Democracy Has Prevailed.

November 19, 2012

More On Senator Marco Rubio's Geological Knowledge

He's been called one of the rising stars of the GOP and one of the symbols of the future.

He's also got a lot to learn about science.

Take a look at this from GQ (h/t to ThinkProgress). When asked how old he thought the earth was, he responded:
I'm not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow. I'm not a scientist. I don't think I'm qualified to answer a question like that. At the end of the day, I think there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all. I think parents should be able to teach their kids what their faith says, what science says. Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I'm not sure we'll ever be able to answer that. It's one of the great mysteries.
Yes, there are "multiple theories" about how the universe was created (some of them actual science, most of the others are not), but that's not what he was asked.  He was asked about the age of the earth - and to that question he said he wasn't sure "we'll ever be able to answer that."

But he's wrong.  It's not much of a mystery and  - that age isn't much in dispute.  It's about 4.54 billion years old (give or take 50 million).

The funny thing about Rubio is that he's not even being consistent with his own church.  He told Christianity today that:
I'm a Roman Catholic. I'm theologically in line with the Roman Catholic Church.
Ok, so what does the Roman Catholic Church say about the age of the earth? Let's take a look at this document from the Vatican website:
According to the widely accepted scientific account, the universe erupted 15 billion years ago in an explosion called the “Big Bang” and has been expanding and cooling ever since. Later there gradually emerged the conditions necessary for the formation of atoms, still later the condensation of galaxies and stars, and about 10 billion years later the formation of planets. In our own solar system and on earth (formed about 4.5 billion years ago)...[Emphasis added.]
So Rubio disagrees with his own church?

More anti-science from the GOP - the future of the GOP.


Prup (aka Jim Benton) said...

That's not something new. I left Catholicism over 50 years ago -- before Rubio or the Baby Bigmouth (Ryan) could even claim to be 'one of the pre-born' -- and it was never either Creationist or Biblically literalist. In fact, had he attended the Jesuit High School I did and suggested such a thing, he might have found a half dozen students -- and no teachers -- who would have been sympathetic, but the others would have laughed the nonsense out of him. The Catholicism I grew up was -- in every area but sexuality, and my teachers never made a big deal about those teachings -- politically liberal, Democratic, pro-Union, and compassionate as well as extremely pro-Science. (They were anti-Communist Cold Warriors, yes, bt even that was a leftish, liberal position, basically that we agreed with many of the aims expressed by Communism, but knew the calcified conservatism of Communism could no more succeed in bringing them about than could the American ideas of our Right Wing. Of course, that anti-Communism meant that the schools and the students were more divided over Vietnam than were even most Americans. And yes, perhaps because of the immigrant heritage, perhaps they would cheer on Civil Rights Marcjhers in the South, but question them if their own racial attitudes were challenged.)

When I entered High School I was still following the family Liberal (Eisenhower) Republican position -- and that put me at the rightward edge of the students. I have been trying to come up with an image for how we would have treated a baby Ryan or Rubio in class. I can't because I literally have no memory of meeting anyone in school, priest, layman, or student, who would have expressed ideas like his, Certainly they would have been argued against, mocked, and possibly used as an object lesson of non-Catholic thinking.

Of course, the post-Vietnam, post-1970 'flight from politics' by previously radical liberals who did not return to liberalism but rejected politics entirely pushed many of my contemporaries into a non-political 70s and a return to politics as Reagan Democrats in the 80s. (Fortunately I never found that path tempting.)

It was that generation that taught the Rubios, Jindals and Ryans -- ironically all born within 18 months of each other -- this new Conservative Catholicism that hero-worshipped Karol Wotyja the way we did Giuseppe Roncalli, that saw Vatican Two as a Mistake rather than a needed Remake. But the catholics I grew up with would have found far more sympathy for -- and in common with -- my humanistic, liberal, compassionate atheism than for this new cold, Bible-spouting, uncharitable, 'abortion above all other questions' psuedo-Protestant dourness. (Chris Christie, who was born about the time I was leaving the Church, and eight to ten years before the others, is a transtional figure, not entirely willing to give up on the remnants of liberalism in the more conservative catholicism I learned. He's no prize, but he's no Ryan or Jindal r Rubio either.)

And one final comment about that age difference. When the three 'new Catholics' were entering adolescence, the people who had experienced the Depression, Roosevelt, and the fight against Hitler were moving into their Sixties, at least, and even those who had been old enough to experience McCarthy's terror were nearing or in their forties. This matters.

Maria Lupinacci said...

"I'm not a scientist, Jim, I'm just an old country GOP hack"

(h/t to Digby)

Nine-El said...

You love these gotcha moments...right?

BHO is cheek licking in the Far East...u see the pics of very uncomfortable lickees? Man is about zero on culturally appropriate behavior scale ... then there is Sen Leahy..wants to permit 20. Yes 20 federal agencies to be able to read email sans search warrants. Love it .... what did ditzy Nancy do today?

Social Justice NPC Anti-Paladin™ said...

More anti-science from the GOP - the future of the GOP.

Of course progressives will excuse Obama saying the same thing as he evolved.

Who Said It: Marco Rubio or Barack Obama?

Conservative Mountaineer said...

So what? Who gives a shit how old Earth is?

I continue to be amazed as to the 'gotcha' questions and situations the leftists continually try to employ.

Let's talk about *TODAY*,, how are we going to solve economic issues,, sloooow or roll-back onerous regulations, or reduce income rax uncertainty?

Oh,,, I forgot,, the 'takers' won.

Unknown said...

Thanks for bringing this up. It may a while before the GOP realize that substance, not only style, is an important quality in a candidate.

Yeah, it may be a gotcha question unrelated to the most important topical policies. It's unseemingly to throw a prospective world leader a softball and see if he can hit it.

Dayvoe said...

HTTT: On Obama - he also says IN THAT SAME EVENT that he believes in evolution.

Did you miss that part? I guess you did.

But let me spell out the important issue here because I think you need the help: In order to hold that evolution is true, one has to also accept the fact that the planet is billions of years old.