been directed to your excellent site, and had a good browse
in search of recent evolutionary events. Many thanks! Full
of sound observations.....wait for it!....but
There's an awful lot of "proof by assertion" going on here. Scientific method is about testing disprovable hypotheses, not about looking for evidence in support of a theory. There are two problems in this case.
One lies in the statement of evolutionary theory in terms of "species". Evolution is obvious and logical, but the notion of species is too arbitrary and weakly defined to allow the hypothesis to be tested. Some humans produce sterile offspring, some couples are infertile through physiological incompatibility, most tend to segregate into visibly different mating communities, some have radically different morphology attributed to unusual chromosomes that do not make them sterile... We are all classed as homo sapiens, but each of these tests would be considered sufficient to define a new species of fish or mouse.
The other lies in the nonspecific nature of evolutionary prediction. Observation suggests that a cannon ball will land "somewhere", Newtonian physics predicts exactly where, so it is a scientific hypothesis and can be tested by experiment. It is pretty obvious in retrospect that living things have evolved, but until we can predict, say, that the next garden predator will be a ten-legged adaptation of the spider, we can't call evolution a scientific hypothesis - it's just a plausible link between observations.
Evolution is certainly a lot more explanatory, and a lot less ridiculous, than creation, but it isn't science - yet!
Eddington said that a student of physics must get used to having his common sense violated five times before breakfast, every day. I'm a physicist, and it's breakfast time - thanks for listening!
don’t claim to be an expert in the philosophy of
science, but in my view your definition of science as
requiring it to make predictions of the future is too
narrow to be useful. This definition would, for instance,
exclude much of astronomy outside the solar system.
Astronomy’s realm is too distant for experiments that
manipulate the objects of study, and evolution’s
realm is too ancient. However, I believe that hypotheses
from both of these fields can be validated by collecting
independent data that support one or another hypothesis,
even if these data do not come from experiments of the sort
that physicists can do.
Evolutionists can do experiments of model systems in the laboratory, but because evolutionary adaptations rely on random mutations in individual organisms for their source, even these may play out differently in replications of the same experiment (Bennett and Lenski EXS 83:135, 1997). The important role of random mutation in evolution makes it unlikely that the features of your next garden predator could be predicted. In this respect, the theory of evolution itself predicts the difficulty of making predictions about specific adaptations; so predictions of the sort that validate theories in physics cannot be expected for evolution. Does this make evolution less than science? I think not.
Evolutionists have made a number of hypotheses that may have violated common sense (and certainly violated creationism) and which have nonetheless been supported by the collection of additional independent data. My favorite is the hypothesis – based on anatomic comparisons between whales and other mammals - that whales evolved from artiodactyls (even-toed ungulates). Although no one could predict exactly what the intermediate species should have looked like, reasonable candidates for intermediate species (“whales with legs”) have recently been found in the fossil record (e.g. Gingerich et al, Science 293:2239, 2001) in rocks of just the right geologic age; and these fossils seem to validate the hypothesis. Furthermore, molecular genetic evidence also independently supports this hypothesis (Shimamura et al. Nature 388:666, 1997).
Also keep in mind that you are unlikely to see scientists investing time in trying to disprove evolution because it has already been so solidly supported by the evidence. How often do physicists design experiments to “disprove” accepted principles of quantum mechanics or statistical thermodynamics, and how often would such grant proposals be funded?
In short, with thousands of papers supporting evolution by evidence from paleontology, molecular genetics, laboratory models of evolution, field studies, population genetics, biogeography, computer simulations and mathematical modelling, there’s a lot more than “proof by assertion” going on here.
|Comment:||I've been reading the archives and FAQs for about two years and I thank all of you for taking the time to cull, distill, and present the main threads so well. Now that I've begun reading the newsgroup directly (I use Agent), I sometimes see acronyms that are not explained in the postings nor on your Jargon page. I did figure out AiG and AFA-B, for example, with a bit of googling. Do you think these belong with Jargon, or might a separate Acronyms page on this site help other newbies when reading the raw postings?|
I'd like to update the Jargon entries with new terms and acronyms. Unfortunately, I have been and continue to be very busy. I hope to be able to update the Jargon entries on a more regular basis after I finish my Ph.D. program next year.
|Comment:||Can someone explain to me what the Creationists mean by a "kind"? I had an ongoing discussion with someone at AiG and when I asked this question, plus the observation that I would like to be referred to some research by the group, in order to view samples of their scientific research. I got a rude reply that it was obvious I had the wrong attitude and AiG would no longer respond to my E-mail. Kent Hovind sent me the same response when I pointed out that applying proven rules of naval architecture, Noah's Ark would sink due to the mass/displacement ratio because of the wooden supports needed to keep storm waves from collapsing the sides of a rectangular vessel, with a minimally curved bottom, even without animals aboard. Even if it did not sink immediately, the joints of a wooden craft in rough water would need constant patching and constant bailing of the vessel to keep from sinking. I also wondered what kind of keel would be needed to prevent such an awkward vessel from breaking the first time a 500+ foot long wooden vessel was supported at the bow and stern, but not the middle portion, a highly probable happening in a flood where the surface of the world was covered in water and the winds had no land to reduce their force. Since it was entirely likely I had the math wrong, I referred him to a site that gave the equations. I also referred him to a professional boat builder to confirm the need to repair joints in such a vessel in those conditions. His answer to ‘what is a kind’ was "a bird is still a bird no matter what changes happen." I guess this means that there is no difference between an ostrich and a hummingbird. What is it with these folks? I thought that if you want to claim that science supports your theology you should at least be willing to be open to criticism and defend your claims just like "real science" does. Jacor|
enough, if anyone, including the most skeptical scientist,
had to actually observe any animal in the process of
changing into a fundamentally different kind of animal, or
to observe life spontaneously arising from non-living
matter, or to observe matter appearing from nothing, would
most likely become an instant convert to the most devoted
form of theism or alternatively to assume that a master
illusionist or hypnotist or special effects expert was at
work. The really stupid parts of this whole Hovind thing is
that the phenomena around even the narrowest understanding
of evolution are not observable nor empirical, but are
Example: I see an object at point A. Later an identical looking object is at point B. One theory is that the object has moved. Refutation of the alternatives may leave the above as the most plausible, even the only possible explanation. It may, however be impossible to prove 'empirically'.
|Comment:||I've repeatedly asked for clarification on your correction for the Jean Rostand quote, and have not received any replies. I have contacted libraries in France to obtain copies of Rostand's quote, using your references, and they have said they do not find anything of the sort. Please confirm where you find accurate referencing for Jean Rostand's quote, "Transformism is a fairy tale for adults."|
|Response:||In the article in question,
Ed Babinski details his references. He inquired about the
quotation and received a reply from Marie-Antoinette de
Lumley at France's National Center for
Scientific Research, who attributed this quotation to
the February 1959 edition of Age Nouveau, p. 12.
Beyond that, you'll have to take the matter up with Mr. Babinski.
|Comment:||I have to
take exception to Kenneth Fair's statement (to be sure, he
said it was only as far as he knew) that creationist sites
don't give the same sort of list of opposing links that
Talkorigins does. The Geoscience Research Institute site
gives quite a list of creationist and evolutionist sites,
and even better, it links to many sites that are simply
scientific (hence evolutionist). Although, from a quick
look at both sites, the Talkorigins set of links is
I often go to the GRI site to read the articles they link, on both sides of the issues. Because the scientific sources are done well, and the creationist sources generally not well done, I'm not sure what purpose they have for linking articles, as it seems to me that the evolutionist side more or less trounces the creationists also linked.
I'm always wondering, of course, how the folks at GRI manage to read Science, Nature, and many other good journals as well, while maintaining a creationist posture. They are pretty much on the edge of the opposition to radiometric dating, in any event, not able to deny the honesty and integrity used in such chronometry, yet finding the inevitable questions and problems that arise in science to sort of maintain a plausible deniability (I don't find it plausible, of course). Coffin, from GRI, is remembered, naturally, for stating in the Arkansas creationist trial that without the Bible he'd accept the scientists' statements about the age of the earth (something like that).
Anyway, I just thought, credit where it's due.
corrected. GRI's web site does seem to have a fairly
balanced set of links,
though they are not as extensive as this site's. Thanks for
For those who may not be aware, Geoscience Research Institute is associated with the Seventh-Day Adventists.
Congratulations, Your web site has done nothing more than
the people that shovel this garbage in the classrooms. Most
of your "theories" (and that is all they are and weak ones
at best) are nothing more than circular reasoning. Your
information on the human footsteps is incomplete. The
footsteps were in FACT determined to be human. The
"scientist" from Discover conveniently stood with his back
to the FACTS and refused to look at them.
If there was no flood... How could there have been enough sediment dumped into the Gulf of Mexico and other bodies of water, to completely bury trees in their standing position, resulting in their being petrified, While still standing?
How could the Grand Canyon have been formed over millions of years by a river that begins and flows 2,ooo plus feet below some of the higher drop-offs in the canyon? Did the water defy gravity for a few thousand years and flow up hill?
If so many of the dinosaurs were vicious carnivores(as scientists would have us believe).. Why are the dinosaur fossils found intact? Look around you the next time you are in the woods. You won't see any entire animal carcasses lying about. This is because the other carnivorous animals Eat the dead ones, resulting in the scattering of the remains. The same thing would have been happening Millions of years ago if the earth were in fact that old. These "dinosaurs" died suddenly/quickly and were buried very rapidly below hundreds of thousands of tons of sediment... before their bodies could naturally decay or other animals could get to them to consume them.
Remember: The truth shall set you free! For more information that will discredit your "facts" even more go to www.drdino.com
initial criticism that our "theories" arguments are "weak"
and "circular" is too vague to respond to, however I
believe I can shed some light on his/her other statements.
I assume the writer's comments regarding "footsteps" is meant to refer to the famous Laetoli footprints found by the late Mary Leakey. Is to it is true that these prints are generally thought, due to their age, to have been made by an early hominid such as Australopithecus, but this assumption has been questioned by some paleoanthropologists who believe that the prints may belong to an early species of our genus Homo. See this page by Jim Foley for more information on this.
Either way these prints do not present an insurmountable problem for current theories of human evolution.
The writer asks where, if there was no (global?) Flood, the sediment come from to bury and petrify trees in an upright position? The answer is rather simple, local flooding. Local large scale flooding is rather common and quite capable of burying trees in sediment. Another source of sediment capable of burying trees are volcanoes, which can bury whole forests in layers of volcanic ash. See Andrew MacRae's article on polystrate trees.
I'm not sure about the writer's reference here to the Gulf of Mexico, but it is possible he/she is referring to the petrified forest found in the State of Mississippi (See Mississippi Petrified Forest: National Natural Landmark and Mississippi Petrified Forest for more information).
The writer next asks about the Grand Canyon and how it was formed. No the water of the Colorado River did not have to run uphill in defiance of gravity. The "hill" (the Colorado Plateau) arose after the river was already there and as it grew higher the river simply cut into it.
See Young-Earth Creationism and the Geology of the Grand Canyon, The Geologic Story at Grand Canyon, and Grand Canyon Geology for more information on the Grand Canyon.
Finally the writer unknowingly argues against his/her own position by asking how it is, if many dinosaurs were carnivorous, that we find complete skeletons rather that fragmentary scavenged remains. There fact of the matter is that while complete articulated dinosaur skeletons are sometimes found they are relatively rare. Most vertebrate fossils, including dinosaurs, are disarticulated fragments and partial skeletons, occasionally bearing telltale tooth marks of predation and/or scavenging. So turning the question around on the writer: why if most of the fossil record is the result of a global flood do we find so few complete articulated skeletons?
See A king-sized theropod coprolite found in Saskatchewan and Nibbling Triceratops for some rather obvious evidence of carnivorous behavior by dinosaurs.
See The Complete Dinosaur: Selected Excerpts, for a good overview of dinosaur diets and the evidence involved.
And see Basic Concepts in Dinosaur Taphonomy, for a book chapter on dinosaur taphonomy.
|Comment:||I just visited the AiG Homepage. Imagine my surprise to find that it's a sales site! I went there hoping to read about actual creation "science". I thought there might be articles about research done, experiments in progress, predictions about the natural world, etc. Instead what I found was a site selling bibical tracts and materials to help bibical believers fight the nasty old evolutionists. How can these people make even the most rudimentary claim to represent a science, when their site contains no science?|
|Comment:||The Moon is
Made of Cheese! A Creation/Evolution allegory
by Damian Carroll
The following transcript is from a debate between Carl Johnson, P.H.D., a leader in the rapidly developing field of “Celestial Foodstuffs,” and Mark Howard, an undergraduate astronomy student.
MODERATOR: Gentlemen, welcome to the debate. Today’s topic: Lunar Composition. For years, schoolchildren have been taught only one theory about the composition of our orbiting sister, the Moon, popularly known as the “Moon Is Made Of Rock” Theory. But this theory has come under fire recently by a group of religious and political activists, demanding equal time for their own views, dubbed the “Celestial Foodstuffs” Theory. Educators and scientists say that CF Theory is no more than a barely disguised reworking of the ancient “Moon Is Made Of Cheese” Theory. Our debate today will focus on differences between these two intriguing fields of research, in the hopes that the public will gain greater understanding of each. We’ll begin with Carl.
CARL: Thank you. Folks, I’m here tonight to tell you something groundbreaking. It’s something most scientists do not want you to hear. They’re afraid that if you discover the truths I’m about to tell you, you’ll stop funding their research. You won’t allow them a monopoly in what gets taught in our school science classes. But luckily, after tonight you’ll be armed with the latest in cutting-edge research and proven facts that will allow you to refute the bogus theory that has a stranglehold on our educational system. I’m talking, of course, about the “Moon Is Made Of Rock” theory. What’s that you say? You thought scientists had proof that the Moon is made of rock? Well, folks, I’m here tonight to tell you they don’t. “Moon Is Made Of Rock,” or as I like to call it, MIMOR, is just a theory. It hasn’t been proven. And until it is proven, conclusively, all we ask is that our Celestial Foodstuffs theory be given equal time.
MODERATOR: Thank you Carl. Mark…
MARK: First of all, I can’t believe we’re even having a debate about this. But since we’re all here, I’ll try to make this short. The Moon is definitely made of rock. That’s a fact. We have loads and loads of evidence. We have rocks from the Moon. We’ve run thousands of chemical tests on Moon materials – they’ve all come up as, well, rock. We’ve sent astronauts to the Moon – they saw that it was, in fact, made of rock. Now, it’s true we don’t know exactly how the Moon was formed. We have some good ideas and there is ongoing research. But as far as the Moon being made of cheese, I don’t understand how anybody could still believe that.
MODERATOR: Thanks, Mark. Carl…
CARL: Folks, Mister Howard would like you to think that all scientists agree on MIMOR. But this is absolutely not the case. I, for example, have P.H.D.s in Nutrition and Statistics, and I do not agree. Furthermore, many of my colleagues find grave problems with MIMOR theory. Even leading astronomers have trouble accepting the theory. Why, just last April NASA scientists admitted, “Many questions remain about the chemical composition of the Moon.”
MARK: That quote is totally out of context. You know as well as I do that NASA was talking about the exact chemical composition of Moon rock. They certainly do not doubt that the Moon is made of rock, and there’s no way that they are saying it might be cheese!
CARL: I’ll leave that up to the audience to decide. My point is that many questions about Moon composition remain unsolved, yet Mark Howard would have you believe they’ve got it all sewn up. That simply isn’t true.
MODERATOR: Well let’s look into your Celestial Foodstuffs theory, Carl. Tell us how your research points to the Moon having a dairy-based composition.
CARL: I’d be happy to. For hundreds of years, humans have known intuitively that the Moon is made of cheese. It’s really quite obvious if you don’t hide behind a bunch of scientific mumbo jumbo. Let me give you a little thought experiment. If you opened up your refrigerator at home, and saw something greenish white, with little holes in it, you would assume it was cheese. Any rational person would do the same. Why then, should the case of an object in the sky be any different? Logically, we should assume the same thing – the Moon is white, the Moon has holes, and therefore it is cheese. But don’t take my word for it -- I have statistical facts to back up that statement.
MODERATOR: Well let’s get into those statistics. As you know, for a long time Moon Is Made Of Cheese theory was based largely on doctrine. Poems, literature, and the like insisted that the Moon was cheese-based. But you say your Celestial Foodstuffs theory incorporates new evidence.
CARL: That’s right. Let’s first look at the so-called “scientific” theory that is taught in our schools today. Scientists tell us that the Moon is a huge ball of rock, circling – in astronomical terms – right next to the Earth, another huge ball of rock. Now I ask you, does this make sense? Does it seem likely that two balls of rock would be found right next to each other in space? Let’s look at the math. According to scientists, the ratio of empty space to rock in the universe is enormous. Jump anywhere in space and you are likely to find yourself in a totally rock-free zone. Considering this, what are the chances that two balls of rock would appear right next to each other in the vast enormity of space? I’ve performed the calculations, and the answer is: nil. Of all the places for a ball of rock to appear, right next to the Earth is so unlikely as to be statistically impossible. So we’re left with the question – if a ball of rock could not appear next to the Earth, what might the Moon in fact be? And of course, the only other possibility is a ball of cheese.
MARK: That’s totally ridiculous. You’re assuming that the Moon just appeared randomly out of nowhere. No scientist would argue that. You’ve ignored everything we know about the development of solar systems, planets, and moons. What’s more, even if you could prove that our Moon was not made of rock, there’s no reason to assume that cheese is the only other alternative. What are the chances of a ball of cheese appearing next to the earth?
CARL: I would love to give you that calculation, and believe me, I am working on it. The problem is, because science has totally ignored the possibility of Celestial Foodstuffs, we have no data about the ratio of cheese to empty space in the universe! Until science takes our theory seriously, we will have to gather that data on our own, and that takes time.
MARK: Science has no reason to study cheese ratios in the universe. We’ve never found cheese anywhere except here on Earth. On the other hand, we have found loads and loads of rock on the Moon. How do you explain that?
CARL: Mark is referring here to so-called “rock evidence,” gathered on the Moon by astronauts, that scientists claim proves their case. I don’t have to tell you that this evidence is spotty at best. Astronauts have only set foot on a very small fraction of the Moon. The Moon rocks they’ve gathered show us only tiny pieces of what the total composition of the Moon might be. Here’s a little thought experiment: imagine you are a tiny astronaut on the Moon. You come to Earth and land in Wisconsin, a region rich in cheese. In fact, your spaceship lands on a large cheese wheel. You get out of your ship, take some samples, and bring them back to the Moon. There, your Moon scientists analyze the samples, and determine that the Earth must be made of cheese! I think we can all see how NASA has made this very mistake. They’ve sent their astronauts to a couple isolated locations on the Moon that contain some rock. But we’ve seen no samples from the vast regions between those scattered Moon landings. They bring us back tiny pieces of the puzzle and expect us to jump to conclusions along with them. But there is no reason to make that jump! The Moon is no more made of rock than the Earth is made of cheese.
MARK: Carl is right. We don’t have samples from every inch of the Moon. Trying to collect them would be a logistical nightmare. We don’t have the resources to send millions of missions to the Moon to take samples in every direction. Luckily, we don’t need to do so. The samples we have from the Moon paint the larger picture, and every one of them is consistent with the moon being made of rock. We can’t prove that every inch of the Moon is rock, but we have shown that possibility to be far and away the most likely. I’d like to ask Carl, are you saying it’s a coincidence that every time we landed on the Moon, we just happened to be on a huge platform of rock?
CARL: I don’t know, Mark. That’s not for me to prove. You’re the one saying the whole Moon is rock. You’re the one saying that’s the only theory our children should hear.
MARK: We may not have rock from every corner of the Moon, but one thing we’ve never found is cheese!
CARL: That’s what science would like us to believe. But I suspect that scientists may be hiding cheese evidence, for fear that it would demolish their case. It wouldn’t be the first time science perpetrated a fraud. Let me call your attention to the Buzz Aldrin fiasco. As you know, in 1982 Mister Aldrin was caught telling a girl in a bar that some rocks in his pocket were authentic Moon rocks. But subsequent chemical tests proved that those rocks were from a ranch in Montana! Do you deny that this was a case of clear-cut lies?
MARK: Yes, we’ve all heard about the Buzz incident. But let me point out that it was scientists who discovered that fraud, and publicly debunked it! The beauty of science is that every claim is rigorously tested by a large number of individuals.
CARL: Nevertheless, we can see how scientists are perfectly capable of misleading the public. What’s more, I am not convinced that the samples brought back from the Moon are rock at all. A careful look at those samples shows that they are indistinguishable from old, hardened cheese! Anyone who has let cheese sit out for a couple days in a cold, dry climate – such as that on the Moon – knows that cheese can harden to a remarkably rock-like consistency. Imagine how hard cheese could get after a couple billion years spent orbiting the Earth! Thus, science has not proven that their samples are non-cheese.
MARK: Just because you say it could be cheese, doesn’t make it true! Are you a geologist? Have you ever taken a chemistry class?
CARL: Ah, again, we see the appeals to scientific elitism. As if regular people aren’t smart enough to understand the complexities of lunar study.
MARK: You’re the one who is treating this audience like idiots.
CARL: Mark, Mark, Mark. Science has tried again and again to beat down CF theory, and failed every time. Scientists said the Moon could not be cheese, because cheese has little holes and the Moon has big ones. We replied that a piece of cheese as big as the Moon would naturally have bigger holes. They said a piece of cheese that large would require an enormous cow to provide the milk. We replied that enormous cows may very well live right outside our solar system. They said a piece of cheese that large would emit an odor so strong –
MARK: Scientists never said any of those things! You’re making up arguments just to knock them down!
CARL: Be that as it may, your research has never looked into any of these possibilities! Have you constructed a giant cheese smell-o-meter and sent it into orbit as CF supporters have demanded? Why not? Are you afraid of what such a smell-o-meter might find?
MARK: You’re talking nonsense. Scientists don’t have time to chase down every half-baked theory that gets thrown at them. We work based on what we know. We know that the only materials ever brought back from the moon were rock. Nobody has ever shown evidence of cheese composition. You can’t expect us to take twelve steps backwards just to satisfy your idiotic demands.
CARL: But you don’t know that the whole moon is rock. You can’t be positive. You’ve only studied a tiny fraction of the moon.
MARK: A countless number of separate experiments have all arrived at the same result.
CARL: But you don’t know for sure. It’s possible that the moon is made of cheese.
MARK: It is extremely unlikely. It is so unlikely it doesn’t even warrant consideration.
CARL: But it’s possible?
MARK: Fine, yes, I suppose it’s possible, in the sense that any incredibly unlikely thing is still possible.
CARL: Exactly. And that is precisely why Celestial Foodstuffs Theory should be taught alongside MIMOR theory in school science classes. We just don’t know which is true. Millions of Americans believe firmly that the Moon is cheese, and their views should be addressed.
MARK: You’re talking about teaching something in a science class that no reputable scientist believes.
CARL: Well why should scientists have a monopoly on science? I say, let the public in. Anybody with an idea they feel passionately about deserves to have that idea taught to children in the public schools.
MARK: That’s absurd. Why even have science classes if you’re not going to teach established science?
CARL: All we ask is for our children to learn the truth.
MARK: Whose truth?
CARL: Well mine, of course. The Moon is made of cheese, Mark. It’s about time you stopped arguing and just accepted that fact.
independent, professional advice regarding an offer from a
friend to become involved in an invention that he describes
“A liquid is introduced into an apparatus which is rigid and static with no energy-storage devices such as batteries or springs. Part of the liquid volume remains at the bottom and forms a reservoir while part of it is drawn up into the apparatus to a point from which it proceeds to return to the reservoir in a continuous non-stop series of drops”. Is this even possible and if so what is the value of such an invention?
I’m skeptical. Please help me decide. I don’t want to anger my friend, but I’m afraid that I will unless I have an authoritative reason to refuse his offer. As this is over my head. I ask for your help.
|Response:||It is possible, from the description, that the device could have an external energy source, in which case he could be describing a typical garden fountain. Without the external energy source, he is describing a perpetual motion machine. Such machines are generally considered impossible because they violate the first law of thermodynamics. The professionals at the US Patent Office don't accept applications for perpetual motion machines without a working version because all claims for such machines have been bogus.|
|Comment:||Several friends and I have read articles here with great interest. One question that popped up is, how could we go about getting our DNA tested to see where our own mitochondrial lineage might lie? Inquiring minds want to know. *grins*|
|Response:||There are several laboratories that do mitochondrial DNA testing. For instance, I typed "mitochondrial DNA testing" into a search engine and came up with Mitotyping Technologies, LLC. This may be an expensive procedure, however.|
|Author of:||Fossil Hominids: mitochondrial DNA|
|Response:||Bryan Sykes, the author of The Seven Daughters of Eve, has set up a business that does exactly what you want: Oxford Ancestors: Putting Genes in Genealogy It costs US$220 - not exactly cheap, but affordable for most people if you're interested enough!|
|Comment:||I just stumbled into your site. I'm very sorry that I didn't find you earlier. Excellent work!!! For the past few years, there has been a steady stream of Creation supporting articles in the Forum section of our local newspaper. Some are clearly the product of a deranged, tormented minds, but they continue to appear with regularity. An example from the last issue was as follows: "Of course, teaching evolution has been fruitful. It provided the ideological foundation for nazism, communism, racism, abortion, and atheism". One can only suspect that hangnails and hemorrhoids may soon be added to the list. I've only recently begun to realize the profound depth of hatred and distrust that fundamentalist religions have for science. Keep up the fight!|
believe the time spent and the care taken to make this
archive--great job! Your patience with the creationists is
mind-boggling. I'm afraid I tend to just dismiss them and
think longingly that we may some day find a cure for
Keep up the good job!
This is a quick question, what do you say about ridiculous
sites like this one?
What a bunch of garbage! If you haven't already trashed this site please do so. What a pile of crap.
|Response:||Although it may sometimes seem to the contrary, this site is really not concerned with "trashing" other sites. The web site in question here is by Harun Yahya, a Turkish creationist. His views appear to be little more than a rehashing of arguments espoused by young-earth creationists found in America. To that extent, the arguments he raised should be (in most part, at least) already covered by this archive. As always, we leave it to our readers to examine our site, examine other sites, and most importantly, read the peer-reviewed literature to decide for themselves.|
you evolutionists have to come to grips with is that if you
believe in molecules-to-man evolution; you have to believe
that matter somehow generated information systems. Over
millions of years as one kind of animal changes into
another you have to have a continual increase in
Think about it. If reptiles are going to turn into birds, reptiles don't have feathers, birds do, where does the information for feathers(which are complex structions like hair folicules) come from? Its not in the genes of a reptile!
See, you evolutionists have to propose that over millions of years new information keeps being generated from matter and somehow added into the genes.
The problem? It doesn't happen. Its impossible. You know this. So you say "Oh, but mutations."
In High School I was given the example that when bacteria becomes resistant to antibodies thats evolution! Funny thing is when you understand it its actually the opposite of evolution.
Because they lose the ability to do something which can actually cause them to become resistant. Thats the opposite of evolution.
They are actually losing information. Science has never observed information being CREATED to further evolution!
They still can't show me where information is being created. If they did I'd have a lot easier time seeing how a lizard could grow feathers.
|Author of:||Creation Science and the Earth's Magnetic Field|
problem? It doesn't happen. Its impossible. You know this.
So you say "Oh, but mutations."
Actually, it is very possible, very probable, and in fact unavoidable. That is what I actually know, as opposed to what I have been told I know.
The claim that it is impossible to create new information is a fiction based on an erroneous choice for the measure of information.
|Comment:||So far I have read many of the responses to questions. Quite frankly, I find the responses nonscientific. They continuously say that we have evidence, but never report it. Having someone writing a statement in a response is proof of nothing. Well maybe it's proof of what they believe, but that's not science. In many instances the proofs of evolution, macro or micro are based on presupposition that evolution occurs. When the response writers answer questions they just simply state answers, not give evidence. It is always just a statement that they suppose is true or fact. I want the facts not the statement of fact. Supporters of evolution talk like democrates and republicans arguing over who is right. That is not evidence. That is opinion. Science is not to be opinion it is to be reliable, testable, results where no other conclusion can result. Evolution has not been proven so don't say it has. Lets see you do in a lab today. It can't even really be tested. Now if I'm wrong don't tell me, show me the tests and let me reach my own conclusions. If it is true, I should be able to reach the conclusion all on my own without the researcher guiding me to the truth. That's not science. Where do I get the research without the conclusion based on presupposition?|
|Response:||I'm not sure
what you expect from this feedback. It is intended to
contain short answers to questions that readers of this
archive have. We cannot possibly--nor do we intend to try
to--provide all of the scientific evidence for evolution in
a couple of paragraphs.
Rather than criticizing these feedback responses for something they were never intended to provide, why not instead read some of the articles on this site? They go into far more detail discussing the scientific evidence for evolution, and also contain references to the peer-reviewed literature that goes into much greater detail about the evidence. You might learn that a few of your preconceptions are wrong. For instance, evolution can be and has been tested, both in the lab and in the field. Try looking at our Must-Read Files section for starters.
|Comment:||I think this is a really nice web site, but I will always only believe that God made us and the world and I truly believe with all my heart that that is all that matters.|
|Comment:||I have been doing research for a paper in me class in college and am trying to present both sides of the origin of life. I came to your web site to try to obtain some information regarding evidence of transitional features in life forms and I was supremely dissapointed by the information presented. Being open-minded, and without bias when it comes to truth, I found it disheartening that this web site was nothing more than a bunch of criticism of creationists. I did not find one person who was more devoted to truth then the art of criticism. Sorry, not impressed.|
The art of criticism is much improved by specificity. The anonymous reader doesn't like something he found here about transitional fossils. That's rather vague. It doesn't even tell us which of several pages might have irritated the self-proclaimed unbiased reader.
Somehow, I can't picture our intrepid reader here as Diogenes reincarnate.
|Comment:||If evolution is true, then evolution is on going. If so, then what are we, as humans evolving into ? Are we going to grow wings and fly one day ? Also where are the half ape-half human people that are still evolving into humans ? If mutation is a loss of information, then how did we become what we are today ? If we were cut, the enzyme would have to command the protein to go clot, but if the enzyme and the protein evolved seperatley, then how could you live if you were cut ? The protein would not know what to do becuase it was given no command.. therefore you would die.. if the enzyme came first .. why would it if it served no purpose.. as in no protein to command to clot blood. My last question...if the world blew into existance.. what did it blow from ? a cosmic egg ? where did the egg come from ? WHat about the sun growing smaller over time. wouldnt life be kinda hard to live on the hot scorched earth since the sun was so much bigger so you say millions of years ago. Where you there to witness any of these assumptions of how you all think life evolved into what it is today ? my case rests|
|Author of:||The Recession of the Moon and the Age of the Earth-Moon System|
then what are we, as humans evolving into?
In the short run, a different type of human. A smarter type, if we are lucky. In the long run, nobody can tell. It depends on the details of the future, which are unpredictable. So, in the long run, the question is impossible to answer.
Also where are the half ape-half human people that are still evolving into humans?
Of course there aren't any, and there is no aspect of evolutionary theory which would imply that there should be any, so the question does not make sense.
As for the evolution of blood clotting, see Is the Complement System Irreducibly Complex?, part of the T.O archive FAQ Irreducible Complexity and Michael Behe. There are sound scientific descriptions of blood clotting evolution.
If the world blew into existance .. what did it blow from?
Nobody knows. In fact, nobody knows that the universe "blew into existence" (it almost certainly did not, even within the confines of the Big Bang models of cosmology). The Belgian Jesuit priest & astronomer Georges Lemaître called it a "primordial atom". But most cosmologists recognize the Big Bang models as being descriptions of how the universe evolved, not how it began. The assumption that the universe blinked into existence "from nothing" is far too simplistic. We simply don't know what the state of the universe was before the event we call the Big Bang. In the setting of string theory, it may even be that the "bang" was a collision between space-time structures of larger geometric dimensionality. See Paul Steinhardt's webpage at Princeton, for stuff about the cyclic model & "ekpyrotic" cosmological models. Also see Ned Wright's Cosmology Tutorial for more material on Big Bang cosmology.
What about the sun growing smaller over time?
The sun is not growing smaller over time (see the Shrinkage section of The Solar FAQ: Solar Neutrinos and Other Solar Oddities in the T.O archive, and my own Response to the Shrinking Sun Argument.
my case rests
And one might enquire "on what"?
people regarding Harold Slusher's education credentials. He
has been a professor in the University of Texas El Paso for
There is nothing fundamentally immoral providing any honorary degree a person obtains (which is quite common), but to completely leave out earned degrees is dishonest and manipulative.
Perhaps you might find it of interest to visit:
I agree that leaving out an earned degree would be a bad thing, but so far as I can tell our page does no such thing.
There is a difference between holding an academic position and earning a degree. An assistant professorship is not the same thing as an earned doctorate.
If you do know of a legitimate earned doctoral degree for Slusher, please do give us the details. I tried searching for "slusher" in the URL provided, but his name did not appear to be mentioned. Since the URL seems to have nothing to do with the issue of Slusher's educational history, I'm not sure why it was cited.
suppose that life came from some sort of self replicating
molecule (aside, how did it come to be that DNA could be
transcripted to mRNA and tRNA and then into protiens? This
is too complex for evolution)that eventualy became some
sort of pot-bacterium. How could it power itself? It would
have not mitacondria. How could it reproduce? It would have
no mate. How could it eat? There would be no plants and all
organisms either eat plants, other animals or "eat"
sunlight. Bacteria also live for a very short time, which
means that the first life would be starving, without means
to reproduce and dead within fifteen minuets.
Thats right, it's not an organisms internal complexity that proves creationism, its the intracasies of ecosystems and the impossibility of making one from scratch.
"Educated Creationist's" first question regarding the
origin of the DNA to RNA to "protiens" [sic] process, I
personally cannot answer this question (though someone else
might be able to say something about it). As far as I am
aware this question is part of the problem of the origin of
life from non-life for which there is currently no strong
theory. And since the process leading to the origin of life
is currently unknown it is impossible to calculate any
probabilities regarding it and therefore Educated's claim
that this is "too complex for evolution" is merely a bald
Educated then asks how the first (pot?) bacteria could "power itself" without "mitacondria" [sic]. Given that "Educated Creationist" is "educated" there should be no need for me to point out that in fact no bacteria (prokaryote) has mitochondria. Only eukaryotic organisms have mitochondria. So by Educated's logic all the bacteria that have lived for the last three billion years or so have not in fact lived at all. An interesting aside here is that eukaryotic mitochondria and chloroplasts are thought to have originally been free-living bacteria that formed symbiotic relationships with the early eukaryotes, a process known as endosymbiosis.
Next Educated wants to know where the bacterial Adam found his Eve. Fortunately for our prokaryotic Adam most bacteria reproduce asexually by simply dividing into two new cells, no mate needed. Note: Some bacteria do exchange genetic information through a process called conjugation, a simple form of sex.
Finally Educated asks what the first bacteria would eat. Well, Educated gives one possible answer in his/her question. Sunlight. And in fact some of the earliest fossils are of colonies of cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) known as stromatolites that lived on sunlight just as cyanobacteria do today. However many researchers believe that still earlier forms of bacteria lived off of various chemicals found in nature much like species of bacteria that live today in the deep sea feeding on hydrogen sulfide which flows from hydrothermal vents.
For more information on hydrothermal vents and the bacteria that live near them see Ancient Bacteria, Hot Vents, and Hydrothermal Vents: "Hot springs" on the sea floor near mid-ocean ridge crests.
"Educated Creationist" may want his/her tuition money back.
|Comment:||I am researching the Creation/evolution debate and I am looking for some help. I'm having trouble finding actual demonstrations of the mechanism of natural selection which are justified in being extrapolated to argue for macroevolution. I am not a young-earth creationist because I believe that what ICR and others like them pass as science is very poor science indeed. However, I get frustrated because I can't seem to find any writings by Darwinian evolutionists who take the time to engage in respectful discussions with those who fall outside of the Darwinian camp, but who are most assuridly not young-earth creationists. I would welcome any discussion via email, on the actual, observable, testable evidence for macroevolution. Most of what I am finding consists of "just so" stories, hand-waving and circular arguments. Obviously, many creationsists and other opponents of Darwinian evolution do this as well, so don't take this as a one-sided attack of evolution in general. I just have questions that have not been answered in the course of my research.|
|Response:||You're in luck. We have an article on this very topic. See the 29+ Evidences for Macroevolution FAQ.|
sleep, and it's your fault. I've lost track of the number
of nights I've been running through this site, reading
everything I can find, only to look at the clock and see
two or three in the morning. It's been worth it, your site
has been a godsend. Thank you.
ice core project:
How many layers do the researchers assume were added each year? Our assumptions strongly affect conclusions from data. And our conclusions in one area may affect our assumptions in another. If our assumptions are erroneous, what is the likelihood of our conclusions being correct?
For example, if I assume roughly 20 layers were added each year, on average, and 110,000 is the correct count of layers, then the ice core is about five or six thousand years old. This is about when I already believe God flooded the earth.
Note that what I already believe can influence my assumptions about the Greenland ice core.
|Author of:||Creation Science and the Earth's Magnetic Field|
Greenland Ice Core Project, and the Greenland Ice Sheet
Project 2 are only two of many ice core projects (see
the National Ice
Core Laboratory Science Management Office webpage).
The assumption is that the layers are annual, so 110,000 layers is 110,000 years. But this is not an arbitrary assumption. Pollen lands on the ice seasonally, as do other environmental tracers like dust. These are used to calibrate that ice cores in time. The isotopic ratios in atmospheric gas are also known to vary seasonally. These too are used to pin down the annual nature of the layers. The process is not perfect, and sometimes annual layers melt together or become otherwise indistinguishable. But this is taken into account when the time length for the core is determined.
|From:||David MacMillan III|
|Comment:||Hi- I am a
9th grade homeschooled student who is an ardent supporter
of creation. I would like you to check out
www.answersingenesis.org. They have a lot of evidence for
creation (that is, against evolution). I do not believe
that anyone can give me any good evidence for
MACROevolution. Darwin's famous finches are a wonderful
example of MICROevolution. Macroevolution is impossible
because mutations are NEVER beneficial. Any mutation
remotely beneficial has awful side affects. The second law
of Thermodynamics (the most rigirously tested law in
science) prohibitsss macroevolution.
David MacMillan III 240 Buffalo Trace Wichester, KY 40391
|Author of:||Meteorite Dust and the Age of the Earth|
|Response:||There is no
truth to the claim that the 2nd law (or any other law) of
thermodynamics prohibits macroevolution. In fact, I would
say quite the contrary, that thermodynamics makes
macroevolution an inevitability. See, in this archive, Thermodynamics, Evolution and
Creationism. Also see Entropy,
God and Evolution and
Note on Entropy, Disorder and Organization (the last
one might be too technical, but it does get to the reality
of the matter in detail).
It may well be that nobody can ever convince you that macroevolution may be real, especially if you have already decided that you will not be convinced. However, from the practicing scientist viewpoint, I ponder a question which no creationist has ever satisfactorily answered, so far as I know. And that is this: What physical process, or law of nature, prevents microevolution from inevitably leading to macroevolution? The usual attempt at an answer is to claim that "information" in the genome can never increase, but that is an easily destroyed argument (see How to Measure Information).
So maybe you can take my question to your homeschoolers and provide me with the long sought answer. I'm sure we all would like to know, over here in the land of Talk.Origins.
|Response:||Two things that Tim did not cover in his response:|
|Comment:||You guys really make me mad. Do you know how it is?? This is supposed to be a CREATION/EVOLUTION debate site not an evolution- lets smash creation site so fix ur attitude ~G4G|
|Author of:||Creation Science and the Earth's Magnetic Field|
|Response:||This site is
"supposed to be" neither more nor less than what it says it
is, like anything else. And here is what it says it is, on
the very first page of the archive: The
Talk.Origins Archive is a collection of articles and
essays, most of which have appeared in talk.origins at one
time or another. The primary reason for this archive's
existence is to provide mainstream scientific
responses to the many frequently asked questions (FAQs) and
frequently rebutted assertions that appear in the
Our attitude is what we have always said it was. And we are what we are supposed to be.
Can you please comment on the accuracy and validity of C14 dating tests, or any other dating tests? It has been reported that such tests are calibrated before hand and therefore almost always made to produce the expected results.
Thanks in anticipation
|Author of:||The Recession of the Moon and the Age of the Earth-Moon System|
& precision of any measurement are always functions of
how carefully it's done. Sloppy work begets unreliable
results. Careful work begets more reliable results. It is
certainly not true that any radiometric dating tool is
"calibrated before hand" in the obvious sense of this
message (i.e., "rigged"), in the vast majority of cases
(i.e., the honest ones).
Also keep in mind that 14C dating is usually only reliable out to about 40,000 years, though I think one could push it to 60,000 years with newer, high precision techniques. So, in the context of methods used to determine the few billion years age for the Earth, 14C dating is not really relevant.
For details, see the following entries in the Talk.Origins archive.
|Comment:||Hi, I really like your site. I was reading the information you have on the ancestry of modern humans. The author said that humans first appeared around 120,000 years ago, but the earliest fossil evidence on this site is from around 25,000 years ago. I was just wondering if there is any fossil evidence to show that humans first appeared around 120,000 years ago, or is this just the date that modern science thinks they probobly started appearing. Thanks.|
|Response:||The fossil evidence (and other evidence) on modern humans dates from around 120,000 years ago (see the Hominid Species FAQ). The Hominid Fossils page on this site lists and displays only some of the most historically important fossil discoveries.|
that evolution is taught quite often as fact is the biggest
lie to cross this continent since its discovery. Evolution
on a macro level is bad science and nothing more then
frauds and dreams of poor scientists and arthropologies.
Example in point. The supposed fossil link between dinosaurs and birds, a bird-like reptile found in China. Turned out to be yet another fraud on the evolutionist landscape, just like Nananderthal Man, just like the famed "Lucy" which Leaky himself admits he found the leg bone in strata 200 feet deeper a half a mile away. But what is the real tragedy is that evolutionist or bad scientists have managed to teach millions of people around the world that they evolved from primordial goo by chance and natural selection. The biggest hoax of the 20 century. Even worse is the knowledge of the incredible complexity of just one protein matrix let alone DNA with all of its sequencing which is information, PROOF OF INTELIGENT DESIGN. Yet many scientist continue to blatently continue to ignore the obvious physical laws of the universe including the 2nd law of thermodynamics to imbrace some ridicluous theory which is PROVEN to be mathematically impossible anyway you slice it. Derek Boudreau 571-278-0823 cell
is very typical of the feedback we receive quite regularly
here. It's full of inflated rhetoric, unjustified
conclusions, false claims and misspellings as
less-than-thorough understanding of the subject those
claims are being made about. I'm going to ignore the
inflated rhetoric and just look at the specific factual
The supposed fossil link between dinosaurs and birds, a bird-like reptile found in China. Turned out to be yet another fraud on the evolutionist landscape
The reference here is to Archaeoraptor, a fossil reported on in National Geographic in 1999. It turned out to be a combination of at least 2 different fossils, glued together. But your claim that this was "the supposed fossil link between dinosaurs and birds" is false. It was actually only the latest in a long line of feathered theropods that are intermediate between dinosaurs and birds. And it is important to note that it was found to be a forgery by paleontologists doing their jobs, examining the evidence. It is an example of how science self-corrects, as this particular specimen never made it through peer review. That's how science operates, and it works quite well.
just like Nananderthal (sic) Man
I presume you mean Neanderthal Man. I have no idea why you listed this as "yet another fraud". What is fraudulent about Neanderthalensis? There are literally hundreds of specimens extent.
just like the famed "Lucy" which Leaky (sic) himself admits he found the leg bone in strata 200 feet deeper a half a mile away
This is an ideal example of how a completely false claim gets made among creationists, gets repeated over and over as it gets retold, and changes as it is passed on. Yet every time it is repeated, it is said as though it were credible. Alas, it is not. The demonstration of why this claim is false is to be found at Lucy's Knee Joint: A Case Study in Creationists' Willingness to Admit their Errors.
Information on the "mathematical impossibility" of abiogenesis can be found at Lies, Damned Lies, Statistics, and Probability of Abiogenesis Calculations
Thermodynamics is dealt with at Thermodynamics, Evolution and Creationism
|Comment:||I am wondering about your mission. Are you on a mission to teach creationism or are you in competition with others? I had stumbled upon your slashing of Carl Baugh's credentials. What was your intent? Is your focus on teaching the truth about creationism or knocking out your competition. I dont think that article was very informative or constructive to say the least. Matter of fact to squash a fellow creationist is un-Godly and unprofessional to say the least.|
God charges Christians with upholding truth and exposing falsehoods. Telling it like it is about liars is Godly, IMHO, whether they happen to share one's views on creation or not. If creationism is about telling lies, then telling the truth would indeed be "unprofessional" for a creationist.
About the mission... Perhaps the reader should check out the Welcome page again.
I overheard some people (ok, my parents) talking about a "Geneticist in Utah" working on Ancestry who wants to get everyones DNA. Then he will try and determine who is going to go to 'hell' or 'heaven'" <<shrug>>
I would be greatful if you could give me a link if you know of this (its a humerous subject).
Thanks again! And keep up the GREAT site!!!
discussion may have been referring to the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-Day Saints (the Mormons). Mormon doctrine
holds that family relationships continue after death. It
also holds that a person's deceased ancestors can also
receive the blessings of being eternally united with their
families. For this purpose, Church members make covenants
in temples in behalf of their ancestors, who may accept
these covenants, if they so choose, in the spirit world. In
order to do so, however, the person must be able to
identify those ancestors; thus, the Mormons place a strong
emphasis on genealogy and have one of the most complete
genealogical databases in the world.
Here are a couple of links that might interest you on this topic:
|Comment:||If Evolution were a fact then why has no "SCIENTIST" accepted Dr. Hovinds 250,000.00 challenge? Looks like the evidence is lacking.|
|Response:||The short answer is that "Dr." Hovind's offer has been carefully (and dishonestly) crafted so that nobody will ever be able to win it. For more information, take a look at John Pieret's FAQ on Kent Hovind's $250,000 Offer.|