Friday, August 15, 2008

Attack of the Flat Earth

BBC news

Personally, I don't see how anyone could seriously buy this stuff and still have the mental capacities for such daunting mental tasks as respiration. It's so ridiculous that even creationists generally won't touch it.

I'm inclined to believe that it's a prank, a mockery of those who deny basic facts about the earth in deference to their ideologies, if it wasn't so seemingly-seriously argued for on the internet. Curse you, Poe's Law!

The BBC article is a treasure trove of recorded stupidity: people convinced that there's a global conspiracy against their view, and accusations of "discrimination" against them merely because belief in a flat earth is nowdays synonymous with denialism. But one part in particular caught my eye:

Now, I'm no scientist, but I think there may be a problem with thinking that the entire world is a circle, with the north pole in the middle and an impossibly large Antarctica forming the outer edge. Actually, make that two problems.

First, where the heck is the edge of the Earth?

In the middle of Antarctica?

Anybody see the edge?

And secondly, what the heck is on the other side?

You'd think someone would have noticed our satellites encountering the strange problem of seeing the totality of Earth at one moment, then seeing only a sliver of it, then seeing some sort of bizarro Earth on the other side. Something like that would explode a few heads at NASA.

And it's interesting to note just how similar all this flat earth rhetoric is to creationism: heliocentrism is some ideology cooked up by scientists one day which everybody apparently just takes on faith, all evidence contradicting them was fabricated by some shadowy worldwide conspiracy with apparently nothing better to do with their time than play pranks on us Americans, and Joe Smoe apparently figured out the true facts of the cosmos while the world's top scientists were out to lunch. Yeah, right.

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