Tag Archives: DNA

Mmmmm . . . Oreos . . . and Intelligent Design?

As usual, philosophy has some fancy terms to describe simple concepts.  Things are caused by agents or events.  The 10th domino falls because of the event preceding it (the 9th domino falling), but the first domino fell because an agent pushed it over.

Ignoring agent causation is a problem for Darwinists.  We use the inference of agent causation — or design — all day, every day.  The classic “watch on the beach” illustration is just one of countless examples one could use.  If you find a watch on a beach you infer that someone dropped it, not that it came into being by an infinitely long series of random events.  Crime investigations assume agent causation.  And on and on.

Greg Koukl makes this distinction in his essay on Oreos & Origins:

Now to give you an illustration about how the game is fixed by the courts and by the educational system and by the scientific community, I have suggested what I have called the Oreo Experiment. You go to your chemistry teacher and ask if he is able to look at a solution and describe, based on his scientific testing, what is in the solution and how the solution, the precipitate, came to be. The precipitate is the heavy stuff that falls out, precipitates in the solution. In a beaker, for example. It seems that someone who is well-versed in the area of chemistry and well-versed in the area of physics can look and measure and test and describe what happened in a simple kind of thing.

Your chemist teacher takes the challenge and you say, “Okay, I’m going to put out a beaker full of stuff. There you see it, and now I’m covering it. Tomorrow we’ll uncover it and you’ll see something that has precipitated. Then it is your job to figure out how that happened.” Sure. Fair enough. I know science. I know the laws of chemistry. We’ll do it.

However, just before the chemist comes into the room the next morning to begin his experiments to look and observe the precipitate and begin to measure it to solve the problem, you lift the cover on the beaker and drop in an Oreo cookie. He walks in, you remove the cover to the beaker, and there is this discolored solution, but clearly visible is this rapidly decaying Oreo cookie. Very obvious. You can still see the word “Oreo” on it. And you say, “Okay, now using the laws of physics and chemistry, explain to me how that Oreo cookie got there.” And he says, “Wait a minute, it’s obvious that someone put it there because Oreo cookies don’t just manufacture themselves out of nowhere in the middle of a beaker. You are playing a trick on me. Someone dropped it in there.” And then you say, “Foul. You’ve broken the rules. You’ve inferred an outside agent here. You’re not being scientific. It’s your job to be a scientist. This is a chemistry lab. Let’s stick with science. You are obliged to come up with some kind of explanation limited to the laws of chemistry and physics and time plus chance to explain how that Oreo cookie got there in the last twelve hours.” Now, he would be hard pressed to do so. Why? Because it was put there. You know it was. The evidence indicates it was. There was an agent that caused that, but the rules have restricted him from concluding what it obvious in the circumstances.

As Koukl points out, Intelligent Design isn’t a “God of the gaps” argument where we fill in the unknown with God.  Many times agent causation is the most likely and obvious answer, but scientists use a “science of the gaps” fallacy.  Their blind faith in science leads them to assume that “science” will explain it later.

But in this case, agent causation is a perfectly reasonable explanation for the “gap” of how the Oreo got there.  The materialists — who ignore agent causation when it is convenient — have a gap, but we don’t.  In the same way, when you examine the complexity and fine-tuning of the universe, DNA, etc., along with the simple logic of the “first cause” argument, it is perfectly reasonable to infer a designer.

I saw this with a conservation I observed years ago.  One friend was making a case for Intelligent Design and the flaws of Darwinism to another friend, who is an atheist.  The atheist couldn’t refute a single point, but merely reiterated his faith that science would figure it out later.

Are Darwinists remorseful about their “junk DNA” errors?

Image of a DNA chain which shows the double he...
Image via Wikipedia

Many Darwinists thought that DNA contained “junk,” and they used this “fact” as part of their mockery of Intelligent Design (ID).  It turns out that DNA wasn’t junky after all — just as ID would have predicted.  And these same Darwinists pretend that ID gets in the way of scientific progress.

Read this quote carefully.  It is by Skeptic Magazine publisher Michael Shermer and it was written only 5 years ago.

We have to wonder why the Intelligent Designer added to our genome junk DNA, repeated copies of useless DNA, orphan genes, tandem repeats, and pseudogenes, none of which are involved directly in the making of a human being. In fact, of the entire human genome, it appears that only a tiny percentage is actively involved in useful protein production, It looks as though Rather than being intelligently designed, the human genome looks more and more like a mosaic of mutations, fragment copies, borrowed sequences, and discarded strings of DNA that were jerry-built over millions of years of evolution.

Via Who believed in the myth of junk DNA? – Michael Shermer, for one.

That is just another in a long line of evolutionary fairy tales.  This false belief system dominates education, politics, science and fake Christian churches.  Get informed and stop letting them get away with bad science.

Do you think their bias could be leading them to be wrong on anything else?  Will Shermer et al apologize for hindering science with their false beliefs?  Do they have any shame?

Another evolutionary bedtime story

This is a classic example of the kind of just-so stories you get from Darwinian evolutionists.

This guy knows exactly what happened early in the history of life on Earth …  Except that he doesn’t. In “Slaves to evolution,” (ABC Science 06/09/2011) Bernie Hobbs explains it all for you:

“Two billion-odd years ago, one of the most important meals in history took place. One bacterium swallowed another one. But instead of being digested, the swallowee survived. And it kept doing what it had always done: using oxygen to rip apart food molecules, and then using the energy released to make ATP. So the bacteria that did the swallowing suddenly had this little lump inside it that leaked ATP, which the swallower could use to power its own cellular reactions. It was a match made in thermodynamic heaven.

And this crazy hybrid was the great (x10n) grandmother cell that all eukaryotic cells evolved from. The mitochondria in your cells, mine and every plant, animal and fungi on the planet are descendents of that meal. It’s like slavery, but with benefits.”

. . .

Okay, Bernie, so … we know it happened this way because …

“There’s no single piece of killer evidence that proves the case for the bacterial origins of mitochondria and chloroplasts, …”

And people like this are the ones trying to say that Intelligent Design isn’t science but that their views are.  They’d rather nod their heads at tautological bedtime stories like that rather than study something like Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design by Stephen C. Meyer.

Remember, this is the worldview that dominates education, media and politics.  Don’t be taken in by the hoax.

Expelled!, the sequel

This case was destined to be another example of the egregious abuses of academic freedom documented by Ben Stein in Expelled!, but this one turned out a little better.  See Journal Apologizes and Pays $10,000 After Censoring Article for a very important post on what is still going on in scientific circles.

These violations are so destructive, because the same bullying / cowardice you see in evolution debates has proved equally successful (read: lucrative) in the Global Warming / Global Climate Change scam.

Some snippets:

In one of their favorite soundbytes, members of the Darwin lobby like to assert that intelligent design scientists do not publish peer-reviewed research. That claim is manifestly false. But the fact that intelligent design scholars do publish peer-reviewed articles is no thanks to Darwinists, many of whom do their best to ensure that peer-reviewed articles by intelligent design scientists never see the light of day.

Witness the brazen censorship earlier this year of an article by University of Texas, El Paso mathematics professor Granville Sewell, author of the book In the Beginning and Other Essays on Intelligent Design. Sewell’s article critical of Neo-Darwinism (“A Second Look at the Second Law”) was both peer-reviewed and accepted for publication by the journal Applied Mathematics Letters. That is, the article was accepted for publication until a Darwinist blogger who describes himself as an “opinionated computer science geek” wrote the journal editor to denounce the article, and the editor decided to pull Sewell’s article in violation of his journal’s own professional standards.

The publisher of Applied Mathematics Letters(Elsevier, the international science publisher) has now agreed to issue a public statement apologizing to Dr. Sewell as well as to pay $10,000 in attorney’s fees.

. . .

Lepiscopo points out that in retracting Sewell’s article, Applied Mathematics Letters “effectively accepted the unsubstantiated word and unsupported opinion of an inconsequential blogger, with little or unknown academic background beyond a self-professed public acknowledgment that he was a ‘computer science grad’ and whose only known writings are self-posted blogs about movies, comics, and fantasy computer games.” This blogger’s unsupported opinion “trumped the views of an author who is a well respected mathematician with a Ph.D. in Mathematics from Purdue University; a fully-tenured Professor of Mathematics at the University of Texas–El Paso; an author of three books on numerical analysis and 40 articles published in respected journals; and a highly sought-after and frequent lecturer world-wide on mathematics and science.”

This is the type of pathetic bullying (on the part of the Darwin crowd) and cowardice (on the part of the journalists) that is rampant in science:

After Dr. Sewell’s article was pulled, Darwinian zealots crowed about their achievement and maliciously speculated that the article was withdrawn because it wasn’t really peer-reviewed or because it was somehow substandard. The journal, meanwhile, left Dr. Sewell to twist in the wind, seemingly endorsing the Darwinists’ smears. The journal editor Dr. Rodin wrote a groveling letter to the Darwinist blogger who complained to him in which he agreed that publishing Sewell’s article would involve “impropriety.” Rodin further apologized “for our erroneous judgement in even considering this paper for publication.”

. . .

By issuing this statement, Applied Mathematics Letters is essentially admitting that it trashed its own professional standards by what it did. According to the journal’s editorial policies, acceptance of an article cannot be rescinded once an author has been notified of its acceptance, and accepted articles are supposed to be withdrawn only “under exceptional circumstances” such as fraud, errors, ethics violations, and the like.

“None of these circumstances even remotely occurred with respect to the withdrawal of Dr. Sewell’s paper,” said Mr. Lepiscopo.

Sadly, the kind of successful bullying by Darwinists that was documented in Expelled! leads to this sort of abuse:

One can sympathize with the editor’s situation. Perhaps he heard about what happened toevolutionary biologist Richard Sternberg at the Smithsonian after he allowed a peer-reviewed article favorable to intelligent design to be published in the biology journal he edited.

If there is a “war on science” today, it’s not being waged by the critics of Darwinism or supporters of intelligent design. It’s being waged by Darwinian fundamentalists who are attempting to prevent any voices except their own from being heard in the scientific community. They seem willing to do virtually anything to silence their critics–from denying them tenure, to preventing them from being hired, to engaging in cyber attacks, to censoring peer-reviewed articles by scholars with whom they disagree. Italan geneticist Guiseppe Sermonti has remarked that “Darwinism… is the ‘politically correct’ of science.” How right he is.

Dear Darwinists: You are bullies and cowards.  You know it.  We know it.  If you were confident in your views you wouldn’t have to resort / succumb to such behavior.

And the Global Warming / Global Climate Change lobby is no different.  Just follow the money.

And be sure to see the Wintery Knight’s sendup of cowards A. C. Grayling and Richard Dawkins, who come up with the lamest of lame excuses to avoid debating William Lane Craig.

—–

Here’s a clip describing the Expelled! movie:

How caterpillars and butterflies mock the Darwinists

One of the most common things we learned about as kids should still fascinate us, and remind us of how exquisitely and beautifully God designed his creation.

Hat tip: Wintery Knight

It is no wonder that even with the pro-Darwin education / media / politics echo chamber we live in that 90% of people still believe there is a God (regardless of how badly they misunderstand him and still rebel against him).

Romans 1:18-20 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 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.

Clairvoyant Darwinists don’t even need to read Intelligent Design books to “review” them

See ID critics do not read ID books before reviewing them « Wintery Knight.  Those are book “no-views,” not book reviews.  This reminds me of how the Darwin fans will rush to Amazon to give one star to books like Stephen Meyers’ Signature in the Cell when they obviously haven’t read it.  You’d think their transparent dishonesty would embarrass them, but apparently they haven’t evolved to hold that sort of morality.  I was very disappointed that someone from Forbes would be so sloppy.  Their editorial content is usually held to much higher standards.

My guess is that they know if they actually read the books they’d have to respond to the arguments, and not their straw-man versions of what Intelligent Design is.

“As a friend of ours puts it, Jonathan Wells’s The Myth of Junk DNA is in the process of being “Ayala’ed.” To “Ayala” a book is to attack it in review without having bothered to read or even read much about it, simply on the basis of what you think it probably says given your uninformed preconceptions about the author. The term comes from the wonderful instance where distinguished biologist Francisco Ayala pompously “reviewed” Stephen Meyer’s Signature in the Cell for the Biologos Foundation website while giving clear evidence of not having cracked the book open or even looked at the table of contents.

Thus we have several posts from University of Toronto biochemist Larry Moran, criticizing Myth while being totally open about not having read it first. Moran wrote no fewer than four posts on the book in this fashion, claiming as an excuse that Myth would not be published in Canada until May 31. (In fact, the book was available for purchase from Amazon since early May.) And now, as Casey already noted, we have Forbes science writer John Farrell, citing Moran as his source — a “double Ayala,” so to speak, where you attack a book without reading it citing as justification a review by someone else who also hasn’t read it.

Farrell thinks the myth of junk DNA is itself a myth — that “scientists never dismissed junk DNA in the literature.” In other words, Wells has set up a straw man. Of course, not having looked at the book, Farrell can’t have consulted Dr. Wells’s fifty pages of notes documenting his argument. The notes may be downloaded for free here. (Also available in Canada.)”

So this is what criticism of intelligent design amounts to… denouncing a book before reading it.

Read the whole post.

How Richard Dawkins’ (ir-)religion hinders scientific progress

See Jonathan Wells on his book, The Myth of Junk DNA – yes, it is a Darwinist myth and he nails it as such.  As I read the article I thought of how bias can get in the way of scientific discoveries.

The conventional wisdom is that religion and science are at odds or are at least “non-overlapping magesteria.”  Philosophical naturalists like to posit that religion impedes scientific progress.  That is a false dilemma, of course, because the notion that God is orderly and that we can think his thoughts after him drove early science and is still logical.

But look what happens when atheistic assumptions get in the way of science:

“The amount of DNA in organisms,” neo-Darwinist Richard Dawkins wrote in 1976, “is more than is strictly necessary for building them: A large fraction of the DNA is never translated into protein. From the point of view of the individual organism this seems paradoxical. If the ‘purpose’ of DNA is to supervise the building of bodies, it is surprising to find a large quantity of DNA which does no such thing. Biologists are racking their brains trying to think what useful task this apparently surplus DNA is doing. But from the point of view of the selfish genes themselves, there is no paradox. The true ‘purpose’ of DNA is to survive, no more and no less. The simplest way to explain the surplus DNA is to suppose that it is a parasite, or at best a harmless but useless passenger, hitching a ride in the survival machines created by the other DNA.” (The Selfish Gene, p. 47)

Dawkins’ worldview caused him and many others to “know” that this must have been “junk” DNA. Who knows how many important scientific advancements were delayed because of bias like this? Christians know that there are natural and supernatural forces in the world, and that the composition of the universe screams out design. Even Dawkins concedes that it appears to be designed.

More from the link:

Collins also wrote that intelligent design is a “God of the gaps” position that is doomed to collapse with further advances in science (p. 193). But Collins has it exactly backwards: He and other promoters of the myth of junk DNA have put their faith in a “Darwin of the gaps” argument that must now retreat in the face of new advances in genome research.

Truly open-minded scientists wouldn’t assume that the “junk” DNA was evolutionary baggage.  They would have considered that perhaps it had another function put there by an intelligent designer.

Scientific progress can be negatively impacted by bad philosophy — just not always the kind people assume.  How many other discoveries are hindered by the false Darwinian worldview?

P.S. This topic always reminds me of a funny bit in an episode of The Simpsons where Lisa finds a phony fossil of what appears to be an angel.  The episode cleverly skewered both sides of the debate – though mostly against Christians. (Sadly, this is one of the last episodes Phil Hartman did before he was killed. He played the attorney Lionel Hutz).  I loved this line from the judge presiding over the trial:

As for science versus religion, I’m issuing a restraining order: Religion must stay 500 yards from science at all times.

If only the (ir-)religious bias of Dawkins et al had a restraining order against it!