Ken Ham: Important Creationist Conference

This is big news from the personal blog of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the Australian entrepreneur who has become the ayatollah of Appalachia. As you know, ol’ Hambo is co-founder of Answers in Genesis (AIG) — described in the Cast of Characters section of our Intro page.

Hambo’s article is The Latest Creationist Research — at a Special Conference. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:

The International Conference on Creationism (ICC) meets this year, and our staff at Answers in Genesis is looking forward to it! Now, the ICC is held every four or five years and is a ministry of the Creation Science Fellowship of Pittsburgh. … The conference is meeting from August 4–8 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, this year.

Got your attention, didn’t we? Yes, dear reader, you read that correctly. This is an opportunity that comes around only once in every four or five years, and it’s happening this August. You have plenty of time to make your plans. Hambo continues:

Many of our researchers on staff attend the ICC, and some of them, such as Dr. Andrew Snelling and Dr. Georgia Purdom, present peer-reviewed research papers. You see, all the papers that are presented at the ICC are peer-reviewed — despite the claims of secularists who say that creation research isn’t reviewed or edited.

Yes, peer-reviewed. AIG has its own, in-house, “peer-reviewed” journal, which we’ll discuss shortly. Let’s read on from Hambo’s article:

According to the ICC website, the conference is dedicated to providing (1) “a technical forum for the latest creation research” and (2) “a coherent platform for the pedagogical, professional, and legal issues involved in the teaching of creation science at the secondary and tertiary levels.”

Wowie — the latest creation research! Hambo continues:

I am attending, along with a number of others from the Answers in Genesis staff. I will be the opening speaker on Sunday, August 4, at 7:00 PM, giving a talk titled Genesis, Biblical Authority & the Age of the Earth. My talk is free and open to the public.

You don’t want to miss that! Here’s more:

Dr. Snelling, a geologist and the Director of Research at Answers in Genesis, emphasizes the necessity of the ICC: “The International Conference on Creationism is the peak gathering of creation scientists and those informed lay people who want to hear about or present the latest creationist research.”

Not only that, but:

Dr. Snelling also oversees the Answers Research Journal, a peer-reviewed technical journal available for free online.

Here’s a link to that prestigious journal: Answers Research Journal. Their “About” page is written by that same Dr. Snelling, who is not only AIG’s Director of Research, he’s also the journal’s editor-in-chief, so you know the journal is going to be scientifically objective. Snelling says:

Answers in Genesis is excited to announce the launch of its online technical journal, Answers Research Journal. ARJ is a professional, peer-reviewed technical journal for the publication of interdisciplinary scientific and other relevant research from the perspective of the recent Creation and the global Flood within a biblical framework.

[…]

Furthermore, people want to know they can trust what is published on the Internet, which is why papers in our journal will be reviewed by the best experts we have available to us through a large network of well-qualified creationist researchers, scientists, and theologians who are the best thinkers in their fields of creationist research. Thus, we can give you absolute assurance that the papers we will be publishing in our Answers Research Journal are of the highest scientific and theological standard.

ARJ will disseminate research conducted by creationist experts in theology, history, archaeology, anthropology, biology, geology, astronomy, and other disciplines of science by providing scientists, students, and supporters the results of cutting-edge research that demonstrates the validity of the young-earth model, the global Flood, the non-evolutionary origin of “created kinds,” and other evidences that are consistent with the biblical account of origins.

And here’s one more quote from Snelling, which will surely give you the confidence you’re looking for in a science journal:

Answers Research Journal comes to you with the full backing of AiG’s President/Founder Ken Ham and the entire AiG Board, who have been wanting to see such a journal launched.

Now you know that Hambo wasn’t kidding when he said that creation research is peer-reviewed. That’s your guarantee of quality for the big conference in Pittsburgh. Hambo ends his article like this:

We’re looking forward to being able to share more of the latest creation research with you.

Well, what are you waiting for? Start making plans to attend the conference! With the rapid pace of creation research these days, you don’t want to be left behind.

Copyright © 2013. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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32 responses to “Ken Ham: Important Creationist Conference

  1. Can’t wait to see this.

  2. “papers in our journal will be reviewed by the best experts we have available to us”

    I’m absolutely certain this statement is true.

  3. Even the word “research” sounds too official, really. I feel like they are using the word rhetorically — they want their followers to assume they aim to discover new facts … when the best they can possibly do is brainstorm for new ways to twist them.

  4. “…who have been wanting…” ? Someone needs a copy editor. Worse, there’s an incestuous odor from this whole pile.

  5. AiG: “ARJ will disseminate research conducted by creationist experts in theology, history, archaeology, anthropology, biology, geology, astronomy, and other disciplines of science by providing scientists, students, and supporters the results of cutting-edge research that demonstrates the validity of the young-earth model, the global Flood, the non-evolutionary origin of “created kinds,” and other evidences that are consistent with the biblical account of origins.

    And they have the chutzpah to call this science?!? They will only publish research that supports their pre-conceived views? How can that by any stretch of the imagination be called science?

    What’s really sad, and is truly a condemnation of the state of science education in this country, is that a large percentage of our population doesn’t understand why this is a problem.

  6. “… have been wanting …”

    I really hate that combination of words, but I hear it all the time. For years I have been wanting to tell these people to get a grammar book and get off my lawn!

  7. Doc Bill – Glad I’m not the only one!

  8. Time to rerun your post on creationism being cargo cult science.

  9. Bet they publish more “peer reviewed papers” than do the Dishonesty Institute members, who also have their own in-house, or is it out-house, journal, the latter having more use for the papers’ pages as needed, of course.

  10. Curmy – your closing ‘left behind’ comment is brilliant – presume that it was intentional 🙂

  11. Douglas E says: “Curmy – your closing ‘left behind’ comment is brilliant – presume that it was intentional”

    I wish it were intentional, but no, it’s just a fortunate accident that I didn’t notice until now. Good work spotting it.

  12. You can read how they stack the deck here. Regarding the abstract (“summary”) review process, we find these statements:

    [criterion] “Is this Summary formulated within a young-earth, young-universe framework?

    [criterion] “Does this Summary provide evidence of faithfulness to the grammaticohistorical/normative interpretation of Scripture?

    “Do not be afraid to reject a Summary if it does not properly satisfy the above criteria nor is in the best interests of the ICC as judged by its goals as outlined in the Call for Papers … The ICC Area-Editors play a very important initial role in preserving a high level of quality in the ICC, as well as protecting the ICC from unnecessary review on clearly inappropriate papers.”

    IOW anything that challenges the YEC view is “summarily” rejected, regardless of its scientific value.

  13. Mark Joseph “Time to rerun your post on creationism being cargo cult science.”

    That thought occurred to me as well when I was writing my post above, but then I thought, “No, the cargo cultists were sincere in their beliefs.”

    More and more I’m getting the feeling that many of the “professional” creationists such as Ken Ham (especially Ken Ham) are just doing it to scam their flock, Elmer Gantry-style.

  14. “[Hambo’s] talk is free…” Still too much.

  15. Christine Janis

    “anything that challenges the YEC view is “summarily” rejected, regardless of its scientific value.”

    The problem is, Ham and his acolytes are doing a good job in convincing uninformed people that if scientists reject a religious explanation for something, they are being just as biased.

    After all, that *sounds* fair, doesn’t it?

  16. @ Crumy – we’ll just acknowledge that your brilliance flows forth subconsciously!

  17. 1000 Apologies!!!! That’s Curmy 🙂

  18. Douglas E says: “1000 Apologies!!!! That’s Curmy”

    I’ll leave the original. These little things reveal our subconscious.

  19. I think it’s been pointed out before that “they do look cute when they dress up and pretend to be scientists”

  20. Charles Deetz ;)

    So between the ICC and the ARJ they can now share their hypothesis about how the facts of the world fit the ‘facts’ of the Bible more easily? Wouldn’t the conflicts in their published ideas and facts cause some kind of spontaneous combustion? Like a bunch of conspirasists about JFK’s shooting arguing about how many shooters there really were? It was a water canopy … no it was underground geysers, etc.

  21. Doc Bill and MaryL, your reaction to the phrase “have been wanting” piques my professional interest. (One of the courses I taught was titled American Dialects.)

    It sounds entirely normal to me, and apparently to a lot of other people, since you say you hear it all the time. I find the similar expression, “I’ve been knowing him a long time” (which people say on the other side of a minor dialect boundary about 150 miles from where I grew up) sounds quite odd. None of the dialect studies I am familiar with investigated the syntax of “want,” so I am curious whether “have been wanting” also has a regional distribution. What part of the country did you learn English in?

    I have signed up to attend a workshop and lecture soon on folk linguistics, by Dennis Preston, of Oklahoma State, and it would be fun to see what he has to say.

  22. Retired Prof, if it helps your study, “have been wanting” doesn’t sound too strange to me, whereas “I’ve been knowing him a long time” sounds substandard. I grew up in Chicago (Northwest Side).

    I would say “I have known him a long time”, or “I have known him for a long time.” But as for “have been wanting”, I’d be as likely to say “have wanted”; however, in certain constructs it wouldn’t carry the same meaning. There’s a slight difference between “I have been wanting to buy a new car for a while now” and “I have wanted to buy a new car for a while now.”

    All this discussion raises the question — is the evolution of our language due to natural selection, or is it intelligent design?

  23. I grew up in Lansdowne, MD, a Baltimore exurb. Both parents were Baltimore natives. I tend to mentally edit speech and writing. To me, “Have been wanting”, would be clearer as “Have wanted.”

    What’s really driving me up the wall lately is the use of myself for I or me.

    If any of this is intelligent design, we should burn all copies of “The Elements of Style”.

  24. Like retiredsciguy, “have been wanting” does not sound strange – grew up in far north-central Indiana where we claim to speak Standard American English 🙂 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_American

  25. Ceteris Paribus

    “Have been wanting” sounds more secular and passive; an expression of a rationally derived preference among more than one possibility.

    “Have wanted” sounds more sectarian and demanding; an unmet emotional need. Something along the lines of that biblical commandment warning against coveting things over in the neighbor’s yard.

    Which would explain why AIG opted for the “have been wanting” version.

    It also may explain the regional usages of the phrase. As in Detroit where I grew up, and “have been wanting” was unambiguously used. Coveting something you “had wanted” but was beyond your own fence could get a person unambiguously dead.

  26. Ceteris Paribus says:

    “Have been wanting” sounds more secular and passive

    I hate to get squishy here, but I guess we’re talking about the use of a participle (I have been wanting) instead of some past form of the verb (I wanted, I have wanted, etc.). Do these forms have different meanings? If I want something, is that the same as to be wanting something? I donno. I want what I want. Each verb is going to have a different flavor in its various forms. After writing the foregoing and looking it over, I have to say I don’t know what the answer is — or if you prefer, I am not knowing.

  27. SC: …I have to say I don’t know what the answer is — or if you prefer, I am not knowing.

    I have been thinking that’s very clever!

  28. Thanks for the replies on “have been wanting.”

    To get technical about it, English speakers generally use BE + verb + ing
    structures (traditionally called “progressive tenses”) only with verbs that denote an action, not ones that express a steady, invariant state:

    “I have been painting my house this week,”
    but not
    “I have been owning my house for twenty years.”

    One way to describe differences in the use of “want” is to say that some speakers place it in the “sporadic action” syntactic category along with “paint,” whereas others feel it is a “steady state” verb like “own.” Whether the difference is a matter of dialect or idiolect (an individual’s language system) might make an interesting project for one of my erstwhile colleagues and/or her students.

    Hey, I just noticed: “IDiolect” would be a good name for the words and turns of phrase found in Discovery Institute writings.

    As for the force behind language evolution, I used to tell my students the basic explanation is that kids never get it completely right. For example, about a thousand years ago several generations of English-speaking kids pronounced the final syllables of words–the ones that carried grammatical meaning–more and more indistinctly. It became hard to tell whether a noun was a subject or an object, or a verb was an infinitive or a finite verb. So they started adding prepositions and other grammatical words, and depending on the position of a word in the sentence to make sure everyone understood how it was functioning. Nobody designed the substitute system intelligently; people just fell into new habits that made things clear enough.

    In biological evolution, organisms only have to survive well enough to produce grandchildren. In language evolution, linguistic structures only have to allow people to communicate with reasonable clarity.

    Don’t get me wrong. I mean here only the basic vocabulary and grammar we inherited from our linguistic forebears. I’m not talking about the speeches, poems, and everyday banter individuals create. Writers and speakers should choose their words with intelligence and care. The ragged edge of incoherence is not good enough. We all want to impress each other, and to do that we need style. To get that we have to revise and revise and revise.

    The motto I gave students in my stylistics class was, “Never pass up the chance to dash off a first draft in the heat of passion. But always commit your final version in cold blood.”

  29. By the way, one of the reasons I like to hang out here is the stylish banter, such as the three comments above mine.

  30. Retired Prof: Hey, I just noticed: “IDiolect” would be a good name for the words and turns of phrase found in Discovery Institute writings.

    For example —
    1) “Strengths and weaknesses”
    2) “Micro-evolution vs. macro-evolution”
    3) “Specified complexity” (or some such)
    4) Anything written by Klinghoffer
    5) Anything written by Luskin

  31. “…the ragged edge of incoherence…” Must remember that phrase.

    All the bright, intelligent minds here can’t resist stylish banter and brighten my days, too.