June 28, 2006

Human Genome Pioneer Finds God, Expresses Belief In "Theistic Evolution"
— Ace

Which seems to be evolution (Darwinism!) but according to God's preconceived plan.

Among Collins’s most controversial beliefs is that of “theistic evolution”, which claims natural selection is the tool that God chose to create man. In his version of the theory, he argues that man will not evolve further.

“I see God’s hand at work through the mechanism of evolution. If God chose to create human beings in his image and decided that the mechanism of evolution was an elegant way to accomplish that goal, who are we to say that is not the way,” he says.

I don't buy it, but this sort of theory at least doesn't contradict the evidence at hand.

Collins believes that science cannot be used to refute the existence of God because it is confined to the “natural” world. In this light he believes miracles are a real possibility. “If one is willing to accept the existence of God or some supernatural force outside nature then it is not a logical problem to admit that, occasionally, a supernatural force might stage an invasion,” he says.

It seems to me that, if one is going to believe in a faith-based theory of speciation, this one is least objectionable in terms of science. It's not really falsifiable, nor does it impose any dogma on scientific research, which is how I prefer my religious beliefs.

But that's just my humble opinion, of course.


Thanks to JackStraw.

Posted by: Ace at 12:14 PM | Comments (162)
Post contains 259 words, total size 2 kb.

1 I think he's pretty close to the truth. I also think it's obvious that humans are no longer evolving physically, but are now evolving mentally. Our rather generalized bodies are good enough for us, and besides, physical evolution usually results in becoming highly specialized, and therefore vulnerable to small changes in the environment. Like the dinosaurs, for instance.

Posted by: robert108 at June 28, 2006 12:32 PM (+7P4z)

2 He may have come to share with many political thinkers the opinion that, if God didn't exist, we would have had to make him up.

Posted by: Kralizec at June 28, 2006 12:32 PM (m5x6c)

3 yeah, but what if newton had an abrams tank?

Posted by: mcmorris at June 28, 2006 12:39 PM (FGtjw)

4 Robert Flew came to the same conclusion, a few years back. He was one of the leading atheist thinkers and writers, and he finally said "...you know what? After thinking about this for years and studying all the facts and information... yeah, there's got to be some kind of God."

And really, science, common sense, and logic all dictate that there has to have been some sort of creator, even Einstein came to that conclusion. The only real debate is what this creator is like.

And now the spam filter won't let me link to my website. nice.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 28, 2006 12:52 PM (Pwzb0)

5 I've long thought that. I'm just a moron, though.

Newton and an Abrams?! Whaaa???

Posted by: John at June 28, 2006 12:55 PM (Dc9q6)

6 Here we go again!

Posted by: BrewFan at June 28, 2006 01:01 PM (0AD+O)

7 Placebo effect….

Power of imagination…

Never to late to come to conclusion….

There is a power, which exists and creates wonders…..

And Collins will not be that one chosen to open this window…

Posted by: Angélique at June 28, 2006 01:03 PM (B9jx0)

8 I do wonder what will become of Intelligent Design arguments if, someday, we chance across an alien broadcast from a species, and a civilization, that's had some billion-year head-start on us. (And no, I have no idea, myself.) How inferior, even rudimentary, our design may seem in comparison.

Intelligent Design presumes the excellence of homo sapiens: hence the species' supposed "design". But is our design the girl whom men judge to be beautiful, just so long as she's the only girl in town?

Posted by: tex at June 28, 2006 01:07 PM (bF/st)

9 Any deity that had to resort to evolution to create life as we know it is a weak, stupid or both.

www.ephesians3-9.com/view/?pageID=72226

Posted by: DL at June 28, 2006 01:08 PM (jGip9)

10 And really, science, common sense, and logic all dictate that there has to have been some sort of creator

No they don't.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 01:20 PM (O0soJ)

11 Darwinism is a faith-based theory.

Posted by: djs at June 28, 2006 01:24 PM (Zu59f)

12 And I've fixed the spam filter.

PERMANENTLY

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 01:24 PM (O0soJ)

13 What if Darwin is God?

Posted by: asshat at June 28, 2006 01:25 PM (yHvEo)

14 Darwinism is a faith-based theory.

No it isn't. If you can't distinguish between fact and faith, I have a nice mountain to sell you.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 01:25 PM (O0soJ)

15 I like the solution as well, except for the 'we aren't evolving further' clause. Why is this here? Who is to say that we are currently in God's image? The evidence weighs against it.

Besides, if evolution has stopped then we wouldn't have mutation (which we do), and the ability develop immunities, and regional specialization, like blue eyes and dark skin.

It's attractive, it just overreaches.

Posted by: mputtre at June 28, 2006 01:30 PM (Bx/jv)

16 And I've fixed the spam filter.

PERMANENTLY


I just love how on Aces comment bar this comment is followed by what looks like 3 separate spams from irvin

Posted by: HowardDevore at June 28, 2006 01:31 PM (tlV7G)

17 And I've fixed the spam filter.

PERMANENTLY


You keep using this word permanently.....

Posted by: JackStraw at June 28, 2006 01:33 PM (rnOZq)

18 "Darwinism is a faith-based theory."

"No it isn't."

So why, in recent years, have many nontheistic and antitheistic scientists abandoned the good ship Darwin in favor of other nontheistic theories? What do you know that they do not?

Posted by: DL at June 28, 2006 01:33 PM (jGip9)

19 >>natural selection is the tool that God chose to create man<<

Wet on several levels. Let's start with the most obvious. Natural selection is, by definition, a means of discernment, and discernment requires comparison. You have to create first--and then discern.

Also, was Abel the first "naturally selected" unfortunate?

Posted by: Dave in VA at June 28, 2006 01:37 PM (ouyA9)

20 Another note on astrobiology-vs-ID:

I think one of the benefits of Martian astrobiology research is the potential counter-argument it offers Intelligent Design.

If, for the sake of argument, one says ID truly exists and for our benefit, then ID should not have meddled in Martian evolution at all. As Martian life could not have contributed towards the development of homo sapiens, Mars has no need of ID. Martian evolution should therefore have been limited to mere chemical evolution, or at best primitive cells lacking any interior complexity. Any greater evolution would be, by the lights of ID, a pointless freak of nature, if not an outright impossibility.

On the other hand, if ID does not meddle in evolution, then a Martian evolution comparable to that of the early Earth would make perfect sense. Martian seas of the Noachian period were sufficiently warm and ph-balanced for life. If the seas were also long-lived, then it should not be surprising to find that the fossil seabeds hold remnants of complex biological evolution.

Right?

Posted by: tex at June 28, 2006 01:38 PM (bF/st)

21 Is is correct to say that Darwinism in it's totality is still only a theory. Is is incorrect to say that evolution and natural selection as a method for the change and adaption of organisms is still only a theory. Micro-evolution is observable fact. Why do people insist that God's method of creation has to be so crude and unsophisticated as the Genesis account, then turn right around and talk about The Lord moving in mysterious ways?

Posted by: Henry at June 28, 2006 01:47 PM (jnxi7)

22 Intelligent Design presumes the excellence of homo sapiens

Not at all. I wish people would read up more on ID before pontificating about it. Intelligent Design looks at a much more basic, tiny biological scale, not at finished products, although if you put hundreds if not thousands of bits together that are highly improbable if not from design then you've got an even lower probability that any other explaination fits.

If, for the sake of argument, one says ID truly exists and for our benefit, then ID should not have meddled in Martian evolution at all.

And you put a qualifier in there that ID doesn't even consider: "for our benefit." Leave that off and examine your martian theory again.

No they don't.

Try reading up on the cosmological proof of God some time I can do it here but I'm not sure anyone wants to read through it. Trust me, the conclusion is inevitable - if you remember that proof does not have to be beyond any possibility of doubt. It just has to be beyond reasonable doubt. That is, something is proven when the alternative is more silly and implausible than what you've demonstrated.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 28, 2006 01:48 PM (Pwzb0)

23 So why, in recent years, have many nontheistic and antitheistic scientists abandoned the good ship Darwin in favor of other nontheistic theories? What do you know that they do not?

Because they are fools or frauds.

In the case of the Discovery Institute (the people behind Intelligent Design), both.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 01:48 PM (O0soJ)

24 It's an epistemologically bankrupt belief, simply because of its non-falsifiability. It brings nothing new to the table. Says Collins:“If one is willing to accept the existence of God or some supernatural force outside nature then it is not a logical problem to admit that, occasionally, a supernatural force might stage an invasion,”That's merely tautologous. If I'm willing to accept the existence of a fairy called Tinkerbell (not to be confused with Andrew Sullivan) at the bottom of my garden (despite there not being the teensiest shred of evidence), then it's not a logical problem to admit that believing in her will bring her back from the brink of death. Come on children! Clap hands and say, "I believe in fairies!" That's it! Good old Tink!*

Richard Dawkins took a big cluebat to this sort of feeble posturing in an excellent essay: Snake Oil and Holy Water. A sample:Agnostic conciliation, which is the decent liberal bending over backward to concede as much as possible to anybody who shouts loud enough, reaches ludicrous lengths in the following common piece of sloppy thinking. It goes roughly like this: You can't prove a negative (so far so good). Science has no way to disprove the existence of a supreme being (this is strictly true). Therefore, belief or disbelief in a supreme being is a matter of pure, individual inclination, and both are therefore equally deserving of respectful attention! When you say it like that, the fallacy is almost self-evident; we hardly need spell out the reductio ad absurdum. As my colleague, the physical chemist Peter Atkins, puts it, we must be equally agnostic about the theory that there is a teapot in orbit around the planet Pluto. We can't disprove it. But that doesn't mean the theory that there is a teapot is on level terms with the theory that there isn't.This is a puerile and lazy theism. It's God-of-the-gaps at best, and that's a losing proposition.




* the class of things that exist only because people believe in them is in fact described by the Tinkerbell Effect.

Posted by: David Gillies at June 28, 2006 01:49 PM (RC1AQ)

25 Why are you people so obsessed with evolution?

Posted by: shawn at June 28, 2006 01:50 PM (yp3GE)

26 tex, you've pretty well laid out the argument that ID can and does only have room for God as the "Designer", and any talk of an alien "Designer" is disingenuous.

Collins' views aren't particularly novel. It's the only way an intellectually honest Christian can reconcile his beliefs with the fact of evolution.

Posted by: dorkafork at June 28, 2006 01:52 PM (ksDNy)

27 To sum it up very quickly:

Evolution can be divided into two parts: Fact and Theory.

The Fact of Evolution is simply this: New species have arisen over time.

This is true. This Francis Collins accepts it; even the weasels at the Discovery Institute accept it. (Publically, anyway. They try to hide their Young-Earth Creationists from the public view.)

Evolution happened. It is still happening. We have seen it happen. There is absolutely no question about the facts. Evolution is real.

The there's the Theory of Evolution, which is the explanation for how (not why; how) Evolution happens. That's not a fact; it's just an explanation for the facts. But it is a very good, reliable, extremely thoroughly tested explanation.

Francis Collins could be right; God could be directing Evolution from some distant remove. It appears that Evolution takes place entirely naturally, but God can be subtle, if you like. As Ace noted, this is known as Theistic Evolution, and scientists really have no problem with it.

Intelligent Design is a different kettle of rotten fish. It claims to prove that Evolution could not take place naturally. These claims are entirely unsupported by evidence.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 01:55 PM (O0soJ)

28 Pixy,

"Because they are fools or frauds."

"In the case of the Discovery Institute (the people behind Intelligent Design), both."

You need to slow down and read my posts and think about your replies before you type them.

I specifically stated *NON*theistic and *ANTI*thesitic types who have renounced Darwinism but who have NOT gone over to ID or TE.

Try decaf.

Posted by: DL at June 28, 2006 01:56 PM (jGip9)

29 And I've fixed the spam filter.

PERMANENTLY

Once again, blind faith trumps reason.

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 02:01 PM (oZXdi)

30 I specifically stated *NON*theistic and *ANTI*thesitic types who have renounced Darwinism but who have NOT gone over to ID or TE.

Oh, sorry.

I misread it because I don't know of any such thing. Give me an example.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 02:02 PM (O0soJ)

31 Once again, blind faith trumps reason.

Not in this case. I've turned the bloody thing off.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 02:03 PM (O0soJ)

32 Why are you people so obsessed with evolution?

I can't speak for anyone else, but my reason for "obsession" with Darwinism is its implications and the original "Wedge Document."

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 02:08 PM (tnsUn)

33 I misread it because I don't know of any such thing. Give me an example.

That's funny. It says a lot, too.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 02:09 PM (tnsUn)

34 If one is willing to accept the existence of God or some supernatural force outside nature . . .

If God exists outside of nature He is irrelevant to a scientific discussion.

Posted by: at June 28, 2006 02:11 PM (Xs8NS)

35 I'm certainly no more obsessed with evolution than say some are obsessed with illegal imigration. One has implications for the state of state. The other only has implications for the state of man.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 28, 2006 02:11 PM (rnOZq)

36 Oops, 7:11 p.m. was me.

Posted by: Justin at June 28, 2006 02:14 PM (Xs8NS)

37 I can't speak for anyone else, but my reason for "obsession" with Darwinism is its implications and the original "Wedge Document."

You're kidding, right?

You make no assessment at all of the facts or the theory; you just decide that you don't like what some other people have decided the implications are? Social implications, neither connected with nor supported by evolutionary theory in any way?

It's certainly your right to say "I don't like gravity, so I won't believe in it", but it ain't gonna make you fly.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 02:16 PM (O0soJ)

38 It's certainly your right to say "I don't like gravity, so I won't believe in it", but it ain't gonna make you fly.

Darwinism does not equal gravity.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 02:19 PM (tnsUn)

39 It's certainly your right to say "I don't like gravity, so I won't believe in it", but it ain't gonna make you fly.

Probably true. But I'm pretty sure some of the stuff being advertised in the endless stream of spam, will.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 28, 2006 02:20 PM (rnOZq)

40 And if you ("Sue") or DL would care to provide me with an example of someone turning away from modern evolutionary theory for a non-religious alternative, I'd be happy to discuss it.

But fair warning: If you are thinking of someone like Steven Jay Gould, I will laugh. Because there's a third alternative explanation I forgot: fool, fraud, or didn't happen.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 02:20 PM (O0soJ)

41 Hey! I have opposable thumbs!

These are fucking awesome!!

Posted by: Dave in Pleistocene Texas at June 28, 2006 02:21 PM (1YvT/)

42 Darwinism does not equal gravity.

Evolutionary Theory is as well-tested and reliable as current gravitational theory (i.e. General Relativity).

Sorry again if you don't like that, but it is true.

(What's this "Darwinism" you speak of, anyway?)

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 02:22 PM (O0soJ)

43 Evolutionists = witches

Posted by: wood at June 28, 2006 02:23 PM (yHvEo)

44 But fair warning: If you are thinking of someone like Steven Jay Gould, I will laugh. Because there's a third alternative explanation I forgot: fool, fraud, or didn't happen.

That's funny. I don't know why you're working on web hosting when you could be getting the Nobel prize right now. And that's not sarcasm; if you were justified in being so certain, you could win a Nobel easily.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 02:24 PM (tnsUn)

45 Evolutionary Theory is as well-tested and reliable as current gravitational theory (i.e. General Relativity).

No it's not.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 02:25 PM (tnsUn)

46 Pixy,

No point in my naming them.

First, I believe you are lying. If you are even half as informed as you present yourself, you can't not know who at least some of them are. If you genuinely don't know them, then you have no business vomiting uninformed opinions all over an adult conversation like this one. Go outside and play.

Second, if I do mention them, I know what the essence of your response will be (I've had this conversation before, y'see). Whatever I posted about them, you'd make it about ME rather than about THEM.

Third, you no doubt have already dismissed them, too, as fools and frauds (albeit nontheistic and antitheistic ones). So what'd be the point?

Fourth, it doesn't matter who they are; all that matters is that they exist and are not on my side of the fence but are just as much your ideological opponents as I am. More so, in a way.

So what I want to know is - and I'm asking this for the second time - what do you know that they do not? Why are they incorrect for rejecting Darwinism in favor of other *NON*thestic and *ANTI*theistic explanations for life? Be specific.

Posted by: DL at June 28, 2006 02:28 PM (jGip9)

47 Richard Dawkins took a big cluebat to this sort of feeble posturing in an excellent essay

Richard Dawkins is an annoying asshole who gives atheists and agnostics a bad name.

Just doing my part to keep things friendly.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 02:29 PM (Uuy++)

48 Well, if you take that in the sense that general relativity has been shown to have some holes but is generally descriptive of observed phenomena then it certainly is. All we actually know about gravity for sure is how to write equations to describe it's effects.

Posted by: Henry at June 28, 2006 02:29 PM (jnxi7)

49 I don't believe that humans have a soul in the sense of some shimmery Casper-like object which inhabits our bodies during our lifetimes. I think that we're made out of atoms having complicated chemical reactions, the result of billions of years of evolution. Also, I think therefore I am.

The mere fact that this collection of matter has subjective experiences is something I cannot prove, but which we all know to be true. (Although artificial untelligence types sometimes like to prattle on about the Turing test, but they're just dodging the issue.)

This is currently outside of the realm of science. There's no measure of subjective experience. But it's endeniably real.

This, combined with a few other things (like the big bang) is why I think that devout atheists are being, well, unscientific.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 02:39 PM (ePQxy)

50 Astounding arrogance they have, to lay claim to absolute truths they simply cannot know...which is the very thing the revile their opponents for doing. I'd call it hypocrisy but hypocrites know they are hypocrites. These deluded people don't have even that level of self-awareness.

Posted by: DL at June 28, 2006 02:49 PM (xGmEw)

51 Evolutionary Theory is as well-tested and reliable as current gravitational theory (i.e. General Relativity).

While, as far as I know, this is accurate, it says less about the reliability and tested nature of evolution than it does about our understanding of gravity, Pixy.

Evolution is the only scientific theory that people go to the wall about, get contemptuous and abusive about when they meet a skeptic.

The existence of species that we cannot find existing before a certain point neither proves nor disproves evolutionary theory - it's a framework to interpret data, nothing more, nothing less. So is Intelligent Design.

What amuses me most, however, is the tendency of people to think the two theories are in opposition. Many ID advocates are evolutionists.

And nobody at the Discovery Institute is a creation scientist, despite feeble attempts by people to equate the two ideas.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 28, 2006 02:51 PM (Pwzb0)

52 The mere fact that this collection of matter has subjective experiences is something I cannot prove, but which we all know to be true. (Although artificial untelligence types sometimes like to prattle on about the Turing test, but they're just dodging the issue.)

You should enjoy this page and this page about philosophical zombies.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 02:57 PM (tnsUn)

53 Almost every ID proponent I've ever talked to has actually been a creationist.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 02:57 PM (Uuy++)

54 Evolution is the only scientific theory that people go to the wall about, get contemptuous and abusive about when they meet a skeptic.

That's because it's the only scientific theory that skeptics use legal wrangling to interfere with education on the said scientific theory. And then there's the lies, distortions, gross misunderstanding of basic scientific concepts, logical fallacies, attacks on the honesty of scientists/accusations of being part of an atheistic conspiracy et cetera ad nauseum.

Fourth, it doesn't matter who they are; all that matters is that they exist and are not on my side of the fence but are just as much your ideological opponents as I am. More so, in a way.

So what I want to know is - and I'm asking this for the second time - what do you know that they do not?

Well, if we're playing argument from authority, what do those guys know that these scientific and scholarly organizations and the national science academies of 67 countries do not?

Posted by: dorkafork at June 28, 2006 03:02 PM (ksDNy)

55 That was interesting, Sue. I don't pretend to really understand it, though.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 03:03 PM (Cpse7)

56 attacks on the honesty of scientists/accusations of being part of an atheistic conspiracy et cetera ad nauseum.

It's more of the other way around (LOOK OUT FOR THE THEOCRACY!!) if you want to be a biologist.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 03:06 PM (tnsUn)

57 As we would say in my old neighborhood sandy, Sue is wicked smaht.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 28, 2006 03:08 PM (rnOZq)

58 That was interesting, Sue. I don't pretend to really understand it, though.

I don't have the mental horsepower to fully grasp all of it either, but the second "zombie" link was the more understandable one, and the one that was in agreement with what you said earlier.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 03:09 PM (tnsUn)

59 Great. Now they're dumbing down Intelligent Design.

' My ancestor may have hung from a tree, but it was by the neck, not the tail.'

Posted by: BFD at June 28, 2006 03:10 PM (QBpRu)

60 As we would say in my old neighborhood sandy, Sue is wicked smaht.

Aw, thanks Jack! Not really, though, I'm the nightlight among all of the megawattage around here.

Spurwing outshines us all, of course. SQUARK!

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 03:14 PM (tnsUn)

61 Pixy,

You say:

Francis Collins could be right; God could be directing Evolution from some distant remove. It appears that Evolution takes place entirely naturally, but God can be subtle, if you like. As Ace noted, this is known as Theistic Evolution, and scientists really have no problem with it.

OK, so there's Darwinian evolution and theistic evolution (which is not Darwinian). I take it you subscribe to Darwinian evolution. Based on?

Posted by: djs at June 28, 2006 03:15 PM (Zu59f)

62 I wish I was smart like Pixy Misa.

Pixy Misa knows everything.

Posted by: BFD at June 28, 2006 03:19 PM (QBpRu)

63 "Well, if we're playing argument from authority, what do those guys know that these scientific and scholarly organizations and the national science academies of 67 countries do not?"

What is it with you kids? Two of you spout off now and I still can't get a straight answer to a simple question. Atheistis/humanists/secularists abandon Darwinism in favor of other ideas, so I ask Darwinists why they stick to Darwinism when these other atheists don't, and I'll be damned if I can get an simple, straightforward, one-paragraph answer that does not attack my character or the character of those I mention.

"And nobody at the Discovery Institute is a creation scientist, despite feeble attempts by people to equate the two ideas."

Don't know if they are or not, but I do know it's much easier for the godless to keep track of their enemies by tossing them all into one bucket. To the degree one fails to toe the line of a totally atheistic explanation for life, the universe and everything, to that degree one is denounced as a non-atheist - if only potentially - or at best a liability and an obstacle. In either case, you become an enemy and are treated as such. Hence so many inhuman humanists.

Posted by: DL at June 28, 2006 03:19 PM (xGmEw)

64 One more link before I need to go: List of non-ID, non-religious scientists critical of Darwinism.

Of course, since they're critical of Darwin, they're not really scientists.

Posted by: Sue Dohnim at June 28, 2006 03:23 PM (tnsUn)

65 DL,

You say:

and I'll be damned if I can get an simple, straightforward, one-paragraph answer that does not attack my character or the character of those I mention.

It's a faith that is particularly prone to zealotry.

Posted by: djs at June 28, 2006 03:25 PM (Zu59f)

66 My one question to the people that believe that life came from nothing is this: If live began from a random pool of chemicals then why can't we now create new life in a lab?

Seems simple enough to me. We can duplicate any condition you wish in terms of heat, light, pressure, chemicals........

And yet no one has been able to create 'new' life.

So explain to me why that is...........

Posted by: Midaz at June 28, 2006 03:29 PM (nM6mE)

67 If live began from a random pool of chemicals then why can't we now create new life in a lab?

I don't think that's very conclusive, Midaz. After all, doing the experiment right might take millions of years.

Also, there's no scientific consensus as to where life began. Some suspect the ocean, some suspect deep underground, some suspect Mars, and some even suspect comets. Nobody knows. It's a mystery.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 03:36 PM (Cpse7)

68 Almost every ID proponent I've ever talked to has actually been a creationist.

Of course they are; that's a logical conclusion of an intelligent designer. Intelligent Designer=creator. But are they Creation Scientists? That's a different sort of thing entirely.

My one question to the people that believe that life came from nothing is this: If live began from a random pool of chemicals then why can't we now create new life in a lab?

A scientist named Miller claimed he had manged to generate basic proteins from gasses and electricity in the 50's but it turned out he had the chemicals in a mix and presence that were not accurate to the early formation of the earth. In any case simple disjointed proteins does not equal life's beginning. That's why the "life on mars" stories were so misleading.

That's because it's the only scientific theory that skeptics use legal wrangling to interfere with education on the said scientific theory.

Actually that only started fairly recently, and the contempt and arrogance has been around for a long time. For some, evolution so well describes so many aspects of life it becomes a sort of religious faith and those sorts will not permit any heresy.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 28, 2006 03:37 PM (Pwzb0)

69 Not in this case. I've turned the bloody thing off.

YOOHOO!!!!

POKER POKER POKER POKER POKER POKER

(That's for my laboriously crafted comment that got trashed about two years ago because I made the mistake of using a poker analogy.)

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 03:38 PM (oZXdi)

70 If live began from a random pool of chemicals then why can't we now create new life in a lab?

That question is wrong in at least five different ways.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 03:41 PM (FRalS)

71 Then tell me sandy, what conditions CAN'T we duplicate in a lab and why it would take millions of years. Seriously. If life began from unliving things then tell me why we cannot now make life begin from unliving chemicals.

Posted by: Midaz at June 28, 2006 03:41 PM (nM6mE)

72 If life began from unliving things then tell me why we cannot now make life begin from unliving chemicals.

We can.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 03:42 PM (FRalS)

73 That question is wrong in at least five different ways.

Ok pix, please enumerate the five ways it is wrong. People that believe in the 'big bang' believe that it was all randomness and that through some miracle of fate humans exist. So do please tell me the five ways I am wrong.

Come on. What created the spark of life and if it was all random why can we not now create new life?

Posted by: Midaz at June 28, 2006 03:44 PM (nM6mE)

74 PENIS ENLARGEMENT DEVICES are now on sale at Innocent Bystanders.

Hurry -- supplies are limited. Your money gladly refunded if these devices don't add two inches to that pathetic little schlong of yours!!!

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 03:45 PM (oZXdi)

75 eople that believe in the 'big bang' believe that it was all randomness and that through some miracle of fate humans exist.

That's three errors right there.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 03:46 PM (FRalS)

76 You're enjoying yourself, aren't you Michael?

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 03:47 PM (FRalS)

77 Again Pixy, please list my errors.

Posted by: at June 28, 2006 03:49 PM (nM6mE)

78 I can't answer your questions, Midaz. The truth is, scientists don't know how life began. They simply do not know. Biogenesis is a mystery, for now at least.

As to what conditions we'd need to create in a lab, high pressure would be difficult (assuming life began deep underground, which is just a guess). As to why it might take millions of years, that could be because the right combination of molecules coming together in exactly the right way is just so incredibly unlikely. But this is all hypothetical guesswork, since in reality we just don't know how life came about.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 03:50 PM (ePQxy)

79 Actually that only started fairly recently, and the contempt and arrogance has been around for a long time. For some, evolution so well describes so many aspects of life it becomes a sort of religious faith and those sorts will not permit any heresy.

No, the so-called "skeptics" have been interfering with the teaching of Evolution since day one.

Your second statement may be true; there may indeed be such people. It has no connection with the validity of the theory, however.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 03:50 PM (FRalS)

80 What created the spark of life and if it was all random why can we not now create new life?

Evolution only purports to explain the diversity and complexity of life. It assumes that life is a given. Your question relates to the field of abiogenesis, which at them moment is largely speculative, and nobody pretends otherwise. But it's unfair to criticize evolution for it's inability to answer a question that it is not intended to address.

In fact, it's almost as bad as CHEATING AT POKER!

(BTW, I'm a creationist and I think ID is bullshit.)

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 03:52 PM (oZXdi)

81 We can.

No we can't, not the way Midaz meant it. We currently cannot create life without using existing life as an ingredient. That may change soon, though.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 03:53 PM (Cpse7)

82 You're enjoying yourself, aren't you Michael?

You know what's wrong with Australians?

They really suck at POKER!

Plus, must of their men could benefit from the PENIS ENLARGEMENT DEVICES now on sale at Innocent Bystanders.


Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 03:58 PM (oZXdi)

83 If you mean Darwinism in a strictest sense, scientists don't endorse Darwinism, the current theory is the modern synthesis or neo-Darwinism. I'm not a Darwinist, Pixy isn't ("What's this "Darwinism" you speak of, anyway?", earlier.) I hope you'll forgive me if I understood, your use of the words atheist, secularist and godless gave me the impression that you were using the term "Darwinism" as a synonym for "evolution".

So what I want to know is - and I'm asking this for the second time - what do you know that they do not? Why are they incorrect for rejecting Darwinism in favor of other *NON*thestic and *ANTI*theistic explanations for life? Be specific.

There aren't a whole lot of ways I can specifically respond to undescribed arguments from unnamed scientists. If they're neo-Darwinists, then I have no problems with that, that's been "The Theory of Evolution" since the 1930s/40s, and it is solid.

I don't want to hold you responsible for Sue's comments, but she links to a site of "non-ID, non-religious scientists critical of Darwin" which of course includes Stephen Jay Gould. (Dingdingding, Pixy, we have a winner.) Gould undoubtably rolls over in his grave every time he is portrayed as some sort of evolution doubter.

Posted by: dorkafork at June 28, 2006 04:01 PM (ksDNy)

84 What truely amazes me is that it takes MORE faith to believe that life sprang out of unliving things than it does to believe that there was 'something' out there that created it for us. I simply don't have that much faith to believe that life began from unliving things.

I do not question that evolution happens. It is a provable fact. However most people that believe in 'darwinism' are also athiest/agnostic. To believe that life began without a creator takes far more faith than my belife in a living God.

Posted by: midaz at June 28, 2006 04:02 PM (nM6mE)

85 List your errors? Okay:

People that believe in the 'big bang'

People don't "believe in" the Big Bang. It's a theory. It's an explanation for the observed facts: The expansion of the universe, the age and motion of the stars and galaxies, the Cosmic Microwave Background. It's a very good explanation; though certainly not perfect.

To put it simply: The universe is expanding. From our observations, it has been doing so for billions of years. Something that has been expanding for billions of years was, logically, smaller, billions of years ago. And if you go back far enough, it would have been infinitely small.

believe that it was all randomness

They believe no such thing.

Mutations are random.

Natural selection is not.

and that through some miracle

No miracles apply.

of fate

Nor is there any such thing as fate. (I didn't count these as errors though; I assumed you were waxing poetic.)

humans exist.

We know humans exist. That's our starting point. You don't need a miracle to get there, because you're already there. We can trace back the evolution of humans for billions of years. We can't, at present, satisfactorily explain the origin of life itself. However, that is not properly Evolution, but another field called Abiogenesis.

There is no reason to doubt that Abiogenesis is correct; however, it is far less robust as a theory than Evolution proper.

Now:

If live began from a random pool of chemicals

First, abuse of the term "random". Interaction of individual molecules is not predictable, but follows quite rigid statistical rules.

Second, we don't know if life began in a pool as such; current thought is that a wet surface is far more conducive to assembly of complex molecules than the body of water itself. (A minor point, but an important one.)

Third, life is chemicals. That's all that life is.

then why can't we now create new life in a lab?

Four: We can. It's just hard.

Five: And that's assuming you are talking about constructing something that is reasonably defined as "alive" from something that is reasonably defined as "not alive", and assuming you are ruling out viruses (which can be crystallised and then restored) and things like tardigrades, which can be frozen solid in a block of ice and revived. Unless you properly define "life" and "create", the question is ultimately worthless.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 04:06 PM (FRalS)

86 By the way, there's a great quote by Sir Arthur Eddington, which these conversations remind me of:

"Not only is the universe stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine."

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 04:08 PM (Cpse7)

87 Its truly weird that some crack-pots can take a few bone fragments a few icinficant fossels and claim beyond the shadow of a doubt that we came from a ape which came from a rodent that came from a lizard that came from a frog that came from a fish that crawled out of the water or find some dumb lizard fossel and claim that this is the proof that all birds came from dinosouars BUNK I DID,NT COME FROM NO DINOSOUAR SQUARK,SQUARK THOSE EVOLUTIONIST WACKOS RUFFLE MY FEATHERS

Posted by: spurwing plover at June 28, 2006 04:10 PM (n7v4a)

88 What truely amazes me is that it takes MORE faith to believe that life sprang out of unliving things than it does to believe that there was 'something' out there that created it for us.

Again, the assertion that life "sprang out of unliving things" is not made by evolutionary biology. My impression is that the discussion here is largely in the field of chemistry, and involves conjecture about how stuff like self-replicating RNA might have been the origen of some virus-like thingy that we could define as life.

Evolution assumes that life existed, and then undertakes to explain how single-celled organisms led to the amazing variety and exquisite complexity of the life that we observe today, in a manner that is consistent with the fossil record, molecular biology, the human genome, etc.

POKER POKER POKER

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 04:12 PM (oZXdi)

89 And if you go back far enough, it would have been infinitely small.

In the case of an open universe, that's sortuv an oversimplification.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 04:13 PM (ePQxy)

90 However, that is not properly Evolution, but another field called Abiogenesis.

Didn't I just say that?

Yes, I believe I did, at 8:52 p.m.

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 04:19 PM (oZXdi)

91 Spurwing Pterodactyl? Is that you?

Posted by: sandy burger at June 28, 2006 04:20 PM (PQyeQ)

92 One more link before I need to go: List of non-ID, non-religious scientists critical of Darwinism.

Thank you.

Of course, until you learn the difference between what you call "Darwinism" and Evolutionary Theory, you won't understand what that list actually means.

Of course, since they're critical of Darwin, they're not really scientists.

Bullshit. Darwin wasn't a saint; just a genius. He just laid out the framework for evolution, but he knew nothing of genetics, much less DNA. (Neither did anyone else at that time, of course.) It so happens that he was right; it is not required that he be right in every detail. Otherwise all the biologists in the world would be out of work.

Now, from your list:

One of the earliest critics of neo-Darwinism on my list is population geneticist Motoo Kimura. His criticism was that all-powerful natural selection was not powerful enough to eliminate all mutations at the DNA level. He called these mutations neutral mutations, because they are not affected by selection, positive or negative. He was right.

Well, duh. I'm not sure who ever claimed that natural selection eliminated all mutations; certainly from what we know today the idea is absurd.

Has nothing to do with a rejection of Evolution, or even Darwinian Evolutionary Theory.

Another good example is mathematical biologist Stuart Kauffman who explains why natural selection cannot be the sole source of order in At Home in the Universe.

Yeah, why is that? The list doesn't bother to say.

Gabriel Dover claims there is a third force in evolution.

Huh?

An example of a palaeontologist who accepts evolution, but rejects the claim that palaeontology can determine missing links with certainty, is: Henry Gee.

Another rejection of a specific claim that no-one ever made.

he eminent but unorthodox astronomer sir Fred Hoyle wrote an attack on the fundamentals of neo-Darwinism using high level mathematics: Mathematics of Evolution. ... Hoyle believes life came from space.

Doesn't address Evolution; doesn't solve the problem that he claims exist; doesn't demonstrate that there is a problem.

The immunologist Edward J. Steele wrote what could be called the textbook of 'neo-Lamarckism'. He explains in molecular terms how acquired characteristics of the immune system can be inherited in: Lamarck's Signature: How Retrogenes Are Changing Darwin's Natural Selection Paradigm.

Addresses a small detail of the way DNA mutates. Not statisticially significant.

The embryologist Brian Goodwin has interesting ideas about scientific alternatives for Darwinism.

Complete loon.

Palaeontologist Niles Eldredge argues against the reductionism of the 'ultra-Darwinist'.

Worked with Stephen Jay Gould to refine one particular aspect of Evolutionary Theory.

And so on.

This is not the list you were looking for. (And cetainly not the list you claim it to be.)

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 04:29 PM (FRalS)

93 No we can't, not the way Midaz meant it.

Can too.

We currently cannot create life without using existing life as an ingredient.

We can; unless he is also specifying the time frame and the budget.

Given unlimited time, we can do it, no problem.

Given an unlimited budget, we can do it in limited time.

I didn't say it was easy; I didn't say it had been done already. I said it can be done.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 04:32 PM (FRalS)

94 Didn't I just say that?

Sorry Michael, didn't mean to step on your pokers toes.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 04:33 PM (FRalS)

95 Dammit Pixy, why aren't strike tags implemented?

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 04:33 PM (FRalS)

96 What is it with you kids? Two of you spout off now and I still can't get a straight answer to a simple question. Atheistis/humanists/secularists abandon Darwinism in favor of other ideas, so I ask Darwinists why they stick to Darwinism when these other atheists don't, and I'll be damned if I can get an simple, straightforward, one-paragraph answer that does not attack my character or the character of those I mention.

Because the question is wrong.

(a) There is no such thing as Darwinism; (b) if you are referring to Evolutionary Theory, your claim is in many (perhaps most) cases simply factually false - the individuals in question have not rejected Evolutionary Theory; (c) because Evolutionary Theory has nothing whatsoever to do with atheism, humanism, or secularism; and finally (d) people who understand Evolutionary Theory accept it because it is supported by an overwhelming body of evidence.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at June 28, 2006 04:38 PM (FRalS)

97 " Darwin wasn't a saint; just a genius."

..................and a racist, naturally.

Posted by: Son of Sigmund at June 28, 2006 04:45 PM (QBpRu)

98 There is no such thing as Darwinism

Yes there is.

the individuals in question have not rejected Evolutionary Theory

None of them reject the idea that life evolved, and neither would I. They do reject Darwinian evolution in favor of Theistic evolution, which again, is not Darwinian.

Posted by: djs at June 28, 2006 04:56 PM (Zu59f)

99 Ok Pixy, then please do tell me how life began and don't give me platitudes about how it's all unknown. Please, tell me why you are certain there can be no God. No creator. I am certain that you cannot. You cannot 'know' where it all came from. It is the height of hubris to believe that man can 'know it all' and explain everything just through fossil records et al.

So, please, tell me why you are certain you are right and I am wrong. It seems to me that it takes more faith on your part to believe that it all came from nothing than for me to believe there was a creator.

BTW, I truely enjoy these kinds of discussions even though I am convinced that you are totally wrong.

Oh, and one more thing, show me one, just one, example of man creating life from unliving things. Just one.

Posted by: midaz at June 28, 2006 05:01 PM (nM6mE)

100 Usually, I think it's best not to try to get "behind" someone's position on an issue in order to try to discern a motive for their holding it. I mean, an opinion is either well-supported or it's not, and no motive can add to or subtract from an opinion or its supportability. However, in this case, it seems to me that idle inquiry for its own sake is often undercut by pride issues on both sides.

It seems widely understood by creationists that some evolutionists are motivated partly by a desire for independence from a paternalistic creator-god or from paternalistic men who claim to represent him. It also seems widely understood by evolutionists that at least some creationists are motivated partly by a desire to make evolutionists toe God's line in their behavior and thoughts.

So my modest proposal to creationists is this: Publicly denounce the notion that merely having been created or designed by someone means that you have to obey him. Let evolutionists everywhere know that for you, this is just a question of the evidence. You think you have solid evidence that a powerful being designed human beings and created the earliest ones, but you have no desire to try to use that evidence as a basis for making people obey you or anyone else. In fact, you're completely comfortable letting each of your intelligent listeners draw his own best conclusion about the evidence you've got. You're cool with it, because you figure the god or amazing alien race that designed our brains to use 25% of the food energy we take in must have wanted us to use our brains as best we can.

Once you make people understand that you're not at all trying to take every thought captive, maybe you'll have an easier time getting people to just evaluate your evidence on the merits.

Posted by: Kralizec at June 28, 2006 05:02 PM (gHR/6)

101 They do reject Darwinian evolution in favor of Theistic evolution, which again, is not Darwinian.

Strictly speaking they do reject Darwinian evolution just like every other scientist in favor of neoDarwinian evolution. They do not reject the theory of evolution, they just add a Goddidit at the beginning. "God chose to create human beings in his image and decided that the mechanism of evolution was an elegant way to accomplish that goal." That is fundamentally different from arguing there's something wrong with the Theory of Evolution or arguing that divine intervention was somehow required.

Posted by: dorkafork at June 28, 2006 05:04 PM (ksDNy)

102 You think you have solid evidence that a powerful being designed human beings and created the earliest ones, but you have no desire to try to use that evidence as a basis for making people obey you or anyone else.

I have no such evidence. It's something that must be taken on faith, just as believing that no such being was involved in the creation of life must be taken on faith.

Posted by: djs at June 28, 2006 05:08 PM (Zu59f)

103 So long as we're enumerating errors:

They believe no such thing.

Mutations are random.

Natural selection is not.


Yes, it is. "Natural selection" is a description of a process that depends on randomness and time. "Natural selection" doesn't do anything. The environment changes; the parts of a population of a species that can, or already have adapted to the new environment survive. That's randomness, as it depends on mutation.

There is no reason to doubt that Abiogenesis is correct; however, it is far less robust as a theory than Evolution proper.

You keep insisting that we can create life in the lab. You've also already stated that we haven't actually done it. This is not only unscientific, it's pretty disingenuous. Stop saying it. You may be able to say that "scientists believe that they can create life", but that's a different thing, isn't it?

First, abuse of the term "random". Interaction of individual molecules is not predictable, but follows quite rigid statistical rules.

This is an important point, as statistically we should be looking at a Universe of dispersed hydrogen instead of the highly complex one we live in.

Third, life is chemicals. That's all that life is.

This is true, but meaningless. We're all just interactions of quantum interactions as well, and running a Web hosting service is just a matter of punching keys on the keyboard.

Five: And that's assuming you are talking about constructing something that is reasonably defined as "alive" from something that is reasonably defined as "not alive", and assuming you are ruling out viruses (which can be crystallised and then restored) and things like tardigrades, which can be frozen solid in a block of ice and revived. Unless you properly define "life" and "create", the question is ultimately worthless.

Fine--"life" is a sufficiently complex molecule that is able to turn itself into Alan Thicke.

Posted by: rho at June 28, 2006 05:10 PM (aLDBr)

104 God chose to create human beings in his image and decided that the mechanism of evolution was an elegant way to accomplish that goal." That is fundamentally different from arguing there's something wrong with the Theory of Evolution or arguing that divine intervention was somehow required.

True, but once you acknowledge that God may have been responsible for the starting conditions, you have to entertain the possibility that the fix was in at the outset and that there's more to the direction evolution has taken than just the natural selection of random mutations.

Posted by: djs at June 28, 2006 05:21 PM (Zu59f)

105 BrewFan, are you out there?

I'm staying on the bench for this one.

Posted by: Ed Snate at June 28, 2006 05:28 PM (W0un0)

106 "Global Warming" - the current religion of the Left

"Evolution" - the current religion of libertarians (who really should know better, but are worried about what God thinks about 'recreational' drug use)

PS Sue, Thanks for the links. I foyu have any more I'd apreciate your posting them.

Posted by: max at June 28, 2006 05:36 PM (SO3B1)

107 Once again, blind faith trumps reason.

In sales, we call it the triumph of arrogance over intelligence.

BTW, want hits on your blog? Mention Evolution!

Posted by: wiserbud at June 28, 2006 05:51 PM (56ssE)

108 Look, I created the universe so that I'd have something to watch on TV. Okay, now you know.


Now shut up - Las Vegas is on. Man, Nikki Cox is the best thing I ever made.

Posted by: God at June 28, 2006 06:12 PM (JEPSV)

109 Yes, please can't we let God watch Las Vegas? The guy works hard - he needs his 'me time'.

Posted by: adolfo velasquez at June 28, 2006 06:18 PM (OfelW)

110 Poker Viagra.

Posted by: adolfo velasquez at June 28, 2006 06:18 PM (OfelW)

111 Once you make people understand that you're not at all trying to take every thought captive, maybe you'll have an easier time getting people to just evaluate your evidence on the merits.

Well, Christians do want to take your thoughts captive. I just don't think that means you have to ignore science for fear that you will put your faith at risk.

(Phil 4:8-9 NIV) Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things. {9} Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me--put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

(Heb 12:1-3 NIV) Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. {2} Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. {3} Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.



Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 06:26 PM (oZXdi)

112 BTW, want hits on your blog? Mention Evolution!

Sorry, can't do that. We're too busy taking orders for PENIS ENLARGEMENT DEVICES!!!!

Posted by: Michael at June 28, 2006 06:29 PM (oZXdi)

113 We can; unless he is also specifying the time frame and the budget.

Given unlimited time, we can do it, no problem.

Given an unlimited budget, we can do it in limited time.

I didn't say it was easy; I didn't say it had been done already. I said it can be done.

Good God Pixy. Did you read what you just wrote????? How can you possibly KNOW it can be if it HASN'T been done? Dude, you have more faith than I do........

Posted by: at June 28, 2006 06:35 PM (nM6mE)

114 Abiogenesis fantasy rather weakens the argument, Pix'.

And the problem with beginnings - from the evolutionist's perspective - is exactly the problem with the weakness in abiogenesis theory ...this is quite readable:

Why Abiogenesis Is Impossible

Actually, this series of evo' posts (what's goin' on Ace?) caused me to go back and look again at the core reason I jumped fence over to the Watchmaker side 15 years back (i.e., the problem with the probability of the spontaneous arisal of a self-replicating life-form), and I actually found a well-reasoned rejection of that argument here:

Lies, Damned Lies, Statistics,
and Probability of Abiogenesis Calculations


...which - momentarily - impressed me to no end (first time in 15 years of askin' n' readin') ...until I read the refutation to Musgrave:

His argument consist of breaking a highly improbable outcome into a series of smaller more probable outcomes, then reconstructing the smaller more probable outcomes into the highly improbable outcome. The problem with this logic is that if you reconstruct the highly improbable outcome from random independent smaller outcomes, you obtain the same probabilities as if you directly compute the probability of the highly improbable outcome. If you think your logic is correct, break the probability of winning the lottery into smaller more probable outcomes and win every lottery around.

...which quite took the wind out of my only momentarily bemused sails (i.e., that there was a probability refutation).

A cosmology that is unable to understand its a priori inconsistency isn't very impressive to a rational discussion. Neo-darwinian evolution requires abiogenesis, and the mere assertion that "we can [create life]" bespeaks more hubris that a deist's belief in Deity, Pixy.

Poor choice of argument?

Posted by: davis, br at June 28, 2006 07:07 PM (60wmB)

115 Pixy do you have some sort of link or information that demonstrates we can come up with life from unliving chemicals? I have seen experiments that generate simple proteins but nothing that is life, at least this side of Frankenstein.

But yes, let me echo: evolution does not deal with origins of life, it is simply a framework to interpret data with. Origins of life are likely not going to be discovered scientifically, and origins of all matter and existence are by definition metaphysical and outside the realm of science.

Stupid scientists and writers attempt to wrestle with it anyway, but all you end up with is impressive sounding, but ultimately meaningless and empty guesses. Sophistry.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 28, 2006 07:38 PM (Pwzb0)

116 Christopher Taylor: I wish people would read up more on ID...

And I wish people would read up more on actual science.

Christopher Taylor: And nobody at the Discovery Institute is a creation scientist, despite feeble attempts by people to equate the two ideas.

If it quacks like a duck... From Wikipedia:

Intellectual dishonesty, in the form of misleading impressions created by the use of rhetoric, intentional ambiguity, and misrepresented evidence, form the foundation of most of the criticisms of the institute... Its critics... claim that the Discovery Institute knowingly misquotes scientists and other experts, deceptively omits contextual text through ellipsis, and makes unsupported amplifications of relationships and credentials. A wide spectrum of critics level this charge; from educators, scientists and the Smithsonian Institute to individuals who oppose the teaching of creationism...

This criticism is not limited to those in the scientific community..., but also includes former Discovery Institute donors. The Bullitt Foundation, which gave $10,000 in 2001 for transportation causes, withdrew all funding of the institute; its director, Denis Hayes, called the institute "the institutional love child of Ayn Rand and Jerry Falwell," and said, "I can think of no circumstances in which the Bullitt Foundation would fund anything at Discovery today."

The Templeton Foundation... asked intelligent design proponents to submit proposals for actual research, "They never came in," said Charles L. Harper Jr., senior vice president...

Sandy Burger: Almost every ID proponent I've ever talked to has actually been a creationist.

Same here, Sandy.

Christopher Taylor: Stupid scientists...

And you split atoms with your mind, CT? Do tell. Maybe you can loan your skills to Discovery Institute, and help them discover something. There's a first time for everything...

Posted by: tex at June 28, 2006 09:18 PM (blbZV)

117 *yawn* And here I thought this thing was dying off when I went to bed last night.

Some of you are trying to fight the good fight and I feel for ya, I really do. But do your foreheads a favor and quit beating it against senseless brick walls like pixy. When you bring up legitimate objections to evolution (as they conceive it, regardless of brand labels), you get no real response and you get frustrated.

Why?

Because you're trying to staple Jell-O to the wall.

Here's your problem: you have forgotten for the moment that this is far more than mere "science" to people like pixy...this is their philosophy, this is their ideology, this is their religion (yes, it is, don't deny it). As has been pointed out, they require more faith to hold to their godless doctrinal statements than ANY theist here might need, including the most red-necked fundmanentalist, which I am. They don't realize that, of course, and would deny it if they did.

Just realize that such people - who can play a lightning fast conclusion-ignoring mental shell game with you, the way pixy does - are not thinking in a straight line.

You are unable to reason with them because they are incapable of reason...they are incapable of reason because they are unwilling or unable - unlike some thieists, like - to question every primary assumption about why they believe what they believe and why they believe it. They simply can't or won't do it.

But until they do (only the individual can do it for himself or herself) you will get exactly NOWHERE with them. It'll be a constant, never-ending Mexican standoff, except they won't see it as that. They'll claim to be winning as they stand there, ignorance to their blindness and stark nakedness, pointing and laughing at the exposed belly button of the others with whom they love to argue.

They do not have, or have lost, that vital adult quality of brutal, painful self-examination. That makes them children, intellectually, and slow ones at that. So treat them as such: pat them on the head, smile, nod sympathetically, then ignore them.

Besides, they'll learn soon enough (Darwin, Gould, Sagan and all the rest know better now).

Over and out.

www.ephesians3-9.com

Posted by: DL at June 29, 2006 02:22 AM (Xvzbk)

118 IDers are so disgustingly deceitful.

Yes, I agree that evolution (more accurately: scientism) is dogmatic to many on the Left. I'm not on the Left.

That said, I think the Christians here suck many a penis for their disgraceful attacks of Darwinism as unscientific. While I agree that is, in many cases, unscientific (because it is untestable in many places), why can't the Christians allow scientists to test some of the claims made in their scripture?

This is where the forked-tongue Christians trot out the "you can't put the Lord to the test" bullshit.

Well, maybe you can't, Christians, but I can. Behold, if your faith can stomach it:

I do not give praise to the Christian god. In fact, I, once again, ask the weak, homosexual, pathetic god of the Christians to kill me right here and right now, and I ask it in the name of Jesus Christ.

"You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it." John 14:14, words of Christ

"Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died." Acts 12:23

Now, all of you, behold the torrent of ad hominems and "That's what it says, but that's not what it means!" excrement that will follow.

Posted by: Loundry at June 29, 2006 04:32 AM (svN5w)

119 Science is no threat to religion.

It has always struck me that anyone should view science as incompatible with religion; if you hold that reality itself was created by a higher power, it should follow that science is simply an analysis of that reality.

I think the main threat ID'ers and the like feel from religion is due to an inchoate feeling that the world should consist only of what we can perceive with our (unaided) eyes and ears, and that anything outside of that should have a tiny "God was here" reassuringly stamped on it when viewed through a microscope.

In other words, they're xenophobes who use religion as a means to an end (that being to force everyone else to wear the same blinders) and practice a state of denial to convince themselves otherwise .

Posted by: Scott at June 29, 2006 04:33 AM (f8958)

120 I think the Christians here suck many a penis for their disgraceful attacks of Darwinism as unscientific

LMAO! As soon as I saw ace's post I knew where this was going. Every ID/Evolution post ends up in the same place.

Now, as a Deist who happens to be very comfortable with most aspects of Christianity while also believing that Darwin was on the right track, I'd humbly suggest that these debates are largely pointless.

No one is budging, guys. No one ever does. Not in this forum.

Athiests can laugh all day long at belief in a higher power, but it doesn't much bother me because I've been on that side of the fence, too, before making a gradual progression from to agnosticism and eventually deism.

I know that I'm happier today because of it. I also know that someone else's lack of faith has no bearing whatsover on my own. Different strokes for different folks. And if you can get there without it, more power to you.

At the risk of coming off like a completely condescending ass, however, I'd also suggest that some athiests seem to be awfully pissed off at the world that they claim to have such a profound understanding of.

Then again, I've met my share of Christians who seem to think that the mere act of quoting a few biblical passages gives them ultimate moral authority over others. They are fucking obnoxious assholes who I view with contempt because they give Christians like my wife a bad name.

I'm guessing that IDers, Creationists, Evolutionists and every shade in between wouldn't feel compelled to squabble over these beliefs at every opportunity if the education of their children weren't at stake.

That's what's at the heart of the matter, and that's the thing we always miss. The passion and energy is misplaced. The idea that we must all subject our children to a monolithic standards during primary education is the problem.

Grant parents private school vouchers and this debate mostly goes away along with squabbles over sex education, reciting the pledge, school uniforms, and a host of others.

People are generally happy to live and let live. What they want is control over their own children's education. Give it to them. We all pay for this system, directly or indirectly. We should have control over what our children are taught. And if my idea of education differs from yours, so be it. The market will sort it all out eventually.

Posted by: The Warden at June 29, 2006 05:04 AM (8WTw1)

121 Hey Loundry , I asked Jesus not to kill you so it appears we have a mexican standoff. I did ask Jesus to go ahead and give you tape worms though.

Posted by: roc ingersol at June 29, 2006 05:12 AM (m2CN7)

122 In fact, I, once again, ask the weak, homosexual, pathetic god of the Christians to kill me right here and right now, and I ask it in the name of Jesus Christ.

It wasn't apparent that you were addressing me. It really sounded like you were asking Andrew Sullivan to kill you.

Posted by: God at June 29, 2006 05:32 AM (2XXia)

123 ask the weak, homosexual, pathetic god

Loundry, why are you so angry that you would use your own sexual orientation as an insult?

Posted by: adolfo velasquez at June 29, 2006 05:44 AM (t15nA)

124 LMAO! As soon as I saw ace's post I knew where this was going.

Why do you think I sent him the link? Grab cage, insert ferret, poke with stick. It's a tried and true formula.

Still, some very smart people here and always provokes some good discusion.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 29, 2006 05:47 AM (J8+2b)

125 Loundry-

This is where the forked-tongue Christians trot out the "you can't put the Lord to the test" bullshit.

Well, maybe you can't, Christians, but I can. Behold, if your faith can stomach it:

I do not give praise to the Christian god. In fact, I, once again, ask the weak, homosexual, pathetic god of the Christians to kill me right here and right now, and I ask it in the name of Jesus Christ.

"You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it." John 14:14, words of Christ

"Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died." Acts 12:23

Now, all of you, behold the torrent of ad hominems and "That's what it says, but that's not what it means!" excrement that will follow.

If not for the fact that religion is by definition a matter of faith, you could "disprove" any religion whose scripture contains absolute guarantees concerning when, where and how the immortal will interact with the mortal simply by performing the proscribed action and then watching for divine follow thru or lack thereof.

This would be a true test but for one wee little problem: religion is a matter of faith.

Now, if we know - absolutely - that if we do X, consequence Y will follow, every time, then what you have among adherents is knowledge, not faith. And by definition it is then not a religion.

This is the reason why you cannot "disprove" Christianity (the one you seem to hold a grudge against) or any other. Not because its followers "speak with a forked tongue", but because you lack a basic grasp of logical thinking.

But go ahead and keep on feeling smart, I'm sure you're a great hit with the other freshmen.

Posted by: Scott at June 29, 2006 05:49 AM (f8958)

126 I acknowledge the criticism that I continue to maintain faith in many opinions. I don't want to have faith in anything. I would like to come to the end of my life having found and questioned every one of my opinions. Along the way, I want to be sure to question carefully my felt opinion that it's good to question every one of my opinions. And I want to ask, "Good? Good for whom?" And, "Good? What is that?"

Posted by: Kralizec at June 29, 2006 06:08 AM (m5x6c)

127 And, "Good? What is that?"

An hour and a half of quality time outdoors on a cool autumn evening accompanied by a glass of Maker's Mark and Coke and an Arturo Fuente 858 Corona.*

*bonus points if you can see or smell corn.

Posted by: The Warden at June 29, 2006 09:01 AM (rkK3q)

128 roc ingersol wrote:

Hey Loundry , I asked Jesus not to kill you so it appears we have a mexican standoff. I did ask Jesus to go ahead and give you tape worms though.

No, we don't have a mexican standoff. Did you fail to read the scripture I posted? Jesus said that he would give you for those of your ilk."anything" if you asked it in his name. I did just that. I survived. What's the scoop, roc? Choose your favorite:

A) Jesus lied
B) Jesus is a myth

In either case, the Bible is false. Still keen on demanding "scientific tests"? Clearly not, since you have sunk to stupid ad hominems, as predicted.

Scott wrote:

Now, if we know - absolutely - that if we do X, consequence Y will follow, every time, then what you have among adherents is knowledge, not faith. And by definition it is then not a religion.

The problem with your statement is that you claim that the Bible is true. If so, then its truth can be tested. If not, then how do we know it's true? If you try to escape with the "faith" loop, then you have no right to test anything that anyone claims. Do you remember what my complaint is? Dishonest Christians keep demanding "tests" of their opponents' claims while excusing their own claims from testing.

I believe it's called, "What's good for the goose is good for the gander." And the Bible is false. Otherwise, why do I continue to survive? How is it that Herod DIES for not praising your god whereas I survive for doing the exact same thing. In fact, I asked to die in the name of Jesus Christ and lived to tell the tale. What's the deal, Scott?

A) Jesus lied
B) Jesus is a myth

In either case, the Bible is false. You did choose a different tactic in your weaselly defense, though you couldn't resist the ad hominem dig at the end. Typical and expected.

adolfo wrote:

Loundry, why are you so angry that you would use your own sexual orientation as an insult?

Merely to up the ante with my blasphemy (Jesus loves sucking cock. All. Day. Long.) Allegedly your god hates homosexuality. He also loves the stench of animal sacrifice (something he shares in common with devil worshippers) and loves killing babies and children (1 Sam 15:3), so I count it as a sign of being moral that he would hate what I do.

Posted by: Loundry at June 29, 2006 09:03 AM (svN5w)

129 In fact, I asked to die in the name of Jesus Christ and lived to tell the tale.

A. You didn't mean it.

B. There may be a lot of wiggle room in the phrase "in the name of"; maybe it has to be a request asked with a good heart or something. I don't know what that was in the original language.

C. Many Christians (such as Catholics) don't have the literal view of the Bible you seem to think all Christians have.

D. The fact that Herod died for something is no guarantee that everybody will. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that God is gonna bitch-slap all blasphemers... in this life.

E. What do you mean "Jesus is a myth"? He was a real person, whether or not you believe all those stories the Christians tell about him having all that mojo.

F. Your interpretation of that Biblical passage isn't consistent with the rest of the New Testament, which describes hardship in this life being rewarded in the afterlife (e.g. almost all the apostles were tortured to death at a young age, which is surely not what they wanted out of life). The more theologically correct interpretation is that God will give you everything you ask for... in heaven.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 29, 2006 10:02 AM (K2rlS)

130 Evolution, meaning the changing of one species into another has NOT been proven. Evolution of certain traits (such as coloring, etc.) within a species has been demonstrated.

Simpler fosilized life forms are found in strata that is assumed to be older, and more complex life forms are found in strata that is assumed to be more recent. This however does not necessarily mean that life evoled from the one to the other and no logical means has been put forth to explain how this could happen. The theory of natual selection, or the very slow adoption of minute benificial traits over very long periods of time, has been largely abandoned by most scientist. (There should be ten of thousands of intermediate life forms between every species and the fosil record does not show this, many intermediate stages would be non benificial such as the transition from a leg to a wing, and how can complex interdependant systems, such as sight or hearing, evolve in minute stages.)

The new theory is puctuated equilibrium, which has a whole new set of problems. (How does very complex systems, such as sight, ocure in a masive mutation or how does a leg turn into a wing in a single or few mutations?)

In short, to say evolution is a fact, the same as gravity, is quite simply false and a very poor analogy. I am not arguing for any theory. I am not even saying that evolution did not happen. I am merely stating that evolutionary theory is not a fact and even evolution itself has not been proven.

Posted by: Gary Stadlman at June 29, 2006 11:24 AM (BKwTZ)

131 do i have this right - first there was nothing, and then it exploded?

Posted by: tommy in texas at June 29, 2006 12:14 PM (pjusE)

132 do i have this right - first there was nothing, and then it exploded?

Do I have this right - there's a magical old gentleman in a nightdress who has always existed and up and created everything in the universe one week?


None of the explanations make any damn sense. Discounting theories on the basis of ridiculousnesses cuts all ways equally.

Posted by: S. Weasel at June 29, 2006 12:47 PM (1HKrT)

133 Er... did someone just use an article from Wikipedia to prove a point here? You do know that the articles in there are written by whoever bothers to take the time and you can edit them any time you wish just by clicking on the Edit this article button, right?

Further, even if the incredibly hostile Wikipedia entry is accurate, donors sending money does not mean the people there are like-minded to the donors or controlled by them.

I really wish people would learn and think before responding with such deep, knee-jerk hostility. Tex is a classic example of the kind of person I was referring to that takes evolution and turns it into a quasi-religious zealotry.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 29, 2006 12:54 PM (Pwzb0)

134 so God is an old gentleman in a nightdress is a theory?

Posted by: tommy in texas at June 29, 2006 01:18 PM (pjusE)

135 Loundry:

You're already dead.......dumb ass.

Posted by: DeProgrammer at June 29, 2006 01:46 PM (viP/R)

136 Actually Weasel, a transcendent creator makes the most sense of all the options. The universe cannot have always existed - entropy would have reduced everything to it's simplest form. The universe cannot have suddenly come into being out of nothing, because if there ever was nothing, what would there be now?

nothing.

So you're left with a theistic creator, someone outside of time and who exists eternally, without beginning. Nothing else makes sense, and nothing else fits science.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 29, 2006 01:51 PM (Pwzb0)

137 Christopher: the universe cannot have always existed, but God can? Pff! I call bullshit!

Posted by: S. Weasel at June 29, 2006 02:13 PM (1HKrT)

138 So you're left with a theistic creator, someone outside of time and who exists eternally, without beginning.

Sorry to nitpick, but if you're talking about something outside of time, then words like "eternally" and "beginning" actually become meaningless.

Personally, I think it's not physically possible for humans to have a very meaningful discussion about God or the creation of the universe. Our brains (currently, at least) just aren't capable of it.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 29, 2006 02:18 PM (PQyeQ)

139 So you're left with a theistic creator, someone outside of time and who exists eternally, without beginning. Nothing else makes sense, and nothing else fits science.

The willingness to say "I don't have an explanation so I will just write it off to an omnipotent being who has always been and He just put it all here for his own amusement" doesn't make sense either. It's merely the lack of a logical explanation and has no more grounding in logic than telling your kids "Cause I said so". And it sure as hell ain't science.

I have no problem with anyone who has faith. But there is no more reason for me to believe it than any other reason. Less than some. I will confess that I find it odd that many conservatives, who rely on facts and evidence for any other belief, are willing to chalk this one up to blind faith.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 29, 2006 02:29 PM (rnOZq)

140 God: Weasel, Weasel.

Weasel: Here I am.

God: Take your shoes off Weasel, for where thy stand is holy ground.

Weasel: Pff! I call bullshit!


*one act play written and produced by DP*

Posted by: DeProgrammer at June 29, 2006 02:39 PM (gr15+)

141 For your reading pleasure:

The Book of Enoch:

www.johnpratt.com/items/docs/enoch.html

Posted by: Abraham Rabinowitz at June 29, 2006 02:51 PM (gr15+)

142 Sorry to nitpick, but if you're talking about something outside of time, then words like "eternally" and "beginning" actually become meaningless.

Correct, but it's neccessary to use terms that we can understand to try to leverus into a concept too huge to fit in our brains.

But it's basic common sense, and science, and logic.

You have to understand that anything at all exists, which is obvious to everyone but the truly insane.

You have to understand that something cannot come from nothing.

Those are the logic/common sense base components (and scientific).

Since these two things are true, then something has to have the power of existence in and of its self - something is eternal and has no beginning.

Your choices then are that everything has always existed - either perpetually as is or in a fluctuating big bang/collapse cycle. Or a theistic creator.

The problem with the always existed idea is the entropy dilemma I pointed out.

The problem with the cycling big bang is that science simply doesn't support it, it's basically debunked.

Which leaves you with the theistic creator. That's what Anthony Flew and this fellow, as well as Einstein and many others came to understand. There's no choice, ultimately. Being an atheist puts you in the camp of being illogical, nonsensical, and unscientific.

Christopher: the universe cannot have always existed, but God can? Pff! I call bullshit!

something has to have always existed. Science proves that it cannot have been the universe. Therefore it has to have been something external, transcendent from the universe. Something that created it. This something is intelligent enough to have done so (the smartest thing in existence, since by definition everything created must be less than the creator), and something powerful enough to have done so (again, the most powerful thing in existence, because it had the power to create all that is, other than its self, thus making all of these things less powerful).

It's inevitable.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 29, 2006 03:02 PM (Pwzb0)

143 Science has proven no such thing, Christopher. Not to long ago, science had no cure for polio. Did one not exist?

Being an atheist puts you in the camp of being illogical, nonsensical, and unscientific

Believing in a deity you have never seen and who's existence you can't prove makes you in the camp of wibcans and muslims. All your doing is throwing your hands up in the air and joining a group that gives you strength for your arguement if not in fact then in numbers.

Einstein was a brilliant mathematician. That makes him a theological scholar, how?

How do you explain life on Mars? Was that a trial run? Why do we spend billions of dollars a year looking for life throughout the universe when Einstein already said it was futile? God said so.

As I said, I have no problem with people who have faith. Except the arrogance of some who think that their blind faith in something they can neither prove or even give the slightest evidence of, makes them enlightened and those that don't reflixively agree, stupid.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 29, 2006 03:15 PM (rnOZq)

144 CT: knee-jerk hostility

At Ace's Place we jerk more than knees, Atom-Boy.

CT: ... even if the incredibly hostile [Discovery Institute] Wikipedia entry is accurate...

If it's accurate you've got nothing to bitch about, now do you?

CT: Further, ...donors sending money does not mean the people there are like-minded to the donors or controlled by them.

Nice grammar, CT. You took a degree in English Lit to complement the degrees in Logic and Psychokinetic Atom Splitting?

As regards your Theory of Da Money, you might want to run that by Detective McGruff. He's always on the lookout for a partner who can put the pieces together.

With his mind, obviously.

Posted by: tex at June 29, 2006 03:45 PM (/zajH)

145 ...you've got nothing to bitch about, now do you?

Correction: That should read, ...you've got nothing to bitch about, now have you?

Ace Of Spades: the relentless pursuit of perfection.

With our minds.

Posted by: tex at June 29, 2006 03:55 PM (/zajH)

146 I just have one request of all those who claim that not believing in an all powerful deity and simultaneously claiming that all those who don't believe are unscientific and every other adjective you have spewed prove it.

If you claim its unscientific not to believe in a deity, then the converse is true. You can scientifically prove it.

Do it.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 29, 2006 04:07 PM (rnOZq)

147 More knee-jerk fun with CT's relativistic know-nothing accelerator, the Discovery Institute:

New Yorker: Devolution

[Institute fellow] Behe has confessed to “sloppy prose” and said he hadn’t meant to imply that irreducibly complex systems “by definition” cannot evolve gradually.

Translation: "I got nothin'."

David Wolpert, one of the authors of the N.F.L. theorems, recently denounced [Institute fellow] Dembski’s use of those theorems as "fatally informal and imprecise." Dembski’s apparent response has been a tactical retreat.... “I certainly never argued that the N.F.L. theorems provide a direct refutation of Darwinism.”

Translation: "I got nothin', too."

In the nearly ten years since the publication of Behe’s book, ...I.D. has inspired no nontrivial experiments and has provided no surprising insights into biology. As the years pass, intelligent design looks less and less like the science it claimed to be and more and more like an extended exercise in polemics...

[The Discovery Institute's 'Wedge Document'] begins by labelling the idea that human beings are created in the image of God "one of the bedrock principles on which Western civilization was built." It goes on to decry the catastrophic legacy of Darwin, Marx, and Freud—the alleged fathers of a "materialistic conception of reality" that eventually "infected virtually every area of our culture." The mission of the Discovery Institute’s scientific wing is then spelled out: "nothing less than the overthrow of materialism and its cultural legacies." It seems fair to conclude that the Discovery Institute has set its sights a bit higher than, say, reconstructing the origins of the bacterial flagellum.

Heh.

Posted by: tex at June 29, 2006 04:44 PM (/zajH)

148 JackStraw:

I'll bet if God Himself brought you the proof, you'd still kill the messenger.

BTW, you don't have a corner on evidence.

ps. Do NOT receive the mark of the beast.

Posted by: Unaposter at June 29, 2006 04:55 PM (gr15+)

149 If you claim its unscientific not to believe in a deity, then the converse is true.

For the record, I haven't claimed that. However, some of the views which often go along with the label "atheist" are unscientific.

In particular, the need to downplay, ignore, or deny the mystery of consciousness. (Not to mention the ineffability of the big bang, as science currently understands it.)

Posted by: sandy burger at June 29, 2006 05:01 PM (jAwAN)

150 Unaposter: Do NOT receive the mark of the beast.

Mark of the Beast illustrated exclusively at:
martypam.tr[replace with letter "i"]pod.com/bottom1.JPG

Posted by: tex at June 29, 2006 05:15 PM (/zajH)

151 For the record, I haven't claimed that.

Well, technically speaking, I guess I kinduv did. But, you know, I didn't mean it that way. Carry on.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 29, 2006 05:24 PM (jAwAN)

152 Dude, what if our whole galaxy were, like, an atom in one of God's fingernails? I mean, dude. Duuuuude. Seriously, man, that would be far out.

Say, has anyone seen my bong? I thought I put it down, right next to genghis' beer...

Posted by: sandy burger at June 29, 2006 05:32 PM (jAwAN)

153 Science has proven no such thing, Christopher. Not to long ago, science had no cure for polio. Did one not exist?

Please do me the favor of reading what I said and thinking about it a bit, if you've got any scientific background you'll recognize what I said is valid.

Einstein was a brilliant mathematician. That makes him a theological scholar, how?

It doesn't. Nor did I remotely imply he was. I simply noted that he recognized what I pointed out was true and was smart enough to agree. Just like this fellow the article is about, and Anthony Flew did.

How do you explain life on Mars?

Nobody found life on mars. They found some protiens that are the basis for a chain that can become an amino acid, which is used in building life forms. It's like finding iron and declaring we've found a Lexus. The newspapers were, shall we say, inaccurate and exaggerated. They've been known to do so *global warming hysteria*.

Why do we spend billions of dollars a year looking for life throughout the universe when Einstein already said it was futile? God said so.

When did God say there's no life anywhere else? When did I say that? When did anyone here remotely imply that to any slightest degree? Why must you be so frantically defensive of your position that you refuse to even consider what someone says? You're responding like an anti-war fanatic does.

I laid out the proof. If you can dispute or disprove what I've said, feel free. I'm not associated with the Discovery Institute. I could care less who they are or what they do, I'm a freelance artist. I simply like to point out the truth when things are getting a bit hazy.

Kind of like how I pointed out how evolution doesn't deal with origins of life or existence, and how defining how all matter got here was metaphysical, not scientific. Because people were getting off track from the truth.

I would, however, love to see the explanation for how something that is irreducibly complex can somehow evolve gradually. Knock me out Tex. This should be interesting.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 29, 2006 07:27 PM (Pwzb0)

154 Christopher Taylor vs. "stupid scientists", Round # whatever:

CT: The problem with the cycling big bang is that science simply doesn't support it, it's basically debunked.

From the smallest ratchets of evolution to the greatest blasts of cosmology -- you're there CT, putting those stupid scientists in their place. (I.D. scientists exempted.)

And all without a college degree! (Or do they still give degrees to artists?)

Steinhardt and Turok's endless universe -- recent articles and papers:
- Stupid MSNBC introduces stupid theory.
- Stupid scientists provide their own stupid introduction to the stupid theory.
- Discover article on older version of stupid theory, with good historical background and step-wise illustrations, but also stupid.
- Stupid Steinhardt's stupid answers to stupid questions about stupid Cyclic Models.

Posted by: tex at June 29, 2006 09:20 PM (/zajH)

155 "It doesn't. Nor did I remotely imply he was. I simply noted that he recognized what I pointed out was true and was smart enough to agree. Just like this fellow the a"rticle is about, and Anthony Flew did."

So Einstein and Flew are smart enough to agree with you. That doesn't need a comment. I'll just let that one sit there and simmer.

You still have proven nothing. You can't prove there is a God. You can't prove there isn't 42 of them. Your simply saying "Since neither I nor anybody else has soved the riddle yet I say God did it and anyone who doesn't agree is stupid."

That's not science. That's the absence of science. And if you had any background in logic and not being arrogant you would know that. Here's the truth which you honor so. Prove there is a God and stop relying on the fact that nobody can disprove it. That's absurd logic.

Posted by: JackStraw at June 30, 2006 12:49 AM (rnOZq)

156 Tex, I'm sorry to disappoint you but the most recent studies and discoveries point to the universe is accellerating apart, not slowing as expected. Further, a good 90% of the matter required for gravitational pull to result in an eventual collapse. Modern astronomy and physics rejects the perpetual cycling universe.

But do please keep posting from MSNBC and such on scientific matters, they've proved so reliable in the past when reporting on science. ALAR, DDT, Global Warming...

Jack, I know this violates your faith, but you have to at least admit that science proves that the universe cannot always have existed and that something cannot come from nothing. Those two things are simply indisputable.

Now, if you want, you can start to come up with wild theories about how physics didn't apply at some point or that there's some force we haven't discovered and don't know about in science that makes it all work the way you want it to... but that's just bad science.

The only logical conclusion is that there's a theistic creator. Science demonstrates this as I proved above. You don't have to like it, but if you're intellectually honest, you'll have to face it.

Unless, as I said you can disprove what I said which you haven't even attempted yet. Have courage, and think about it a while, it doesn't cost you anything.

Except your worldview that insists that God cannot exist, without proof, logic, or evidence to support that position.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at June 30, 2006 07:06 AM (Pwzb0)

157 CT: Tex, I'm sorry to disappoint you but... the universe is accellerating apart.

"Listen to me very carefully."

You're a semi-employed painter living in Pot-head, Oregon.

This is not Pot-head, Oregon.

Steinhardt and Turok try to explain the acceleration, along with all the other large-scale properties of the universe.

With their minds.

No read = No learn. You're being a troll. Go paint a hippy.

Posted by: tex at June 30, 2006 08:01 AM (bF/st)

158 Thanks tex, you're doing a fine job.
A valued member of the team, indeed.

Posted by: Satan at June 30, 2006 11:33 AM (My+2n)

159 Satan: Thanks tex, you're doing a fine job.

Hippy.

Posted by: tex at June 30, 2006 12:16 PM (bF/st)

160 Loundry,

Email me via the site above for the simple reason why you're still breathing after your little bout of blasphemy. It's an answer you'll never hear here.

If you're really interested.

dl

Posted by: DL at June 30, 2006 01:50 PM (jP01s)

161 Heh. Loundry doesn't seem to realize that the good Lord IS going to "take my [Loundry's] life" ...though in His own good time, exactly as He's planned, in such a fashion as He decides ...whether he [Loundry] truly desires it by that point or no.

...based upon His typical "tough love" standard.

...few get to opt out, either (only Enoch and Ezekiel, in my reading of it).

And angry railing at God is going to do Loundry about as much good as its done the rest of us down through the Ages.

Loundry's lack of scriptural understanding is only matched by his lack of telelogical depth (albiet a shared failing, much in evidence by many commenters here).

It's vastly amusing to read scriptural commentary masquerading as evidentiary of this-or-that infantile position of the commenter based upon some random Biblical citation by someone who's position sooo publicly and obviously displays their lack of depth in the subject. And, in this case, their adolescent angst.

Loundry? - You will die ...and then, you'll be judged. Like all of the rest of us.

What? You think that your words are going to make someone slap their foreheads and say "Whoa, dude, I've never thought of that"? Or maybe "You'reright Loundry! God can't be real cuz' He didn't blast you dead right then and there"?

Yeah. That's going to work.

What an original argument.

Not.

Spare us the histrionics moron child: you'll get farther in the discussion by being at least reasonably polite and respectful of what can be well thought out and rational consideration of divinity. By people who may've long since walked through a wall that you see as adamantinally opaque brick. And maybe learn something.

...not, mind you, that I personally think you're emotionally capable of it. Yet.

Posted by: . at July 01, 2006 06:32 AM (60wmB)

162 SHARP TOOTHS TO THE RIGHT OF US SHARPTOOTHS TO THE LEFT OF US SHARPTOOTHS EVERYWEHRE IM NOT WAITING AROUND TO GET EATEN IM OUTTA HERE I GOTTA FLY NOW

Posted by: spurwing plover at July 02, 2006 08:54 AM (0eEOk)

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