The Watering Hole, Saturday, March 19, 2016: Please Don’t Feed The Bible Literalists

There are people going around expounding ridiculous theories on the history of Earth and the Life that has existed on it, and we have to stop encouraging them. I’m not suggesting they be locked up in prisons or mental institutions (the former might be a bit harsh but I do think the latter might do them some good), but I am saying that we have to stop treating these ridiculous ideas as if they have any merit whatsoever just because there are still people around delusional enough to believe them. There are many such ideas, but the one I want to talk about today is the Biblical story of the farmer’s daughter and the traveling salesman Noah’s Ark and the Great Flood. They never happened. There was no flood 4,400 years or so ago that wiped out all humans and other living land-based animals on the planet. There may have been flooding in various parts of the world, but it wasn’t a global phenomenon, and it didn’t rain for nearly six weeks, and then take nearly six months for the waters to recede. For one thing, even if all the ice on all the land melted, the waters would never rise enough to submerge all the mountains or come anywhere close to doing that. And if, as the story goes, the waters rose high enough to cover the mountains all over the world (not just in the know part of it at that time), then to where did the water recede? Did it just evaporate off the planet? Did it go down some giant drain that God temporarily plugged up while it rained? The water that rained down had to have come from somewhere. If it came from the oceans, then they would have been depleted by the amount of water they gave up to become rain. So the water coming back down out of the sky couldn’t possibly have been more than what went up into them. So the waters from the rain couldn’t possibly rise higher than the mountains. It’s just not possible.

But don’t waste your time trying to explain that to Wayne Propst, of Tyler, Texas. [First name Wayne = Red Alert.] Wayne is convinced he found evidence of Noah’s flood in his aunt’s front yard. “How much better can it get?” he asked, unfortunately to a reporter from a local television station as opposed to no one in particular. I guess that would depend on your definition of “better” and in which direction you want this story to go. For example, Wayne wants to claim the fossil he found is proof that Noah’s flood happened. (Why do they call it Noah’s Flood? He was the one good guy on the planet. He didn’t flood the earth. God did.) But if that were true, then when would the flood have happened? About 4,400 years ago? So his fossil couldn’t be older than that. But fossils, by definition, are at least ten thousand years old. If you find a fossil, then you have found something that, by definition, pre-dated the story of Noah and His Technicolor Dream Flood. Therefore it cannot be proof that the flood story ever happened, because it was already there in the ground when the flood supposedly happened above it. In fact, if you’re a Bible literalist, it was in the ground before the Earth was created.

Speaking of Noah and Worldwide Synchronous Drowning Event, I hear many people wrongly say that God’s Covenant to Noah was that he would never destroy the world again, and that the rainbow in the sky would be a reminder to Him (God, not just Noah and the other remaining seven people on the planet) of that covenant. Okay. Why would an omnipotent being need some kind of reminder about something? Does that make any sense at all to you? He’s all-knowing, yet there are things he can forget happened. He’s all-powerful, except against memory loss. But that’s not what God promised Noah. He only promised Noah and his family that he would not destroy life on Earth by flood again. Read it for yourself. But why would He have even done so in the first place? He’s an all-powerful entity, isn’t He? Doesn’t he later send out a mysterious ankle-deep fog that killed the first-born male child of every household (according to Cecile B. DeMille)? If He had the ability to do that, why not do the same thing without the first-born male filter? Why the scientifically wrong flood story? But He never said he wouldn’t do the opposite, either. He never said he wouldn’t destroy all life on Earth by drying it up, and letting it catch fire. Or by making the air unbreathable. Or by setting loose a killer virus, unstoppable by modern medicine (which some people think violates his wishes, too.) He created the world in six days, but he needed forty to flood it with extra-terrestrial water and another 150 days to let it dry up? He couldn’t do all of that with the same wave of His Hand he used to create all Life on this planet? Does that make any sense to you at all? Because it sure as shit doesn’t make any sense to me. Why do people believe such nonsense? And why do we treat them like they’re sane when they tell us they do? How can “the Bible” (which is just a collection of little books) be the “literal word of God” when it was translated from stories written in languages unspoken in centuries, by flawed human men who obviously mistook the ancient word for “moon” or “month” as the word for “year” (hence, all these old men living twelve times longer than normal), and it contains such blatant falsehoods? Please, tell me you don’t believe the Bible is literally true. I want to be able to talk to you again.

This is our daily open thread. You know what to do, and what not to do.

25 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Saturday, March 19, 2016: Please Don’t Feed The Bible Literalists

  1. When the rain stopped and the water receded, it carved the Grand Canyon. IIRC, there was even a book for sale at Grand Canyon Natl Park that explained the details, among other things.

    In re Wayne Propst, the only fossils that were ever in his aunt’s front yard were him and his aunt.

    The bible is, in reality, nothing at all beyond a “record” of sorts that details the means used by some clever ancient tyrant alpha males to attain power over the masses and then keep it. Solomon noted in Ecclesiastes, “there is nothing new under the sun.” He got that right,. For ‘modern’ details, feel free to google Trump, Bush, Cheney, Putin, Reagan, Mussolini, Hussein, Nixon, Hitler, Stalin, Cruz . . . etc.

    “The Bible is an antique volume — written by faded men.” (Emily Dickinson, circa 1861)

    • There is also a series on YouTube called Time Team. This series ran for over 20 years and is hosted by Tony Robinson, the actor who played Baldrick in the Black Adder series. The team of archeologists, historians with experts in various fields spend 3 days digging up history. In one episode they uncovered a 250,000,000 year-old mammoth fossil.

  2. Brutal Anti-Cruz Attack Ad Just 30 Seconds Of Candidate’s Photo Displayed Without Any Text, Voiceover, Music

    In what many political observers are calling a new low in an election season that has already seen its share of negative campaigning, a scathing anti–Ted Cruz attack ad airing this week reportedly shows nothing more than a still photograph of the Texas senator’s face for 30 seconds, unaccompanied by any text, voiceover, or music.

    The pointed TV spot—which continues on in complete silence and does not pan across or zoom in on the candidate’s face, but merely holds steady on the image for half a minute before fading to black—is said to be running in several states with upcoming primaries and is paid for by a super PAC opposed to Cruz’s presidential bid.

    “This is an extremely vicious jab at Ted Cruz, and one that succeeds in painting the candidate in a most unfavorable light,” said Douglas Reisenthaler, a senior analyst with Public Policy Polling, who described the ad as by far the most unrelenting and hostile attack to air since the 2016 election cycle began. “Inevitably, some voters will be turned off by the maliciousness of showing an unretouched headshot of Ted Cruz on television screens across America, but it has nonetheless proved very effective in turning public opinion against his candidacy.”

    He added, “Everywhere this ad has aired, Cruz’s numbers have gone into complete free-fall.”

    I understand many stations are refusing to air the ad. After about ten seconds, most viewers change the channel.

    • Were the Simpsons being prescient? Or did Trump decide to model his candidacy announcement on the Simpsons clip, to prove to everyone it was a joke from the beginning. They pretty much nailed it 15 years ago.

  3. Today Brian Stelter has Amy Goodman from Democracy Now and Free Speech TV on his show, Reliable Sources. That’s the second time she’s been on his show, the first was Feb. 21st. It would be nice if he could keep that up and make her a semi-regular guest.

    • I’m so glad they finally arrested the idiot who was aiming through the crack in the wall of the overpass.

  4. McConnell: No New Supreme Court Justice Until The NRA Approves Of The Nominee

    McConnell isn’t simply delegating his duty to evaluate potential Supreme Court nominees to the NRA, he’s deferring to the NRA despite the fact that the gun lobby group’s case against Garland is very thin. It consists of Garland’s single vote to rehear a case that one of his court’s most conservative members also voted to rehear, along with a decision to allow the FBI to continue to perform audits on the background check system after lawmakers sympathetic to the NRA tried and failed to shut those audits down.

    McConnell must go, along with any politician who “thinks” like him.

  5. I decided to watch a compilation of some of Bill Maher’s new rules. Some of his jokes work and some don’t and I’m just a casual fan but there was one thing that really stuck out to me. There were only two guests who interrupted his shtick and got a dirty look. David Spade, who I can’t stand, and Tweety, who I can’t stand.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s