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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".