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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Evolutionary Ghost Stories?

Listen up, shrimp. No, wait. I mean, listen up, about shrimp. I reckon punctuation and right wording make a difference. Actually, it's not really a shrimp.

Let me back up.

Paleontologists discovered a fossil arthropod that strongly resembles a rare kind of critter that is shrimp-like. There are things called the "banded cleaner (or coral) shrimp", but really aren't shrimp. They're classified as closer relatives to lobsters and such than to shrimp. They sure look like shrimp, though.

Banded Cleaner Shrimp is not really a shrimp. Creation, evolution, creation science, paleontology
"Banded Cleaner Shrimp", Stenopus hispidus / US-NOAA
But evolution and paleontology are chock full of storytelling, and the facts don't always mesh with the stories. This new stenopodidean is in the "wrong" place according to the evolutionary worldview. Since it pops into the geologic column, disappears for a few "millions years", then is spotted again pretty much unchanged, they tell a story about it being in a "ghost lineage". Yeah, right. Using the biblical creation Genesis Flood model, it fits mighty fine, no problem.
Fossils seem to tell amazing stories about ancient animal life, but close inspection reveals that these stories differ from each other not because of different fossils, but because of different interpretations. Do the remarkable circumstances surrounding a newly discovered fossil arthropod tell two stories or just one?

A US team of paleontologists publishing in the Journal of Paleontology described a new fossil arthropod as belonging to a rare shrimp-like kind called stenopodideans. These marine animals have a huge set of third legs, whereas shrimp and lobsters have large first legs.

The fossil looks so much like a living stenopodidean that the study authors were easily able to identify it. But the really remarkable piece of this story is its geologic setting.
If you're not scared, you can read the rest by clicking on "Ghost Lineage Spawns Evolution Ghost Story".

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The Star of Bethlehem?

A popular tradition of Christmas is putting the three wise me up with the rest of the manger scene. It's a very old idea, but has some misconceptions: the Bible does not specify three visitors, but names three gifts; they probably didn't arrive to see the Christ child until about two years after the events of Luke 2:1-20 had finished; "wise men", who are they in Matthew 2:1-11? I reckon there's no need to ruin traditions, they're harmless. You can read about those dudes in "We Three Kings".


Pixabay / OpenClips
There's a sorta tradition of speculating about the star of Bethlehem. Was it a special, miraculous little star that God made for the occasion? A conjunction? Something else?
The apostle Matthew records that the birth of Jesus was accompanied by an extraordinary celestial event: a star that led the magi (the “wise men”) to Jesus. This star “went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was” (Matthew 2:9). What was this star? And how did it lead the magi to the Lord? There have been many speculations.
To read the article, saddle up your camel and bring your seeking friends to "What Was the Christmas Star?"

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Evolution, Environmentalism, Extermination


As discussed in "Radical Environmentalism and the War on Humans", adherents of the extremist ecology and animal rights movements have evolutionary thinking as the foundation for their worldviews. By their reckoning, life is pretty much the same, it's just that humans evolved more efficiently. But some think that humanity is a blight, and should be exterminated (or at least seriously culled). Don't expect respect if you tell them that humanity is special because we are created in God's image. No, we're accidents, just like everything else. No hope, no purpose. And yet they preach the evolutionary message of despair.

I reckon that any group will have the occasional participants that are plumb crazy, but it's a mite unsettling when someone gives a speech at a university wanting Ebola to kill most of us — and other nutcases cheer! This article from 2006 is just as relevant today:
A stunning claim circulating the internet is that a university lecturer was publicly applauded for advocating the elimination of 90% of the world’s population by airborne Ebola virus.

An eyewitness certainly gained that impression from the talk by Dr Eric Pianka, a highly respected evolutionary ecologist, given in early March 2006 to the Texas Academy of Science at Lamar University in Beaumont.1 Pianka may have been misunderstood in that he probably did not say that Ebola use should be some sort of deliberate policy. But the reality, based on an incomplete transcript of the actual talk, is still cause for grave concern.
You can read the rest by clicking on "Doomsday Glee".

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Quasar Alignment and Other Spooky Cosmic Stuff

The more science we learn, the more we realize that we don't really know much at all. Astronomers were baffled by the things they called "quasi-stellar-objects", or quasars. They suspicion that those huge things have something to do with black holes at the middle of distant galaxies, and jets of light shooting out are the result of this activity.

Quasar 3C 273. Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Now quasars are joining the fun of refuting cosmic evolution ideas, even more than usual. It seems that they are in an alignment that baffles secular scientists. This kind of thing interferes with secular cosmogony and cosmology.
Unexpectedly, quasar rotation axes show a peculiar alignment over billions of light-years.

The European Southern Observatory, using its VLT (Very Large Telescope) in Chile, finished measuring the positions and rotations of 93 quasars and found something weird. These powerhouses of light, with powerful jets streaming out their poles, show unexpected traits in common. An ESO press release titled “Spooky Alignment of Quasars Across Billions of Light-years” states:
I reckon you'll want to read the rest of the article. Hope you do. There are some bonus items in there that give further frustration to deep-time advocates, too. Click on "Quasar Alignment Is “Spooky”.


Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Isn't Evolution Just a Biological Theory and Nothing Else?

Darwin's Disingenuous Drones want it both ways. Far too often, we see news reports where scientific "discoveries" are merely speculation about evolution — even when evolution is not applicable, even by their own criteria. Good science is often tainted by attempts to turn something into an "explanation" or the newest great evolutionary breakthrough. And they fail.

On the other hand, post something refuting the Big Bang, or something that is not-directly-biological, or something about abiogenesis, in a creation group,  and you'll often get rebuked by owlhoots that say it has "nothing to do with evolution". Sorry old son, but evolutionary thinking permeates and ruins many of the sciences. The Big Bang, abiogenesis and other things do relate to Darwinism. Attempts by the Evo Sith to distance themselves from failed theories are not fooling us.


In fact, theistic evolutionists and old earthers are sometimes called "moderate" or "reasonable" Christians by militant atheists. Why? Because they compromise so much on the Word of God, they agree with atheistic interpretations of the evidence and downplay the authority of the Bible that they claim to believe.
‘That’s got nothing to do with evolution!’ This is a common response evolutionists give when creationists challenge them to produce evidence for abiogenesis (the idea that life spontaneously arose from non-life). Evolution, they say, is not about the origin of life; it’s only about the subsequent development of that first life form into the vast and diverse array of living things that now populate our world.

Of course, it is fair to distinguish between the two claims. However, in referring to abiogenesis as ‘evolution’, creationists are generally not confusing the proposition that life had a naturalistic origin with the proposition that all life is related by common descent. Rather, the point is that concepts like abiogenesis, universal common ancestry, and even the alleged development of stars, galaxies and planets from simpler structures are all connected to each other like intersecting threads in a much larger web of controversy. Our critics may want to arbitrarily limit the scope of the debate, especially when it comes to areas such as the origin of life, in which the evidence is so strongly stacked against them. But ultimately, this battle isn’t just about biology—it’s a battle of worldviews. And as we shall see, leading evolutionist sources themselves often use the term ‘evolution’ to refer to much more than a biological theory of common descent.
To finish reading, click on "Evolution: not just about biology".

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Using Evolutionary Pseudoscience in Cancer Research

Despite the protestations of its proponents, evolution is not essential for the progress of observable, practical science. In fact, evolution hinders scientific progress (for example, "junk" DNA); evolutionary thinking is downright useless. Far be it for evolutionary scientists to get real jobs and use their training for something useful.


Evolutionary thinking and evolution have no valid scientific applications, especially in medical and cancer researches.


Cancer is a scary subject. I think we've all lost friends and kinfolk to it (I know I have), so we want significant research being done. Fortunately, there is. However, putting the pseudosciences of evolution and astrobiology together, and we have a waste of time, money and hope. Some people are advocating taking an evolutionary approach to cancer research. The "science" here uses data mining, circular reasoning, assumptions, presuppositions and more. Even the most ardent evolutionist should be skeptical about all of the assumptions (beyond the usual "evolution is true" mantra).
Physicist Paul Davies and astrobiologist Charles Lineweaver believe that cancer cells are simply cells that have reverted to their evolutionary ancestral state to cope with the challenges they face. This is called an “atavistic” model. (Atavism means reversion to an ancient, primitive, or ancestral state.)

Scientific American explains that because cancer occurs in so many different kinds of living things—people, animals, and plants—we know it evolved way back when everything alive shared a common ancestor. And what was that ancestor? Why a single-celled organism, of course! And what do single-celled organisms do better than anything else? They proliferate. They multiply. They are practically immortal, dividing and dividing and dividing. Just like cancer cells. Ergo, cancer has a very ancient evolutionary history. Or so their story goes anyway.
To read the rest, click on "Can Evolutionary Clues Cure Cancer?"
   

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Do Box Turtles Have Antifreeze?

The Creator's amazing designs and planning have revealed themselves in many ways. Interestingly, the more science advances with greater technology, the more we learn about God's design. It's a great time to be a creationist! One critter with some impressive features is the Eastern box turtle.

pixabay / JamesDeMers
Most of us know that when threatened, the turtle can pull its extremities into its shell for protection. But how many know that they have been programmed with the ability to survive being frozen? They have something resembling antifreeze, and I reckon that they go into something resembling what science fiction calls "suspended animation". The Genesis Flood was a judgement on wicked humanity (the next judgement is by fire, 2 Peter 3.5-7), but God preserved humanity and kinds of living things. But the Flood changed the surface of the earth, its climate and so on. He didn't just say, "Okay, everything's changed, you're on your own!" No, he equipped his creatures with ways to survive with methods that baffle evolutionists, who can only come up with ad hoc speculations in order to deny the glory and wisdom of the Creator.
After my family moved to northern Idaho, I recalled fond memories of my childhood back East. When a high-school friend told me he was planning to visit the East coast, I asked him to bring back a living reminder of my past—a box turtle. He obliged and brought a beautiful male specimen, which I named “Waldo Pepper.”

I built an outdoor pen in which Waldo puttered about throughout the summer. When winter approached, he dug a shallow burrow to prepare for the cold. I piled autumn leaves over him and covered everything with a small tarp. It can get bitterly cold in Idaho, but that winter was unusually frigid. I remember it dipped down to 30°F below zero (-34°C).

When spring came, I must admit that I wasn’t hopeful to find Waldo alive. On the first warmish day I anxiously scraped away the leaves. I saw the top of his shell, barely below ground level. “He didn’t dig deep enough,” I worried. “He’s sure to be dead.” I touched his shell and to my delight it lurched as he moved within. He had made it through that wintery blast!
To read the rest of the story and to learn about how this little guy survives, click on "Frozen Alive! Eastern Box Turtles".

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Sea Slug #FAIL for Evolution


Another thing that causes consternation for evolutionists is the sea slug. That little critter can save and store some of the plant stuff that it consumes to store energy. In some ways, it's solar powered. Evolutionists thought they had an answer in horizontal gene transfer, and that was the explanation for the hows and whys. But no, that option drew a losing hand. Instead, the creation option is the best one again.
In an everyday scene so bizarre that science fiction writers might never have imagined it, algae-eating sea slugs actually hijack chloroplasts—those tiny plant structures that perform photosynthesis—and use them as energy producers for themselves. Evolutionary biologists have linked a particular mechanism that they thought sea slugs used in this baffling process to a means by which evolution could have crafted similar DNA sequences found in similar-looking creatures that use completely different DNA. But new research heralds bad news for these evolutionary wishes and provides clear evidence for incredible biological creation. 
Solar-powered sea slugs begin by eating algae, just like other slugs and snails. But that’s where the similarities stop. Once the algae is in their gut, these sea slugs use tiny specialized finger-like cellular extensions to detect, select, and literally grasp chloroplasts out of the chewed-up algae and bring them inside their body cells.
To read the rest, just plant yourself at this link: "Solar-Powered Sea Slug Illuminates Evolutionary Weaknesses".

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Your Inner Machinery Indicates the Creator


A frequently-offered evidence for design is irreducible complexity. More simply, people will admit that the device they are reading this on is the product of intelligent, purposeful design. A painting has a painter, a building has a builder, and so on. However, Darwinoids will parrot remarks by bad philosophers and excuse makers like Richard Dawkins who say things like, "No, something only has the appearance of design, but it really isn't". Oh, please!

Meanwhile, scientists who study the amazingly intricate systems within you, and within living cells, are finding them more and more complex. There are many machines with functions like ratchet and rotation, switching internal architecture, scissors cutting and repairing DNA, and much more. There are newer discoveries that show more detailed information — and information is becoming the key, because these are not just microscopic machines, but there is a form of information technology involved. Evolution can be claimed, but really, evolutionists cannot explain all this. The reasonable conclusion is that there is an amazingly intelligent Creator.
This is a golden age of discovery about molecular machines, but the metaphor may be moving from machinery toward information processing.

Hardly a day goes by without a new discovery of machines in cells doing wonderful things with moving parts. Thanks to new imaging methods, scientists have clearer vision in the cell than ever before (see Science Daily and Science Insider for examples). We can only touch briefly on a few of the latest discoveries:
Hold your horses, Horace! To read the rest, you'll have to click on "Cell Biologists Use Machine Language".

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Perspectives on Ebola and Other Viruses

This post contains no medical advice. If you have reasons for concern, see your doctor right away.

There is a great deal of fear coupled with misinformation about the Ebola virus. People may envision an apocalyptic plague like the super flu in Stephen King's The Stand, but that is nowhere near the truth. Ebola is not known to be contagious through casual contact. As usual in anything require humanitarian relief, the Christian medical missionaries are heavily involved while the atheists essentially throw stones at them from the sidelines.


Micrograph of human liver tissue infected with the Ebola virus / US CDC
Dr. Jonathan Sarfati wrote an article that deals with several important points from a scientific as well as theological basis. All viruses are not harmful, some are even beneficial. Fruit bats have a symbiotic relationship with the Ebola virus, for instance. Also, viruses are a conundrum for evolutionists since they rely on RNA, which is fragile. The Ebola virus is inefficient, since it kills its own host and defeats evolution by making reproduction extremely difficult. For that matter, why did God create viruses, and what happened after the Fall?
For the last year or so, a deadly epidemic has ravaged West Africa. The culprit is the Ebola virus (genus Ebolavirus), named after the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Za├»re). This causes a high-grade fever accompanied by abnormal bleeding, both internal and external—hence the term ‘viral hemorrhagic fever’—plus other nasty things like diarrhea and vomiting.

The resulting loss of blood and accompanying organ failure means the disease is very dangerous—a 70.8% case fatality rate. So in Africa, it has claimed over 4,000 victims, and it’s estimated that the total death toll will reach over 20,000. Recently Ebola claimed a fatality in the USA, as well as infecting nurses at two modern hospitals in the USA and Spain.
To read the rest of this informative article, click on "Ebola disease: the result of the Fall".
  

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Taung Child — Missing Link Still Missing

Once in a while, creationists will get a bit rowdy with passing along bad reports or even hoaxes as if they were the final nails in the coffin of evolution. (Some Christians were spreading this bit from a satire site.) But those "proof" reports are about as effective as smoke signals in a blue norther. I keep telling people to slow down and check before posting stuff. Unfortunately, such hysterical reporting seems to be the norm for evolutionists.


Taung Child / Wikimedia Commons / Didier Descouens
There was a lot of noise made about the Taung Child. Supposedly, it was a transitional form where something was evolving for the purpose of having a bigger brain and eventually becoming human. This was based on assumptions and evolutionary presuppositions, as well as inferior equipment. Better equipment and more thorough investigation show that this specimen is nothing special. It would be helpful if evolutionists exercised a bit more restraint before making big announcements. Creationists don't need to imagine or make up stuff, but some of the lay people foul up now and then.
“Taung Child”—the first australopithecine ape discovered—didn’t blaze the trail to bigger better brains for humanity’s supposed ancestors after all. A 2012 CT X-ray analysis reported that Taung Child had an unfused frontal bone as human babies do—and quite unlike great apes. (See diagrams below.) Dean Falk and colleagues claimed that Taung Child and other hominins of its time were evolving increased capacity for expansion of the frontal brain by delaying fusion of this cranial bone. A new imaging study, published 9 September 2014 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, begs to differ.

Of course the evolutionary story is far more flexible than the fossils from which it seeks support. Therefore, though Taung Child has lost its recently acquired prominent status in the human evolutionary hall of brains, thanks to its dissimilarity to humans it will doubtless be retained for the evolutionary variability it supposedly demonstrates.
Use your head, finish reading the article by clicking on "Tale of the Taung Child Collapses". In addition, you can read "Australopith Child Gets an Academic Spanking".

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Was Darwin Right After All?


Darwinists love to assume that he predicted many things in his "masterpiece" books and writings. Did he get some things right? Well, sure. He said so many things, the odds are in favor of getting something right. In addition, although he was not a scientist, he was skilled at observation. Darwin's Drones give him a lot more credit than he deserves, however. And those owlhoots tend to ignore things that were already predicted by creationists, and give Papa Darwin the credit. Things like invasive species (the evolutionary imbalance hypothesis), the disputed "group selection", and biogeography. You can read those three examples at "Darwin Was Right, So They Say".

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Referring to Adaptation as Evolution is Difficult to Swallow



The equivocation trick is back in play as an explanation for changes. Many of Darwin's Cheerleaders are so intent on convincing people that goo-to-you evolution is real that they confuse people by using word games. Referring to adaptation as evolution is highly misleading at best, and has been used before (such as the twist in oysters). Creationists do not have a problem with adaptation or natural selection (which was first proposed by a creationist), but we do object when people are deceived into confusing adaptation with full-on evolution.

Swallows in Nebraska were making an impact — on cars, trucks, roads and so on. Those with smaller wingspans were surviving, and their population was increasing. That's adaptation, Arnie. But scientists gleefully called it evolution, even though the birds were doing what they were designed to do.
According to a news headline: “Birds evolving to dodge traffic”. Another proclaimed,“Evolution via Roadkill”. The articles were reporting research on changes in cliff swallows in southwestern Nebraska, USA. Since 1982, researchers have been conducting detailed annual surveys of the colonies of thousands of these birds that build mud nests on highway bridges, overpasses and road culverts in the area.

The researchers collected the carcasses of cliff swallows hit by vehicles, and discovered that road kill victims had longer-than-average wingspans, right through the study period. In 2012, for example, the average cliff swallow in the population had a 106-mm wingspan, whereas the average wingspan of roadkill swallows was 112 mm. What’s more, as the years passed, fewer and fewer birds were being hit by cars, even though the numbers of nests and birds had more than doubled, while the amount of traffic on the roads had remained steady.
To read the rest, fly over to "Traffic Clips Wings".

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

How Did Snakes Get Venom?


The question of the origin of snake venom has been re-questioned by researchers who were dissatisfied with the "we think maybe" evolutionary explanations. Evolutionary assumptions have hindered scientific research before, and here is a case where it happened again. Evolutionists will occasionally become dissatisfied with established guesswork and conduct overdue investigations, and they repudiated the established evolutionary view of the origin of snake venom. Interestingly, the results of their research fit well with biblical creationist views.
The origin of snake venom has long been a mystery to both creationists and evolutionists. However, by stepping outside the standard research paradigm, scientists recently showed that snake venom proteins may have arisen from existing salivary proteins.

The Bible indicates that at the beginning of creation, God's handiwork was not fraught with death, disease, and violence. Because of Adam and Eve's rebellion, creation became subject to all of these negative factors, including snakes with toxic venom. The question then arises of how the curse on creation brought about these deadly changes. Were new genes of malicious intent added by the Creator, or was pre-existing genetic information corrupted or altered in some way? According to what we know about genomic decay and the character of God as revealed in the Bible, it is more likely that genomic modification, possibly associated with degradation (genetic entropy), was the cause.
To finish reading, click on "Decoding Snake-Venom Origins".

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Design of the "Flying Lemur"

The "flying lemur" is one of those creatures that has a name with no bearing in reality; it does not fly, and it is not a lemur. (Sort of like the guinea pig, it is not from Guinea and is a rodent.) It's a tree-dwelling glider. The better name for this strange creature is "colugo". No relation to the interviewer Neil Cavuto, he is not a tree dweller and does not glide, and the names are spelt rather differently. 


Wikimedia Commons / Colugo / Lip Kee Yap

The colugo has nasty sharp pointed teeth, but it eats leaves. The big eyes are your first clue that it is nocturnal. They are puzzling, since their classification has been disputed until it was given one of its own. One of the most amazing features is the ability to easily glide for long distances. The surprising Cavuto colugo is an example of the creative work of their Designer.
You might think the colugo (ka-LOO-go) of Southeast Asia is a clumsy creature—well, maybe at first glance. On the ground, these odd, squirrel-like creatures seem to flop and jump along with the awkwardness of a baby bird. They also make climbing a tree look like a laborious process, which involves scraping at the bark with sharp claws and then hopping up quickly on their tiny paws. You get exhausted just watching them.

But once they’ve reached high into the canopy of the rainforest—the place where they belong—something amazing happens. These clumsy ground-walkers take to the air in an elegant display of aerodynamics. They glide like no other mammal on earth and prove, once again, that our ingenious Creator knows how to surprise us.
To finish reading, fly on over to "Colugos—Soaring Above Expectations".

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Instincts and Preprogramming


We have Basement Cat. I like to watch what I call the "feline machine" in action. She likes to stalk the birds on the porch through the screen door and will occasionally lunge at them, causing a flurry of avian panic. But she's never been an outdoor cat and never been the fierce huntress that she considers herself. One time, I put my hand in something wet on the porch railing (I think it was squirrel pee) and wiped it off. There was still a faint smell on my hand even after rinsing. I was petting Basement Cat later, and she started biting me. Not the playful bites, either. Eyes dilated, all that. She wanted blood; the predatory instinct kicked in.


Basement Cat using e-book reader as a pillow, picture by Robert Sorensen © 2014
No instinct here, just cuteness.
Humans and animals are born preprogrammed with an assortment of reflexes and instincts. They could not have been learned many behaviors, but they do things anyway. There is no rational evolutionary explanation for this. Like a computer with a basic operating system, we are given certain instincts from our Creator, and then build from there.
As a newborn infant, how did you know to do the things that you were never taught?

At first that question might strike you as nonsense. Perhaps you’re thinking, “Huh? Babies don’t know anything they didn’t actively learn. We’re all born with a brain that’s a blank slate, and after we’re born, we begin to learn through experiences, through environment, and through lessons taught by others.”

However, the notion that humans (or animals or insects) are born with a brain that is devoid of knowledge, simply waiting for a chance to sponge it up, is incorrect. To draw a rough analogy, a computer can be assembled with every physical component in place down to the last screw, but it can accomplish nothing until information is installed onto its motherboard.
You can read the rest by clicking on "Ready-Made Instincts".

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Silence is Another Problem for Peer Review

First, an update. I was informed by Radar's wife that he had knee surgery one week ago. It was successful, but he is in considerable pain. We are asking the Christian readers to join us in praying for his full and rapid recovery. -CBB

Although some people hide behind the "Yeah, but it's not peer reviewed!" concept, secular peer review processes have some serious drawbacks. In addition, people who believe in Scientism (where "science" is the only way to discern truth) do a disservice to scientists by expecting them to be more than human. Although they should have higher standards of integrity and objectivity, they are human and subjected to avarice just like you and me. (Also, some people think that scientists are completely objective and dispassionate, but that ignores both the scientific process and human nature.) They also seek success, recognition and grant money.



What value is there in doing a study, recording all the steps and set-up, making notes and then saying, "Here is the study. It was a waste of time?" Actually, it has quite a bit of value. There is a disputed quote attributed to Thomas Edison about his failures in inventing the light bulb: "I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work". Even if he did not say it, there is some value to that remark. Just like reporting a failed result in a peer reviewed paper, scientists can help other scientists and not give artificially inflated value to successful results.
Sociology is under scrutiny, but the issues apply to all of science.

Is there a message in nothing? Yes, Jeffrey Mervis said in Science Magazine. When a scientist gets a null or empty result, that’s still a result. It should be announced, so that other scientists know what doesn’t work, not just what works. Publication of null results is valuable. It saves time by avoiding needless repetition. It also presents a more accurate picture of the world. As PhysOrg’s headline by Bob Yirka reads, “lack of published null result papers skews reliability of those that are published.” That’s a serious charge. It means that published papers suffer credibility loss when null results are not shared.

The question of what to do with null results has plagued medical research, where people’s lives could be on the line. The Stanford team now found similar publication bias in social and behavioral sciences.
To review the rest of this article, click on "Peer Reviewed Science Can Mislead in a Major Way".

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Misotheists Misfiring


Although it is usually quite tedious to deal with militant Internet atheopaths, sometimes we have to give warning to thinking people to show what these arrogant, manipulative and frequently vile people are like. They wonder why some of us do not wish to spend our time interacting with them and their overgrown egos that need constant coddling. Here are some reasons why.
  • They often start with the assumptions that, because they are atheists, that somehow makes them more intelligent than "theists". It is also quite often a result of prejudicial conjecture.This "smarter than you" claim falls to the ground because not only is it related to the genetic fallacy, but their claims are instantly refuted because their conversation is loaded with logical fallacies. 
  • Watch for personal insults, usually the first line of attack. Quite often, they appeal to pride and ridicule. 
  • Then, they attempt to put their opponents on the defensive. This attempt at manipulation usually involves the aforementioned appeal to pride and ridicule, plus using the straw man fallacy; guess what, Buttercup? We do not need to defend positions that we do not hold, and putting words in our mouths show how shallow and disingenuous you are.
  • These militant misotheists claim to know your motives. This is often used with the straw man and with ridicule, but unless they have magical powers (a concept they deny), they have no idea what is in someone's heart and mind.
  • Swarming like piranhas. This is most common in social media. Just block them and move on to something more productive.
  • Attacking "theists" is an attempt to justify their unbelief, and the arguing never stops even when they are shown to be full of hot air. If they can manipulate someone into acting "bad" or not giving an answer that they deem to be sufficient, they will cry, "Victory is mine!" The Atheist Handbook® instructs them to never allow a "theist" to be right about anything of substance.
  • They are such bullies, they will try to make someone feel guilty for not following their arbitrary rules for posting, conversation, engagement and so on. Somehow, they demand the "right" to say whatever they want, whenever they want, and you are the bad guy if you do not cater to their whims. We are under no obligation to give them a platform for their insults, fallacies and hatred, although their massive egos compel them to state opinions (no matter how uninformed) as well as personal attacks.
I have better things to do than fall for misotheist trickery.
Yet, all of their game playing is simply a waste of the thinking person's time and energy. They try to build up their egos and strive for bragging rights to their friends who also lack intellect, character and integrity. Here is an example of dismantling a letter from an angry atheopath.
This week’s feedback is an example of the uninformed misotheistic elephant hurling that we normally don’t publish because it breaks our feedback rules. But we wanted to show the sort of thinking out in cyberspace, and also show that there are good answers to objections to Christianity. The response shows that Christianity has provided the foundation for science, alleviation of poverty and rejection of superstition.
If you have the courage to finish reading, you can click on "Mangling Misotheism". By the way, since atheist narcissistic sociopaths seem to be the only ones leaving comments, guess what you can't do? Hey, you might want to rub some aloe on that burn. Addendum: I was called a coward by someone posting anonymously. Doubly ironic, hiding behind anonymity to call me a coward, and also proving me right at the same time!


Saturday, August 30, 2014

Darwin's Finches and Epigenetics

Galapagos finches ("Darwin's finches") have been touted as good evidence for evolution. Beak sizes changed, therefore, evolution. Unfortunately for Darwin's Cheerleaders, they are not only extrapolating small changes into justifying goo-to-you evolution, but variations and speciation are not evolution (except in the loosest definition of the word). In fact, some evolutionists think that these small changes are a slap in the face of creationists, but they are uninformed about creationists: we know about speciation, and it fits with the biblical models.


Medium Ground Finch, John Gould / PD
Traditional Darwinian evolution held that small changes led to big changes and eventually, something would turn into something else. That was largely abandoned with more understanding of genetics and mutations. However, variations are limited by genetics, so you still will not get something changing into something else; there is no vertical evolution. Now scientists are learning that a major factor in change is epigenetics.
Authentic speciation is a process whereby organisms diversify within the boundaries of their gene pools, and this can result in variants with specific ecological adaptability. While it was once thought that this process was strictly facilitated by DNA sequence variability, Darwin's classic example of speciation in finches now includes a surprisingly strong epigenetic component as well.

Epigenetic changes involve the addition of chemical tags in an organism's genome without actually changing the genetic code. Both the DNA nucleotides and the proteins that DNA is wrapped around (called histones) can be chemically tagged by different types of controlling molecules that determine how genes are turned on and off. Thus, the epigenetic regulation of the genome can produce differences in traits without actually being related to changes in the DNA sequence itself. What's even more amazing is that these changes can be inherited over multiple generations. Thus, epigenetic changes unexpectedly facilitate variability and speciation within created kinds.
To finish reading, dip your beak into "Darwin's Finches: Answers From Epigenetics".

Friday, August 29, 2014

Busy-ness


I've been attempting to post once a week here to help out Radar. My preferred day is Wednesday, but with various difficulties that I will not divulge, plus being busy in other areas (including an interview), I'll give this quick post. There is one scheduled for Saturday, August 30, 2014.



Briefly, an anonymous whiner was complaining about the way I post things. (Some people are desperate to find any excuse to demonize people, especially under cover of anonymity, but never mind about that now.) S/he does not deserve a detailed, personal response, but I do have something that I posted on our Facebook Page:
While I do write some articles myself, most of those are other (smarter) people's work. This [Facebook Page] is not a link mill where any old thing from a creation science organization is posted. I read the featured articles (well, read at some of the more difficult ones) to select things for you, the viewing audience. The format is generally Introduction, Excerpt, Link to finish reading. Those intros have a couple of purposes: First, so the search engines do not penalize the site I link to site and mine by regarding them as duplicates, and also, I often have material that I want to add that may supplement the linked article.
Mmmkay, Skippy?

Here are some of the things I've been writing as full articles and not posts this month:
I have written a couple of original articles for this Weblog as well, but not recently. 

By the way, some of the obstreperous attention seekers are proving me right in this article from May, "Evolution and the New Atheo-Fascism".

So, I've been busy writing, posting and dealing with some things that may take me away from doing those things. But tomorrow's post for this blog is ready, anyway. —Cowboy Bob


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Created Or Evolved? Do you have a reasonable answer?

Lost any hope of finding meaning of life?  Lost your desire to figure it out?  Buried under a mound of idiotic propaganda on "science" and "animal" and "history" channels, news media, magazines and online mainstream websites?   Give yourself a chance and read "Created Or Evolved" please?!!

Lost Radar?  No, I am awaiting surgery and it takes almost every ounce of my strength to merely work from home and keep providing for my family.  Meanwhile, Cowboy Bob aka Piltdown Superman has graciously kept posts coming in my stead.  I've survived terrible accidents, a tumor, awakening just in time in the middle of a catastrophic fire, a MRSA infection, attempted murder and the stupidity of mountain climbing without proper equipment not to mention various youthful endeavors typical of my "Boomer" generation.  Next month I have surgery which will either quickly restore me to close to normal or possibly bring me closer to my demise.  I went from playing tennis and basketball to having trouble running to being barely able to walk in a fairly short time.  I thank God for my life and I trust Him no matter what!  So if I do not come back, it will be because I have left this life behind.  I'll know in about a month.

When I do return (I am an optimist, after all), I will try to figure out what is wrong with the comments, as almost all of them are being filtered out by the Google spam engine and NOT by Bob.  Anyway, I figured I could muster some energy and start a brilliant Creation.com article and hope you go there to finish reading it so that you have a chance (should you believe in evolution) to reorient yourself...

Created or evolved?

Where do we come from? Find your answer to the vital creation vs evolution question

Biston betularia
The peppered moth (Biston betularia, in its light and dark forms) is often paraded as evidence for evolution, whereas it actually isn’t. See: The moth files. Minor variation within a species of moth does nothing to explain the origin of the moth or how (for example) a worm could change into a fish. 

For readers wanting to dig deeper still, see the many articles accessible from Q&A: Natural selection.

Photos by Olaf Leillinger, wikipedia.org 

Published: 25 June 2013 (GMT+10)
Are you created or evolved?

Since Charles Darwin first published his Origin of Species in 1859, the idea that everything just evolved by itself over millions and billions of years has come to dominate our public media and educational institutions. Evolution is often spoken of as ‘fact’.

So it surprises many that there are an increasing number of voices speaking out against evolution. They say we are not evolved, but created. It’s even more of a surprise to discover many of those voices are from leading scientists across a range of disciplines. Not only are they pointing out the flaws in evolutionary theory, but they’re also showing that the evidence around us fits with the Bible’s account of the past, not evolution.

What is this evidence for creation that these scientists are pointing to? There’s lots. Here’s just a taste.

The design of living things

If we look at even just one aspect of our bodies, such as the dexterity of our hand, wrist and fingers, it speaks of design, and therefore, a Designer. Robotics engineers are still striving to copy that dexterity!1 And our movements are controlled by our brains—no mean feat! The immense complexity of the human brain, its creativity and power of abstract reasoning, with capacities vastly beyond that required for sheer survival, is perhaps the most obvious evidence for intelligent creation.2

New jaw-dropping discoveries of the cell’s hitherto-unrealized complexity are continuing to be made.

At the time that Charles Darwin published his Origin of Species, a cell was considered a simple ‘blob of protoplasm’—a basic building block of life. But with the development of technology allowing us to study living things at a molecular level, it’s now realized that a single cell is enormously complex. And new jaw-dropping discoveries of its hitherto-unrealized complexity are continuing to be made. E.g. the cell has a ‘switchboard system’ to coordinate the multiplicity of biochemical events happening within.3


And much more! E.g. it’s humorous now to look back on the prediction, by a scientist (J.B.S. Haldane) who believed that, because of evolution, no-one would ever find a wheel in nature.4 He was wrong, as this video clip (duration 1 minute, 26 seconds) of the world’s smallest rotary motor, the incredible ATP synthase enzyme present in all living things, shows:5




And there are linear motors, too, including the kinesin protein that ‘walks’ as it transports essential components to where they are needed in the cell, as this video (duration 1 minute, 11 seconds) shows:6




Note that every ‘step’ the kinesin protein takes requires one ATP molecule for energy—i.e. ATP which is generated by the rotary ATP synthase motor shown in the previous video clip. The eukaryotic cell needs both of these highly complex motors to be present and fully functional—and much more besides. No wonder the Psalmist wrote …
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. (Psalm 139:14)
… and the Apostle Paul said:
For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)

There are many more videos and much more evidence to be seen if you read the rest here!

Hope to be back soon!  Are you still here?  Go read that article!!!  Thanks!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Horsing Around with Evolution

When asking proponents of evolution for evidence for their belief system, there was a time that they would proudly trot out horse fossils. It has been considered one of the best evidences for evolution; the ever-reliable and unbiased Wikipedia still says so (he said as he rolled his eyes disdainfully). This is another shining example of presuppositions dictating interpretations of the evidence — very badly, too.


Big Sugar / by Michelle Studer, copyright 2013, used with permission
Horse evolution proponents should bridle their enthusiasm. Instead of demonstrating multiple stages of evolution, the series is a swayback about finding an assortment of animals with some resemblance to the horse, then manufacturing a Just So Story. Some candidates for transitional forms are not even related to the horse, there are no believable models to support assertions of gradual changes, no evidence for assertions of where and how they lived, and more. However, the fossils do show variety and rapid burial in the Noachian Flood.
The horse series has long been a showcase of evolution. But in reality, this series is the best argument that can be presented against evolution from the fossil record. Creationists have various opinions on whether the horse series is in fact made up of different created kinds. This article addresses some of the current problems, and concludes that the horse series probably comprise three different created kinds, not including all animals that have been labeled Hyracotherium. Hyracotherium itself appears to contain several different created kinds such as animals similar to tapirs.
To finish reading, hoof on over to "The Evolution of the Horse".



Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Is Racism a Product of Evolution and Genetics?


It is an established fact that evolution has been used to "scientifically" justify racism. Nobody is saying that evolutionary thinking causes racism, it's just that the two work so well together. In fact, racism is a natural extension of evolution. In fact, our political views are evolutionary as well. Notice how leftists see people as groups and not as individuals?

Today, it is politically incorrect in most places to be a racist, and evolutionists have been distancing themselves from their own racist past. Then someone writes a book and says that racism is a natural result of evolution, and that it is in the genes. Oh, boy. The evolutionary community is upset that someone is taking evolution to a logical result that makes them look bad. Meanwhile, Bible believers know that there is only one race, and ridiculous scientific interpretations toward racism are unconscionable.
A well-known science writer is in hot water for linking evolution to alleged differences in racial abilities. But where will his evolutionary critics run?

Geneticists and evolutionists are stepping on themselves to condemn Nicholas Wade’s politically-incorrect new book, A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History, where the author makes links between alleged racial inequalities in IQ to evolution, concluding that’s why African countries can’t handle democracy. Writing for Nature, Ewen Calloway reports that “More than 130 leading population geneticists have condemned a book arguing that genetic variation between human populations could underlie global economic, political and social differences.” Ditto for Michael Balter, reporting in Science Magazine that “Geneticists decry book on race and evolution.
You can read the rest by clicking on "Evolution Is Racist, Evolutionist Writes".

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Evolutionary Pronouncements, Chromosomes and Research


In yet another instance of evolutionary presuppositions hindering science (and refusal to learn from past embarrassments like so-called "junk" DNA), assertions that chromosomal fusion showed that humans and apes evolved from a common ancestor are falling apart. Not only do evolutionists force and manipulate the data to fit their worldview, but they ignore alternative explanations for what is observed. To make matters worse, they saw what they wanted to see but further examination shows that these scientists were seeing things that were not there.

Chromosomal fusion is not a threat to biblical creation. Also, the evidence shows the opposite of what evolutionists expected to find.
Evidence never speaks for itself; it must be interpreted. When it is interpreted in a particular worldview, it can sound very convincing that the evidence supports that worldview. This was the case for the proposed chromosomal fusion that supposedly resulted in human chromosome 2. It was promoted as unequivocal evidence that humans and apes shared a common ancestor. In a biblical worldview, it is possible for a chromosome to have resulted from the fusion of two smaller chromosomes. However, there were details about the story that didn’t make sense. The biblical worldview provided the motivation to dig deeper. Further investigation now makes it clear that human chromosome 2 was not derived from a fusion of ape chromosomes; its structure is consistent with being designed by a wise Creator.

In my lifetime I have seen a number of supposedly powerful arguments for evolution come and go. Generally, they seem powerful because it is implied there is only one way to interpret the evidence, and only an evolutionary interpretation is given. I have found that the biblical worldview is far more robust, and it is only a matter of time and some research before it is clear that the evidence is better explained by a biblical model.

Human chromosome 2 was said to have been formed by the fusion of two primate chromosomes that remain separate in chimps. It was supposed to be an end-to-end (telomere-to-telomere) fusion. Known fusions in mammals are different in that they occur near at least one centromere region. A few years ago I wrote about one example of a “compelling” evolutionary argument, the supposed evidence for a fusion involving human chromosome 2.1 According to Dr. Ken Miller, this was incredibly powerful evidence of common ancestry between humans and apes.2 Since apes have 48 chromosomes (24 pairs) and humans have 46 (23 pairs), evolutionists propose that a fusion occurred to account for the difference.
You can read the rest by clicking on "Chromosome Tales and the Importance of a Biblical Worldview".