfectly incomprehensible and stupid piece of email from an idiot.

    He replies. One line with a link.

    He then receives two more emails like the first, augmented by the typical idiotarian claims of being dismissed and intimidated.

    Now, for all I know, this idiot has proceeded to spam him with a barrage of furthur unsolicited email. But by PZ’s published account, it took a total of 3 emails, including one that PZ responded to, to trigger this level of retaliation–publishing the schmuck’s email address.

    It’s good to know and instructive to people who look here to see. PZ on science, expert. On ethics…not so much.

  28. #28 Pterorhynchus
    July 4, 2006

    After taking a several second look at this I would like to know what this guy was on when he did this. Nobody in their right mind could possibly produce such a massive rant of complete meaninglessness. Perhaps I should also mention that the horrifficly inferior design of the page nearly burned my eyes out.

    “BLUNDER”-of Scandinavian origin,compare Old Norse blunda ‘to close one’s eyes’ ,Norwegian dialect blundra ; see BLIND

    This seems oddly appropriate to place near the end of that page, at which point anyone who was sctually reading the page would probably be blind, literally.

    And what’s with this guy’s karyotype fetish? When I last checked, karyotypes are ony a representation of the number of chromosomes present in an individual organism, not the reason evoltion takes place.

  29. #29 jeffw
    July 4, 2006

    I admire your tireless ability to go after the kooks, in all their marvelous diversity (which evolution is ultimately responsible for, of course). I wonder though, if too much of that over too long a period can adversely affect one’s mental health, and permanently skew one’s thinking – “Gaze long into the abyss, and the abyss gazes into you”. I’m not really suggesting anything, except that it takes a thicker skin than mine. Perhaps there’s some kind of evolutionary arms race in progress between evolutionists and creationists. The evolutionists keep getting tougher, and the creationists keep getting kookier.

  30. #30 Stanton
    July 4, 2006

    I wrote

    Dear Sir,
    In your email to Dr PZ Meyers, you said that karyotypes and meiosis disprove evolution. However, if that is so, then how come that the origin of the evening primrose species Oenothera gigas has been documented as having arisen from a meiotic accident in O. lamarckiana, where the normal 2n=14 was doubled, so that the seeds that sprouted into the first O. gigas had 4n=28? Hugo de Vries attempted to hybridize the two flowers, but was unable to do so. How would that disprove evolution?
    Also, if karyotypes disprove evolution, then why is it then, that the Indian Muntjac deer, Muntiacus muntjak, has been proven to have arisen from the Chinese Muntjac, Muntiacus reevesi, through a series of meiotic catastrophies that reduced the number of chromosomes in Indian Muntjac deers to 2n=7 in males, and 2n=6 in females? How would the documented rise of new species from previously known species disprove evolution?
    http://content.karger.com/ProdukteDB/produkte.asp?Aktion=ShowFulltext&ProduktNr=224037&Ausgabe=230522&ArtikelNr=81520
    http://www.microscopyu.com/galleries/fluorescence/cells/muntjac/muntjac.html

    Stanton

  31. #31 Stanton
    July 4, 2006

    Anyone want to bet that this guy isn’t going to respond coherently to mine?

  32. #32 Phil Studge
    July 4, 2006

    I’m with Shoeless. PZ replies to the initial email, and gets two more in return. This is spam? A ‘flurry of mail’? Please tell us there was more than this to justify publishing the poor bastard’s email address.

    And anyway, for what purpose? Is this Christ-Psychotic going to be swayed by an army of emailers, or will it just harden his heart like a frigging pharaoh’s?

  33. #33 Caledonian
    July 4, 2006

    It’s good to know and instructive to people who look here to see. PZ on science, expert. On ethics…not so much.

    PZ has never claimed to be an expert on ethics; he quite clearly is an expert on biology.

    Furthermore, studying the nature of ethical systems and the ethics of various societies is what qualifies one as an expert on ethics. One’s personal behavior is irrelevant to the qualification.

    Finally, PZ has only done a thing which you disapprove of. That does not mean that his personal ethics are somehow defective.

    You are a pompous fool without the courtesy to keep your personal opinions to yourself; instead, you proclaim them to be universal constants and complain when others don’t act in the matter you think they should.

    Get stuffed.

  34. #34 shoeless
    July 4, 2006

    No, my opinions are not universal contants. My claiming PZ’s ethics in this area defective are my opinion. If you need a “this is my opinion and only my opinion” disclaimer on every piece of opinion ever uttered, you are more stuffed than I can ever be.

    Of course I’m a pompous fool…as are you to take up the keyboard and ever type a word. What’s your point?

    I’m no middle-of-the-roader when it comes to awareness of our physical world. As far as I’m concerned, in matters biological, PZ speaks for me. By degrees I’m a biochemist and yet he speaks for me. He has graciously opened up his blog to allow people to offer opinions. You have a problem with mine being offered? Understood. Not accepted. Understood.

  35. #35 PZ Myers
    July 4, 2006

    There are yet more emails from this guy of increasing stridency, and this is after a polite request that he stop dunning me.

    He’s treating my email as his dumping ground, he’s spamming (is there a magic number for spam? 3? 4? Do I have to wait until he’s sent me 100?), and he’s ignoring requests to desist. He is actively soliciting responses to his screed. I’m happy to oblige him.

    Go ahead and email me with any kind of lunacy you want, but if you won’t stop on request, I don’t have to be nice to you.

  36. #36 Djur
    July 4, 2006

    Uh, having your street address printed leaves you open to vandalism, assault, and worse. Having your email address posted leaves you open to roughly jack shit. Certainly not “stalking” or whatever the fuck you like to call it.

    There is absolutely no reason not to post someone’s email address in any situation. It’s cheap, replaceable, and anonymous. By sending an email, you take the risk that someone else will get your address.

  37. #37 jakobpunkt
    July 4, 2006

    I disagree with you, Shoeless. I think it’s pretty standard, when you send an email to a blogger qua blogger, to expect that your email address, along with the contents of your email, might be posted on the blog.

    Posting someone’s email address is in now way comparable to posting their real name, telephone number, or meatspace address. Email addresses can be changed with only minor inconvenience, and knowing someone’s email address puts you in no real position to do them harm.

  38. #38 jakobpunkt
    July 4, 2006

    what Djur said.

  39. #39 Phil
    July 4, 2006

    This is my first comment on this blog, I just wanted to say that I agree with those who think it was unreasonable to publish this guy’s email address.

    3 emails might be a little irritating, but since a reply to the first indicates a willingness to enter into a dialogue you can hardly call him a spammer, and there’s no way he deserves the kind of response he’s now going to get.

  40. #40 micheyd
    July 4, 2006

    Oh come on, people. I know this has been said before, but an e-mail address is hardly an ‘outing’ of identity like we’ve been seeing on blogs. As PZ said, he probably did the guy a favor by giving him more people to proselytize at. Now I understand that getting e-mails from people telling him that his argument is bunk may hurt his feelings, but endangering him it is not.

  41. #41 PZ Myers
    July 4, 2006

    Come on, people. He’s still sending me email. He’s read this post, and isn’t complaining about the address being online…the guy is thanking me.

    Thankyou again for helping me to publish the fallaciousness of evolution.
    You have provided me the means of giving every respondent the full and unevolutionedited version.
    It is easy to see why you do not wish to correspond with me0you don’t have the answers to my questions.I think the visitors/bloogers on your site will soon realise that

    Got that, bloogers? Write him a nice thank you note.

  42. #42 PZ Myers
    July 4, 2006

    Truth be told, I’m feeling a bit like the NY Times Travel section now.

  43. #43 goddogit
    July 4, 2006

    This posting of some true crank’s address doesn’t bother me much, although it seems useless AND unnecessary.
    What does bothers me is the hair-trigger annoyance at disagreement that PZ has been showing lately. It really has begun to seem like unfunny crankiness itself, rather than some loveable, or trifling, eccentricity. There’s a really unfortunate bossiness in how he disagrees, and it seems to be very easy to cross some line he has drawn in his own mind.

    I do wish you would cut this sort of thing out, PZ! It really has made your writing feel needlessly, and unproductively, bitter.

  44. #44 Fredrock Flintstone
    July 4, 2006

    Why can’t these people EVER make a logical argument?

    Because logic doesn’t support the arguments they wish to make.

  45. #45 rudko
    July 4, 2006

    If you enter his email address into a google search box you will find he has posted it on the web already himself and posted his full physical address and phone number.

    Obviously he is not too concerned about it.

  46. #46 Carlie
    July 4, 2006

    “What does bothers me is the hair-trigger annoyance at disagreement that PZ has been showing lately.”

    You’re falling right into their hands with that argument. It’s not “disagreement”, it’s WRONG. It’s annoyance at the promulgation of things that are not true. We can disagree as to whether the flag of the United States is the most beautiful flag in the world. We cannot, however, “disagree” as to which country that flag with red and white stripes and a blue field with 50 stars represents. Incorrect statements should be corrected.

  47. #47 Steve LaBonne
    July 4, 2006

    It’s beyond even just wrong. Ignorance is bad enough; arrogant, militant, triumphalist ignorance is sickening and destuctive. goodogit is a f’ing idiot to call this “disagreement”.

  48. #48 Kuni
    July 4, 2006

    Am I the only one getting a Time Cube vibe from that guy’s writing?

    Enjoy the rest of your 4th, PZ.

  49. #49 jv
    July 4, 2006

    As for the comments on PZ’s “hair trigger” in posting his email address: I presume none of you have had a public association with moderate to high profile writing on evolution.

    I had a brief email exchange with a creationist that he posted to his website, and then I had random people emailing incoherent anti-evolution screeds for years. I’ve seen the same thing happen with academic papers that contradict their cherished delusions.

    I can’t even imagine what PZ’s inbox looks like, but each and every one of those emails is incredibly frustrating. Whether a custom rant, or a bunch of copy and pasted text, each is from some militantly delusional individual, and you really want to say “please, please just read a few textbooks”. But they all come back with “Ha, you are unable to respond to my challenge!”.

    Physicists, cosmologists, and mathematicians just get run-of-the-mill insane people who think there’s a conspiracy afoot to deny them their rightful Nobel. Biologists have 20% of the general population wanting to burn them at stake as heathens. And another 30% or more that just thinks their pastor has a better understanding of science than the scientists.

    Hair trigger? Hell, if I were PZ, I’d just tape the damn trigger down.

  50. #50 Caledonian
    July 4, 2006

    There’s nothing to ‘disagree’ with — the sentiments expressed aren’t coherent enough to make sense. This person’s claims aren’t wrong, they’re just dumb. They would need a great deal of improvement to upgrade to wrong.

    I am, as always, greatly disturbed by this attitude I see among some of you that every person and every position is inherently worthy of respect and consideration. There are things that are inherently contemptible.

  51. #51 Dan
    July 4, 2006

    It’s not contemptible, Caledonian, it’s pitiable.

    Pity those who don’t know any better all you like, but reserve your contempt for those who do.

  52. #52 Zeno
    July 4, 2006

    This reminds me of Fermi’s classification of science mistakes: Wrong/Completely wrong/Not even wrong

    Alexander, it’s Wolfgang Pauli who is usually given credit for the remark “It is not even wrong,” as cited in a reminiscence published shortly after his death.

    And Stanton? Buddy, you seriously need to check out http://tinyurl.com/ before you quote another mile-long URL again!

  53. #53 Fred J
    July 4, 2006

    goddogit said

    “What does bothers me is the hair-trigger annoyance at disagreement that PZ has been showing lately.”

    Comment by goddogit not understood by some, please reread. Must be the hot weather. Hang in there goddogit.

    PZ, when I receive only a couple e-mails similar to this I get upset so I have no idea what hundreds would do to me. You seem to be hardened to it though. Good thing you are.

  54. #54 Troutnut
    July 4, 2006

    I can’t believe anyone would bark at PZ for publishing the guy’s email address. It’s possible to be ethical and still not be nice to everyone on the planet.

    Punishing a jerk is a completely ethical proposition. Especially when the punishment fits the crime so well.

  55. #55 David Harmon
    July 4, 2006

    Re: posting this guy’s E-mail address, some of you need to pick up some perspective. At worst it would have been rude to post the address without permission. That’s “rude”, not “EEEVIL!”. In this case, PZ made a judgement call based on the letters he received (of which he only posted the “public” rant), and also on his knowledge of the type.

    I’ve hardly had a tenth his experience with such cranks, but every case I’ve seen suggested that such people want to both contact and be contacted by as many people as possible. To them, every letter they get — even rebuttals, even outright insults — is an affirmation. It means somebody took them seriously enough to write to them! Heck, posting the whole rant in a side link, (instead of cherry-picking it for laughs) is more courtesy than the guy probably gets in most months!

    (OK, the “ghost troll” background might be seen as a cheap shot, but PZ’s used it elsewhere, and I think it’s cute.)

  56. #56 Torbjörn Larsson
    July 4, 2006

    “Pity those who don’t know any better all you like, but reserve your contempt for those who do.”

    Okay, let’s see how that works.

    Pity – Gilder. Contempt – Dembski.

    To complement the Dembski measure, # of vacuous concepts/# of proposed concepts (Dembski = 1 Dembski, based on CS, CSI, EF, et cetera), we can also introduce the Gilder measure, # of vacuous papers/# of published papers.

    Gilder = 1 Gilder, and so is the creobot above. The measures map conveniently to the amount of pity and contempt people such as IDiots engender.

    Humm. This may mean creationism gives some results besides pity and contempt – measures on “don’t know” and “don’t care”.

  57. #57 Mike N.
    July 4, 2006

    email = nothing. That’s why there’s a delete button. If I were hit with a bunch of email because I criticized, say, Michelle Malkin or Bill O’Reilly, I’m cool. Had PZ posted his phone number and snail mail address, that’s grounds for complaining. Also, I doubt “Jack Sprat” is his real name….

    On to the real issue, which is “My favorite part.” My favorite part is where he writes, “In the beginning was the LOGOS and the LOGOS was with the THEOS.”

    Logos is the most difficult word to translate in Greek, and though someone somewhere may have figured out how to translate John 1.1, our friend Mr. Sprat certainly hasn’t. What words he did translate he messed up. That he tries to use this jibbery jaw nonsense as “fact” that he cannot and does not try to translate busted my gut.

  58. #58 Troff
    July 4, 2006

    Regarding the question of whether it was spam? Two points:

    1) very much a “Time Cube” feel.

    2) Right down to the fact it wasn’t even addressed to PZ; it was a generic print.

    How so? The line that started “Dear Reader,I suspect that the few facts discussed here represent merely the starting point of an exciting journey”.

    My specialty is I.T. not biology. I suspect if I WAS a biologist, my brains would’ve leaked out of my ears trying to make my way through the details of the text. Having next to no biology skills, I was Generalist enough to catch that part.

  59. #59 tigger
    July 5, 2006

    You know, PZ, maybe you ought to start a pen pal list for us to sign up and take one of this idiots off your hands for you, to keep as our own pet whackos.

  60. #60 sammy
    July 5, 2006

    Troff – funny that you should say that it has a Time Cube-y feel. I was thinking that it’s two “Dilute!”s and an “OK!” short of a Doctor Bronner’s Soap label. (PDF of the actual label available here.)

  61. #61 RBH
    July 5, 2006

    Turns out he had a similar run-in with folks on a British Medical Association board 18 months ago. All very polite and British, but you can see the “WTF is this guy saying?” tone underlying some of the responses.

  62. #62 Jessica Guilford
    July 5, 2006

    I’m with Mike N.: There’s a delete button. People who request feedback really shouldn’t complain if they get it, much less have people complaining on their behalf. If he’s really upset with a responder, this guy can also choose to block subsequent e-mails from them: I don’t expect a lot of people are going to bother writing in the first place, so this should be easy enough.

    If PZ had encouraged people to cause him harm of some kind (and no, I don’t think “show no mercy” counts: in context, this looks to me like it means “show no mercy to this guy’s twisted logic,” since he also said “be nice”), that would be stepping over a line. But not only do I not see that, I mainly see PZ giving him what he wanted. So everybody’s happy except the bystanders.

  63. #63 Yorkshire Ranter
    July 5, 2006

    That e-mail certainly wasn’t intelligently designed.

  64. #64 John Pieret
    July 5, 2006

    He’s since sent me two more letters insisting that I’m all wrong and that I’m trying to “intimidate” him “with typical evolutionary bluster.”

    Shades of Timothy Birdnow, who accused you of “trying to blind us with science.” Birds of a feather, you might say . . .

  65. #65 No One Of Consequence
    July 5, 2006

    I hope that anyone responding to this guy is using a throw-away email account as well, or at least one with a good spam filter.

    Side Note: I’ve considered creating a website with nothing but spammers email addresses — let their spiders/robots pick up each others email addresses for a while.

  66. #66 xebecs
    July 5, 2006

    Looks like it’s time for another blogger ethics panel…

    Sorry, better make that “commenter ethics panel”.

    Here’s an idea for common courtesy to a blogger we all read and respect (else why are we here?):

    If you are going to criticize the blogger’s ethics, please first read the blogger’s responses to the previous comments about the blogger’s ethics. Have the humility to throw in some caveats, such as “if I understand correctly” or “My apologies if PZM has actually received many more than three emails and simply hasn’t made that crystal clear enough for me.”

    Come on people, moralizing is boring, and moralizing without knowing all the facts is kind of like, oh, I don’t know, the sort of thing that IDers do.

  67. #67 Bronze Dog
    July 5, 2006

    When I read this guy, I also get the Time Cube vibe, or as I like to say, AaAaAaAaAaAaA! I Think I’ve Won the Powerball!

  68. #68 PZ Myers
    July 5, 2006

    To clarify more fully: I sent him one very brief (and most amazingly, polite) reply in which I gave him a link to an article that shows he is wrong, and requested that he not send me any more. I have now received a half dozen copies of this same screed, under two different titles. There are other short emails in which I am told that karyotypes mock me, that evolution is ludicrous, yadda yadda yadda. The creationist has acknowledged that I asked him to stop, yet he continues to send me this garbage. In a couple of emails, one quoted above, he thanks me for putting his stuff on the web, so he can better explain to the world his amazing insight.

    Look, he’s a spammer. I’ve created a junk mail filter to trash is email on sight. This is a kook who spews his incoherent screeds to anyone whose email address he can find. I think it perfectly appropriate and just to publish his email so anyone can argue with him. It’s exactly what he wants.

  69. #69 ANJackson
    August 16, 2006

    Thankyou,
    Could we discuss any specific points of disagreement regarding the biological points raised?

  70. #70 Ryan
    April 17, 2008

    A search by this senders email places him (it is a HIM) in Zimbabwe. He goes by either B N Jackson or Alfred N Jackson and is a primary care physician according to one source where he offers up a place to stay for people attending the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair in 2003.

    There is an interesting exchange between him and others here:

    http://www.bmj.com/cgi/eletters/329/7479/1366-c#91066

    A further search on google for ‘alfred n jackson zimbabwe’ also turns up further interesting results.

  71. #71 dave
    April 17, 2008

    “MEIOSIS CASTRATES EVOLUTION”

    ^Oh no, He’s got evolution by the balls