Evolution is Crazy, Says Man Who Thinks the Earth Was Created 6000 Years Ago, All the Animals Were Saved on a Boat Built by a 600-yo Noah, and our Loving Creator Drowned Everyone

Evolution is Crazy, Says Man Who Thinks the Earth Was Created 6000 Years Ago, All the Animals Were Saved on a Boat Built by a 600-yo Noah, and our Loving Creator Drowned Everyone July 21, 2017

fish fight

I watched the debate between Ken Ham and Bill Nye (the “Ham on Nye” debate) live in 2014. The question was, “Is Creation a viable model of origins?”

Ken Ham is a young-earth creationist, meaning that he thinks the earth is 6000 years old and that evolution is nonsense. He’s the founder of the Creation Museum in Kentucky.

How poorly did Ham do? Let me count the ways.

1. Ham wants to make a distinction between experimental or observational science (reliable) vs. historical science (not). His point: you weren’t there, so how would you know?

Bill Nye pointed out that this is a make-believe distinction not made within science. For example, astronomy inherently looks back in time, since the light from distant objects might have taken millions or billions of years to reach us.

Ham repeated, “You weren’t there” several times, though this applies to him as well. Ken, were you there to see God make everything? Did you see the Genesis story accurately transcribed and copied? And I wonder how Ham would accept a lawyer defending a man accused of murder whose case was, “Yes, I’ll admit that you’ve got damning evidence, but so what? Were you there?

Ham gave the example of our spherical earth, which we can observe, vs. millions of years, which you can’t. But of course you can. Science has long since left personal observation behind and uses instruments and clues to piece together the reality of nature. The clues pointing to an old earth and universe are not hard to put together—red shift from moving galaxies, radioisotope dating, plate tectonics, and so on.

2. Non-Christian scientists borrow from the Christian view for logic and an understandable universe. That sounds like the Transcendental Argument (responded to here) or the Argument from Mathematics (here).

3. Though the topic was the scientific evaluation of the Christian origin claims, Ham gave a surprisingly long Christian pitch. I naively thought that he would start with the evidence and then have God as the conclusion. Nope. Ham’s organization has a faith statement that begins, “Answers in Genesis seeks to give glory and honor to God as Creator, and to affirm the truth of the biblical record of the real origin and history of the world and mankind.” He obviously puts his presuppositions first and selects the facts to support that.

Ham’s response: I have faith, but so do you.

No, science doesn’t use faith. Science follows the evidence where it leads, while Ham wants to select and reinterpret the evidence to support the conclusion he started with.

During the question phase, Ham was asked, “What would change your mind?” After a long pause and much rambling, he admitted that no one could show him that there was no god. He did say that he would be happy to change his models if need be. That is, he’ll change his models as necessary to keep his God hypothesis alive in spite of new scientific discoveries.

4. Ham discussed Darwin’s errors. Only Creationists imagine that what Darwin thought constrains evolution today. More here.

Intermission.

Can you believe that we’re actually wasting time talking about a 3000-year-old mythology as if it’s actually true? It’s like we’re in kindergarten or Klown Kollege, debating the flat earth or geocentrism. Don’t we have bigger issues that this ridiculous debate is keeping us from?

Should we have a national debate over Scientology’s Xenu? Or the Haida myth that the Raven brought the sun to humanity? Or the Babylonian creation story where Marduk slays Tiamat and forms the universe from the corpse?

We live in interesting times. Let’s get back to what passes for science at the Creation Museum.

5. Dogs will always be dogs. Ham rejects speciation (despite Creationist darling Michael Behe accepting speciation and common descent). Whatever you show him—Lenski’s experiment with E. coli or a bacterium’s sudden new ability to metabolize nylon—he’s determined to reject it, though he never makes clear what confines the change within a species to keep it from becoming another species.

To squeeze all those animals onto Noah’s Ark, he imagines that there were less than 1000 “kinds,” but that, in the 4000 years since Noah landed, they were so profligate that they gave us the 16 million (or more) land animal species we have today. That’s some serious speciation.

Ham never defined “kinds,” but it sounds like it would map roughly to the biological concept of order (two steps down from phylum, and two steps up from genus). Let’s see where this takes us.

There would be just one pair for the primate order—that’s baboons, gorillas, chimpanzees, all the monkeys, and many more. Rodents are another order—that’s mice, rats, voles, beavers, squirrels, and lots more. Carnivores are another—the cat family (tigers, panthers, etc.), the dog family (wolves, foxes, etc.), bears, raccoons, mongooses, hyenas, and lots more. Ungulates are another—giraffes, deer, cattle, pigs, hippos, camels, and lots more.

But mammals are just one category. There are also insects, arachnids, birds, amphibians, reptiles, centipedes, roundworms, tapeworms, flatworms, and dozens more that most of us have never heard of, each with many orders. And don’t forget orders that are now extinct, since Ham imagines all animals that existed were thundering around during Noah’s time.

So the Ark lands, and the pairs go off together to repopulate the sterile earth. Can diverse members of an order mate today—say a rat and a beaver? A bear and a lynx? A giraffe and a hippo? If not, then why imagine that they could 4000 years ago? Perhaps this genetic diversity was available but unexpressed so that each pair was close enough genetically to create viable offspring but that the original rat-like pair would give us squirrels today or the original tiger-like pair would give us raccoons?

But where’s the evidence? We don’t see the record of this remarkable change in diversity in the DNA of modern animals.

I have no idea what the Hamster’s fantasy means, and we’ve wasted far too much time speculating.

6. There are hundreds of dating methods (natural clocks). They’re all fallible, and most give dates of the earth much younger than 4.6B years. Ham’s conclusion is to use the perfect source, the one who was there—God.

Oh, so then I guess Ken “Were you there?” Ham wasn’t there either. So much for his epistemology.

Ham showed a slide listing these natural clocks for just a few seconds and didn’t go into any of them. I assume he was referring to arguments like, “If you look at the rate at which minerals rinse off the land to add salt to the ocean, the oceans should be much saltier if they are billions of years old.” This was a world-class Gish gallop, since to explore and dismiss each of them would take far longer than the three seconds they deserved. (In the case of the salty ocean, there are ways that salt is removed from oceans—seen in salt domes, saline lakes like the Dead Sea, or the million cubic kilometers of salt deposited at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea.)

Bill Nye pointed to direct evidence for the age of the earth by citing trees dated at 6800 years in America and 9550 in Sweden and the 680,000 annual layers found in ice cores. He brought it home by noting that there were ancient coral fossils under the Creation Museum.

During Q&A, Ham was asked: if evidence showed the earth to be much older than 10,000 years, would you change? Ham said that it’s not possible for observational science to contradict the claim of a young earth.

But then how can Ham’s science confirm a young earth without being falsifiable?

7. The Noah story. Ham didn’t spend much time on Noah, though his Creation Museum is responsible for the Ark Encounter replica of the Ark.

But Bill Nye spent much time lampooning the Flood. (My summary of the Bible’s Noah nonsense is here.) Some of Nye’s points:

  • The Grand Canyon shows clearly distinct layers of fossils, not an enormous mix of every living thing, sorted by size, that you’d expect if they were deposited there in just days. Further, you never see modern animals mixed with dinosaurs that lived in the same habitat—modern hippos with sauropod dinosaurs, for example, since they both favor(ed) shallow fresh water.
  • Plants die after being under salt water. Where did our plants come from?
  • Why is there just one Grand Canyon? If the Flood caused it, there should be many around the world. And how does the Flood both lay down the layers and cut out a canyon?
  • How did the animals get home after the Flood?
  • The Ark would’ve been the biggest wooden ship ever. Compare that to the Wyoming, the world’s largest wooden schooner. It was built in 1909 as the culmination of centuries of shipbuilding expertise, but its size made it twist too much, and it leaked. Noah was an amateur, and his project was larger. He’s going to succeed where seasoned shipwrights couldn’t?

And why do Bible coloring books show just a little round Ark with happy animals on top? Why not show the corpses of millions of people and perhaps billions of other animals floating on the surface of the water? Wasn’t a corpse-covered ocean part of God’s perfect plan as well?

8. Ham thinks that the Bible stories are accurate statements of what actually happened. My favorite: the Bible points to one race. How he can say that given the racism in the Bible? The Bible forbids intermarriage with other tribes (Deuteronomy 7:3) and makes clear that impure ancestry forbade one from becoming an Israelite (Deut. 23:3). God demands the genocide of many tribes. Even Jesus was careful to focus the evangelism of his disciples: “Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel” (Matthew 10:5–6).

Other observations

Ham made clear that his view should be taught in public, taxpayer-supported schools, though I couldn’t make sense of his logic. He didn’t say why astrology wasn’t a valid alternative to astronomy or why other origin myths shouldn’t also be taught. And somehow he slipped in the claim that God intends marriage to be between one man and one woman (I’ve slapped down that ridiculous argument here and here).

Nye made clear that “I don’t know” isn’t embarrassing and says nothing about the validity of science. Referring to various aspects of science, he said, “that’s how we do it on the outside.”

Nye’s main point was that the citizens of America deserve better. Teaching accurate science, not make-believe, is essential for America’s competitiveness. It’s simply unpatriotic to settle for less.

Let’s be real, let’s not make a joke of ourselves.
— Pat Robertson responding to Ken Ham

(This is an update of a post that originally appeared 2/7/14.)

Photo credit: Doug Geisler

 

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Mark Landes

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2017/07/17/creationists-are-mocking-flat-earthers-for-taking-the-bible-too-literally/

    Of course it is even funnier when creationist mock flat-earthers for taking the bible too literally

  • This man actually has the audacity to accuse others of being in denial about their creation story, while openly admitting there’s nothing that could change his mind.

  • Herald Newman

    The problem with idiots like Ham is that he’s a presuppositionalist. He has literally assumed that his God exists, and that the Bible is directly inspired by God, and completely inerrent. Nothing will ever change these assumptions because they are dogma to him.

    I never understood why Nye agreed to debate somebody who’s so off his rocker?! Last time I checked, Ham is still pushing the video sales of the debate, even though the debate was not a debate, rather it was Nye trying to have a debate, and Ham mostly proselytizing to the audience.

    Arguing with presuppositionalists is a useless venture, as the “debate” between Matt DIllahunty and Sye Ten Brugencate, along with personal experience, has showed me.

    • Lerk!

      I never got around to watching it, and I know a lot of people thought Nye shouldn’t do it, but I noticed afterward that Christians were disappointed in the outcome. One minister I know posted something to the effect that Ham didn’t represent his side very well, and he hoped not to “lose” young Christians as a result.

      I do hope churches show the video a lot in the next few years. If it’s as one sided as it seems, then it should result in lots of people, young and not so young, realizing that they’ve been practicing mythology and nothing more.

      • jamesparson

        I don’t think they watch debates very often. I think it shakes their faith too much. They have been told their whole life how right they are, and suddenly some one is explaining why they are not.

        I don’t think they lose their faith right then and there, but I do think they start questioning.

        ~~~~~~~~~~~~

        “I do hope churches show the video a lot in the next few years.”

        I hope so too.

        • TheNuszAbides

          I don’t think they watch debates very often.

          at best, debates are jumping-off points for serious investigation by any given member of the audience who happens to have a concern for clear-headed inquiry; at worst, they’re artifacts of rhetorical chicanery abused to score points with the choir. for example, time limits are a practical measure that provide mindless advantage to the worst tactics: a YEC can toss out a dozen published crank-claims from decades of fake hole-poking ‘supporting’ denial of evolution, in a few minutes; soundly refuting these turds (as opposed to resorting to merely calling the YEC an ignorant or manipulative putz — regardless of how accurate such an assessment might, objectively, be) would take multiple time allotments.

          most of the debates i’ve seen/heard (somewhere in the low dozens, probably still fewer than 100) are <20 years old, atheist-versus-theist, and centered around a theistic proposition. invariably, the theist includes at least one emotional-button-pushing anecdote in his* material. but i've never heard a target-audience theist complain that such things are gratuitous, irrelevant, etc., because (i reckon) somewhere deep down, the core instinct of the apologist is to shore up faith rather than pursue rational argument to sway the non-believer — and I suppose I could be blocking it out, but I can't recall ever seeing a believer rebuke an apologist outright for being shabby, dishonest, or the like — Lerk!'s unsourced paraphrase of "one minister I know" notwithstanding!

          all that said, I too hope that propagating the video disappoints more and more Christians, to at least the extent that Ham's reputation/platform never deserved the size it had already reached before the debate. and I certainly don't fear that it will put any relatively honest, relatively skeptical folks at risk of finding Ham's side of things compelling in any way.

          *I wouldn't doubt that such an animal exists, but I've yet to come across an atheist debating with a female theist.

      • TheNuszAbides

        something to the effect that Ham didn’t represent his side very well

        i.e. didn’t hinge the whole thing on rhetorical diversions. (not that there wasn’t any rhetoric involved, but Ham is probably too much of a tool himself to be comfortable communicating to a target audience one tiny cut above tool-level. plus it seems unlikely that whatever Ark-Park-backers he has left would appreciate him diverging too much (whatever that is) from pounding literalism.

    • jamesparson

      It goes something like this

      1. Everyone has assumptions
      2. All assumptions are valid
      3. You are biased against God existing
      4. That is why you don’t think God exists
      5. I am open to God existing
      6. Therefore I think God exists
      7. I am right. Therefore God exists.

  • guerillasurgeon

    FFS, there are trees older than 6000 years. Did God just put them there to tempt us into error? I’d suggest sending this guy back to Australia, but they don’t want him. 🙂

    • Bob Jase

      No, Satan put them there – hah, trick question!

    • Jim Jones

      There are hunting spears older than 300,000 years.

    • Ignorant Amos

      Göbekli Tepe has been dated back to the 10th millennium BCE.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%B6bekli_Tepe

  • Bob Jase

    “Should we have a national debate over Scientology’s Xenu? ”

    So who would win in a three-way fight – Xenu, Thanos or Darksied?

    • Michael Neville

      Sauron would win, if he had The Ring.

      • TheNuszAbides

        or that’s what the Elves want us to believe …

        • Ignorant Amos

          That bird has flown…I seen Frodo chuck the The Ring into the fiery depths of Mordor and that’s backed up by the textual “evidence” too.

        • http://existentialcomics.com/comic/175

          Or is that from “The Last Ringbearer”?
          (actually, while a few parts of that are interesting I mostly didn’t like the flipping of the perspective).

    • Nos482

      My money would be on Thanos… especially the Ultimate Universe version.

      • MadScientist1023

        That depends. Does he have the Infinity gauntlets in this fight?

        • Nos482

          He didn’t need them. He just came back stronger each and every time he died… capable of warping flesh and ‘souls’ as he saw fit.
          Eventually Richards killed him off for good by removing the a cosmic cube’s safety features so it reacted to it’s user’s subconcious wishes. Thanos wanted death…

  • RichardSRussell

    Ken Ham’s go-to laff line was “Well, you see, we’ve got this book ….” [pause for appreciative chuckle from his fans in the audience], repeated several times, because he’s not the most imaginative guy you’ve ever run into.

    I kept waiting for Bill Nye to hold up a copy of Harry Potter and say “Well, I’ve got one, too. Why is yours any better than mine?”

    • Nos482
    • Paul

      “I kept waiting for Bill Nye to hold up a copy of Harry Potter and say “Well, I’ve got one, too. Why is yours any better than mine?”

      I’m not aware of anyone that takes the Harry Potter books as historical narrative. Are you? They are taken as they are meant to: as fiction.

      Contrarily, two university college professors, Andrew Dickson White and John William Draper, took a fictional book about Christopher Columbus by Washington Irving (of Headless Horseman fame) and taught it as historical fact. As a consequence, many still believe that a lot of people in the past though the world was flat, which of course isn’t true.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myth_of_the_flat_Earth

      • RichardSRussell

        No, pretty clearly the Harry Potter stories are fiction. And we know this because J. K. Rowling is still around and can describe the (by now well documented) creation process.

        But suppose 2000 years from now, after several collapses of civilization, the books have still survived but the accounts of their creation have not. Would there be a religious tradition of Dumbledorians fighting the evil machinations of the still-around-somewhere Voldemort and his horcruxes?

        The question I was hoping Bill Nye would ask Ken Ham was along the lines of “Why do you think YOUR book is any different?” That is, why should anyone take the fantastic stories in the Bible any more seriously than the fantastic stories of Hogwarts? Just because the authors are long dead?

      • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

        We’re not responsible for your delusion concerning the historicity of your ‘bible’.

        Demonstrate it.

        • Paul

          I’m not responsible for your delusion that I’m delusional. Demonstrate it.

        • Jim Jones

          > Demonstrate it.

          Your posts.

      • Jim Jones

        Like Harry Potter, it is very clear that the bible stories are fictional. They are also almost all anonymous which makes it much worse.

        Fan fiction is fiction.

  • RichardSRussell

    BTW, as a certifiable lefty (both senses) myself, I’m pleased to see from the above illo that apparently Darwin was, too.

  • theot58

    Ken Ham makes some excellent points about the inadequacy of Macro evolution.

    Macro evolution is a fairy tale for grownups. It has no credible scientific evidence supporting it; just believers and priests who push it onto trusting students through propaganda in the science class.

    Dr John Sanford (Geneticist and inventor of the Gene Gun) said :

    “The bottom line is that the primary axiom [of Darwinian/Macro evolution]
    is categorically false,
    you can’t create information with misspellings,
    not even if you use natural selection.”

    Malcom Muggeridge
    Pascal Lectures, Ontario Canada, University of Waterloo said:

    “I, myself,
    am convinced that the theory of evolution,
    especially to the extent to which it’s been applied,
    will be one of the great jokes in the history books of the future.
    Posterity will marvel
    that so flimsy and dubious a hypothesis
    could be accepted with the credulity that it has.”

    • Michael Neville

      John Stanford was a plant geneticist who became a fundamentalist Christian and Young Earth Creationist. While he has the background to critique evolution, he admits that he rejects it because it “goes against the word of God.”

      The late Malcolm Muggeridge was a professional curmudgeon with no scientific background. His degree was in English literature. His ignorance and incredulity are not evidence against evolution, they’re evidence of his ignorance and incredulity.

      Macro evolution is a fairy tale for grownups. It has no credible scientific evidence supporting it; just believers and priests who push it onto trusting students through propaganda in the science class.

      Then why do the vast majority of biologists, paleontologists, and the like accept evolution? Okay, a few outliers like Stanford and Michael Behe reject it but fundamentalist Christians like biologist Francis Collins and paleontologist Robert Bakker accept it.

      • islandbrewer

        Actually, even Michael Behe doesn’t reject evolution (although he tends to keep quiet about it). His big contribution is that he believes in “irreducible complexity” which, in his opinion (with which no other biologists agree), demonstrates “design.”

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          Yeah, the biggest problem with his ideas is that he has no way of showing which features evolved, and which ones were designed (and for the features that were designed, by who, what, how, or when).

        • You’d think that he would be smart enough to understand the responses to his irreducible complexity ideas. Maybe he says, “OK–I’ll admit that the ideas that I’ve floated have plausible natural pathways, but there could be others,” but I’d have thought that he’d need to retrench.

      • theot58

        1) FEW SCIENTISTS ACTUALLY EXAMINE THE EVIDENCE

        – Most people succumb to the indoctrination at school and blindly accept it as a scientific fact.
        – this is religious indoctrination

        – very few actually scrutinize the evidence

        2) THERE IS SIGNIFICANT DISSENT.

        There is significant dissent from Darwinism. For proof of the dissent to go http://www.dissentfromdarwin.org/ and download the list of brave scientists who are willing to publicly declare their dissent from Darwinian/Macro evolution. Micro Evolution is observable science, Darwinian/Macro evolution is a fairytale supported only by propaganda.

        • Michael Neville

          Creationism is supported by wishful thinking and misinterpretation of some cult’s holy book.

          Look, you ignorant twerp, you’re not going to get us to believe in your fairy tales about some sky pixie inventing everything because we know better. So take your bullshit away and bother some stupid people who might believe that nonsense.

        • Oh, please–not the pointless Dissent from Darwin thing again? How hard is this? The topic is biology–no one cares what not-biologists say.

          Go search “Project Steve” for the rebuttal from the rationalist side.

        • jamesparson

          I have a cat. He appears to hear with what look like ears, he appears to see with what look like eyes, he appears to smell with what looks like a nose. His paws look like they have 5 digits in the front. His mouth looks like it has teeth.

          I am looking at all his body parts and they seem vaguely similar to my own. There are couple of possible explanations.

          1. It is just a random coincidence
          2. There was a common ancestor

          If it was a coincidence, there is nothing to study.
          If there is a common ancestor, then make we look for it.

          ~~~~

          I don’t think their should be limits to what we look for. But I know some people disagree. Some people think that they have found everything they need to know. But I disagree.

    • Chuck Johnson

      “The bottom line is that the primary axiom [of Darwinian/Macro evolution is categorically false, you can’t create information with misspellings not even if you use natural selection.”-theot58

      Evolution works in nature, and it works in computer simulations.
      Mutations create useful information in a minority of cases.
      Selection pressure converts that minority into a majority.

      You have been lied to, and you have believed it.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=STkfUZtR-Vs

      • theot58

        What do you think this video actualy shows?

        How do you think this helps macro evolution (apart from using the same word).

        Dr Phillip Skell (National Academy of Sciences member) speaks convincingly against the fallacious assertion that “nothing in biology makes sense without evolution”. Listen to this interview with Dr Skell and decide for yourself. Click on link: http://intelligentdesign.podomatic.com/entry/2012-06-06T13_36_13-07_00

        • Chuck Johnson

          What do you think this video actually shows?-theot58

          David set up this simulation using virtual creatures of chosen body types and engineering parameters. They couldn’t travel very well.

          The simulation would have mutations as a part of it. Engineering parameters of the creatures would change a bit to represent mutations.

          Next, a new generation of creatures would replace the old generation (as in biological systems). All of the new creatures would than be tested for ability to travel quickly. A “fitness number” would be assigned to each creature. The fitness number would then be used to simulate selection pressure. The creatures would survive to the next generation (statistically) in proportion to their fitness number.

          So, mutations, selection pressure, and the birth and death of generation after generation would all be accomplished as a part of this simulation. These things are all necessary for simulated evolution, or natural biological evolution.

          Eventually, the creatures learned to walk quickly, and then fly. They flew by tearing themselves apart very forcefully. This caused parts to fly through the air more quickly than they could have walked.

          All of this fitness (locomotion) innovation was created by evolutionary progress without the help of the experimenter (David).

          That’s how biological evolution works, too. No intelligent mind is needed to create complicated and useful things. The mechanisms of mutation and selection pressure create these useful innovations generation after generation, and no thinking or planning is necessary once evolution is underway.

        • theot58

          David Lenski did a much more realistic emulation.
          He tried to demonstrated macro evolution in the lab using bacteria.
          After at least 65,000 generations of bacteria – THERE IS NO MACRO EVOLUTION EVIDENT.
          So what are the evolutionists to do:
          1) Declare “this is exactly what evolution would predict”
          2) Transition to computer simulations (where the programmer codes in exactly the result he wants to see).
          Please wake up – macro evolution is a popular myth.!!

        • Chuck Johnson

          I don’t know what you mean by “Macro Evolution”.

          But the evolution from one species to another is proved by evolution of DNA from one species to another.

          Ring species show evolution from one species to another.
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring_species

          PBS Nova’s Becoming Human Parts 1,2 and 3 show the skeletal evolution from pre-human to human skulls and other bones.

          The fossil record shows various species evolving into other species.

          Within science, the truth and usefulness of the Darwin-Wallace discovery is not in doubt.

          That discovery comes into doubt when religious superstitions are presented as if they were science. Creation science and Intelligent Design use ignorance, dishonesty and superstition to present their case. That case fails among scientists, but succeeds when the audience is motivated by religious superstitions.

        • theot58

          Macro evolution is the development of new body parts and systems. It requires new and novel genetic information.

          Do you have evidentiary support for your statement: “Ring species show evolution from one species to another”?

          I read the Wiki article but it is really weak.
          – It works well in the imagination of evolutionists but this does not constitute evidence.

          The article states:
          “The textbook examples of ring species, including
          the circumpolar
          herring gull complex,
          the greenish warbler of Asia,
          and the Ensatina
          salamanders of America,
          have
          all been challenged,
          so ring species are at best rare.”

          .

        • Chuck Johnson

          David Lenski did a much more realistic emulation.
          I think you mean Richard Lenski.

        • theot58

          You are right – I apologize.

        • The bacteria couldn’t metabolize citrate in an aerobic environment … and now it can.

          Sounds like evolution to me. Or is this where you say, “Yeah, but it’s still bacteria!”?

        • Chuck Johnson

          Dr Phillip Skell (National Academy of Sciences member) speaks
          convincingly against the fallacious assertion that “nothing in biology
          makes sense without evolution”.-theot58

          That assertion is only fallacious to the extent that it is an exaggeration and an overstatement.

          Evolution is fundamental to understanding where living things come from, and why do they exist with the forms and the functions that we observe. These are broad, general questions.

          Questions that are much more specific will often need no reference to evolution to be answered.

          “How many atoms of oxygen can one molecule of hemoglobin transport ?” Needs no reference to evolution for a good answer.

          “How did it come to be that many animals use hemoglobin as an oxygen transport mechanism ?” Greatly benefits from the insights that the Darwin-Wallace discovery can provide.

        • theot58

          Can you please substantiate you wild (and incorrect) assertion that you need macro evolution to determine how many atoms of oxygen one molecule of hemoglobin can transport.
          I used to be intimidated by wild assertion from evolutionists – but after reading the fine print I discovered that they are only not air.
          They are used car salesmen peddling BS.
          Show us the evidence.

        • Chuck Johnson

          Can you please substantiate you wild (and incorrect) assertion that you need macro evolution to determine how many atoms of oxygen one molecule of hemoglobin can transport.-theot58

          At this point, it is hard to determine if I am observing you ignorance, your stupidity, or your dishonesty.

        • Tommy

          I would say all of the above.

        • Show us the evidence.

          Show us the consensus.

          This isn’t hard. My opinion is very easy to sway. Simply show me that the scientific consensus rejects evolution, and I will too.

        • Kuno

          Is it opposite day already?

        • Chuck Johnson

          Listen to this interview with Dr Skell and decide for yourself. Click on link: http://intelligentdesign.po-Don

          I listened to this interview, and Dr. Skell showed himself to be a foolish, ignorant and dishonest man when it comes to evolutionary biology. The reason is that he is using political arguments where scientific insights should be referred to.

          Apparently, he is bowing to the needs of religion in his disrespect for scientific truth.

        • theot58

          He is going against the main stream – because the main stream has been deceived.

          Consider a quotation from New Scientist magazine in an article “Survival of the fittest theory: Darwinism’s limits” 03 February 2010

          “Much of the vast neo-Darwinian literature is distressingly uncritical.

          The possibility that anything is seriously amiss with Darwin’s account of evolution is hardly considered.

          Such dissent as there is often relies on theistic premises which Darwinists rightly say have no place in the evaluation of scientific theories. So onlookers are left with the impression that there is little or nothing about Darwin’s theory to which a scientific naturalist could reasonably object.

          The methodological scepticism that characterises most areas of scientific discourse seems strikingly absent when Darwinism is the topic.”

          Macro evolution is dying a slow and agonizing death – but that is what scientific progress is meant to do.

        • Chuck Johnson

          Macro evolution is dying a slow and agonizing death – but that is what scientific progress is meant to do.-theot58

          Explain to me what you mean by “Macro Evolution”.

          Does it mean change from one species to another?

        • Macro evolution is dying a slow and agonizing death

          Says who? I wonder (dare I say it?) if these sources are Answers in Genesis, Creation Research Institute, Disco Institute, and other agenda-driven sites.

          That’s not how science works, Chester.

        • MR

          Honestly. It’s hard to take these people seriously sometimes. How one-sided is your world if you’re making such statements? A slow, agonizing death? It’s hard not to giggle.

        • My favorite example: one of the early Creationist books was “Evolution: A Theory in Crisis.” The 30th anniversary edition was titled, “Evolution: Still a Theory in Crisis” (emphasis added).

          Yep, any day now, evolution is going to keel over. Any day now. Just like Jesus said that the end will come … any day now.

        • TheNuszAbides

          Just like

          unless, of course, one of those predictions is *gasp* metaphorical.

        • Zeta

          theot58: “Consider a quotation from New Scientist magazine in an article “Survival of the fittest theory: Darwinism’s limits” 03 February 2010

          Your quote came from the 6th Feb 2010 issue of New Scientist. The piece was clearly labelled with the word “OPINION” in the magazine and was written by Jerry Fodor, a philosopher, and Massimo Piattelli Palmarini, a cognitive scientist. It is nothing more than a propaganda piece and free advertisement for their (at that time) new book: “What Darwin Got Wrong”, published 16th Feb 2010.

          Why didn’t you honestly state that? The way you quoted it seems intended to mislead readers here that it was from a genuine article of New Scientist magazine.

          Both authors were not evolutional biologists. Readers may be interested in a review by Michael Ruse who said that it was “an intensely irritating book”.
          http://archive.boston.com/ae/books/articles/2010/02/14/new_critique_intends_to_rebut_darwins_ideas/?page=full

          There is also a piece about it on RationalWiki.
          http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/What_Darwin_Got_Wrong

          The way you have been writing here is suspiciously similar to the infamous See Noevo who has been banned by Bob. Are you See Noevo?

        • Interesting. I hadn’t made that connection. I banned See Noevo 7 months ago.

        • TheNuszAbides

          did anyone get a screencrapcap of his content-free feints? … never mind; i doubt that anybody who demanded evidence justifying any of his increasingly-universal bans would be persuaded by a mere screencap.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Skell is a *chemist*, not a biologist.

          So you lose *twice*:
          – Wrong field of science
          – Appeal to Authority fallacy

        • theot58

          I don’t care about win or lose.
          I do care about truth and lies.
          The truth is that the scientific evidence supporting macro evolution is pathetically weak. Teaching it as a scientific fact is gross deception.
          Does this not concern you?
          Do you not care that students are being deceived?
          I say again: Show us the evidence

        • TheNuszAbides

          the problem is that you have to do better than quoting one crank and showing a list of parrots-in-denial. you have to actually refute volumes upon volumes upon volumes of observations that are no longer dependent on Darwin’s writing, nor on Wallace’s. you have to refute over a century of growing disciplines, like genetics, having found further evidence consistent with evolutionary theory.

          and merely asserting “deception! false! pathetically weak!” isn’t going to get you there. i’m sure the feeling that you’re on the Right side of Truthiness is awfully compelling … inside your head; but the thing is that actual science has been going on under your very nose (or perhaps more accurately, behind your back, since you seem to have turned resolutely away from the actual record of evidence for evolution), and I suppose that human endeavor by and large is simply lucky that your tactics of “truth-seeking” have not prevailed over methodological naturalism as a whole within living memory.

          until that theory-shattering event, you’re wasting ones and zeroes with your alarmist bloviations.

        • theot58

          You have not showed ANY evidence.

          Can you elaborate on your statement
          ” you have to refute over a century of growing disciplines,
          like genetics, having found further evidence consistent with evolutionary theory.”

          Evolutionists do this a lot. They think that quoting different fields of science is actual evidence.

          NEWSFLASH: Listing different fields of science is NOT evidence.

          Show as the evidence to prove that a bacterium became a baby over millions of years.

          I am happy to wait.

          Science is not a popularity contest – however a common deception propagated by evolutionists is that “everyone believes in evolution”, this is provably NOT true.

          Go to http://www.gallup.com/poll/21814/evolution-creationism-intelligent-design.aspx and see the running poll which shows that ONLY 15% believe that humans evolved

          and God had no part in the process.

        • TheNuszAbides

          yes, we’re quite fortunate that science is not a popularity contest subject to the same atrocious rhetoric that so many of us have been swallowing generation after generation for millennia.

        • TheNuszAbides

          I say again: Show us the evidence

          have you been banned from biologos.org yet? they seem comfortable with accepting the copious evidence and simply shifting their faith to old-earth creationism. what do you actually think is at risk here? use some of that prophecy mojo — wait, no, don’t, you’ve been laughed at enough already.

    • The Hamster doesn’t like evolution, so I should reject it? I think I’ll follow the consensus of the scientists who actually understand the data.

      • Paul

        Are you sure that the consensus has the right interpretation of the evidence? I keep asking for evidence of life coming from a single common ancestor, but all I get in response is birds producing birds, bacteria producing bacteria. Sorry, but none of that proves universal common descent.

        • Michael Neville

          None of us here are biologists. So:

          1. We go with the consensus of biologists, the educated professionals, about evolution and descent from a common ancestor.

          2. If you want an answer to your question, why don’t you ask a biologist? Bob’s a computer engineer, I’m an accountant, neither of us are qualified to give a detailed answer about common descent

        • theot58

          The line – “why don’t you ask a biologist” is a cop out to hide the fact that you don’t really have any evidence.
          I have gone through Darwins book (On the Origin of species) and Dawkin’s book Evolution the Greatest Show on earth.
          Neither has credible scientific evidence to support the wild assertion that a bacteria became a baby over millions of years.
          PLEASE SHOW US THE EVIDENCE.

        • Michael Neville

          The line “why don’t you ask a biologist” means that we’re not the people who have the evidence you’re going to ignore anyway. If you really wanted evidence for evolution then you’d go to a biology blog, not an atheist blog. But you don’t want evidence, you want to us to accept 2500 year old creation myths written by people who didn’t know where the Sun went at night. You’re not going to convince us to accept superstitious nonsense and you’re going to sneer at reality, so why don’t you peddle your bullshit somewhere else?

        • theot58

          Why don’t you read a high school text book on evolution and see for yourself the deceptions they go to in order to support this dying macro evolution myth.
          They still talk about similarities in embryo’s as evidence for evolution whereas Ernst Haeckel (the perpetrator of this deception) was openly declared a fraud over a century ago.
          Do you not care that students are being deceived everyday?
          Is truth important to you or not?

        • Michael Neville

          Is truth important to you or not?

          Yes it it, that’s why I don’t believe the lies you’re trying to peddle here. Just go away. Nobody wants to play silly games with you. Nobody is buying your godsoaked bullshit. And we’re sick of stupid, ignorant people like you telling lies that you learned from other stupid, ignorant, dishonest people like your hero Ham.

        • Michael Neville

          Yeah right, you’re pretending Haekel’s work is used in modern text books. Next you’ll be telling me that medical text books still tell which rattles to shake over a patient to drive out demons.

          Thanks for showing that like your buddy Ken Ham you’ll lie to make a point. But I forgot, Lying for Jesus™ is a sacrament for you folks, especially if you’re lying to non-fundamentalist Christians.

        • MR

          The Truth Project used to peddle the Haekel nonsense. Disingenuous arguments for people who paid to be deceived.

        • I missed the significance of the Haekel thing. Yes, it was incorrect. It takes a while to change textbooks, and of course any mention of Haekel that identified it as wrong isn’t a problem.

          The Creationists have so little to work with that they must grasp at dust particles.

        • TheNuszAbides

          ah, so it’s another canard like “but but but Piltdown Man hoax!” good to know.

        • Greg G.

          Remember that in Haekel’s day, they didn’t have the technology to photograph through a microscope, wo the images had to be drawn by hand. The important details were illustrated, not every minute detail. Also, the printing technology of the day was black ink and white paper. No shades of gray.

          Do you not care that students are being deceived everyday?

          I care very much about children being deceived by people like you. I care that you were deceived, too. Please stop promulgating your brain damage.

        • MR

          The irony of Haekel is that nowadays since we can photograph embryos we can see with our own eyes embryonic similarities across species. Haekel exaggerated some aspects, but photography highlights even more the stunning similarities. His theory of ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny was off, but not by so much as apologists would like you to believe. Embryonic development does echo our ancestral past, just not in the way Haekel believed. The apologists want to throw the, ahem, baby out with the bath water. They want to highlight Haekel’s error with much hand waving to distract you from how close he was to getting it right.

        • His theory of ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny was off, but not by so much as apologists would like you to believe.

          Exactly. I find this a fascinating point. He thought that the embryo developed through its primitive past. Not so, but the body repurposes elements of its past. For humans, there’s a tail that gets reabsorbed. The gill slits and arches are repurposed. The recurrent laryngial nerve is a joke, but what the heck–it gets the job done. And so on.

          Let me know if you find any scientific discussions of this. I’d like to do a post on it.

        • MR

          Check your email for a suggestion.

        • Chuck Johnson

          Neither has credible scientific evidence to support the wild assertion that a bacteria became a baby over millions of years.
          PLEASE SHOW US THE EVIDENCE.-theot58

          More than millions of years are needed.

          Darwin noticed the forms of and functions of diverse species, living and extinct. From this he guessed that evolution over time had caused, and continues to cause these variations.

          The fossil record shows billions of years worth of morphological changes that suggest evolution.

          It turns out that Darwin and Wallace were right.
          http://tinyurl.com/oazyudc

          Modern biochemistry verifies it.
          http://tinyurl.com/ybquzwxa

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Get a PhD in Genetics…and then come back.

          DNA, archaeology, and biology all converge on evolution, and it makes falsifiable, testable claims that have been tested but NOT falsified.

          That’s what makes evolution and evolutionary theory science and ‘creationism’ just wooly-headed wish-fulfillment.

        • theot58

          So to be an intelligent believer in macro evolution; you have to get a PhD in genetics. Is this what you are saying?
          I say again: SHOW US THE EVIDENCE.
          Macro evolution is condemned by the scientific evidence.
          it is dying a slow and agonizing death – but it is about time.

        • Demonstrate your point that evolution is crap. But here’s the hard part: you can’t use any articles that come from a web site that has a religious agenda. We need scientific conclusions, not religiously motivated ones. Since evolution is crap, you should find this in the mainstream scientific literature.

          Go.

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          But… but… what about the huge conspiracy on the part of scientists that’s suppressing THE TRUTH! That’s why creationists can’t find non-religious sources for their science!

        • TheNuszAbides

          you’ve read two peripherally relevant books – one by an evolutionary biologist who *gasp* doesn’t know everything!, and one by the naturalist who got the ball rolling for evolutionary biology but *gasp* didn’t know everything! – and you’re demanding THE EVIDENCE on a counterapologetics blog?

          you’re an absolute buffoon.

          what’s your shabby one-liner refutation (so you can pretend that reading it wouldn’t help) of Coyne’s Why Evolution Is True?

        • The line – “why don’t you ask a biologist” is a cop out to hide the fact that you don’t really have any evidence.

          I like your pioneer spirit. Why believe what those pencil-pushing eggheads say, amirite? You can figure this stuff out for yourself!

          Therefore, don’t get into a car until you can repair any problem and can identify what every part in the engine does to the satisfaction of the designer. Ditto an airplane.

          I have gone through Darwins book (On the Origin of species) and Dawkin’s book Evolution the Greatest Show on earth.
          Neither has credible scientific evidence to support the wild assertion that a bacteria became a baby over millions of years.

          Uh . . . I hate to ask the obvious question, but have you read a fucking textbook on the subject?

        • theot58

          So let me understand you.
          Darwin’s book on evolution
          and Dawkin’s book on evolution
          are no good. It has to be a text book, am I hearing you right?
          Is there a specific text book that I should read,
          because I have read many.
          It seems to me Bob that I have examined the evidence on this issue much more carefully than you.
          It seem to me that you are a blind believer in the macro evolution myth.
          You believe it in spite of the evidence, not because of it.
          You are more of a believer than you realise.
          Your appeal to authority (most scientists believe evolution) is a weak position. (Most people believed in the flat earth at one stage.)
          …. and the truth shall make you free.

        • So let me understand you.
          Darwin’s book on evolution
          and Dawkin’s book on evolution
          are no good. It has to be a text book, am I hearing you right?

          If you want to get a comprehensive understanding of modern biology’s view on evolution, yeah. Kind of obvious, isn’t it?

          Is there a specific text book that I should read,
          because I have read many.

          I have no suggestions.

          It seems to me Bob that I have examined the evidence on this issue much more carefully than you.
          It seem to me that you are a blind believer in the macro evolution myth.
          You believe it in spite of the evidence, not because of it.

          Despite your best efforts, this really isn’t that confusing.

          Why do you fly in an airplane when you don’t know everything about how they work? Do you trust the (dare I say it?) consensus that they work?

          In modern society, no one can hope to understand more than a tiny sliver of science and technology. We must rely on others. In the case of biology, we look to biologists. What do they say about why life is the way it is? That field is called “evolution.” I suggest we learn from the experts, since we can’t hope to be experts ourselves.

          Your appeal to authority (most scientists believe evolution) is a weak position.

          Hilariously wrong. Go look up the “appeal to authority fallacy” and come back and tell us what it is. I’ll wait.

        • Jim Jones
        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          I’ve posted this many times before, but here you go.
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jw0MLJJJbqc

        • TheNuszAbides

          I have gone through Darwins book (On the Origin of species) and Dawkin’s book Evolution the Greatest Show on earth.

          that would be an amazing slam-dunk case … if anyone anywhere ever had confirmed that evolutionary theory hinges on either or both of those books.

          here’s a massive clue: it doesn’t.

        • Chuck Johnson

          The emergence of new species from previously-existing species is well demonstrated in biology.

          After that, it becomes a matter of perception and classification to decide what defines “Bird” and what is “Non-Bird”

          Were the now-extinct dinosaurs birds ?
          The scientific answer is yes, to some extent, and no, to some extent.

          Formal classification is different from similarity.
          Similarities include forms, functions, and identical components of DNA.

        • Are you sure that the consensus has the right interpretation of the evidence?

          There’s never proof with science, but what alternative do we laymen have to accepting the scientific consensus as the best approximation to the truth?

          I keep asking for evidence of life coming from a single common ancestor, but all I get in response is birds producing birds, bacteria producing bacteria. Sorry, but none of that proves universal common descent.

          You know Michael Behe? He accepts common descent. Go ask him.

          And don’t ask for proof. It doesn’t exist within science.

        • Paul

          “And don’t ask for proof. It doesn’t exist within science.”

          Then I’m surprised you don’t like Creationists. In the debate, Ken Ham says that we all have the exact same evidence – just different interpretations of the exact same evidence. Technically I didn’t ask for proof, I asked for evidence.

          “…alternative do we laymen have to accepting the scientific consensus as the best approximation to the truth?”

          How about critical thinking skills?

          “You know Michael Behe? He accepts common descent. Go ask him.”

          Let’s suppose I do ask him. Should I accept his answer uncritically? Should I not ask him about how he arrived at that conclusion?

          I’m certainly interested in the I.D. worldview, as well as the naturalistic/materialistic worldview, the Creation worldview, as well as others. Should I not evaluate each one critically and draw my own conclusions?

        • Technically I didn’t ask for proof, I asked for evidence.

          Ah, but you did: “none of that proves universal common descent.” Why else would I have made a point about asking for proof?

          “You know Michael Behe? He accepts common descent. Go ask him.”
          Let’s suppose I do ask him. Should I accept his answer uncritically? Should I not ask him about how he arrived at that conclusion?

          Go ahead. I simply mention Behe in case he had any standing in your eyes. Another is Ken Miller, a Catholic who was a strong witness in the Dover trial. Another: Francis Collins, head of the NIH and an evangelical.

          I’m certainly interested in the I.D. worldview, as well as the naturalistic/materialistic worldview, the Creation worldview, as well as others. Should I not evaluate each one critically and draw my own conclusions?

          Nope. You get to establish your own science? You’re not a scientist! What good are your conclusions in a field in which you’re not qualified to evaluate the evidence?

          Show me that you’re consistent. Show me that you are skeptical of every field in which you haven’t personally made a serious study. Cuz what I’m guessing is that you say this only about fields in which you don’t approve of the consensus.

        • Paul

          “You get to establish your own science?”

          I’m not establishing my own science. I’m simply evaluating the arguments.

          “Cuz what I’m guessing is that you say this only about fields in which you don’t approve of the consensus.”

          Whether I’m in the majority or minority on a particular issue is irrelevant. Consensus is not what makes something true or not.

        • I’m not establishing my own science. I’m simply evaluating the arguments.

          Um . . . you’re not qualified. The people who are qualified have already evaluated them. It doesn’t matter whether you’re pleased with the consensus view; it’s the best approximation to the truth we laymen hve.

          “Cuz what I’m guessing is that you say this only about fields in which you don’t approve of the consensus.”
          Whether I’m in the majority or minority on a particular issue is irrelevant. Consensus is not what makes something true or not.

          Not the issue, Mr. Bold Pioneer. I’m talking about whether you like the consensus. It sure looks like you take your bold “prove it to me” attitude only for topics that don’t please you. Is that just a coincidence, or are you happy to accept the consensus if and only if you like it?

        • Paul

          “It sure looks like you take your bold “prove it to me” attitude only for
          topics that don’t please you. Is that just a coincidence, or are you
          happy to accept the consensus if and only if you like it?”

          Again, that is completely irrelevant. I critically evaluate the evidence and draw my conclusions. I listen to viewpoints on all sides and critically evaluate those as well. If I’m in the majority, so be it. If I’m in the minority, so be it. I really don’t care what side I end up on.

        • “It sure looks like you take your bold “prove it to me” attitude only for
          topics that don’t please you. Is that just a coincidence, or are you
          happy to accept the consensus if and only if you like it?”
          Again, that is completely irrelevant.

          Irrelevant? Tell us anyway. I think that it’s at least curious if you’re from the Show Me state when something steps on your theological toes, but you’re quite happy to give quantum mechanics or string theory a pass, even though that’s complete BS to the ordinary layman.

        • Paul

          “Irrelevant? Tell us anyway.”

          I did tell you why it was irrelevant. Start reading from the sentence right after “Again, that is completely irrelevant.”

        • You talked about your process, not which disciplines you focus on, which was my point.

          So we’re at least in agreement that the science you tentatively reject is exclusively that which offends your religion. There’s loads of science you don’t understand but that you give a pass to–quantum physics, materials science, and so on–because it doesn’t challenge your religious preconceptions.

          Is that right?

        • Paul

          “So we’re at least in agreement that the science you tentatively reject is exclusively that which offends your religion.”

          There is no conflict between science and religion.
          The conflict is about over different interpretations of the exact same evidence. Ultimately, the conflict is between worldviews.

        • There is no conflict between science and religion.

          I could disagree with that, but let me try to find common ground. This works as long as we say that whenever there’s an apparent conflict, religion yields to science (or: religious interpretation yields to scientific interpretation).

          You’ll say that science changes sometimes. Yes, it does, and that’s a strength.

        • Paul

          But is it really the science that changes or is it our understanding of the scientific evidence that changes?

        • Michael Neville

          All of the above. As new evidence is determined or new interpretations of evidence are made then science changes.

          Continental drift was discarded because it had problems. Plate tectonics became accepted because of new data and new interpretations of old data in light of the new data.

        • Greg G.

          Often, it is the increase of scientific evidence that forces changes. New fossils are discovered that illuminate gaps. Genomes of more plants and animals are added. Newer technology allows higher resolutions in astronomy and quantum physics.

          When scientists first began to study DNA and make genomic trees, it was a chance to invalidate evolution. Scientific study had produce the heirarchy of morphology were constructed. Fossils reinforced it as they showed that there were ancient forms that modern animals shared. If the structure of the heirarchy constructed using DNA had contradicted the heirarchy constructed from morphology, some new theory of evolution would have been needed. But the DNA evidence validated the earlier models. That was probably creationists last good chance to refute evolution. Instead, it put the final nail in the coffin of creationism.

        • TheNuszAbides

          it put the final nail in the coffin of creationism.

          stupid undead nontheories!!

        • Greg G.

          Longinus should have used a wooden stake.

        • TheNuszAbides
        • Greg G.

          I didn’t know that story about Longinus. But it seems reasonable that drinking Jesus’ blood would make one immortal or, at least, undead. Or not.

        • The facts at our disposal change, and our understanding of those facts change, and the science changes.

        • Herald Newman

          There is no conflict between science and religion.

          Jerry Coyne wrote a blog post about that yesterday. My Voice of America discussion of science versus religion

          Of course there can be religious scientists: that’s a matter of simple fact. But many are deeply inconsistent in how they approach life. In the end, Barr’s argument for compatibility boils down not to evidence, but to the fact that there were and are people who are both religious and scientists. And that’s not compatibility, but coexistence.

        • MNb

          That’s why there is a conflict between science and your religion. Your religion rejects huge chunks of science. And your religion determines your worldview.
          Of course there is a priori no conflict between religion and science. Pastafarianism accepts every single scientific conclusion. The majority of christians at least in western and central Europe accepts evolution, specifically common descent of Homo Sapiens and Pan Troglodytes. That’s because their christianity is not your christianity.

        • Michael Neville

          You’re wrong, it is relevant. When a know-nothing goes against the professional consensus then it shows the know-nothing is simply that, a know-nothing. It’s one thing to ask questions about things you don’t understand. It’s quite another for an amateur to tell a group of professionals: “I disagree with you because I don’t like the conclusions you’ve reached.”

        • Paul

          Are you a part of some science cult that doesn’t allow you to question anything or critically evaluate what they say?

        • Michael Neville

          I see reading comprehension is not one of your attributes. If you reread my comment you’ll see: ” It’s one thing to ask questions about things you don’t understand.”

          Are you part of some know-nothing cult which questions anything you know jack-shit about?

        • Paul

          I made that statement in reference to your last statement: “It’s quite another for an amateur to tell a group of professionals: I disagree with you because I don’t like the conclusions you’ve reached.”

          Do you just automatically except what they say no matter what their conclusions?

          FYI, I don’t disagree with them because I don’t like their conclusions. I disagree with them because I examined the exact same evidence they and came to a different conclusion.

        • Herald Newman

          Do you just automatically except [sic] what they say no matter what their conclusions?

          If a group of scientific experts in domain X say that Y (a claim from domain X) is true, yes I would accept the conclusion.

          If Y is not in the domain of X, then I would see what experts in domain for Y have to say.

          I disagree with them because I examined the exact same evidence they and came to a different conclusion.

          And my opinion here is still that you are unqualified to properly evaluate the evidence. People spend years working in a particular specialized domain just so they can gain enough understanding of the particular topic, and you think that you, and unqualified schmuck just like me, can see where they went wrong in their evaluation?

          It’s much more likely that you missed the boat than the experts.

        • MNb

          Which is no surprise, given your rejection of the scientific method.

        • Paul

          That’s a bizarre statement. I have no problem with the scientific method.

        • MNb

          1. All creationists have a problem with the scientific method.
          2. You are a creationist.
          3. You have a problem with the scientific method.

          Evidence for 1: The Wedge Document of the Discoveroids, the AIG stuff about historical and operational science, the AIG article called “What is science”, the criticism on Logos.nl of the scientific method.

          Weasel out strategy of all creationists, including you: redefine science according to their own need.
          Forget it, Paulie. You want to replace well working naturalistic theories with your preferred theology. That’s your problem with the scientific method. Denying it only makes you a liar, which doesn’t surprise anyone either.

          PS: your expression “science cult” just above makes clear you have a problem with the scientific method.

        • Sharon Diehl

          Yes, you have a problem with the “scientific method”. You don’t know how to apply it. Our understanding of evolutionary biology has come about with the scientific method.

        • TheNuszAbides

          I have no problem with the scientific method.

          so you’re an Old Earth Creationist? you know that’s already been squared with accepting evolutionary theory, right?

        • Michael Neville

          Do you just automatically except [sic] what they say no matter what their conclusions?

          Much of science is counter-intuitive. Nobel Prize winning physicist Richard Feynman said: “If you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don’t understand quantum mechanics.” I’ve had math up to calculus and I don’t understand some of the math used for quantum physics. So if scientists say “X” and I don’t understand it, unlike you I don’t automatically think they’re wrong.

          disagree with them because I examined the exact same evidence they and came to a different conclusion.

          I’m sure you’ve convinced yourself of this. Another Feynman quote comes to mind: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person to fool.”

        • Greg G.

          I disagree with them because I examined the exact same evidence they and came to a different conclusion.

          No, you haven’t. You have only looked at a limited amount of evidence through creationist publications. Creationists lie. Why would you trust them?

        • TheNuszAbides

          they sound awfully similar in a variety of accents, but ‘except’ and ‘accept’ are often very dissimilar in meaning.

        • Are you part of the Prideful Conceited Big Ego Club that insists that you’re the final authority even on subjects for which you’re insufficiently educated?

        • TheNuszAbides

          oh wow, perhaps next you’ll regale us with how you were enlightened by one of Mencius Moldbug’s ravings about ex cathedra social tyranny …

        • Herald Newman

          Again, that is completely irrelevant. I critically evaluate the evidence and draw my conclusions.

          Do you have a PhD in biology, or some relevant field, and are you currently publishing in that field? If not, then you simply lack the necessary skills, training, and background, in order for you to properly evaluate the evidence.

        • MNb

          Then when will you begin to present us the results of your critical evaluations? Since you entered this blog you have given us nothing but decades old repetitions of creacrap. One of them is your claim of “critically evaluating”, which is creacrap code for “nothing can convince me that Evolution Theory is correct”.

        • Paul

          “It doesn’t matter whether you’re pleased with the consensus view; it’s the best approximation to the truth we laymen hve.”

          So if you lived in the time of Galileo, you would have accepted the majority scientific view of a geocentric galaxy? Would you have even listened to Galileo and Kepler’s arguments for a heliocentric galaxy? Would you have critically evaluated both sides and then drawn your own conclusions or would you have just blindly accepted the majority scientific opinion?

        • I’m talking about modern science from the last couple of hundred years. Projecting myself back into a pre-scientific age is a change of subject.

        • Paul

          You missed the point I was trying to make. Do you think that group-think will make advancements in science? Or will advancements be made by those who dare to think differently, like Galileo and Kepler?

        • No, group think within science, among scientists won’t make advancements in science. That has never been the topic, so please don’t try to change it.

          You and I are laymen, remember? The question is: what should we laymen (who can’t evaluate the evidence) going to do with a scientific consensus besides accept it as provisional truth?

        • Paul

          “No, group think within science, among scientists won’t make advancements in science.”

          Good, I’m glad you think that.

          “The question is: what should we laymen (who can’t evaluate the evidence)
          going to do with a scientific consensus besides accept it as
          provisional truth?”

          Why do you assume that you are unable to evaluate the evidence? Have you ever taken a science class before? That’s what they teach you to do in science class (the lecture part) and then that’s what they have you do in science class (the lab part).

        • Why do you assume that you are unable to evaluate the evidence? Have you ever taken a science class before? That’s what they teach you to do in science class (the lecture part) and then that’s what they have you do in science class (the lab part).

          I went to college. Yes, I’ve taken science classes. The point is, (1) it’s just me and (2) I don’t have a doctorate in anything. When I compare that against the scientific consensus in biology, (1) it’s tens of thousands of biologists who say this and (2) they all have doctorates. They understand this stuff very thoroughly. In a contest between me and them, I lose.

          Why is this hard? It would be simple pigheaded arrogance for me to say, “Yeah, I know that they disagree with me, but I’m still sure that I’m right!!!”

        • Paul

          Let me try and explain this again: The issue is NOT the difference in the amount of factual knowledge. Yes, it would be arrogant for someone with only a single high school biology class ( or maybe even one college biology class) to say that they know more than someone with a PhD in biology. But that’s not the issue. The laws of logic on the other hand apply to everyone and they are transferable. They are still capable of evaluating arguments. For someone without a PhD to just throw up there hands and say something like “They have more factual knowledge than me so I should just accept what they tell me.” amounts to intellectual laziness. I’d say they’d still have an obligation to evaluate the arguments. Evaluating arguments is not being arrogant.

        • Yes, it would be arrogant for someone with only a single high school biology class ( or maybe even one college biology class) to say that they know more than someone with a PhD in biology. But that’s not the issue.

          No, it’s not the issue, as I’ve made clear many times. It’s not Paul with a high school biology class behind him. It’s not Paul with serious amateur study to make him unusually knowledgeable in biology for an amateur. And it’s certainly not any of those Pauls against one biologist. It’s Paul against the entire (wait for it . . .) scientific consensus within the field of biology. That’s what you’re reserving the right to reject.

          For someone without a PhD to just throw up there hands and say something like “They have more factual knowledge than me so I should just accept what they tell me.” amounts to intellectual laziness. I’d say they’d still have an obligation to evaluate the arguments. Evaluating arguments is not being arrogant.

          Holy shit, how many times must we go round and round on this? Are you truly not getting it, or are you just yanking my chain?

          We’re not talking about you evaluating arguments. We’re talking about you rejecting the consensus of an entire field of science about which you’re not even qualified to evaluate the evidence.

        • Greg G.

          Dunning-Kruger strikes again.

        • Too dumb to know that he’s dumb.

        • Michael Neville

          I’ve taken science classes and read books on science. I know enough about evolution to know that I don’t know very much about it. For instance, I’ve just looked at a set of exam questions for an undergraduate course in evolutionary development (evo devo). I read: “Are mutations that are less pleiotropic more likely to contribute to evolution?” It took a minute of googling “pleiotropic” to discover it refers to “mutations in a gene or gene product that plays only a limited role in development, in a modular cis-regulatory element, or in a modular domain of a protein.” When I don’t understand an explanation, then I know I don’t know much about evolution.

        • Michael Neville

          The point you’re missing is that science is self-correcting. The reason why phlogiston theory and Piltdown Man are no longer part of science is that scientists found they were incorrect. You’ve read that science doesn’t show anything is true, but it can show that some things are untrue.

          If you could show that evolution was untrue then the next thing you would do is write your Nobel Prize acceptance speech. However, and this is a major however, whatever theory you devise to replace evolution would have to successfully answer ALL of the questions that evolution answers and some that it doesn’t. GODDIDIT doesn’t answer any questions and so can’t replace evolution. Intelligent Design is creationism repackaged with all reference to God replaced with “Intelligent Designer” who just happens to have godlike attributes. ID was invented by a lawyer, Philip Johnson, to get around the Constitutional prohibition of teaching religious mythology in American public schools.

        • Paul

          “The point you’re missing is that science is self-correcting.”

          If it’s self-correcting, then it’s not correct now. But what is actually being corrected? The scientific facts or our understanding and interpretation of them?

        • Michael Neville

          Nobody has said that science was “correct now”. However just because there’s errors in science doesn’t mean you can fill in the holes with whatever fairy tale most appeals to you.

          <With apologies to Dara O’Briain>

        • Ignorant Amos

          “Get in the fuckin’ sack”

        • Ignorant Amos

          Do you think TToE started as group think.

          Or will advancements be made by those who dare to think differently, like Galileo and Kepler?

          Or Darwin and Russell Wallace?

        • Greg G.

          So if you lived in the time of Galileo, you would have accepted the majority scientific view of a geocentric galaxy?

          There was no such thing back then. The majority of the experts on planetary observations agreed with Galileo. The scientific non-specialists may not have been up to date.

        • Greg G.

          I’m not establishing my own science. I’m simply evaluating the arguments.

          You are establishing your own science when you put your incredulity and ignorance of the evidence over the evidence.

        • Michael Neville

          Consensus is not what makes something true or not.

          Consensus makes something more likely to be true, especially when amateurs are considering the professionals’ consensus.

        • Herald Newman

          Consensus makes something more likely to be true, especially when amateurs are considering the professionals’ consensus.

          I would go further and say that the consensus of [scientific] experts is something that is the most likely to be true. Science is of course provisional, but we have nothing better.

        • TheNuszAbides

          I’m simply evaluating the arguments.

          you misspelled ‘simple-mindedly’. but you already blew your chance to be honestly curious, so that’s no big surprise.

        • Paul

          “Ah, but you did: “none of that proves universal common descent.” Why else would I have made a point about asking for proof?”

          OK, so you’re saying there’s no proof in science. So I should just blindly accept something for which there is no proof simply because of a consensus? That makes no sense at all.

          “Show me that you are skeptical of every field in which you haven’t personally made a serious study.”

          Could you honestly say that there’s no proof in any of those other fields as well? Would a ditch digger be unable to prove to me that he actually dug a ditch, even though I observed him do it?

        • OK, so you’re saying there’s no proof in science.

          Yes. I’m clearing up a common misconception. Proof applies in math and logic only. In science, you have strong or weak evidence.

          So I should just blindly accept something for which there is no proof simply because of a consensus? That makes no sense at all.

          What alternative do you have? You’re going to reject the consensus in a field you don’t understand for what reason? Just because you don’t like it??

          Could you honestly say that there’s no proof in any of those other fields as well? Would a ditch digger be unable to prove to me that he actually dug a ditch, even though I observed him do it?

          How can you set yourself up as Judge of all Science when you don’t even understand how this stuff works?

          We’re not talking about ditches; we’re talking about the conclusions of science. For example, the Germ Theory of Disease. Technically, it’s not proven. There’s a vanishingly small possibility that the Germ Theory only seems to explain how some diseases work and that it’s technically incorrect. The Theory of Evolution is similarly very well evidenced, but there is a nonzero chance that it’s technically incorrect as well.

        • Paul

          “In science, you have strong or weak evidence.”

          OK. So the evidence for universal common descent is weak.

          “How can you set yourself up as Judge of all Science when you don’t even understand how this stuff works?”

          1) I don’t set myself up as judge of all science. 2) Your making an assumption that I don’t understand it. If it can be demonstrated that I don’t understand it, well then, I’m only as good as the public school teachers, college professors, and professional scientists that I learn from.

          Judging from your blog post it’s obvious you didn’t take the time to find exactly what Ken Ham believes about Creation.

          “We’re not talking about ditches; we’re talking about the conclusions of science.”

          I was just pointing our your inconsistency. You want to accept the majority in some fields, but not in others.

          “The Theory of Evolution is similarly very well evidenced, but there is a nonzero chance that it’s technically incorrect as well.”

          If by evolution you mean “change over time,” “change in heritable features over time,” “descent with modification,” then I agree that is well evidenced since it’s observable.

          Did you actually mean “nonzero chance” or did you actually mean “zero chance”?

          You yourself said historical science is unreliable. So why just accept what someone believes about the past? Testing things in the present is one thing. Believe things about what happened in the past is another.

        • So the evidence for universal common descent is weak.

          Says the guy who isn’t a biologist. I think I’ll ignore that and accept the consensus of the experts, if you don’t mind.

          1) I don’t set myself up as judge of all science.

          Maybe I misunderstand your position. Does your science come from scientists? Or do you reserve the right to reject what they say if you don’t approve?

          2) Your making an assumption that I don’t understand it.

          I’m assuming that until you get that doctorate, you will be at a significant disadvantage when you want to reject the consensus view in a scientific discipline.

          Again, on that potential misunderstanding of mine, if you’re saying that you’d never reject the consensus view, then we’re on the same page.

          Judging from your blog post it’s obvious you didn’t take the time to find exactly what Ken Ham believes about Creation.

          I’ve spent many hours over many years reading this, discussing it with people, and going to lectures/conferences, so I doubt it. But if you think this is important, then point out the main areas where the Hamster says something I didn’t know.

          “We’re not talking about ditches; we’re talking about the conclusions of science.”
          I was just pointing our your inconsistency. You want to accept the majority in some fields, but not in others.

          Right. I’m talking about the field of science.

          If by evolution you mean “change over time,” “change in heritable features over time,” “descent with modification,” then I agree that is well evidenced since it’s observable.

          Let’s use “evolution” like the experts do, OK?

          Did you actually mean “nonzero chance” or did you actually mean “zero chance”?

          Huh? I meant “nonzero chance.”

        • Paul

          “Does your science come from scientists? Or do you reserve the right to reject what they say if you don’t approve?’

          1) science is science. 2) I don’t reject what they say because I don’t approve of what they say. It’s a matter of critically evaluating the evidence. Can they demonstrate their conclusions? If they can’t, then I reserve the right to reject it.

          “I’ve spent many hours over many years reading this, discussing it with
          people, and going to lectures/conferences, so I doubt it. But if you think this is important, then point out the main areas where the Hamster says something I didn’t know.”

          Then how could you get so many things wrong in your blog. My initial post demonstrated everything you got wrong and misunderstood. You just seemed to dismiss it by say that there was a lot to unpack and that I probably wasn’t even interested in your rebuttal.

          “Let’s use “evolution” like the experts do, OK?”

          I did. That’s how they define it. Just one example: Dr. Joel Cracraft from the American Museum of Natural History (notice that he has a PhD).
          https://www.coursera.org/learn/teaching-evolution

          “Huh? I meant “nonzero chance.”

          OK, by saying there’s a non-zero chance, you’re admitting that the majority could be wrong, correct?

        • I don’t reject what they say because I don’t approve of what they say. It’s a matter of critically evaluating the evidence. Can they demonstrate their conclusions? If they can’t, then I reserve the right to reject it.

          You don’t have the qualifications to evaluate the evidence; you don’t have the qualifications to determine if they meet your bar: demonstrating their conclusions. And yet you’re going to judge them anyway.

          I think the rest of us see the problem even if you don’t.

          Then how could you get so many things wrong in your blog. My initial post demonstrated everything you got wrong and misunderstood. You just seemed to dismiss it by say that there was a lot to unpack and that I probably wasn’t even interested in your rebuttal.

          Yes, I did dismiss your response (it’s here). It looked like a big waste of time, but let me ask you to sell me on it. What do you think I will find/learn if I read it?

          “Let’s use “evolution” like the experts do, O K?”
          I did. That’s how they define it.

          Carefully qualifying what exactly “evolution” means is what Creationists do. That’s always a red flag.

          OK, by saying there’s a non-zero chance, you’re admitting that the majority could be wrong, correct?

          What’s hard about science being always provisional? I’ve made this clear before.

        • Paul

          “you don’t have the qualifications to determine if they meet your bar: demonstrating their conclusions”

          Are you saying that you’re incapable of determining if there conclusions do or don’t follow from the premises?
          Are you capable of determining if something they say is factual true?

          Case in point: I watch a lecture series on health and nutrition and the professor was talking about health condition about low albumen in the blood. The example she gave of albumen was an egg white. Then I watch a lecture on evolution. The guy was a bird enthusiast and was talking about bird evolution. Then started talking about bird eggs. Then he mentions albumen. He said albumen was part of the egg yolk. Turns out he was wrong and the nutritionist was right.

          “What do you think I will find/learn if I read it?”

          At the very least you’d get your facts straight about what the Creation position is on particular issues. This would help you avoid straw-man arguments.

          “Carefully qualifying what exactly “evolution” means is what Creationists do. That’s always a red flag.”

          As I mentioned, I defined it exactly the way someone who works in the field defines it. It’s also important to define terms. Because if we can’t agree on them, then there’s really no point in have a discussion or debate. I used exactly the way an expert does which is what you wanted.

          “What’s hard about science being always provisional? I’ve made this clear before.”

          Nothing. But if you’re saying chances are good that they are wrong, then why even bother blindly accepting their conclusions? That makes no sense.

        • Are you saying that you’re incapable of determining if there conclusions do or don’t follow from the premises?

          Without a doctorate in biology, yup. Why is this hard? Is it just that you have no humility? Evaluating all the DNA evidence, the fossil evidence, the geological evidence, and all the other evidence that I’m too ignorant to even be aware of sounds like an enormous job. This is the conclusion of the entire field of biology, with tens of thousands of biologists, remember–there’s a lot to go through.

          Case in point: I watch a lecture series on health and nutrition and the professor was talking about health condition about low albumen in the blood. The example she gave of albumen was an egg white. Then I watch a lecture on evolution. The guy was a bird enthusiast and was talking about bird evolution. Then started talking about bird eggs. Then he mentions albumen. He said albumen was part of the egg yolk. Turns out he was wrong and the nutritionist was right.

          Albumin is a class of proteins (“Serum albumin is the main protein of human blood plasma”—Wikipedia).
          Albumen is the white of an egg, which also contains albumins. What mistake was made?

          “What do you think I will find/learn if I read it?”
          At the very least you’d get your facts straight about what the Creation position is on particular issues. This would help you avoid straw-man arguments.

          An interesting challenge. I’ll try to read it to test your claim.

          I’m pretty knowledgeable about Creationist arguments, having been reading about them for 20+ years.

          “Carefully qualifying what exactly “evolution” means is what Creationists do. That’s always a red flag.”
          As I mentioned, I defined it exactly the way someone who works in the field defines it.

          As I mentioned, people in the field don’t need to define it. It’s just evolution.

          Having careful caveats is the red flag. (“Of course I accept evolution definition 1. Who doesn’t? It’s evolution definition 2 that is completely unsupported by evidence, despite what those idiot biologists say.”)

          “What’s hard about science being always provisional? I’ve made this clear before.”
          Nothing. But if you’re saying chances are good that they are wrong

          That would be an interesting hypothetical, but I didn’t say that. Quote me correctly next time.

        • Paul

          “Without a doctorate in biology, yup. Why is this hard?”

          Then I suggest you take a course in logic and reason. All semester long you’ll be evaluating arguments – many of which will be from subjects you are not an expert in. You’ll still be able to map out the argument and put them into formats such as:

          If P then Q
          P
          Therefore Q

          If the argument follows this format, you’ll know the argument is valid.

          If P then Q
          Q
          Therefore P

          If the argument follows this format, you know the argument is invalid.

          After taking the logic class, you’ll be able to evaluate arguments whether you understand the terms or not.

          “Albumen is the white of an egg, which also contains albumins. What mistake was made?”

          The evolution expert said it was part of the yolk, not the egg white. Did you not notice that I already mentioned that?

          “As I mentioned, people in the field don’t need to define it. It’s just evolution.”

          But yet they do. And I defined it the same way they do. You also asked me to use the same definition they do. Which of course I did.

          “Quote me correctly next time.”

          OK, you said:
          “The Theory of Evolution is similarly very well evidenced, but there is a nonzero chance that it’s technically incorrect as well.”

          I asked you to clarify if you meant zero or nonzero. You said “nonzero” So a non-zero chance would mean that there is a chance that it’s technically incorrect. Then you said “What’s hard about science being always provisional?” Nothing is hard to understand about that, but now know you’re saying that you didn’t say that, which I find odd.
          But what is actually provisional? The scientific facts or our understanding and interpretation of them?

        • Then I suggest you take a course in logic and reason. All semester long you’ll be evaluating arguments – many of which will be from subjects you are not an expert in.

          Yeah, I’m still having a hard time understanding you, a novice, rejecting the consensus of an entire field of science. It seems over-the-top arrogant, but perhaps I’m just missing something.

          So a non-zero chance would mean that there is a chance that it’s technically incorrect.

          Yeah.

          Then you said “What’s hard about science being always provisional?”

          Right. Same as the previous statement.

          Nothing is hard to understand about that, but now know you’re saying that you didn’t say that, which I find odd.

          Uh, OK. Do me a favor and don’t try to explain further.

          But what is actually provisional? The scientific facts or our understanding and interpretation of them?

          I’ve already responded to this. Is this the tangent that it seems to be, or is there an interesting discussion here?

        • TheNuszAbides

          The evolution expert said it was part of the yolk, not the egg white. Did you not notice that I already mentioned that?

          as someone who puts on a show of logically evaluating evidence, you really should know better than to merely paraphrase your memory of your comparison of two lectures, rather than actually citing the [allegedly erroneous] scientist.

          1. I tend to doubt you will be presenting us with the ‘bird fancier’ speaking the exact words “the albumen is part of the yolk”. but please whip out that evidence to shock me into submission.
          2. Let’s be charitable and assume that your anecdote is entirely accurate and this bird fancier made a mistake. When he did so, was he presenting a study for peer review? Was the fact of the albumen’s location or constitution critical in that moment to a point he was making? Was an entire class of vulnerable students in peril of failing their exams or eradicating a species by swallowing this monstrous lie and never looking back?
          or was it just a stupid mistake?
          and if it was just a stupid mistake, how does that bolster your ill-informed opinion regarding evolutionary theory?

        • Paul

          “I’m pretty knowledgeable about Creationist arguments, having been reading about them for 20+ years.”

          Yes, you mentioned that. But if that’s the case, I’m wondering how you got so much wrong in your main blog post. Perhaps you’re confusing Creation with Intelligent Design?

        • Creation or Creationism?

          ID refuses to speculate about the intelligence behind design. Is there more than this? What intellectual argument would apply to one that wouldn’t work for the other?

        • Michael Neville

          You yourself said historical science is unreliable. So why just accept what someone believes about the past? Testing things in the present is one thing. Believe things about what happened in the past is another.

          Evolution makes predictions about what we would expect to see in the fossil record, comparative anatomy, genetic sequences, geographical distribution of species, etc., and these predictions have been verified many times over. The number of observations supporting evolution is overwhelming.

        • ORigel

          “Would a ditch digger be unable to prove to me he actually dug a ditch, even though I observed him do it?”

          Yes. You could be hallucinating. Or aliens could have implanted the image in your head to fool you.

        • Jim Jones

          > Ken Ham says that we all have the exact same evidence

          Ken Ham is a liar. He ignores actual evidence for antique myths.

          Geology shows that fossils are of different ages.
          Paleontology shows a fossil sequence, the list of species represented changes through time.
          Taxonomy shows biological relationships among species.
          Evolution is the explanation that threads it all together.
          Creationism is the practice of squeezing one’s eyes shut and wailing and screaming “DOES NOT!, DOES NOT!!”
          ~~ Unknown

          Super-fast evolution

          Human activity has created a new mosquito species.

          http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1113414796/human-activity-new-species-062916/

        • Paul

          So do you live in a different universe than the rest of us? A different galaxy? A different planet? Do you look at different animals than the rest of us? Different plants? Different mountain ranges?

          If so, then the evidence would be different for you. Otherwise you have the exact same evidence that we all do.

        • Jim Jones

          Nope. Hammy & you think a poorly written and contradictory book of myths is evidence. It isn’t.

        • Michael Neville

          Yes, except that creationists and their ID brothers ignore the evidence if they don’t like it. Witness Ham’s sneers at “historical science”.

        • MNb

          Plus that you creacrappers only use methods that seem to lead to your predetermined conclusions. See for instance the distinction between operational and historical science you think so important. According to your own creationist definitions (which by exception and coincidence actually do have merit, even though you creacrappers excel at ignoring it) forensic science is historical science. Still you accept it – no “we always should rely on testimonies!” manure here. At the other hand radiometry typically operational (or repeatable or whatever you like to call it) science. Still you reject it.
          You only produce creacrap, even on your own terms. My demented dog is better at critically evaluating his food than you at critically evaluating relevant evidence.

        • Max Doubt

          “If so, then the evidence would be different for you. Otherwise you have the exact same evidence that we all do.”

          Yes, you’ve made it abundantly clear that you don’t agree with the evidence that life on earth has evolved to reach its current state. You claim there are other ways to interpret the evidence. But in all your complaining about how you don’t understand this stuff, you have yet to offer any alternatives to the process of evolution. It looks like you don’t have a way to explain the state of life on earth that includes all the evidence we have for evolution and neglects none of it. Given your inability to offer any alternative explanations, all your persistent admission of incredulity and ignorance, it seems your honest answer would be that you don’t agree with evolution, but you can’t explain it either. Sound about right?

        • Paul

          “He ignores actual evidence for antique myths.”

          He didn’t ignore the evidence. You INTERPRETED the evidence to be myth.

          “Geology shows that fossils are of different ages.”

          Geology is physically incapable of showing us anything. Geology is the study of the earth and it’s structure. People study the earth and interpret the fossil evidence. You interpret it one way, Ken Ham interprets it another. You’re studying the exact same geological evidence. You’re just coming to different conclusions.

          “Paleontology shows a fossil sequence, the list of species represented changes through time.

          Paleontology is physically incapable of showing us anything. Paleontology is the
          study of fossils. People study the fossils and
          interpret the evidence. You interpret it one way, Ken Ham
          interprets it another. You’re studying the exact same fossil evidence. You’re just coming to different conclusions.

          “Taxonomy shows biological relationships among species.”

          No, taxonomy is a classification system design by humans. Phylogenetic trees are a tool people use to map out their hypotheses of biological relationships.

          “Evolution is the explanation that threads it all together.”

          No, evolution is “change over time” or “change in heritable features over time.”

          “Human activity has created a new mosquito species.”

          Observable. Testable. Demonstrable.

        • Michael Neville

          Geology is physically incapable of showing us anything.

          See, this is why intelligent, reasonable people go with the scientific consensus and ignorant people try to make science match their prejudices. You’ve just shown that you know nothing about geology but are willing to make pronouncements about it. You’re wrong, of course. Geology does show us things. If you knew anything about geology then you’d know this.

          So why should any of us pay you the slightest heed? Your ignorance and incredulity aren’t evidence of anything but your ignorance and incredulity.

        • Joe

          You interpret it one way, Ken Ham
          interprets it another. You’re studying the exact same fossil evidence. You’re just coming to different conclusions.

          Except for Ken’s conclusions is opposite to what he should be proposing.

        • You interpret it one way, Ken Ham interprets it another.

          Is the fact that Ken Ham has his head up his ass relevant? Maybe someone who didn’t have an agenda is where you want to go for a critique. Oh, and someone with a biology doctorate.

        • MNb

          Ol’ Hambo rejects evidence presented by radiometry, while claiming that he accepts operational science. He’s a liar. You not addressing this after I pointed it out to you plus continuing to parrot Ol’Hambo also makes you a liar.
          But we already know that from the previous time.

        • Sharon Diehl

          Paleontology, my dear, does, indeed, physically demonstrate morphological changes in species and changes in environments through geologic time.

          Fossils are evidence for evolution at the macro scale, and at the micro scale we use DNA to show divergence and relationships among species. For example, we share 99.9% DNA with extinct Homo neanderthalensis and 98.7% DNA with Bonobo chimps. Go further back in time as species diverged, and we only share 84-85% DNA with canids (dogs, wolves) and ruminants (cattle, goats, deer). Go further back in time along diverging lines of species, and we only share 65% of genetic material with birds such as chickens….even a life form such as yeast shares 18% of genetic material with humans. This is why cells of baker’s yeast can be used in cancer studies because “the same genes that control the cell cycle in baker’s yeast (and that malfunction in tumor cells) exist in more or less the same capacity in human cells.” (Dr. Leslie Pray).

          Anyone who dismisses evolutionary processes is a fool.

          Ken Ham doesn’t interpret anything, he just waves a buybull, er, bible around.

        • Jim Jones
        • Paul

          Would you say that it took an intelligent being to create that animated gif?

        • Jim Jones

          No gods or other mythical beings involved.

          But scientists were.

        • Paul

          I made no mention of whether or not that being had to be God or anything supernatural. I was simply asking whether or not you could infer an intelligent being.

          But yes, an intelligent being was involved. Whether it was a scientist or some other tech savvy person, I don’t know. But see, you are capable of inferring intelligence.

        • Greg G.

          Yes, a human being made the gif with a computer.

          The universe looks like it came about naturally. It does not look like it was designed at all. Just gravity and chemistry.

        • Paul

          “The universe looks like it came about naturally. It does not look like it was designed at all.”

          Of course, your opinions are not facts. It sounds like you might have gone through the Francis Crick indoctrination program:

          “Biologists must constantly keep in mind that what they see was not designed, but rather evolved..”
          — Francis Crick

          Why must they constantly keep that in mind? Because it looks designed. They must delude themselves by constantly repeating the mantra “It’s not designed. It’s evolved.”

        • MNb

          Neither are your opinions facts.
          We are capable of inferring intelligence because we have a good idea what means that individual used and which procedures he followed.
          We have no idea how that plays out with a supernatural designer. Humans making gifs with computers is an argument against creacrap.

        • Greg G.

          You have been fooled by creationist quotemining. The quote in context is:

          Biologists must constantly keep in mind that what they see was not designed, but rather evolved. It might be thought, therefore, that evolutionary arguments would play a large part in guiding biological research, but this is far from the case. It is difficult enough to study what is happening now. To figure out exactly what happened in evolution is even more difficult. Thus evolutionary achievements can be used as hints to suggest possible lines of research, but it is highly dangerous to trust them too much. It is all too easy to make mistaken inferences unless the process involved is already very well understood.

          You can use the term “design” metaphorically but it is “designed” by evolutionary mechanisms, not “intelligently designed.” Those biological systems look like they were “designed” by random mutations filtered by natural selection.

        • TheNuszAbides

          Why must they constantly keep that in mind? Because it looks designed.

          the fact that we are hardcore pattern-seekers by habit/nature does not mean that wanting to project Design into Nature trumps complex scientific theories. does the word “consilience” mean anything to you?

          you just can’t see that your motivated reasoning is not even remotely in the same class as applied methodological naturalism (okay, both tend to involve brains — but quite different policies with regard to utilizing their capacities). But I predict you’ll soldier on with the pretense that you’re rigorously independent-minded and scientific consensus is groupthink.

        • Joe

          An animated .gif is not a thing found in nature.

        • TheNuszAbides

          i still think of that kinda talk as a red herring, or at least a sop to ivory-towerism. how precisely are our shenanigans Outside Nature?

        • Joe

          Yet birds and bacteria both share the same DNA.

          Even if there was a designer, he started with the blueprint for pond scum when he decided to make humans. It’s common descent whatever way you look at it.

        • Max Doubt

          “I keep asking for evidence of life coming from a single common ancestor, but all I get in response is birds producing birds, bacteria producing bacteria. Sorry, but none of that proves universal common descent.”

          Your continued acknowledgement that you’re under-educated, incredulous, and ignorant are noted and accepted. Here’s a thought…

          If you have an explanation for the diversity of life on earth that doesn’t include the process of evolution, and if this supposed explanation is better supported than the science the rest of us do understand about the issue, lay it on us. If you have no such better supported explanation, then pretty much all you’re doing here is complaining about how much you don’t know about the matter.

      • theot58

        Your sarcasm and scoffing is only an indication that you do not have any real scientific evidence for macro evolution.

        Show us the evidence to convince us that a bacteria became a baby over millions of years.

        PLEASE SHOW US THE EVIDENCE.

        Check on link http://youtu.be/pS5j3XccmUM to see an atheistic professor Dr Richard Lumsden demolish evolution.

        When he was challenged by a student to genuinely examine the scientific evidence for evolution; he realised how scientifically bankrupt evolution is.

        • With regard to your video, I heard a few standard creationist talking points, and repeated unsubstantiated assertions that the scientific evidence supports creationism, not evolution. That can hardly be expected to “demolish” evolution: those points have been said around the web many times and haven’t demolished it yet.

          So, Dr Lumsden changed his mind from atheist to Christian? OK. It happens. But it does not happen to most atheists, or to most promoting evolution. Facts are what matter, not personal testimony, and the video you present didn’t present many.

          But if you’d like a personal testimony, I used to strongly believe in a literal, six day creation, ~6,000 years ago. Then I explored further and found numerous pieces of evidence pointing towards an old earth with a diversity of species generated by evolution. It was a painful realisation. I suspect there are others following Bob’s blog here who have had similar experiences. How are you going to weigh those personal testimonies?

        • theot58

          I agree with you that “Facts are what matter, not personal testimony, ” so BECAUSE of the scientific evidence clearly shows that natural forces alone DO NOT have the ability to produce the information needed to build a brain. etc.

          The onus of proof is on evolutionists to demonstrate that a bacteria became a baby.

          SO WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE?

          PLEASE SHOW US.

          My testimony is slightly opposite to yours.

          I had been hearing about the “mountains of evidence” proving Evolution for years; I thought it was rock solid science.

          One day I started scrutinizing the so called “mountains of evidence” and to my utter disgust I found that it was actually mountains of cow dung.

          There are mountains of ambit claims in the big print but when I analysed the small print I discovered that I was conned.

          The deception starts with a vague and changing definition of evolution; if they do not define what the word means then the evidence they provide does not have to prove anything in particular. (see link for details http://youtu.be/fQ_h-S7IuaM). The evolutionists provide countless examples of micro evolution (adaptation) and INFER that this somehow proves Macro evolution (development of new body parts). This is typical “bait and switch” advertising.

        • Greg G.

          I did that, too, many years ago. I read all the creationist books and was amused by the way they quoted evolutionists saying things that undermined their position. I decided to read some books on evolution to see if I could find similar quotes. But the evolution evidence made a lot of sense. Then I found a couple of the quotes that the creationists had used and saw that they had been ripped out of context. That’s called “quotemining”. It’s like pointing out 18 Bible verses that have been translated to say “there is no god” but not saying the verses say “there is no god besides me” or “the fool says in his heart there is no god”. Still, there’s 18 verses, and 25 if you include the Catholic version of the Bible… it’s like someone is trying to tell you something.

          Then I heard a preacher telling us what scientists say about evolution when I knew that what he was saying was flat out false. A few minutes later, he was telling us what heaven would be like with the same tone of gravitas in his voice. How could he know what heaven was like and how could I believe him when he had just proved he couldn’t be trusted about what he could read in books about what scientists said?

          I remember being told many times that evolution would be overturned in 10 to 15 years. That was over 40 years ago. A creationist friend told me the same thing over 20 years ago. I reminded him about it fifteen years later and he denied ever saying it. But some Christians were saying that uniformitarianism in geology would be overturned in 10 to 15 years back in the early 1800 when Charles Darwin was still a boy.

        • MR

          I’ve noted before that we had similar experiences, Greg. When you know what the science actually says and you hear how apologists twist it, you find yourself in quite a pickle.

          When I was a kid I asked Grandma M why there was a discrepancy between the Bible and the age of the earth. She looked me in the eye and said, “I don’t know.” At least she was honest. Her comment allowed my interest in science to continue.

          Later in life when I was attending a seminar (The Truth Project) that billed itself as a kind of reconciliation of science and Christianity. It turned out to be an apologist bait and switch. They did just what you said, quote mined scientists, twisted the science to say the opposite of what it actually was. I found myself thinking, “Well, scientists may or may not be wrong about the science, but one thing I know for sure, my Christian leaders are most definitely wrong about what the science says.” It was hard to imagine that they didn’t know they were twisting the science. You’d have to be pretty stupid. The more likely scenario was that they were being intentionally deceitful. And who were they trying to deceived? Their fellow Christians.

        • Perhaps theot should focus on readings from scientists rather than sites with “ministry” or “creation” in the title.

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          But those icky scientists just want to sin, so they insist that there is no god and that evolution is real! A good Christian can’t just go and read that stuff!

        • MR

          I hear those books are warm to the touch. Scary.

        • epicurus

          And they smell like sulphur.

        • Michael Neville
        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          I thought evilutionists only had one book: Darwin’s The Origin of Species.

        • Michael Neville

          There’s also all the grimoires, the Necronomicon, the Akashic Records, and all the other books of magic and evil that evilutionists collect.

        • Then, of course, there’s the Malleus Maleficarum, the “Witches Hammer,” that Christian inquisitors collect.

        • MR

          Amen, brother!

        • I’ll bite once, but probably only once. Like Bob and others here (and I’m guessing like you as well) I am not expert in the area.

          One of my favourite evidences is biogeographic distribution, because it goes beyond the “that could be common design or common origin” chestnut. Take for example Darwin’s Galapagos finches. It’s easy to say “Each of the radiation of finches are still finches”, but why are there radiations of finches here and not in other parts of the world? Could they all be related? Because, if so, that’s significant changes going on, though it may fit within some after the fact imposed definition of “kind”.

          It goes further, though. Why are sightless fishes more closely related to the sighted fishes in their area than to other sightless fishes? Why is there not a “sighted fish” kind and a “sightless fish” kind?

          Why are there marsupials in Australia and South America, and fossils of marsupials in Antarctica? Could they be related? If so, are all marsupials one “kind”? And were they created in Eden? Or was there a special creation of the marsupial “kind” in Australia and/or South America long ago? (for the record, one of the early founders of my former denomination argued for a local flood based on the evidence that Australian animals had been there long before the flood and didn’t have any break in the fossil record – so no kangaroos on the ark…)

          There are plenty of other examples (presented by interpreters more competent and informed than me), and none of these examples by themselves show bacteria became a baby. What they do show is that it is hard to state all life began with a multitude of complex species (“kinds”) in one geographic location (“Eden”) at one point in time (“Creation”). The species we can say are related do not fit nicely within the alleged Biblical definition of a kind, and it is difficult to place an arbitrary line in the species difference record and say “anything above this is micro-evolution and possible, anything below is macro-evolution and has never happened”.

        • TheNuszAbides

          i can’t believe anyone is letting this “bacteria became a baby” horseshit stand.

          EDIT: i now see that he’d stated it more coherently in an earlier [if no less misguided] post.

        • Max Doubt

          “… so BECAUSE of the scientific evidence clearly shows that natural forces alone DO NOT have the ability to produce the information needed to build a brain. etc.”

          Of course that’s not true. But I accept your continued admission that you don’t understand the science that supports our current understanding of the process of evolution.

          “The onus of proof is on evolutionists to demonstrate that a bacteria became a baby.”

          No, the burden of proof falls to those who try to demean our currently best supported explanation for the diversity of life while claiming to have a better supported explanation. That would be you. Your incredulity and ignorance only support the notion that you’re incredulous and ignorant. We have yet to see you make even the slightest mention of this alternative explanation that you feel is better supported. You know it wouldn’t kill you to be honest and admit it if you have no such explanation.

        • ORigel

          Why are you expecting bacteria to evolve to a human baby? Evolution in’t geared toward producing humans. The probability of it happening again is Vanishing.

        • TheNuszAbides

          The onus of proof is on evolutionists to demonstrate that a bacteria became a baby.

          Not Even Wrong. please get help.
          NO EVOLUTIONIST HAS EVER MADE SUCH A CLAIM, AND EVOLUTIONARY THEORY HAS NEVER REQUIRED SUCH AN EVENT IN ORDER TO DEMONSTRATE ITS EXPLANATORY POWER.

          EDIT: i see you were making a half-assed attempt to repeat yourself — but you managed to formulate the concept in an overly ignorant fashion by omitting “over millions of years”.
          contrasting time frames don’t diminish the explanatory power of evolutionary theory; they’re merely a convenient excuse for creationists to plunge their fingers further into their ears. The fact that speciation occurs with any species composed of DNA is evidence that it occurs with every species composed of DNA. And as others have pointed out, other lines of evidence converge, so once again your imaginary slam-dunk isn’t sufficient even when you come closer to phrasing it coherently. If How Science Works doesn’t give you warm fuzzies, it’s not because something is wrong with science, it’s because you’re desperate to believe manipulative scumbags and misled tools.

          (Yeah, yeah, I get it, that’s exactly what you think Evilutionary Conspiracists are. Your next problem is: no matter how much relativism you want to borrow for special pleading, you and I can’t be equally correct on that issue, no matter how emotionally invested you are.)

        • theot58

          Have you read any high school text books on evolution?

          What do you think they say?

          You are continually evading the issue.

          SHOW US THE EVIDENCE FOR MACRO EVOLUTION:

          If we cut through the linguistic trickery evolutionists use to confuse and intimidate the masses.

          Darwinian/Macro evolution can be stated simply as the following equation:

          Simple beginning (e.g. 1 primitive cell like a bacterium.)
          + lots of time
          + lots natural selection
          + many mutations
          + natural forces (rain, wind, gravity etc.)
          =============
          extremely complex organism
          (e.g. human, brain, blood circulatory system)

          Has this been observed? – NO (Even Richard Dawkins agrees with this)

          Is it plausible? -Not really ; There is no proof that it is.

          Does it need a lot of faith to believe this? – Certainly does

          So why do we teach it as a scientific fact?

        • TheNuszAbides

          Does it need a lot of faith to believe this? – Certainly does

          asserted without evidence and with unwarranted ‘certainty’.

          So why do we teach it as a scientific fact?

          you’ve already obstinately denied the actual answer to the question, so posing it is utterly useless beyond the bubble of your relentless rhetorical grandstanding.

        • TheNuszAbides

          This is typical “bait and switch” advertising.

          sorry, child, you need far better than a crash course in rhetoric to get over your brainwashing.

        • Your sarcasm and scoffing is only an indication that you do not have any real scientific evidence for macro evolution.

          Uh . . . I’m not a biologist. Why would you ask me for this?

          While I’m just an amateur with respect to biology, it’s not hard to see that evolution is the scientific consensus. See the appendix at this post.

          Show us the evidence to convince us that a bacteria became a baby over millions of years.

          So now you’re Judge and Jury of All Science? You always go back to first principles and figure out every issue yourself? Or is this only something you do when the science steps on your theological toes?

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Looked him up. The guy speaking was ALWAYS an xtian.

        • Scooter
        • Greg G.

          That proves that he was a scientist. It doesn’t address whether he was Christian.

        • Jim Jones

          If you don’t believe that there is a thing called DNA and that it is the way that all lifeforms are made then you need to leave now.

    • MNb

      Sanford is either stupid or lying if your quote is correct. Evolution Theory never has claimed that natural selection created information. Plus “creating information with misspellings” is either such a bad methaphor that it’s also a false representation of Evolution Theory or it’s a good metaphor and “you can’t” is totally wrong.
      Why would I accept anything from a goof like that?

      • theot58

        Because what he is saying makes good scientific sense.
        If you had an instruction manual to build a car (= DNA molecule) and you randomly introduce typos (mutations) – do you think you will ever build a better car or a Jumbo jet?
        Think about it.

        • Greg G.

          Better cars and jets are designed by testing models and selecting what works best.

          If you want to use the spelling metaphor for evolution, remember that the “misspellings” are “respellings”. Some words have variant spellings. Some “respellings” are “misspellings” but some “respellings” create neologisms. Natural selection works out which are which.

          But you are using a tired analogy to help you misunderstand the subject.

        • “An adder” used to be “a nadder.”

          “An apron” used to be “a napron.”

        • Greg G.

          Did “another” used to be “a nother” or “an other” or both?

        • Michael Neville

          Yes.

        • Greg G.

          I finally got a definite answer but I’m not sure what I learned.

        • Max Doubt

          “Did “another” used to be “a nother” or “an other” or both?”

          It depends on the particular usage. If you mean just something else, that’d be “another”. If you are being more emphatic, it’s “a nother”, as in the example of the oft used phrase, “a whole nother…”.

        • There’s a place near where I live called Hood Canal. Problem is, it’s (obviously at a glance) not a canal. Somewhere along the line, there was a misreading (or misspelling) of “Channel.”

        • Ignorant Amos

          The Red Sea is neither red, nor a sea….Yam Suph, translated as …Sea of Reeds…Sea of Seaweed, is a saltwater inlet. I’m guessing the seaweed was thought to be reeds. Anyway, somewhere along the lines it became popular to call it the Red Sea, probably by that committee of dicks writing the KJV.

          http://textus-receptus.com/wiki/Yam_Suph

        • Michael Neville

          The next town to the east of where I live is Mystic. This name has nothing to do with mysticism. It’s the result of a 17th Century mangling of the name of the local Native American tribe, the Mashentuckets.

        • Greg G.

          I hear the place is famous for pizza.

        • Michael Neville

          Mystic Pizza is overpriced and barely adequate. If you want good pizza, the Rolling Tomato in Groton or Mango’s Pizza in Old Mystic Village are much better.

        • Reminds me of SNL’s Coffee Talk: “I’m getting verklempt … talk amongst yourselves … suggested topic: chickpeas are neither chicks nor peas” (or egg cream has neither eggs nor cream).

        • jamesparson

          What are pineapples then?

        • TheNuszAbides
        • jamesparson

          I live near Nevada, which means snow. It is a dry hot desert, no snow there.

        • TheNuszAbides

          is that another Iceland/Greenland type thing? trying to trick the rivals?

          … hey, good thing you set me thinking about that one. Turns out that only the naming of Greenland was intentionally deceptive:
          http://anitastravelstories.com/2013/06/03/how-iceland-and-greenland-ended-up-with-such-messed-up-names/

        • MNb

          Hint: when a goof misrepresents what he wants to criticize you can safely bet that whatever he is saying does not make good scientific sense.
          You better think about it – you actually made an argument against creationism without realizing it.
          Second hint: instruction manuals, cars, DNA, typos, mutations, jets and the people who write/use them all belong to our natural reality.
          God the creator however …..

          “randomly introduce typos do you think you will ever build a better car”.
          I’m sure of it – given enough time and if allowed to throw away all instruction manuals with typos that don’t work. That’s called natural selection.
          Third hint: whenever you try to defend a goof don’t introduce even goofier stuff.

        • jamesparson

          Do you think that random mutations are the only types of changes that biologist claim happen?

          What if there were multiple processes that cause changes to happen? Would that satisfy your concerns?

        • ORigel

          Biologists use random to mean “not biased toward improvement.” Other than that, mutations are not quite random.

        • Joe

          What about if the only typos you could introduce were those that provided instructions for a jumbo jet?

          If you had a manual full of useless typos, you’d throw it out. If it provided something new and useful, you’d keep it.

          I hope you like that analogy.

        • Max Doubt

          “Because what he is saying makes good scientific sense. If you had an instruction manual to build a car (= DNA molecule) and you randomly introduce typos (mutations) – do you think you will ever build a better car or a Jumbo jet?”

          As always, we accept your acknowledgement that you don’t understand the science of evolution.

          “Think about it.”

          You do agree, don’t you, that evolution is the best supported explanation for the diversity of life on the planet? After all, you seem unable to describe a process which is better supported. All you’re doing here is whining about your lack of awareness and understanding. Can you explain how life has come to its current state, by some method other than the process of evolution, and in a way that you can demonstrate with any objective evidence?

    • MNb

      Muggeridge also said “People do not believe lies because they have to, but because they want to”.
      Unless we assume that he and you are not people this applies to him and you as well – including that quote of his. See, Muggeridge was a contrarian satirist for the sake of being contrary. He was not a man you want on your side.

      • Ignorant Amos

        Muggeridge went onto a chat show with the then Bishop of Southwark, Mervyn Stockwood, to debate “The Life of Brian” with John Cleese and Michael Palin.

        Have you seen it? Muggeridge and the Bish are a pair of clowns. Apparently they hadn’t even seen the first fifteen minutes and therefore missing a major part of the plot.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tl8acXl3qVs

        He was also a champion of that toadie Mother Theresa.

        • MNb

          No, I prefer the discussion with Alexander Walker and Bishop Atkinson of Black Addertown.

    • Max Doubt

      “Macro evolution is a fairy tale for grownups. It has no credible scientific evidence supporting it; just believers and priests who push it onto trusting students through propaganda in the science class.”

      Much as you don’t like and/or don’t understand the process of evolution, you surely agree there is no better supported explanation for the diversity of life on earth, don’t you?

      • theot58

        No I do not.

        I had been hearing about the “mountains of evidence” proving Evolution for years; I thought it was rock solid science.

        One day I started scrutinizing the so called “mountains of evidence” and to my utter disgust I found that it was actually mountains of cow dung.

        There are mountains of ambit claims in the big print but when I analysed the small print I discovered that I was conned.

        The deception starts with a vague and changing definition of evolution; if they do not define what the word means then the evidence they provide does not have to prove anything in particular. (see link for details http://youtu.be/fQ_h-S7IuaM). The evolutionists provide countless examples of micro evolution (adaptation) and INFER that this somehow proves Macro evolution (development of new body parts). This is typical “bait and switch” advertising.

        • BlackMamba44

          One day I started scrutinizing the so called “mountains of evidence” and to my utter disgust I found that it was actually mountains of cow dung.

          There are mountains of ambit claims in the big print but when I analysed the small print I discovered that I was conned.

          So, what’s this “mountain of evidence” you went through?

          Give us some sources or links to the scientific data you “scrutinized”. Give us the “fine print” that shows were all being “conned”

          SHOW US THE EVIDENCE.

          If you’re an expert in all the fields of science that provide data on evolution it should be easy for you

        • Michael Neville

          Further down in this thread Zeta noticed that theot58’s anti-evolutionary arguments were similar to the banned See Noevo’s arguments. Has anyone ever seen these two in the same room?

        • BlackMamba44

          They just can’t stay away.

        • MR

          Like a moth to a flame.

        • Greg G.

          A few times, I have started to say that I had shown him something before but then I think that maybe I haven’t shown this guy. Their arguments are always so alike, it’s deja vu all over again.

        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          Funny, I just asked the same question, though I narrowed it to a single evidential request to be fair and to limit the scope of the response.

        • BlackMamba44

          Maybe you’ll get a response then. 🙂

        • TheNuszAbides

          supposedly he read Darwin’s Origin and Dawkins’s Greatest Show and apparently that felt like a mountain. I shudder to think that there are humans who have much more of an appetite for reading and still want to side with goons like t58.

        • One day I started scrutinizing the so called “mountains of evidence” and to my utter disgust I found that it was actually mountains of cow dung.

          This plays well when speaking to a Christian audience of bobble heads, but that’s not us. You keep making this point as if we care. So not-biologist theot58 doesn’t agree with/approve of/understand evolution? Who cares? It’s the scientific consensus. What person with a brain would reject the consensus of the people who understand the data in favor of the opinion of someone (with an agenda) who doesn’t?

        • Michael Neville

          What person with a brain would reject the consensus of the people who understand the data in favor of the opinion of someone (with an agenda) who doesn’t?

          <Waves hand wildly>

          Oh! Oh! Oh! I know. I know. Call on me. Call on ME!!1!

        • Greg G.

          He always calls on you. Give the rest of us a chance.

        • TheNuszAbides
        • Greg G.

          Exactly what I was thinking about when I typed that. But YouTube says you have to watch it on YouTube.

        • Kevin K

          “One day” he scrutinized the evidence? Holy shit, that’s some kind of speed reading. You can get PhD upon PhD upon PhD in the biological sciences and not have caught up with the mountains of evidence with regard to evolution.

          It’s a big fucking mountain.

        • Yep, it’s a big mountain. theot58 must be an awesome scholar.

        • Kevin K

          It’s amazing that he hasn’t won the Nobel Prize in Scholar.

        • The evolutionists provide countless examples of micro evolution (adaptation) and INFER that this somehow proves Macro evolution (development of new body parts).

          The Creationists have their faces shoved in evolution and grudgingly accept microevolution, but they deny macroevolution without even acknowledging the elephant in the room: if variation happens, why isn’t macroevolution simply that same admitted variation with more time? What magic force keeps the variation contained so that, even after a billion years, a species is still the same species?

        • Max Doubt

          “What magic force keeps the variation contained so that, even after a billion six thousand years, a species is still the same species?”

          Fixed that for you. 😉

        • Max Doubt

          “No I do not.”

          So for explaining the diversity of life on earth, you feel there’s a better supported explanation than the process of evolution. Is this something you’re allowed to share?

          “I had been hearing… [ *** snipped pissing and moaning about not understanding the science of evolution *** ]”

          Pretty much everyone here agrees with you that you don’t understand evolution. You don’t have work so hard at letting us know that.

        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          I’ll bite. Give me one piece of evidence that scientists currently feel supports evolution that is actually cow dung.

        • theot58

          How about Comparative emryology

          This evidence originated in the late 1800’s and
          was promoted by Ernst Haeckel.

          The assertion is that similarities in the
          embryos of different creatures indicates that all creatures had a common ancestor.

          Haeckel included the following diagram in his
          book (black and white portion).

          He described how the embryos of different
          animals looked remarkably similar at the very early stage of development and
          that they diverged as they developed later.

          Haeckel’s drawing were a complete forgery.
          The similarities he describes at the “very early stage”

          were intentionally copied that way to
          support the evolution theory.

          They do not reflect the actual appearance of embryos

        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          You received a response below that makes clear why your presentation of this information is slanted. Even if that weren’t the case, it doesn’t satisfy my criteria since no scientist relies on Haekel’s drawings to support the theory.

        • MR

          More than slanted!

        • Someone made a mistake? Yep, it happens. Good thing science corrects itself.

          Is that it, or did you have some larger point to make?

        • Michael Neville

          So you had to go back over 100 years to dig up some dirt about one biologist. I’m not impressed. Incidentally it wasn’t creationists who discovered Haeckel’s chicanery, it was other embryologists.

        • ORigel

          Why did Darwin have a chapter on embryos in his book The Origin of Species, then, decades before Haeckel’s drawings?

          Why do we have microphotographs that prove comparative embryology now?

          Haeckel was trying to promote his hypothesis of recapitulation with his drawings, that embryos go through their entire evolutionary history during their development. That radical idea was debunked, but comparative embryology still stands.

        • MR

          Why do we have microphotographs that prove comparative embryology now?

          Right!? Haeckel’s drawings pale in comparison to actual photographs. His particular theory was off (and not entirely wrong), but the point of his drawings to show the similarities is demonstrated a hundred-fold in actual photographs! theot58’s argument is completely disingenuous.

        • theot58

          Can you please explain how embryos support macro evolution.

          How do they show that a bacterium became a baby over a long time period?

          Even staunch evolutionist PZ Myer conceded that
          Haeckel’s drawings are frauds.
          He says in an article:
          “Haeckel was wrong.
          His theory was invalid, some of his
          drawings were faked,
          and he willfully over-interpreted the data to prop up a false thesis.
          Furthermore,
          he was influential,
          both in the sciences and the popular press;
          his theory still gets echoed in the latter today.
          Wells is also correct
          in criticizing textbook authors
          for perpetuating Haeckel’s infamous diagram
          without commenting on its inaccuracies
          or the way it was misused to support a falsified theory.”

        • Even staunch evolutionist PZ Myer conceded that
          Haeckel’s drawings are frauds.

          That’s ancient history. What modern biologist ever thought that the drawings were accurate?

          This is an uninteresting direction to pursue. We’re all on the same page.

        • BlackMamba44

          He finds the explanations and evidence from actual scientists unconvincing but he wants atheists to explain it to him.

          And why am I getting deja vu?

        • Just be thankful he hasn’t brought up Piltdown Man.

          Yet.

        • BlackMamba44

          As a “curious observer of everyone else’s superior knowledge” (got this quote from a disqus commentor but can’t remember who) i had to look that up. I now have more knowledge than I did yesterday. 🙂

        • It’s a good thing to be aware of. They’ll say, “Yeah, but Piltdown Man was a hoax that wasn’t discovered for decades!”

          But so what? Science found the mistake, not Creationists. Science never pretends to be perfect.

          Their argument is, “But science makes mistakes!” as if they have something better.

        • TheNuszAbides

          fixation on the inerrancy of [insert puffed-up Authority here] does seem to make it awfully hard to figure out that for the rest of us, inerrancy is a pipe dream that we can decline to bet our imaginary souls on.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Here’s an early map of the world.

          https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a1/TabulaRogeriana_upside-down.jpg

          It is wrong, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t useful at the time, or the world doesn’t exist.

        • Zeta

          In a comment to you two days ago, I said, “The way you have been writing here is suspiciously similar to the infamous See Noevo who has been banned by Bob. Are you See Noevo?”

          I have not seen a response from you. Again, are you See Noevo?

        • Michael Neville

          You failed again. You were asked for “one piece of evidence that scientists currently feel supports evolution that is actually cow dung.” You brought up Haeckel, who died almost exactly 99 years ago and whose fakery was exposed by other scientists in his lifetime.

          Try again, this time giving something that actually answers the question.

        • MNb
        • “It’s even possible to rise a small distance from the ground in a single step — but that’s micro-stepping. A micro-step cannot elevate a man from one floor of a building to another. Such a miraculous motion is macro-stepping, which is beyond the ability of mere man.”

          Nice!

        • MR

          I particularly like: “Stairs are a theory in crisis!

        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          That is hilarious!

          5. According to the Law of Gravity, everything falls toward the Earth. Humans can’t violate a scientific law.

        • ORigel

          I especially like the image of stepping as leaping up an entire floor in a single go.

        • MadScientist1023

          Is that youtube video supposed to be the “mountains of evidence” you started looking through? Really?
          Hate to break it to you, but Youtube isn’t evidence. Youtube is a secondary source, and one with absolutely no publication threshold. Have you at least tried opening a book? I’m sure it’s far too much to expect you to have looked at the primary literature.

    • Jim Jones

      > Ken Ham makes some excellent points about the inadequacy of Macro evolution.

      No he fucking doesn’t. He’s a moron. When he emigrated to the USA from Australia, he raised the average IQ level of his birth country by a measurable amount.

    • Sharon Diehl

      John Sanford is a religious nutter who “believes” the earth is less than 100,000 years old. It is 4.6 billion years old based on a variety of radioisotopic dating techniques–no argument.

      You’re quoting a journalist naysaying on a consensus scientific theory? Snort.

      Ken Ham, my dear, makes no ‘excellent points’. He is a charlatan.

  • skl

    “Bill Nye pointed out that this is a make-believe distinction not made within science. For example, astronomy inherently looks back in time, since the light from distant objects might have taken millions or billions of years to reach us.”

    This made me think of a question I asked “eric” on an earlier blog here:

    “If we look at the CMB [Cosmic Microwave Background] in a given direction,
    and we see light that is about 13.9 billion years old but if we look in the
    direction diametrically opposite, we see light that’s also 13.9 billion years
    old, how can the universe be only 13.9 billion years old? Wouldn’t that make
    the universe 2 x 13.9 billion years old?”

    [eric hasn’t answered yet. He might not have seen the post that included
    this question because a few minutes ago I discovered that a day or two ago it
    was ‘Deleted. Detected as Spam’. I’ve tried reposting it.]

    • Ersch

      I think that the a answer might be that the big bang wasn’t an explosion that occurred within space, but an inflation of the volume of space, simultaneously in all three dimensions, into nothing. The universe has no edge or center, like the surface of a ball has no edge or center, only the”surface” of the universe is three dimensional instead of two. (No matter where we are in the universe it will appear to us that we are at it’s center.) Light has been traveling from every region of the universe into the direction of every other region since the big bang. So, adding together the maximum amount of time that light has traveled from two different directions would be counting the age of the universe twice. But maybe someone else can explain it better.

    • MNb

      “Wouldn’t that make the universe 2 x 13.9 billion years old?”
      No. Ask Einstein how inertial systems work, especially regarding observers. Also length contraction and time dilation. Sorry, today I don’t feel like giving a free lecture on physics.

    • Jim Jones

      > Wouldn’t that make the universe 2 x 13.9 billion years old?”

      No, but even Stephen Hawking couldn’t explain that to me.OTOH, it’s more believable than that a fairy in the sky wants me to cut off the end of my dick while not eating bacon.

      • JustAnotherAtheist2

        What if Stephen Hawking wanted you to cut off the end of your dick and avoid bacon?

        • Jim Jones

          He would have lost his mind.

    • Joe

      but if we look in the
      direction diametrically opposite, we see light that’s also 13.9 billion years
      old, how can the universe be only 13.9 billion years old? Wouldn’t that make
      the universe 2 x 13.9 billion years old?

      The universe is expanding in all directions simultaneously. If you stand in the middle of a circle, the distance to the edge is R, not 2R.

      • skl

        I explained to Bob S. somewhere in this thread why that doesn’t make sense to me.

        • Joe

          Why doesn’t it make sense?

          Draw a circle on the ground. Stand in the middle. Measure the distance to any point on the edge of the circle.

          What about that doesn’t make sense?

        • skl

          “Draw a circle on the ground. Stand in the middle. Measure
          the distance to any point on the edge of the circle. What about that doesn’t make sense?”

          It doesn’t make sense to me so far because, basically, I’ve
          seen scientists say there is NO CENTER to the universe, that there is NO LOCATION of where the Big Bang started, that it happened EVERYWHERE.

          So if, for example, it also happened at current point R (a
          point to our RIGHT 13.9 billion light years away), that point would be 27.8 billion light years from current point L (a point to our LEFT 13.9 billion light years away).

        • Joe

          It doesn’t make sense to me so far because, basically, I’ve
          seen scientists say there is NO CENTER to the universe, that there is NO LOCATION of where the Big Bang started, that it happened EVERYWHERE.

          Those two things are not incompatible.

          So if, for example, it also happened at current point R (a
          point to our RIGHT 13.9 billion light years away), that point would be 27.8 billion light years from current point L (a point to our LEFT 13.9 billion light years away).

          You seem to be confused on several fronts. The size of the observable universe, the speed of a photon of light and the geometry of a sphere. Simply not understanding them does not disprove these things. You think thousands of physicists and cosmologists have somehow overlooked something so basic a layman can see it straight away?

        • ORigel

          Imagine points A and B. They’re seperated by a million light years today.

          Now go back a billion years ago. Because of universal expansion, they were closer than a million light years back then.

          Keep winding back the clock. The further back you go, the closer the points are. Until at the Big Bang, points A and B were at the same point.

          That’s why cosmologists say the Big Bang happened everywhere. Every point was at the same point at t=0. Every point was the Big Bang starting point.

          Now I don’t know if this is a precise description of it because physicists don’t know the laws of quantum gravity yet. But I think it’s broadly accurate at least.

        • MR

          Sadly, I think you all are trying to explain this to someone intent on not understanding.

        • Even assuming skl is eager to learn, as he claims, he’d learn faster if he’d just spend half an hour with Wikipedia.

        • TheNuszAbides

          he does seem oddly selective of what he is willing to accept from there (or anywhere else, ever).

        • TheNuszAbides

          at best [he]’s intent on JAQing off. if the motives are sincere, the toolkit is egregiously lacking, and seems resistant to borrowing from other toolkits. if the motives aren’t sincere … well, then we know who can go DIAF already.

        • MR

          I like to think that *I* am the starting point of the Big Bang. ;D

        • Is the entire universe expanding equally in all directions from your point of view?

          I think you have a strong case.

        • MR

          (Glances out the window to where that discovery was made)

          Yeah, I think I do!

        • Inflation was an expansion of space. It’s not bound by the speed of light.

        • skl

          “Inflation was an expansion of space. It’s not bound by the
          speed of light.”

          That probably implies the expansion was faster than the
          speed of light.

          But then it must have slowed down substantially because I
          don’t think scientists are saying it’s expanding at the speed of light now.

          And yet they also say that despite its having slowed down,
          the expansion is accelerating!

        • Susan

          That probably implies the expansion was faster than the
          speed of light.

          I’m pretty sure it does.

          it must have slowed down substantially

          What do you mean by “it”? Again, I’m not being facetious. It’s not a trick question.

          I
          don’t think scientists are saying it’s expanding at the speed of light now.

          I don’t think so either. Have you considered reading books on the subject for the layperson instead of this approach?

          they also say that despite its having slowed down,
          the expansion is accelerating!

          Yes. They do. Travellling in space is not the same as space itself expanding.

          I suggest you go to an appropriate forum if you’re really interested.

        • skl

          “What do you mean by “it”? Again, I’m not being facetious. It’s not a trick question.”

          I thought the meaning of the pronoun was obvious from the context of Bob S’s words. By “it” I mean the “expansion of space”. (And, to my mind at least, this is the same as “expansion of the universe”, as one can’t consider an expansion of space unless there is
          something within or something bordering/defining the space.)

        • Susan

          I thought the meaning of the pronoun was obvious from the context of Bob S’s words.

          Not at all. Bob Seidensticker’s words (in context) seemed to be saying that the expansion of space/the universe is not the same as something travelling through space/the universe.

          By “it” I mean the “expansion of space”. (And, to my mind at least, this is the same as “expansion of the universe”, as one can’t consider an expansion of space unless there is
          something within or something bordering/defining the space.)

          So, no. You said that “it” slowed down substantially. That’s why I asked you what you mean by “it”. Please explain.

          Why ask this on an a forum that questions christian claims?

          Instead of a physics forum?

        • skl

          “Not at all. Bob Seidensticker’s words (in context) seemed to be saying that the expansion of space/the universe is not the same as something travelling through space/the universe.”

          Not at all, to my mind, at least.
          The something had to be travelling through space/the universe unbound by the speed of light, because there is no way to know what space is unless there is something in it or bordering it.

          “So, no. You said that “it” slowed down substantially. That’s why I asked you what you mean by “it”. Please explain.”

          I already did. Please the re-read the preceding.

          “Why ask this on an a forum that questions christian claims? Instead of a physics forum?”

          Why are you asking me physics questions about my physics questions on this forum?

        • Ignorant Amos

          Why are you asking me physics questions about my physics questions on this forum?

          Yip…a feckin’ sea lion….

        • Ignorant Amos

          Why ask this on an a forum that questions christian claims?

          Instead of a physics forum?

          Sealioning by chance?

          http://i2.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/873/260/a5b.png

          http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Just_asking_questions

        • Greg G.

          Ah ha! I mostly understood the concept but this fills in the gaps.

        • Ignorant Amos

          A.k.a. JAQing off like the creationist wankers they are.

        • Greg G.

          I think the early universe made “leaps” that I interpret to be analogous to quantum leaps, such as an electron moving from one shell of an atom to another.

          Things can move through space at or less than the speed of light but space can move through the void at any speed and that is accelerating. We have solar systems, galaxies, clusters of galaxies, and super-clusters that are all gravitationally bound structures. As space continues to accelerate, the superclusters will be moving away from each other at greater than light speed and will become invisible to one another. Most of a universe’s “lifetime” would be at a time when they are receding from one another at greater than light speed. We happen to be in this one in the earlier stages.

          There is a non-zero chance that a universe could pop into existence within another universe. But since the time that the universe is expanding at less than light speed is a very short time compared to the time it would be expanding at greater than light speed, it is most likely that the bubble universe would never be able to detect the receding superclusters. Bubble universes would be like the Russian dolls inside one another. We could be the innermost doll in an inconceivably large number of doll universes.

        • skl

          “Things can move through space at or less than the speed of light but space can move through the void at any speed and that is accelerating.”

          To my mind, if space expanded faster than the speed of light
          then so did the things IN space. You can’t measure space or even comprehend space unless there are things in it or bordering/defining it.

        • if space expanded faster than the speed of light
          then so did the things IN space.

          Space expanding is not the same thing as things moving through space. Things can be getting farther from each other simply because space is expanding, not because they’re moving through space.

        • skl

          “Space expanding is not the same thing as things moving through
          space. Things can be getting farther from each other simply because space is expanding, not because they’re moving through space.”

          To my mind, there IS NO SPACE unless matter exists. And that
          matter would have moved at the rate of the “space expansion.”

        • MR

          Ah, well that settles it then. The scientists are wrong.

        • Joe

          To my mind, there IS NO SPACE unless matter exists. ”

          Why do you think that?

        • skl

          I don’t see how you identify or define space without some
          reference to matter. Like the space between me and you.

        • Joe

          You don’t need matter to define space. It’s not relative to anything. It is a thing in itself.

        • skl

          If it’s not relative to anything then how would you measure it’s speed?

        • Joe

          You measure speed relative to something. That can be a point in space which as no mass.

          You don’t measure existence or some other properties, relative to anything else.

        • Michael Neville

          Think of passengers in a train. They’re sitting in chairs, not moving relative to the passenger car, yet traveling at 60+ mph.

        • skl

          I am. They’re matter.

        • Michael Neville

          I’m beginning to think that not only do you not understand the analogy, you don’t want to understand it and are doing everything to keep from understanding it.

          Ignorant Amos could very well be right in his accusation of sealioning.

        • skl

          Are we at least on the same page that the things IN space must have travelled at greater than light speed?

        • Michael Neville

          But only because space itself is traveling faster than the speed of light.

        • Greg G.

          To my mind, there IS NO SPACE unless matter exists. And that
          matter would have moved at the rate of the “space expansion.”

          I think I would go along with that if you mean mass/energy. Alan Guth’s theory is that space and mass/energy are equal and opposite, like kinetic energy and potential energy. So space and mass/energy must come into being simultaneously in a zero sum game.

        • Greg G.

          Right, but the things in space are not traveling at greater than light speed through space.

          A goldfish can swim in a bag of water. The bag of water and the goldfish might be going 70 mph in a car, but the goldfish is not swimming 70 mph in the bag.

          AIUI, space has some properties, such as those related to magnetism, that factor into the speed of light. Photons and galaxies are limited by those factors in how fast they can travel through space. But space itself expands. The space between superclusters expand at the same rate as the space containing the superclusters. There is no difference in the rate of expansion. It is just the gravity of the superclusters that holds them together.

        • skl

          “Right, but the things in space are not traveling at greater than light
          speed through space.”

          If space expanded at greater than the speed of light then so must have the things in space.
          To my mind, there IS NO SPACE unless matter exists. And that
          matter would have moved at the rate of the “space expansion.”

        • Greg G.

          Right. Those things in space that was traveling away from other portions of space at greater than light speed would be traveling at greater than light speed from them with the space.

          I have forgotten some of the details here, but when James Clerk Maxwell was considering how a charge moving through space creates an electromagnetic force and an electormagnetic force can move a particle. So he decided to see what speed something would travel if its movement created the force and the force moved it using the measured factors of magnetism. It turned out to be the speed of light. His son was a child at the time but he wrote about it as an adult that when his father worked it out he danced around the room. It’s why we call it “electromagnetic radiation. You are a few decades too late to get a complete answer about that from me. I passed electromagnetics in college and understood it fairly well back then.

          Great White Sharks can swim 35 mph in the water but the water is traveling with the Earth at 18 miles per second so the shark travels at that speed but the shark cannot swim any faster than hydrodynamics allow it to swim in the water. When matter moves through space, the kinetic energy counts as mass. It is insignificant at speeds we are accustomed to, but it becomes so great as it approaches light speed, it requires more and more energy to accelerate it more. It’s the difference between the force of a summer breeze to a summer hurricane.

        • skl

          “Right. Those things in space that was traveling away from
          other portions of space at greater than light speed would be traveling at greater than light speed from them with the space.”

          We seem to be on the same page that the things IN space must have travelled at greater than light speed.

          But what DEFINES the space, that is, what BORDERS the space?

        • Greg G.

          But what DEFINES the space, that is, what BORDERS the space?

          Speculation? Nothingness?

        • Joe

          Here be dragons?

        • Greg G.

          You fall off the edge of the universe.

        • Joe

          But what DEFINES the space, that is, what BORDERS the space?

          The same thing that is north of the North Pole.

        • Susan

          If space expanded at greater than the speed of light then so must have the things in space.

          But not in space.

          You don’t really care what the answers are, do you?

          If you did, you wouldn”t be on a site that examines christian claims and shows why they aren’t well supported.

          You’d be off reading books on cosmology and asking questions of people who have studied it.

          At least a couple of people qualifiied in the field have responded here and you’ve ignored their responses.

          .

        • skl

          Bob Seidensticker’s OP above brought up a matter of
          astronomy. I brought up points/questions I had about that matter. Since then, multiple posters including Bob S., and including you, have engaged with me in conversation on that matter.

          We are free to continue the conversation. If you are unhappy with the conversation then you are free to change the channel.

        • Susan

          Bob Seidensticker’s OP above brought up a matter of
          astronomy.

          Yes, it did. But it was in regard to Ken Ham’s idiotic “Were you there?” strategy. The article referred to cosmology but Bob S. is not a cosmologist.

          Since then, multiple posters including Bob S., and including you, have engaged with me in conversation on that matter.

          And neither Bob S. nor I nor most posters here are qualified to discuss it. At best, you’ll get a layperson’s best understanding of the subject when they look into the subject because they are genuinely curious about the subject.

          With the exception of two (possibly more) individuals. MNb and epeeist. They are actually qualiied. You ignored them.

          You ask questions. People respond. You ignore the answers.

          If you want to understand cosmology, you should go to a forum where experts are happy to answer genuine questions.

          You are on a forum that clearly advertises itself as a sceptical examination of christian claims. You are requesting an explanation from (mostly) non-experts on a highly technical subject (cosmology) and ignoring the few people who have some expertise in the many related fields. .

          You’ve shown no engagement with the responses.

          This has been a pattern of yours on every subject you’ve engaged in.

          Reproductive rights and epistemology are two more that immediately spring to mind.

          We are free to continue the conversation.

          Of course everyone is free to comment. I wasn’t suggesting they aren’t.

          Try to focus.

          If you are unhappy with the conversation then you are free to change the channel.

          I’m not unhappy with “the conversation”. It’s that I see a vacuous wanker JAQing off endlessly.

          I’m not suggesting you not be allowed to do that.

          It’s just that when you do, you’re going to have to accept people pointing it out as part of the discussion.

          .

        • skl

          Take 4 (last 3 Detected as Spam):

          SKL: “Since then, multiple posters including Bob S., and
          including you, have engaged with me in conversation on that matter.”

          Susan: “And neither Bob S. nor I nor most posters here are qualified to discuss
          it. At best, you’ll get a layperson’s best understanding of the subject when they look into the subject
          because they are genuinely curious about the subject.”

          If they were not qualified to discuss it, they chose to discuss it anyway, and I’m glad they did.

          And
          a layperson’s understanding and language is fine with me. To my mind,
          unless rocket scientists can make their work reasonably comprehensible
          to laypeople in laypeople’s language, their findings and ideas lose a
          lot of value. And they don’t want that to happen. They want us to
          appreciate their finding and ideas,
          AND have a reasonable comprehension of them. That’s why people such as Neil deGrasse Tyson have the jobs that they have.
          IF
          I’m talking gobbledykook then maybe part of the reason is that Neil and
          the rest of the science communicators aren’t doing a good job.

          If
          you feel we’re disqualified from engaging in this conversation, then
          feel free to ignore us. But please quit harping should we continue the
          conversation.

          “With the exception of two (possibly more) individuals. MNb and epeeist. They are actually qualiied. You ignored them.”

          I’ve
          responded to epeeist. The reason I didn’t much earlier is that his post
          certainly seemed to be in agreement with me, with the exception of one
          clearly wrong statement of his (“I am not aware of anyone saying that
          [the expansion of the universe] has slowed down.”). That statement may
          have been due to his
          misunderstanding of what I was saying.

          I’ve also just responded to MnB, asking him to try to put in layman’s terms what he’s saying about Lorentz Transformations.

          “I’m not unhappy with “the conversation”.”

          Then why are you harping?

          “It’s that I see a vacuous wanker JAQing off endlessly. I’m not suggesting you not be allowed to do that.”

          Then why are you harping?

          I have been polite, sincere, inquisitive, on-topic, and have not been
          snide, sarcastic nor questioned people’s integrity or motives.
          I’d recommend you keep the harping to yourself.

          Regardless, I don’t foresee you and me having more conversation.

        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          That probably implies the expansion was faster than the speed of light.

          But then it must have slowed down substantially because I
          don’t think scientists are saying it’s expanding at the speed of light now.

          And yet they also say that despite its having slowed down,
          the expansion is accelerating!

          There is no contradiction, just a misunderstanding on your part. The initial expansion was incredibly quick, the expansion slowed down (presumably due to the gravitational force of the matter that formed), and eventually the expansion started accelerating once again.

        • epeeist

          That probably implies the expansion was faster than the speed of light.

          It can be, which is why we talk about the “visible universe”, things embedded in the part of space that is moving faster than light is not visible to us.

          But then it must have slowed down substantially because I don’t think scientists are saying it’s expanding at the speed of light now.

          I am not aware of anyone saying that it has slowed down.

          And yet they also say that despite its having slowed down, the expansion is accelerating!

          The deceleration parameter q0 has been measured by two groups studying type 1a supernovae. In both cases they come up with a value of q0 < 0, which means that the expansion of the universe is accelerating.

        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          I am not aware of anyone saying that it has slowed down.

          I don’t recall which book it was, but I read that the expansion of the universe slowed down from its initial stages and then started accelerating again. This isn’t correct?

        • epeeist

          It’s a question of what is being referred to. Yes, expansion slowed down after what was effectively a phase change but current observations show it to be accelerating again.

        • ORigel

          The expansion slowed down after inflation.

        • epeeist

          The expansion slowed down after inflation.

          Accepted, but it is quite difficult to ascertain exactly what skl is referring to, inflation, the period after or the whole thing.

        • skl

          SKL: But then it must have slowed down substantially because
          I don’t think scientists are saying it’s expanding at the speed of light now.

          Epeeist: I am not aware of anyone saying that it has slowed down.

          What I mean is the scientists say the universe expanded faster than the speed of light early on, but that it’s slowed down, and the universe is expanding at substantially slower than the
          speed of light now.
          I’m sure you agree with that.

          SKL: And yet they also say that despite its having slowed down, the expansion is accelerating!

          Epeeist: The deceleration parameter q0 has been measured by two groups studying type 1a supernovae. In both cases they
          come up with a value of q0 < 0, which means that the expansion of the universe is accelerating.

          Then we agree the scientists say the universe expanded faster than the speed of light, then decelerated to something much
          slower than the speed of light, but now is accelerating from that speed.

        • epeeist

          I don’t think scientists are saying it’s expanding at the speed of light now.

          Are they not? In which case you know more than I and can provide me with a citation.

          Once you have done this we can move on.

        • skl

          I may have had this completely wrong when I said “What I
          mean is the scientists say the universe expanded faster than the speed of light early on, but that it’s slowed down, and the universe is expanding at substantially slower than the speed of light now.”

          Wikipedia says
          “Using standard candles with known intrinsic brightness, the
          expansion of the universe has been measured using redshift to derive Hubble’s Constant: H0 = 67.15 ± 1.2 (km/s)/Mpc. For every million parsecs of distance from the observer, the rate of expansion increases by about 67 kilometers per second.”
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metric_expansion_of_space”

          So maybe the universe’s expansion never slowed down after
          the Big Bang and is in fact expanding much faster now, accelerating at about 67 kilometers per second.
          In other words, we’re not only expanding faster than the
          speed of light, we’re getting faster all the time.

          Is that right?

        • Susan

          I explained to Bob S. somewhere in this thread why that doesn’t make sense to me.

          Go to a physics forum and start (or find) an appropriate thread.

          They’re usually very patient with people who are genuinely curious and don’t understand the field (which is most of us)..

        • RichardSRussell

          To keep it simple, imagine a 2-dimensional (flat) sheet of rubber with little paper dots glued here and there all over it. Let’s say it’s a foot square. You nail down the top edge and the left edge, then grab the lower edge and right edge and stretch them so that the sheet is now 2’x2′. Each of the dots will have moved some distance away from each of the other dots, but, from the perspective of any single dot, the increase in distance will be greater for the dots farther away, less for the ones closer in. And that’s true for every one of the dots, not just a particular one that might (or might not) have started out near the center of the sheet.

        • skl

          Thanks, but that doesn’t help my understanding.

    • Greg G.

      No, it’s the same 13.9 billion years, if that is the correct time. It seems to me that the age is 13.7 billion years, but maybe I haven’t checked for a couple hundred million years. If you looked at it in one direction and then turned one degree, would you think that would change anything? The path of light for those two views would be traveling nearly parallel for the same 13.9 by. Turn 90 degrees, you see light of the same age but it doesn’t make the age any different. Another 90 degrees, and it is still the same age.

      • skl

        I tried to explain to Bob S. somewhere in this thread why I don’t understand this. Basically, I’ve seen scientists say there is no center to the universe, that there is no location of where the Big Bang started, that it happened EVERYWHERE. So if, for example, it also happened at current point R (a point to our RIGHT 13.9 billion light years away), that point would be 27.8 billion light years from current point L (a point to our LEFT 13.9 billion light years away).

        • Jim Jones

          I thought 3 dim integrals on the complex plane was confusing but this shit is way above my pay grade.

        • Michael Neville

          We are right in the center of the observable universe. That isn’t the center of the universe, which probably doesn’t exist, but rather shows us the limits of how far we can see.

        • Greg G.

          The CMB came from everywhere in the universe but it was at a much higher frequency. The only CMB we can see now is from the time the event happened but the universe was and is expanding, so what we see is now in the microwave frequencies that are red-shifted because it is traveling away from us.

          The background radiation from our local area dissipated long ago, so all we can see is what is coming from 13.9 billion light years away. If the solar system was in a complete light blocking fog that instantly went away, it would take 8:20 seconds for light from the sun to reach us. The light that left the sun before the fog would have already passed us and there would be no light escaping the sun until the fog lifted. That is essentially what happened less than a half-billion years after the Big Bang. It was all plasma which blocked light. When it cooled so that atoms could form, light could travel.

        • skl

          “… but the universe was and is expanding…”

          Sometimes I imagine that universal expansion must be creating a vast and ever growing empty “hole” in the middle of the universe. (But then I remember scientists saying there is no middle!)

          The view that the universe is expanding certainly seems to be the
          overwhelming consensus of scientists. But it’s apparently not a universal consensus.
          “Although the paper has yet to be peer-reviewed, none of the experts contacted by Nature dismissed it as obviously wrong, and some of them found the idea worth pursuing.”
          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/17/universe-expanding-cosmologist_n_3606136.html

          There’s also some controversy over the rate of expansion.
          “The most precise measurement ever made of the current rate of expansion of the Universe has produced a value that appears incompatible with measurements of radiation left over from the Big Bang. If the findings are confirmed by independent techniques, the laws of cosmology might have to be rewritten.”
          http://www.nature.com/news/measurement-of-universe-s-expansion-rate-creates-cosmological-puzzle-1.19715

          Please don’t ask me to explain it. It’s pretty much Greek to me!

        • ORigel

          The expansion is uniform.

        • MNb

          You’re asking questions about Relativity while sticking to Newtonian Mechanics. As long as you don’t let the latter go you won’t ever get it.

          “that point would be 27.8 billion light years from current point L”
          That’s only correct on Galilean Transformations, ie Newtonian Mechanics. It’s incorrect on Lorentz Transformations, ie Relativity. The former don’t apply exactly because we’re talking the speed of light.

        • skl

          Would you be able to put in layman’s terms what you mean by Lorentz Transformations and how they answer my question?

        • MNb

          No.
          They don’t answer your question. They show that you ask a wrong question, like I already wrote in my previous comment with “That’s only correct …. it’s incorrect …..”.
          What I’m trying to tell you is that every single comment of yours is a category error.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_mistake

          What I’m also trying to tell you is that you never will be able to understand the answer as long as you don’t master relativistic terminology: twin paradox, time delation, length contraction and Lorentz Transformation etc.
          Finally I must stress that no matter how benevolent, many answers you have received (especially about the expanding Universe) are only tangentially relevant for your question about the size of our Universe. That’s because they try to do the impossible: explain a Relativistic topic in terms of Newtonian mechanics. That’s doomed to fail.
          You’ll have to study. I have given more than enough key words you can google. Have you mastered a few of them then we will be talking.

        • skl

          “What I’m trying to tell you is that every single comment of yours is a
          category error.”

          Do you mean even my statement that ‘if the universe expanded at greater than the speed of light, then all the things comprising the universe likewise travelled at greater than the speed of light’ ?

          “I have given more than enough key words you can google. Have you mastered a few of them then we will be talking.”

          I’ll try to do that.

        • Susan

          I’ll try to do that.

          Upvote (without sarcasm) for that.

        • MNb

          “Do you mean ….”
          No.

    • Rudy R

      Ask a cosmologist.

  • Paul

    “Ken Ham is a young-earth creationist, meaning that he thinks the earth is 6000 years old and that evolution is nonsense.”

    To clarify, Ken ham thinks that microbes-to-microbiologists evolution is nonsense. He doesn’t have a problem withe evolution meaning “change over time” or
    even “change in heritable features over time.”

    “Ham wants to make a distinction between experimental or observational science (reliable) vs. historical science (not)….Bill Nye pointed out that this is a make-believe distinction not made within science. ”

    Ken Ham pointed out in the debate that several science books make the distinction of historical science. (33:00, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6kgvhG3AkI).
    I’ve even listened to (secular) college lectures that say the same
    thing. (i.e. “The Joy of Science” by Robert Hazen from The Great
    Courses) .So BIll Nye was wrong. There is a distinction being made.

    What’s another term for historical science? Forensic
    science. You’re observing things in the present to try and figure out
    what happened in the past. Bob, what makes you think that forensic
    science is unreliable?

    “…astronomy inherently looks back in time, since the light from distant objects
    might have taken millions or billions of years to reach us.”

    1) There’s one word that stand out to me: “might” 2) What is the one-way
    speed of light? It’s one of those unanswered questions. Hence Bill Nye’s
    use of the word “might.”

    “Ham repeated, “You weren’t there” several times, though this applies to him as well. Ken, were you there to see God make everything?”

    Ken Ham acknowledge in the debate that this applies to him as well. He
    admits he wasn’t there. Thus, the use of forensic science.

    “And I wonder how Ham would accept a lawyer defending a man accused of
    murder whose case was, “Yes, I’ll admit that you’ve got damning
    evidence, but so what? Were you there?”

    Ken Ham would admit that he wasn’t there. He would have to rely on the
    testimony of eye witnesses pertaining to that case. As it pertains to
    origins, Ken would say that God created the universe, therefore God
    would have witnessed this creation, and that he, Ken Ham, relies on
    God’s eyewitness testimony: the Bible.

    “…vs. millions of years, which you can’t [observe]. But of course you can.
    Science has long since left personal observation behind and uses
    instruments and clues to piece together the reality of nature”

    No, scientists, not science, use the instruments and come to their own conclusions about the evidence they are looking at.

    “Ham rejects speciation (despite Creationist darling Michael Behe accepting speciation and common descent).”

    First of all, Michael Behe is a proponent of Intelligent Design. I would
    neither call him a Creationist nor a Creationist darling.

    Secondly, no, Ken Ham doesn’t reject speciation. It’s observable. There are many different species of canines: domestic dogs, wolves, foxes, jackals,
    coyotes, dingoes, etc. which are all members of the canine kind (or
    family). Ken Ham also doesn’t reject common descent. He would say that
    all those species of canines would have a common ancestor: a canine.
    What Ken Ham rejects is universal common descent, a.k.a Darwinian
    evolution, the idea that everything can be traced back to a single
    common ancestor.
    (regarding the common ancestry of finches: 38:50, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6kgvhG3AkI, regarding the common ancestry of the different varieties of canines: 39:40 )

    “..Lenski’s experiment with E. coli or a bacterium’s sudden new ability to metabolize nylon—he’s determined to reject it.”

    No,he wouldn’t reject evidence of bacteria producing bacteria and whether
    or not they metabolize nylon. What he’s rejecting is the idea that this
    is evidence of life coming from a single common ancestor.
    (44:30 – 46:30, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6kgvhG3AkI)

    “Ham never defined “kinds,” ”

    Yes, he did define it:
    (39:40, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6kgvhG3AkI)
    It’s (in most cases) at the family level, not at the order level like you stated.

    “Can diverse members of an order mate today—say a rat and a beaver? A bear
    and a lynx? A giraffe and a hippo? If not, then why imagine that they
    could 4000 years ago? …But where’s the evidence? We don’t see the
    record of this remarkable change in diversity in the DNA of modern
    animals.”

    No, they can’t and Ken Ham doesn’t think that they did – back then and even now. Bears produce bears, felines produce felines, insects produce insects, birds produce birds, reptiles produce reptiles, etc.

    You’re right: we don’t see that kind of remarkable change that you talked about. Hence, no evidence for life evolving from a single common ancestor. And no, I’m not saying that evolutionist think that rats and beavers mated, etc. I’m just agreeing that the remarkable diversity required in the DNA for a single common ancestor to give rise to all the organisms today just doesn’t exist. But there does exist remarkable diversity in the DNA to give rise to the different species (variations) within the same kind (the family level in most instances). But species, however, will have a little less genetic diversity than the parent kind.

    “I have no idea what the Hamster’s fantasy means, and we’ve wasted far too much time speculating.”

    That wasn’t Ham’s fantasy. That was yours as a result of your misunderstanding. Instead of speculating, you could have just searched AnswersInGenesis.org for the definition of “kind”, or even paid closer attention to part in the debate where he explained what he meant by it.
    (39:40, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6kgvhG3AkI)

    “There are hundreds of dating methods (natural clocks). They’re all fallible, and most give dates of the earth much younger than 4.6B years. Ham’s conclusion is to use the perfect source, the one who was there—God.
    Oh, so then I guess Ken “Were you there?” Ham wasn’t there either. So much for his epistemology.”

    As Ken Ham stated in the debate, he admits that he wasn’t there and that everyone uses historical/forensic science to try to determine what happened in the past. Problems with radiometric dating methods:
    https://answersingenesis.org/geology/radiometric-dating/

    “Bill Nye pointed to direct evidence for the age of the earth by citing trees dated at 6800 years in America and 9550 in Sweden and the 680,000 annual layers found in ice cores.”

    The assumption being made by Bill Nye is that those are annual layers. Tree are known to sometimes produce more than one ring per year. While the number of rings in the tree is observational, there’s an assumption being made by some scientists about the rings being annual. Same thing with the ice cores: they are not annual layers.
    https://answersingenesis.org/environmental-science/ice-age/do-ice-cores-show-many-tens-of-thousands-of-years/

    “…Ham said that it’s not possible for observational science to contradict the claim of a young earth.But then how can Ham’s science confirm a young earth without being falsifiable?”

    As stated in the debate, there’s a difference between observational/experimental
    science and historical/forensic science. Observational science cannot prove or disprove what one believes about origins.

    “Ham made clear that his view should be taught in public, taxpayer-supported
    schools, though I couldn’t make sense of his logic.”

    Unsubstantiated comment. I challenge you to find exactly where he said that. He did no such thing during the debate nor is that the position of Answers in
    Genesis.
    https://answersingenesis.org/creationism/in-schools/should-christians-be-pushing-to-have-creation-taught-in-government-schools/

    https://answersingenesis.org/creationism/in-schools/should-creation-be-taught-public-schools/

    https://answersingenesis.org/media/video/creation/taught-in-government-schools/

    One thing they are in favor of is Christian schools teaching evolution:
    https://answersingenesis.org/public-school/teaching-evolution/should-christian-schools-teach-evolution/

    “Nye made clear that “I don’t know” isn’t embarrassing and says nothing about the validity of science.”

    Yet, when a politician gives that answer to the question “How old is the earth?”, he gets berated by atheists on blogs and comment sections all across the Internet.

    “Teaching accurate science, not make-believe, is essential for America’s competitiveness.”

    I agree! Teaching accurate, observable, and experimental science is essential. Teaching beliefs about our origins (creation, universal common descent, etc), should be kept out of science class. Since it is important to make a distinction between factual evidence and the beliefs based on them, could they be offered as an elective (i.e. not mandatory)? Sure. 1) It’s important to teach children critical thinking skills 2) Since students are choosing the subject they want to learn about, no one could claim “What about separation of church and state.”, “indoctrination”, or anything like that. 3) You’d have to me careful about who’s teaching the class. One would hope that a Creationist would teach the Creation class, A proponent of universal common descent would teach the Darwinian evolution class, etc. I certainly wouldn’t want to learn about Creation from a Darwinian evolutionist, just like you wouldn’t want to learn about the beliefs about Darwinian evolutionists from a Creationist. Like you Bob, I would go to a Stephen Meyer lecture to learn about Intelligent Design (or Jonathan Wells, Michael Behe, etc). Except that I wouldn’t claim that Michael Behe is a Creationist
    darling.

    Bob,
    If you want to know the answer to the questions you had about Noah’s flood, and learn more about the Creation position on any of the topics brought up in the debate, please check out this page:
    https://answersingenesis.org/countering-the-culture/bill-nye-debates-ken-ham/answers/

    • Michael Neville

      If you’d like rebuttal to the creationism you’ve been fed please check out: http://www.talkorigins.org/

      • Paul

        Already been there. I find it unconvincing. Is there one in particular that you found convincing?

        • Michael Neville

          It’s better to say there’s nothing there that I found unconvincing. I do find creationism, particularly Ham/AIG’s creationism, unconvincing. GODDIDIT is not a convincing argument for an atheist.

        • You don’t get it. That you found it unconvincing means nothing. In particular, it should mean nothing to you since you know better than any of us your lack of expertise in biology.

          When you’re a practicing biologist, I’ll grant that you have a warrant to decide if evolution is crap or not.

        • BlackMamba44
        • JustAnotherAtheist2

          Perfect. 🙂

        • Paul

          Are you saying that ONLY practicing biologist understand evolution? Then why even bother teaching evolution in school? Please explain your response.

          My expertise is only as good as the secular college professors teach it. It’s only as good as the science writers write about it. But should I just accept it blindly? Am I not allowed to critically evaluate it and then ask them follow-up questions?

          Try applying your statement to other other things and see if truth still holds:

          “When you’re a practicing Christian, I’ll grant that you have a warrant to decide if Christianity is crap or not.”

          “When you’re a practicing Muslim, I’ll grant that you have a warrant to decide if Islam is crap or not.”

        • Are you saying that ONLY practicing biologist understand evolution?

          Enough to reject it, yes.

          Then why even bother teaching evolution in school?

          ?? Evolution is the scientific consensus; we teach that in science class in school. Where’s the puzzle?

          My expertise is only as good as the secular college professors teach it. It’s only as good as the science writers write about it. But should I just accept it blindly? Am I not allowed to critically evaluate it and then ask them follow-up questions?

          You’re that driven to get a PhD in biology so you can properly critique it? Godspeed.

          If you’re talking about what we laymen can do, sure we can ask questions. But if we don’t understand the answer, “Well, I’ll just declare evolution to be crap then” isn’t a logical response.

          “When you’re a practicing Christian, I’ll grant that you have a warrant to decide if Christianity is crap or not.”
          “When you’re a practicing Muslim, I’ll grant that you have a warrant to decide if Islam is crap or not.”

          Science and religion are quite different. To see this, note that there is a consensus within science on many subjects. Within religion, “There is a supernatural” is about as far as different believers get.

        • MR

          Not to mention that Christians don’t believe Christianity because they are experts at Christianity.

        • Paul

          “Evolution is the scientific consensus; we teach that in science class in school. Where’s the puzzle?”

          There you go again with your common consensus argument. Consensus has no bearing on what makes something true or not. It may be the case that they are all evaluating from the same worldview. One thing there is a consensus on from Creationists, I.D.ers, Evolutionists, etc is the concept of “change over time, change in heritable features over time, ” That’s observable. It’s demonstrable. They all have different worldviews, but they still come to this exact same conclusion. But the key thing that we should teach in school is critical thinking skills, not blindly accepting what they are being told. That’s what cults do. Schools should not be cults.

          “If you’re talking about what we laymen can do, sure we can ask
          questions. But if we don’t understand the answer, “Well, I’ll just
          declare evolution to be crap then” isn’t a logical response.”

          You’re assuming I don’t understand the answer. The reason I ask the questions are to understand to the topic. Were you not allowed to ask any questions while you were in school? Were you instructed to just sit there, not ask questions, and accept as truth everything you were told? Are you saying one can’t understand the answers unless one has a PhD?

        • Consensus has no bearing on what makes something true or not.

          Despite your best efforts, this isn’t hard. “It’s the consensus; therefore, it’s true” is flawed reasoning. Luckily I never said or even thought that.

          However, “It’s the consensus; therefore, it’s currently our best guess at the truth” is valid reasoning. As a layman, you’re stuck with just our best guess at the truth.

          It may be the case that they are all evaluating from the same worldview.

          Not sure what this means. Is it important?

          But the key thing that we should teach in school is critical thinking skills, not blindly accepting what they are being told.

          Do you not know what they teach in science class? They teach the scientific consensus, where it exists. They teach chemistry, not alchemy. They teach astronomy, not astrology. And they teach evolution, not Creationism.

          You’re assuming I don’t understand the answer.

          Not at all. I was simply exploring that possibility.

          Were you not allowed to ask any questions while you were in school? Were you instructed to just sit there, not ask questions, and accept as truth everything you were told?

          Yes, ask questions. I never said otherwise.

          Are you saying one can’t understand the answers unless one has a PhD?

          Not the point. The point is: what will you do when you get your questions answered, and everything has a naturalistic answer?

        • Raging Bee

          Consensus has no bearing on what makes something true or not.

          It’s a more reliable guide than your obvious bullshit.

        • epeeist

          Consensus has no bearing on what makes something true or not.

          It rather depends on how that consensus comes into place. With science it tends to be multiple lines of evidence leading to the same conclusion. To switch from evolution, if you look at the theory of relativity we initially had the precession of Mercury and the deflection of light by the sun.

          As time has gone on there have been more tests and more evidence has been amassed, the latest ones being gravitational waves and gravitation micro-lensing.

          Given this kind of testing and this kind of evidence then the scientific community has moved to consensus as to GR being the best current explanation for these phenomena.

          The same is true of evolution, as Darwin’s initial theory underwent inter-theoretic reduction and incorporated genetics and microbiology it has become the strongest explanation for the way the biosphere is and hence has become the scientific consensus.

          Could it be wrong? Of course it could, but any new theory would have to explain all that the current theory does and any anomalies that it does not.

        • RichardSRussell

          … why even bother teaching evolution in school?

          For the same reason we teach heliocentrism.

        • Bob Jase

          If we teach heliocentrism why can we all fly heliocopters?

        • TheNuszAbides

          did you miss the part where scientific disciplines don’t require professions of faith?

    • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

      Dude, we’ve got ARCHAEOLOGY showing civilizations with records going back farther that YOUR KIND’s assertion of the entire history of the Earth.

      More to the point, NONE of the histories have a world-wide flood…only legends.

    • Too many knots to untangle. And you don’t much care about the rebuttal anyway, do you?

      • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

        “And you don’t much care about the rebuttal anyway, do you?”

        I’m guessing not, unless the response is “OH MY GOD YOU’VE TOTALLY CONVINCED ME THAT GOD AND YOUR PARTICULAR VERSION OF CHRISTIANITY ARE TOTALLY TOTES FOR REAL AND I’M GOING TO GO TO THE NEAREST BIBLE-BELIEVING CHURCH FIRST THING SUNDAY MORNING AND START TITHING AND YOU CAN TELL YOUR PASTOR AND ALL OF YOUR CHRISTIAN FRIENDS THAT YOU GET BROWNIE POINTS IN HEAVEN FOR CONVINCING ME OF THE TRUTH!”

        Does that ever happen for these people, I wonder? Considering that this likely virtually never happens, I always wonder what their actual motivation is. And it’s not just a Christian thing, or even a religious thing, because conspiracy theory wackos do this, too, in almost the exact same way.

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          Hmmmm… that gives me an idea…

          What would actually happen if the only response to these people was an affirmative? What would they do if no one actually argued with them anymore, but just said, “OH, WOW! THANK YOU! I BELIEVE NOW!”

        • Might they see through your cunning ruse? If you have any interesting results from your experiment, let us know.

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          “Might they see through your cunning ruse?”

          What are they going to say if they do? Maybe they’ll point it out, but they can’t prove it. And it might stop them from posting huge walls of text trying to sell their brand of bullshit, because they’ll be too busy arguing over whether you’ve actually converted or not.

          This would probably work best if you could get about a dozen people to do the same thing in one thread.

        • Jim Jones

          Next time the JWs or Mormons come to the door . . . .

          LOL!

        • TheNuszAbides
        • islandbrewer

          It’s not arguing with us I’m so concerned with, it’s the ability to miseducate the next generation that worries me.

          The US has already declined precipitously in its science education. The majority of our scientific research (in all fields, not just biology) is now done by foreign born scientists (‘cuz ‘Muricans don’t take kindly to all that Satanic book lernin’).

          When the most famous neurosurgeon in the US doesn’t understand evolution and dismisses it casually, you know we’re on the extra-dumnb track and going fast.

        • Jim Jones

          “The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.”

          — Franklin D. Roosevelt

        • jamesparson

          We sooooo have to try that one of these days.

        • Jim Jones

          Most all Christians are Powerball Christians (and oddly, their Jesus always wants what they want, never the other way around).

          They “buy a ticket just in case” — they don’t study the bible or follow the rules but something meaningless like thanking god after 15 surgeons save their newborn or sticking fliers under car wipers at Walmart, well, it costs them nothing.

          And you never know . . . like the Powerball.

        • TheNuszAbides

          Considering that this likely virtually never happens

          maybe their motive is to wait for exactly that to happen — at which point they can comfortably assume that the new ‘convert’ is in fact an Atheist Spy[!] wishing to infiltrate their righteous circle, and proceed to humor the spy while rejoicing in the effective neutralization of an individual who could have spent their time far more wisely …

      • Paul

        Yes, I do. I care about the rebuttal and the rebuttal to the rebuttal.

        But first, I just needed you to get the facts straight on the debate – to correct your misunderstandings.

    • Jim Jones

      > If you want to know the answer to the questions you had about Noah’s flood, and learn more about the Creation position on any of the topics brought up in the debate, please check out this page: https://answers…..

      I’d rather know facts than silly nonsense from iron age sheepherders who didn’t know what rain was.

    • Max Doubt

      “He doesn’t have a problem withe evolution meaning “change over time” or even “change in heritable features over time.””

      Any idea what Ken thinks might cause those changes to stop at some point?

    • MadScientist1023

      If “kinds” is taxonomic Families, the creationist view is that there was a single feline pair, and that all lions, tigers, pumas, ocelots, bobcats, house cats, etc descended from that single pair about 4000 years ago. That’s a rather remarkable rate of diversification. It certainly suggests a rate of mutation and speciation several orders of magnitude higher than what we see today. Why don’t we see new species popping up all the time?

    • Raging Bee

      Your main “source” for all that copypasta is a web site run by a known con-artist who is currently doing all sorts of legal-financial backflips to get taxpayers to finance his dumbass amusement park and avoid paying any taxes. If all you have is fake science from already-discredited con-artists, then you have nothing.

  • Ersch

    Hey! What have you got against Klown Kollege? I worked hard for my degree.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLPlyRwwj4E

  • Mr. A

    “To squeeze all those animals onto Noah’s Ark, he imagines that there were less than 1000 “kinds,” but that, in the 4000 years since Noah landed, they were so profligate that they gave us the 16 million (or more) land animal species we have today. That’s some serious speciation.”

    – The problem is actually even worse. Ham doesn’t believe in evolution or speciation, remember? Therefore, in order to account for all the species we see today, all of them must been created out of thin air for the past 4000 or so years without anyone bothering to record this.

    • Greg G.

      But the speciation events seem to have been curtailed in the past few centuries, at least since Linnaeus started cataloging them.

  • Jim Jones

    > To squeeze all those animals onto Noah’s Ark, he imagines that there were less than 1000 “kinds,” but that, in the 4000 years since Noah landed, they were so profligate that they gave us the 16 million (or more) land animal species we have today. That’s some serious speciation.

    Only 30 [species] splitting events would yield [one] billion species. Over 3.5 billion years, that’s one speciation event every 116 million years. As Allen Orr and [Jerry Coyne] calculated in [their] book Speciation, on average a new species forms by splitting of a given lineage at a rate between one every 100,000 years and one every million years. (This is a rough estimate, of course and varies by taxa.)

  • pud

    “The Hamster” bhwaa! Part of the “rat” “kind”

  • epicurus

    When I read the title of this post in my rss reader I thought Bob was going to be talking about Trump’s new communications person!
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/progressivesecularhumanist/2017/07/trumps-new-communications-chief-anti-science-climate-change-denier/

    • MR

      Holy Sh*t, we’re f*cked.

      • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

        Yes, we are. This is why I don’t find satire about the current government funny anymore. It’s all too real.

        • Greg G.

          Why scream “FAKE NEWS” every time someone sticks a microphone in front of you, then lawyer up over it, then say you can pardon yourself from it?

        • Michael Neville

          When the news reads like satire then we know we’re definitely fucked.

          This guy is making some scary predictions.

          My own ideas about the effect of inequality on social instability align with the work of social scientist Peter Turchin. He and his collaborators use mathematical models to study the rise and fall of societies—an analysis that postulates a new American civil war arriving as soon as 2021 (and in a highly-armed nation already suffering from an epidemic of gun violence, he doesn’t mean “civil war” metaphorically). [link to Turchin’s paper in linked article]

        • Scary predictions, but also a compelling case for a $15 minimum wage.

          On the topic of income inequality, the GINI index (look it up in Wikipedia) is a simple quantitative value of it, and you can see it going up in the US.

        • TheNuszAbides

          Hanauer’s been at it for years, but I can’t say I’m surprised he hasn’t previously been heeded by his fellow moguls.

        • Chuck Johnson

          Trump’s not much of a card player.
          He’s got a weak hand and he keeps on pretending that it’s all aces.

        • TheNuszAbides

          Yeah, Andy Borowitz has a knack for it, but he could probably be doing something more worthwhile right about now.

      • jamesparson

        Let’s me give you a few things that might help.

        1. It is the red states that take the most money form the federal government. Any cuts hurt them the worst

        2. GOP is tarnishing Christianity in ways I would not think possible

        3. What is their agenda besides repealing the ACA (ObamaCare)? They talk like reactionaries, but in reality they aren’t moving anything anywhere

        4. This is NOT a country of old white guys. There are all kinds of people.

    • Lark62

      He is staffing the government like a really bad reality tv show. Oh, who can I select who is totally unqualified for the position, has no relevant knowledge or skills, that everyone will hate and who will create lots of drama for my next tweet storm?

      • Jim Jones

        I keep saying it: It’s like a Marx Brothers movie.

        • Chuck Johnson

          When can we expect the musical interlude?

        • Raging Bee

          Please, not the one from “Duck Soup!”

        • Chuck Johnson

          There are quite a few song-and-dance numbers in “Duck Soup”.
          Here’s an example:
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yyeKYQdYISg

        • Raging Bee

          Actually, that’s the one I was thinking of.

      • MR

        …or who is a sworn enemy of said department.

  • Snagglefritz Sagenschnitter

    5. Dogs will always be dogs. Ham rejects speciation

    My absolute favourite part of the debate came at the 41’10” mark when Ham showed that the latest scientific evolutionary tree had the same basic shape as Ken Ham’s “creationist orchard”. Only one problem – the scientific chart on the left was upside down! (Check the writing on the chart; it’s all upside down.)

    The sad thing is that nobody noticed! Or, at least, nobody pointed out the mistake even if they did notice.

    I can’t upload the screenshot (don’t know why) so here’s a link to the video at the 41’10” mark (I hope that works).

    https://youtu.be/z6kgvhG3AkI?t=2470

  • JustAnotherAtheist2

    Chuck posted this before, but I’m struggling to find it now that I wanted to post a reply. It’s worth viewing for the remarkable paddlefish data alone (1:15:00 ish).

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OV27qy6Gfb4