Outrageous Free Fire Zone

We know, you’re looking at the title and wondering what the outrage is. Okay, we’ll tell you. Your Curmudgeon is furious that for several days now, it’s been extremely difficult to find something to blog about.

What’s wrong with the creationists? Why don’t they do something to amuse us? It’s the only thing they’ve ever been good at, but for some reason they haven’t been posting anything we can use.

So we’re declaring another Intellectual Free Fire Zone. We’re open for the discussion of pretty much anything — science, politics, economics, whatever — as long as it’s tasteful and interesting. Banter, babble, bicker, bluster, blubber, blather, blab, blurt, burble, boast — say what you will. But avoid flame-wars and beware of the profanity filters.

We now throw open the comments to you, dear reader. Have at it!

Copyright © 2020. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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24 responses to “Outrageous Free Fire Zone

  1. For the love of a good woman, on a weekly basis I sit through a “Message” of arrant biblical nonsense at her evangelical christian church. Yesterday the church brought in a “scientist” named Dr Robert Carter of the Creation Ministries International (Bio: here).

    In addition to the usual litany of Creationist Clunkers he was selling subscriptions to their “Creation” magazine and the church sent around a special “Love Offering” collection.

    Of course the sheep in the pews nodded and laughed at the appropriate places, although I think I did notice a larger than usual number of early walk outs, which I took as a good sign.

    Creation Ministries International gives Ham a run for their money in terms of slickness of presentation. But the question I was left with is, is this guy a sincere imbecile, or a slick, malevolent con man? I couldn’t tell.


  2. O great Hand of Correction – I pray the Aardvark will dispense a closing parenthesis after the word “here” in the first paragraph.

    [Voice from above] So let it be written, so let it be done.

  3. Brexit already costing more than UK’s net contributions to EU over 47 years

    And we are still a year away from even knowing what Brexit actually is!

    Weep for the Britain Formerly Known as Great…

  4. IMHO, it is difficult to understand motivation, and probably pointless. It has been pointed out that easiest
    person to fool is oneself.
    If we are talking about motivations, there are many possibilities for the con man. What is difficult to understand is why there are so many believers even for the most blatant con.

  5. “Why don’t they do something to amuse us?”
    They do, but as long as you don’t learn to read Dutch you’ll have to depend on me. Here we go, with trusty YEC outfit Logos.nl!
    Of these the title is sufficient:

    The flagellum – a permanent icon of Intelligent Design

    Column – despite the fossils

    In 1540 Europe suffered from drought as well

    Buried carcasses – how experiments with dead crocodils confirm the Bible

    Thrilling news: follow Logos.nl on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and share that message with your friends and you’ll participate in a lottery. You can win a DVD called “The case for Christ”! Be honest, you don’t want to miss that chance.

  6. But the ice on the cakes is this brilliant shorty.


    How heavy is the Earth?

    Question: if you could put the Earth on a weighing scale, how heavy would she be? And could weight of the Earth change, without rocks coming in from space?

    [It takes a creacrapper to ask something like this; we never would think of it]

    Answer: you can calculate the mass of the Earth with Newton’s Law of Gravitation. That way we arrive at a mass of the Earth of 5,97 x 10^24 kilogram; that’s almost six thousand million million million tonne. An unimaginable weight! If you assume no mass is added or removed from or into space you only can change the mass of the Earth by putting Einstein’s well known formula E = mc2 into practice. That means turning mass into energy (or the other way round), something that for instance happens in a hydrogen bomb. However, then only a few kilogram per explosion transformed. You won’t change the mass of the Earth significantly this way.

    [Holy Moly, is this what we should expect from education in a creacrap theocracy?]

  7. @Skmarshall is puzzled: “is this guy a sincere imbecile, or a slick, malevolent con man?”
    My answer is always that he’s well beyond the point that this difference still matters. Such are the wonders of Oogity Boogity Land!

    @Mega: yup, that one made the Dutch newspapers too. I cannot deny feeling some schadenfreude. However folks like you (and PaulB) remain welcome at this side of the small pond.

  8. @TomS
    “What is difficult to understand is why there are so many believers even for the most blatant con.”

    Speaking for the one nearest and dearest to me, and her con of choice: “If I believe this I will one day see my father again.”

  9. If you really enjoy a good laugh, go to this site: https://www.wireclub.com/topics/science and browse the threads, some great creationist mantra dribbling in there!

  10. @SC You’re no Yul Brynner and it’s a little early but what the heck, I’ll have a quick shot of Knob Creek for the “So let it be written, so let it be done.”

  11. For anyone in the UK between 7th and 16th of February, don’t miss the many events at the DarwIN Shrewsbury Festival!

  12. I assume that there will be discussion on the report on “living machines” – built on cells from African clawed frogs, using “evolutionary design”. Lots of issues.

  13. TomS. I love Xenopus (clawed frogs). Kept them as pets for me nite awhile. I’ll look for reference to what you mentioned but if you have a source I’d like to see it. Thanks!

  14. A blast from the past:

    O great Hand of Correction – I pray the Aardvark will dispense a closing parenthesis after the word “here” in the first paragraph.

    In the Pascal programming language curly brackets enclose comments.

    {This is my first Pascal program}
    Program my_program (input, output);

    writeln (‘Hello World’);

    Well, years ago a student came to me with a compiler error message he didn’t know: Errors 1; Unexpected EOF

    I knew what to look for and, sure enough, there was an “open” comment:

    { This comment has no closing bracket!

    You didn’t close the comment, I said, so the compiler thought your program was one long comment, then it came to the End of File unexpectedly. Thus the error.

    Student returned a few minutes later, furious. What kind of teacher are you, anyway? He demanded. I came to you with one error, did what you told me to do and now I have 52 errors! And he stormed off.

    I seem to recall he got a job with Microsoft, but that could just be my snarky recollection.

  15. @Green Poison Frog
    I assume that there will be lots of press coverage, but I saw it in The Guardian online “Scientists use stem cells from frogs to build first living robots”
    and they refer to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
    “A scalable pipeline for designing reconfigurable organisms”
    Sam Kriegman, Douglas Blackiston, Michael Levin, and Josh Bongard
    PNAS first published January 13, 2020 https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1910837117
    Open access!

  16. chris schilling

    There are evangelicals in Oz who insist the mega-fires are God’s way of trying to tell us something: Read more Bible, or “Jesus saves!” or something equally vacuous.

    People never expect the worst, but the worst always happens, if not to you, then to someone else. We were warned about this sort of thing at least twenty years ago, and the Conservatives on the right stalled, or shrugged it off. Now we’re in it, and the evangelicals use it as a pretext to talk about the wrath of God, or some such nonsense.

    Usually I enjoy schadenfreude, but it’s a bit hard when you’re the one copping the consequences, along with everyone else!

  17. @FrankB – The weight of the earth does change because of E=mc^2, and not just from nuclear explosions. A more significant weight loss occurs from the natural decay of radioactive isotopes, most of which are in the earth’s core, generating much of the heat that drives plate tectonics. Other loss occurs from the ongoing outgassing from our atmosphere.

    Still, these two losses are no match for the weight gained from infalling space dust and meteors. Net result — the earth gets heavier as it gets older, just like the rest of us.

  18. @MichaelF: one of the headlines I took from Logos.nl above shows that kind of “reasoning” occurs in The Netherlands as well – and, I haste to add, not only among creacrappers. The most famous Dutch politician, Geert Wilders, has an advertisement on tv that literally says “air never has been so clean since decades”. What he omits is that the air in my country belongs to the most polluted in entire Europe.
    Talking schadenfreude, here we enjoy an ammonia crisis – especially Dutch farmers produce way too much ammonia.(conveniently called nitrogen crisis, because that sounds less bad). This seriously threatens our economy (for one thing building projects have been halted). Still above mentioned Wilders calls this “climate madness”; many farmers refuse to accept the scientific conclusions. What makes me especially cynical is that subsequent governments have been warned more than 10 years ago that this would happen.
    Predictably our right wing government only considers half hearted measures, several of which (speed limit back from 130 km/h to 100 km/h) likely are not going to work properly anyway.
    I’m a climate pessimist. We have passed the point of no return a few years ago. Fortunately I’m old enough and won’t see the inevitable real [*bleep*] hit the fan.

  19. Apparently WordPress is a climate sceptic too, because my comments “is awaiting moderation”.

    [Voice from above] The problem was the Curmudgeon’s rule against foul language.

  20. BlitzWatch: “Project Blitz is a coordinated effort by Christian Nationalists to inject religion into public education . . . using a distorted definition of ‘religious freedom.’

    ”In order to achieve these goals, the Project Blitz campaign arms state-level politicians with model bills, proclamations, and talking points through its legislative guide.”

    More at link.


  21. FrankB makes reference to

    [t]he most famous Dutch politician, Geert Wilders

    The calibre of the man was well illustrated in a 2016 interview on the BBC:
    How Geert Wilders views the European Union

    The calibre of the arguments for Brexit are similarly explicit in the above…

  22. The good thing coming from the Brexit is that Wilders and co, while continuing to produce nonsense about the EU, have quit suggesting a Nexit.