Pharyngula

Well, fly fishing is a science

This is hilarious. That wacky Islamic creationist, Harun Yahya, sent all those copies of his great big expensive book, Atlas of Creation, to biologists all around the country, and darned few of us have actually bothered to look at it in any detail. The general pattern of the book is repetitious and predictable: the book shows a picture of a fossil and a photo of a living animal, and declares that they haven’t changed a bit, therefore evolution is false. Over and over. It gets old fast, and it’s usually wrong (they have changed!) and the photography, while lovely, is entirely stolen.

Here’s the latest funny part: someone did scrutinize the photos a little more carefully, and discovered a few of the photos are actually of fishing lures, hook and all. That’s the level of competence we’re talking about in this book.

By the way, I recently got another copy of the Atlas — the only difference seems to be that the new version has an emerald green cover, while the previous was bright red. Man, it’s impressive that they’ve got so much money that they’ll send out new editions just to change the cover color.

Comments

  1. #1 danley
    January 9, 2008

    Montana baby! Bass pro shops and Lands End.

  2. #2 MAJeff
    January 9, 2008

    wow, as much as I dislike my dissertation, I’ve never considered doing anything like that.

  3. #3 Scott
    January 9, 2008

    Well, it is obvious: Fishing lures were designed and therefore so were caddis flies.

    Scott

  4. #4 MAJeff
    January 9, 2008

    One of my mom’s favorite stories involves my dad, fly fishing, a fly in the lip, and the emergency room. There’s a cigarette in there too, but I think the photographic evidence has been destroyed.

  5. #5 Glen Davidson
    January 9, 2008

    The general pattern of the book is repetitious and predictable: the book shows a picture of a fossil and a photo of a living animal, and declares that they haven’t changed a bit, therefore evolution is false. Over and over. It gets old fast, and it’s usually wrong (they have changed!)

    That’s what I love about non-IDist creationists, they’re so far from understanding science that they don’t even know how to make good PR claims against evolution. So Harun’s just peddling monotonous YEC claims, while the IDists at least came up with “arguments” that could bamboozle some half-educated MDs, engineers, and computer specialists.

    True, there wouldn’t be much point in dressing up Dembski’s and Behe’s “arguments” (and Behe clearly stole a lot of his “arguments” from YECs, though not all of them) with glossy photos and high production values and sending them out to any competent biologists. Indeed, any scientist who understands how science works would notice that IDists don’t have any actual evidence in favor of ID, only their false dichotomy peculiarly ornamented with Dembski’s Aristotelian and medieval metaphysics.

    That’s why ID quickly shifted from trying to gain adherents among scientists (as science-illiterate Phillip Johnson originally envisioned), to good old-fashioned revival meetings among the “faithful” dolts. But credit where it is due, at least ID has been somewhat interesting to critique, while Yahya’s “contribution” consists solely in flashy repackaging of the most repetitious and unappealing YEC “arguments” (minus the young earth nonsense) that Ken Ham and Kent Hovind can muster.

    Glen D
    http://tinyurl.com/2kxyc7

  6. #6 Brownian, OM
    January 9, 2008

    Obviously, on the seventh day God slipped on his hip waders and tried out his new graphite casting rod.

    And people say theologians never come up with anything new.

  7. #7 Elf Eye
    January 9, 2008

    OK, someone has to say it: He has swallowed the creationist bait hook, line, and sinker.

  8. #8 Ray
    January 9, 2008

    Well, that proves it! The book can change color from one generation to the next, it proves that even BOOKS ARE EVOLVING! oooooo…. spooky!

    (koff) (wink)

  9. #9 genesgalore
    January 9, 2008

    ya, it couldn’t be that rice and beetles have been around alot longer than sapiens that they have a more complex genome. the intricate structures on beetles is so cool

  10. #10 Ex-drone
    January 9, 2008

    So Yahya is claiming that fly lures did not evolve from fish hooks?

  11. #11 dale
    January 9, 2008

    It could be that eternal life will be spent in a Cabella’s superstore with all exits leading to the great fishing waters in the universe. I’m in. Wadda I gotta do?

  12. #12 kevin
    January 9, 2008

    Those fishing lures are astounding. Here are more by the same creator:

    http://www.solarexpert.com/fishing/more-fly-tying.html

    -Kevin

  13. #13 Mister DNA
    January 9, 2008

    This reminds of me of the time – years ago – some creationist on a message board posted something about all the problems the Jackalope posed for evolution.

  14. #14 MAJeff
    January 9, 2008

    It could be that eternal life will be spent in a Cabella’s superstore with all exits leading to the great fishing waters in the universe. I’m in. Wadda I gotta do?

    You and my dad both. Shoot me, though. I’ll stick with steel, glass, and cement.

    Over the recent trip back to MN, was hanging with some friends of a friend, and they were talking about ice fishing. I forgot people do that. I forgot I used to do that.

  15. #15 Dale
    January 9, 2008

    So just how do you get yourself on the mailing list for these books? I think it would be great to get a few dozen copies sent across the world so that I could put them in my recycling bin.

  16. #16 dale
    January 9, 2008

    Fly fishermen = frustrated entymologists. Trust me on that one.

  17. #17 dale
    January 9, 2008

    The mantra:
    Bambooooooo..Bamboooooooo

  18. #18 ChrisKG
    January 9, 2008

    Amazon has the red volume as no.1 and the green cover as volume no.2. So, unless I spend a minimum of $65 each I guess I’ll never know what’s in them to tell them apart.

  19. #19 danley
    January 9, 2008

    DI should host a creationist fish-fry every year.

  20. #20 J-Dog
    January 9, 2008

    SHHHH! Don’t tell ERV! She made Dembski and Behe cry, and there’s just no telling what she might do to this schmuck… She’s got a LOADED BRAIN, AND SHE’S NOT AFRAID TO USE IT!

  21. #21 Troutnut
    January 9, 2008

    It’s hilarious he didn’t even Photoshop the hook out.

    There’s another mistake in the photo, too. I’m assuming the insect circled in the amber is supposed to be a prehistoric caddisfly for comparison with the one Graham tied. It’s clearly a mayfly, though, not a caddisfly.

  22. #22 Christopher Heard
    January 9, 2008

    A bunch of us biblical scholars got them, too. My department chair commented, “That’s an awfully expensive doorstop.”

  23. #23 dale
    January 9, 2008

    Your site is very well done. Very nice, indeed.
    Thanks!

  24. #24 vhutchison
    January 9, 2008

    I have a copy of the 12.5 pound doorstop. The cost alone of shipment of thousands of these from Turkey must be great. One of the first things one notices in leafing through the book is that the geological periods shown for many fossils are entirely wrong.

  25. #25 wildcardjack
    January 9, 2008

    As a person who makes his living as a book dealer, I’m curious if the book has an ISBN. In my world, it’s not really a book if it doesn’t have that universal identifier. Until it has an ISBN it’s just a bound work.

    But, having an unused bachelors in mechanical engineering, I probably could write quite a tome on the mechanics and fluid dynamics of fly fishing.

    I won’t, but someone could. Or maybe someone would like to sponsor me.

  26. #26 QrazyQat
    January 9, 2008

    Fraudulent illustrations? That really raises my Haekels.

  27. #27 RBH
    January 9, 2008

    MAJeff wrote

    Over the recent trip back to MN, was hanging with some friends of a friend, and they were talking about ice fishing. I forgot people do that. I forgot I used to do that.

    That’s called “repression.” :D

  28. #28 MAJeff
    January 9, 2008

    That’s called “repression.” :D

    Fortunately, it hasn’t manifest itself in a fetish for parkas or ice or anything. Winter is inside time.

  29. #29 Shalini
    January 9, 2008

    When is someone going to sue that cretinist bastard?

  30. #30 Man of Science
    January 9, 2008

    As an atheist, I’m amazed at the stupidity of those who continue to try and disprove science with their moronic and baseless ideas. I’m also an avid fly tier and fly fisherman. So, seeing this bastard combine his ignorance with my beloved pastime, he’s pushed me too far! Time for an unholy beating with my 8 wt rod…

  31. #31 G. Stefanik
    January 9, 2008

    In response to ‘wildcardjack’ #25, in Amazon it is listed as only having an ASIN, which is Amazon’s identification number with no ISBN given.

  32. #32 GodlessHeathen
    January 9, 2008

    #26, QrazyQat:”Fraudulent illustrations? That really raises my Haekels.”
    AUGH! *facepalms*

  33. #33 bpower
    January 10, 2008

    lol @ American fly fishermen (pre- “A River Runs Through it” excepted)

  34. #34 dsmccoy
    January 10, 2008

    For those of you not honored with one of these glorious tomes,
    here it is in all its glory online.

    On this page, it’s about halfway down.
    Easiest way to find it is search for “caddis”, the fake spider is two photos above the caddis.

    http://www.harunyahya.com/books/darwinism/atlas_creation/atlas_creation_03c.php

  35. #35 Crudely Wrott
    January 10, 2008

    I once considered posting a sign on my home on the Wind River in Wyoming.

    “Preachers, Politicians and Peddlers Prohibited. Fishermen with Children Always Welcome.”

    Didn’t. Should have.

  36. #36 Quiddam
    January 10, 2008

    Can someone with a copy confirm that the pictures are actually in the Atlas. I’ve been all over the website http://www.harunyahya.com/ but I can’t find them there. The story is almost too good to be true.

  37. #37 Venger
    January 10, 2008

    They are definitely on the PDF file that was linked. About half way down the page, between Horseshoe Crab Beetle and Winged Termite. He can’t even identify the spider lure as a species, just lists it as spider.

    SPIDER

    Age: 25 million years old
    Location: Dominican Republic
    Period: Oligocene

    Spiders today possess all the features possessed by those that lived millions of years ago. A 25-million-year- old spider fossilized in amber is one of the proofs of this.

    CADDISFLY, DARK-WINGED FUNGUS GNATS

    Age: 25 million years old
    Location: Dominican Republic
    Period: Oligocene

    Pictured are a caddis fly and fungus gnats in amber. These living things have survived for millions of years without the slightest change in their structures. The fact that these insects never changed is a sign that they never evolved.

  38. #38 dsmccoy
    January 10, 2008

    I’ve been all over the website … but I can’t find them there.

    They’re there. I posted a pointer two comments above years.

  39. #39 Epistaxis
    January 10, 2008

    Wow. Too bad there’s no line and sinker.

    But that’s still not worth opening his book.

  40. #40 steven ross
    January 10, 2008

    Have you seen the author’s page on his website? Is it possible to have any more pictures of himself?

    http://www.harunyahya.com/theauthor.php

  41. #41 Dale
    January 10, 2008

    One of the Amazon reviews had this to say…

    “You are the same people that cannot answer the simple question:

    “If we came from apes, then WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY STILL DOING HERE????”

    Yep, ponder that a bit.”

    sigh.

  42. #42 Quiddam
    January 10, 2008

    “I’ve been all over the website … but I can’t find them there.”

    They’re there. I posted a pointer two comments above years

    Now I feel stupid, I missed your post, I tried searching for caddis fly but no joy. Anyway it’s perfect – especially considering the chapter on frauds. http://www.harunyahya.com/books/darwinism/atlas_creation/atlas_creation_17.php

  43. #43 Steven Carr
    January 10, 2008

    Faked photos?

    Has anybody told Jonathan Wells?

    I can see a book in it for him – exposing the lies and deceptions practiced by creationists, who use fake photos to produce evidence where there is none.

  44. #44 dsmccoy
    January 10, 2008

    Have you seen the author’s page on his website? Is it possible to have any more pictures of himself?

    “author” should be used loosely. He doesn’t write it himself, he has a staff of trained … trained … oh I don’t know, some guys who make stuff up. Like the guys at the Weekly World News, only Islamic.

    Anyway it’s perfect – especially considering the chapter on frauds.

    Nice.
    That’s perfect.
    Maybe he just needs to move the pictures to that chapter.

  45. #45 dsmccoy
    January 10, 2008

    Interesting take on the “author”, if you want some hair-raising scandal stuff.

    http://www.mukto-mona.com/debunk/harun_yahya/

  46. #46 Mister DNA
    January 10, 2008

    Have you seen the author’s page on his website? Is it possible to have any more pictures of himself?

    I think we’ve found the villain in the next James Bond movie.

  47. #47 blue collar scientist
    January 10, 2008

    The photos are definitely printed in the book – at least in the green-covered version. I have posted photos of the pages in question – pages 241 and 244.

  48. #48 Mickey Mortimer
    January 10, 2008

    Ughh…. the bird skeleton he shows to indicate birds are unchanged is an enantiornithine, which all went extinct at the end of the Cretaceous.

  49. #49 AJS
    January 10, 2008

    One of the Amazon reviews had this to say…
    “You are the same people that cannot answer the simple question:
    “If we came from apes, then WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY STILL DOING HERE????”
    Yep, ponder that a bit.”

    I can only assume that this reviewer never listens to MW radio, eats dinner by candlelight or writes with a fountain pen ….. and for that matter, even stopped reading paper books as soon as electronic books became available.

  50. #50 Lago
    January 10, 2008

    He discusses how crinoids are unchanged and shows fossil crinoids and extant polycheate worms as one and the same..

  51. #51 Rob
    January 10, 2008

    I went along to a talk given by a couple of Harun Yahya’s guys at my uni back in November.
    To give you an idea of how sophisticated these guys were, they opened up by condemning “Darwinism” for eugenics, nazi-ism, communism, racism and capitalism. Then we basically had a butt-load of lies and mis-direction. My personal favourite being when he rolled out the old trope that Darwin said that the evolution of the eye was “absurd in the highest degree”.

    I asked in question time why he decided not to quote the rest of Darwin’s sentence or mention what the rest of the chapter was. I called him intellectually dishonest just to force him to defend himself and instead I got a weird tirade about how Darwin’s science was “too old”, the orbit of the earth and Anthony Flew’s recent dubious conversion. The moderator had to ask him to answer me directly and he just equivocated till his time ran out.

    What was a little interesting is that the Muslim creationists aren’t YECs. They seem to have no problem with an old earth according to their scripture. It’s basically just evolution they have a problem with.

  52. #52 Carlie
    January 10, 2008

    Man, I want one of those books! I have an entomologist friend who would love some of those photos. I have half a mind to write to him and ask for a desk copy, but then he’d know my name and where I work. That couldn’t be good.

  53. #53 Peter McGrath
    January 10, 2008

    Do you think Harun Yahya knows his pen-name sounds like someone talking down the big white telephone?

  54. #54 Ray M
    January 10, 2008

    Well, I don’t know what all the fuss is about. These pictures are *not* fakes… rather, they are positive proof that god is a regular guy who likes fishing. After all, didn’t his son hang around with a bunch of anglers? And didn’t he tell them to become ‘fishers of men’?

    My born-again in-laws will lap this up, if ever I tell them

  55. #55 Craig Kaplan
    January 10, 2008

    I know this is a bit weird, but with all the many biologists who received this book and don’t know what to do with it, I wonder whether there’s anyone out there who would be willing to send me their copy. I sheepishly admit I’m fascinated by such works of folly. I would love to have a copy, to occupy a place of pride next to Wolfram’s _A New Kind of Science_ and Serafini’s _Codex Seraphinianus_.

    If anyone reading this is willing to consider sending me a copy, please let me know.

  56. #56 me
    January 10, 2008

    Y’all miss the point. Graham Owen’s incredibly life-like fly fishing lures PROVES beyond any doubts that insects were intelligently designed.

  57. #57 Teenage Lobotomy
    January 10, 2008

    allah is bat-shit crazy.

    This from a victim of Teenage Lobotomy.

    Out of the Hospital out Against my will
    Life is so Beautiful Iam “The Vejtables”.

  58. #58 F. Caccin
    January 10, 2008

    #31:
    in Amazon it is listed as only having an ASIN

    In Italian ASINO = donkey, which, according to the Merriam-Webster online, is:
    1 : the domestic ass (Equus asinus)
    2 : a stupid or obstinate person
    Sorry, could not resist.
    F.Caccin

  59. #59 thadd
    January 10, 2008

    Someone put their free copy in the seminar room at school, and one day before class, I walked in an a bunch of the undergraduates were siting their with the giant red book in front of them making fun of it. I think that shows some proper respect.

  60. #60 Hank Fox
    January 10, 2008

    Does anyone have any pictures of early fishing flies?

    I’m wondering if they’ve evolved since those early days.

    Someone better get a good screenshot of that page. I predict it will soon “evolve” to not include these two flies.

  61. #61 Chinchillazilla
    January 10, 2008

    Oh, that’s just precious.

  62. #62 Lago
    January 10, 2008

    Some people are interested in a copy. I have one and if PZ might start a thread on, “Why I deserve a copy of this screamingly stupid book” I would give it to the winner. They need only pay for postage…

  63. #63 Reginald Selkirk
    January 10, 2008

    This is the funniest Creationist story I’ve read in quite a while. This ought to get cross-posted at Panda’s Thumb.

  64. #64 David Marjanovi?, OM
    January 10, 2008

    Ughh…. the bird skeleton he shows to indicate birds are unchanged is an enantiornithine, which all went extinct at the end of the Cretaceous.

    He discusses how crinoids are unchanged and shows fossil crinoids and extant polycheate worms as one and the same..

    And the “280-million-year-old frog” is the 160-million-year-old salamander Karaurus. Complete with tail and all. Never mind the fact that the oldest known frogs are 250 million years old. Oktar’s carelessness is incredible.

  65. #65 David Marjanovi?, OM
    January 10, 2008

    Ughh…. the bird skeleton he shows to indicate birds are unchanged is an enantiornithine, which all went extinct at the end of the Cretaceous.

    He discusses how crinoids are unchanged and shows fossil crinoids and extant polycheate worms as one and the same..

    And the “280-million-year-old frog” is the 160-million-year-old salamander Karaurus. Complete with tail and all. Never mind the fact that the oldest known frogs are 250 million years old. Oktar’s carelessness is incredible.

  66. #66 Quiddam
    January 10, 2008

    Have you noticed that the plagiarized photos on the web page have a watermark – to prevent them from being plagiarized again.

    CADDISFLY, DARK-WINGED FUNGUS GNATS

    Age: 25 million years old
    Location: Dominican Republic
    Period: Oligocene

    Pictured are a caddis fly and fungus gnats in amber. These living things have survived for millions of years without the slightest change in their structures. The fact that these insects never changed is a sign that they never evolved.

    Sir Wilfred Le Gros Clark, who was in the team that uncovered the forgery, could not hide his astonishment at this situation and said: “The evidences of artificial abrasion immediately sprang to the eye. Indeed so obvious did they seem it may well be asked-how was it that they had escaped notice before?”Well if a fish hook half as big as the specimen can escape notice, maybe it’s a bit more understandable.

  67. #67 Jim
    January 10, 2008

    Come on, people, this is a HUGE breakthrough for ID! Now we know HOW god created us! He started with our spine and then glued on the other major parts of the skeleton, and then while holding our skeleton with big metal claws, started wrapping the other parts of our body with various materials to create our flesh.

    The similarity of the real creature to the lure proves this is how it was done. I can’t believe it’s taken us this long to figure it out.

  68. #68 Avenel
    January 10, 2008

    #60

    Not the flys themselves, but a page on the evolution of the fishhook is here.

  69. #69 VeryUnseemly
    January 10, 2008

    I have no background entomology whatsoever, but even I can tell just by looking at the pictures that the fossil ‘scelionid wasp’ and the living one are two very different creatures.

    “There is no difference between 25-million-year-old winged ants and specimens alive today. Winged ants that have remained the same despite the passage of millions of years are some of the proofs that evolution never happened.”

    LULZ for the win!

  70. #70 Skwee
    January 10, 2008

    I never, ever thought I would say this. However, the title of Worst Creationist Argument ever is invalid if said creationist is incarcerated:
    This guy’s less convincing than Kent Hovind!!!

  71. #71 Judy
    January 11, 2008

    One of these showed up at the library where I work.

    I don’t believe it’s going to be added to the collection.

  72. #72 MAJeff
    January 11, 2008

    I don’t believe it’s going to be added to the collection.

    Isn’t there a special collection or a display it could be added to?

    Oh, god, what am I saying. Pulp the thing.

  73. #73 arghous
    January 12, 2008

    So did Adam fly fish in the Garden? Only to catch and release, I presume, since he didn’t eat meat. Or maybe only on Fridays, I don’t know.

    Since the trout only ate coconuts and whatnot, how did the insect fish lures work, anyway?

  74. #74 David Edwards
    January 21, 2008

    Over at Rants n Raves we’ve just had a contest courtesy of this post in the relevant thread, namely try and be the first to arrange for the fishing lure illustrated in that post to be inserted into a future edition of Harun Yahya’s book.

    Go take a look at the lure in question. But do NOT do so if you are drinking ANY beverage in close proximity to your computer. Coffee spurted on monitor incidents are hereby your own fault.

  75. #75 David Edwards
    January 21, 2008

    Double post …

    Just in case this hasn’t been done already …

    Harun Hayha’s book is listed on Amazon under the category “Fishing Lures” …

  76. #76 FrederickK
    October 3, 2008

    Richard DAWKINS seems to be BADLY TAKEN THE BAIT LIKE A FISH! It is actually very good that Harun Yahya put the picture of a model of a caddisfly right beside the fossil picture of the insect. This insect still exists today. The real picture of the living specimen and its model picture are all the same. Everywhere in the Internet, plenty of living pictures of the insect are available. Besides this model picture is not available in the other editions of the Atlas of Creation, Harun Yahya put the original picture on the other editions. Dawkins reckoned this as a mistake and published it on his website. And after that, some of the newspapers and websites that thought this as a huge discovery published the Dawkins’ news immediately. Whereas it is not something disadvantageous as Dawkins thinks. On the Atlas of Creation, it is being told that an insect which is living today and of which the living picture can be found anywhere on the internet has not been changed for 25 million years. So, thanks to Dawkins, millions of people visited the Atlas of Creation website. And they learned that the insect has not changed for millions of years.

  77. #77 Kel
    October 3, 2008

    Yo FrederickK, ever heard of punctuated equilibrium? If the organism is fully adapted to it’s environment, it won’t change. If the fossil record turned up a homosapien skull before mammals came about, then it would be something significant.

  78. #78 Jean DuBois
    December 1, 2008

    Someone should sue that moron who goes by the name of Harun Yahya aka Adnan Oktar for copyright infringement on the stolen photos. The sad thing is that the prosecutors who banned Prof Dawkins’ site in Turkey have no more neurones than this pitiful clown with lots of money to spare to produce this very expensive litter liner of a book. As to where this money might be coming from, the Light House (Deniz Feneri) court case in Germany might be a good eye opener. The German Federal Court indicted some fundamentalist Turkish citizens living in Germany for fraudulent fund raising, with links allegedly going all the way to the AKP (governing party in Turkey). These people have no concept of critical thinking, which is proven day after day with the fruitless rhetoric displayed by the AKP chiefs. What I find really depressing and insulting is that the EU is championing the policies of AKP, which are nothing but diversion to their Islamic and bigot agenda. The EU should be firm on demanding secular policies by reiterating that this is, if nothing else, is a deal breaker for accession prospect of Turkey to the EU. The EU should not be fooled by the hypocritical act portrayed by the AKP claiming to cherish secular ideal. This is a total lie! If it walks like a duck, quakes like a duck, it sure is a duck. And the AKP for all their non-secular and bigot policies is the lamest duck of all!!

  79. #79 Dave A
    January 7, 2009

    “darned few of us have actually bothered to look at it in any detail.”

    How then is any further comment valid?

    “a few of the photos are actually of fishing lures, hook and all.”

    From the evidence provided, only one of the photos in the book features a fishing lure, the other is a replica of the arachnid.

    I don’t believe in creationism, but I find it incredible that the ONLY thing about this book that is making the headlines is that the authors have included an image of a replica of an animal, as opposed to an image of the animal itself.

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