O'Brien Trophy Regret

Sometimes I give away a Robert O'Brien Trophy to some mouth-breathing imbecile only to find, a few days later, an even more ridiculous example of human stupidity. And I'm afraid it's happened again. And frankly, I can't imagine finding anything any dumber than this column by Craig Smith at the Worldnutdaily. Who is Craig Smith? Well, his little bio at the end of the article announces him as "an author, commentator and popular media guest because he instantly engages audiences with his common-sense analyses of local, national and global trends." And then it says he wrote a book claiming that oil is not fossil fuel at all, is constantly regenerated within the earth and therefore there is no shortage. Seriously.

But that book isn't the crowning achievement in lunacy for Smith, not even close. This new column sets a gold standard of sheer stupidity that will be hard for anyone to top. He actually claims that the goal of "secular progressives" is to eliminate Christianity and Judaism from the US and turn it into a godless society. Now that's pretty standard lunatic rhetoric, of course, but he doesn't stop there. He claims that the reason we secular progressives are doing this - please don't try and take a drink while you read this or you may ruin a keyboard - is to appease the terrorists. Because radical Muslims like nothing more than secular progressives.

He starts out speaking about having received a copy of a "secret plan" from George Soros (the right's current boogey man du jour), John Kerry, Michael Moore and Howard Dean. And he blathers on about this for a few paragraphs, apparently thinking that he's setting the stage humorously to make a serious point. In fact, he's setting up the punchline of his incomparably moronic argument. Which is this:

The Plan: Analyzing the enemy and its goal was the first priority of the SPs. They wanted to know just what would appease the enemy. So they looked at the words of bin Laden and the Grand Mufti from the '40s and realized the No. 1 goal of the Islamo-fascists was to kill all Jews and Christians who stand in the way of converting the whole world to Sharia Law. With that in mind, Soros, being a business man, saw this as a simple common sense proposition.

If America was godless and devoid of all Jews and Christians then there would be no need for terrorists to destroy that which does not exist. The plan would include, but not be limited to, the removal of any mention of God in our society. No Ten Commandments. No mention of God in our Pledge of Allegiance. Even ultimately taking ''In God we Trust'' off our money. All prayer at sporting events would be outlawed. The mere mention of God would be punishable by prison. In essence, God would be removed from America.

The planners concluded that a godless nation, devoid of all Jews and Christians, that didn't allow the mention of God, would no longer be a threat to their goal. Islamo-Fascists would then focus their full attention and fury on countries like Italy that host the Vatican; Australia, with its large Evangelical populations; and ultimately Israel, where the basis of belief in Judaism and Christianity are founded. The land that brought forth the Bible of the Jew and the Christian.

Keep in mind this plan has been underway for some time. Many moves have already been quietly put in place by the ACLU, MoveOn.org and other SP operatives. The final purging of all the last vestiges of God and believers will be accomplished as George Soros and his armies of godless complete the plan. That is if they are elected. Remember, they will only tell the public of their plan if elected.

This will all occur while the secular progressives claim they are merely doing so for the safety of the nation and to uphold the principle they hold so dear - the separation of church and state. The means justify the ends in that we will be a nation that has no value to anyone for we are a nation without values. Oh don't worry. I'm not talking about your 401K or the value of your home. You will still get the weekly paycheck. Maybe a little less in it each week as your taxes will have gone up. The need for more government-sponsored social programs will be required to meet the needs that the churches and synagogues until now have serviced. Obviously, without churches and synagogues the need will be great.

So that is the strategy. A good one if you are an atheist or a Soros Kool-Aid drinker who believes it is better to switch than fight. It is quite different than the plan the neocons have put forward.

It's so monumentally idiotic that it's hardly worth fisking, only worth quoting. There's no need to parody what is already a self-parody.


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PZ says something good in agreement with a post by Brian Leiter: I’d suggest that the Christo-Fascists have done far more damage to our country than any Islamo-Fascist -- after all, the Islamic hordes haven’t been responsible for stripping away our civil liberties, nor did they force us to spend…
Someone turned me on to a new journal – Secular Culture & Ideas – covering cultural (secular) Judaism. There's an interview with science journalist Natalie Angier, an essay on secular thought in American politics, and several articles on Jewish feminism. Douglas Rushkoff's essay on how…
David Horowitz (you all remember him, right? Deranged anti-intellectual wanker?) He has declared 22-26 October to be Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, to be represented with talks by such towering intellects as Rick Santorum, Ann Coulter, and Sean Hannity. Brian Leiter has a complementary suggestion:…
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That reminds me of a lunatic freeper (there's a tautology for you) quoted by Shakespeare's Sister:

I had an interesting discussion with a conservative-leaning friend who doubted that liberals were anti-American, and sided with the terrorists. "Why would they want the terrorist to win?" he asked. I think it is quite simple.
First, the left is still enamored by Marxist/Stalinist socialism. This is why they embrace Castro, Chavez, Kim, ad nauseum. I know this is different than Islamo-fascism, but hang in there, I'm getting there...
Second, left-wing extremists hate our free society. They do not appreciate hearing viewpoints that disagree with heir own. They believe that they already have all the answers, and any conflicting arguments are counter-productive at best.
Third, they believe their socialist ideal is achievable, but only after the current capitalistic, democratic republic is eliminated. Therefore, they see the Islamo-fascist sabotage of our country as an opportnity [sic] for their takeover. "The enemy of my enemy is my friend". They believe that after they can take over our country only after:
1. Islamists nuke Washington DC and the US Government fails, or
2. The democrats win both houses of congress and vote to surrender to the Islamo-fascists, or
3. The democrats win both houses of congress and vote to weaken our defenses to the extent that #1 or #2 occur.
Then the fun happens. The constitution will be re-written to change "rights" to "demands". Free speech will be replaced by "correct" speach [sic]. Religion will be outlawed. Private property will be eliminated, and a system whereby income taxes will rise to 100%, with the government deciding how much money to distribute. We have seen this pattern before.
Of course, the Islamo-fascits [sic] have no special love for leftists, either. They will not be satisfied with nuking one US city. They have made their case quite clear...they intend to eradicate us "devils". Even a leftist attempt to placate the Islamo-fascists by offering American Jews to them will not satisfy their hunger for western deaths.
This is the snapshot view of my opinion of the leftists' motivations to our current problems.
By Ginger Yellow (not verified) on 30 Oct 2006 #permalink

You can start a new tropy. AFDave, over at After the Bar Closes, is distinctly stupider than even Robert O'Brien.

AFDave's UPDATED Creator God Hypothesis Thread Part 2.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't 'SP' a Scientologist term for people who go against them?

This guy used to commentary on my "Favorite" radio show of the religious nutbags, Bob Larson. Bob, sad to say, no longer does his daily radio show. He used to beg for cash on a hourly basis, had "enemies" out to get him(some of whom he paid), exorcised demons from callers on the air and wrote(or had ghost written) several really bad novels, which he apparently is not willing to sell on his current website. He was also touring the country doing demon exorcism programs. Larson was humorous in a "I can't believe he's doing this" kind of way. Its something missing from the current batch of religious broadcasters.

Now Larson has a new website and new scams for the suckers. http://www.boblarson.org/

Anyway, Craig Smith used to be on Larson's radio program to talk about economics. From the article, Smith has not achieved sanity or rationality in his old age.


I can't find it anymore, it seems, but somewhere in my computer files is a quote which I took years ago from an interview which was conducted in prison with a terrorist who had been convicted in an earlier bombing of, I think, the WTC. The leader said something to the effect that what really bothered Muslims about the US wasn't it being "a Christian Nation." On the contrary, they could respect a country founded and built on the laws of God, even if it was a different understanding of God. So they admired those who were trying to put religion into government, the schools, etc.

But secularism -- the separation of church and state -- that was offensive. That was evil.

I'm going to keep looking around for it. Not that it would change this guy's mind, of course. Actually, it would probably support D'Souza.

Given that loonies like Craig Smith live in a parallel universe that exists only in their minds, they should not benefit from modern conveniences, all the fruits of the Enlightenment. They should communicate using stone tablets and messengers or (if they can afford hand made papyrus) passenger pigeons. That way their missives would reach their intended audience of the ignorant without being polluted by the fruits of modern technology.

They don't call it World "Nut" Daily for nothing.

By Kevin Klein (not verified) on 30 Oct 2006 #permalink

Please stop using the term "mouth breather" to suggest stupidity. Mouth breathing has a whole lot more to do with sinus and respiratory problems than intelligence.

Carry on...thekeez


I've got some funny phone calls from my college days calling Bob Larson's show.

Bob Larson may be the funniest of all the religious right loonies. He's so irrational he makes Pat Robertson look like David Hume by comparison. He truly is one of those nuts you watch with your mouth agape, just astonished that anyone could possibly do anything but laugh at it.

And then it says he wrote a book claiming that oil is not fossil fuel at all, is constantly regenerated within the earth and therefore there is no shortage. Seriously.

It should be noted that a Nobel prize winner has a hypothesis based on the differing material found in oil reserves around the planet. His name is Gold I believe and this merits a paragraph or 2 in Michael Shermers book 'Science Friction' from a year ago. Shermer gave it a 5/10 chance of being correct given Gold's track record.

So this O'Brien award winner is beyond stupid but perhaps he bought the hypothesis before the evidence said one way or the other.

And then it says he wrote a book claiming that oil is not fossil fuel at all, is constantly regenerated within the earth and therefore there is no shortage. Seriously.

It should be noted that a Nobel prize winner has a hypothesis based on the differing material found in oil reserves around the planet. His name is Gold I believe

Thomas Gold. He wasn't a Nobel Prize winner, but he was a reputable astrophysicist who worked with Fred Hoyle and eventually became head of the Cornell Astronomy Department. Gold's biggest successes were in magnetic fields (he coined the term "magnetosphere") and in helping to develop the Steady-State Theory (the only serious scientific alternative to the Big Bang, now largely discredited).

In 1992, he published a paper called "The Deep Hot Biosphere" (expanded into a book in 1999) that put forth his "fossil fuels aren't from fossils" hypothesis. It hasn't found much purchase in the West, but there are quite a few Russians (where abiogenic hydrocarbon origin theories have been around since Mendeleev) who are trying actively to prove it.

It's a serious enough theory that there have been legitimate articles in the geological journals[1] weighing the pros and cons, though most geologists regard it as unlikely - putting it in much the same niche as the Steady State theory occupied in astrophysics not that long ago. Google or Wikipedia can give you plenty of information with the keywords "abiogenic petroleum" or "hot deep biosphere".

[1] Glasby, G.P., 2006. Abiogenic origin of hydrocarbons: An historical overview. Resource Geology 56, 83-96 [this article finds mostly that the evidence is against the abiogenic theories]

There's a disconnect between Craig Smith and Mustafa Akyol, the Turkish journalist who testified at the Kansas Kangaroo Kourt. Akyol claimed that

But one reason of the widespread resentment is that Muslims think the west and, of course, the United States is completely a materialistic civilization. They think that when they watch western films, when they read western media, and when the kids take western education, they think that they will be poisoned by an ideology, materialism.

So it's win-win for the wingnuts: secular or Christian, the terrorists get us!

Oh - I should also mention that although Thomas Gold's abiogenic petroleum theory is a scientific theory in the proper sense, it has, like certain other marginal and largely disproven theories (steady-state, cold fusion, AIDS isn't caused by HIV, etc.), attracted a whole circle of rabid believers who wave off any scientific evidence against the abiogenic theory as Evil Propaganda From Scientific Elites and Corporate Fat Cats Determined To Crush The Real Truth.

I like the way the badgeology.com website categorizes things. They distinguish between "pseudoscience" and "fringe science", and categorize abiogenic oil theory under "Presumed Frontier Science but in reality Fringe Science", along with "Global Energy Shortage Doomsayers", panspermia, and "Anthropogenic Global Warming Naysayers".

Anyway, while it may be true that Gold's work on abiogenic oil at least qualifies as a properly constructed (if implausble) scientific theory, and it might even turn out to be the case that Gold's theory describes a real-world process which does account for some small minority of oil deposits, I'm not quite sure Smith's book rises to the same level of, um, worthiness of slack. Here's the inside flap, as summarized by amazon:

It is estimated that Americans consume more than 25 percent of the world's oil but have control over less than 3 percent of its proven supply. This extremely unbalanced pattern of consumption makes it possible for foreign governments, corrupt political leaders, terrorist organizations, and oil conglomerates to place the citizens of the United States in a stranglehold of supply and demand. There is no greater proof of this than the direct relationship between skyrocketing gas prices and the exploding wealth of those who control the supply of oil.

In Black Gold Stranglehold, Jerome R. Corsi and Craig R. Smith expose the fraudulent science that has been sold to the American people in order to enslave them: the belief that oil is a fossil fuel and a finite resource. On the contrary, this book presents authoritative research, currently known mostly in the scientific community, that oil is not a product of decaying dinosaurs and prehistoric forests. Rather, it is a natural product of the earth. The scientific evidence cited by Corsi and Smith suggests that oil is constantly being produced by the earth, far below the planet's surface, and that it is brought to attainable depths by the centrifugal forces of the earth's rotation.

In great detail Corsi and Smith explore the international and domestic politics of oil production and consumption. This includes the wealth and power of major oil conglomerates, the manipulation of world economies by oil-producing states and rogue terrorist regimes, and the political agenda of radical environmentalists and conservationists who obstruct the use of oil reserves currently controlled by the U.S. government. The authors offer an understanding of the dangerous situation America faces because its currency is no longer tied to any precious and truly scarce metals such as gold, as it was until 1973. This situation could easily lead to the devastation of the U.S. economy if Middle Eastern countries are able to enact current plans to accept only the Euro or gold-backed currencies such as the Gold Dinar instead of the U.S. dollar as the standard currency for oil.

Black Gold Stranglehold will dramatically change the debate about oil. The significance of its message is sure to cause thoughtful people to reconsider the current dependence of the U.S. economy on imported oil.

I see some warning flags there.

I also notice, with some alarm, that the publisher of the book is "WND press". Wait, what? Does WorldNetDaily do book publishing now?

"Anyway, Craig Smith used to be on Larson's radio program to talk about economics."

Bob Larson must be for people too far out for Art Bell.

By Bill Jarrell (not verified) on 30 Oct 2006 #permalink

A question: could someone please explain who the Robert O'Brien of the trophy is and why he's a suitable symbol for ideologically-driven stupidity?

I've seen the trophy referred to here before and I've tried a few searches to find out who/why/what, but "Robert O'Brien" is an awfully common name.

By Ktesibios (not verified) on 30 Oct 2006 #permalink


Originally, it was simply called the Idiot of the Month Award. The Robert O'Brien in question is a first class obnoxious ass I banned from here long ago. He was so persistently idiotic that I renamed the award after him. He blogs at http://huperborea.blogspot.com.

i heard from a guy who works for a oil company that the company knows oil is constantly renewing and will never run out but because they are so greedy they limit how much they produce to make more money at the expense of the regular american.

anyway even if oil could run out there is stuff just waiting to be used things that have been around for 50 years. everyone knows there is a 250 mile per galoon carburator that the car companies were paid off by the oil companies to keep off the market. there is plenty of corn to replace all teh gasoline used in america and then some. look at brazil. and there is enough coal to do everything for centurys and we havent even talked about nukes yet.

worrying about running out of oil is like worrying that the planet is getting hotter when neither is or ever will be true.

You forgot to mention there's a car that runs on water, man.

Petroleum is produced when sequestered carbon is exposed to suitable conditions of heat and pressure. So it is true that petroleum continues to be produced, and if we use it up, we'll be able to get more; we'll just have to wait a a few million years.

I have a car that runs on water, but I have to use a gasoline engine to power the pumps the get the water to the wheel that powers the car. But the car itself runs on water.

Hey, I have a car that runs on water, all I have to do is electrolyse the water first to release the hydrogen and oxygen to be burnt!

Petroleum is produced when sequestered carbon is exposed to suitable conditions of heat and pressure.

There's also the fact that you don't just need petroleum being produced, you also need the right geology (faulting, impermeable layers etc.) to happen near the source to trap and concentrate it enough for it to be worth extracting, close enough to the surface for us to get at it.

That probably adds and order of magnitude or three to the already large disparity between production and our consumption...