Bad Claims: The Recession of the Moon

 

 

Of course, some presentations of this are worse than others. In this one Thunderf00t lambastes a particularly bad example of the claim/argument, but he does cover rather tidily the issues involved.

 

 

And here’s one where Desertphile does an excellent job of explaining why the extrapolation based on no evidence is outright intellectually dishonest; he also goes into some of the evidence that makes the extrapolation obviously incorrect.

This bad argument has been floating around for some time. It’s a gross misunderstanding of astronomy promulgated by Answers in Genesis to the credulous and those with little scholarship in any of the sciences needed to comprehend it. The biggest problem with this argument—and it’s not really an argument; it’s more like an unsupported claim—is that it rests on a faulty premise: The moon has been receding from the Earth at the same rate since it’s inception.

Really? Do you have evidence that it has been receding at the same rate ever since whatever event generated our moon? The answer isn’t just a resounding, “No,” it’s a resounding, “There is evidence that the moon had been receding by much less in the past than it is today.”

There are a number of poorly framed arguments and bad claims made by Creationism that involve unsupported extrapolation in this manner. It’s a great deal like looking at how the temperature has risen by 20 degrees between 6am and noon—and then extrapolating that the entire universe must have been frozen solid a few days ago and that we’re all therefore going to die in a fire within a few days ourselves. Without either direct observation of the temperatures from midnight to 6am; or at least evidence to permit us to extrapolate those temperatures making claims that temperatures will continue to rise or had in fact risen from absolute-zero would be laughed at.

These claims and arguments are, of course, not being published in any peer reviewed journals on the very subjects of geology, astrophysics, or physics because they’re blatantly wrong and wouldn’t even make it past the editorial phase. Instead, they are being spread instead in the political sphere; taking a the low road of attempting to convince a credulous and unstudied population to make them “true.” They can’t make it with these claims in places where people will actually put them to the test.

When people resort to cheating and misrepresentation to make their point, it’s time to either take them to task or dismiss them.

The Recession of the Moon and the Age of the Earth-Moon System (Tim Thompson, 2000)

50 thoughts on “Bad Claims: The Recession of the Moon

  1. It is very interesting that you should point out the fact that a constant rate can not be proven.

    That same argument is exactly what evolutionists fail to take into consideration for nearly every single one of their arguments for an old earth.

    Radioactive dating? Sedimentary levels? Starlight? All lose their credibility when you take away the concept of a constant rate.

    The moon argument may or may not be accurate. If it is not accurate, it certainly is not a pivotal argument on which Creationism hangs, and there is therefore no real harm done.

    However, such a disproving would be disastrous for the Evolutionist who absolutely relies on the constancy of rates.

  2. People are not called “evolutionists” any more than we call people “relativists” for thinking that the Theory of Relativity is a correct model, or call people “atomicists” for thinking that Atomic Theory is a correct model. And so on. Why talk like that? Also, the velocity of light and the radioactive decay constant are much more important for general cosmology than they are to the Theory of Evolution so it’s mention is a red-herring.

    Furthermore, the Theory of Evolution does not in fact rely on a lot of constants—the variation of the frequency of alleles in populations over time is not a constant effect. Like all studies of past events it does rely on our ability to properly measure spans of time and identify milestones in them. Knowing the mechanisms that vary the rates of change in the qualities that academia uses to identify and study spans of time is important for properly identifying spans of time—also being able to identify those that do not appear to vary is equally important for the same reason.

    The problem inherent with thy presented claims is that there is no evidence that any of these apparent constants (e.g. velocity of light, statistical radioactive decay) were ever anything other than constant. There are no proposed or observed mechanisms that could vary these constants.

    With the velocity of the recession of the Moon we do have evidence that its velocity varies (not to mention that it’s accelerating away from the Earth which will vary the velocity.) There is a claim that if we roll the Moon backwards according to the current velocity will put it into a place that is impossible according to mountains of other evidence. There are known mechanisms that would affect the acceleration of the recession of the Moon (see: Conservation of Angular Momentum) and after examining the Plate Tectonic model of the Earth combined with tidal drag, produces a model that manages to fit the gathered data a lot better than the Surprisingly Close Moon hypothesis. The result is that we can reject that hypothesis for the superior model.

    There are no observed mechanisms that would have affected the statistical constant of radioactive decay or the known velocity of light. It is good to point out that if, in fact, these differed in decay rate or velocity during the past our current data on the age of the Universe and all the models are way off. Except that, in the case of the velocity of light, increasing the velocity (even at near t0 of the Universe) would make the Universe dramatically older than is currently modeled.[1] Plus, this would have some very odd implications for observed gravitation—which would also oddly change the visible structure of everything we can see out there in the Universe in ways that we don’t observe.[2]

    Scientific models of the Universe are under constant clarification as new evidence and revelations about the nature of our amazing home are discovered. Certainly, there’s a Nobel Prize in it for thee if thou can discover a mechanism by which statistical radioactive decay can vary or if thou can provide experimental or model evidence that the light constant must have varied in the past.

    Right now, a variance in either of these things is contra-indicated by numerous findings and evidence across multiple fields of discovery and analysis. So, any such proposed variance would have to be reconciled with them to be accepted.

    Of course, the Faster Light at t0 Decaying to c Recently hypothesis, which would make our Universe way older than we think, might be pretty cool if it were to survive to grow into a theory because it would make the Universe even weirder than we have come to know it.

    [1] Faster Light at t0 Decaying to c Recently hypothesis ramifications for the apparent age of the Universe, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRmJbP25m-Y
    [2] The lack of observed effects from a Faster Light at t0 Decaying to c Recently hypothesis, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EAUxQjylzc

  3. Evolutionists are those who hold to the theory of evolution as opposed to another origin theory such as creationism. Contrary to popular belief there are still a very large number of people (both laymen and PHD holding scientists) who do not believe in evolution. Therefore it is still a valid clarification.

    To be fair, however, I was referring more to those who hold to the idea of an old earth than to those who hold to the idea of genetic mutations gradually improving organisms, so perhaps you would prefer that I use the term “old-earthers” instead? But frankly debating the exact terminology is pointless when it has no real bearing on the argument being made.

    You claim that, unlike moon recession, there is no evidence against constancy for radioactive dating, sedimentary levels, or speed of starlight. I would assert that there is indeed such evidence.

    In the case of radioactive dating (or radioisotope or radiometric or whatever terminology you should prefer) there have been plenty of examples where objects of a known modern age have been dated to millions of years. For example, volcanic rock formed by Mount St. Helens in 1986 was tested using Potassium-Argon dating. The resulting dates ranged from .5 to 2.8 million years.

    Similarly, rocks formed by Mount Ngauruhoe of New Zealand in 1949, 1954, and 1975, were dated by Geochron Laboratories as being from .27 to 3.5 million years old. These are just two examples among the abundant others which show that such dating is completely unreliable. If these rates are so constant, how are modern rocks being dated so old?

    There is even more evidence against the idea that the rate of sedimentary levels was constant. There have been fossils found which stretch through multiple sedimentary levels. This would not have been possible unless all the levels had been placed down with very little time in between.

    Similarly, there are places where the sedimentary levels had been folded. If already dried levels of sediment were folded, it would fracture, but these are simply bent with no cracking. This means that the levels must have bent while forming, which means that they must have been forming at the same time.

    In the case of the speed of starlight, I will admit that there is more theorization than actual evidence, however, you may have heard of Einstein’s theory of “time-dilation?” Basically stated, it means that time flows at a different rate relative to the point of view. It is affected by such things as gravity. There is therefore no reason to assume that the speed of light is the same in outer space as it is from our point of view here on earth.

    There are many other less-consequential examples which go against old earth ideas. Stalagmites are assumed to take thousands of years to form, yet people have placed modern jars in caves and watched as they grew inside the jars over only a few decades.

  4. I’ll leave a lot of the science to Amerist, but I wanted to respond to a few little things here, and I’ll chime in on science a bit as well.

    Evolutionists are those who hold to the theory of evolution as opposed to another origin theory such as creationism.

    Evolution is not an origin theory, and although it is frequently confused with abiogenesis (the beginning of life), it should not be. Evolution would be just as valid if a god or aliens or something else had seeded life on Earth.

    Christian Creationists are often opposed to the idea of evolution, as it is incompatible with a literal reading of the book of Genesis in the Christian Bible, but evolution is not necessarily incompatible with a creator. It does give us much less reason to believe on one though.

    …so perhaps you would prefer that I use the term “old-earthers” instead?

    No, not really. You are the one espousing a small minority view which has a whole universe of evidence stacked against it, so the term “Creationist” is useful to identify the set of beliefs you hold on this issue since they are fairly consistent with other people who believe in Biblical Creation. We might call people “flat-earthers”, but we don’t have any need to call other people “round-earthers”, it is simply assumed until someone disagrees.

    Additionally, and more importantly, using a term like “evolutionist” attempts to create a false sense that believing in the well-proven Theory of Evolution is in every way equal to believing in Biblical Creation. The use of the “ism/ist” suffix in particular attempts to create a false dichotomy between evolution and creation, making “Creationism” and “Evolutionism” two sides of a religious coin, with the deciding factor in which to accept being your belief in the “religion” of science, or the Christian religion.

    Evolution can then be slandered as a religious belief rather than a scientific theory based on facts and physical evidence, and people can then argue that it is just as reasonable to believe in creation as evolution, or even more reasonable since the factual, testable basis for a belief in evolution has been dismissed and creation’s basis of faith remains.

    At that point it is a simple matter of saying that a “true” Christian must accept creation and reject evolution, and someone with more training in religion than science is likely to accept Biblical Creation regardless of its lack of evidence.

    I’m not trying to say that you are intentionally doing this here, but I believe that this is an accurate explanation of the source and effect of the “Evolutionist” language. I can see why you would want to use it, but I hope you can also see why we tend to dislike it.

    In the case of radioactive dating (or radioisotope or radiometric or whatever terminology you should prefer) there have been plenty of examples where objects of a known modern age have been dated to millions of years.

    Unfortunately I don’t have time to do much more than say that basically this, like the problems that Creationists have with many other dating methods, is not in the methods themselves but in the limitations of those methods and ignorance or misunderstanding of those limitations.

    Basically, certain dating methods are known not to be reliable in certain situations and on certain types of materials, and we know why they are not reliable in those cases, so we simply don’t use them.

    This applies to carbon dating, radiometric dating, ice cores, and probably just about any dating method you could think of. I don’t think we’ve covered these subjects very well so far, so if you don’t get enough about them here, I’ll try to write one or more whole posts on the subject.

    Other than that, for now I can point you to this video on the subject. It’s not the most thorough and it detailed, but it does cover some of the things you’re talking about. Talk Origins has a much more technical document that should answer a lot of your questions if you can understand it. I probably couldn’t understand all of it, and I haven’t read it all, but Talk Origins is generally a good, reliable resource. Later Amerist or I can find more resources and add them here or in a new post.

    Stalagmites are assumed to take thousands of years to form, yet people have placed modern jars in caves and watched as they grew inside the jars over only a few decades.

    I don’t think it’s an assumption, I believe that it’s an extrapolation based on observations and dating, although I don’t think you’d trust that part.

    Stalagmites can’t all be formed at the same rate, otherwise all stalagmites would be the same size. In fact stalagmites form at very different rates based on the conditions that they are forming in. I’m no expert on this, but it seems to me that the amount of water and appropriate minerals available to create these formations would be two of the most important factors in the time they take to form.

    Some formations in some caves then could take thousands of years to form while others might only take decades. This is only evidence of the obvious fact that the speed of many physical processes can be changed by the conditions they occur in.

    Let me propose another simple experiment for these guys:

    Start measuring natural stalagmites (not specially selected ones that you know will form relatively fast, but a good selection from various locations in many different caves around the world).

    Find out exactly how fast the natural formations are growing, and report back on those.

    If we find that they all grow at very fast rates, then we’ll have something to think about, but as these experiments have already been done and yielded the result that some form quickly while others form extremely slowly, I don’t think they would get the results they would want in an honest experiment.

    I guess the other alternative would be super-fast formation in the past? ;)

    If you still believe that this is good evidence, please read this or any of the many other refutations I’m sure are out there, and let us know if you still think it’s good evidence. If you do, I’d like to know why.

    Creationists do occasionally manage to find an issue to pick on, but the vast majority (if not all) of them are easily explainable by someone who really knows what they’re talking about. I am not that person, but I can often point people in the right direction if they really want to learn the truth about these things.

    These kinds of weak arguments are enough to let someone hold onto their faith in Biblical creation if they want to, but serious research easily shows how wrong or even fraudulent they are. This is why Creationism is not taken seriously by almost any but the most religious scientists, and in order to accept it those few must still do essentially the opposite of science and accept it on faith.

  5. I will first assert (again) that I am using general terms. There is no need to nit-pick over the specific terminology as it has no real bearing on the arguments presented. I use the term “Evolution” to broadly categorize the origin theory which includes such things as the big bang, an old earth, mutations, etc. I use it to clarify that I am talking about the rejection of other origin theories such as Creationism.

    It’s not as though I am the only one to do this. The very site you referred me to on the stalagmite issue is called “evolution-creationism.us.” These are the commonly accepted terms for the broad division between the two, therefore they are the terms I tend to use.

    I am not intending to induce sentiments towards one side or against the other. I am simply using a generalized clarifier. You claim that I would liken it to two sides of a coin. That is not remotely close to my belief. To place Evolution and Creation on different sides of the same coin would be to imply some level of compatibility between the two. They are diametrically opposed in every way. Yes, there are those who attempt to create a merger (Theistic Evolutionists, Progressive Creationists, etc.), but they have deceive themselves worse than those from any other theories. The underlying principles of both simply can not be reconciled, and it is foolishness to attempt it.

    You also seem to be under the impression that Evolution (again, I’m using the broad term) is science, while Creationism is faith. You claim that Evolution is “well-proven” and that there is “a whole universe of evidence stacked against” Creationism. This could not be further from the truth. I have yet to see any proof of Evolution whatsoever, or any proof of Creationism. There is quite a bit of evidence on both sides, but there is nothing to conclusively prove either. Both are ultimately based on faith.

    Creationism is a science which is based on the religion of Biblical Christianity. Likewise, Evolution is a science which is based on the religion of Secular Humanism. Humanists may argue all they like that their’s is not a religion, but the same key elements are there. Whether it is a religion by name or not, it is a religion none the less. Humanism worships the absence of God in the same way that Christianity worships God Himself.

    You made yet another very interesting assumption. You claimed that I “espouse” Creationism? Read my previous comments again. I had not yet claimed my allegiance to either side. All I have done thus far is present plain unbiased facts. If those facts should support Creationism, then perhaps you should be reconsidering your opposition to that side?

    But you are correct in that I am a Creationist. I believe Creationism through a combination of two things. Yes, faith is the primary foundation for my belief, just as it is for Evolutionists. I also believe Creationism because the vast majority of scientific evidence I have seen (and I have done quite a lot of looking for it on both sides) supports (not proves) the Bible’s account.

    I am quite familiar with talkorigins.org, and evolution-creationism.us. I have done plenty of reading on both. I would like to instead point you to answersingenesis.org, which thoroughly debunks the arguments presented by the sites you recommend.

  6. Whoa! Back up a moment.

    I will first assert (again) that I am using general terms. There is no need to nit-pick over the specific terminology as it has no real bearing on the arguments presented. I use the term “Evolution” to broadly categorize the origin theory which includes such things as the big bang, an old earth, mutations, etc. I use it to clarify that I am talking about the rejection of other origin theories such as Creationism.

    Thense thou use the word “Evolution” wholly incorrectly and contrary to its definition. The Theory of Evolution does not include Big Bang Cosmology, it does not include the formation of the Earth-Moon system (that’s Planetary Formation Theory), and it does not include abiogenesis.

    Someone taking issue with an absolutely wrong use of a word is not nit-picking; it is the very basis of honest communication. This is why I pointed out that the Speed of Light is far more important to Cosmology than it is to Biology and thus Evolution. (In some ways Evolution doesn’t really care what the speed of light since how quickly photons propagate through a vacuum has no bearing on common ancestry or the variation of the frequency of allies in populations through time, etc.)

    What thou just said above equates to: “When I said, ‘blue,’ I really meant all colors—the entire palette—oh and also paint.” Nobody can hold a sane conversation when people are playing that fast-and-loose with language.

    All the materials necessary for thee to use proper jargon and definitions are at thy disposal. Go to Wikipedia. Look up the Theory of Evolution and Physical Cosmology if thou don’t know where to start.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_cosmology and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_evolution although less adept readers may want to see this one instead: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Introduction_to_evolution

    This is a huge problem that a lot of people attempting to actually discuss these things on a level playing field slam right into. The whole Creationism vs. Evolution debate crops up claiming to be about Evolution (Biology) and then wildly tangents out into Geology, Cosmology, Astrophysics, Chemistry, etc. with such dizzying ballet pirouettes that everyone gets vertigo.

    By behaving in this manner people who would genuinely like to explain the problems with any specific objections, claims, or other material quickly become frustrated.

    How about taking it one claim at a time rather than winging recklessly through vastly differing spheres of scientific discovery that are only tentatively connected to each other?

  7. Fine. I concede that I need to find a better term to define the overall theory than simply “evolution.” Any suggestions? (Wikipedia is blocked at the college I am attending.)

  8. Chuck -

    Try using The Free Dictionary it’s a direct copy of Wikipedia. I don’t know how frequently it synchs with Wikipedia but it might not be blocked by your school.

    Here are the links Ammie gave on that site:
    Physical Cosmology
    Theory of Evolution
    and
    Introduction to Evolution

    As to how to define the condensed scientific view of cosmology + evolution, I’m not quite sure what to tell you. You would probably think that calling it the “scientific view of cosmology and evolution” makes your point of view seem un-scientific.

    You may be interested in reading up on Religious Cosmology and Cosmogeny, which is the study of creation theory.
    “Cosmogony can be distinguished from cosmology, which studies the universe at large and throughout its existence, and which technically does not inquire directly into the source of its origins.”

    Happy reading!

  9. Wow, that free dictionary thing is pretty good idea. I had not heard of it before, and it is not blocked. Thanks for the link!

    As for the term in question, surely there must be some one-word term which refers to the overall worldview that includes biological evolution, big bang theory, etc?

    I suppose “naturalism” is a pretty close match. Would using that term in my desired context be less offensive?

  10. Wow. I am going to have to read the Wikipedia page on Naturalism now. That’s a little bit further afield into philosophy than I normally tread…

    I am glad the FreeDictionary link worked. I’ve been using that on and off for a while, they have an excellent navigation and thesaurus. ^^

  11. Ok, I believe I have to make a post now. It is a few days behind, but I just now noticed this discussion and simply cannot just bite my tongue.

    Chuck, while I understand your viewpoint and your rationale, I must admit that parts of it disgust and offend me. A number of your claims and comments are quite an affront to not only things that I personally believe, but to intellectual integrity as well.

    I respond to post number 5.

    I am not one to be a grammar nazi or nit pick over small details, so I can partially let the use of the term “evolutionists” slide. I’ll have to get into it later on, so this one isn’t as bad. While I would have to disagree on its use, for reasons that Kazz and Amerist have already laid out, I understand what you are aiming at.

    I will actually agree with you on your claim that scientific theories (abiogenisis, evolution, etc.) are not compatible with creationism. So many people try to take the non-overlapping magisteria argument but it simply does not hold up. Religion makes claims of the beginning of existence (creation) which heavily disagrees with anything that scientific theories would offer. Trying to reconcile the two viewpoints and merge them so that both can in fact be correct is simply an awful attempt at having your cake and eating it too.

    The rest of your post is where I begin to HEAVILY disagree with you.

    I’ll start by saying that evolution IS in fact science and creation IS faith. Science is a system of knowledge that is obtained and is TESTED through the scientific method. Evolution holds true to this definition. Creationism on the other hand defies scientific knowledge and aims to support believes already held through the bible. While I have to concede to your definition of “proof” because you can never technically PROVE such things (you can’t ever really PROVE anything besides math). This does not in any way mean that the evidence doesn’t strongly point to one direction. As per faith, you are once again using word play. The traditional definition of faith would be believe in something for which there is no evidence. Evolutionary theories do not fall under such definition whereas creationism does.

    The next part is where I was actually offended heavily. Your claims of creationism being a science based on biblical Christianity is ridiculous. Creationism is NOT a science, but rather a psuedoscience. It is a position brought about in order to attempt to prove that the stories in the bible are true. The claim that evolution is a science based on secular humanism is just outright asinine and insulting. First of all, the term secular humanism was not even coined until the 20th century, well after evolutionary theory was brought about. Secondly, evolutionary theory is the result of observation and research done through the scientific method, it in no way is attempting to affirm an already in place belief. Secular humanism in fact has very little to do with evolutionary theory. It may be true that most secular humanists believe in evolution, but it is no where true that people who believe in evolution are going to be secular humanists. Finally, I know you creationists like to lable SH as a religion, but if you take the most common definition of religion, it is not. Once again, it comes down to word play/semantics. There is no dogma or mysticism in SH. Secular humanists use the term “life stance” to define their beliefs.

    Finally, if you believe that you the majority of scientific evidence supports creationism, you need to either look up more or check your sources. Your position does not surprise me with your citation of Answers in Genesis. I will simply say that it is a VERY terrible source I suggest your try others. AiG has been criticized by scientists and creationists alike. A lot of the people from AiG have no credentials to be really making such bold claims. For example, the president of AiG, Ken Ham, has nothing more than a bachelor’s degree in applied science. If you like, check out No Answers In Genesis, an Australian non-profit group that debunks all of the claims made by AiG. If there are any topics not covered in that, I’m sure that any of us here would be happy to discuss specific things. I was actually handed an AiG pamphlet this week and found so many logical fallacies and inaccuracies in the first 3 pages that I had to stop reading to save my sanity.

    I write a lot.

  12. Creationism IS scientific. Yes, we start on the presupposition that there is a God who created the world, but then we use scientific methods to expound on that.

    Naturalists (that is the term I will use for now unless a better one is discovered) start with the presupposition that there is no God and attempt to use scientific methods to expound on that. Don’t believe me? Listen to your own sources.

    Boyce Rensberger:
    “At this point, it is necessary to reveal a little inside information about how scientists work, something the textbooks don’t usually tell you. The fact is that scientists are not really as objective and dispassionate in their work as they would like you to think. Most scientists first get their ideas about how the world works not through rigorously logical processes but through hunches and wild guesses. As individuals they often come to believe something to be true long before they assemble the hard evidence that will convince somebody else that it is. Motivated by faith in his own ideas and a desire for acceptance by his peers, a scientist will labor for years knowing in his heart that his theory is correct but devising experiment after experiment whose results he hopes will support his position.”

    Richard Lewontin:
    “We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is an absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.”

    Naturalism and Creationism both use exactly the same scientific methods in what they do. They are equally scientific. One of them simply starts with the incorrect presupposition.

    As I have already stated, I do not believe that it would ever be possible to PROVE either presupposition, but the overwhelming amount of evidence I have seen does in fact support the Creationists’ presupposition.

    You’re offended? I’m the one who should be offended at my science being so constantly unjustly dismissed as a “pseudoscience” when it is every bit as valid as the the naturalists’ science. But don’t worry. I’m well past taking offense at much of anything.

    I am quite aware that the term “humanism” was not coined until recently, but that does not mean that the same basic belief, sans the official term, was not a motivating factor. Nor do I claim that ALL those who study the naturalist side of science do so for that motivation, but the vast majority that I have seen do.

    You tell me to look up more sources? I ask you to provide some that I have not already thoroughly researched. Surely you don’t think I haven’t heard of the sham of site known as “No Answers in Genesis.” You seem to be under the assumption that my lack of belief in your system is due to a lack of knowledge about it. That also could be taken as extremely offensive, but I’ll pass on that.

    Finally you, as with so many before you, make these grand claims about the logical fallacies found within Creationism, and yet you provide none of them. Anyone can make those claims. Care to back them up?

  13. McKnight let me explain how science actually works as you apparently have no idea. In science you don’t start with any presuppositions beyond the base axioms that universe exist in some observable way. That includes the presupposition of God. You can not start with the presupposition that god ether exist or dose not. Rather you arrive at such conclusion after the data has been collected. When we investigate phenomena we enter the experiment with all of our pervious knowledge and theories. We use this frame work to predict what will likely happen. If our predictions match up the experimental data the theory holds true, if it doesn’t we examine the theory to see where it might have gone wrong, we modify the theory if possible, other wise we limit the theory as an approximation of a greater theory that we then derive.

    Now in the case of creationism, it is unchanging, creationist believe they have the truth before they ever do experiments then manipulate the experiment or the data to fit with there presuppositions. If data simply can not fit it is ignored or thrown out entirely. That’s not science in any way shape or form.

    You want sources and pieces of evidence for evolution? How about going to the research journals them selfs:
    Genetic evidence:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=10469592&dopt=AbstractPlus
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=11704760&dopt=Abstract
    http://www.pnas.org/content/100/22/12841.full
    http://www.vwxynot.blogspot.com/2007/06/endogenous-retroviruses-and-evidence.html
    http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~content=a739354644~db=all
    http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/krigbaum/proseminar/quintana-murci_naturegenetics_1999.pdf

    Fossil evidence:
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v410/n6827/abs/410433a0.html
    http://www.pnas.org/content/105/9/3226.abstract
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6WJS-45KV1WK-V&_user=56861&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000059542&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=56861&md5=95177feea9fa64eb86ee7bff02d6e615
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v327/n6119/abs/327205a0.html
    http://www.jstor.org/stable/2740287
    http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/110523085/abstract?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0
    http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/stories/s877478.htm
    http://www.asu.edu/clas/iho/lucy.html (Shameless plug for my school :P )
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/flores.html
    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/03/0325_0322_asiaevolution.html
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2006/04/06/MNGCGI4CAD1.DTL
    http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/VIIB1cCambrian.shtml

    Mind you this is only a small portion of the evidence for evolution (focusing on human evolution), if you want more I’ve got literally hundreds of thousands of additional sources.

    Creationism makes claims which are simply not supportable, such as a world wide flood. The geological record dose not indicate a world wide flood, the areas which have evidence of flooding are shown to be periodic, minimal, and never at the same times. You don’t see a thick world wide silt layer, you don’t see any kind of hydraulic sorting in the fossil record, they can’t explain where the water came from or went to, they can’t explain why radiometric dating produces the same date for geological records, why all life looks it was made ad hock (i.e. just thrown together), etc, etc, etc…

    The fact of the matter is creationist have no evidence, and make no real science claims. The only thing close to a science claim made was that of irreducible complexity, which doesn’t hold water. Hell, Behe’s original argument of the bacteria flagella has long since been disproved:
    http://www.pnas.org/content/100/6/3027.full
    http://jb.asm.org/cgi/reprint/170/7/3305
    (I’ve got more if you want them)

    You guys can even explain endogenous retro viral sequences:
    http://www.nature.com/ng/journal/v29/n4/abs/ng775.html

    Please if you have any actual questions about evolution let me know I’d be happy to clarify things for you.

    Also in regards to your first statements on radioactive variance, radioactive decay must be statistically constant. If it was other wise, it would imply the strong and/or weak forces could vary significantly. Such variances are not conductive of life, i.e. we wouldn’t be alive if they weren’t near constant. Again, I can explain this even further if you need help.

  14. Chuck,

    Once again, you seem to misconstrue just what exactly science is. I will grant you the fact that many scientists do in fact begin their work a form of presupposition, this is called a theory. Even while that may be true, it is in no way comparable. Naturalists, as you would call them, do not operate on a disbelief in god, but rather work as though it is irrelevant and that things can be explained naturally. This is not a hindrance to their work in any way.

    The major difference between the two should be quite obvious. Creationists start with the assumption that god exists, do their experiments/research, and if their data does not support their ideas, it is thrown out. Scientists may start with an idea (hypothesis), but if their data shows that their hypothesis is wrong, then their hypothesis is changed and the new one is tested. If the data supports the hypothesis, a theory is created. If at any point, data is ever brought about that proves said theory wrong, it is thrown out, rather than throwing out the data.

    Yes, I am offended. It gets tiring that people liken intellectually dishonest work with that of actual science on a constant basis.

    The concept of humanism has very little to do with evolutionary theory, and most science for that matter. Science in no way has to support humanism.

    Yes, I’m telling you to look up more sources, or rather better ones. You so easily dismiss sites (ones that provide reputable scientific sources) and yet you cling to AiG. I was not citing NAiG as a good source for scientific material, but rather criticism of AiG and some of their propaganda. I am not saying that you are uneducated on the subjected, but rather “miseducated.”

    I could list out examples of logical fallacies used by creationists, but I could never stop writing. Simply pick up pretty much any creationist literature that is attempting to disprove any scientific theory that would not support their view. You will almost assuredly run into one from the start. Note you did say logical fallacies, which are rampant almost anywhere. If you mean leaps in logic in regards to the belief system itself, then those aren’t really hard to find as well. Things such as arguing to discredit one tiny aspect of science and then automatically assuming that means that the god of the bible exists are prime examples.

  15. What you both are describing is how science is supposed to work, not how it actually plays out in real life. The idea of a totally objective and impartial scientist is an ideological impossibility. It simply doesn’t happen. The very fact that we are human means that we form opinions and beliefs well before we fully investigate in them.

    But that is not always a bad thing, and I will now explain why. Please indulge me for just a moment, and assume, for the sake of this example, that there is a god, and that this god played, at the very least, some supernatural role in the formation of the universe. Now let us also assume that scientists were, in fact, the models of objectiveness and impartiality that you describe. Let us assume further that this god had not left us any writings to explain how he supernaturally interceded in the formation of our universe.

    With these assumptions in place, it would not matter how true the fact may be that this god did play a role. His role would never be discovered. That is because supernatural acts are not testable by the same natural methods that scientists use. Now these perfectly objective and impartial scientists may be able to come up with a full model for how the universe could have been formed. This model, based on what they know, may be a perfect example of how it could have happened. However, the simple fact remains that it is not how it actually happened. Without a prior assumption that this god was involved based on the writings he left, that truth would never ever have the possibility of being discovered.

    The very attempt to keep science impartial by the absolute exclusion of prior assumptions would actually prevent the possibility of anything supernatural being discovered, regardless of how true it may be. This makes it biased towards the side of naturalism. It is not impartial at all.

    Now you believe (a belief you hold to be true beforehand as a presupposition) that there is no god. Therefore, you do not care that the possibility of supporting his existence is neutralized. But the existence of God is still a possibility, and the only way to have it truly unbiased and impartial is to have scientists on both sides. There must be both those who study science from a purely natural perspective and those who study science from the perspective that there was supernatural involvement.

    You both claim that Creationists throw out data which does not support our views. I would love for you to give me an example of this.

    EndGameOmega, you claim that the geological record disproves a global flood. You then list how it should look had there been a global flood. There is one distinct problem with that argument. There would have had to have been a global flood for you to know what it would have looked like. Science is about observations, remember?

    Now surely you would claim that you look at what the results of local floods are and extrapolate on that to find what the results of a global flood would be. However, this global flood would be nothing remotely similar to any other floods that have been witnessed. This was not some simple case of a lot of rain. “All the fountains of the great deep [were] broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.” This was most likely a violent flood. There would be no way to tell exactly what the results of it would be unless we witnessed it ourselves.

    However, when we look at the geological record, and we interpret it in the light of a global flood, not only does everything fit, but many things which natural science can not explain are easily resolved.

    I do thank you for the list of resources you have recommended. I will read through them as I have time.

    Kyle, you claim that Creationists are “intellectually dishonest.” Come on, really? That is the most flagrantly false thing you have stated thus far. Dishonesty implies intent. Perhaps we are not correct? That would make us simply wrong, not dishonest. You try to make it sound as if we are deliberately spreading lies. Whether or not our research is accurate, I guarantee you that we are sincere.

    You then, once more, claim to have found these many logical fallacies without being able to list any. Do you know just how many times I have heard that claim? Furthermore, do you know how many times I have heard that claim, yet the person claiming it has been unable to provide any examples that actually hold up to scrutiny? I’ll give you a hint. It’s the same number of times. If they are so easy to find, I would welcome the opportunity to see some of them.

  16. Actually, in most circumstances it works the way it is supposed to. As you stated, the supernatural is untestable and thus is not falsifiable. As we can only test what we can observe, it only makes sense to disregard the possibility of the supernatural occurrences and act as though they don’t happen. Sure, on the off chance that they do happen, it would in fact skew the results, but there is no reason to assume that they would. It really is as simple as that. You argue that the possibility of god (this would be the Christian god) is something that should be taken into heavy consideration when examining things. The thing is, as of yet, it has been shown to be completely inconsequential. With our “secular science” we have made great advances in many areas of science, without consideration of the supernatural. Additionally, you are arguing as though your god is the only one that would have to be taken into consideration. Should we not take into consideration any of the other gods that have been thought up? Sure, most of the evidence points to them not existing, but what if they did? Maybe by assuming that they don’t exist, our hypotheses and theories have been developed erroneously because they are simply the best explanations for how the natural world would operate without those gods. Once you allow for one god to be inserted into the assumption of “you theory works if god didn’t exist, but if he did it would be wrong,” you must then consider the rest. The problem your argument runs into is, we CAN explain things near perfectly without considering god (I say “near,” because there are areas where we have strong competing theories such as the origin of the universe).

    As per the throwing out of data that does not support views, that is in abundance with regards to work not done by them. By this I mean, when scientists get data from tests from experiments that tends to disagree with biblical accounts (age of the earth for example), creationists attack the methods and search for even one anomaly in any of thousands of tests to attempt to discredit the method. I know I’ll be spawning a whole other debate, but the best example is radiometric dating. As far as work done by creationists, I don’t have any sources on me at the moment.

    I’ll let EndGameOmega take the flood argument for the most part, but I will throw in my two cents. With regards to the not having any basis to model what would happen to in the event of a worldwide flood, that is wrong. We are able to run simulations that account for all of the factors that may affect results (physics, etc.) We have yet to even mention the impossibility of the flood in the natural world. Things such as there not being enough water present on earth, the fact that if the world was flooded with that much water, the air too would become supersaturated which would make it almost the equivalent of breathing water, the fact that the Grand Canyon could NOT have been created by the flood (water would have to travel too fast). Once again, the supernatural must step in to temporarily cease the laws of physics for creationist theories to be true.

    Yes, intellectually dishonest. No, it does not imply intent. You are clearly unaware of how the term is used. Intellectual dishonesty applies under multiple circumstances, including: knowingly supporting falsehoods, unknowingly supporting falsehoods due to lack of knowledge on the subject, and intentionally omitting portions of the truth in certain contexts.

    Examples of logical fallacies? Fine. I’ll give you one from a creationist propaganda piece I read today (circulated by guess who? AiG). It read “a growing number of scientists reject the theory of evolution.” There are multiple fallacies in just that simple sentence. Appeal to authority, appeal to common practice, bandwagon, hasty generalization to name a few. It fails to mention the fact that this number is relatively small and that the list that they can provide contains many “scientists” in fields that would be irrelevant to the subject and therefore not a proper authority anyways. It fails to mention things such as 98% of biologists follow the theory of evolution. These kinds of fallacies are found littered in creationist literature. I can go through more of this page to list off the other ~hundred fallacies if you would like.

  17. Ok, been reading through and noticed this today. I believe it is time to answer this last post by Chuck. First however, an introduction should be in order. I’m Joe. As of now, I shall begin to disassemble your arguments and show the fallacies listed here.

    Now, to begin.

    First, you state that scientist are not completely impartial. I will grant you this, however, you fail to see the other side of this. Yes, scientist go in with a perceived notion of what is expected and such. That is what theories are there for. However, if the evidence is contradictory to the predicted results under those conditions, a new theory is eventually formed as science changes and scientist collect more data. We have expected results but are not bound to them. Creationist can’t change the theory because it is a belief system not scientific. They must alter the evidence to fit the theory. Scientist fit the theory to the evidence. This is the first problem.

    The next two paragraphs for me are humorous and not because i am an atheist. These are humorous because let us replace “God” with the “Invisible Pink Unicorn” and you will find that since the Unicorn did not leave us with any documents and your God did, well obviously the Unicorn is no more crazy than yours because well, your evidence was written by man and mine was never given for it is too sacred. Now I am sorry for the mockery that occurred however, it was necessary for the point. Again, science does not fit the evidence to the assumptions, but makes assumptions and then alters these based on the evidence, and then form theorems about the patterns seen in the natural world. To simply state God, Thor, Zeus, the Flying Spaghetti Monster (blessed be his noodliness), or any other God is an unfalsifiable claim and is not science for there is no reason to add it to the system.

    Occam’s Razor is quite applicable here. With two explanations, the one with the least assumptions or entities is the better system. Engineers use this routinely and it helps quite a lot. Apply this and the addition of God alone – assuming God is ever existing – is more complicated than necessary for it is just as easy to assume that the Universe created itself and therefore – in respect to our knowledge and ability to perceive time to the beginning – the Universe itself would be ever existing. Again, a problem with your thoughts.

    Thirdly, yes it is true, a God could exist. However which God? Do we know this God yet? Is it a Deist, Pantheist, Pagan (many versions there), Taoist, Hindu, Jewish, Christian, Islamic, Native American (many there as well), or one we have yet to know? The existence of God is a unfalsifiable claim. It can’t be proven true or false and is therefore assumed false because it falls upon the claimer to provide the proof. Remember, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. All gods have none. Ergo, we operate under the well put system that they do not.

    EndGameOmega can cover the science in much more depth than I, as I am not so well versed in the physics or cosmology as he is. Kyle has answered your intellectual dishonesty already so I shall not cover it. However I shall cover some logical problems in creationist literature. This is from AiG, the pamphlet “Evidence for a Young World”.

    I shall simply go with #2 as I have much to do tonight and do not have enough time to devote to more.

    “2. Too few supernova remnants.
    According to astronomical observations, galaxies like our own experience about one supernova (a violently-exploding star) every 25 years. The gas and dust remnants from such explosions (like the Crab Nebula) expand outward rapidly and should remain visible for over a million years. Yet the nearby parts of our galaxy in which we could observe such gas and dust shells contain only about 200 supernova remnants. That number is consistent with only about 7,000 years worth of supernovas.” ~ Answers in Genesis (http://www.answersingenesis.org/docs/4005.asp)

    This assumes that we have not only observed all supernova remnants in the sky but that we also didn’t miss any that have gone. The universe is a big place. It isn’t all easy to observe constantly like a pot of water boiling. One, this evidence is from (the 200 novas and the stats) Keith Davies, who actually makes mathematical errors in his work and assumptions that are not correct. This is actually evidence for a VERY OLD UNIVERSE. We are observing the end of a star’s life. Now we have observed a supernova in our galaxy, SN1604, also known as Kepler’s Nova. It is 20,000 LY away. This means that in 1604, that if at the beginning of the universe had to be at least (assuming the start was set to blow when God made it) created in 18,396BC. As a minimum (excluding all the much farther out supernovas observed, some upwards of 230,000,000 LY or more), this debunks the young earth theory for if God put the photons out there without the event occurring, then God has lied to his creation and thereby is not the God in the Bible (for he is only truth and can’t lie).

    If you have further questions feel free to ask away. I hope this answers most of them.

    Cordially,
    JM

  18. I now am sorry for the poor grammar in my last paragraph’s third sentence. That should read It isn’t as simple as constantly watching a pot of water boil. My brain has shut down as I believe i am too tired. For that i am sincerely sorry.

    JM

  19. I apologize for my delayed response. I caught a pretty bad case of the flu about the time of my last post, and have spent most of my free time sleeping since then.

    Kyle:

    You seem to think that it would not matter if God (or a god) was real, and we simply did not know about Him. You argue this on the basis of the advances of science. Do you not wish to know the truth simply for the sake of it being the truth? Even if the existence of God truly had no effect whatsoever on our lives, would you not wish to know of His existence simply because He does exist?

    Beyond which, God’s existence surely does have an effect on us. Should my God, as I believe in Him, truly exist, then we will all be held accountable to Him. Those who believe will spend eternity with Him in glory, while those who have not accepted the gift that His Son, Jesus Christ, has given us, will be doomed to Hell. I would call that pretty consequential. Therefore, as I have already argued, there must be those scientists studying on both sides of the arguments.

    And no, I am most certainly not arguing as though my God should be the only one taken into consideration. Jehovah is the God that I personally believe to be the One True God, therefore it is on His side that I will argue, but those who believe in another god are welcome to study from that god’s perspective. I would, of course, pray that they would eventually come to belief in my God, just as I would for those studying science from a purely naturalistic side, but they have the right to study from the perspective they desire just as we do.

    You bring up radiometric dating again. While it may be accepted by a large majority of scientists, that does not make it automatically correct. The evidence that I have seen shows it to be extremely unreliable at best. We are not throwing out proven data here. We are simply showing that it is not as reliable as naturalist scientists claim it to be.

    Back to the flood, you claim that there have been simulations run which would show the results, but I’ll say again that this was a supernatural occurrence. Supernatural occurrences can not be tested by the same natural methods with any remote level of accuracy. Yes “the supernatural must step in to temporarily cease the laws of physics.” Have we claimed anything different of the flood? Sure, you’ll find plenty of models out there which try to explain the flood from a more natural perspective, but ultimately it was a direct act of God which is not held to the normal laws of physics.

    I’m afraid it is you who has a misunderstanding of the term “intellectual dishonesty.” Here is the Free Dictionary definition. “Intellectual dishonesty is the advocacy of a position known to be false.” Creationism is not “known to be false.” Further down in the article we see another clarification. “If the person is unaware of the evidence, their position is ignorance.” So, as I previously said, even if Creationism were false, it would still not be intellectual dishonesty, as there is no evidence against it. Further down yet we see another interesting aspect of the term. “The terms intellectually dishonest and intellectual dishonesty are often used as rhetorical devices in a debate; the label invariably frames an opponent in a negative light. It is an obfuscatory way to say “you’re lying” or “you’re stupid”, and has a cooling effect on conversations similar to accusations of ignorance.”
    http://encyclopedia.thefreedictionary.com/intellectual+dishonesty

    Your claimed “logical fallacy” is simply a statement of fact. What connotations that fact may have are irrelevant. Furthermore, a quick search revealed quite a number of times where the exact same phraseology has been used by naturalist scientists. Here are just a few examples.
    http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2008/05/10/america/NA-POL-US-Campaigning-Scientists.php
    http://www.thenewamerican.com/tech-mainmenu-30/environment/274-a-growing-number-of-scientists-are-reconsidering-climate-change
    http://chronicle.com/che-data/articles.dir/articles-41.dir/issue-23.dir/23a00801.htm
    http://www.sciencenews.org/view/feature/id/31953/title/Scientists_Get_a_2nd_Life

    Also, you are failing to realize that this is an individual claim being made by an individual Creationist resource. Even if this was such an unforgivable logical fallacy, it is not a foundational Creationist argument. It is simply an individual argument made by AiG, and does not reflect on Creationism as a whole.

    Joe_Dharma:

    Hello Joe. I’m Chuck. Nice to meet you.

    I understand what you are saying, but the simple fact is that we have not had to “alter the evidence” because all the evidence already fits with our viewpoint. If the evidence did not fit, it would be a different story. Furthermore, we often do change beliefs on the exact details of how things came about, but our overall view has not had to change, because all the evidence still supports it.

    The invisible pink unicorn, Thor, and Zeus are all quite a bit more far-fetched than the existence of Jehovah, and their existence would be quite a bit less consequential. Furthermore, I am not aware of anyone who actually does believe in them. However, if any of them did exist, I would still wish to know of it simply for the sake of knowing the whole truth.

    Let’s look at a similar, but more realistic possibility – the Loch Ness Monster. It may or may not exist. It would have little to no consequence on our daily life if it did. Still, if it does exist, I would like to know about it simply for the sake of knowledge.

    Occam’s Razor, first of all, is a heuristic, or rule of thumb. It is not in any way a proof. Secondly, the idea that God simply created the world in essentially the same state that it is currently in, is far more simplistic than the idea that a lot of time, a lot of chance, and a lot of mutations have somehow formed the universe as we have it today.

    For the argument of which god is the True God, see my above response to Kyle’s similar question.

    I can not say that I am very knowledgeable in the specific field of astronomy, therefore I am not as capable of providing a response to this argument as other Creationists may be. However, I noticed a particularly false statement you made at the end. You said, “If God put the photons out there without the event occurring, then God has lied to his creation and thereby is not the God in the Bible (for he is only truth and can’t lie).”

    I reject the idea that it would be a lie to His creation, because He told us specifically that He has done that. Remember that God created light on day one (Genesis 1:3-5). However, he did not create the sources of light until day four (Genesis 1:14-19). Now light is not an abstract concept but a physical thing. It is made up of actual particles. These particles reflect their source. Therefore, if there were yet no physical sources of light, God must have placed the particles of light in transit as if they were coming from the sources that would later be there. He filled the whole universe with these particles of light as if the sources were there or had been there.

  20. EndGameOmega:

    I have now looked through the first group of links you provided as genetic “evidence” for evolution. Once you break down all the technical language, the primary argument that is used by all of them is the similarities in DNA. Here is where we come back to the same point I have been making all along about our initial presuppositions.

    Evolutionists (and I can use that term accurately in this case) look at the similarities in the DNA of different species and say “Ah, the similarities show that this one must have evolved from this other one.” They say that, not because they have any actual proof of the evolution taking place, but because the data seems to fit with their system.

    The Creationist, on the other hand, looks at the same data (he does not discard or alter it in any way), and says “Ah, the similarities show that this species shares the same common Creator with this other one.”

    Neither side has any more concrete proof than the other, as neither creation nor genetic increase of information has ever been witnessed. The same data fit equally well within either side’s perspective.

  21. Yes, I would like to know the truth, simply for the sake of knowing it. The fact of the matter is, there is no evidence for the existence of your god (or any of the others.)

    God’s existence only has an effect on us if he in fact existed. So far as our life on Earth is concerned, there is no evidence that anything will happen to us in our “natural” lives if he exists. There is no evidence for the existence for a life after this one, so there is no reason to assume that there would be one and that we should be concerned about it. I will completely ignore the sheer asinine belief that one must believe in something in order to receive “salvation” for the sake of the discussion. I don’t deny creationists the ability to believe and explore what they want, I simply state that what they do is not science and find it insulting when they erroneously tread on the shoes of real science.

    Don’t you see how ridiculous the whole system would become if every religion started making claims that they know science better and that is has to support their beliefs? Every single deity that one could think up must be properly explored in the realm of science then. For example, I could say I believe in the neon green/orange striped zebra god. It is my belief that this has been revealed to me to be true and you have no grounds for discounting my belief. I could say that this god created the earth with magic. Like your god, I never have to follow any natural laws because I can just say that the zebra can cease the laws of physics and do what he wants. Thus, there is no way for you to explain away my god and it can be just as true as yours. It does not make much sense, but using your logic, it works.

    You are correct, belief in something by a majority does not make it correct. Religion is a prime example of this. I do ask you to look over better documents in regards to radiometric dating though. Almost every claim against it that I have seen, by creationists alike (including AiG), is easily explained to be nothing but hogwash. If you would like specifics, I welcome you to provide documentation on why you think it is unreliable and I will be happy to explain it.

    Concerning the flood, how do you not see the flaws in this kind logic? Natural evidence does not support a global flood. So not only would god have to had ceased the laws of physics, but then covered up his tracks afterward. Like I said before with the neon zebra, claims of “magic” simply do not work. Just as you can assert that it works for you, you cannot disprove similar claims for other beliefs. There is simply no reason to believe such claims.

    I assure you that I am well aware of how the term is used. Just because you find one dictionary that fails to highlight all of the three of my points, does not mean my usage was incorrect. The first two were clearly covered in your reference (advocating a known false position, and doing so out of ignorance.) The other one while not covered by you, is not excluded. I’ll quote the definition I found for it: “Intellectual dishonesty is the creation of misleading impressions through the use of rhetoric, logical fallacy, fraud, or misrepresented evidence. It may stem from an ulterior motive, haste, sloppiness, or external pressure to reach a certain conclusion.” This most certainly includes not only leaving out information, but extends it a bit further. Thus, yes the rhetoric used by most creationists is in fact intellectually dishonest. And excuse me? No evidence against creationism? Try most of modern science. You mentioned just getting over the flu. How do you think we have the flu shot every year? Yes, that is right, by using the theory of evolution. I care not for the claims of using the term as a rhetoric device to secretly call people stupid. My use of the term was quite appropriate.

    And no, my claimed logical fallacy was in fact a logical fallacy. It is using mental hooks to mislead. Yes, I’m aware that creationists aren’t the only one to use the phrase that I referenced. If you will note, your sources are all written by journalists, not scientists (not that I don’t think scientists have ever used it.) My point is, these kinds of logical fallacies are found littered throughout creationist literature. I see your point about an individual not representing the whole, but in most circumstances, I hear the same exact arguments with the same exact fallacies from a multitude of sources.

    I’ll let Joe respond to what you wrote to him for the most part, but I can’t resist sticking my nose in to make a few short comments. First of all, no the evidence does NOT fit your viewpoint. You skew and erroneously discredit proper science to fit your view and then claim that it fits your view. Finally, in regards to the supernova argument, you seem to be attempting to explain away something that you wish not to acknowledge. It is deception to create light that appears to be from something that never in fact existed. Regardless of the claim of creating light and sources at different times, the sources of these lights would have to have never been created. Thus, the light is simply an illusion of a source.

    I read your web page and noticed that you claim to work for AiG. I am no longer surprised by how someone can cling so tightly to such a terrible, untrustworthy site.

  22. “What you both are describing … investigate in them.”

    No, what we’ve described is how science works. Any scientist who puts his belief before the experiment is doing it wrong, and it will show when is predictions don’t hold and frame work becomes unable to explain what is being observed. Science by it’s very nature is self checking, as what doesn’t work isn’t usable.

    “But that is not always … of being discovered.”

    Actually supernatural events could and in many case would leave evidence of their existence. You would see sharp boundaries and changes which can not be explained by any theoretical models, which irrevocably violates the base axioms of science. Now it is possible that god created the world in such a way so as to hide all evidence of it’s existence, but then you need to answer the question of why god would do so? In effect it would have created the world, yet left no signature on any of the creation. That clearly contradicts the bible (Psalm 19, among others), yet it’s what we see in nature. Namely the lack of intelligence in the “design” of the world.

    “The very attempt to … impartial at all.”

    No it wouldn’t. We would discover the supernatural as an unexplainable boundary condition where all of our models fail, and the only reconsideration would be the revocation of the base axioms, I.e. that there is something more to this world then what we can observe. We have NEVER seen anything matching such a description, and any time a claim has been made other wise it was ether misunderstood, or not well documented to begin with.

    “Now you believe … involvement.”
    I have seen no evidence for god and as such do not presuppose his existence. For to believe in one god over any other with out evidence of any’s existence is illogical. I am and agnostic atheist. I don’t believe there is no god, but I don’t believe in one ether.

    “You both claim that Creationists throw out data which does not support our views. I would love for you to give me an example of this.”

    *sigh* Where to start…

    Archaeopteryx: Archaeopteryx comprises several bird like dinosaur fossils that have been discovered over the past 150 years. Archaeopteryx is a transitional form between dinosaurs and bird, which is shown by it’s various similarities to both groups. For instance it has similarities to a bird such as having feathers, a wishbone (a furcula formed of two clavicles fused together), along with some other minor features. Due primary to it’s feathers it is called a bird despite having several very strong reptilian feature, that bird don’t have. Again, for instance Archaeopteryx had teeth, no bird dose or can have teeth, it lacks a beak which would again be a defining characteristic of a bird, and it’s skelital structure has far more in common with reptiles then birds, such as having unfused Metacarpals (hand) bones. The problem is that creationist stop reading after it’s called a bird and ignore all other evidence favoring it’s transitional nature. They in effect throw out what makes Archaeopteryx a strong transitional form, and simply call it a bird. That’s bad science.

    Moon dust: The whole moon dust argument is a perfect example of creationist ignoring evidence. In essence the creationist argue that there’s too little moon dust to account for the age of the moon. The problem is that creationist use a very old estimate of how much dust is accumulating on the moon, the approximate estimate was something like 14Mtons per year, far in excess of modern measurements which only put it at 22Ktons to 44Ktons. Now if it was an honest mistake it wouldn’t be an issue, but they had these numbers back when they came up with there whole Again creationist ignore modern evidence.

    Zarcon Crystals and He – D. Russell Humphreys made the claim in his paper “Helium Diffusion Rates Support Accelerated Nuclear Decay” that there is too much He in Zarcon crystals for them to be 1.5My old, and instead must be about 6Ky+/-2Ky. The problem is that Humphreys doesn’t even know his own science and makes such grand mistakes as testing the diffusion of Zarcon crystals under vacuum, and ignoring things like uranium concentration of the rock. He also uses, and “modifies” old Russian meassurements for zarcon diffusion rates, dispite the fact that newer, and better measurements are avilable. Hell he comits blatint acdemic dishonesty by revising this shity old russian data to better fit with his model.

    I can go on, and on, and on… I could mention how we’ve seen increases in information content in organism, despite what creationist claim, I could mention how the ignore basics atomic physics to say nuclear decay can increase, I could mention how they believe an overflowing lake can cause the grand canyon to form in minutes, despite the physical impossibility of it. But I’ll stop here for now. The point with these selections is that creationist throw out, ignore, or modify data to make it fit. That’s not science. It’s lieing.

    “EndGameOmega, you claim … witnessed it ourselves.”

    I’m not a geologist, but I do have a good working knowledge of how the physics of geology work. If it was violent flood as you and other creationist claim, then you would see strong mixing patterns of minerals all across the earth at exactly the same depth, you don’t. Given that this would have had to happen with in about 5Ky, this layer would be very close to the surface, and again very deep as well as soft. This layer dose not exist. You would also expect to see large boulders and rock formations evenly scattered across the globe, and not just located near mountains, again you don’t. You’d expect to see complete mixing with in the fossil record, again you don’t. You’d expect things like coal seams to at the very lest have flowering plants and trees (assuming you belive the coal seams where made by the flood, though if you don’t you have to ask why is it made out of dead things?), you don’t. I could go on for a while. I don’t need to see a world wide flood to predict what would happen as the laws of physics would remain the same regardless (don’t try to say the laws of physics change as such a claim is not

  23. Kyle: Nearly your whole recent post was a regurgitation of what you have already stated. Therefore I do not feel compelled to again reply to what I have already rebuffed.

    However, you did bring up the one new point about the flu. You are confusing the difference between genetic evolution and natural selection. No well-informed Creationist denies the reality of natural selection. But natural selection never leads to a new species. One strand of flu can change, through natural selection, to another strand of flu, but it will always remain a strand of flu. Like wise dogs can change, through natural selection, to German Shepherds, Bloodhounds, Poodles, etc., but they will always be dogs.

  24. only unsupportable, but against your own claims that the flood can be understood and even modeled).

    “However, when we look at the geological record, and we interpret it in the light of a global flood, not only does everything fit, but many things which natural science can not explain are easily resolved.”

    No it doesn’t. Hell Creationists don’t even have a set model for how the flood would have worked, and the few that I’ve seen (such as Walt Brown’s hydroplate model and the ice canopy) are not only out right ignorant of science, but insane as well. Tell me one thing that creationist flood geology can tell me about oil locations that uniformitarianism can’t, hell just show me how it can even match the predictions of uniformitarianism and I’d be impressed, cause the last person to argue against it ended up drilling for gas in Sweden, only to come up dry: (*sigh*) I can’t post websites anymore, so if you want the link PM me and I’ll give it to you.

    Your welcome for the list, I only hope you’ll be able to read some of them, given that your college censors wikipedia I wouldn’t be to surprised to see them sensor journals as well. I’m really surprised that any college would censor a site, that’s just wrong no matter how you look at it, and especially an informational site. I mean even if it’s not the best place it’s still wrong to censor it.

    “Kyle, you claim that Creationists are “intellectually dishonest.” … we are sincere.”

    No, creationist are quite dishonest. Hell, look at Kent Hoven who’s sitting in jail due to tax fraud. That’s inherently dishonest. But if you want to only consider there science works, then fine. I’d point out people like Humphreys who manipulate data to fit there theory. I’ll point out the extrema amount of quote mining (i.e. quoting someone out of context purposefully so as to make it sound that there saying something there not.) that many creationist do, like when they misquote Darwin on the eye:

    “To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree.”

    while ignoring the rest:

    “When it was first said that the sun stood still and the world turned round, the common sense of mankind declared the doctrine false; but the old saying of Vox populi, vox Dei, as every philosopher knows, cannot be trusted in science. Reason tells me, that if numerous gradations from a simple and imperfect eye to one complex and perfect can be shown to exist, each grade being useful to its possessor, as is certainly the case; if further, the eye ever varies and the variations be inherited, as is likewise certainly the case; and if such variations should be useful to any animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, should not be considered as subversive of the theory. How a nerve comes to be sensitive to light, hardly concerns us more than how life itself originated; but I may remark that, as some of the lowest organisms in which nerves cannot be detected, are capable of perceiving light, it does not seem impossible that certain sensitive elements in their sarcode should become aggregated and developed into nerves, endowed with this special sensibility.”

    Again, I can go on and on. Now I have no doubt that you are sincere in what you believe, but many of you believe lying is acceptable to get others to believe as well.

    “You then, …some of them.”

    Kyle gave you some good ones and this post is already to long, and I can you’ve posted another since your last response.

    P.S. You know these post are getting long, perhaps the forum would be a better place to discus this.

  25. “However, you did … always be dogs.”

    And you don’t understand evolution or the flu virus. The fact of the matter is the flu virus dose change genetically, hence why it ends up adapting to our drugs. The change is genetic, and it is documented as such. Micro and Macro evolution work on the same principle, i.e. that of genetic change and natural selection, by agreeing that the flu virus can change you’ve just agreed that evolution is taking place. Genetic change has been seen time and time again within a set of organisms, hell we’ve seen whole new metabolic pathways open up in Bactria, that is with out question evolution to a T. It shows speciation, and movement with in whole orders.

    As for you dog comment, it’s factitious as dogs are a classification of a group of animals. If two dogs where to speciate they would each still be called dogs despite having different species classifications. It’s like arguing that a bacteriumwhich has evolved is still a bacterium, it doesn’t change that it’s evolved to become a whole new species.

  26. It is along the same lines yes, but not necessarily the same arguments. It’s rather hard to argue my position with continually new points when you are spewing the same nonsense that I have been hearing for years. “God did it with magic” is simply not a logical way to explain anything. As I stated, the neon zebra is just as (il)logical.

    Natural selection is a key proponent in the theory of evolution. Let me ask you, do you believe in the “magic of kinds?” As someone who believes in the literal word of the bible, you certainly need a way to explain away the story of Noah’s ark (2 of every animal.) Or do you honestly believe that every single species on earth (save the unicorns) was able to fit onto a wooden boat? So is it partial evolution or more magic?

  27. “I have … with their system.”
    Then you don’t understand the idea of inheritance. It’s not just that the genes look the same it’s that they are the same; they are in the same place in many case and preforme the same function. When there are some mutations the amount you see is consistent with it’s point of split. Hell, a good amount of those links where about EVRs which are pure viral sequences and server no porpoise for us. They exist at the same location in many species and you can map out a clear line of inheritance between species that share the EVR sequences.
    “The Creationist … other one.””
    Except it doesn’t indicate design! Why would a designer use and imperfect bas sequence to begin with, and why would he purposefully insert random viral sequences in such a way as to indicate a clear line of inheritance. It doesn’t make sense unless he wants to lie to us. Hell the high degree of non-linearity with in your “design” is strong proof against inelegance, the adhoc nature of life which consist of nothing but components infighting is strong evidence of the lack of intelligence.
    “Neither … perspective.”
    How do you define information? You know what it doesn’t matter because: If it’s Genome size then we’ve seen that increase. If it’s specificity of a catalyst (i.e. enzymes, Ribosomes) we’ve seen that increase. If it’s generality of a catalyst (i.e. enzymes, Ribosomes) we’ve seen that increase. If it’s the efficiency of a catalyst (i.e. enzymes, Ribosomes) we’ve seen that increase. Hell we’ve even seen whole new metabolic path ways open up in organism, so yes, we HAVE seen information increase, no matter how you try to define information.

  28. “I understand what you are saying, but the simple fact is that we have not had to “alter the evidence” because all the evidence already fits with our viewpoint. If the evidence did not fit, it would be a different story. Furthermore, we often do change beliefs on the exact details of how things came about, but our overall view has not had to change, because all the evidence still supports it.”

    Ok, I’m just going to cover evolution here. There is but one thing to say. FOSSIL. again… FOSSIL! Every fossil is a transitional fossil as everything is mutating, changing, evolving. A fossil is a geological snapshot of a plant, animal, or other material that is preserved and a scientist can date it and see the timeline of change and evolution (the tree of life). The evidence supports it. EndGameOmega has provided you with a small small list but a very good one. He is much better than I am on this topic than I. Therefore, I digress for a time to cover the rest of your post.

    “The invisible pink unicorn, Thor, and Zeus are all quite a bit more far-fetched than the existence of Jehovah, and their existence would be quite a bit less consequential. Furthermore, I am not aware of anyone who actually does believe in them. However, if any of them did exist, I would still wish to know of it simply for the sake of knowing the whole truth.”

    I am glad you wish to know truth. That is what I seek. The reason I make this statement is to show that Jehovah, is just as crazy as the other Gods. I shall make a comparison to the FSM (flying spaghetti monster). Both can’t be seen, only felt, both have books divinely inspired, etc. You state that the FSM is crazy, why then is yours not? However Gods are irrelevant to the system of the observable world. We simply state that the universe is observable. You state that the universe is observable and God exists. The first premise is necessary to work in the system and sufficient because it is the only way we can interact with the system. The second premise is however not necessary for the Universe to exist for it is an addition to the complexity that is not observed. Nor is it sufficient for anything in this world as it can be explained by science or has yet to have enough information to form a correct theory – this is simply time.

    You reference the wish to know truth, however, you reject it because the evidence does not form with your beliefs. Scientist change their views due to evidence, creationist do not.

    Onto your post again.
    “Let’s look at a similar, but more realistic possibility – the Loch Ness Monster. It may or may not exist. It would have little to no consequence on our daily life if it did. Still, if it does exist, I would like to know about it simply for the sake of knowledge.

    Occam’s Razor, first of all, is a heuristic, or rule of thumb. It is not in any way a proof. Secondly, the idea that God simply created the world in essentially the same state that it is currently in, is far more simplistic than the idea that a lot of time, a lot of chance, and a lot of mutations have somehow formed the universe as we have it today.”

    The Loch Ness Monster has yet to be observed, therefore it is not proven to exist or to not exist. However, because we do not know, until evidence arises of it being so, we state that we do not see any reason to believe in the hypothesis. Just as a scientist in the 1700′s would have told me to show how i know that HOMO/LUMO theory was correct and not other explanations to explain the cycloformation reactions in chemistry, you making this claim must show why your theory (so to speak – without evidence it is just conjecture) is correct.

    Occam’s razor is a heuristic, yes, i know. I use it daily in my engineering. However, it is a very very good way of getting the right answer to my problems. And the second point is wrong. Here is how. God is a very complex being. To assume him is much more complex and problematic than stating that simple laws of physics and chemistry and biology, etc. work to do this. The fact that things work so well, such as air being there, trees shading us, being far enough away from the sun, etc is not proof of God. We evolved under these conditions and by selection we adapted to fit these conditions correctly. You are confusing the cause and effect here – a logical fallacy.

    “I can not say that I am very knowledgeable in the specific field of astronomy, therefore I am not as capable of providing a response to this argument as other Creationists may be. However, I noticed a particularly false statement you made at the end. You said, “If God put the photons out there without the event occurring, then God has lied to his creation and thereby is not the God in the Bible (for he is only truth and can’t lie).”

    I reject the idea that it would be a lie to His creation, because He told us specifically that He has done that. Remember that God created light on day one (Genesis 1:3-5). However, he did not create the sources of light until day four (Genesis 1:14-19). Now light is not an abstract concept but a physical thing. It is made up of actual particles. These particles reflect their source. Therefore, if there were yet no physical sources of light, God must have placed the particles of light in transit as if they were coming from the sources that would later be there. He filled the whole universe with these particles of light as if the sources were there or had been there.”

    No, this is just so wrong. You apparently didn’t study hebrew, read a tanakh, or ask a rabbi about this. So, I am going to kindly explain the idiocy here. Yes you read it right however, the stars are created and such, but the light is not thrown about but ordered. God in genesis is ordering the world and universe by speaking into order. God here is a cause, by speaking such it is so. Anyways, I shall continue. You fail at understanding light. Yes it is a particle but also a wave (it travels at the speed of light – a constant) However if time has only existed for so long (6,000 years to 20,000 years) the particles that are reaching us are showing an event that did not occur in these supernovas. The supernova was expanding and was never a star where supernovas come from. This means that the heavens would be lying to us about events that did not happen. So either, God lied, as he created the stars and universe, or Satan has been able to play around with God’s heavens to make us doubt him, just like those damn fossils.

    Sir, I humbly ask you to actually read some science. You are speaking to people who read this stuff for fun. You do not know what you are talking about as shown especially here.
    “However, you did bring up the one new point about the flu. You are confusing the difference between genetic evolution and natural selection. No well-informed Creationist denies the reality of natural selection. But natural selection never leads to a new species. One strand of flu can change, through natural selection, to another strand of flu, but it will always remain a strand of flu. Like wise dogs can change, through natural selection, to German Shepherds, Bloodhounds, Poodles, etc., but they will always be dogs.”

    NO, this is WRONG!

    This is natural selection, yes. However, the reason natural selection works is because the virus MUTATED – genetic evolution – occurred! That is why ancestors (FOSSILS) of mammals can be traced back to a similar ancestor – well known one of the current apes and humans. The common ancestor is what these ‘kinds’ came from. Natural selection does not work without genetic mutation – giving genetic variation. Natural selection – the microevolution as you would call it – is evolution and many of these steps of little evolutions lead to what you say doesn’t happen – macroevolution. There is neither micro or macro – just evolution. Read any decent college biology textbook.

    JD

  29. “I apologize for my delayed response. I caught a pretty bad case of the flu about the time of my last post, and have spent most of my free time sleeping since then.”

    Meh, it happens.

    “Kyle:
    You seem to … He does exist?”
    I don’t think that’s what Kyle’s saying. He’s saying there is no evidence of god so we should not presuppose that one exist, again without evidence. If he dose not affect our lives or this world noticeably then he leaves no evidence behind to see or test, therefor we should not presuppose his existence.

    Beyond which, God’s existence surely does have an effect on us. Should my God, as I believe in Him, truly exist, then we will all be held accountable to Him. Those who believe will spend eternity with Him in glory, while those who have not accepted the gift that His Son, Jesus Christ, has given us, will be doomed to Hell. I would call that pretty consequential. Therefore, as I have already argued, there must be those scientists studying on both sides of the arguments.

    You say your god’s existence has an effect on us, so then I ask how do you know? More specifically how do you know it’s your god, remember there are many other religions most of which would jump in and say it’s their god(s) doing the influencing. From my stand point that simply implies none have the answer and merely want to assert they do, for the piece of mind it gives them.

    As for other religions, I think you missed the point of the question. If your religion is wrong and some other is right, then what happens to you? You would have basically wasted your life on a lie only to die and ether face some type of judgment you not prepared for or something similar. In fact since you’ve believed in and worshiped what would be a false profit and religion you are more likely to be judge harshly in most other religions. However someone who freely admits they don’t know everything and continues to doubt but still seeks the truth is likely to be rewarded for such given the nature of most religions scriptures. What that means is it’s better for someone who doesn’t know not to presuppose one god over another until they are very certain. Most, if not all of us are not certain that your god exists, and in my case I’m lead further and further away from any god (much more so in the case of a specific personal god, like that of the bible) by the evidence I see in the world.

    The more I look at what you consider to be creation, the more I realize how wrong it is to call it created in the intelligence sense of the word. There is no real design just random combination of parts that works MOST (i.e. not all) the time. The given components are very rarely the most efficient, and almost always in fight with other features the organism has. Hell just look at our brains, they start off with a random number of connections with each brain cell connecting to all it’s surrounding neighbors, over time some of these connections wain, and even disappear altogether, creating memories and thought patterns. It’s completely Adhoc!

    And no, I am most certainly not arguing as though my God should be the only one taken into consideration. Jehovah is the God that I personally believe to be the One True God, therefore it is on His side that I will argue, but those who believe in another god are welcome to study from that god’s perspective. I would, of course, pray that they would eventually come to belief in my God, just as I would for those studying science from a purely naturalistic side, but they have the right to study from the perspective they desire just as we do.

    “You bring up radiometric … scientists claim it to be.”

    No what your claiming is that radioactive decay rate can change noticeably under normal conditions. That’s not only wrong it’s out right ludicrousness given what must happen to cause such a rate change and what would happen given such a change. Creationist readily and repeatedly throw our radiometric data when they don’t like it, and hand wave the augments with “Well you don’t know it’s constant”, which as I’ve already pointed out is complete and utter rubbish.

    “Back to the flood, you claim … normal laws of physics.”

    If it was a supernatural occurrence then you’ve just admitted you can’t understand it through physical phenomena which means you concede that you can’t produce a working model for it. As for detecting it at all you have a problem there as your flood would still have left physical defects in the geological column, and it would have left evidence that it occurred. As far as I and damn near every other modern day geologist can tell there’s no evidence of it whatsoever. Which implies that god hide the evidence, or more likely it just never happened. Ether or it doesn’t look good for your argument.

    “I’m afraid it is you who has a misunderstanding …”

    Your right if they argue merely from a position of ignorance that’s not academically dishonest, however when they lie and quote mine to try and make there point it is academically dishonest, when they try to use degrees or positions of supposed authority (especially when said degrees are very questionable) it’s again academically dishonest.

    “Your claimed “logical fallacy”… just a few examples.”

    OK, and your point is? First off your first and last links are irrelevant in this argument, that more scientists are trying to get into politics or that some scientists are using a new medium to explore social and psychological issues, as well as publish work and ideas, is nothing new or again relivent. As for your other two articles only the second one has any real meaning, and as I understand the science and the scientists it’s not even correct, though more to the point is irrelevant as far as evolution goes. The third one is about definitions and classifications more then real science.

    “Also, you are … Creationism as a whole.”

    Your right a single argument doesn’t reflect badly on the whole (though most creationist would argue the opposite when dealing with evolution). However AiG has an extremely large number of bad arguments (out of the 40 or so I’ve read in depth all failed because of something simple, i.e. some thing that a 1st year student should be able to see)

  30. Damn. Left an unquoted chunk of text in my last comment. Eh, you guys will know it when you see it :p

  31. Wow. This is getting a bit time-consuming trying to reply to every post. I’ll do my best, but you’ll have to forgive me if I don’t cover every detail.

    EndGameOmega said “Actually supernatural events could and in many case would leave evidence of their existence.”

    I don’t think I’m making my argument in this respect clear enough. I am not saying that there would necessarily be no evidence left by a supernatural act (there may or may not be), but that the evidence would not be held to the same testable standards as would the evidence left by a natural event.

    EndGameOmega said “I.e. that there is something more to this world then what we can observe. We have NEVER seen anything matching such a description,”

    lol. That’s a funny statement. Just think about it for a minute. If there is something that we cannot observe, OF COURSE we will never see it. That’s what “unobservable” means. This is why we cannot actually prove God’s supernatural acts. What we do instead is look at the natural evidence we do have, and we scientifically test it to see if it can indeed fit with what God has told us He has done.

    Perhaps a loose comparison could be made to the way scientists discover exoplanets (planets outside of our solar system). To my knowledge, we have yet to find a visible exoplanet. However, we know of their existence based on how they effect the surrounding stars.

    Likewise, we can not see or prove God, nor can we directly prove His supernatural acts. What we can do is study the surrounding natural evidence to see how it fits.

    EndGameOmega gave his examples.

    Archaeopteryx is a bird, plain and simple. Its similarities to dinosaurs only reflects the fact that both share the same Creator.

    Moon dust is not an argument used by well-informed Creationists. AiG has written several articles debunking it themselves.

    There is no such thing as “zarcon” crystals. Assuming that you meant “zircon” crystals, that is not an argument with which I am very familiar. I will have look it up. Based on your summary, however, it sounds as though it is mostly a matter of basing research on outdated data, which, if true, would clearly be a case of carelessness rather than deliberate discarding of evidence.

    As for the acceleration of nuclear decay, it has been proven in labs that it is possible given the right circumstances. With or without that fact, however, a sufficient explanation is simply that the acceleration was a direct result of one of God’s supernatural acts. “Either at Creation, as part of the curse described in Genesis 3, or during the Genesis Flood” (AiG).

    The flood of the Bible was not, as you call it, “an overflowing lake.” I’ll again remind you that the flood was a supernatural act and that it was most likely an extremely violent one. You say we are ignoring the evidence? Where is the evidence that this supernatural act could not have formed the Grand Canyon?

    EndGameOmega said “Creationist throw out, ignore, or modify data to make it fit.”

    You have yet to show this. Your given examples certainly do not.

    You bring up the canopy model. That is not a model either AiG or I hold to. I believe it was a directly supernatural act which does not need a natural explanation.

    I am not aware of a Creationist named Kent Hoven, but assuming you are referring to Kent Hovind, he is an individual who made a mistake. While it is unfortunate that he chose to mar his testimony in that way, it is not a reflection on Creationism as a whole. In fact, Hovind’s actions in tax fraud were directly opposed to our Scriptural command to “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s” (Mark 12:17).

    Could you provide an example of Humphreys’ manipulation of data?

    The Darwin Eye misquote is yet another example that AiG has spoken out against. It is only the less-informed Creationists who unfortunately attempt to use it in that way, and they do so only out of innocent ignorance. I suggest you read this page before you continue to bring up more of these arguments that well-informed Creationists do not use.
    http://www.answersingenesis.org/get-answers/topic/arguments-we-dont-use

    Speaking of deception, have you ever looked at the naturalist side of things? For example, take a look at Haeckel’s embryo diagrams. They are blatantly fraudulent. He deliberately altered them to support his theories.

    Or we could consider the peppered moth experiments, where they took dead moths and glued them to trees in an attempt to get photographic “evidence” for their ideas.

    Better yet, let’s look at the Miller-Urey experiments which still claim to have created the building blocks of life – amino acids, while deliberately withholding the fact that they had to drastically alter the environment to do it and the fact that they were the wrong type of amino acids anyway.

    EndGameOmega said “The fact of the matter is the flu virus dose change genetically.”

    Yes, and I did not say otherwise, but that genetic change is based on the possibilities held within the genetic code which God provided at Creation. We believe that God included the ability for the genes to to adapt – to an extent – as a defensive mechanism.

    You can argue all you want that there is no difference between speciation and evolution into other species. The simple fact remains, however, that bacteria has never been witnessed to evolve into anything other than a more advanced form of bacteria. The same is true with the flu, with dogs, with horses and with every other original “type” that God created.

    EndGameOmega said “’God did it with magic’ is simply not a logical way to explain anything.”

    Unless, of course, it is simply true, and you cannot prove that it is not.

    EndGameOmega said “you certainly need a way to explain away the story of Noah’s ark.”

    No offense, but bringing up this argument just shows your lack of knowledge in this area. The ark was huge. The measurements given for the ark are in cubits, and obviously there are problems in converting from cubits as it was a subjective measurement. However, when the measurements are converted using the very smallest possible conversion ratios, we get 95,703 square feet of floor space. If every type of animal was given an extremely generous 20 square feet of space (way more than would be needed for most), that would allow for 4,785 types of animals! The more liberal estimates would allow for far more yet. This article gives a much more detailed explanation of how the ark most likely was set up.
    http://answersingenesis.org/articles/am/v2/n2/caring-for-the-animals

    EndGameOmega said “It’s not just that the genes look the same it’s that they are the same.”

    Yes, much of the gene structure is the same. I have not denied that. You’re still not getting the fact that all animals were made by the same creator. By way of illustration, we could look at auto manufacturers. We could look at a Chevrolet Corvette, Camaro, and Monte Carlo. We would would find many similar parts. We would even find some parts that are exactly the same across the line. This is because they are all made by the same company. Likewise, it would only make sense that God’s creations would include similarities and even exact matches throughout them.

    Joe_Dharma said “Every fossil is a transitional fossil as everything is mutating, changing, evolving.”

    There has never been a fossil found which is truly an in-between stage of evolution between two types of animals.

    Joe_Dharma said “Scientist change their views due to evidence, creationist do not.”

    That’s not true. As I have already stated, Creationists have not changed their overarching view that God created universe because there has been no evidence to necessitate that, however, we often do change our views on the specific details.

    Joe_Dharma said “The fact that things work so well, such as air being there, trees shading us, being far enough away from the sun, etc is not proof of God.”

    Nor have I claimed it to be. I might argue that statistics show it to be more likely for those conditions to have been the result of a deliberate act rather than random chance, but that is still not proof.

    Joe_Dharma said “The particles that are reaching us are showing an event that did not occur in these supernovas. The supernova was expanding and was never a star where supernovas come from. This means that the heavens would be lying to us about events that did not happen.”

    You’re obviously still not getting something here, so I’m just going to back up and explain it more thoroughly.

    God created the light. Then God created stars. God created the light as if it were there from the stars.

    When God created the stars, He would have created them at different levels of maturity. If God had created all the stars as if they were brand new, there would not have been enough light. If God created all the stars as if they were older, all the stars would have burnt out at around the same time, and then we would have no starlight left at all. Therefore God must have created the stars at varying levels of maturity.

    Back to day one, when God placed the light in the universe, He placed it there as if it was coming from the stars. He would have placed the light there at full maturity. In other words, He would have put the light there as if it had been traveling long enough to reach the earth. Placing the light as if it had just started to travel away from the stars would have done no good.

    You argue that some of the light we see reflects the image of stars that would never have existed, but I fail to see why that is a problem. As I already stated, the stars must have been created at different levels of maturity. Why then could God not have created stars that reached the maturity level of no longer existing?

    The light was created mature enough to be already reaching the earth at day one, even though it had not, in actuality, been traveling all that way. Why then is it a problem for there to be light which reflects stars that, in actuality, were created already dead?

    You claim that it would be a lie, but how can it be a lie if God told us that He did it? For God specifically told us the basic principle behind the argument (that He created light before the stars), and the rest is just the automatic conclusions that must be formed based on that fact.

    Joe_Dharma said “This is natural selection, yes. However, the reason natural selection works is because the virus MUTATED – genetic evolution – occurred!”

    Read my above response to EndGameOmega.

    EndGameOmega said “You say your god’s existence has an effect on us, so then I ask how do you know?”

    I say that God’s existence does have an effect on us, if He is indeed real. Thus, there should be those studying to show that he is real.

    EndGameOmega said “If your religion is wrong and some other is right, then what happens to you? You would have basically wasted your life on a lie only to die and ether face some type of judgment you not prepared for or something similar.”

    I would pose the same question to you. When it all comes down to it, everyone must choose to believe in something. Even agnostics choose to believe that one cannot know for sure.

    EndGameOmega said “There is no real design just random combination of parts that works MOST (i.e. not all) the time. The given components are very rarely the most efficient, and almost always in fight with other features the organism has.”

    You claim that God’s creation is not the most efficient. You have a better way of doing things? Well, there was once a better way of doing things, but that way was ruined by the curse of sin.

    Okay, I believe that should cover all the new arguments brought up, but as I mentioned you all left me a lot to cover, so I apologize for whatever I’ve missed.

  32. Pingback: Welcome U of A Students » Better Than Faith

  33. Le sigh. It really appears as if you just don’t get it, Chuck. Your cling to creationism doesn’t come as a surprise when examining this fact. The level of confirmation bias is astounding.

    I’m not going to respond to the entire thing, as I will allow EndGameOmega and Joe to represent themselves for the most part. I will discuss the impossibility of the flood story further on in my post.

    The point of the evidence for supernatural events is that there is none. We are more than aware that IF such an event were to occur, it would not be similar to any natural events, but it would still be testable. The fact of the matter is, there is NO evidence for such supernatural events such as the flood. These events would leave behind evidence that would not make sense under natural circumstances. Additionally, you do not test to see if evidence supports a fairytale, you test to see what actually happened. I’ll cover this topic more when I discuss the flood.

    In regards to the extrasolar planets, yes there are a number that we have found visibly (using infrared and visible spectrum light). The others we use techniques like radial velocity and gravitational microlensing. While we cannot visibly see those planets, we know they exist for all practical purposes because of the way the planets affect their surroundings. That said, this is not even slightly comparable to the theory of god. You cannot in any way prove that God affects or has affected the natural world.

    Skipping down a bit, I notice you reference Haeckel. This is such a load of propaganda garbage that it isn’t funny. Haeckel’s original sketches haven’t been used seriously in quite some time. There may be historical references, but I have yet to see it actually taught as fact. I have seen similar examples, where actual PICTURES were used, but not the sketches.

    A tiny but further you misquote EndGameOmega as saying stuff that you actually quoted from me.

    “Unless, of course, it is simply true, and you cannot prove that it is not.”

    I am still baffled at how you cannot comprehend just how illogical that is. You cannot prove the validity of your claims of magic. Once again, I have just as much credibility saying that the pink unicorn incinerated all of humanity and recreated it because he felt like it. You cannot prove me wrong and if it was true it would make sense. This is faulty logic because it is circular and fails to follow the burden of proof. The burden of proof is on you to prove that it is true, not on me to prove that it is false.

    Going out of order to make better sense.

    “There has never been a fossil found which is truly an in-between stage of evolution between two types of animals.”

    Actually there are tons, creationists just seem to misunderstand it. You will never find a half-bird, half-monkey hybrid. You would be a fool to expect something of the sort. The fact of the matter is, the fossils of extinct species that have characteristics of multiple species are prime examples of transitional fossils. Fossils of archaeopteryx and tiktaalik show terrific evidence for transition. Creationists simply revert back to the old, “same designer so that’s why they look like multiple different species, lol.”

    “Nor have I claimed it to be. I might argue that statistics show it to be more likely for those conditions to have been the result of a deliberate act rather than random chance, but that is still not proof.”

    This extremely highlights your, like most creationists, ignorance. Not a single “naturalist” scientist would explain the world as the result of chance. By asserting such a claim, you display your ignorance of not only the way things are explained, but of probability as well.

    You don’t seem to be able to comprehend the supernova argument. Yes, we get that if god existed, he could create things at any age (in regards to the supernovas.) The problem is, by creating only the light and not the actual supernova, god would be giving the illusion of the supernovas having existed when they in fact never did. This is deception.

    “You claim that God’s creation is not the most efficient. You have a better way of doing things? Well, there was once a better way of doing things, but that way was ruined by the curse of sin.”

    Yes, actually there are plenty of ill-”designed” things in nature that we have better ways of doing them. Examine even “simple” features in the eye and just how inefficient they are. Examine absolutely ridiculous digestive aspects of certain animals such as the rabbit where they must eat their own excrement to full digest it. Your god must have one wicked sense of humor.

    I’ll cover the flood in my next post.

  34. So basically, for all the arguments in your above post, the primary point was that I cannot prove the existence of God or any of His supernatural activities.

    I agree. I’ve been saying all along that such things can’t actually be proved. If they could, we would no longer be relying on faith. What Creation scientists do is show how the Biblical accounts do fit with actual science. We do not claim for the science to actually prove any Biblical accounts, but it does support them.

    My point is that natural science cannot find any way to actually disprove any of the Bible. I believe that is because the Bible is true. No, it does not prove that the Bible is true, but it does not contradict it.

  35. To your response of “No offense…was set up.”

    Actually, your response shows not only your arrogance in the assumption that I don’t know what I’m talking about, but your lack of knowledge of the natural world and the way things actually work as well.

    I’ll break down the different aspects of the story so as to make it easier to argue.

    First we shall start with the ark itself:
    I am well aware of what a cubit is considered to be. It is roughly 18 inches (the average length from the elbow to the tip of the fingers.) With all the measurements, the ark would have been 1.5m cubic feet in volume, around 100m square feet in floor space, and weigh around 15,000 tons.
    -The number of animals on the boat would still be too high for even a ship of the size you project. It has been awhile since I have checked, but I believe there is somewhere around 60k vertebrate species that we know of. This is why I brought up the “magic of kinds” argument which you did not address. I know the old fall back of “the bible says kinds not species.” As “kinds” is in no way a scientific classification, it can be used without bounds to fit things the way creationists want it. The thing is, once you allow for it to fall back to genus, you allow for some interesting speciation which brings in evolution. I’ve even seen it go back to family, which would definitely bring in more evolution. Alas, even when you break it down that far, there still isn’t enough space. You have to account for not only mammals, but birds, reptiles, amphibians, anthropods (insects, spiders, etc.)
    -Excrement: Reading the AiG page made me laugh at the severe misunderstanding of the way things work. By allowing for slatted floors and areas where the excrement could accumulate, you reduce the capacity for holding animals. I’d like for you to talk to someone in the industry of manure and tell them that a simple window would suffice for allowing the toxic fumes out. I guarantee you will be laughed out of the place. Then talk to someone in a zoo and see just how much excrement certain animals produce just on a daily basis. These “compartments” would have to be emptied almost constantly. Have you ever walked into a port-o-potty? Now multiply the stench by a ridiculous amount and you might have an idea of the fumes. Good luck breathing, even with windows.
    -Building of the ark at the size projected would take centuries without any modern machinery to help put this thing together, and only a handful of men to do it.
    -You must account for the gathering of materials as well. Wood, pitch (which would have to have been resin and not petroleum based) and other materials would take a while to set up.
    -Without protection from the environment, insects, animals, etc. parts of the ark would fall apart before the entire thing was completely. Frankly, wood rots without proper protection.
    -A wooden vessel of this size would not hold together. Ask someone who makes ships.

    The animals:
    -Surprisingly, all the animals on earth are not within walking distance of Noah’s house. There are many animals that are found exclusively on the other side of the planet, many in places that would be hard to get to.
    -A great number of animals survive on VERY specific diets. For example, koalas live almost exclusively on a diet of fresh eucalyptus leaves (they will eat select other plants like acacia.) They use these leaves not only for nutrition, but also as a source of water. Hummingbirds survive on a combination of nectar and insects. Good luck planning for the specific dietary needs of every animal.
    -Carnivores – Dried meat? Try putting dried meat and then other live animals in front of a carnivore, take a guess which one the carnivore would rather eat. These animals have predatory instances and would much rather kill and eat their food fresh than have it given to them.
    -While herbivores can just have the plants laid out for them, the carnivores and omnivores would need lots more attention. Simple self-feeders would not suffice.
    -Metabolism of animals would come into heavy play. Some animals, like our friend the hummingbird eat multiple small meals a day, changing from insects to nectar. Additionally, such animals with high metabolism eat lots. Hummingbirds eat up to 5 times their body weight in nectar a day.
    -Your referenced AiG pages says that animals could easily change to substitute diets. Wrong. Attempting to give many species of animals food to which they are not accustomed to would be a bad idea. Many would simply starve, others might become sick. Even subtle changes can have a huge impact. For example, take a common domesticated dog. A sudden switch in food brands can cause them to get sick or simply avoid the food altogether.

    The flood:
    -As I have said, there isn’t enough water on the planet to flood it. This would have to be supernatural.
    -If the planet was in fact filled with that much water, the air would be supersaturated, making it impossible to breathe. More supernatural.
    -Water around the earth would become brackish. This would kill most salt water and fresh water species (some would be able to survive.) Try pouring salt water into a fresh water tank or vice-versa and watch as the fish die.
    -Plant life would also die under the same conditions. Many plants couldn’t even survive when submerged in water, let alone brackish.
    -Explanation for fossils usually come out of this story through the “rapid deposition” theory. If this were true, would you not see randomly scattered fossils? FOr example, rabbits in what we know as the Precambrian layer? Human fossils along with dinosaur fossils? This is not the case at all. Did God decide to play a game to make it appear as though a flood never happened?
    -The Grand Canyon created by the flood? Take a geology 101 course. Even something as simple as looking at the curvature of the canyon will show you that it is impossible for it to have been formed by a single fast moving flood. A short duration flood would have caused it to be more linear. This is of course only one of thousands of pieces of evidence against your global flood theory.

    There is plenty more that I haven’t covered, but I think I’ll stop for now.

  36. “So basically, for all the arguments in your above post, the primary point was that I cannot prove the existence of God or any of His supernatural activities.”

    A number of them, yes. You skipped over the ones that didn’t and actually had a debatable topic.

    “I agree. I’ve been saying all along that such things can’t actually be proved. If they could, we would no longer be relying on faith.”

    That’s the point! You are relying on a story book. Why should you choose this one over any other one? Why not the Qur’an? Because you weren’t raised in the middle east. Why not the Gospel of the Cookie Dough Dragon? You can have faith that the Great Dragon does in fact exist!

    “What Creation scientists do is show how the Biblical accounts do fit with actual science. We do not claim for the science to actually prove any Biblical accounts, but it does support them.

    My point is that natural science cannot find any way to actually disprove any of the Bible. I believe that is because the Bible is true. No, it does not prove that the Bible is true, but it does not contradict it.”

    That the thing, science does not support the bible. Of course science cannot actually disprove the bible, but that capacity is not limited to the bible. Science can’t really prove any thing for certain. It can tell us what is probably true, but we know it can’t ever break that 100% certain barrier. Yes, science almost certainly contradicts the bible, you just choose to ignore it. In regards to disproving it, think of it as a limit approaching a point where the point is 100% certainty in disproof. Science will never reach the point, but it will get infinitely closer and your god will get infinitely smaller.

  37. And that is why mine is ultimately a religion of faith. I don’t have a problem with that. If you do, then you obviously are not going to believe, and for that I am very sorry.

    Those of you that I have been talking with here have brilliant minds; there’s no question there. Your debating skills are top-notch. Furthermore I commend you all for not resorting to cheap tactics such as name-calling, as many others I have debated with so often do.

    But there are times when you must simply put aside your vast intellect and simply believe by faith.

    I can only pray (and I will) that someday you will be able to do that. Jesus is ready to accept you as soon as you are willing to believe in Him.

  38. Congrats to us then! Please join the group of 30 now that are praying for me. Prayer is just the same. It does nothing.

    Enjoy your life.

    JD

  39. Exactly, it is faith. There is no reason to believe in it other than it being in a book that some guys wandering around in a desert two thousand years ago wrote. Like I have said, it makes just as much sense to have faith in the Cookie Dough Dragon. The problem with faith is, how do you know if someone is right or wrong? You don’t. You simply have to take their word for it. So if the person who is going around doing charitable work says god told them to, then you have to believe them. If the person rolling around on the floor says the holy spirit has filled them and caused them to speak in tongues, you have no reason to question them. And if the mother who drowns her two sons in a lake because god told her to, you must once again accept it because you cannot say that it is not the truth. There is no way to differentiate who is schizophrenic and who is in fact telling the truth.

    I do not have a problem with people who choose to have “faith” so long as it doesn’t affect others. If you wish to believe it, then live your life that way, and enjoy it. The problem arises when people feel that they need to force people to live certain ways because of their faith. When your faith tells you to bring about legislation that withholds civil rights from gays, prevents stem cell research, etc., I have a problem with it. Until you can prove that your god exists with empirical evidence, don’t expect everyone else to live up to the doctrines that you hold onto through faith.

    I see no reason why anyone should ever put aside their intellect (rationality, reason, and logic) for faith. It hasn’t gotten anyone anywhere that we can prove. The only way faith would be important would be in the unlikely event that your god does exist. So faith essentially becomes circular. You must have faith in order for faith to be important.

    Like Joe said, you are welcome to join the club and pray for us. The same as faith, prayer has never been proven to do anything.

    May the Cookie Dough Dragon be with you and may you be blessed with cookies and milk.

  40. How can I know that I am right and other religions are wrong? That’s easy. Historically, systematically, or logically I can’t. But FAITH is my “substance of things hoped for.”

    What evidence do I have for Christianity? Well, I pull out all sorts of examples which could seem to support the Bible, but ultimately FAITH is my “evidence of things not seen.”

    I am thrilled to hear that there are already so many praying for you, and I truly hope that one day you will give in to what God is trying to show you and allow Him into your life.

    Until then, may “the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.”

  41. So you don’t have an actual response. Great. You know, you’ve admitted that you have faith and not science, you’ve admitted that you have no testable explanation for pretty much anything in the bible. I was typing out a large response your post, but now I see there’s no reason to. You’ve agreed with the primary point I was trying to put across. You have faith, we have evidence.

  42. EndGameOmega pretty much said it. You have absolutely no response. You have admitted to the point we were trying to prove. That is that you have nothing more than illogical faith to support your beliefs. You have no historical, scientific, or logical evidence. You simply have faith and faith alone.

    As Nietzsche said, “A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything.”

  43. Nah, like I said before. There’s plenty of evidence available for both sides, just not enough to prove either. When it all comes down to it, you just have to believe in one side. I take the side of Faith in God.

  44. No, you really don’t have any evidence. You THINK you do, but speaking as someone who works in science and actually understands it you don’t. As soon as you even start to consider supernatural explanations as a legitimate answer your idea loses all credibility as a scientific or even an empirical theory. You can try and hand wave it away, but the truth of the matter is evolution actually explains how and why the biological world works, and it predict EVERY thing we see in nature. We make pharmaceuticals from it, we’ve come up with new medical treatments because of it. The fact is evolution has saved lives, my own in fact. No amount of denial or hand waving will change what exists.

    You lost this argument as soon as you appealed to the supernatural, you admitted you don’t have evidence, and you don’t have science. I have no doubt you’ll try and argue something else absurd, and that your right, but I find it funny that the very stuff you cling to and preach is what lead me and most of my class away from Christianity.

  45. Errr… Typeo “…and that your right…” should read “…and that’s your right…”, as in that’s you legal right.

  46. Hey Chuck …

    I just wanted to encourage you. As a fellow theist on here, I say “Keep it up”! These guys were not all that nice to you and you pretty much kept your cool – good job, bro.

    And to all my atheist friends both in this forum and on the streets, please work on your people skills. You should “evolve” better, less insulting tactics to preach your beliefs. Otherwise, you start sounding as much of an ultra-fundamentalist as some of our buddies out there on Mill Ave. … and Lord knows, no one wants that!

    smile =)
    vocab

  47. We are as nice to Chuck as we’d be to any theist or atheist that came an spewed nonsense all over the place. Chuck is not only wrong but arrogant as well. He claims to know enough about science to make grandiose claims and supports quacks and crack pot ideas. If he where in an actual science debate he’d be laughed at, and with good reason! He’s completely ignorant and brain washed. Hell he can’t even figure out that the supernatural isn’t science and any appeal to it invalidates any claims you have in science.

    It’s clear to me that ether you’ve not read his post or have simply agreed with them as they fit your physiological world view. The points and claims he has made are out right ignorant of science and he keeps making them. You can support him all you want Vocab, that wont change the fact that he’s wrong, and arrogant. We aren’t preaching to him, where trying to explain why his knowledge of science is nonexistent. Seriously you aren’t helping him, your self, or us.

  48. EndGameOmega said of Chuck …

    …came an spewed nonsense…
    …not only wrong but arrogant as well…
    …supports quacks and crack pot ideas…
    …completely ignorant and brain washed…

    I say … sigh …
    I think you kinda just proved my point …

  49. Like I said Vocab, we are as nice to Chuck as we be to our own in this case. Chuck is quoting nonsense as science, so yes where going to call him on it. That’s not being mean it’s being honest. He supports crack pot ideas as science, and argues them as such. He claims things are supernatural, and can’t be explained as science then trys to say all the evidence we have is wrong with out cause.

    If you want to throw your weight behind Chuck feel free, you simply show to all of us and any who know science that you don’t know anything about it ether. Chuck was wrong, and continues to be wrong. He refuses to acknowledge any of the arguments made against him as valid, and hand waves them away. He’s brain washed because he can’t even use logic or reason to argue his case, nor can he even see it.

    The fact is that Chuck came into our forum, and spewed irritated crap about changing radioactive decay rates, to which anyone who knows about atomic and particle physics will agree is utter bullshit. We called him on it, so then he reiterates it again, and adds other nonsense to the mix. He’s claiming that all of science is wrong, then gives no good reason for it. He’s wrong, and we called him on it, if nether he nor you can accepts that then you shouldn’t try to argue with people who know this stuff.

  50. That wasn’t really good timing, Vocab. Sniping at the atheists may make a good case for a social bond with Chuck; but it certainly doesn’t make a good case for actually being part of the community. Everyone tends to require some level of evidence when assertions are made, some moreso than others, and when it comes down to extremely well known fields of knowledge and extraordinarily contrary assertions…the evidence required is going to be staggering.

    It doesn’t shock me that people like EndGameOmega and Kyle (whom I think thou cite primarily when referring to the “atheists” because I think they both are) become annoyed when rhetorical arguments revolve around linguistic hacks, shifting jargon, and blatantly ignoring the epistemology of what’s being argued. Since I’m a poor philosopher, but I am a linguist, I figured that I’d give Chuck access to the basic precepts of what he was arguing so we could have a common language (via the proxy Wikipedia site).

    I decided to let others, or as thou called them the atheists, have the floor when the conversation wandered heavily into meta arguments.

    A second problem is that forum discussions like this tend to lack emotional appeal of speech—what would be a humorous jibe can seem like a personal attack, and irritable wording directed at behavior feels like direct insults. The discussion certainly became extremely informal and a bit heated, but no where did it become the outright flame war that thou insinuate was happening.

    Furthermore, don’t think that I missed the rhetorical language tricks in thy post either. Nobody discussing science is “preaching their beliefs.” Using language such as this should and will evoke a reaction of narrowed eyes as it did in EndGameOmega’s reply.

    Chuck did an excellent job of holding his own, trying to manage the epistemological discourse; but all that rather evanesced away in the end when he dropped discussing the facts in lieu of talking about religiosity and faith.

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