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Month-End Close-Out 10/31/2007
Sometimes the creation-evolution news comes in too fast. Heres a bakers
dozen from the October shelf, lest they go stale; time to start a new batch for November.
Encore: A letter in last weeks
by two molecular biologists recommended that we should be borrowing from
biology. They were particularly struck by the efficient way plants extract
all the energy from sunlight in their photosynthetic reaction centers.
Perhaps we should study biology more often and more directly for solutions
to our pressing modern problems.
- Charity begins at worldview: David Cyranoski in
(450, 24-25, 10/31/2007)
investigated why the level of charitable giving in prosperous Japan is a tenth of
that in America. Its not just due to economic realities, regulatory policies and
taxes. The behavior is consistent from rich to poor, from corporate to private.
The most intractable problem, he wrote, was a culture in which individuals, rich or not,
do not generally donate. Cyranoski interviewed a patient advocate and a
scientist who are trying to change the culture. People think the government is
going to do everything for them, explained a leader of a philanthropic organization
in Tokyo. The author did not delve into possible religious reasons for the disparity
between Japanese and American attitudes about charitable giving Japan is less than
1% Christian, while America is nominally 75% or more but did refer to societal
belief in the collective rather than the individual. Is this a problem science
- Dino adventure: Alison Abbott in
(450, 18-20, 10/31/2007) wrote up an adventure story about attempts to excavate
dinosaur bones along the Colville River, Alaska. The ill-fated expedition was full of troubles,
woes, infighting and only partial success, but spoke of this whole trove of dinosaur fossils
mostly fragmented skulls and bones belonging to hadrosaurs as quite remarkable,
a home to diverse species of polar dinosaurs. Unfossilized bone has
reputedly been found in this 200 km bone bed, which displays evidence of a watery
catastrophe, says creationist writer
Margaret Helder. Remember
the tracks found at the south pole? (See article on
and the 10/18/2007 entry).
- No room for error: Biophysicists constructed their own protein loops,
reported a team from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and found them to be
delicate. Tiny changes in the amino acid order produced large changes in the
loops. Writing in PNAS,
they said, These results suggest that the high-resolution design of protein loops is
possible; however, they also highlight how small changes in protein energetics can
dramatically perturb the low free energy structure of a protein.
- How the sherpas do it: Tibetans live at high altitude and carry heavy
loads with ease in conditions that would quickly exhaust most flatlanders (see
06/17/2005). How do they do it?
A mostly-American team found that they have more nitric oxide (NO) in their bloodstream,
which increases blood flow. This suggests that NO production is increased and
that metabolic pathways controlling formation of NO products are regulated differently
among Tibetans, they found. These findings shift attention from the traditional
focus on pulmonary and hematological systems to vascular factors contributing to
adaptation to high-altitude hypoxia, they concluded. This seems to suggest
that a simple change in a regulatory factor, rather than substantive physiological
changes, allowed these people to adapt to their unique environment.
- Spanish tiger tusks: Large mammal bones in abundance have been found
in a vast fossil hoard near Granada, Spain, reported the
Giant hyenas, sabretoothed cats, giraffes and zebras lived side by side in Europe
1.8 million years ago. About 4,000 fossils have been found so far.
They say this place, near a crossroads of ecological zones, was a hyena den,
where hyenas feasted and left the bones. Must have been some hyenas to feast
on mammoths and sabretooth cats.
- Lava vs meteor: Chixculub didnt do in the dinosaurs, Gerta
Keller is still arguing. Despite the nearly weekly matter-of-fact statements about
the meteor that made the dinosaurs go extinct, a press release from the
Geological Society of America
discussed Kellers view that supervolcanism in India was responsible.
Not only was the impact event too early, it produced one tenth of the deadly gases
that came from Indias Deccan traps, she calculated.
- Dino tracks in China: Parallel trackways of raptor dinosaurs
have been found in China, reported
suggesting that this species did hunt, or at least hike, in groups.
- Reptile tracks in Canada:
reported a discovery of reptile tracks from Canada claimed to be 315 million years old
1 million and 3 million years older than the previous find (and a kilometer
lower in the rock strata).
- Western science:
magazine (11/02/2007, Vol. 318. no. 5851, p. 733) gave a portrait of Xu Guangqi,
the Renaissance man of China (b. 1562). He brought science and geometry to the East.
Where did he get it? From the West. He learned it from Jesuit missionary
Matteo Ricci, and spread its influence across the land.
Xu Guangqi brought calendar reform, improvements to irrigation, and Euclids Elements
to China, along with other Western ideas. For his achievements, he has been
compared to Leonardo da Vinci and Francis Bacon (provided he reference his sources).
- Eastern stem cells: China and Australia are collaborating on stem cell
research with adult stem cells, that is: see
Oct. 26 in Science. The $1 million Australia-China Centre for Excellence in Stem Cells
will be using adult mesenchymal stem cells to treat cancer and diseases of the lung and liver,
then combining the research with immunology to push the field forward, the paragraph said.
- Make like a lemur: Were all related to flying lemurs,
Geographic based on a phylogenetic study in
(11/02/2007, Vol. 318. no. 5851, pp. 792-794). Look before you leap.
- Ringmoons: More small embedded moonlets have been found in Saturns
A ring, reported Science
Daily. They seem confined to a narrow belt. Scientists think they are
relatively recent, not related to the initial origin of the rings. Even so, explaining
the apparently youthful age of the entire ring system remains a challenge.
- Convergent design: Elaborate tri-cusped molars evolved separately
more than once, if a story in
Geographic is credible. A new species of Jurassic mammal found fossilized
in China had the same molars, very advanced in terms of its tooth structure,
that unrelated mammals also had.since Pseudotribos robustus belongs
to a different and long-lost lineage, it must have evolved the cut-and-grind tooth
independently, the article said matter-of-factly. This is an example
of a process known as convergent evolution. The National Geographic Society
partially funded the research that was published in
(11/01/2007, 450, 93-97).
These are just a few examples of the dozens of
articles that pass before our editorial eyes in an attempt to inform our readers
of noteworthy discoveries relating to origins. Your letters keep this
service going. Write here if you have a comment.
When Bad Religion Confronts Good Science, and Vice Versa 10/31/2007
Next headline on:
Politics and Ethics
A spooky Halloween thought: there are still witch doctors in the world today.
If they were harmless spooks, they could be dismissed as kooks, but they can have
a devastating impact on the ecology as well as the souls of men.
Geographic had a disturbing story this month about the witch doctors of Uganda, who are driving
the beautiful gray-crowned cranes of the country extinct, because of superstitious
These birds with golden headdresses, also known as crested cranes,
are among the most beautiful in Africa. They are popular and beloved icons for most
people in the region.
In the past decade, though, the crane population in Uganda has fallen from 50,000
to 20,000, primarily due to witch doctorsalso known as traditional healerswho
use the animals in folk medicine and poachers who take the birds from their natural habitat....
Because the cranes mate for life, village people think that by consuming
the birds eggs and feathers, they too will have better relationships. A team of researchers found
40 dead cranes in the shrines of witch doctors. Because the birds are treated
cruelly in capture and transport, poachers often have to catch 4 or 5 for every one
that actually makes it to the black market.
The healers crush the eggs with herbs to sell as a love potion.
Feathers, claws, and beaks of the cranes are also used in drinks and as decorations
for promoting monogamy and affection.
The crane is also perceived as a good omen that can cast away evil
spirits from children.
For a study in contrasts, when the good-guy/bad-guy roles are reversed,
consider what is happening in schools and universities across America. The website for the
upcoming movie Expelled (see
is holding a contest for true stories from students, professors and scientists who have been
ostracized, fired, denied tenure, or otherwise expelled simply
for doubting the reigning paradigm of Darwinian evolution.
In just a few days, the site at
Expelled has collected
16 stories. These include teachers and senior research scientists with impressive
academic research records. The movie itself will detail many of the notable
cases. It is expected that many will refrain from telling their stories, though,
for fear of retribution.
If you are appalled at both cases, good. You
have not bought into the white science vs. black religion dichotomy, which has been
roundly debunked by most historians of science, such as Lawrence M. Principe (Johns
Hopkins; see Teaching
Company lecture series). It means you are wise to the
either-or fallacy. It also
means that you assume Judeo-Christian morality as a precondition of judging right from
World War II fighter entombed under 250 feet of ice in how many years did you
say? See 10/28/2002.
Clearly there is plenty of good and bad in both science and religion.
If we can judge between good and bad science, as does James Randi, the skeptics
societies and the Ig Nobel Prize judges, we
should also be able to judge good and bad religion. If it is wrong to judge
science based on bad examples, it is wrong to judge all religion because of witch
doctors who drive beautiful birds extinct based on foolish superstitions.
A little more reflection will reveal that science and religion are not watertight
compartments but have many aspects that overlap and reinforce one another.
If you are an evolutionist, or an atheist, on what basis could you
claim that what the witch doctors are doing is bad? According to Darwinism,
primitive peoples and their religious sensations evolved, as did their prey, the
cranes. If the cranes are wiped out by the humans, too bad. The humans
are obviously the fittest. Evolutionists should actually praise the selfishness
of the native people who are trying to improve their reproductive fitness, because
selfishness is the ultimate good in Darwinland. Darwinists believe that even
altruism is a byproduct of selfishness.
Decrying the birds fate only makes sense if humans have souls, who have an
innate sense of true moral categories that should make us care about such things.
On a scatter plot of case studies in science and religion, we should
expect to find clusters of good religion and good science, bad religion and bad
science, good religion and bad science, and good science and bad religion.
We can make these judgments only if we presuppose a righteous Creator.
Because Christians and Jews believe in a holy, personal God who called all things
He made good, and created man in His image, they alone have a foundation for making
sound moral judgments based on Gods holy standard.
So, Darwin Dogmatists, ease up on your fellow academics who disagree with the
reigning paradigm, and hear them out. Stop judging them until you can
define and defend your moral categories, and consistently judge your own actions
and beliefs accordingly (including the integrity of science). This means
you will have to acknowledge Judeo-Christian moral standards at the outset.
If not, please explain where your moral categories come from, and why anyone else
should feel the way you do.
Then, let the good scientists and
good Jews and Christians join the fight to save the endangered creatures God
has put under our stewardship.
Suggested method: win the Ugandans to Christianity, so that they have a basis for sound
moral judgment and appreciation for creation. Then educate them in science
and ecology so they will know how best to care for their fellow created things.
Educate them in logic and Bible doctrine so that they will not fall for superstitious myths
Timothy 2:23-25, Ephesians
4:14-15). This will heal a fallen society from within so that the population
will have an internal motivation to do good, without the need for police and government
Halloween is also Reformation Day.
The Protestant Reformation was not just a theological quibble over
doctrine. It was a call to freedom of conscience for each individual to
respond to his or her Creator in faith, love and reason to have personal
access to the Word of God in their own language. Many historians have attributed
the rise of science, political liberty, the end of tyranny and slavery, and a plethora of
new social institutions based on personal responsibility to that fateful day on October
31, 1517, when Martin Luther, in a one-man crusade of righteous indignation at a moral
evil he witnessed (his people enslaved by a foolish superstition), nailed his
to the church door in Wittenburg.
The story is complex, and Luther was far from a perfect man; he also
was indebted to brave predecessors such as Jon Hus and John Wycliffe.
Luthers crusade bore good fruit because he
studied Gods word intently, using his God-given reason, instead of acquiescing to
the doctrines of mere men, and had the courage and opportunity to open this door of freedom to
others. One of his passions was to get the Word of God into the common language
so that individuals could study it for themselves. Western civilization
has benefited immensely since. (For a summary of the benefits,
see this Reformation
Society article). The ending of the movie
Martin Luther says,
Luthers influence extended into economics, politics, education and music,
and his translation of the Bible became a foundation stone of the German language.
Today over 540 million people worship in churches inspired by his Reformation.
Is this not morally superior to the Halloween haunts of witch doctors who
enslave poor people in dark superstitions? Lets give the captive
people of tribal villages the same opportunity. Jesus Christ can turn the
heart of darkness
to everlasting light (I
John 1). When that light illuminates both science and religion, the
fusion of good religion and good science is a recipe for whooping cranes and
Exercise: List leaders in various fields who were products of the Reformation,
along with the benefits they brought to humanity. Examples: J.S. Bach and G.F. Handel (music),
William Wilberforce (human rights), Johannes Kepler (astronomy), John Milton (literature),
Adam Smith (free market economics), John Adams (political liberty).
Christianity Changed the World by Alvin J. Schmidt.
Next headline on:
Politics and Ethics
Amphioxus Is Green, Like Coral 10/30/2007
Evolutionists may want to combine their song Its a long way from
with It isnt easy being green.
Green fluorescent protein (GFP) has been found in the lungfish Amphioxus, according
to a press release from
of Oceanography. Why is this not easy? Because its a long
way: The researchers say amphioxus GFPs are very similar to those of corals,
an interesting fact since the two animal groups are separated by hundreds of
millions of years of evolution. Now they are trying to find a function
for GFP in the slender, slippery lancelets that allowed them to hold onto an ancient
evolutionary innovation for so long.
If you are laughing out loud, good. It shows you are not completely hypnotized
by evolutionary mists and vapors. How did you like that
euphemism they tossed out,
as if we werent paying attention? Interesting fact,
they called it. Try devastating falsification.
Fitness for dummies, from 10/29/2002.
Is it running in circles?
GFP may well have a function in lancelets,
but that has nothing to do with helping Charlie weave his fable that they got it
from corals. Finding GFP in lancelets is like finding human genes in a shark
its not at all what Charlie would have expected. Wait a minute
they found that, too (12/26/2006).
Next headline on:
Crystal Power Is Not Evolution 10/30/2007
What would Max Planck think? The Institute named after him put out a
release, Evolution in the Nanoworld, that claims that synthetic
molecules can organize themselves by an evolutionary principle of selection:
The automatic molecular assembly and selection steps exhibited by
the molecules, which start as random mixtures, demonstrates a fundamental step
in the evolution of life. The organization is activated by
instructions which are built-in to the molecules. During assembly,
molecules exhibit active selection: those in incorrect positions move to
make room for others which fit properly. The molecular-level observation
of such self-selection gives, for the first time, direct insight into
fundamental steps of the biological evolution from inanimate molecules
to living entities.
Dr. Klaus Kern added, The ability of molecules to selectively
sort themselves in highly organized structures is a fundamental requirement
for all molecular based systems, including biological organisms.
Yet it becomes clear from reading the details that the researchers at the Max Planck
Institute had pre-programmed the molecules to assemble into the patterns:
Dr. Mario Rubens research team at KIT [Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, a
partner in the research] is responsible for designing molecules
with built-in instructions, which when read out activate the self-selection
process. He comments: Spontaneous ordering from random
mixtures only occurs when built-in instructions are carefully designed and
sufficiently strong to initiate successful self-selection.
So this was a form of determinism, like crystallization, not natural selection.
Also, the resulting structures lacked any significant coded information content
as in the genetic code. Genetic instructions are different from molecular built-in
instructions, because they can be translated and conveyed in ways that do not depend
on the particular molecules used.
Any analogy to living organization was further stretched by the fact
that they used highly specialized conditions unlike anything in a plausible prebiotic scenario:
The molecules are placed on ultra-clean metal surfaces and heated gently
to enable motion, sorting, and organization, the press release said.
Furthermore, the molecules, once locked in place, were incapable of further evolution.
Note: The following commentary should not be perceived as anti-research.
On the contrary: we want a return to rational science that follows the evidence and
avoids making preposterous metaphysical claims. The press release contained
an escape clause: The resulting nanostructures also hold great promise as an
efficient avenue to new catalysts, nanotechnologies, and surface applications.
Great! Focus on those goals, without the evolutionary nonsense,
and you can get positive vibes here. The evolution-talk has absolutely nothing to do
with the nanotechnology. Like a parasite, it only hangs on and saps the energy.
Amphibian Imprints Found 10/30/2007
OK, what is wrong here? Making a connection from this research to the origin
of life is so far-fetched, it is patently absurd. ID people and creationists
have been pointing out for decades the difference between the biological genetic
code and crystallization, but no creationist should be required the fallacy
should be obvious to any thinking person, especially a scientist. A grade-school
child could understand the difference between a snowflake and a book.
Notice that these researchers are esteemed men at Germanys
highest ranking research institute. Were not talking about intellectual
slouches here. This is the degree of absurdity you get in scientific reasoning
and explanation when science becomes so entrenched in a materialistic paradigm it
is incapable of thinking outside of it. These guys have chained themselves in Platos
fun-house, thinking the warped mirrors represent reality.
Meanwhile, the incorrigible Darwinists at Univ. of Georgia are still
at it, according to EurekAlert,
thinking abiotic adenine is a step toward the origin of life (see
10/22/2007 entry), and EurekAlert gives them full court press.
How do you get scientists to stop making absurd claims?
Two suggested therapies: (1) shame, and if that doesnt
work, (2) cut off the funding. If the mad scientists still wont change their
evil ways, well, then we have Max Plancks own view on scientific progress.
The renowned physicist, a Christian through his life, once quipped,
A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and
making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and
a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. ID needs about
30 more years for the attrition in the Darwin Party to clear the field. (And the air.)
Next headline on:
Origin of Life
Full-body imprints of amphibians claimed to be 330 million years old have been
reported from Pennsylvania. The imprints show the unmistakably webbed
feet and bodies of three previously unknown, foot-long salamander-like critters
that lived 100 million years before the first dinosaurs.
The story in a press release from the
Geological Society of America
contains a photo
of the unusual fossils. Spencer Lucas, paleontologist from
the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, said,
Body impressions like this are wholly unheard of.
Other interesting things were found in the same formation, including
a monster in time for Halloween:
Also found in rocks from the same formation and of the same age are
footprints of other relatively large animals and fossils of insects
and plants, Lucas explained. There is even a saucer-sized footprint
of an unknown vertebrate that suggests larger four-footed beasts lived
far earlier than ever before suspected.
The impressions were not found in the field. They were found when examining
specimens that had been sitting for decades in the Reading Public Museum Collection.
Sound familiar? Larger, advanced creatures
living much earlier than previously believed, in exquisitely preserved rock that
they just know is hundreds of millions of years old. Sounds
like a broken record in more than one sense
Neo-Darwinism falsified in the lab, from
Next headline on:
Book: Intelligent Design Argument Turns Leading Atheist to God 10/29/2007
There is a God, announces a former leading atheist on the cover of
his new book. Antony Flew changed his mind a few years ago partly because of the design
argument: the fine-tuning of the universe, according to the blurb on
Amazon.com. New arguments by philosophical theists like Alvin Plantinga and Richard
Swinburne also played a large part. The Amazon description sums up the
import of this book: In one of the biggest religion news stories of the
new millennium, the Associated Press announced that Professor Antony Flew, the
worlds leading atheist, now believes in God
In an exclusive interview with Benjamin Wiker on
To the Source,
Antony Flew made it clear that intelligent design was a decisive factor in his
change of heart:
Anthony Flew: There were two factors in particular that were decisive. One
was my growing empathy with the insight of Einstein and other noted scientists that
there had to be an Intelligence behind the integrated complexity of the physical
Universe. The second was my own insight that the integrated
complexity of life itself which is far more complex than the physical
Universe can only be explained in terms of an Intelligent Source.
I believe that the origin of life and reproduction simply cannot be
explained from a biological standpoint despite numerous efforts to do so.
With every passing year, the more that was discovered about the richness
and inherent intelligence of life, the less it seemed likely that a
chemical soup could magically generate the genetic code. The difference
between life and non-life, it became apparent to me, was ontological and not
chemical. The best confirmation of this radical gulf is Richard Dawkins
comical effort to argue in The God Delusion that the origin of life can be
attributed to a lucky chance. If thats the best argument
you have, then the game is over. No, I did not hear a Voice. It was
the evidence itself that led me to this conclusion.
Flew has only come as far as to believe God is a Person, but is not a Christian.
The book, however, which he calls his last will and testament, includes
a Christian extra: The book concludes with an appendix by New Testament scholar
and Anglican bishop N.T. Wright, arguing for the coherence of Christian belief
in the resurrection. Flew praises Wright, though he maintains some distance
still from orthodox Christianity.
Its good N.T. Wright has added a Christian
apologetic to this book. He made a good impression with his inputs to the
new film The Case for Christ
Rejection of atheism is only a halfway house; we hope Flew considers the same
evidence that convinced Lee Strobel. Having a sincere friend like Gary Habermas is
Machiavellian Monkeys Made Us Compassionate 10/28/2007
The significance of this book is not that everything Flew says will
be agreeable to Christians, but that it illustrates the power of the evidence for
design. Antony Flew, an influential atheist for over 50 years, retained enough
intellectual integrity to follow the evidence where it leads. This is
especially courageous after publishing the opposite view for so long. It is extremely rare for someone to
retract an opinion after they have published it not just an error, but a deeply
held belief. The argument for design convinced Dean Kenyon to do so, and
now Antony Flew.
We hope fair-minded atheist readers will take this
opportunity to consider the evidence these two men found powerful enough to
make them swallow their pride and switch sides. How about starting with Lee Strobels
film The Case for a Creator,
followed by The Case for Christ.
Drop by these pages regularly, too.
Next headline on:
Bible and Theology
Love, loyalty, patriotism all the qualities that imbue a romantic novel
with soul came from Rhesus monkeys acting badly. This is the belief of Dario Maestripieri, a primatologist
and Associate Professor in Comparative Human Development and Evolutionary Biology
at the University of Chicago, according to an article in
Dr. Maestripieri observed behavior between groups of Rhesus monkeys
and saw ruthless aggression, nepotism, and complex political alliances.
Machiavelli was right, he figured: success involves using whatever tactics necessary to hold onto power.
But alas, sometimes poor outcasts became the patriots of a new revolution.
Our Machiavellian intelligence is not something we can be proud of,
but it may be the secret of our success. If it contributed to
the evolution of our large brains and complex cognitive skills,
it also contributed to the evolution of our ability to engage in
noble spiritual and intellectual activities, including our love and
compassion for other people, Maestripieri said.
But why shouldnt we be proud of something evolution has built into us?
What is the evolutionary origin of shame? If anything, we should be ashamed
of the kinds of senseless values noble spiritual and intellectual activities,
love, and compassion that contradict the secret of our success.
Maestripieri did not explain whether his new book, Machiavellian Intelligence:
How Rhesus Macaques and Humans Have Conquered the World, intended to propose
something that might be true about the world, or was itself a
Machiavellian ruse to gain personal power for himself (see
self-referential fallacy in the
Baloney Detector). He also did not explain why the
Rhesus monkeys got stuck in an eddy with small brains in an endless cycle of group power struggles
if, in our case, during the same period of time,
big brains and complex cognitive skills were natural by-products of the very same process.
His theory also ascribes evolutionary
success to those who use sex for power. Ladies and gentlemen used to despise
their fellow humans who acted like brute beasts. Its not that people
prior to Darwin failed to notice that we share much in common biologically with
other creatures. They just understood that there are superior values to our
biological drives, such as self-control, honor, integrity, righteousness, fairness,
justice, unselfishness, rationality and common sense. Brute beasts, lacking
these moral and intellectual capacities, were never held responsible for them,
but neither were they held up as models for human behavior. Evolutionary philosophy,
by contrast, celebrates our baser nature unconstrained by reason and ethics.
Darwinists only get away with it by borrowing rationality and ethics long enough to
dispense with them, a self-refuting position.
Whoops! Geologists change a rocks date from one end of the geologic timescale to the other,
For undermining all vestige of human nobility by
ascribing it to monkey antics under mindless evolutionary forces, for excusing
bestial behavior as the secret of success but then saying we should be ashamed of it, and for
shooting his argument in the foot by assuming the ontological existence of love and
nobility, Maestripieri handily wins Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week.
We cant believe anything you said, professor; youre just in a
mindless, truthless, toothless, ruthless power grab.
Next headline on:
Fall Colors Have a Function 10/27/2007
Deciduous trees have an investment decision to make when fall chill sets in:
do they send their sunlight-produced nutrients to the roots early, and so risk damage to the
leaves from autumn sunlight, or should they spend more energy creating a sunscreen that allows
them to produce nutrients longer, and thereby increase food storage in the roots for the
The determining factor may be the amount of nitrogen in the soil,
claims a press release from the
Geological Society of America.
According to research done by a graduate student at University of North Carolina,
in nitrogen-poor soils the balance is tipped toward investing in sunscreen. It
takes energy to produce the reddish anthocyanins, but these allow the leaves to
work overtime producing nutrients from the impoverished soil. Trees in more
nitrogen-rich soils can simply fade to yellow before falling.
The students advisor remarked, The rainbow of color we see in the fall
is not just for our personal human enjoyment -- rather, it is the trees going on
about their lives and trying to survive.
There are a couple of problems with the advisors
remark. First, it ascribes personality
and intent to a plant. The plant has no brain to figure out what to do; rather,
it has been pre-programmed with elaborate mechanisms that ensure its survival.
Did the tree figure out how to manufacture anthocyanins? Did it know in advance
that these molecules will allow it to extract more nutrients from the nitrogen-poor
soil? Was it trying to survive? Of course not.
The mechanisms discovered are marks of engineering for robustness.
Cilia Are Antennas for Human Senses and Development 10/26/2007
The second problem is an either-or fallacy
between plant survival and human enjoyment. These functions are not mutually
exclusive. They also raise interesting philosophical questions.
Why should humans feel enjoyment at the rainbow of color in the fall? What is
the evolutionary advantage to pleasure at a scene that does not produce food or
offspring? Why shouldnt a human sense alarm at the apparent death of
a source of food?
Actually, the advisor left open the possibility that joy
might be a purpose, by saying it is not just for our personal human enjoyment.
But to push the point, she would have had to explain how the pleasure response in
humans to apparently useless beauty had adaptive value. That would not be
very romantic, would it? It would be just another example of evolutionism
taking the soul out of life. If you are an evolutionist feeling good walking
through the rainbow of colors in a fall display, maybe you should be
surprised by joy.
Next headline on:
The little hair-like projections on cells, called cilia, have more functions than
previously believed. A press release from
Johns Hopkins University
said that researchers found cilia are important for the sense of touch particularly,
for heat sensation. In fact, cilia are implicated in at least three of the five
The article explained that some people thought to have
psychological problems may actually be victims
of ciliopathy or defects in cilia formation. Dr. Nico Katsanis
said, People with ciliopathies are often thought to have mental retardation
or autism because they appear slow. Now it appears that
many aspects of their mental capacity may be just fine, they are just slow
because they cant sense things as well as other individuals.
Another press release from
earlier in the month reported that Katsanis team found that cilia act like
little radio antennas that control the development of the body:
Johns Hopkins researchers say they have figured out how human and all
animal cells tune in to a key signal, one that literally transmits
the instructions that shape their final bodies. It turns out the cells
assemble their own little radio antenna on their surfaces to help them
relay the proper signal to the developmental proteins listening
on the inside of the cell.
Katsanis commented on the importance of this finding: Weve just reset
a huge volume of literature under a new light.
The transmitters are primary cilia, relatively rigid, hairlike
tails that respond to specialized signals from a host of
proteins, including a key family of proteins known as Wnts. The Wnts in
turn trigger a cascade of shape-making decisions that guide cells to
take specific shapes, like curved eyelid cells or vibrating hair
cells in the ear, and even make sure that arms and legs emerge
at the right spots.
Exciting discoveries in the cellular realm continue
apace. Some will remember that cilia were the first
examples in Michael Behes classic book
Box of irreducibly complex structures. That was in 1996; no one knew
the half of it back then.
Ghost of Hitler still haunts Western medicine, from
Is intelligent design a productive scientific theory? One way to
tell is to see if the case gets better with new discoveries. Darwinisms proponents
have to keep adding patches and hotfixes to the theory to explain away new problems
with the fossil record, the tree of life and the complexity of the cell.
The case for Intelligent Design, by contrast, gets stronger with each new finding.
Imagine: a radio antenna on each cell, signalling the inside world about the
outside world. Most signal-relay stations we know about were intelligently
Signal without recognition is meaningless. Communication implies
a signalling convention (a coming together or agreement
in advance) that a given signal means or represents something: e.g., that S-O-S
means Send Help! or, in this case, that Wnt proteins mean put this arm here.
and receiver can be made of non-sentient materials, but the functional purpose of the system
always comes from a mind. The mind uses the material substances to perform an
algorithm that is not itself a product of the materials or the blind forces
acting on them. Thus the analogy in the press release:
cilia are just like radio antennas. Antennas may be composed of mindless matter,
but they are marks of a mind behind the intelligent design.
Next headline on:
Academic Intolerance: Ben Stein, the lead in the upcoming documentary
explained the problem of academic persecution of Darwin doubters to
Bill OReilly on Fox News Monday night, Oct. 22. The interview is available on
Next headline on:
Neanderthals Have Become Like Us 10/25/2007
The change in attitude about Neanderthals is almost complete. The formerly
brutish missing links were pretty modern after all. DNA sequencing of Neanderthal
remains, along with new fossil discoveries, have made this subgroup of Homo sapiens
for all intents and purposes the equivalents of us. For example:
The Nature article claimed that Neanderthals ruled the planet for a long time:
- Talk to me bro: Neanderthals probably spoke languages like modern
humans. A genetic study announced by
claims their FOXP2 gene, implicated in language capacity, was identical to
modern mans. Some arent willing to concede this essential mark
of humanness, thinking the similarity might be due to contamination, but Svante Paabo,
one of the investigators, thinks not. One gene doesnt prove ability to
speak, he recognizes. Still, he was willing to state that with respect to FOXP2,
theres nothing to say that Neandertals could not speak just like we do.
Other indications are that they had large brains (larger on average than those of
modern man) and lived in groups.
- Better redhead than deadhead: Some Neanderthals had red hair and pale
skin, a study in Science claimed. The genetic study hinted
that Neanderthal hair and skin color varied as much as that of moderns; this questions
the assumption of their being a dark-skinned race recently migrated from Africa. (See also
Daily and the BBC
- We Neanderthal, the cosmopolitan cognoscenti: Neanderthals have been found farther east.
Nature reported the discovery of Neanderthals in southern Siberia.2
The DNA of fossils fell within the range of European Neanderthals, the international
Thus, the geographic range of Neanderthals is likely to have extended at least
2,000 km further to the east than commonly assumed. This followed a report
on ENews earlier this
month about Neanderthal bones found in China.
Morphological traits typical of Neanderthals began to appear in European hominids at
least 400,000 years ago and about 150,000 years ago in western Asia. After
their initial appearance, such traits increased in frequency and the extent to which
they are expressed until they disappeared shortly after 30,000 years ago.
If their intelligence, travel and culture was this advanced, however, it seems a
stretch to believe they were completely supplanted by near equals after 370,000
years of success. Considering the entry in March that Neanderthals and modern
humans lived contemporaneous for some time (03/08/2007, bullet 8),
and in August that
Neanderthals and modern humans possibly interbred (08/02/2007),
it appears that further adjustments to the evolutionary tale are in the offing.
1. Elizabeth Culotta, Talk Like a Man,
18 October 2007.
2. Krause et al, Neanderthals in central Asia and Siberia,
449, 902-904 (18 October 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature06193.
If you are not so thoroughly brainwashed by evolutionary
myths that you can still think rationally about evidence, join the movement to jettison the
Neanderthal tale and start over (01/16/2007).
It seems crazy, on the face of it, to assume that
Neanderthals lived on this planet at least 120,000 years, if not 370,000 years, without
inventing the horse and buggy, rodeos
ships, drip irrigation and hot air balloons. Look how quickly
their equivalents (us) went from simple farming to conquer sea, air, land, and even space
even with smaller brains! These people were better hunters, better at playing
Survivorman, and probably as intelligent and more agile than we are, yet Darwinians expect us
to believe they did nothing but hunt meat for the cave cookout day after day for
hundreds of thousands of years. How do you spell b-e-l-i-e-f?
Dogbert takes on Darwin! Watch the YouTube clip at
Its time for a complete overthrow of the Neanderthal myth.
In its place, we suggest these three replacement assumptions:
If you were to approach the data with Darwinian glasses off, and these assumptions
in mind, without doubt you would find plenty of supporting evidence. Since Darwinism
is now falsified (10/08/2007), lets do it.
- Taxonomy: The Neanderthal classification is a
Darwinian fabrication. The set of Neanderthal traits was completely within the range of
human variability. They are, and were, Homo sapiens sapiens.
They lived not that long ago, and may still be among us. The variability is
a continuum, not a distinct cut-off. It would be like classifying Eskimos or
the Nephilim/Rephaim/Emim of Old Testament records as missing links. We have stated several times that
if you took skeletons from living individuals at the extremes of modern variability, they
would look like separate species (e.g., 07/22/2007).
- Chronology: The entire span of human history
fits within thousands of years, not tens or hundreds of thousands. If it were
not so, we would have a right to expect, based on the rapid advance of civilization in
recorded history, that these people, who were identical to us, would have developed
written language and technology with clear traces in the fossil record. A corollary
is that the Darwin-based dating methods are seriously flawed.
Next headline on:
Next headline on: Media Darwin
Evolutionary Science Reporting Battles Creationists 10/24/2007
If creationism is so discredited as to not warrant any further discussion, some
science writers are sure going out of their way to refute it. Some recent
- Eye of the Hydra: Little sea creatures known as hydrae have light-sensitive
molecules called opsins, reported
Scientists think the opsin proteins, which exist all over the tiny animals but are
concentrated near the gut, help the hydra find its prey.
Todd Oakley, a notable anti-creationist involved in the study, used this as a barb
against Darwin doubters:
Oakley said that anti-evolutionists often argue that mutations, which are essential
for evolution, can only eliminate traits and cannot produce new features.
He goes on to say, Our paper shows that such claims are simply wrong.
We show very clearly that specific mutational changes in a particular
duplicated gene (opsin) allowed the new genes to interact with different proteins
in new ways. Today, these different interactions underlie the genetic machinery of
vision, which is different in various animal groups.
Yet the story begs the question that mutational evolution produced the opsins or led to their
function. A team member illustrated the circular thinking when he inferred, because we
dont find them in earlier evolving animals like sponges, we can put a date on
the evolution of light sensitivity in animals. Another problem with the idea
that evolution produced it is that it pushes the origin
of light sensitivity further back in the evolutionary time frame to 600 million years ago.
See also Live Science.
- Skull of the St. Bernard: In a surprising display of misunderstanding
of the issues, a University
of Manchester press release claimed that artificial selection in St. Bernard dogs
refutes creationism. The skull shape in St. Bernards has changed a little in 120
years since the breed standard was defined. These changes evolved purely
through the selective considerations of breeders. But this is, of course, artificial
selection not natural selection. The press release continues,
Creationism is the belief that all living organisms were
created according to Genesis in six days by intelligent design and
rejects the scientific theories of natural selection and evolution.
A quick check of creationist literature would have shown that not even the most literal
Biblical creationist believes God created St. Bernards directly. Creationist books
and lectures often include diagrams of all the various dog breeds, from St. Bernards to
poodles to Dobermans, as descended from an original dog kind that was probably like
a wolf. Many would include all the wolves, coyotes, dingoes and foxes in the
original dog kind.
But this research once again demonstrates how selection
whether natural or, in this case, artificially influenced by man is the
fundamental driving force behind the evolution of life on the planet.
In addition, most creationists would admit an extensive
amount of natural and artificial selection in the sorting out of traits in dog
populations since the creation. Even in this press release, the dogs started
and ended as St. Bernards one variety within one species so there was
no origin of species or variation on the scale Darwin envisaged.
a news service of the American Association for the Advancement of Science,
reproduced this press release without alteration; so did
- Brain of the Behe: Science (Oct. 20) gave Michael Behe 200 words to clarify
a point, but then let Sean Carroll have 500 words to trash it. A complete account
is given at Access
Research Network by David Tyler. The lopsided exchange omitted the fact that
Behe has written extensive responses to Carroll on his
as noted by Anika Smith at Evolution
News, and to many of his other critics, as noted by Robert Crowther on
Science, by picking and choosing a small portion of Behes writing,
gave the distinct impression that he was conceding a major point of Darwinism, when in
fact Behe proceeded beyond the quoted part to explain why it was irrelevant to evolutionary theory.
Carroll, nonetheless, accused Behe of a complete disregard of a massive literature
surrounding protein interactions crucial to Behes entirely unfounded conclusion.
Carroll did not cite any examples of such literature.
It is appalling to see the low level of intellectual
rigor in the typical science press release these days when they deal with matters of
creation vs evolution, and the deliberate anti-creationist bias in the journals.
In the typical popular science report, creationism, when mentioned at all, is
made into a caricature, a straw man to
ridicule and shoot down. Dont they realize that refuting an accurate
presentation of an opponents view is more likely to succeed in the long
run? Maybe they know they cannot. They use the only weak munitions
they have: the pop-guns and spitballs of propaganda.
Jewish First Temple Period Uncovered 10/23/2007
We hope our readers appreciate the detail and fairness
in these pages. Links to all the original sources are provided so you can
check whether what is represented here is in fact what the evolutionists are claiming.
Much of our reporting comes straight from the original science journals.
While we try to present the news in ways that are thought-provoking and occasionally entertaining,
we do not pander to ignorance or bias. We do not regurgitate the party-line
talking points. We invite the reader to investigate the evidence and evaluate
the logic on both sides. After decades of Darwin-only propaganda in the news
media, we hope you find this liberating.
Next headline on:
Darwinism and Evolution
Artifacts dating from the First Temple period have been found in trenches illegally
dug by Muslims on the Temple Mount: for the story, see the
Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
and Bible Places.
Dr. Leen Ritmeyer has diagrams of where the artifacts relate to the Temple
position in his Ritmeyer Blog.
The First Temple was built by Solomon (see
I Kings 5-8).
After the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians in 586 BC, the Jews returning
from exile built a Second Temple
This temple was elaborately enlarged by Herod the Great into the magnificent Temple of
Jesus day (Matthew 24).
That temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD.
Portions of the Herodian walls from the Temple Mount remain to this day, including
the Western Wall, a sacred site for the Jews. The Muslims, however, deny the
existence of a Jewish temple on the summit. The Dome of the Rock now sits over the
The Temple Mount has been off limits to archaeologists and is under
control of Muslim police. Muslims have been performing unauthorized and reckless
trench-digging with a bulldozer, forbidding archaeologists to examine the trenches.
A fortuitous by-product of the illegal digging is that it
allowed artifacts from under the present level to be seen for the first time in
thousands of years. Although the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) did nothing
to stop the reckless trenching, they verified that some of the artifacts date from
the First Temple period.
The only bright side of this atrocity is providing
proof of the Biblical claims of the First Temple. Muslims show no concern for
the sensibilities of other religions but react with violence if any non-Muslim approaches
their sacred sites. In recent years, they dug into the southeast corner of the Temple Mount
into soil richly laden with artifacts, to build an underground mosque.
Their level of carefulness and concern was to pile the debris into mounds
and toss tons of it over the wall. Dedicated archaeologists have found bits
of precious artifacts among the dirt
National Geographic asks, Was Darwin Wrong? from
Who knows what additional treasures lie under the Temple Mount?
Archaeologists reveal amazing things at the periphery, but these are only tantalizing
glimpses of artifacts that millions of people would rejoice to see, were it not for the bullying and threats of
the religion of peace to wage global jihad if they dare to look. Where is the U.N. in this blatant example
of disrespect for priceless relics from antiquity? Oh, theyre too busy helping the dictators of the world and
outlawing righteousness. Whats unfathomable is why the Israeli government
and the IAA have been so silent and appeasing.
Christians and Jews believe that a Third Temple will someday arise
on the Temple Mount. Some orthodox Jews even have the plans and preparations
underway. Given the volatility of the politics of Jerusalem, one would think
this might trigger a kind of apocalypse.
Next headline on:
Bible and Theology
Politics and Ethics
Is Adenine Additive? 10/22/2007
A paper in PNAS argues that adenine can form in plausible prebiotic conditions.1
Does this add to the story of chemical evolution leading to life on Earth?
Some chemists at the University of Georgia explored the chemical steps
necessary to form adenine (one of the bases used in DNA). Adenine has been
found in extraterrestrial environments. They found that ammonia or water can
act as a catalyst to get the incipient molecule past some of the energy hurdles
of ring formation. After describing their investigation in detail, they remarked,
Finding a viable, thermodynamically feasible, step-by-step mechanism that
can account for the formation of adenine did not prove to be easy.
Nevertheless, they felt that their success will motivate others to find how the
remaining DNA bases could have formed naturally.
The authors went far beyond merely elucidating
the mechanism behind the formation of adenine in meteorites or interstellar space.
They explicitly claimed that it contributes to understanding how life originated:
Our report provides a more detailed understanding of some of the chemical processes
involved in chemical evolution, and a partial answer to the
fundamental question of molecular biogenesis. Our investigation
should trigger similar explorations of the detailed mechanisms of the
abiotic formation of the remaining nucleic acid bases and other
biologically relevant molecules.
In fact, the first line in the paper is, How did life begin? The presence
of biomolecules was a prerequisite, but the origin of even the simplest of
these remains a fascinating but unsolved puzzle. Understanding the
origin of adenine, to them, thus would constitute progress in the story of lifes
1. Roy, Najafian and Schleyer, Chemical evolution: The mechanism of the formation
of adenine under prebiotic conditions,
Proceedings of the
National Academy of Sciences USA, published online before print October 19, 2007;
Did you notice the logical trick? It is one
question to account for the observed extraterrestrial formation of a chemical,
but quite another to suggest it is relevant to the origin of life. This
presupposes naturalismthe very question that ought to be up for debate.
Searching for Natural Selection in a Wildflower 10/19/2007
If that is what they wanted to do (prove naturalism)
they should have stated their presuppositions and goals objectively, but they didnt.
They snuck their presuppositions into the paper as if nobody would notice or care.
Well, we care. We are not going to let them suggest that explaining adenine
has anything to do with supporting philosophical naturalism, any more than would
explaining water, dust, plasma or the laws of nature. This is like a Democrat
claiming, We explained the mechanism of voting machines, therefore President
Bush stole the election. Voters used voting machines, but that has
no bearing on the very different question of how they were used. They might
as well explain the chemical pathway of a component of a computer chip as support
for the belief that computer software wrote itself. Adenine is a substrate
used in life for coded messages. Just like understanding the chemistry of paper and
ink says nothing about the origin of the message in a book, understanding the chemistry
of adenine says nothing about the genetic code. Is a cathode-ray tube aware
that Survivorman is playing through its electrons? Did the CRT organize itself
for this purpose? Neither does adenine form
for the purpose of self-organizing into a living system.
We must not allow materialists to invoke the chemistry lab as support
for their philosophy. That is called begging the question. Only by
assuming that life is no more than chemistry can they make that connection.
Next headline on:
Origin of Life
Evening snow (Linanthus) is an amazing little wildflower that adorns desert areas of southern
California. Its blossoms open in the evening, spreading fragrance across a
harsh landscape. Two varieties have been noticed; one with white flowers,
and one with blue flowers. Scientists noticed that the white ones sometimes
grow on one side of a ravine, and the blue ones on the other; in other places,
the two varieties grow in a blue-white mosaic. Is this pattern
due to genetic drift (i.e., chance), or to natural selection?
Elisabeth Pennisi wrote about this in Science.1
Her opening line might open some eyes about the difficulty of deciding a question
this simple: Sixty years ago, studies of these patterns provided key support
for a powerful evolutionary theory. Now, two evolutionary biologists have
found that the theory doesnt hold in this species.
Two researchers decided to settle the debate with a long-term field study.
Their decision was that natural selection was the winner, at least a little:
In the seed-transplant studies, each color flower typically did best
on its own turf, indicating that selection played a role.
There may have been some environmental influences at work, in other words, that
tended to make one color predominate in one environment and the other in different
environments. But is anyone certain?
The study shows the unimportance of drift in Linanthus, says
evolutionary biologist Masatoshi Nei of Pennsylvania State University in State College.
In this sense, [the] finding shakes the ground of the shifting balance theory.
But he is cautious about making generalizations, given that other studies suggest otherwise:
The relative importance of selection and drift depends on the genes and populations studied.
1. Elisabeth Pennisi, Natural Selection, Not Chance, Paints the Desert Landscape,
19 October 2007: Vol. 318. no. 5849, p. 376, DOI: 10.1126/science.318.5849.376.
So in a 13-year study, these scientists could only
point to a little bit of natural selection that might have played a role in
the color pattern of two varieties within the same species? And they expect
us to believe that science has proved that humans have bacteria ancestors due to this
wondrous mechanism of natural selection?
Mega-Dinosaur Found in Argentina 10/18/2007
Next headline on:
Check out this dinosaur: 105 feet long, 43 feet tall, having a neck 56 feet long.
The spinal column alone probably weighed 9 tons.
Thats Futalognkosaurus dukei, one of the
largest dinosaurs ever found, recently reported from Argentina (see
BBC News and
PhysOrg). A single
vertebral bone was nearly 3 feet long.
Geographic called it a behemoth
(see Job 40:15-24).
The four-story-tall plant-eaterbelieved to be a new specieswas found
alongside fossils of fish, crocodile-like reptiles, a flying pterosaur, and a
sickle-clawed meat-eater called a megaraptor, the article said.
Update 10/22/2007: Another species of polar
dinosaur was found in Australia, reported
Daily. This one, a carnivore, might have resembled Allosaurus but was 20% smaller,
based on the tracks that were discovered.
Still, youd be looking straight at its hip in real life. The press release
noted the low latitude of the vicinity but did not speculate on what this implies about
the environment and this dinosaurs ability to cope with it:
The tracks are especially significant for showing that large dinosaurs were
living in a polar environment during the Cretaceous Period, when Australia was
still joined to Antarctica and close to the South Pole.
If evolution is progressive, why are all the really
big success stories extinct? Where is all the lush plant life that allowed
this behemoth to exist? Why was the fossil found with fish and leaves? Why are all
the bones found under a
0.5 meter rock layer? How did a beast this large get fossilized in the first place?
If something this large escaped detection in the fossil record till recently, how
can scientists say for sure that we wont find large Jurassic or Cambrian
mammals somewhere? How did evolution engineer a head at the end of a 56 foot long neck that could
one minute nibble the top of a tall tree, then next minute reach down and get a drink without
bursting its brains out?
And where was the meat for a carnivore living near the South Pole?
What does this imply about the foliage available for its prey to eat?
What does this say about global warming?
There are just a few questions to think about that never get asked
in the evolutionary literature.
How a Darwinist explains living fossils, from 10/13/2004.
Next headline on:
Prominent Biologist Espouses Darwinian Racist Views 10/17/2007
The history of evolutionary thought includes many aspects modern evolutionists
would rather forget, such as racism and eugenics. Old ideas that blacks
are evolutionarily inferior have cropped up again, though, not from some redneck
schoolhouse but from the co-discoverer of the DNA structure.
James Watson, outspoken secular humanist, let loose with some comments about
racial inferiority that set off a firestorm, reported
(UK). Watson was promoting his new book Avoid Boring People: Lessons from a Life in Science,
which includes this statement:
There is no firm reason to anticipate that the intellectual capacities of
peoples geographically separated in their evolution should prove to have
evolved identically. Our wanting to reserve equal powers of
reason as some universal heritage of humanity will not be enough to make it so.
His comments to a London newspaper made it clear who he had in mind:
Dr Watson told The Sunday Times that he was inherently gloomy about the
prospect of Africa because all our social policies are based
on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours whereas all
the testing says not really. He said there was a natural
desire that all human beings should be equal but people who
have to deal with black employees find this not true.
Watson tried to clarify that he did not mean blacks should be discriminated
against, but did not back away from his scientific claims.
Civil rights groups are studying his remarks and expressing
Fox News also
reported on some of the aftermath.
Science wrote in 1990, according to The Independent article,
To many in the scientific community, Watson has long been something of a
wild man, and his colleagues tend to hold their collective breath whenever he
veers from the script (cf. 08/24/2003).
But Watson himself made it clear in the quotes
above that his opinions were inextricably tied to views on human evolution
that he must feel are fairly typical among scientists.
reported that Watson apologized for his remarks. To all those who have
drawn the inference from my words that Africa, as a continent, is somehow
genetically inferior, I can only apologise unreservedly, he said.
That is not what I meant. More importantly from my point of view,
there is no scientific basis for such a belief. Yet parts of his
statement seem to put the blame on his listeners: I cannot understand how
I could have said what I am quoted as having said. The article also
notes that Prof Watsons statement did not clarify what his views on
the issue of race and intelligence are, but he hinted that he had been misquoted.
He said, I am mortified about what has happened, but none of his
apology explicitly took responsibility for earlier statements or explained what
he really meant by them. The article quotes some of the heated response his
remarks instigated. See also:
Watson has been suspended from administrative duties at Cold Spring Harbor
Laboratory (Long Island, NY) because of his remarks about race.
reported that this may indicate the end for Watson: senior US colleagues said things like
It is a sad and revolting way to end a remarkable career, and
He has failed us in the worst possible way. See also the
BBC News and a
commentary on MSNBC that said
Watson appears to have a foot-in-mouth gene.
An Editorial in
10/25 entitled Watsons Folly was similarly unsparing, but regretted
that this episode might hinder the openness and critical debate scientists need when dealing
with controversial subjects including the sensitive task of unravelling
differences between the worlds population groups, all the while acknowledging
that race is an emotive and unscientific word. The editorial
blamed Watson for sheer unacceptable offensiveness that can lend
succour and comfort to racists around the globe, yet was just as concerned
about the chilling effect his remarks will have on scientific inquiry, such as
investigating the equally sensitive genetics of desirable traits,
such as cognitive ability.
The editorial acknowledged such investigations can lead to
abuses: Asking such questions has always been controversial, given the potential
for abuse of the outcomes demonstrated by the history of eugenics. But it
agreed with a point Watson himself was trying to make: Scientists explore the
world as it is, rather than as they would like it to be. This presupposes
that scientists are not subject to biases like other investigators an assumption
some would point out was used just as readily by abusers of the past.
Update 10/25/2007: Watson, age 79, has retired
under a cloud of disgrace from his position at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, reported
the BBC News.
He said his resignation was more than overdue. The circumstances in
which this transfer is occurring, however, are not those which I could ever
have anticipated or desired.
Watsons apology does not go far enough.
The same reporters who hound politicians to apologize for a controversial statement
should press Watson to give a full accounting of what he meant to say, and should demand
he take complete responsibility for his remarks, not blame his listeners. His
apology sounds like the joke about a brat whose mom tells him, Did I hear you
call your sister stupid? Tell her youre sorry! He dutifully
walks over to Susie and says, Sis, Im sorry youre stupid.
But Is It Evolution? 10/17/2007
Read Watsons apology carefully, and you see him shifting the blame to others for
misquoting or misinterpreting him. Fine; we all get misunderstood. Tell
us, then, Jim, what you really think about black people and their intelligence,
and explain whether you still believe tens of thousands of years of evolution has
made some races more intelligent than others. Tell us whether society should
treat all people as equal or not. Tell us on what evolutionary basis a
government should say that people have inalienable human rights.
Two books should be read by anyone who doubts the
influence of Darwinian thinking on racism: The Mismeasure of
Man by Stephen Jay Gould, and From Darwin to Hitler by Richard Weikart
Darwinists in past days put a black man in a zoo
categorized black people as closer to apes than to Europeans
did experiments rigged to show racial superiority of Europeans and males
(article), and committed actual genocide in Namibia
(article) and Tasmania
(article) because of
evolution-based racism. While evolutionists could argue that Darwinism does
not imply racism, many evolutionists used alleged primitive peoples as
evidence that human evolution was true.
The script that Watson veered from has been
modified to expunge those incriminating episodes, but every once in awhile they
emerge again, because they are a natural outgrowth of evolutionary beliefs that have
different people groups evolving separately for tens of thousands of years or more.
Biblical creationists, by contrast, believe that all people are of
one race the human race. We are all one family, descended from one
original pair, and related once again through Noah and his offspring just a few
thousand years ago. While abilities (both cognitive, artistic, physical and
intellectual) can vary substantially even within one biological family, we are all
one race, one family, one blood, and one creation. We are each individually
equally precious in Gods sight and worthy of equal dignity as creatures made
in His image. Choose what kind of worldview you want governing our world.
Next headline on:
Some key features in evolutionary theory do not match up to observations.
Here are a few recent examples from PNAS abstracts:
- Oh no, a dilemma: Gene duplication is supposed to be a mother
of evolutionary invention. Some Swedish evolutionary biologists considered
a problem with this idea: Maintaining a duplicated gene by selection for the original function
would restrict the freedom to diverge. (We refer to this problem as Ohnos dilemma).
Susumi Ohno years ago had considered duplicate genes fodder for innovation (see
01/02/2003). In this paper, the team
modeled a way around the dilemma but only if Before duplication,
the original gene has a trace side activity (the innovation) in addition to
its original function.1 The paper, however,
only speculated that new functions might arise: e.g., New genes might
arise during speciation under selection. They did not identify any
innovations arising by duplication. It is suggested that new
genetic functions arise when selection is imposed on a minor
side function of a preexisting gene, they summarized, but amplification
of an existing function is not innovation of a new function.
Sean B. Carroll and Chris Todd Hittinger had written the previous week (10/10/2007)
in Nature about experiments showing adaptation of a duplicated gene.1a
Despite getting a favorable write-up on PhysOrg
as an example of natural selection in action, the original paper only described a case
of subfunctionalization in yeast: that is, one gene with two functions apparently split into two
genes with one function in another species. In this division of labor,
therefore, no new genetic innovation was added. The authors also engineered
the lab yeast organisms according to their own human measures of what constituted
fitness. This is a form of artificial selection, not natural selection.
Yet Carroll told PhysOrg that they had retraced the steps of evolution of the gene.
PhysOrg said that The work illustrates, at the most basic level,
the driving force of evolution. Carroll, described as one of the
worlds leading evolutionary biologists, went even further, extrapolating
this one experiment with yeast to all of biology:
This is how new capabilities arise and new functions evolve.
This is what goes on in butterflies and elephants and humans.
It is evolution in action. They did not address the problem of
getting around Ohnos Dilemma.
- Oak joke: A tradeoff between growth and reproduction, often
inferred from an inverse correlation between these two variables, is a fundamental
paradigm of life-history evolution, began three biologists writing in
PNAS.2 Like sports records, paradigms are
made to be broken. Oak species provide a unique test of this
relationship because different species mature acorns either in the year of
pollination or in the year after pollination, they said, so they studied
13 years of data on five oak species.
So what did evolution have to do with it?
Nothing, they found: the relationship was caused by environmental conditions.
Thus, contrary to the current consensus, growth and reproduction
in these species are apparently largely independent of each other,
they concluded. In contrast, tradeoffs between current and future
reproduction appear to be much more important in the life-history evolution of
these long-lived plants. We also conclude that a negative correlation does
not necessarily imply a causal mechanism and should not be used as the
only evidence supporting a tradeoff.
- Robust against evolution: Some British and American scientists studied
the effects of pleiotropy (one gene affecting more than one trait) and epistasis
(the effect of one gene suppressing another) in plants. Although the
occurrence of epistasis and pleiotropy is widely accepted at the molecular level,
its effect on the adaptive value of fitness-related genes is rarely
investigated in plants, they began. Yet, Knowledge of these
features of a gene is critical to understand the molecular basis of adaptive
That being so, its time to experiment.
Working with Arabidopsis thaliana, the
lab plant of choice, they studied a candidate gene, FRI, which is
associated with flowering time a seemingly key fitness gene. The results? For one thing,
FRI was less associated with fitness than previously thought.
They also found an epistatic relationship with the FLC locus; the variation in FRI,
therefore, was not associated with fitness.
We show that nonfunctional FRI
alleles have negative pleiotropic effects on fitness by reducing the numbers
of nodes and branches on the inflorescence. We propose that these antagonistic
pleiotropic effects reduce the adaptive value of FRI, and helps explain the
maintenance of alternative life history strategies across natural populations of
This is not adaptive evolution, therefore, but robustness
- Speed limit: Three Harvard biologists studied the mutation speed
limit of proteins and published their results in PNAS.4
They showed with models of evolutionary fitness there is a fine line between protein
stability and evolvability. Too unstable or mutable, and a protein can lead to
mutational meltdown and the extinction of the species.
The theory provides a fundamental relation between mutation rate, maximal
genome size, and thermodynamic response of proteins to point mutations.
It establishes a universal speed limit on rate of molecular evolution by
predicting that populations go extinct (via lethal mutagenesis)
when mutation rate exceeds approximately six mutations per essential part
of genome per replication for mesophilic organisms and one to two mutations per
genome per replication for thermophilic ones. Several RNA viruses function
close to the evolutionary speed limit, whereas error correction mechanisms
used by DNA viruses and nonmutant strains of bacteria featuring various genome
lengths and mutation rates have brought these organisms universally ~1,000-fold
below the natural speed limit.
The costs of error-correction mechanisms and cell division, however, pose additional
constraints on mutational load. The authors also did not consider effects of
epistasis and pleiotropy on their model. They basically showed that even without
those complications, there are limits on how many mutations an organism can endure
in its quest to evolve into something more complex. They felt their theory
needs to be considered in computer models of evolution and in origin-of-life scenarios
to avoid mutational meltdown and error catastrophe.
- Natural selection tug-o' war:
Another recent paper in PLoS One
by Steven A. Frank (UC Irvine) seems to suggest that evolution works toward the maladaptation
of species, not beneficial adaptation.5 Thats
because Organisms use a variety of mechanisms to
protect themselves against perturbations. The robustness of organisms
against perturbations (like mutation) shields them from natural selection.
He concluded that evolutionary dynamics drives systems in the direction of
repeated rounds of enhanced robustness and decay. Because robustness
works against natural selection, selection will tend to drive the organism toward
cheaper designs and lowered performance: i.e., maladaptation.
Frank thought that robustness would increase genetic variability
over time, because Reduced sensitivity to inherited mutations slows the rate at
which natural selection clears deleterious mutations from the population.
But considering the previous paper about mutational speed limits, it seems it could
also accelerate an organism toward mutational meltdown and extinction.
1. Bergthorsson and Andersson and Roth, Ohnos dilemma: Evolution
of new genes under continuous selection,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
published online before print October 17, 2007, 10.1073/pnas.0707158104.
1.a. Hittinger and Carroll, Gene duplication and the adaptive evolution of a classic genetic switch,
449, 677-681 (11 October 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature06151.
2. Knops et al, Negative correlation does not imply a tradeoff between
growth and reproduction in California oaks,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
USA, published online before print October 16, 2007, 10.1073/pnas.0704251104.
3. Scarcelli et al, Antagonistic pleiotropic effects reduce the potential adaptive value of the FRIGIDA locus,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
USA, published online before print October 16, 2007, 10.1073/pnas.0708209104.
4. Zeldovich, Chen and Shakhnovich, Protein stability imposes limits on
organism complexity and speed of molecular evolution,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
USA, October 9, 2007 (vol. 104, no. 41) pp. 16152-16157, 10.1073/pnas.0705366104.
5. Steven A. Frank, Maladaptation and the Paradox of Robustness in Evolution,
of Science One, 2(10): e1021. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0001021.
Links to these articles are included for those who would like to research them further.
From the abstracts, it seems that each team attempted to verify a key component of
evolutionary theory, yet found the evidence contrary to established beliefs.
So what else is new?
Cassini Celebrates 10 Years in Space 10/16/2007
In none of these papers did the evolutionists demonstrate that random
mutation could actually invent something new and beneficial. They merely assumed
that it could. But in
each case, the powerless mechanism of natural selection was clearly unable to compensate
for the accumulating damage of harmful mutations. At best it could maintain the
status quo, thanks to the help of exquisitely-designed proofreading and repair
mechanisms. Natural selection: what a flimsy hope on which to base
ones entire philosophy.
Next headline on:
The Cassini team is reveling in the outpouring of public praise for the mission.
Launched on October 15, 1997, Cassini-Huygens has spent ten years in space and is over
three fourths the way through its prime mission, to explore the Saturn system, its
rings, moons, magnetic field and the large moon Titan
(see ESA and
continue to pour in. Unless the spacecraft fails or funding is cut off, there
is no end in sight for one of the most successful outer planet missions in history.
The Cassini Imaging Team has posted a gallery of recent hi-res color images
at Ciclops.org. One picture
in particular seems suitable for the occasion: a dazzling
rainbow on the rings caused by
the opposition effect of sun glint on icy ring particles
(also posted by JPL).
Several recent discoveries were reported in the literature:
- Tropical Titan: the
University of Chicago
described Titan as a tropical moon in its own way. Despite the -290 degree
chill, Titan has an atmosphere saturated with methane that acts like the humidifier and
moisturizer for this bizarre world. At that temperature, in fact, methane is even
more volatile than water is on Earth.
even gave the weather forecast: Morning forecast on Titan calls for widespread
methane drizzle off Xanadu. See also another
article that says the European Southern Observatory shares credit for this discovery.
- Southern Lakes: The latest radar swath taken by Cassini across Titans
southern latitudes revealed some lakes there, too but fewer, apparently,
because it is summertime in the south. If the mission continues for several
more years, scientists are eager to see if the southern lakes grow and the northern
lakes dry up as summer shifts northward. See the
press release for a montage of the northern lakes and a shot of the southern lake;
see also European Space Agency.
- Runaway Iapetus: Preliminary explanations for the black-and-white
case of Iapetus are starting to come in after last months close flyby
(see 09/13/2007). Some scientists think,
according to a JPL
press release, that solar heating leads to a process called thermal segregation.
The water ice in the more-absorbent dark material sublimates and
re-deposits on the cold white parts a runaway and irreversible effect.
This may explain why dark material tends to puddle in the bottoms of craters
or hang on crater walls facing the equator. They believe the dark material is only
about a foot deep. Whatever the explanation, the amazing images of Iapetus from the
September 10 flyby are sure to occupy scientists for years to come.
- The Ancient Mountains of Iapetus: Because the mysterious mountain
ridge on Iapetus is heavily cratered, scientists assume it is ancient. They
are ruling out theories that a ring collapsed onto the surface, because it would not
explain apparent tectonic features associated with the ridge. See the
- Jet Blue: A lovely limb shot of Enceladus with its geyser plumes
colored blue was released in another
press release. Imaging team scientists Jason Spitale and Carolyn Porco
were able to line up the plumes with the tiger stripes. Their results,
published in Nature last week,1 suggest that more
hot spots will be found in future flybys.
1. Spitale and Porco, Association of the jets of Enceladus with the
warmest regions on its south-polar fractures,
449, 695-697 (11 October 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature06217.
Like Jupiter (10/15/2007),
Saturn was filled with surprises. Nothing in the Saturn system requires
billions of years; many things require mere thousands. A lot of needless
cerebral horsepower is expended trying to keep apparently young phenomena going
for unnecessary eons. We can enjoy the show without the mythology.
Sweden Bans Creationism 10/16/2007
Next headline on:
Creationism and intelligent design are being banned in Swedish schools, reported the English
version of the Swedish news source, The
Local. Intelligent design (ID) makes no claim about the Creator, but only
the detectability of design; nevertheless, both were banned equally.
This may not be unexpected after the Council of Europe resolution last week
(10/06/2007). Whats unusual
about this decision, though, is that creationism has been banned from church schools
because Sweden, like many European countries, has a state church.
The Swedish government is to crack down on the role religion plays in independent faith schools,
the article began. Pupils must be protected from all forms of fundamentalism.
Teachers can still start the day with prayers, but when science lesson
time comes, they must stick to the curriculum. Religious education is still
allowed, but all elements of religious worship would have to be completely
separate from class teaching.
Most independent schools in Sweden are privately owned but funded by government grants,
the article said. Schools that break the rules can be closed by the
Swedish National Agency for Education, which is doubling the number of inspectors
to ensure compliance.
Look at the web page, and you will see another story: increasing
numbers of Swedes are converting to Islam. This means that the Swedish political
dunderheads who cant read their tea leaves had better wake up to the fact that
the country will become creationist soon anyway. They must choose, while there is still time,
whether they want peace-loving Christian creationists, who want to reason with them and debate
the evidence, or Islamic fascists who will make them convert via a sword at the neck.
Either way, the Church of Darwin cannot survive. It is obviously not the fittest, because it just
New Horizons at Jupiter 10/15/2007
Compare this story with the
Some Christian Colleges Love Darwin More than Jesus.
Next headline on:
Politics and Ethics
Bible and Theology
New Horizons, a spaceship bound for Pluto, took a good look at the Jupiter system when
passing by on Feb. 28. The scientific findings were featured in a special section
of Science last week, with 11 articles. Joanne Baker said in the
Introductory article,1 The papers in this special
issue record how the probe witnessed lightning and aurorae in Jupiters atmosphere,
volcanic eruptions on the moon Io, and the pulsing of Jupiters magnetosphere,
a cocoon of charged particles that swathes the entire system.
Visit the New Horizons
website where there is a gallery
of images from the Jupiter flyby.
- Ios magnetic personality: Of special interest is Io, the volcanic inner moon of Jupiter.
The spacecraft witnessed a major eruption of a polar volcano seen earlier by the Galileo mission:
An eruption of the Tvashtar volcano on the satellite Io was caught in the act,
allowing the mechanics of the sulfurous plume and the lava temperature to be measured.
Pollution from Ios volcanoes has even reached the shores of Europa, an
icy moon that may harbor oceans beneath its frozen surface. Ios volcanic
emissions feed extra sulfur and oxygen ions into a vast particle cloud that circles
the entire Jupiter system, held in place by the planets strong magnetic
field. Behind the planet, it is pulled into a magnetic shadow billions of
kilometers long, streaming away from the Sun as the solar wind deflects around Jupiter.
Acting like a giant pipe, this magnetic tail drains half a metric ton of charged
particles out of the jovian system each second.
Apparently the mass lost down the magnetotail is just half of Ios output.
Norbert Krupp, in another introductory
article,2 said that Io is ejecting one metric ton per second of
sulfur dioxide particles. Data from all of the previous missions
have shown that Jupiters moon Io is the most important player in the
configuration and dynamics of the jovian magnetosphere, he exclaimed. Keep in mind that Jupiter
has the largest magnetosphere by far of any planet in the solar system.
This little moon is shedding a lot of responsibility
- Polar eruption: Spencer
et al described the volcanoes on Io in another paper
The 350-km-high plume from Tvashtar
contained remarkable time-variable filamentary structures
Tvashtar, erupting steadily during the eight days of the observations
was just one of several active volcanoes witnessed in action
They measured lava temperatures nearly 2000° F. consistent with
basaltic lavas and not requiring exotic high temperature magmas
inferred from some Galileo observations, they claimed (compare this
abstract from Galileo scientists).
- Ring things: Jupiters faint rings were the subject of a paper by
Showalter et al
(picture).4 They were surprised that
clumps appeared in some new tenuous rings; these clumps challenge our theoretical
understanding, they said
Another puzzle is that The dusty jovian ring system
must be replenished continuously from embedded source bodies, but they
could not find any new small moons capable of feeding the ring system other than
the previously-known Metis and Adrastea
Jupiters rings showed significant
variation since Galileo: a pattern matched by the thinnest rings at Saturn and Uranus.
We conclude that the general class of dusty rings may be much more dynamic
and time-variable than was previously supposed, with variations on 10- to 20-year
time scales not the exception but the norm.
- Europa dope: New Horizons also got looks at Europa and Ganymede.5 It appears
that Io is coating Europa with some of the non-ice material observed earlier on
thousand-year time scales
The young crater Pwyll on Europa showed less
contamination than others, supporting the idea that the salty material comes from outside the moon.
If so, this raises hopes that the ocean under the ice is not so salty as to inhibit
Yet if Europa is undergoing active resurfacing, as they said,
it might seem plausible that the accumulated salts from Io would contaminate the
interior ocean over billions of years.
- Ganymede scarface: Ganymede appears to be accumulating a globally distributed dark material
except where relatively recent impacts have excavated cleaner ice from below
the surface. New Horizons observed three bright, rayed craters not mapped
by earlier missions (picture).
1. Joanne Baker, Grand Tour,
12 October 2007: Vol. 318. no. 5848, p. 215, DOI: 10.1126/science.318.5848.215.
2. Norbert Krupp, New Surprises in the Largest Magnetosphere of Our Solar System,
12 October 2007: Vol. 318. no. 5848, pp. 216-217, DOI: 10.1126/science.1150448.
3. Spencer et al, Io Volcanism Seen by New Horizons: A Major Eruption of the Tvashtar Volcano,
12 October 2007: Vol. 318. no. 5848, pp. 240-243, DOI: 10.1126/science.1147621.
4. Showalter et al, Clump Detections and Limits on Moons in Jupiters Ring System,
12 October 2007: Vol. 318. no. 5848, pp. 232-234, DOI: 10.1126/science.1147647.
5. Grundy et al, New Horizons Mapping of Europa and Ganymede,
12 October 2007: Vol. 318. no. 5848, pp. 234-237, DOI: 10.1126/science.1147623.
We could not find where any of the scientists ventured
to explain how these short-lived phenomena, sometimes called dramatic,
could be sustained for 4.5 billion years. New Horizons has shown that the
Jupiter systems dynamic activity, first observed in 1979 by the Voyagers,
was not a fluke. Volcanic eruptions, ring erosion and active resurfacing have
continued unabated for the last 28 years. How far back in time can these
evidences of youth be extended?
Walking Upright Was a Birth Defect 10/14/2007
Remember that nearly all of these phenomena were a complete surprise
when first discovered. Believers in a billions-of-years-old solar system
did not predict them then, and cannot explain them now. Some open-minded
researcher should take the collective data and model it without the a priori constraint
of billions of years. Planetary science needs new horizons.
Next headline on:
Whats so big about walking upright? A single birth defect in a human ancestor
21 million years ago could have made it all possible, according to Dr. Aaron Filler
(Cedars Sinai Medical Center), a specialist in the spine.
he proposes that in the hominiform hominoid Morotopithecus, a sibling
was born with its horizontal septum transposed behind the lumbar region of the spine.
This would have made its normal knuckle-walking gait inefficient. The child must
have stood upright for relief.
Any mammal with this set of changes would only
be comfortable standing upright, he said. I would envision this
malformed young hominiform the first true ancestral human
as standing upright from a young age while its siblings walked around on all fours.
According to the article, this idea greatly demotes the importance of the bipedalism
of Australopithecus species such as Lucy, because walking upright was already
old hat by then. In fact, the septum pattern found in his assumed upright-walking
hominoids is as old as some invertebrates. Filler seems to be proposing upright
posture not for any particular functional reason but as a mistake. From an
embryological point of view, he remarked, what took place is literally breathtaking.
So the Ugly Duckling of an early hominoid family found a
sweetheart with the same birth defect and the two lived happily ever after, having
lots of children that became medical doctors and philosophers.
Hes right; for a story devoid of sense or evidence, this one is literally
breathtaking. Better re-read the
11/18/2004 entry to recall all the other
birth defects Dr. Filler forgot to fill out.
Inner Ear More Complex than Thought 10/13/2007
Next headline on:
Another level of complexity has been added to the mystery of hearing.
Scientists at Massachusetts
Institute of Technology (MIT) found that another membrane in the cochlea of the inner
ear, once thought to be passive, is actively involved in transmitting sound waves to the
hair cell receptors. Their work was published in PNAS.1
For years, researchers have focused on the basilar membrane (BM) in the
cochlea as the transmitter of sound waves to the hair cells. A smaller and
more delicate structure, the tectorial membrane (TM), on the other side of the hair
cells, was not known to take part in the transmission of sound.
The MIT team carefully extracted tectorial membranes from guinea pig ears
and observed their response to sound with extremely sensitive laser instruments able to
measure nanometer-scale displacements. To their surprise, they found not only
that the TM transmits sound information just like the basilar membrane, but it does so
at right angles transverse instead of longitudinal. They believe this dual mechanism
feeds the brain with much more information than could one wave alone:
In short, the ear can mechanically translate sounds into two different
kinds of wave motion at once. These waves can interact to excite
the hair cells and enhance their sensitivity, which may help explain
how we hear sounds as quiet as whispers, says Aranyosi. The
interactions between these two wave mechanisms may be a key part
of how we are able to hear with such fidelity for example, knowing when
a single instrument in an orchestra is out of tune.
And just how sensitive is the inner ear? According to Werner Gitt in his
delightful book The Wonder of Man (CLV, 1999), the hair cells in the
cochlea provide us the ability to hear sound intensities over a range of a million
million to one. This is an astonishing feat, he said, since
it is accomplished with just one range of measurement. No known technical
measuring apparatus can do this without switching from one range to another
We know the ear is enormously sensitive in its
ability to discriminate between different kinds of sound, Freeman says.
We dont know the mechanism that lets it do that. The new
work has revealed a whole new mechanism that nobody had thought of.
Its really a very different way of looking at things.
In addition, our ability to discriminate pitches is astonishingly
good, allowing us to detect differences of 0.3% over a range of 10 octaves
(p. 24). The actual movement of hair cells is about 100 picometers, or
one thousand millionth of a centimeter about the size of a few atoms (p. 28).
The ear is probably our most sensitive organ. Under ideal conditions a human
can hear a 3kHz note having an energy level of only 4 x 10-17
watts per square meter and adjust automatically to sound waves more energetic by 12 orders of
Now, it appears that an additional mechanism that
helps explain this astonishing sensitivity of the inner ear has been found. Presumably this
mechanism is present in all mammals. Although the authors did not discuss the brain
response, it stands to reason that if the amount of information transmitted by the ear is higher,
the auditory cortex in the brain must be correspondingly more complex to receive and
interpret the information. The authors did not mention evolution in
their paper, nor did the MIT press release.
1. Ghaffari, Aranyosi, and Freeman, Longitudinally propagating traveling
waves of the mammalian tectorial membrane,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
USA, published online before print October 9, 2007, 10.1073/pnas.0703665104.
Please, Darwin Party hacks, listen carefully: tell us
how guinea pigs figured this out. [pause] We cant hear you. We know
its not because our ears are incapable of hearing your response.
This allows us to conclude your silence is your answer. Sorry; for a
world view aspiring to explain all of reality, forfeit is not an option.
Could cave fish go blind on purpose? from 10/18/2004.
Further reading: See a discussion of the sense of hearing from a
creationist perspective at ARN.
Dr. Howard Glickmans in-depth article contains diagrams and illustrations,
including one showing the relationship of the basilar and tectorial membranes.
This article is part of this medical doctors series on the human body called
Exercise Your Wonder.
Next headline on:
Microsoft Billionaire Puts His Money Where His Darwinism Is 10/12/2007
Paul Allen is spending millions on humanitarian causes: not the cure of disease or
the end of poverty, but on helping humans recognize that they evolved from space
dust (see next entry). This, presumably, brings enlightenment.
Shortly after 9/11, the PBS series Evolution made its debut,
thanks to a large endowment from Allen, co-founder of Microsoft
(09/24/2001). Now, according
Blaze, his money is backing a NOVA production that will try to head off at the
pass the non-evolutionary idea of intelligent design. Allens version
of the Dover trial, Kitzmiller vs. Dover School District will, judging from
the producers statements, the film,
Judgment Day, side with the plaintiffs who called intelligent design
a thinly veiled form of creationism, the view that a literal interpretation
of the Bible accounts for all observed facts about nature. This stands
in contrast to evolution, naturally, which amounts to established scientific fact:
Judgment Day captures on film a landmark court case with a powerful
scientific message at its core, said Paula S. Apsell, NOVA Senior
Executive Producer. Evolution is one of the most essential and
least understood of all scientific theories, the foundation of biological
science. We felt it was important for NOVA to do this program
to heighten the public understanding of what constitutes science and what
does not, and therefore, what is acceptable for inclusion in the science
curriculum in our public schools.
This fits with the mission of Allens company, Vulcan Productions. It is devoted to producing
films that explore creative opportunities that result in engaging and
Vulcan Productions has long been committed to the subject of evolution
and its teaching, remarked Vulcan Productions Executive Producer, Richard Hutton.
When we co-produced the Evolution series with the WGBH Science Unit in 2001, we
set out to bring the richness of Darwins theory to life. The story of
the Dover trial gives us another opportunity to reaffirm our commitment
to helping audiences understand the nature of science through elegant and
To make sure some observational evidence can back up the storytelling,
Allen supported the construction of a radio telescope array for SETI at Hat Creek,
California the Allen Telescope Array (see
08/17/2007). 42 of the planned 350 six-meter
dishes are in place enough to start getting some work done.
Scientist reported that the facility has just begun operations. It will
spend half its resources doing routine astronomy surveys, but the priority is on SETI
(the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence).
Crucially, SETI astronomers will be able to commandeer the telescope for
their own exclusive use when necessary, the article said. Jill
Tarter of the SETI Institute added, Ill also have some time when I can say,
all right, now SETI is going to decide where to point the telescope.
The Darwin Party Vulcans and the Intelligent Design
Visigoths are fighting an uneven battle in the media.
Paul Allens prior Evolution film project
was thoroughly debunked by the Discovery Institute (see
ReviewEvolution.com), and the
Dover trial propaganda was thoroughly dismantled in their book
into Evolution. Dont expect to see any of this detailed analysis
and damaging information included in the Vulcan film. By their own admission,
they are not committed to telling the truth, but to compelling storytelling.
Hasnt that been the problem from the beginning of the Darwin wars?
(12/22/2003). Unfortunately, multibillionaires
are in short supply to fund ID films (e.g.,
Illustra Media, which operates on a
shoestring). Fortunately, ID films tend to be far more
credible to viewers and tend to get widely distributed via word of mouth advertising.
Dust Became Knowledge 10/11/2007
When watching Star Trek, most people realize that
Vulcan Spocks dispassionate logic is just part of the fantasy.
Dont expect any logic from the Darwin Party Vulcans at the SETI Institute
if they find an unexplained signal in an Allen dish some day. While inferring that they
found an intelligent signal that was designed, they will conclude
that the creatures with whom they are communicating evolved from space dust
(12/03/2005). Thats only logical
if you mind-meld with a rock.
Next headline on:
The Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week award goes to an
Press article reporting on a finding from the Spitzer Space Telescope. It
began in a very matter-of-fact manner, claiming that the one of the biggest questions
of philosophy is being answered by dust.
Astronomers have taken a baby step in trying to answer the cosmic
question of where we come from.
Some humans may not take kindly to the assertion that they came from a black hole
breaking wind. But
one astronomer added just as confidently, In the end, everything comes from space dust.
Its putting all the pieces of the puzzle together to figure out where we came from.
Planets and much on them, including humans, come from dust
-- mostly from dying stars. But where did the dust that helped form those early
stars come from?
A NASA telescope may have spotted one of the answers.
Its in the wind bursting out of super-massive black holes.
Surely there must be some observational evidence to support such a monumental
claim that we came from dust in the wind. The Spitzer team detected dust around one
quasar 8 billion light-years away. This, the story goes, shows that dust is
a building block of us: Dust is important in the cooling process to make stars,
which are predominantly gas. The leftover dust tends to clump together to
make planets, comets and asteroids, the article explained. The claim that
we are leftovers does not seem to be helping our self-esteem after the prior insult.
Another astronomer claimed that the discovery is
an important step in answering a fundamental mystery of the early universe.
The original press release from the
Team said a pretty face is like a melody: The hit song that proclaimed,
All we are is dust in the wind, may have some cosmic truth to it.
Lets ponder this profound display of wisdom.
Babies make baby steps, it is true, but do they know where they are going?
Do they make a straight line toward knowledge? or even an indirect line?
Babies dont ask fundamental questions, nor do they presume to have the answers
before taking their baby steps. One moment after stepping toward daddy, they may
do an about face toward mommy, or make a right-angle turn, or collapse in a heap on the rug.
Collagen and a car that extracts energy from the road, from 10/01/2004.
If this analogy represents the kind of steps science is making in its pursuit of
knowledge about where we came from, is it not possible that numerous
about-faces and collapses could occur before they answer the question? And if
so, might not the final answer be completely different, that we did not come from
The presumptuousness of scientists these days knows no bounds.
Here they are just starting to take baby steps, and they already know the answer
to the biggest question that has occupied the greatest minds for thousands of years.
If knowledge is defined as a justified true belief, then it is hard to call knowledge
anything that originates in dust blowing in the wind.
Next headline on:
Origin of Life
Make Your Face Sparkle With Diatoms 10/10/2007
Human engineers may join forces with cellular architects to produce the next generation
of paints, cosmetics and holograms, reported
Scientists are finding ways to harness the rapid growth of diatoms.
Manufacturing consumer products with these properties currently requires energy-intensive,
high-temperature, high-pressure industrial processes that create tiny artificial reflectors.
But farming diatom shells, which essentially harnesses a natural growth process, could
provide an alternative that takes place at normal room temperature and pressure,
dramatically reducing energy needs and so cutting carbon dioxide emissions.
The process is also extremely rapid -- in the right conditions, one diatom can give
rise to 100 million descendants in a month.
The products are also biodegradable and have a low carbon footprint. Someday
the holograms on your credit card, the shimmering fabric in your clothes, and the
sparkle in your face may owe their dazzle to miniature glass-makers of the sea, diatoms.
The picture of the five-pointed star diatom in the
article is worth a thousand words. How did a little one-celled organism
figure that out? And why? Surely a plain pill box would have sufficed
for survival, but God gave living things beauty as well as function. Search on
Diatoms in the search box above for more fascinating facts about these creatures
and how they grow their exquisite glass houses.
The Daily Dinosaur Media 10/09/2007
Next headline on:
Dinosaur discoveries continue to make news. Here are some recent findings
by those who dig getting out and digging for what they can get out:
On the home front, Walking with Dinosaurs, the traveling stage show, is currently
drawing crowds in the eastern United States. Brendan Maher reported for
(09/27/2007, pp. 395-396) that hundreds of children are flocking to the shows to see
their favorite monsters. The $20 million production, equipped with animatronic giants
and puppets, tells the tale of the dinosaurs 160-million-year lease on Earth.
Ken Lacovia, a paleontologist who watched the show with Maher, was pleased to see all
the kids in the Philadelphia sports arena. He portrayed dinosaurs as
a gateway drug for the sciences, to which Maher added,
A lot of kids scored tonight.
- Giant Ascending the Grand Staircase: A new species of duck-billed dinosaur was
found in the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, reported
Geographic. High school students helped find this giant of a hadrosaur that
was named Gryposaurus monumentensis. It was 30 feet long and stood 10 feet
tall. And what did it eat with its 800
teeth and massive jaws? Plants, they think: While the diet is unknown,
given the considerable size of the creature, the massive teeth and jaws are thought
to have been used to slice up large amounts of tough, fibrous plant material.
Its hundreds of teeth recycled like a conveyor belt, giving it continual biting power.
They believe it was buried in the bend of a river. It was found exquisitely preserved.
The remote Kaiparowitz Formation northwest of Lake Powell,
where this dinosaur was found, is largely
unexplored. A number of other dinosaurs have been discovered in it, along with
fish, lizards and mammals but the findings may represent only 5% of what
remains to be found.
- Chinese Boxer: The reconstruction of Suzhousaurus megatherioides,
a new species of therizinosaur found in northwest China, looks like a long-necked
wrestler or boxer. But this fighter wasnt out for blood;
Science said that therizinosaurs are considered theropods that went vegetarian.
Geographic called it a weird dinosaur because it was large, long-necked,
short-tailed and had long arms with three claws each. Unlike the short-armed,
carnivorous T. rex theropod, maybe this one wrestled plants to the ground.
The article claims that the earliest North American therizinosaur dates from 90 million
years, but S. megatherioides dates from 115 million years. This would
mean the group took 15 million years to discover North America. It would also mean
that the first therizinosaurs were huge, and evolved smaller over that time.
- Rex was here: The BBC
News reported the discovery of a possible T. rex footprint in Montana.
The three-toed print would fill a square meter.
- Dead Loch Ness monster: A plesiosaur vertebrum was found in Northern Ireland,
the BBC News said.
Many think the Loch Ness monster resembled this long-necked, flippered swimmer, and now
a rare fossil of a plesiosaur has been found in that part of the world.
A museum curator examined the fossil and believes it could be 190 million years old.
Ichthyosaurs and shark teeth have also been found at the site on the Colin River.
So, by their own admission, the Darwinists are tempting children with gateway
drugs to get them high on their tales of millions of years of senseless evolution.
They should be arrested.*
Will Darwinism End With a Big Bang? 10/08/2007
*arrest, v.: 1. to hold back, as of a danger or an enemy; check the expansion or influence
of; Arrest the downward trend; Check the growth of communism;
Contain the rebel movement;
For some interpretations of dinosaur fossils you are not likely to hear about in the
Darwin puppet show, see Creation on the Web
And think about the evidence presented above: exquisite preservation, burial of
a large creature in mud, worldwide distribution, decrease in size over time.
Do the evolutionary stories of millions of years make sense?
2. An interference with or a checking of the regular course of a disease or symptom.
Next headline on:
We may be seeing the end of Darwinism as we know it. Eugene Koonin of the
National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) at the National Institutes
of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, has written a devastating critique of traditional
Darwinism in an open-source journal,
Koonin, an evolutionist himself, basically said that all major life forms, with
all their complexity, appear suddenly in the record without intermediate forms,
and this fact can no longer be denied.
Major transitions in biological evolution show the same pattern of sudden
emergence of diverse forms at a new level of complexity. The relationships
between major groups within an emergent new class of biological entities are hard
to decipher and do not seem to fit the tree pattern that, following Darwins original proposal, remains the dominant description of biological evolution. The cases in point include the origin
of complex RNA molecules and protein folds; major groups of viruses;
archaea and bacteria, and the principal lineages within each of these prokaryotic
domains; eukaryotic supergroups; and animal phyla. In each of these
pivotal nexuses in lifes history, the principal types seem
to appear rapidly and fully equipped with the signature features of the respective
new level of biological organization. No intermediate grades
or intermediate forms between different types are detectable.
We saw Koonin a few months ago wondering what human-like genes were doing in a sea anemone
(07/08/2007). Last year, he was
wondering about the origin of introns (03/09/2006).
It seems these and other evolutionary puzzles have taken their toll.
In place of traditional Darwinian theory, Koonin proposed a new hypothesis: the
Biological Big Bang (BBB). He drew parallels with the inflationary
big bang of cosmology:
I propose that most or all major evolutionary transitions that show the
explosive pattern of emergence of new types of biological entities
correspond to a boundary between two qualitatively distinct evolutionary
phases. The first, inflationary phase is characterized by extremely
rapid evolution driven by various processes of genetic information exchange,
such as horizontal gene transfer, recombination, fusion, fission, and spread of
mobile elements. These processes give rise to a vast diversity of forms
from which the main classes of entities at the new level of complexity emerge
independently, through a sampling process. In the second phase,
evolution dramatically slows down, the respective process of genetic
information exchange tapers off, and multiple lineages of the new type of
entities emerge, each of them evolving in a tree-like fashion from that point on.
But is this just an argument from analogy?
What possible relevance does the physical origin of universe have to the biological
development of species? It
appears that Koonins hypothesis was motivated not so much from the plausibility of
comparing life to the sudden origin of the universe from nothing, but by the
observational facts: it became clear to him that life did not evolve by Darwins slow,
Koonins paper shows a bush of life instead of
Darwins tree of life. The diagram shows a variety of lineages all
emerging suddenly from a center point. He describes how in almost every sphere, from
protein folds to the major kingdoms of life to the animal phyla, a tree pattern cannot
be found. Instead, sudden emergence, with all the complexity in place from the start, is
the rule. He admits, for instance, that the Cambrian Explosion (see
a highly publicized enigma, is unlikely to be solved by proposing
molecular changes in the Precambrian. In an already familiar pattern,
he said, the relationship between the animal phyla remains controversial and elusive.
Koonin drew attention to other writers who have noted the same
patterns: Carl Woese, Stephen Jay Gould, Cavalier-Smith, and most recently
Doolittle and Bapteste (see 02/01/2007).
There is no universal tree of life. Evolutionists need to face that fact
and come up with alternatives. Will his Biological Big Bang stand up to
critical review by fellow evolutionists?
It did not escape Koonins notice, nor that of the reviewers,
that his hypothesis would be latched onto by creationists and promoters of intelligent
design theory (ID). William Martin (U of Dusseldorf) looked at this statement in
the paper: In each major class of biological objects, the principal types emerge
ready-made, and intermediate grades cannot be identified and
had this reaction: Ouch, that will be up on ID websites faster than one can
bat an eye. Koonin knew that his ideas could be grist for the ID mill,
but answered that even though he tried to avoid ID allusions, he had to face the
situation as honestly as possible:
.... there is little I can do because this is an important sentence that
accurately and clearly portrays a crucial and, to the very best of my understanding,
real feature of evolutionary transitions. Will this be used by the
ID camp? Perhaps if they read that far into the paper.
However, I am afraid that, if our goal as evolutionary biologists
is to avoid providing any grist for the ID mill, we should simply claim
that Darwin, in principle, solved all the problems of the origin
of biological complexity in his eye story, and only minor details remain
to be filled in. Actually, I think the position of some ultra-darwinists
is pretty close to that. However, I believe that this is totally
counter-productive and such a notion is outright false. And, the ID
folks are clever in their own perverse way, they see through such
false simplicity and seize on it. I think we (students of evolution)
should openly admit that emergence of new levels of complexity is a complex
problem and should try to work out solutions some of which could be distinctly
After this, he assured himself that ID doesnt offer a viable answer to any problem.
Presumably this means that materialism is safe, in his view. It follows that
any radically unorthodox naturalistic answer is better than
the current paradigm which is no longer tenable.
Nicholas Matzke (formerly of the National Center for Science Education, NCSE)
noticed this paper and left his calling card at the
Well, he began dryly, since it is clear that this paper will be on
every ID/creationist blog on the planet in under 12 hours, I might as well put in my 2 cents early.
Matzke defended the traditional slow-and-gradual Darwinism. Surprisingly,
one of his defenses was to claim that the Linnean category of phylum is an
illusion. Down with phyla! he shouted. His other arguments
disputed that the apparent sudden transitions were inaccessible to gradualistic
In his concluding remarks, Matzke acknowledged that shoving this
problem under the rug is counter-productive.
Until this week I worked at the National Center for Science Education, where we
oppose the ID/creationists and develop a finely-tuned sense of the sorts of
things they will pluck from the literature and desperately portray as
evidence that they arent completely nuts. However, I am well aware
that telling scientists to censor themselves to avoid giving creationists talking
points is a non-starter, so hopefully my comments came out as being
substantive rather than just the boring voice of orthodoxy.
Since the complete paper and Matzkes rebuttal are online and freely available,
the reader can decide who is desperately portraying themselves as not completely nuts.
Update 10/22/2007: Another molecular biologist has
commented on the paper (see
Shi Liu of the Eagle Institute of Molecular Medicine in
North Carolina was not surprised because he had already proposed a similar biological
big bang back in 1991. His ending comment might jolt awake some historians
Thus, while we may still appreciate the role of Darwin in helping scientists
wining [sic] a upper [sic] hand in fighting against the creationists for filling our
intellectual void of understanding lifes origin and evolution, we must
realize that Darwins fetal [sic?] mistakes have also misled science
into a dead end of fruitless search for the non-existent last
common ancestor (LCA) and some useless constructions of some untruthful
universal tree of life (TOL).
This quote might be compared with Doolittle and Baptestes illustration of the
the ladder that helped the community to climb the wall of acceptance and understanding
of evolutionary process (see 02/01/2007 entry and
commentary). Liu apparently agrees with them that now that we have climbed it,
(i.e., winning the war against the creationists), we do not need this ladder anymore.
See Big Lie in the Baloney Detector.
1Eugene V. Koonin, The Biological Big Bang model for the major transitions in evolution,
Biology Direct 2007, 2:21doi:10.1186/1745-6150-2-21.
We are at a critical time in the history of ideas.
Marx fell, Freud fell, and now Darwin is in free-fall with little hope of recovery.
Its a little like the Yeltsin stage of the fall of Russian communism.
It was late summer of 1991. Gorbachev had softened up the West with talk of an
ease of tensions, but this allowed his rival Boris Yeltsin to amass a large popular
following. Fearful of Yeltsins popularity among the masses, the
hardline communist party bosses put Gorbachev on house arrest,
staged a coup and re-seized power. But it was a complete joke. Boris was
outside with the people, standing on a tank with a bullhorn receiving cheers from
the freedom-hungry crowds, while TV cameras showed
the communist bosses inside their fortress with trembling hands, reading prepared statements
claiming they were still in control. Other Soviet officials in the room were clearly drunk.
This could not have happened were not evident to everyone that Marxism-Leninism had
decayed from within and could no longer support the power structure erected around it.
Crow Cam Lets Scientists See Intelligence at Work 10/07/2007
Nobody is going to fall for Koonins BBB model of evolution.
It is tantamount to believing in miracles. Cosmic inflation, even if there were
such a thing, says nothing about the origin of information, genetic codes, body plans
and all the other things Darwin needed to explain.
Like Marxism, Darwinism was an ideology that sounded good on paper.
It fueled a lot of revolutionary fervor in its day. In practice, though, it quickly
became a dead orthodoxy. It had to be enforced by totalitarian thought police
and by waves of purges. In a stunning repeat of recent history,
we see today the Darwin Party bosses preaching their Darwinist dogma and claiming
everything is under control, when in their heart of hearts they know it doesnt fit the way the
If this is indeed the Yeltsin stage of the fall of Darwinism, the next steps
are critical to the future of Western civilization. Yeltsin stood at a tipping
point in Russian history but was too tipsy to take advantage of it. His penchant
for vodka, and his lack of personal integrity, led to his becoming an embarrassing
footnote to the story of the Soviet empires demise. Koonin is the Gorbachev figure.
He recognizes that it is no longer a viable policy to pretend that business as
usual can forestall a collapse. He offers perestroika, an
easing of tensions, to appeal to the masses who are leaning toward the Reaganesque
doctrine of intelligent design, recognizing full well that Reagan supporters will
capitalize on this perceived weakness of Soviet ideology. Outside, ID supporters
are winning the hearts and minds of the world with their shouts of Tear down this
wall. Matzke is the Soviet hardliner wanting to rein in Gorby Koonin
before he opens the floodgates of mass revolt. His restatement of traditional Darwin doctrine, however, is
unlikely to convince knowledgeable insiders, or stop the momentum of intelligent design.
What happens next is anyones guess. The Darwin Party still
wields tremendous power. It is very possible they will continue to succeed with
business as usual through exercise of raw power or subterfuge (threats, intimidation,
decrees by judges, and official propaganda). This could keep the status quo going for many years.
But the empirical engine of Darwins balloon is dead; how long can they keep it aloft with
their own hot air? Meanwhile, onlookers see the intelligent design balloon reaching new
heights. The hardliners cant hide the truth much longer.
Change could happen very fast. All that is needed is for enough
high-ranking Darwin Party officials to break ranks, and you could see a rapid mass
exodus of scientists confessing I never really believed all that stuff, anyway.
(Is this possible? Read this article on
Darwinism is as unnecessary to science as a parade float is to the vehicle underneath.
Evolutionary explanations are, like NAS member Phil Skell noted, a mere narrative gloss
after the engine of science has done the work (02/28/2006).
Darwinists have erected huge, elaborate floats on the engines of science, parading
their materialist ideology down main street, where Grand Marshall Charlie can display
his imperial new clothes. Science got by just fine without all the decor. The
Darwin parade serves the interests of the regime, not the interests of scientists. Science will be less
burdened and free to explore the open roads of evidence when its engines are no longer
obligated to perform rituals for the regime.
If change does come rapidly, we must also learn from recent Russian
history that not all change was for the better. Here we are, 16 years after
one of the most dramatic bloodless revolutions in history, and the Russian people
are once again victims of a virtual dictatorship. What happened? It was
almost too good. TV viewers around the world were astonished to see jubilant
crowds hammering down the Berlin wall, and around Moscow
the police joining the masses in support of free speech and freedom of religion.
The faces of peasants were euphoric with the hope of freedom. But the Union unraveled;
each former Soviet republic pulled away, and in some cases, imposed even stricter
regimes on their people. Some of these independent states (especially the ones
ending in -stan) are persecuting Christians as harshly as the Stalinists did but
under a different ideology.
Another problem was that the fall of the Iron
Curtain opened the door not just for solid humanitarian and Christian missions that had so long been
prohibited, but also for cults and charlatans. The influx of cultists prompted
the government to crack down on all but the official Russian Orthodox Church,
leading to some of the same violations of human rights as before but for different
reasons. The Russian government found itself unprepared to deal with these
challenges, and the people were unaccustomed to the responsibilities of living in
a free society. Dictatorship is always a quick fix to social turmoil.
So now, we have Vladimir Putin, a former Soviet KGB boss, ruling Russia much like a
Romanov or Kruschev.
Darwinism is, of course, an intellectual rather than a political ideology,
but there are enough parallels and overlaps to provide warning. When Darwinism falls,
will cults demand equal time for their scientific views? Will this prompt a
crackdown that lets in some views and persecutes others? Who is to decide?
What will get funded? How do we allow a wide spectrum of people with different
belief systems to be involved in scientific institutions, without making them the
toy of any and every ideology that wants to leverage sciences perceived epistemic
authority? Here are some principles for post-Darwinist science.
This partial list can help science recover from decades of abuse by the Darwin Party.
Creationists and intelligent design people can now have a seat at the table.
They must not become the new dogmatists. The Islam of Harun Yahya is a real
concern if it were able to co-opt science and make it the lapdog of Islamic totalitarianism
(cf. Lysenko in Stalinist Russia), but if the Turkish
creationists are obligated to show observability, testability and repeatability like
everyone else, they will have to win by persuasion and the quality of their operational
science, not by coercion. Civilization cannot exercise prior restraint against
a Mormon or Jehovahs Witness or Hindu who has a scientific hypothesis. The
burden of proof, though, is on the scientist. Whether or not it gets funded is a different
question, but science as an endeavor to find truth about the natural world
cannot know where the next great insight will come from. Does the hypothesis
explain the phenomenon convincingly? Does it lead to further insights that are
observable, testable and repeatable? Most likely the cults will not do very well
at this game. The demise of Darwinism should remind us, however, of the power of an
entrenched dogma to stifle free inquiry for a century.
- Keep science out of the worldview business. Whether Darwin intended
it or not, his disciples got carried away trying to explain ultimate origins and ultimate destiny.
Scientists in their day-to-day operations have no business speculating about
matters that are the domain of theologians and philosophers. As individual thinkers
and citizens, they are certainly free
to write and publish their own opinions about such things on their own time and dime,
but should not receive federal grants to speculate on matters that go far beyond the evidence.
- Restrict scientific work to matters of observation: The work that
receives funding and support should be observable, testable, and repeatable.
It should promise practical applications that support the government and the taxpayers,
because they have a right to expect ROI (return on investment).
This should have no impact on the bulk of the legitimate sciences, but will keep out
the cultists as well as the Darwinists. No one need worry that authors of
journal papers will praise Allah or Moroni, but neither should Darwinists be able
any more to rhapsodize about their father figure in Nature or Science.
No more just-so storytelling. No more attributing any and all observations (human morals,
homologies, biodiversity) to Darwinian mechanisms based on materialistic presuppositions.
If it is not observable, testable and repeatable, its out of bounds.
It is true that science depends on certain presuppositions
that are not themselves matters of science,
such as regularity and the reliability of sense impressions,
but those who evaluate an individuals
work do not need to know or care about his or her private world view. They can
judge the quality of the work by its fruits.
- Discontinue use of the E-word in biology. Microevolution is uncontroversial
but is often invoked as evidence for macroevolution when it is no such thing. Both Koonin and
young-earth creationists allow for significant variation within lineages, but calling this evolution
will only continue to obfuscate and equivocate.
The E-word has become so encrusted with
philosophical baggage it should be avoided. Use variation instead.
Reserve evolution for reminiscing about Darwinian macroevolution (that defunct idea once
taught as fact).
- Demote the status of scientific consensus. As we see from the downfall
of Darwinism, having a scientific consensus confers no guarantees of a theory being correct.
All scientists accept evolution was trumpeted ad nauseum in the face of
creationists. Well, all scientists (an exaggeration)
were wrong, then. The history
of science is replete with cases of the scientific consensus being on the losing side.
While following a consensus may be a pragmatic necessity when politicians need to formulate
a policy under time pressure (depending on the degree of confidence one can have in the
verifiability of the theory), scientists must stop making claims that consensus
represents truth. One maverick whos right trumps a hundred who agree with
each other, as King Ahab found out the hard way
(I Kings 22).
- Keep science out of politics. It is no secret that the big journals
and research labs are almost uniformly left-leaning, socialist and liberal, feeling entitled to all
the money they want for anything they want to do. This must stop.
Universities and journals must open their doors and welcome scientists of all religious
and political stripes provided they do good lab work. They should be
graded on the quality and fruitfulness of their experimental work and the
persuasiveness of their scientific reasoning.
If an individual scientist has strong feelings about matters beyond science, no one
is stopping him or her playing the marketplace of ideas outside the science lab.
- Never forget. The extent of hubris and control exercised by Darwinists,
and the persecution that followed, must remain a stern lesson to scientists in
the post-Darwin world. Budding scientists must be trained in humility and restraint about
their work. Science is not a pathway to ultimate truth. Insights from
other fields (history, theology, philosophy) must be respected. Quotes by dogmatic
Darwinists of the past should be held up to public scorn repeatedly as an antidote
to those who would try it again.
- Persuade, dont legislate. Science is supposed to be part of
the open marketplace of ideas. There should be no place for prior restraint of
ones beliefs. Mavericks have often proved to trump the consensus.
The question is not whether one is in the majority or minority, but how one can prove
ones theory is right.
A word to two groups of Darwinists: the incorrigible hardliners and
the disillusioned scientists. Hardliners take warning: we have over a
century of quotes by your dogmatic brethren, and we are not going to let you forget
what they said. You have been the most intransigent, puffed-up and combative people of the
20th century. If you think you can just lay low and wait for this ID wave to
pass, so that you can seize power again, we are onto your tricks. School
boards and universities take heed: accepting hardline Darwinists into the discussion is as
risky as letting Lenin or Osama run for Parliament. There are certain people
who will use the institutions of free inquiry and democracy for revolutionary
ends, and then will destroy those very freedoms once empowered. Beware.
To the disillusioned researcher, we offer a word of comfort. It is hard
for anyone when the basis for a strongly-held belief system evaporates.
Many questions follow from the collapse of a belief. We want you to know that Christian
creationists (contrary to adherents of some religions that would try to terrorize or pressure you
into conformity) are accepting and forgiving. They believe in reasoning with
love. There are Christians who would like nothing better than to help you work
through these issues. If you write our
Feedback line, we will try to link you up with
someone you can talk to privately without pressure or obligation. Dont
despair about your scientific career, either. There is a great future in post-Darwinist science.
Look at the wonderful gains being made in biomimetics, systems biology, and biomedical research
each of which owe nothing to Darwin. Evolutionary theory, in fact, appears more like
a parasite than a vitamin to biology. There is
still a place for the study of natural variation among populations, without the assumption
that an unguided mechanism is able to generate new complex information. Most of
biology will get by just fine after the Darwinian storytelling fluff is no longer fashionable.
Finally, to creationists and proponents in ID, realize that the transformation
to a post-Darwinist world is going to be a long haul. The collapse of Soviet communism
was not the end of communism. In fact, Marxist ideology continues unabated and vicious in Vietnam,
North Korea, Cuba, China, and American universities. Dogmatic Darwinism is
not going away any time soon. The debate may open up, and alternative viewpoints may finally
get a hearing, but gaining a hearing is not the same as being heard.
Materialism for many is too seductive a philosophy to give up; expect battles long
after the war is won.
Now, therefore, more than ever, is the time to become knowledgeable about the creation-evolution
controversy. Complacency is not an option. Good and bad things
will try to fill the vacuum left by Darwin. What follows the collapse of
Darwinism could be worse than what preceded it, unless freedom-loving minds stay alert and take the initiative
to produce a better scientific enterprise for all. Get informed, get active, get prepared.
Stay tuned here for the latest developments.
Next headline on:
Ever want to fly like a bird? Now you can do the next best thing: get a
tail-feather view of what it is like to fly from branch to branch.
University of Oxford scientists attached a small video camera to the underside
of a New Caledonian Crow to watch it in the wild, reported
report includes video clips you can watch.
Geographic News said this is one of the first uses of this ultra-light camera
technology. It will allow us to follow small animals around in their own
New Caledonian crows fascinate scientists because of their exceptional
tool-using ability (see 02/23/2007,
08/09/2002). The camera-equipped crow did
not disappoint. It not only used tools made out of grass stems; it stored
its best ones for later use.
Noting that this species of crow appears to be the only non-primate
animal known to use tools, the BBC article said, The team is using its video footage to
investigate why New Caledonian crows might have evolved their tool-using abilities.
One idea was that the behaviour may have evolved in response to food shortages.
Can we please just enjoy these
amazing animals without making up myths that a drought made them
invent intelligence without primate help?
Nanofabrication Imitates Shells, Butterflies 10/07/2007
The Necessity-is-the-Mother-of-Invention theory of
evolution leaves unexplained how the right genetic mutations converged on combinatorial
solutions to a problem, nor what intelligence is, nor why many creatures go extinct
in a drought instead of inventing intelligence. Evolution provides only
useless speculation that does no heavy lifting in scientific explanation.
Birds are wonderfully designed animals. Evolutionists
cannot even explain beak length, let alone the whole bird
(08/24/2005). Look at the Darwinians violate their
own principles: they phrased the sentence crows might have evolved their
tool-using abilities. Well, then, they might
not have evolved them, too. Why is this prospect never considered?
If they are assuming evolution to find out if evolution occurred, they are
begging the question. Their wording doesnt make any sense.
A bird would have to have intelligence to decide to
evolve it, if it even could. What did these birds do, for crying out loud,
mutate their own genes for the purpose of trying to find a brain capable of tool use? Using the
word evolved as a purposeful word violates Charlies core principle that natural
selection be unguided and purposeless. Only the presupposition of creation
tolerates a proposition about The Purpose-Driven Bird
(04/20/2006, bullet 3).
Next headline on:
A new plastic strong as steel has been manufactured according to the
specs in seashells, reported
By mimicking a brick-and-mortar molecular structure found in seashells,
University of Michigan researchers created a composite plastic thats as
strong as steel but lighter and transparent. (See these previous entries
about how marine organisms manufacture their shells:
Butterflies have inspired the development of new materials with
exceptional and unexpected optical properties.
reported that the shimmering lights from butterfly wings and peacock feathers
do optical tricks. Their brightly colored patterns are
due to structural variations at the hundreds of nanometers level, which cause
them to absorb or reflect light. By manufacturing materials with
similar optical properties on the nanometer scale, researchers at Northwestern
are making very high quality optical materials with interesting properties.
Neither article mentioned evolution nor owed
any debt to evolutionary theory.
Darwin tree-building software plagued with mathematical flaws,
Next headline on:
European and American Politicians Attack Creationism 10/06/2007
Actions of political bodies on both sides of the Atlantic have revived questions
about the roles of science, politics and religion in public discourse and policy.
The Council of Europes Parliamentary Assembly voted 48 to 25 to accept a resolution
denouncing creationism and intelligent design, according to
European Observer and
The non-binding resolution strongly warned member states against perceived creationist attempts to infiltrate
schools. The strongly worded resolution warned that creationism could be a danger not
only to science, but to human rights. Some of the outrage
was prompted by a Turkish Islamic group under the name Harun Yahya that had sent
creationist materials to many schools throughout Europe
11/27/2006). Last year also, a UK
Truth in Science
had distributed information packs with
materials promoting intelligent design (see 01/11/2007
bullet 6, 12/08/2006 bullet 2,
10/27/2006, bullet 4, and
10/04/2006, bullet 11).
A spokesperson for
the vote said the purpose was not to fight any belief, but to warn against the
attempt to pass off a belief -- creationism -- as a science and to teach the theses
of this belief in science classes. She dubbed intelligent design, which
tries to avoid religious questions, as neo-creationism. See the
responses to this resolution by Albert
Mohler and by
In America, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sounded off about
the issue of evolution. After a speech about her science policy,
she responded to questions from the
York Times in a phone interview. Knowing that some Republican candidates
had endorsed intelligent design, Clinton said the following, according to
Patrick Healy and Cornelia Dean:
I believe in evolution, and I am shocked at some of the
things that people in public life have been saying, Mrs. Clinton said
in the interview. I believe that our founders had faith in reason and
they also had faith in God, and one of our gifts from God is the ability to reason.
Clinton characterized the Bush science policy as conducting a war on science and
vowed to support research on embryonic stem cells and global warming. She also
previously said, We have to be steered by values and morals.
I am grateful that I have the ability to look at dinosaur bones
and draw my own conclusions, she added, saying, too, that
antibiotic-resistant bacteria is evidence that evolution is going on as we speak.
Thank you, Hillary Clinton, for shooting materialism
in the foot, and evolutionism with it. If the ability to reason is a gift from
God, then it did not evolve. It means that truth, values and morals also did
not evolve. Materialism, therefore is dead. Now the issue becomes using our
God-given reason. Come now, and let us reason together.
Appendix to the Vestigial Organs Story: Whoops, Function Found 10/06/2007
Ms. Clinton, have you ever
studied philosophy of science? Are you aware of the difficulties involved in using
empirical observations as evidence for a theory? Do you really think
that antibiotic resistance in bacteria constitutes evidence that presidential
candidates evolved from bacteria? (see response by Dr. Kevin Anderson in
TrueOrigin). Are you aware
of the role of presuppositions in science? Do
you realize that creationists see the very same dinosaur bones you are looking at,
and draw their own, very different, conclusions? On what basis are you defending
your right to say the evidence supports evolution instead of creation? On what
basis are you saying that creationists do not have the right to use their reason to
come to their conclusions? If creationists also use their God-given reason to examine
the evidence and draw conclusions, on what basis do you call your conclusions scientific
and their conclusions unscientific? What is science? Is it merely what
those in power say it is? You must be consistent, Ms. Clinton. You already
said reason is God-given. This means it did not evolve. You either have
to agree with the creationists, then, or else display to the watching world that
your reasoning powers are deficient or are driven by political ideology.
As for the Council of Europe, these people are a lost cause.
They are the same ones that give
honors to the likes of Yasser Arafat while engaging in policies that will bring
down Western civilization. Europe is heading for a perfect storm, in which
its citizens cannot and will not give up their creature comforts, and are too selfish
to have children and raise families, so they import
cheap labor from Islamic nations who will be more than happy to tip the population
dynamics toward the East. Muslim immigrants will be keen to infiltrate
the political and social institutions till, through threats of terror and sheer
force of numbers, they will make the Council of Europe
an arm of Sharia Law. Having already seen the terror their new neighbors
can inflict, the dying Europeans are quick to denounce the one democracy
in the middle east (Israel), but are scared spitless about offending Muslims.
So they gag with their cottonmouths against creationists who offend
the priests of their idol, Charles Darwin. Its hard to respect anything these
irresponsible heirs of Churchill have to say about anything while their heads are
still attached to their necks. They need medical care, not reason, because their feet
are bleeding from self-inflicted bullet holes.
Weve already unpacked some of the lies and distortions in their resolution
Here they are again, creating arbitrary demarcation criteria that no philosopher of
science would defend, making bogeymen out of
the heirs of Francis Bacon
while welcoming anti-Western elements into their failing democracies.
So much for worrying about human rights.
Its not the Islam of Harun Yahya they fear (they are laying out the welcome
mat for that); its the evidence that
Charlie might be a false god they cannot allow indoctrinated student eyes to see.
None of the creationist groups they worry are infiltrating schools were
doing anything more than donating free material for consideration. Presumably,
any teacher can simply deposit the material in the circular file, and teach
their usual curriculum with complete freedom. That is not infiltration.
We all receive materials in the mail every day that we have to sort through using
our God-given reason, to decide what things merit attention and what should be tossed.
Thats freedom of choice. Infiltration is what the Darwinists pulled off (read the
quote at the top right of last months page).
The Council of Europe totalitarians claim they are not against any beliefs.
OK, so let the Turks, the Hindus, the Mormons, and Truth in Science have their day in
science court. Since Darwinism has already been falsified (e.g.,
10/26/2005 among many examples in these pages),
its time to evaluate alternatives. Each group can restrict its theology
to their church, temple or mosque, but should have the same right to employ their
science, using their God-given reason, to evaluate the observations and draw conclusions.
If Darwins theory had been so strong, it would certainly have succeeded in
the open marketplace of ideas without the heavily armored shielding its defenders
have erected around it. Now that its debunked, Europe had better choose
which alternative is more preferable: dialogue with those who want to improve their
heads vs dialog with those who want to remove their heads. If the latter
continue to make gains, a reasoned defense
may not be enough; Europeans may need the physical defense of Western creationist science that
can put out terrorist fires and provide medical aid (see
A little use of God-given reason in the head by Clinton and the Council of Europe
would save their necks, let alone their bleeding feet.
Next headline on:
Politics and Ethics
The appendix is not just a useless organ left over from our evolutionary past,
new research is showing. According to an Associate Press article (see
MSNBC News), this
seemingly useless organ may produce, protect good germs for your gut.
Scientists at Duke University Medical School believe that the appendix can regenerate
the normal bacterial flora that aid digestion.
According to the new theory,
the worm-shaped organ outgrowth acts like a bacteria factory, cultivating the
good germs our digestive system depends on, when disease or diet reduces
the bacterial population in the colon.
Daily included a profile of William Parker, one of the Duke researchers
who discovered the function.
People in undeveloped countries apparently have lower rates of
appendicitis. The appendicitis attacks in civilized countries may result
from an overreaction of the immune system to excessive hygiene, the article
suggested. An inflamed appendix can be deadly and needs to be removed
promptly. This does not imply, however, that it is useless.
Evolutionists had long considered the appendix as a prime example
of a useless vestige from our ancestors. The fact that humans can get by
without it seemed to support this view. The human appendix is also
smaller and more shriveled-looking compared with other mammals.
In 1895, Weidersheim listed 180 human body parts
he considered vestigial remnants of our evolution. Creationists
countered that just because we
may not know a parts function, that does not mean it has none. They
also pointed out that the list of alleged vestigial organs has shrunk from 180
down to just a few (see articles by Jerry
Bergman and Jonathan
Sarfati and Don Batten). The concept lives on even today;
Science lists the human appendix as #1 in their list of Top Ten Vestigial
Organs as evidence for evolution.
Though its no longer news that the appendix really is
functional (see 08/30/2001 entry and article by
this new article hints at a previously undiscovered role for the organ: a way for the body to
reboot the normal flora of the digestive tract. A scientist from
University of Michigan said of another apparently useless organ from Weidersheims
list, Ill bet eventually well find the
same sort of thing with the tonsils.
from Brandeis University turned some creationist heads, however, when he said that the Duke
Medical School explanation makes evolutionary sense.
Dont let the Darwinists try to steal glory
for Charlie over this. Consider
that Darwins theory held up medical research on these supposed vestigial
organs for 100 years. Tonsils were routinely cut out of childrens
throats under the assumption they were useless relics of our
evolutionary past, only for the victims to discover it made them more susceptible
to throat infections. Though you had better get an appendectomy if you get
appendicitis, it seems much wiser principle these days to hang on to all your
organs as long as you safely can, because they are there for a reason.
Darwin Saves Junk, Makes Treasure Out of It 10/05/2007
Now that we have another case of Vestigial? NOT!,
should we let the Darwinists grin and say that the discovery these organs are functional makes
evolutionary sense? Theres an oxymoron for you: evolutionary sense.
Apparently it made just as much evolutionary sense when the appendix had no function
as it does now when it has a function. If that makes evolutionary sense, then
evolutions sense is not worth two cents.
Like tax-and-spend politicians, the Darwin Party takes credit (08/24/2007)
for solutions to problems it created. Vote the rascals out.
Next headline on:
The Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week award goes to a press release from
the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, which began by
personifying Evolution1 as a
tinkerer in its own junkyard:
Evolution has mastered the art of turning trash to treasure
though, for scientists, witnessing the transformation can require a bit of
patience. In new genetic research, scientists have traced the 170
million-year evolution of a piece of junk DNA to its
modern incarnation as an important regulator of energy balance in
The article went on to speak of genes 170 to 200 million years old that
Evolution used as raw material for its innovations even though the
sequences were conserved (i.e., unevolved) all that time. We thought
we had found the tip of the iceberg of an evolutionary process that started
around 200 million years ago, said Marcelo Rubinstein of
HHMI, and we got really fascinated by the idea of
pulling up the entire iceberg from the depths.
Presumably hardware superstores now carry iceberg lifts.
The discovery, they said, suggests that regions of the genome
formerly presumed to be a genetic junkyard may actually be a hardware
superstore, providing components that can be used to evolve new genes or
1. Darwin himself began the tradition of personifying
evolution in his famous quote from The Origin of Species:
It may be said that natural selection is daily and hourly scrutinizing,
throughout the world, the slightest variations; rejecting those that are bad, preserving
or adding up all that are good; silently and insensibly working, whenever and
wherever opportunity offers.
If Darwinist researchers are having a lot of
fun, far be it from us to stop them (see 08/17/2007).
Make believe is a fun game.
Inca Priests Fattened Children for Slaughter 10/05/2007
If, by any chance, you read this press release and did not get all
the jokes, then a serious re-education program is needed. Please read all
the back issues of Creation-Evolution Headlines to heal your funnybone.
Next headline on:
Geographic News had a disturbing story from archaeological studies of Inca rituals
in what is now Peru. Studies of hair samples and other features in
mummies indicate that the Inca warlords fattened up children for up to a year before
slaughtering them. A team that analyzed the mummies believes that captured
children were then forced on a grueling pilgrimage, drugged, and sacrificed to their
idols. One of the researchers called it chilling that
the children ... were not killed on a whim but were part of a complex process
for which they were selected some considerable time before. In modern law
this is called malice aforethought, but would it be malice in Inca culture?
What kind of world do you want to live in?
One that recoils in horror at such brutality and calls it what it is evil
or one that explains it away as social evolution?
Modern Crustacean Found in Early Cambrian 10/04/2007
At the end of the article,
a professor surmised that the treatment of such peasant children may have served
to instill fear and exert social control over remote mountain areas newly incorporated
into the empire. He said this so dispassionately, it almost sounded sensible.
A Darwinist can
only look at this kind of tribal custom without judgmentalism, because in their
world view, evolution is what evolution does. For the Inca tribe, child sacrifice
served a social purpose. Survival being the highest good, child
sacrifice worked to enhance the survival of the population. Such treatment
of children was not wrong, therefore; it was just what this particular tribe found
workable in their circumstances. Who are we to judge?
Presumably, within the purposeless happenings of Darwins universe,
a culture could develop selection pressure to torture babies and commit genocide.
They become the virtuous ones, in this kind of thinking; the terrorists are those
who try to stop them. Its all just mathematics and natural law. In
social evolution, you have the cooperators and the defectors. Virtue is defined
in terms of the cooperators. No moral judgment comes into play at all.
If you dont believe Darwinists actually think this way, go back and read
these entries: 05/22/2007,
especially David Sloan Wilsons discussion of Virtue Island from
Lets extend the lessons of the Incas to our modern world. Right now, in North
Korea, there could be a million political prisoners in concentration camps (see
World Net Daily).
The communist regime dispassionately conducts medical experiments on prisoners,
finding out which chemicals cause the most rapid and violent deaths. This is
the way Kim Jong Il has found practical for the purpose of instilling fear and exerting
social control, and could also provide useful information for his next war.
Take notes in your lab book like a good social scientist and write this up for your
next paper. Ho hum, next case.
If North Korea were to succeed in using nuclear weapons to kill a million
people suddenly, would this be any worse than doing it piecemeal? Keep
reasoning. If his actions led to a global
thermonuclear conflict, in which every living thing on Earth died, so what?
Well, what do you know, the defectors lost out this time. An alien
Darwinist watching from another world would just take notes in its lab book and
write it up for its next paper.
We hope there are enough righteous people left, whose consciences
have not been seared by Darwinism, to recoil at such thoughts. Western
cultures Darwin-saturated academia
has sworn off any moral judgment. Within most university departments it would
be profoundly inconsistent to call what the Incas did, or what the North Koreans
are doing, as evil, because evil is an undefined term. Strange, isnt it, that their
innate sense of morality pops out in other ways, like attacking the US President
and accusing his methods of fighting terrorism as immoral, or expecting everyone
to fight global warming as the moral thing to do to save the planet. Why
save the planet? The Darwinists tell us that selfishness is the basis of
everything. So be selfish. Who cares if the children are left with
the consequences of our selfishness? Theyll just have to find their
own selfish ways to deal with it.
Jews and Christians believe, by contrast, that evil is the result of selfishness,
which is sin an affront to the Creator. A cursory reading of the Old Testament
(and knowledge of history) shows that what the
Incas did is nothing new. The antediluvian world was filled with violence.
Ancient cultures in Old Testament times routinely engaged in child sacrifice. The
prophets of God denounced these practices as vile and detestable, declaring that such
things were utterly foreign to the mind and heart of God. The Bible teaches
that God is redeeming individuals from this evil world one by one, and that evil
will come to an end at the final judgment. In the meantime, fighting evil
and rescuing its victims is near to the heart of God. Righteousness has
both temporal and eternal consequences. Righteousness will triumph.
So choose the kind of world you want to live in. If you are
a Darwinist, dont think you can borrow Judeo-Christian moral values.
You must live with the ones you have chosen. There are no human rights.
Frame pictures of Goebbels and Mengele on your wall.
Go live in North Korea or Sudan and experience the actions of natural selection in
all their dispassionate expressions. Take whatever comes, because what you
see is what you get; the stars fade out in the end anyway, and nobody boos or cheers
at the end of the show.
Are you having an unpleasant reaction to those thoughts? Could it be a
clue that there is something more than neurobiological reactions going on in
Next headline on:
Politics and Ethics
Bible and Theology
A crown-group crustacean that is markedly similar to those of living cephalocarids,
branchiopods and copepods has been found exquisitely preserved in early Cambrian
fossil beds from China, an international team reported in Nature.1
Though such organisms have been found in middle and later Cambrian rocks, this pushes the
origin of eucrustacea (crustaceans of modern aspect) back another 25 million years.
The authors of the paper said nothing, however, about the implications of this discovery to the
problem of the Cambrian explosion (see 04/23/2006).
Not only was the crustacean modern-looking, it was so well preserved that
even soft parts and eyes were visible. Even fine parts of setae on the tips of the
legs are clearly seen in the organisms representing different developmental stages.
Examples of Orsten-type Cambrian lagerstatten
(exceptionally preserved fossil beds) were known from Sweden, but this one is from China.
The species Yicaris dianensis resembles living minute and blind cephalocarids,
both in its head and trunk-limb design. In other words, modern cephalocarids
are blind, but this Cambrian representative had large twin eye lobes. Other resemblances
were noted in the post-mandibular limbs with their elongate, rather fleshy basipods armed with up to
seven setiferous, soft endites medially, and the existence of epipodites:
Epipodites and a sophisticated combined locomotory and food-gathering apparatus,
as present in Yicaris and, presumably, in the eucrustacean ancestor, may
have been a significant factor leading to the successful diversification of
eucrustaceans already by the Cambrian. Some authors consider that
insect wings may have originated from epipodites; the early Cambrian
occurrence of this trait is of potential significance to the debate regarding
the emergence of winged (pterygote) forms within euarthropods.
That speculation notwithstanding, the crustacean found here apparently had a system
for sweeping food toward its mandibles using these epipodites and antennae. Plus,
it had eyes, a head shield, a developmental process from larva to adult, and was probably
capable of swimming.
The authors mentioned nothing about the Cambrian explosion. Their only
reference to the evolution of this complex creature shielded the problem of missing
evidence by claiming that evolutionists are getting warmer in their search for an ancestor:
Discussion. The material of Y. dianensis is important in two respects.
First, it displays the post-embryonic ontogeny of an animal as old as the Early
Cambrian. Second, Y. dianensis is temporally close to evolutionary
events deep in arthropod and, specifically, crustacean phylogeny. Its development
should, therefore, be closer to the original developmental pattern of the stem forms
and less changed than that of recent in-group taxa, which have accumulated lineage-specific
modifications. With such ontogeny data and having the age of the fossil
as a time marker, it is possible to more precisely include ontogenetic
evolutionary pathways in the reconstruction of relationships and ground patterns
of stem species and monophyla. According to our analysis, Y. dianensis
represents the first undoubted eucrustacean known from the Lower Cambrian (the
single previously described Lower Cambrian putative eucrustacean species lacks eucrustacean
characters) and can serve as a substantial tool for testing relevant character
acquisition and phylogenetic hypotheses. This is of particular importance
because crustacean phylogeny has gained new interest by recent studies using
neurobiological, developmental-biological and molecular investigations.
Yet the authors did not explain how this organism was any more primitive than modern
crustaceans. The claim above, therefore and the following one from the Abstract,
seem unsupported by
the evidence at hand: Its stratigraphical position provides substantial support
to the proposition that the main cladogenic event that gave rise to the Arthropoda
was before the Cambrian. No evidence for that cladogenic event
(in plain English, the genesis of a new kind of animal) was provided. The statement
basically means only that evolutionists must now search earlier than
the Cambrian for clues to where arthropods came from, assuming they evolved from
more primitive ancestors.
The Editors Summary, similarly, avoided mention of the Cambrian explosion.
Newly unearthed Orsten-type fossils from China include the earliest known eucrustacean
in exquisite three-dimensional detail, significantly extending the fossil record of this group.
In summary, true crustaceans now are established to exist at the Atdabanian layer
of the early Cambrian, just slightly above or in the layers where the first trilobites and
1. Zhang et al, An epipodite-bearing crown-group crustacean from the Lower Cambrian,
449, 595-598 (4 October 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature06138.
No sooner had we reported the exceptional finds
reported in Geology (next entry), when this one showed up.
They think they can get away with it, hiding
their announcements in expensive journals that the public is unlikely to see, using
fancy words like cladogenic and monophyletic to pull the
wool over our eyes. Need plain English? They found another modern-looking
animal in the lowest fossil-bearing rocks, without any trace of an evolutionary
sequence from simple to complex. Their claims about cladogenic events
before the Cambrian leading up to this critter, eyes and all, is pure fiction dressed up
with euphemism and
obfuscation. There is no evidence this animal evolved.
There it is,
fully formed in this early layer, without any Darwinian tree. Cladogenic
is a miracle word inserted to hide a lack of evidence. Tell it like it is.
Exceptional Preservation: Can It Last Hundreds of Millions of Years? 10/03/2007
It is shameful that scientists persist in propagating their myth
without any evidence to support it, and lots of evidence against it. Sudden
appearance is not evolution. Darwin-doubters need to call them on the carpet
and demand honesty and accountability. The Darwin Party knows all about the
Cambrian explosion. Few are the ones that want to talk about it, because it
embarrasses them, just like it did Charles Darwin, who called it one of the strongest
arguments against his theory. Charlie hoped that continued searches for more fossils
would eventually find the missing links. Wrong! Increasing evidence has made his
problem worse. The Cambrian explosion is louder than ever, booming out the
message: life appeared abruptly, fully formed, as if it had been created.
To see the Darwin Party squirm, go to the Wikipedia page on the
and click on the
tab. Now search on the word creationist:
How much to say about how Creationists, supporters of Intelligent Design
and some Islamists quote the CE as a refutation of Darwinian evolution?
Pro: its a hot topic and some readers will be disappointed if they
dont see coverage. Cons: hard to do briefly in what is a long
article anyway; hard to avoid charges of partisanship (either way) unless the
discussion is long.
Come on, cowards: the Internet has plenty of space. Go ahead and take all the
time you need to explain how modern, complex life emerged
without ancestors by an evolutionary process. We have the time. Make our day. Give us the
whole tale. See if you can do better than the Master of Disaster, Charlie Marshall, did
One of the tricks they try to play is to say that the Cambrian explosion
was not that sudden a bang; it extended over 40-80 million years or more, if certain
trace fossils from the Precambrian are tossed into the story. They
compare the Cambrian explosion with the rise of mammals which, according to their mythology, diversified into
all our modern forms in just 40 million years. First of all, it is really dumb to use
one myth as evidence for another. Its like saying that life must have
evolved on Europa because it must have evolved on Mars. Foul: double drivel.
Evolution is the issue, and claiming it happened fast twice at two different times
just begs the question.
More important, the appearance of each type is virtually instantaneous.
Trying to stretch the Cambrian explosion out, or link it earlier with the
Ediacaran fauna presumably earlier (see 12/02/2002
and 08/19/2004) is not going to help. The
fact remains that each complex creature, whether trilobite, crustacean, echinoderm,
worm, or vertebrate fish (08/21/2002), shows up
suddenly, fully formed, at first appearance in the record. They dont
see incipient trilobites becoming half-trilobites then full trilobites over a
period of ten million years, such that they could make a claim that Darwinian
evolution was working on steroids for awhile. No; the first trilobites and
crustaceans just show up no ancestors at all. Whatever the Ediacaran
organisms were, they were not on the way to becoming trilobites; they were a
distinct kind of organism that also appeared abruptly and went extinct.
(Speaking of trilobites, remember that the record is the reverse of
evolutionary expectations: see 07/28/2007).
However they may wish to draw out the process, the Cambrian explosion was really
a set of multiple independent explosions at roughly the same time. The ones
they think showed up millions of years later, like this eucrustacean, keep turning
up earlier and earlier. All the basic animal types (phyla) and body
plans show up on the lowest layers. Evolution is falsified by the only
tangible record of the past.
Because of the awareness of the Cambrian Explosion most readers
have, we would expect to see some acknowledgement of it by the paleontologists
who report their Cambrian discoveries. Instead, we still get worthless
evolutionary promissory notes, like this new fossil will shed light on the
origin and ancestry of arthropods when there is no collateral.
Stop accepting trust deeds from the Darwinian loan sharks. Their deeds
are not worthy of anyones trust.
For more entries on the Cambrian explosion, see
09/04/2007 on genetic mechanisms,
04/03/2007 on comb jellies,
01/16/2007 on alleged Precambrian embryos,
08/10/2006 on Cambrian embryos,
07/13/2006 on mollusks,
06/18/2006 on alleged Cambrian explosion precursors, and
04/23/2006 on Cambrian Explosion Damage Control,
02/14/2006 on hand-waving solutions offered
by the Darwinians. The last entry contains links to earlier entries about
Cambrian vertebrates, long thought to be not represented that early; see especially
01/30/2003 about 500 fossil fish found in the
early Cambrian. You might recall from
07/25/2003 that many high school biology textbooks gloss
over this little problem for Darwin, if they mention it at all.
Next headline on:
What can happen in 460 million years? A lot, according to the standard
In this diagram of geological and biological evolution, accepted by nearly all geologists,
all the continents came together 260 million years ago, broke up 200 million years ago,
and broke into our familiar continents 100 million years ago (mya). In the geological time chart,
it only took 40 million years for most of our modern mammals and birds to evolve, and
seven million for apes to appear and turn into philosophers.
The Earth has been a dynamic place for eons, they say.
Would delicate features of land and animal remains,
estimated at nearly 500 million years old, be expected to survive global rearrangements,
including planetary extinction
episodes at 65 million and 251 million years ago? If we can believe the
geologists, they did. Consider three exceptional cases of preservation reported
this month in Geology, the journal of the Geological Society of America.
The authors of the last two articles mentioned other places in the world where similar
lagerstatten are known. Somehow, according to their thinking, these locales
enjoyed peace and quiet for hundreds of millions of years while the rest of the world
took a wild ride of bumping continents, glaciations, extinctions from meteor impacts
and many other global catastrophes.
- Pristine plateau (Jurassic, 150 mya): Jolivet et al examined
the Mongolian summits, An uplifted, flat, old but still preserved erosion surface
and described it in Geology.1 They dated the large peneplain,
uplifted 4000 m, as having formed in Jurassic times yet no erosion was evident
till recently. Their preservation for ~150 m.y. implies that no further
tectonic movements occurred before the onset of the last deformation episode, 5 +- 3 m.y.
ago, they claimed. It also suggests that very low erosion rates
were maintained by a dry climate over millions of years. For that story to be
credible, this one spot escaped continental movements, ice ages, tropical periods and floods for all
the time since the age of dinosaurs. The rest of the world may have been rockin
and rollin but This [preservation] was mainly achieved by the combination of
a generally dry climate and a protracted period of tectonic quiescence that lasted at least 150 m.y.
- Canadian soft-bodied fossils (Silurian, 425 mya): A team from the
Royal University of Ontario reported exceptionally preserved soft-bodied biotas
of Silurian age in the same issue of Geology.2 An example
of lagerstatten, or
sedimentary deposits that exhibit extraordinary fossil richness or completeness
(see ICR article by Bill Hoesch, Aug 2007),
these deposits provide some of the best examples of intact Silurian biota ever found.
They described three sites on the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario, Canada. Here,
Soft tissues are preserved as calcium phosphate and carbon films, the latter
possibly stabilized by early diagenetic sulfurization, they reported.
It is significant that the biotas also include a decalcified, autochthonous shelly
marine fauna, and trace fossils. The deposits contained taxonomically and
taphonomically diverse biotas including articulated conodont skeletons and heterostracan fish,
annelids and arthropods with soft body parts, and a diverse marine flora.
Soft tissues normally disarticulate and decay, but these three sites were so fine,
they even contained the intact eyes of conodont snails.
- Manitoba jellyfish (Ordovician, 460 mya): In the same issue of
Geology,3 paleontologists from the Manitoba Museum described
exceptionally preserved soft-bodied fossils, including eurypterids, xiphosurids, and
large problematic tubes. One of the sites included the best fossilized
jellyfish ever seen. Ordovician soft-bodied fossils are remarkably rare globally, the authors
said, and one would see why: jellyfish normally decay quickly on shorelines such as
this one. Fossils and rocks at both sites indicate rapid burial under anoxic
and/or hypersaline conditions, they concluded.
1. Jolivet et al, Mongolian summits: An uplifted, flat, old but still preserved erosion surface,
Volume 35, Issue 10 (October 2007), pp. 871–874.
2. von Bitter, Purnell, Tetrault and Stott, Eramosa LagerstätteExceptionally
preserved soft-bodied biotas with shallow-marine shelly and bioturbating organisms
(Silurian, Ontario, Canada),
Volume 35, Issue 10 (October 2007), pp. 879–882.
3. Young et al, Exceptionally preserved Late Ordovician biotas from Manitoba, Canada,
Volume 35, Issue 10 (October 2007), pp. 883–886.
Try to think independently and critically.
If you found these things, without the brainwashing
of years of school telling you about millions and millions of years, what would you
conclude? The chart on Wikipedia
is colorful, detailed and authoritative-sounding. Do you sense a disconnect
from reality? Let the evidence speak afresh, uncluttered by human schemes
devised by 18th and 19th century storytellers.
Geologists call for a time out from blind dates, from
Geology has already undergone
substantial revolutions. The geology of the 18th century (neptunism, volcanism)
was unrecognizable to the 19th century, and 20th century geology was metamorphosed
from its predecessors beyond recognition. Almost everything believed about the
Earth in 1901 is now discredited. Another revolution would be merely traditional.
What if we wiped our minds clear of the
cobwebs of Lyell and Darwin, and just looked at what we find without predispositions
of gradualism over eons? Would preserved soft parts from snail eyes, jellyfish
and dinosaur blood vessels (06/03/2005)
lead you toward a theory resembling anything like the accepted geological column?
Its hard to think outside the box. Geologists would surely balk at
trashing their chart and starting over. Why, what a waste to discard all that
work! Sorry, this is science; it is supposed to be an open-ended search for
the truth whichever way the evidence leads. There are no sacred cows in science.
Next headline on:
One Special Universe: Take It or Leave It 10/02/2007
If you think this universe is odd, to what would you compare it? Adrian Cho
asked this and other basic questions in a whimsical review of cosmology since WMAP
in Science.1 Closer analysis of the Cosmic Microwave Background
(CMB), as revealed in detail by WMAP
03/20/2006), has uncovered features so surprising
(e.g., 08/29/2007), some
cosmologists are entertaining an idea that would seemed heretical a decade ago: i.e.,
the Copernican Principle might be wrong (cf. 06/30/2006).
Investigators looking for harmonics in the CMB seem to have found
surprising alignments. The quadrupole, octupole and other harmonics appear to
have axes that line up with each other. Furthermore, they are in the plane
of our solar system. Even more bizarre, they are aligned with the line of
equinoxes. Whats going on here? Is this a clue that we occupy a
special position in the universe? Some cosmologists, uncomfortable with such notions
which the Copernican Principle was supposed to dismiss, have called this alignment
the axis of evil.
But the map led to some mysteries, too. Within 6 months, one team had
found a curious alignment of certain undulations in the CMB. Others
soon found more correlations that suggested that the cosmos might be skewered
like a meatball on a toothpick by an axis of evil. That
axis might show that the universe has a strange shape or is rotating.
It could trash cosmologists cherished assumption that the universe has
no center and no special directions, the so-called cosmological principle
that traces its origins to Copernicus. Or it could be a meaningless
fluke. Everyone agrees its there, says Kate Land,
a cosmologist at the University of Oxford in the U.K. But is it
Maybe there is a foreground effect in the local neighborhood influencing
the CMB. Even if true, however, it would not do away with the conclusion
that there is some pretty weird physics going on around us. We cant get outside
our universe to compare it to any others, obviously. We have only one
universe, and in some ways perhaps it just is as it is.
Theres the rub: With only one universe to measure, it may be
impossible to tell.
1. Adrian Cho, A Singular Conundrum: How Odd Is Our Universe?,
28 September 2007: Vol. 317. no. 5846, pp. 1848-1850, DOI: 10.1126/science.317.5846.1848.
Chos discussion assumes inflation, dark
matter, dark energy and multiverses, so his statements need to be understood in
that context. Still, even within that worldview, things are not going the
way the materialists wanted. It was hard enough on them to find out the universe
is not eternal and had a beginning. Now, they must entertain the possibility
that we occupy a privileged position after all.
When Myth Turns Genocidal, Whos to Blame? 10/02/2007
The only escape from the
design inference is to keep repeating the joke that things are as they are because
they were as they were. If your debate partner does that, keep the joke going.
Ask the next logical question, Why were they as they were? If he
replies that its turtles all the way down, you win.
Next headline on:
Aryan mythology was the subject of a book review by Michael Witzel (Harvard linguist)
in Science last week.1 He was reviewing Stefan Arvidssons
book Aryan Idols about the mischief done in the quasi-scientific, quasi-historical
investigation of the alleged noble race behind the primitive Indo-European language.
of Nazi Germany can be traced to 19th-century myths about a purebred race of noble people
who settled the German fatherland in an idyllic past: Concurrently, during this
period of European dominance, Darwinism and race science emerged and
a new myth took form: a European or even Nordic Aryan race of noble warriors had conquered
western and southern Eurasia. The myths were confused with science:
Race studies and eugenics emerged as sciences in many countries.
So far, this sounds in agreement with Richard Weikarts treatise
From Darwin to Hitler (02/03/2005,
04/07/2005). Witzel agrees that the co-option of unknowable
mythologies for political ends in the name of Darwinian progress had disastrous
consequences, resulting in the Nazi attempts to exterminate those labeled non-Aryan.
Even after World War II, Witzel notes, Aryan fantasies continued with other players.
It seems strange, therefore, that at the end of this book review,
Witzel turned his guns on a mix of strange bedfellows, some of whom had nothing to do with Aryan
myths and were staunch opponents of Nazism, the creationists:
We also need the engagement of scholars willing to take public stands--whether
in the battles over creationism or in the recent attempts by Hindu nationalists and
fundamentalists (in both India and California) to rewrite Indian history in a mythological
fashion, he stated. Aryan fantasies have indicated the inherent dangers
most clearly, and here lies one of the enduring merits of Arvidssons book: it
indicates how we can actually learn from history.
1. Michael Witzel, History of Science: Myths and Consequences,
8 September 2007: Vol. 317. no. 5846, pp. 1868-1869, DOI: 10.1126/science.1141619.
If anybody can explain how Witzel got here from
there, please explain. In short, he said, Hitler was bad, so fight the
creationists. Good grief, Hitler was a social Darwinist, not a creationist!
Creationists like those at ICR or AIG have absolutely nothing to do with Aryan myths,
nor are they in any way mixed up with nationalist groups in India or native-American
groups in California trying to rewrite history according to their racist, ethnic myths.
New Atomizer Mimics Bombardier Beetle 10/02/2007
Creationists hate Nazi ideology.
They go out of their way to denounce racism. They believe we are all one blood,
all descendents of the same original human family, and all equally accountable to our Creator. They
love and promote science. They love all people, and want to win them to Christ. How on
Earth can Witzel lump them with Aryan nationalists as dangerous? How can he apply the
cussword fundamentalists to respectable believers in the Bible who wish
to end the bloodthirsty nationalism, share the good news of Jesus, build churches
and medical centers and bring education and science to poor people, and simultaneously apply the label to
machinegun-toting Hindus who burn churches and kill Christians in India? These could
not be more polar opposites.
This is the kind of outrageous characterization
that the editors of Science publish with impunity, never providing space for rebuttal.
Remembering that certain self-righteous scholars of another era attributed the works of Jesus to the devil,
the only one who has not learned from history here is this misguided prof from Hahvahd.
Maybe he would rather live in one of the idyllic scientific utopias inspired by Father Charlie
Next headline on:
Politics and Ethics
Theres a new technology coming to market, thanks to a little bug.
The bombardier beetle has long been used by creationists as a creature with a weapon
against evolutionary theory. Its tightly-integrated combustion
apparatus would be useless or dangerous to the beetle unless all the parts worked
together from the start. This, creationists argue, is evidence against
gradual evolution (e.g., AIG).
Now, a creation physicist has imitated the beetles controlled explosions.
Andy McIntosh, Professor of Thermodynamics and Combustion Theory at Leeds University (UK),
has developed new technology
based on the bombardier beetle which has the potential to become the platform
for the next generation of more effective and eco-friendly mist carrier systems.
(For more on Dr. McIntosh, see 11/27/2006
The press release from
and Physical Sciences Research Council, explains the significance of this advance:
The [Micro]MistTM spray technology enables droplet size, temperature and velocity to be closely
controlled, allowing advancements in a variety of areas where the properties of the
mist are critical. Such applications include fuel injection, medical drug delivery
systems, fire extinguishers and fire suppression, all of which face major challenges
relating to the demands of greater performance and reduced environmental impact....
The invention is only 2 cm long. It uses heat and flash evaporation
technique to propel a variety of liquids over distances of up to 4m or produce a
mist with droplets as small a 2 microns. McIntosh has been studying
the beetles mechanism for years (12/08/2003).
Prof McIntosh likens the beetles defence mechanism to a pressure cooker controlled
by a complicated system of valves: Essentially its a high-force steam
cavitation explosion. Using a chamber less than one millimetre long, this
amazing creature has the ability to change the rapidity of what comes out, its
direction and its consistency.
Nobody had studied the beetle from a physics and engineering
perspective as we did and we didnt appreciate how much we would learn from it.
Swedish Biomimetics 3000 Ltd has signed a worldwide exclusive licensing agreement for
development and commercialization of the technology, the press release states.
Potential applications include fire suppression, fuel injection and medical drug delivery.
Magazine in the UK also had a write-up on the new invention inspired by a bug.
Congratulations to Dr. McIntosh for great work
inspired by creation. This is in a long line of inventions by creationists,
including such little, inconsequential things like motors, generators, reflecting
telescopes, microscopes, the telegraph, refrigeration, vaccines, and peanut butter.
magazine had the audacity to say, McIntosh is a well-known creationist.
Acknowledging that hes created a cool beetle cannon is not an endorsement of
his belief structure. Talk like that to Faraday, you jerks. If
MicroMist is intelligently designed, on what basis could you claim the bombardier
beetles technology, which is even more wondrous than this (it can reproduce
itself, for one thing), was not intelligently designed?
Georgia Tech sets up biomimetics institute for Bioneers to capitalize on
natural technologies, from 10/29/2005.
While some UK scientists were sitting on their fluffy couches at Darwin Party storytelling
weaving myths and violating the laws of logic (09/30/2007),
this UK scientist was imitating nature to improve our lives.
Someday when life-saving drugs are given you by MicroMist machines,
or your car uses less-polluting, more efficient fuel injectors, or firefighters
save your house with these devices, thank a creationist.
More than that, thank a Creator who put technologies into living creatures that
can inspire and motivate us to explore, learn, and apply our intelligence for good.
Incidentally, the bombardier beetle shows no gradual evolution in the
fossil record (see 09/23/2007). Like most
other animal technologies, it appears abruptly, fully formed, working superbly from its
Next headline on:
Bacteria and Plants Know Network Tech 10/01/2007
An article on Science Daily says,
plants have their own chat systems that they can use to warn each other.
Many herbal plants such as strawberry, clover, reed and ground elder naturally form networks.
Individual plants remain connected with each other for a certain period of time by means
of runners. These connections enable the plants to share information with each
other via internal channels.
So what do they have to chat about? Danger. Their early warning system
enables them when hazards lurk about: Once warned, the intact plants strengthen their
chemical and mechanical resistance so that they are less attractive for advancing caterpillars,
Even smaller critters may have networks: in fact, possibly even a power grid.
Phillip Ball wrote for
Bacteria may be wiring up the soil. Yes, believe it or not,
Bacteria can sprout webs of electrical wiring that transform the soil into a
geological battery, a team of researchers claims. Some bacteria extrude
nanowires that shunt electrons produced during metabolic reactions.
A geochemist working
at the Venter Institute believes The earth beneath our feet might act as a gigantic
circuit built by microbes to power their metabolic systems. If so,
this new aspect of microbiology is a little too fantastic for some to
accept, but one admitted, If this idea is right, it is really quite remarkable.
You dont need to talk to your plants.
Theyre too busy text-messaging each other. Maybe human network engineers
could learn a little technology from our humbler lifeforms.
Comet Woes: News Reports Hide Backroom Exasperation 10/01/2007
Next headline on:
Comets are made of the most primitive stuff in the solar system, a press
release from University
of Michigan triumphantly claimed today. As hunks of rock and ice
that never coalesced into more planets, they give researchers clues to the
evolution of solar systems.
Tell that to Toby Owen and two colleagues who just published a paper
in Icarus.1 They measured the nitrogen to
carbon ratio from several real comets and found it 300 times smaller than expected, if
the comets had formed in the primitive outer reaches of the solar system. Having
established the deficit experimentally, they tried to explain it,
saying, we have to guess what
was the N2/CO ratio where the ice grains which agglomerated to form
comet nuclei were formed, either at the outskirts of the solar nebula or in the
dense interstellar cloud which collapsed to form the nebula, assuming that their
composition was not changed (italics theirs). That, of course,
was the assumption in the U Michigan press release.
Where has the nitrogen disappeared?
They looked again at the expected ratio, and compared it with their
actual measurements. They looked at various ways of bringing the numbers
in line. Way off still. At this point we raise our hands,
they said a statement of exasperation rare for a dignified scientific paper.
In conclusion, we do not know what has happened to the missing nitrogen
(italics theirs). Earlier, they said they had accepted the usual assumptions
about comet formation (see footnote also for historical reference to Halleys
speculation about Noahs flood).2
Meanwhile, the U Michigan press release paraded on, assuring the readers that
each piece of data was coming together into a complete understanding of not only comets
but entire solar systems. As for what these observations say about the origins
of the solar system, scientists dont know just yet, the article
admitted, but then quoted a confident researcher, The composition of comets
tells us about conditions approximately 4.5 billion years ago when the solar
system was formed.
1. A. Bar-Nun, G. Notesco and T. Owen, Trapping of N2,
CO and Ar in amorphous iceApplication to comets,
Volume 190, Issue 2, October 2007, Pages 655-659, doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2007.03.021.
2. In previous papers, we have supported the idea
that icy planetesimals (aka comets) could have brought heavy noble gases and other
volatiles to the inner planets ([Owen and Bar-Nun, 1995], [Owen and Bar-Nun, 1998]
and [Owen et al., 2000]). This concept can be traced back to Edmond Halley
(1724) who thought a collision with a comet could have produced Noahs flood.
More recently, the role of comets in bringing volatiles to the Earth has
been championed by Oró (1961), Sill and Wilkening (1978) and especially Delsemme
(2000, and references therein). Our approach to this venerable idea
has been to assume that the water ice in comets formed in the
amorphous state at temperatures below ~50 K and trapped ambient gases
in the process.
Dont you wish the science reporters would
just tell it like it is? Dont they think we can handle the truth?
Do they assume the public would freak out if they showed a little humility for
a change? (09/29/2007).
Next headline on:
Scientist of the Month
Click on Apollos, the trusty|
|Guide to Evolution
This is one of the best sites I have ever visited. Thanks.
I have passed it on to several others... I am a retired grandmother.
I have been studying the creation/evolution question for about 50 yrs....
Thanks for the info and enjoyable site.
(a retiree in Florida)
It is refreshing to know that there are valuable resources such as Creation-Evolution
Headlines that can keep us updated on the latest scientific news that affect our view of
the world, and more importantly to help us decipher through the rhetoric so carelessly
disseminated by evolutionary scientists. I find it Intellectually Satisfying
to know that I dont have to park my brain at the door to be a believer
or at the very least, to not believe in Macroevolution.
(a loan specialist in California)
I have greatly benefitted from your efforts. I very much look forward
to your latest posts.
(an attorney in California)
I must say your website provides an invaluable arsenal in this war for souls
that is being fought. Your commentaries move me to laughter or sadness.
I have been viewing your information for about 6 months and find it one of the best
on the web. It is certainly effective against the nonsense published on
Talkorigins.org. It great to see work that glorifies God and His creation.
(a commercial manager in Australia)
Visiting daily your site and really do love it.
(a retiree from Finland who studied math and computer science)
I am agnostic but I can never deny that organic life (except human) is doing a wonderful
job at functioning at optimum capacity. Thank you for this ... site!
(an evolutionary theorist from Australia)
During the year I have looked at your site, I have gone through your archives and
found them to be very helpful and informative. I am so impressed that I forward link
to members of my congregation who I believe are interested in a higher level discussion
of creationist issues than they will find at [a leading origins website].
(a minister in Virginia)
I attended a public school in KS where evolution was taught. I have
rejected evolution but have not always known the answers to some of the
questions.... A friend told me about your site
and I like it, I have it on my favorites, and I check it every day.
(an auto technician in Missouri)
Thanks for a great site! It has brilliant insights into the world of
science and of the evolutionary dogma. One of the best sites I know of on
(a programmer in Iceland)
The site you run creation-evolution headlines is
extremely useful to me. I get so tired of what passes
for science Darwinism in particular and I find your
site a refreshing antidote to the usual junk.... it is clear that your thinking and logic
and willingness to look at the evidence for what the
evidence says is much greater than what I read in what
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Please keep up the good work. I appreciate what you
are doing more than I can communicate in this e-mail.
(a teacher in California)
Although we are often in disagreement, I have the greatest respect and admiration for your writing.
(an octogenarian agnostic in Palm Springs)
your website is absolutely superb and unique. No other site out
there provides an informed & insightful running critique of the current
goings-on in the scientific establishment. Thanks for keeping us informed.
(a mechanical designer in Indiana)
I have been a fan of your site for some time now. I enjoy reading the No Spin of what
is being discussed.... keep up the good work, the world needs to be shown just how little the scientist
[sic] do know in regards to origins.
(a network engineer in South Carolina)
I am a young man and it is encouraging to find a scientific journal on the side of creationism and intelligent design....
Thank you for your very encouraging website.
(a web designer and author in Maryland)
GREAT site. Your ability to expose the clothesless emperor in clear language is indispensable to
us non-science types who have a hard time seeing through the jargon and the hype. Your tireless efforts
result in encouragement and are a great service to the faith community. Please keep it up!
(a medical writer in Connecticut)
I really love your site and check it everyday. I also recommend it to everyone I can, because there is
no better website for current information about ID.
(a product designer in Utah)
Your site is a fantastic resource. By far, it is the most current, relevant and most frequently
updated site keeping track of science news from a creationist perspective. One by one, articles
challenging currently-held aspects of evolution do not amount to much. But when browsing the archives,
its apparent youve caught bucketfulls of science articles and news items that devastate
evolution. The links and references are wonderful tools for storming the gates of evolutionary paradise
and ripping down their strongholds. The commentary is the icing on the cake. Thanks for all your
hard work, and by all means, keep it up!
(a business student in Kentucky)
Thanks for your awesome work; it stimulates my mind and encourages my faith.
(a family physician in Texas)
I wanted to personally thank you for your outstanding website. I am intensely interested in any
science news having to do with creation, especially regarding astronomy. Thanks again for your GREAT
(an amateur astronomer in San Diego)
What an absolutely brilliant website you have. Its hard to express how uplifting it is for me
to stumble across something of such high quality.
(a pharmacologist in Michigan)
I want to make a brief commendation in passing of the outstanding job you did in rebutting the
thinking on the article: Evolution of Electrical Engineering
... What a rebuttal to end all rebuttals, unanswerable,
inspiring, and so noteworthy that was. Thanks for the effort and research you put into it.
I wish this answer could be posted in every church, synagogue, secondary school, and college/university...,
and needless to say scientific laboratories.
(a reader in Florida)
You provide a great service with your thorough coverage of news stories relating to the creation-evolution controversy.
(an elder of a Christian church in Salt Lake City)
I really enjoy your website and have made it my home page so I can check on your latest articles.
I am amazed at the diversity of topics you address. I tell everyone I can about your site and encourage them to
check it frequently.
(a business owner in Salt Lake City)
Ive been a regular reader of CEH for about nine month now, and I look forward to each new posting.... I enjoy the information CEH gleans from current events in science and hope you keep the service going.
(a mechanical engineer in Utah)
It took six years of constant study of evolution to overcome the indoctrination found in public schools of my youth. I now rely on your site; it helps me to see the work of God where I could not see it before and to find miracles where there was only mystery. Your site is a daily devotional that I go to once a day and recommend to everyone. I am still susceptible to the wiles of fake science and I need the fellowship of your site; such information is rarely found in a church.
Now my eyes see the stars God made and the life He designed and I feel the rumblings of joy as promised. When I feel down or worried my solution is to praise God the Creator Of All That Is, and my concerns drain away while peace and joy fill the void. This is something I could not do when I did not know (know: a clear and accurate perception of truth) God as Creator. I could go on and on about the difference knowing our Creator has made, but I believe you understand.
I tell everyone that gives me an opening about your site. God is working through you. Please dont stop telling us how to see the lies or leading us in celebrating the truth. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
(a renowned artist in Wyoming)
I discovered your site a few months ago and it has become essential reading via RSS to
(a cartographer and GIS analyst in New Zealand)
I love your site, and frequently visit to read both explanations of news reports,
and your humor about Bonny Saint Charlie.
(a nuclear safety engineer in Washington)
Your site is wonderful.
(a senior staff scientist, retired, from Arizona)
Ive told many people about your site. Its a tremendous service to
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(a meteorology research scientist in Alabama)
...let me thank you for your Creation-Evolution Headlines. Ive been an avid reader of it since I first discovered your website about five years ago. May I also express my admiration for the speed with which your articles appearoften within 24 hours of a particular news announcement or journal article being published.
(a plant physiologist and prominent creation writer in Australia)
How do you guys do it--reviewing so much relevant material every day and writing incisive,
(a retired high school biology teacher in New Jersey)
Your site is one of the best out there! I really love reading your articles on creation evolution
headlines and visit this section almost daily.
(a webmaster in the Netherlands)
Keep it up! Ive been hitting your site daily (or more...).
I sure hope you get a mountain of encouraging email, you deserve it.
(a small business owner in Oregon)
Great work! May your tribe increase!!!
(a former Marxist, now ID speaker in Brazil)
You are the best. Thank you....
The work you do is very important.
Please dont ever give up. God bless the whole team.
(an engineer and computer consultant in Virginia)
I really appreciate your work in this topic, so you should never stop doing what you do,
cause you have a lot of readers out there, even in small countries in Europe, like Slovenia
is... I use crev.info for all my signatures on Internet forums etc., it really is fantastic site,
the best site! You see, we(your pleased readers) exist all over the world, so you must be
doing great work! Well i hope you have understand my bad english.
(a biology student in Slovenia)
Thanks for your time, effort, expertise, and humor. As a public school biology teacher I
peruse your site constantly for new information that will challenge evolutionary belief and share much
of what I learn with my students. Your site is pounding a huge dent in evolutions supposed
solid exterior. Keep it up.
(a biology teacher in the eastern USA)
Several years ago, I became aware of your Creation-Evolution Headlines web site.
For several years now, it has been one of my favorite internet sites. I many times check your
website first, before going on to check the secular news and other creation web sites.
I continue to be impressed with your writing and research skills, your humor,
and your technical and scientific knowledge and understanding. Your ability to cut through
the inconsequentials and zero in on the principle issues is one of the characteristics that
is a valuable asset....
I commend you for the completeness and thoroughness with which you provide
coverage of the issues. You obviously spend a great deal of time on this work.
It is apparent in ever so many ways.
Also, your background topics of logic and propaganda techniques have been useful
as classroom aides, helping others to learn to use their baloney detectors.
Through the years, I have directed many to your site. For their sake and mine,
I hope you will be able to continue providing this very important, very much needed, educational,
humorous, thought provoking work.
(an engineer in Missouri)
I am so glad I found your site. I love reading short blurbs about recent discoveries, etc,
and your commentary often highlights that the discovery can be interpreted in two differing ways,
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even know about the story yet.
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You are indeed the Rush Limbaugh Truth Detector of science falsely so-called.
Keep up the excellent work.
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many of the concepts not in my area (particle physics) and which I hear about in school or in the media.
Also, I just love the commentaries and the baloney detecting!!
(a grad student in particle physics)
I thank you for your ministry. May God bless you! You are doing great job effectively
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Creationsafaris stands unique thanks to qualitative survey and analysis of scientific publications and news.
I became permanent reader ever since discovered your site half a year ago. Moreover your ministry is
effective tool for intensive and deep education for cristians.
(a webmaster in Ukraine, seeking permission to translate CEH articles into Russian to reach
countries across the former Soviet Union)
The scholarship of the editors is unquestionable. The objectivity of the editors is
admirable in face of all the unfounded claims of evolutionists and Darwinists. The amount
of new data available each day on the site is phenomenal (I cant wait to see the next new
article each time I log on). Most importantly, the TRUTH is always and forever the primary
goal of the people who run this website. Thank you so very much for 6 years of consistent
dedication to the TRUTH.
(11 months earlier): I just completed reading each entry from each month. I found your site about
6 months ago and as soon as I understood the format, I just started at the very first entry
and started reading.... Your work has blessed my education and determination to bold in
showing the unscientific nature of evolution in general and Darwinism in particular.
(a medical doctor in Oklahoma)
Thanks for the showing courage in marching against a popular unproven unscientific belief system.
I dont think I missed 1 article in the past couple of years.
(a manufacturing engineer in Australia)
I do not know and cannot imagine how much time you must spend to read, research and
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I thank you for it.
(a practice administrator in Maryland)
Since finding your insightful comments some 18 or more months ago, Ive
visited your site daily.... You
so very adeptly and adroitly undress the emperor daily; so much so one
wonders if he might not soon catch cold and fall ill off his throne! ....
To you I wish much continued success and many more years of fun and
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unending story spinning by ideologically biased scientists.
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(an engineer in Texas)
I love your site. Found it about maybe
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green. You have a real knack for exposing the toothless claims of the
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(a missionary in Japan)
I just thought Id write and
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(a computer programmer in Tulsa)
Just wanted to thank you for your creation/evolution news ... an outstanding educational
(director of a consulting company in Australia)
Your insights ... been some of the most helpful not surprising considering the caliber of
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(a biologist and science writer in southern California)
I first learned of your web site on March 29.... Your site has far exceeded my expectations and is
consulted daily for the latest. I join with other readers in praising your time and energy spent to educate,
illuminate, expose errors.... The links are a great help in understanding the news items.
The archival structure is marvelous.... Your site brings back dignity to Science conducted as it
should be. Best regards for your continuing work and influence. Lives are being changed and
sustained every day.
(a manufacturing quality engineer in Mississippi)
I wrote you over three years ago letting you know how much I enjoyed your Creation-Evolution headlines,
as well as your Creation Safaris site. I stated then that I read your headlines and commentary every day,
and that is still true! My interest in many sites has come and gone over the years, but your site is
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very much appreciated.
(a hike leader and nature-lover in Ontario, Canada)
...just wanted to say how much I admire your site and your writing.
Youre very insightful and have quite a broad range of knowledge.
Anyway, just wanted to say that I am a big fan!
(a PhD biochemist at a major university)
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The stories you highlight show the irrelevancy
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mouth disease; doing a great job of discrediting themselves. Keep up
the good work.
(a database administrator and CEH junkie in California)
I cant tell you how much I enjoy your article reviews on your
websiteits a HUGE asset!
(a lawyer in Washington)
Really, really, really a fantastic site. Your wit makes a razor appear dull!...
A million thanks for your site.
(a small business owner in Oregon and father of children who love your site too.)
Thank God for ... Creation
Evolution Headlines. This site is right at the cutting edge in the debate
over bio-origins and is crucial in working to undermine the
deceived mindset of naturalism. The arguments presented are unassailable
(all articles having first been thoroughly baloney detected) and the
narrative always lands just on the right side of the laymans comprehension
limits... Very highly recommended to all, especially, of course, to those who
have never thought to question the fact of evolution.
(a business owner in Somerset, UK)
I continue to note the difference between the dismal derogations of the
darwinite devotees, opposed to the openness and humor of rigorous, follow-the-evidence
scientists on the Truth side. Keep up the great work.
(a math/science teacher with M.A. in anthropology)
Your material is clearly among the best I have ever read on evolution problems!
I hope a book is in the works!
(a biology prof in Ohio)
I have enjoyed reading the sardonic apologetics on the Creation/Evolution Headlines section
of your web site. Keep up the good work!
(an IT business owner in California)
Your commentaries ... are always delightful.
(president of a Canadian creation group)
Im pleased to see... your amazing work on the Headlines.
(secretary of a creation society in the UK)
We appreciate all you do at crev.info.
(a publisher of creation and ID materials)
I was grateful for creationsafaris.com for help with baloney detecting. I had read about
the fish-o-pod and wanted to see what you thought. Your comments were helpful and encouraged me
that my own baloney detecting skill are improving. I also enjoyed reading your reaction
to the article on evolution teachers doing battle with students.... I will ask my girls to read your
comments on the proper way to question their teachers.
(a home-schooling mom)
I just want to express how dissapointed [sic] I am in your website. Instead of being objective, the
website is entirely one sided, favoring creationism over evolution, as if the two are contradictory....
Did man and simien [sic] evovlve [sic] at random from a common ancestor? Or did God guide this evolution?
I dont know. But all things, including the laws of nature, originate from God....
To deny evolution is to deny Gods creation. To embrace evolution is to not only embrace his creation,
but to better appreciate it.
(a student in Saginaw, Michigan)
I immensely enjoy reading the Creation-Evolution Headlines. The way you use words
exposes the bankruptcy of the evolutionary worldview.
(a student at Northern Michigan U)
...standing O for crev.info.
(a database programmer in California)
Just wanted to say that I am thrilled to have found your website! Although I
regularly visit numerous creation/evolution sites, Ive found that many of them do
not stay current with relative information. I love the almost daily updates to
your headlines section. Ive since made it my browser home page, and have
recommended it to several of my friends. Absolutely great site!
(a network engineer in Florida)
After I heard about Creation-Evolution Headlines,
it soon became my favorite Evolution resource site on the web. I visit several times a
day cause I cant wait for the next update. Thats pathetic, I know ...
but not nearly as pathetic as Evolution, something you make completely obvious with your snappy,
intelligent commentary on scientific current events. It should be a textbook for science
classrooms around the country. You rock!
(an editor in Tennessee)
One of the highlights of my day is checking your latest CreationSafaris creation-evolution news listing!
Thanks so much for your great work -- and your wonderful humor.
(a pastor in Virginia)
Thanks!!! Your material is absolutely awesome. Ill be using it in our Adult Sunday School class.
(a pastor in Wisconsin)
Love your site & read it daily.
(a family physician in Texas)
I set it [crev.info] up as my homepage. That way I am less likely to miss some really interesting events....
I really appreciate what you are doing with Creation-Evolution Headlines. I
tell everybody I think might be interested, to check it out.
(a systems analyst in Tennessee)
I would like to thank you for your service from which I stand to benefit a lot.
(a Swiss astrophysicist)
I enjoy very much reading your materials.
(a law professor in Portugal)
Thanks for your time and thanks for all the work on the site.
It has been a valuable resource for me.
(a medical student in Kansas)
Creation-Evolution Headlines is a terrific resource. The articles are
always current and the commentary is right on the mark.
(a molecular biologist in Illinois)
Creation-Evolution Headlines is my favorite
anti-evolution website. With almost giddy anticipation, I check
it several times a week for the latest postings. May God bless you and
empower you to keep up this FANTASTIC work!
(a financial analyst in New York)
I read your pages on a daily basis and I would like to let you know
that your hard work has been a great help in increasing my knowledge
and growing in my faith. Besides the huge variety of scientific
disciplines covered, I also enormously enjoy your great sense of humor
and your creativity in wording your thoughts, which make reading your
website even more enjoyable.
(a software developer in Illinois)
THANK YOU for all the work you do to make this wonderful resource! After
being regular readers for a long time, this year weve incorporated your
site into our home education for our four teenagers. The Baloney Detector
is part of their Logic and Reasoning Skills course, and the Daily Headlines
and Scientists of the Month features are a big part of our curriculum for an
elective called Science Discovery Past and Present. What a wonderful
goldmine for equipping future leaders and researchers with the tools of
(a home school teacher in California)
What can I say I LOVE YOU!
I READ YOU ALMOST EVERY DAY I copy and send out to various folks.
I love your sense of humor, including your politics and of course your faith.
I appreciate and use your knowledge What can I say THANK YOU
THANK YOU THANK YOU SO MUCH.
(a biology major, former evolutionist, now father of college students)
I came across your site while browsing through creation & science links. I love the work you do!
(an attorney in Florida)
Love your commentary and up to date reporting. Best site for evolution/design info.
(a graphic designer in Oregon)
I am an ardent reader of your site. I applaud your efforts and pass on
your website to all I talk to. I have recently given your web site info
to all my grandchildren to have them present it to their science
teachers.... Your Supporter and fan..God bless you all...
(a health services manager in Florida)
Why your readership keeps doubling: I came across your website at a time when I was just getting to know what creation science is all about. A friend of mine was telling me about what he had been finding out. I was highly skeptical and sought to read as many pro/con articles as I could find and vowed to be open-minded toward his seemingly crazy claims. At first I had no idea of the magnitude of research and information thats been going on. Now, Im simply overwhelmed by the sophistication and availability of scientific research and information on what I now know to be the truth about creation.
Your website was one of dozens that I found in my search. Now, there are only a handful of sites I check every day. Yours is at the top of my list... I find your news page to be the most insightful and well-written of the creation news blogs out there. The quick wit, baloney detector, in-depth scientific knowledge you bring to the table and the superb writing style on your site has kept me interested in the day-to-day happenings of what is clearly a growing movement. Your site ... has given me a place to point them toward to find out more and realize that theyve been missing a huge volume of information when it comes to the creation-evolution issue.
Another thing I really like about this site is the links to articles in science journals and news references. That helps me get a better picture of what youre talking about.... Keep it up and I promise to send as many people as will listen to this website and others.
(an Air Force Academy graduate stationed in New Mexico)
Im a small town newspaper editor in southwest Wyoming. Were pretty
isolated, and finding your site was a great as finding a gold mine. I read
it daily, and if theres nothing new, I re-read everything. I follow links.
I read the Scientist of the Month. Its the best site Ive run across. Our
local school board is all Darwinist and determined to remain that way.
(a newspaper editor in Wyoming)
have been reading your page for about 2 years or so....
I read it every day. I ...am well educated, with a BA in Applied Physics
from Harvard and an MBA in Finance from Wharton.
(a reader in Delaware)
I came across your website by accident about 4 months ago and look at it every day....
About 8 months ago I was reading a letter to the editor of the Seattle Times that was written
by a staunch anti-Creationist and it sparked my interest enough to research the
topic and within a week I was yelling, my whole lifes education has been a lie!!!
Ive put more study into Biblical Creation in the last 8 months than any other topic in my life.
Past that, through resources like your website...Ive been able to convince my father (professional mathematician and amateur geologist), my best friend (mechanical engineer and fellow USAF Academy Grad/Creation Science nutcase), my pastor (he was the hardest to crack), and many others to realize the Truth of Creation.... Resources like your website help the rest of us at the grassroots level drum up interest in the subject. And regardless of what the major media says: Creationism is spreading like wildfire, so please keep your website going to help fan the flames.
(an Air Force Academy graduate and officer)
I love your site! I **really** enjoy reading it for several specific reasons: 1.It uses the latest (as in this month!) research as a launch pad for opinion; for years I have searched for this from a creation science viewpoint, and now, Ive found it. 2. You have balanced fun with this topic. This is hugely valuable! Smug Christianity is ugly, and I dont perceive that attitude in your comments. 3. I enjoy the expansive breadth of scientific news that you cover. 4. I am not a trained scientist but I know evolutionary bologna/(boloney) when I see it; you help me to see it. I really appreciate this.
(a computer technology salesman in Virginia)
I love your site. Thats why I was more than happy to
mention it in the local paper.... I mentioned your site as the place
where..... Every Darwin-cheering news article is
reviewed on that site from an ID perspective. Then
the huge holes of the evolution theory are exposed,
and the bad science is shredded to bits, using real
(a project manager in New Jersey)
Ive been reading your site almost daily for about three years. I have
never been more convinced of the truthfulness of Scripture and the faithfulness of God.
(a system administrator and homeschooling father in Colorado)
I use the internet a lot to catch up on news back
home and also to read up on the creation-evolution controversy, one of my favourite topics.
Your site is always my first port of call for the latest news and views and I really appreciate
the work you put into keeping it up to date and all the helpful links you provide. You are a
beacon of light for anyone who wants to hear frank, honest conclusions instead of the usual diluted
garbage we are spoon-fed by the media.... Keep up the good work and know that youre changing lives.
(a teacher in Spain)
I am grateful to you for your site and look forward to reading new
stories.... I particularly value it for being up to date with what is going on.
(from the Isle of Wight, UK)
[Creation-Evolution Headlines] is the place to go for late-breaking
news [on origins]; it has the most information and the quickest turnaround.
Its incredible I dont know how you do it.
I cant believe all the articles you find. God bless you!
(a radio producer in Riverside, CA)
Just thought I let you know how much I enjoy
reading your Headlines section. I really appreciate
how you are keeping your ear to the ground in so
many different areas. It seems that there is almost
no scientific discipline that has been unaffected
by Darwins Folly.
(a programmer in aerospace from Gardena, CA)
I enjoy reading the comments on news articles on your site very much. It is incredible
how much refuse is being published in several scientific fields regarding evolution.
It is good to notice that the efforts of true scientists have an increasing influence at schools,
but also in the media.... May God bless your efforts and open the eyes of the blinded evolutionists
and the general public that are being deceived by pseudo-scientists.... I enjoy the site very much
and I highly respect the work you and the team are doing to spread the truth.
(an ebusiness manager in the Netherlands)
I discovered your site through a link at certain website...
It has greatly helped me being updated with the latest development in science and with
critical comments from you. I also love your baloney detector
and in fact have translated some part of the baloney detector into our language (Indonesian).
I plan to translate them all for my friends so as to empower them.
(a staff member of a bilateral agency in West Timor, Indonesia)
...absolutely brilliant and inspiring.
(a documentary film producer, remarking on the
I found your site several months ago and within weeks
had gone through your entire archives.... I check in several times a day for further
information and am always excited to read the new
articles. Your insight into the difference between
what is actually known versus what is reported has
given me the confidence to stand up for what I
believe. I always felt there was more to the story,
and your articles have given me the tools to read
through the hype....
You are an invaluable help and I commend your efforts.
Keep up the great work.
(a sound technician in Alberta)
I discovered your site (through a link from a blog) a few weeks ago and I cant stop reading it....
I also enjoy your insightful and humorous commentary at the end of each story. If the evolutionists
blindness wasnt so sad, I would laugh harder.
I have a masters degree in mechanical engineering from a leading University. When I read the descriptions, see the pictures, and watch the movies of the inner workings of the cell, Im absolutely amazed.... Thanks for bringing these amazing stories daily. Keep up the good work.
(an engineer in Virginia)
I stumbled across your site several months ago and have
been reading it practically daily. I enjoy the inter-links
to previous material as well as the links to the quoted
research. Ive been in head-to-head debate with a
materialist for over a year now. Evolution is just one of
those debates. Your site is among others that have been a
real help in expanding my understanding.
(a software engineer in Pennsylvania)
I was in the April 28, 2005 issue of Nature [see 04/27/2005
story] regarding the rise of intelligent design in the universities. It was through your website
that I began my journey out of the crisis of faith which was mentioned in that article. It was an honor to see you all highlighting the article in Nature. Thank you for all you have done!
(Salvador Cordova, George Mason University)
I shudder to think of the many ways in which you mislead readers, encouraging them to build a faith based on misunderstanding and ignorance. Why dont you allow people to have a faith that is grounded in a fuller understanding of the world?...
Your website is a sham.
(a co-author of the paper reviewed in the 12/03/2003
entry who did not appreciate the unflattering commentary. This led to a cordial
interchange, but he could not divorce his reasoning from the science vs. faith dichotomy,
and resulted in an impasse over definitions but, at least, a more mutually respectful dialogue.
He never did explain how his paper supported Darwinian macroevolution. He just claimed
evolution is a fact.)
I absolutely love creation-evolution news. As a Finnish university student very
interested in science, I frequent your site to find out about all the new science
stuff thats been happening you have such a knack for finding all this
information! I have been able to stump evolutionists with knowledge gleaned from
your site many times.
(a student in Finland)
I love your site and read it almost every day. I use it for my science class and
5th grade Sunday School class. I also challenge Middle Schoolers and High Schoolers to
get on the site to check out articles against the baloney they are taught in school.
(a teacher in Los Gatos, CA)
I have spent quite a few hours at Creation Evolution Headlines in the past week
or so going over every article in the archives. I thank you for such an informative
and enjoyable site. I will be visiting often and will share this link with others.
[Later] I am back to May 2004 in the archives. I figured I should be farther
back, but there is a ton of information to digest.
(a computer game designer in Colorado)
The IDEA Center also highly recommends visiting Creation-Evolution Headlines...
the most expansive and clearly written origins news website on the internet!
(endorsement on Intelligent Design and Evolution
Check out this site: www.creationsafaris.com.
This is a fantastic resource for the whole family.... a fantastic reference library with summaries,
commentaries and great links that are added to
dailyarchives go back five years.
(a reader who found us in Georgia)
I just wanted to drop you a note telling you that at www.BornAgainRadio.com,
Ive added a link to your excellent Creation-Evolution news site.
(a radio announcer)
I cannot understand
why anyone would invest so much time and effort to a website of sophistry and casuistry.
Why twist Christian apology into an illogic pretzel to placate your intellect?
Isnt it easier to admit that your faith has no basis -- hence, faith.
It would be extricate [sic] yourself from intellectual dishonesty -- and
from bearing false witness.
Sincerely, Rev. [name withheld] (an ex-Catholic, apostate Christian Natural/Scientific pantheist)
Just wanted to let you folks know that we are consistent readers and truly appreciate
the job you are doing. God bless you all this coming New Year.
(from two prominent creation researchers/writers in Oregon)
Thanks so much for your site! It is brain candy!
(a reader in North Carolina)
I Love your site probably a little too much. I enjoy the commentary
and the links to the original articles.
(a civil engineer in New York)
Ive had your Creation/Evolution Headlines site on my favourites list for
18 months now, and I can truthfully say that its one of the best on the Internet,
and I check in several times a week. The constant stream of new information on
such a variety of science issues should impress anyone, but the rigorous and
humourous way that every thought is taken captive is inspiring. Im pleased
that some Christians, and indeed, some webmasters, are devoting themselves to
producing real content that leaves the reader in a better state than when they found him.
(a community safety manager in England)
I really appreciate the effort that you are making to provide the public with
information about the problems with the General Theory of Evolution. It gives me
ammunition when I discuss evolution in my classroom. I am tired of the evolutionary
dogma. I wish that more people would stand up against such ridiculous beliefs.
(a science teacher in Alabama)
If you choose to hold an opinion that flies in the face of every piece of evidence
collected so far, you cannot be suprised [sic] when people dismiss your views.
(a former Christian software distributor, location not disclosed)
...the Creation Headlines is the best. Visiting your site...
is a standard part of my startup procedures every morning.
(a retired Air Force Chaplain)
I LOVE your site and respect the time and work you put into it. I read
the latest just about EVERY night before bed and send selection[s] out to others and
tell others about it. I thank you very much and keep up the good work (and
(a USF grad in biology)
Answering your invitation for thoughts on your site is not difficult because
of the excellent commentary I find. Because of the breadth and depth of erudition
apparent in the commentaries, I hope Im not being presumptuous in suspecting
the existence of contributions from a Truth Underground comprised of
dissident college faculty, teachers, scientists, and engineers. If thats
not the case, then it is surely a potential only waiting to be realized. Regardless,
I remain in awe of the care taken in decomposing the evolutionary cant that bombards
us from the specialist as well as popular press.
(a mathematician/physicist in Arizona)
Im from Quebec, Canada. I have studied in pure sciences and after in actuarial mathematics.
Im visiting this site 3-4 times in a week. Im learning a lot and this site gives me the opportunity to realize that this is a good time to be a creationist!
(a French Canadian reader)
I LOVE your Creation Safari site, and the Baloney Detector material.
(a reader in the Air Force)
You have a unique position in the Origins community.
Congratulations on the best current affairs news source on the origins net.
You may be able to write fast but your logic is fun to work through.
(a pediatrician in California)
Visit your site almost daily and find it very informative, educational and inspiring.
(a reader in western Canada)
I wish to thank you for the information you extend every day on your site.
It is truly a blessing!
(a reader in North Carolina)
I really appreciate your efforts in posting to this website. I find
it an incredibly useful way to keep up with recent research (I also check science
news daily) and also to research particular topics.
(an IT consultant from Brisbane, Australia)
I would just like to say very good job with the work done here,
very comprehensive. I check your site every day. Its great
to see real science directly on the front lines, toe to toe with the
pseudoscience that's mindlessly spewed from the prestigious
(a biology student in Illinois)
Ive been checking in for a long time but thought Id leave you a
note, this time. Your writing on these complex topics is insightful,
informative with just the right amount of humor. I appreciate the hard
work that goes into monitoring the research from so many sources and then
writing intelligently about them.
(an investment banker in California)
Keep up the great work. You are giving a whole army of Christians
plenty of ammunition to come out of the closet (everyone else has).
Most of us are not scientists, but most of the people we talk to are not
scientists either, just ordinary people who have been fed baloney
for years and years.
(a reader in Arizona)
Keep up the outstanding work!
You guys really ARE making a difference!
(a reader in Texas)
I wholeheartedly agree with you when you say that science is not
hostile towards religion. It is the dogmatically religious that are
unwaveringly hostile towards any kind of science which threatens their
dearly-held precepts. Science (real, open-minded science) is not
interested in theological navel-gazing.
Note: Please supply your name and location when writing in. Anonymous attacks
only make one look foolish and cowardly, and will not normally be printed.
This one was shown to display a bad example.
I appreciate reading your site every day. It is a great way to keep
up on not just the new research being done, but to also keep abreast of the
evolving debate about evolution (Pun intended).... I find it an incredibly useful
way to keep up with recent research (I also check science news daily) and also
to research particular topics.
(an IT consultant in Brisbane, Australia)
I love your website.
(a student at a state university who used CEH when
writing for the campus newsletter)
....when you claim great uncertainty for issues that are fairly
well resolved you damage your already questionable credibility.
Im sure your audience loves your ranting, but if you know as much
about biochemistry, geology, astronomy, and the other fields you
skewer, as you do about ornithology, you are spreading heat, not
(a professor of ornithology at a state university, responding to
the 09/10/2002 headline)
I wanted to let you know I appreciate your headline news style of
exposing the follies of evolutionism.... Your style gives us constant,
up-to-date reminders that over and over again, the Bible creation account
is vindicated and the evolutionary fables are refuted.
(a reader, location unknown)
You have a knack of extracting the gist of a technical paper,
and digesting it into understandable terms.
(a nuclear physicist from Lawrence Livermore Labs who worked
on the Manhattan Project)
After spending MORE time than I really had available going thru
your MANY references I want to let you know how much I appreciate
the effort you have put forth.
The information is properly documented, and coming from
recognized scientific sources is doubly valuable. Your
explanatory comments and sidebar quotations also add GREATLY
to your overall effectiveness as they 1) provide an immediate
interpretive starting point and 2) maintaining the readers
(a reader in Michigan)
I am a huge fan of the site, and check daily for updates.
(reader location and occupation unknown)
I just wanted to take a minute to personally thank-you and let
you know that you guys are providing an invaluable service!
We check your Web site weekly (if not daily) to make sure we have
the latest information in the creation/evolution controversy.
Please know that your diligence and perseverance to teach the
Truth have not gone unnoticed. Keep up the great work!
(a PhD scientist involved in origins research)
You've got a very useful and informative Web site going.
The many readers who visit your site regularly realize that it
requires considerable effort to maintain the quality level and
to keep the reviews current.... I hope you can continue your
excellent Web pages. I have recommended them highly to others.
(a reader, location and occupation unknown)
As an apprentice apologist, I can always find an article
that will spark a spirited debate. Keep em
coming! The Truth will prevail.
(a reader, location and occupation unknown)
Thanks for your web page and work. I try to drop by
at least once a week and read what you have. Im a
Christian that is interested in science (Im a mechanical
engineer) and I find you topics interesting and helpful.
I enjoy your lessons and insights on Baloney Detection.
(a year later):
I read your site 2 to 3 times a week; which Ive probably done for a couple
of years. I enjoy it for the interesting content, the logical arguments, what I can
learn about biology/science, and your pointed commentary.
(a production designer in Kentucky)
I look up CREV headlines every day. It is a wonderful
source of information and encouragement to me.... Your gift of
discerning the fallacies in evolutionists interpretation of
scientific evidence is very helpful and educational for me.
Please keep it up. Your website is the best I know of.
(a Presbyterian minister in New South Wales, Australia)
Ive written to you before, but just wanted to say again
how much I appreciate your site and all the work you put into it.
I check it almost every day and often share the contents
(and web address) with lists on which I participate.
I dont know how you do all that you do, but I am grateful
for your energy and knowledge.
(a prominent creationist author)
I am new to your site, but I love it! Thanks for updating
it with such cool information.
(a home schooler)
I love your site.... Visit every day hoping for another of your
brilliant demolitions of the foolish just-so stories of those
who think themselves wise.
(a reader from Southern California)
I visit your site daily for the latest news from science journals and other media,
and enjoy your commentary immensely. I consider your web site to be the
most valuable, timely and relevant creation-oriented site on the internet.
(a reader from Ontario, Canada)
Keep up the good work! I thoroughly enjoy your site.
(a reader in Texas)
Thanks for keeping this fantastic web site going. It is very
informative and up-to-date with current news including incisive
(a reader in North Carolina)
Great site! For all the Baloney Detector is impressive and a
great tool in debunking wishful thinking theories.
(a reader in the Netherlands)
Just wanted to let you know, your work is having quite an impact.
For example, major postings on your site are being circulated among the
Intelligent Design members....
(a PhD organic chemist)
opening a can of worms ... I love to click all the related links and
read your comments and the links to other websites, but this usually makes me late
for something else. But its ALWAYS well worth it!!
(a leader of a creation group)
I am a regular visitor to your website ... I am impressed
by the range of scientific disciplines your articles address.
I appreciate your insightful dissection of the often unwarranted conclusions
evolutionists infer from the data... Being a medical
doctor, I particularly relish the technical detail you frequently include in
the discussion living systems and processes. Your website continually
reinforces my conviction that if an unbiased observer seeks a reason for the
existence of life then Intelligent Design will be the unavoidable
(a medical doctor)
A church member asked me what I thought was the best creation web site.
I told him CreationSafaris.com.
(a PhD geologist)
I love your site... I check it every day for interesting
information. It was hard at first to believe in Genesis fully, but
now I feel more confident about the mistakes of humankind and that all
their reasoning amounts to nothing in light of a living God.
(a college grad)
Thank you so much for the interesting science links and comments
on your creation evolution headlines page ... it is very
(a reader from Scottsdale, AZ)
visit your site almost every day, and really enjoy it. Great job!!!
(I also recommend it to many, many students.)
(an educational consultant)
I like what I seevery
much. I really appreciate a decent, calm and scholarly approach to the
whole issue... Thanks ... for this fabulous
It is refreshing to read your comments. You have a knack to get to the heart of
(a reader in the Air Force).
Love your website. It has well thought out structure and will help many
through these complex issues. I especially love the
I believe this is one of the best sites on the Internet.
I really like your side-bar of truisms.
Yogi [Berra] is absolutely correct. If I were a man of wealth, I would
support you financially.
(a registered nurse in Alabama, who found
us on TruthCast.com.)
WOW. Unbelievable.... My question is, do you sleep? ... Im utterly
impressed by your page which represents untold amounts of time and energy
as well as your faith.
(a mountain man in Alaska).
wanted to say that I recently ran across your web site featuring science
headlines and your commentary and find it to be A++++, superb, a 10, a homerun
I run out of superlatives to describe it! ... You can be sure I will
visit your site often daily when possible to gain the latest information
to use in my speaking engagements. Ill also do my part to help publicize
your site among college students. Keep up the good work. Your
material is appreciated and used.
(a college campus minister)
Featured Creation Scientist for October
Dr. Walter T. Brown
Heres a short introduction to an influential living creationist
you should get to know.
His story is best told in the recent book published by Julia Mulfinger Orozco,
Christian Men of Science (Ambassador Emerald International, 2001), but
here is a glimpse of a remarkable man with world-shattering ideas.
Dr. Walter T. Brown, Jr. got his PhD from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
while in the military. He had a long and distinguished career in the Air Force,
including teaching mathematics at the Air Force Academy and teaching science
and technology at the Air War College. He also taught physics at Auburn
Like many Christians, Dr. Brown received Christ as a teenager,
but accepted evolution simply because it permeated secular society. He assumed, like
many, that evolution was merely Gods way of creating. Later, he became
interested in the claims that Noahs Ark might still exist, and that peaked his
interest in the flood. As he realized that the scientific evidence for the flood
was overwhelming, he also realized that the flood explained most of what he had
earlier thought supported evolution. That began his interest in creation science.
In 1980, he decided to go full time into creation research
and teaching. After a time serving as director of the Midwest
Center for the Institute for Creation Research (ICR), he founded his own
non-profit organization, the Center for Scientific Creation (CSC).
Though certainly a believer in Biblical teachings about creation, his focus is on
scientific arguments for creation and the world-wide flood.
Dr. Brown has an aptitude for research and writing and a breadth
of scientific understanding that is exceptional, whether discussing
geology, biology or astronomy. Having taught
mathematics at the Air Force Academy, he also brings superior mathematical skill
into his research and writing.
Two significant fruits came out of his new ministry.
One was his popular In the Beginning seminars, held around the
country. The 7-hour seminar was sometimes followed by a debate whenever the
local sponsors could find a qualified evolutionist. These seminars
were almost always well attended and highly rated, often ending with
long and lively question-answer sessions.
His military background gave him a flair for quality, punctuality and
dignity in the running of each days program.
Dr. Brown travelled around the
United States and Canada giving seminars for nearly 20
years, until he decided it would be more fruitful (and easier on his
family) to devote more time to research and writing.
His research included trips into the Grand Canyon to investigate
aspects of his flood model.
One expedition nearly cost him his life. He became stranded in a side
canyon, suffering from dehydration, with only treacherous ways to get out. Fortunately (or we
should say providentially), he did make it out thanks to courage,
determination, a piece of rope and answers to prayer.
Walt Browns magnificent book
In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood is
the second major fruit of his ministry.
It is one of the finest comprehensive books on creation science in print,
both in content and in presentation. The content of Dr. Browns
treatise is remarkable for its breadth and depth. He has 135
categories of evidence, all footnoted and personally researched, that
support creation and oppose evolution. The book also has numerous
interesting topics explored in depth, and answers to common questions.
Dr. Brown is gifted at making his case, giving fair and balanced treatment
to all possible explanations for a phenomenon (such as frozen mammoths
or the origin of comets) and explaining why the creation model is superior.
He is also careful to mention both strengths and weaknesses of his own ideas,
admitting frankly when there is a problem that needs more research.
The book is also handsomely laid out; its the kind of book that
once you start leafing through it, you cant set it down.
Loaded with color illustrations and charts, it just draws you in and keeps you
wanting to learn more.
A highlight of the book, and the most popular talk in his
seminars, is his original hydroplate theory of the flood.
When he was an evolutionist, one of the hindrances to Dr. Browns
acceptance of the Genesis record of a global flood were the questions: Where
did the water come from? Where did it go?. For years,
Dr. Brown applied all his investigative and mathematical
skills to this question. The result was a stunning model that not only
answers the two questions, but explains 25 geological mysteries around the world,
such as submarine canyons, salt domes, mid-oceanic ridges, the fit of the
continents, the Grand Canyon, frozen mammoths
and much more. Not all creationists accept his model in all respects,
but Dr. Brown has this going for it: it is faithful to the Biblical record,
and it includes predictions that allow his model to be falsifiable.
Some of his predictions made in the 1980s have since been confirmed.
He is also honest enough to admit arguments that later prove unsupportable.
Want to learn more? His entire book is available online at his
content-rich website, CreationScience.com.
In about 2007, the 8th edition will be published with even more new material.
Dr. Brown was also the first to propose the then-radical proposal, now
accepted (at least in part) by other creationists,
that the Grand Canyon was formed from a dam breach in a huge post-flood
lake. Even secular geologists have recently been
seriously entertaining similar ideas. This is a remarkable shift
in thinking for this natural wonder, long considered an icon of millions
of years of slow, gradual processes.
At a creation symposium in Anaheim, California in 1979,
Dr. Brown was among hundreds of participants listening to dozens of
prominent creationists presenting their research papers. At this time, when he was
formulating plans for his seminars, he saw a multimedia
presentation that impressed him greatly. It was entitled How Big
Is God? It was an audio-visual journey from Earth to the farthest
ends of the universe, presented using three projectors showing over 700 color
slides, all computer-synchronized with narration and music.
David Coppedge (chief bwana of Creation Safaris, sponsor of this
website) had just produced this show, and it subsequently went on the road for 25
years and was seen by over 300 audiences. Dr. Brown felt this show could
provide an inspirational punch his seminars needed, so he worked with David to
get a copy of it. He always used it as the Grand
Finale for his seminars. It was often voted the second most popular
presentation after his lecture on the hydroplate theory.
Dr. Brown has had a standing offer, in his seminars and in
his book, for a written, strictly scientific debate with a qualified evolutionist on the
scientific case for creation vs. evolution. He feels that a written
debate would have advantages over the usual live debate format, because it could be
more easily disseminated and studied, and each side
would have time to research their statements and rebuttals in more depth.
For over 20 years no one has taken him up on it.
Any evolutionist looking over his book In the Beginning, would
likely be terrified. Read it and you will see why. This is a
book that, after having mastered it yourself, you would want to stockpile
to use as gifts for educated and skeptical friends.
Dr. Brown is an exemplary family man with a lovely wife, Peggy,
who supports him in all his research activities. In person, he is a
warm and generous, unpretentious Christian gentleman, a great conversationalist
and able to make you feel like you are the important person. Just dont get
into a debate with him unless you love truth. Dr. Brown is a military
strategist who knows how to disarm weapons of falsehood, gently and
For more about Dr. Brown and his ministry,
be sure to drop in at CreationScience.com.
If you are enjoying this series, you can
learn more about great Christians in science by reading
our online book-in-progress:
The Worlds Greatest
Creation Scientists from Y1K to Y2K.
A Concise Guide|
You can observe a lot by just watching.
First Law of Scientific Progress
The advance of science can be measured by the rate at which exceptions to previously held laws accumulate.
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.
Nature will tell you a direct lie if she can.
So will Darwinists.
Science is true. Dont be misled by facts.
Finagles 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 according to his own pet theory.
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.
Murphys Law of Research
Enough research will tend to support your theory.
If the facts do not conform to the theory, they must be disposed of.
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.
The number of different hypotheses erected to explain a given biological phenomenon
is inversely proportional to the available knowledge.
All great discoveries are made by mistake.
The greater the funding, the longer it takes to make the mistake.
The solution to a problem changes the nature of the problem.
Peters Law of Evolution
Competence always contains the seed of incompetence.
An expert is a person who avoids the small errors while sweeping on to the grand fallacy.
Repetition does not establish validity.
What really matters is the name you succeed in imposing on the facts not the facts themselves.
For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.
Thumbs Second Postulate
An easily-understood, workable falsehood is more useful than a complex, incomprehensible truth.
There is nothing so small that it cant 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.
The best theory is not ipso facto a good theory.
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
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,
Wisdoms 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).
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