Psuedo Live Blog of Bill Nye-Ken Ham Creationism debate

I foolishly live blogged the near 3 hour Bill Nye-Ken Ham creationist debate. It is done in live style, so bare that in mind. It is conversational.

We begin with a commercial for Ken Ham’s creationist museum. Full of cute cartoons to draw in the kids.

It is amazing how much of a fuck you this is to non Christian creationist faiths. Ham’s early slides mention Jesus. Too bad for any of the other faiths that have the same idea. So it’s not just a creationist belief, but Christian creationist.

Ken Ham is Australian. I bet Mel Gibson loves him. His creationist museum had 2 million visitors. That makes me sad. The debate is hosted at his museum.

It is not as much of a debate, point/response. It is more like two people presenting polished presentations.

Bad logic: the guy who invented the MRI is a creationist, thus it is true. Of course the million of other scientists disagreeing are not mentioned. This reminds me of climate change deniers. He does this consistently, bringing up scientists who are creationist, some who are chairs at US universities. I need a list of those schools to make sure nobody I like ever attends them.

A big argument Ham forwards is that science about the past is impossible because we cannot see it/were not there to witness it. I’m still unclear who witnessed the creation of God on day zero. This is the observational vs experimental science argument. But Hams view of observation is things he can see with his eyeballs. Because he cannot see carbon dating then it is experimental. I am starting to believe he does not believe in microscopes.

He keeps arguing the point that Nye can not show any science that also could not be created by god. Of course, an omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent god is an easy out. My god can do anything, so all your facts are useless.

He points out flaws in Darwin’s finch theories of evolution. But Darwin wrote that in fucking 1859. We didn’t know that blood types existed then. We know more now. His argument that Darwin believed in racial superiority as part of evolution is a disgusting and specious argument against our modern scientific beliefs.

I hate how much Ham focuses on public schoolbooks. That is the point of this debate. He is trying to get creationism taught in all public schools. Fucking disgusting.

I am unsure this high profile debate will have any effect. It’s not going to change the minds of creationists. But it sure is fun to rip apart.

Hmmm. He implies the dinosaurs were all killed by Noah’s flood. I don’t know creationism so closely that I was aware of this belief.

Holy crap. He brought up the primacy of heterosexual marriage as proof of gods post lapsarian introduction of sin.

Homophobia mentioned, everyone DRINK!

“The battle is about authority” he says. Who is in charge, God or man? He relates this to Texas laws. He basically wants a biblical government. Fuck democracy. He ends this segment with “died on the cross for your sins”, so fuck you to the Jews and Hindus and Arabs and shintos etc.

Fuck this is long. I’m 1 hour in and all they have had is opening statements and then Ham spoke for like 30 minutes.

Bill Nye counters. There are 680,000 layers of seasonality in a recovered piece of ice. That means we needed to have 170 seasons per year under a 6000 year belief and says “wouldn’t somebody have noticed that.” Too funny. There are trees that have more than 6000 rings. You can go see them at a fucking museum. Haha.

He says about “observational” science. Go and visit the layers in the Grand Canyon and “observe” those.

Hahaha. Nye says if all the animals were on the ark, and the arc landed near babel, how did kangaroos get to Australia without leaving any evidence of their travel. They only exist in Australia. Where did they come from if not evolution.

This audience is almost 100% creationists. They don’t laugh at any of Bill Nye’s stupid jokes (non partisan super bowl jokes for example). Get the sticks out of your ass people. Bill Nye makes 7 year olds chuckle, but not adults with the minds of 7 year olds.

Hmm, fascinating. the biggest wooden ship ever, a New England ship called the Wyoming, was incapable of being sailed by its 14 extremely awesome sailors. Some of the best sailors humanity has ever had. The tensile strength of wood could not keep the hull from bending. The arc had 8 sailors and 7000 creatures on it. (Did I use tensile correctly?)

He is talking about fish sex. Asexual minnows who can have sex with themselves have more diseases than the same minnows who have the sexy time with other minnows. The reason is two creatures create new DNA that is able to defend itself better. I think a few bible thumpers heads just exploded at the mention of the icky sex talk.

In Kentucky (home of this debate and the creationist museum) there are zero universities that cover nuclear medicine. How sad.

Finally!! Rebuttals and debate time. Each gets 5 minutes per point. Ham has a little joke and everyone laughs. This audience is depressing.

Ut oh. Ham is raising questions about mt St. Helens. Bill Nye is on the Mt St Helens research commission. Don’t step on super mans cape dude.

Wow. Ham is slamming any Christian who does not believe in creationism. They are all misled. 6000 years or nothing!

Ham talks about how “Death is because of mans sin.” What is the sin of the innocent children who die in natural disasters? (This is the Deism vs Theism argument.)

Ham talks about how carbon dating is not perfect. He shows where dating placed a tree at 45k and the rock above it as 40million. Nye says “well maybe the rock just slid over it, seems a simpler explanation than a supreme being”. Ham counters that the rock surrounded the tree. Yah, I’m sure there is no other explanation.

Lol. Nye talks about Hams belief that we cannot see the past. All astronomy is the past. We see light from years ago. In fact we see each other in the micro past as it takes light time to go from the back of the auditorium to the front. Nye makes a good joke about the people at the back looking younger to him. I think these people do not believe in the existence of light. Nobody laughs.

Ham uses the term “biblical” a lot. But he is always referring to the Old Testament. Strange.

My god. Why am I doing this. My mind is becoming mush listening to this idiocy. You can’t argue with these people. There is a fundamental gap in belief that can never be bridged. If people don’t believe in any science not visible to their eyeballs we can’t get very far.

Ham basically says he does not believe in the light distance measurements because of the horizon issue. Sigh.

On the arc, ham says maybe Noah was the best ever. Nye replies with “maybe you believe in superheroes but I don’t”. Haha.

There are pyramids older than the flood. Lol. Ham probably doesn’t believe Egyptians exist. It’s not like that area or those people were in the bible or anything.

I wish Nye was stronger on the bible. He doesn’t know it very well and it inhibits his ability to make a great point about Hams constant mixing of old and New Testament.

Holy crap. Oh no. 45 minutes of audience questions. I am losing my mind. This is going to be scary.

This is the whitest audience ever. Michelle Bachman has a more diverse turn out.

How arrogant and narcissistic a belief it is that god created the earth first. He creates it for us. Me me me me me.

Where did atoms come from? Nye says that is why we do science, to learn, to find such answers. Ham says it is already clearly answered. There is a book about it, da bible. We are all doomed if these people get in charge. His belief implies we don’t need to do science. We already know the answer.

This is a basic problem. Scientist understand that we do not know all the answers. New discovery explains and changes and resets our beliefs based on new knowledge. Creationism is a closed book. All is set and can never be changed.

This is a debate about creationism and the 6000 year time frame, not about Christian belief. Most Christians are not creationists.

“Could anything ever change your mind.” Hams answer. “I am a Christian … No, no one is ever going to convince me that the word of god is false.”<— the problem with this debate.

Ignorance. That is what this is all about. It isn't about Christianity. Millions of believers, Christian, Jew and Arab, believe the earth is 45 million years old.

Best question so far. "Favorite color, one word answer". Nye says "green, because green plants reflect green" Ham asks if he can get 3 words "observational science blue". That was actually funny.

Hams creationist argument is all based on observational science. He can never be proven wrong because we cannot go back in time to prove anything. It is a denial of discovery and exploration.

Ham has argued in the past that we should not go to mars and search for life because we already have the answer, which is no.

Ham gets asked if all the bible should be taken literally. He waffles. Says some shit about some being fact and some, like psalms, are parables. Other parts, like its support for multiple wives show sin and the New Testament declares one man one woman.

Homophobia reference, DRINK!

Intelligence design discussion. I wish Bill was better at arguing this point. He basically says fuck that shit. He would have been better off given a "we don't know" answer like he did for the creation of matter or the genesis of conscious thought.

Lol. "beyond museums or carnivals is there anyone using creationism to create anything in this world." Great question. He uses false logic by saying historical scientists who were creationists produced wonderful product. But none of them "used" creationism to make those products.

Omg. I saw a black person in the audience. DRINK!!

Final question for the Q&A. 2 hours and 38 minutes of torture. Your all welcome.

Is there any single thing that drives you. A lame question.

Ham obviously says the bible. He says if you believe in god then god will reveal himself to you and mentions riches of gold and silver.

Capitalist Christianity. DRINK!!

Nye says it's the drive of why are we here and are we alone. And notes that hams beliefs are a drive to stop looking for answers and we stop inventing. So a move to kick out science from out schools is dangerous for America as it competes in the world.

Holy fuck. It's over. Wow. The one thing I can say is that the creationist view is a minority, but the anti science beliefs of too many Christians in America is not. It is dangerous. It is a walk back from progress. It is a belief that leads to a more brutal world, more pain, more tears, more death, more hatred, more bigotry, more sadness.

I know this was long. I hope, if anybody actually made it to the end, that my live blog was at least fun.

Thanks for listening,


The 365 Day Graphic Novel Challenge


Writers: Matt Wagner

Artists: Various

Dark Horse, 2000


Been a long time since I’ve thought of that name.

Back in the early 80s, Matt Wagner made a big splash with GRENDEL which was one of the early successes for independent comics.  Then Wagner did something completely unexpected and killed the character.  It was hard to imagine the series continuing after that but Wagner did it and did it amazingly.  He shifted the focus from the character to the mantle of Grendel as it overcame several different people and provided a series that was truly unique and innovative.

But, like all good characters, the original Grendel can’t quite stay dead.  This book collects a limited series which highlighted stories about the original Grendel, Hunter Rose.  Some are quite excellent, some are somewhat mystifying but all are worth reading and they bring an unexpected depth to…

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The Toys of Imagination

MonsterManualTony DiTerlizzi has a fascinating post up about the visual creative origins of some classic Dungeons and Dragons monsters and the power of play and imagination. Tony worked on the Advanced Dungeons and Dragons Monster Manual and talks about how some of the monsters were based on a set of cheesy plastic monster figures from Hong Kong.

He has included some great pictures of his personal collection along with some history from Tim Kask. Well worth checking out here.

(via BoingBoing)


The 365 Day Graphic Novel Challenge


Writer & Artist: Daniel Clowes

Pantheon, 2011

Daniel_Clowes_-_Mister_Wonderful_coverI had to take a break from the Cthulhu comics.  The madness was not coming from the concepts but the overwhelming monotony of it all.

So what better phase shift than Daniel Clowes?

MISTER WONDERFUL is a story about a blind date and the aftermath.  It is told virtually completely through the interior monologue of Marshall who has been set up on a blind date by a married couple he knows.  It begins with Marshall sitting in a coffee shop, waiting for his date to arrive, and scoping out many of the people around him including hoping that some are not his prospective date.

Once his date does arrive, the evening gets off to a painful start as Marshall examines everything he says and focuses so much on trying to make a good impression that he nearly bungles it.  What happens…

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The 365 Day Graphic Novel Challenge


Writer/Artist: Eric Powell

Albatross, 2002

2359040-screenshot_02This is really a book for die-hard GOON fans.

It reprints the first three self-published GOON comics before the title went to Dark Horse and it’s easy to see some of the differences here.

Powell’s artwork is not as polished (which he readily admits) and the plots are weak.  There is a running commentary throughout the reprints between Eric and his fictional publisher which is actually quite amusing.  But, during the commentary, Powell points out many of the problems himself.

It’s an interesting three issues as it not only provides an origin for the Goon but also solves the mystery of the Goon’s unseen employer which were plots not so quickly covered in the DH version.

Still, many of the salient attractions of the strip are here even if in an embryonic form.  We have the Goon, Franky, the Zombie Priest…

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The 365 Day Graphic Novel Challenge


Writer: Brian K. Vaughn

Artist: Adrian Alphona

Marvel, 2009

runaways-teen-aAfter a promising beginning in the first volume, Vaughn drops the ball here.

The teenage spawn of super-villains are still on the run from their folks in this second volume.  They’ve found a ‘base’ to hide out in and spend most of their time trying to figure out what to do.  Enter a mysterious youth who appears to also be a child of evil who (not surprisingly) turns out to be something else.

Oh, and then Cloak & Dagger show up because one of the cops on the parent’s payroll has the bright idea to send them after the runaways.

I lost interest in the storyline with the new kid because it diverted from the main story.  Plus I got tired of hearing the kids bicker.  The plot picks up again with the arrival of Cloak & Dagger…

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The 365 Day Graphic Novel Challenge


Writer/Artist: Marjane Satrapi

Random House, 2003

persepolis_cover_bigThis is one of those books that I’ve always known about but never actually read.  I don’t tend to be a big fan of autobiographical comics to begin with and, as a 51 year old white male, I doubted that I would be able to connect with the childhood of an Iranian girl.

At times I can be, in the parlance of my then 3 year old nephew, “a lobster poo-poo pee-pee head”.

Although I can no more identify with the struggles of a young Iranian girl than my cat can identify with my own personal struggles, PERSEPOLIS is that type of narrative that transcends race, gender and culture and illuminates the basic human struggle of us all.

Told from her point of view, it is the story of Satrapi growing up in Iran and enduring the Shah’s reign and then the ‘cultural…

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