Posted by: Johan Normark | August 22, 2010

Foxy archaeology

Being a great fan of Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show I have come to appreciate his recurrent coverage of Fox News. Fox News is as predictable as the 2012-circus, leaving the audience with data presented with false logic, Christian manipulation, conspiracy theories, etc. I doubt Stewart will cover the Mormon Glenn Beck’s recent travesty of archaeology. However, it has already been covered by two archaeological blogs. Anyway, here is a short comment on it.

Beck claims that there is a connection between the Newark Earthworks in Ohio and the Khufu pyramid at Giza by claiming that the angle of the Khufu pyramid is the same as the angle of the axis cutting through the octagon from the center of the not completely circular formation in the earthwork. Back at A Hot Cup of Joe, it is shown that this math is incorrect. However, let’s say it was the same for the sake of the argument. Why would that necessarily indicate a transatlantic connection since; (1) the pyramid and the earthworks are from completely different periods, (2) they are completely different kinds of buildings bearing no resemblance to one and another, (3) the differences in measurement: one being a vertical measurement (the height of the pyramid) and the other a horizontal measurement (the alignment between locations of the ground)? It is only because of the angle that we are led to believe that the structures share a common origin. The false logic is that no one can come up with the same angle as the Khufu pyramid of Giza without any connection to that site (never mind that completely different alignments have been measured). A classic strategy in this nonsense, common in the 2012-circus as well, is to choose structures that suits the predefined (often a Biblical) story and find “evidence” that support it, rather than the scientific method which works the other way around. There are plenty of earthworks and other structures in the Americas that do not fit this story and hence they are ignored.

Slightly later in Beck’s presentation we find out that there was supposedly a man buried in the earthworks. He was interred with holy stones written in Hebrew. If we just ignore the fact that these finds are frauds, Beck believes he has proven the ancient connection between the Khufu pyramid and the earthworks. If we continue to ignore chronology, completely different construction techniques, and other small issues, why would people of Hebrew descent replicate the angle from the Khufu pyramid in the Newark Earthworks? Even if you believe the nonsense that comes from the Mormon Church you will have problems explaining why the Hebrew chose an angle from an Egyptian monument for their earthworks. I suspect Beck believes the Hebrew participated in the construction of the pyramid. That is just another of his chronological flaws.

It is also ridiculous to argue that only the Smithsonian, government, etc. created the idea that the Indian was a savage to hide “the truth about America” (conspiracy theory again…). It is of course people like Beck, who claims that the Newark Earthworks were built by people from the other side of the Atlantic, that are the problems today.  It is they who believe that the Earthworks could not have been built by “savages” but by a Biblical tribe. The very idea of savage has been dropped a long time ago in the archaeological community but Beck is living in a world of his own where past ethnocentric evaluations prevail. This is now, forget the past as Beck says himself. Fox News must be one of the few TV network where being a nut job is a qualification. They are creating their own savages but today they are Muslims instead.



  1. Thanks for posting this Johan. This kind of thing drives me crazy. I can’t believe that Fox lets this kind of crap slide…oh wait, yes I can. Nothing like butchering history and archaeology for nationalistic purposes! This is why anthropologists and archaeologists have to maintain some sort of public interaction–just to counter nonsense like this.

    • I wonder if Beck himself believes this or if he is willing to tell lies just to bolster nationalism? I do not know which scenario would be worst?

      • I have no idea. I am still amazed that this crap is on national TV. Just another day in the land of the amazing political pundits.

      • Fox News appears to be full of them. I thought O’Reilly was the worst guy until I saw Beck…

  2. from this article:

    “For a century or so, scientists have theorized Asians migrated to the Americas across a land bridge at least 14,000 years ago. But Mormons have been taught to believe the Book of Mormon — the faith’s keystone text — is a literal record of God’s dealings with the ancient inhabitants of the Americas who descended from the Israelite patriarch Lehi, who sailed to the New World around 600 B.C. The book’s narrative continues through about 400 A.D.

    The church teaches that Joseph Smith translated this record from gold plates found on a hillside in upstate New York in 1820, when he was 14. The Book of Mormon was first published in 1830.

    In Mormon theology, Lamanites are understood as both chosen and cursed: Christ visited them, yet their unrighteousness left them cursed with dark skin. The Book of Mormon says Lamanites will one day be restored to greatness through the fullness of the gospel. (The original 1830 version of the Book of Mormon said they would become “white and delightsome;” in 1981, the passage was changed to “pure and delightsome.”) Though not mentioned specifically in the Book of Mormon, Polynesians have been taught they are a branch of the House of Israel descended from Lehi. ”

    Glen Beck is simply using Fox news and visa versa to pump Mormon theology about ancient North America and all the junk science is simply Mormon indocrination. They need a reason to put ancient north americans on a pedestal to make the Book of Mormon look true. Plain and simple.

    You should never confuse Glen Beck or Fox News with Christians.

    Pro 6:12 A man of Belial, a wicked person, is he that goeth about with a perverse mouth;
    Proverbs 6:13-15 he winketh with his eyes, he speaketh with his feet, he teacheth with his fingers; deceits are in his heart; he deviseth mischief at all times, he soweth discords. Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly: in a moment shall he be broken, and without remedy.


    In the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen

    • You are correct that they “put ancient north americans on a pedestal to make the Book of Mormon look true.” I do not confuse Beck or Fox news with all Christians. Christians make up a multiplicity that cannot be reduced to one category. The ones that I have problem with are those who let a supposedly holy scripture be used as a frame of interpretation.

  3. ,Se
    The LDS In Very Interested In Mesoamerica,Sending Many Of Their Childern On Mission To Central America,Buying Property In Belize,Also Belife Early Contact Confussed Sun With Son.

    • I have seen them on mission, particularly in Belize and I have even worked with at least one Mormon archaeologist.


  5. I think we can see the obvious connection, as he has written the names of both in Papyrus…

  6. Who is he and who are both? Beck?

    • I just noticed that I never noticed this reply (because I just noticed that I was still subscribed to comments on this post, and your reply wasn’t threaded).

      Beck’s chalkboard has text in the font Papyrus, favorite of James Cameron (in Avatar) and schoolchildren writing reports on ancient Egypt. You can tell the font is related to ancient Egypt because of the name. It’s considered an especially exotic and creative font because it ships with Microsoft Office.

      If the name “Newark Hopewell City” is written in Papyrus, we must conclude that it is related to ancient Egypt. Or Fox just can’t afford interesting typefaces.

  7. No.BeKKK!

  8. Is Beck a Klan member?

  9. No,Just A Public Racist,With Pre-war German Flair.The Lds Has Reconized Some Pacific Islanders As Saints But Few From Africia.

    • That description seems appropriate.

  10. “Triumph Of Igrorance”BeKKK A Former Top 40,Morning Zoo DJ. Climbs The Media Ladder To Become 7/Macaw Placing Himself Infront Of Sacred Public Monuments Claiming The Struggle For Social Justice.
    His Rally For “REclaiming Honor” Is Neo-con Code For Blood und Honor.A Shame The Greatest Generation Defeats The Axis Only To Lose To Fascism.

  11. I am glad I am not living in America…

  12. Not Me,I’m Blessed To Be Living In The Maw Of The Earth-monster,I Live In The City Next To Where The Gods Of Grenwich Dwell.A Nice Mixture Of Stepford Wifes/Daughter And Mojodos Waiting In Their Designated Pick-up Area Paciently Antisapating The Arrival Of El Effe,To Take Them To Spruce Up The Cloue.
    Plus The Kundalini Serpent I Shifting Form The Old World To The Spine Of The Americas,Andes,Rockies,With The Maya Mountain As Itz Heart,And The Nine Maya Spirits As The Earth Lords Awaiting Our Summons.


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