Creationist offers bad reason to deny reality.
Raw Story: Creationist author Terry Mortenson doesn’t understand how an atheist like Bill Nye “the Science Guy” can find joy in scientific discoveries.
Following the debate between Nye and Creation Museum founder Ken Ham on Tuesday night, Mortenson sat down with Creation Today co-hosts Eric Hovind and Paul Taylor to discuss the event.
“I was kind of intrigued by one of Bill’s last comments about the joy of discovery, but I thought, what is the joy of realizing that I came from pond scum as a result of an explosion and that eventually I’m going to die and I won’t be here, I won’t remember that I ever lived, nobody else will ever remember,” Mortenson said. “What is the joy of that? It is purposeless, as Richard Dawkins and William Provine and others have said.”
“There is no purpose,” he continued. “There is no morality. All you have in evolution in is what is is. It’s the survival of the fittest and if I’m stronger than you and I’m a lion and you’re a gazelle, sorry, you’re my lunch. And if I’m Hitler and you’re a Jew, sorry, you’re lunch. And if I am outside the body and you’re in the mother’s womb, and I don’t want you, sorry, you’re lunch.”
“There is no basis of morality or purpose, and Bill is stealing from the Christian worldview to find joy in discovery when there is no purpose or meaning to it.”
We can dismiss a lot of this as non-argument. Just because I’m aware of my mortality doesn’t mean I’m incapable of joy. And how does the knowledge that you’re descended from less complex life forms somehow give you free reign to abandon morality and eat babies? It makes no logical sense.
But put aside all the hyperbole and consider the actual, underlying argument: that Mortensen finds evolution unsettling, so he chooses not to believe it. Further, since evolutionary theory is so disturbing, Mortensen argues that it cannot be true. I find the existence of things like Two and a Half Men and Lite Beer a nightmarish indictment of American tastes — but that doesn’t mean it’s logical to conclude that they don’t exist. It just means that there are facts out there that I’d rather not be true. Sucks to be me, but I have to accept it.
And this comes up so often that we can easily say it’s a cornerstone of the creationist pseudo-science; “I find it too disturbing, therefore it can’t exist.” This isn’t logic, this is wishful thinking. In fact, this is the very definition of wishful thinking. The fact that they think this is a compelling argument shows that logic is a completely foreign concept to creationists.
When your reasoning is this flawed, the odds that your argument is solid are slim to none.
Bill Nye to CNN: “The two sides aren’t equal’ on climate change
Science educator Bill Nye on Monday told CNN that they weren’t doing the public any favors by giving climate change deniers equal airtime because ‘the two sides aren’t equal.”
“There are a couple of things that you can’t really dispute,” Nye explained to CNN’s Carol Costello. “Sixteen of the last 17 years have been the hottest years on record. That’s just how it is.”
“I appreciate that we want to show two sides of the stories — there’s a tradition in journalism that goes back quite a ways, I guess — but the two sides aren’t equal here. You have tens of thousands of scientists who are very concerned and you have a few people who are in business of equating or drawing attention to the idea that uncertainty is the same as doubt. When you have a plus or minus percentage, that’s not the same thing as not believing the whole thing at all.”
The Washington Post noted on Sunday that scientists had been warning for years that because of warming weather and severe droughts, Colorado’s “table was set” for monster wildfires like the ones currently sweeping through the state.
“It is because of the heat ultimately,” Nye told Costello. “Just two years ago, it was was wet in Colorado and there was a lot of growth in forests. And then you can say they should have responsibly cleared that growth — it’s a difficult thing. So then two years later when it’s especially dry and the forest flora gets especially dry and then there’s a lightening strike, the fire is that much more intense than it would have been.”
“But the people who are politicizing this issue, they seem to be winning because not much is being done on the issue of climate change,” Costello pointed out.
“If you’re a voter consider taking the environment into account as well as the economy,” Nye advised. “I think the two candidates running for president right now have different views about the validity, for example, of science and the importance of it and what you would do about climate change in the coming years.”
“We in the science education community chip away at this problem all the time. We have an enormous population of people in the United States that don’t believe in evolution, the fundamental idea in all of life science. It would be like saying, I don’t believe in earthquakes or something. The analogies are disturbing.”
Earlier this year, a Media Matters analysis determined that coverage of climate change had dropped by 80 percent on U.S. broadcast networks between 2008 and 2011.
Watch this video from CNN’s Newsroom, broadcast July 2, 2012.
Bill! Bill! Bill! Bill!
News Roundup for 7/29/11
Bill Nye reacts to a question on Fox News
-Headline of the Day-
"Bill Nye Explains To Fox News Moon Volcanoes Don’t Cause Global Warming."
You might think that’s one of Wonkette’s typical comically hyperbolic headlines, but it’s actually pretty damned close to the mark. See, Bill Nye the Science Guy was on Fox to talk about a rare volcano found on the moon. During the interview, the foxbot asked this deeply penetrating question; “Does it go, you know, anywhere close to the climate change debate that’s underway here on earth? I mean, you know, if the moon had erupting volcanoes, a few years, well, a few million years ago, however you want to put it…
you know, it’s not like we’ve been up there burning fossil fuels.”
At which point, Bill blinks and answers with what the report describes as a “blank stare.”
You can understand Nye’s problem here — where the fuck do you even begin? Do you start by explaining that burning fossil fuels doesn’t cause volcanoes or by saying that volcanoes aren’t causing global warming? And, while you’re making this decision, you’re also distracted by the astonishing stupidity of it all. Regardless of where you start, is Copernicus over here even capable of understanding it?
"That’s the last time Fox News tries to invite an actual children’s science teacher on the program," the report surmises. Yeah well, science was invented by commies to launch sputnik and fluoridate water with zombie serum.
Patriots don’t do science. (Wonkette, with video)
-The GOP position on the debt ceiling explained-
See, it works like this:
Hope that clears up any questions you might have. (Whip or Will)
"More Top Democrats Come Out in Support of 14th Amendment Solution."
If you haven’t heard of it, it basically involves the President declaring the debt ceiling hereby raised, getting taken to the Supreme Court, and winning.
Not the worst plan ever. (Firedoglake)
Stories to Watch: 3/13/11
How long can the world hold it’s breath? How long has it been since the nuclear crisis in Japan began? This whole thing has been characterized by the Japanese government telling everyone it’s not as bad as you think, then coming out later and saying it’s worse than they thought. A cooling system in a second reactor has failed and authorities are presuming partial meltdowns in both. With the cooling systems down in both, seawater is being pumped into the reactors. Asked what he thought of this tactic, Bill Nye responded this way:
…i.e., it’s a Hail Mary pass.
In addition to the nuclear crisis, NPR reports that “millions of Japanese lack water and electricity.” The evacuations have no doubt displaced tens — if not hundreds — of thousands. To make matters worse, Japan’s Meteorological Agency predicts there’s “a 70 percent chance of a magnitude 7-class earthquake in the next three days.”
Wow. CNN reports that the earthquake moved Japan’s coastline eight feet and shifted the Earth on it’s axis.
In more hopeful news, Reuters reports that as many as 100,000showed up at the Wisconsin State Capitol yesterday in support of unions and in protest of the establishment of FitzWalkerstan. ThinkProgress points out that this exceeds the estimates for the largest Tea Party rallies. Hey Wisconsin GOP — it is on.
Freshman house ‘baggers worry that GOP leadership will opt to live in reality.
Finally, here’s the least surprising item of the day: founding neocon Bill Kristol thinks we ought to have a war. This time, with Libya. Is that before or after we go to war with Iran, Bill? There’s always plenty of money for war, isn’t there?