[UPDATE: For those who are unaware, Roy Spencer is a vocal climate change “skeptic”, but a particularly influential one as a member of the UAH remote sensing team. He has been making the rounds of late peddling a “climate is self-stabilizing due to large negative feedbacks” take on the issue. He is a member of the Heartland Institute, a contributor to the George C. Marshall Institute, and the favorite climatologist of Rush Limbaugh.]
Some people have for whatever reason argued that Spencer is not a creationist, perhaps because in defending the idea that neo-creationist Intelligent Design should be taught in public schools, Spencer plays dumb at who or what the Designer is supposed to be, a common creationist tactic:
Intelligent design can be studied and taught without resorting to human creation traditions and beliefs, which in the West are usually traceable to the first book of the Bible, Genesis. Just as someone can recognize and study some machine of unknown purpose built by another company, country (or alien intelligence?), one can also examine the natural world and ask the question: did this machine arise by semi-random natural physical processes, or could it have been designed by a higher power?
In case anyone believes that Spencer is merely advocating the teaching of ID as a hypothetical rather than as part of his personal religious views, he follows up with a clarification that speaks volumes about both his ability to separate ideology from science and his trustworthiness as a science communicator:
Indeed, I was convinced of the intelligent design arguments based upon the science alone.
But of course there is no scientific evidence in favor of ID. None. And there are mountains and mountains of evidence in support of evolution through natural selection, from fossils to genetics. Spencer’s statement is simply gobsmacking. I would be curious to see what “science” he can produce in favor of ID- as I am sure other ID proponents would as well. It would after all be the first time anyone ever had.
And in other venues, Spencer has been a bit more forthcoming about his actual beliefs. Not only does he believe that the Judeo-Christian god is the creator of the universe and all living creatures, he believes that this also is supported by scientific evidence:
In relation to the basic claims of Christianity, do what I did! Read the Bible. Judge it for itself. Put it to the test. I am confident that you too will find the Bible not only to be in agreement with proven facts of science, but also to be the book which will lead you to a personal faith in God the creator of all things.
Perhaps more puzzling, he believes that the Bible offers a consistent and error-free narrative which itself is evidence of its truth:
I was struck by the unity of the Bible’s message – the way it agreed with itself even though it was written by 40 different authors over a period of 1,600 years. I realised that the gospel records were free of comment from the writers. They merely recorded what they saw without exaggerating the events, without covering up the faults and failings of the followers of Jesus and without trying to present the story in exactly the same way. There were enough differences between the four gospels to prove they had not collaborated, but not enough differences to stray into the area of outright contradictions and errors.