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The marriage of creationism and antivaccinationism—literally

Believe it or not (and you probably won’t believe it), but I never intended to post today, as it’s a holiday, and I had to write my usual level post for my not-so-super-secret other blog. But then one of you had to send me this:

I couldn’t resist at least a quick comment on this.

That’s right. Kent Hovind, one of the world’s most famous young earth creationists and frauds (given that he went to jail for tax evasion) is marrying Marry Tocco, Michigan’s own most annoying antivaccinationist and someone about whom I’ve written several times, most recently in 2014. In the video, he goes on about how his wife and his imprisonment drove his wife away and how he blames the government for breaking up their marriage.

Of course, this is yet another example of crank magnetism. After all, Hovind is known to be antivaccine. (He even points out how he knew Tocco from her antivaccine activities and praises her work.) For example, he’s posted videos on the “dangers” of vaccines and a multipart video about how earth is being depopulated through vaccines and chemtrails.

Truly, this is a match made in crank heaven. I also can’t help but wonder if this isn’t an astoundingly savvy move to seize an opportunity for Hovind and Tocco to combine their business interests and peddle creationism pseudoscience and antivaccine quackery to the masses.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

80 replies on “The marriage of creationism and antivaccinationism—literally”

Well, in favor of young earth creationism…
Relativity provides a path where the world could only be a few weeks old.
That the tau would be so low as to shift light from the sides and direction of travel to nearly absolute hot, it’d make for a very exciting and for a very short trip, as one’s magical spaceship dissolved into a quark-gluon plasma. 😉

But, the math would work out perfectly. 😛
And of course, it’s pretty much the *only* way such could be true inside of this universe. 🙂
But, oh, what gravity waves you’d generate as you blow past entire galaxies!

Yeah, I do physics jokes too.

“Literally unbelievable.”

No belief necessary since we evidence. Admittedly it’s YouTube evidence but that’s good enough for me.

I wonder if they will give joint talks on the next Woo Boat Cruise.

G-d did create the immune system perfectly, after all. Any failures are due to operator error.

@Narad, so *that’s* where we went wrong! Ignoring the manual.
Due to my birth day, rather than be a 1961 model, I’d be a pre-1962 model, which is ill documented.

So, maybe push rod was replaced with dial… 😉

Wait, Hovind AFAIK did not get divorced because of adultery. How can he get re-married?

I think it has to do with Baptists’ being different from Roman Catholics.

as one’s magical spaceship dissolved into a quark-gluon plasma.

Idk, Wizrd1. Could you elaborate upon how “light from the sides** and direction of travel” is shifted toward ‘absolute hot’?

Spoil-sport, These guys did it:

Since the Bussard engines must be kept running to provide particle/radiation shielding, and because of the hard radiation produced by the Bussard engines, the crew can neither repair the damage nor turn off their Bussard ramjets…

By the time the ship is repaired, tau has decreased to less than a billionth and the crew experience “billion-year cycles which passed as moments”. But by the time that they are ready to attempt to find a future home, they realize that the universe is approaching a big crunch.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tau_Zero#Plot

**I’ve never heard of this, only doppler shifting; And, for outer galaxies already shifted into the far infra-red and microwave, It seems that traveling in that direction would only tend to bring light back into the visible?? Just point that way.

@Gilbert:
OK, anything less than 180 degrees on the sides of the direction of motion are dilated into the front view of the direction of motion.
It’s fully described in the story, although handwaved away via their shields of magical strength.
Behind, a similar, but red shifted effect would occur. Nothing would be visible from the sides, the stern, bathed with the lowest frequencies, the bow, the hardest of gamma – enough to disintegrate them down to a quark-gluon plasma.

@Gilbert, read that a couple of months ago. Hence, my reference and expectation of recalling low tau. 🙂

Cool book, alas, the premise was wrong, as it was based upon a cyclical universe.
Today, they’d meet Doctor Who at Gallifrey, at heat death date. 😉

The age of the universe from the perspective of a photon which has (against all probabilities) traveled without colliding with anything since the moment of the big bang is 0.

@Mephistopheles O’Brien, the probability of a photon traveling any significant part of the universe without interacting with other photons or electrons is so near to zero as to not be very well worth even considering. 😉
After all, the early universe was quite an interesting place!

It is a little off-putting that this young earth/creationist Hovind guy is building a theme park in Alabama called Dinosaur Adventure Land — It seems aimed at children
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjFkJ2bTR40
=====================================

Wizrd1, what is seen is a diffuse orb of light due to doppler-shifting the cosmic microwave background (essentially homogeneous in any direction) into the visible. The stars are not visible since the light from those are shifted towards x-rays. I’m uncertain about perpendicular veiws — I seem to remember that light from those would be as seeing a linear rainbow as if the light went through a prism.

http://io9.gizmodo.com/5976041/this-is-what-it-would-really-look-like-to-travel-at-near-lightspeed

The real bitch is that every hydrogen atom becomes a cosmic ray… But, that is what the ionic scoop or Star Trek deflector dish is for.

Around every corner horrors loom,
Conspiracies all, leading to our doom.
..Hovind declares it’s all by design,
..While Tocco promotes diseases benign,
United they achieve critical mass and…Boom!

@#17 Gilbert

Holy Creationist Competition, Batman! There are already two south of Cincinnati. Hovind hopes to contend with Ham, down there in Alabama? How much free labor from the faithful does he hope to get? Considering the location and his new wife, we know there won’t be free vaccinations against Zika offered, should they be developed.

As long as we’re talking about redshift, I’d like to mention the free computer game “A Slower Speed of Light”, developed by MIT as a student project. It demonstrates relativistic effects in an intriguing way — as you collect orbs in the game’s environment (a strange village), the speed of light decreases. The effects rendered include the Doppler effect, the searchlight effect, time dilation, Lorentz contraction, and the runtime effect. One warning: as lightspeed approaches walking speed, the experience might best be described as “blarg-tastic” and it may be uncomfortable if you suffer from vertigo.

But it’s pretty cool otherwise. 😉 The gameplay mechanics are extremely simple — it’s mainly there just to showcase relativity.

http://gamelab.mit.edu/games/a-slower-speed-of-light/

“Wait, Hovind AFAIK did not get divorced because of adultery. How can he get re-married?”

“I think it has to do with Baptists’ being different from Roman Catholics.”

Not even that. Roman Catholics don’t accept divorce for adultery, or for anything actually. The Church exceptionally grants a annulation of marriage, but those are few and far between, and only for a handful of motives it deems valid: lack of consent, non-consummation, consanguinity. Adultery is not on the list. (Or they’re would be too many annulations, I guess.)

I don’t know about Baptists, but Bible literalists may find useful, so to speak, to go by the Mosaic law, which authorises divorce. That law was still on the books by the time of the Gospels, which is why Jesus is portrayed as having to opine on the legitimity of divorce. And even he didn’t forbid it outright.

@ScienceMonkey #28, yeah, some folks probably believe that.
A decade or so ago, I had someone confidently tell me about how “the microwaves stay inside of the food”.
I patiently explained that microwaves are just like light and radio waves, then asked how long the light stayed in the room after the switch was turned off.
Ah, the dawning of realization was quite obvious in that person’s face!

he’s posted videos on the “dangers” of vaccines and a multipart video about how earth is being depopulated through vaccines and chemtrails.

When you can show these folks a graph of human population over time ( https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b7/Population_curve.svg/350px-Population_curve.svg.png ), well, you think they’d at least wise up and modify their claim to state the reptilian overlords are decreasing the growth rate (so we’re only at 7.5 billion people instead of 20 billion or so) because there’s clearly no depopulation. They’re not even clever at what they lie about.

Regarding this union of delusional minds–when I was in 8th grade, the two most obnoxious (class-clown/always gabbing) classmates began dating. One day the two of them just wouldn’t shut up as the math teacher tried to explain the quadratic equation on the chalkboard. He finally turned around and told them “I hope you two marry so you only screw up one marriage”. The ensuing silence bought enough time for the teacher to finish the derivation which was probably his only goal, but the wisdom of those words applies here, too.

OK, anything less than 180 degrees on the sides of the direction of motion are dilated into the front view of the direction of motion.

Ahh. Yes, Wzrd1, it’s all coming back to me now — even what is behind is crowded into the front view but doppler-shifted red.

Here’s Carl Sagan on the subject.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQnka2wNa_M
=====================

Thx, Calli Arcale #22. I’ll have a look.

the probability of a photon traveling any significant part of the universe without interacting with other photons or electrons is so near to zero as to not be very well worth even considering

Yet we can observe the cosmic microwave background, which is a remnant of the very early universe. To lowest order, it looks like an isotropic background consistent with a black body spectrum at a temperature of 2.7 K. The usual explanation is that these photons are redshifted from the much hotter thermal spectrum they had at the time the CMB was generated. There is a small dipole moment (less than one part per thousand) due to our motion with respect to that background, and even smaller (parts per million or less) oscillations at higher dipole moments, which constrain our theories of the early universe to a large degree (I’d have to look up details; palindrom, who is an astrophysicist IRL, might know them offhand).

Eric @32 — I think the dipole moment is a bit more than 1 in 10^3, and the finer structure is about 1 in 10^5. You’re right that the finer structure does constrain the history of the early universe remarkably tightly — it’s really amazing. The detection and mapping of these has brought us into the era of what’s sometimes called “precision cosmology”. For example, we know that the universe’s geometry is Euclidean to within about 1 per cent.

If you’d told me this 45 years ago when I first learned about cosmology, I’d have been astonished.

I can hear Hovind’s self-written vows now:
Hello, my name is Kent Hovind. …
(that’s the actual first sentence in the introduction in his PhD dissertation at Patriot University, the double-wide mobile house on the hill)

This is stupid, but when I see a picture of a galaxy that is 12 billion light years away I think how those photons captured just had their journey stopped by us but then I think there’s still a lot more photons from that galaxy and I don’t feel so bad. Yeah…I know that’s stupid.

There’s no way I would watch 12 minutes of that loon ramble on…his divorce being the ‘fault’ of the government is a conversation-ender. But it appears that he’ll be very happy with another old white dried up racist crank. Good on ’em

his divorce being the ‘fault’ of the government

Wait, what? Admittedly I didn’t watch the video (I have enough problems suffering fools as it is), but making a claim like that without evidence is a surefire sign of a narcissist.

I don’t normally give people like Ms. Tocco advice I intend to be helpful, but in this case I’ll say the same thing I’d say to any female acquaintance in a similar situation: Run away!

Kent Hovind, one of the world’s most famous young earth creationists and frauds (given that he went to jail for tax evasion)

Oh, is he a “sovereign citizen” too?

“Yet we can observe the cosmic microwave background, which is a remnant of the very early universe.”

This and related comments: you need to consider the extinction distance for the photons. Most of the original photons may have been extinguished (absorbed), replaced by new ones (emitted) that are approximately the same. This is a routine calculation in astronomy. For example, light passes through a window even though virtually zero photons transit the window glass. The extinction distance in space is much longer but the principle is the same. Key variables are density and composition of the ISM and photon energy/wavelength.

Photons in many cases originate much closer than you might expect.

Wait, Hovind AFAIK did not get divorced because of adultery. How can he get re-married?

I think it has to do with Baptists’ being different from Roman Catholics.

Not entirely sure about Baptists, but Jehovah’s Witnesses only allow for divorce in cases of adultery, which seems to be the biblical position. I do know of some cases of rotten marriages where somebody will go off and commit adultery so he or she can get divorced. They usually get “disfellowshiped” for this, but can get “reinstated” eventually.

For example, light passes through a window even though virtually zero photons transit the window glass.

Scattering, absorption, emission:

The fact is that the photons coming out of the other side of the glass are not the same ones that went in to the glass.

As photons hit the glass, they scatter off the atoms in the glass — or rather, they are absorbed by the glass atoms, inducing a vibration of the atom, and then the vibration causes a new photon to be emitted in a random direction. There’s a delay between when the photon is absorbed and when the new one is emitted.

https://www.quora.com/When-photons-travel-through-glass-their-speed-is-reduced-When-they-exit-the-glass-e-g-into-a-vacuum-their-speed-will-be-higher-What-gives-them-the-energy-to-accelerate

How does image fidelity survive the process, rs? Why does glass not pass IR and UV? Too far out of range for the material to absorb and emit? Windows have ‘windows’.
==================================

OK, anything less than 180 degrees on the sides of the direction of motion are dilated into the front view of the direction of motion.

I could never get a ‘feel’ for that, Wzrd1 #11.

Relativistic Aberration:

Half the speed of light, and we’re developing eyes in the back of our head

http://www.fourmilab.ch/cship/aberration.html
========================

I tried that game, Calli Arcale #22. It is certainly interesting though there is too much ‘inertia’ in the game mechanic sort of spoiling it — It’s like trying to be nimble piloting a hovercraft or airboat. Why should a spirit have inertia anyways? Aether frame dragging?

p.s. Anyone wishing to try it can safely ignore those ‘system requirements’; It looks as though they just posted it as the state of the art in 2012.

That’s quite hilarious!

I often wonder how many of the anti-vaxxers we follow hold *interesting* religious/ philosophical views as well.

In other (non) news…

it appears that at least two well-known woo-meisters
( Adams and Null) are again speculating upon the health of one HRC.

At Natural News today : will she ‘croak’ before the election?
At prn.fm: coughing is a sign of advanced Parkinson’s.

#42

At prn.fm: coughing is a sign of advanced Parkinson’s.

Then I’m surely doomed. And here, I always believed my doctors, the ones who personally examined me that my coughing was a symptom of asthma.

@ Meg:

In my own case, it’s probably a symptom of drinking diverse liquids too quickly.

But hey, what do I know?
I’m not an ‘international expert in natural health’ or suchlike.

it’s probably a symptom of drinking diverse liquids too quickly.

Other symptoms may include wobbling and falling down.

Advanced Parkinson’s? IANA neurologist, but Parkinsonian people I’ve seen have all exhibited a suite of obvious and very distinctive symptoms The notion that Hillary is somehow hiding something like that is ludicrous, like much of the propaganda coming out of the RWNJ echo chamber.

And as our esteemed host reminded us a couple of weeks ago, diagnosing people from a distance isn’t good practice.

Actually err Doktor, I have hardly ever fallen except when I tripped over a cat last month whilst entirely sober
Better than sober- caffeinated.

palindrom as I said previously ‘what do we know’- we only have real advanced degrees
As opposed to PhD in Dreckology

Most of the original photons may have been extinguished (absorbed), replaced by new ones (emitted) that are approximately the same.

Absorbed by what? I mean, there are foregrounds, but photons from the surface of last scattering predate structure formation.

(I.e., paging palindrom.)

^ OK, I don’t watch Y—be videos that are ponied up, but this had been popping up here and there as I was trying to write that.

Substitute “streaming” for “wheeling.” It’s a classic, although I was disappointed to be disabused of the notion that it had been filmed in Ithaca, New York.

Narad @50 — I’m not a quantum mechanic by a long shot, but photons cannot travel less than c — yet when light propagates through a medium such as glass, it ‘slows down’. My understanding of this is that the charges in the medium polarize in response to the electric field in the wave, and the radiation from these oscillating dipoles in effect mixes with the original wave and slows its propagation. Now, where photons fit into this picture becomes somewhat mysterious — but photons really only manifest concretely when they are absorbed, so “what really happens to the photon” is something of a slippery concept, in rather the same way that you can’t tell which slit the photon “really” went through in a double-slit experiment.

I sometimes play at being an astrophysicist when I want to sound impressive, but at base, I’m a simple country astronomer. Eric Lund actually knows basic physics much better than I do and may wish to comment. And Eric, “palindrom has is all wrong and is probably a moron” is perfectly OK if it’s the case!

“I’m not a quantum mechanic by a long shot”

Same here. I went by usage I’m familiar with in relation to astronomy, where there may be some liberality in the description of the mechanism of extinction. I’ll happily defer to expertise in the subject. Specifically whether the photons can be said to have survived following interaction with a medium.

With regard to “Absorbed by what?” the ISM (inter-stellar medium) is not empty. However it’s rarefied enough that extinction distance can be several light years. I don’t know the exact relationship other than it is longer for shorter wavelengths.

yet when light propagates through a medium such as glass, it ‘slows down’

I’m not talking about the glass routine. Allow me to backpedal my earlier comment simply to an observation that recombination-era photons have very long mean free paths, and my initial reaction was that gravity would be the dominant secondary effect.

In other words, yes, I’m willing to believe in virgin CMB photons. This sentiment is subject to prompt adjustment, of course.

@Palindrom #52

“My understanding of this is that the charges in the medium polarize in response to the electric field in the wave, and the radiation from these oscillating dipoles in effect mixes with the original wave and slows its propagation.”

My understanding of this is that the electrons of the atoms excite in response to the photons in the wave, and the radiation from these excited electrons in effect mixes with the original wave and slows it’s propagation.

http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/I_31.html
[Richard Feynman discussing the refractive index]

Atheist ex-Christian here. We know everything about divorce.

The New Testament explicitly forbids divorce unless the spouse has been “impure” which is usually interpreted as committing adultery. Full stop. The Bible even makes a point of saying this is NOT the Mosaic law and trumps it. This is what Kent believes. He’s not a Catholic, he’s not appealing to the Old Testament.

What Hovind is doing is praying to God and asking for an exception. And lo, God gave him one! Yes folks, the almighty gave Hovind an exception to His immutable law. Rather like Hovind’s taxes.

Sorry for multiple posts on the subject, and for the Whackyweedia link, but, oh boy, is Kent Hovind a sovereign citizen.

I only recently found out about these people; it’s like Christmas morning, what with the giant box full of amusement. Also they make me feel pretty smart and sane in comparison.

JP: Sovereign citizens were a big part of the conspira-sea cruise. I think they’re also one of the only forms of woo that regularly ends up in jail. The US government does *not* like it when you fail to pay your taxes because of the presence or absence of fringe on a flag.

They’re also associated with the guys who took over that wildlife refuge in Oregon. Jerks.

because of the presence or absence of fringe on a flag.

Ahh, yes; maritime law — The tradgedy here is that all a simpleton judge must do is pretend the defendant is a boat.

Judge bows to sovereign:

They’re also associated with the guys who took over that wildlife refuge in Oregon. Jerks.

Don’t know how I could have missed that; I’m practically from Oregon, and enjoyed watching the militia go down from my seat in, I think, the psych wing of St. Joe’s in Chelsea.

At the time I was wondering why *I* was the one who was locked up when those people were – at the time – free to run around being insane.

(I was glad of the computer access at the time, but looking back, I probably would have been better off if I had been let nowhere near one.)

Mary Tocco is awesome. So why can you not, and have you not refuted any of her vaccine truth information. All you have going here, is,more attempted false discreditation, and personal attacks. Have you seen all the news on your wonderful blogger Gorski, in the articles on Natural News?

Hey, Lowell — tired of having your conspiracy theories shot down on Disqus, so you’ve moved over here?

The Hubbsbot’s deranged version of legalese is always good for a brief chuckle. Sadly, he didn’t exactly bring his A-game here.

Since we’re on the subject of the strange habits of some of our more illustrious trolls, Fendelsworth just tried to leave another poopy-noise comment on my blog.

RE: Dinosaur Adventure Land

My understanding was that it was closed down after the government seized the propery because Hovind owed money from his tax evasion. Wiki has a good summary of his legal problems. The funny thing about sovereign citizens is that they continue to preach and believe in their bullsh*t even after being proven horribly wrong. Like that couple on the conspira-sea cruise who were arrested when they landed.

JP: “Don’t know how I could have missed that; I’m practically from Oregon, and enjoyed watching the militia go down from my seat in, I think, the psych wing of St. Joe’s in Chelsea.”

It has been amusing. There is a twitter feed hashtag that you can follow:
https://twitter.com/hashtag/OregonStandoff?src=hash

The trial is about to start. It will be very amusing. One of the defendants has declined an assigned lawyer and wants to refuse the assigned court appointed back up counsel. He is also the the one who had a rope made of ripped linens in his cell and in one of the many “legal motions” declared that he was an idiot.

It has been amusing. Hence the many songs:
https://www.google.com/search?q=youtube+oregon+bundy&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=youtube+oregon+bundy+song

And, yes, the FBI agents shouted “halleluyah!” per David Fry’s request. The aliens he spoke of have not been found.

So why can you not, and have you not refuted any of her vaccine truth information.

There is this blue text we call a link which does just that in the blog post.

Have you seen all the news on your wonderful blogger Orac, in the articles on Natural News?

Yup. Have you seen the answers here and at the other blog ?

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