Sunday, June 12, 2011

Bogus Science 2011 (It's Not What You Think)

Diagram of the palatine tonsils from U.S. Nati...                                   Image via Wikipedia
According to a study released today by the Center for Science and Culture at Discovery Institute, bogus embryo drawings, long-debunked claims about tonsils, and outdated information from a 1950s lab experiment highlight the glaring bloopers found in proposed science curricula currently being considered by the Texas State Board of Education.
"Retro-science must be in, because the proposed curricula are filled with outdated scientific claims," said Casey Luskin, a policy and education analyst with Discovery Institute. "It's truly amazing how much discredited information keeps getting recycled year after year."
Remember kids: To be acceptable, it doesn't have to be true but it does have to be Darwinian.
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43 comments:

Sixth Estate said...

To be fair, badly written textbooks probably say more about the horrendous state of the public education system, which I gather is even worse there than here, than it does about the current state of actual science.

SDC said...

It's too bad that the religious lunatics in charge of the Texas State Board of "Educayshun" can't tell the difference between science and myth to begin with; as for the "Discovery Institute", surely they can come up with something better than 1950's medical techniques or embryo drawings from the 1800s. Are they pointing to Lowell's drawings of Martian "canals" in astronomy texts too? Maybe they should be making sure that the "cure" for leprosy (as described in your little magic book) is in Texas' medical texts?

Joe said...

SDC is so Biblically illiterate its funny. I assume his reference to healing leprosy is found in Leviticus 14:2-52. Now if SDC actually took the time to read the passage he would know that what was described there was not the cure of leprosy but the Old Testament ritual cleansing of someone who has already recovered from leprosy. In every 'primitive' culture that I studied the exclusion of lepers from said society was universal. Once excluded the leprous individual was banned forevermore from becoming a member of normal society. But what about the person who recovered you ask. The ancient Hebrews decided that there had to be a way of bringing such a person back into the mainstream and the best way to do so was to do a ritual cleansing. The cleansing ritual is what SDC just thought was the healing ritual. LOL. Ah poor old SDC. He can't even spell education let alone defend debunked science still being taught as fact.

RkBall said...

Joe -- thanks for weighing in. I've read the Bible several times, and I can't recall a biblical cure for leprosy in the OT. But I can recall one or more passages dealing with the cleansing ritual of a healed leper, as you have indicated.

Of course, Christ in his mercy and power did heal lepers by the power of God working in and through him.

SDC said...

Oh yeah? Well you wait untill we lwftists get into power it will time to throw all you christuns in prison.

Joe said...

Too true Richard. Curing leprosy in the OT just as in the NT was always presented as being a miracle not something to be achieved by ritual. In ways it is like our salvation which is not acquired by rote, rule or ritual. It is achieved only by the miraculous Grace of God. Unfortunately for SDC the miracle hasn't happened yet and thus he makes all kinds of foolish statements. He remains in my prayers that the matchless grace of Jesus may touch him too.

SDC said...

Nice try, halfwits (including the imposter). Your little magic book is chock full of such superstitious "cures", which makes me wonder why you "christuns" even bother going to hospitals, when all you need is a zoo full of animals to sacrifice to your imaginary "god".

Joe said...

"Your little magic book is chock full of such superstitious "cures""

A little evidence supporting your allegation would be nice SDC as so far all you've shown is your own ignorance. Of course the great thing about ignorance is that there is a cure! You probably know what it is so why don't you try it?

SDC said...

Sure thing, Joe; why don't you try looking at 2 Kings 5 for a "cure" for leprosy? How about John 9 for a "cure" for congenital blindness? Or Mark 5 to "cure" constant menstruation? Who needs some of those new-fangled "antibiotic" thingies when you can just follow 2 Kings 20? And on, and on, and on. For someone who claims to know what your little magic book says, you sure don't seem to know a lot.

RkBall said...

The same Christians who believed in the miraculous interventions of God as recorded in holy Writ are the same Christians who, motivated by belief in the regularities of nature and faith in God and his goodness and mercy, helped establish modern medical science and who, historically, are responsible for funding, building, operating, and staffing the hospitals of the western world.

It is to these hospitals which SDC wants to go; fine, be "our guest" and partake of the mercy which Christians largely brought to the world.

Joe said...

Surprise surprise surprise! SDC just confirmed what I wrote! These were recorded miracles not rites or rituals If you notice the woman with the bloody discharge had been to all the 'doctors' and they were unable to help her. The doctors of the day couldn't cure leprosy or congenital blindness etc etc etc. Yet the man born blind was able to see. The leper was healed and the woman was able to live a normal life. Does it happen all the time? Of course not! If it did it wouldn't be miraculous! Swing and a miss by SDC! Thanks for trying though.

SDC said...

I see, it was just magic, is that it? If you're such a believer in magic, why do you take advantage of modern medicine and the scientific method everytime you take a medication or have an x-ray done, fool? What is it that makes these made-up tales of "miracles" worth any more than any OTHER cult's similar fairy tales of "miracles"?

Joe said...

SDC once again you have missed the point and I must say that you are really good at missing the point. Do you practice or is it just native talent?

Back on topic. Magic has the connotation of humans controlling the outcome kind of like medicine. However Miracles are not magic because we humans have no control over the event. A miracle is the Sovereign act of The Sovereign Being. The universe's existence is a miracle. The sun shining is a miracle. The earth moving around the sun is a miracle. The earth rotating on its axis is a miracle. The earth having water and air in just the right proportion is a miracle. Living beings again are a miracle. Now I know that anti-theists like yourself call that natural but then there are many folks who can't see the forest for the trees so we will just move on. I met a young woman in church on Sunday who had 4 young children gathered around her. By their looks it was quite evident that she had given birth to them. One of the parishioners introduced us saying that the young woman was her daughter in law. The parishioner went to say that the young woman had suffered from cancer as a young woman and that the cancer had so damaged her reproductive tract that the doctors told her she would never have children. The young woman lovingly referred to each of her child her miracle. Yes SDC miracles happened back in Biblical times and are faithfully recorded. The people who witnessed the miracles were not stupid. They recognized a miracle when they saw it. I too have witnessed miracles as they happened to me. I won't bother to recount them because they would take over Richard's blog. That being said having witnessed those miracles I can honestly say that there is more to this life than a bunch of amino acids bumping together. There are Powers beyond our petty existence. Or to put it bluntly, "A fool says in his heart. "There is no God"".

Anonymous said...

Tell me, Joe, in what realm other than fantasy writing is "magic" accepted as any sort of reasonable "explanation" for ANYTHING, fool? If even 1% of the supposed "miracles" in your little magic book had actually happened, why is it that we have no unbiased contemporary reports of any of these things happening? methinks that if these sorts of things had actually happened, someone other than a shill for your cult would have noticed them and written about them, if only to say "Hey, wtf? There were zombies walking through the streets this morning." That leaves your supposed "miracles" in exactly the same place as every OTHER cult's supposed "miracles", ie. nothing more than fairy tales dreamt up by snake-oil salesmen who are in the business of sucking gullible sheep into their superstition.
SDC

Joe said...

Well SDC there are non so blind as those who WILL not see. I know what I have witnessed. I know others who have witnessed and testified to observed occurrences for which there is no other explanation other than a miracle. You won't believe them so I won't bother recounting them and I will leave you to your willful blindness. You want an existence that rules out 99.99% of existence so knock yourself out. Enjoy your shriveled pitiful little time between womb and tomb. Personally I want to take the time to explore that other 99.99% of existence. The shimmering glimpses I have had indicate that in that other 99.99% is where true reality exists. Where you and I are now is but a pale imitation of what truly is. For when that day comes and come it shall that you and I lay fading upon the cold ground our last ragged breath leaving our bodies you will choose a hole in the ground where I will be seeking glories heretofore unknown. For I KNOW Whom I have believed.

Anonymous said...

Should I blind myself to reality and LIE to myself so I can believe a comforting lie, in the same way that you brainwashed cultists do, Joe? Sorry, but even if I had some sort of desire to do so, I still couldn't "make" myself believe something for which there is no evidence. I KNOW that this life is the only one there is, and there is no sense in telling myself otherwise, while you are reduced to telling yourself fairy tales in order to try to deal with the fact that you're going to die.
SDC

Joe said...

SDC I have never asked you to lie whether to yourself or to others. I would rather that you be brutally honest with both yourself and others. However it is evident by your statement that "there is no evidence" (a lie in itself BTW) that you carefully screen out anything that does not meet you narrow definitions of truth and reality. In other words you have been brainwashed/indoctrinated/trained to think along only very narrow ways. You refuse or are incapable of opening your mind to other possibilities. Having once been a virulent anti-theist myself I know where you are coming from. It is a tiny twisted denial of truth in which you dwell. That being said I was not convinced of my mistake by what other men told me. No one ever sat me down and said, "You must believe thus". In fact the opposite was true. One day while alone with my thoughts I encountered the Living God. His Brilliance so overwhelmed my darkness that I had to admit His Existence. Once I did that I began to experience what could only be described as miracles. Someday when you become a believer I will share a few. By then you will be ready. Until then.....

SDC said...

Joe, I look at all evidence on its merits, and that goes for your cult as much as it does for others. You, on the other hand, have a very peculiar double standard in that you've convinced yourself that your cult is above the very standards of evidence that you expect from any other. That means that you are just as brainwashed as any scientologist, mormon, muslim or raelian. Since NONE of you have any sort of evidence for your bogus "miracles", I can either evaluate them based on evidence (which none of you are willing to offer), I can reject them all, or I can accept them all. Is there any reason why I should give your fairy tales some sort of a free pas in this regard? If you're listening to imaginary voices in your head, that tells me that whatever grasp on reality you might once had had was tenuous to begin with.

Joe said...

Well SDC we have reached our usual loggerhead. You still refuse to do any homework and you keep trying to drag me back down to your level. Sorry to disappoint you there SDC but I moved on from where you now are over 30 years ago. I moved from a life full of pettiness, hatred and strife to one of peace, hope and love and you think your silly little protestations are going to bring me back to your level! That is rich. You are trying to sell a whole man on the advantage of being a eunuch. Since you seem to want to be on par with me why don't you try moving up to my level. It is well worth the ride and all you have to lose is your closed minded pettiness, hatred and strife.

Anonymous said...

What "homework" do you expect anyone to do on your cult except to look at its claims and see if those claims are supported by the evidence? I've already done this (for your cult and many others) and NONE of you have anything past "trust me, an invisible magic man in the sky told me that...". You wouldn't accept such utter BS from anyone else on anything else, but your blind spot won't let you look at your own superstition in the same way that you look at others; you have chosen to deliberately BLIND yourself because you are desperate to believe the baseless claims of a cult that grew upp around the fairy tales of bronze-age sheep-herders.
SDC

Joe said...

Well SDC if you read a book or two and do a bit of googling you won't find what I am describing. Why not. Because it is not there! It can't be there anymore than you can find flowers growing in caves! God is not a subject to be studied! He is a relationship to be lived! Foolish you keeps hanging out in a cave and reporting that flowers don't exist. Well duh! Your meager evidence doesn't disprove the existence of flowers it simply shows you're looking in the wrong place! He hides Himself from the 'wise' and reveals Himself to the 'foolish'. If you want to know if God exists be foolish enough to ask Him! Don't be so 'wise' as to read another scholarly book written by fellow cave dweller. Of course he's going to say there are no flowers. He never been out of the cave either!

SDC said...

Imagine that, you say exactly what every follower of every OTHER cult also says; this once again leaves me in the position of either believing ALL of you wingnuts, believing NONE of you, or evaluating the evidence as presented for myself. Since your "evidence" is no more convincing than that of any other cult, and I'm not about to take such fairy tales from any of you at face value, can you guess what the only logical choice left is?

Joe said...

Does anyone else find Caveman SDC funny? I do. I've invited him time and time and time again to come and get some healthy Sonshine and all he muster is "Its all imaginary".

Of course it is "all imaginary" SDC we are the figments of God's Imagination! I hope SDC realizes he can rant and rail all wants because to deny the existence of God is a God given right, but when I hear that disembodied voice coming from the the cave of ignorance proclaiming 'Its all imaginary' I will smile and move on.

Anonymous said...

And when you get any more evidence than the Scientologists, or the Raelians, or the Muslims, or the lemmings that follow Harold Camping, or those that would appease the "volcano gods" by tossing in virgins, then your lunacy might be worth taking seriously, Joe. You're happy to write off all of THOSE superstitions as deluded insanity, but you cling to yours (which has no more in its favour than they have in theirs) like a child clings to a teddy bear, simply because you can't admit the truth to yourself.
SDC

Joe said...

Well Fred Flinst....er... I mean SDC you certainly are a lazy type aren't you. Its not my job to provide you with evidence. Its your job to find it. If you don't want to look well that's your problem. I looked for evidence and found it. Richard looked for evidence and he found it. Millions upon millions of others have looked and found it. I am quite certain that if you were to actually look you would find it too! And no I am not suggesting to talk to other people especially the clowns you mention. In fact I would suggest that you don't even read a Bible, Book of Mormon, Q'ran, Kama Sutra or any other book or text mankind has held sacred. Instead ask the God that you don't believe in to reveal Himself to you. That is all. Get on with life make a twit of yourself on Christian blogs, do what ever you want. Except keep asking that even though you don't believe in Him that He would reveal Himself to you. If you have any other question, ask Him. Its quite simple and you don't even have to leave your cave. Now have a nice life and God Bless.

SDC said...

Fool, what makes you think that your claims are somehow "special"? EVERY cult claims that they have some sort of special connection to an imaginary invisible magic man in the sky, and NONE of you have any sort of evidence. Your personal beliefs ("I KNOW my "god" is true and he loves me because I get a warm and fuzzy feeling when I think about him") aren't evidence for the truth of your superstition, because EVERY superstition has wingnut followers who claim the exact same thing you do. If your imaginary friend existed, and had the powers that you claim for it, it would be an easy thing for it to prove it, no? The fact that I'm not about to be swayed by any argument less than what it would take to convince me of anything else means that your superstition simply has to meet an ordinary standard of evidence, and "trust me, it's magic" doesn't meet that standard, not when it comes from you, and not when it comes from any other brainwashed cultist.

Joe said...

Cavema....er.....SDC you do have comprehension problems don't you. I don't care what you think. If you doubt me prove me wrong. You follow the steps I outlined and prove me wrong. It's no different than me telling you that compressing air makes it hotter. I'm not asking you to consult any air compressing experts. I'm not asking you to join any air compressing societies and what's more you can even call me a liar after you take an air compressor and measure the temperature of the air as it is compressed. Simple isn't it. Do the experiment like any good scientist because until you actually do some experimentation your constant droning is of no more importance than that of a pesky mosquito. So in the immortal words of Foghorn Leghorn, "Run along son you got some work to do if you want to catch that chicken".

SDC said...

Nice try at a bait and switch, Joe, but your example doesn't even come CLOSE to the issue at hand. We can confirm through unbiased experimentation, over and over again, no matter who does it where, that compressing air heats it up. When we look at the claims made for your imaginary friend, no such confirmation exists, only the claims of the lunatic making them. That means that your claims have no more weight than those of someone who claims to talk to "Zeus", or "Allah", or "Buddha", or "the volcano god", or anyone else, fool. There is no real difference between your nonsense and that of Phillip Garrido, the wingnut who "talked to god" through a box he held up to his ear.

Joe said...

Well caveman - SDC when you have done the experiment I gave you, come back and talk until then your droning is falling on deaf ears.

SDC said...

The experiment has been done many, many times, Joe, and every one who comes up with a different imaginary "god" than you do will be glad to tell you exactly why YOU'RE wrong, and THEY'RE right. Since listening to voices in one's head isn't any sort of reliable way of interpreting the world, and leaves you with no actual evidence, I'd be very interested in hearing you explain why you think your delusions are worth any more than the delusions of those who follow any other cult, no matter how big or small.

Joe said...

I don't care about anyone else Caveman - SDC I care only about you trying the experiment. I don't want to hear your excuses I want to hear your results. Get back to me when you are done. Oh and no excuses about imaginary and everyone having different. Your results only.

SDC said...

And all you need to do to experience the majesty of the invisible refrigerator pixies yourself, Joe, is to really, truly, search for the invisible refrigerator pixies with every fibre of your being; Once the invisible refrigerator pixies talk to you, you'll KNOW they're real, trust me. Does this sound at all familiar, nutcase, and do you have even an inkling of how insane your position is?

Joe said...

If there indeed is no God as you so fervently assert Caveman-SDC then why are you so afraid to conduct my little experiment? Really what could possibly happen? I really don't see a downside. Yet here you are making excuse after excuse after excuse. Do the experiment and get back to me. Simple isn't it.

SDC said...

Have you got down on your knees in front of the Fridgidaire and begged for the invisible refrigerator pixies to make themselves known to you yet, Joe? If not, why not? Maybe it's because you realize that that is no more ludicrous than YOUR "test"? And, once upon a time, when I first started wondering about this issue, I actually DID try something similar to what you suggest, with absolutely no results; maybe I just don't have the sort of brain abnormality it takes to imagine voices talking to me? I simply despise you snake-oil salesmen selling BS and fairy tales as some sort of a substitute for reality, and that goes for ALL superstitions. You need to open your heart to the invisible refrigerator pixies, Joe, and then, and only then, will you be able to fully understand the pixies' love for you. And if you decide to scorn that love, Joe, the invisible refrigerator pixies will punish you for all eternity for your decision, as a measure of how you turned down their love. Does that sound any more "reasonable" than the BS that you're in the business of selling, Joe? I didn't think so.

RkBall said...

Joe - "all atheism is parasitic". Mull and ponder!

SDC said...

Which is truly "parasitic", Richard? Is it someone that tells you to think for yourself and evaluate the evidence, or is it someone that tells you "trust me, there's an invisible magic man in the sky that talks to me, and that magic man wants you to do x"? Why do you think con-men of all stripes have found religion to be such a fertile ground for their scams?

Joe said...

In response to the Caveman SDC. I never asked you to get on your knees. I never asked you to pray to a rock or a fridge or any other man made item. I simply asked you to conduct a simple experiment involving something you obviously know nothing about. Try it then get back to me.

Yes Richard anti-theists are parasitic and I might add cowardly. They certainly aren't as scientific as they pretend to be. lol. Unfortunately they have nothing to add to an intelligent discussion. They somehow remind me of a 2 year old spoiled brat that keeps interrupting adult conversations. Its not that you want to ignore them its just that they are so blamed immature.....

RkBall said...

Parasitic in the sense of appropriating ideas from theism and using or subverting them to suit their needs. Also, atheists present emotionally-driven arguments masquerading as objective logic.

SDC said...

And I've already told you a number of times that your experiment has been tried and found wanting, Joe; why don't you try MY experiment, and let me know if you succeed in communing with the invisible refrigerator pixies? Or would that involve you coming to the realization that your superstition is simply you talking to yourself?
And Richard, using your own arguments against you is hardly "parasitic", it's simply showing that your arguments aren't worth the hot air they're spoken with; without actual EVIDENCE, any cultist anywhere can claim that they have just as much as you do, and that goes for invisible refrigerator fairies as much as it does for your imaginary "god". When atheists come up with an argument like "Believe or else you're going to burn forever, heathen", then you might be right about "emotionally-driven arguments", but until then, they are strictly the purview of superstitions like yours.

Joe said...

How would know it has failed Caveman-SDC you refuse to conduct it. As for your experiment: Sorry but been there, done that and gave it up over 30 years ago. Seeking the created instead of the Creator is a child's game best given up by grown adults. Now thirty years ago I would have completely agreed with you but as Paul of Tarsus is famous for having said (and I paraphrase), "When I was younger I thought like a child and I acted like a child, but when I became an adult I put childish ways behind me". Now if you want to keep on worshiping your fridge well don't let me stop you. On the other hand other than filling your belly you won't find it very satisfying.

SDC said...

It DID fail when I tried it in my naive childhood, Joe, or are you trying to claim that it worked? Have you tried to contact the invisible refrigerator pixies "with an open heart" yet? The pixies have the power to hear you ANYWHERE, so you don't need to be in front of the refrigerator, but it does put you in a contemplative mood that opens you up to more possibilities than what your superstitious mind will allow.

Joe said...

Caveman-SDC using your logic Leibniz and Newton were wrong about calculus. How do I know? Well when I was in grade 6 I discovered I couldn't do Calculus. If I couldn't do calculus then no one else could do calculus therefore Leibniz and Newton were wrong. Unfortunately for me my grade 10 teacher was convinced that Leibniz and Newton were right and set about teaching me calculus. Imagine my surprise that in the span of 4 years Leibniz and Newton were shown not to be the fools I was so certain they were. I wonder if da Vinci was convinced that man could not fly when all of his 'flying machines' failed. Not that his doubts mattered to the Wright brothers. I wonder what would have happened if Igor Sikorsky quit after his first helicopter failed to be stable in flight. Not that any of these points mean anything after all your childhood experiment proves once and for all that there is no such thing as God. Can ask you another question personal question? Did you at sometime after your childhood experiment begin dabbling in the occult? Your childish answers seem to indicate occult influence.

SDC said...

By that "logic", Joe, you have NO IDEA if you have ever chosen the correct imaginary "god" to believe in, so you'd better get going on re-checking all of the other possibilities; are you planning on going in alphabetical order (which can be tough, given that many of these "gods" have only approximate names in English) or going in historical order (which has a number of research problems associated with it)? And no, I've never had any sort of interest in what you might call "the occult" (other than considering your cult as one aspect of "the occult", because it is simply another attempt by weak-minded fools to try to gain some "supernatural" control over factors outside of their control). The idea of some lunatic chanting over an altar to an imaginary being remains just as ludicrous when any other cult does it as when your cult does it, so you still have this little inconvenient problem of REALITY to deal with. The difference between your examples and your superstition is that your examples can be PROVEN, while your cult can't, meaning that a mullah in a catbox in the desert, or a medicine man in the jungle can do the exact same thing your cult did, and simply make up whatever sort of "god" appeals to them, and say "MY "god" is real because my "god" talks to me, and he "answered" my prayers."

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"