Creationist Wisdom #397: Hambo Won the Debate

Today’s second letter-to-the-editor appears at the website of Canada Free Press, the Canadian equivalent of WorldNetDaily, and it’s titled The Twenty First Century – Enter at Your own Risk. As you will see, the title has no relevance to the content.

We don’t like to embarrass people (unless they’re politicians, preachers, or other public figures), so we usually omit the writer’s full name and city. But today’s letter-writer is a preacher — Rev. Michael Bresciani. He’s described as “a Christian author and a columnist for several online conservative and Christian news and commentary sites,” but all we need to know about him is that his work is published by Canada Free Press. We’ll give you a few excerpts from the rev’s letter (or column, or whatever it is), enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. Okay, here we go:

After reading the reviews, publishing some on our website and finally taking the time to listen to every word and nuance of the debate between creationist Ken Ham and Bill Nye the science guy. The idea of rating one against the other to determine who won the debate fell away like snow in July. After hearing only one single answer from Bill Nye and Ken Ham’s follow-up reply the abject spiritual poverty of modern man became perfectly evident – it was blaring.

Wow — he listened to “every word and nuance of the debate” and there was one exchange that tells the whole story. What was that one crucial answer from Nye and Hambo’s follow up? We’re told:

Nye offered one of the worst explanations of entropy, sometimes called the second law of thermodynamics, ever heard. It was as if he was espousing the idea that the law, which states that everything in the universe is decaying, could be overcome simply by the warm glow of the sun.

The second law of thermodynamics? For a discussion of that in the creationist context, TalkOrigins has a whole section on it: Thermodynamics, Evolution and Creationism. Let’s return to the rev’s letter:

We almost expected someone, anyone, to stop the debate long enough to remind Nye that the sun is also subject to the second law, it, too, is slowly burning up and will someday be gone altogether. But Nye’s mesmerizeation with science magic could not be de-lustered.

Hey — he’s right! The sun is “burning up” — BWAHAHAHAHAHA! — and one day it’s going to die. That demolishes Nye’s “mesmerizeation with science magic”! The rev continues:

Following the flowery notion that simple sunshine could overcome entropy and produce complexity, including inter species evolution, Nye went on to praise technology.

Technology? Yuk! It’s godless, so who needs it? Here’s more:

It was another version of, ‘It’s not the destination that counts – but it’s the journey that matters.’ He repeated the phrase about science being all about the “joy of discovery” several times over as if it was both the cause and the justifiable end to all scientific pursuit. We almost expected him to say that we scientist actually do care about finally answering the question of which came first, the chicken or the egg.

That was too profound for us, so we have no comment. Moving along:

Nye’s aura, halo and his momentary golden glowing naiveté was shattered like the switching off of a giant floodlight when Ham replied; “What good is all the joy of discovery when after that you are dead and your life is forgotten.” In so many words, Ham went on to ask – what is the purpose of any discovery – if man is destined to annihilation and non-existence.

Hambo was right! What’s the point of knowing stuff? We’re all gonna die! We should spend every moment thinking about that. Another excerpt:

We saw two men, one proclaiming that discovering how everything is made is far more important that acknowledging who made it. The other man was saying that the fascination and the useful result of discovery are wonderful and indeed important, but second only to knowing who to thank.

Yes, it’s all about “knowing who to thank.” On with the rev’s letter:

As an old man often found in the company of other old men and women it is impossible to agree with a philosophy that says playing around with how things are made takes precedence over why they were made. I submit that no man who approaches the fullness of the time allotted to him can escape seriously pondering this simple but profound proclamation. It is a piece of wisdom, a clarion call from the Living God to stop looking around and take a serious moment to look up.

Th rev knows what’s important. Then there a few paragraphs of scripture, after which the rev concludes with this:

Indeed it isn’t a matter of who can win this debate. After considering the broad expanse of the matter we refer to as eternity – there simply is no contest.

No doubt about it — according to the rev, Nye lost the debate because … well, because he’s lost. The man is a fool! It never was a real contest.

Copyright © 2014. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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10 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #397: Hambo Won the Debate

  1. Ugh! And ignoramuses such as our good Revver Michael Bresciani wonder, often to the point of shock and bewilderment, why scientifically literate people will get short with them. Hearing the same lame game shamelessly straw-manned and shredded over and over gets kinda tedious after a while. This Revver wouldn’t know a Gibbs from a Helmholtz. The only recoverable energy naïfs like him could expend would be in speeding away on their Carnot cycles.

  2. This letter (and many of the others you’ve posted) reminds me of how wonderful it is that our constitution guarantees the right to make any statement in public regardless of how ignorant it makes you appear. If you developed an ignorance scale for statements you select to display, this one would rank pretty high!

  3. Con-Tester:

    “Gibbs” and “Helmholtz” just gave me a flashback to the one time in the last 51 years that I seriously thought of leaving Chemistry. It was 1974, literally sweating through my first exam in Classical Thermo. When I found that my 57 was the highest grade in the 7-student class, my sanity returned. I still didn’t get the material, but a year later I took Statistical Thermo, and it finally made sense, even though the math was very intense.

    In any case, I always caution everyone to never assume that these people are that clueless (even if they are 99+% of the time) because they only need to rote-regurgitate a few odd facts or jargon to impress fence-sitters. And they always have a motive to sound even more clueless than they actually are. And being “natural born” salesmen, impress is what they do.

  4. Charles Deetz ;)

    Oops, this one

  5. Intelligent design is also subject to 2nd law of thermodynamics. That’s why we cannot design a perpetual machine.

  6. The letter writer is just another dazed creationist walking around proudly displaying his ignorance. Meh.

  7. @Frank J: You have ±15 years on me. I’m not that cautious — at least not yet. If this Revver has the faintest grasp of thermo and/or stat mech, and he’s still writing the distorted gumph he does, then he’s a duplicitous, pretentious windbag. If, as is more likely, he writes what he does without any demonstrable comprehension of the subject matter, he’s a delusional, self-important windbag. In either case, he’s a windbag.

  8. In so many words, Ham went on to ask – what is the purpose of any discovery – if man is destined to annihilation and non-existence.

    And yet the set of people who say this sort of thing are almost exactly identical to the set of those who accuse atheism of leading to nihilism.

    It’s quite clear how that works: They think nihilism is necessarily true, with God sort of “staving it off”.

    It’s sort of like how fundamentalists are moral relativists whose subjective element happens to be rooted in God, instead of (or really, as a puppet of) their personal whims. Take away God, they say, and all sort of evil becomes justified — yet piles of evidence (like the Bible and basic philosophy) show that God can and has made every kind of evil justified already. So their real complaint is just that atheists fail to adhere to the correct locus.

    Whether reality actually entails objective meaning or objective morality is irrelevant to the fallaciousness of these arguments against atheism. If such things are truly real, then they are truly real, and thus independent of God.

    Conversely, theists could start arguing that atheists “may as well” say that 2+2=5 because only God serves as a proper grounding for mathematics, but curiously enough, they don’t make that argument and likely don’t believe it themselves. They do have some notion of the coherency of an atheist universe, but they only take that notion so far.

  9. @Con-Tester:

    he’s a delusional, self-important windbag

    I think you’re being unnecessarily generous.

    He’s described as “a Christian author and a columnist for several online conservative and Christian news and commentary sites”

    From his ignorant babbling, I’d say he’s well-qualified for those tasks.

  10. I don’t think there is fundamentally anything wrong with periodically thinking about whether there may be a God who is ultimately responsible for the universe. The trouble arises when a person can’t distinguish their faith from that which can be proven and uses faith to discount objective reality. This leads down the path of then using faith to justify all manner of repression and evil and attempts to force others to believe as you do. To try to treat an ancient text written down by goat herders in a prescientific era as a science book is folly. My experience with evangelicals is that they place more emphasis on their holy book than on the holy one. They claim to hold every word as literal truth but then subjectively interpret things at will. Science offers a way to get at where the truth actually lies with no subjectivity required.