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NBC sleasumentary

Ruth Otte of the Learning Channel/Discovery wrote:

>Last night [Sunday], TLC aired a programme titled "Mysteries of the Origins 
>of Man," which, among other bits of pseudoscience and out right mysticism, 
>dragged out the misinterpreted/hoaxed Paulxy "human" tracks as evidence that 
>"nobody really knows" the origins of humanity. Narrated by Charlton Heston 
>(no big surprise there). I've noticed that TLC seems particularly prone to 
>airing this sort of thing..

That's an understatement. This is at least the third time 
NBC has aired this sleasumentary, despite countless protests 
and letters from scientists and educators.  Ironically, all these 
objections seem to have backfired, as NBC claimed they only 
proved the show to be interesting and controversial, and thus 
deserved to be aired again.  Yeah, right. Obviously they care 
much more about ratings and $$$ than truth and integrity.  

I suppose that should not be a surprise, but it's disappointing 
nonetheless. I hate to think of the millions of people influenced 
to accept nutty ideas about science and earth history each time this 
program aired.  Many otherwise intelligent appearing people I know 
seemed to have fallen for its many pseudoscientific claims  hook, 
line, and sinker.. a sad commentary on the state of science 
education in America.  

I think it's fine to send more letters to NBC (they should know 
that our concern has not ended about this) but fear they will have 
no more affect this time than the last.  Apparently NBC just does 
not care whether the public is mislead or educated, as long as the 
bread comes in.  Is there another possible approach?

Ruth, since you are President of the Learning Channel, is there 
any chance of developing a counter show that would address,
explain, and correct many of the blunders and bloopers of the 
NBC show?  Wouldn't an educational expose' like this get decent 
ratings also, while helping correct many misimpressions?  Just 
something to think about.  

At any rate, besides the talk.origins review of this 
program that someone else mentioned, I wrote my own 
critique of it when it first aired over a year ago.
It's now on my Paluxy web site at:


Or you can go directly to the critique at:

I focus mostly on the claims about Paluxy "man tracks" 
and related matters, on which I've worked and written 
extensively. The supposed "man track" expert on the 
show was creationist "Dr." Carl Baugh (actually he has 
no legitimate degrees), and who is considered 
disreputable and a "problem" even by many creationists.
One interesting aspect of the show is that it promoted 
the concept of hyper-ancient humans (tens of millions 
of years old), evidently based on the Hare Krishna 
beliefs of some of the producers, whereas some of the 
"experts" they paraded (like Baugh) are actually strict 
creationists who believe the exact opposite--that humans 
and all other life forms were created only a few thousand 
years ago.

Glen J. Kuban