If you’ve ever spent any appreciable time on science blogs and forums, you may have had the occasion to read one of these really strangely worded and formated posts by a character who calls himself Dave Mabus.
So what’s he on about?
According to him, he’s been waging a “propaganda war” for the last three years against atheists, skeptics, and rationalists. As you can see from the word cloud above, he’s nearly as fixated on James “The Amazing” Randi as he is Nostradamus. More so than even atheists. Other special favorites of Markuze are PZ Myers, Phil Plait and Richard Dawkins. Apparently he’s even threatened PZ Myers’ life and, according to one science forum I visit on occasion, Markuze has threatened to hack them or shut them down with a DoS attack.
But why? What’s his Beef?
Markuze seems to think that he has a special gift of prophecy and that he’s waging a war against blasphemy. He very often cites quatrains of Nostradamus as justification for his lunacy, but he clearly ignores the fact that Nostradamus is well-debunked by rational and critical looks at his quatrains (short, poetic prophecies of dubious and vague nature). He cites vague passages that could truly refer to any number of events in history, but somehow they hold special meaning for Markuze.
Markuze is, however, clearly a person in need of psychological help if his personality is accurately portrayed in his words, spammed across hundreds of blogs and forums. In several posts, and on his website, he threatens violence and displays extreme hatred for those who don’t think like he does. For instance, he writes on his site, “so why don’t you all [atheists] go shoot yourselves in the HEAD [sic], surely better than your miserable lives?”
A few lines of text later, Markuze appeals to popularity in arguing against atheists, stating that we’ve “adopted a position against 98% of the human race, both past and present” but he cites no figures to support this. Still, theists areÂ admittedlyÂ a majority in the world. But there are reliable figures that atheism and the non-religious are Â currently 10-13% of the world’s population if not more. In some nations, the percentage of non-believers is as high as 30% (see WikiPedia: Demographics of Atheism)
Markuze also speaks of an “atheist purge” in his rants, telling the world to “[p]lease keep your atheists in check, or we will…”
And he claims to have had a “simple” objective:
1) to reveal that Nostradamus was a genuine prophet who could predictÂ the future with 100% accuracy;
2) to demonstrate that prophecy and atheism are not compatible withÂ each other and are mutually exclusive;
3) therefore dawkins, pz, randi and their skeptic atheist followersÂ were deluded liars…
Looking through his site, painful on the eyes as it was, there was no indication that he gave any “proof” of Nostradamus’ predictive power. If anything, he confirmed the silliness of believing in that sort of thing. And I would agree with Markuze that prophecy and atheism are incompatible. Prophecy is built on fantasy, wishful thinking and a desire to influence groups of people. Most “prophecies” in biblical mythology and the vague, rambling quatrains of Nostradamus were so vague as to be easily attributed to many historical events that were to follow their publication. Some, especially those in biblical mythology, were written after the fact or were selfÂ full-filled. To an extent, this is the nature of Nostradamus’ prophecies: the are self full-filled by those that interpret events to fit a quatrain only after the fact. As a prophecy, any given quatrain of Nostradamus is worthless since they have zero predictive power.
One can only guess at the psychological workings of Markuze that lead him to his conclusions in number 3. His inclusion of a “therefore” seems to indicate that the first two points were premises or a logical argument, but they appear true only in his mind.
So what informs Markuze’s fantasies? Where does he get the ideas for the web of delusion and hatred and loathing for atheists that has polluted and influenced his thinking?
The clues are in his posts and rants. Particularly in his choice of pseudonyms. “Mabus” is a fictional character from the science fiction television series First Wave, which aired from 1998 to 2001. It featured a pair of heroes who were dispatching Gua, aliens bent on taking over the Earth, in an underground “war” which was fueled by propaganda generated by tech-savvyÂ ”Crazy” Eddie (Rob LaBelle). The aliens were evil and using science as their weapon against humanity. “Crazy” Eddie was a Nostradamus buff who was using quatrains to track and kill the atheists. I mean aliens.
Mabus is a name that really exists in the fictional writings of Nostradamus, so clearly this is where the show’s writers obtained the name. It was also the name Nostradamus gave for the “anti-christ,” that person who is supposed to be the “anti-” version of another fictional character but of biblical mythology.
The real question is why does Markuze choose the name “Mabus” as his pseudonym, knowing that this is the name of the anti-christ? My guess is that it has to do with Markuze’s dual personality, one of a polar nature.
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