Curmudgeonly Christmas 2016

As is evident from the presence our traditional holiday graphic, this is the only time of the year that your Curmudgeon is in a jovial mood. We wish a Merry Christmas to one and all — or Hanukkah, if you prefer.

To enhance your holiday experience, we once again link to the Curmudgeon’s acclaimed poem, which is read to children all over the world: The Night Before Christmas Eve.

As expected, the Discoveroids have started posting about their Top Ten creationism events for the year. They began with #10 of Our Top Stories of 2016: Tyson Says Chances of Intelligently Designed Universe “May Be Very High”. Their title is absurd because the Discoveroids hate Tyson; he’s opposed to virtually everything they stand for.

The Discoveroids are referring to something they wrote on 26 April 2016, about which we posted Klinghoffer, Neil deGrasse Tyson, & Lisa Randall. Tyson was having fun by saying that because of a lack of evidence, we could never know if we were living in an alien computer simulation. The Discoveroids are claiming that as one of their Top Ten events because — they imagine — it shows he’s open to the idea of intelligent design. We think it shows the opposite — that such things are inherently outside the scope of science. If Tyson’s entertaining remark makes their list, it’s obviously been a bad year for the Discoveroids, and it enhances our merry mood.

Then they posted #9 of Our Top Stories of 2016: Feathers on a Bird or Dinosaur Tail? That’s very recent news, about which we wrote Feathered Dinosaur Tail Found in Amber. According to the Discoveroids, the fossil is likely to be a bird. They say:

But unfortunately we have so little material, and the bone is so difficult to distinguish from the soft tissue, that any strong claims about this tail should be greeted with skepticism. This paper will not be the last word on the nature of the animal that sported this wonderful tail.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! If that’s how they start their Top Ten list, you can imagine how thrilling the next eight items will be.

That’s all we’ve got for you — at least so far. Because we’re starting a holiday weekend, we expect lower traffic than usual for the next couple of days. Also, because our kind of news rarely gets reported on Christmas, we may not post at all tomorrow. But your Curmudgeon is always on the job, so if we should find anything of interest, we’ll tell you about it.

Please use the comments as an Intellectual Free Fire Zone for the discussion of pretty much anything — science, politics, economics, whatever — as long as it’s interesting. Say what you will, but do so tastefully and beware of the profanity filters.

We now throw open the comments to you, dear reader. Have at it, and have a Merry Christmas!

Copyright © 2016. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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13 responses to “Curmudgeonly Christmas 2016

  1. On the BBC web pages there is a essay on the secret of how life on Earth began.

  2. The DocBill tree is up, eggnog and brandy down the hatch, first Scrabble game of the holiday in the bag, Amazon depleted, Visa card melted, cat in a box (literally) and feast fixings, well, yet to be had but soon; and Christmas tunes blasting out of the Klipshorns!

    What a celebration of evolution that last one is. Although the allele for the speakers got fixed in the early 80’s, the receiver underwent a couple of mutations until the early 90’s where it was fixed into a 100 W/channel Technics receiver but it’s the music media that’s undergone the most rapid evolution. From vinyl discs on a Dual 1229q turntable, to a Teac reel-to-reel, to a single drawer CD, to a 5-disc CD tray, to an iPod with a Griffin FM broadcast adapter, to an iTunes playlist over WiFi to an Apple Airport Express, to Pandora over WiFi from my iPhone.

    I’m sure it won’t be long before all my appliances can not only speak but sing, then my kitchen could perform Handel’s Messiah all by itself.

  3. I see the Tooters are off to a fast, science-free start! Obviously, they are ignoring totally the paper that was published on the dinosaur tail in amber or they wouldn’t make such a silly claim. Too bad they don’t have an actual paleontologist on staff, rather it’s left to washed-up hack Klankerwanker and home-schooled Savvy Sarah to do the “analysis.”

    It boggles the mind that they have EIGHT more of these turkeys to dredge up.

  4. Charles Deetz ;)

    Trump fever is running thru the creationists. As posted elsewhere, a petition for Mike Pence, who would have a friendly ear to begin with:

    We therefore urge you to persuade President Trump to issue an executive order imposing a nationwide indefinite moratorium on the teaching of evolution in public schools. For it to be effective, this order should clearly state that it supersedes the decisions of state and district boards of education regarding the science curriculum.

    And these are the supposed defenders of free speech versus PC speech.

  5. Has it occurred to anyone else that our friend KevinC sounds an awful lot like Klinghoffer?

  6. Marry xmas or whatever you choose to celebrate to SC and readership. A safe and healthy 2017 to all.

    And I’m a little jealous of DocBill right now.

  7. It has occurred to me since quite a while that many creationists sound like each other.

  8. For the IFFZ: I was deeply amused by the recent Discoveroid blog by none other than Westie himself: Walt Disney and Evolution: A Study in Ambiguity. Westie argues that, despite all appearances, All-American Walt was a dissenter from Darwin, too, somehow–as if, even if true, that would somehow be significant.

    Oh yes, and he’s also plugging his own book: Walt Disney and Live Action: The Disney Studio’s Live-Action Features of the 1950s and 60s by John G. West himself.

    It seems an odd topic for so senior a Discoveroid to cover–except, I suppose, that ole Walt’s ‘True Life Adventures’ were pretty fast and loose with facts and data as well. See Lemmings don’t commit mass suicide, Disney pushed them off a cliff

    Merry Christmas, everyone! And a Happy New Year, if that is possible in the post-Brexit, post-fact, world of President Trump and his Merry Cabinet of Bomb-Throwing Idealogues….

  9. michaelfugate

    Westie has also written – Celebrating Middle-Earth: The Lord of the Rings As a Defense of Western Civilization. Quite the pop-culture maven, is Westie. If he could only learn some history and biology…
    Happy Solstice! The light is returning!

  10. Ok. Lets make believe archaeopteryx wasn’t first described over 50 years ago. Then we can be iscoveroid ‘fellows” one and all.!!

  11. In the spirit of Christmas, here is a rehash of an 20 year old joke:

    Four Republican politicians are chatting, when a tornado whips them up and deposits them in front of the Wizard of Oz, who asks them what they would like.
    Chris Christie: please can I have some courage?
    Paul Ryan: please can I have a heart?
    Mike Pence: please can I have a brain?
    D***** T****: where’s Dorothy?

  12. An appropriate comment from a cynic: “Bah Humbug”

  13. doc bill,
    Some audio alleles become fixed for good reason. I dredged up a Placido Domingo Xmas concert on the music server this morning to give the Maggie’s a workout. Ear buds…bah, humbug.

    Have to say that the whole bag’o’electrons thing lacks the charm of those old reels too. Although it has become my primary source.

    Perhaps there is a creationist somewhere who just can’t understand why, if there’s solid state, why are there still tubes.