Doug Phillips’ Raising The Allosaur

A Review of Vision Forum Film Flim Flam

Raising the Allosaur

Raising the Allosaur

Doug Phillips has ambitions to create a Christian film industry to compete with and supplant the evils that Hollywood spews on the public. To that end he has launched the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival (SAICFF). In just three years the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival has become Vision Forum’s largest program. Doug Phillips has even produced his own film, The League of Grateful Sons. More films are planned, with the goal of Doug Phillips becoming one of the top Christian film producers in the world.

Along the way, however, Phillips’ first production mysteriously disappeared. At the time it launched, it graced the cover of Vision Forum’s catalog. It was the most profitable Vision Forum product of the year. Then it disappeared without explanation, just as, all of the production costs having been recovered, it should have remained a steady source of income, with margins approaching 80%. What is this first Doug Phillips production, and why would he abandon it just when most profitable?

The mysterious disappearing Vision forum production was a 2002 documentary video entitled, Raising the Allosaur: The True Story of a Rare Dinosaur and the Home Schoolers Who Found It . The reason it disappeared from Vision Forum’s website and catalog is that it’s not a “true story” but rather a highly exaggerated account of some home school kids and their parents who tagged along, as part of nothing more than a tour group, on someone else’s dinosaur dig.

When I first watched this documentary something about it just didn’t smell right. I’m no paleontologist, but even from what little I’ve learned from reading National Geographic and visiting a few dinosaur and archeological museums I knew there was something seriously untrue about Doug Phillips’ true story. Even with what little I know about paleontology I know enough to know that no group of untrained parents and their kids (home schoolers or not) could possibly go out in the field, and the very first time out, and in the course of just a few days in the field, “make the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year.”

Indeed, after doing just a very little digging of my own I didn’t have to dig too deep to unearth a real stinkeroo of a story. Doug Phillips himself figured out awhile back that he’d been caught in his lies, which is why he no longer sells Raising the Allosaur. This review will expose some of those lies.

Here’s what the back of the video jacket of Raising the Allosaur says:

Q: What happens when a group of home school boys and girls travel to the badlands of Colorado with their parents in search of adventure and the hope of finding ancient treasures buried in rock?

A: They make the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year. There, buried in the rock, they excavate three amazing creatures: a many-plated Stegosaur; a 120-foot Brachiosaur. Most importantly, they raise from the ground what appears to be the most complete Allosaur (similar to a T. Rex) ever found in the history of paleontology, including the monster’s giant skull complete with rows and rows of once-razor sharp teeth…

This Q and A reflects exactly what this documentary attempts to portray–that home schoolers were directly responsible for discovering and excavating some very significant and very rare dinosaur bones. “They [the home schoolers] make the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year.” Left completely out of the story are those who were actually responsible for the finds–skilled professional paleontologists with many years of field and laboratory experience.

Taking all the credit, and grossly misrepresenting the facts (i.e. telling a pack of lies) for “the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year” is Doug Phillips and his team of home school families, who also shares some of the credit with Pete DeRosa and his two sons. Yet “Mr. Honor” Doug Phillips fails to give credit where credit is due. He doesn’t mention any of the men who were responsible for discovering and excavating the Allosaur.

For this investigative review I interviewed Joe Taylor, founder of the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum. Mr. Taylor is a professing Christian (Primitive Baptist), a creationist, and paleontologist. Joe has over 25 years of field and laboratory experience as a paleontologist. Joe’s Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum is the largest creationist fossil museum in the world. Joe is highly respected by many paleontologists around the world, as well as by numerous creationists, including Ken Hamm and Carl Baugh.

I asked Joe to share his story. The big challenge was that there’s just so much to cover that it was hard to condense it. Here’s Joe’s Reader’s Digest version of what really happened with Raising the Allosaur, and why Doug Phillips was forced to pull a highly profitable video from Vision Forum’s catalog:

On the cover of Vision Forum’s video Raising The Allosaur Doug Phillips claims that his group of home school kids found and raised from the ground the Allosaur. But that is not true. The home school kids and their parents did not raise even one bone from the ground. And they certainly did not also excavate a stegosaur and a 120-ft. long sauropod all in four days. It is nonsense. I told Peter that what he thought was a Stegosaur was just another sauropod. Dana had also found it in 2000, long before any of us were there. Doug boasts that a Dr. Bruce Belamy “found” the Allosaur skull. That is a lie. It was actually found by Mt. Blanco team member Jordan Hall three days after Belamy left.

By late 2002 Doug Phillips had made the DeRosa boys famous through his web page and through aggressive promotion of them as prodigies and professionals since the ages of five and seven. This got the DeRosas speaking engagements on the East coast and else where. At a meeting of home schoolers in New York State, the DeRosas claimed that Mark discovered the Allosaur and that Peter was the one who determined that they had an Allosaur. They were lying. They did not find the Allosaur at all. It was I who identified it as an Allosaur in May 2001. At the same time, Pete DeRosas told the meeting that their boys were so great that NASA had come out to make a film of “their” work. Another complete lie.

Doug gave my credentials to the DeRosa boys and exaggerated that. I personally know dozens of genuine paleontologists all over the world. The DeRosas do not.Yet, Phillips told the world that the teen age DeRosa boys were seasoned, highly trained professionals, with a dozen years experience each with hundreds of digs to their credit. I have personally done dozens and dozens of fossil digs over the last 25 years. It’s virtually impossible for even an active digger like myself to have done hundreds even in a lifetime. But Doug gave those credits to the DeRosas who were only 17 and 18 at the time and who in reality had only been to two dinosaur digs, both of which were my digs and they participated as my trainees.

There was another film made about raising that Allosaur titled The Truth About Raising The Allosaur. It included all of the actual footage and stills of the real excavation from start to finish. It shows that Dana Forbes, the property owner of the land where the Allosaur was discovered, actually found and even excavated on the Allosaur with a college paleontology student a year and a half before Doug Phillips and his home schoolers were ever on Dana’s ranch. It shows that the DeRosa boys were merely my trainees and that this was only the second dinosaur dig they had ever been to.

The other was at another of my digs for Carl Baugh. Doug pretends the DeRosas are knowledgeable paleontologists. He claims that this Allosaur is the largest. The truth is that they knew better. The other film shows the DeRosa boys and I standing under a cast of the world’s largest Allosaur, Saurophaganax, in Boise, Oklahoma. The man who restored it is a friend of mine and verified its size. It is 11 inches longer than the one we excavated.

The Truth About Raising The Allosaur was never released because Doug Phillips demanded it not be as part of a mediation settlement between the DeRosas and me. Doug was supposed to have come to the mediation, but sent his lawyer instead. That mediation left me in financial ruin.

Doug Phillips is a Pharisee. He puts on a good show in the flesh. The things he says sound fair and good. But my personal experience with him is that he is a very unethical man who will destroy someone who holds him accountable.

He pulled the very successful video Raising The Allosaur off the market because he had gotten a lot of heat from all of us who knew it was a big lie. But it was pulled at the same time that he issued a statement that he was parting ways with the DeRosas because of “ethical” problems. The “ethical” problems were never disclosed. I believe that the real reason was because the DeRosas were unhappy with and critical of Doug. I don’t think Doug will be telling on the DeRosas because he doesn’t want them telling on him.

Shame on all of them for taking the Lord’s name in vain. They are preaching Christ for filthy lucre’s sake. Doug Phillips succeeded in turning more than a dozen of my friends against me and against each other in order to cover his lies and fraud in getting the Allosaur away from its rightful owners. I am glad to say though that through a lot of hard work the friendships that Doug Phillips succeeded in wrecking have all been restored. I have publicly marked Doug Phillips as a divider of the brethren.

What Doug has done to me has ruined my business and wasted the better part of the last four years of my life. It has been the most grievous situation I have ever endured.

People ought to demand their money back for a film that is listed as a documentary but is just a lie.

Joe Taylor

Joe Taylor’s accusations against Doug Phillips are very strong. But they deserve to be taken seriously. No businessman in his right mind would give up the kind of profits possible from a video product, the production expenses of which having already been fully recovered. If it were possible for Phillips to edit the Raising the Allosaur video to eliminate a few problem areas, he would no doubt do so. The fact that he has not, instead quietly pretending as if the Raising the Allosaur video had never existed, speaks volumes that the content was so far from reality that no amount of editing could fix it.

As Doug Phillips continues to pursue his ambitions of personal domination of a new Christian film industry, spearheaded through his Vision Forum and San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival, he would do well to recall that the Ten Commandments of Christian Filmmaking which he established specifically for the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival, includes a Ninth Commandment:

“Truth is essential to Christian films… Film is an especially powerful medium for communication and should be handled with integrity.”

Keeping the Ten Commandments is a far wiser approach to starting a new Christian film industry than creating entirely new film genres and categories in conflict with those commandments. As it stands, however, Raising the Allosaur deserves at least honorable mention in what appears to be Doug Phillips’ innovative new film category known as “Fictional Documentary.”


Update: see “Doug Phillips: Villainy Behind the Mask of Virtue?; More Than Two Years After News Release Many Allegations Still Go Unanswered

151 Comments on “Doug Phillips’ Raising The Allosaur”

  1. Disgusted says:

    Disgusting and Duplicitous. Not to mention shameless. And this man is the founder of the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival?

    No wonder defrocked RC Sproul, Jr. and Kevin Swanson fit in so well as judges…

  2. Jen says:

    I’d heard some rumors before about this, but I learned a lot in your story here.

    I’d also heard rumors about the Allosaur skull being damaged because the DeRosas actually took it as theirs and attempted to “restore” it. Do you know anything about that?

    Also, what happened to the Allosaur, or more specifically, its skull?

  3. Time to Stop Stealing says:

    Joe Taylor said, “People ought to demand their money back for a film that is listed as a documentary but is just a lie.”

    Good idea. Vision Forum’s phone number is 800.440.0022.

  4. Not fair? says:

    Mr. Barnes, The points raised in your article are very troubling, but why do you call this docudrama “Doug Phillips’ Raising the Allosaur”? Weren’t many others involved? Isn’t it unfair to lay all the blame on Mr. Phillips?

  5. Insider says:

    Doug was supposed to have come to the mediation, but sent his lawyer instead.

    Doug Phillips skipping a meeting at which he would be held accountable? No surprise there. This is one of the many details in Taylor’s testimony that ring true to those of us who know Doug well.

  6. The Truth About Raising The Allosaur was never released because Doug Phillips demanded it not be as part of a mediation settlement between the DeRosas and me. Doug was supposed to have come to the mediation, but sent his lawyer instead.

    Is there any way we can get some documentation in regard to this mediation? So there is basically no possible way to ever see this video?

  7. Henry Barnes says:

    Not Fair, of course there were others involved. The problem is they just don’t seem to get much in the way of credit, if any credit at all. Phillips is crediting people who had no part in finding or excavating the Allosaur, while he fails to mention those who did. It’s not at all “unfair to lay all the blame on Mr. Phillips” in light of the fact that he takes all the credit (with the exception of what he falsely gives to the DeRosas). Phillips is in fact entirely responsible, and a review of the film credits shows that:

    Writer and Director, Doug Phillips
    Executive Producer, Doug Phillips
    A Doug Phillips Film
    A Vision Forum Video
    Copyright 2002, Doug Phillips

    About the only thing that Doug Phillips doesn’t take credit for is the narration:

    Narration, Winston MacArthur

    But “Winston MacArthur” is obviously Doug Phillips too!

    If Phillips wants all the credit is it unfair to also “lay all the blame” on him? I don’t think so.

  8. Wolf hound says:

    Wow! I wonder what the “BCA Session” is going to do about this!

  9. Kate says:

    Well, I guess we creationist/christian camp can thank our very own “Piltdown Man” Doug Phillips to guide our way with these great discoveries.

    This brings such discredibility when it comes to important archeological discoveries. Sadly, this seems to happen to some of these people that have goals for fame and glory, who use the name of Christ for profit. I pray that he, and those who follow him, will see the truth of the Word and repent.

  10. Trial Lawyer says:

    Wolf hound, I suspect the “BCA Session” [sic] will toss this hot potato to the Vision Forum board, just as the Vision Forum board tossed the hot potato of the unbiblical excommunication of the Epsteins over to BCA. It’s a different jurisdiction, you see.

    Of course, if you seek to understand how it’s possible to maintain distinct jurisdictions while “uniting church and family,” well, don’t get your hopes up. Jurisdictions are tools to invoke when helpful in a chosen fight, but they’re put away quickly when they don’t help Doug Phillips in a given circumstance.

    In the end, neither upholding nor ignoring jurisdictions will help Doug Phillips much, though, as he is the only person who is a member of the BCA leadership and the Vision Forum Ministries board of directors. So he cannot escape responsibility either way.

  11. Do Not Steal says:

    Eighth Commandment

    Don’t steal other people’s work. We expect all submissions, including the soundtracks, to be consistent with the laws of intellectual property.

    How can it be consistent with the laws of intellectual property for Phillips to take credit for a significant scientific find that he and the DeRosas had nothing to do with? How can it be consistent with the laws of intellectual property to refuse to give credit to the professionals who were responsble? Isn’t Phillips basically stealing their intellectual property?

    I think Mr. Taylor got it right. Phillips is a Pharisee. That’s exactly what Pharisees do isn’t it? “And they tie up heavy loads, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as a finger.”

  12. Question for Lawyers says:

    Do any of you lawyers out there know if what happened with the apparently Allosaur fraud violated any state or federal laws? For example, mail fraud, because the Allosaur DVDs were sent across state lines by Vision Forum? If so, do you know who could be charged criminally?

    Would it only be Doug Phillips, or could the Vision Forum Ministries board be implicated? What about the Vision Forum Inc. officers and employees at the time — do they need to seek indepedent legal counsel about their own potential liability (since Don Hart would have a conflict of interest in advising them)?

  13. In Six Days says:

    We bought that video from Vision Forum and had a few doubts about it too. But Doug comes off so professional in the film. He throws around some impressive dinosaur terms that make it sound like he really knows what he’s talking about.

    I was so troubled to read your story this morning that I pulled the video out and watched it again. I saw it this time in a whole new light. I have to admit that I’m now embarrassed I didn’t see a lot of the problems with it before. I didn’t see it before because (hard to admit here) maybe I didn’t want to. It’s just hard to believe that someone that’s done so much good for home schoolers could be a liar and a cheat. Now I feel betrayed. I think we’re going to call Vision Forum and demand our money back.

    Can someone please explain to me why in the video Doug Phillips calls himself “a Professor with the Creation Research Institute”? I went to their web site and I can’t find anything that says he has some kind of official position with them, let alone being a “Professor.” Is Doug Phillips a real Professor, or is that just another lie too?

  14. Pat says:

    Kate said, “I pray that he, and those who follow him, will see the truth of the Word and repent.”

    I’m not prepared just quite yet to demand repentance. Doug deserves to tell his side of the story before anyone passes judgment. But I’ll have to say Mr. Barnes that your story is very compelling. I don’t know how Doug Phillips is going to talk his way out of this one. Maybe it’s all just some kind of big misunderstanding? I just don’t see how though.

    Doug what’s going on here? You need to get right on this and give us some kind of public explanation. You can’t just ignore this. If you do it’s just going to confirm that Raising The Allosaur was just a scam. It’s not good enough to stop selling it. Why would you stop selling it unless you’d done something really bad Doug? Something looks really bad here Doug and I don’t like it. Our family has bought a lot of things out of your catalog. Until you resolve this I’ll be holding off on placing any more orders with you.

    Kate is right. If you did Mr. Taylor wrong then you need to make it right with him. You also need to give us our money back.

    I don’t want my money back though. If you cheated Joe Taylor you can just give my money to him.

  15. Do the Honorable Thing says:

    I was thinking about “honor” in light of this story, since Doug Phillips claims to be a man of honor, and is always teaching about honor. Other than obvious need for truth-telling in the first place, there is really only one “honorable” thing Doug Phillips can do now, and should have already done earlier.

    Exodus 22:1-4 outlines the penalties for stealing: “If a man steals an ox or a sheep, … he shall restore five oxen for an ox and four sheep for a sheep… He should make full restitution.”

    Let’s be generous and consider ourselves sheep. The only “honorable” thing for a man of “honor” to do in this situation is to make full restitution – pay back 4 times the amount he has stolen from each person who bought this pack of lies.

    How about it, Vision Forum? I’m sure you already have the records of who bought this fraud. We are calling on you to do the honorable thing and initiate making full restitution. That is the only way to know there is true repentance for Doug’s lies.

    I think Doug teaches something like restitution at Witherspoon School of Law. Doug, are you going to practice what you preach now?

  16. Kate says:

    After re-reading the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum blog, it occured to me that some of the adherants to Dominion theology (I’m still working through some of the details of understanding that properly) have almost twisted their style into “Domination Theology”. It doesn’t seem to matter who they step on, as long as they reach their “God-ordained” goals, ambitions and even, kingdoms on this earth. How does this differ from the popes of old who crushed and persecuted the early church to establish their own reign and rule?

    This approach, just like all man-made ways to power, will backfire for them as enough of the persecuted find solace in the Truth of God’s Word and like-precious faith and fellowship, resulting in the exposing of any lies in these people or that may exist in any one of us.

    “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if [there be any] wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23-24

    … and just so that I don’t fall into this sin:

    Psalm 64:1-10

  17. Trust but Verify says:

    I feel betrayed. I think we’re going to call Vision Forum and demand our money back.

    If you get through to them, please take note of what is said and who says it and let us know. Thank you.

  18. Henry Barnes says:

    In the spirit of “so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed” let me post a copy of an email from Mr. Dana Forbes that he sent in response to an inquiry about the Allosaur and Doug Phillips’ video. As Joe Taylor has already stated, Dana is the property owner where the Allosaur was discovered.

    Dear __________,

    Your e-mail of 8/11/2003 was passed on to me by someone who was involved in the 2001-2002 excavation of the allosaur from my property. I was the landowner the film refers to, and thought it might be helpful, even though some time has elapsed, to pass along what transpired.

    I quote from your email: “I watched the documentary on the Allosaurus. It was the DeRosas and Doug Phillips’ team that excavated it. I also understand that there was an agreement that what Doug Phillips’ team found they could have. As far as I know Joe Taylor was not involved. The site is owned by a Christian home schooling couple, and the DeRosas have the fossil rights.”

    First of all the Vision Forum group that came out was just a tour group. They were given an opportunity to dig some at a site that I had found the year before. We had already excavated some field jackets encasing parts of the allosaur’s spine in 2001. This was done under Joe Taylor’s direction and supervision. The DeRosas were there helping, but so were a number of others. The VF group in general was a fantastic group of people who helped move a lot of dirt and helped locate some important bones. They did no actual removal of significant bone material. During their digging they uncovered a neck vertebra at which point they were done. Joe Taylor came out after the VF people left and conducted the excavation of the vertebral column including the skull. The DeRosas were clearly involved, but they did not direct the removal of anything from the site. Joe did. (By the way, the vertebra that the Vision Forum group uncovered was removed in a separate jacket from the skull and was a dirt load of distance from it). Doug Phillips and VF had no rights to any of the bone material excavated. The DeRosas, Joe Taylor and my family all had a stake in the allosaur.

    It is amazing that Joe’s team, the main ones responsible for “raising the allosaur”, are given no credit in the film at all. Joe’s Mt. Blanco team is not mentioned. Let me repeat, those most responsible for quote “making the film” based on its given title received NO credit whatsoever. Additionally certain necessary others involved and our family as well are not listed in the credits. However, home schooled boys and girls out on an adventure with their parents are said to “raise from the ground what appears to be the most complete Allosaur…ever found in the history of paleontology [gross overstatement of bone percentage], including the monster’s giant skull.” * And Doug Phillips’ name is listed everywhere. [*Taken verbatim from the back cover of the “Raising the Allosaur” video. Italics are mine.]

    Other major problems with the film include the comment that I found the bones with a scintillator. The awareness of bones on the property came from a local old-timer and my actual discovery of my first bones came as a direct answer to prayer. Later, I did use a handheld scintillator in an effort to help find new sites, but this mostly led to dead ends. Most of my discoveries came from what I believe to be a God given ability to see the bone material and then the ability to follow it up to its source. The site that is called the “behemoth site” was discovered by my son, Evan. A paleontology student from Mesa College in Grand Junction discovered what the DeRosas have termed the “steg site”. I found the allosaur site and had removed other bone from it before any excavators were ever on the property.

    We were never involved with the Grand Junction Museum or the Museum of the Rockies. One of the world’s largest dinosaur fossil museums did express an interest in partnering with me, but that is a far cry from “major, major museums…chasing after” me. There are other less glaring, yet important technical inaccuracies.

    The video certainly conveys the idea that the DeRosas and Doug “did it all”. It also incorrectly describes the landowner’s story. I communicated with Doug Phillips about the problems with the film, but he never connected with me. Later, when I questioned Doug, based on the allosaur “documentary”, about his qualifications to host a Christian film contest which cited integrity as a major standard, I received angry accusations from his establishment that I was simply looking out for my own gain.

    Personally, we do not view this film as a documentary. It has too many flaws and promotes fantastical PR for VF and Creation Expeditions. Frankly I believe it has done a tremendous amount of harm. Not only does the film reduce the scientific value of the discovery because of lack of true reporting of the facts, but it also in the long run hurts the home school movement that the producer indicated that he was trying to promote. Hyperbolism does not sit well with science and does not belong in the creationist’s toolbox. Exaggeration eats away at the foundations of integrity and virtue that we are trying to instill in the upcoming generation. There are other issues as well that I prefer not to go into here.

    Vision Forum could tell their own story, but they had no right to tell or make any one else’s story their own. For us, the film promotes a falsehood that masquerades as truth. I think you would find it hard if not impossible to find anyone who was originally part of the dig project on the Forbes Ranch that did not feel that way or worse about the film. This is of course magnified when one realizes the amount of money that VF probably made on the film as well as the other doors of opportunity flung open because of the falsely placed notoriety gained from it.

    Hope this corrects some of the misunderstandings surrounding the history of the site. I am copying this statement to those that were indicated as having received your original statement.

    Dana Forbes

  19. I believe Dana says:

    Dana Forbes: “The film promotes a falsehood that masquerades as truth….This is of course magnified when one realizes the amount of money that VF probably made on the film as well as the other doors of opportunity flung open because of the falsely placed notoriety gained from it.”

    Interesting point that brings to mind the Jonathan Park homeschool creation radio drama. Without all the hype related to Raising the Allosaur, how likely is it that the Institute for Creation Research would have subsequently handed over to Doug Phillips a program they had already reportedly invested more than $500,000 into? Not likely.

  20. Croc says:

    Henry Barnes: “But “Winston MacArthur” is obviously Doug Phillips too!”

    Henry is not far fetched on this, afterall, Douglas Winston Phillips is named after both Douglas MacArthur & Winston Churchill.

    I am looking at a copy of the Allosaur video, which states:

    “Raising the Allosaur, c. 2002 Doug Phillips and The Vision Forum, Inc. All Rights Reserved. A Vision Forum Video presentation. Distributed by The Vision Forum Inc, 4719 Blanco Rd., San Antonio, Texas, 78212. Cover design by Overjoyed. [Hmmm…. the cover reveals a photo of DP’s oldedst son, Joshua] Warning: Federal law provides severe civil and criminal penalties for the unauthorized reproduction, distribution, or exhibition of copyrighted motion pictures, videotapes, or video discs.”

  21. Joe Taylor says:

    What happened to the Allosaur skull and did the DeRosas damage it?

    The Allosaur was a 50% skeleton. What was there was articulated, or still in position as it lay. We took the spinal column out in four foot sections including the neck. The skull was a separate package about 4 feet long. The animal was buried on its left side. The strata in that area is tilted at about a 30 degree angle. This meant that while the skeleton was originally flat, it was now tilted at an angle. Animals’ necks tend to re-curve in death. That is, they arch back up over their shoulders shortly after death. Since the Allosaur’s head was on the South side and its feet on the North, when it was tilted downward the skull ended up being about 3 feet lower than its spine. To some of Doug’s group this made it appear to be disarticulated.

    There is a reason I stated all of that. Since the skull was lower, it was in much harder rock. We jackhammered for a day or two to get down around the whole skull. I had already computed that the nose would be right at 34 to 36 inches from the back of the head. Since we were running out of time, and the rock was getting very hard, we dug the minimum depth. After plastering the skull, we laid it down flat on the pallet and it separated right at its nose just as I planned. But, the area under the nose was thinly supported. My plan was to plaster in new supports under the nose so that when we removed the top of the field jacket, the nose would not droop and break. The DeRosas had never worked on a dinosaur bone in a lab before and in their ignorance and greed they didn’t support the nose and it broke and three teeth were lost. When my crew and I watched what they did it was sickening. I am exceedingly sorry that I let Pete and Doug threaten to sue me to get the Allosaur for themselves. Yes, they damaged it, contrary to Doug’s blather about it. They also damaged the left side of the skull because they didn’t know what they were doing. Attempting to cover up their blunder, they told the appraiser that the animal was lying on its RIGHT side, which is totally false. They told him that it had been exposed to the weather. This was patently false. The left side was the deepest down and we took nearly six feet of overburden off of it. It had never been exposed to the weather! They also didn’t show the appraiser the grids of the dig which shows how the bones were laying. The excavation grids would have told him they were lying. They didn’t have them anyway, because I had all of the field work data as it was my dig. And since they had gotten the skeleton by threat and fraud, they could not very well ask me for anything. I know the appraiser.
    Joe Taylor

  22. Joe,

    Do we have any communication, either by email, letter or tape of you being threatened with a lawsuit?

  23. Do the Honorable Thing says:

    Thank you, Joe, for supplying incredible context to this story. Is this the same allosaur? If so, do you think this is being handled honorably, or what do you think would be the honorable thing to do with the allosaur itself?

  24. Larswife says:

    “Do any of you lawyers out there know if what happened with the apparently Allosaur fraud violated any state or federal laws? For example, mail fraud, because the Allosaur DVDs were sent across state lines by Vision Forum? If so, do you know who could be charged criminally?”

    It depends on the statute of limitations, which in most states is usually two years from the date a fraud was “discovered” to have been committed (not when the fraud occurred – that’s important). Thus, for those people who knew of the Allosaur debacle when it happened (e.g., Joe Taylor, Dana Forbes), then the statute of limitations has probably already passed for them. But for those who are just hearing about it for the first time and were harmed by it (i.e., they purchased the video), then the statute of limitations for them begins to run, I would say, as of the date of Mr. Barnes’ blog entry (12/11/06). If videos were sent across state lines then federal charges can be brought and – quite probably – RICO charges as well.

    “Would it only be Doug Phillips, or could the Vision Forum Ministries board be implicated? What about the Vision Forum Inc. officers and employees at the time — do they need to seek indepedent legal counsel about their own potential liability (since Don Hart would have a conflict of interest in advising them)?”

    “Raising the Allosaur, c. 2002 Doug Phillips and The Vision Forum, Inc. All Rights Reserved. A Vision Forum Video presentation. Distributed by The Vision Forum Inc, 4719 Blanco Rd., San Antonio, Texas, 78212.”

    It would appear that not only could Doug Phillips individually be sued but also “The Vision Forum, Inc.,” which would include its officers and directors.

    “Is Doug Phillips a real Professor, or is that just another lie too?”

    According to the Institute for Creation Research website,
    “All members appointed to the faculty of the ICR Graduate School have terminal degrees in their fields of instruction. All faculty members are also expected to be of high moral character and personal integrity, firmly committed to the ICR Tenets and educational philosophy.”

    I doubt DP qualifies – back then or now.

  25. Sue says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong?

    Dougie isn’t
    a real lawyer (anymore)
    a real counselor
    a real professor
    a real ordained pastor with any real church
    a real truthful movie maker

    He just plays one on the internet and in his “Assembly of the Mini-Covenant.”

    It all reminds me of Monty Python’s “Quest for the Holy Grail” scene that goes something like this. . . . “It’s just a fuzzy little rabbit” . . . . . “Yes, but he has very sharp teeth!”

  26. Another lie says:

    Can someone please explain to me why in the video Doug Phillips calls himself “a Professor with the Institute for Creation Research”? I went to their web site and I can’t find anything that says he has some kind of official position with them, let alone being a “Professor.” Is Doug Phillips a real Professor, or is that just another lie too?

    In Six Days, these are excellent questions, all of them. As you surmise, Doug Phillips is currently not a professor of any sort at ICR. More important, he was not a professor at ICR when the Raising the Allosaur video was produced. So yes he lied. Again.

  27. One correction says:

    Sue, you made one mistake. Doug Phillips is still a real attorney as a member of the District of Columbia bar. That’s the only reason he can say “Doug Phillips, Esq.” As for the other things, I think you’re correct.

  28. Lawrence says:

    In the interest of stopping some false witness before it really gets started …

    Phillips is listed in this article at ICR as number 33:

    It says:
    Scientists Associated with ICR

    The scientists listed below have served ICR in a variety of ways-some as adjunct faculty or research associates in the ICR Graduate School, some speaking in ICR seminars or writing monographs or books for ICR. Names are listed alphabetically with their respective scientific fields of specialty.

    How he could be considered a “scientist” I have no clue.

  29. John says:

    The article Lawrence found is dated April 1, 2002, the year Raising the Allosaur was produced. Based on that official website listing, Mr. Phillips was _not_ then a professor at ICR. I also spoke with ICR Prof. Kenneth Cumming (Ph.D. Harvard) by phone. Although he recognized Doug Phillips’ name, he said Phillips had not been on the ICR faculty.

    I suppose it is possible that Mr. Phillips was an irregular adjunct faculty member a long time ago (so that Prof. Cummings could have forgotten), but if these two witnesses are to be believed, Doug Phillips was most certainly not on the ICR faculty in 2002 when he claimed to be a professor in Raising the Allosaur.

  30. I was wondering says:

    Why is Ligonier sending out a letter saying they need 1.5 million before the end of the fiscal year? I wish it would effect management but it won’t they will just lay off the hard workers. Goodbye, good and faithful servants.

  31. Evening folks,

    I can hardly believe the way you guys persist in gossiping about Doug.

    Proverbs states “When words are many sin is not absent”

    and again “He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him. ”

    Constantly stirring up strife is not godly behavior.


  32. Mark says:

    I work with “real scientists” everyday, and Doug Phillips is anything but a “scientist.”

    By his own public admission, Doug avoided the William and Mary undergraduate math requirement (which may explain my wife’s identification of Doug’s logical fallacies in his October 2004 election piece).

    Whether his public “confession” (concerning the math requirement) was real or contrived, the current allegations concerning Doug’s actions and “status” with ICR require an honest accounting.

    Regardless of who holds a hard science degree, there are many among us who understand the only “reality” is Jesus, and we thank God for blessing each of us with this insight.

    May God open the eyes of those who do not know Him.

  33. Joe Taylor says:

    I could show you the video personally, but it is not available otherwise.

    Joe Taylor

  34. Joe Taylor says:

    Pete called me on the phone August 2002 and told me that if I didn’t give the bones to them that there would be legal action. I was so disgusted with all the endless problems (caused by Pete and Doug much of which was unknown to me at the time) that I told him to just come get them, that I wouldn’t go to court with a Christian brother. I know Doug at least knew that I had said that or he backed Pete in the threat, because Doug told me in a letter later on, that if I did sue them, he’d tell the whole world that I was a vow-breaker. I do not now consider Pete DeRosa or Doug Phillips to be Christians.
    Joe Taylor

  35. Watchman says:

    S.J., you have violated every rule in the book here time and again. You’ve also deleted and rejected any comments from any who have attempted to post comments on your own blog in defense of the Epsteins. After all the malicious and vindictive things you’ve said about the Epsteins you, of all people, have the nerve to come here and accuse us of “gossip”? Now you’re even trying to salvage your puerile image by suddenly feigning an interest in holy Scripture?

    Swordbearer John, your boss was just accused here of being a Pharisee. It’s no surprise that all you’re doing is emulating him: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.” John 13:16

  36. John says:

    SJ: “I can hardly believe the way you guys persist in gossiping about Doug.”

    SJ, what you say makes no sense, for your definition of “gossip” covers any negative, public testimony. By your standard the Apostle Paul was one of the biggest gossipers of all time because he opposed Peter publicly to his face for his Pharisaical hypocrisy and had the nerve to write about it in the “blog” of his day — a publicly circulated letter which is now part of the very Bible you selectively quote.

    I find it interesting that, aside from ecclesiastical tyranny, the most common charge against Doug Phillips is hypocrisy. It appears that certain patterns of sin are timeless. Too bad Mr. Phillips continues to refuse to follow Peter’s example of repentance. The resulting public shame and “gossip,” as you call it, are his own fault.

  37. Joe,

    I see you are near Lubbock in west Texas. I might have to make a special trip your way to see the museum and check out the video as well. I am only a few hours away in the DFW area.

  38. Freed by His blood says:

    Is the homeschool community aware of this egregious violation of its trust? Who are the big suppliers of this movie to the smaller outlets? At some point, I think that those responsible for its continued sale are treading on very thin ethical ice. One more ?, does VF continue to get royalties from the sale of this crockumentary?

  39. Bewildered William says:

    I’m new to this discussion here but I have to say that I’m really astonished at the behavior at the commenter on this section. You guys don’t know the first thing of what you are talking about. Doug Phillips has been adjunct faculty with ICR for nearly a decade (I don’t know the exact number of years but it has been close to a decade). He’s been Dr. John Morris’ partner at Back To Genesis conferences throughout this entire time, has published articles in ICR’s Acts and Facts magazine, and I think even had a little book coauthored between him and Dr. John Morris. I have personally attended Back To Genesis conferences where Dr. John Morris president of ICR has introduced Doug as a member of their faculty and a professor of apologetics. By the way, I’ve done a little research of my own and discovered that Mr. Joe Taylor has zero scientific degrees and certainly no doctorate. His background is as a painter and I understand he was pretty good at it. As far as the comment by Dr. Cummings is concerned, I don’t believe Phillips is a part of the graduate school or ever claimed that he was a part of it. The fact that he has been an adjunct professor of apologetics and on staff for close to ten years has never been a secret. This whole line of reasoning is a ridiculous witch hunt.

  40. Trust but Verify says:

    I am not as “bewildered” as William about the quantity and character of commentary that is critical of Phillips in this thread. I suspect that is because I am not a newcomer to this site and because the exaggerations and/or lies in the rest of the Allosaur video make every detail worthy of extra scrutiny.

    If further investigation proves that Phillips was in fact an adjunct ICR faculty member in 2002 — even though nothing on the ICR website indicates such — it would still be misleading to refer to him as a Professor at the ICR.

    In academia there is a world of difference between a regular “professor” and an “adjunct professor”. just as Prof. Cummings understood the title to refer to a regular professor so, too, would the typical viewer of the Allosaur video. As such, it is fair to designate the professor reference as another example of an exaggeration in the video.

  41. Lynn says:

    “Mr. Taylor is a professing Christian (Primitive Baptist), a creationist, and paleontologist. Joe has over 25 years of field and laboratory experience as a paleontologist.”

    Mr. Barnes, I have looked up some information about Mr. Taylor and am impressed with his ability to dig fossils and do casting work, but I admit it is confusing, giving him a title as though he had an MS or PhD in this field.

    When I read an article, and see “paleontologist,” or “chemist,” or “biomedical engineer,” and the like, I am assuming the person so-called has a master’s degree or greater in these fields.

  42. Concerned Christian says:

    This anti-Christian, anti-Creationist gentleman does get one thing right: Doug Phillips likes to erect “straw men” to knock down. How sad the pagans see through Doug’s charade.

  43. Accreditation says:

    Yeah, how can Joe be a paleontologist but Doug can’t be a professor?

  44. Henry Barnes says:

    Lynn, I would agree that it would be implausible for any reputable chemist or biomedical engineer to be an undegreed self-taught expert in his field. However, that’s apparently not the case with paleontology. The Indiana Jones-ish university professor/field archeologist is apparently the exception.

    The field of paleontology is apparently not limited to just degreed university academics. Some of the most highly respected field paleontologists are men with no related degrees of any kind. As is the case in many other areas of life, experience is often the best teacher. But obtaining that respect as a professional paleontologist comes only after many years of field and lab experience. Clearly, there are many amateur and hobbyist paleontologists. Perhaps Doug Phillips himself would fit into that category, but perhaps he doesn’t even qualify as an amateur. The point is that he in no way deserves the credit that he’s taken and also bestowed upon others who didn’t rate it.

    If the Phillips video were in any way credible he’d still be selling it.

  45. Lynn says:

    “As is the case in many other areas of life, experience is often the best teacher.”

    I agree with you completely there. Computer software development is another such example — I know college drop-outs who are experts in that field and have made very successful careers for themselves with no college at all.

    Thank you for the information and clarification.

  46. Prof truth says:

    Bewildered William writes : “I have personally attended Back To Genesis conferences where Dr. John Morris president of ICR has introduced Doug as a member of their faculty and a professor of apologetics.”

    From the ICR website:

    All members appointed to the faculty of the ICR Graduate School have terminal degrees in their fields of instruction. All faculty members are also expected to be of high moral character and personal integrity, firmly committed to the ICR Tenets and Educational Philosophy.

    I have dealt with faculty and adjunct faculty for 15 years and I can tell you if they are adjunct, they are introduced as ‘adjunct’ and it is known what degree they have or do not have! It is a big deal in academic circles and rarely does an ‘adjunct’ teach something they are not degreed in at accreditated universities. It is a big no no.

    After searching the site on accreditation here is what I found:

    Because of the prejudice against creation-science, outspoken creationist schools such as ICRGS used to stand little or no chance of getting recognition through accreditation. But after an eleven-year effort, involving much prayer and hard work, as well as strong opposition, TRACS finally gained acceptance by the U.S. Department of Education and then by CHEA (Council on Higher Education Accreditation), the umbrella organization serving all accrediting bodies. The ICR Graduate School, as well as almost 50 other creationist colleges and seminaries, now have either accreditation or candidate status, through TRACS.

    It is questionable whether TRACS would be acceptable as an accreditation in academic circles for further study. So the whole point may be moot about DP being a professor there.

    In any event, would Mr. Morris be willing to comment on the integrity of the Allosaur situation?

  47. MAB says:

    I’m not a lawyer, and this isn’t legal advice, but in response to the question about whether Vision Forum employees need independent legal counsel, it is highly unlikely. There is what is known as “judgment proof” defendants. That is, a defendant whose assets are not substantial enough to justify unloading a ton of money getting at them, and even if someone won a judgment, most of the assets would be protected from those judgments by statutes. It is something more than dirt poor, and something less than rich. I’m guessing most Vision Forum employees fall in this category.

    Second, there is what is known as “joint and several liability.” That is, if five people are held liable, but 4 of them have no money, the holder of the judgment can collect from the one with the bucks. This varies from state to state, but is, I believe, the majority position. That means if a judgment were won, it is unlikely a judgment holder would get as far down the line as VF employees in collecting his judgment.

    Third, the employees themselves could have counter suits for fraud, etc, and if successful, and at the same time unsuccessful as a defendant, could collect from VF the amount of liability, if any, attributed to them.

    Fourth, it is highly unlikely an ordinary VF employee could be legitimately joined as a defendant in a suit such as this for mail fraud. That depends on the nature of the employee’s work, obviously, but there would probably have to be some substantial direct culpability, and if there is, that employee needs to make restitution on his/her own without the threat of the civil courts.

    All that to say, it’s up to you if you seek independent counsel. Here are some of the factors I think might be useful to someone having to make that decision.

  48. Henry Barnes says:

    From: Henry Barnes []
    Sent: Wednesday, December 13, 2006 10:44 AM

    Subject: Questions about Doug Phillips and relationship with ICR


    I have some concerns regarding Doug Phillips and certain claims that he’s made regarding his alleged discovery of an Allosaur. No doubt you’re already familiar with his video, Raising the Allosaur. I’d appreciate your assistance with the following questions:

    (1) Was Doug Phillips a “Professor at the Institute for Creation Research” in 2002, when he made his video and when he made that claim about himself? Has he ever been a Professor at ICR? If so, when and in what capacity? I see that in an ICR article in 1998 it ends with “Doug Phillips, J.D., is an adjunct professor of apologetics and speaker for ICR.” However, in the video, produced in 2002 Phillips uses the term “professor” not “adjunct professor.” Would not ICR consider there to be a significant difference between the two?

    (2) Does Doug Phillips have any current affiliation with ICR? If so, what? If he was previously affiliated, when did that end, and on what basis?

    (3) Your web site has a page entitled “ICR Scientists” one of whom is listed as Doug Phillips. The others on that list do indeed appear to be bona fide scientists. How does Doug Phillips qualify as a scientist when, as far as I’m aware, his education is in law? How do his credentials (or lack thereof) in any way qualify him to be listed among other genuine scientists? By listing Phillips alongside other genuine scientists, when Phillips has no scientific education and training (at least as far as I’m able to determine) does it not call into question ICR’s very definition of a scientist?

    (4) Is ICR aware of the controversy surrounding the Raising the Allosaur production? Has it made any official statements on the subject since in the film Doug Phillips claims to be an ICR Professor?

    (5) Did Doug Phillips’ Raising the Allosaur production play any role in ICR’s decision to hand over to him the Jonathan Park radio drama?

    (6) Is ICR aware that the is “copyright Vision Forum, Inc.”, suggesting that it has become a for-profit venture for Mr. Phillips? Was that part of the agreement in the handover?

    Thank you for your assistance.

    In Christ Jesus our Lord,

    Henry Barnes


    From: Bruce Wood []
    Sent: Wednesday, December 13, 2006 4:45 PM
    To: Henry Barnes []

    Dear Mr. Barnes,

    Thank you for contacting ICR. With respect to your questions regarding Doug Phillips, the following information is permitted for public knowledge:

    Doug Phillips has worked with ICR President Dr. John Morris on many occasions when the two of them teamed up for Back to Genesis seminars. Because he has done much to present and defend young earth creation in churches and to pastors, and needed an ICR-related title Mr. Phillips was thus introduced as “Adjunct Professor of Apologetics” in both Back to Genesis and Case for Creation seminars, but has not been officially affiliated with the ICR Graduate School as a teacher or in any other capacity.

    ICR founder, Dr. Henry M. Morris, listed Doug Phillips within the ICR article The ICR Scientists. There is an apparent loose tie-in with the linking of bonified, degreed scientists and those who have studied the scientific evidences and taught young-earth creation while working for ICR as one of its speakers. In his introduction Dr. Morris says (with my underscored emphasis),

    This article will provide brief information about the team of scientists associated with ICR who believe, study, and teach the scientific evidence for recent creation and the global flood, as divinely revealed in the Bible. All of these professional scientists*, whether serving as full-time staff, on the adjunct roster, or advisory board, are Bible-believing Christians and are committed to all of ICR’s Tenets, including absolute Biblical inerrant authority and its implied “young-earth creationism.”

    Under the sub-heading, “Scientists Associated with ICR,” Doug Phillips’ description reads (with my underscored emphasis),

    33. Doug Phillips (Science Education and Law) is Director of Family Vision Publishers and a popular speaker on the importance of Genesis and creation for Christian family values, law, and apologetics at ICR seminars. He has his law degree from the George Mason University School of Law.

    Mr. Phillips continues to work with ICR, as a speaker and in his affiliation with ICR in producing the Jonathan Park radio and tape/CD series. ICR’s decision to transfer the Jonathan Park radio drama to Vision Forum, Inc. was done with mutual consent. ICR’s goals and budget no longer included the production costs for the program. In a joint agreement, Vision Forum, Inc. bought the rights to this popular program, but continues to use the ICR radio production studio in Santee to record it (the same studio that produces the Science, Scripture & Salvation and Back to Genesis programs.)

    ICR is aware of the Raising the Allosaur controversy, but does not wish to comment on it at this time.

    *A copy of this reply will be CC’d to pertinent ICR staff for review.

    Best regards,

    Bruce Wood

    Public Information Office

    Institute for Creation Research

  49. Cut your losses says:

    The carefully worded official ICR response tells me a few things:

    (1) ICR does consider there to be a significant difference between a courtesy title of “adjunct professor” given for use at two limited events and claiming without qualification to be a ICR professor, but they don’t want to go on record explicitly admitting that with respect to someone they have a contractual relationship with.

    (2) The Raising the Allosaur film did play a role in their decision to hand the Jonathan Park radio program over to Doug Phillips but they don’t want to to go anywhere near admitting this, given how much of an investment they surrendered in the process and given the subsequent controversy. This is why this is the one question they decline to answer even partially.

    (3) The scientist designation for Doug Phillips is also a courtesy title, although a very puzzling one, as it seems completely unnecessary. I find it troubling that such a designation appears on the ICR website the same year that Raising the Allosaur was produced. One wonders if the designation was requested.

    (4) ICR is very much aware of the controversy surrounding Raising the Allosaur but does not wish to comment on it — probably because of their ongoing contractual relationship related to the Jonathan Park radio program.

    A search of the ICR website a few minutes ago for “Raising the Allosaur” yielded “no results.” Given ICR’s close connection with Doug Phillips, one would expect some mention of his most prominent “contribution” so far to creation research. That is, if ICR considered it credible. I suspect they do not. The Allosaur video is also not mentioned at all on the Answers in Genesis website, which means the two largest Christian creationist organizations have nothing good to say about it.

    In other words, ICR and AiG are shunning the Allosaur. Hank Barnes’ story appears to explain why.

  50. The Bottom Line says:

    Henry Barnes: “If the Phillips video were in any way credible he’d still be selling it.”

    I think this is the bottom line. Professor or not professor: it doesn’t change the bottom line.

  51. Frank Thomas says:

    “If the Phillips video were in any way credible he’d still be selling it.”

    This is a faulty argument. Products get dropped all the time for all kinds of reasons. Go look for the sound track for Raiders of the Lost Ark. Its only available used, and is usually more than $100. For some reason it’s no longer being produced.
    I have no idea what’s going on with Allosaur, but the fact that there has been a legal squable probably has something to do with the fact that it’s no longer for sale.

  52. Grace is Sufficient says:


    Kudos! Thank you for a fine expose, and thank you for staying the course. Truth will always find its opponents, and those who subvert the truth will always find justification for their behavior.

    Grace is Sufficient

  53. Joe Taylor says:

    Come by any time. In fact I would invite anyone who has blogged in on this. We are an open book.

    Bewilderd William:
    I have a degree in Art from 1966. But big deal, its an art degree. Portfolios are what counts in commercial art. My ability as a painter and sculptor and the fact that I could restore bones so that PhDs could not tell what was bone, got me into the inner sanctums of numerous major museums and universities. I never introduce myself as a degreed paleontolgist. But I am a real paleontologist. There are many men who have no degree who are doing what is considered real science and they even give papers at places like the prestegious International Society Of Vertebrate Paleontology. Giving a poster of one’s work is essentially the same as delivering their paper verbably. I have done joint papers and joint posters with degreed men. But there is really no way to “get a degree” in field and lab paleontology. It takes years of backbreaking work, a lot of equipment, a real lab,lots of costly supplies, the ability to camp out in bad weather and a library of books and reference material. Thanks to many generous paleontologists with PhDs, I have a large file of hard to get fossil papers. And I have spent a fortune on books and photodocumentation.

    But really paleontology is easy! Why young boys who have only been to two dinosaur digs can be hailed as highly trained professional, seasoned paleontologists with a dozen years experience and hundreds of digs to their credit, if Doug Phillips needs them in a dinosaur film. 😉

    Joe Taylor

  54. Mark says:

    Frank Thomas said, “the fact that there has been a legal squable probably has something to do with the fact that it’s no longer for sale.”

    Mr. Thomas, Doug Phillips purports to be a Christian. If these allegations are true, then we have to ask some hard questions.

    What type of Christian man threatens the brethren with a law suit, sends his attorney to an arbitration meeting, and fails to publicly disclose “the fact there has been a legal squable”? Furthermore, what does it say of a man’s supporters when they throw objectivity to the wind and demand more accountability of the sheep than of the shepherd/ministry leader?

  55. Prairie Girl says:

    This morning I did an internet search for Raising the Allosaurus and guess what? You can purchase the DVD at over a dozen sites, including Amazon, which is currently sold out by has more on the way. It really doesn’t matter if Vision Forum is no longer selling the item. It is still Phillips responsibility to pull it from the other sellers and to explain why. One of the sellers was promoting by saying “the true story” and most of the sites mention it being a homeschool group that raised the dinosaur as well as saying the expedition was led by Doug Phillips. Perhaps we ought to contact those sellers ourselves. But the fact remains that IF the story, as reported here,is true and IF Doug Phillips continues to make money knowing the truth, himself, this is fraud.

  56. Wolf hound says:

    Kate stated the following:

    “After re-reading the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum blog, it occured to me that some of the adherants to Dominion theology (I’m still working through some of the details of understanding that properly) have almost twisted their style into “Domination Theology”.

    Kate, you are heading in the right direction. Unless our minds are renewed by the truth of God’s Word, we will not become more Christlike. It all starts with the theological grid that someone is filtering everything through. If the grid is faulty then the methods and results will be faulty and unbiblical as well.

    In the Dominionist theology of the Reconstructionist, they believe that they have a mandate to take dominion of what Adam lost in the garden.

    ”The purpose of the new Adam is to undo the work of the fall, restore man as covenant keeper, make of man again a faithful citizen of the Kingdom of God, and enable man again to fulfil his calling to subdue the earth under God and to restore all things to God’s law and dominion. Those who submit to this calling and dominion inherit the earth (Matt. 5:5).

    R.J. Rushdoony, The Institutes of Biblical Law (Nutley, NJ: Craig Press, 1973), p. 728.

    Dominion is God’s principle for man over nature (Gen. 1:28), and for the male in the person of the husband and father in the family (I Cor. 11:1-15). Dominion as the male’s nature and prerogative is to be found throughout the animal world as a part of God’s creation ordinance. In animals, as Ardrey has pointed out, there is a primacy of dominion over sexual and other drives. “The time will come when the male will lose all interest in sex; but he will still fight for his status.” In fact, “dominance in social animals is a universal instinct independent of sex.” This male instinct for dominion reveals itself in animals in three ways: first, in territoriality, i.e., a property instinct and drive, and second, in status, a drive to establish dominion in terms of rank in a rigidly hierarchical order, and third, survival, and order as a means of survival. This is true of animals in natural setting; zoo animals, being in a welfare society, are more absorbed with sex. In the male, dominion leads to increased sexual potency and longevity. Moreover, “It is a curious characteristic of the instincts of order that most are masculine.” The female’s sexual and maternal instincts are personal and thus in a sense anarchistic.
    These characteristics are true of human life also.

    R.J. Rushdoony, The Institutes of Biblical Law (Nutley, NJ: Craig Press, 1973), p. 201.
    Citing Robert Ardrey, African Genesis (NY: Atheneum, 1961).

    The fruit of this theology is the desire for position, dominance, restoration and apparently potency, according to Rushdoony. It is strange doctrine, and it leads to unbiblical practices and desires. This theology produces a works based religion in my opinion.

    In the article the Metzler posted titled “Meet the Theonomists;” Roche gives another example of the fruit of this theology.

    “Another extremely embarrassing and repeatedly encountered element of theonomy is best represented by the leading theonomists’ singular refusal to heed the inimitable Rodney King: “Can’t we all just get along?” If the theonomy boys can do so, they do not want to — having a schism and personally anathematizing at least one fellow-movement principal seems to be almost a union card of the movement.”

    They will bicker and fight with one another till they turn blue, because they desire to have their kingdom recognized and honored here on earth.

    This theology is very intellectual and appealing to the intellectual types, because it is all so very logical. One problem though, it is a distortion or radical aberration of the bible.

    Kate, keep up the investigation into the Dominion aspect of this Christian Reconstructionism, because it is a faulty understanding of the bible that is driving all of these controversies surrounding Phillips.

  57. Watchman says:

    Apparently this isn’t the first time that some of these same allegations were made about Doug Phillips and Raising The Allosaur. The fact that Phillips pulled a very profitable video without any explanation lends strong support to the belief that Phillips’ Allosaur story is a fakeumentary, not documentary, and that Phillips knew it was faked when he produced it, wrote it, directed it, narrated it, copyrighted it, etc.

    It should really go without saying, but Doug Phillips is welcome to provide us with a response to this story. In fact I’d strongly encourage him to do so and I’d be happy to give him an entire article here. That would be much smarter than just continuing to ignore it and hoping it will just go away… unless that is he just doesn’t have any credible defense to offer.

  58. Jacob says:

    I didn’t have any trouble finding references to the allosaur video on Vision Forum’s web site. Here’s an interesting one from March 2004:

    Raising the Allosaur: The True Story of a Rare Dinosaur and the Home Schoolers Who Found It is an exciting 70-minute video that documents the discovery made in May 2002 of the world’s fourth and largest Allosaurus skull. We are pleased to announce that the film will air as a special feature on Faith Television on April 1 at 8:00 p.m. EST and again at 11:00 p.m. EST that same evening.

    So Mr. Taylor you’re saying that Doug Phillips is lying when he says,

    Home schoolers found the allosaur?
    It’s “the largest Allosaurus skull” in the world?
    It’s a “true story”?

    I’ve got to hand it to Phillips for getting at least one thing right. He arranged to get his video shown on television on April Fool’s Day!

  59. Come to Jesus says:

    I don’t know as I’ve ever seen a blog so full of hypocrisy. Just take a look at this statement about Doug’s dino,

    “They are boys who must bring ever-higher ethical standards to their field of work and not yield to the lure of lucre or compromise on the ground of philosophical expediency. (This is crucial: Sadly, creationism — like everything else out there in this fallen world — has its fair share of hucksters and charlatans more interested in making a buck through sensationalism, than advancing the kingdom of God.)”

    You said it Doug! You said it.

  60. For those of you who have seen the video you’ll notice that at the end when they were loading the field jacket containing the skull into the truck they are all photographic stills. That’s because in Joe’s video, Joe is seen all over the place while it was being loaded and the reason Phillips didn’t record it was because it would have been absolutely impossible to edit Joe out of it. Instead they took a few well angled photographs that make it appear as if Joe was never there.

    Here is the original article about the allosaur which was (and still is) posted on the website since before this whole situation started with Phillips. You can see for yourself that it was Joe who excavated it, not Phillips. And you can see that amazingly, despite what you see in Phillips video, Joe was there to load the the field jacket containing the skull into the back of that yellow truck.

  61. Joe Taylor says:

    Benefit of the doubt to Doug:
    Doug Phillips may have been lied to at first by the DeRosas. By his own admission he had never been to a dino dig before. So perhaps he was just lied to and ignorant. But the evening that we found the Allosaur skull, he knew the whole story. And two months after the dig, I sent him another e-mail telling the true story. He ignored it all. Even after his video was released, I told him of its falacies. He reacted with anger and condemned me as a slanderer. The evening we found the skull we projected a drawing on Dana Forbes wall of an Allosaurid to fit the proportions of the skull based on my computation of its size based on the two measurable points exposed on the lower jaw. After that, Pete DeRosas asked me to send Doug a write up about the dig. I did this and I titled my e-mail RAISING THE ALLOSAURUS. In it I told Doug of the partially petrified wood we had found, that Jordan Hall was the one who found the skull and I gave him its measurements and other info. He claims that he never got the e-mail. But Forbes said it never was sent back undeliverable. I believe he did get it because his PR reflected everything I had said. The glaring difference was that he gave no ctredit to those to whom it belonged.
    This man and Pete DeRosa have told litteraly dozens of lies about the Allosaur, me and the others involved in all of this. If the ordinary minister were caught in even one of the major lies Doug and Pete have told, he would be dismissed from his office. Doug’s board knows all about this matter. What does that say about Doug’s church?
    Joe Taylor

  62. Joe Taylor says:

    Home schoolers found the allosaur?
    It’s “the largest Allosaurus skull” in the world?
    It’s a “true story”?

    All of the above are false statements.
    Joe Taylor

  63. Joe,

    I found this comment from the link in Come to Jesus’ comment:

    But whenever God raises up such a generation, there always arises a breed of men — envious and consumed with greed — who would stand and revile the great work of God in these young men. Over the past few months, we have heard as some of the more unscrupulous of these individuals shout (paraphrase): “It’s a lie, how could a bunch of home school kids do this;” and “Give it to us, not these kids, they will destroy the Allosaur, they already have.

    Is Doug Phillips talking about you?

  64. Sniffin’ says:

    I’ve been sniffin’ around both on and off line regarding Doug Phillips’ qualifications in this area. Doug Phillips has been an adjunct professor of Apologetics for ICR since at least 1998, teaching mostly about — apologetics. He has never been a full professor, and ICR’s website clearly delineates between the two. If you look at all the adjunct professors who have “science education” listed after their name, Doug Phillips is the only entry that doesn’t state what degree he has and from where. It mentions his law degree, but that is not “science education.” This entry also seems to be a relatively new entry about Doug Phillips on ICR’s website.

  65. Joe Taylor says:

    Apparently this was about me. I never said it. I did say that the innexperienced DeRosa boys were not qualified to restore this specimen without help. They had never worked on a dinosaur bone in the lab before. Doug has tried to ruin my reputation in every area dear to me, the Primitive Baptists, Creationists, Home schoolers and those in the American Heritage movement.

    Two corrections: Dana Forbes has just informed me that he did get the e-mail back that I sent to Doug titled “Raising The Allosaurus.” However, Pete didn’t like it and apparently re-wrote it to leave all of us out and that is what Doug used for his PR. I gave credit to the home schoolers for their part, but Pete nor Doug wanted to give credit where credit was due to any of my crew.

    Two: My nephew is right. I was in all the shots and I’m in the one in Doug’s video. However, Doug’s shot was taken in 2001 a year before the 2002 dig –a year before Doug got there. And we were loading one of the spinal jackets into Dana’s brother-in-law George’s Yellow pick up. We were not loading the skull. That was loaded a week after Phillips crew left May 2002. I have the entireity of the dig on video and in hundreds of stills. In fact, Linda DeRosa was using my video camera to record the loading of the skull.
    Joe Taylor

  66. Henry Barnes says:

    Joe, thanks for providing these corrections. It’s indicative of your regard for thoroughness and accuracy.

  67. Henry: I was just told that there was a “Joe Taylor” who had commented on the Epstein story. It is not me. I have not commented on them at all. Please advise if this is so. It was not me. I have only commented on the Allosaur.

    I want to also say that I want no part of “Doug bashing.” I have no interest in accusing the man of something that I have no way of knowing if he did or not. And just because someone else is criticizing him for something else, I do not intend to join in when I know nothing about the matter. As I told him personally in 2002, we had a lot of common views and friends. I am still puzzled at why he tried to obliterate me when I could have done so much for him. However, I thank God, now, that I had no joint business dealings with him.

    By the way, there were a lot of people filming the dig. Linda DeRosa was certainly one of them. On my digs we all film for each other. It may seem like an insignificant thing whether she or another woman did the actual filming of loading the skull, but I have tried very hard to keep the facts straight in this very complicated matter. I would rather be corrected than have even a small misstatemnt stand. If she did not film any of it, I apologize for saying she did. Nevertheless, it does not change the really serious matters which is the only reason for your concern in the first place.

    Joe Taylor

  68. Mark Epstein says:


    Since Mr. Barnes posted this story, and since Mr. Taylor, his nephew, and others have commented, I realized that Joe Taylor is the man that Doug Phillips led us in prayer against while attending Boerne Christian Assembly!

    What I found so telling was this statement within one of Mr. Taylor’s comments: “He [Doug Phillips] reacted with anger and condemned me as a slanderer.”

    Despite what any of his supporters wish to believe, this is but one example of many that provide a glimpse into Doug’s true character. Not only is this another person describing Doug’s un-Christian behavior, but it is becoming increasingly clear to me why Doug Phillips didn’t chastise me or hold me accountable for my sin towards Jennifer – Doug has the same problem from which I had to repent: anger.

    I also think it is very important for your readers to know that there is absolutely no hatred in my heart for Doug Phillips; quite the opposite in fact. My family and I pray for him every day and love him as a brother in the Lord. However, because Doug is an unaccountable shepherd who denied my family due process and refused our overtures for reconciliation, we had to bring our situation to the visible church.

    As your objective readers have been able to see for themselves, we have given Doug credit where credit is due. Our story is not an “attack” on Doug Phillips; he is a public leader, he has sinned publicly, and he has no one to hold him accountable. Therefore, there is a need for public accountability, which is why I am so heartened to see others telling their stories on your website.

    May God bless and heal those who have been hurt by Doug, and may God bless Doug with a realization of the harm he has done to others. Only then will we all be restored to one another as brothers and sisters in the Lord and only then can the final healing begin.

    To God be the glory.


  69. Henry Barnes says:


    I heard from Jen Epstein about the malicious comments that someone posted on her blog in the name of “Joe Taylor.” It wasn’t hard for her to sort out that they weren’t posted by you. I think it’s all been straightened out now and Jen knows what to look for in the future.

    You need to be aware that this is the sort of thing that we’ve had to deal with regularly here at Ministry Watchman as well, especially since taking on Doug Phillips. This is SOP for Phillips’ operatives. Rather than answering the allegations Phillips’ operatives just engage in malicious attacks and impersonations.

  70. Visable Church? Matt.18?

    Mark: thank you for the note that you prayed against me. Perhaps it had some beneficial affect on me anyway. My church would not let me go to court with another member of my church. But they have not required that I do Matthew 18 with Doug, though I have tried. When he would not speak to me to work things out at the very first in 2002, I asked Pete DeRosa to speak to him. I asked his personal assistant, Bob Renaud the same. When that failed, I asked ICR/John Morris to go to Doug. That failed and my former pastor and Kent Hovind told Doug that they would be glad to mediate between us. They were both sharply rebuffed. I believe I went way over what my own church requires.
    At that time Doug had carried an article by Dr. Joe Moorecraft III and reading it several times it appeared to say that someone in my situation was free to take someone like Doug to court. I DID NOT sue Doug, eventhough he has told that I have. I did not. That lie lost me at least one speaking engagement. The DeRosas were sued by someone related to the case and Pete with Doug’s backing threatened to sue me. We also appealed to Doug’s board.
    Joe Taylor

  71. Mark Epstein says:

    Joe Taylor wrote:

    “Apparently this was about me. I never said it.”

    which was stated in response to what Brandon cited:

    “But whenever God raises up such a generation, there always arises a breed of men — envious and consumed with greed — who would stand and revile the great work of God in these young men. Over the past few months, we have heard as some of the more unscrupulous of these individuals shout (paraphrase): ‘It’s a lie, how could a bunch of home school kids do this;’ and ‘Give it to us, not these kids, they will destroy the Allosaur, they already have.’”

    I apologize, Joe, for not making myself very clear. Doug Phillips made a very similar statement from the pulpit of Boerne Christian Assembly. After making the statement, Doug had the members pray against you and what you allegedly said.

    My family and I are aware that you did not say these things, and we learned of the validity of your statements from another source.

    Please accept my humble apology for ever praying against you without knowing the facts, and thank you for your willingness to speak of this issue publicly.

    Yours in Christ,


  72. Henry Barnes says:

    Joe, your testimony about Doug Phillips is entirely consistent with the testimony that I’ve heard from several others about how Phillips responds to being confronted about his numerous sins and transgressions. You’re not the only person, Joe, that Phillips has used and plagiarized his work and stolen all the credit. You’re not the only one that Phillips has walked all over, and then when you confront him he just threatens to sue you. You’re not the only one that Phillips has taken on the role of “victim” or “martyr” and written blog articles against. You’re not the only one Phillips has rebuffed and then organized imprecatory prayer church meetings to call down the wrath of God against: “Yes, God vindicates His own. He does it His way and in His timing. He ‘smashes the teeth’ of the wicked, we need not do so ourselves.”

    Doug Phillips is a user. He uses people to achieve his objective and then when he’s done using them he casts them aside like dirt. In the case of the Allosaur fakeumentary Phillips even used home schoolers as human shields, “Home educators, you had better get used to the persecution, the scoffing, and the ridicule.” Notice however that no one ever scoffed or ridiculed home schoolers themselves over Raising the Allosaur. The only person who is being scoffed and mocked is Doug Phillips, and for good cause.

    I’ve received some hate mail for this article. I really wish that at least some of it had some logic and common sense to it. Most of it has had the recurring theme of, “If Doug Phillips has indeed sinned then you are personally required to privately confront him, per Matthew 18. Taking these issues public is sinful.” I don’t buy it.

    Phillips’ video is not just a hoax and a sin, it’s a very public sin. Why anyone would honestly think that I or anyone else has a biblical obligation to privately confront such a public sin makes no sense. Secondly, even if I did believe that Matthew 18 applied in this case (and I don’t), I already knew what kind of response I would get. Doug Phillips has only one of several responses that he ever gives when confronted with his sins:
    1. He ignores the accuser.
    2. He says “It’s none of your business.”
    3. He writes a self-righteous blog article taking on the role of the poor victim/martyr and elicits the support of his readers by claiming that they too are victim/martyrs.
    4. He demands, “What church are you a member of and what are the names of your elders,” and then launches a behind the scenes political campaign in your church to ruin you.
    5. He threatens a lawsuit.

    In other words confession of sin and repentance is an alien concept to Doug Phillips, whereas retaliation and vengeance are SOP.

  73. Mark Epstein says:

    Mr. Barnes,

    Has anyone from the Phillips camp proffered an explanation as to why Doug Phillips’ Vision Forum, which is a business, is somehow covered by the Matthew 18 dictates?

    I could understand the argument if we were discussing Vision Forum Ministries in this article, but Raising the Allosaur was part of Vision Forum, a for-profit entity. Moreover, where ministries are concerned, Ministry Watchman has made it very clear the steps to which it adheres. Again, what specific explanation from anyone did you receive that would lend credence to their allegation that you or Ministry Watchman must take the allegation of public malfeasance of a business to Doug Phillips directly, in the spirit of Matthew 18?

    I ask these questions for one reason: During the immediate aftermath of Jennifer’s private email to Doug, in response to an open invitation to submit responses to one of Doug’s young male employees, I was told that Doug’s role as an elder extended to his business. I haven’t been able to locate a biblical basis for such a claim. Has anyone provided you with the biblical basis for same?


  74. Henry Barnes says:


    No, the hate mail has never mentioned Vision Forum but only Doug Phillips as an individual. I recognize the point that you wish to make, and I believe it could be a valid one. However, I don’t think it’s even necessary to resort to that argument.

    The issue is that sin must be confronted and exposed (particularly where there has been no repentance) to the same extent that it was perpetrated. Matthew 18:15 is speaking of private sins committed by one brother against another: “Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone.” Private sins call for private rebukes. However, sins committed publicly or against a large number of victims (e.g. defrauding patrons with faked videos) call for a public rebuke. Doug Phillips didn’t just defraud me when I bought his video, he defrauded thousands of people.

    No one has yet to make a biblically valid case for why Phillips’ transgressions should not be made public. If these were private sins then I’d be the first to say that Phillips must be rebuked privately. But these aren’t private sins. Certainly the Allosaur fakeumentary isn’t a private matter.

    Even Charlie Fisher’s story about Doug Phillips and Boerne Christian Assembly members perverse form of “church discipline” against the Epsteins can’t be construed as a private sin because, as I understand it, your reputations were smeared all over San Antonio and perhaps far beyond. That kind of public injustice calls for a public response.

    Even though you could have gone public immediately you didn’t. I’m impressed by your patience and the lengths you went to to be reconciled with Doug and Beall Phillips and BCA members. As I understand it, you and your wife attempted in all earnestness for over two years to seek to be reconciled with the Phillips, but they would have no part of it. I’m absolutely sickened by that.

    The purpose of church discipline is no different than why we discipline our children. It’s to bring a sinner to repentance, with the ultimate goal of restoration and reconciliation. Instead it would seem that Phillips uses the threat of his tyranny, masquerading as “church discipline,” to beat the sheep into subservience. All he was looking to do was to make an example of you. It’s not about fearing the Lord. It’s about fearing Doug Phillips.

  75. Terry says:


    Kudos for your insightful work exposing the fraud and dishonesty connnected with Doug Phillips’ “Raising the Allosaur.” I am a friend of Joe Taylor and Dana Forbes, and was a member of Joe’s dig team that actually did raise the allosaur. For those of us who were truly involved, Phillips’ video is a laughingstock, full of lies and misstatements. The saddest part is that Phillips knew he was making false claims — but he also knew the promotional value of such a find to his ministry. I stand by the statements of Joe and Dana, and would be happy to testify against Doug Phillips if this matter ever goes to court. By the way, I don’t believe that most of the people (there were many) who were involved in the allosaur dig are aware of this discussion, some of whom have gone to great lengths to document the truth. I plan to change that, so you may be hearing from a number of them in the near future.

  76. Mark Epstein; For praying against me: I certainly forgive you. I’m sure you were sincere in your heart. Thank you for your honesty. I am convinced that there are many very good people in Doug’s church. I have met a few. I would not hold it against anyone who has had a bad impression of me because of anything Doug has said or done. I agree that those who sin publicly should be rebuked publicly. In trying to solve this problem and save my reputation and business, I spent literally almost six months of my life getting documentation of this whole affair. It almost collapsed my business. My file on it weighs nearly 100 lbs. Two copies of all pertinent print as well as video documents have been made and are in storage elsewhere, so I am not the only one who has the facts. Most of the participants in the whole dig have been interviewed including some who were in Doug’s group. And again, I am convinced that everyone who came with Doug were there with pure motives and were unwittingly made a part of something they were not aware of. God bless you and God bless Doug to get his life straight.
    Joe Taylor

  77. Imprecations says:


    I just heard the Imprecatory Praise Quartet and thought of you and Doug. 😉

  78. No man thinks more highly than I do of the reasoning abilities of the very “worthy” people who have left comments on this site…..But different people often see the same subject in very different lights, and therefore I hope it will not be thought disrespectful to those people if, entertaining as I do an opinion very opposite to their’s, I shall speak forth my sentiments freely and without reserve.

    This website is a sorry excuse for backstabbing! Vision Forum Ministries is 10,000 times more Biblical than this “Ministry Watchman” will ever be.

    It is in a man’s own prerogative to stop selling an item if he so chooses. Wake up an smell the coffee people, Ministry Watchman is a fraud!

    All the emails they have sent out came from email addresses they stole!!!!! I didn’t subscribe to get their “news” more rightly defined as gossip and lies! Neither did you. Take a look at the facts. They couldn’t get a crowd by themselves so they stole Vision Forum’s mailing list. This discredits EVERYTHING they say!!!!Since they are thieves then they need to get themselves straight before they try to correct others.

    As for me, I am sick of hearing from Ministry Watchman, and I would be just please beyond measure if Ministry Watchman just lost gravity contact and took a trip into outerspace!

    The Statesman

  79. John says:

    I spent literally almost six months of my life getting documentation of this whole affair. It almost collapsed my business. My file on it weighs nearly 100 lbs. Two copies of all pertinent print as well as video documents have been made and are in storage elsewhere, so I am not the only one who has the facts.

    Very wise, Mr. Taylor, particularly the extra copies. I trust that those with the extra copies know what to do with them if anything should happen to you?

    I realize that some observers, people who have not had any significant conflicts with Phillips, may think this is going way overboard or is just paranoid. But paranoids have enemies, too. And multiple witnesses in this case agree with you that Phillips has been an enemy of the truth, and of those who speak it, about the Allosaur mess.

  80. The file duplicates are secure. I am not paranoid either. But I am, and always have been, a historian and ducumentarian. The good, bad and indifferent makes up the stories of our lives. At the time, the most mundane things are often not recorded by most, but it is those very things that later on are important. With all my digs and fossil projects, I have no idea of the future significance of anything, but because of that very thing, it is important to record as much as possible.
    In September 2001, the DeRosa boys had asked to leave our dig at Carl Baugh’s and they wanted to go over to dig on the Allosaur that Dana had found. I told them they could go clean up the rubble in front of it, only, so the folks from AiG and CSI could walk around it. When I went over the next day to show AiG, CSI, I was very upset to see that the boys had started digging next to where Dana had uncovered several feet of the spine several months before. They not only had damaged otherwise perfect bones but they had so severely undercut the collumn that we had to mount an emergency dig costing us some $30,000 in lost revenue from digs with AiG and CSI which we planned to start in May, 2002. Just a few minutes after rebuking Peter for what they had done and for which he apologized, I was filming the site and panned over to where Dana was and merely as a matter of course, I asked him when he discovered this Allosaur. He told it in detail and that it was a about a year earlier. The DeRosas were listening. It is all on tape and duplicate footage is secured. Those boys knew they did not find the Allosaur. But a short time later, they had the unmitigated gall to tell Tom DeRosa (not related) of CSI that Mark had discovered the Allosaur. I also videotaped some 50 lbs. of bone fragments that Dana had recovered from the Allosaur site. In another clip Peter himself tells someone that this is the original site that Dana found and then points to the other site where Dana found Allosaur bones. Doug and his lawyers and the DeRosas later tried to make it look like Dana found the “other” Allosaur but that Mark found the original that we excavated. I’m glad I videotaped it all. It proves that the very basis for the DeRosas’ and Doug’s whole story is false.
    Joe Taylor

  81. Justice Prima says:

    A few days Joe Taylor said this:
    Pete called me on the phone August 2002 and told me that if I didn’t give the bones to them that there would be legal action. …I told him to just come get them, that I wouldn’t go to court with a Christian brother…. I do not now consider Pete DeRosa or Doug Phillips to be Christians.
    I hate to spell out the obvious, but shortly thereafter Michael Metzler attacked and defamed this Christian gentleman by mocking this very statement, turning it upside down its head and making it sound like Mr. Taylor was the one threatening the lawsuit and laying the framework to initiate a lawsuit, even though so far Mr. Taylor is the only one in this story NOT threatening to call in the lawyers.

    What we have here is Philips’ crony Pete INITIATING the threat of a lawsuit, and what Mr. Taylor says is that he _gave up_ without a fight because he would not go to court with a brother- i.e. he wouldn’t DEFEND himself, but preferred to submit to their unlawful demands in the face of a lawsuit threatened by Philips and DeRosa.

    By saying he no longer considers Philips a brother, he is *not,* as blind Michael insinuated, laying out the framework to initiate a lawsuit. Rather he seems only to be saying that if it happens again, next time he will feel free to DEFEND himself. It’s obvious to anybody reading that statement judiciously that Mr. Taylor will not be handing his documentation and evidence over to Pete or Doug this time, no, not even if they *again* threaten a lawsuit.

    Some have been quick to dismiss all charges against Doug and the BCA in regard to the Epstein’s largely on the basis of a BCA website which just issued a flat denial and some further false accusations (Jen claimed a doctrine of sinlessness…), and Matthew Chancey’s distasteful little foray into gossiping about Jen’s preconversation sins (where do you supposed Mathew learned about that titillating little piece of gossip?).

    But Doug has been strangely silent in regard to the Allosaurus charges, and has issued no denials or evidence of any sort- that standard which dismissed all charged because BCA quickly issued a blanket denial seems not to apply here. It’s a shame, because I think it’s obvious that Joe Taylor has a legitimate complaint.

  82. Lynn says:

    I agree with you, and disagree with Michael Metzler’s interpretation as well. To try to make Mr. Taylor out to be the one who is positioning himself to sue at this point, when PHILLIPS was the one doing that, seems ridiculous.

    All Phillips was doing was claiming he knew Taylor said he wouldn’t sue Doug, and Phillips used that information to bully Taylor into giving him the bones, saying if Taylor did sue, Phillips would tell the world about him not being a man of his word. Taylor thinks this is clearly unChristian behavior on Doug’s part, so he does not consider Doug to be a Christian. We don’t have to read any more into this than there is, and ESPECIALLY when it is the OTHER side that is doing the legal threatening.

    I agree Doug doesn’t come across much like a believer at all, with behavior like that. This, coupled with the recent blogs from Phillips’ supporters on the Epsteins, with obvious leaked private information from pastoral counseling going out on these sites, is domineering, dispicable, disgusting and DISHONORABLE!

  83. Joe Taylor says:

    To clarify a point: I am not threatening to sue Doug Phillips or Pete DeRosa. The reasons I did not were because I believed them to be Christian brothers. I was urged by several friends to do so. But I did I didn’t want to have Doug scream it to the world that I was a vow breaker as he threatened to do. For a host of reasons, I do not now consider Doug or Pete or his sons to be Christians. I do consider them to be hypocrites and Pharisees. That being said, like the Pharisees of old, there is much to agree with in their public statements. But their right positions on some things does not justify their unethical and un-Christian behavior.

  84. Michael Metzler says:

    Dear Friends,

    My reply to the allegations here regarding my blindness and mocking of a gentleman can be found at the following link:

    Please let me know if I can do anything further to help clarify this matter.

    Thank You,
    Michael P Metzler
    POB 8282
    Moscow, ID 83843

    P.S. If you go to the link: Please note that I do not in fact hope to see any Pauline chapter outlawed. This is merely an argumentative thought experiment.

  85. Always Batya says:

    “Phillips wanted to arbitrate a dispute in an ancient and respected tradition of justice in which a decision would have be backed by tangible force and settled henceforth for the peace and purity of the world.”

    Mr. Taylor, is this true about Phillips wanting ‘arbitration’. Was that the word he or anyone else used at the time?

    Also Mr. Taylor, did YOU personally contrive to bring this dispute to the internet in order to assassinate the character of DP even after you refused to ‘arbitrate’? Or, were you contacted by MW and asked to tell the truth?

    There seem to be some Christians who think that if one does not use legal means first then they are not free to tell the truth after the fact.

  86. Lynn says:

    Michael Metzler, from link provided:
    “Likewise with Taylor: anything that would have been good by letting Phillips go has now been completely undone. In fact, the situation is far worse.”

    Not true, Michael. As one who has long been interested in the creation-evolution debates, who possesses multiple books and videos by young earthers and day-age theorists and evolutionists, who has spent hours visiting websites by all persuasions, I am very glad to hear Mr. Taylor’s perspective on this. I certainly would want to be apprised of untruths in any material I would consider for purchase, or, not being able to purchase it, for talking about in a discussion or debate.

    This article did me good in helping sort out fact from fiction in this particular case.

  87. Justice Prima says:

    Brother Taylor, believe me, those of us reading for just the facts rather than to further some strange agenda of our own understand that you have never threatened to sue DP or Peter DeRosa.

    It is obvious to most of us that you submitted to unjust demands in the face of threats rather than defend yourself because you found it distasteful to defend yourself against a brother. Having come to the conclusion (based on the treatment you continued to receive at their hands even after you submitted to their unjust demands) that they are not the brethren you thought they were, you now feel free to defend yourself. I think it would be helpful if you could explain more about that and some of the hundreds of pounds of evidence you have.

    Michael, I read the post, and I have to say your allegations and assumptions about me and why I posted as I did are so far off the mark that I am almost persuaded to think of Douglas Wilson as a tenderhearted teddy bear on the basis that if you could be that bizarrely off the mark with your wild guesses about this single comment of mine, there’s not any telling what rash errors you must be making elsewhere. Really, you need to take a deep breath and start separating some issues here.

    As just a small example, I didn’t include a link to your post, which seems to have offended and outraged you in no small amount, as you assume nefarious motives for that omission. The truth is much simpler. I simply didn’t think about. If I had, I would have assumed that everybody else here reads your site and would know what I was talking about and how to find the link if they needed to refresh their memories. Now that I have thought about it, that is what I think.
    You might just as accurately have speculated about the nefarious reasons for the omission of the word ‘ago’ in the first sentence of my above comment. Both omissions are rather similar in origin and equally lacking in malice aforethought.

    I disagree with you about Brother Taylor. I think you are being grossly unfair to him. I think he has raised concerns and issues that deserve an answer from Doug Philips, and Doug Philips is doing his best to ignore the issues, and redirect attention. I imagine the Epstein story is a welcome distraction to him.

    I do not know the Epsteins, nor do I know anybody who knows them, and I have yet to reach a final conclusion about their story. At this point some of the things that concerned you also concern me, and other issues you brought up seem to me to be answered satisfactorily- but I have far from made up my mind regarding that case.

    I do not know Brother Taylor, but I do have dear friends who do know him, and they have given me a good report on his character, integrity, and Christian humility. I have seen for myself that he tells a plausible story and that Doug Philips is trying to pretend Joe Taylor doesn’t exist. I don’t know anything about Dana Forbes (I’m not even sure I have the name spelled right there, but I ‘m not going to go check because I think everybody will know who I mean) and Dana Forbes may claim a miraculous gift for finding fossils and I may not share that belief (and might even find it embarrassing), but that does not have any bearing on the known facts that the dinosaur was on Dana Forbes’ land- that is not in dispute. Forbes the landowner tells a different story than Philips about who found the allosaur and when and how it was excavated, and Forbes’ story is supported by Joe Taylor.

    Philips’ story is supported by nobody else at this point, as the DeRosas are silent and I understand they and PHilips have parted ways.

    I do not know Doug Philips nor do I know (that I am aware of) any members of his church past or present, and I do not have a bone to pick with him personally. In fact, some of the complaints about his ‘patriarchy’ could also be leveled at me, albeit I am a woman (Corrie and I both used to be on the Patriarch’s Wives list). I do not go up and get my own communion and I would not introduce my guests at church nor would I speak out with my own prayer request. I would ask my husband or one of the men to do this for me or to read aloud the prayer request for me. On the one hand I think these personal things have little bearing on the topic at hand, yet on the other, I think they may help put my concerns in the proper context.

    So I have not the same bones to pick here as others do- but I do believe Doug Philips has treated Joe Taylor deceitfully and in an ungodly fashion, and I have yet to see any evidence to suggest otherwise.

  88. Joe Taylor says:

    Mr. Metzler: Your name is new to me and I have just now (12-21-06) read for the first time your comment on Poosthink. I don’t know the source of your information, but I would appreciate it if you would let me know. It would have been good if you could have contacted me first. Feel free at any time. ( Let me clarify a few things: I tried several times by phone and e-mail to talk to Doug Phillips early on in mid 2002 about all of this. Pete DeRosa and family were living at Doug’s and working at his offices at Vision Forum for a time. Since they were both involved, I was trying to get them both to work this out with me. But Doug was the one putting the story out to the whole world. The DeRosas were benefiting tremendously by Doug’s PR of them, false as it was. Rather than deal with me personally on this, Doug demanded I get a lawyer. Yes, arbitration was suggested and we looked into it. My lawyer chose mediation as also suggested by Doug’s and Pete’s lawyers. In my opinion, we did everything we could to get these men to sit down with us at any time prior to that meeting, April 12-13 2004. Leading up to mediation, I offered to go to San Antonio to meet with Doug so he would not have to be far from his young family. Doug and Pete wanted restrictions on the meeting. We said we would meet at any time and with no restrictions, i.e.; each side could present all their points and bring anyone they wanted, their lawyers as well as pertinent parties. In my opinion, Doug and Pete used any excuse to back out or delay for weeks at a time. In all their delaying, my legal bill was growing and my loss from work to deal with the details of all of this was hurting my museum. I regret, now, that I agreed to any of the restrictions in the mediation demanded by Pete and Doug’s lawyers.
    Present at the mediation were Pete and his wife, and sons Peter Jr. and Mark, one of his board members, and their lawyer for Pete. Doug refused to come and sent his lawyer, who did not speak. I had my older brother John, who was not allowed to speak, and my lawyer.
    No, I did not seek out this blog to discuss Doug Phillips.
    I far as I know, I had never heard of Ministry Watchman blog until about the first week of Dec. 2006. A friend told me to go look at the site. Some time later, Mr. Barnes called me and asked for an interview. I am under no legal obligation to not speak about Doug Phillips. If he or Pete DeRosa want to challenge what I have said, we agreed in mediation that it could be brought back before the mediator for assessment. I would be glad to defend ANYTHING I have alleged. This issue was never resolved between Doug and I.
    I ask you Mr. Metzler and any of Doug’s defenders; what are you going to do about all these lies your friend has told? Stop avoiding the real issue.
    Joe Taylor

  89. Joe Taylor says:

    100 lb. file on The Allosaur debacle: They contain an almost hour by hour account of any exchanges or printed info regarding the facts and timeline. These were gathered by a number of people. There is also a very complete video diary from several persons as well as CD’s of talks given by those involved. Included are un-coached written statements by those involved as well as video interviews recounting their reccollection of the events.
    I have hunted dinosaur bones with Dana Forbes. He really does have a good eye for fossils. I have been looking for over 25 years and am pretty good. He was adept from the very first.

  90. Lynn says:

    Michael Metzler:
    “And unfortunately, there are some who will believe just about anything so long as it supports feelings of outrage towards an alleged male abuser.”

    I just clicked through the word “some” above, from your site, and found that it went to my name. I guess you forgot that I never did accept the allegations that the contract was stolen from Kistler, and that Tim Dick’s silence was yet more evidence that the allegations were true, as I have heard *some* say.

    As I told one of the writers on this site, it takes a lot to convince me of anything.

    Btw, what is the difference, in essence, between the charges of plagiarism with respect to Wilson and his writings on slavery and what we are seeing here? You have written some about that issue on Pooh’s Think. That would make an interesting comparison to read, if you are so inclined.

  91. Michael Metzler says:


    The primary purpose of this web site is now to damage the reputation of Phillips, his wife, and his various establishments generally, as attested to the prematurely interrupted story on the Epsteins; the rhetorical methods here are highly manipulative, sappy, purely strategic, and are at some times simply violent. This web site is not dedicated to judicially arbitrating old disputes about dinosaur bones or resolving disputes among Christians. If the truth of your allegations is as severe as you make it out and substantiated with hundreds of pounds of documentation, then it would seem you should let your intentions known to Phillips that you plan to find an established and credible news source to present your story….or something. (If you do something like this, please make your allegations, your story, and your supporting evidence clear so that intelligent people can scrutinize it; this would include careful citation to the video) But I’m afraid something like this will be difficult to do now that you have allowed yourself to become the next stone thrown at Phillips’ head at this web site. I think you have damaged your own reputation by doing so. If you look at the archives of Ministry Watchman, you will see that I did not decide on this issue of Phillips as a Phillips defender, but was rather appreciated here as a Ministry Watchman defender before the lynch mob was formed. I would scrutinize carefully the role your story has played in the Ministry Watchman narrative. More could be said, but I leave it to that for now.

    My opinion still stands about your claims to have allowed Phillips to go away in peace as a Christian; however, my comments to your writing here are geared primarily to Ministry Watchman’s coverage of Phillips’ generally. I am not interested at this time at becoming your opponent.

    Thank you to Ministry Watchman for their willingness to post these comments. I’ll let you guys have the last words on this thread.

  92. Lynn says:

    “The primary purpose of this web site is now to damage the reputation of Phillips, his wife, and his various establishments generally, as attested to the prematurely interrupted story on the Epsteins;”

    Really? Ya think? *I* thought MW let go of the story because the Epstein’s names were leaked on blogs that supported Phillips, and that once that cat was out of the bag, in addition to all kinds of pastoral confidentiality issues being leaked, that MW thought it best to allow the Epsteins to share their story in their own words. Kind of a mid-course correction because their names were no longer anonymous, so there was no further need for Charles Fisher to tell their story for them. If I am wrong about this, please, MW correct me publicly.

    “the rhetorical methods here are highly manipulative, sappy, purely strategic, and are at some times simply violent.”

    That line above is an excellent case in point. Sweeping, broad-brushed innuendo, with no specific examples.

    “This web site is not dedicated to judicially arbitrating old disputes about dinosaur bones or resolving disputes among Christians.”

    That isn’t the website’s purpose, nor does it have to be.

    “If the truth of your allegations is as severe as you make it out and substantiated with hundreds of pounds of documentation, then it would seem you should let your intentions known to Phillips that you plan to find an established and credible news source to present your story….or something.”

    Or he could tell it here. In this regard he’s free to do what he wants.

  93. Professor Truth says:

    How very fair MW is for posting Metzler’s comments in light of the fact his site does not allow comments. (Of course, you are welcome to call or e-mail him anytime, as he always tells us)

    For the sake of total truth, I think those reading here should know that Mr. Metzler has been banned from quite a few sites. I do not have the total list but he mentions most of them on his own site. Of this he seems to be very proud. He posed as the characters Steve and Stacy to post on Doug Wilsons blog even though he had been banned. This is even when he rails against commenters like me for being anonymous. The latest banning seems to be Pyromaniacs, a site where only two people have been banned in all its years of operation. It takes quite a bit to be banned from that site, which exposits scripture, as related by its founder, Phil Johnson.

    From what I can tell of reading Pooh’s think over the last year, Mr. Metzler has dedicated his life to ruining his former pastor, Doug Wilson. Since he does not allow comments, an alternative site, Pooh’s Think with comments has been founded by some of his detractors. This is a site of Metzler’s writing from Poohs Think WITH comments.

    I hope those reading Metzler’s posts will keep the above in mind and also his continuing assertion that Jen Epstein is “Mrs. Binoculars.” Metzler decided to support Chancey’s assertions and promote his nefarious website. In Metzler’s words, “This is an all-around well done post by Chancey.” Of course, Mr. Metzler will probably now try and deny this with his prolific academic vocabulary which only serves to add shadows and confusion to a very clear situation.

    I have never been comfortable with MW posting Metzler comments or articles. He is just not taken seriously by many old timers in the Christian blogosphere.

    Of course, there is a real possibility this comment will show up on Poohs Think with one of his exhaustive academic analyses defending his positions. So, I will be the first one to say what I have written above is MY opinion based on what I have read over the past year.

  94. Justice Prima says:

    So far MW has done three stories that I know of. Ligonier (primarily told by Frank Vance before MW, and simply continued here), the Epsteins (in part), and the Allosaurus.

    The Epstein story is yet inconclusive in my view, though whatever else may be questionable about this story (and I do have some strong concerns both with how MW handled it and some of the events Jen has told which do bear more than one interpretation), nobody has yet explained why it was appropriate for Doug or his supporters to reveal sins Jennifer committed before she was a Christian. That hardly indicateds a track record of failure at MW, nor does it look like MW is a lynch mob.

    As for an actual lynch mob, it’s true, I think, that there is a lynch mob mentality against the Epsteins. I have heard of one person publicly calling for Jennifer’s suicide as the only suitable proof of repentance. I have read many nasty accounts of pre-conversion sins. I have seen two noses that don’t look very similar to me outlined in photoshop and posted as proof that they are the same nose. I have seen a man who has never met the Epsteins tell salacious accounts of their marriage before conversion and their arguments afterward as though he had personally witnessed them. I have seen bizarre claims about being able to read into the motives of total strangers for such horrible crimes as forgetting to include a link to a public post. I have seen public comments about public posts labeled as ‘gossip,’ by somebody who allows no commenting on his blog.

    Oh, wait, that wasn’t anybody who is giving Joe Taylor a judicious hearing, was it?

  95. Watchman says:

    Professor, as anyone who’s been around here for any length of time should know, I have a very liberal comment approval policy. That isn’t to say that there aren’t some rules that I expect everyone to follow. There clearly are rules. However, the overriding principle is based upon my strong views of free speech. That includes speech (opinions) that I disagree with, such as Mr. Metzler’s opinions on all things Doug Phillips.

    However, this isn’t to say that I’m now going to permit Ministry Watchman to be turned into a potential feuding match between Mr. Metzler and his detractors. Mr. Metzler will now no doubt be compelled to respond to your comments and concerns Professor. I trust that if he does so he’ll do it on his own blog. The problem then becomes Professor, should you wish to respond, how would you do so since Mr. Metzler doesn’t permit comments on his blog? As you’ve already pointed out though, there is Pooh’s Think with comments.

    So here’s my proposal. I’d just as soon not have any more comments here about Mr. Metzler. He’s not the story, and I don’t want to see us get distracted from the story, no matter how tempting that might become.

    Therefore, if you have concerns about Mr. Metzler please consider posting them in an appropriate article on Pooh’s Think With Comments.

    Oh, and just to satisfy the curiosity of the conspiracy theorists, no one associated with Ministry Watchman had anything at all to do with setting up or maintaining Pooh’s Think With Comments, nor do we have any idea who’s behind it.

  96. Michael Metzler says:


    Thank you again for allowing me to offer a short reply to the allegations against me here on this thread; this is a very fair and just thing to do. You should be commended for this. And I am glad that you do not find this thread turning into a Metzler affair a good thing. I agree—for the sake of Joe Taylor’s story as well as for my own. This will therefore be my last comment on this thread.

    However, due to the fresh allegations—if you could call it that—made by “Professor Truth” I have decided to dedicate a significant post to my experience with Ministry Watchman, as well as the story of the Epstein story on Ministry Watchman. I hope to have it up within a week. Any further posts following this preliminary one will depend on the kind of activity from Ministry Watchman and internet apologists, particularly as directed to my own good name and the reputation we have done in the Wood.

    Every issue Professor Truth mentioned above I have already brought up at Pooh’s Think and thoroughly addressed; so if the reader is interested in the accuracy of the Professor’s insinuations, you should be able to find a good deal of what you need at my site. Also, I should note that I never claimed that the Binoculars picture was a picture of Jen Epstein, and I in fact implied that I believed Chancey might not have either on the very post providing the link to mrs. binoculars. Also, I was using the phrase Mrs. and Mr. Binoculars before I ever heard of Matthew Chancey, and my continued use of this phrase therefore has no bearing to the question as to whether or not the picture for Ministry Watchman is in fact a picture of Jen Epstein.

    Lastly, I have already pointed out that the implication that I do not allow posts at my web site is intentional libel. Anyone who has every requested that I post something for them at Pooh’s Think knows this is not true; further, you will not be able to find one person who I have turned away, but for one time that Chris Witmer asked me to post something that had nothing to do with the content of my web site and was comprised primarily of a private email from me. I have already addressed this at many times and places, and it is simply dishonest to continue implying that I do not allow response at my web site. The invitation is still open, and it is quite an invitation! Would Ministry Watchman be willing to offer the same invitation? However, even though I have never turned down a post, minus Witmer’s, this does not mean to say that I do not have basic standards for acceptance, such as relevance, a clear thesis, and an argumentative interaction with a claim from the Wood. There are many reasons I have and many reasons I have given already as to why I do not currently have comments activated; one reason is that I prefer to have someone post right to the Wood as a primary attraction if they really think they have something insightful and argumentatively cogent to say about any of our claims and work in the Wood. Yet, as I have mentioned a few times already, I might have comments opened again mid-January; but this will depend on how things are going occupationally and with my family. They will be moderated since kirkers did a good deal of vandalism to the comment threads when I did have comments activated.

  97. Watchman says:

    Like I just said, there won’t be any more commenting here re Michael Metzler. So the last comment I just received won’t be approved. This back and forth could go on in perpetuity, but as far as I’m concerned it’s irrelevant to this article. Mr. Metzler gets the final word.

    However, and I hope you don’t mind my saying so Mr. Metzler, but I very much look forward to the day that you’re willing to deal with people’s concerns about you (Professor Truth et al), on your own blog.

    Your concerns about vandalism, while legitimate, are no different from my own. I’ve had to deal with a tremendous amount of attempted vandalism. Comment moderation and spam filters have proven very effective in preventing vandals from achieving their objectives. Nevertheless, I do readily acknowledge that it can still be annoying having to manually sift through it all. The fact is though that anyone who’s willing to take on controversial subjects or unpopular issues is bound to make a few enemies (this I know too well). Sifting through a little harassment is, in my opinion, well worth it in order to find the occasional outstanding comment that would otherwise be lost if we didn’t accept comments at all.

  98. Professor Truth says:

    “Mr. Metzler gets the final word.”

    You mean the final 10,000 words.

  99. Cliff Withrow says:

    In 2003 (maybe 2004), just before the first San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival, Doug Phillips called Mr. Brian Barkley of New Liberty Videos and encouraged him to enter into the competition his recently completed video Warriors of Honor – The Faith of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. Mr. Barkley was not in his office that day; however, Mr. Phillips left a rather lengthy message practically insuring him that he would win the $10,000 prize. Mr. Barkley completed the entrance application and spent quite a bit of money (money he did not have) to re-edit the film so as to get it under the time allowed.

    One of the statements on the application said that all entries would be included in a “Best of” series that was going to be sold by Vision Forum. Mr. Barkley understood this to mean that Vision Forum would purchase the DVD from him and make it available with the other productions.

    Unfortunately, this is not what happened. Vision Forum violated national and international copyright laws by making illegal copies of the video selling it along with the rest of the entries. When Mr. Barkley objected they threatened him citing the entry application.

    When he asked where in the application he was signing away his copyright, they cited rule number seven. What is fascinating is that the rule said nothing of the sort (I thought Phillips was a lawyer? Wow, I know who not to hire.) Mr. Barkley owns a small production firm. He is a single man operation, but still produces high quality documentaries. This is how he provides for his family.

    The San Antonio Film Festival is really an outlet for homeschoolers. Mr. Phillips should have never gotten a professional film maker involved. The only reason I could see for his doing so was to have a just cause to sell his “Best of…” for $30 plus dollars (otherwise, no one would have bought it.) The film that did win was done by a kid for a very small budget (probably with his dad’s camcorder.)

    When the lawyers were just preparing to get involved Vision Forum blinked and worked out a deal to purchase the video and make it available in their magazine. However, it took nearly twelve months and quite a bit of energy on Mr. Barkley’s part.

    On this day I lost all respect for Mr. Phillips. He troubled a very humble and godly man.

  100. Jen says:

    Cliff, would you be so kind as to tell us exactly what rule number 7 says? It is difficult to tell how it was either violated or misinterpreted if we can’t actually see it.

    Just to clarify things a bit, the winner of the 2004 Film Festival was not only produced by some homeschoolers (which I see nothing wrong with, in and of itself), but there seemed to be no plot. I know most, if not all, of the people involved in making this film, and felt there were some very good aspects, such as the music by Nathan. But there was no plot. Most people did not understand why it won the grand prize, but I’ll give you some clues.

    The producers and videographers were young men who, until just before the film festival, worked for several years for Vision Forum. In fact, pretty much their whole family worked for Doug Phillips and I believe they are some of the same young men who filmed the Allosaur movie. Most of the other people involved were connected personally in some way to Doug as well.

  101. Cliff Withrow says:

    I wish I had a copy of rule 7, but I do not. You can find it on the original entrance application. As to a plot, you are probably correct. My observation was simply that Mr. Phillips coaxed a professional film maker (who is somewhat gullible) and encouraged, make that insisted, that he entered and when the purpose appears to have been an outlet for homeschoolers. Then to top it off he made illegal copies of his production and sold it in a “Best of…” compilation.

    Even if there was no plot, a descent lawyer, let alone a brother in Christ, would not do this to another man’s work. This is the way Mr. Barkley pays his bills. I believe this is inexcusable.

    Understand that an agreement was reached between the two parties and both appear to be satisfied with the results. In his typical fashion, Mr. Barkley holds no ill will.

  102. Clyde Parks says:

    As Mr. Withrow has noted Doug Phillips has some history when it comes to defrauding men of the fruits of their labors. I hope that Ministry Watchman will do an entire article exposing Phillips’ San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival. It needs to be exposed. He cons people into surrendering their ownership rights so that he can go and take the top films from his Film Festival and make a “best of” DVD compilation and sell it at a huge profit without paying the video producers a dime. What Phillips did to Brian Barkley is only one example of the many film makers that he’s conned.

    Even the heathens of Hollywood would never think of perpetrating the kinds of fraud that Phillips has routinely perpetrated. The man is a cheat and a thief.

  103. Mark Epstein says:

    Here is a link to the “rules” for 2006. I do not know if these were the same rules for Doug’s first fesitval in October 2004.

    Here is a link to the Film Short Entry Form


  104. Mark Epstein says:

    Mr. Parks,

    I seriously doubt Doug Phillips will appreciate being referred to as “a cheat and a thief.” However, if it’s true, then it’s not defamation.

    Please let us know if you receive any threatening communication.

    Mr. Barnes: It appears there are some very strong opinions concerning the SAICFF. I know I concur with my wife’s comment above.

    Perhaps gentlemen such as Mssrs. Parks, Withrow, Barkley,, will be willing to provide you documented evidence to write Mr. Parks’ suggested article.



  105. This might be the rule in question:

    10. By submitting a film to the SAICFF, the filmmaker agrees to allow part or all of the film to be placed on the SAICFF or Vision Forum Web site ( and, respectively), and to allow Vision Forum Ministries the option of including the film in a “best of the SAICFF” video album, the proceeds from which will go to the Vision Forum and the SAICFF to promote the work of the Vision Forum, the Jubilee Awards, and the SAICFF.

  106. VF Customer says:

    You can still view the 2003 catalog online for Vision Forum at

    My question is this, Doug Phillips states in his article on page 3 of the 2003 VF catalog the following:

    “Consider that our dinosaur site was completely excavated by home educators. The paleontologists were home educators. The team doing the restoration was made up of home educators. The film production, design and documentary team were exclusively home educators. In fact, the business team that created the images you are looking at on this page and the typesetting design of this catalog was entirely made up of home educators.”

    If this is the premise for him saying it was done by home educators, this need to be addressed. Is this true? Was the majority of the team home educated? There is also more information on pg. 48 in the catalog.

  107. So in the VF 2003 catalog, the main item seems to be the Raising the Allosaur with a full page spread on page 48 and then dinosaur-related materials on the next page. Don’t forget the 2 page introduction largely about the dig.

    Then in the VF 2004 catalog, once again Raising the Allosaur is given a full page spread on page 86, with some of the same dinosaur-related materials on the next page.

    Then – poof – Raising the Allosaur disappears from the catalog. You can still find some of the dinosaur-related materials though. As noted by others, the DVD is no longer available on the website.

    Oh, if anyone wants to say “well the Allosaur DVD is old and VF likes to keep their product line fresh”, Noah’s Ark, Jonathan Park and a few other materials have been available for more then 2 catalogs and I want to say for the past 4 or 5.

  108. Jen says:

    VF Customer, why does it matter whether they were home educated or not? I fail to see the significance in your question. Yes, they were, but I think that just shows that education can take many forms and that you can learn just as much home educating, if you apply yourself. What this doesn’t tell us is if these people were actually qualified to do their respective jobs or not. Home education has nothing to do with being qualified to do their particular job. I have a college degree, yet that no more qualifies me to be a paleontologist or to work in any other specialized field other than my degree either. I think it is clear that Doug favors home education in all his endeavors, but that does not necessarily equate to one’s qualifications or lack thereof.

  109. SemanticsMan says:

    Also, bear in mind that the phrase “home educators” refers to parents as well as children, and besides, a large percentage of older home-schooled children are now professional adults with degrees and qualifications.

  110. Joe Taylor says:

    Doug’s main customer base is home educators, most of whom are humble honest folks who would be embarassed to be over-rated for any reason. Doug’s modus operendi is to shower someone or some group with praise when he can use them and rain down wrath when they challenge or rebuke him. I have seen him turn on home educators who are very good people when they challenged them. In my opinion he uses people for his own enlargement.

    The home schoolers he credits with discovery and excavation of the Allosaur did little of it, and the home schoolers who actually did find and excavate the Allosaur he gives no credit to and in fact has maligned them for asking him to tell the truth.

    I have been in the fossil business in every aspect for 26 years. There are many PhDs who can draw conclusions and make analyses but who are not qualified to restore a fossil. Their education does not automatically make them artistsans. It is no different with home schoolers. But real abilities are irrelevant to Doug. He can make those up out of thin air if it will sell a product.

    I want to say again, that the young men who made Raising The Allosaur video did a great job technically. I wish they could have had all of our footage of the real dig.
    Joe Taylor

  111. Cliff Withrow says:

    Friends, just to let you know, the rule was changed after the first year and is now worded differently. It does appear to be a bit more precise. And the rules appear to now exclude professional film makers. When this all broke I was hoping it was a mistake, an oversight or miscommunication by Mr. Phillips – however that did not seem to be the case. Vision Forum wanted to actually make the argument that they had a right to make copies of Mr. Barkley’s work and sell it without giving him any compensation.

  112. Terry says:


    I had not planned on contributing to this discussion again, but in light of continuing questions regarding the practices of Vision Forum–especially regarding their involvement in filmmaking–I feel compelled to share the below press release, which I helped write, at the time of VF’s first film festival. Whether it was ever released to the press or picked up by any media outlets, I don’t know. But I send it to you FYI, and leave it to you to put on the Watchman site or not.


    November 5, 2004

    Villainy Behind the Mask of Virtue: Vision Forum Unmasked

    The man behind the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival, a project of Vision Forum Ministries that is supposedly “taking dominion for Christ in film,” owes homeschoolers all across the country an apology for violating their trust.

    Vision Forum’s first film, Raising the Allosaur, is Phillips’ main credential for being a film festival sponsor and judge, all the while grossly violating #8 & #9 of his own 10 commandments for entering a film in his festival. Respectively they state: “Don’t steal other people’s work” and “Truth is essential to Christian films.” Phillips calls his film a documentary, but it is misleading and grossly misrepresents the truth and steals from the hard work of others. The promotions and the jacket on the film itself begin the lying in order to sensationalize Phillips claims. In order to exercise his so-called “dominion,” Phillips has unethically stepped on the heads of several other Christian creation ministries and individuals, employing threats of legal action, making accusations and through innuendo.

    This debacle surrounds an allosaurus story that Wendy Rigby of KENS TV first reported on two years ago. The film Raising the Allosaur catapulted the financially troubled Vision Forum into the lucrative market of films and dinosaur digs, offering outings for those that can afford $999/person among the homeschool community. Rigby’s story put Phillips on the media map—a huge benefit to the struggling outfit—but unfortunately (through no fault of Ms. Rigby) was highly misleading.

    Phillips’ Vision Forum was over a million dollars in the red, according to a Dunn & Bradstreet report when Phillips met the DeRosa family, which Phillips features in his film. The DeRosa family is promoted by Phillips as having “sterling character” and their two boys as “prodigies,” the best the homeschool movement has produced. However, evidence suggests this family has been involved in some dirty dealings of its own over the past three years that would deem them unworthy of these titles. The DeRosas, owners of Creation Expeditions a “Christian” fossil tour outfit, have been involved in legal battles since receiving their tax-exempt status. The DeRosa family and Phillips’ involvement with the Allosaur has been immersed in duplicity, slanderous lies, murky dealings and divisiveness.

    In short, the controversy surrounds the excavation of an allosaurus discovered in northwest Colorado by landowner, Dana Forbes. Forbes, who originally found the allosaur in October, 2000 and is featured in the beginning of Phillips’ film, was not given credit for the discovery. The Forbes abandoned both their land and their dream of blessing the creation community through tours and scientific studies on the land through the deceitful actions of Doug Phillips and Peter DeRosa.

    Along with the Forbes, Creation Expeditions and Vision Forum together deceived and bullied many parties involved in order to profit from the exciting discovery. Chief among them is Joe Taylor, who owns perhaps the largest creation fossil museum in the world, which is located in Crosbyton, Texas. Taylor, the lead site manager for the allosaur excavation, is not featured in Phillips’ film at all. Represented as paleontology “professionals” in Raising the Allosaur, the Pete DeRosa family had never dug up a dinosaur until they were casually invited by Taylor to one of Dr. Carl Baugh’s Colorado digs in May of 2001. Taylor taught the DeRosa boys, Peter and Mark, the basics of fossil excavation, and most of the allosaur featured in Phillips film was removed, plaster cast and sent to Taylor’s Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum in September of 2001. Tom DeRosa, president of Creation Studies Institute and Mike Zovath, field representative for Answers In Genesis were part of the original dig. When Vision Forum/Creation Expeditions came to the Forbes property in May of 2002 to film Raising the Allosaur over four partial days of digging, all that was left of the allosaur was the end of the tail, which had been plaster cast the year before to protect it from erosion. By the time the VF group (composed primarily of homeschool families that paid $999.00 per person) had departed, the skull had not yet been found. This is why there is no footage of it being excavated in the film.

    Based on notes which Taylor had made and shared with DeRosa of where the skull would likely be located if it had not eroded away, the VF group exposed a bit more bone. Dr. Bruce Bellamy, given credit in Phillips’ film for finding the skull, did in fact, dig where the DeRosas told him to and found the first articulated neck bone. But the Bellamy family has told witnesses that they tried to tell Phillips they didn’t find the skull as stated in the movie. At the time of this dig, Phillips and his tour group had no idea what it was that they had found. Others present concur.

    Taylor’s professional excavation crew came in after Phillips’ tour left and a member of Taylor’s crew, homeschooler Jordan Hall, digging in the company of other Mt. Blanco team members, Phillip Hall, Don Yaeger, Dave Babbit, Chantell Lines, Don Yaeger, the Forbes family and others, actually found the skull after several days of digging. Along with the rest of the bones, the skull was field-jacketed and taken to the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum with the understanding that Taylor would do the cleaning and prep work and that he would train the DeRosa boys in this as well. However, the next time the DeRosas showed up at Taylor’s museum it was to demand that Taylor surrender the bones to them. Under threat of a lawsuit, and believing it wrong to sue a brother, Taylor reluctantly let them have it, which they took to a “lab” owned by Doug Phillips.

    Consequently, Taylor suffered devastating financial losses and has had to shut his museum down several times as well as sell his museum displays just to survive. Answers In Genesis Ministries and Creation Studies Institute have supported Taylor and tried to help him survive. Friends of Taylor agree that he suffered extreme financial and emotional hardships due to the self-serving actions of Phillips and the DeRosas. Phillips even used his Internet blog to intimidate Taylor, calling him an enemy of homeschoolers and accusing him of persecuting the DeRosa paleo “prodigies” and being a greedy and jealous man. But these comments are contradicted by statements from many witnesses who were there, who describe Taylor as the man that took the DeRosa boys under his care and taught them all they know about hard rock dinosaur digging.

    The lies, misrepresentations and fraud surrounding the making of Raising the Allosaur instead raise serious questions about the character and integrity of Doug Phillips, who claims to be the “moral voice” of some 600,000 homeschoolers across the country. The VF website showcases Phillips and his family as at the forefront of “taking dominion for Christ.” However, Phillips appears to be far from the man he purports himself to be. Behind his mask of virtue hides a mean-spirited, dishonest man who uses his legal skills to bully those that dare to get in his way.
    Phillips has always been right there with his legal team to protect the DeRosas’ misdeeds from coming to light, thus preserving their bad character as well as his lucrative “documentary.”

    In a few days the faithful will gather in San Antonio at the VF Film Festival to hobnob with some of the most well-known Christian film makers around, and Phillips will be basking in glory and hyping his fraudulent film. On the Raising the Allosaur film jacket, Phillips states “What happens when a group of home school boys and girls travel to the badlands of Colorado with their parents in search of adventure and the hope of finding ancient treasures buried in rock? They make the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year…They raise from the ground what appears to be the most complete Allosaur ever found in the history of paleontology, including the monster’s giant skull complete with rows and rows of once-razor sharp teeth.” However, one might better ask, “What happens when a supposed moral leader resorts to deception, fraud, threats and strong-arm tactics to deny others their rights and to produce a film that is full of half-truths and lies?” Many in the Christian and homeschooling communities would like answers to this and a host of other questions surrounding this story. They would like to see this situation investigated and proper restitution given to the victims. It remains to be seen how much longer the Christian community will allow itself to continue to be duped by Phillips and the DeRosas, but it would only add insult to injury if Raising the Allosaur brought further fame and fortune to a man who seems devoid of conscience through the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival.

    Epilogue: Due to the allosaurus controversy and the many people who have stepped forward to report misdeeds committed by the DeRosas, it appears that Creation Adventures has been taken off the Vision Forum website, speaking engagements featuring them have been canceled and VF has issued a private letter suspending all dealings with Creation Adventures—as well as the sale of the film—“pending a season of self-examination, re-evaluation, repentance and accountability.” One can only hope (but don’t hold your breath) that Doug Phillips will partake of such a season himself.

  113. Lynn says:

    Found out about that link at the Adventures in Mercy Blog in the comment section, under a comment by “Truth Seeker.”

    I went to it, and it makes some very strong claims about Joe Taylor, in addition to having the BCA statement against the Epsteins and Chancey’s ridiculous articles from mrs.binoculars.

    I am praying for the truth to come out in this matter, and for the innocent to be defended and protected.

  114. Sniffin’ says:

    Just when I thought there wasn’t much more to tell regarding this story, I did a little sniffin’ today and heard a story from a friend who asked Dr. John Morris about Doug Phillips’ movie, “Raising the Allosaur.” Seems Dr. Morris just laughed and said, “Well, Doug Phillips isn’t exactly known for always getting his facts straight!”

    That seemed kind of odd coming from a scientist.

  115. […] Most troubling in its ramifications for how it could adversely impact the cause of Christian education is Doug Phillips’ video documentary “Raising The Allosaur.” Some have referred to this video as a “fakeumentary.” Indeed, there is overwhelming evidence that many of the claims made by Phillips in “Raising The Allosaur” are blatant fabrications. Phillips has never been able to provide any reasonable explanations for the glaring inconsistencies and serious allegations that have been put to him as a result of his video production, masquerading as a documentary. Phillips suffered so much negative public exposure for his fakeumentary that he withdrew it from the Vision Forum catalog, without any public explanation, and he did so in spite of the fact that “Raising The Allosaur” had been a very lucrative product for Vision Forum. Phillips’ fakeumentary has greatly harmed the cause of creationism. If even just a few of the allegations against this video are true, then Doug Phillips is guilty of perpetrating a huge fraud against many thousands of Christians, and especially against Christian home schoolers (in the video Phillips falsely credits home schoolers as having been responsible for finding the allosaur). Phillips owes the Christian public either an explanation or an apology. However, after many such demands, he has completely evaded doing either one. There are numerous other issues that call into question Doug Phillips’ integrity, but “Raising The Allosaur” may be the most glaring example yet. […]

  116. […] Most troubling in its ramifications for how it could adversely impact the cause of Christian education is Doug Phillips’ video documentary “Raising The Allosaur.” Some have referred to this video as a “fakeumentary.” Indeed, there is overwhelming evidence that many of the claims made by Phillips in “Raising The Allosaur” are blatant fabrications. Phillips has never been able to provide any reasonable explanations for the glaring inconsistencies and serious allegations that have been put to him as a result of his video production, masquerading as a documentary. Phillips suffered so much negative public exposure for his fakeumentary that he withdrew it from the Vision Forum catalog, without any public explanation, and he did so in spite of the fact that “Raising The Allosaur” had been a very lucrative product for Vision Forum. Phillips’ fakeumentary has greatly harmed the cause of creationism. If even just a few of the allegations against this video are true, then Doug Phillips is guilty of perpetrating a huge fraud against many thousands of Christians, and especially against Christian home schoolers (in the video Phillips falsely credits home schoolers as having been responsible for finding the allosaur). Phillips owes the Christian public either an explanation or an apology. However, after many such demands, he has completely evaded doing either one. There are numerous other issues that call into question Doug Phillips’ integrity, but “Raising The Allosaur” may be the most glaring example yet. […]

  117. […] If you don’t know the story behind this letter, you may read it here. Posted in Vision Forum, Doug Phillips. […]

  118. […] If you don’t know the story behind this letter, you may read it here. Posted in Vision Forum, Doug Phillips. […]

  119. Mary Gavin says:

    Has anyone ever heard of Creation Studies Institute or it’s founder and president, Tom DeRosa? Until recently they were the creation arm of D. James Kennedy’s Ministry. Tom is recommended by both ICR and Ken Ham(AIG). Tom has been taking people on fossil floats for around $60/adult (less for children)down the Peace River in search of Ice Age fossils since the early 90’s. Pete DeRosa, no relation to Tom, was the field director for CSI until the spring of 2002. This is where the DeRosas learned to sift through the sand in search of Pleistocene fossils.
    Tom DeRosa, and staff from AIG, including AIG vice president Mike Zovath, his daughter Stephanie, Buddy Davis were part of the Forbes dig in September of 2001 when 12 ft. of the Allosaur was removed. (8 months before Doug Phillips and the Vision Forum tour ever set foot on the property.) This was the second dinosaur dig the Pete DeRosa family had ever gone on!!!! Mike Zovath and Stephanie filmed this first dig. There is plenty of video footage to be had from many involved besides Joe Taylor.

    Phillips claims his film is a documentary, however, a documentary documents the facts of a particular event. Phillips not only leaves out the real facts and the people who raised the Allosaur. He makes up his own story.

    Do we love truth? Should we make excuses for those that twist truth to their advantage? The world is watching and if we don’t value truth, we can’t expect to be taken seriously by secular scientists, or anyone for that matter.

    As Christians we need to be concerned about the victims!!! Several creation ministries, the homeschool community who bought this bogus video,and others have indeed been harmed. Joe Taylor’s dig team, made up of professional men and women who donate their time, resources and expertise to provide evidence for the creation message had to endure this gross injustice. As many are speaking out that the truth be told, Phillips/DeRosa camp retorts that these people are glory seekers! HOGWASH!!!! They are not in it for the money or the glory. Matter of fact. Who has made all the m oney! Who made lots of money off a bogus film as well as tours for around $1,000 a head. Who was given a Jonathan Park series, and who has been billed as professionals and been given access to the Edmontasurus site inSouth Dakota?
    Mt Blanco dig team not only welcomed DeRosas on their first ever dino dig in May of 2001. They helped train them. Dave Babbitt, retired surveyor and the man in charge of Taylors grids and graphs, lent Peter DeRosa his transit and taught him how to use it.

    Does Joe Taylor have the right to speak the truth?

    I remember when the film “End of the Spear” came out and Doug Phillips wrote a scathing piece criticizing the producers for their choice of the lead actor, citing his personal life style as making him unfit for the role. Phillips might want to look at both homself and the family that he picked to make heroes to our home school boys and girls. Immorality is immorality!

    Standing on truth!
    Where else should christians stand?

  120. Cliff et al,

    I found the old rule #7:

    By submitting a film to the SAICFF, jthe filmmaker agrees to allow part or all of the film to be placed on the SAICFF or Vision Forum Web site ( and, respectively), and to allow The Vision Forum, Inc. the option of including the film in a “best of the SAICFF” video, the proceeds from which will go to the Vision Forum and the SAICFF to promote the work of the Vision Forum, the Jubilee Awards, and the SAICFF.

    The current rule #7:

    Films produced, financed, or initiated by a major film studio are ineligible for competition, but may be considered for screening (see “Submissions for Film Festival Screening Only” below).

    It seems rule #10 is a rewrite of the old rule #7:

    By submitting a film to the SAICFF, the filmmaker agrees to allow the film to be screened at the festival October 25-27, 2007 and to allow short portions of the film to be used by Vision Forum Ministries and the SAICFF for promotional purposes.

    Cliff, if you are still reading this blog, please contact me by clicking on my name and using the Contact Brandon link.

  121. P. Ballard says:

    Wow, I had heard vague references that there was some dispute over the allosaur that the DeRosa’s posess – but had never known about this interent “discussion” until I just now stumbled upon it.

    Our family have known the DeRosas for close to 30 years now – since Mr. DeRosa (Pete) was quite young. He and Linda have been entrusted with the care and mentoring of our children – as we have done with theirs at times. One of my children has even worked on the allosaur under discussion, and has helped as staff on some Creation Expedition trips. I do not know the Phillips or other parites named in this “discussion”.

    I would just caution anyone reading here to be very careful about jumping to conclusions based on this “hearsay evidence”. You will be help accountable for your words and thoughts by a just and impartial Lord – and there is so much that none of us actually knows – but I do know the DeRosa’s and their genuine love for the Lord – waaaaaay before there was ever a dinosaur in their lives. They have not changed!

    for the Ballard family

  122. Cynthia Gee says:

    “Tours for around $1,000 a head”????

    Did Visionforum do this?

  123. Mary Gavin says:

    Yes VF “Skimmed the Cream” Pete DeRosas words, and charged high prices for the dino digs. For the $60.00 Fossil Float, using CSI’s itenerary and printed material without permission incidently, DP charged a mere $450.00.. He bought it wholesale from Pete for ?. Pete himself charged $175.00. Which is fine …Business is Business……but Ministry and mercy are something different again. By the way, careful investigator that I am, I supect that P. Ballard is Pete DeRosa. But I cant prove it yet.

  124. Watchman says:

    Mary, on the Allosaur dig, didn’t Phillips charge those home school families $1,000.00 a head, with no discounts for their kids? I received copies of numerous documents from someone (I won’t disclose my sources, but no, they weren’t forwarded by Joe Taylor or anyone in his organization)) showing that Phillips paid CSI a tiny fraction of that. $175.00 comes to mind (please confirm the number if you can, Mary).

    I just wonder if those home schoolers would feel such a markup was reasonable.

    I may not have the resources at this time to run any further exposés about the Phillips Allosaur fakeumentary. Just from what I’ve seen of the documents that have been sent to me (and I know there are many more), that would be a big exposé project. But I hope that someone else soon will.

  125. Mary Gavin says:

    Looking back at Vision Forum’s ads for their dinosaur digs they all range around $1,000. I am looking at one for May 19-23, 2003 which was advertised for $1,250.00.
    (no child’s discount)

    I have a Ice Age Excursion (Peace River fossil float) advertised for February 12-14, 2004 at $400.00 adults, $150 children age 2-5, under 2 are free The DeRosa charge was $175./ person I don’t know what the child discount was for P. DeRosa. limited to 150 people.

  126. P. Ballard says:

    {{{By the way, careful investigator that I am, I supect that P. Ballard is Pete DeRosa. But I cant prove it yet.}}}

    Of all the responses I possibly anticipated – this was not one. What would you like as proof?
    Pictures from the highschool yearbook that show Pete as a student, and my husband listed as one of his teachers?
    Pictures I have of Pete’s children at my 4-H club meetings?
    Pictures of my son working at the lab and on digs?

    Send me your address and I will oblige whatever you need.

    Blessings and prayers for one accord among the brethren,
    from the Ballard family

  127. P. Ballard,

    It is hardly hearsay, as Joe Taylor was directly involved in dealing with the DeRosa’s regarding the whole Allosaur controversy. He invited the DeRosa’s to their first hard rock dig in May 2001 where they attended Carl Baugh’s dig. I would ask the DeRosa’s why they no longer do Creation Adventure Tours with Vision Forum for starters, and if you like I can provide documentation. If I may request, that if you send pictures to Mary, please send her any pictures you may have of at least one of the “hundreds of dinosaurs dig” that the DeRosa’s boys had been on before May 2002 because I am really interested in seeing those.

  128. Mark Epstein says:


    “HUNDREDS of dinosaur digs”? Please tell me the DeRosas did not make this claim. Why, they aren’t old enough to have conducted hundreds of digs. I met the DeRosas at Phillips’ church, and I know that neither DeRosa boy is old enough to have been personally involved in hundreds of digs. At least not when Doug and Pete were working hand in glove on the Allosaur dig that resulted in Phillips’ fakumentary.

  129. Mark, Pete DeRosa didn’t say it but Doug did say the following in his May 20, 2002 press release:

    “We were blessed to be under the supervision of Pete DeRosa and his entire staff from Creation Expeditions,” Phillips said. “These guys are a top-notch team with hundreds of digs behind them and more than a decade of experience working on some of the most interesting fossil sites in the world. I think everyone was impressed by their professionalism, their knowledge, and their passion for excellence.”

    I think the boys were 17 and 19 years old at the time.

  130. Mark Epstein says:


    Phillips’ hype? Phillips’ exaggeration? Phillips lying? Such a comment (“hundreds of digs”) is analogous to someone using RC Sproul Jr. as an example of honesty.

  131. Mary Gavin says:

    I don’t know when this went up on Vision Forum, but hopefully the public will see this for what it is, A COVER UP! Home page a little box that reads response to internet attacks–click and voila! some quotes: “not our intent to arouse baser interests among our constituents….we will provide you with a link upon request which contains our response to these lies, along with the response of various local churches, home school leaders, and others who have experience adverse contacts with the perpetrators behind these attacks.”
    WOW, Why won’t Doug answer the attack on his film and defend it’s status as a “Documentary Film”. Because he can’t. This is the cowardly way to tell lies about people behind a veil where they can’t defend themselves. The stuff that has been shared can be proven and has been done openly and publicly.It hasn’t been done behind a veil. Why won’t Doug address legitimate conplaints about his film publicly. Why assasinate the messengers?

  132. A new website dedicated to the controversy surrounding the events portrayed in Raising The Allosaur can be found at It is time for the whole truth to be known.

  133. […] For the original article outlining the film, click here. […]

  134. […] For the original article outlining the film, click here. […]

  135. Mark Epstein says:


    Phillips, his shills, and his proxies all use the logically fallacious ad hominem attack to discredit those who would have the audacity to speak the truth.

    Can you say “moral cowardice”? How about “deep character flaws”?

    Phillips just needs to repent.

  136. Cynthia Gee says:

    $1,000 a head?????
    Given the fact that most homeschooling families are rather large, if Mom, Dad, and 8 kids went on a dig, they would be shelling out $10,000!!!
    A wise man once told me that whenever something was going on that didn’t seem quite right, but you couldn’t quite put your finger on WHY it seemed fishy, all you had to do was to look around to see who was making money off of the situation and you would likely find the explanation for its occurrance.
    This explains a lot of things….

  137. Cynthia Gee says:

    Hey all… dish me up some crow, it looks as though I made a mistake regarding the pricing of those VF dino-digs.
    On Jen’s Gems, Brenda wrote,
    “Cynthia, you are right that there is a lot of money that flows through the homeschool movement, however, the trips that you are discussing were not day trips. These were weeklong trips in which participants did receive some meals, seminars, etc. It is still more expensive than I could ever afford, and probably most people as well. I do think that there were some families that saved sacrificially from a modest income to attend some of these tours. To get a better perspective about what the typical cost of a trip would be, you would do better to compare this price to the cost of a five to seven day secular dig in which the participants received an above average “entertainment” value (i.e., not just labor intensive work, but also family activities). I think that general one day digs in this type of secular establishment used to run from $60 to $100 a day, but I am not positive.”

    She goes on to say,

    “The cost of the tours did not include lodging or all meal costs, but I think that it did cover entrance fees to the National Monument and the Museums…however, I am not completely certain about that.”

    Thank you, Brenda. Week long trips for $1000 a pop are a little better, but that’s still a lot of money, especially with bed and board not included. Can you imagine a family of nine trying to afford something like this?

  138. […] Also Ministry Watchman wrote about the”Raising the Allosaur” a little bit ago. […]

  139. […] Also Ministry Watchman wrote about the”Raising the Allosaur” a little bit ago. […]

  140. Mark Epstein says:


    I want to publicly thank you for initially breaking this story. This level of chicanery needs to be exposed and no manner of rationalization can excuse Phillips, even if only a fraction of the allegations are true.

    To the Gavins and Girominis: I want to publicly thank you as well for risking the treatment Jen and I have experienced at the hands of Phillips and his “christian” proxies/shills. Their behavior besmirches Christ’s visible and invisible church. Honor? Probably not.

  141. I have started on my personal blog the first in a series of articles dealing with controversy surrounding Raising the Allosaur.

    Just look in the right sidebar for the section labeled RTA.

  142. Ex VF Supporter says:

    I haven’t seen you mention this before but I just came across another web site that chronicles Doug Phillips’ Allosaurus fraud:

    Killing The Allosaur

  143. Ex VF Supporter says:

    We just got our new Vision Forum catalog. Once again it has a “Creation Adventures” section. Once again the Raising The Allosaur video is missing. Once again the veracity of your story about Raising The Allosaur being a fraud is confirmed.

    As always, the Vision Forum catalog has got a few good books and videos, and lots and lots of overpriced kiddie toys. I’ve read somewhere that Doug Phillips doesn’t celebrate Christmas, but he times his catalog to come out just immediately ahead of the Christmas shopping madness.

    Doug Phillips likes to lambast the worldly excesses of todays churches and postmodern Christian families. Isn’t the lure of materialism one of the major pitfalls we need to watch out for? Doug Phillips’ junk-toy trinket catalog promotes materialism and marginalizes the gospel of Jesus far worse than any Christian “book” store that I’ve ever seen.

  144. […] It would seem that Doug Phillips isn’t the only member of his family who has a penchant for perpetrating film frauds. I received an email from a very credible source. The content of that email is truly shocking, and I’ve confirmed from additional sources that the story is in fact true. […]

  145. Vision Phoney says:

    Lots more on Vision Phoney’s Phillips Fraud can be found at

  146. Cynthia Gee says:

    It seems that Matt Chancey is running for office (Public Service Commission president) in the state of Alabama.

    Check out this discussion:

    “Josh C” writes,
    “There’s nothing wrong with someone believing that they should vote for their household. Even if the male happens to be the head of the household. If a woman lives by her self with her children, she is the head of her household. If she lives by herself, she is a representation of her household. Some people have different convictions than others. I think there’s more to the story, otherwise you wouldn’t be so fired up. You’re obviously trying to find some dirt on Matt and you can’t think of anything but this? If this is all you can find on Matt than he’s a saint.

    Why don’t you talk about how Matt spends 3 months out of the year working on building water wells and taking blood over to the Sudan? Why don’t you talk about how he is a Godly man who takes care of his wife and children?

    “JoshC” accuses me of trying to dig up dirt on Chancey, then in the same breath mentions Chancey’s “work” in the Sudan — with Brad Phillips, perhaps? Mighty dusty place, the Sudan…


  147. Headless Unicorn Guy says:

    The fact that he has not, instead quietly pretending as if the Raising the Allosaur video had never existed,…

    Oceania has always been at Peace with Eastasia, Comrades.

  148. […] by a genuine concern for the well being of the Christian home school movement.” He dismissed the Allosaurus fakeumentary debacle, even though it’s public exposure as a fraud created such a huge scandal that Doug […]

  149. […] Doug Phillips’ Raising The Allosaur, A Review of Vision Forum Film Flim Flam […]

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