Congressman Broun on Evolution & the Big Bang

This is a Associated Press story, which means we can’t give you any excerpts other than direct quotes from individuals. It doesn’t matter in this case because we hunted around and found a video of the event they’re reporting. You can click on that and be way ahead of the AP. It only lasts for a minute or so.

As for the AP story, we found it in the Arizona Daily Star located in Tucson, Arizona, but it’s about a congressman from Georgia. The headline is Congressman calls evolution a lie from ‘pit of hell’.

It seems that Congressman Paul Broun, a Republican whose district includes Athens, where the University of Georgia is located, said that evolution and the Big Bang theory are “lies straight from the pit of hell.” He made that statement at a sportsman’s banquet, which explains the background you’ll see in the video.

According to Wikipedia, the man is a medical doctor, and in Congress he’s a member of the Committee on Science and Technology and also the Committee on Homeland Security.

Go ahead, watch the video. The man is a world-class idiot. Verily, we are governed by fools.

See also: Answers in Genesis Defends Paul Broun.

Update: Paul Broun vs. Charles Darwin.

Copyright © 2012. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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31 responses to “Congressman Broun on Evolution & the Big Bang

  1. Charles Deetz ;)

    9,000 years old? Where does he get his facts?

  2. Charley Horse

    Well, if a Republican congressman says it, it must be believed.
    Just as credible as if it were straight from the Holy Book.

    If you go to the church’s website, you will see that the video has
    been taken down “by the user”. Whatever that means. You also
    get the gist that the church sponsored this celebration of killing
    Bambi…..lots of Bambis mounted on the wall. If so then we have
    a political speech given at a religious event. Outrageous!
    While many spend a lot of effort protecting our borders, the Republicans
    are busy destroying from the inside. These Republicans are much
    more of a threat than millions of undocumented farm and construction
    workers.

    But UF did win over LSU today….so it ain’t all bad on the home front.

  3. Ceteris Paribus

    I usually do not make comments on a person’s appearance, but the good Doctor/Scientist Broun seems to be wearing a flak jacket under his shirt. Maybe he is expecting a revenge attack from a herd of zombie deer looking for their missing heads?

    Oops, wait a sec. Re-ran the video, and it is apparent Broun is wearing the same corset that Captain Kirk modeled on later versions of Star Trek. I know this must be what is under his shirt, because if you look closely you will see that Broun also sports on his left ear the same communication/assimilation device that is used by the Borg. Yup, Broun’s mind is gone and he has been assimilated. Resistance is futile for creationists.

  4. Super secret double probation SC.
    :). A slight consolation , my South Carolina Gamecocks just nuked U Georgia 35-7.

  5. Classic southern good old boy bullslinger throwing out a little Gish gallop, more of a trot, and puffing himself as an expert by calling himself a scientist, implying that he actually studied something and using a big word, embryology. He obviously has good taste in television, however, because he mentioned the hit show Big Bang Theory. (Shot on location in the Pit of Hell, I guess.)

    And conspiracy! Yes, a conspiracy by the godless, liberal, academic, ivory tower elites who want to do, I dunno, who knows what. I’ll tell you one thing, though, the smartest things in that room were those deer heads.

  6. Yes, he is an idiot, and Georgia and the other southern states are full of similar idiots. Incredibly though he’s on the Committee on Science and Technology and also the Committee on Homeland Security? We’re in deep trouble.

    But this is nothing really new for Georgia. I did a short teaching stint at Georgia State in 1981 and found that the university’s library actually subscribed to the ICR “journal” of creationism! They probably still do subscribe.

  7. I saw the same AP story on Yahoo News and immediately clicked over here to see what you had to say about this gem of a congressman, Curmy. And he’s on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology!

    A doctor willing to dismiss everything he learned about the scientific method should lose his license to practice medicine.

  8. How scary is it that someone who is the chair of a House SCIENCE Committee Panel says that he hates science and thinks it is evil? I could see having someone who has that viewpoint on the panel, just so those viewpoints are represented, but as the CHAIR?

    But regarding what Broun says about evolution: IF IT IS A LIE, it didn’t come from Hell. Only the Creator of the Universe (assuming there is one) made everything the way it exists, and gave us the capabilities to observe, measure and think about what we observe. So if Evolution is a lie, it is NOT from the pit of Hell. It comes directly from the throne of God. If evolution isn’t true, that makes GOD a liar, not Satan.

    The amount of evidence, of so many different types, that each can stand alone yet sometimes corroborate each other in stunning fashion, all point to the same reality. Even the Pope admitted that the evidence of the physical world is so overwhelming that to deny it is silly.

    Pope John Paul II wrote:
    The convergence, neither sought nor fabricated, of the results of work that was conducted independently is in itself a significant argument in favor of this theory.

    So, in other words, if evolution does not happen then God must be a malicious prankster to plant so MUCH evidence of so many different types that all clearly show it DOES happen. I say “malicious prankster” because the price of observing our universe and thinking about it is allegedly eternal damnation if we use the senses and reason our Creator gave us. That doesn’t seem right or fair to me, but who’s to say? God could do whatever he wants, right? It’s just that if God is that way, it sure isn’t very much like the character Christians claim He has.

  9. Is this another case of a politician lying to get elected or his real beliefs?
    If the latter I despair for our world.

  10. The same House Committee of which Todd Akin is a member – figures…

  11. Being from Missouri and having Todd Akin on the same committee I shouldn’t be surprised to learn there are more scientific illiterates on there. I’m going to have to look into the other members. Maybe a major news organization could be convinved to expose them. I doubt the majority of the voters realized how little these guys knew about science.

  12. @The Bicycling Guitarist – One theme of Gnosticism was that the beings responsible for the design of the material world were evil demiurges.

  13. Why are the headlines featuring evolution, or the big bang?
    He’s also condemning embryology!

  14. Ceteris Paribus

    The Bicycling Guitarist says: “How scary is it that someone who is the chair of a House SCIENCE Committee Panel says that he hates science and thinks it is evil? I could see having someone who has that viewpoint on the panel, just so those viewpoints are represented, but as the CHAIR?”

    Tom S says: “Why are the headlines featuring evolution, or the big bang?
    He’s also condemning embryology!”

    The answer to both questions is that Broun is speaking for his party. He doesn’t even have a Democratic opponent in this year’s election.

    To be clear, Broun is chair of a subcommittee – the Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight. But Bicycling Guitarist raises a valuable point, since no legislator gets to be a chair of anything by just raising their hand and saying “Oooh! Oooh! Chose me!”

    Chairmanships are handed out by their parties, based on the parties’ confidence that their chairman will tow the party line regardless of any facts to the contrary. Personal expertise or knowledge in the area is secondary but possibly helpful, for example in the case of Ron Paul who, during nearly a quarter century in the House, eventually was made chair of a banking and finance subcommittee. P0ssibly because he had experience being co-partner in a mail order coin business.

    But Broun being Chair of Investigations and Oversight is a prime political post, since the Chair gets to decide which issues will be called up for investigation, or not. And which witnesses will be allowed to testify, or not.

    No matter that the writers of the constitution did not perceive the future harms that party politics would bring, or bother to mention it in writing if they did. The now supra-constituional (maybe that should be infra-constitutional) party mechanism is firmly enshrined in the minds of the voters every bit as much as is the godly basis on which our founders wrote our constitution. Surely even the mandate for presidential proclamations of days of prayer is to be found somewhere in that document.

    Curm has written elegantly about the Republican party previously (2009) – here and addendum

    There was a day when senators and congress members merely had to swear an oath or make an affirmation to uphold the constitution. No party line was required. At this time no Republican office holder would dare take the affirmation route. Few probably even understand that the oath is optional.

    Maybe a post 2012 election addendum will be in order? I’m especially curious what future exists for the Republican party as a rational organization when the majority of its party office holders have signed a “no new taxes” pledge to Grover Norquist. The penalty for any office holder not signing is to find a well financed competitor in their next party primary.

  15. Charley Horse

    Ceteris Paribus says….Maybe a post 2012 election addendum will be in order? I’m especially curious what future exists for the Republican party as a rational organization when the majority of its party office holders have signed a “no new taxes” pledge to Grover Norquist. The penalty for any office holder not signing is to find a well financed competitor in their next party primary.

    I’ve got a great title for the documentary describing that….
    Expelled…No Intelligence Allowed
    Expelled…No Intelligence Allowed

  16. Adrian asks, “Is this another case of a politician lying to get elected or his real beliefs?
    If the latter I despair for our world.”

    You may start despairing, Adrian. He’s running unopposed, so he’s certainly not saying it just to get elected.

  17. What’s the bet that this cretin is a climate denier too?

    Climate change, evolution education under attack

  18. This is from the Wikipedia article that links from his name in the original post:
    “His internship was at Good Samaritan Hospital in Portland, Oregon and residency at University Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama. He then practiced general medicine; starting in 2002 he maintained a practice based solely on house calls.” (Bold added)

    Seriously? A practice based solely on house calls? That should send up a big red flag. Paul Broun is indeed one strange bird.

  19. Cedric Katesby asks, “What’s the bet that this cretin is a climate denier too?”

    Such that no bookie would be willing to give you odds.

  20. retiredsciguy says: “Paul Broun is indeed one strange bird.”

    If I were trying to write a skit for a late-night comedy show about a “typical” Republican, I couldn’t do better than Broun — stag heads and all. He’s perfect. Somewhere, Goldwater is weeping.

  21. Ceteris Paribus

    Curm says: “Somewhere, Goldwater is weeping.”

    And likely in that same somewhere is William F. Buckley Jr. For those who don’t know the name, Buckley founded the National Review journal back before its editors were fired for making intellectual arguments that didn’t conform to the party line.

    Buckley was a genuine conservative gentleman and scholar, who early on criticized House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s use of the phrase “Democrat” Party as a crass distraction that diminished the value of genuine engagement with the other major party.

  22. Actually making a practice out of house calls can be quite lucrative. A number of physicians including a former partner of mine have gone into ’boutique’ or ‘concierge’ practices where they charge a yearly retainer and then may charge more for each visit they make. They only accept a couple of hundred patients but and take call 24/7 but may charge 2000 or more as a retainer. Thus they guarrantee themselves a few hundred grand base salary. Not mainstream but you can make a lot of money for a primary care doc and not have to answer to a big hospital system.

    As to this turkey running unopposed… that’s just sad. He is a great example of what’s pushing many conservatives away from the Republican party.

  23. Charley Horse

    A few years ago I found a website with Goldwater’s warnings
    concerning the Religious Right. Here’s a teaser:
    http://www.liberalslikechrist.org/about/Goldwater.html

    “I am a conservative Republican, but I believe in democracy and the separation of church and state. The conservative movement is founded on the simple tenet that people have the right to live life as they please as long as they don’t hurt anyone else in the process.”
    (in a 1994 Washington Post essay)
    “The religious factions will go on imposing their will on others,”
    “I don’t have any respect for the Religious Right.”
    “Every good Christian should line up and kick Jerry Falwell’s ass.”
    “A woman has a right to an abortion.”

  24. Charley Horse says: “Goldwater’s warnings concerning the Religious Right.”

    Except for Reagan (who unfortunately pandered to people like Falwell), it’s all been downhill since then.

  25. Charley Horse

    I had great respect for Bush I. Much more respect than
    his son had for him.

    William Buckley’s son, Christopher, had a lot to say about his
    extreme disappointment in the GOP. Worth reading his words on
    that in 2006….

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2006/0610.buckley.html
    Let’s quit while we’re behind
    By Christopher Buckley

    Small excerpt:
    I voted for George W. Bush in 2000. In 2004, I could not bring myself to pull the same lever again. Neither could I bring myself to vote for John Kerry, who, for all his strengths, credentials, and talent, seems very much less than the sum of his parts. So, I wrote in a vote for George Herbert Walker Bush, for whom I worked as a speechwriter from 1981 to ’83. I wish he’d won.

    Bob Woodward asked Bush 43 if he had consulted his father before invading Iraq. The son replied that he had consulted “a higher father.” That frisson you feel going up your spine is the realization that he meant it. And apparently the higher father said, “Go for it!” There are those of us who wish he had consulted his terrestrial one; or, if he couldn’t get him on the line, Brent Scowcroft. Or Jim Baker. Or Henry Kissinger. Or, for that matter, anyone who has read a book about the British experience in Iraq.

  26. @TJW: Thanks for the enlightenment about house calls. I stand corrected. I was thinking that he must have “issues” that made other doctors shy away from working with him in joint practice.

  27. Expelled Elected…No Intelligence Allowed

    Fixed it.

  28. @RSG: no problem. he may (and based on his views, probably did) have issues that kept others at bay. My former partner also left b/c of personality conflicts. In any case, though, that type of practice can be attractive.

    @Charley Horse: same here, except I did vote for Kerry, not wanting to “waste” my vote. The Republican brand has become so tainted by its affiliation with the religious right that I’ve all but given up on them. That’s saying something coming from a family that has been staunchly conservative my whole life.

  29. CH: Bush Sr. was definitely a great president, and probably would have been re-elected were it not for Ross Perot. I consider Bush Sr. to be the last true conservative president, that is, non-ideological, pragmatic, but with an eye toward fiscal restraint and a strong defense. He seems to me to have had less personal ego and more of a sense of service than almost any modern president, and he was definitely the most qualified when he took office.

    Showing how wise he was, in their primary contest in 1980, Bush referred to Reagan’s “trickle down” theory as “voodoo economics”. He was right.

  30. We might all be aware that what Broun, and Akin, both are espousing is not substantially any different than what those at the Discovery Institute espouse regarding their anti-science diatribes. Though these two, et. al, have likely held there perverted anti-science views for years, their absurd outing shows that these creationists can come out of the closet from even the highest places, and the DI is certainly working hard wedging more and more of them.

    Lawrence O’Donnell on his MSNBC Last Word show gave an excellent summary of Broun’s position on his show tonight (10/8/12). I hope he posts it on the MSNBC.com web page for the Last Word.

  31. I’ve made it through looking into half the republicans on the house science and technology committee and at least half of those (so 1/4) of the republicans are outspoken global warming deniers. Not just against policy making on the subject but outright deniers that there is a problem. Information on their stances on creationism is not readily available in most cases. That’s only having looked at half the republicans. I haven’t gotten to the democrats and started with the gop bc they come first on wikipedia as they are the majority.