Oh, that explains it

May 16, 2008

Adnan Oktar ‘s conviction on charges of profiting from what amounts to a sex slave operation was a set up, he said.

Who would do such a dastardly thing?  The communists and the Freemasons!

This interview is from last September, but so far it’s perfectly in line with what his PR flacks are saying since the sentencing:  Video, selected transcripts.

I’m sure that’s what he tells his wife, Morgan Fairchild.

How can you keep from thinking this stuff is parody?  It looks and sounds like slightly amateurish “David Letterman” or “Saturday Night Live” routines.

Adnan Oktar: Creationist crash much racier in Spanish

May 15, 2008

Adnan Oktar? The Turkish creationist recently sentenced to three years in prison for using his creationist organization for personal gain?

The Reuters story in English didn’t note that part of the personal gain was a lot of sex with young girls and boys. That’s what the Spanish version says in elPeriodico.com.

The official spokesman for the many faces of Harun Yahya (Oktar’s pen name) says that the charges are unrelated to the creationism shtick. The Spanish version says Oktar was running a cult that involved recruiting young men by enticing them with young women.

How will the Discovery Institute spin this one?

With Turkey’s odd laws on press freedom and libel and slander, how can we really figure out what’s going on?

Raw Google translation of the Spanish version below the fold

Read the rest of this entry »

Turkey opens up to WordPress blogs?

May 12, 2008

Last time we seriously checked in with Jim Gibbon it was for the haiku contest on research papers.

Comes this missive from Gibbon now, which suggests that the Adnan Oktar ban on WordPress blogs in Turkey was lifted as of May 3.  True?  Mr. Gibbon is in Turkey, I gather, which would put him in a position to know.

Was this a predictor of Oktar’s sentencing on May 9?

Hey, Turkey!  Welcome back!

Schadenfreude alert: Turkish creationist gets three-year sentence

May 10, 2008

Tape up your face to keep from smiling too broadly, schadenfreude being a sin or close to it.

Turkish creationist, bully and general gluteal carbuncle Adnan Oktar got sentenced to three years in prison yesterday, for the crime of creating an illegal organization for personal gain.

Adnan Oktar in October 2007 - on his yacht?

You remember Oktar: He’s the guy who publishes all those nasty anti-evolution and anti-science books, steals photos for his high-cost, low-information “atlas” of creationism, and successfully sued to shut down this blog’s availability in Turkey (Well, this blog and two million others on WordPress).

Reuters has a story on the affair:

A spokeswoman for his Science Research Foundation (BAV) confirmed to Reuters that Oktar had been sentenced but said the judge was influenced by political and religious pressure groups.

Oktar had been tried with 17 other defendants in an Istanbul court. The verdict and sentence came after a previous trial that began in 2000 after Oktar, along with 50 members of his foundation, was arrested in 1999.

In that court case, Oktar had been charged with using threats for personal benefit and creating an organization with the intent to commit a crime. The charges were dropped but another court picked them up resulting in the latest case.

Oktar planned to appeal the sentence, a BAV spokeswoman said. No further details were immediately available.

Oh, yeah — those political and religious pressure groups. And Oktar’s high dollar bullying of government authorities — what is that?

European, and Turkey, laws against political views may trouble one, justly. In a perfect world, there would be no need for such things, with good and true ideas having a good shot at winning in a fair fight. Oktar specializes in the sort of thuggery that makes a fight for ideas unfair. We might hope this latest action will simply help keep the playing field even, level and fair.


The news is oddly silent about this otherwise.

Tip of the old scrub brush to The Sensuous Curmudgeon.

Hittin’ the big time? Or just catching up?

January 19, 2008

Adnan Oktar’s mean-spirited campaign against knowledge, science and evolution still makes headlines — this time in the blog of Die Zeit, the most widely-read newspaper in Germany.

I’m flattered at the mention. I’d be happier if I knew Turkey’s ban on blogs had been lifted. I’d be happier if Die Zeit’s view leaned much more toward protecting freedom of the press, and much less toward general xenophobia against Moslems. Perhaps I’m reading too much into the comments.

Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub is banned in Turkey, China, and blocked in the Duncanville, Texas, school system. What does that mean?

Aid and comfort: Turkey creationism

September 6, 2007

Public Radio International’s daily news program, The World, reported today that a group called “Discovery” (the Discovery Institute?) and mathematician David Berlinsky are in league with Islamic fundamentalists in Turkey in their pushing of creationism over evolution theory. (Still can’t get a biologist to go along with them? Mathematician? What are the odds that he knows anything about biology?)

Update: Here’s the link to the creationism story, creationism in Turkey.

True stripes show, eventually: Creationism in Turkey is pushed by a bunch that uses threats of violence against teachers of science at all levels, and bullying tactics otherwise, to “persuade” others (so far as I can tell, this blog and all other WordPress blogs are still being blocked in Turkey due to bizarre legal maneuvers by the charlatan science commentator Adnan Oktar, who publishes under the pseudonym Harun Yahya some of the most inaccurate material and fantastic fabrications in their war on science).

The story is not up in the archives for The World, yet — archives generally run a day behind. The story was broadcast today, September 6, 2007. It featured wild track tape of Berlinsky lecturing in Turkey, if I heard correctly, and further interviews with him.

Stay tuned.

Dutch creationists pay to keep evolution off television

August 20, 2007

Here’s an interesting tactic Dutch Christians seem to have picked up from Adnan Oktar: If you don’t have a rebuttal to evolution, buy the rights to the information and cover it up.

It’s a commercial/religious twist on what Richard Nixon tried to do, but this may be legal. Will it work? Can Christians, or Moslems, purchase the rights to the truth, to keep it from being broadcast?

David Attenborough is famous for his nature programs, usually produced for the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) and often broadcast in the U.S. on Public Broadcast System (PBS) stations. An evangelical Christian television network in the Netherlands purchased the rights to one of Attenborough’s latest productions, The Life of Mammals, but has edited out all references to evolution.

Are the edits significant? See for yourself:

Comparative clips of the English and Dutch versions can bee seen at Cloggie.

MediaWatchWatch.com reports the move may be pointless, since many Dutch homes have BBC on their cable systems.

Still, with Adnan Oktar spending millions to publish and distribute widely a grotesquely inaccurate book on evolution (unholy to do such things, Adnan – really!), with Texas’s State Board of Education chaired by a hard-headed creationist, one does tire of the creationists’ tendencies to try to purchase the right to be stupid, and then force that stupidity on others.

Why not just stick to the facts? What’s so wrong about letting the truth out? What’s so wrong with the truth that religious fanatics will spend millions to cover it up?

Richard Nixon’s ghost is slapping Santayana’s ghost on the back, asking him to join in on the joke. Santayana’s ghost is not laughing.

More information:

Turkish creationists censor 1 million WordPress blogs

August 19, 2007

It’s an act worthy of Nicolae Ceauşescu, or Idi Amin — but the Turkish creationist Adnan Oktar has taken legal action that effectively blocks more than a million weblogs from access in Turkey — all the blogs on WordPress, the host of this blog.

Here’s the general announcement to WordPress clients. This site has the text of the threats from Oktar’s lawyers to WordPress.

Here’s a link to Matt’s blog, which has more discussion.

Adnan Oktar is the guy who pays people to write under the name Harun Yahya. Under that name he has published dozens of anti-evolution screeds. You may recall that, in the past year, he has financed the publication of an 800-page book, handsomely bound with scores of pictures (many of them plagiarized), claiming evolution could not account for features of living things. The scientifically vacuous book was delivered to schools and libraries across Europe in 2006, and then to thousands of U.S. scientists, teachers and libraries earlier in 2007.  (Here’s a good summary of creationism and Islam, from Taner Edis.)

I suggested in comments that protests should be made to the European Union. Turkey is working to gain admittance to the EU, and childish, totalitarian eruptions such as Oktar’s getting a court to censor a million blogs, significantly detract from Turkey’s chances and case. There is high irony here, too — Oktar is one of those who has willingly spread false claims that evolution was a cause of the Holocaust (when he’s not busy denying the Holocaust happened; consistency and accuracy are not among his strong points) — heck, just a few months ago he was claiming evolution is the cause of terrorism.

Do you have better ideas about what to do?

I hope the few of you who read this blog will spread this word far and fast.

Such disruptions of communication over an entire nation are the dreams of terrorists. Are we to understand that Adnan Oktar does this because Darwin convinced him? Or are his actions direct denial of his earlier claims?

I have been a journalist for a long time, having joined the Society of Professional Journalists in 1974. I spent many years in Washington, slugging it out against people who wished they had the power of censorship, and some who actually did have that power in other nations. I do not recall any similarly stupid activity outside of totalitarian governments, most of which are now gone.


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