Pharyngula

The crazy billboard lady is back again

Julie Haberle, the born-again who splattered Minnesota billboards with creationist apologetics, has revamped her website. It’s prettier and twice as stupid now; it still has the very clumsy bulletin board that was utterly ruled by evolution supporters poking holes in her bad arguments. What the site primarily has, though, are the quote mines — this place is a gold mine of quote mines. For instance, right up front and center they have this:

“To take a line of fossils and claim that they represent a lineage is not a scientific hypothesis that can be tested, but an assertion that carries the same validity as a bedtime story – amusing, perhaps even instructive, but not scientific.”

–Henry Gee

Ardent Evolutionist, Dr. Henry Gee, Senior Editor, Biological Sciences for the journal Nature as written in his book, In Search of Time: Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life, New York, The Free Press, 1999, page 126-127.

I thought this was hilarious and so typical. I actually spent some time talking to Henry Gee at SciFoo, and this very subject came up. He gets quoted all the time by creationists, and he also gets whined at by scientists who say he has to be more careful to avoid this kind of misrepresentation (he is, of course, a strong supporter of science and evolution who thinks creationists are lunatics). Caution does not get the important ideas said, though, and we can’t sit here policing our words, afraid that some idiot will scavenge them and use them to lie. Haberle’s whole site is a testimonial to the willingness of creationists to distort scientific statements wholesale. She has a series of issues where she tries to call into question basic evolutionary ideas by doing little more than quoting out of context little snippets from books she hasn’t read.

The Henry Gee book is a beautiful example. She hasn’t read it, she certainly couldn’t explain what it’s about (it’s an excellent summary of the principles and philosophy of cladistics), and most amusingly, she got the title wrong. It’s
In Search of Deep Time: Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life(amzn/b&n/abe/pwll).

Comments

  1. #1 Dan
    August 14, 2007

    Perhaps the most telling aspect of that horrendous website is the obvious typo (look at the parenthetical comment in the second quote on the main page).

    What is it about fundies that completely removes any sense of proper English or grammar? Did I miss something, or is spell-check now a tool or Satan?

  2. #2 Dan
    August 14, 2007

    Ok…Ok….
    “a tool of Satan.”

    At least I correct my mistakes.

  3. #3 SteveM
    August 14, 2007

    “…or is spell-check now a tool or Satan?”

    No, I think this is the correct question to ask 🙂

    Spell check is a good tool when used properly, but is more like Satan when used instead of proof-reading.

  4. #4 Stanton
    August 14, 2007

    Dan, I think it’s because they take Martin Luther’s speech about Reason being the whore of Satan to heart, and take it to mean that Grammar is one of Reason’s children.

  5. #5 Dahan
    August 14, 2007

    Ghaaa!!

    What is wrong with these people? On her website, under the section marked “fossil record”, she states as a reason to disbelieve evolution that:

    “Fossils are always found fully formed, having no partially formed features.”

    What is she expecting to find in the fossil record for her to believe evolution to be true? A completely useless half a femur because it hadn’t fully evolved yet? Then I suppose a completely useless 5/8ths of a femur, etc. I just don’t get the it.

  6. #6 RamblinDude
    August 14, 2007

    Or perhaps it’s just random ejaculations of speaking in tongues.

  7. #7 Ric
    August 14, 2007

    Here’s a comment about the site itself:

    What resolution exactly is it designed for? On my 1024 screen I have to horizontally scroll just slightly. Whaaaa?

    That’s some crappy design if I ever saw it.

  8. #8 Bob O'H
    August 14, 2007

    Oh my god! I made the mistake of looking at the genetic drift page. The first paragraph is, well…

    *whimper*

  9. #9 Andrew Wade
    August 14, 2007

    Caution does not get the important ideas said, though, and we can’t sit here policing our words, afraid that some idiot will scavenge them and use them to lie.

    Caution against malicious misrepresentation does not get the important ideas said. There are, of course, other reasons to be careful in writing.

  10. #10 John Marley
    August 14, 2007

    What’s with the monkey fixation?

  11. #11 John Marley
    August 14, 2007

    Re: Quote mines

    Have you seen this page?

  12. #12 Onymous
    August 14, 2007

    I was just looking at this yesterday. I drove past a half a dozen of these billboards while going up I-5 on vacation.
    Thought it was funny that the chimp looks entirely more dignified than the human.

  13. #13 Steve_C
    August 14, 2007

    It appeals to the god botherers to claim that Evolution claims we’ve descended from modern monkeys. It gets them on the creationist’ side. “My great-grand-daddy ain’t no monkey!”

  14. #14 Arneson
    August 14, 2007

    Thanks for mentioning the humble efforts of some of us. The Gee quote has been a particular thorn in my side for some time. I have personally corrected her several times. She has continued to use it, thinking somehow it supports her position.

  15. #15 thalarctos
    August 14, 2007

    What is she expecting to find in the fossil record for her to believe evolution to be true? A completely useless half a femur because it hadn’t fully evolved yet? Then I suppose a completely useless 5/8ths of a femur, etc.

    Dahan, even that wouldn’t be enough–some modern whales have femurs of about 4 cm long, and that fact doesn’t seem to change her delusion any. So it’s not really about the partial structures at all; if you produced those fossils she specifies, she’d just move the goalposts again.

  16. #16 R. Paul Wiegand
    August 14, 2007

    Regarding caution in writing … I agree.

    Threading that careful needle of scientific writing, where one must make clear the importance and meaning of what is being contributed without overstating or overgeneralizing one’s results, is challenging enough. Having the additional constraint of not just guarding my language, but actually having to anticipate how someone will misquote me seems an unreasonable request.

    Those intent on manipulating your words will do so, however careful you are. Besides, much of scientific writing involves contrasting things, and it is difficult to do that properly when you are worried about someone lifting one side and not the other. Guarding against quote mining endangers useful dialectic, I think.

  17. #17 bugaboo
    August 14, 2007

    Or, as my friend’s grandmother, b. 1905 as a strident Catholic who thought Vatican II was one of the greatest tragedies of our day, said, “We don’t know how those bones got there. I could pull them out and put them together anyway I wanted and declare it science.”

    She also was a firm believer in geocentricism and never believed that we actually set foot on the moon, believing instead that it was all done on a Hollywood movie set so that money could be funneled to favored government contractors of the Democrats.

  18. #18 gg
    August 14, 2007

    “The crazy billboard lady is back again”

    Now, wait, is she a ‘lady with crazy billboards’ or a ‘crazy lady with billboards’ or ‘a crazy lady with crazy billboards’? I only ask because I was once referred to as ‘crazy yo-yo guy.’

  19. #19 Stanton
    August 14, 2007

    Hey, someone posted a video about Julie…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzG091Wm1WM
    Did you know she used to be a medical doctor and a lawyer?

  20. #20 richCares
    August 14, 2007

    “My great-grand-daddy ain’t no monkey!”
    of course not, the monkeys’s much smarter!

  21. #21 Carlie
    August 14, 2007

    gg – yes.

  22. #22 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    August 14, 2007

    Hey, someone posted a video about Julie…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzG091Wm1WM
    Did you know she used to be a medical doctor and a lawyer?

    I’m surprised she wasn’t an engineer….

    Sorry. Sorry. Sorry. Couldn’t resist.

  23. #23 PalMD
    August 14, 2007

    Deep time scares creationists–a lot. She wouldn’t know deep time if it bit her fossilzed ass a few million years from now.

  24. #24 Glenn
    August 14, 2007

    R. Paul Wiegand wrote (#16)

    Those intent on manipulating your words will do so, however careful you are.

    Amen to that. It’s pretty tough to fend off the slings and arrows of square brackets and ellipses.

  25. #25 Calladus
    August 14, 2007

    I’ve also noticed that the religious evolution deniers get skittish about deep time. Many of them preach (and I use that word deliberately) against an Earth that is “millions of years old”.

    I find it both sad, and amusing that they can’t even talk about an Earth that is almost 5 billion years old, or about evolving life with a history of billions of years. Instead they have to cut down the history of our planet to a few mere millions of years and then argue against that.

    And as for you, Rev. BigDumbChip – I’ll have you know that many engineers, myself included, are perfectly rational, skeptical and logical thinkers. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have an afternoon AD&D game to play, and I need to pick up my cloak from the dry cleaners.

  26. #26 Brian F
    August 14, 2007

    The sexual connotation of the phrase “Who’s your daddy” makes it impossible for me to take this site seriously.

  27. #27 Fastlane
    August 14, 2007

    She’s got nuthin on AFdave (for those of you who hang out at Dawkins’ forums or IIDB, you know of whom I speak).

    But I don’t think dave got around to paying for billboards yet….

  28. #28 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    August 14, 2007

    I have no room to talk. I’m in I.T.

    Computer “scientists” have as poor a track record as engineers as creationists.

  29. #29 Stanton
    August 14, 2007

    The sexual connotation of the phrase “Who’s your daddy” makes it impossible for me to take this site seriously.

    What did you expect with a woman who takes prescription Reese’s Pieces as a substitute for psychoactive medication? St Augustine of Hippopotamus?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AA6-3txfwJE

  30. #30 R. Paul Wiegand
    August 14, 2007

    Ee gads, I dared to post on it! I couldn’t help myself … I tried to resist …

    I blame PZ for this!

    Her site takes “straw man” to a whole new level … “cotton-fiber man”. Why do we engage her arguments at all? I’m in the “put up, or shut up” camp: Give me a better explanation and I’ll go away happy, until then … *yawn*.

  31. #31 Greg Peterson
    August 14, 2007

    Did anyone else notice THIS little gem from her site, dissing SEED Magazine?

    Alliance for Science asked students to write an essay on, “Why would I want my doctor to have studied evolution.” Not only does this indoctrinate children, it also urges children to question parental decisions.
    http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/news/2007/US/308_alliance_for_science_evolution_2_21_2007.asp
    All of the winners (including a 9th grade student) receive an annual subscription of SEED Magazine, which is known for its obsession with sex and homosexuality. SEED is NOT considered a ‘scientific’ magazine and it’s puzzling that this type of publication would be selected (unless Alliance for Science has an agenda?).

  32. #32 Skeptic8
    August 14, 2007

    I think that the “committee” suspicion is correct for the site. Maybe this is a trap for rational posters which will allow them to devise more real-appearing strawmen.
    The Creos are adroit at concealing their underlying assumption of the 6000 YO planet and producing consistent-seeming arguments from that basis. The objective planetary age for evolution assessment doesn’t hinder science. For the Creos the fossil evidence is merely a proof of the Flood. Thus age, superposition & dynamics are disregarded. Physics & time are mutable and dismiss radio-dating

  33. #33 Jonathan
    August 14, 2007
  34. #34 Steve_C
    August 14, 2007

    That’s got to be a satire site…
    they even say they want to shut down landover.

    Too funny.

    I mean look at those geeks on the bios page. Did the carnies come to town?

  35. #35 PZ Myers
    August 14, 2007

    ObjectiveMinistries is a parody site.

    Adventure Safaris is the real thing. You’ve missed your chance to go on a dinosaur dig with creationists, and it unfortunately looks like they’ve given up on hunting for a Canadian plesiosaur.

  36. #36 Rey Fox
    August 14, 2007

    “which is known for its obsession with sex and homosexuality”

    Huh. They’ve only been publishing for 11 issues, it’s my hope that they’d be known, period. Have there really been that many Dr. Tatianna-style sidebars on insect orgies? I’ve only got the last two issues.

    PZ: “unfortunately looks like they’ve given up on hunting for a Canadian plesiosaur.”

    Seems fortunate to me. I mean, on one hand, it’s good to have more hands out there digging, but I’m sure if they found anything, they’d announce that they discovered a dragon, send it to the Flintsone Museum and keep it under lock and key.

  37. #37 David Marjanovi?
    August 14, 2007

    Now, wait, is she a ‘lady with crazy billboards’ or a ‘crazy lady with billboards’ or ‘a crazy lady with crazy billboards’?

    Do you really want an answer to that one? “May the Gods fulfill your wishes” (Ancient Greek curse).

    Due to a peculiar conspiracy of English grammar and English orthography, she is obviously and unambiguously a crazy lady with billboards. If she were a lady with crazy billboards, she’d be a crazybillboard lady.

    Except that most native speakers, it appears, don’t know where to put hyphens…

  38. #38 David Marjanovi?
    August 14, 2007

    Now, wait, is she a ‘lady with crazy billboards’ or a ‘crazy lady with billboards’ or ‘a crazy lady with crazy billboards’?

    Do you really want an answer to that one? “May the Gods fulfill your wishes” (Ancient Greek curse).

    Due to a peculiar conspiracy of English grammar and English orthography, she is obviously and unambiguously a crazy lady with billboards. If she were a lady with crazy billboards, she’d be a crazybillboard lady.

    Except that most native speakers, it appears, don’t know where to put hyphens…

  39. #39 Brownian
    August 14, 2007

    From the Adventure Safaris website on the Canadian Plesiosaur:

    We will spend the week interviewing eye witnesses, visiting Manipogo sighting locations, visiting elders of the Native American tribes to record their stories of Manipogo.

    How quaint. They’re going to talk to the Indians for confirmation of their creationist contemporary dinosaur theory. How very open-minded of them.

    I wonder what they’ll do if the elders don’t stop at telling stories of dinosaurs living in Lake Winnipeg, but go on to recount how Wisakedjak survived the Great Flood with only an otter, a beaver, and a muskrat for companions and went on to recreate the earth, trees and animals and all people from there.

  40. #40 Traffic Demon
    August 14, 2007

    Hmm, has the password prompt on their forum been there for a while, or is it new? If it’s new, does it have anything to do with my posting with “whoisyourcreator” as my user name? If so, my apologies to everyone for spoiling the fun.

  41. #41 Eisnel
    August 14, 2007

    Someone just made a post to the forum using the same name as the site’s creator. It said that the entire site is a hoax intended to demonstrate how ludicrous creationist claims are (and it suggested that those who agreed with the site’s message should avoid breeding). That post was quickly removed, and now all forum posting requires a password.

  42. #42 Elizabeth
    August 14, 2007

    Skeptic that I am, I am wondering if crazy Julie is laughing all the way to the bank. She is a “business consultant” who has set up a 501C3 nonprofit, so her website claims, and is soliciting tax deductible donations for her cause. You know how the faithful are inclined to drop money into any “Christian” basket passed under their noses!

  43. #43 Steve_C
    August 14, 2007

    hehe. thanks PZ that was getting surreal.

  44. #44 negentropyeater
    August 14, 2007

    is this a new canadian Loch Ness monster story… it’s good for tourism

  45. #45 Stanton
    August 14, 2007

    No, Negentropyeater, Manipogo has been around for a long while, as long as its more famous cousin, Ogopogo.

  46. #46 Craig
    August 14, 2007

    But true Christians don’t NEED to read things and get the names right.

    I remember back in the 80’s when I was doing ad work at a paper… the movie “The Last Temptation of Christ” was out and causing a furor, and a local group ran an ad condemning it and telling people not go go because it was blasphemous. Only they called it “The Temptation of Jesus.”

    After a few moments of consideration we decided to run the ad without correction.

  47. #47 Steve_C
    August 14, 2007

    Snotty nosed college edumicated heathens.

    Don’t you know you should respect your elders and forefather and… ummm.

    Jesus rules! Yeah!

    (Parody concluded)

  48. #48 tony
    August 14, 2007

    Except that most native speakers, it appears, don’t know where to put hyphens…

    Posted by: David Marjanovi?

    Yes,they do!

    right between the two last names!

  49. #49 Monado
    August 14, 2007

    PZ, how do you know that Objective Ministries is a parody? If so, they caught me, because a couple of years ago I posted disparagingly about their search for a live dinosaur.

  50. #50 jose
    August 14, 2007

    Henry Gee may not be a young earth creationist, but his is a creationist in the sense that he is a Christian and thinks that God ultimately made everything.

  51. #51 Skeptic8
    August 14, 2007

    Thank you Jonathan,
    For posting the OBJECTIVE link! The writer caught the flavour of the 1920s travelogues in this excellent exercise of imagination. Perhaps he could be encouraged to regale us with tales of his ‘expeditions’ at a suitable micro-brew pub with a snarfty IPA.

  52. #52 PZ Myers
    August 14, 2007

    I think Henry Gee is going to be very surprised to learn that he is a Christian.

  53. #53 Traffic Demon
    August 14, 2007

    “WhoIsYourCreator was featured on http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/ today and we’ve received thousands of hits from it. Unfortunately, a few evolutionists are doing bogus postings under our name, as well as some really stupid ‘inappropriate’ postings, so we’ll let them cool down for a couple of hours and restart the forum later.

    From our past experience on the previous forum (http://www.123forum.com/777), blocking them doesn’t do any good as they get new IPs as fast as we can block them.”

    STRONG! I killed the forum! Fear the bored teacher on summer break!

  54. #54 jose
    August 14, 2007

    On Henry Gee, God, and Dawkins:

    http://psom.blogspot.com/2006/10/delusions-of-faith-as-science-henry.html

    I also thought that I read somewhere that he belongs to the Church of England (does that make him Anglican? – I get confused).

    Still a good science writer though.

    Jose

  55. #55 jose
    August 14, 2007

    Also PZ –

    Henry Gee quote from http://www.natcenscied.org/resources/articles/3167_pr90_10152001__gee_responds_10_15_2001.asp:

    I am a religious person and I believe in God. I find the militant atheism of some evolutionary biologists ill-reasoned and childish, and most importantly unscientific — crucially, faith should not be subject to scientific justification. But the converse also holds true — science should not need to be validated by the narrow dogma of faith. As such, I regard the opinions of the Discovery Institute as regressive, repressive, divisive, sectarian and probably unrepresentative of views held by people of faith generally. In addition, the use by creationists of selective, unauthorized quotations, possibly with intent to mislead the public undermines their position as self-appointed guardians of public values and morals.

  56. #56 PZ Myers
    August 14, 2007

    Yes, I know. I argued with Henry for a while a few weekends ago. What I find really unscientific is that anyone would decide that ideas held on faith should not be examined scientifically.

  57. #57 Mike Haubrich, FCD
    August 15, 2007

    I found a morsel on the site, regarding mutations. This isn’t a quote mine, it is within context:

    Mutations are extremely rare and almost always harmful to the organism. However, evolutionists claim that these damaged DNA molecules can miraculously rearrange code sequences to create new functional traits and/or features in an organism.
    But single mutations cannot cause novel and more complex traits and features to instantaneously appear. Therefore, how probable is it that the next necessary mutation would miraculously build on the precise DNA location of the previous one? And, until the new trait or feature is completed and considering its new corrupted and non-functional DNA, why would the new organism be considered more fit?
    “The important point is that science has now quantitated that a genetic mutation of as little as 1 billionth (.0000001%) of an animal’s genome is relentlessly fatal!”
    http://ricter.com/wordline/AR_Gst_Lect.htm

    So, I was curious about where she got the “quantitated” link and discovered that the original came from a “guest lecture” by this guy:

    Dr. Barney Maddox holds a B.S. in biology from Texas Christian University and an M.D. from UTSW Medical School in Dallas. His residency in urology was done through the University of Missouri, and he now is in private practice. In 1997 Dr. Maddox was a committee member on the Texas State Schoolbook Panel, for biology.

    Texas State Schoolbook Panel. For biology.

    I leave it at that; sleep well.

  58. #58 Ritchie Annand
    August 15, 2007

    Shame on you for spoiling the fun, TD! I was just about to post to Joe W. over there.

    The interesting thing about this one post by Joe over there is that he actually hits on the truth:

    Getting any useful mutation is like winning the genetic lottery. Now I agree that sensing pressure would be highly valuble trait and it is easy to see that natural selection would certainly benefit any organism that aquires it. Its usefulness, however, does not make it any more likely that an organism is going to hit that genetic lottery jackpot.
    That is what I meant.

    Well, yes, really.

    Evolution is pretty much use it, lose it, or rearrange it.

    A lot of the rest of his arguments in other messages make the teleological error. Experiment: start from squirrels, end up at bats… go!. Much like the fact that dealing you a particular set of five cards in poker is astronomical (about 1 in 312 million), yet your odds of having received those cards is suddenly 100% after the fact, statistics that make teleological assumptions are artificially high.

    Considering how fairly distantly bats are related to anything else (when your nearest out-groups includes wolves and rhinos!)

    Considering how separate digits are formed via apoptosis (if I remember rightly, Carroll’s Endless Forms book has a wonderful shot of the expression of a protein where the webbing will die), webbing can evolve from “bad” mutations in this regard.

    Going from squirrels to flying squirrels and seeing what changes actually occurred that differ between the two very closely-related lineages would be more instructive.

    The last point that shows a lack of the basic fundmentals of evolutionary process is that even if your scenario happened, there is absolutely no mechanism for rebuilding your “sensor” in future generations. Just as getting a sticker in your toe is not passed on to your children, the instruction for rebuilding your “sensor” have not in anyway made any change to the encoding in the DNA.

    Yep… not much in the way of Lamarckism going on.

    Knowing the God created something does not in anyway diminish human curiousity of how it works.

    I would submit that, in general, it does, and that curiosity is the default state from childhood until it dies or is quashed by an environment which will brook no questions. As always, I find Copernicus and Galileo very interesting examples to bring up 🙂

    (P.S. Flying squirrels are so gosh-darned CUTE)

  59. #59 hyperdeath
    August 15, 2007

    What is the true context of the Henry Gee quote?

    Is he criticising the notion of evolution being a line in which each transitional organism is merely a precursor to the organism that follows it, thus forming a path leading up to a “fully evolved” organism.

  60. #60 Rev.Enki
    August 15, 2007

    Does she have anything to do with the insane number of anti-choice billboards set up between Duluth and the Twin Cities?

  61. #61 PZ Myers
    August 15, 2007

    No, that’s MCCL. Different group, just as insane.

  62. #62 Lysa
    August 15, 2007

    This lady is insane. Under her “Indoctrination” link, she makes reference to the “Peppered Moth Myth”. One of the most amazing examples of microevolution in a modern, observable setting, and she’s dismissing it as myth. Hilarious.

  63. #63 JDP
    August 16, 2007

    “To take a line of fossils and claim that they represent a lineage is not a scientific hypothesis that can be tested, but an assertion that carries the same validity as a bedtime story – amusing, perhaps even instructive, but not scientific.”

    Not only out of context, but also completely false.

    Stratocladistic methods being pioneered in paleontology right now provide a systematic and rigorous framework to analyze anagenic relationships between taxa.

    So yes, it is scientific, so long as you’re using stratocladistics.

  64. #64 Traffic Demon
    August 17, 2007

    Board’s down again… not that I would know anything about it. ::evilgrin::

  65. #65 Henry Gee
    September 12, 2007

    Yes, it’s me, God, talking. Just to correct some misperceptions.

    * I am not a Christian. I am a Jew (Liberal Tendency). For some interesting examples of Jewish belief in the modern age, try this:
    http://www.worldjewishdigest.com/ME2/dirmod.asp?sid=&nm=&type=Publishing&mod=Publications%3A%3AArticle&mid=8F3A7027421841978F18BE895F87F791&tier=4&id=D2AE62185F784067BFE766F4440C8813

    * I’d say that I am a believer, but my belief tends so closely to agnosticism as probably makes no significant difference.

    * I would defend the theory of evolution by natural selection to my last breath.

    * Creationism is rubbish. End of.

    * As PZ says, I also get fed up of scientists telling me not to debate the niceties of evolution with other evolutionary biologists for fear of creationist quote-miners. We had a nice lunch at SciFoo, PZ and I, with Eugenie Scott, who was concerned that I liked to air evolutionary biology’s internal squabbles in public, as in my book In Search of Deep Time. However, creationists are that desperate they’ll quote-mine anything, and as I said to Eugenie, creationism is an unfortunate affliction that’ll always be with us, like herpes. To which Eugenie’s response was along the lines that we should always try to practice safe sex. What nonsense. Live dangerously.

    * Now, hold tight, it’s time for me to switch off your space-time continuum for essential maintenance.

  66. #66 Henry Gee
    September 12, 2007

    Yes, it’s me, God, talking. Just to correct some misperceptions.

    I am not a Christian. I am a Jew (Liberal Tendency).

    I would defend the theory of evolution by natural selection to my last breath.

    Creationism is rubbish. End of.

    As PZ says, I also get fed up of scientists telling me not to debate the niceties of evolution with other evolutionary biologists for fear of creationist quote-miners. We had a nice lunch at SciFoo, PZ and I, with Eugenie Scott, who was concerned that I liked to air evolutionary biology’s internal squabbles in public, as in my book In Search of Deep Time.

    However, creationists are that desperate they’ll quote-mine anything, and as I said to Eugenie, creationism is an unfortunate affliction that’ll always be with us, like herpes. To which Eugenie’s response was along the lines that we should always try to practice safe sex. What nonsense. Live dangerously.

    Now, hold tight, it’s time for me to switch off your space-time continuum for essential maintenance.

  67. #67 Henry Gee
    September 12, 2007

    Yes, it’s me, God, talking. Just to correct some misperceptions.

    I am not a Christian. I am a Jew (Liberal Tendency).

    I would defend the theory of evolution by natural selection to my last breath.

    Creationism is rubbish. End of.

    As PZ says, I also get fed up of scientists telling me not to debate the niceties of evolution with other evolutionary biologists for fear of creationist quote-miners. We had a nice lunch at SciFoo, PZ and I, with Eugenie Scott, who was concerned that I liked to air evolutionary biology’s internal squabbles in public, as in my book In Search of Deep Time.

    However, creationists are that desperate they’ll quote-mine anything, and as I said to Eugenie, creationism is an unfortunate affliction that’ll always be with us, like herpes. To which Eugenie’s response was along the lines that we should always try to practice safe sex. What nonsense. Live dangerously.

    Now, hold tight, it’s time for me to switch off your space-time continuum for essential maintenance.

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