Can there be a President with 16th Century beliefs?

While watching a series on cable recently about the creation and development of the universe, based on the scientific knowledge which has been growing for centuries, I was stunned by the flat out statement that the Earth was created 4.5 billion years ago in the smashing together of meteors.

This was in the context of a 10-billion-year old universe which started with a Big Bang.

The billions of years of lava formations, the cooling of water and the 1.5 billion year old covering of the earth with ice, the development of single-celled creatures that eventually evolved into water creatures thousands of years before dinosaurs - all these things which have been proven by science I found amazing and spectacular.

Then I read an online article about Mike Huckabee... essentially a discussion of his conflicts with environmentalists... and it brought up his Creationist beliefs: the six-thousand-year old world created by God, the separate creation of man (in the Garden of Eden, I guess).

This makes him no different from the early European church that burned those whose beliefs led to scientific discoveries, that kept millions from learning even to read,  and made religion the basis of government.

How can time travel backwards in this way? I understand that there are millions of people who believe the same things and who will never allow themselves to read of, much less accept, contemporary knowledge. Religion, then, effects education, effects politics and effects our future.

We have spent seven years with a President who has all but disabled development in science, education and medicine, but who has used war and military invasions like the ancient Crusaders. Are we going to continue going into the historic depths of time?

Under The LobsterScope

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The Evolution Gap - I Thought it was Bigger!

I like to think that my fellow Democrats are a lot like me. Then a Gallup poll rocked me out of this delusion.

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Progressive Blogging 2.0 (or 3.0?)

I've been online since 1995.  I have my own blog, Mercury Rising, which has been around Blogspot and now WordPress since December of 2004; before that, I'd spent a number of years hanging around Eschaton, DailyKos, Hullabaloo and other first-generation progblogs; before that, I spent a lot of time at Salon's "Table Talk" message boards, from whence a number of progbloggers (TBogg, Atrios (who posted as "Kurt Foster"), etc.) apparently got their start.  Recently, I was invited to be a part of Fire Dog Lake's guest crew of posters.

I'm writing this because I wanted to make some (deeply subjective) observations on the pre-progblog era (1995-2001), ProgBlogs 1.0 (2002-2004), ProgBlogs 2.0 (2004-present), and ProgBlogs 3.0 (now?).  

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Hitchens: Karl Rove an Atheist

Cross posted at Democratic Courage blog.

According to ex-liberal neo-con Bush administration buddy Christopher Hitchens, Karl Rove is an atheist. Here's an excerpt from his interview with  New York magazine's Boris Kachka:

Has anyone in the Bush administration confided in you about being an atheist?
Well, I don't talk that much to them--maybe people think I do. I know something which is known to few but is not a secret. Karl Rove is not a believer, and he doesn't shout it from the rooftops, but when asked, he answers quite honestly. I think the way he puts it is, "I'm not fortunate enough to be a person of faith."

What must Bush make of that?
I think it's false to say that the president acts as if he believes he has God's instructions. Compared to Jimmy Carter, he's nowhere. He's a Methodist, having joined his wife's church in the end. He also claims that Jesus got him off the demon drink. He doesn't believe it. His wife said, "If you don't stop, I'm leaving and I'm taking the kids." You can say that you got help from Jesus if you want, but that's just a polite way of putting it in Texas.

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The Republican Debate


Brief comments:

Mitt Romney was clearly the most poised and articulate. (and his hair is almost Reaganesque). McCain was the most energized and passionate. Giuliani seemed to wander around with his comments, especially on abortion. But the top three remained the top three.

Mike Huckabee gave thoughtful responses - but he doesn't believe in evolution? Ron Paul was far removed from the others. And Tom Tancredo gets the wingnut prize for calling for repeal of the 16th Amendment.

So, was McCain a bit over the top? Did Giuliani too often hark back to 9/11? And is Romney too smooth by half?

Maybe the real winner is Fred Thompson


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