Pharyngula

You may have seen this letter already

A newspaper editor sent me this bizarre little letter. Apparently, the writer, a Mr Nick Lally, was spamming it all over the place, and his copy was also sent to addresses at these domains (actual email addresses stripped to protect the already put-upon):

@ncnnow.com, @krcb.org, @krcb.org, @californiaconnected.org, @humboldt1.com, @ksee.com, @telemundo.com, @koce.org, @cbs.com, @nbc4.tv, @angnewspapers.com, @modocrecord.com, @arcataeye.com, @pulitzer.net, @goldcountrymedia.com, @bakersfield.com, @bakersfield.com, @berkeleydailyplanet.com, @eastbayexpress.com, @canyonnews.com, @bhweekly.com, @bigbeargrizzly.net, @paloverdevalleytimes.com, @carmelpinecone.com, @carmichaeltimes.com, @chicoer.com, @chicoer.com, @triplicate.com, @gte.net, @svcn.com, @svcn.com, @svcn.com, @svcn.com, @svcn.com, @davisenterprise.net, @independentvoice.com, @ivpressonline.com, @herburger.net, @nctimes.com, @eurekareporter.com, @timesstandard.com, @dailyrepublic.net, @pressbanner.com, @fontanaheraldnews.com, @goldcountrymedia.com, @mcn.org, @fresnobee.com, @herburger.net, @gilroydispatch.com, @theunion.com, @hmbreview.com, @pulitzer.net, @thevalleychronicle.com, @freelancenews.com, @pinnaclenews.com, @hb.quik.com, @pe.net, @pulitzer.net, @valleysun.net, @kvsun.com, @recordbee.com, @compuserve.com, @lodinews.com, @pulitzer.net, @gazettes.com, @jewishobserverla.com, @laopinion.com, @dailynews.com, @DowntownNews.com, @latimes.com, @losbanosenterprise.com, @paloaltodailynews.com, @maderatribune.net, @maderatribune.net, @malibutimes.com, @MammothTimes.com, @mantecabulletin.com, @mcn.org, @almanacnews.com, @modbee.com, @modbee.com, @montereyherald.com, @morganhilltimes.com, @mtshastanews.com, @ktsftv.com, @sainte.tv, @indiancountry.com, @napanews.com, @marinij.com, @sierrastar.com, @ojaivalleynews.com, @dailybulletin.com, @dailybulletin.com, @ocregister.com, @palipost.com, @hax.com, @avpress.com, @paradisepost.com, .wilson@sgvn.com, @arguscourier.com, @arguscourier.com, @mtdemocrat.net, @bizjournals.com, @angnewspapers.com, @ptreyeslight.com, @portervillerecorder.com, @busjournal.com, @redbluffdailynews.com

That looks like he had found a directory of California newspapers and was sending his important missive to all of them. Lally is not from California, which makes me wonder if he flooded all the other states in the same way…let me know if you see some garbage with his name in it in your local paper.

Anyway, you’d think that such a widely disseminated letter must contain very important information, but I doubt that the gang here will be surprised at all to learn that it is a poorly written collection of creationist crap. I’ve put it below the fold for your grisly appreciation.

By the way, the author claims to have been a science teacher. I wonder how many young minds were poisoned and how much inquiring curiousity was stifled by this ignorant know-nothing.

Dear Editor,

I am writing this letter to all clergy…and to the spiritual leaders of our churches and synagogues throughout our country.

Charles Darwin’s birthday is fast approaching February 12, ’09, with a 200 year celebration. The National Center for Science Education led by known atheists, are encouraging churches to join the Darwin Day celebrations. To date there will be 850 Darwin Day events worldwide. I find it interesting that this “Trojan Horse” is aimed directly at churches as well as schools. Evolutionists have already been quoted as saying: “A backward collared clergy is worth more then an atheist on a school board any day”. So, before you spiritual leaders consider preaching Darwin’s theory in your churches and synagogues in the name of looking progressive or tolerant to your congregations, its best that you know all the facts first:

Actually, the NCSE is a secular organization that studiously avoids taking any position on the atheism/religion wars (I know; I’d like them to take my side, but they keep refusing.) There is one ‘known atheist’ there, Eugenie Scott, but she is probably the most adamant one there about not troubling the houses of gods.

Eugenie Scott is also the one with that quote, sorta. She actually said,

One clergyman with a backward collar is worth two biologists at a school board meeting any day!

I am always amused that creationists never get their quotes right, not even when it says just about exactly what they want it to say. Of course, Genie isn’t saying she’s trying to sneak a trojan horse into Christianity — she’s pointing out that there are plenty of gullible sheep who will pay attention to anything a clergyman says on school boards, and that they aren’t all so stupid that they’ll believe in nonsensical creationism.

But let’s move on to Mr Lally’s “facts”.

1. Evolution is not Biblical. All Christians should know that the major theme of the Bible is that every thing was created “very good” followed by original sin, thus resulting in death (physical and spiritual) and ending with atonement through Jesus Christ. Preaching evolution to Christians is anti-Biblical because now you have death coming before original sin. Evolutionary teaching just flip-flops the Biblical theme so that there is no need for Christ.

Well, yes, he’s right, in a way. Evolution is not compatible with his interpretation of the Bible. Of course, the Bible is such a raging gemisch of priestly babble, unanchored to reality in any way, that it’s pretty darn easy to yank any interpretation you want out of it, and some people claim it is compatible with evolution. I really don’t care. You might as well fight over whether Dr Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham is compatible with evolution — you’re inflating the significance of the text beyond all bounds and without consideration for what the authors actually intended.

Oh, yeah…and this whole idea that I’m personally damned by ‘original sin’ and that I need to believe in the magic non-sacrifice of a man-god hybrid in order to be forgiven is total bullshit. Your peculiar interpretation, which is incompatible with evolution, is a bollocks-waving pile of inflammatory garbage that only a lunatic could find rational.

Scientifically: 1. Life can only come from life. It’s called the law of biogenesis proven by Louis Pasture. You cannot come from a rock.

Louis…Pasture? Come on, man, the little things count. These slip-ups make you look like a fool. And say…two number ones? Can’t you count?

There is no law of biogenesis. This is a creationist invention. Scientists have been talking for decades about chemical evolution, the transition from non-life to life, the fuzziness of the boundary, and the fundamentally chemical nature of life itself. You don’t just get to declare an arbitrary law by fiat and pretend that science is on your side. And no, Louis Pasteur did not prove anything of the kind. He showed that bacteria and fungi do not spontaneously appear; he knew nothing of progenotes, chemical replicators, and autocatalytic sets.

2. Information in the chemicals of our DNA can not come from matter or energy.

It has been proven by Dr. Werner Gitt that information can only come from intelligence which begs the belief that DNA acts like a CD programmed by God.

Werner Gitt is a young earth creationist whose arguments have been shown to be false, built on the kind of arrogant pretension common to the truly ignorant. Besides, we see information accumulate in molecules by entirely natural processes; bacteria routinely express simple genetic changes that produce new information, and I’m quite sure bacteria aren’t intelligent, and that these changes don’t occur by intent anyway.

3. The fossil record is an indictment against evolution. We have not found the transitions between single celled animals to complicated invertebrates, nor have we found transitions between invertebrates to vertebrates. All we find in the fossil record is that organisms just show up completely formed with hardly any changes from the “biological explosion” to today. Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils and not one transition.

Actually, we do have transitions between single-celled and multi-cellular organisms. We do have transitions between invertebrates and vertebrates — look up protochordates sometime. Your ignorance of these basic facts is not evidence.

And come on, that 87% is just made up, isn’t it? It doesn’t even make sense. How can you talk about finding a specific fraction of all the living fossils, whatever those are?

4. We even discovered mammals which evolution teaches came millions of years after the reptiles together with dinosaurs in the fossil record!

I don’t know what fossil record you’ve been looking at, but the one scientists use shows mammal-like reptiles preceding the dinosaurs. This is old news. A reptilian radiation produced many branches, including an early line that led to the modern mammals, but it was the saurian line that flourished best in the Mesozoic.

5. Never have we found a mutation that offers new genetic information that is beneficial to the organism in order to evolve. The majority of mutations are harmful, a lost of genetic information, or a mix up of the same genetic information. That is why mutation and natural selection doesn’t work.

All those wonderful new crop varieties that keep us well-fed and prosperous? They are the outcome of mutations. All those pests and diseases that are resistant to our poisons and antibiotics? Mutations, again. Obviously mutations can be beneficial.

Most mutations are completely neutral. We know the error rate in DNA replication, and we know that Mr Lally was born with several hundred novel mutational changes to his DNA, and we see that he is … oh, wait. Bad example. I carry several hundred random changes made to my parents’ DNA, and I am mostly normal.

I’m afraid that Mr Lally doesn’t understand selection, either. It doesn’t require that a majority of mutations be beneficial — a tiny minority is sufficient. Darwinian processes are all about increasing the frequency of rare events into a majority.

6. Even among the hominids, i.e., “Lucy”, Australopithecus afarensis, has been proven to be nothing more then a chimp. Dr Lubenow demonstrated that Lucy’s foot was tampered with by evolutionists placing Homo habilis bones in its ankle to make it look bipedal.

First, let’s clarify something. Marvin Lubenow is a creationist with a Masters degree in theology, who was awarded an honorary doctorate by Christian Heritage College, founded by Tim LaHaye and Henry Morris, and demanding a strict biblical literalism. It is an undergraduate institution (for the sadly deluded, I must add) and isn’t even qualified to hand out post-graduate degrees. Lubenow’s expertise is non-existent. You can also read a review of Lubenow’s book in which he makes this claim, and see that he’s not exactly competent in the field.

Any preacher that professes Christ in the name of evolution is doing himself and his parishioners a big disservice because they are not giving God or His Word, the Bible, the authority it deserves. Thanks to those people who are teaching evolution, Christianity is losing over 75% of their youth. (Barna Research, 2000)

Phenomenal! I’m glad you had some good news to share, Mr Lally!

I have to disagree, though. Any preacher willing to acknowledge reality and reason is doing his parishioners a favor. If that drives them away from the lies of religion, he’s doing them an even greater service.

As a retired science teacher I assure you that we were super naturally created by intelligence, a God of super natural powers. And fortunately, we were given a written history of this account in the Bible and in the Torah.

Nick Lally
Green Township, NJ

I pity your former students, and I’m overjoyed that you’re finally out of the school system.

Comments

  1. #1 PharmDude
    January 4, 2009

    Wow. These people are unreal….

  2. #2 funda62
    January 4, 2009

    “known atheists” Is that like “known communists”? This guy might have taught science in the 50’s but I doubt he’s seen the inside of classroom in years. I hope no newspaper is dubious enough to print this bs.

  3. #3 Unstable Isotope
    January 4, 2009

    What is it about creationists and the talking point about all mutations being harmful? I see that one all the time!

  4. #4 Kel
    January 4, 2009

    Same shit, different day. Why is it that creationists rely on the ignorance of those they preach to in order to get their message across? (rhetorical question btw)

  5. #5 yoyo
    January 4, 2009

    you get the coolest emails! I only get the ones that tell me my female staff should not be working because of gods will and should be washing clothes in spring water, truly psycho but not as interesting. Thank the spaghetti monster for all pirates and creationists.

  6. #6 Nerd of Redhead
    January 4, 2009

    It is better to keep one’s mouth shut and not appear stupid, than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt. This guy removed all doubt.

  7. #7 Helioprogenus
    January 4, 2009

    He’s claims he’s a science teacher?

    I highly doubt that, and if he did spoil any minds, it was probably in a school system tied to some fundamentalist religious denomination with already spoiled minds. These hacks practically live hypocrisy and will never cease stooping towards lying and cheating, even when it goes against the religious edicts they try fervently to shove into other people’s minds. The end’s justify the means, and it makes you wonder whether they deserve to walk around freely.

  8. #8 BobC
    January 4, 2009

    If I remember correctly even Morris MN has a creationist biology teacher. Why haven’t these bad teachers been fired yet? How many more thousands of students are going to be cheated to save the jobs of incompetent teachers?

  9. #9 mikeg
    January 4, 2009

    *beerlips* burp!

  10. #10 Kel
    January 4, 2009

    As a retired science teacher I assure you that we were super naturally created by intelligence, a God of super natural powers.

    Appealing to his own authority. How can we be sure this is not Charlie Wagner again?

  11. #11 Big Mike
    January 4, 2009

    I’ll have to keep an eye out here, I am from southern NJ and Green. Just wondering if any of Township is in the North west corner of NJ. Just wondering if any of that crap will show up here, need to get started on my own letter to the editor i think 🙂

  12. #12 Wowbagger
    January 4, 2009

    I’m mostly amused by the fact he cites the work of a man named ‘Gitt’. No doubt when he’s referred to by people from the UK they preface it with ‘stupid’.

    Oh, and 3. – Anthropologists have found 87% of all living fossils? Not unless they’re working well outside their field of expertise.

    What a maroon. This idiot seems lucky to be able to spell ‘science’, let alone have taught it.

  13. #13 Bride of Shrek OM
    January 4, 2009

    I love the bit about Lucy’s foot. Damn ankle tampering Evolutionists and their rascally ways.

    What I’d like to see is a show of hands from all the targeted newspapers as to who was having such a slow news day that they had the room or the inclination to print this car crash.

  14. #14 Ray M
    January 4, 2009

    Methinks his name should be Doo Lally. Stupid gitt.

  15. #15 Lorax
    January 4, 2009

    One good thing about creationists, once you know the rebuttals, you are basically set for life…..its also one of the bad things about creationists.

  16. #16 Mozglubov
    January 4, 2009

    I really did enjoy Louis Pasture, though… I guess he must have been Louis Pasteur’s less well known rural cousin.

  17. #17 CortxVortx
    January 4, 2009

    A quick google finds this:

    http://www.creationsciencealive.com/Biographies.html

    A legitimate nutcase.

  18. #18 Kel
    January 4, 2009

    One good thing about creationists, once you know the rebuttals, you are basically set for life…..its also one of the bad things about creationists.

    The Counter-Creationism Handbook will never go out of date 😉

  19. #19 tresmal
    January 4, 2009

    Werner Gitt. At least he lives up to his family name.

  20. #20 Ed Darrell
    January 4, 2009

    Oh, Lally’s affiliated with the abominable Carl Baugh:
    http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/presenters.php

    Maybe we could get some state science group to do wanted posters of these guys, and put them up in the post offices of towns where they bring their circus . . .

  21. #21 Ed Darrell
    January 4, 2009

    So, P.Z.: Was it a sympathetic newspaper editor, or some guy just looking for comments?

    And now that I look again at the Lucy’s foot crap, it occurs to me that it’s libelous. I think Donald Johanson would have a case. Wish I were still practicing so I could take the case.

  22. #22 Capital Dan
    January 4, 2009

    funda62 | January 4, 2009 10:05 PM

    “known atheists” Is that like “known communists”?

    Yeah. That little bit jumped out at me too, and it’s pretty telling as to the state of Mr. Lally’s faculties.

  23. #23 Nightshadequeen
    January 4, 2009

    About the Lucy’s foot thing:

    How much of her head do we have? Because they can check for bipedalism via the head as well, and that would be a lot harder to fake.

  24. #24 Crudely Wrott
    January 4, 2009

    Quoth Lally,

    I find it interesting that this “Trojan Horse” is aimed directly at churches as well as schools.

    ~++ZZzzzeeeeeEEE BOY yoy YOY yoy yoing==*!

    Honey, where’s the irony meter repair kit?

    (whatever made him mention a Trojan Horse aimed at schools?)

  25. #25 'Tis Himself
    January 4, 2009

    Louis Pasture? Is he related to Gracie Fields or Ed Wood?

  26. #26 Feynmaniac
    January 4, 2009

    All Christians should know that the major theme of the Bible is that every thing was created “very good”

    Any Christian should know that the Genesis 1 describes man being created after animals and Genesis 2 describes man coming before. I mean, COME ON! The first two chapters of your sacred book contradict one another!!!

  27. #27 Nerd of Redhead
    January 4, 2009

    Nightshadequeen, more than the ankle is involved:

    http://www.asu.edu/clas/iho/lucy.html#upright

  28. #28 flynn
    January 4, 2009

    Have seen the Lucy fossil a LOT in the last few months. I have no idea what bones he could be talking about. There is really only a scrap from the foot. The pelvis and knee as well as skulls from other A afarensis are the indicative parts as far as I know.

  29. #29 Blake Stacey
    January 4, 2009

    inquiring curiousity

    [sic]

  30. #30 Twin-Skies
    January 4, 2009

    Thanks to those people who are teaching evolution, Christianity is losing over 75% of their youth. (Barna Research, 2000)

    Actually, I think this has more to do with the fact people are growing more aware of how out-of-touch with the real world Christianity can be.

    You don’t blame the customer for leaving if the product you’re pushing is crap to begin with.

  31. #31 Jing-reed
    January 4, 2009

    Some additional, and scary, information about high school biology teachers:

    http://jingreed.typepad.com/jingreeds_musings_from_th/2009/01/creationism-and-public-high-schools.html

    Although one in six seems like an awfully high number.

  32. #32 KevPod
    January 4, 2009

    I got this letter. And when I wrote back a snotty one-liner, he replied thusly (remember, this isn’t me talking, but the writer of the letter PZ so ably deconstructed):

    Dear Reader,
    Just what is your objection to a super natural creation? …..speaking scientifically of course. When I taught science, I too was an evolutionists, but when I really studied the science behind evolution, I discovered so much was just plain conjecture….almost a like a faith base belief system.
    Ask yourself this: How do we go from non-life to life? You can’t do that. Name one, (only one organism) that has shown to be a transition from a single cell animal to a complicated multi-cell animal like a Trilobite? Remember what Darwin said: “If my theory be true, we shall find numerous transitions in the fossil record”
    But all we find are fish without any previous transitions. Show me the hard facts and I will listen.
    Why is it we find a rodent (mammal) living with dinosaurs? We even found a dinosaur with a mammal in its stomach. They are supposed to be millions of years apart. How come we find pictographs of dinosaurs engraved by man who had to actually see them.
    Reader, I could go on and on, but if you’re not willing to see the facts for yourself and just keep listening to the current rhetoric and keep following the masses off the cliff, then there is nothing I can say or do to change your mind.
    Remember, this is a war between two ideologies. You only have two choices: Either you believe we were supernaturally created or we came from a natural process. There are no other choices. But there is only one Truth.
    Nick

  33. #33 Twin-Skies
    January 4, 2009

    @KevPod #32

    Funny that Nick keeps droning on and on about our unwillingess to leave the “current rhetoric ,” when his letter indicates he’s the one having this problem.

  34. #34 Nerd of Redhead
    January 4, 2009

    The one truth is that Nick is no scientist, and has no idea, if he ever did, of how science really operates. As Sastra said on another thread. The Woo is strong in him.

  35. #35 Timebender13
    January 4, 2009

    I sometimes have to wonder if these people really believe the crap they say. They could at least come up with some new arguements besides the “missing link” and “lack of mutations”. I have never seen a more unoriginal group op people…

  36. #36 doctorgoo
    January 4, 2009

    Apparently he’s published almost this exact letter before.

    http://www.strausnews.com/articles/2008/09/04/township_journal/opinion/1.txt

    If he got published once, why not a couple hundred more times? lol

  37. #37 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 4, 2009

    I have no doubt if he spammed South Carolina papers I’ll be seeing this in my local paper, the Post and Courier, any day now.

    I’ve had a few letters that counter shit like this published, so I’ll just have to respond. Thanks for the ammo.

  38. #38 Feynmaniac
    January 4, 2009

    Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils and not one transition.

    76% of all statistics are made up. Margin of error 3%, 19 times out of 20.

    Living fossils appear to be a real thing. However, I don’t think he is using the term properly.

  39. #39 Keanus
    January 4, 2009

    I spent many years in text book publishing putting out science and math texts for K-12 and we used to get at least one of these a year–in hard copy, no emails. Many attacked evolution, like this screed; others often attacked or tried to improve on Relativity in some way, often claiming the Einstein was too limited in his understanding of physics; some were about how to build perpetual motion machines. Most were a hoot. I even remember one that came as a blue print complete with multiple illustrations that was on about an 8 x 10 foot single sheet. One had to crawl across it on one’s hands and knees to read it.

    The lesson of all this? The world is still full of nuts.

  40. #40 also
    January 4, 2009

    This video, posted by his associate, RoseAnn Salanitri, explains everything:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRx6k-9H1FU&eurl=http://www.creationsciencealive.com/

  41. #41 CalGeorge
    January 4, 2009

    “Nick Lally is a retired science teacher, who taught science from an evolutionary point of view in the public schools for 25 years. It is his desire to teach the truth he has become
    educated about as opposed to the inaccuracies he taught as part of his public school curriculum. He is a member of good standing with the Creation Study Group of New Jersey, Inc.”

    http://www.creationsciencealive.com/Biographies.html

    His photo is here:

    http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/presenters.php

    “Nick Lally is a retired public school science teacher who formerly taught evolution as detailed in his textbooks. After careful research, he discovered the frauds and misinformation of evolutionary precepts. Now embracing the creationists view, Mr. Lally focuses mainly on anthropology with a passion for the truthful presentation of scientific evidence. He is co-founder of Creation Science Alive with RoseAnn Salanitri. He is married and has one daughter.”

  42. #42 RamblinDude
    January 4, 2009

    We even discovered mammals which evolution teaches came millions of years after the reptiles together with dinosaurs in the fossil record!

    Zounds! In other news, fossils of sea creatures have been found on what is now dry land!

    What, no mention of how the second law of thermodynamics disproves evolution, too? This guy even sucks as a creationist.

  43. #43 allison
    January 4, 2009

    Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils and not one transition.

    What the heck is a “living fossil”? I thought all fossils were dead.

  44. #44 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 4, 2009

    What is it with Creationists and shitty websites?

  45. #45 Kel
    January 4, 2009

    What the heck is a “living fossil”?

    A creature we find in the fossil record that is still alive today. Coelacanth is a good example.

  46. #46 Marci Kiser
    January 4, 2009

    Er…the Torah is part of the Bible. The first five books, specifically. It’s cute that he doesn’t even get the Bible right.

    Wait, is cute the right word?

  47. #47 CalGeorge
    January 4, 2009

    Nick got his opinion piece published in September, 2008 in the Township Journal:

    http://www.strausnews.com/articles/2008/09/09/township_journal/opinion/1.txt

    Creationism and science

    The Rev. Michael Dowd travels the country preaching that evolution is the science that proves the existence of God.

    Your readers need to be reminded that evolution is not biblical nor is it supported by science.

    First, biblical: All Christians should know that the major theme of the Bible is that every thing was created “very good” followed by original sin, thus resulting in death (physical and spiritual) and ending with atonement through Jesus Christ. Preaching evolution to Christians is anti-biblical because now you have death coming before original sin. Evolutionary teaching just flip-flops the Biblical theme so that there is no need for Christ.

    Second, Scientifically: 1. Life can only come from life. It’s called the law of biogenesis proven by Louis Pasture. You did not come from a rock.

    2. Information in the chemicals of our DNA can not come from matter or energy.

    It has been proven by Dr. Werner Gitt that information can only come from intelligence which begs the belief that DNA acts like a CD programmed by an omnipresent God.

    3. The fossil record is an indictment against evolution. We have not found the transitions between single celled animals to complicated invertebrates, nor have we found transitions between invertebrates to vertebrates. All we find in the fossil record is that organisms just show up completely formed with hardly any changes from the “biological explosion” to today. Anthropologists have found 87 percent of all the living fossils and not one transition.

    4. We even discovered mammals, which evolution teaches came millions of years after the reptiles, together with dinosaurs in the fossil record.

    5. Never have we found a mutation that offers new genetic information that is beneficial to the organism in order to evolve. The majority of mutations are harmful, a loss of genetic information, or a mix up of the same genetic information. That is why mutation and natural selection doesn’t work.

    6. Even among the hominids, i.e., “Lucy” Australopithecus afarensis, has been proven to be nothing more than a chimp. Dr Lubenow demonstrated that Lucy’s foot was tampered with by evolutionists placing Homo habilis bones in its ankle to make it look bipedal.

    Any preacher that professes Christ in the name of evolution is doing himself and society a big disservice because they are not giving God or His Word, the Bible, the authority it deserves. Thanks to those people who are teaching evolution, Christianity is losing over 75 percent of their youth. (Barna Research, 2000)

    This is why Sparta Evangelical Free Church is hosting a creation science seminar on Sept 12, 13 and 14. It’s free to everyone. Call the church office for details. 973-300-1717

    Readers, I urge you to search out the facts for yourself. As a retired science teacher I assure you that we were super-naturally created by intelligence, a god of super-natural powers. And fortunately, we were given a written history of this account. It’s called the Bible. Read it!

    Nick Lally

    Green Township

  48. #48 Kevpod
    January 4, 2009

    “Posted by: Ed Darrell | January 4, 2009 10:28 PM
    So, P.Z.: Was it a sympathetic newspaper editor, or some guy just looking for comments?”

    ‘Twas me, editor of a weekly community newspaper which actually does take the time to counter dingbat submissions from, oh let me think.. over the past few years, we’ve gotten screeds from fluoride-phobes, “chemtrails” conspiracists, Deepak Chopra fangirls, homeopaths, crystal healers and Creationists, to name the ones I can remember offhand. Right, and “detoxification” advocates, too. Plus many more.

    Most of these people are selling something. I don’t let the stuff into print without some countervailing context, or simply calling BS on it.

    I often hear skeptics disparaging the credulous press. And they’re mostly correct. But not all media people are disinterested clock-punching dupes looking to fill space. Some of us actually do try and maintain standards. And a few of us read Pharyngula!

  49. #49 Jadehawk
    January 4, 2009

    Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils and not one transition.

    OMFG!!! The geico commercials are true!!!

  50. #50 Kel
    January 4, 2009

    The main question I’d ask his is if he has knowledge that proves creation, then why is he evangelising it to religious leaders instead of righting for it in the scientific community? Surely the lure of fame and fortune that would accompany such proof makes the endeavour worthwhile… that is unless he’s a fraud who doesn’t have anything beyond conjecture.

  51. #51 hje
    January 5, 2009

    “And fortunately, we were given a written history of this account. It’s called the Bible.

    If Mr. Lally could actually read, he would realize that there are at least different creation stories in that biblical source. Even ancient Jewish scholars realized this.

    I wonder if he taught students utter nonsense, such as the stupid claim that women and men have different number of ribs. I remember my high school biology prof dispelling that specific piece of creationist idiocy–it was certainly being told to some kids in their churches. It makes me forever grateful for the outstanding science teachers that I had in high school.

  52. #52 Rodger T NZ
    January 5, 2009

    LOL pure creationist gold.

  53. #53 Bad Albert
    January 5, 2009

    Okay, I finally understand now. Life was created by the process of pasteurization! Thank you Mr. Lally.

  54. #54 Carl
    January 5, 2009

    What is it with science teachers and Young Earth Creationism?

    Ken Ham, Kent Hovind, and this Lally nut.

    When somebody claims expertise due to being a “science teacher” I think of the Simpsons episode in which Lisa caused school chaos by stealing all of the Teacher Editions.

  55. #55 helvetica
    January 5, 2009

    Having a creationist teach science is like having an atheist lead a mass.

  56. #56 uncle frogy
    January 5, 2009

    curious about the 87% if he meant that 87% to mean all the fossils that have been found are equal to 87% of the total number of possible fossils how did he come up with the total number to equal 100% ??
    must be from the same place that the similar kinds of crap arguments come
    the desperation is apparent are they all suffering from schizoaffective disorder.

  57. #57 Kobra
    January 5, 2009

    Former science teacher? What? Did he teach science before the Scope’s trial?

  58. #58 MikeM
    January 5, 2009

    Well, if your list is accurate, he got the Modesto Bee, and the Fresno Bee, but somehow missed the parent paper, the Sacramento Bee.

    Bzzzz. Too many bees, I guess.

    No great loss. Heh.

  59. #59 Molly, NYC
    January 5, 2009

    As others have pointed out, it’s suspicious that a someone claiming to have taught science has such a negligible grasp of how it works.

    But another thing about science types (and to a lesser extent, schoolteachers) is that they tend to be fairly meticulous about details; experiments just don’t run if you aren’t a little persnickety. That this guy didn’t bother to proof his email, especially one he was sending so broadly, is also kind of funny.

    Do you suppose he could be one of those “science teachers” who was originally hired to teach phys ed or something and got roped into teaching the health class? He doesn’t mention having any science degrees, and these people usually brag about any valid credentials they have. (Hell, even invalid ones.)

  60. #60 Marco sch.
    January 5, 2009

    Churches and synagogues, bible and torah… How come mosques and the Quran are not mentioned? Damnit! We islamists are serious creationists too! May you burn in hell Mr Lick Nanny!

  61. #61 Kevpod
    January 5, 2009

    With this Nick guy and the ladies singing “Go Tell It On The Mountain,” I think what we have are intellectually incurious folks who are basically frightened and clinging – yes, clinging – to something that gives them comfort from fear of death.

    As strongly as they assert these hokey beliefs is as tenuous as their actual faith in them must be. My sense is that they cover for this fear and doubt with the grandiose and overblown assertions.

    I have no evidence for this, but it seems consistent with their behavior.

  62. #62 Jeff
    January 5, 2009

    I find it disturbing that I there are people who would read that letter and think “take THAT Darwin worshipers!”

  63. #63 Rey Fox
    January 5, 2009

    “Never have we found a mutation that offers new genetic information that is beneficial to the organism in order to evolve. The majority of mutations are harmful”

    Wow, he contradicts himself in the space of two sentences. NEVER have we found a beneficial mutation…the MAJORITY are harmful. I’d give this guy the benefit of the doubt and say that the minority he was thinking of is the neutral mutation, but I think that this contradiction is actually symptomatic of the general tendency of authoritarian types like him to completely disregard the minority and wield the Majority club. Majority RULES, it’s all there is to his way of thinking.

    From the follow-up:
    “Just what is your objection to a super natural creation?”

    Loses me in one sentence. What’s my objection…maybe that there’s absolutely no evidence, and it’s pure mythology.

    “Why is it we find a rodent (mammal) living with dinosaurs? We even found a dinosaur with a mammal in its stomach. They are supposed to be millions of years apart.”

    Wow. I know third-graders that could school this guy in science. So we don’t even need to find evidence of hominid-dinosaur cohabitation or even Cambrian rabbits anymore, just mammals and dinosaurs living together? The ever-shifting goalposts of the desperately ignorant.

    “Either you believe we were supernaturally created or we came from a natural process. There are no other choices. But there is only one Truth.”

    Tremble in fear at the capital T!

    I’m still young and impudent enough to feel a small thrill at that bogus statistic he showed about the 75% of young people lost to Christianity and the 66% under-30 vote for Obama. Makes me think that the old dogmatic superstitions are crumbling, and that this old cook’s world is slowly fading away into history. Bye bye, don’t let the front floor hitcha on the way out.

  64. #64 Spinoza
    January 5, 2009

    Hey, is Louis Pasture the guy who discovered that boiling your grass would make it greener?

    … Thus giving us the brilliant landscaping technique of Pasturization?

  65. #65 scooter
    January 5, 2009

    The cave stuff on Discovery channel right now is mind boodling, if you’re in the US

  66. #66 Rey Fox
    January 5, 2009

    Jeez, did I really spell “kook” with a “c”? Must have been caught up in my youthful rebellious fervor. Of course this guy’s not a cook, that’s wimmins work.

    One more juicy little tidbit:
    “I find it interesting that this “Trojan Horse” is aimed directly at churches as well as schools.”

    Ho ho yes, we’re coming to THINK in your churches! Shouldn’t have messed with us, brother, shouldn’t have messed with us.

  67. #67 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 5, 2009

    As Sastra said on another thread. The Woo is strong in him.

    I think she meant “the poo is strong in him” — such a truckload of bullshit, he must’ve spent a month shoveling in the Pasteur.

  68. #68 SJackson
    January 5, 2009

    Found humor: Google search “nick lally”. On the first page of hits is a page entitled “Bugs related to Nick Lally”. Well, yes, we are all related :snicker:.

  69. #69 AJS
    January 5, 2009

    Twin-Skies @ 30:

    You don’t blame the customer for leaving if the product you’re pushing is crap to begin with.

    I think you’ll find that’s exactly what the RIAA and MPAA do …..

  70. #70 Ian
    January 5, 2009

    PZ, you missed an address. The one ending @sgvn.com appears to only have been partially stripped.

  71. #71 RedGreenInBlue
    January 5, 2009

    Speaking of slightly inaccurate quotations, maybe Mr Lally will appreciate this one:

    Forgive him, Darwin, for he he knows not what he does.

  72. #72 Your Mighty Overload
    January 5, 2009

    Of course, mammals and dinosaurs did co-exist – they have been about for the last 160 million years or so. However, this is hardly news for any biologist with an interest in paleontology or evolution. Of course, this guy is trying to sensationalize, rather than inform.

  73. #73 Kevpod
    January 5, 2009

    Look what just came over a Google Alert for my town:

    Did God Use Evolution to Create?
    Week of January 3, 2009
    About the program:
    Because miracles are hard to understand many people do not accept that God created everything in six ordinary days. Instead, they believe that God used evolution to create. But, why would an all powerful God need the process of evolution? Don’t miss this eye-opening discussion!

    http://www.icr.org/radio/668/

    It seems that they’re trying to glom onto evolution’s credibility to promote their trumped-up nothingness.

  74. #74 pcarini
    January 5, 2009

    Thanks to those people who are teaching evolution, Christianity is losing over 75% of their youth. (Barna Research, 2000)

    As much as I’d love to believe this statistic, I can’t trust Barna Research’s impartiality. From the first google hit for “Barna Research” (barna.org):

    Serving the information needs of the church by offering statistics, resources, seminars and custom research on current cultural and spiritual trends.

  75. #75 Owlmirror
    January 5, 2009

    Because miracles are hard to understand many people do not accept that God created everything in six ordinary days. Instead, they believe that God used evolution to create. But, why would an all powerful God need the process of evolution?

    Heh. Why would an all powerful God need six days?

    For that matter, why would an all powerful God need to create a universe at all?

  76. #76 pcarini
    January 5, 2009

    And if an all powerful god exists, why does it need us around to get its dirty kicks?

  77. #77 shonny
    January 5, 2009

    Werner Gitt – How appropriately named! Ok, one extra ‘t’, but otherwise spot on.

  78. #78 GeneK
    January 5, 2009

    I found a web site ‘founded by a Nick Lally:
    creationsciencealive . com

    The bio of the founders match the claims he makes here.
    “Nick Lally is a retired science teacher, who taught science
    from an evolutionary point of view in the public schools for 25
    years. It is his desire to teach the truth he has become
    educated about as opposed to the inaccuracies he taught as
    part of his public school curriculum….”

    GeneK

  79. #79 Twin-Skies
    January 5, 2009

    @AJS #69

    Isn’t that exactly why they’re loathed, if not laughed, at today?

  80. #80 Miguel
    January 5, 2009

    PharmDude @ #1:

    Wow. These people are unreal….

    Unfortunately, these nuts are only too real. If only they were as fictional as their fairytales…

  81. #81 Brandon
    January 5, 2009

    This vomitous spew of words is almost as much a butchery of the English language as it is the scientific non-terminology it presents without even the slightest hint of competence.

    Sweet fucking Athena, these people are ridiculous.

  82. #82 Wayne Robinson
    January 5, 2009

    Werner Gitt also doubts in the “Big Bang” theory too, and thinks that the theory requires the existence of dark matter to explain it (it doesn’t; dark matter was postulated to explain the missing gravitational forces acting on ordinary matter. He reckons no one has seen it, therefore it doesn’t exist, which isn’t quite true; images of the bullet cluster has shown dark matter’s effect in acting as a gravity lens). He also reckons that since someone has estimated that there are 1 followed by 25 “0” stars in the visible universe, and “since” the fastest computer in existence would take longer than the age of the universe to count them, therefore goddittit. I might have got his reasoning wrong because it is rather bizarre.

  83. #83 Reed
    January 5, 2009

    You might as well fight over whether Dr Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham is compatible with evolution — you’re inflating the significance of the text beyond all bounds and without consideration for what the authors actually intended.

    Oh wow. That’s a marvelous idea. I fully support the creation of a religion using Dr Seuss as scripture. It has just the right mix of rhyme, moral message, pointless mayhem, and flat out weird.

    Give it a thousand years to mature, and you’ll have people fighting crusades over whether the green eggs were literally green or not.

  84. #84 shaun
    January 5, 2009

    the major theme of the Bible is that every thing was created “very good”

    But please remember that any comic book collector will tell you the ranking scale goes: Mint, Near Mint, Very Fine, Fine, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor, Piece of Shit.

    Even when new, the universe had some damage along the spine and some dog-eared-ness at the corners.

  85. #85 John C. Randolph
    January 5, 2009

    Why haven’t these bad teachers been fired yet?

    It’s extremely difficult to fire a public school teacher in the United States. Their unions will protect them even if they’re demonstrably incompetent.

    -jcr

  86. #86 John C. Randolph
    January 5, 2009

    BTW, this is the process for firing a teacher in New York City:

    http://oldsite.reason.com/0610/howtofireanincompetentteacher.pdf

    It’s probably slightly less elaborate in other jurisdictions, but you get the idea.

    -jcr

  87. #87 John C. Randolph
    January 5, 2009

    it’s suspicious that a someone claiming to have taught science has such a negligible grasp of how it works.

    It’s entirely possible that he did have a job as a science teacher (which is not to say that he actually taught science.) I certainly met a number of shockingly incompetent teachers when I was in high school.

    Out of 20 or so teachers I had in high school, four were outstanding, two were complete idiots, and the rest were mediocre. This was in Fairfax county, VA, which is a very well-funded school district.

    -jcr

  88. #88 KnockGoats
    January 5, 2009

    For that matter, why would an all powerful God need to create a universe at all? – Owlmirror

    Well, it got tired of stroking its own… ego, and wanted a few billion slaves to perform that important task. This, stripped of babble, is what the Abrahamaic religidiots tell us, even the non-creationists among them.

  89. #89 Wowbagger
    January 5, 2009

    Well, it got tired of stroking its own… ego, and wanted a few billion slaves to perform that important task. This, stripped of babble, is what the Abrahamaic religidiots tell us, even the non-creationists among them.

    Yeah, you’ve pretty much nailed it there. I’ve always been fascinated by how the religulous think it reasonable to believe that if there was a perfect, loving, omnimax being capable of creating the universe it would act like a 6-year-old with an ant farm.

  90. #90 kemibe
    January 5, 2009

    Lally wrote to KevPod:

    when I really studied the science behind evolution, I discovered so much was just plain conjecture….almost a like a faith base belief system.

    So he admits that his “creation science” disproving evolution and 100 percent drawn from the Bible is actually conjecture. Who knew?

    These guys more often than not argue as vehemently against their own propositions as any scientist could–not that the people inclined to be swayed by such horseshit will ever notice.

  91. #91 Peter Mc
    January 5, 2009

    He doesn’t know his Pasteurs from his Pastors.

  92. #92 scooter
    January 5, 2009

    CalGeorge @ 41

    In case anybody missed this rogues gallery posted above by Cal George, it’s a real hoot

    http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/presenters.php

  93. #93 David Marjanovi?, OM
    January 5, 2009

    Quoted in comment 32:

    Why is it we find a rodent (mammal) living with dinosaurs?

    We don’t (unless we count birds as dinosaurs, which this cretinist of course doesn’t). Why did Napoleon cross the Mississippi?

    Rodents turn up in the Paleocene. There are mammals in the Mesozoic, but different ones.

    We even found a dinosaur with a mammal in its stomach. They are supposed to be millions of years apart.

    Wrong. Mammals are not dinosaur descendants.

    The good man seems not to have grasped the fact that the tree of life is a tree and not a pole.

    How come we find pictographs of dinosaurs engraved by man who had to actually see them.

    How come Napoleon crossed the Mississippi.

  94. #94 CosmicTeapot
    January 5, 2009

    According to the link from Ed @20, one of the presenters is Dr. G. C. Jackson who has held various positions since 1980 which “have included five high schools, six community colleges, four colleges, and two universities … in Virginia, Maryland, Vermont, and Tennessee.”

    That’s 17 positions in 28 years. Hopefully they are getting fired for being bad teachers!

  95. #95 Geoff
    January 5, 2009

    This guy has such a rudimentary grasp of science and of English that my first thought was this ‘retired science teacher’ got no closer to teaching than homeschooling his own poor kids. Posters here seem to prove I was wrong.

    I’ve come across this messianic mindset in someone who developed schizophrenia late in life, but I’m no psychiatrist, so wouldn’t like to speculate.

    Let’s just be generous and say he’s gone gaga.

  96. #96 Lorax
    January 5, 2009

    4. We even discovered mammals which evolution teaches came millions of years after the reptiles together with dinosaurs in the fossil record!

    Sweet a new spin on the old “if we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys” argument. Creationinsts rock, what with their creating new ways to use the same old misconceptions.

  97. #97 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 5, 2009

    Let’s just be generous and say he’s gone gaga.

    An expression involving a rat and a tin shit-house springs to mind.

  98. #98 Dawn
    January 5, 2009

    Oh, PZ. Now my Monday is starting off sadly, to know that I exist in the same state as that person. Even more sadly, I live within 20 miles of this person. 🙁

    I’m glad this person didn’t teach science to MY kids. If they had come home spouting this junk, I would have gotten violent.

  99. #99 Matt Heath
    January 5, 2009

    Actually, the NCSE is a secular organization that studiously avoids taking any position on the atheism/religion wars

    Hooray for correct use the word “secular”. Far to often you read it treated as a synonym for “atheist”, “antireligious” or stupidest of all “antichristian”.

  100. #100 Moses
    January 5, 2009

    Created “very good.” I don’t think God quite understands the concept of “very good” if he made creatures capable of sin. Never mind the obvious defects in design, beyond the rationalized reasons we age and die. For example:

    Why are people near-sighted? Why do people get far-sighted? Why do they get both?

    Why are their different levels of intelligence and, frankly, so many people so stupid? Why can’t we use our feet like hands AND walk on them? Why do we have fingernails instead of retractable death-claws of doom, like my cat?

    In fact, why don’t we look more like cats? Do you see LOL humans sweeping the Internets? No, you don’t. And, sure, you have LOLCelebs, but only a few people can be celebs while ALL my cats, my mom’s cats, my families cats, and even the crazy cat-ladies of the world, can have their precious feline masters be LOLCats.

    The rest of us, laboring in obscurity while opening cans of tuna for our masters…

  101. #101 varlo
    January 5, 2009

    No telling what harm he did to hsi students, but at least we can find solace in the fact that he has now been put out to pasteur.

  102. #102 Torun1
    January 5, 2009

    God made heaven & earth in 6 days & rested on the 7th. What did do on the 8th day?
    My guess is, it called its publishers (Goatherds Inc) to sell the story which took longer to write than creation but then it preferred to write on tablets of stone.It had forgotten to create the allpoint pen!

  103. #103 Dancaban
    January 5, 2009

    Gitt by name Git by nature.

  104. #104 RedGreenInBlue
    January 5, 2009

    Actually, Torun, it seems he got something right: on the eighth day, he created a very nice vegetarian restaurant and ethical food shop in Manchester.

    Praise Scheese-us!

  105. #105 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    January 5, 2009

    Now embracing the creationists view, Mr. Lally focuses mainly on anthropology with a passion for the truthful presentation of scientific evidence.

    Uh uh. And in other news, black is white, and up is down.

  106. #106 Jeremy
    January 5, 2009

    As someone pointed out already, why did it take an omnipotent god six whole days to create the universe? More importantly, why did it exhaust him to the point where he had to rest on the seventh day? A real deity could have instantly sneezed the universe into existence.

  107. #107 Richbank
    January 5, 2009

    to be fair, I think “Pasture” is the work of an overactive spellcheck, and I think we’ve all been there. That’s about the only credit he deserves though, and if #32 is an accurate representation of his writing ability, he may not even deserve that.
    /resume creo-bashing

  108. #108 Cannabinaceae
    January 5, 2009

    Inspired by GeneK @78:

    I wonder what’s worse: Supposed science taught from an evolutionary perspective by an incompetent semi-literate (which could cause even the genius-track students to go off-rail), or creationism taught instead of science (which might not make any difference to the dullards – who are possibly going to reject facts and reason anyway, at the behest of their parents’ and/or priests’ abuse – but would leave the genius-track students laughing).

    To be sure, I’d be on the side of fact/reason all the way, but in the RW kooks and incompetents do get in. Which would we prefer or least abhor? Yes, yes, I know: neither but the ideal is rare. I’m talking purely operationally.

  109. #109 Michael Dowd
    January 5, 2009

    Clarification: CalGeorge, in post #47, links to a newspaper article with a wildly inaccurate first line: “The Rev. Michael Dowd travels the country preaching that evolution is the science that proves the existence of God.” I do nothing of the sort. What I do is try to help religious people let go of literal interpretations of their otherworldly/unnatural myths in order to embrace an evidential, evolutionary worldview. Saying that science proves the existence of God is as absurd as claiming that oceanography proves the existence of Poseidon. I’m a naturalist, not a supernaturalist. http://thankgodforevolution.com/node/1531

  110. #110 BTJ
    January 5, 2009

    You’re doing a great public service unpacking all this lunacy. I don’t see how you do it. You must (dare I say it) have the patience of Job. 😉

  111. #111 davem
    January 5, 2009

    The ‘pasture’ thing made me laugh. Last time I was in a pasture, it was full of cow and bull shit.

    Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils

    Yeah, it’s about time those damned palaeontologists got off their backsides and did some work…

  112. #112 SEF
    January 5, 2009

    This could turn into a good game of spotting the living fossils an anthropologist might have spotted – ie serious cultural/sociological throwbacks (probably of the conservative religious kind) as well as any more purely mental or physical ones.

  113. #113 strangest brew
    January 5, 2009

    *109

    As I mentioned in an earlier post…the only folks that can turn the tide of this ignorance are those that have closer intellectual links and ties with the afflicted…

    An Atheist or Secular organization will be ignored as tools of the devil…but if a fellow follower of Christ and all that entails ‘preaches’ that evolution is an extremely well documented and logically valid process that does not threaten their world view…well then and only then will any progress be made in eradicating the ridiculous and frankly dangerous nonsense of biblical literalism!

    It would be well that all superstitious nonsense was deemed irrational including religious dogma of all shapes sizes and hues…but little steps…time to drag the backward into the 21st century and let further education from media and society in general do the rest!

    It has a far better chance of success then just laughing at them…even though it is sorely tempting!

  114. #114 SEF
    January 5, 2009

    @ Jeremy #106:

    why did it take an omnipotent god six whole days to create the universe?

    That could be more the time it took the brat of a deity to get bored with each level of game play. The seventh day of “resting” might have been when the exasperated parent deities finally took the uber-play-station away from him.

  115. #115 Michael Dowd
    January 5, 2009

    I agree with you, strangest brew. That’s precisely what I’m trying to do in my book, “Thank God for Evolution”, and in my teaching and preaching ministry.

  116. #116 Aaron
    January 5, 2009

    I believe this is your card? (Nick’s Profile on ZoomInfo — part of the Green Township GOP — no surprise there!)

    You also won’t be surprised to learn that he was a presenter at a Creation Expo. (You can see his picture there)

    With Roseann Salintiri, Nick co-formed “Creation Science Alive” [Source], which has an Active Website. (Her picture is also on the Creation Expo link above)

    Nick’s contact information can be found here (PUBLICALLY, ONLINE). Please be responsible with it.

  117. #117 Naughtius Maximus
    January 5, 2009
  118. #118 ShadowWalkyr
    January 5, 2009

    Wait. . .he can spell “Australopithecus afarensis” but his grammar is that bad?

    Weren’t there any English teachers at that school?

  119. #119 Richbank
    January 5, 2009

    @#117
    Copy and paste is such a useful tool for other tools. A meta-tool, if you will.

  120. #120 Doug Little
    January 5, 2009

    I’ve got one thing for this Creotard…

    Teh GOOGLE, your doin’ it wrong.

  121. #121 Bart Mitchell
    January 5, 2009

    I don’t know why PZ attacked the percentage at number 3 (4?)

    Everyone knows that 83.14159% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

    What I want to know from this line is, why do we have anthropologists digging up ‘all living fossils’.

    By definition of their title, shouldn’t they be restricting their study to hominids related to us?

  122. #122 Galbinus_Caeli
    January 5, 2009

    #83.

    So they claim that “no computer could count the stars before the end of the universe”?

    Let’s do a little back of the envelope calculation.

    10^24 Stars. I don’t know that that is accurate, but let’s work with it.

    I can buy a computer with a 3.4Gz processor pretty cheaply these days. That is 3.4 x 10^9 billion operations per second. Let’s assume that each of those is counting a star. If I run that computer 24×7 that is 3.2 x 10^7 seconds. Multiply those together and I see about 1 x 10^17 operations per year. divide with 10^24 years and I see 1 x 10^7 years.

    Ten million years. Yes, a long time, but a whole lot less than the lifetime of the universe.

    Oh? They say the universe only 6000 years old, and God will be back to kick it over like a petulant toddler any day now?

    Fine, we will just have to upgrade to 6.4Gz processors and cluster up 1024 of them. No big deal, pretty straightforward job.

  123. #123 Doug Little
    January 5, 2009

    Coelacanth = Living Fossil ???

  124. #124 Jim A.
    January 5, 2009

    So you’re saying that there ARE sesquicellular creatures in the fossil record? Because I maintain that there no fossils of creatures with more than one and less than two or more cells. Anything that LOOKS like that was probably fossilized at the moment of cell division.

  125. #125 Vic
    January 5, 2009

    It reads like a bunch of randomly assorted Chick Tracts.

  126. #126 Galbinus_Caeli
    January 5, 2009

    #114, or when He was reloading the Holy Bong and ordering Spiritual Pizza.

  127. #127 Watchman
    January 5, 2009

    I’ve always been fascinated by how the religulous think it reasonable to believe that if there was a perfect, loving, omnimax being capable of creating the universe it would act like a 6-year-old with an ant farm.

    Wowbagger FTW.

  128. #128 Doug Little
    January 5, 2009

    GC,

    The fastest current super computer achieved 1.026 quadrillion instructions per second. that is 1.026×10^15

    Using your numbers that is a mere 30.458 years.

    Wiki says that the number of stars in the observable universe is, worst case 710^22 so using this number we have.

    2.13 years.

  129. #129 MartinB
    January 5, 2009

    One minor correction: The discovery by Pasteur that living things are not spontaneously created from, say garbage, is sometimes called “law of biogenesis”. At its time, it was an important discovery because people frequently believed that even rats or mice would just pop into existence if you throw enough garbage somewhere.

    Of course this does not say anything about biogenesis on early earth which happened under completely different conditions and a vastly larger timescale.

  130. #130 Joe
    January 5, 2009

    This massive and semi-random spamming is a classic net.kook trait – I’m on a mailing list infested by this nutcase, who is in the habit of occasionally emailing a vast list of public organisations such as the UK Press Complaints Commission and the Met Office to complain that he hasn’t been given a Nobel Prize yet…

    http://www.perceptions.couk.com/

  131. #131 Galbinus_Caeli
    January 5, 2009

    #127 DL, well I was trying to stay under budget. 6.4Gz AMD chips sell for under $125 each. We could cluster up a thousand of them less than a megabuck.

    Not only could it be done, but it could be done cheaply.

  132. #132 Nerd of Redhead
    January 5, 2009

    The distributed computing systems used by the various at-home groups can add up too. Say you have a million users world-wide crunching the number of stars using only 75% of the CPU time per day. That could knock the 10 million years down to about 13 years.

  133. #133 rob
    January 5, 2009

    “Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils and not one transition.”

    this quote reminds me of one i saw about 25 years ago in National Geographic. a tourist at (i think) Mammoth Cave asked a guide “how many miles of unexplored caverns are there?”

  134. #134 Feynmaniac
    January 5, 2009

    Wowbagger #89,

    I’ve always been fascinated by how the religulous think it reasonable to believe that if there was a perfect, loving, omnimax being capable of creating the universe it would act like a 6-year-old with an ant farm.

    Owlmirror awhile back linked to the boy God hyothesis .

    I will argue a new thesis….Yahweh was originally pictured to be a presexual child of about twelve.

  135. #135 SteveM
    January 5, 2009

    I don’t mean to take this too seriously, but “counting stars” has to mean more than just running a digital counter up to the number of stars you think there are in the universe. Counting stars has to be actually pointing a telescope (optical or radio or whatever), taking an image and identifying all the stars in the image and recording their coordinates. This will be pretty slow even with the fastest computers available.

    Even so, this will only count the observable universe, not the entire universe. So, it is impossible to count all the stars in the universe.

    But the bottom line is, So what? not being able to count all the stars doesn’t invalidate anything.

  136. #136 Galbinus_Caeli
    January 5, 2009

    The letter writer uses the term “counts” and “computer”. Never is a telescope or other detection device mentioned as a bottleneck. An assumption has to be made that a list of some sort is available and only counting is needed. Still we would need a bit more than one cycle per item. Probably actually five. 1) Destructively Read from list.(Pop) 2) Increment index.(+i) 3) Is list empty?(if) 4) If yes, exit.(exit) 5) Return to step 1(loop).

    So all the calculations need to be upped by a factor of five.

  137. #137 Owlmirror
    January 5, 2009

    How come we find pictographs of dinosaurs engraved by man who had to actually see them.

    BTW, he’s almost certainly referring to the infamous Ica stones

  138. #138 Lowell
    January 5, 2009

    I did a little digging on Creation Evidence Expo, just because creationists tend to not be totally above board (see Kent Hovind).

    There’s no corporation called Creation Evidence Expo listed on the Indiana Secretary of State’s website, but the Expo is run by Fredrick Boyd. http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/about.php

    Boyd is a principal in Creation Evidence Crusade Inc., an Indiana non-profit corporation. https://secure.in.gov/sos/bus_service/online_corps/view_details.aspx?guid=AAF13F33-EACE-44D6-BCFF-7571E5102B17

    So, I’m assuming that sponsorship checks and donations made payable to Creation Evidence Expo are going to be run through the non-profit.

    Although the “Expo” appears to be free to the public, they’re seeking donations from 500 people at $50 per year. http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/index.php

    So, that’s at least $25,000 per year that goes untaxed (assuming they get the donations).

    I guess it’s all probably legal, but it just pisses me off that the government subsidizes this crap at any level.

  139. #139 LeonB
    January 5, 2009

    Well,
    As a southerner living in Alabama I am grateful that this lunatic is in New Jersey.

    Sounds like we all have our share of wakaloons. (Remember Dover, PA).

    I have always thought that there was an element of confirmation bias when viewing the South. We may have more of the Biblically Impaired here, but the difference may not be as great as some think.

    I suppose it’s more a function of Rural vs. Urban.

  140. #140 SteveM
    January 5, 2009

    Re Ica stone:

    The wiki article has this amusing statement:

    …suggesting that the engravings are indeed younger than the rocks.

    Wouldn’t it be quite a trick to find an engraving that is older than the material it is on?

  141. #141 Owlmirror
    January 5, 2009

    @#133
    (Citing from George Leonard’s page:)

    I will argue a new thesis….Yahweh was originally pictured to be a presexual child of about twelve.

    It should be noted that Asherah was mentioned simultaneously with Yahweh on a couple of artifacts:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asherah#In_Israel_and_Judah

    I suppose the question that arises is, was Asherah considered to be Yahweh’s consort/wife, or his mother? In the legend that Leonard mentions, Asherat is indeed his mother. Hm.

    I am reminded that there was another rather famous sort-of child god whose mother was also worshipped:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horus

  142. #142 David Marjanovi?, OM
    January 5, 2009

    So you’re saying that there ARE sesquicellular creatures in the fossil record? Because I maintain that there no fossils of creatures with more than one and less than two or more cells.

    The transition is not in the number of cells. It is in how tightly the cells are attached to each other and integrated with each other. For example, you can press a living sponge through fine silk, separating the cells from each other; they will assemble into a new sponge if you let them. Cell-cell adhesion proteins, cell-cell signaling proteins, and so on and so forth have all evolved gradually.

  143. #143 Galbinus_Caeli
    January 5, 2009

    #139. I can do it with concrete or other cast stone. The “engraving” is in the mold before I pour in the matrix.

  144. #144 Lee Picton
    January 5, 2009

    I check in on the Barna polls fairly often, exactly because, being an evangelical christian, he has a vested interest in making his stats look as good as possible within the guidelines of polling. He seems to be an honest pollster, and has admitted that his evangelical goals are not being met by a long shot. So when Barna admits with consternation that the young are leaving religion in droves, I am inclined to give credence to his observations. That his results correlate pretty well to PEW stats attests to his competence. Someone can correct me on this, but I think I read somewhere that he wanted to get an accurate portrait of religion in this country in order to identify targets for evangelization. I am delighted to see that he is losing the battle.

  145. #145 David Marjanovi?, OM
    January 5, 2009

    Also, if we found a sesquicellular being, you’d immediately demand a 11/4-cellular and a 13/4-cellular one. That’s a game — moving the goalposts — that creationists have been playing since the discovery of Archaeopteryx in 1861.

    I suppose the question that arises is, was Asherah considered to be Yahweh’s consort/wife, or his mother? In the legend that Leonard mentions, Asherat is indeed his mother. Hm.

    Easy: over time, Yahwe got merged with his father El Elyon. Divine megamergers happen all the time (especially in Egypt — Amun-Ra is just the most famous example).

  146. #146 SteveM
    January 5, 2009

    re #82:

    He [Werner Gitt] also reckons that since someone has estimated that there are 1 followed by 25 “0” stars in the visible universe, and “since” the fastest computer in existence would take longer than the age of the universe to count them, therefore goddittit. I might have got his reasoning wrong because it is rather bizarre.

    No, his argument is that no singlecomputer could count them. From his article “What is the purpose of Stars”:

    Let us now try to visualise the above-mentioned [10^25] number of stars. No human being lives long enough to count such a large number, so we use a computer, one of the fastest ones available[the series C-90 CRAY C916/16]. It can do ten thousand million calculations in one second, which is extremely fast! But even at this great speed it would require 30 million years of non-stop counting stars, and indeed, no computer could last as long as that.

    So, this, in his mind, confirms the statement in the bible that the stars are uncountable. Therefore science proves the bible!

  147. #147 Dr P
    January 5, 2009

    Well, he IS from Jersey…

  148. #148 Mathi Lusch
    January 5, 2009

    I hate it when clowns such as this Nick Lally claims this is what all the Christian (and Jewish faiths as well) teaches. Untrue. His comments are in contradiction to what the Catholic (Roman, Orthodox/Eastern, and Coptic) Churches teach and the same with Reform and Conservatiive Judaism. Not sure about Orthodox Judaism. I wonder where he worked as a science teacher.

  149. #149 Metro
    January 5, 2009

    Dr. Suess’ Green Eggs and Ham may in fact be more relevant to the discussion of evolution. More relevant, certainly, than this letter.

  150. #150 ATG
    January 5, 2009

    “known atheists” Is that like “known communists”?

    These days, we’re more like “known terrorists”.

  151. #151 Dennis
    January 5, 2009

    Heh:

    http://creationsciencealive.com/

    40% off of your very own Creation Science High school (I assume for home schooling) teaching kit.

  152. #152 Paleotn
    January 5, 2009

    “5. Never have we found a mutation that offers new genetic information that is beneficial to the organism in order to evolve….”

    Guess he’s never head of MRSA. If they could, I bet these little staph bacteria would consider beta-lactam resistance to be a pretty handy mutation. Vancomycin resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (VRSA) would certainly agree that mutations can sometimes be a really, really good thing for surviving in a cold, cruel world.

    I wish no harm on the guy, but his keeling over due to an antibiotic resistant staph infection would be poetic justice, don’t you think?

  153. #153 Lowell
    January 5, 2009

    Google didn’t give me any indication of where Nick Lally supposedly taught science. Maybe it was one of the public schools in Green Township, NJ?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_Township,_New_Jersey#Education

  154. #154 DaveG
    January 5, 2009

    I wonder what’s the point of counting stars? Clearly there can be no more stars than atoms in the universe, and I suspect that cosmologists can postulate the mass of the universe and distribution of elements, which would give you upper bounds.

  155. #155 ChemBob
    January 5, 2009

    You think this Lally guy is damaging to children, check out the bio of this guy from http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/presenters.php (bottom of the page):

    “Dr. Wile, author of 8 textbooks including: Exploring Creation with Chemistry ? 2nd Ed, Exploring Creation with General Science ? 2nd Ed, Exploring Creation With Marine Biology, Exploring Creation with Physics ? 2nd Ed, Eco-Hysteria: A Scientist Examines the Environmentalist Movement, Exploring Creation with Biology, The Human Body: Fearfully and Wonderfully Made, Reasonable Faith: the Scientific Case for Christianity, used worldwide by homeschoolers, holds a Ph.D. from the University of Rochester in Nuclear Chemistry. He has won several awards for excellence in teaching and lectures worldwide on the topics of Nuclear Chemistry, Christian Apologetics, Homeschooling, and Creation vs. Evolution. In addition, he has published over 25 articles on these subjects in nationally recognized, peer reviewed journals.”

  156. #156 SteveM
    January 5, 2009

    Re 153:

    The point of counting stars is that there is a verse in the Bible saying it can’t be done. Knowing how many there are is not counting them. He already assumes the scientific estimate of the number of stars is correct and then claims nothing is capable of incrementally counting that high within its lifetime. The point is just to show the inerrency of the bible.

  157. #157 Danny
    January 5, 2009

    Figures the Creation Evidence Expo is in my home town. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if CFI invited PZ to town during that time?

  158. #158 homostoicus
    January 5, 2009

    Don’t you have to pass an English test to be a teacher?

  159. #159 Leon
    January 5, 2009

    You cannot come from a rock.

    Quite right But…humans springing forth from the ground is the creationist argument, not the evolutionary one.

  160. #160 cicely
    January 5, 2009

    “Thanks to those people who are teaching evolution, Christianity is losing over 75% of their youth.”

    Oh, if only…..

    Wowbagger @89:

    I’ve always been fascinated by how the religulous think it reasonable to believe that if there was a perfect, loving, omnimax being capable of creating the universe it would act like a 6-year-old with an ant farm.

    Or, at the very least, which is insecure in its omnipotence, else why would it need to create a species “in (its) own image” to serve as suck-ups, reminding it on a daily basis how great and all-powerful it is?

    The Big G needs some serious therapy.

    On Mr. Lally, I have a theory. It’s entirely possible that this is a case of an individual getting older and suddenly becoming aware in a more-than-impersonal way of his mortality, suddenly desperate to grease his way into Heaven. The “missionary against the evilutionists” approach might not be very different from the old women “buying holiness”, giving all their money to their churches, even if it means that they must eat dog food in a freezing house. Only the coin is different. And they get some nice ego-stroking from others in the flock.

    Of course, I could be wrong….

  161. #161 cicely
    January 5, 2009

    homostoicus @157:

    Don’t you have to pass an English test to be a teacher?

    This might vary by state….but I remember, back at the Dawn of Time when I was at college, hearing with my own ears a group of graduating Education majors who were all in a panic because there was talk of requiring teachers to pass a competency test. In reading. They were sincerely worried that they wouldn’t be able to pass.

  162. #162 Parrotlover77
    January 5, 2009

    PZ – you accidentally left part of an email address in (more than just the domain). .wilson@sgvn.com

    May want to fix that before somebody gets clever. 🙂

  163. #163 Kel
    January 5, 2009

    The distributed computing systems used by the various at-home groups can add up too. Say you have a million users world-wide crunching the number of stars using only 75% of the CPU time per day. That could knock the 10 million years down to about 13 years.

    Ever since I installed Einstein @ home, my system has become incredibly unstable.

  164. #164 Nerd of Redhead
    January 5, 2009

    Ever since I installed Einstein @ home, my system has become incredibly unstable.

    Do you have the latest version of BOINC? Also check the forums. Some conflicts/bugs that do happen. Mine runs very stable with Mac OSX 10.5.

  165. #165 minas
    January 5, 2009

    i believe that the worst enemies of the christian faith today, are the ones that are supporting it!!!

  166. #166 Roger Scott
    January 5, 2009

    tedious tendentious twit

  167. #167 John Marley
    January 5, 2009

    …followed by original sin, thus resulting in death (physical and spiritual)

    I have heard this a lot. It’s proof that fundies have no clue what is actually written in their holy book.

    If there was no death before “original sin” then what the hell does Genesis 3:22 mean?

    Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever…”[emphasis mine]

    They can’t even get thei own bullshit right. Is it any wonder that they find reality confusing and offensive?

  168. #168 WRMartin
    January 5, 2009

    John Marley @166:

    If there was no death before “original sin” then what the hell does Genesis 3:22 mean?

    Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever…”[emphasis mine (yours)]

    Ummm, just guessing here, but maybe: God is mysterious. God is confused. God is bipolar. God has Borderline Personality Disorder. God is contradictory. God achieved his level of incompetence.
    Something like that?

  169. #169 Last Hussar
    January 5, 2009

    BBC Radio 4 are doing programmes about Darwin this week- what is happening in the US as we approach his birthday.

    Extraxt from the Dead Seuss Scrolls

    On the first day of the seven,
    God made Earth and then made Heaven.
    Then he divided dark and light,
    And he called them Day and Night.
    Then he separated Land from Sea
    In preparation for day number Three…

  170. #170 Kel
    January 5, 2009

    Do you have the latest version of BOINC?

    Indeed, though I’m running it on Windows XP. If it weren’t for gaming, I’d have made the switch to Linux long ago.

  171. #171 kjv
    January 5, 2009

    As if proof were needed that darwinists are evil, once again acquisition of antibiotic resistance is touted as an example of a beneficial mutation. How can it be beneficial when it kills people? It’s not exactly poetry.

  172. #172 Nerd of Redhead
    January 5, 2009

    kjv

    ..antibiotic resistance is touted as an example of a beneficial mutation.

    It is beneficial for the bacteria-they live to reproduce. That is the evolutionary benefit. What part of that don’t you understand? Resistance to antibiotics isn’t beneficial for the person infected with the bacteria, but that is a whole other story.

  173. #173 WRMartin
    January 5, 2009

    kjv @170: I believe your ego is talking (and not just with your choice of pseudonyms). Antibiotic resistance IS beneficial to the bacterium. See, there’s this evolution thingy and it doesn’t always refer to mankind. As a matter of fact, I would tend to believe that mankind is pretty far down the list of evolutionary research subjects. Or are you volunteering?

  174. #174 littlejohn
    January 5, 2009

    kjv: You are being anthropocentric. Antibiotic resistance certainly is beneficial if you’re a bacterium. Hey … how many cells do you have?

  175. #175 Wowbagger
    January 5, 2009

    As if proof were needed that darwinists are evil, once again acquisition of antibiotic resistance is touted as an example of a beneficial mutation. How can it be beneficial when it kills people? It’s not exactly poetry.

    I’m gonna call Poe. No-one’s that stupid.

  176. #176 Lowell
    January 5, 2009

    How can it be beneficial when it kills people? It’s not exactly poetry.

    Does this mean that poetry is an example of something that is beneficial yet kills people?

  177. #177 uncle frogy
    January 5, 2009

    I have heard it before that the reason god created before kind of like this.

    God made creation out of the only thing that was available namely himself. then he made man to praise and obey him. So he is praising and worshiping himself with himself. He is concerned with his “creations” behavior and our sex lives . Sounds just like a masturbation fantasy ??

  178. #178 Kel
    January 5, 2009

    once again acquisition of antibiotic resistance is touted as an example of a beneficial mutation. How can it be beneficial when it kills people?

    I hope this is a poe…

  179. #179 Pareidolius
    January 5, 2009

    Somebody probably already said this but . . .

    “Louis Pasture? He was outstanding in his field.”

  180. #180 KnockGoats
    January 5, 2009

    i believe that the worst enemies of the christian faith today, are the ones that are supporting it!!! – minas

    “Not while I’m alive they ain’t!”

  181. #181 gaypaganunitarianagnostic
    January 5, 2009

    Idiotpedia – er – conservapedia says that belief in evolution by the public is declining. They also say that young people are falling away for the Faith because of (of course) satanic, secular, atheist, PUBLIC school system. Premises seem contridictory

  182. #182 Kel
    January 5, 2009

    It’s hard to imagine conservapedia getting anything right, so I guess if they keep putting up contradictory premises eventually one has to be right by pure chance. Now if only they had a good selection criteria to keep the good and weed out the bad… then their site could evolve into something legible.

  183. #183 Jim Thomerson
    January 5, 2009

    The comments about counting stars reminded me of a science fiction story, which my faulty memory said, at first, was about counting stars. It wasn’t, but a good story anyway. A religous group way back in the mountains hired some computer guys to help them along. They believed the universe exists only so they could copy down all the 100 billion names of God. They had been at it for 300 years and still has a long ways to go. So the guys set them up and running. The computer guys realized that the task would be completed shortly. They decided to bug out, thinking the purchasers would be unhappy when the task is completed and nothing happens. They are riding their mules down the mountain. Figure the task is about done. They look up, and, one by one, the stars are going out.

    Sorry to break your train of thought.

  184. #184 Watchman
    January 5, 2009

    That’s an Arthur C. Clarke story, Jim. The Nine Billion Names of God

  185. #185 kjv
    January 5, 2009

    poetry – poe try

  186. #186 Kel
    January 5, 2009

    poetry – poe try

    phew, my irony meter was able to survive for once.

  187. #187 Qwerty
    January 5, 2009

    also #40 – Apparently RoseAnn Salanitri is still teaching children. Scroll down to see the picture.

    http://www.creationevidenceexpo.org/photos.php

  188. #188 mrcreosote
    January 5, 2009
  189. #189 'Tis Himself
    January 5, 2009

    Dr. G. C. Jackson … has taught science or education courses at both public and private schools to students in kindergarten through the university level. His positions since 1980 have included five high schools, six community colleges, four colleges, and two universities … in Virginia, Maryland, Vermont, and Tennessee.

    The boy just can’t hold a job.

  190. #190 bastion of sass
    January 5, 2009

    At #75, Owlmirror wrote:

    Heh. Why would an all powerful God need six days?

    Well, you know how it is….

    You start off a small home improvement/redecorating project, and you see that what you did on the first day is good. So you expand your plans a bit and do more on Day 2, and you see that’s also good. So, what the heck, you get even more ambitious and on Day 3, your plans get even more elaborate–and that’s good too, so on Day 4…and Day 5…and Day 6…

    …and so your project ends up much bigger than originally conceived, and by the end of the week, you’re out of money and physically and emotionally pooped out, so you’ve got to spend the entire Day 7 resting.

  191. #191 Nerd of Redhead
    January 5, 2009

    Bastion, good explanation. That would explain why man is so badly designed. Running out of money and patience, so the job is hurried. Bad god.

  192. #192 mikecbraun
    January 5, 2009

    Whew! I don’t see it on my local paper’s website, and they usually print any piece of crap opinion piece they get. And since when are anthropologists digging all of the fossils? What about archaeologists and paleontologists? I guess he picked the easiest one to spell, because he’s a retard. I wonder if “living fossils” are mobile? What a maroon.

  193. #193 Seandc
    January 5, 2009

    Well I grew up in green township. And I must say, having gone to school there, I never once heard of this Nick Lally at my school (I only went to elementary school there though) and my older siblings have not heard of him either. I suppose it’s possible that he taught there during a time that was outside the 15 year span that we spent in those schools, which would mean he taught there nearly 2 decades ago. But either way I’m certainly glad he isn’t a teacher there anymore, or he never was. Oh how I wish people would check the evidence before they made their claims…

  194. #194 bluescat48
    January 5, 2009

    Great another fundiecREoTARD

  195. #195 Jadehawk
    January 5, 2009

    This could turn into a good game of spotting the living fossils an anthropologist might have spotted – ie serious cultural/sociological throwbacks (probably of the conservative religious kind) as well as any more purely mental or physical ones.

    well, I did try to make a Neanderthal joke in #49, but I guess no one is interested in the fact that apparently there are living fossils of any interest to anthropologists :-p

  196. #196 Brian Dillon
    January 6, 2009

    Just had a look at Nick Lallys site & the whole creation evidence expo. What a load of bullshit. There should be laws against misinformation & outright lies. The whole expo is so jam packed with lies & misquotations that it should be brought to account for them.

    The section on evolution is an utter lie which they claim to be true with the uttmost certainty .They use the tree of life as Darwins model & the purpendicular line model as the biblical account. Ok you may say but they claim with absolute authority that all the latest evidence supports the biblical model. This is so far removed from the truth that its not a misrepresentation, its a lie. Of course they offer no proof for the claims, nor do they present any evidence to refute Darwin.

    I would love to see these people held to account for the outright lies they are presenting so confidantly as evidence.

  197. #197 Ragutis
    January 6, 2009

    Posted by: Lowell | January 5, 2009 5:51 PM

    How can it be beneficial when it kills people? It’s not exactly poetry.

    Does this mean that poetry is an example of something that is beneficial yet kills people?

    Well, from a Vogon point of view…

  198. #198 Azkyroth
    January 6, 2009

    You cannot come from a rock.

    Obviously, Mr. Lally, you underestimate just how resourceful and creative biologists are. 😉

  199. #199 Billy Sands
    January 6, 2009

    I always laugh at the idea that creation was supposedly “very good” and there was no death and that T.rex ate coconuts. Was it his god’s plan to overpopulate the planet with flatuent dinosaurs before Adam ate an apple?
    This in itself is funny. Also, if you read the creation myth, you will see that adam and eve didn’t know what right and wrong was untill they ate that fruit – but god punishes them anyway.

    There is a great bit on QI where Stephen fry asks Alun Davis if he has ever read the book of genesis. He replied “no”, to which Stephen fry replied “you should, it’s absolutely hilarious” (sounds better with fry’s dismissive tone)

    I prefer to just ask nutbags like this if their god can make square circles etc – or if god can do anything, can he make himself gay (as most YECs are homophobes) – might as well have some fun with them.

  200. #200 PYRETTE
    January 6, 2009

    This is my favorite sentence, it does a somersault and f*cks itself up the arse;
    “Anthropologists have found 87% of all the living fossils and not one transition.”
    1) Anthropologist: scientist who studies HUMANS
    2) Living fossil: a current species that has remained unchanged over a long period.
    3) How do we know how many fossils we haven’t found yet?
    4) How can you find a transition fossil amongst the LIVING fossils?

  201. #201 Bezoar
    January 6, 2009

    “Our Co-Founders, Nick & Teri Lally and RoseAnn Salanitri,
    are commmitted Christians who have combined their talents,
    time and gifts to bringing the evidence that supports
    creationism to interested groups.”
    Uh, as opposed to committed christians.
    Key-r?st do I have a headache

  202. #202 The Countess
    January 6, 2009

    That missive reminds me of the diatribes often written by father’s rights activists. They compare themselves to Martin Luther King and present “facts” about divorce and child custody, which are really valid studies misrepresented and taken out of context. Those idiots send their long-winded screeds en masse to huge cc lists including every newspaper known to man and every politician within spitting distance. The cc lists are an amazing thing to behold. Same kind of thing you posted, PZ. There’s no shutting them up, but their angry and apocalyptic letters are amusing to read… to a point.

  203. #203 Nick Lally (not that one!)
    January 6, 2009

    You cannot imagine the horror of finding that someone with the same name as me was preaching Creationism. Feels like it slurs my name. Wonder if there is any chance of a cease and desist type lawsuit. He has a website somewhere, if anyone wants a laugh.

  204. #204 ian
    January 7, 2009

    The original sin, as I understood it, was eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge. To hear their “scientific” debunking of evolution in that context is to see these people for the frauds they are.

  205. #205 Chris Cox
    January 7, 2009

    PZ and the other evolutionists in this thread should check out the book “In Six Days” by John F. Ashton PhD if they would like several substantial challenges to their theories of evolution. It may be hard to stop foaming at the mouth over Lally’s simple creationist arguments, but if you want an honest mental challenge to your evolutionary theories pick up the above book.

    The book contains the views of fifty different scientists on why they left evolution in favor of creation:

    http://www.amazon.com/Six-Days-Scientists-Believe-Creation/dp/0890513414/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1231359252&sr=1-1

    Enjoy…

  206. #206 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Chris, sorry, but I’ll get my evolutionary science from the primary scientific literature. Any fool can get a book publish, as there are vanity presses and woo presses. By the way, a PhD doesn’t impress me. I have one of my own.

  207. #207 Sirius Knott
    January 7, 2009

    God bless Mr. Nick Lally for standing up for truth!

    The Kanawha Creation Science Group of WV has begun a similar initiative, the Creation Letter Project at http://kcsg.wordpress.com .

    I’m sorry that PZ and the rest of you have bought into the lie of evolution. We hope that you will follow the evidence where it actually leads instead of following blind guides who base their science on the flawed premise of naturalism and materialism, excluding a priori the truth of God. False assumptions lead to false conclusions.

    Again, Hooray for Mr. Lally for fearlessly speaking the truth in the face of Big Science and maudlin mockstars!

    –Sirius Knott

  208. #208 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    excluding a priori the truth of God. False assumptions lead to false conclusions.

    That explains creationism.

  209. #209 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    Sirius Knott huh….

  210. #210 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    Well shit. With a name like Sirius Knott I was thinking Poe, but that website is 100% for real. And 100% stupid.

    The claims that evolution is wrong because of the perceived “religious consequences” and not because of some, you know, actual evidence and science is a stand that I find particularly moronic.

  211. #211 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Sirius Knott huh….

    I noticed that too.

  212. #212 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Sirius, please show us some physical evidence for your imaginary deity. Until you do that, you are a liar and bullshitter.

    Bed time.

  213. #213 Sastra
    January 7, 2009

    Sirius Knott #207 wrote:

    Again, Hooray for Mr. Lally for fearlessly speaking the truth in the face of Big Science and maudlin mockstars!

    A non-ironic use of the term “Big Science” and the sudden appearance of “maudlin mockstars?”

    Uh huh. The “Creation Letter Project” may be real, but I call Poe on ‘Serious — Not.’

  214. #214 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    Any fool can get a book publish, as there are vanity presses and woo presses.

    Indeed, I note the publisher for that one is: “Master Books”.

    “The world’s largest publisher of creation-based material for all ages.”

    Yeah… They’re just full of science, aren’t they?

    I note that Amazon.com is not taken in; the book is filed under theology.

  215. Bed time

    Damn it. I was going to have some fun.

  216. #216 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    Uh huh. The “Creation Letter Project” may be real, but I call Poe on ‘Serious — Not.’

    yeah

  217. #217 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    *Nerd of Redhead

  218. #218 Intelligent Designer
    January 8, 2009

    I concede that Kel is a better speller than I, except when it comes to words like “humor”, “color”, and “labor”.

  219. #219 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    I concede that Kel is a better speller than I, except when it comes to words like “humor”, “color”, and “labor”.

    Don’t forget gaol, realise, encyclopaedia and aluminium.

  220. #220 SEF
    January 8, 2009

    @ Chris Cox #205:

    if you want an honest mental challenge to your evolutionary theories pick up the above book.

    I suspect that will actually involve the other meaning of the word “mental”. Though it’s quite likely much of the contents won’t even be honest.

    How about you tell us, in your own words (thus avoiding copyright / plagiarism problems and also demonstrating you understand what you’re pushing) whichever one of the accounts you find to be the most impressive and convincing. Then we’ll tell you exactly why you, and the originator of it, are wrong (possibly in excruciating detail and almost certainly with copious evidence).

    Are you brave enough to put your judgment where your mouth is? Or are you a dishonest coward who secretly already knows he’s in the wrong?

  221. #221 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    Or are you a dishonest coward who secretly already knows he’s in the wrong?

    I hear that’s the code-phrase Christians use to identify each other – back in the good old days when they were persecuted.

  222. #222 CosmicTeapot
    January 8, 2009

    No, Serious Nut is for real. A poor mans Ken Ham but with comments!

    A site where you are asked to present logical arguments, which are then incorrectly dismissed as straw man arguments; where strong evidence against creationism is simply dismissed as not important, or just wrong (with no “evidence” as to why they are wrong).

    Where you are not allowed to make fun of his name but he does not extend the same courtesy.

    Where he is quiet happy to use ad hominem attacks.

    Looks like Captain Pantin’ Hank Dregg will have to sail into enemy territory , the Sea of Stupid, and have some fun. Ooh Arrr!

  223. #223 Sirius Knott
    January 8, 2009

    @Cosmic Teaputz:

    Yes, I remember you and I understand if you got upset that your weak, regurgitated arguments were rejected.

    @ Nerd of Redhead:

    Prove there isn’t. Oh, and don’t bother with the whole FSM rebuttal. I’ve covered that pathetic rephrasing on my site. Use it and you’re pretty much admitting you got nothing.

    As Blaise Pascal noted, we’ve been given too little evidence to be sure and too much to ignore. This is quite necessary if free will is to exist for the Christian God is the sort of being that compels worship by His very nature if He made Himself too obvious.

    In any case, if you seek Him with your whole heart, He promises you will find Him. If you reject the light given to you, He’s under no obligation to give you more.

    –Sirius Knott

  224. #224 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    You can’t prove there isn’t a god, much like you can’t prove there isn’t a teapot floating between earth and mars. With no evidence for God, there’s no reason to believe in him. Show the evidence for God and I’ll reconsider.

  225. #225 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    I found GOD! He was living under a rock. He was very small. I stepped on him and squished him. He made a loud pop and that was it. God is dead.

  226. #226 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Dang, my water is still water, not vodka. God is a wimp. Oh, Steve_C killed him. That ‘splains it.

  227. #227 RonH
    January 19, 2009

    Nick or somebody posted his thing as comment #6 here:
    http://amp.utdallas.edu/index.php?storyid=741&comment=awesome

  228. #228 CosmicTeapot
    March 17, 2009

    Whoops, missed a response to me.

    Serious Nut “Yes, I remember you and I understand if you got upset that your weak, regurgitated arguments were rejected.”

    Sorry, I deduced my arguments about Darwin from reading Darwin; and Hitler from reading Hitler.

    Whereas you get your answers from AIG. So lets add projection to the list.

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