The Big Picture

Patrick Goldstein and James Rainey
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Bill O'Reilly on science: Why is Earth the only planet with a moon?

As my blogmate Jim Rainey has frequently pointed out, Fox News has its own unique view of the world, where the facts rarely get in the way, most recently in the way Fox pollster Frank Luntz used a strange brand of faux science to find a panel of people unimpressed by President Obama's recent State of the Union address. But when it comes to seeing the world through the wrong end of a telescope, no one tops Bill O'Reilly, who has been the butt of a thousand jokes after confronting an atheist on his show with irrefutable evidence of the existence of God--using as his evidence the fact that the tides come in and the tides go out. I mean, O'Reilly said with great certainty, who else could possibly be controlling that?

As any scientist could tell you, it's the moon that controls the tides. So Papa Bear has taken to the airwaves again to pursue a new wrinkle in his faux science agenda. He now acknowledges that the tides might indeed be controlled by the moon. But so what? As he says: "How'd the moon get there? Can you explain that to me? How come we have that? And Mars doesn't have it. Venus doesn't have it. How come?"

Actually, as any amateur astronomer knows, Jupiter has lots of moons, 63 in all, several of which you can see through a good pair of binoculars. One of them, Ganymede, is actually larger than Mercury. Saturn has 62 moons. Uranus has 27 moons. And hey, Bill, Mars actually has two moons of its own, that were discovered in 1877, long before even Roger Ailes was born. As far as I know, there's no evidence that either of them are made of green cheese either. I'm beginning to think that O'Reilly might have slept through quite a few of his fifth-grade science classes. But he sure is certain in his beliefs. Here, watch for yourself:

 --Patrick Goldstein

 

 
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"How did the moon get there." "How come we have that, and Mars doesn't have that."

Nothing incorrect about that statement. Mars does not have a moon. It has 2. Name a planet with "a" moon.

I don't care for O'Reilly and don't watch him, but give me a break. If you want misinformation, watch MSNBC. That Maddow lady has some wild ones don't you think?

Hey Goldstein, we will point it out to you yet again: Bill O'Reilly never said that Earth is the only planet that has a moon. So your headline is a lie. It is time for you to correct yourself and apologize to Bill. Now man up.


There's a reason why Goldstein is an Entertainment and Media columnist. It is because he would be a laughing stock as a science columnist.

O'Reilly happens to be more correct than Goldstein knows. Our moon is quite unique. It is very large and very close to the Earth which not only gives us large ocean tides, but also the geologic activity of the planet, among other lunar effects.

Our moon is a huge factor in why life is so abundant and thriving on this planet. Nothing else like it exists in our solar system.

Goldstein, I suggest that you check in with your science editor before putting your foot in your mouth the next time you decide to tackle this subject.


We'll do it live!!!

Hmmm, when did OReilly suggest that other planets did not have moons?
He brought to the discussion what another person brought up about the tides.
OReilly stated that why doesn't Mars or Venus have that, inferring the one moon that creates the tidal forces.
If someone had a semblance of intelligence would know that if we did not have the one moon or more than one moon, either tidal forces would be too weak or too strong which would cause geological problems that would make life not only very difficult to be sustained or impossible.
If the author does not know about the teleological argument, maybe you could read about it here-http://www.leaderu.com/offices/billcraig/docs/teleo.html

But hey, why bother even attempting to understand the counter argument, just go ahead and attempt to equate a hypothesis on the existence or the absence of God, as fact.

We all know some folks REALLY love to equate a hypothesis or theorem as fact. We all know who that would be don't we author?

And Bill O'Reilly is rumored to be the smartest man at FOX News? Wow. That really says a lot about Fox's employee screening process, doesn't it? Ordinarily, I'd wonder how anyone that stupid can become the mouthpiece of the Republican party, but instead I'm more interested in how such limited brain activity still provides basic motor function.

That is all right. Liberals like to believe in the models of global warming, forgetting that man-man CO2 accounts for less than 0.0000008% of the atmosphere.

These same people forget that the "mathematical models" they use are based on "Drake's Equation" used for SETI -- which had an INFINITE number of variables, so accepted "guesses" in place of real data.

Any model of the Earth's climate would be so complext as makes no odds. I could not even begin to count the number of variables and most of them would be impossible to determine actual values for in a real world.

Science does not come by CONSENSUS. You do not "vote" on what is SCIENCE. It is based on PROOF that is determinate and can be independently varified. This does not happen in the world of "global warming."

So O'Reilly is the least of your concerns...

Pinheads?...No Bill. Sorry...This imbecile is so cockily sure about his flippent statements. I think an intelligent person would check his or her facts before they go blurting assumed ones like that. Try replacing that bible with a science book, Sir.

Our planet is actually a binary planet. The moon passed the threshold test as our binary pair in its ancient history, but now has receded to the point where the barycenter of our CG is now back to the definition of a planet/moon (resides inside the physical volume of the earth) - system - BUT it was not originally this way.

We were originally a binary planet. How that happened is complete speculation. Of course there are plenty of pat answers and enforced answers, but when you step back out of religion and back into true science - we do not actually know how this occurred. I think this may be what Bill is trying to say. What we have is completely different from any other planetary member of the solar system (Pluto is a dwarf binary).

Oh gosh, I forgot we are supposed to bash him and tender some intellectual sounding disdainful quip....

"Astonishing"

 
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