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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Rebuttals to Darwinists

I was asked to provide some rebuttals (and even rebuttals to rebuttals to rebuttals, etc.) to claims made by site like talkorigins or commenters to this blog. Here you go!

A Critique of Douglas Theobald’s “29 Evidences for Macroevolution”
"I am convinced that various groups of organisms had an independent, nonevolutionary origin. More specifically, I believe the founding members of these groups were created miraculously and separately by God. Douglas Theobald, on the other hand, is convinced that all organisms (except the first) descended from a single, original species.

In “29 Evidences for Macroevolution,” Dr. Theobald sets forth the evidence that he believes proves scientifically that all organisms share the same biological ancestor. In this critique, I argue that his evidence is insufficient to establish that proposition."

Problems with a Global Flood?
"In one sense, it’s good to see articles like that by Mark Isaak, where the author displays his contempt for Scripture [and I don’t simply mean questioning biblical literalism, but direct mocking attacks against the Christian belief that the Bible is the inerrant written Word of God that “cannot be broken” as Christ Himself believed (John 10:35)], yet feigns concern that “a global flood makes the whole Bible less credible.” How do police investigators normally treat statements by witnesses who are blatantly dishonest?"

The next post includes links to point/counterpoint dialogues between the author and evolutionists who oppose his view.

Thermodynamics vs. Evolutionism
"The second law presents an insurmountable problem to the concept of a natural, mechanistic process: (1) by which the physical universe could have formed spontaneously from nothing, and (2) by which biological life could have arisen and diversified (also spontaneously) from a non-living, inanimate world. (Both postulates form essential planks in the platform of evolutionary theory in general.)

While many highly qualified scientists who number themselves in the camp of evolutionism are candid enough to acknowledge this problem, the propagandists of evolution prefer to claim the only “problem” is that creationists “misunderstand” real thermodynamics."

The next one is a replay, but it is good enough for a second helping for those who may have missed it:

Five Major Evolutionist Misconceptions about Evolution
"A major reason why evolutionist arguments can sound so persuasive is because they often combine assertive dogma with intimidating, dismissive ridicule towards anyone who dares to disagree with them. Evolutionists wrongly believe that their views are validated by persuasive presentations invoking scientific terminology and allusions to a presumed monopoly of scientific knowledge and understanding on their part. But they haven’t come close to demonstrating evolutionism to be more than an ever-changing theory with a highly questionable and unscientific basis. (The situation isn’t helped by poor science education generally. Even advanced college biology students often understand little more than the dogma of evolutionary theory, and few have the time [or the guts] to question its scientific validity.)"

Because the rebuttal to the above has been mentioned, here is the rebuttal to the rebuttal:

Tim Wallace answers Wayne Duck
"Wallace’s response to Duck’s critique of Wallace’s rebuttal of Mark Isaak."


Simon Peter said...

The article (perhaps better described as a paper) on Thermodynamics was very interesting. It brought back to mind much of what I had previously learned in Physics and Meta-Physics and assured me that my understanding was correct and that entropy is increasing in both closed and open systems.

cranky old fart said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
cranky old fart said...

By the way, just so you're prepared, Highboy was curious about who you were, so I quoted you from your site about those damned 3 year olds,

Your fellow fundy had this to say in response:

"Simon is wrong. You know that of course, but I thought you'd like to hear a Christian say how utterly ridiculous that notion is".

Here was your quote by the way:

"Babies and children up to the age of moral majority (no specific age given in the scriptures) are judged according to their parents"

Why aren't you guys on the same page. I mean, that inerrant text is clear as a bell, no?

Anonymous said...

29+ Evidences for Macroevolution: A Response to Ashby Camp's "Critique"

"Anti-evolutionist Ashby Camp has penned a critique of these "29 Evidences of Macroevolution," which can be found posted at TrueOrigin. Camp's critique is well-written, very thorough, and quite lengthy (the criticism is longer than the original article). Although I intend to address Camp's concerns in totality, currently I can only devote a limited amount of time to this effort. In the meantime, this partial response will suffice . . . "

"Problems with a Global Flood?
More Nonsense on "TRUE.ORIGINS":Jonathan Sarfati's Support Of Flood Geology

"Young-Earth creationist (YEC) Jonathan D. Sarfati has written a responseProblems with a Global Flood? to Mark Isaak's Problems with a Global Flood(at the Talk.Origins Archive). In this report, I will discuss some of the problems in Sarfati's response and provide additional reasons why "Flood geology" is bogus. Sarfati's report also contains a lot of unnecessary and childish name-calling against Mark Isaak and others, which says something about Sarfati's level of maturity and objectivity"

Followed your link to Sarfari's article, found this: "[predators] can even survive on vegetables if they must. " (answering what they would eat).

Don't try this with a pet cat! As the Vegetarian Society of the UK points out:
"Although it is possible to keep dogs on a vegetarian diet satisfactorily, cats are more specialised and you are advised to consider carefully before changing your cat to a vegetarian diet* . . .
Cats require certain nutrients from meat that cannot be obtained in sufficient amounts from plant foods. These include taurine, arachidonic acid, vitamin A, and vitamin B12.

. . .Taurine is an amino acid essential for cats but not for other mammals. In the prolonged absence of taurine, a cat's retina slowly degenerates and the cat suffers eye problems and can become irreversibly blind . . . The only rich source is meat.

Arachidonic acid
. . . cats lack the necessary enzymes to synthesise arachidonic acid and so a dietary source is essential. . . . Meat is the only major source. Arachidonic acid deficiency takes some time to develop but its effect on the cat is profound.

Vitamin A
Cats cannot utilise the provitamin A of vegetables and therefore require preformed vitamin A (retinol) which occurs only in animal foods. There are only small quantities of vitamin A in eggs and dairy produce. The richest source is liver.

Vitamin B12
Cat's cannot synthesise their own vitamin B12 and a dietary source is necessary. Vitamin B12 is present only in animal products.

Unlike other mammals, cats cannot synthesise useful quantities of this vitamin from protein and therefore require a good dietary supply. . . . A diet based on cereals, milk and eggs will always be deficient in niacin for cats. Meat is a rich source . . ."

[The obvious reply is that cat's obligate carnivory only evolved after the Flood. Evidence? Ha! Evidence, shmevidence. It's not a Just-So story if it's in the Bible! (Oh, wait. It isn't? This is just creationists devising ways that the Flood account could have worked?) Ah . . . It's not a Just-So story if it backs up the Bible!

"Thermodynamics vs. Evolutionism"
Thermodynamics for Two, Please

"Thermodynamics" sounds really scientific, and intimidating as all get out. We've all known people who drop names, or toss around impressive jargon to make themselves look important or smart. And we've probably all seen someone who, showing off, misuses a technical word, or otherwise goofs up, and manages to make a complete fool of himself in the presence of a real expert. I've even known people who, thus caught out, try to maintain the bluff and make fun of the truly knowledgable person, in an effort to save face before their friends. We've all seen that, especially among children."

Another very nice essay on this site is
"Why can't scientists just leave genesis alone? Why do they always have to poke around into the origins of things? Why couldn't Darwin have just stuck to studying insects and barnacles? We already had an explanation for the origin of life (in a book called Genesis) -- wasn't that good enough? Since scientific discoveries of the origins of living things seem to upset some people, why don't we just drop it? What difference does it make, anyway?
Well, it makes a BIG difference."

Many of the short-and-sweet examples he gives will be dismissed as just microevolution (ignoring how an earlier generation of creationists ferociously opposed any evolution (had they gained power, as Lysenkoism did in the old USSR, it's possible we would be struggling to feed ourselves), and how little else has changed. The last example is very different, however, and speaks to how the creationist 'orchard model' of immutable kinds destroys so much of modern biology's ability to tell us about the world, how it renders so much of genetics and cutting edge biomedical research random and meaningless. It's the story of Baby Fae, the infant who was given a baboon heart when a human heart was not available to replace her own failing organ. When after a few weeks the poor baby died, the doctor was asked, more or less: it was so risky, she probably would have died no matter what, why on earth did you worsen the odds by using a baboon heart?! Why not a chimp heart, in the hope that the closer relationship would help matters? His reply, as apparently reported in the Times of London: it wasn't a consideration, since he didn't believe in education.

Running death toll: Creationism 1, Evolution 0.

Although - this claim shows up in reputable-looking places, but it makes me worried. Will do more research. Anyone hear anything about it being debunked or affirmed?

And what does creationism think about genetic engineered plants and animals?
(this could be fun, because this is where I hit my 'all evidence must finally conform to my beliefs/ideology' bit. I do my best to fight it, superbugs! superweeds! dead monarch butterflies!! but it's rough Monsanto is evil! going . . .

"Five Major Evolutionist Misconceptions about Evolution "
Fundamental Creationist Misunderstanding of Five Major Misconceptions of Evolution (a rebuttal of Timothy Wallace's Five Major Evolutionist Misconceptions of Evolution in the True.Origin Archive)
"A major reason why creationists arguments can sound so persuasive is because they often combine assertive dogma with intimidating, dismissive ridicule towards anyone who dares to disagree with them.  Creationists wrongly believe that their views are validated by persuasive presentations invoking scientific terminology and allusions to a presumed monopoly of divine knowledge and revelation on their part. But they haven't come close to demonstrating creationism to be more than a ever-rigid doctrine with a highly questionable and unscientific basis. (The situation isn't helped by poor science education generally. Even advanced college biology students often understand little more than the dogma of creationism, and few have the time [or the interest] to question its scientific invalidity.)"

* No, I don't know why anyone would put their cat on a vegetarian diet (although my cat probably would like eating vegetarians . . .). I've been a vegetarian for years, and I've never understood this. They're carnivores, for cryin' out loud. If one must, however, supplements are available so one doesn't have to watch their pet go blind and die as a result of being kind to animals and the environment . . .

Anonymous said...

"His reply, as apparently reported in the Times of London: it wasn't a consideration, since he didn't believe in education."

by which I meant to write evolution, obviously.

-Dan S.

Juggling Mother said...

I was pointed in the direction of this site, & I thought you & your readers might like it:-)

It proves how evolution is completely wrong, as it is based on the scientifically flawed assumptions of Copurnicus & heliocentrism.

this ridiculous claim provides the keystone for all evolutionary theories and the age of the earth etc

here's soem extracts:

1) No one--not Copernicus, not Kepler, not Galileo, not Newton, not Einstein--absolutely no one has proven the earth to be moving.

2) The earth moves only thru abstract, abstruse, and esoteric mathematics invented to make it move.

3) Over 200 truly scientific experiments using real mathematics have shown no earth movement, and these had the science establishment in a panic from the 1880's until Einstein came to the rescue in 1905 with his "relativity" hypothesis.

4) Relativity is pure claptrap and there isn't a person reading this who can't know that fact.

5) Foucault's Pendulum, the Coriolis Effect, and geostationary satellites do not prove a moving earth.

An example of pseudoscience in it's truest form:-)

Anonymous said...

radar -
what's the creationist 'rebuttal' for this?

-Dan S.

radar said...

Lunchtime and the comments are ongoing!

Dan, one answer to your link was in this:

"Theo Godwyn on March 14, 2006 12:39 PM writes...

The YEC answer to this is so simple. Rather than human eggs being infected by a virus 98,000 times, perhaps we are using reverse logic. The human DNA did not come from a virus. The viral genetic code (either RNA or DNA) originated in a human. Wouldn't this be a much more reasonable conclusion? Afterall, a virus mutates very rapidly and frequently adopt genetic information from its host.

If this is the case, genetic similarities between monkeys and humans are due to structural and biochemical similarities. The fact that a virus has those same similarities is only due to the fact that the virus has once infected a human or primate host.

They say that the human genome contains 8% viral DNA. Human DNA has 3.5 billion base pairs. They are saying that 280 million of these base pairs come from viruses.

Everytime a virus mutates, it mutates because it has adopted host DNA. The mechanism for adopting host DNA is alot more explainable than a mechanism wherein a egg infected by a virus would survive to pass on this new code. A cell will typically lyse when infected by a virus. Otherwise the virus has no means of reproduction."

Also, I did not say that cats ate vegetables on the Ark and it was not in my post or the linked post by Woodmrappe.

Mrs. A - Many evolutionists, not just creationists, have suggested land bridges between continents such as the bridge between Siberia and Alaska. One such bridge may have existed for the first few years after the flood that linked Australia with the Asian continent.

Frankly, if you believe that self-replicating life simply "happened" somehow a few zillion years ago, then the idea that kangaroos might have hopped across some mud or been lugged along in a ship doesn't seem far-fetched at all.

Jake said...

Except that as scientists, we're not interested in what seems most probable intuitively. We're interested in where the evidence points. And the evidence does not point towards kangaroos hopping from the Middle East to Australia

Jake said...

Oh, and Radar, I responded to Theo's comment on that blog. I'm not sure how long it will take to get through the moderation queue.

Dan, that link was super cool! I love biology! I really should have stayed in that field when I had the chance. Sigh...

Juggling Mother said...

radar the "evolutionists" land bridges were many millions of years ago, and disappeared due to tectonic plate movements and the shifting of the continents. you say all that happened within a month or so, when the earth was flooded. by definition, a flood that covers the whole earth must mean the sea levels were the highest they have ever been. land bridges could not have popped up and down for no reason!

creeper said...


From your post:

"While many highly qualified scientists who number themselves in the camp of evolutionism are candid enough to acknowledge this problem, the propagandists of evolution prefer to claim the only “problem” is that creationists “misunderstand” real thermodynamics." "

What's especially hilarious about this link being presented as any kind of rebuttal is how in the ongoing discussion (click the first 'Tom Schneider' link at the top right) Wallace (1) not only admits but is quite eager to point out that the entropy of an unisolated system can decrease, at the expense of its surroundings (which puts him very much at odds with Radar's understanding of the 2nd law of thermodynamics, which Radar understands in such a way that he can't even as much as eat a sandwich), but (2) actually retreats and admits that the 2nd law of thermodynamics is actually not an obstacle to evolution, just that he claims he has not seen ironclad proof that the mechanisms are there to accomplish it. Whether he has any interest in exploring this further is open to conjecture.

Thanks for the link, Radar. That was pretty funny.