(Tier 1) Adventures in ACE XX: Currently Nonsense

Now that our creationist duo is done making waves, the stars of ACE PACE 1087 hop over to currents. And I need to pause in eviscerating their terrible “science education” to admonish them for abusing dialogue tags. They’re horribly clunky. In two tiny paragraphs, we have “related Ace” and “replied Dad,” and that isn’t even the worst they’ve done. I know they can’t resist mangling science, but do they really have to be so brutal with writing style, too? Dialogue tags should be seen but not heard. They should be kept to a minimum, and when used due to dire necessity, they should be as simple as possible. Don’t get all fancy. A simple “said” or “asked” will suffice. This is one area where you should definitely put the thesaurus down. And the style these days is to generally put the tag after the speaker: “Ace said,” “Dad asked.” It sounds much less stilted that way, and therefore avoids drawing attention to the tags and away from the narrative.

Apologies for the digression. It’s just really bugging me.

My pain over their abuse of dialogue tags fades as Ace burbles about Commander Matthew Maury. Oh, how creationists love him! Oh, how foolish they look! Let me just say here what I’ve said before:

They cling desperately to Matthew Fontaine Maury, pious Confederate scientist and author of The Physical Geography of the Seas. They make out that Psalm 8:8 had more to do with his mapping ocean currents than his experience with sailing. They desperately need to believe that science depends on Christianity. Alas for them, he was an old earth man, and shared the attitude of his contemporaries that if science conflicted with the Bible, it was due to a failure to interpret one or the other correctly. They weren’t like today’s creationists, declaring that science has to fit a literal interpretation of the Bible, evidence be damned. But yes, he was a religious man: good show, creationists! There have indeed been a few Christians in science. Not that that means anything.

Silly people.

Ace’s dad ‘splains about currents, and it’s all very basic, and illustrated with the worst drawing of ocean currents I have ever seen:

Image shows a simple drawing of the Atlantic Oceans, with the continents of Africa, part of Europe, Greenland, part of North America, and all but the very southern tip of South America visible. They've tried to draw the Gulf Stream with thick red arrows. They have pretty much completely failed. It's a jumble of unconnected lines.
Illustration of Gulf Stream from Page 27 of ACE PACE 1087. WTF is this even?

Dad natters on, and it’s the longest stretch of boring but serviceable information I’ve ever seen in a PACE, so I guess currents don’t give these creationists conniptions.

The streak continues as Dad explains tides. Bill O’Reilly, you should be ashamed. If the ACE people can accurately explain how tides are caused, you should be able to understand how they work!

Image is Bill O'Reilly. Caption says, "Tide goes in, tide goes out. You can't explain that."
I am in awe, as we have now gone more than a page without major mistakes or creationist crap. The facts are even placed within a basic but adequate framework. What happened? Did actual educators invade the ACE offices and insert appropriate information? Is it aliens? They even got less obnoxious with the dialogue tags! It’s aliens. Must be.

Image is a meme of WIll Smith from Men in Black. He's wearing a suit, standing in front of a futuristic interior, and holding up his hands like the Aliens dude from the History Channel. Caption says, "Aliens."
Dad makes a rousing case for learning about the oceans: it’s so that we can exploit them better as food, water, and energy sources. There’s a bit of the ol’ drill-baby-drill attitude. And then we see that the intelligent aliens have handed the enterprise back to the ACE people:

“Minerals are another vast ocean resource. Lumps lying on the ocean floor contain some valuable minerals.”

Um. I think he means “polymetallic nodules.” And, while there was much excitement about mining them in the 60s and 70s, the furor has since died down. Maybe someday they’ll be sexy again.

Ace’s dad apparently decides he’s gone too far, what with letting aliens slip some actual science in, and then all this talk about how oceanography is important to human flourishing. He cuts off the spigot of knowledge and opens the taps on religious dreck for the last several paragraphs.

“The most important preparation you can make for yourself as a child of God, though, is to meditate upon God’s Word and apply its principles to your daily life.”

Gosh. That’s so science.

He then quotes Joshua 1:8 in full, which has bugger-all to do with anything, except for religious argle-bargle.

And then Ace proves he’s a dutiful little Godbot:

“Thank you, Dad, ” answered Ace quietly. “I will meditate upon God’s Word every day and make it a part of my life, because I certainly want to be successful in God’s plan for my life.”

Well, Ace and the kids he’s supposed to be a role model for, let me suggest a verse to meditate on very carefully indeed:

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

When you’re ready for the truth, start here, and you’ll soon be free of this wretched dreck. And should you wish to cast off religion entirely, we’ll be here to help you build a more robust, evidence-based understanding of the world. Also, you’ll have a 1000% better life and won’t have to go round sounding like an automaton all the time.

That concludes ACE PACE 1087. Stay tuned for 1088, which has a certain… atmosphere… of Christianist nonsense.

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(Tier 1) Adventures in ACE XX: Currently Nonsense
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