The Times on the Creation Museum

The New York Times gives us sneak peek at the big Creation Museum opening in Kentucky this weekend:

The entrance gates here are topped with metallic Stegosauruses. The grounds include a giant tyrannosaur standing amid the trees, and a stone-lined lobby sports varied sauropods. It could be like any other natural history museum, luring families with the promise of immense fossils and dinosaur adventures.

But step a little farther into the entrance hall, and you come upon a pastoral scene undreamt of by any natural history museum. Two prehistoric children play near a burbling waterfall, thoroughly at home in the natural world. Dinosaurs cavort nearby, their animatronic mechanisms turning them into alluring companions, their gaping mouths seeming not threatening, but almost welcoming, as an Apatosaurus munches on leaves a few yards away.

And so begins one of the most vapid and credulous newspaper articles you will ever see on this subject. Given the pathetic way in which the mainstream media usually covers this subject, that’s really saying something.

So what does the article’s author, Edward Rothstein, think of the museum?

It also serves as a vivid introduction to the sheer weirdness and daring of this museum created by the Answers in Genesis ministry that combines displays of extraordinary nautilus shell fossils and biblical tableaus, celebrations of natural wonders and allusions to human sin. Evolution gets its continual comeuppance, while biblical revelations are treated as gospel.

Outside the museum scientists may assert that the universe is billions of years old, that fossils are the remains of animals living hundreds of millions of years ago, and that life’s diversity is the result of evolution by natural selection. But inside the museum the Earth is barely 6,000 years old, dinosaurs were created on the sixth day, and Jesus is the savior who will one day repair the trauma of man’s fall.

It is a measure of the museum’s daring that dinosaurs and fossils — once considered major challenges to belief in the Bible’s creation story — are here so central, appearing not as tests of faith, as one religious authority once surmised, but as creatures no different from the giraffes and cats that still walk the earth. Fossils, the museum teaches, are no older than Noah’s flood; in fact dinosaurs were on the ark.

Those paragraphs could have been written by Ken Ham himself. It would be nice, however, if Rothstein could have pulled himself away from his rapt contemplation of the museum’s daring to note that scientists do a lot more than merely assert that the universe is billions of years old and all the rest. They actually have evidence for their assertions. Lots of evidence! And not one bit of that evidence depends on the testimony of an ancient holy book.

Or perhaps Rothstein, after writing something like this:

For the skeptic the wonder is at a strange universe shaped by elaborate arguments, strong convictions and intermittent invocations of scientific principle. For the believer, it seems, this museum provides a kind of relief: Finally the world is being shown as it really is, without the distortions of secularism and natural selection.

might have taken note of the fact that such arguments as the creationists make have been answered over and over again. He could have noted that their invocations of scientific principle are a sham, pure and simple.

Of course, had he done that, he would not have been able to affect the tone of bemusement that seems required in articles of this sort. Like so many before him, Rothstein seems content to tell a warm and fuzzy story of charmingly anachronistic religious folks, building a pleasant little monument to their deeply help religious beliefs. The real story, that these are scientifically ignorant people enshrining their hostility to modernity and free thought, is considerably less pleasant.

On and on the article drones, discussing the scientific view on the one hand and the Creation Museusm’s view on the other, like these were just two sides of the same coin:

But for a visitor steeped in the scientific world view, the impact of the museum is a disorienting mix of faith and reason, the exotic and the familiar. Nature here is not “red in tooth and claw,” as Tennyson asserted. In fact at first it seems almost as genteel as Eden’s dinosaurs. We learn that chameleons, for example, change colors not because that serves as a survival mechanism, but “to ‘talk’ to other chameleons, to show off their mood, and to adjust to heat and light.”

No, for a visitor steeped in the scientific world view the impact of the museum is shocked disbelief at the sheer level of scientific incompetence on display coupled with considerable nervousness about the political power these folks wield.

Rothstein offers a few gentle criticisms of the museum in the article’s final paragraphs. But his article is mostly a fawning and ridiculous tribute to one of the rankest displays of pseudoscience you are ever likely to confront.

Comments

  1. #1 PC2
    May 23, 2007

    I find it interesting that you pick on young earth creationists who believe in a ,of course, scientifically indefencible position. yet you defend the equally scientifically indefencible position of the cambrian explosion being a result of purely blind chance. It seems to me if you were truly worried about finding the real truth of the matter you would be equally critical of the fantastic claims made for the materialistic philosophy of purely blind chance transmuting jellyfish into dinosuars and then the equally fantastic claim of dinosaurs transmuting into ducks and chickens, not to mention polar bears into whales. To rail against someone who believes in young earth creationism because he finds such materialistic fables preposterous is to fail to take a good hard look in the mirror and see how preposterous your story truly is. Of course you probably will call me crazy but hey I’m no more crazy than you believing pigs can fly.

  2. #2 gwangung
    May 23, 2007

    yet you defend the equally scientifically indefencible position of the cambrian explosion being a result of purely blind chance.

    Sorry. You’re wrong here. Doesn’t take much to explain a 20-30 million year “explosion.”

    hen the equally fantastic claim of dinosaurs transmuting into ducks and chickens

    Do the genetic analysis. Minor changes to some of the genes show how easily scales are modified into feathers; genetic histories show the relatedness.

    You’re not crazy—but you’re really not familiar with the material.

  3. #3 kamimushinronsha
    May 23, 2007

    Wow! PC2 you have opened my eyes to the truth, what have I been thinking all these years. I had no idea evolutionary theory proposed that polar bears turned into whales. What a crock of bulls*&^, and jelly fish to dinosaurs? It’s absolutely absurd, I’m going to find Jesus right this moment. Thank you such much for saving me from an eternal damnation in Hell, YOU are my savior.

  4. #4 baryogenesis
    May 23, 2007

    A case of being blinded by the “light” of religion. A lazy-minded approach, PC2, of selectively “educating” yourself into ignorance. It’s sad, really. Also a bit scary. The so-called materialistic fables (as opposed to your made-up fairy tales) really just confirm that WE ARE LIVING ON THIS EARTH.

  5. #5 Ex-drone
    May 23, 2007

    PC2, you missed the easy one. The Times writes:

    Two prehistoric children play near a burbling waterfall …

    Since the Bible apparently starts with creation, how could anything be “prehistoric”? I guess that The Times has been sucked in to using Darwinian terminology.

    PC2, if you’re going to go to bat for the YECs, you need to get all the irrelevant details.

  6. #6 Tyler DiPietro
    May 24, 2007

    Question: Is PC(insert incarnation indicator here) a parody, or is he serious? I can’t decide, his arguments are so profoundly stupid I find it hard to believe anyone could believe them, especially someone who has read SciBlogs for any length of time.

  7. #7 DFV
    May 24, 2007

    The Creation “Museum” just magnifies the “Shock and Awe of Stupidity” tactics of the Christian Right (actually, the Regressives). To present dinosaurs on Noah’s Ark is absolutely ludricrous, but the Regressives must be entertained in order to believe in God. They need parlor tricks from God (miracles) and Gantrys to tell them how to behave. They also need to have “heathens” “pagans” “lepers” “feminists” “homosexuals” to be self-righteous about.

    What they actually need, however, is a bit of deprograming.

  8. #8 MartinM
    May 24, 2007

    Question: Is PC(insert incarnation indicator here) a parody, or is he serious?

    He’s serious, sadly. He’s been at PT for a while, under a few different names.

  9. #9 PC2
    May 24, 2007

    In all the responces only one tried to state anything remotely scientific to refute me. And that was geangung’s comment.

    Do the genetic analysis. Minor changes to some of the genes show how easily scales are modified into feathers; genetic histories show the relatedness.
    Newsflash gwangung;
    ALL evidence points to human genetic degeneration. There has NEVER been a mutation, out of millions of observations, that has unambiguously increased information in the Genome.

    The genome is also proven to be poly-functional thus poly-constrained to the negative effects of mutations. Poly-functional means that many stretches of DNA are read forwards, backwards, every other letter, and sometimes read by being decrypted as well there is evidence that suggest the 2 and 3 dimensional shape the DNA takes results in a forth and fifth level of meaning derived from the DNA. ANY mutation in such a poly-functional stretch of DNA would be severely constrained in that 5 different meassages are found on the same stretch of DNA. This only intensly hampers the already vain search for the fabled beneficial mutation that would serve as conclusive proof for evolution.

  10. #10 J-Dog
    May 24, 2007

    Pc2 – Yes, you are the Poster Boy for human genetic degeneration! You have devolved from homo sapiens to homo stupidus christos. Congratulations! Come on down and get your prize – a hearty laugh, with finger pointing by the crowd, for your amazingly stupid antics and posts.

  11. #11 Whatever
    May 24, 2007

    PC2 said –

    The genome is also proven to be poly-functional thus poly-constrained… blah, blah, blah, blah

    You can’t just type something and then expect everybody to believe it’s true, you have to have evidence. Is this really a complicated concept? I mean if we play by your rules I can just type anything and it’s true because I said so.

    You see PC2 the functional dichotomy of DNA proves that it is impossible for “poly-functional” genome to have any effect on mutation. This is a super fact, I don’t have any references but that doesn’t matter because I typed it, so it must be true. Thanks for playing.

  12. #12 PZ Myers
    May 24, 2007

    Poly-functional means that many stretches of DNA are read forwards, backwards, every other letter, and sometimes read by being decrypted as well there is evidence that suggest the 2 and 3 dimensional shape the DNA takes results in a forth and fifth level of meaning derived from the DNA.

    Where ever did you get these ideas? There are some overlapping and palindromic sequences in bacterial and viral genomes, but this elaborate fiction you’ve erected is otherwise nonsensical.

    How do you get around the observed fact that mutations are quite common, and do not destroy the functionality of the gene?

  13. #13 mark
    May 24, 2007

    PC2 wrote:

    It seems to me if you were truly worried about finding the real truth of the matter you would be equally critical of the fantastic claims made for the materialistic philosophy of purely blind chance transmuting jellyfish into dinosuars and then the equally fantastic claim of dinosaurs transmuting into ducks and chickens, not to mention polar bears into whales.

    Do you really, honestly believe that this is an accurate statement? Do you really, honestly believe that scientists attribute present-day biodiversity to “pure, blind, chance?” If you do, you are seriously misinformed. You embarrass yourself by exposing your ignorance. Your time would be better spent trying to find a primary, scientific reference in which the author claims that “pure, blind chance” is responsible for the “Cambrian explosion” or the evolution of birds from reptilian ancestors. (And Chick tracts do not count as scientific references.)

  14. #14 Science Avenger
    May 24, 2007

    OK people, I could be wrong, but:

    Realpc
    PC2
    PWC

    Same wave of MSU (making shit up).
    Same snide superiority complex.
    Same disregard of substantive responses.

    I say ban the troll(s), but that’s just me.

  15. #15 PC2
    May 24, 2007

    I get my facts for the poly-functional thus poly-constrained nature of DNA from Dr. J.C. Sanford, who taught genetics for 25 years at Cornell, He was a loyal Darwinist for many years before the weight of the evidence he was exposed too made him admit “The Emperor Has NO Clothes”. He also invented the “Gene Gun” and has several other patents under his belt. His book “Genetic Entropy” deals with poly-functional/poly-constrained nature of DNA as well as the fact that nearly all mutations to DNA are considered “slightly” negative thus below the threshold of selection pressure. Which means the slightly negative mutations problem becomes compounded with each passing generation since it is not selected out. He points out that most all theories that are put forth in biology blatantly ignore this fact as well as other currently known foundational facts about the characteristics of negative mutations to the genome. The book is understandable for the lay reader yet will challenge those who are well versed in molecular biology. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in this controversy.

  16. #16 Whatever
    May 24, 2007

    Let’s see what we can find out about Mr. Sanford with a quick google search. Ahhh! here is a good one

    An advocate of intelligent design, in 2005 Sanford testified in the Kansas evolution hearings on behalf of intelligent design, during which he denied the principle of common descent and “humbly offered … that we were created by a special creation, by God.” He also stated that he believed the age of the Earth was “Between 5[,000] and 100,000″ years.

    Now that’s an unbiased scientist if I ever heard one. So PC2 if I understand your logic correctly, since an accredited PhD scientist said it, then it must be true. It doesn’t matter that his work in the “poly-functional blah blah blah” wasn’t peer reviewed.

    So, all I have to do to prove you wrong is find another PhD scientist who published something that wasn’t peer reviewed and then I will have effectively provided counter evidence of the same substantiveness? Is this correct? I mean we should all play by the same rules correct?

  17. #17 Whatever
    May 24, 2007

    I say ban the troll(s), but that’s just me.

    I personally enjoy toying with them, I don’t know why I just do. In the end I guess it’s all up to the blog’s author, we commenter’s are like the pawns of the blog sphere.

  18. #18 Phobos
    May 24, 2007

    …being a result of purely blind… chance

    Surely you’ve heard by now that the theory of evolution is not based on random chance. That’s a strawman caricature.

    …equally fantastic claim of dinosaurs transmuting into ducks and chickens, not to mention polar bears into whales…

    Who is saying dinos evolved into mammals? (birds, yes, mammals, no)

    ALL evidence points to human genetic degeneration. There has NEVER been a mutation, out of millions of observations, that has unambiguously increased information in the Genome.

    Simple (commonplace) gene duplication can increase genetic information (as well as many other types of mutations). IIRC, a bunch of evidence on this was compiled for the Dover trial…take a look. Even some non-mutation mechanisms can increase the genetic information of a population (e.g., gene flow, recombination). Of course, you’ll need to define “information” before getting too far into that debate. It’s more complicated than you might think.

  19. #19 PC2
    May 24, 2007

    Whatever:
    All Dr. Sanford’s facts for negative mutation rates to DNA and poly-functional characteristics of DNA are back up by peer reviewed research papers in his book. That is his #1 area of expertise! An area in which he clearly excels above many of his peers in Genetics. You are probably going to eat some corn today that has been touched by some of his research. His invention the Gene Gun is widely used in molecular biology around the world. For you to question his expertise in genetics because he lacks expertise in radio-metric dating is similar to me throwing out all your knowledge about your specific specialty because you don’t understand the details of quantum mechanics. I really can’t blame him for questioning the age of the universe when the blatant falacy of the lies he had been taught for all those years finally dawned on him. I believe even you would be extremely sceptical of anything other sciences had taught you after the full weight of the deception in Genetics dawned on you.

  20. #20 Tegumai Bopsulai, FCD
    May 24, 2007

    As reported at Denialism Blog, the LA Times did a much better job on this one: Yabba Dabba Science

  21. #21 PC2
    May 24, 2007

    Phobos
    I think it is rather obvious that meaningful information in DNA is directly related to functionality of an organism, this is similar as a computer program for your computer, yet more nuanced since the “code” in the DNA is ,far, far more complex than anything man has ever devised(Bill Gates). You state all these methods of increasing information, i.e. gene flow,, duplication etc..etc.. as proof of an increase in information Yet Dr. Sanford deals with each of these questions you raise and clearly shows why there is a loss in function for the organism for each case.
    As a sidelight, I would like to point out that although man’s experimentation and tinkering with bacteria, such as e-coli, is truly extensive there has NEVER been a transmutation into another form of bacteria. IT is still just slightly modified e-coli bacteria,. As well the further the deviation from the original bacteria induced the less fit for survival the bacteria become. This is not good news for evolutionists. It goes on and on ,,whereever I look for rock solid evidence for evolution, there is nothing to be found except overblown similarities.
    Like that little old lady on the old Wendy’s commercials, I’m asking…”Where’s The Beef?”

  22. #22 Jon S
    May 24, 2007

    Well said PC2.
    I’ll simply comment on the museum and article. I was fortunate enough to visit the museum while it was still under construction and can vouch that it’s first class and will rival the secular museums and all the propaganda and brainwashing they pour on its visitors. Of course I’m pleased with the New York Times article and hope it helps draw interest from all around the world. The media usually mocks the museum out of ignorance, so it’s nice to see a supportive article for a change.

    I have to disagree with Jason when he says “scientists do a lot more than merely assert that the universe is billions of years old. They actually have evidence for their assertions. Lots of evidence! And not one bit of that evidence depends on the testimony of an ancient holy book.”

    I say it’s fairly accurate that scientists merely assert that the universe is billions of years old. There are many well respected scientists who believe the earth is only thousands of years old and not billions, and they have lots of evidence too! And, yes, we do accept the Bible as an authority, which we believe is God’s Word and not just some “ancient holy book”. Fortunately, there are many millions of people around the world who also believe this, so we’re not the minority the media makes us out to be. I’m glad to see the Creation Museum standing up against the pseudoscience of the evolutionary world, and I certainly hope the museum does a lot to destroy the myths that atheists and evolutionists have politically indoctrinated the world to believe toward the age of the earth, and that it will have a positive impact on society. Yes, evolution is a sham, and needs to be exposed as such. Amen.

  23. #23 Tyler DiPietro
    May 24, 2007

    “I think it is rather obvious that meaningful information in DNA is directly related to functionality of an organism, this is similar as a computer program for your computer, yet more nuanced since the “code” in the DNA is ,far, far more complex than anything man has ever devised(Bill Gates).”

    Oh for fucks sake, another person completely ignorant of computer science who assumes he knows what he’s talking about.

    First of all, get one thing straight: BILL GATES IS NOT AN AUTHORITY ON COMPUTER SCIENCE. The man is a highly successful entrepreneur but he is no more an authority on computing theory than Steve Jobs or Michale Dell. If you want to quote someone with some weight in the discipline, you’d want to go for Don Knuth, Gregory Chaitin, Ray Solomonoff or someone in that vein.

    Second of all, DNA is not a computing device as we understand it, because as far as we can tell it is not Turing complete. It can be used to potentially be used to achieve Turing equivalence, and such biocomputing tasks have been done on very small scales. But DNA as it is is not meaningfully comparable to computer code.

    Third of call, DNA is not all that “complex”. It’s a four character code, instead of binary code as is used in most abstract computing theory, and has a higher potential information density that modern semiconductors. THAT DOES NOT MAKE IT MORE COMPLEX IN TERMS OF COMPUTING THEORY. To say so would totally miss the point that “complexity” in terms of computing either deals with case-dependent running-time or the miminal length string of binary digits from which an object can be effectively computed. There is no actual computation that you could implement on a Turing-equivalent quad-state logic machine that you couldn’t implement on a Turing-equivalent binary logic machine.

    Foruth, “information” has technical meanings. The two most commonly used metrics of entropy (free choice among an ensemble of messages, a la Shannon-Wiener theory) or compressibility (minimal length implementation of a universal Turing Machine, a la Chaitin-Kolmogorov theory). Unless you have a technical metric that be formally defined as “information”, you using the term in a way that is neither rigorous or honest.

  24. #24 Science Avenger
    May 24, 2007

    Yep, standard Realpc/PC2/PWC trolling responding to substantive criticism with:

    1) “whatever”

    2) Authoritarian references from his favorite creationist goof of the moment, or something totally lacking relevance like Bill Gates as an expert on computer programming.

    3) Lots of made up shit decorated with statements like “I believe”, as if anyone should care.

    It never seems to occur to these guys that they won’t ever have any credibility as long as they can only reference each other. They remind me of the “experts” on Satanic cults, which made a very healthy living doing exactly that.

    Jon S parroted: There are many well respected scientists who believe the earth is only thousands of years old and not billions

    Ah, the classic creationist canard. Fine, I’ll bite. Rattle off the names of a few that are NOT fundamentalist Christians or Muslims.

    Once again, you guys will NEVER be persuasive to anyone outside of your little goofy cabal until you can find some folks out there who are:

    1) Not part of your evangelical brotherhood
    2) experts on subjects you talk about
    3) in agreement with what you have to say.

    The fact is 99% of scientists in any discipline you care to name related to evolution think what you have to say is CRAP, because the evidence says otherwise. The mathmaticians think your math is crap, the geologists think your geology is crap, the astronomers think your astronomy is crap, and a conservative constructionist Bush appointed judge ruled that your “science” is just religion in disguise, as of course, it is. Chanting otherwise won’t make it so no matter how long you do so.

  25. #25 SLC
    May 24, 2007

    The article from the NYT is a sad commentary on the decline of the “newspaper of record.” This should be of no surprise to anyone who read their coverage of the Dover trial. The two small town newspapers in York, Pa. did a far superior reporting job then did the “newspaper of record.”

    Re Science Avenger

    Clowns like Jon S, and PC2 (and the mentally ill Larry Fafarman) have no interest in trying to convince knowledgeable people of anything. They address themselves to their fellow mental midgets and whackjobs.

  26. #26 funknjunk
    May 24, 2007

    So i am a layman and need to have the links to the refutation of the Sanford explanation or ‘revelation’ or whatever you want to call it. I can see that there is some piling on going on here, so can someon who wants the layman to understand please refer me to some information which can tell me WHY these theories are not accepted by 99% of the scientists in the field? Thanks!!

  27. #27 Salvador T. Cordova
    May 24, 2007

    PZ asks regarding polyconstrained information:

    Where ever did you get these ideas? this elaborate fiction you’ve erected is otherwise nonsensical.

    It was probably from sources like Cornell Geneticist John Sanford in Genetic Entropy:

    There is abundant evidence that most DNA sequences are poly-functional, and therefore are poly-constrained. This fact has been extensively demonstrated by Trifonov (1989). For example, most human coding sequences encode for two different RNAs, read in opposite direction s(i.e. Both DNA strands are transcribed Yelin et al., 2003). Some sequences encode for different proteins depending on where translation is initiated and where the reading frame begins (i.e. read-through proteins). Some sequences encode for different proteins based upon alternate mRNA splicing. Some sequences serve simultaneously for protein-encoding and also serve as internal transcriptional promoters. Some sequences encode for both a protein coding, and a protein-binding region. Alu elements and origins-of-replication can be found within functional promoters and within exons. Basically all DNA sequences are constrained by isochore requirements (regional GC content), “word” content (species-specific profiles of di-, tri-, and tetra-nucleotide frequencies), and nucleosome binding sites (i.e. All DNA must condense). Selective condensation is clearly implicated in gene regulation, and selective nucleosome binding is controlled by specific DNA sequence patterns – which must permeate the entire genome. Lastly, probably all sequences do what they do, even as they also affect general spacing and DNA-folding/architecture – which is clearly sequence dependent. To explain the incredible amount of information which must somehow be packed into the genome (given that extreme complexity of life), we really have to assume that there are even higher levels of organization and information encrypted within the genome. For example, there is another whole level of organization at the epigenetic level (Gibbs 2003). There also appears to be extensive sequence dependent three-dimensional organization within chromosomes and the whole nucleus (Manuelides, 1990; Gardiner, 1995; Flam, 1994). Trifonov (1989), has shown that probably all DNA sequences in the genome encrypt multiple “codes” (up to 12 codes).

    John Sanford

    And PLoS Computational Biology “A First Look at ARFome: Dual-Coding Genes in Mammalian Genomes?

    A textbook human gene encodes a protein using a single reading frame. Alternative splicing brings some variation to that picture, but the notion of a single reading frame remains. Although this is true for most of our genes, there are exceptions. Like viral counterparts, some eukaryotic genes produce structurally unrelated proteins from overlapping reading frames. The examples are spectacular (G-protein alpha subunit [Gnas1] or INK4a tumor suppressor), but scarce. The scarcity is anthropogenic in origin: we simply do not believe that dual-coding genes can occur in eukaryotes. To challenge this assumption, we performed the first genome-wide scan for mammalian genes containing alternative reading frames located out of frame relative to the annotated protein-coding region. Using a newly developed statistical framework, we identified 40 such genes. Because our approach is very conservative, this number is likely a significant underestimate, and future studies will identify more alternative reading frame-containing genes with fascinating biology.

  28. #28 Art
    May 24, 2007

    Sal, your second citation disagrees with your first – something you would know if you had bothered to read the PLoS paper. (A hint – just what is the frequency of occurrence of dual-coding genes, and how does this fit with Sanford’s incorrect assertions?)

    While you’re reading some real science, why don’t you take us through the estimates in the second paper of the improbability of occurrence of dual-coding genes. In particular, spell out the limits (upper and lower) that one would get using the authors’ methods and comment on how they match up with Dembski’s “line in the sand”.

  29. #29 Richard Simons
    May 24, 2007

    finknjunk says

    please refer me to some information which can tell me WHY these theories are not accepted by 99% of the scientists in the field? Thanks!!

    The first thing to realize is that Intelligent Design and creationism in general are not theories.

    A theory is an explanation for a body of facts that has been well tested and that makes predictions that can be tested and conceivably refuted. ID makes no predictions and there is nothing that could possibly refute it. Two organisms have the same gene – that’s how God made them. Two organisms have the same broken gene – that’s how God made them. Two organisms have different genes – that’s how God made them.

    Strict biblical creationism does enable predictions to be made, e.g. there will be deep, world-wide deposits of silt from a global flood, but they have been refuted. The cop-out there could be that, no matter what it looks like, God has put evidence in place to trick us into thinking the world is older than really is.

    The theory of evolution, on the other hand, makes many predictions, e.g. other primates will have the same broken vitamin C gene as is found in people, no bird will be found with hair or a placenta, and being half-hearted about taking your antibiotic can result in drug-resistant bacteria. It is being tested hundreds, if not thousands, of times a week in a vast array of experiments and has never been seriously questioned.

    If you want comments on particular points, the best source is http://www.TalkOrigins.org/indexcc. TalkOrigins also gives links to many other sites, including creationist ones (which seldom reciprocate, and that alone should tell you something).

  30. #30 Jon S
    May 24, 2007

    Well, Science Avenger, you got me. I can rattle off a long list of names of scientists who believe the earth is only thousands of years old, but I don’t know their religious beliefs or background without doing some research, and I’d guess most of them would profess to be fundamentalist Christians, at this present time, if you’d ask. I guess that makes them not “real scientists”, as the old evolutionist canard goes. However, I’m sure there are scientists that you describe, but most of them are coming to the light and shaking off their old atheistic beliefs, such as J.C Sanford… whoa stop the boat! Real scientists rejecting evolution??? How dare they, impossible! But yes, there are many former atheists, evolutionists, and Darwinists converting to Christianity and Creationism. And, yes, I know there are those who’ve been raised in Christian homes or professed to be Christians who’ve converted to atheism, but I’d argue that they’ve been successfully indoctrinated by the secular school system, among other things. And as for the 99% of scientists you claim think that what I think is crap, well, they are wrong, and more and more scientists are starting to realize that, and the precious 99% will begin coming down. I’m sure you realize that majority rule doesn’t equate to truth. However, I believe in a God who was there at the beginning when he created the universe, who knows a lot more than you or any other scientist, and he has revealed much of his creation to us. Sorry you don’t agree, but there are many who do, and their voices are being heard, and it’s going to make a positive difference in the world and in many people’s lives. I hope it will make a difference in your life too.

  31. #31 Jon S
    May 24, 2007

    SLC, I can assure you I’m not a clown, and, while I’m not getting my hopes up, I do have a serious interest in convincing knowledgeable people of the truth, if they’re interested. I hope I could get them to question some of the things they believe about evolution, which is actually forbidden in the public school system and frowned upon in other areas of science. But, if people were allowed to question these sacred cows, I think they’d see a whole new world. And that’s what makes the Creation Museum so important. It will challenge the evolutionary beliefs that people weren’t allowed to question elsewhere and will expose evolution for the myth it is.

  32. #32 Richard Simons
    May 25, 2007

    Jon,
    I suspect you rely on creationist sites without questioning their claims. Be warned, they have a reputation for lying.

    Do you really believe that there are many scientists in relevant fields who think that the earth is just thousands of years old, even though you have no idea of their areas of expertise? Just what is this evidence for a young earth that creationists keep telling us exists but that they’re unable to present to us?

    Regarding your claim that many scientists are moving towards a creationist view of biology – do you seriously believe that?

    The vast majority of biologists treat creationism as being no better than stories of half man – half cat hybrids in ‘National Enquirer’. The ones who find it enough of a threat to education to post here are in a distinct minority. Don’t believe me? Go to any biological conference, present your views and see if anyone manages to keep a straight face.

  33. #33 Salvador T. Cordova
    May 25, 2007

    Art says:

    Sal, your second citation disagrees with your first – something you would know if you had bothered to read the PLoS paper. (A hint – just what is the frequency of occurrence of dual-coding genes, and how does this fit with Sanford’s incorrect assertions?)

    Sanford says with respect to ARFs:

    Some sequences encode for different proteins depending on where translation is initiated and where the reading frame begins

    The second paper affirms that there are at least some ARFs maybe more, and that the supposed scarcity of ARFs in mammals is from human prejudice (they use the more polite phrase “anthropgenic source”)

    The scarcity is anthropogenic in origin…

    we identified 40 such genes. Because our approach is very conservative, this number is likely a significant underestimate, and future studies will identify more alternative reading frame-containing genes with fascinating biology.

    I would say 40 qualifies as “some“, especially since 40 is an underestimate by the authors.

    Art, you’re quite in the habit of misreading what ID proponents actually say. Your inability to defend your own mis-statements is always amusing, especially for a professor of biology who pretends to think he can defend his ideas. I seem to recall a certain exchange we had on endosymbiosis. :-)

  34. #34 Science avenger
    May 25, 2007

    Jon S said: I’d guess most of [scientists who claim the earth is thousands of years old] would profess to be fundamentalist Christians, at this present time, if you’d ask. I guess that makes them not “real scientists”, as the old evolutionist canard goes.

    No, that’s a straw man. It just makes them biased, and consequently lacking credibility, which is reality, not a canard. Don’t parrot people’s phrases back to them regardless of the facts, it doesn’t impress.

    But yes, there are many former atheists, evolutionists, and Darwinists converting to Christianity and Creationism.

    Baloney. That’s another creationist canard, the impending anti-evolution revolution in science, where all the scientists are going to see the fundamentalist light. Except it has never happened, despite you guys chanting this nonsense for over 20 years. Meanwhile, the evidence thatv supports evolution keeps piling up.

    And, yes, I know there are those who’ve been raised in Christian homes or professed to be Christians who’ve converted to atheism, but I’d argue that they’ve been successfully indoctrinated by the secular school system, among other things.

    Of course you would, your ideology doesn’t allow you to consider what really happens. The facts be damned!

    I’m sure you realize that majority rule doesn’t equate to truth.

    Of course it doesn’t, the evidence is what “equates” to the truth, which is why atheists, agnostics, Christians, Jews, Buddhists and Muslims who have examined the evidence see the truth of evolution, whereas the fundamentalist biblical literalists are alone in refusing to do so.

    But of course, the majority DOES equate to the truth when you think the “many” are on your side, which is why you brought it up in the first place, right? You guys are as transparent as a pane of glass.

  35. #35 Robert O'Brien
    May 25, 2007

    Of course it doesn’t, the evidence is what “equates” to the truth, which is why atheists, agnostics, Christians, Jews, Buddhists and Muslims who have examined the evidence see the truth of evolution, whereas the fundamentalist biblical literalists are alone in refusing to do so.

    If by “evolution” you mean common descent, then, no, Jethro, that is decidedly not the case.

  36. #36 SLC
    May 25, 2007

    Re Jon S

    For the information of Mr. Jon S, my PhD thesis adviser was an old earth creationist who rejected the theory of evolution, which, by the way, he was totally ignorant of. Unfortunately, for Mr. Jon S, it’s pretty hard to be an elementary particle physicist and accept a 6000 year old universe. In order to do this, one would have to reject all the findings of modern physics, including quantum mechanics and relativity, which would make it rather difficult to conduct any research in the theory of elementary particles or, for that matter in astrophysics.

  37. #37 Art
    May 25, 2007

    Hmm…

    Sanford said (in the quote Sal gave us) “There is abundant evidence that most DNA sequences are poly-functional, and therefore are poly-constrained. ”

    The PLoS paper finds that more than 24,900 of 25,000 human genes (rounding the human genome to a manageable number) are not “poly-constrained”.

    Putting one and one together, we may conclude that Sal thinks fewer than 100 out of 25,000 is “most”. Sal’s math classes must have been very interesting.

    And what about those probability estimates, Sal? How do they stack up with Dembski’s “line in the sand”?

    As for endosymbiosis, let’s recall what Standish said on the ARN thread Sal is fantasizing about:

    If there is really good evidence to support endosymbiosis, why is this not presented in text books? Why support a theory that is supposed to be so robust with evidence that isn’t? And why make it up as you go along as I see in this discussion when critiquing a simple presentation designed to free high school students from errors presented in their text books? I’m not going to try to answer ever bit of bluster and nonsense, but it is deceptive to state that introns in mtDNA are not found in eubacteria? I’ll quote Lewin 1997 from the very page that I reference in my presentation:
    “The GT-AG rule describe the splice sites of nuclear genes of many (perhaps all) eukaryotes. This implies that there is a common mechanism for splicing the introns out of the RNA. The consensus does not apply to the introns of mitochondria and chloroplasts, nor to the yeast tRNA genes.” Lewin 1997 Pg. 888.

    Now, I’m happy to know if Lewin is wrong about this, but if he was, you can hardly denigrate my scholarship or honesty and quite frankly, I don’t think you should denigrate his. Scientists can only work with the data they have at the time. Yes, this is put inelegantly in the presentation, but hey, my training is as a scientist, I’m not Shakespeare! Bottom line, I don’t see it as honest to say that the introns in mitochondria are type II introns just like bacteria when they are clearly a different kind of intron whether you want to classify them with Type II introns or not.

    !!! Everyone in the field, including the people Sal mis-quotes on ARN, knows that mitochondria have group II introns.

    I won’t drag the discussion here; instead, readers can go to the last page of this thread and see just how misleading and dishonest Sal can be when defending the mis-statements of the ID crew. (Note how Sal ignores almost all of my last comment in the thread – and then declares “victory”. Amusing, if sad.)

  38. #38 PC2
    May 25, 2007

    Art,
    I find it facinating that evolutionists always want to take the minimum amount of complexity they can find and exalt it as some kind of triumph. I can assure as research goes on the poly-functional complexity level of the genome will continue to grow. Can I make a sizable bet with you on the 100 number you quoted?

  39. #39 Salvador T. Cordova
    May 25, 2007

    Art says:

    The PLoS paper finds that more than 24,900 of 25,000 human genes (rounding the human genome to a manageable number) are not “poly-constrained”.

    Where does it specifically use that phrase that they are “not poly-constrained”? I’m sure the readers would be appreciative to see it for themselves. Can you provide a quote in context (you know, something not quote mined).

    By the way, poly constrained is not limited to ARF constraints. You would have to account for anti-sense transcriptions as well which Sanford references in Genetic Entropy, and Yelin 2003.

    See: Widespread occurrence of antisense transcription in the human genome (Yelin 2003).

    Whether you like it or not, Sanford uses sense-antisense transcription as part of the notion of poly constraint. And how much according to Yelin 2003?

    We conclude that >= 60% of this data set, or 1,600 predicted sense-antisense transcriptional units, are transcribed from both DNA strands.

    This indicates that the occurrence of antisense transcription, usually regarded as infrequent, is a very common phenomenon in the human genome.

    A very common phenomenon. Hmm… You were saying, professor Art? :-)

    PS
    Speaking of the Endosymbiosys thread, it seams your link failed. Here it is: Critique of Endosymbiosis, G2 Introns and Organelles

  40. #40 Art
    May 25, 2007

    Hmmm… that URL pointer to the ARN thread needs fixin’.

    http://www.arn.org/ubbthreads/showflat.php?Cat=0&Number=227842&page=0&fpart=1&vc=1

    PC2, the sure bet is that IDists will continue to move their definition of “most” – today, its 100/30,000, tomorrow it’ll be 10/30,000, and so on. And they will also expand the definition of “polyfunctional” to mean almost anything.

    There’s a simple explanation for the existence of poly-functional proteins, one that is consistent with many other studies of protein function. And that is that protein functionality is a zero-complexity matter (complexity defined as Dembski does). That’s what direct experimental measurement shows, what sequence gazing reveals, and what overlapping open reading frames are telling us.

    Sorry to burst your bubble.

  41. #41 Science Avenger
    May 26, 2007

    Robert O’Brien gratuitously asserted: If by “evolution” you mean common descent, then, no, Jethro, that is decidedly not the case [that the fundamentalist biblical literalists are alone in refusing to accept the truth of evolution.

    OK, I’ll bite. Who are the nonfundie bib lits ups that refuse to accept evolution?

  42. #42 PC2
    May 26, 2007

    Art,
    I wish I knew you personally, I would bet you all the money I could get my hands on that you are completely wrong in your assertion that the polyfunctional gene count will go down from 100.

  43. #43 Jon S
    May 26, 2007

    Science Avenger- You claim that scientists who believe the universe is only thousands of years old are biased? Well, of course they are! And it would do you well to freely admit your own biases. Unfortunately it’s atheists and evolutionists who claim they’re not biased, thus bestowing upon themselves credibility. But tell me, do you have any religious or anti-religious beliefs? Do you reject the Bible’s claims about Jesus, heaven, salvation, the creation account, and Noah’s flood? Do you accept the 99% of scientists you claim are speaking the truth about evolution, even though there’s no way to confirm their claims? If so, then you’re biased too. The difference is that we freely admit our biases. Any effort to validate evolution scientifically must involve extrapolation, since current observations must be used to deduce events that supposedly occurred millions and billions of years ago. The fact is that everyone brings certain biases to the table that leads them to accept whatever conclusions or interpretations they accept. Therefore, by your own words, you and the 99% of scientists who supposedly believe in evolution lack credibility too. You may deny this, but your own biases speak loudly.

    It’s also interesting that you deny there are evolutionists, atheists and Darwinists that convert to Christianity and Creationism, especially when I point out one mentioned in this blog entry. Let me name a few more scientists who once believed in evolution and are now creationists: Geneticist, Dr. Jim Allen, Plant Physiologist Dr. David Catchpoole, Physicist and Cosmologist Dr. John Hartnett, Anthropologist, Dr. Neil Huber, and Theoretical Chemist Edward A. Boudreaux, who considers his former belief in evolution to be an embarrassment. So if I can provide evidence that it does happen, then it’s nonsense to deny it never happens. These scientists, and many others have shown over and over again that the evidence you claim that supports evolution can easily be interpreted to support the creation account, so it’s not very impressive (in fact it’s deceptive) to claim that the evidence supporting evolution keeps piling up. Your ideology doesn’t allow you to consider any alternative.

  44. #44 Jon S
    May 26, 2007

    SLC- You claim it’s pretty hard to be an elementary particle physicist and accept a 6000 year old universe. In order to do this, one would have to reject all the findings of modern physics.

    You’re quite mistaken. Otherwise there would be zero scientists who consider themselves Creationists. The fact that I can get a list of such scientists proves you wrong: Dr. Theo Agard (Medical Physics), Dr. Thomas Barnes (Physicist), Professor Sung-Do Cha (Physics), Dr. Eugene Chaffin (Professor of Physics), Dr. William M. Curtis III (Th.D., Th.M., M.S., Aeronautics & Nuclear physics), Dr. Don DeYoung, Astronomy, Atmospheric Physics), Dr. Jason Lisle (Astrophysicist), Dr. Mikhail Shulgin (Physics), Dr. Keith Wanser (Physicist), Professor Seoung-Hoon Yang (Physics).

    Do you really believe these scientists would accept your claim, throw in the white flag and become intellectually fulfilled atheists and evolutionists? I’m sure they would conclude that you really don’t know what Creationists believe, and that the evidence really supports a young earth much better.

  45. #45 SLC
    May 26, 2007

    Re Jon S

    The fact is that, against the dubious scientists listed by Mr. Jon S, there are thousands of physicists, including my creationist thesis adviser, who have been convinced by the scientific evidence that the universe is 13+ billion years old and the earth is 4.5 billion years old. These latter include every physicist who has received a Nobel Prize in physics, the most prestigious award in science.

    1. None of the so called physicists listed by Jon S has a record of publishing research in the area of elementary particle physics in peer reviewed refereed journals. If Mr. Jon S has some evidence to contradict this claim, he should bring it forward.

    2. According to the answers in genesis web site, Mr. Curtis has no degree in physics.

    3. According to the answers in genesis web site, Mr. Chaffin teaches at Bob Jones Un. It’s a travesty that a piece of crap institution like Bob Jones calls itself a university.

    4. According to the answers in genesis web site, Mr. Chaffin has no university appointment at all.

    4. According to the answers in genesis web site, Mr. Dan DeYoung teaches at Grace College, another piece of crap bible college.

    The bottom line is that in order to accept a 6000 year old earth, one would have to reject the theories of relativity and quantum mechanics

    1. Just in the milky way galaxy alone there are stars known to be so far away that light would take 100,000 years to reach earth. If the universe was 6000 years old, the light could not have gotten here.

    2. Radioactive decay of heavy elements such as uranium are governed by the laws of quantum mechanics. Some of these elements have half lives of a billion years or more. If the earth was only 6000 years old, the decay products would be practically non-existent. Many of the particular decay product isotopes are not found naturally but only as a result of the radioactive decay.

    I must take this opportunity to apologize to Prof. Rosenhouse for carrying on a dialog with a troll like Mr. Jon S but it is hard to let his crap pass without comment.

  46. #46 Science Avenger
    May 26, 2007

    The people who accept evolution are from all sorts of philosophical/religous backgrounds. OTOH deniers of evolution are practically 100% religious fundamentalists, as you tacitly admit yourself with your linking of Christianity and creationism. So where do you suppose the bias is? A blind man could see it with a cane.

    Scientists have confirmed evolution for decades, and continue to do so. That IDers/creationists keep denying this just demonstrates how intellectually dishonest they are.

    I never denied there are evolutionists (whatever those are), atheists and Darwinists (whatever those are) that convert to Christianity and Creationism. I denied there were “many”, in any meaningful sense of the word. That, and I doubt the sincerity of people who claim to be former atheists, because 9 times out of 10 when they are quizzed about their former views, they reveal that they were merely mad at the gods, rather then denying them.

    It’s not deceptive at all to claim that the evidence supporting evolution keeps piling up. One need only follow the literature and understand the nature of evidence to see that. You clearly don’t, because evidence is the sort of thing that is the result of falsifiable testing, not the result of after-the-fact “interpretation”. That’s the glaring difference between scientists, who do research, and pseudoscientists like the creationist/IDers, who merely rationalize everything to match their preconceived notions.

  47. #47 Jon S
    May 27, 2007

    SLC- It’s interesting that all the scientists you disagree with are ‘dubious’. I suppose it would be fair if I were to examine your scientists of choice, mock them, and suggest they’re all dubious scientists. That seems to be a common strategy of evolutionists, to mock whatever scientist doesn’t conform to their worldview and claim that proves them right. Sorry, but your attempt to discredit them is silly.

    That’s nice that your thesis adviser rejects the theory of evolution, but sad that he believes the universe is 13+ billion years old and the earth is 4.5 billion years old. He, like you, seem to be ignorant of the facts disproving such an ancient universe. Of course, you don’t have much of a choice but to believe such fables. The ACLU and other atheist organizations will prevent you from learning the flaws of evolutionary theory with all the political pressure they can muster.

    It’s fair to say that none of the physicists I listed has a record of publishing research in the area of elementary particle physics, but it would be dishonest of you to claim that among every scientist who has published research in this area that none of them are Creationists, unless you can back that up. If we were to have a list of every such individual, I suppose we could interview them and verify your claim, but until then, I’m not impressed. Further, even if none of them were Creationists, that doesn’t make the universe whatever age these scientists agree on from day to day.

    You claim that in order to accept a 6000 year old earth, one would have to reject the theories of relativity and quantum mechanics. But this obviously isn’t true, or no scientist would believe in a 6,000 year old earth. Based on certain assumptions, perhaps it would take 100,000 years for light to reach earth from the milky way galaxy, but that doesn’t prove the universe is over 13 billion years old. The RATE Project has done considerable research to support a recent creation and explains why we don’t need to accept billions of years. Radiometric dating has many flaws and doesn’t impress anyone who understands the unprovable assumptions behind it.

    Mr. SLC, we can discuss all your evolutionary questions and concerns, but there’s no need to resort to name calling to make yourself feel superior. Just relax and stop with the troll comments; it makes you appear childish.

  48. #48 Science Avenger
    May 27, 2007

    Jon S said: It’s interesting that all the scientists you disagree with are ‘dubious’.

    No, what’s interesting are that (practically) all the scientists denying evolution are fundamentalist Christians.

    It’s fair to say that none of the physicists I listed has a record of publishing research in the area of elementary particle physics, but it would be dishonest of you to claim that among every scientist who has published research in this area that none of them are Creationists, unless you can back that up.

    This is a typical creationist attempt to shift the burdon of proof, a la Behe at Dover insinuating that it was the duty of his critics to disprove his theory, rather than his to verify it. You creationists are the ones that try to claim so many scientists support your cause. Fine, back your claim by showing the ones that do. Oh, but they need to be scientists in the relevant fields. That’s the part you guys don’t get. It doesn’t mean dick if you’ve got a lawyer, a mathematician, and a chemist supporting you. Those aren’t the relevant fields. Where are the scientists that support you that are paleantologists, or geologists, or god forbid, biologists? That is the subject you know. Funny how you never ever seem to have any of those.

    So, to summarize, there is near uniformity of religious views on your side of the debate, where my side has the entire religious spectrum well-represented. My side has the near unanimity of support from the fields directly related to this discussion, whereas the tiny number of people you guys can drum up in support are almost uniformly in mismatched areas of expertise.

    Now who’s biased again?

  49. #49 Robert O'Brien
    May 27, 2007

    OK, I’ll bite. Who are the nonfundie bib lits ups that refuse to accept evolution?

    Pseudoscience Avenger:

    Thank you for taking time away from avenging phlogiston theory to respond. Many of the people associated with the Discovery Institute, for starters. (David Berlinski certainly qualifies, and I share his antipathy for the concept of common descent.)

  50. #50 Science Avenger
    May 27, 2007

    Jon S said: [E]ven if none of them [scientists who has published research in this area] were Creationists, that doesn’t make the universe whatever age these scientists agree on from day to day.

    No, it doesn’t, the evidence does that. But then why do you creos always try to claim that “there are many well respected scientists who believe the earth is only thousands of years old and not billions”? Does the number of scientists who believe in a position only lend credence to it when they support you?

    Let me introduce you to Project Steve, a listing of PhD scientists who support evolution with the requirement that their first name be Steve or Stephen. Despite this, it has 807 signatories, far more than any list of similarly educated creation supporters of any name.

    Robert O’Brien said: Many of the people associated with the Discovery Institute [are nonfundie bib lits that refuse to accept evolution], for starters. David Berlinski certainly qualifies.

    Here we go with “many” again. One is many? And a mathematician (non relevant area of expertise) to boot? Why am I not surprised? OK, as far as those associated with the DI, I’ll call your Berlinski and raise you Dembski, Behe, Philip Johnson, and Stephen Meyer, Christian fundies all. Even limiting it to that, we’re sitting pretty at 80% fundies, and if we looked at all of them it would considerably higher, probably around 99%.

    And thank you Robert for the childish name distortion and phlogiston red herring tossed my way. It reveals once again how you guys have to resort to character assasination because you can’t win the battle of facts.

  51. #51 Ted
    May 27, 2007

    To the rational folks: don’t waste your time on the bible-thumpers. There’s no way you’ll ever convince them. No amount of evidence and logic will work. They have faith in what they believe, and no fact is powerful enough to pierce that, I’m afraid. They’re desperate to preserve their own ability to believe their nonsense (which means they’re the more intelligent religionists, as the stupid ones aren’t aware of any science that they need to reconcile to their myths).

    It’s really a waste of time to engage them.

    And as for the yokel up thread who spoke of the millions of christians worldwide, let me just remind you that there are over 6 billion people on this planet. Only two billion of which can remotely be called “Christian” in the broadest sense of the word. Collectively you are a human minority, while the combined rest of the human population believes, shall we say, very different silly myths. There’s nothing particularly special about yours in that context.

  52. #52 SLC
    May 27, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. Well, well, Mr. Jon S has now admitted that the universe may be at least 100,000 years old. That’s 16 times as old as the young earth creationists claim. Actually, that was my opening bid. For his information, it is well established that the Andromeda Galaxy is so far away that light from it would take 5 million years to arrive at earth. Will Mr. Jon S now concede a 5 million year old earth as a possibility?

    2. Mr. Jon S has claimed that radioactive decay is flawed, without, of course, presenting any evidence or an argument as to why it is. My suspicion is that Mr. Jon S will bring up uncertainties in Carbon 14 dating as his evidence. How about U235 with a half life of 750 million years?

    Mr. Jon S. has taken issue with my characterization of the so called physicists he named and challenged me to name some of my own. I could name any number of Nobel Prize winners but I will confine myself to individuals I have taken courses from or have attended lectures from.

    Courses

    Steven Weinberg
    Owen Chamberlain
    Julian Schwinger
    Emillo Segre

    Lectures

    Richard Feynman
    Murray GellMann
    Robert Hofstadter
    P. A. M. Dirac

    I think that any knowledgeable individual will find the individuals I named to have far superior reputations in the scientific community then the phonies named by Mr. Jon S.

  53. #53 SLC
    May 27, 2007

    Re Ted

    Not to put too fine a point on it but some months back, there was a discussion on this blog concerning Dr. Berlinskis’ credentials. As even Dr. Berlinski admitted in a comment, his PhD is in philosophy, not mathematics. He is most definitely not a mathematician, by his own admission.

  54. #54 Ted
    May 27, 2007

    Re SLC,

    I’m afraid I don’t know who Dr. Berlinski is, or what you were trying to convey. Just not up to speed, I guess.

  55. #55 PC2
    May 27, 2007

    I know you guys probably like beating up on a YECs, Like Jon S, but I thought you might want to take a look in the mirror at the weakness of your own philosophical foundation.

    There are two prevailing philosophies vying for the right to be called the truth in man’s perception of reality. These two prevailing philosophies are Theism and Materialism. Materialism is the current hypothesis entrenched over science as the overriding hypothesis guiding scientists. Materialism asserts that everything that exists arose from chance acting on an eternal material basis. Whereas, Theism asserts everything that exists arose from the spirit of God who has always existed in a timeless eternity. A hypothesis in science is suppose to give proper guidance to scientists and make, somewhat, accurate predictions. In this primary endeavor, for a hypothesis, Materialism has failed miserably. Whereas surprisingly the fantastic claims of Theism are validated.
    1. Materialism did not predict the big bang, Yet Theism always said the universe was created.
    2. Materialism did not predict a sub-atomic (quantum) world that blatantly defies our concepts of time and space, Yet Theism always said the universe is the craftsmanship of God who is not limited by time or space.
    3. Materialism did not predict the fact that time, as we understand it, comes to a complete stop at the speed of light, as revealed by Einstein’s theory of relativity, Yet Theism always said that God exists in a timeless eternity.
    4. Materialism did not predict the stunning precision for the underlying universal constants for the universe, found in the Anthropic Principle, Yet Theism always said God laid the foundation of the universe, so the stunning clockwork precision found for the various universal constants is not at all unexpected for Theism.
    5. Materialism did not predict the fact that the DNA code is, according to Bill Gates, far, far more advanced than any computer code ever written by man, Yet Theism would have naturally expected this level of complexity in the DNA code.
    6. Materialism presumed a extremely beneficial and flexible mutation rate for DNA, which is not the case at all when carefully scrutinized. Yet Theism would have naturally presumed such a high if not, what very well may be, complete negative mutation rate to an organism?s DNA.
    7. Materialism presumed a very simple first life form. Yet the simplest life ever found on Earth is, according to Geneticist Michael Denton PhD., far more complex than any machine man has made through concerted effort. Theism would have naturally expected this.

    8. Materialism predicted that it took a very long time for life to develop on earth, Yet we find evidence for photo-synthetic life in the oldest sedimentary rocks ever found on earth (Sarah Simpson, Scientific American, 2003). Theism would have expected this sudden appearance of life on earth.
    9. Materialism predicted the gradual unfolding of life to be self-evident in the fossil record, The Cambrian Explosion cast doubt on this prediction. Theism would have expected such sudden appearance of the many different fossils in the Cambrian explosion.

    These hard facts seem to question the whole materialistic philosophy upon which evolution is built. Is the philosophical basis for evolution truly as strong as we think it is? If you are honest with yourself, I think you will have to admit, it is not nearly as strong as most people are led to believe.

  56. #56 Jon S
    May 27, 2007

    Science Avenger- Of course practically all the scientists that deny evolution are fundi Christians. I can’t imagine why a professing atheist would deny evolution. A young universe obviously makes more sense if you actually believe the Bible, and an ancient universe makes more sense if you deny God, the Bible, or religion in general. I believe, however, the evidence is there for a young earth, but there are those who won’t accept it because of their preconceived notions and bias.

    You want a list of Creationist paleantologists, geologists or biologists? Fine. Such Geologists include Dr. Steve Austin, Dr. John D. Morris, Dr. Graeme Mortimer, Dr. Emil Silvestru and Dr. Andrew Snelling. Palaeontologists include Dr. Harold Coffin, Dr. Arlton C. Murray, Dr. Joachim Scheven, Dr. John Whitmore and Dr. Kurt Wise. Biologists include Dr. Raymond G. Bohlin, Dr. Ken Cumming, Dr. Dean Kenyon, Dr. John W. Klotz and Dr. Joachim Vetter.

    I’m sure you can mock and insult each one’s credentials, and claim your scientists are superior, but that only demonstrates your bias further. Anyway, the number of scientists who believe in any particular position has nothing to do with its validity. Truth is independent of majority opinion.

    I’ve been introduced to Project Steve before, but that’s merely amusing, not convincing. The scientific consensus has been wrong many times before, and will be wrong many times in the future. Take a look at any science textbook and just see if anything has been revised 5 years later and you’ll see where scientists were wrong. New information will always change scientific consensus.

  57. #57 Jon S
    May 28, 2007

    SLC- I believe the universe is less than 10,000 years old. Please don’t jump to conclusions.

    Yes, radioactive dating is flawed. It’s the interpretation of the evidence that’s at issue, not the evidence, which is what evolutionists fail to understand. It has been documented that radiometric dating is often in disagreement between other dating methods and can produce vastly inflated ages for rocks of known ages. There’s evidence of accelerated nuclear decay in the past. All radioisotope dating methods assume that the decay rate of a given isotope is constant, and it would have to be in order for the method to be reliable. Evidence of accelerated nuclear decay makes radiometric dating unreliable.

    And yes, as you’ve pointed out, there’s uncertainty in carbon 14 dating. In fact there’s compelling evidence of carbon 14 found in coal and diamonds, which would be impossible if they were millions of years old. In fact, carbon 14 can essentially be found in all fossil organic material throughout the geologic column.

    You claim that your list of individuals has far superior reputations in the scientific community, but I politely disagree with you. I could attempt to look up their credentials and mock and insult them, but I won’t resort to being disrespectful like that. I’m sure they’re well meaning and sincere in their beliefs, but, once again, that has nothing to do with truth. I believe God is smarter than every one of them, and it’s Him that I put my faith, not fallible man.

  58. #58 Science Avenger
    May 28, 2007

    Jon S wrote: Of course practically all the scientists that deny evolution are fundi Christians. I can’t imagine why a professing atheist would deny evolution.

    What better illustration of the myopic view of the world you have? You just ignored over half the world’s human population. You know, the ones that aren’t atheists, and aren’t fundi Christians, in large measure aren’t creationists either.

    I’m sure you can mock and insult each one’s [the creationist scientists] credentials, and claim your scientists are superior, but that only demonstrates your bias further.

    I love how you guys claim a bias any time the evidence doesn’t come out in your favor. Of course you can’t ever be bothered to produce non-question begging evidence for your claims. That would show you actually have considered the possiblity of your own error. But you have The Truth ™. You can’t possibly be wrong. Many of you will admit as much, something you won’t find many scientists doing. You’re like the whiny kid at school who cant ever win at the games, but always claims everyone else cheated, because he can’t bear the thought that he just sucks. It’s pathetic, really. You ought to be embarrased.

    The scientific consensus has been wrong many times before, and will be wrong many times in the future.

    Uh, no, it hasn’t. Again, you guys toss the term “many” around as if it is a raw number, but for it to be meaningful, it has to be a proportion. And the proportion of time the scientific community has been wrong has been WAY lower than the proportion from those wearing the pointy hats, and the dresses, and the tin foil. Science gets challenged by cranks and nitwits religous bleaters by the truckloads every year, and science just keeps knocking them all down. Sure, every once in a blue moon, an Einstein or Wegener arises and beats the establishment. But notice that they did real science. People quoting from ancient texts who are not willing to be bothered with getting that “pathetic level of detail” scientists refer to as evidence, but instead lob ignorant criticism grenades at science, have NEVER beaten science. They never will, because their epistemology is horribly flawed.

    New information will always change scientific consensus.

    Right, how dare scientists actually pay attention to evidence. Better to be like the fundamentalists and stick with views that have been refuted.

  59. #59 Tyler DiPietro
    May 28, 2007

    Jon S., you are doing nothing more than parroting long debunked creationist propaganda. Accelerated decay is nonsense peddled by, as far as I can tell, creationist groups exclusively, and as usual, there are fundamental flaws in their claims. And 14C in coal deposits is usually caused de novo by rocks surrounding the fossil fuels, and correleates nicely. I would suggest getting your science from actual reputable scientists instead of charlatans pushing religious pseudoscience. Really, flogging dead horses is no fun for any of us.

  60. #60 Robert O'Brien
    May 28, 2007

    Here we go with “many” again. One is many? And a mathematician (non relevant area of expertise) to boot? Why am I not surprised? OK, as far as those associated with the DI, I’ll call your Berlinski and raise you Dembski, Behe, Philip Johnson, and Stephen Meyer, Christian fundies all. Even limiting it to that, we’re sitting pretty at 80% fundies, and if we looked at all of them it would considerably higher, probably around 99%.

    My good Pseudoscience Avenger, you have only demonstrated that you and those who ride around with you in the clown car use the label “fundie” to such an extent as to make it meaningless. The fact remains that there are plenty of people who reject or are skeptical of common descent who are not fundamentalists by any meaningful metric.

  61. #61 SLC
    May 28, 2007

    Re Ted, Science Avenger

    Sorry Mr. Ted, it was Mr. Science Avenger who brought up Berlinski. Berlinski, for the benefit of those who have never heard of him is a philosopher, and fellow of the Discovery Institute who provides articles for the neoconservative rag Commentary Magazine denying, among other things, the theory of evolution and the big bang theory of cosmology, neither subject of which he has the slightest expertise. He is best known for the misuse of probability theory to support his idiotic ideas. I have contended that for several years he was less then candid about his credentials, allowing third parties to claim that he has a PhD in Mathematics (this was the subject of a considerably bruhaha on an earlier thread on this blog).

    Re Jon S

    Mr. Jon S questions the contributions of the Physicists I named, all of whom have won Nobel Prizes (apparently, the Nobel committee doesn’t agree with his assessment). However, just to mention a few of their contributions, I provide the following list.

    Chamberlain & Segre discovered the anti-proton.

    Feynman developed quantum electrodynamics (Feynman diagrams)

    GellMann discovered the application of the group SU3 which, among other things, predicted the existence of quarks.

    Schwinger developed quantum field theory.

    Dirac developed the relativistic theory of electrons and positrons and made major contributions to the development of the theory of quantum mechanics.

    Weinberg developed the relationship between the electromagnetic and weak forces.

    Hofstadter discovered magnetic resonance, the basis of the MRI technology.

    Now Mr. Jon S should provide a list of the accomplishments of the physicists he named. That won’t be hard, it consists of the empty set.

    Mr. Jon S failed to respond to my comment relative to the distance to the Andromeda galaxy and provided no explanation as to how the light from a galaxy 5 million light years away arrived at the earth in 10,000 years. Or how light from the other side of the milky way traveled 100,000 light years in 10,000 years.

    Mr. Jon S talks about acceleration rates for radioactive decay. Isn’t it an amazing coincidence that radioactive elements having different decay rates all had just the acceleration required to agree with a 10,000 year old earth. Thus the acceleration rate of Carbon 14 decay (half life of 5000 years) and U235 (half life of 750 million years) have just the acceleration rates required so as to arrive at a 10,000 year old earth! As police detectives like to put it, never believe in coincidence.

    By the way, since Mr. Jon is such a biblical expert, I would like him to explain the discrepancy between the first two books of genesis. I the first book, humans were created after all the other animals; in the second book, humans were created before all the other animals. Apparently, the big guy couldn’t make up his mind as to what tale to provide to his subjects.

  62. #62 SLC
    May 28, 2007

    Relative to the age of the earth, attached is a link to a pdf file from Lawrence Krauss of Case Western Reserve University. I’m sure that Mr. Jon S will be singularly unimpressed as, like many born agains, his mind is made up and the facts are irrelevant.

    http://www.defconamerica.org/creationmuseum/creation_museum_guide.pdf

  63. #63 Robert O'Brien
    May 28, 2007

    …denying, among other things, the theory of evolution and the big bang theory of cosmology…

    That’s news to me. Do you have a link?

  64. #64 SLC
    May 28, 2007

    Re Robert O’Brien

    I don’t think that Dr. Berlinskis’ earlier articles back in the 1990s are on Commentary Magazines’ web site. However, Mr. O’Brien can access that web site at

    http://www.commentarymagazine.com/cm/main/mainHome.aip

    to determine if they are.

  65. #65 Science Avenger
    May 28, 2007

    The fact remains that there are plenty of people who reject or are skeptical of common descent who are not fundamentalists by any meaningful metric.

    Sure there are Bob, just like evolution is in its last throws, and ID is going to take over, and there aren’t any “true” transitional fossils, and ID is science except when you need it to be religion to claim religious discrimination, and all the other claptrap you creo sheep have been bleating for 20 years.

  66. #66 Jon S
    May 28, 2007

    Science Avenger- You act as if the only ‘real’ scientists are those that accept whatever the scientific consensus is, and that real scientists must believe in evolution. Books have been written to refute this silly evolutionist canard, and I made my point by demonstrating this is not so. Scientists believe many wacky things, including evolution. Of course there are scientists that are neither atheists or Christian that either accept or deny evolution. I think, if we were to classify every scientist, you’d be aghast at what belief systems they hold. It’s not my intention to ignore them, but I don’t have the time nor resources to provide you with a comprehensive list of every scientist in the world, their degrees and religious affiliations that believe evolution is hogwash. The fact remains that there are many well-respected scientists that don’t accept evolutionary thinking, and they shouldn’t be ridiculed by people like you for their willingness to question the predominant scientific opinion. I completely understand it’s a minority of scientists, but the point is that the there are real scientists with real degrees who don’t accept evolution based upon solid evidence, and it’s dishonest to suggest their beliefs are therefore invalid or somehow make them inferior to the scientists you esteem.

    You say you love how we claim a bias any time the evidence doesn’t come out in your favor. Well, what evidence are you referring to? Can you ever be bothered to produce non-question begging evidence for your claims? The evidence better supports a young earth than an old earth. To support your belief in evolution you can only come up with dubious alleged ancestors to fill the missing links, yet no scientist has ever observed such evolution occurring in today’s world. When we look at the evidence, there are no documented mutations occurring that would change one kind of animal (ex. reptile) into another kind of animal (bird), yet evolutionists believe by faith that it happened in the past. No animals are producing the kind of change necessary to prove evolution. Instead we see them losing information and becoming less evolved, such as bacterial resistance. Of course you’ll never admit you’re wrong, because you can’t stand the thought that you’ve been hoodwinked by the education and political system.

    I stand by my use of the word “many” and suggest that the scientific community has been wrong many times before, which can be demonstrated quite easily, and, therefore, we can conclude that it will happen many times in the future. As I said previously, science textbooks change from year to year. That would suggest that the proportion of the time the scientific community has been wrong is consistent. Of course you try to defend it by suggesting it actually proves how open and honest these scientists are and how they welcome new evidence and try making this weakness out to be a strength. Fine. But the fact remains that in order for scientific consensus to change, the scientific consensus must have been wrong in the first place. This is valid evidence to suggest that we shouldn’t just accept whatever the scientific consensus is without question, which is what evolutionists are demanding. Evolutionists ridicule the idea that those who are in agreement with evolution could be wrong.

  67. #67 Jon S
    May 28, 2007

    Tyler DiPietro- Your claim that I’m parroting long debunked creationist propaganda is nothing but propaganda. The site you referred me to is a biased source. If they were neutral on the evolution debate and were simply providing criticisms, I’d be more impressed, but they seem to have an ax to grind with creationism right from the beginning and would deny whatever evidence comes their way. I’d only accept your accusations if those in the RATE group were to acknowledge that their research has been debunked, or if a reputable source were to provide counter evidence. I would suggest getting your science from actual reputable scientists instead of charlatans pushing religious pseudoscience.

  68. #68 SLC
    May 28, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. Mr. Jon S still hasn’t explained how light from 5 million light years away got here in 10,000 years or why there is a discrepancy between books 1 and 2 Genesis.

    2. Mr. Jon S makes the claim in response to Mr. Science Avenger that there are reputable scientists who believe that evolution is wrong. There are reputable scientists who believe in all kinds of crap. For instance, Nobel Prize winning physicist Brian Josephson believes in cold fusion, ESP, and PK. Medical researcher Peter Duesberg denies that HIV causes AIDS. This only proves that scientists can be as whacky as the rest of the population.

  69. #69 ABP
    May 28, 2007

    And so begins one of the most vapid and credulous newspaper articles you will ever see on this subject.

    Not really! I think Edward Rothstein (the Times journalist) made it crystal clear that the Creation Museum baldly rewrites history and science. Nearly every paragraph points out a contrast between what the Creation Museum says and what the scientific establishment–or, even better, what mainstream culture–says.

    I think what you’re wanting from the article is a sense of outrage. But news articles aren’t usually the place for outrage, and maybe they shouldn’t be. Instead, Rothstein gives a non-hysterical, slightly amusing account of how this museum ignores real science. Is it necessarily a bad thing for a reporter to give such a factual account of a news event that people from both sides of the spectrum find it essentially truthful? (Although in fairness this probably isn’t the case–I disagree that “Those paragraphs could have been written by Ken Ham himself” and obviously you are unhappy with this report.)

    In fact, I think one of the most salient points of the Times article is:

    For the believer, it seems, this museum provides a kind of relief: Finally the world is being shown as it really is, without the distortions of secularism and natural selection.

    Don’t be alarmed–I don’t think the Times is endorsing this kind of fact distortion. No, they’re just reporting on the terrifying reality and some people DO find this museum a safe, happy place where their worldview is justified. I wish Rothstein had used stronger language (“extremist believer” might be more appropriate than just “believer” in the passage above), and his evolutionary biology is lousy. But I think the main point of the article is that some fundamentalist crazies are building a non-science museum, and in some ways the fact that this article didn’t go on at length to defend mainstream science is a powerful way of taking the right stance.

  70. #70 Jon S
    May 28, 2007

    SLC- You claim that I questioned the contributions of the Physicists I named. But that’s not true. I actually said I wouldn’t resort to that. Now if you want to compare your scientists of choice against various Creationist scientists, we could certainly do that. We could list their degrees, achievements, patents, awards, publications, affiliations, positions, research, etc. I’ve viewed the accomplishments and achievements of various Creationist scientists and am pleased with their success. But whatever differences we find will fail to support the validity of evolution. At some point it would be interesting to review all the Nobel Prize winners in physics and other areas and find out if any of them would profess to be Creationists. That would be pretty cool, huh? But I’m sure if that were to happen, you’d find a way to dismiss them after the fact.

  71. #71 SLC
    May 28, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. I issue the following challenge to Mr. Jon S. Give me the name of 1 Nobel Prize winner in physics who subscribes to young earth creationism. Put up or shut up.

    2. I listed the achievements of the physicists I named which won them the Nobel Prize. So far, Mr. Jon S has failed to identify a single achievement of any of the so-called physicists he has named which in any way, shape, form, or regard is even remotely comparable.

    3. So far, Mr. Jon S has failed to explain the discrepancy between the 1st and 2nd books of Genesis relative to the order of human arrival. We’re still waiting.

  72. #72 SLC
    May 28, 2007

    Re Jon S

    Mr. Jon S should also explain how light from a galaxy 5 million light years away arrived at the earth in less then 10,000 years.

  73. #73 Science Avenger
    May 28, 2007

    Jon S wove straw thusly: You act as if the only ‘real’ scientists are those that accept whatever the scientific consensus is, and that real scientists must believe in evolution.

    I act in no such manner. I am simply making note of the FACTS that:

    1) The vast majority of evolution-denying scientists have their credentials in areas of study OTHER THAN those directly relevant to evolution.

    2) The vast majority of evolution-denying scientists are Fundamentalists.

    Now it is of course true that reality does not hinge on majority opinion. On the other hand, majority opinion is very often a good indicator of reality. When that opinion is restricted to people knowledgeable in the subject, that value goes up further. When that opinion is also in an arena designed (he-he-he) to encourage dissent, where the biggest prizes are given, not to those who follow the group, but to those who strike out boldest, it becomes almost comical to claim that the reason all these people think you are full of crap is because of some sort of conspiracy, and downright arrogant to think it is due to some basic error that those outside those areas of study were somehow more able to see.

    It is far more reasonable to accept that the reason science overwhelming rejects what you are saying is because You ARE full of crap.

    Can you ever be bothered to produce non-question begging evidence for your claims?

    Parroting your opponent’s phrases back to him in inappropriate situations doesn’t impress.

    The evidence better supports a young earth than an old earth.

    Funny how 99% of geologists, you know, the people who actually spend their entire lives studying the earth, disagree with you. This is the point at which you are so fond of blindly screaming “conspiracy”, based on nothing except that you lost the evidenciary battle.

    I stand by my use of the word “many” and suggest that the scientific community has been wrong many times before

    You do that. It’ll be another perfect example of the intellectually dishonest nature of creationist arguments I can use in future debates. Creationist math: 1% = “many”.

    As to your simplistic view of “right” and “wrong”, I offer this excellent article by Asimov. However wrong science has been in the past, pseudoscience like creationism has always been more wrong, and THAT my friend, is a trend sure to continue, with your help.

  74. #74 Kevin
    May 28, 2007

    “Oh for fucks sake, another person completely ignorant”

    ahhh Tyler, you said a bad word and this makes you a totally unserious fellow who must be ignored.

  75. #75 Kevin
    May 28, 2007

    Posted by: SLC | May 27, 2007 12:47 PM

    nice list!

  76. #76 Jon S
    May 29, 2007

    SLC- 1. Okay, you got me. I can’t name any Nobel Prize winners in physics who subscribes to YEC. I guess that proves me wrong, huh? The absence of evidence is evidence of proof? Tell me what relevance your challenge has and why should it lead anyone to submit to evolution or such an ancient universe?

    2. I fail to see why you’re insisting that I list the achievements of the physicists I named. I haven’t done this previously for the sake of brevity. After all, you should be able to do such research on your own. But to humor you, here’s a list of what I came up with after a little bit of research: Dr. E. Theo Agard: Former director of medical physics at Flower Hospital Oncology Center. Holds a B.S. (Hons) first class in physics from the University of London, an M.S. in physics from the Middlesex Hospital medical School at the University of London, and a Ph.D. in physics from the University of Toronto. He was elected to the national board of directors of the Health Physics Society in 1993. Wrote a paper on Scattered Radiation Doses to Some Critical Organs During Pediatric Radiotherapy. Dr. Thomas G. Barnes: D.Sc. from Hardin-Simmons University, Professor emeritus of physics and Director Schellenger Research Laboratories of Texas Western College of the University of Texas at El Paso, former consultant to Globe Universal Sciences, Inc., former research physicist at Duke University, M.s. degree from Brown University, Director of many important research projects on terrestrial magnetism and atmospheric physics, published various scientific papers and textbooks, wrote “Foundations of Electricity and Magnetism”, “Physics of the Future”, “Physics: A Challenge to Geological Time” and “Young Age for the Moon and Earth”. Dr. Eugene Chaffin, B.S., Oklahoma State University, M.S., Oklahoma State University, Ph.D. in Theoretical Nuclear Physics, Oklahoma State University, Post-doctoral studies at the Institute for Applied Nuclear Physics in Karlsruhe, Germany, Professor of Physics at Bluefield College, has at least 5 publications, Physics professor at Bob Jones University, Adjunct Faculty member of Astro/Geophysics Department Institute for Creation Research, Member of the Editorial Board of the Creation Research Society Quarterly. Dr. William M. Curtis III, Master of Science, Southern Methodist Univ. (Aeronautics and Nuclear Physics), Chief of Aerodynamics to Director of Engineering with Fairchild Industries, Board of directors Ft. Worth Regional Science Fair, Associate Fellow- American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, authored many monographs, invented several aerodynamic features such as airfoils, wing and tail configurations, leading and trailing edge devices, inlets, bypass ducts and several whole aircraft configurations. Dr. Don DeYoung, B.S., M.S., Physics, Michigan Tech University, Ph.D., Physics, Iowa State University, Indiana Academy of Science, AuSable Environmental Institute, Creation Research Society, Institute for Creation Research, numerous publications and books, specializes in solid-state and nuclear science as well as astronomy. Dr. Jason Lisle, graduated summa cum laude from Ohio Wesleyan University where he double majored in physics and astronomy, and minored in mathematics. He did graduate work at the University of Colorado where he earned a Master’s degree and a Ph.D. in Astrophysics. Used the SOHO spacecraft to investigate motions on the surface of the sun as well as solar magnetism and subsurface weather. His thesis was entitled “Probing the Dynamics of Solar Supergranulation and its Interaction with Magnetism.” He has also authored a number of papers in both secular and creation literature. Dr. Keith Wanser, B.A., M.A, Ph.D. Professor of Physics at California State University, Fullerton. Research in fibre-optic sensing techniques, experimental and theoretical condensed matter physics, and basic theories of matter. Over 30 refereed and 18 other technical papers and 7 U.S. patents.

    3. There is no discrepancy between the 1st and 2nd book of Genesis. Chapter one provides the order of creation. Beginning with Genesis 2:4, God provides more detail. I’m not sure what version you’re reading from, but Chapter 2 doesn’t say that humans were created before the other animals. Genesis 2:19 says that God HAD formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air, but it doesn’t suggest man came first. I think you’re getting carried away with nothing.

    4. Regarding starlight millions of light years away: Distant stars and galaxies might be millions of light-years away, but that doesn’t mean it took millions of years, by our standards, to get here. A light year is the measurement of distance, not time. Time can vary depending on your position in space. Time is slowed by gravitational forces. Time dilation has been experimentally demonstrated. The cosmology model proposed by Dr. Russell Humphries starts with the earth near the center originally, then the universe rapidly expanding in a white hole or black hole running in reverse. At the beginning, gravity would slow earth’s clocks far more than clocks further away, especially at the edge of the universe. Therefore, billions of years would be available for light for light to reach earth in less than one ordinary day, as measured by earth clocks. Of course there’s still research to be done, but the fact is that Creationists have recognized the problem of star light for a long time and are answering the challenge. In time there will be a satisfactory answer. It’s no different that evolutionists not being able to explain the origin of life. No one has been able to do it, but they insist someone will figure it out eventually.

    Sorry Jason for this long post. SLC has been very demanding.

  77. #77 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    Sure there are Bob, just like evolution is in its last throws, and ID is going to take over, and there aren’t any “true” transitional fossils, and ID is science except when you need it to be religion to claim religious discrimination, and all the other claptrap you creo sheep have been bleating for 20 years.

    Pseudoscience Avenger:

    I accept your tacit admission of defeat. By the way, were you educated across the border in Mexico?

  78. #78 Jon S
    May 29, 2007

    Science Avenger says “The vast majority of evolution-denying scientists have their credentials in areas of study OTHER THAN those directly relevant to evolution.”

    Nonsense. I already demonstrated that’s false. Since when is palaeontology irrelevant to evolution?

    You say “Now it is of course true that reality does not hinge on majority opinion. On the other hand, majority opinion is very often a good indicator of reality.”

    Well then, the majority of polls show that the majority of Americans reject evolution and believe that God created the universe. Now you’re in the fringe minority.

    You go on to say “When that opinion is restricted to people knowledgeable in the subject, that value goes up further.”

    Ah, but how do we know these knowledgeable people are unbiased and have no preconceived notions that would affect their beliefs? I think you fail to consider that if they’re atheists, they’re not going to consider the alternative to evolution, and they’re not going to even question evolution. Science has been redefined to exclude God right from the beginning, so if there is a God, it’s obvious that those who accept what mainstream science says will be on the wrong side of the evolution debate.

    You say “Parroting your opponent’s phrases back to him in inappropriate situations doesn’t impress.”

    Who says I’m trying to impress? I’m merely pointing out that your own words can be used against you.

    You say “Funny how 99% of geologists, you know, the people who actually spend their entire lives studying the earth, disagree with you. This is the point at which you are so fond of blindly screaming “conspiracy”,

    I don’t think it’s a conspiracy, but I do believe there’s discrimination based upon your own scientific belief system, and that the rest of the world shouldn’t be subjected to your belief system.

  79. #79 SLC
    May 29, 2007

    Re Jon S

    Here we are on a Tuesday morning and Mr. Jon S has still failed to rise to the challenges posed to him.

    1. Mr. Jon S has still failed to explain the discrepancy between books one and two of Genesis.

    2. Mr. Jon S has still failed to provide the name of one Nobel Prize winner in physics who is a young earth creationist.

    3. Mr. Jon S has still failed to provide a significant contribution from any of the so-called physicists he has named which is in any way, shape, form, or regard of consequence.

    4. Mr. Jon S has still failed to provide an explanation as to how light from a galaxy 5 million light years away arrived at the earth in less then 10,000 years.

    All Mr. Jon S has done is provide bromides and nonsensical arguments from authority in response to comments by Mr. Science Avenger. As a for instance, Mr. Jon S points to a poll showing that the majority of Americans polled reject the theory of evolution. Scientific arguments are not decided based on the polling of persons ignorant of the subject matter (which includes Mr. Jon S as an example).

  80. #80 SLC
    May 29, 2007

    Re Jon S

    Well, Mr. Jon S continues to evade the challenges I posed to him.

    1. Mr. Jon S has yet to provide an explanation of the disagreements between books 1 and 2 of Genesis.

    2. Mr. Jon S has yet to provide an explanation as to how light from a galaxy 5 million light years away arrived in less then 10,000 years.

    3. Mr. Jon S has yet to provide a significant contribution to science made by any of the so-called physicists he listed earlier on.

    4. Mr. Jon S has yet to comment on the the amazing coincidence that nuclei having different rates of decay also have to have different rates of acceleration in order to agree with a 10,000 years old earth.

    5. Mr. Jon S has yet to provide the name of a Nobel Prize winning physicists who is also a young earth creationist.

  81. #81 SLC
    May 29, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. Mr. Jon S provides no significant contributions in the field of cosmology or elementary particle physics for any of the so-called physicists he names.

    2. Mr. Jon S cites Russell Humphries as a physicist who claims to have solved the problem of light from far away objects arriving at the position of the earth in less then 10,000 years. I am including two reviews of Humphries’ book which demonstrate that he is full of crap. His model has no basis in reality. I am including these two reviews which were obviously written by knowledgeable individuals because I am not an expert on General Relativity (and apparently neither is Humphries). This is a very specialized branch of physics which most physicists have only a passing knowledge of.

    Spaced Out About Starlight and Time [Rating 1 Sterne]
    The absurdities necessary to sustain a Young Earth Creationist (YEC) worldview are literally cosmological in scope as “Starlight and Time” painfully attests. Forcibly mating biblically induced fundamentalist dogma and magical thinking with General Relativity and Cosmology is an act of intellectual and scientific rape – but contemporary YECs never have let their sense of morals prevent them from doing what is ‘right.’

    “Starlight and Time” purports to show how light could travel billions of light years from distant astronomical objects during the passage of only a few thousand years of Earth time. Even YECs admit that the universe is vast – beyond any biblical cosmology however burlesque their exegetical exertions – but dogmatically refuse to cede that the earth is old – a paradox of their own making, a single snowflake in the blizzard of ignorance that typifies so-called ‘creation science.’

    The author, Dr. D. Russell Humphreys, posits an alternative cosmology to solve the light travel time problem and assuage febrile creationist sensibilities. Although Humphreys is a physicist, he is untrained in General Relativity or Cosmology, and it shows. His white hole cosmology has been reviewed and found universally wanting by the reality-based scientific community and old earth creationists! Even YEC stalwarts, who routinely swallow shallow sacro-scientific swill, entertain substantial doubts, although leading purveyors of misinformation such as Answers in Genesis (AiG) and the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) continue to disingenuously pimp “Starlight and Time” – even while they subtly admit that it is ultimately flawed.

    The core of Humphreys’ model is the abandonment of the cosmological principle. Instead, he proposes that the universe is not uniform, but rather has the shape of a sphere with a finite radius. In the model, the universe originated from a single point in the center of the sphere. In effect, Humphreys’ model brings to life many of the common misconceptions about what the Big Bang actually says about the origin of the universe.

    Humphreys tries to apply General Relativity to the resulting matter distribution, claiming that gravitational time dilation will cause time to pass faster the more distant one is from the center. If one postulates that the earth is very near the center of the universe, Humphreys claims that this resolves a central problem for Young Earth Creationists – how to resolve the evidence for an ancient universe with their demand that the earth was created anywhere from 6,000 to 12,000 years ago.

    “Starlight and Time” models the center of the universe as a white hole, the opposite of a black hole (instead of matter only flowing inwards, a white hole constantly emits matter and energy). Humphreys fails to explain why that white hole does not appear to exist anymore – we would notice the extremely strong X-ray flux, if nothing else – but that is far from the only problem with the model. In particular, Humphreys badly mangles the standard General Relativity treatment for gravitational time dilation – in order for time to pass more rapidly far away from the earth, we would need to be near a black hole, not a white hole. Humphreys tried to salvage his model by later claiming a time dilation within the white hole, but this was equally unworkable. It goes without saying that his model fails to explain a vast array of cosmological observations, including the existence of the cosmic microwave background radiation and its anisotropy, supernovae time dilation, light element abundance and so forth.

    Humphreys’ findings are, to borrow a phrase from the Nobel Prize winning physicist Wolfgang Pauli, “not even wrong.” Humphreys later publication “New Vistas of Spacetime Rebut the Critics” orphans his original arguments by inventing fresh fallacies to replace his former fantasies – an unfortunate pattern that permeates all of his work.

    Ultimately Humphreys is wrestling with a preposterous hypothesis. His failure is spectacular and totally expected. Any YEC universe consistent with General Relativity must display extraordinarily rapid decreases in the observed redshifts of distant galaxies and cannot contain visible objects which are more than a few thousand light years away!

    The redshift anomalies predicted are not observed and objects billions and billions of light years away are routinely surveyed and cataloged. General Relativity and the Big Bang as utilized by reality-based mainstream science trumps the hermit hermeneutics endemic to the ‘genesis is an incontrovertible history of the universe’ claque of credulous YECs.

    If you enjoy convoluted and elastic reasoning as an art form, or wish to build a library of classic YEC calumnies and conceits by all means purchase “Starlight and Time” – it is a tendentious treasure. By any other metrics the demon haunted universe is brain dead and so is this book.

    For a reality-based look at the cosmos try The First Three Minutes: A Modern View of the Origin of the Universe by Steven Weinberg or Many Worlds in One: The Search for Other Universes by Alex Vilenkin.

    The theory proposed in this book does not work [Rating 1 Sterne]
    Starlight and Time proposes to solve the “light travel time problem” by postulating the existence of past gravitational time dilation in a bounded universe. This time dilation would, it is proposed, cause clocks to run slower on Earth than in distant galaxies, allowing light to travel billions of light years from distant galaxies during the passage of only a few thousand years on Earth. This is a very creative idea, but close examination of the physics shows that it does not work. Humphreys’ time dilation proposal could work if the universe were static (that is, neither expanding nor contracting), but the universe is, in fact, dynamic — it is expanding. More distant galaxies are receding from Earth more rapidly than nearby galaxies. This differential motion produces a differential time dilation effect (“moving clocks run slower”) which exactly counterbalances the gravitational time dilation effect so that all clocks in the universe, whether on Earth or on distant galaxies, run at the same rate as the universe expands. There is no differential ageing of the outer parts of a bounded expanding universe compared with the center. This identity of the time-keeping properties of clocks on Earth and on distant galaxies is easily established by calculation of the relevant clock rates with respect to the expansion of the universe from the spacetime metric. Humphreys neglects to perform these calculations and ends up misleading himself and his readers. Starlight and Time was made public in 1994 as an attempt to reconcile “young-earth” recent creation theology with the evidences of astronomy that the universe is very large and very old. The theory has since attracted critical analysis which shows it to be false. The first of these analyses was published in Bible Science News, 9/95. A second analysis was published in the 6/97 issue of the Creation Research Society Quarterly. Still other analyses have been submitted to a number of Creationist organizations. Readers who are not familiar with General Relativity theory should not trustingly accept the conclusions of this book. It is flawed by a number of serious misunderstandings of relativity theory. Readers interested in the details of these flaws may consult the above-mentioned references. In fact, there are a number straightforward theorems which can be derived from Relativity theory which show that 1) If Humphreys’ model of the universe is correct, then there can be no visible objects further away than about 6000 light years and 2) the redshifts of distant objects should be rapidly decreasing at the present time. Both of these predictions are found to be seriously in error. 1) The most distant observed objects are about 10 billion light years away (a distance estimate which Humphreys explicitly affirms). The upper limit on the distance of visible objects in Humphreys’ model is only about one fourth of the distance to the Milkly Way, clearly an impossible prediction. 2) The observed upper limits on redshift changes in extragalactic objects is millions of times smaller than the rate of change predicted by Humphreys’ model. These two predictions are consequences of any young-universe relativistic model, regardless of the precise details. Consequently, this entire class of model of the universe is ruled out by the observed properties of the universe.

    3. Mr. Jon S is apparently as ignorant of the book of genesis as he is of physics. The fires book of genesis says that humans were created after all the other animals were (i.e. on day 6). the second book of genesis says that Adam and Eve were created first and then all the other animals were created afterword to keep them company.

    4. Incidentally, Jon S should also should also provide an explanation as where Cains’ wife came from as there were only Adam, Eve, Cain, and Abel mentioned before she was.

  82. #82 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    Jon:

    The earth is billions of years old. Give it up already.

  83. #83 Science Avenger
    May 29, 2007

    Robert O’BRien said: I accept your tacit admission of defeat.

    Pointing out your side’s horrific history of inaccurate claims is an admission of defeat in your world? What color, pray tell, is the sky there?

    I see now why you have a prize in stupidity named after you. Congrats.

  84. #84 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    Pointing out your side’s horrific history of inaccurate claims is an admission of defeat in your world? What color, pray tell, is the sky there?

    My good hayseed, your sorry posterior is all over the map on this one. You have not proven your original claim that the only people who reject common descent are fundamentalists. Don’t they have a class on argumentation and debate at Tijuana U?

  85. #85 Science Avenger
    May 29, 2007

    Jon S: said Science Avenger says “The vast majority of evolution-denying scientists have their credentials in areas of study OTHER THAN those directly relevant to evolution.”

    Nonsense. I already demonstrated that’s false. Since when is palaeontology irrelevant to evolution?

    No, you didn’t. There are thousands of palaeontologists out there. You can’t demonstrate anything with 5 or 6 names. This is just basic statistical honesty – when someone says “many doctors think A, B or C” it is understood that “many” essentially means “a large percentage”. NOBODY would think “5 doctors out of thousands think A, B and C” equates to “many doctors out of thousands think A, B and C”. It’s not intellectually honest.

    how do we know these knowledgeable people are unbiased and have no preconceived notions that would affect their beliefs?

    We don’t. But you don’t get to ASSUME they have a bias just because you don’t like their conclusions. If you think there is some sort of psychological bias among geologists to cause them to interpret their rocks to say that the earth is billions of years old when it is in fact thousands of years old, go for it. There is a Nobel prize waiting. Frankly, just stating the problem shows how laughable it is, but by all means, go prove me and the scientific establishment wrong. I won’t wait up.

    I think you fail to consider that if they’re atheists, they’re not going to consider the alternative to evolution, and they’re not going to even question evolution.

    That’s a presumption without evidence. I personally can say that this atheist would be absolutely fucking thrilled to his bones for proof of life here being planted by aliens, rather than evolving. Really, I think that would be cool as shit. But you know what? The evidence for it is a big fat goose egg, so I don’t believe it.

    You fundies are far too liberal with your projection of your inability to consider solutions outside your philosophical biases. We scientific types can’t have that problem for very long. The very nature of falsifiable scientific experimentation and public discussion of results (you know, facts) doesn’t tolerate it.

    You guys also just don’t want to deal with the fact that the majority of people who accept evolution are NOT atheists! Ken Miller, not Richard Dawkins, is the norm. You bleat on about philosophical biases of a group with an astonishing variety of philosophies of life! The only bias they have is for scientific evidence, and that’s where you guys fall short.

  86. #86 Science Avenger
    May 29, 2007

    Robert O’ gratuitously asserted: your sorry posterior is all over the map on this one. You have not proven your original claim that the only people who reject common descent are fundamentalists.

    You just keep telling yourself that Mr. All-baseless-insult-and-no-substance. You guys have given me weapons I’ll use to crush creos for decades, not that the ones from Dover weren’t enough. You really think the argument of:

    We’re right, and as evidence look how so many scientists support us, but the fact that the vast majority of scientists disagree with us doesn’t mean we are wrong.

    is going to persaude anyone who isn’t already wearing the tin foil?

    Anyone who pays attention to who speaks publicly on the issue can see how overwhelmingly fundamentalist the evolution-denialists are. That you guys would try to deny that is laughable in the extreme, and only works to science’s favor, because it erodes what little credibility you had.

  87. #87 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    Pseudoscience Avenger:

    I realize you are intoxicated with your own posts, but in all your blah-blah-blah you have yet to demonstrate that only fundamentalists deny common descent.

  88. #88 SLC
    May 29, 2007

    Re Jon S

    Mr. Jon S brought up the name Russell Humphreys (apparently the correct spelling) as an authority on the question as to how light from a galaxy 5 million light years away could arrive at the earth in less then 10,000 years. Attached is a link to a critique by old earth creationist Hugh Ross which totally demolishes Humphreys’ analysis. Unlike Humphreys, Ross has substantial credentials in the Theory of General Relativity and cosmology.

    http://www.reasons.org/resources/apologetics/unravelling.shtml?main

  89. #89 Science Avenger
    May 29, 2007

    Robert O’Brien trolled: I realize you are intoxicated with your own posts, but in all your blah-blah-blah you have yet to demonstrate that only fundamentalists deny common descent.

    You realize nothing. Saying Fundamentalists dominate the evolution-deniers is like saying NBA players are very tall on average: it’s obvious enough once it’s pointed out and people start looking for it. Why does the ID crowd spend so much time making speaches at churches? Why do they claim religious discrimination when they lose social battles? The answer is obvious, and I invite anyone out there to just start looking into the views of evolution-deniers whenever they speak, and what you find, almost without exception, is fundie fundie fundie.

    Oh, and of course the fact that none of the evidence supports what they say, and they instead got their “science” views from a 2,000 year old book written by ignorant desert nomads, is a hint as well. But just keep ignoring reality Robert, as is your wont. Fits right in with that crowd.

  90. #90 Joe
    May 29, 2007

    Science Avenger,

    Show Mr. O’Brien some respect- he has an award named after him.

    What is that Bob? “The Idiot of the Month?” That’s it, isn’t it …

  91. #91 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    What is that Bob? “The Idiot of the Month?” That’s it, isn’t it …

    I’m afraid I don’t accept awards from college drop-outs/failed comedians.

  92. #92 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    Pseudoscience Avenger:

    You wrote:

    …whereas the fundamentalist biblical literalists are alone in refusing to do so.

    That is manifestly false.

  93. #93 Robert O'Brien
    May 29, 2007

    …a 2,000 year old book written by ignorant desert nomads…

    I’ll add the Bible to the list of things of which you are ignorant.

  94. #94 Jon S
    May 29, 2007

    Robert O’Brien says “The earth is billions of years old. Give it up already.”

    Actually, I used to believe the earth was billions of years old and used to laugh at those who denied that… mostly because of the starlight problem, but I’m proud to say I never fell for evolution. Anywho, as a Bible believing Christian, I challenged Creationists to explain to me, from the Bible, why I should accept a universe less than 10,000 years old. I was shown Mark 10:6, which says “at the beginning of creation God made them male and female.” That was good enough for me… knowing that Jesus affirmed man was present at the beginning of creation. Then, after reading about the problems of evolution, such as unreliable dating techniques, problems with the big bang, problems with mutations and natural selection to produce new organisms, problems with DNA and the origin of life, problems associated with evolution compared to what we actually observe about the real world… after a while the evidence started shifting away from long ages to young ages. Evidence for a young earth can be found in the distance the moon is moving away from the earth, salt in the oceans, traces of blood and DNA found in dinosaur bones, research with diamonds, zircons, and coal, etc. After looking at things from a different perspective, I can’t see any reason to believe the earth is billions of years old. I think if more people were to question evolution and billions of years they’d be surprised to learn that what they’ve been fed is a lie at worst and deception at best. In fact I think most scientists couldn’t really explain why they believe in evolution (if they do believe in evolution), and most of them probably don’t think much about it because it’s not important to their work. It only seems important to academics, not not real science.

    Science Avenger- Bias in science is real; there’s no need to deny reality. Scientists mostly believe in evolution because it’s expected. They’d be ridiculed and denied certain privileges if they didn’t. Certain colleges in California have been denying entrance to students that reject evolution. Therefore only those that conform to this view are free from ridicule. It’s also not uncommon scientists who do believe in YEC to stay under the radar and not give away their beliefs for fear of discrimination. So it’s fair to say there are more YEC than we know about. Once more and more scientists come out of the closest it will be more and more accepted to question evolution in the scientific community. Sure, it’ll take some time, but it’s already happening.

    You said we creationists think: “We’re right, and as evidence look how so many scientists support us, but the fact that the vast majority of scientists disagree with us doesn’t mean we are wrong.”

    You’re missing the point. It’s not that so many scientists support us, but it’s that there ARE credible scientists who hold to YEC. We need to shatter the myth that ‘real’ scientists don’t believe in evolution, which is what the anti-evolution establishment wants the public to believe.

    FYI: You’re also helping me in my discussions with evolutionists, so I welcome the dialogue too.

  95. #95 MartinM
    May 30, 2007

    Evidence for a young earth can be found in the distance the moon is moving away from the earth, salt in the oceans, traces of blood and DNA found in dinosaur bones, research with diamonds, zircons, and coal, etc

    Perhaps we can speed this discussion up a bit. Got anything that isn’t on this list?

  96. #96 SLC
    May 30, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. Mr. Jon S doesn’t seem to be very anxious to address Prof. Hugh Rosses’ critique of Russell Humphreys’ nutty ideas.

    2. I’m surprised that Mr. Jon S hasn’t invoked the name of Kurt Wise, PhD student of none other then Stephen Jay Gould and young earth creationist. Is that because Prof. Wise readily admits that the overwhelming scientific evidence supports an old earth but that he believes in a young earth because of his religious beliefs. In fact, he has publicly stated he will continue to believe in a young earth regardless of the scientific evidence and that no amount of such evidence will change his mind.

  97. #97 Jon S
    May 30, 2007

    SLC: I glanced through Hugh Rosses’ critique, but it hasn’t caused me to abandon my beliefs. It only reinforces what I’ve said previously; that there’s still work to be done, more research is needed, and with time there will be more satisfactory theories, ideas and answers. The fact that we don’t have all the answers laid out neatly for us is no reason to give up. I’m sure the people studying the origin of life won’t be giving up their pursuit anytime soon just because it’s really, really hard to figure out how life could accidentally start all by itself by just the right arrangement of molecules in just the right order, etc. There will always be challenges and obstacles in science no matter what position you align yourself with, so I’m not afraid of not having all the answers.

    And actually I did mention Kurt Wise. See my post on May 27 at 11:43 pm. I suppose you take his position as evidence of the evolutionist canard that we’ll believe anything despite the evidence against it. But that only shows you don’t understand our position. It’s not that we choose to ignore the evidence, it’s that we interpret the evidence differently. The bottom line is that we believe God over fallible scientists that change their views and theories once more evidence becomes available. This isn’t meant to disparage science, but is just a criticism to those who think scientists couldn’t possibly be wrong about the age of the universe or evolution. You may believe radiometric dating is accurate and never gives wrong results, but the next time you see scientists changing the dates I hope you realize that in order for them to change the date, they had to be wrong in the first place.

  98. #98 386sx
    May 31, 2007

    Thanks for the various strawmen there Jon S. Lol, who doesn’t understand whose position.

    We believe God over fallible scientists, but there’s still lotsa work to be done and more research needed!

  99. #99 SLC
    May 31, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. With respect to Kurt Wise, he is the one who said that no amount of scientific evidence will convince him of an old earth. Unlike Mr. Jon S, Prof. Wise is an honest creationist. The fact is that no amount of scientific evidence will convince Mr. Jon S of an old earth; he will quite happily go right on believing the testimony of cranks like Russell Humphreys, no matter how incompetent his views are and how unqualified he is to proclaim them. Even analyzes by creationists like Hugh Ross, whose training in cosmology and relativistic physics provide him with far superior qualifications to discuss issues of General Relativity then Mr. Humphreys will be ignored. This is what real scientists refer to as cherry picking. For the information of interested perusers of this thread, I am adding a link to a commentary by Richard Dawkins on Kurt Wise which is written more in sadness then in acrimony.

    http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/dawkins_21_4.html

    2. Mr. Jon S demonstrates his total ignorance of the theory of evolution by bringing up the subject of origin of life. For his information, the theory of evolution has nothing whatever to do with the various theories of the origin of life. They are completely separate entities. The theory of evolution doesn’t start until life appears.

    3. Mr. Jon S has apparently discovered that Adam and Eve were created before the other animals according to the second book of genesis, in contrast to the first book where humans were created last.

    4. Apparently, Mr. Jon S is as mystified as most bible scholars as to where Cains’ wife came from.

    5. By the way, Mr. Jon S still has failed to address the curious coincidence that alleged acceleration of decay rates of radioactive nucleii are different such as to agree with a 10,000 year old earth. Thus the acceleration rate of Carbon 14 must be millions of times lower then the acceleration rate of U235. I am afraid I must agree with Albert Einstein on this matter, “the old one may be subtle but he is never duplicitous.” Apparently, Mr. Jon S thinks that god is duplicitous.

  100. #100 hoary puccoon
    May 31, 2007

    Back on May 28, Jon S wrote, “the scientific consensus has been wrong many times in the past, and will be wrong many times in the future.”
    Science Avenger replied, “Uh, no, it hasn’t….”
    Sorry, Science Avenger, but sure it has– because the scientific consensus changes to reflect new evidence as it comes to light. The problem with Jon S’s position is that a literal reading of the bible was the scientific consensus– in the eighteenth century!
    The scientific consensus in evolutionary theory is in a state of change right now because of the vast amounts of new data flooding in from genomic research, among other areas. We don’t know where things will stand even five years from now on hot issues in evo-devo, for instance. But to believe that scientists are going to discover that three hundred years of experiments and observations by some of the greatest minds in history– challenged and cross-checked by tens of thousands of lesser lights– are going to be proven wrong…! That requires not only a naive faith in biblical literalism, but an absolute ignorance of the history of science.

  101. #101 Danon
    May 31, 2007

    Really funny, give you 1 star.

  102. #102 Science Avenger
    May 31, 2007

    Yes, HP I acknowledge all of what you say, but I still stand by my statement – in context. When people say, as Jon S does, that “the scientific consensus has been wrong many times in the past”, they are trying to imply that it is unreliable and there are other sources of knowledge more worthy of our trust. But that’s a nonsequitor. It’s like saying “Don’t pick LeBron James for your team because he has missed many shots and lost many games in the past”.

    Which again brings us back to those key concepts: “many”, and “wrong”. Many compared to what? Some idealistic childish notion of knowledge handed down from on high, perfect and never changing? OK, nice fantasy, now let’s deal with the reality, which is, whatever the extent of error in the scientific community, the error of any other group has been far worse, for far longer. Science corrected Piltdown man. The pious are still defending the debnked Shroud of Turin.

    I can’t improve on Asimov’s demolition of the idea of an absolute right and wrong, and I encourage everyone to read it. It’s a amazing article. Science makes ever finer adjustments to it’s knowledge. That is its strength. Holding this against it, and treating all errors as equally and totally “wrong” is to use a very blunt instrument for a detailed job, and to botch it badly.

  103. #103 Jon S
    May 31, 2007

    SLC- 1. It’s a shame you accuse me of being a dishonest creationist. I’ve been nothing but open and honest; I have nothing to hide, and I’m not ashamed of my beliefs. What have I said to warrant that accusation? Perhaps you ought to examine your own integrity for constantly jumping to false conclusions. If I haven’t been clear on anything please say so and I’ll try to elaborate. You claim no amount of scientific evidence will convince me of an old earth. To me that’s a dishonest claim because I believe the scientific evidence, in fact, favors a young earth. And no amount of scientific evidence will convince you of a young earth. Does that in and of itself make YOU dishonest for denying the scientific evidence for a young earth?

    2. As for evolution and the origin of life, I’m not sure how you miss the connection. I completely understand they’re not the same thing, as you dishonestly claim that I don’t. Our discussions haven’t been exclusively related to evolution; they’ve ranged from the age of the universe and earth, Christianity, the Bible, Jesus, scientists and their qualifications, scientific bias, name calling, dishonestly, etc. Why is the origin of life suddenly off limits??? Is this a forbidden subject that I brought up, or a taboo among evolutionists because they don’t have any real answers?

    3. Mr. SLC, either you’re being very dishonest, or you continue to misunderstood what I’ve said. According to the creation events listed in Genesis 1:1-31 Adam and Eve were created after all the animals. There is nothing in Genesis 2 to suggest otherwise. Genesis 2 tells us that God had already made the animals and birds, so if they were already made, how can you suggest that they came after man? In Genesis 2 God is elaborating, or giving us more detail. I fail to see why you think you’re on to something here.

    4. SLC says “Apparently, Mr. Jon S is as mystified as most bible scholars as to where Cains’ wife came from.”

    Whoa, where did this come from? More dishonesty from SLC? I don’t recall discussing anything about Cain’s wife, so how do you suppose I’m mystified??? There’s no mystery at all, and I’m scratching my head to figure out why you think there is. Cain’s wife was his sister. Surprise! And I’m not aware of any Bible scholars that don’t already know that.

    5. Now you make the accusation that I think God is duplicitous? To set the record straight, I do NOT think God is duplicitous. I believe there are logical answers to all the evolutionist questions, even if they can’t be explained at the present time. As for radiometric dating, I really, really don’t have the time to go into all the detail (I’m sure you will interpret this as being dishonest and evasive), but I’ll briefly point out that there are many examples where the dating methods give dates that are wrong for rocks of known age (such as K-Ar dating of five historical andesite lava flows from Mount Nguaruhoe in New Zealand.) It’s argued that excess argon from the magma was retained in the rock when it solidified. Scientific literature lists many examples of excess argon causing dates of millions of years in rocks of known historical age. If excess argon can cause exaggerated dates for rocks of known age, then why should we trust the method for rocks of unknown age? It’s impossible to confirm the reliability of any particular date, unless man can historically give an account.

  104. #104 Jon S
    May 31, 2007

    Science Avenger- you’re still reaching to define your terms. I’m sure you’ll claim I’m misquoting him, but the atheistic evolutionist W.B. Provine admitted “Most of what I learned of the field (evolutionary biology) in graduate (1964-68) school is either wrong or significantly changed.” (A review of Teaching about Evolution and the Nature of Science, National Academy of Science USA, 1998)

    Perhaps you ought to lecture him on the proper use of the term “most”.

  105. #105 Tyler DiPietro
    May 31, 2007

    I’d like to extend a word of gratitude to Jon S., who is providing a great example in this thread of why I ban godbotting at my blog.

  106. #106 SLC
    June 1, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. Okay Mr. Jon S, where did Cains sister come from? There is no mention in the bible of any such person. The only persons identified are Adam, Eve, Cain, and Able. What was Cains’ sisters’ name?

    2. Apparently Mr. Jon S is referring to some version of the bible which is unfamiliar to most persons. Just to be clear, when I refer to the bible, I am referring to the King James translation which is used in most mainline Protestant churches. In this version, there is no mention of Cain having a sister, and it is perfectly clear that in book 1 of genesis humans were created last and in book 2 humans were created first. By the way, I believe that the Latin Vulgate bible used in Roman Catholic Churches does not differ in this regard, nor does the Hebrew version used in synagogues differ.

    3. Mr. Jon S is seriously in error in his accusation that I would reject a preponderance of the evidence supporting a young earth. No reputable scientist would. I would point out that none other then Kurt Wise freely admits that that overwhelming preponderance of the scientific evidence favors an old earth.

    4. I stand by my claim that Mr. Jon S is a dishonest creationist. He repeats the crap from the Answers in Genesis web site which has been thoroughly debunked. For a summary of the debunking, see the Talk Origins and Talk Design web sites. The fact that Mr. Jon S persists in accepting the long discredited claims of the young earth creationists and ignoring their debunking is proof positive that his ideas are generated not by scientific evidence but by his crackpot religious views. In this regard, he differs not at all from Prof. Wise; he only differs in that Prof. Wise admits it.

  107. #107 SLC
    June 1, 2007

    Re Jon S

    In Mr. Jon Ss’ response to Mr. Science Avengers comment, he makes the usual creationist claim that evolutionary science has been modified since the synthesis of the 1930s and 1940s, and that therefore we should ignore Theodosius Dobzhanskys’ admonition that, “nothing in biology make sense without the theory of evolution.” By the way, just for the information of Mr. Jon S, Prof. Dobzhansky was a devout Eastern Orthodox Christian. This is the hight of stupidity. By this logic, we should ignore all of modern physics because new scientific findings required the modification of Newtons’ laws of motion to include relativistic and quantum mechanical effects. All scientific theories are tentative and subject to modification or even abandonment in the light of new information. Read Ken Millers’ response to a stupid question by the defense lawyers in the Dover case, based on this logic.

  108. #108 Joe
    June 1, 2007

    @SLC,

    Inre the Dobzhansky quote: after quoting out of context, the next favorite creo ploy is insisting that what scientists say is engraved in granite and must be literally interpreted (like their scripture). Then, if they can show an exception, they think the statement has been entirely invalidated. Funny, no facts ever invalidate their scripture.

  109. #109 Science Avenger
    June 1, 2007

    Jon S. Dodged thusly: you’re still reaching to define your terms.

    No, I clarified that the way you are using the terms is intellectually dishonest, or ignorant, take your pick. I can’t say I’m surprised though, those are top tools of the trade for creationists, along with acting like quoting someone changes reality, and ignoring counterarguments (Asimov’s article). Tell me, do you have any thoughts of your own? The bulk of your posts are either boilerplate creationist non-answers, parroted versions of what other people here are saying, or quotes.

    And you guys wonder why every time you go into battle with science in an arena where these tricks aren’t allowed (courts), you get your heads handed to you (Behe), or you run like scared rabbits (Dembski).

  110. #110 Jon S
    June 1, 2007

    1. Mr. SLC, Cain’s sister is mentioned is Genesis 5:1-4. Adam lived 930 years and had other sons and daughters. The Bible doesn’t mention her name, nor the names of her other brothers and sisters. Only Cain, Abel, and Seth are named. Where are you trying to go with this?

    2. I was referring to the New International Version of the Bible, which is the common translation of the various churches I’ve attended all across America. I also checked the New King James, New American Standard Bible, The Message, New Living Translation, King James Version, American Standard Version, and they all indicate that Adam had other sons and daughters. I think you’re being caught up in a word game. Genesis 1 gives the order of creation. What you’re reading in Genesis 2 of your King James Version (I think you’re referring to verse 19) is that God formed the animals. It’s not meant to imply that they came after Adam, only that God had formed them. We use this type of plain speech every day, and most people don’t get confused, so I’m not sure why you’re having problems with this. If you can’t read the original Greek or Hebrew, try reading several different english versions.

    3. Mr. SLC, modern day science demands that everything is explained by naturalistic means, thereby excluding God or anything supernatural. Thus, any conclusion that does not have a naturalistic explanation is automatically rejected. The supernatural, by definition, is ‘unscientific’, according to the scientific establishment. So how can you honestly say that you’d accept a preponderance of evidence supporting a young earth if it contradicted what you already consider to be a naturalistic explanation? I think any evidence that points to a young earth will be explained away by evolutionists, or they’ll simply interpret the data to fit their model. I now challenge you, Mr. SLC, to assume, for arguments sake, that the universe is less than 10,000 years, and see if you can figure out why all these brilliant scientists could get it wrong, and how you could make sense out of the world. If you accept my challenge, I bet you’d be surprised what you’d discover.

    4. Your name calling only demonstrates your intolerance. It’s also why the Creation Museum was built, and why it will have such a major impact throughout the world. I hope you accept my challenge.

  111. #111 Jon S
    June 1, 2007

    Science Avenger- I’m not sure why you’re disputing my terminology, calling me dishonest, and insulting me. This seems to be a standard anti-creationist ploy… the use of verbal abuse to make you feel superior? Relax, dude.

    You champion the court system, but you don’t seem to realize that that’s a political arena, and it was a failure. Evolutionists never had a case; the sticker on textbooks wasn’t any more religious than your faith in evolution. The sticker actually encouraged students to think critically about evolution. But evolutionists can’t tolerate the American public thinking for themselves, so they put a halt to it so that they could indoctrinate children in evolution and fill them with their propaganda. Truth is independent of what the court system legislates. You may claim victory, but it only demonstrates intolerance, and the American public is picking that up. Enjoy the trials; the more you guys win, the more you help us make our case.

  112. #112 SLC
    June 2, 2007

    Re Jon S

    1. I have a flash for Mr. Jon S. The earth is 4.5 billion years old, the universe is 13.5 billion years old. All the scientific evidence points in that direction. All so-called scientific evidence pointing in another direction has been discredited. Mr. Jon Ss’ contention that all the worlds scientists, including all the Nobel Prize winners are wrong and that the cranks he quotes are right is evidence of mental instability on his part. Mr. Jon S, you belong in a mental institution. I hope that Mr. Jon S gets the help he do desperately needs.

    2. I have another flash for Mr. Jon S. He and I and chimpanzees have a common ancestor who lived some 6 million years ago. Don’t like that idea. Tough bananas. The evidence is overwhelming.

    3. With respect to the sticker, I would suggest that Mr. Jon S do a Google search on Prof. Ken Miller (a devout Roman Catholic by the way) who was interviewed by a reporter in Atlanta concerning the sticker which was placed on a textbook he co-authored. As he pointed out, he had no problem with the idea of the sticker, provided it was modified to remove the reference to the theory of evolution and replace it with a reference to all scientific propositions. All scientific hypotheses and theories should be critically examined, not just evolution. As I stated previously, all scientific propositions, including the theory of evolution, are tentative and subject to reevaluation and even abandonment, based on new information. Unfortunately for Mr. Jon S, the likelihood of definitive scientific information being found that negates the notion of common descent is about as likely as Mr. Jon S winning the lottery next week.

  113. #113 Joe
    June 2, 2007

    Quote Jon S “Science Avenger- I’m not sure why you’re disputing my terminology …” If you can’t understand; maybe it’s you: http://www.apa.org/journals/features/psp7761121.pdf
    This reference gives a scholarly explanation of what Mark Twain once said- “Ignorance gives rise to more certainty than does knowledge.”

  114. #114 Jon S
    June 2, 2007

    SLC- I once believed in an ancient earth, including all the geological timescales, such as the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous. I even mocked Creationists at one point. But then I came to my senses and put those childish ways behind me. I found those beliefs to be thoroughly discredited. Feel free to hurl insults and name calling… I deserve the turnabout. I’ll accept it with humbleness.

    To note, I’d be in favor of what Ken Miller proposes. That actually makes perfect sense. Cheers to something we both agree on!

  115. #115 Stanton
    June 3, 2007

    Jon S,
    You’ve talked alot about how superior Creationism is to the Theory of Evolutionary Biology is at explaining Life as we know it, as well as the fossils of what Life once was, and yet, you have not actually demonstrated this alleged fact.

    Would you be so kind as to demonstrate this?
    So, how would a literal interpretation of the Holy Bible help us determine the phylogeny and life histories of placoderms?

    How would a literal reading of the Holy Bible help us understand trilobites?

    What sort of scientific reports have these five American paleontologists who are Young Earth Creationists, of whom you’ve insisted are superior to all other paleontologists in the United States, written that set them so far above all of their inferior, materialistic competitors?

    Please, as one Christian to another, answer my questions.

  116. #116 MartinM
    June 3, 2007

    Mr. SLC, modern day science demands that everything is explained by naturalistic means, thereby excluding God or anything supernatural. Thus, any conclusion that does not have a naturalistic explanation is automatically rejected. The supernatural, by definition, is ‘unscientific’, according to the scientific establishment. So how can you honestly say that you’d accept a preponderance of evidence supporting a young earth if it contradicted what you already consider to be a naturalistic explanation?

    I think you’re missing the point here by quite a margin. Consider Humphreys’ attempts to use GR to explain the light travel problem. There’s nothing supernatural in there. You won’t find a ‘God’ term in any of the equations he uses. Were it correct, it could be published in science journals and taught in science classes. It doesn’t magically stop being science just because it’s being used in defence of a religious belief.

    Indeed, the entire point of the creation museum, and of groups like Answers in Genesis, is the claim that there’s more to YEC than just ‘Goddidit!’ When you claim that methodological naturalism rules out YEC a priori, you’re admitting that YEC really is just magic dressed up in scientific terminology to make it sound better. You’re doing your fellow travellers a tremendous disservice.

    I now challenge you, Mr. SLC, to assume, for arguments sake, that the universe is less than 10,000 years, and see if you can figure out why all these brilliant scientists could get it wrong, and how you could make sense out of the world.

    Oh, that’s easy. If God deliberately made the Universe look exactly like it was 13.7 billion years old, complete with appearance of a history that never took place, then inevitably science would always give the wrong answers.

    It’s also why the Creation Museum was built, and why it will have such a major impact throughout the world

    Not likely, I’m afraid. Creationism is largely a US thing. While you’ll find pockets elsewhere, it barely even registers here in the UK. Most of Europe is much the same, with the obvious exception of Turkey, where Islamic creationists are pretty big. Which leads to an interesting side note – why exactly do you suppose that supporters of evolution represent pretty much all different faiths and philosophies, whereas supporters of creationism are limited to fundamentalists of various religious groups sharing a creation story?

  117. #117 Stanton
    June 3, 2007

    Well, MartinM, to nitpick with you, there are the various Hindu fundamentalists, spearheaded primarily by the HareKrishnas, but, as far as I know, YECs despise them for being pagans, while most mainstream Hindus tend to ignore them when they expound on the evils of “evolutionism.”

  118. #118 MartinM
    June 3, 2007

    Good point. I’d forgotten about Vedic creationists.

  119. #119 Jon S
    June 3, 2007

    Stanton- I have demonstrated that Creationism explains the facts much better than the theory of evolution many times before; however, as expected, those who disagree tend to claim that our arguments have been discredited. But when I take a look at their anti-creationist arguments, it seems that whoever has supposedly discredited the creationists really didn’t understand the creationist point in the first place, created strawman arguments, or fell prey to other falacies and myths. So it’s ‘dishonest’ when they claim that they have discredited Creationism. It’s difficult to overcome such ingrained bias. From what I’ve observed, diehard evolutionists aren’t interested in understanding what we really believe or real discussion; they’re more interested in insulting and name calling, which, in fact, makes them feel superior in intellect, integrity, and morality. Here’s a sample of what I’ve brought up in previous posts: The almost complete absence of evidence of erosion or soil layers or the activity of living things at the upper surface of the various strata. Polystrate fossils (usually trees) that cut through more than one layer of rock. Soft-sediment deformation. Many fossils that show (require) very rapid burial and fossilization; for example, soft parts (jellyfish, animal feces, scales and fins of fish). In the end it’s the interpretation of the evidence that determines which side is right, but I feel the evidence is better explained by a young earth. If you reject what scripture says regarding the origins of man and the earth, however, logically you will only accept naturalistic interpretations from fallible men who weren’t there at the beginning of creation and who can never prove they’re right. But if we trust scripture, then we can take confidence that God gave us an accurate description of what took place.

    You asked how would a literal interpretation of the Holy Bible would help us determine the phylogeny and life histories of placoderms? What scripture teaches is that God created all the living creatures of the sea on day 5 of creation according to their kind. We obviously don’t know how many of these creatures he initially created, only that they’ll reproduce according to their kind. So the creatures of the sea today are indeed ancestors of the original kind. For example, we don’t know what the original star fish looked like, but the starfish we see today are ancestors of that original starfish and come in tremendous variety based on the genetic information of the very first. Likewise today’s sharks are ancestors of the original shark kind, and today’s wales are ancestors of the original wale kind. And that’s exactly what we observe today. Wales give birth to wales, sharks give birth to sharks, and starfish reproduce starfish. We never see any evolution in the sense that new organisms are arising with new information not present in the previous kind. Trilobites aren’t any different. The original trilobite kind was created on day 5, and at some point in the past they became extinct.

    If you’re interested in what scientific reports Creationist paleontologists have done, simply do some research. It’s not that hard to find this information if you put your mind to it. I supplied the names, so now you can check for yourself.

    As one Christian brother to another I hope you know that God’s word can be trusted in all areas, including what it says about history and our origins. If scripture is wrong, then our faith is in vain, for then we have no basis for knowing right and wrong, what sin is, or what truth is.

  120. #120 Stanton
    June 3, 2007

    If you demonstrated this as well as you’ve claimed, I wouldn’t have asked you these questions in the first place.
    Among other things, “poly-substrate fossils” are formed when either an organism, such as a tree, is buried in a mudslide, and is not compressed during fossilization, or is slowly buried as sediment accumulates (do realize that most trees, save baobab trees, do not instantaneously rot away upon death), or if a fossil is eroded partially out of its original matrix and is then reburied. If you actually read and learned about fossilization like you claimed to have once done, you would have known this.

    You have not answered my question about what the Bible says about Placoderm phylogeny and life histories. Does the Bible say that all placoderms constitute one “kind,” or are each species a “kind” of placoderm? How many species of placoderm did God create? What is the mystery fish, Stensioella heintzi, according to the Bible? Is it a chimaera or a placoderm? How come there is no evidence of any humans ever interacting with placoderms, even though placoderm fossils have literally been found on every continent?
    Nor did you bother to answer anything about what the Bible says about trilobites, either. Exactly how many “kinds” of trilobite did God create? What was the reason God gave, according to the Bible, for annihilating them all? If the Bible is the alpha and omega of all knowledge like you claim, it would say so, wouldn’t it?

    Unlike you, I realize that the Bible was never intended to be a science textbooks, and the Ancient Hebrews would probably be horrified to have seen it used as such. I read it for spiritual advice, not for tips on how to do my assignments. I mean, how on earth can you claim that the Bible is totally infallible, when it says that hyraxes (or rabbits, if you prefer the King James’ translation) are hoofed, and chew cud, when neither rabbits nor hyraxes are hoofed cud-chewers?
    Maybe you should read about what Saint Augustine said about reading the Bible literally.
    I already tried searching for those legendary Creationist paleontologists, and what little I found did not impress me at all.
    Furthermore, “Wales” is a country in Great Britain, and can not give birth.

  121. #121 Stanton
    June 3, 2007

    Also, you’re dead wrong about the “diehard evolutionists.” If you actually paid attention to them rather than preaching at them, you’d realize that “diehard evolutionists” are keenly interested in how living and extinct organisms interact, or interacted with the environment, something the vast majority of Creationists seem keenly uninterested in learning.
    If I’m wrong, Jon S, can you point out a Creationist paleontologist to me from the 20th or 21st centuries who specializes in studying trilobites or fossil fishes?

  122. #122 KEvin
    June 4, 2007

    “Stanton- I have demonstrated that Creationism explains the facts much better than the theory of evolution many times before, in the bathroom, in front of the mirror. When I was finished I had to clean up the mess”

    Jon S, please try to list clearly and completely the “facts” that support your position. Not half-baked sentances or disgusting details.

  123. #123 Stanton
    June 4, 2007

    What details?
    He gave me details?
    I thought he gave me the standard Creationist tripe about how sea creatures were made on the 5th day, and can only reproduce in “like kinds.”

  124. #124 Kevin
    June 4, 2007

    The messy part….

  125. #125 JonS
    June 4, 2007

    Stanton- Your interpretation of polystrate fossils is the evolutionist paradigm. The Creationist interpretation is that these organisms were buried quickly, not over many millions of years.

    And of course I did answer your question about what the Bible says about Placodermi. You just weren’t paying attention, which is usually the case in debates like this. The Bible doesn’t mention placodermi because the term wasn’t invented at that time (as a fellow Christian you should know all this). What we can say regarding “kind” is that it’s determined by whether or not the organisms can successfully produce offspring. So a lion and a tiger can mate and produce tigons and ligers. Therefore we know they descended from the same original created kind.

    You ask how come there is no evidence of any humans ever interacting with placoderms, even though placoderm fossils have literally been found on every continent? Well, the same reason why there aren’t human fossils interacting with coelacanths or wollemi pines, and many other living fossils.

    You asked why God annihilated all the trilobites. But again, as a fellow Christian, you should know the answer to this. God doesn’t directly explain why they all died off any more than He explained the death of any other organism. But we know that when Adam sinned, he brought death into the world. But let me guess, you don’t believe in a literal Adam, do you?

    You claim that I don’t realize the Bible was never intended to be a science textbook. Actually, I do realize that. And I’m glad the Bible isn’t a science textbook, because they’re outdated after a year when they weed out all the wrong facts accumulated by scientists and come up with new answers based on new facts and data, and on and on… But the Bible can be relied upon and doesn’t change. II Timothy 3:16 gives a good account of the reliability of scripture. But the Bible is an excellent history book which does touch on real historical events that can be used by scientists in their work. For example, if we know about a historical event, such as an earthquake in the year 500 a.d., and scientists ignore that data and publish a date of 10 million years based on radiometric dating, should we concede that the historical text is not a science textbook and thus should be discredited as unreliable? According to your theory, perhaps, but not to those interested in truth.

    As for your hyrax question, the Hebrew phrase for ‘chew the cud’ simply means ‘raising up what has been swallowed’. Coneys and rabbits go through such similar motions to ruminants that Linnaeus, the father of modern classification (and a creationist), at first classified them as ruminants. Also, rabbits and hares practice refection, which is essentially the same principle as rumination, and does indeed ‘raise up what has been swallowed’. The food goes right through the rabbit and is passed out as a special type of dropping. These are re-eaten, and can now nourish the rabbit as they have already been partly digested. It’s not an error that ‘chewing the cud’ now has a more restrictive meaning than in Moses’ day.

    Mr. Stanton, as a Christian, what do you really believe? When does the Bible actually begin to contain factual statements? Can you determine when the lineages in Genesis talk about real people in history? Did Jesus really rise from the dead, and is he the Son of God? Is there a heaven and hell? Most atheists will tell you evolution and science has proven these are all fairy tails, yet you claim to be a Christian. Are there any parts of the Bible you believe in that science has contradicted? You’re caught in the middle, and many will say you’re just as mentally ill as me :-)

  126. #126 Stanton
    June 4, 2007

    Just to let you know, I only ask these questions because I want to see how well Creationism is capable of helping to describe the natural world. Given as how you make a song and dance out of evading every single one of my questions, you give me the distinct impression that Creationists do not care at all about learning about the natural world or its inhabitants.
    Also, your “cud-chewing” theory about rabbits in the Bible is crap, given as how the original texts refer to hyraxes, which do not chew cud, nor do they eat their own feces like rabbits do.
    Furthermore, are you saying that because I think that a literal interpretation of the Bible is of no use explaining the phylogenies and life histories of prehistoric animals, I’m just as big an idiot as you are? I’ll can the sarcasm and confess that I’m extremely disappointed you think so lowly of those people who don’t agree with the way you mangle facts and spout untruths in Our Lord’s name, including other fellow Christians. Among other things, unlike you, I don’t take my being a Christian as a license to become a gibbering fool, mostly as the Commandment, “Thou Shalt Not Take Thy Lord’s Name In Vain,” refers specifically to things like this. And contrary to your judgment, the vast majority of atheists I’ve met respect me regardless of my spiritual beliefs. If the atheists in this thread thought I was as mentally ill as you, don’t you think they would have said so to me already?

  127. #127 Stanton
    June 4, 2007

    What I’m trying to drive at is that how are “God created all sea “kinds” on the 5th day separate but equal” and “God annihilated the trilobites for reasons we mere mortals will never understand” informative?
    Not only do you insist that Creationism is informative, when I balk about it not being informative, you then call both my sanity and spirituality into question.
    Is that what real Christians like you are supposed to do?

  128. #128 David D.G.
    June 4, 2007

    You claim that I don’t realize the Bible was never intended to be a science textbook. Actually, I do realize that. And I’m glad the Bible isn’t a science textbook, because they’re outdated after a year when they weed out all the wrong facts accumulated by scientists and come up with new answers based on new facts and data, and on and on… But the Bible can be relied upon and doesn’t change.

    Jon S. will evidently dig as deep a hole as necessary to make sure that the point sails well over his head. I’m not sure whether this is pure insanity, pure dishonesty, or a combination of the two.

    ~David D.G.

  129. #129 Stanton
    June 4, 2007

    Obviously, Jon S refuses to realize that the Bible, itself, has changed, too, given as how the original text referred to hyraxes, not rabbits, auroches and not unicorns, Moses with a halo of light, instead of horns on his head, and putting “poisoners” rather than witches to death.

  130. #130 Jon S
    June 5, 2007

    Stanton- I certainly tried my best to answer your questions, as well as others who’ve put forth questions. You accuse me of evading your questions, but I don’t think I have. My posts have been rather lengthy, but I’ve tried to keep them fairly concise, so I’m sorry if you feel I was being evasive. Of course you didn’t answer my questions, did you? Now when I post a response or reply of anykind I’m well aware of the hostility and abuse I’ll receive, but that doesn’t bother me so much. I also know there’s little chance my responses will satisfy anyone on this blog. However, I stand firm on the Word of God, and I hope you do too. It’s not my place to judge your faith, but, I certainly hope it doesn’t bother you to be challenged in your faith, which is my intention. Do you know what you believe and why? Fellow Christians ought to sharpen one another as iron sharpens iron, so forgive me if you feel I’ve been judging you. I just want to challenge you to trust in God’s word over man.

  131. #131 Stanton
    June 5, 2007

    You answered my questions?
    Please refresh my memory about what you said the Bible said about the life histories of placoderms.

  132. #132 Stanton
    June 5, 2007

    On second thought, nevermind, because the reason why you never bothered to point out any YECreationists who specialize in placoderms or trilobites is because there are around 2 Creationists in North America who are capable of pronouncing the word “placoderm,” let alone capable of being able to visualize them as once-living fish and not chunks of concrete.
    I might as well confess that the reason why I’m so adamantly hostile towards Young Earth Creationists is because out of the 50 or so I’ve spoken to, only four of them deign to speak to me as though I were human. The rest either patronize me as though I’m some retarded kindergartener, or they show me the sort of decency a schoolyard bully shows a three-legged dog. Why? Because I think that if God intended the Hebrews to write the Bible as a science book, it would have been Encyclopedia Jerusalem?
    Really, why do I need to trust the word of God as written in the Bible, over men’s word about the questions I want answered if the only things God said about the questions I want answered are in the rocks themselves, and not the Bible?

  133. #133 Science Avenger
    June 5, 2007

    Stanton said: If the atheists in this thread thought I was as mentally ill as you, don’t you think they would have said so to me already?

    OK, this atheist will tell you that you are mentally ill for trying to have a rational conversation with someone who would say something like this:

    Jon S said: Also, rabbits and hares practice refection, which is essentially the same principle as rumination, and does indeed ‘raise up what has been swallowed’.

    This illustrates how biblical literalists will stretch the meaning of as many words as they need as far as they need to protect their little infallibility fantasy. Every book written is infallible by their standards.

    Partially throwing up what you’ve half digested for more chewing is not the same as eating one’s shit, not by a long shot. I invite any doubters to do a comparative test. Just because shit comes out of your mouth when you open it doesn’t make it true of everyone else.

  134. #134 Stanton
    June 5, 2007

    Well, apparently I’m just a masochist in that respect.

    And like I said, the Bible originally referred to hyraxes, and not rabbits, as being ruminating animals, which are actually hindgut fermentors, which are not ruminates like cows, nor refectors, like rabbits, hares or conies.

  135. #135 Jon S
    June 5, 2007

    Stanton says “I might as well confess that the reason why I’m so adamantly hostile towards Young Earth Creationists is because out of the 50 or so I’ve spoken to, only four of them deign to speak to me as though I were human. The rest either patronize me as though I’m some retarded kindergartener, or they show me the sort of decency a schoolyard bully shows a three-legged dog.”

    I’m sorry to hear that. This demonstrates that we’re all sinners and are in need of salvation.

    Stanton says “Really, why do I need to trust the word of God as written in the Bible, over men’s word about the questions I want answered if the only things God said about the questions I want answered are in the rocks themselves, and not the Bible?”

    Well, to begin with, God made the rocks, so he probably knows more about them than anyone ;-). 2nd, for Christians, the Bible is our firm foundation and can be trusted in every area of our lives.

    Science Avenger says “This illustrates how biblical literalists will stretch the meaning of as many words as they need as far as they need to protect their little infallibility fantasy. Every book written is infallible by their standards.”

    Well, yes, every book of the Bible is infallible because we believe it’s God’s word. What do you hold to as your authority? Your own intellect? Darwin? Dawkins? Scientists who believe in evolution? Alien lifeforms? Big foot? I’ll stand by God’s word any time, thank you very much.

  136. #136 David D.G.
    June 6, 2007

    Stanton said: If the atheists in this thread thought I was as mentally ill as you, don’t you think they would have said so to me already?

    OK, this atheist will tell you that you are mentally ill for trying to have a rational conversation with someone who would say something like this:

    Jon S said: Also, rabbits and hares practice refection, which is essentially the same principle as rumination, and does indeed ‘raise up what has been swallowed’.

    This illustrates how biblical literalists will stretch the meaning of as many words as they need as far as they need to protect their little infallibility fantasy. Every book written is infallible by their standards.

    Partially throwing up what you’ve half digested for more chewing is not the same as eating one’s shit, not by a long shot. I invite any doubters to do a comparative test. Just because shit comes out of your mouth when you open it doesn’t make it true of everyone else.

    Posted by: Science Avenger | June 5, 2007 08:49 PM

    (*applauds Science Avenger*) Bravo!

    ~David D.G.

  137. #137 Kevin
    June 6, 2007

    “This demonstrates that we’re all sinners and are in need of salvation.”

    ha ha

    no it does not. It demonstrates that those people are full of crap, as the above quote confirms that you are as well.

    also your post of June 5, 2007 06:32 PM was an answer just like Monica Goodling’s answers to the committee. on and on without ever getting to the point or actually answering anthing.

  138. #138 Stanton
    June 6, 2007

    I’m sorry to hear that. This demonstrates that we’re all sinners and are in need of salvation.

    Then can you at least do me the favor of explaining why at least two of the aforementioned Creationists I argued with demonstrated that they apparently have the power to command God to deny me eternal salvation for the sin of not sharing their point of view?

  139. #139 MartinM
    June 6, 2007

    I’ll stand by God’s word any time, thank you very much.

    Correction. You’ll stand by your interpretation of God’s word any time. The irony is that your interpretation is skewed by the Englightenment, of all things. The notion of ‘truth’ as ‘reducible to facts’ is a fairly new thing.

  140. #140 Kevin
    June 6, 2007

    Correction. You’ll stand by your interpretation of God’s word any time. The irony is that your interpretation is skewed by the Englightenment, of all things. The notion of ‘truth’ as ‘reducible to facts’ is a fairly new thing.

    Posted by: MartinM | June 6, 2007 04:22 AM

    Correction to Correction

    Jon will stand by his interpretation of some squiggly lines on an old parchment found in an empty wine bottle left in the desert by some wild-haired drunken lay-a-bouts.

  141. #141 Stanton
    June 6, 2007

    Correction: the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in clay jars hidden in a cave.

  142. #142 Science Avenger
    June 6, 2007

    Jon S exposed himself thusly: Well, yes, every book of the Bible is infallible because we believe it’s God’s word.

    Here we have a nice summary of fundamentalist epistemology: I believe it, therefore it is true. And they wonder why science has been dragging religion along behind it on the path of knowledge all these years.

    What do you hold to as your authority?

    Here we see creo projection. They cannot fathom NOT having something treated as an absolute authority, so they assume everyone else has one as well. The idea that science’s power comes from EVERYTHING being subject to critical scrutiny, as Ken Miller so brilliantly expressed here, is completely anathema to them.

  143. #143 hoary puccoon
    June 6, 2007

    Science Avenger says, ‘…science’s power comes from EVERYTHING being subject to critical scrutiny….’
    Precisely. And the net result, as far as creationists are concerned, is that every argument they present against evolution has already been considered over and over again, and found wanting. It isn’t that scientists are arrogant when they refuse to reopen a debate that was settled a generation or two earlier. It’s just that it seems boring and pointless.
    If creationists presented new information– and if they were willing to adjust their views when their theories ran into counter evidence– they would be listened to with respect by the scientific community, whether they had advanced degrees or not. But then, of course, they wouldn’t be creationists, they’d be scientists themselves.

  144. #144 Kevin
    June 6, 2007

    Correction: the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in clay jars hidden in a cave.

    Correction Correction Correction

    and I BELIEVE that those clay jars were used to store wine and I understand that the cave was in the desert.

    I was given this knowledge by an absolute authority.

  145. #145 Jon S
    June 7, 2007

    Stanton asked “Then can you at least do me the favor of explaining why at least two of the aforementioned Creationists I argued with demonstrated that they apparently have the power to command God to deny me eternal salvation for the sin of not sharing their point of view?”

    It sounds like their pride was getting in the way. In 1 Peter 5:5-6 God tells us that he opposes the proud and gives grace to the humble. It’s easy to get carried away when we’re passionate about something, but we still need to be careful not to let our pride get in the way, because, as you can see, that turns people off. I try to be respectful as much as possible, but sometimes that’s hard, especially when you’re trying to win an argument. If they’re not being loving, then I’d suggest being a better Christian than them and return their hostility with love.

  146. #146 Stanton
    June 8, 2007

    It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation.

    The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19–20, Chapt. 19 [AD 408]

  147. #147 Kevin
    June 8, 2007

    A bit mroe news: http://www.religionnewsblog.com/17833/27-million-anti-evolution-museum-to-open-soon

    and it seems that Jason Rosenhouse is promoting the ruin of morality:

    “There also will be an exhibit suggesting that belief in evolution is the root of most of modern society’s evils. It shows models of children leaving a church where the minister believes in evolution. Soon the girl is on the phone to Planned Parenthood, while the boy cruises the Internet for pornography sites.”

  148. #148 Kevin
    June 8, 2007

    A bit more news: http://www.religionnewsblog.com/17833/27-million-anti-evolution-museum-to-open-soon

    and it seems that Jason Rosenhouse is promoting the ruin of morality in Amerika:

    “There also will be an exhibit suggesting that belief in evolution is the root of most of modern society’s evils. It shows models of children leaving a church where the minister believes in evolution. Soon the girl is on the phone to Planned Parenthood, while the boy cruises the Internet for pornography sites.”

  149. #149 Stanton
    June 8, 2007

    So, then, is Ken Ham also going to put up an exhibit showing Steve Irwin burning in Hell for not having repented the unforgivable sin of accepting Evolution, too?

  150. #150 katzenbaum
    January 13, 2008

    We can’t help but think how embarrassed believers in evolution will be ten years from now — perhaps even five years — as science is rapidly closing in on this outdated theory.

    To those who rely on name-calling, you reveal your desperation. Many of us who are considering the intelligent design arguments are Jewish and have no beliefs — so much for labeling ID as a cover for creationism and labeling us as evangelicals. You reveal your own narrow-minded, hate-oriented thinking. Perhaps evolution is your religion. But respect those who choose not to believe.

The site is currently under maintenance and will be back shortly. New comments have been disabled during this time, please check back soon.