Sarah Palin: Creationism Update (27 Sept)

THE “PALIN-CREATIONIST” issue, to the extent that it’s still mentioned, has settled into the soggy bog of journalistic truth — which is not always the same as objectively verifiable truth. It’s now as well established as the truth that FDR saved us from the Depression, Eisenhower was stupid, and Lyndon Johnson’s war on poverty is a great success. You know — journalistic truth.

In most news stories and opinion pieces in which the subject arises (and we dutifully scan them all), Palin is that gun-toting, moose-eating, young-earth creationist who wants to ban books, burn witches, and destroy the planet so that Big Oil can profit.

There is nothing much to be done about media behavior; but we continue to search each day for news that runs against the journalistic tide. It’s an increasingly profitless activity. So why do we do it?

We’re secretly hoping to learn that Sarah isn’t a creationist nutcase, and we’d like answers to our Open Letter to Sarah Palin. Anyway, here’s what we’ve come up with this morning:

In the Philadelphia Inquirer we read Palin stops in at Philly bar. We know the headline isn’t very promising, but we’re desperate. Here are some excerpts, with bold added for emphasis:

An enthusiastic crowd swarmed to shake hands and pose for photos with Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin at the Irish Pub last night in Center City, a short time before the first debate of the presidential election.

Sounds like a great place. Okay, what happened there? We read on:

“Sa-rah! Sa-rah!” the crowd cheered, although outside, a large contingent of protesters booed Palin and chanted Democrat Barack Obama’s name.

Wearing a Phillies windbreaker and blue jeans, Palin spent about an hour in the bar mingling.

An hour mingling in the bar? See, it’s like we’ve been telling you — she’s not all bad. Moving along:

Reba Larney, of Exton, said that having a man and woman in the White House together would bring better balance to the nation’s leadership. “There are some women who are called to stand beside men in power and offer a balance,” she said.

This is the first time we’ve heard of the “White House gender-harmony” theory of governance. It’s difficult to keep up with these things. More from the article:

Inside the bar, James Boney, of Atlantic City, said he had been a McCain supporter but would not vote for him now because of the Palin pick.

Ah yes, the always-convincing preface to some political bombast: “I used to be a McCain supporter but now …”

“I have a problem with anyone who thinks the Earth is 6,000 years old,” Boney said, referring to Palin’s onetime support for the teaching of creationism along with evolution in public schools.

There it is! That’s the creationism reference that qualifies this news article for inclusion in our humble blog. It’s not much, but one learns to grasp at straws.

[Our related articles are here: Sarah Palin & Creationism.]

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13 responses to “Sarah Palin: Creationism Update (27 Sept)

  1. Don’t you have a problem with the prospect that a person who believes that the earth is 6000 yrs old could be our next president? Forget the fact that she is as dumb as a doornail when it comes to foreign policy/relations.

    She still hasn’t turned over her tax returns, she is under investigation for “Trooper gate”, the book banning accusations have not been disproven, rape kits in Wasilla were charged to the victim, (don’t tell me she didn’t know about it – I lived in a town that size AND it was “on her watch” as mayor), she is in support of hunting wolves with helicopters, and her own party won’t let her speak to reporters because they think she will say something stupid – …

    http://car54.wordpress.com/2008/09/25/teh-stoopid-it-burns/

    I’m honestly surprised you are still trying to defend her.

    I myself may have voted for McCain if he had picked Mitt Romney so the whole comment here

    Ah yes, the always-convincing preface to some political bombast: “I used to be a McCain supporter but now …”
    … is actually how some people feel.
    She scares me.

  2. Stacy S. says:

    Don’t you have a problem with the prospect that a person who believes that the earth is 6000 yrs old could be our next president?

    Come on, Stacy. I’ve expressed my misgivings at least a dozen times. You should know by now how concerned I am about her creationism. As for the other things, some of your objections may be little more than urban myth. I want solid information. This place isn’t the Rush Limbaugh show, but neither is it Air America.

  3. Stacy, I’ve known Curmy for a few months now so I can say without a doubt, he/she/it is one of the more even handed bloggers out there. If the evidence leads in a direction against Curmy’s natural inclination, he/she/it will follow the evidence not the inclination.

    Actually I’ve known him for several years, and although we have been on opposite sides a few times, he has always followed the evidence. What he is doing here is making sure the evidence is real and not just part of the emotion driven political landscape. I would do the same.

    (Curmy, I trust the cheque is in the mail)

  4. b_sharp says:

    Curmy, I trust the cheque is in the mail.

    Oh yeah. Sure thing, Tundra Boy!

  5. I agree w/ you b. I love the Curmudgeon – I just get a sense that he WANTS her to be something that she isn’t .

    Also, did you follow the link and watch the video? I know it doesn’t have anything to do with the age of the earth – but YIKES!!! How could you want this person to be the VP??

  6. Yeah, Stacy, I sort of chided the Curmudgeon for his pre-judging of the Couric interview in another thread, and as predicted he has been noticeably silent on the issue. That’s fair, since it’s not the major focus of this Blog. On the other hand, he did make snide with Couric before the interview even aired, and now that it has, it’s not Couric who looks bad. Palin sounds like a total idiot, even when softball questions are lobbed at her.

  7. It’s not easy being The Curmudgeon. But I shall persevere.

  8. Stacy, I certainly do not want Palin in office, at any time.

    I’m not an American, I’m a Canuck, but whatever happens in the US has an enormous impact on Canada. Right now I would much prefer Obama because of his stance on science.

    If science gets rolling again in the States, at least two things happen in Canada: 1) the exodus of top scientists to the US will calm down, 2) the crazy religious loons, recently becoming more vocal and insistent, will have to abandon using the US as an example of religious influence on education. Right now they point to the US as an example of the direction things should be going.

  9. mightyfrijoles

    “If science gets rolling again in the States, at least two things happen in Canada: 1) the exodus of top scientists to the US will calm down”

    Monsieur Sharp – this makes no sense. The implication is that science in the US is not “rolling”. But, if that were the case, then no Canadian scientist would be coming to the US. In order for top scientists of Canada to come to the US, there must be some “rolling” science going on.

    I like Palin and hope she grows, in spite of the Creationist sentiment, which she clearly does not push into public policy. I’d vote for her for president, if the choice was Obama and Palin, simply because I don’t want to see a socialist sitting in the White House with virtually unlimited power at his finger tips. You Canadians will be among the first to complain when American science stops “rolling” due to extreme government regulation and manipulation of research funding and cutting of programs – kind of like it is now in most “Social Democratic” countries, for example, Canada. Indeed you may have to close the borders to keep the exodus of American scientists from overwhelming Canadian science. ;0

    And, besides, she has much more and more useful, experience in an executive position than Obama has.

  10. While I tend to agree that the notion that American science gearing up will not decrease a supposed Canadian exodus, I must take issue with almost everything else mightyfrijoles has said. First, are you a practicing scientist? If not, then I can claim especial knowledge of what you merely speculate on, as I am. The last eight years have devastated American science, and it’s not because of some silliness about government regulation and manipulation of research funding. Overall, research funding has not kept pace with inflation. We have lost a huge lead in biotechnology to countries in the Pacific Rim who were far more visionary about the role of government in encouraging technological innovation. And while we likely agree on the fact that Obama will actually attempt to have a fiscal policy that includes something other than tax cuts, what this really means is that it is far less likely that science will be a discretionary football under an Obama administration, and much more likely it will be a priority. Palin is a moron; watch the interview and you will have difficulty coming to any other conclusion.

    With respect to Canadian science, where I also know a fair amount (having actually served as an advisor to CIAR on occasion), it is a model of what to do … if you’re Canada. Limited resources, focus your efforts, support your own. This is why Toronto is now *the* place to go for systems biology, and it is much more likely to attract American scientists than the other way around. However, this model does not work well unless you have the playground south of the border, where we try to maintain global economic dominance by trying to do *everything* (and, most recently, failing miserably). I very much wish Canada could take up the slack and repair the destruction brought about largely by Bush (and soon by McCain / Palin if we are very unlucky). But it is not to be. Canada could easily be a tech mecca on the order of Singapore or Hong Kong (heck, Vancouver is heading in this direction already), but this is unlikely … as long as Canada (and Canadians) continues to regard itself as the trickle down partner, rather than as an economic engine in its own right.

  11. mightyfrijoles

    I have made my life and living in science for the last 40 years. My point was that Canadian scientists would not be going through an “exodus” to get here if our science wasn’t attracting them. Our losses come from poor secondary school science education, leaving us with our only outlet to import science students from abroad. But they keep coming and that means there is an attraction.

    The rest is, of course, a political rant, and you’re free to accept or decline it as you see fit.

  12. mightyfrijoles says:

    … Canadian scientists would not be going through an “exodus” to get here if our science wasn’t attracting them.

    I don’t know if our science is so great these days. Congress blew away the super Superconducting Super Collider, which messed up the lives of more than a few particle physicists. NASA isn’t what it ought to be. They’ve virtually shut down all research on advanced propulsion systems.

    If we’re still attracting people, it’s because we have a large economy so we have a lot of schools and employers. And the pay is good compared to many other places. That’s fine, but it should be so much better.

  13. mightyfrijoles

    Of course it could be better, but when you look at their options, the overall picture becomes quite clear.