“If the situation is as I have described it, the intellectual bankruptcy of Darwinism cannot be concealed for very much longer.  The Darwinists may delay the day of reckoning for a while by wielding the weapons of power, but more and more people are learning to press the right questions and to refuse to take bluff or evasion for an answer.”

– Dr. Phillip E. Johnson, The Wedge of Truth (IVP, 2000), p. 150.

 Creation-Evolution Headlines, January 2001                
 
. .

Story: Mars Atmosphere Eroded by Solar Wind (NASA Science, 01/31/2001).  Mars reveals what would have happened to our atmosphere if earth did not have a strong magnetic field.
Theme: Anthropic Principle.

NASA Will Discover How Life Originated  01/31/2001
On the scene report  At a
ceremony announcing the successor of retiring Director Dr. Ed Stone, the newly-appointed Director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Dr. Charles Elachi, announced in the presence of lab employees and NASA Administrator Dan Goldin his plans for the lab.  In addition to pursuing an ambitious schedule of solar system discovery and earth science missions, he announced that “We will be probing the origin of life itself, and finding out where we came from.”

Dr. Elachi is a distinguished, experienced and eminently qualified leader for JPL, following in the footsteps of his equally distinguished predecessor.  Discovering the origin of life without intelligent design, however, is an impossible dream, but Goldin looked pleased.  Without a Cold War to drive the space program, Dan Goldin found a new mission statement for NASA: Origins, the search for the evolution of the universe, stars, planets and life.  It goes without saying that this search must be carried out without invoking design arguments (because that would sound like creation, and might imply God, and cannot be scientific by definition).  Good luck.
Next headline on: Origin of Life. • Next headline on: Solar System.
Comet Cloud Much Thinner than Expected  01/31/2001
The Oort Cloud, a hypothetical shell of cometary material far beyond the orbit of Pluto, is much thinner than originally believed, according to a scientists from
JPL and Southwest Research Institute, reported in Sky and Telescope online news.  This cloud of material was supposed to be the source of new comets, which disintegrate as they orbit the sun.  Stern and Weissman’s calculations show the cloud could only contain less than 10% of what was previously assumed.  See this good Planetary Society lay explanation of their work and its implications.  The original paper is published in Nature, Volume 409, Number 6820, pp. 589-591 (2001).
Update 02/21/2001  Creationist astronomer Danny Faulkner weighs in on this latest news and what it means for the age of the solar system, on the Answers in Genesis website.
Comets are a serious problem for those who believe the solar system is 4.5 billion years old, and now it’s an even bigger problem.  Short-period comets would quickly burn out, like sparklers at an all-night party, unless there is a source of new material.  That is why Dutch astronomer Jan Oort proposed his famous Oort Cloud.  There has never been any observational evidence for it; it was invented to save the belief in long ages.  Now its existence is even further in doubt.
Next headline on: Comets. • Next headline on: Solar System.
Cells Do Their Own Triage  01/30/2001
According to an article in this week's
Science News (Vol 159 p. 54, 01/27/01), specialized proteins perform emergency first aid and morgue duty.  Proteins dubbed "chaperones" are able to recognize badly-folded proteins and fix them.  Another protein acts as a coroner and breaks apart proteins that are beyond repair.
Proteins cannot perform their duties if they are not folded properly.  The folding gives the protein chain (a string of amino acids) its three-dimensional structure, which is essential to its function.  This kind of intricate molecular origami is accomplished partly by the affinities of parts of the molecule for each other due to the specific order of amino acids (that is why the sequence of amino acids cannot tolerate much error), and partly with the assistance of helper enzymes.  But mistakes happen.  How does the cell recognize an error?  How do brainless, sightless molecules perform first aid?  How could a cell survive that didn't have these capabilities from the start?  How can evolutionists believe that it could?  To all the above, amazing.
Next headline on: The Cell and Biochemistry. • Next amazing story.
Jupiter is Earth’s Bouncer  01/30/2001
Without Jupiter, we wouldn’t be here, says a report by NASA’s
Astrobiology Institute at Ames Research Center.  Jupiter flings asteroids and comets out of our solar system that otherwise would pummel the earth.  Scientists believe a Jupiter-like big brother is necessary for the origin of life on earth-like planets around other stars.
This is another example of the Anthropic Principle, the observation that conditions in the universe are fine-tuned to allow life to exist and thrive.  There are examples on the large scale (size of the universe, gravitational constant), on the solar system scale (size and distance of sun and moon, composition of earth’s atmosphere and crust), and the atomic scale (fundamental constants of physics like the charge on the electron or fine structure constants) that, if altered slightly, would make our planet a sterile place or even non-existent.  Materialists wonder at these “coincidences” but theists have a sufficient first cause.
Next headline on: Solar System.
Article: William Dembski answers Eugenie Scott: Is Intelligent Design Testable?  01/24/2001

Newsletter: The Boyle Project has published a Jan 2001 newsletter on the life of Robert Boyle, including details on recent publications of his books and correspondence.

NASA Astrobiologists Find Support for Origin of Life in Space  01/29/2001
In a
press release prior to publication in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, an interdisciplinary team of astrobiologists at Ames Research Center has found experimental evidence that fairly complex organic compounds can form inside interstellar dust grains and ices, and can survive the harsh space environment.  Moreover, when exposed to water, some of these compounds form cell-like vesicles (click here for pictures).  This lends support to the theory that life could have originated in space, and was seeded to the earth via comets or interstellar dust. 
Update 02/01/2001  Now National Geographic and many other sources have picked up on the story.  NG says, “The simplicity of the process captivates Dr. Sanford. ‘I'm still fascinated by the fact that you can take some things you can buy in the grocery store, give them a sun tan, and voila, you've got cellular structures.’”

   Stories like this have nothing to do with the origin of life, which is not the origin of chemicals, but the origin of complex specified information.  Superficial resemblances of these “vesicles” to cells are as meaningless as the comparison of a statue of a man to a real man; cell membranes perform active transport, letting in desired molecules and inhibiting others against the concentration gradient (i.e., against what would happen naturally).  But most important, without a genetic code and a transcription mechanism and a complex procedure for accurate replication, there can be no natural selection; hence, chance is the only tool available to the evolutionist.  We must repeat as long as these stories continue to show up in the media, the origin of life by chance is impossible no matter how much space, time and materials are assumed.
   Want to know what's really behind this NASA study?  Astrobiologists know that the early earth did not have the type of reducing atmosphere required to produce organic compounds essential to life: in fact, it most likely contained free oxygen which would have been deadly (see Icons of Evolution by Jonathan Wells, ch. 1).  They also believe that life appeared abruptly during a time of early bombardment of the earth.  The old scenario of a warm primordial soup is no longer tenable, so they are now grasping at even more far-fetched theories to explain the origin of life by naturalistic means.  This positive-sounding report should, therefore, be interpreted as an act of desperation.  Notice also how no one is touching this question with a ten foot pole: what was the origin of information?
   The article in National Geographic illustrates the sloppy, uncritical reporting that goes on in the media.  The work done by these scientists is light-years away from anything resembling life, but insurmountable difficulties are just totally glossed over as if they weren’t even there.  It’s as even scientists found some iron ore and announced they have uncovered the origin of airplanes.  This amounts to a propaganda campaign of misrepresentation, distortion, and exaggeration in the extreme!  How can this be justified as science? Why won’t someone put these reports under the scrutiny of real evidence?  If no one else will do it, we will.  This is junk science.
Next headline on: The Cell and Biochemistry. • Next headline on: Origin of Life. • Next dumb story.
Flapping Plane Designed After Pterosaur  01/29/2001
Using the pterosaur as a model, Patricia Jones-Bowman of the University of Toronto is hoping to build a flapping plane called an ornithopter, according to a story in the journal
Science.
If you think pterosaurs were primitive, think again.  They had a technology we have not yet been able to reproduce.  And like other flying animals, they appear abruptly in the fossil record, their wings and flying capabilities already fully formed.
Next headline on: Dinosaurs.
New Function Discovered for Human Brain Glia Cells  01/29/2001
Glia cells, which make up 90% of the human brain, are not as functionless as earlier believed, according to a story in the journal
Science (echoed also in this abstract in Scientific American).  They play an important role in determining how many connections the neurons can make with each other.
The more we learn about life, the more we discover function and design.  So-called junk DNA may be the next.  God don’t make no junk.
Next headline on: The Brain. • Next headline on: Human Body. • Next headline on: The Cell and Biochemistry.
Bush Threatens Cutoff of Federal Funds for Stem Cell Research from Aborted Fetuses  01/29/2001
Although no policy has been made yet, President Bush has voiced his opinion that aborted fetuses should not be used for stem cell research, the
Nando Times reported today.  Bush approves of research from adult stem cells or embryos that died a natural death.  Advocates of the research say, however, that such cells are not as versatile or healthy.
Update 01/31/2001  The policy is still up in the air, according to Science.  It appears Bush’s Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thomson may persuade the president to allow embryonic stem cell research to proceed.
We are at a crossroads of medical ethics here: is it right to do wrong to get a chance to do right?  Should we take a life to save a life?  When does human life begin?  The answers depend largely on whether you believe in creation or evolution, in theism or naturalism.
Next headline on: Politics.
Big-Screen Darwin School: Galápagos in 3-D IMAX  01/27/2001
On the scene report  Released late last summer, the Smithsonian’s IMAX film
Galápagos is making the rounds of IMAX theaters, complete with special screenings for teachers and students, and a complete study guide with suggested experiments on how students can practice natural selection on each other.
Galápagos in 3-D IMAX again demonstrates that Darwinism survives not on evidence and sound reasoning, but on propaganda.  The film is a visual and sonic treat, but unfortunately, as expected, it repeats the standard Darwinian myths about finch beaks, natural selection and evolution-as-fact.  It’s fair to teach Darwin’s voyage on the Beagle as history, just as you might teach about Aristotle or Descartes; it’s what it leaves out that makes this film indoctrination rather than documentation.  It doesn’t tell you, for instance, that finch beak sizes oscillate around a norm depending on drought conditions; that most of the 13 species of Galápagos finches are interfertile, that the finches did not lead Darwin to accept evolution, or that beak changes don’t explain the origin of finches.  It also fails to point out that survival of the fittest is a tautology, that the expression is discredited among biologists today, and that adaptation cannot simultaneously be an explanation of evolution and evidence for it (circular reasoning).  For an explanation of the finch-beak myth, read Icons of Evolution by Jonathan Wells.
Next headline on: Schools. • Next headline on: Darwinism. • Next headline on: Movies.
“Dead” Plant Cells Regulate Their Water Intake  01/26/2001
Xylem isn’t just deadwood, according to a new study in the journal
Science.  The woody cells respond to changes in salinity and mineral content, and can regulate the speed at which water rises in the stem.
How a tree can pump water up hundreds of feet is still a feat not thoroughly understood, and now this study casts new light on a function of cells thought to be inert.  How did brainless plants figure out all this chemistry?  By unguided, impersonal, purposeless forces?
Next headline on: Plants. • Next headline on: Physics.
Sweet Dreams, Rat  01/26/2001
Most news sources like
CBS and National Geographic TV had fun with yesterday’s odd story about dreaming rats.  MIT scientists claim rats rerun their mazes in their dreams, and this helps them run the maze better during waking hours.  This is based on brain wave studies, but like a Harvard psychologist commented, it’s a little hard to prove: “If the rat would tell us, ‘Yes, I was dreaming about running around the track,’ then we'd have it nailed down.”
   If you’ve ever seen your dog shake and shudder during sleep, you’ve probably already surmised Fido is dreaming about something, but it’s a little hard to ask an animal what’s on its mind.  Scientists seem to think they can investigate anything, even the subject matter of animal dreams!  Science has its limitations.
   James Clerk Maxwell, the eminent Scottish physicist who gave us a unified electromagnetic theory (a devout Christian and creationist), was an occasional poet.  During the time of mourning over his father’s death, he wrote a pensive verse about what function God might have designed for our dreams (although he did not claim his musings were scientific).  Click here to read and enjoy the wordcraft of Maxwell’s gifted mind.  (Whatever is going on in a rat’s brain you can be certain is orders of magnitude below this level of contemplation!)
Next headline on: Brain.
Jupiter and Scientists Glowing  01/24/2001
Exclusive  The world’s leading planetary scientists, gathered this week at the
Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California are all aglow with excitement as they share the wealth of new data just returned from Jupiter.  For the first time, two major spacecraft, Galileo and Cassini (swinging by en route to Saturn) have been observing the giant planet at close range simultaneously from different vantage points.  Improved hardware and software has provided unprecedented data at visible, ultraviolet and infrared wavelengths, in addition to magnetic field, plasma, and dust measurements.  Some oohs and aahs came from new movies of Jupiter’s aurora, augmented by observations from the Hubble Space Telescope, and the moon Io’s plasma torus, a donut of charged particles fed by volcanic eruptions from the moon Io (see this awesome photo of Io just released, and our 08/16/2000 story about Io’s unexplained heat output). 
The excitement of discovery can be shared by creationists and evolutionists alike.  Stay tuned for further developments.     This reporter asked a couple of scientists about the rate of mass loss for Io, and they said a ton per second or more.  Io is continually erupting volatiles like sulfur, oxygen and sulfur dioxide to the plasma torus which eventually escape to interplanetary space.  It would be interesting to compute whether this process could continue for four and a half billion years.  Someone want to do a science project?  (A simplistic calculation shows that at its current mass - 8.9316 x 1025 grams - Io could lose a ton a second for 3 trillion years.  Most of the mass being ejected, however, is in the form of crustal volatiles which presumably compose a small fraction of the total mass, which is most likely silicate rock around an iron core.  A realistic calculation would also have to take into account non-linear loss rates as a function of surface area to volume, and the effect of internal cooling rates, including depletion of radioactive elements.  Original mass [with its consequence of higher escape velocity], recycling of ejected material, and accretion sources would also need to be considered.)
Next headline on: Solar System.
Rock Star Dinosaur Found  01/24/2001
Nature reports that a dog-sized dinosaur found on the island of Madagascar has been named after rock star Mark Knopfler.  It has strange hooked teeth, according to the report in the Nando Times.  Discoverer Scott Sampson said, “The most important aspect of this animal is that it underscores the fact that, contrary to popular opinion, we still don't know everything about dinosaurs.”
Popular opinion is shaped by textbooks that are full of errors and museums and TV programs that confidently shell out misinformation.  Despite its disclaimer, however, this article can’t resist launching into storybook land about splitting continents and dinosaur lifestyles.  The opinions are safe from contradiction because, of course, no human was there to observe.
Next headline on: Dinosaurs.
Gentlemen, Start Your Engines  01/23/2001
The Proceedings of the
National Academy of Sciences describe more findings about our amazing molecular motor, ATP Synthase (a complex enzyme that won its elucidators the 1997 Nobel Prize).  Your body has trillions of these tiny motors in the mitochondria of cells.  Each motor is 200,000 times smaller than a pinhead, and rotates at 6000 RPM, generating three ATP molecules per revolution (if these motors stopped, you would be dead before you hit the floor).  The motor is reversible and can be used as a proton pump.  ATP is the energy currency of every living thing.  An active person can generate his/her body weight in ATP in a day’s time.  Today’s report (click here for PDF format) describes more details of the rotor and stator, and contains color diagrams of these amazing molecular machines on which all life, even bacteria, depends.
In Michael Behe’s terminology, these motors are “irreducibly complex” and would never arise by gradual evolution.  The complexity of the cell was never dreamed of in Darwin’s day, and discoveries like this are straining the credibility of the evolutionary myth beyond the breaking point.  Truly we are fearfully and wonderfully made!
Next headline on: The Cell and Biochemistry. • Next headline on: Human Body. • Next amazing story.
Mars Revealed in Dead Color  01/23/2001
The February issue of
National Geographic just came out, with a feature on the latest discoveries and images from Mars.  The magazine includes a large fold-out map, based on 80,000 images and millions of altimetry measurements taken by the highly successful Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft operated by JPL, which has given us the most accurate global data ever of this most earth-like of planets.  “The biggest thing to come out of the MGS images is bafflement,” says Ken Edgett of Malin Space Science Systems, that built the MGS camera; “Much of it just doesn’t add up.  It’s spine-chilling.  It’s . . . mind-boggling!”
Update 01/25/2001  SpaceScience.com has an article about looking for life in the layered terrain of Mars, thought to possibly be from water-borne sediments.  A report in Natureclaims that samples from a Martian meteorite show evidence that water could have come from volcanic outgassing, and that it hints of an ancient ocean (see also this summary in space.com).
Update 03/15/2001  Space .Com has a story about the turmoil of new Mars discoveries, and how they are changing the paradigm every six months.  “It causes one to be humble . . . and it is good to be humble,” one scientist said.
   Many of the apparent contradictions and mysteries come from features that look very young (formed within the last few thousand years), far younger than a multi-billion year old geologically-dead planet ought to appear.  (The scientists’ assumptions couldn’t possibly be at fault, of course.)  Anyway, the article discusses the expected controversies over water and life, but scientists are even less certain now that water was responsible for some of the apparent river channels, gullies, and basins (see 01/22/01 story, below). 
   Regardless of the verdict about Martian water, the large color map in this issue of National Geographic is worth poring over for a long time.  Here is another world, complete with mountains, volcanoes, canyons, deserts, dust devils, polar ice caps and fascinating geology, but no conclusive evidence of even the tiniest bacterium – to say nothing of forests, orchids, lions, angelfish, dolphins and people.  While we learn with excitement and anticipation about the fourth rock from the sun, should we not be reminded to thank the Creator for the unique habitat He designed for us?
   For more amazing images of Mars and the other planets of our solar system, visit photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov.
   The Nature article tries to prove too much with too little.  The SpaceScience.com article repeats many of the logical fallacies of the Mars life myth: e.g., water means life, earth life can exist in extreme habitats, and earth life appeared early so it must be easy to evolve.  These misleading claims fail to understand the complexity of life and the problem of the origin of information.  They also commit the fallacy of circular reasoning, using the assumption of evolution to prove evolution.
Next headline on: Mars. • Next headline on: Solar System. • Next headline on: Geology.
Brits OK Human Cloning  01/23/2001
Major news sources are all reporting that the UK has voted to allow experiments on
human cloning.  A leading expert on ethics in the field, Dr Tom Shakespeare, said it was a worrying step.  “We are very concerned about using embryos in this way, using them as a means to an end.  There are actually things we can do with adult stem cells, so there are alternatives to this technology.  There are very many reasons why we are going too fast and should be much more cautious about this development.”
Update 01/28/2001  The L.A. Times has an article today “Genie Out of the Bottle on Human Cloning” that underscores some of the risks.  “Equally worrisome to some researchers is that when cloning fails, it often fails in gruesome ways.  For every successfully cloned cow, sheep or goat, dozens of others fail to grow in the womb, die at childbirth or perish soon after birth from deformities.”  Ethicists are concerned that human cloning is doable, but is it right?
Update 02/07/2001  According to a story in the Nando Times, efforts are accelerating to clone humans, with ethicists being left behind in the dust.
   Remember how human cloning was supposed to be years away?  Remember how most world leaders said it they had serious ethical concerns about it?  Remember how unthinkable this was just a few months ago?  It all starts with the noblest motives, the hope of discovering cures for Parkinson’s disease and diabetes, but it strikes at the heart of our understanding of when human life begins, and whether it is right to take a life to save a life.  The potential misuses of this technology are ominous, but the voices of concern are being mowed over in the race to be first.  Can you think of any logical stopping point between this and keeping brain-dead adults on life support so as to harvest their body parts, or genetically engineering a super race?  Where will this slippery slope lead?
   When there is no moral consensus, pragmatism and ambition have free rein, just as we have seen with the abortion industry and the sale of fetal body parts.  It’s a brave new world, run by scientists and governments and corporations with no fear of God, who view life as a physical collection of molecules organized without soul or purpose or eternal destiny.  Those of us lucky enough to make it past birth can play god and tinker with the human program.  This is the fruit of Darwinism.  Christian pastors had better wake up and realize that evolution is not just an intellectual side issue; it is a total world view with fearsome societal consequences.  Science can tell us what we can do, but it cannot tell us what we should do.  In the Darwinian dictionary, “should” is an undefined term.
Next headline on: Politics.
Global Warming: It Threatens Me, It Threatens Me Not  01/22/2001
News sources are all echoing the latest United Nations report that global warming is a more serious threat than previously believed.  But other recent reports predicted unusual periods of cooling ahead, and now this report seems to be saying the risk of global warming is caused by industry cleaning up its act and reducing the amount of dust in the atmosphere (see Fox News).  Moreover, a report in Scientific American says that Arctic ozone depletion, long attributed to human pollutants, may be caused by sea salt.
Update 01/24/01  A former head of the U.S. weather service says the U.N. report is “overdoing it” and “missing the point.”
This topic is a little off our theme, but illustrates that science is not just about data and facts.  This U.N. report comes on the first day of work for a U.S. President unfriendly to global warming theory.  How much political posturing is going on, how much socialism, how much economics, how much personal ambition, how much unwarranted extrapolation, how much desire for funding, and how much ignorance of global processes is anyone’s guess.  If you can sift through the morass of all that and find a brute fact here or there, you’ at least have a more informed opinion than the news media.  See Murphy’s Law of Research and Harrison’s Postulate, right.
Next headline on: Environment. • Next headline on: Politics.
E.T. May Use Laser Beacons  01/22/2001
In case E.T. is sending his message with lasers instead of microwaves, Harvard SETI (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) enthusiast Paul Horowitz is unveiling a new telescope to search for alien civilizations in space, reports the
Nando Times.  After years of trying, microwave searches have still come up dry.  But Horowitz is not discouraged:  “We’ve got organic molecules in space, we’ve got planetary systems, we have life right away on Earth, and microbial life in extreme environments on our planet.  What do you need to convince yourself that this is a normal phenomenon?”
Intelligence arising by natural processes, that’s what.  There is precious little of it in this article, which repeats the same old wishful thinking and evolutionary bluffing typical of his mentor Carl Sagan.  It’s ironic that Horowitz, an evolutionist, will enthusiastically embrace the Intelligent Design inference when it comes to receiving a message from extraterrestrials, then turn right around and claim the source of the intelligence that received the message was mindless chance!
Update 02/02/2001:Space.Com reports on how optical SETI and proposed radio interferometers are opening a new chapter in the ongoing search.
Next headline on: SETI.

Mars Canyons Formed by Glaciers, Not Water  01/22/2001
A scientist for the U.S. Geological Survey claims the river channels and other features on Mars were formed by ice, not water.  (See
DiscoveryOnline for a summary.)  Martian channels bear a resemblance to Antarctic counterparts formed by moving ice.

Evidence seems to oscillate back and forth on whether Mars had water, so it is too early to be certain.  But certainly the exobiologists hope for water to be found on Mars because that would boost their hopes for finding life.  But water does not equal life, any more than a nail equals a city.
Next headline on: Mars. • Next headline on: Solar System. • Next headline on: Geology.
Butterfly Evolutionary Trickery Observed  01/22/2001
A team in the Ecuadorian rain forest has done an experiment to see if butterfly mimicry works, and it appears so, according to a report in the journal
Science.  Imported butterflies that look like bad-tasting cousins give birds the creeps.  “I think it is a great study,” says evolutionary biologist James Mallet.  “Mimicry theory seems plausible, but experiments to show its existence in nature have been rarer than hen’s teeth.”
All the species existed before and after the experiment, so nothing has changed.  This is not evolution.  What did they observe?  Conditioned response, nothing more.   Evolutionists need to demonstrate how butterflies and birds arose in the first place.  Notice the admission that actual experiments to back up evolutionary storytelling have been exceedingly rare, at least in this case.
Next headline on: Bugs and Crawlers.
Bronco Busting an Ancient Worldwide Tradition  01/19/2001
Analysis of horse mitochondrial DNA samples from several continents hints that early peoples from around the world learned to tame and ride horses, according to a report today in the journal
Science.  The presumption earlier was that the art of domesticating the horse spread from a single source in Eurasia about 5,000 years ago, but the new evidence seems to indicate that horse breeding had many origins in many locales.  One researcher disagrees with the interpretation but welcomes the data, because “Solving the riddle of equine domestication has been so difficult,” she admits.
Comparative gene sequencing of horses has all the difficulties of human comparative gene sequencing, and is fraught with the same untestable assumptions.  But consider this: evolutionists would have us believe that modern humans (smart enough to hunt and eat the animals), including Cro-Magnons with brain capacities larger, on the average, than ours, existed for a half a million years – multiple times the length of all recorded human history – without ever learning to ride a horse!  That strains the imagination when you consider how natural horsemanship was to civilizations as diverse as the Chinese, the Europeans, the Chaldeans and many others.  Let’s give early people a little more credit for brains and ingenuity.
   Evolutionists scramble the data to come up with their supposed horse evolution story, a fable riddled with errors and inconsistencies.  The ancient Old Testament book of Job, ch. 39:19-25, by contrast, pictures the horse as a masterpiece of God’s design, made with human interaction as part of the plan.  This is why the horse and man have a long, symbiotic relationship, just like the evidence shows.
Next headline on: Early Man. • Next headline on: Mammals.
Bird Species Diverging, Proving Darwin Right  01/18/2001
“Scientists may be witnessing one of the fundamental forces of evolution: the divergence of one species into two.  It is the evidence that the originator of the theory of evolution, Charles Darwin, wanted to see but was never able to find, says
BBC News online science editor David Whitehouse.  Apparently two similar birds in the foothills of the Himalayas are singing different tunes and not interbreeding, which biologists are interpreting as a speciation event in progress.  “One of the largest mysteries remaining in evolutionary biology is exactly how one species can gradually diverge into two,” says Darren Irwin of the University of California, San Diego.
Microevolution is not Darwinian evolution.  Everyone, creationists and evolutionists alike, agrees that variation occurs and species change in horizontal ways – beak size, coloration, habitat.  What Darwinists need to explain is macroevolution: how birds, whales and people arose in the first place from bacteria and ultimately from nonliving chemicals.  This report is sheer bluff, adding nothing to the evolutionists’ arsenal.  On the contrary, it is revealing that Dr. Irwin admits that in 2001, 142 years after Darwin published On the Origin of Species which supposedly solved the problem, speciation remains one of the largest mysteries remaining in evolutionary biology!  For a clear explanation of the difference between microevolution and macroevolution, and why extrapolating micro to macro is a logical fallacy, read Dr. Phillip Johnson’s recent book The Wedge of Truth.
Next headline on: Birds. • Next headline on: Darwinism.
Clinton Last-Minute Land Grab Accelerates  01/17/2001
Just four days before leaving office, President Clinton has set aside one million more acres in six national monuments in the West (for details see this Associated Press release reported in the
Nando Times and Fox News).  These actions are in addition to 11 other National Monuments Clinton earlier designated with the stroke of a pen.  This brings the total to 5.6 million acres, much of it in the western states.  In addition to the monuments, Clinton announced on January 5 a ban on logging and road building in a third of American national forests.  The combined area affected by the ban – 60 million acres – is greater than all U.S. National Parks and Monuments combined (National Geographic). 
Protection of the environment is and should be of major concern to Christians and creationists, but the shameless single-handed decisions by the President just before leaving office are more indicative of monarchy than democracy.  Each parcel of land should be evaluated individually on its merits, with debate by all our elected representatives and input from and consideration for local landowners who are sometimes swept out the door of their own homes.  These decisions often restrict access to protected areas even by nature lovers.  And in some cases, it is debatable whether the Federal Government has a better environmental track record than states, local governments and property owners.
Next headline on: Environment. • Next headline on: Politics.
Stars Gasping for Air  01/17/2001
The Submillimeter Wave Astronomy Satellite (SWAS) has turned up a surprise: there’s only one 10,000th the expected amount of molecular oxygen in interstellar clouds that presumably form stars.  “It really is a dilemma for interstellar chemistry, but it might be a hint that something is wrong with our picture of the structure of these giant clouds,” says Paul Goldsmith in
Scientific American.
When theory differs from observations, it takes integrity to say you may be on the wrong track.
Next headline on: Stars.
Surprises Announced in AAS Meeting  01/16/2001
Sky and Telescope reports on last week’s meeting of the American Astronomical Society in San Diego, with some news of interest regarding origins. 
  • Meteorites present mysteries and paradoxes, showing conflicting evidence of melting yet also containing volatiles like water-bearing minerals and amino acids.
  • Astronomers claim to have better evidence now for the existence of black holes.
  • A pulsar turns out to be less than 1% of its previously assumed age, coming from a supernova observed by the Chinese.
  • Two recently-discovered extrasolar systems with weird orbits and planet sizes don’t fit accepted theories of planet formation (Quote – “in practice, it may be impossible to tell how a given object formed millions or billions of years after the fact”).
  • A wall of galaxy clusters over twice the size of the earlier record holder has been found.
Here are more illustrations that nature still has surprises up her sleeve, and observations tend to upset established beliefs (particularly for evolutionists).
Next headline on: Solar System.
Venusian Women Dig Martian Men  01/16/2001
Nature tells an evolutionary tale about what women like in men.  Sarah Collins, a behavioral biologist at the Institute of Evolutionary and Ecological Sciences in Leiden, the Netherlands, recorded Dutch men’s voices and played them to Dutch women, who then tried to predict what the speakers looked like.  All assumed that the deeper the voice, the more muscular, hairy-chested, taller and attractive the man.  “The results imply that there could be sexual selection through female choice for male vocal characteristics, deeper voices being preferred,” says Collins.  “However, the function of the preference is unclear given that the estimates were generally incorrect,” i.e., small guys sometimes have deep voices and vice versa.
Chuckle, and good grief.  Sexual selection was discredited even in Darwin’s day.  Evolutionary scientists commit the fallacy of reductionism by trying to put the complexities of human relationships into behavioral boxes.  The Harvard Law reminds us, “Under the most precise conditions of temperature, pressure and humidity, the organism does what it darn well pleases.”  How much more so for us humans?  Are deep-voiced men the only guys who get married?  Does love make any scientific sense?  Are we just piles of molecules or do we have a soul?  Like Billy Joel sings, it’s all about soul.  Maybe this evolutionist needs a nice romantic night out.
Next headline on: Darwinism. • Next dumb story.
Pulsars Aren’t So Old  01/16/2001
A pulsar thought to be 24,000 years old may only be 1,615 years old.  Data from the new giant orbiting
Chandra X-Ray Observatory reveals that a supernova remnant is clearly associated with the pulsar.  This supernova was observed and recorded by the Chinese in 386 A.D.  (Reported from January’s American Astronomical Society convention by Scientific American.)  According to Astronomy Now, “This calls into question many other pulsar ages and suggests that some revisions are needed in those astronomy textbooks.”
So another dating method was grossly in error, by over 99%.  It’s refreshing to see scientists admit there are things they just don’t know.  Dr. Mallory Roberts of McGill University states, “While this is exciting by itself, it also raises new questions about what we know about pulsars, especially during their infancies.”  Now that evolutionists have revised the age of the Grand Canyon downward from 5 million to less than 1 million years (see story), and now that they admit granite mountains may have just formed in a few thousand years (see story), what, in the roster of old-age indicators, is next to be found much younger than expected? 
   According to the Chandra website, the “determining the true ages astronomical objects is notoriously difficult.”  Remember this story the next time you hear a confident newscaster proclaiming that such-and-such an event took place 1.329 gazillion years ago.
Next headline on: Dating methods.
Ape-Man Not a Vegan, Ate Bugs  01/16/2001
BBC News reports on a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that our ancestor Australopithecus robustus wasn’t a vegetarian as expected, but ate termites.  Carved bones appear to be tools for digging the bugs out of termite mounds.
Film at eleven.  Sometimes you just have to laugh.
Next headline on: Early Man.
Was Jurassic Park Accurate?  01/15/2001
A new report in the Biological Proceedings of the
Royal Society of London underscores the difficulty of inferring social behavior of extinct animals, such as the dinosaur behavior depicted in the popular movie Jurassic Park.  Scientists studied a fossil graveyard in the Gobi Desert and made predictions about the social behavior of the animals by looking at the bones.  Their predictions, however, did not always agree with the real behavior of their living counterparts.
Let’s all remember to segregate the real observations from the storytelling.  Was Jurassic Park like the real world of the dinosaurs?  If scientists weren’t there, they can’t be sure.  Who knows – maybe velociraptors were as cute as the Flintstones’ Deeno, and would have made good house pets.  After all, there is a vicious-looking bat that munches on fruit, and there are cute frogs poisonous enough to kill an army.  Would you know that from the bones?
Next headline on: Fossils.
Science Textbooks Flunk Accuracy Test  01/15/2001
ALERT!  Researchers found 500 pages of errors in the most popular science textbooks used in schools across the country, according to an Associated Press story reported in the
Nando Times.  Errors included a map showing the equator running through the southern United States, a misstatement of Newton’s first law of motion, and a photo of singer Linda Ronstadt labeled as a silicon crystal.  Unqualified authors are writing the books, and the publishers don’t appear overly concerned about making corrections.  A fact-checker said, “They get people to check for political correctness . . . they try to get in as much cultural diversity as possible.  They just don't seem to understand what science is about.”
Update 01/22/2001:  Another team has found high-school physics textbooks “deplorable,” and filled with errors, according to a report in the journal Science.  Part of the problem is multiculturalism and trying to appeal to students by including images of pop stars.
Update 01/29/2001:  The Nando Times has a story today about wise educators who are using textbook errors as “teachable moments,” helping children think critically and understand that textbooks are not the last word in truth.
For years, Christian researchers such as Mel and Norma Gabler have been blowing the whistle on inaccuracies in science and history textbooks.  But now political correctness is a new threat.  The new paradigm of multiculturalism runs directly counter to the need for accuracy in teaching science.  Creationists and evolutionists alike need to condemn the postmodernist deconstruction and revisionist history that makes textbooks the playthings of special interest groups.
   Although this article did not mention any examples, science textbooks even at the university level continue to report outdated and disproved evidences for evolution.  Jonathan Wells’ new book Icons of Evolution documents these in detail.  (check out these reviews.)
   Students! here are 10 Questions to drive your biology teacher crazy.  And parents, here are Warning Labels you can stick inside your child’s science textbook.
Next headline on: Schools.
Another Bird Ancestor Alleged  01/12/2001
A Mongolian fossil bird is giving evolutionists the “keys to the evolution of flight and ancestry of birds,” according to
Fox News reporting on a story in Nature.  But this fossil, Apsaravis ukhaana, also contradicts some assumptions about the type of bird that was the common ancestor.
It is so important to distinguish between the observation and the interpretation.  What did they find?  A fossil bird, fully capable of flying: 100% bird.  The rest, including the dating, the relationships, the natural history, is mythmaking.
Next headline on: Fossils.
World’s Oldest Crystal Pushes Back Date of First Life  01/10/2001
Australian scientists claim a new record of 4.3 billion years for a microscopic crystal of zircon found inside a younger rock, reports the
Nando Times.  The discoverers claim that oxygen isotopes in the crystal indicate oceans were already present and that life could have evolved 400 million years earlier than thought.
Don’t you wish that some reporter, somewhere, would challenge the credibility of these stories?  Radiometric dating is highly subjective and dependent on unproveable assumptions.  Getting from that shaky platform to a story about when life evolved is unjustifiable, but evolutionists get free reign in the media who seem to just parrot the news releases of the scientific establishment.  Would someone please start asking the hard questions?
Update 01/11/2001  The next day most of the major news sources (Examples: CBS, BBC, USA Today) all picked up on this story and quoted every claim as fact.  (See Souder’s Law, right.)  Would that the news media would scrutinize the mythmaking of evolutionists with a little of the fervor they expend on Bush cabinet appointments.  Who else but an evolutionist could weave a cosmogony out of a crystal smaller than a human hair? (See Ruckert’s Law, right.)  Another thing: this new “finding” causes problems for the impact theory for the origin of the moon, because it alleges the oceans were already in place when the impact should have occurred.
Next headline on: Geology. • Next headline on: Dating methods. • Next headline on: Origin of Life.
Genes and Appearances Don’t Always Relate  01/10/2001
Evolutionary geneticists who compare genetic markers between animals are coming up with different family trees than the biologists who look at external features (morphology), according to
Science News.  Each party feels it has the better explanation, but there are problems with the genetic interpretation: newly proposed group members – such as aardvarks and golden moles – have no obvious physical similarities to their supposed cousins.  “This is an odd collection of mammals, and it’s tough to convince biologists who depend on morphology that this is a valid grouping,” admits S. Blair Hedges, an evolutionary biologist at Penn State.
If evolutionists expected to prove common ancestry in the genes, it isn’t turning out quite so neat and simple.  Molecules and morphology are not singing the same Darwinian song.  See Maier’s Law, right.
Next headline on: Darwinism and Evolutionary Theory.
Kansas Schools Revert to Darwinism Indoctrination  01/10/2001
The Kansas school board will soon reverse its 1999 decision to de-emphasize Darwinian evolution in the state schools, reports the
Nando Times.  Debate and public comment was bitter and divided.  “Board member Steve Abrams, who supported the 1999 version, stated, “It still comes across that this is dogma, that this is the only way it is.”  “You will be legislating naturalism into the public school curriculum,” said Jody Sjogren of the Intelligent Design Network, a non-sectarian group that feels naturalism is an insufficient basis for explaining life and the universe.  “We need to stop making evolution a religion.”  A supporter of the new standards claimed it will help repair Kansas’ tarnished image among scientists.
Update 02/14/2001  It’s official; the new Kansas school board, minus two dissenters voted out last election, has voted 7 to 3 to reinstate evolution as the central principle of biology.
A curious state of affairs this has become; the conservatives are the Darwinists, and the liberals the creationists.  The liberals want free speech, and open inquiry; the conservatives want tradition.  The liberals speak for the common man, the conservatives for the elite.  Except for their entrenched power, the Darwinists are in a tenuous position: they have to explain to a questioning public why they cannot allow teaching all the science, including the science that contradicts evolution.  There’s plenty of that – right here on this page, for example.
   The Access Research Network has a number of articles about the Kansas decision, the press, and the issues.  Also, Phillip Johnson’s new book The Wedge of Truth has a chapter devoted to what really happened in 1999.
Next headline on: Darwinism.
Planet-Searching Spacecraft to Honor Johannes Kepler  01/09/2001
NASA has approved for consideration plans by Ames Research Center to launch a spacecraft in 2005 named
Kepler that will search for habitable planets around other stars by viewing transits. 
Johannes Kepler was one of history’s greatest scientists, a devout Christian and creationist, responsible for many major scientific discoveries.  It was his long labor of demystifying planetary orbits that led to the discovery of his three laws of planetary motion that are still used by JPL space navigators today.  Kepler had an interest in habitable planets and speculated about them, but his trust was in the Word of God. 
   The Bible says nothing definitive about whether life on other worlds exists.  That silence, combined with the Bible’s focus on human life on earth, would make one surmise that, whether or not other habitable planets are out there, sentient physical life (excluding angels) is unique to our earth.  SETI has been looking for years with no results, so far.
Next headline on: Solar System. • Next headline on: SETI.
Put Neandertals Back on Your Family Tree;
or, Was Adam an Aussie?
  01/09/2001
DNA comparisons by Australian scientists have cast doubt on the out-of-Africa story of human origins.  Studies of mitochondrial DNA of an Australian specimen named Mungo Man, the oldest anatomically-modern human fossil, shows that, like Neandertals, portions have gone extinct.  If this could happen in fully-human specimens, it means Neandertals are not as different as modern man, potentially putting Neandertals back on the human family tree.  (Published in today’s
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences; see Scientific American for abstract.)
   Some revealing quotes on this story as reported by New Scientist: “It’s remarkable – totally unpredicted,” says anthropologist Alan Mann of the University of Pennsylvania.  Alan Thorne of the Australian National University in Canberra, who led the new research, says: “A simplistic ’Out Of Africa” model is no longer tenable.”  But not all experts agree.  “The genetic evidence is equivocal,” says Colin Groves, of the ANU.  “The African origin model stands or falls by the fossil evidence.  In my opinion, it stands.”
Update 01/15/2001:  The Stanford anthropologist who published the African Eve theory disputes the interpretation that these findings damage the out-of-Africa theory, according to CNN.  So if both theories can co-exist, why argue?  “Egos, egos egos,” he said.  “Scientists are human.”
Update 02/19/2003: Scientists got together and reconciled their dates, according to the University of Melbourne.  They got the date of maximum human occupation down to 45,000 years.
Update 01/29/2001:  Scientific American today posted an article today titled “The Modern Human Origins Morass: Recent studies support a controversial theory of human evolution.”  The author concludes, “To be sure, the new findings will not end the decades-long debate over modern human origins.  Where it will go from here, however, is anyone’s guess.”
There you have it.  Creationists have long argued that Neandertals are just as modern as we are.  The evolutionists’ popular myth about ape-men evolving from Africa cannot be supported without conflicting evidence getting in the way.  Several currents are colliding here: competing scientific teams with their own self-interest, the inaccuracy of dating methods, false assumptions about human origins, and how much we just don’t know (unless you want to accept the word of the Eyewitness).  Keep in mind that DNA deteriorates quickly; the fact it can be extracted from fossils means the bones cannot be as old as claimed.
Next headline on: Early Man.
Largest Structure in the Universe Gives Big Bangers Lumps  01/09/2001
More lumpiness problems for the Big Bang theory: astronomers have detected a mass of quasars and galaxies 600 million light-years across, the biggest yet. 
Discovery News Online relays the concerns of Gerard Williger of NOAO:
That such a large structure could form so quickly after the Big Bang calls into question some of the traditional theories of how the universe evolved, Williger said, since it is difficult to explain how gravity could pull together such an immense cluster in a relatively short time . . . . “A successful theory has to explain the extremes,” said Williger.
Amen. 
Next headline on: Cosmology with explanation of the lumpiness problem.
You Can Be a Mars Scientist  01/08/2001
With just your home PC, you can help NASA Ames scientists classify Mars craters, according to
Goddard Space Flight Center’s Astronomy Picture of the Day. 
Here’s a fun opportunity to get involved in science as a layman.  Maybe the data on Mars craters will help clarify the age of the Martian surface.  Keep in mind, though, that these observations can help determine relative ages – i.e., the sequence of events – but estimates of absolute ages are based on assumptions about the unobservable past.
Next headline on: Mars. • Next headline on: Solar System.
Is Disease More from Germs than Genetics?  01/07/2001
Paul W. Ewald, a champion of “Darwinian, or evolutionary medicine,” believes that germs, not genes, are responsible for most human ailments, including heart disease, according to a story in the
Nando Times.  Dr. Ewald states, “I realized that virtually all considerations of evolutionary processes in the medical literature were incorrect.”
This story illustrates some of the laws in the right-hand column.  The germ theory of disease, however, is one of the great triumphs of science, championed by a courageous creationistLouis Pasteur.  Pasteur was ridiculed, ignored, and called a fraud by many of his contemporaries.  The same was true of Semmelweis, Lister, and many others who are now known as the great heroes of science and medicine.  History teaches us that the establishment has often been wrong. 
Next headline on: Health.
Astronomers Can’t See Dark Galaxies  01/05/2001
According to the Royal Astronomical Society as reported by Astronomy Now, “The universe could be harbouring numerous galaxies that have no stars at all and are made entirely of dark matter.  Astronomers may ultimately discover that completely dark galaxies outnumber the familiar kind populated by shining stars and gas, perhaps by as many as 100 to 1.”
Let’s get this dark matter thing straight.  They don’t know what it is, they can’t see it, and they don’t know how to look for it, but they know it’s there.  Well, they got their headline.  Let us know when the other 99% of reality turns up.
Tennis Players Do Math Better  01/05/2001
When you react to the ball bouncing erratically toward your side of the court, your brain is rapidly solving complex equations of chaos theory, according to a report in
Nature.  Robot designers have a hard time getting their creations to do such tricks.
Enough said?  Truly we are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).
Next headline on: Brain.
Music is Glorified Birdsong  01/05/2001
Several news sources have picked up on a report in
Science Magazine “The Music of Nature and the Nature of Music,“ which examines the commonalities in human and animal music.  The canyon wren’s call, for instance, sounds similar to Chopin’s “Revolutionary” etude.  After considering humpback whale songs and Cro-magnon flutes, and asking more questions than providing answers, the authors conclude: “Such an impenetrable vagueness about this most basic of human creations seems to signal that the roots of music lie closer to our ancient lizard brain than to our more recent reasoning cortex, that music has a more ancient origin even than human language.”
So what are we supposed to make of this story?  That Mozart wrote mating calls, or marked his territory with operas?  Or that whales should be allowed to perform at Lincoln Center?  With the possible exception of Rap, there’s no comparison between the intricacies of a Bach concerto or a Brahms symphony and the instinctive grunting of the deep or the chirping in the trees.  While no one would deny the pleasure of listening to a meadowlark, the comparison should emphasize the tremendous gulf between man and the animals.  Notice how the last sentence commits the common fallacy of the Darwinians: they just assume evolution instead of demonstrating any evidence for it.  (In truth, the canyon wren sounds more like Chopin’s “Winter Wind” etude.)
Next headline on: Darwinism. • Next dumb story.
Tooth or Consequences: Did Molars Evolve Twice?  01/04/2001
The major news media are echoing a report in
Nature that mammal and marsupial molar teeth, though similar, apparently evolved separately on southern and northern continents after the split of the fabled Gondwana land mass from Laurasia 100 million years ago.  “Tribosphenic teeth have such a complex and intricate assembly, people thought it inconceivable that they would have a multiple origin,” explains Zhe-Xi Luo of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.  The scientists admit many gaps in the lineage.
So-called “convergent evolution,” or the independent development of similar characters, is a serious problem for evolutionary theory.  Today’s story is but one example of many alleged cases of “complex and intricate assemblies” that supposedly arose without design not just once but multiple times.  Do these discoveries ever cast doubt on the Darwinian paradigm?  Never: “evolution is a fact,” they say, no matter what miracles it must perform.  To a creationist, all this storytelling about the evolution of mammal teeth is mythology, resting on unreliable dating methods and a prior commitment to evolutionary naturalism.
Next headline on: Mammals.
African Elephants Closer to Mammoths than to Asian Elephants  01/03/2001
According to a paper in the Proceedings of the
Royal Society of London, gene sequence studies between 5 mammoths, 14 Asian and 8 African elephants show a closer relationship between the mammoths and the African elephants (see also this summary in Nature.)  This contradicts morphological evidence and expectations the Asian and African elephants would be more closely related than the more “primitive” mammoth.  According to the authors, ”the fossil record is patchy and adaptive convergence is a serious problem,” (i.e., the idea that characteristics evolved several times independently).
Mammoths are anything but primitive, being just as complex as any other living thing and well adapted to their environment.  They lived in recent times and were hunted by man.  This report, however, shows the problems biologists get themselves into when they try to force-fit their data into the preconceived notions of evolution.
Next headline on: Fossils.
The Royal Society, by the way, was founded by devout Christian creationists such as Robert Boyle.  You can find the first edition of their Philosophical Proceedings, the world’s longest-running scientific journal, at the Royal Society website.  It contains clear statements of the society’s purpose to use science for the glory of God.
2001, A Science Odyssey  01/02/2001
Science Magazine lists six hot fields to watch in the coming year, including research into how messenger RNA protects against disease, and how cells tell left from right.
Much of scientific research these days is riddled with the assumption of evolution, but the evidence continues to emphasize the amazing complexity of the cell – complexity that never could have arisen by chance.
Stone Age Camp Found Under Sea of Galilee  01/02/2001
The receding shoreline of the Sea of Galilee in Israel has revealed a Stone Age community, according to a report in
National Geographic.  First discovered in 1989, the fishing community, estimated to be 20,000 years old, appears to have cared for their aged and lived on the site for long periods, contrary to expectations for an Ice Age hunter-gatherer culture.
The age estimates for these digs should always be viewed with suspicion, relying not on known history but on dating methods riddled with unverifiable assumptions.  Nevertheless, this and many other archaeological sites confirm that early people were not wandering brutes but had culture, religion, morals and intelligence wherever they are found.  Christian philosopher Francis Schaeffer often called this the “mannishness” of man, a humanness that stands out from the animals in every culture and time.  It is possible that early settlers of the Palestine region arrived here not long after the Flood and the Tower of Babel.
Next headline on: Early Man. • Next headline on: Bible.
Stars Appear Too Early  01/02/2001
The discovery of a new class of starburst galaxies raises questions about the process of star formation, according to a report in the
BBC News.  The galaxies, seen by the Hubble Space Telescope and an Australian telescope, are alleged to be 11 billion years old, very soon after the Big Bang, and may outnumber all other previously known distant galaxies.
This is another example of the “lumpiness problem” in cosmology, where structure appears too soon after the assumed Big Bang.  From COBE and BOOMERANG measurements we know the Cosmic Background Radiation was extremely smooth, so how did we get so quickly to lumpy structures like stars and galaxies?  The lumpiness problem has a counterpart in biology, where life appears too soon after the origin of the earth, and the Cambrian explosion shows every phylum appearing suddenly without precursors (that is, assuming the age estimates of the evolutionists). 
There is so little we know about the distant universe, and so much room for interpretation of the data, that it makes good sense to refrain from jumping to conclusions.  In this case, astronomers are weaving stories of frenzied star birth out of faint pixels of light.  Be careful to discern between raw data and storytelling, in which your assumptions can make all the difference.  It is worth noting, however, that these observations cause problems for their own theories. 
Next headline on: Cosmology. • Next headline on: Stars.
A Concise Guide
for Understanding
Evolutionary Theory

You can observe a lot by just watching.
– Yogi Berra

First Law of Scientific Progress
The advance of science can be measured by the rate at which exceptions to previously held laws accumulate.
Corollaries:
1. Exceptions always outnumber rules.
2. There are always exceptions to established exceptions.
3. By the time one masters the exceptions, no one recalls the rules to which they apply.

Darwin’s Law
Nature will tell you a direct lie if she can.
Bloch’s Extension
So will Darwinists.

Finagle’s Creed
Science is true.  Don’t be misled by facts.

Finagle’s 2nd Law
No matter what the anticipated result, there will always be someone eager to (a) misinterpret it, (b) fake it, or (c) believe it happened to his own pet theory.

Finagle’s Rules
3. Draw your curves, then plot your data.
4. In case of doubt, make it sound convincing.
6. Do not believe in miracles – rely on them.

Murphy’s Law of Research
Enough research will tend to support your theory.

Maier’s Law
If the facts do not conform to the theory, they must be disposed of.
Corollaries:
1. The bigger the theory, the better.
2. The experiments may be considered a success if no more than 50% of the observed measurements must be discarded to obtain a correspondence with the theory.

Eddington’s Theory
The number of different hypotheses erected to explain a given biological phenomenon is inversely proportional to the available knowledge.

Young’s Law
All great discoveries are made by mistake.
Corollary
The greater the funding, the longer it takes to make the mistake.

Peer’s Law
The solution to a problem changes the nature of the problem.

Peter’s Law of Evolution
Competence always contains the seed of incompetence.

Weinberg’s Corollary
An expert is a person who avoids the small errors while sweeping on to the grand fallacy.

Souder’s Law
Repetition does not establish validity.

Cohen’s Law
What really matters is the name you succeed in imposing on the facts – not the facts themselves.

Harrison’s Postulate
For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.

Thumb’s Second Postulate
An easily-understood, workable falsehood is more useful than a complex, incomprehensible truth.

Ruckert’s Law
There is nothing so small that it can’t be blown out of proportion

Hawkins’ Theory of Progress
Progress does not consist in replacing a theory that is wrong with one that is right.  It consists in replacing a theory that is wrong with one that is more subtly wrong.

Macbeth’s Law
The best theory is not ipso facto a good theory.

Disraeli’s Dictum
Error is often more earnest than truth.

Advice from Paul

Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge – by professing it some have strayed concerning the faith.

I Timothy 6:20-21

Song of the True Scientist

O Lord, how manifold are Your works!  In wisdom You have made them all.  The earth is full of Your possessions . . . . May the glory of the Lord endure forever.  May the Lord rejoice in His works . . . . I will sing to the Lord s long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.  May my meditation be sweet to Him; I will be glad in the Lord.  May sinners be consumed from the earth, and the wicked be no more.  Bless the Lord, O my soul!  Praise the Lord!

from Psalm 104

Maxwell’s Motivation

Through the creatures Thou hast made
Show the brightness of Thy glory.
Be eternal truth displayed
In their substance transitory.
Till green earth and ocean hoary,
Massy rock and tender blade,
Tell the same unending story:
We are truth in form arrayed.

Teach me thus Thy works to read,
That my faith,– new strength accruing–
May from world to world proceed,
Wisdom’s fruitful search pursuing
Till, thy truth my mind imbuing,
I proclaim the eternal Creed –
Oft the glorious theme renewing,
God our Lord is God indeed.

James Clerk Maxwell
One of the greatest physicists
of all time (a creationist).