DI and ID vs. GR

By Phil Plait | July 13, 2008 9:00 am

I think Intelligent Falling from The Onion was funnier, but Intelligent Motion is still pretty good.

Tip o’ the reality-blinders to The SkepTick.

Oh– don’t forget, I’m doing the live video chat thang today at 3:00 Mountain time (21:00 UT).

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Antiscience, Humor, Science, Skepticism
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Comments (25)

  1. defectiverobot

    What scares me is that irony-impaired people are probably going to accept these arguments and start evangelizing for them. Lets not forget the wisdom of a certain deranged, solipsistic economist (paraphrasing): “The theory of evolution doesn’t explain where gravity comes from!”

  2. Sir Eccles

    Tip of the hat to the commenter Robert Crowther on that IM article, very well written response.

  3. TheBlackCat

    I agree with Sir Eccles, that comment = is perfect.

  4. TheBlackCat

    I meant to do that.

  5. TheBlackCat

    Darn, being a Poe is more difficult that it looks

  6. (Ringmaster of The Naked Loon here)

    Nuts, I even tried to search The Onion to see if they had already done a similar article, but that one didn’t come up in my search. Oh well.

  7. madge

    I keep hearing Buzz Lightyear in my mind! This isn’t flying it’s falling with STYLE! Likewise this idea will never get off the ground!(She said with all due gravity) Sorry!

  8. Mattness

    There’s also the theory of intelligent star positioning (ISP). “Nowadays more and more scientists are become accepting of Intelligent Stellar Positioning. One proof of ISP as a science is “Irreducible Constellations”. For example, if you remove just one star from the Big Dipper, it either punctures the dipper or snaps the handle, making it no longer a Dipper. What good is a broken Dipper, I ask? So, the stars could not have self-positioned themselves through random processes, proving there’s an Intelligent Cosmic Star Wrangler.” – YouTube-Comment

  9. Darth Robo

    “The theory of evolution doesn’t explain where gravity comes from!”

    True; I’ve already heard many a creationist say ““The theory of evolution doesn’t explain where the Big Bang comes from!”

  10. madge

    @ Darth Robo
    And Lobster Thermidore doesn’t explain where Boef Wellington comes from :)

  11. Caleb

    Sometimes I think a lot of religious people’s clashes with science comes from the fact that they assume that all truth is contained within their sacred texts and thus they assume that anything that cannot be found within them must be false. This leads them to try to translate things that are very obviously metaphorical or illustrative in a literal manner, which leads to a whole host of ridiculous conclusions.

    As a religious person myself, the notion that my sacred texts contain all truth is borderline laughable. To me, religion is about accepting truth no matter what the source of it is. Coincidentally that’s the same goal of science. So, I see no conflict between science and religion simply by understanding that my sacred texts are not the source of all truth.

  12. hambr

    “Take birds, for instance,” he said, “why doesn’t gravity seem to affect them as they soar majestically through the air? These are the questions that the news media and scientific establishment don’t want anyone to ask.”

    Are they kidding?????? They should burn aerospace engineers at the stake for witchcraft. Do they really think that magic or god is responsible for airplanes going from one place to another? This stuff is funny at first, then I just get angry. It is absolutely insane to want to teach our kids this garbage. I know they have their freedoms and that is great, but deep down I really wish we could prevent these people from reproducing. I am not a violent person at all, but if someone said to me ” If god is not controlling gravity then how do birds not fall of the sky when they are trying to fly?” I swear I might punch them right in the face. I’m sorry but I just had to get that out.

  13. CJ

    longtime reader rare poster here…

    Madge! That made me spit my tea out. LOL

    Birds? Really? Was that second article real or a joke. I read that and thought, ‘ok this has to be a joke because no one can be that uninformed.’

  14. Nate

    I came here to echo what defectiverobot said. The Onion piece and even the Loon piece were both pretty funny, but the ironic comments made in the latter actually struck me as even more soluble than the arguments that are currently being made in the attack on evolution. Spooky.

  15. hambr, yes they are kidding. 😉

  16. TheBlackCat

    hambr shows just how powerful Poe’s Law is. As Kok said, this is a joke, meant to parody the arguments used by the DI to attack evolution.

  17. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    “There arn’t ANY evidensee for macro-gravty in the astronomical record. Show me a star that moves, you Eisnteinists have no prove for your big bang ‘atoms to stars’ theories!”

    The bird argument was pretty funny; and add that dead birds always fall while live birds choose, and you will have a humdinger argument for Intelligent Falling/Motion™.

    @ The Tim:

    Nuts

    Still, it was pretty good. And the hilarious “Pet Owner Hierarchy” made up for any differences, before the Loon commenters did.

  18. drksky

    Funny Stuff

    BTW, Phil, why does clicking on an external link in the main story no longer open a new tab in Firefox?

  19. DLC

    Obviously Newton was wrong. Gravity is too complex.

  20. themadlolscientist

    I tend to go with the explanation I learned when I was a lot younger:

    There is no gravity. The universe sucks.

  21. Drunk Vegan

    Young-Earthers: Is God a Poor Writer?

    I was thinking about how people could possibly believe the Earth is 6,000 years old, when geologic evidence (irrefutable evidence collected for centuries) points to 4.5 billion years for the Earth, and astronomy has shown that the universe is about 13.7 billion years old.

    If the universe and everything in it were only 6,000 years old, we would be unable to see any stars further away than 6,000 lightyears, because the light would not have reached us yet. This is clearly not the case.

    If the Earth itself were only 6,000 years old, it would still be molten lava from the giant impact that formed the moon. Obviously this is not the case.

    In any case, let’s ignore the evidence for a second and just apply some logic to the Bible.

    1. Nowhere in the Bible does it state that the Earth is 6,000 years old. This number was invented by scholars who estimated the lifetimes of each generation mentioned in the Bible, adding, before that, 7 days to create the universe.

    2. The Bible does however mention that time is relative. Which is impressive for a book written 2,000 years before Einstein:

    “A day is as a thousand years, a thousand years is as a day.”

    So the Bible itself tells you not to take the time listed in the Bible literally.

    3. Why must every generation have been written in the Bible? Is God really that verbose?

    Even an amateur author knows that there are times when it is wise to skip ahead in the plot. Has every generation of humans that ever lived done something worth mentioning? Isn’t it logical to assume that sometimes there was simply nothing worth mentioning, so God (or the writers who transcribed the Bible) simply skipped ahead?

    Saying that the Earth is 6,000 years old is ultimately a sign of a lack of faith, not a confirmation of it. You are limiting your God to being a poor writer who blabs all day about irrelevancies. I doubt He appreciates the sentiment.

    So the next time you see someone bring up the “the Earth is only 6,000 years old” crap, direct them to this post.

  22. TheBlackCat

    1. Nowhere in the Bible does it state that the Earth is 6,000 years old. This number was invented by scholars who estimated the lifetimes of each generation mentioned in the Bible, adding, before that, 7 days to create the universe.

    It didn’t require much estimation, the “begats” (so-and-so begat so-and-so), along with lifespans, are fairly complete in the bible.

    2. The Bible does however mention that time is relative. Which is impressive for a book written 2,000 years before Einstein:

    “A day is as a thousand years, a thousand years is as a day.”

    So the Bible itself tells you not to take the time listed in the Bible literally.

    Except it refers to there being “day and night”, and besides even 17,000 years is still orders of magnitude off from what it should be.

    3. Why must every generation have been written in the Bible? Is God really that verbose?

    Apparently he is. It explicitly states that a certain person is the child of another person, and how long those people lived.

  23. Gary Ansorge

    Actually, if one day = 1000 years, multiply by 365 days/yr = 365000 years/metaphorical “year” times 6000 = 2,190,000,000 “real” years, which is within 50% of the mark,,,

    See! We CAN tie ourselves in biblical knots,,,

    GAry 7

  24. TheBlackCat

    The 6000 comes from the genealogies of the bible, that is what person had what other person as a child. These start with Adam and go all the way to historical rulers. So unless you expect us to believe that Noah lived for over over a third of a billion years (950years*365,000=346,750,000 years), then you have to stick to the 7 days. It would also require that humans have existed for well over two billion years. So if you don’t see humans living for hundreds of millions of years and existing since the middle precambrian, around the time of the first eukaryotes and about a billion years prior to the first multicellular organisms, then you would have to stick to the 7 days being 1000 years. That would be 7 days*1000years/1 day + 6000 years (or 10,000) = 13,000 years. (or 17,000).

  25. Drunk Vegan

    I think all of you trying to “do the math” here are missing the point. The quote isn’t literally saying “a day is exactly a thousand years, really!” It’s saying that time is relative, and that t ime is irrelevant to an omniscient God.

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