Here are a couple of good quotes I have found on the web lately.
The first is from the comments on Paul Krugman’s blog, posted when Marco Rubio talked about the age of the earth, man:
I think we’re missing an important point here. Conservatives present evolution/geology and creationism/earth age as different “theories’ when they’re nothing of the sort. Creationism, earth age, and a whole series of other phenomena are beliefs, i.e., they are completely unverifiable and irrefutable. Science is something else: it’s a method of inquiry that relies on hypothesis testing, the collection of verifiable data, and replicability. Its results are joined in theories that rely on and must conform to the results of inquiry. Scientific theories are tested against the accumulated data of multiple investigations and, while scientists may develop competing theories, those theories compete on the basis of which best describes the data. One does not “believe” in science, one demonstrates the veracity and applicability of the evidence or contests one or the other (did the CERN electron really travel faster than the speed of light?).
Religion in whatever form is a ritual and belief system–science is not. The conservative strategy thus attempts to equate the two very different ways of viewing the world, elevating their belief system to the status of scientific investigation. It’s a subtle trick, but a trick nonetheless.
Here is another from Crooks And Liars (also from the comments):
One of the recurrent memes among conservatives is that they’re the grownups, the ones who realize that bills must be paid, that you can’t coast on credit card debt forever, and that liberals just want free stuff, without ever having to pay for it. And yet it’s conservatives who—apparently—think that the cheap-energy-and-abundant-resources party will last forever, without the bills ever coming due. It’s conservatives who constantly invoke magical thinking and who simply deny any “inconvenient truth” they don’t want to accept—evolution, overpopulation, peak oil, peak metals, climate change, desertification, vanishing water tables… Hell, conservatives denied for decades that cigarettes are bad for you (did Rush Limbaugh ever come around on that?). How have they gotten away with this for so long?