F Rosa Rubicondior: April 2021

Friday 30 April 2021

The Ever-Shrinking God of the Gaps Just Got a Bit Smaller.

This skull of the extinct horned crocodile from Madagascar (Voay robustus) has been part of the American Museum of Natural History’s scientific collections since the early 1930s.

Credit: M. Ellison/© AMNH
Ancient DNA of Crocodile Sheds Light on Croc Family Tree | AMNH

It has been said the creationism's God of the Gaps is the only thing faster than light because it's always gone just before Science shines its light in the gap, leaving Creationists to search around for another gap to put it in - or invent one if they can't find one.

Just such a gap was found to be empty a few days ago when science solved an ongoing puzzle - how did the extinct Madagascan horned crocodile fit in the crocodile family tree? It was quite obvious from just looking at it that it was a crocodile of some sort but its evolutionary relationship to the others was unknown - until now. The key to closing the gap was the recent advance in the recovery and analysis of ancient DNA - the same scientific advance that is proving the Theory of Evolution to be correct, closing gaps and evicting gods by the dozen.

The Madagascan horned crocodile, Voay robustus (artist's impression)

In this case, it turned out that the Madagascan horned crocodile, Voay robustus, was very much part of the crocodile family tree but deserved a branch in the tree all to itself.

A research report from the American Museum of Natural History tells the story:
New research based on two skulls that have been in the Museum’s collection since the early 1930s resolves a long-standing controversy about an extinct “horned” crocodile that lived in Madagascar.

Another Religion-Based Dogma Falls to Science

Mice form categories to simplify their world. Showing that, researchers identified neurons that encode learned categories.
© MPI of Neurobiology/ Kuhl
Simplifying our world - Mice master complex thinking with a remarkable capacity for abstraction | Max-Planck-Gesellschaft

Yet another religion-based dogma fell to investigation by science recently. The dogma was that there is something unique about humans that sets us apart from the other animals as some sort of special creation - the basis of our belief that we own the planet and everything on and in it, including the other animals, incidentally.

In particular, humans were once thought to be the only sapient, tool-making species. That dogma has been laid to rest many times with many species now known to be capable of logical reasoning, tool-making and use, and problem-solving.

Now here we have evidence, provided by scientists working at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology, Martinsried, Germany, that mice can categorise information and think in the abstract - a fundamental of logical reasoning, information processing and learning, and mice use the same parts of their brain to do it with as we use. Their results were published, open access, in Nature recently.

The Max Plank Gesellschaft news release explains:

Thursday 29 April 2021

How Creationists Lie to Us - Tom Meyer

'Leonardo', the 77-million-year-old Brachylophosaurus canadensis Showing the beautifully-preserved 'soft' tissue.
Dinosaur discovery contradicts theory of evolution, claims creationist Bible expert | Weird | News | Express.co.uk

Young-Earth Creationist, Tom Meyer's claim to fame is that he can recite large chunks of the Bible from memory - so this makes him an expert biologist, geologist and cosmologist, fully qualified to inform millions of working biomedical scientists, geologists and cosmologists, that they've got it all wrong and he knows best - because he's memorised large chunks of a book.

Only trouble is, he also seems to realise he needs to misrepresent science, misinform his audience and play to their gullible, scientifically-illiterate credulity to foist his superstitions on his dupes.

Subversive Christian Talibangelicals Just Keep on Trying!

Rep. Mary Bentley (R-Perryville), seen here introducing a bill to ban abortions in Arkansas, despite the Supreme Court ruling in Roe vs Wade, which decriminalised it in all 50 states.
House advances bill to let schools teach creationism

Subversive Talibangelical Christians are continuing their efforts to circumvent the Constitutional Establishment Clause which forbids any tier of US government from promoting any religion.

This time their effort is in Arkansas where the Repuglican-dominated House has approved a bill (by 72-21) to allow the teaching of Intelligent [sic] Design Creationism to children at tax-payers expense. All the Repuglican voted for the bill and all the Democrats voted against it. This is in direct contravention of a 1980 court ruling which forbids the teaching of Creationism in Arkansas schools, several Supreme Court rulings which have struck down previous attempts to do so and the famous Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District which ruled that Intelligent Design is religion in disguise, not science. The bill now moves to the Senate.

Fundamentally Racist Christians

Do Multiracial Churches Offer Healthy Community for Non-White Attendees? - Barna Group

A survey by the Christian Barna Group has revealed a shocking level of racism in American churches, according to their Beyond Diversity project.

29% of practicing Black Christians reported experiencing racial prejudice in multiracial churches; 27% reported feeling required to give up their racial/ethnic identity in order to integrate successfully into a multiracial church and 28% say they find it difficult to build relationships in multiracial churches.

Persecution News - The Doubt That Strikes Terror in the Heart of Religions.

Said Djabelkhir,
Sentenced to 3 years in prison and a 50,000 Dinar fine.
Algeria: quash the conviction of humanist academic Said Djabelkhir, Freethinker.

Can you imagine a fundamental disagreement between two scientists over a basic principle in science resulting in the state locking up one of the scientists while supporters of the other called for his execution?

That's exactly what has happened in Algeria because of a fundamental disagreement in Islam.

Talibangelical Covidiot News - Death Threats for Advocating Anti-Covid Vaccine

Jamie Aten, Disaster psychologist, author and evangelical
Death threats for advocating anti-Covid vaccines.
For evangelical leader Jamie Aten, advocating for vaccines led to a death threat

An evangelical Christian who urged his fellow evangelicals to get the anti-covid vaccine says he has been getting death threats and other hate messages from his fellow evangelical Christians.

Jamie Aten is executive director of the Humanitarian Disaster Institute at Wheaton College and his work has generally been praised, but when he began urging his fellow evangelicals to get vaccinated, things turned ugly.

Among the emails he reported when he filed his complaint to the sheriff’s office in DuPage County, Illinois, was one telling him his work on vaccines was "punishable by death".

Another, received after he spoke to the New York Times about the importance of getting vaccinated, warned him that encouraging white evangelicals would "eventually lead to the murdering of all mankind". It continued with the veiled threat, "If I knew my stuff, I would know not to encourage people to get vaccinated because that’s what’s going to take down humanity more".

The importance of persuading white evangelical leaders to get a vaccine was highlighted by a recent Pew Research poll which showed that 37% of white evangelicals would not have the vaccine - one of the highest levels of vaccine scepticism for any American demographic. Given the large number of white evangelicals in the USA, this figure means it will be difficult to reach the required level for herd immunity to be effective in controlling the virus, so America will always have a high level of infections and the pandemic will last much longer and claim many more lives than it need.

Other surveys have shown that White Evangelical Christians are the least concerned about how their behaviour impacts on other people when it comes to holding super-spreader events in churches, wearing face masks and observing the social-distancing regulations, so it is hardly surprising that they are also least concerned about acting as a reservoir for the coronavirus and providing a means for new varieties to evolve, so long as they aren't slightly inconvenienced in any way.

Last year, under Trump's leadership, face-masks became a badge of tribal loyalty for Americans, like a MAGA hat. Now it seems a vaccination is also a sign of tribal loyalties.

But perhaps the most instructive thing in this story is not the stupidity of those, mostly Trumpanzee evangelical Christians, who are campaigning against the vaccines, but their quick resort to threats, like good fundamentalist Christians when people disagree with them.

Having just posted a slightly tongue-in-cheek item on Twitter about science flying a helicopter over the surface of Mars and asking what equivalent achievements religions had to matched it, I can understand how Aten feels, as I have also had veiled threats about what their imaginary friend is going to do to me if I don't agree with them and credit the work done by religious scientist to religion, not science. Apparently, they believe that science done by religious scientists is materially different to that done by non-religious scientists, so should be credited to religion, not science.

But Aten has chosen his bed-fellows himself. He might like to consider what it is about their mutual religion that can be used to excuse their selfishness and the threats of violence against anyone who dares to disagree with them. He chose to jump into bed with that particular rat pack so he shouldn't be surprised when they act entirely in character (with apologies to any rats who may have been offended by that metaphor). Laudable though his efforts are, he should be asking himself why they are evoking such a response in his co-religionists.

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Wednesday 28 April 2021

Repugnican News - When the Truth Doesn't Work for You, Lie.

New York Post temporarily deletes, then edits false story that claimed Harris' book was given out in migrant 'welcome kits' - CNNPolitics

A couple of days ago the New York Post ran a story that alleged copies of VP Kamala Harris' children's book, Superheroes Are Everywhere were being included in welcome packs for immigrant children at Long Beach, California and she was therefore profiting from immigration. This would have been illegal, if true, so it was eagerly seized upon by several prominent Repuglicans and repeated on social media such as Twitter without the slightest attempt at fact-checking first. Why spoil a good scandal with truth, eh?

Religious Abuse News - 99 Years for Child-Abusing Paedophile Pastor

Jeffrey Winston Forrest, Youth Pastor
99 years for aggravated sexual abuse of a child and jumping bail
Former Abilene youth pastor sentenced to 99 years in prison | KTXS

"Religion provides excuses for people who need excuses!"

This was never truer than in the case of former Abilene youth pastor Jeffrey Forrest, sentenced to 99 years in prison for the aaggravated sexual abuse of two boys, bail jumping and failure to appear. He had fled to Mexico where he was tracked down, arrested and extradited back to Texas in May 2020.

During the trial, multiple witnesses testified that Forrest admitted to the abuse. He allegedly told a good friend and a professional counsellor.

Tuesday 27 April 2021

New York Religions - Trying to Solve the Problems Religions Cause.

Dec 11, 2019. Orthodox Jewish men pass New York City police guarding a Brooklyn synagogue prior to a funeral for Mosche Deutsch, a rabbinical student from Brooklyn who was killed in a shooting at a market in Jersey City, N.J.
Credit: AP Photo/Mark Lennihan
In New York, interfaith coalition makes common cause against rising tide of hate

Concerned by the rising tide of inter-faith tension and hate resulting in violent attacks on members of one faith by members of another, a group of New York's faith organizations have got together to try to solve the problem faiths are causing.

According to a report in Religion News Service:
On April 16, clergy from 20 New York congregations, including Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews and Christians, met as the Interfaith Security Council held its first meeting to talk about how to share expertise and improve relations with law enforcement.
This was prompted by, amongst other incidents, the mass shooting in Pittsburg, PA, in October 2018, when a gunman attacked worshippers at the Tree of Life Synagogue, killing 11 people, vandalism at four synagogues in the Riverdale neighbourhood of Bronx, NY, last week, and the killing of Mosche Deutsch, a rabbinical student from Brooklyn in Jersey City, N.J. on Dec 11, 2019. Armed police had to be deployed at the Brooklyn synagogue where his funeral took place.

The Interfaith Security Council is an umbrella organisation bringing together several other religious security organizations, one of which is 67th Precinct Clergy Council of Brooklyn, which supports mostly churches in the borough’s East Flatbush area. It's president, Pastor Gilford Monrose, of Mt. Zion Church of God 7th Day, blamed white supremacists for the escalating level of inter-faith violence with:

Sunday 25 April 2021

Malevolent Designer News - Another Win for Science?

The life cycle of malaria parasites. A mosquito causes an infection by a bite. First, sporozoites enter the bloodstream, and migrate to the liver. They infect liver cells, where they multiply into merozoites, rupture the liver cells, and return to the bloodstream. The merozoites infect red blood cells, where they develop into ring forms, trophozoites and schizonts that in turn produce further merozoites. Sexual forms are also produced, which, if taken up by a mosquito, infect the insect and continue the life cycle.

National Institutes of Health (NIH), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
New vaccine success for Oxford is truly remarkable | Kenan Malik - The Guardian

News today of a major breakthrough by medical science in its search for a treatment/cure for malaria which Intelligent [sic] Design advocates believe was created by their putative designer deity to kill around 430,000 people a year, mostly children.

Scientists at Oxford's Jenner Institute have announced the results of a clinical trial of their anti-malarial vaccine, R21, in Burkino Faso, which has shown it to be 77% effective.

One of the problems facing those humanitarian scientists seeking to eradicate malaria, is the complexity of the life-cycle of the organisms that cause it. From the Medicins Sans Frontier website:

Saturday 24 April 2021

Unintelligent Designer Update - The Pea Aphid Blunders.

Pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum

Credit: Shipher Wu (photograph) and Gee-way Lin (aphid provision),
National Taiwan University.
Source: Wikipedia
CC BY 2.5,
Defense Mechanisms in Aphids Can Become a Double-edged Sword, Sharpened by the Seasons | Now | Drexel University

A paper published a few days ago, should be giving Intelligent [sic] Design advocates nightmares, if they had the intellectual integrity to read it. It highlights several instances where basic creationist dogma is refuted by observable reality.

First a little bit of background: pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum) are sap-sucking insects that live on members of the pea family of plants such as alfalfa. They are predated on by a parasitoid wasp (Aphidius ervi) that lays its eggs in the living aphid, which is then consumed alive by the grubs of the wasp. However, they have living in their cells a common endosymbiotic bacterium (Hamiltonella defensa) which provides them with some protection against the wasps in that it prevents the grubs from developing.

These bacteria are inherited exclusively through the female line, being passed to the next generation in the female gamete, or via the cells when the females reproduce parthenogenically (as they normally do) similar to how mitochondria are inherited. Throughout the summer, pea aphids reproduce parthenogenically and can produce about 13 generations in a year, being capable of reproducing 10-12 days after birth. In colder climates reproduction is sexual at the end of summer, via fertilized eggs which over-winter. In warm climates the females continue to reproduce parthenogenically all year round and in intermediate climates a mixture of adult females and fertilized eggs over-winter.

This very high generation rate means evolution can be readily observed so this species was used by researchers at Drexel University to investigate the evolutionary forces at work in this relationship between the endosymbiotic bacterium, the parasitoid wasp and the pea aphid.

Their findings were published a few days ago in the journal Molecular Ecology, sadly behind a paywall. However, the Drexel University news item has the details:

Fundamentally Hypocritical

Dr. Robert Jeffess
"Satan targets Evangelical Leaders and makes them 'sin'."
The Christian response when a brother falls

Another noxious bubble of stinking hypocrisy just burst on the surface of that cesspit of corruption, American fundamentalist Christianity, in the form of Dr. Robert Jeffress of First Baptist-Dallas.

In doing so, it showed how fundamentalists use religion as the source of excuses for their behaviour, so they don't need to take responsibility for their own actions and the consequences of them.

Commenting on the difficulties currently befalling Jerry Falwell Jnr and Liberty University, Jeffress blamed Satan.

Readers may recall how Jerry Falwell Jnr., head of Liberty University - a post he inherited from his dad, who founded the fundamentalist, right-wing conservative Christian Bible college - resigned abruptly when it was revealed that he and his wife Becki, had been having an unusual arrangement with a pool boy from Miami, Giancarlo Granda. The arrangement was that Becki and Giancarlo had sex while Jerry watched.

It also emerged that Falwell had decided to give public support to Donald Trump's election campaign shortly after receiving help from Trump's shady lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen, in preventing Granda making the photographs of the trio's activities public. Cohen had earlier been instrumental in bribing the prostitute, Stormy Daniels, to keep quiet about her activities with Donald Trump, during the 2016 election campaign - about which he later lied to Congress and for which he went to prison for election campaign expense offences in not declaring the payment as an expense by the Trump team.

Friday 23 April 2021

Malevolent Designer News - How SARS-CoV-2 Gets a Second Shot at Killing Survivors of its First Attempt.

A new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis shows that even mild cases of COVID-19 increase the risk of death in the six months following diagnosis and that this risk increases with disease severity. The comprehensive study also catalogues the wide-ranging and long-term health problems often triggered by the infection, even among those not hospitalized.
Credit: Sara Moser
Among COVID-19 survivors, an increased risk of death, serious illness – Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

Those few remaining diehard intelligent [sic] design advocates who are still dogmatically wedded to the notion that nothing evolves and everything is the work of their putative magic creator will be thrilled by this piece of research from scientists at Washington University School of \Medicine in St Louis.

In a paper published in Nature yesterday, the researchers show how, even if you manage to survive the first attack by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, it is 'designed' to get a second go at you in several different ways. Obviously this designer thing has left very little to chance in its determination to kill as many people as possible.

Sadly, the paper in Nature is behind a paywall but, as the Washington University School of Medicine news release explains:

Thursday 22 April 2021

Right-Wing Christians for Lynch Law

George Floyed by Lukas Carlson, 2020
Right-Wing Activists Attack Conviction of Derek Chauvin, Engage in Whataboutism | Right Wing Watch

In the wake of the conviction of ex-police officer, Derek Chauvin, for the extra-judicial killing of George Floyd, yet another in a long list of white police officers killing black people, right-wing white supremacist Christian fundamentalists are coming out in favour of these murders and in defense of the murderers.

Right-wing extremist, Candace Owens, who at the time of the killing tried to justify it by branding Floyd, "a horrible human being" and then categorised the protests that followed as catering for "the bottom denominator in society" (i.e. black people), declared the verdict "mob justice".

Trumpanzee lawyer, Jenna Ellis claimed the jury reached its 'guilty' verdicts because they were influenced by 'leftist' to make him "pay for the collective sins of white people".

Another neo-fascist extremist, Mike Cernovich, declared that the verdict will result in police officers leaving the cities to move into 'deep red' areas,
presumably because he believes in these Repugnican areas they can continue to kill black people with impunity, like in the good ol' days of Jim Crow, segregation and KKK Lynchings. He was supported in this by the far-right activist, Jack Posobiec, who blamed the anti-fascist "Antifa", whom Trump declared to be "terrorists". Remember how in Trump’s America, opposing fascism was regarded as terrorism?

Malevolent Designer News - A Little More About How Brilliantly SARS-CoV-2 is Designed for Killing People

  1. Rotavirus RNAs have a 5′ cap but not a 3′ poly(A) tail. Its NSP3 protein (instead of PABP) binds to the 3′ end of the viral mRNA and interacts with eIF‐4G directly to maintain the closed‐loop RNA for the initiation of viral RNA translation and to block host mRNA circularization (Piron et al, 1998
  2. Picornavirus RNA has an internal ribosome entry site (IRES) in the 5′ untranslated region and a 3′ poly(A) tail. Viral protease (2A or leader) digests eIF‐4G. The truncated eIF‐4G shows higher efficiency in the IRES‐driven translation than the cap‐dependent translation (Ohlmann et al, 1995; Ali et al, 2001).
  3. Coronavirus RNAs have a 5′ cap and a 3′ poly(A) tail. In our model, SUD associates with the 40S/80S ribosome and enhances the PABP:Paip1 interaction to stimulate the host translation machinery. Meanwhile, coronaviral Nsp1 specifically cleaves host mRNAs (green) but not viral RNAs (Kamitani et al, 2006; Huang et al, 2011). Also, viral Nsp1 blocks host mRNA binding to the 40S ribosome. As a result, SARS‐CoV could increase the viral RNA translation but inhibit host mRNA translation.
How SARS coronaviruses reprogram host cells to their own benefit | News - LMU München

For those Intelligent [sic] Design advocates who are not embarrassed by the evident malevolent sadism of their putative designer, this sort of information should thrill and delight them.

Scientists working at the University of Lübeck, Germany and the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, München, Germany have discovered the brilliant mechanism by which the SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 viruses reprogram our cells to reproduce many more copies of the viruses than other coronaviruses, such as those causing the common cold.

They suggest that this may account for the much higher pathogenicity of these two viruses compared to the other coronaviruses. Their findings appeared, open access, in The EMBO Journal 2021, two days ago.

The relevent details are in the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität news release:
Coronavirus researchers led by Professor Rolf Hilgenfeld of the University of Lübeck and PD Dr. Albrecht von Brunn of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München have discovered how SARS viruses enhance the production of viral proteins in infected cells, so that many new copies of the virus can be generated. Notably, coronaviruses other than SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 do not use this mechanism, which may therefore provide a possible explanation for the much higher pathogenicity of the SARS viruses. The findings appear in the EMBO Journal.

Coronaviruses that cause harmless colds in humans were discovered more than 50 years ago. When it emerged in 2002/2003, the SARS coronavirus was the first coronavirus found to cause severe pneumonia in infected people. Comparisons of the RNA genomes of innocuous coronaviruses with those of the SARS coronavirus permitted researchers to identify a region that only occurred in the latter, and was called the "SARS-unique domain" (SUD). Such genomic regions and their protein products might be linked to the extraordinary pathogenicity of SARS coronavirus and its cousin, the COVID-19 virus SARS-CoV-2.

The research groups led by Hilgenfeld and von Brunn showed that the SUD proteins of these two viruses interact with a human protein called Paip-1, which is involved in the first steps of protein synthesis. Together with Paip-1 and other proteins in human cells, SUD apparently binds to the ribosomes, the molecular machines that are responsible for protein synthesis in cells. This would lead to an enhancement of the production of all proteins, both those of the host cell and those of the virus. However, in cells infected with SARS-CoV or SARS-CoV-2, the messenger RNA molecules that code for host proteins are selectively destroyed by a viral protein named Nsp1. As a result of this complicated process, the infected cell predominantly produces viral proteins, so that many new copies of the virus can be created.

Albrecht von Brunn’s research group discovered the interaction between the proteins SUD and Paip-1 several years ago. "Being an experienced coronavirologist, I knew that one has to inspect the special regions of the SARS genome when trying to understand this virus,” he says.

[My emphasis]
Ingenious, or what?!

Wednesday 21 April 2021

The Church of English Racists

Church of England congregation.
BBC Panorama programme 'Is the Church Racist?' | The Church of England

An insight into one of the reasons the Church of England has suffered such a massive decline in membership and attendance was revealed in a BBC Panorama program a few days ago. The CofE is deeply and institutionally racist, at least in the lower tiers of management. Viewers were given example after example of racial abuse and discrimination and of managerial indifference to it. For example, as Dr Elizabeth Henry, the CofE's former race relations adviser related:
A really shocking incident was a young black man who received a picture of a banana [with] his head superimposed on it and underneath is said 'Bananaman'. That is a deeply offensive and a deeply racist image.

He took it to HR and did file a grievance [but] the decision was that it was not racist.

[He] left and was given a very small compensation, however he was forced to sign a non-disclosure agreement.

Tuesday 20 April 2021

Right Wing Christian Racism News - "It's The Jews, I Tell You!"

Right-wing Christian pastor Rick Wiles,
Conspiracy theorist and anti-Semite.
Rick Wiles Says the US Is Under the Control of ‘Satanic Zionists’ | Right Wing Watch

The undercurrent of antisemitism in extreme right-wing Christian fundamentalism was given another noxious airing recently when radical right-wing Christian, conspiracy theorist and End Times broadcaster, Pastor Rick Wiles, declared that the United States is under the control of “Satanic Zionists.”.

Wiles, a non-denominational senior pastor at Flowing Streams Church in Vero Beach, Florida, with a long history of antisemitism, homophobia and support for Putin's Russia, delivered the following hate-filled rant to the audience of his TruNews [sic] broadcast:
The reason the ruling deep state of America hates the Russian people and wants to destroy them? It is the satanic Zionist power that overthrew the Russian government in 1917, did a human blood sacrifice of the Romanov family — a satanic ritual where they slaughtered the Romanovs, it was a satanic blood sacrifice — that same group of Satanists that overthrew the Russian people in 1917, that’s what controls America today.

That spirit right there is what is destroying the United States of America, destroying our freedom, destroying our culture, that spirit right there. That’s what’s making war against Russia. They overthrew it, they got free, they got out from under its bondage. And so who is under its bondage now? The American people. We’re under the bondage of that same satanic spirit.

Trumpanzee Talibangelical News - Just Another Nut-Job For Trump

Tod Coconato, President of Religious Liberty Coalition
Todd Coconato Says Christians Don’t Believe Biden Is President Because God’s ‘Mantle of Anointing’ Remains on Trump | Right Wing Watch

Leading Trumpanzee cultist, preacher and extreme right-wing fundamentalist Christian 'prophet', Tod Coconato, is living in one of Trump's alternate realities so he can reconcile his false prophesy of a Trump landslide victory in 2020 with the fact that Biden won with the largest popular vote ever in American electoral history, and is now firmly installed as 46th President of the United States of America.

Coconato, self-appointed President of Religious Liberty Coalition, has now announced to his credulous followers that Biden is not really POTUS because God anointed Trump! Coconutjob announced this while live-streaming from his car last Wednesday.

Claiming, in best psychotic style, that he heard God speaking to him, and miraculously telling him exactly what he wanted to hear, almost like God was reading from a script that Coconato had handed him, he informed his dupes:
When I prayed about if we’d ever see President Trump as our president again, God just reminded me that he’s the one that chooses the leadership, not us. He allows certain things to happen, but he also responds to the prayers of the righteous. And what he was telling me is that just like David—and I think I said this in a past livestream—but just like David, President Trump has the mantle of leadership, has the anointing of leadership. That’s why it’s kind of confusing to saints that are looking, and they’re wondering what’s going on. Because they see Joe Biden and they’re like, ‘This guy doesn’t seem like he’s authentic, like he’s real; is he really the president?’ And I said, ‘God, why are so many people questioning if Joe Biden is the president? I mean, clearly this guy is the president of the United States. Are we to doubt that? Are we not to believe that?’ And God said, ‘It’s about the mantle, the mantle of anointing, which is on President Trump, not Biden.'
The 'Mantle of anointing', eh? That's the way, Todd! Talk gibberish so your dupes will think it holy wisdom!

It would be comical if only there wasn't a more sinister side to this lunacy.
There is a clear warning in that, and not only of the insanity that fundamentalist zealotry can cause (or does the insanity precede the zealotry?). Note Coconato's cavalier regard for the supremacy of the people in their choice of elected leaders. It's not they who choose the president but Coconato's compliant God (as announced by Coconato and other self-appointed 'saints' who claim to hear voices).

If these frauds ever achieve their goal of a Fundamentalist Taliban-style Christian Theocracy in America, these are the self-appointed people who will be deciding who forms the executive, the legislature and, indirectly, the judiciary!

Another examples of how:
Religion provides excuses for people who need excuses

Malevolent Designer News - Using Mink to Make a More Lethal SARS-C0V-2 Virus

Introduction of SARS-CoV-2 into farmed mink leads to the emergence of viral variants that partially evade antibody-mediated neutralization.

A) SARS-CoV-2-infected workers introduced the virus into farmed mink populations, causing an epidemic spread of the virus in the animals. As a result, the virus mutated in mink and gave rise to a novel SARS-CoV-2 variant. This novel variant was subsequently transmitted back to workers, sparking transmission chains in the local community.

B) SARS-CoV-2 from mink harbor one or more mutations in the viral spike protein, which is used by the virus to enter cells and constitutes the main target for neutralizing antibodies. These mutations enable the virus to partially evade from neutralization by antibodies from convalescent individuals and synthetic antibodies used for COVID-9 therapy.

Figure: Markus Hoffmann
Deutsches Primatenzentrum: SARS-CoV-2 variants from mink evade inhibition by antibodies

Creationist mode:

News today of the lengths Creationism's putative intelligent [sic] designer is going in its plan to make as many of us die from its new plague virus, SARS-CoV-2, which is currently ravaging the world in the worst pandemic for a century.

It has recruited the help of mink!

According to an open access paper in Cell Reports a few days ago, the variety of the virus that went from humans into mink has now produced a variant that evades the antibodies we have been building in the population to prevent us suffering from the virus, or being made seriously ill by it if we do catch it.

The research was carried out by scientists working for the Infection Biology Unit, German Primate Center – Leibniz Institute for Primate Research, Göttingen, Germany and the Division of Molecular Immunology, Department of Internal Medicine 3, Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen, Germany. The news release from the German Primate Center – Leibniz Institute for Primate Research, gives details:

Monday 19 April 2021

Look What Evangelical Christianity Causes! Penis Insecurity!

Penis Insecurity
Correlation between number of Google searches for key phrased and the number of Evangelical Christians in a US state
New study links evangelical Christianity to phallic insecurity in the United States

A paper published in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion last March, offers an explanation for the sometimes bizarre behaviour and aggressive attitudes of male American Bible-belt Evangelical Christians, including their frequent fascination with guns and propensity to follow the male leaders of weird cults - behaviour that seems so at odds with what most of the rest of the developed world sees, rightly or wrongly as a peace-loving, pacifist religion.

The paper reveals an almost obsessive evangelical preoccupation with the size of their penis and suggests that this is due to:
...the largely patriarchal―and increasingly embattled and radicalized―evangelical subculture [which] explicitly or implicitly promotes equating masculinity with physical strength and size, leaving men influenced by that subculture (whether evangelical or not) to seek solutions for their privately felt failure to measure up.

Covidiot News - When a Pastor Believes He's Above the Law

Rev. James Coates
GraceLife Church, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Protesters rally to cause of 'jailed' Canadian church as pastor awaits trial

Rev. James Coates is a former student of Rev. John MacArthur of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California and, like him, believes churches and their pastors are especially priviledged and above the law of the land. To MacArthur's cheers, Coates continued to hold church services at his nondenominational church near Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, in contravention of the anti-coronavirus measures which limit congregations to 15% of the church's capacity and with suitable social distancing measures in place.

After months of his reckless endangerment of the health and welfare of his church members, their families and the public at large, the authorities were forced to act and jailed Coates for 35 days. Undeterred, other pastors at the church continued to hold illegal gatherings until the authorities in Edmonton closed the church, fenced it off and posted guards.

Sunday 18 April 2021

Evolution News - Rapid Evolution of Salamander Colouration

Two opposing evolutionary forces help explain why we see two different colors of spotted salamander egg masses in ponds in central Pennsylvania, according to a new study. Egg masses are either completely clear or opaque white.

Credit: Mark Urban, University of Connecticut
Dueling evolutionary forces drive rapid evolution of salamander coloration | Eberly College of Science

A neat little illustration of how evolution can be the result of competing forces, such as natural selection and genetic drift, was published a few days ago in the journal, Biology Letters. It concerned the rapid evolution of colouration in the eggs of the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) and involved re-surveying a network of 31 ponds in central Pennsylvania to repeat work done in 1990 and 1991 to see what changes had occurred.

Sadly, the published paper is behind a pay wall, but the news item by Gail McCormick from PennState Eberly College of Science has the details:

Christian Hypocrisy News - Liberty University Sues the Falwells.

Jerry Jnr and Becki Falwell
"Sexual behaviour 'damaging' to Liberty University"
Liberty University sues former President Jerry Falwell Jr. for $10 million, citing conspiracy, breach of contract

Good ol' Christian hypocrisy is alive and well and living in Liberty University.

The fallout from Jerry Falwell Jnr and his wife Becki's 'arrangement' with the Miami pool boy, Giancarlo Granda, in which Becki had sex with Granda while Jerry watched, is continuing unabated.

Jerry Falwell Jnr inherited his position as Liberty University's president from his father, Jerry Snr, who founded the Christian fundamentalist 'University', but was forced to resign when news of his and Becki's sexual adventures leaked out. The 'University' is now suing him for $10 million claiming breach of contract and alleging that he conspired to mislead the board of directors by concealing details of the affair from them. The University is also alleging that Falwell “fashioned a deceitful scheme to manipulate the Executive Committee of Liberty” while negotiating his last contract.

The couple also bought a Miami beach youth hostel in 2013 and installed Granda as manager. While Becki admits her affair with Granda, who has the photographs to prove it, she denies the specific allegations and Jerry Jnr, again, despite the photographic evidence showing otherwise, continues to deny his part in the arrangement.

Faith News - Going Down in Black America

Trends in the Black Church: More Faithful, But Not Immune to Decline - Barna Group

Despite the traditional attachment to the Church, especially the fundamentalist, evangelical, historically black churches, the decline in religious affiliation seen in all Americans is no less so in African-Americans, according to a running survey conducted by the Barna Group.

The proportion of Black Americans who think church involvement is "very" or "somewhat desirable" has fallen significantly in the last 23 years from 90% in 1996 (71% "very", 19% "somewhat") to 74% in 2019 (44% "very", 30% "somewhat"). The interesting thing here is the relative change in perceived importance. Only 44% now think church involvement is "very desirable" against 71% in 1996; a 27-percentage point fall! Meanwhile the proportion who think it is "somewhat desirable" has risen from 19% to 30%; a 21-percentage point increase. Clearly, the perceived importance of church invlvement is weakening but not being lost entirely, or maybe peer-pressure to declare unequivocal support for the church has lessened.

Despite this relatively high level of perceived desirability of involvement with the church, the decline in overall affiliation to the churches has continued to follow a similar trend in Black Americans to the general population. Although still higher than average for Americans, there has been a rapid decline from 2011 (89%) to 74% in 2020 in affiliation to any particular church. From the peak of 93% in 2007, this fall represents a loss of one in five affiliates to 'Nones'. 15% of Black Americans now self-identify as 'Nones'; more than double its 2007 level.

Maybe it's me, but the self-identification of religious/spiritual chart seems to reflect muddled thinking. For example, I can't imagine how someone could describe themselves as religious but not spiritual, yet 11% of Black Americans do so. The rest of this chart shows the trend common to all American demographic groups of the younger generations being increasingly neither religious nor spiritual. From a low of 7% for the Baby Boomers, through 13% for Generation X, to 16% and 17% respectively for Millennials and Generation Z. This augers well for the future since people tend to retain their affiliation once established, and affiliation is largely inherited from the parent generation, so the tendency will be for affliliation to decline and 'Nones' to increase as time goes on.

Church attendance remains relatively high amongst Black Americans at 40% attending within the last week. However, in line with other demographics, this has been falling steadily from a peak in 2009, falling 16-percentage points and more than reversing the 11-percentage point gain in the years 2001 to 2009. The average for all American demographics is just 31%, an 18-percentage point fall since 2009.

This figure would probably be significantly lower had it not been for the small rally staged by Hispanic Americans (mostly Catholic) which had declined more sharply than the average (22-percentage points) over the years 2009 - 2020 during the years of scandal in the Catholic Church.

Overall, while the grip of the church remains stronger amongst Black Americans than amongst other American demographics, they are showing very much the same trend of declining religiosity as all Americans and the same generational differences that should ensure this promising trend continues.

However it remains an enduring mystery in American religion, why the religion that was used to enslave Africans and destroy their culture to make them easier to control by the Christian slavers, quoting the Bible as justification for their racism, should be followed so fervently by the descendants of those whom it enslaved and who still endure the racism inherent in evangelical Christian white supremacism.

Saturday 17 April 2021

Talibangelical Trumpanzee News - The Loon Contest Just Got Loopier

Talibangelist Trumpanzee, Mario Murillo, of Mano Murillo Ministries
Mario Murillo Says God Will Destroy America to Save It From Democrats | Right Wing Watch

The competition between Trumpanzee Talibangeslists to see who can make the most ludicrously exaggerated prediction is hotting up. They even held a convention, or "Global Summit" of American fundamentalists at Harvest International Ministry, a church in Pasadena, California, last week end, in which they could out-loon one another. It's hard to tell which fruitloop came out a clear winner but amongst the front-runners was loopy right-wing evangelist, Mario Murillo, of Mano Murillo Ministries, another self-appointed 'prophet' who claims to see and hear God. At the 'Global Summit' he told the credulous audience just what they wanted to hear. He informed them that God is about to destroy the Democratic Party to save America, with:

Evolution News - The Origin of the Amazonian River Stingrays Explained

A selection of Amazonian freshwater sting rays (Potamotrygoninae)
Stingrays in the Amazon were stranded there by the Caribbean Sea | New Scientist

An article in New Scientist, based on research by a team led by João Pedro Fontenelle of the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Toronto Scarborough, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, explains the evolution of the 38 different species of freshwater stingray found in the Amazon river system.

The news poses serious problems for Creationists who believe Evolution by natural selection is impossible and special creation by magic is a better explanation for this sort of biodiversity.

These stingrays are unique in that they inhabit fresh water and are only found in South America. Theya re clearly related to the saltwater stingrays which are themselves related to the rays and sharks. They range in size from 25 centimetres to a metre across.

By analysing the genomes of 350 individuals across 35 of the 38 species to compare genetic differences between the different species, the team showed that they diverged from their saltwater relatives some 26 million years ago between the Oligocene and Miocene epochs. This coincides with a period during which the sea level was higher and this area of South America was a coastal swamp, with the Caribbean Sea intruding far inland. The Andese mountain range was slso lower, creating a wide lowland area west of the Amazon into which the sea could intrude, known to science as the Pabas Wetlands. The result was a mixture of freshwater, saltwater and brakish lagoons with a series of salt gradients, making it easy for marine species washed into these lagoons to adapt to fresh water.

Later, as see levels fell as water became locked up in the polar icecaps, and the Pabas receded, populations of stingrays would have become isolated, making it possible for these populations to diversify due to natural selection by local environments, and genetic drift.

The result is the 38 different species we see today, the inevitable result of these natural processes.

The problem for Creationists is that this is all very understandable in terms of evolutionary theory, and meshes neatly into what is known from other strands of science about sea level change and the environment in that place at that time, giving a perfectly rational, coherent explanation of what we see today. By contrast, there appears to be no reason why a magic creator, even if the existence of such an entity had a rational explanation, would create these species with genomes that just happened to look like they had diversified from a common marine ancestor some 26 million years ago and arranged the geology so it just happened to look like the conditions for this diversity had a consistent, scientific explanation which does not require magic or the existence of a magic creative entity.

The team's findings were published last March in the Journal of Biogeography, sadly behind a paywall.


If you're a Creationists and are beginning to have some doubts because of this tsunami of scientific evidence for evolution and none at all for Creationism, then you might benefit from reading these two books, that should help you understand the realities of nature and dispense with the fantasies and disinformation you've been fooled with by frauds with a political and financial agenda.

Thank you for sharing!

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Malevolent Designer News - The Evil Genius Behind the Coronavirus Revealed

A multidimensional view of the coronavirus - TUM

Creationist mode:

As well as the paper cataloguing the multitude of mutations and varieties of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that creationism's intelligent [sic] designer has had to come up with to try to keep ahead of human medical science, we have here another paper detailing the amazing complexity of the interaction between the virus and human cells as it destroys them and kills its victims. It is by a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), Germany, and the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Germany

Creationists can access the database the team behind this paper have constructed and made available, to marvel at the sheer complexity of the 1484 interactions between the viral proteins and the cell proteins. As described in the TUM news release:

Friday 16 April 2021

Malevolent Designer News - Sponges Don't Get Cancer...

Tethya wilhelma
Can withstand 100 times the dose of X-rays that would be fatal for humans
Sponges can survive massive doses of radiation without getting cancer | New Scientist

According to a paper published in biorXiv ahead of peer-reviewed publication, a research team led by Angelo Forunato of Arizon State University's Arizona Cancer Evolution Center have found that sponges don't get cancer.

Sponges, which belong to the Porifera phylum, live for thousands of years, grow continually and lack an immune system. They are also exposed to solar radiation, so, since cancers normally arise due to mistakes in cell mitosis when the DNA is replicated, or to radiation damage to the DNA, they should accumulate numerous cancers over time.

Yet cancers have never been found in sponges. Clearly, there is something preventing this and, unlike with elephants which rarely get cancer, it can't be due to a highly efficient immune system.

In fact, sponges can survive the highest doses of ionizing radiation ever recorded for a living species. In their experiments, the Arizona team exposed the sponge species Tethya wilhelma to a dose of 600 Gy of X-ray radiation without harm. This is about 100 time the lethal dose for humans.

Malevolent Designer News - One Year of Trying to Keep Ahead of Science

One year of SARS-CoV-2 evolution | Microbiology Society

Creationist mode:

A review paper published just a few days ago should thrill intelligent [sic] design Creationists. It catalogues the measures their intelligent [sic] designer has gone to to try to keep ahead of human medical science so it can carry on killing and making sick as many people as possible with its SARS-CoV-2 virus. The paper is published, open access, in a Microbiology Society's journal, the Journal of General Virology.

Of course, the scientists talk about mutations, evolution, etc, but, as any devoted intelligent [sic] design advocate knows, this is the deliberate design of a magic deity, who is one and the same as the god of the Christian Bible and the Qur'an.

The Microbiology Society new release says:
The review discusses the findings of over 180 research articles and follows the changes that have taken place in the SARS-CoV-2 genome, and the variants that have occurred as a result.

As more and more variants appear, we are getting a better picture of their shared similarities and differences and can better predict what other new variants will look like. Putting all this information together will also help us design booster vaccines that protect against as many variants as possible or design targeted diagnostics.

Although the genomic surveillance in Europe and the USA is fairly strong it is becoming clear there are large areas of the world that we simply have no idea what variants are circulating. These are starting to appear in Europe as imports or community outbreaks. Better surveillance across a broader range of countries would allow us to better risk assess what the next stage of the pandemic might look like. If we want to monitor the ongoing emergence, spread, and import of potential vaccine escape mutants we have to continue this effort or risk further pandemic waves and vaccine failure. Furthermore, understanding the genomic epidemiology of the virus as early as possible will allow us to rapidly develop updated vaccine boosters.

The authors
A number of SARS-CoV-2 variants have emerged from immunocompromised hosts, research has identified. It is thought that variants of concern – including B.1.1.7, a variant first identified in Kent – were a result of long-term infection in people with a weakened immune system.

Persistent infections in immunocompromised people could cause the virus to mutate more frequently because the person’s immune system cannot clear the virus as quickly as the immune system of a healthy person.

Authors Professor Wendy Barclay, Dr Thomas Peacock, Professor Julian Hiscox and Rebekah Penrice-Randal explain the importance of monitoring genetic changes in SARS-CoV-2 for future control of the virus: “As more and more variants appear, we are getting a better picture of their shared similarities and differences and can better predict what other new variants will look like. Putting all this information together will also help us design booster vaccines that protect against as many variants as possible or design targeted diagnostics” they said.

Their review discusses where mutations have occurred, what part of the virus they affect and how the resulting variants could impact vaccination efforts. According to the authors, mutations in SARS-CoV-2 are expected, as the virus is adapting to humans. “Sequencing of human seasonal coronaviruses has not been done on a scale like SARS-CoV-2, particularly when they would have initially spread into humans. SARS-CoV-2 is at the start of its journey in humans whereas other human coronaviruses have been around, in some cases, for many decades” they said.

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants is one of the great challenges in the ongoing pandemic. This review article summarises our current knowledge and understanding of the evolution of the virus, as well as the consequences – for example in terms of vaccination. It is of great interest to anyone wishing to learn more about the history of this virus and what the future may hold.

Professor Alain Kohl
Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of General Virology
Variants with the same or similar mutations have emerged independently in different countries: “SARS-CoV-2 is probably still finding its way in humans in terms of optimal infection and transmission. The scale of the outbreak and the massive sequencing efforts will identify concurrent mutations; basically, the virus is undergoing the same types of selection pressures wherever you are in the world, and the outbreak was all seeded by the same original virus,” explained the authors.

Mutations of particular interest include those in the spike protein. This protein allows the virus to enter host cells and is the main target of the immune system, including immunity generated by all current SARS-CoV-2 vaccines.

Mutations in the gene that codes for spike could change the shape of the protein, allowing it to no longer be recognised by the immune system. Because this protein is so important for SARS-CoV-2 entry, favourable mutations are more likely to succeed and create new, dominant variants of the virus.

Changes that give the virus an advantage can quickly become dominant. For example, one mutation, named D614G, was found in 80% of SARS-CoV-2 viruses sequenced just four months after it was first detected. Now, viruses without the D614G mutation are only commonly seen in parts of Africa.

Another mutation, N501Y, is found in the SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7. This mutation is believed to be the result of infection of an immunocompromised individual and may contribute to the virus being more contagious. Infections with this variant have a higher fatality rate. In the UK, B.1.1.7 became the dominant variant within three months and is now responsible for over 90% of infections there.

Significant spike protein mutations discussed in the review include:

D614G: In February 2020, a mutation was detected in the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 and named D614G. This mutation was found to makes SARS-CoV-2 more infectious, however does not make the virus more harmful. This increase in infectivity led to a significant fitness advantage and within four months, 80% of SARS-CoV-2 viruses sequenced around the world were found to have the mutation. Now, only parts of Africa have circulating viruses without the D614G mutation.

Despite initial concerns, D614G does not have an effect on vaccine efficiency and in some cases, viruses with the D614G mutation are more readily cleared by antibodies against SARS-CoV-2.

Y435F: In mid-2020, reports of mink becoming infected by humans became frequent. In mink, the spike protein of the virus commonly developed two mutations called Y435F and N501T. These mutations allow for stronger binding of the virus to human receptor cells. Viruses with these mutations were found in a cluster of human infections in Denmark, believed to have originated from mink. Concerningly, this variant was able to infect people who had previously been infected with SARS-CoV-2 and were thought to have some immunity to the virus. As a result, 17 million mink were culled.

The mutation Y435F has also been reported to have developed in an immunocompromised person, possibly as a result of chronic infection with the virus allowing it to adapt.

N501Y: In December 2020, a highly transmissible variant of the virus was isolated in Kent, UK. This variant, named B.1.1.7, contained a mutation in the spike protein called N501Y. Not only does this mutation make the virus more contagious, but it was also found to have a higher fatality rate. In the UK, B.1.1.7 is now the dominant variant, and is responsible for over 90% of infections.

The mutation N501Y has been found to have little effect on immunity from both vaccines and previous infections.

E484K: The spike protein mutation E484K has emerged in recent months, once in South Africa and at least twice in Brazil. Variants with the mutation of E484K are able to evade the immune system of both vaccinated and previously infected individuals.

It is thought that this mutation was driven by high levels of population immunity, which drove mutations in the spike protein to evade the immune system. In Brazil, there have been several reports of healthcare workers and other people with antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 being reinfected with variants with the E484K mutant, raising concerns about vaccine protection against this variant.
The authors also provide a handy table of all these mutations so devotees of the putative intelligent [sic] designer can marvel at the amount of work this obsessive malevolence has put into ensuring as many of us get as sick as possible.

Creationist mode:

Okay, back to the real world now - the world where people who understand biology are working to protect us from the results of evolution by natural selection - the world where muttering magic spells to an imaginary magic designer do absolutely nothing to mitigate the harm from parasites like this pernicious little virus.
Spike mutations of interest mapped to the spike trimer. Mutations shown in red, ACE2 shown in yellow, spike monomer in RBD ‘up’ conformation shown in green, spike monomers in RBD ‘down’ conformation shown in pink and blue. Structure made using PyMOL using PDBID 7A94 [24].


SARS-CoV-2 is thought to have originated in the human population from a zoonotic spillover event. Infection in humans results in a variety of outcomes ranging from asymptomatic cases to the disease COVID-19, which can have significant morbidity and mortality, with over two million confirmed deaths worldwide as of January 2021. Over a year into the pandemic, sequencing analysis has shown that variants of SARS-CoV-2 are being selected as the virus continues to circulate widely within the human population. The predominant drivers of genetic variation within SARS-CoV-2 are single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) caused by polymerase error, potential host factor driven RNA modification, and insertion/deletions (indels) resulting from the discontinuous nature of viral RNA synthesis. While many mutations represent neutral ‘genetic drift’ or have quickly died out, a subset may be affecting viral traits such as transmissibility, pathogenicity, host range, and antigenicity of the virus. In this review, we summarise the current extent of genetic change in SARS-CoV-2, particularly recently emerging variants of concern, and consider the phenotypic consequences of this viral evolution that may impact the future trajectory of the pandemic.

Peacock, Thomas P.; Penrice-Randal, Rebekah; Hiscox, Julian A.; Barclay, Wendy S.
SARS-CoV-2 one year on: evidence for ongoing viral adaptation
Journal of General Virology
2021; 102(4), DOI: 10.1099/jgv.0.001584

Copyright: © 2021 The authors. Published by the Microbiology Society.
Open Access
Reprinted under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license (CC BY 4.0)
This tongue-in-cheek twist on the science is, of course, the logical conclusion of the curious Creationist dogma that nothing happens unless their putative designer deity so wills it and, being omniscient, it knows perfectly in advance what the consequences of its designs will be. If any Creationist disagrees with this, feel free to explain the flaw in that logic. Is your designer deity not omniscient and blunders with its designs, being forever surprised by what they do? Or is it just incompetent and now lacks the power to stop SARS-CoV-2 doing what it does and evolving away randomly until it comes up with new, more successful designs all by natural processes that your deity is powerless to prevent?

Or would you rather people thought of your god as a malevolent deity who deliberately creates pain and suffering because it so hates its creation?

Your god; your choice.

Meanwhile, if you have the slightest doubt, here are a couple of books that expose the Intelligent Design hoax for what it is - a badly thought-out attempt to foist fundamentalist religious dogma on scientifically-illiterate people disguised as science by dressing it up in a grubby labcoat.

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