The Sciences

It’s Pat!

Bad AstronomyBy Phil PlaitJan 4, 2007 4:29 AM


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I have been getting a bit of email asking me to say something about Pat Robertson's predictions for 2007, including his statement that the U.S. will be attacked this year. I appreciate people sending me this, but I'm not sure what you expect me to say. He says he hears voices in his head, which he attributes to God. If he's telling the truth, he's schizophrenic -- his predictions in the past based on these voices have either not come true (which sorta negates the idea that it's God) or are pathetically obvious. As the CNN article linked above notes, he predicted Bush would nominate conservative judges to courts. WOW! He must be in touch with God! Robertson said Bush would easily win reelection in 2004, when in fact he only got 51% of the vote. He said Bush would get "victory after victory" in his second term... which is pretty far from reality, especially given the November congressional voting results. He said "God told him that storms and possibly a tsunami were to crash into America's coastline in 2006." Storms in the East?? Duh. But I don't recall there being a tsunami. So if he's not schizophrenic, then he is either lying or terribly, terribly deluded. He makes a vast amount of money from his wacky utterings, so you be the judge. Is he nuts, or just a scoundrel? Does it matter? Not to me. He is a bigoted, small-minded zealot who will say anything to appeal to his base -- and claiming that we'll be attacked this year certainly falls in that category. To me he represents the most venal, horrible, and hypocritical aspects of religious fundamentalism. I'm not surprised the mass media covers his ravings, given that he is a "spiritual leader" to so many people, but it makes me sad -- and angry -- on a lot of levels. Huh. Whaddya know. I guess I did have something to say after all.

Update (January 5, 2007): God has responded. Tip o' the mitre to Lorne at GeekCounterpoint.

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