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Creationism News


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Title: Creationism News

Creationism News April 2013 ????? 2013?4?
  • Dedicated to David Coppedge who sacrificed his
    career as the Head Systems Administrator for the
    Cassini Spacecraft in JPL to honor the Creator
    of the Universe. He also spent literally
    thousands of hours to make his excellent
  • The contents of this presentation were taken from
    David Coppedges website http// Pray
    for his fast recovery from cancer surgery.
  • Pastor Chui
  • http//

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • Researchers are stating that beliefs about the
    origin of western mountains in North America are
    all wrong.
  • In Geologic History of North America Gets
    Overturned, Live Science described how thorough
    the overturning was Its time to redraw the map
    of the world during the reign of the dinosaurs,
    two scientists say.  The scientists, from
    Germany and Canada, dispute the existence of the
    Farallon Plate, long thought to give rise to the
    Rocky Mountains.  Instead, they posit an
    archipelago, such as those in the South Pacific,
    instead of a continental margin.  Finding stacked
    remnants is their justification for the
    overhaul.  The new model is more complex in some
    ways, but also simpler, Nature News claimed in
    How the West Was Built.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • Mitchell Mihalynuk said the new model will make
    waves, as it overturns 40 years of accepted
    wisdom about the evolution of western North
    America. It will take a while to turn people
    around. That intellectual ship has a lot of
    inertia, he said. But for Mihalynuk, this is
    one of those eureka moments.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • If they are right, 40 years of accepted wisdom
    was really never wise at all.  While this new
    model makes perfect sense to some, will it make
    sense to geologists 40 years from now?  Theres
    room for reconsideration.  The paper in Nature by
    Sigloch and Mihalynuk lists four areas of
    uncertainty and a fudge factor to make the model
    work  This is accomplished by introducing an
    additional degree of freedom, an ad hoc,
    otherwise non-observable, westward shift of the
    lithospheric shell relative to the lower mantle.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • In a Perspective article in Nature, Saskia Goes
    said, The tectonic history of western North
    America is a puzzle in which many of the pieces
    are mashed up or missing.  Although she believes
    the new seismic image data alters the
    reconstruction of the pieces, she described the
    observational data as complex The western
    margin of the North American continent,
    comprising the Cordilleran mountain chain that
    runs from Alaska to Mexico, consists of scores of
    continental jigsaw pieces of different origins,
    sizes and ages.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • Goes made it clear that the new model is not
    fixed in stone.  Sigloch and Mihalynuk have
    incorporated several new pieces into the North
    American jigsaw, but others remain to be placed,
    she said.  More modeling and interpretation will
    be required.  The new pieces remain to be
    connected into a self-consistent framework of
    plates with continuous and dynamically evolving
    boundaries, she added, implying that the model
    is not self-consistent yet.  Her piece ended with
    a number of remaining questions.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • Nothing in historical geology is ever as clean
    cut as the popular media would lead you to
    believe.  They give the impression of progress
    the new model is superior to the old.  Is it
    necessarily?  When you are dealing with scores of
    jigsaw pieces without the box cover to show you
    what they are supposed to look like, and no human
    observer around to watch what really happened,
    there is ample room for another overturn in the

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • There is also ample room for alternative theories
    with different assumptions or different ad hoc,
    non-observable fudge factors.  Some philosophers
    even claim an infinite number of theories can
    explain the same observations.  However stated,
    theories and models like this are always
    underdetermined by data.  It means that a
    measure of divination is required to conjure an
    appropriate vision that suits the preferences of
    the day.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • Overhauls also remind us that the consensus is
    often wrong.  Forty years of false belief is what
    these two upstart geologists have to allege by
    overturning the old model forty years of
    accepted wisdom that was foolish in their
    view.  The new accepted wisdom awaits future
    self-proclaimed wise men ready to upset the
    applecart all over again.

North American Geology All Wrong??????????
  • This is accomplished by introducing an additional
    degree of freedom, an ad hoc, otherwise
    non-observable, westward shift of the
    lithospheric shell relative to the lower mantle.

  • Gloria Deo ??????

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • Some of the most unlikely creatures are making
    headlines because of their potential for
    advancing technology.
  • Hagfish clothing  Yuck! Hagfish, marine
    creatures without jaws, look like something out
    of a horror movie.  When attacked, they disgorge
    gobs of sticky slime from glands on the sides of
    their bodies.  You can see the goop in a photo on
    the BBC News, with its surprising headline,
    Hagfish slime The clothing of the future? 
    Strange as it seems, Canadian researchers see
    wealth creation in the slime. 

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • When its fibers get stretched out, they become
    soft and silky, like lycra or nylon, but
    renewable.  Scientists believe hagfish slime or
    similar proteins could be turned into tights or
    breathable athletic wear, or even bullet-proof
    vests.  Other amazing facts a four-foot hagfish
    can contain hundreds of kilometers of slime
    threads.  The silky threads bear resemblance to
    spider silk, even though the creatures are
    unrelated.  A hagfish fossil said to be 330
    million years old already had the slime-making

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • Wet gecko adhesion  Previous biomimetics
    entries (8/27/02, 12/06/06, 8/16/12) have
    described gecko toes amazing adhesive
    properties.  Now, according to National
    Geographic, the next challenge is understanding
    how the toes continue to adhere when weteven
    underwater (cf.10/18/10).  Researchers at the
    University of Akron, publishing in PNAS, are
    taking up the challenge.  Its all theory at this
    stage, but they feel, Our findings provide
    insight into how geckos may function in wet
    environments and also have significant
    implications for the development of a synthetic
    gecko mimic that retains adhesion in water. 
    A press release from the university described how
    they harnessed geckos to tease out the secrets of
    their clingy wet feet.

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • Dragonfly copter  Festo, the company that
    developed the SmartBird flying robot that
    resembles a seagull (see 3/28/11), now has a
    robotic four-wing helicopter called the Bionic
    Opter that resembles a dragonfly (see press
    release with video clip).  Its lightweight,
    highly integrated, and has 13 degrees of freedom
    for complex flight maneuvers.  Substantially
    larger than the insect, it is operated by a
    wireless remote control.  Festo claims it has
    mastered the highly complex flight
    characteristics of the dragonfly, but theirs
    cannot yet lay eggs and hatch babies.  Just like
    its model in nature, this ultralight flying
    object can fly in all directions, hover in
    mid-air and glide without beating its wings.

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • Speaking of dragonflies, they are becoming
    popular subjects for wildlife watchers, Live
    Science says.  A blog post from the U.S. Fish and
    Wildlife Service described how these insects
    (neither dragons nor flies) are garnering a
    swelling fan base
  • You might call dragonflies the stunt
    pilors sic of the insect world. They
    wear flashy colors, dart at speeds of up to 30
    miles per hour, boast ancestors that predate
    dinosaurs and they even mate in mid-air.

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • Dragonflies are harmless to humans and are also
    conveniently active in the daytime, making them
    attractive subjects for watching, with their
    jewel-like wings and bright colors.  Dragonfly
    festivals are popping up across the country and a
    crop of new field guides are making the rounds
    around American towns and cities, the blog
    said.  National wildlife refuges, like 4 listed
    in the blog, are excellent places for viewing
    them.  More interesting facts dragonflies have
    almost 360 vision, they keep mosquitoes at bay,
    and they are indicators of clean water.

Of Hagfish, Geckos and Dragonflies ??,?????
  • Biomimetic Briefs From ear to smartphone app
    (Medical Xpress) from jellyfish to seafloor
    mapper (Live Science) from squid beak to medical
    implants (PhysOrg).
  • Whats not to love about the biomimetics
    revolution?  Its turning peoples attention back
    to the wonderful designs in nature its
    promising advances in technology to improve our
    lives and its 100 Darwin-free.  Turn your kid
    onto dragonflies.  Take a nature walk where they
    are likely to be found.  Teachable moment
    explain to him or her that if something works, it
    isnt by accident.  Numerous technical
    constraints have to be satisfied for flight. 
    When the flight is superb, as with dragonflies,
    you know the technical design is even more
    superb.  Then wow the kids with the fact that
    some fossil dragonflies had wingspans over two

  • Gloria Deo ??????

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Planetary origin theories come across as popular
    and charismatic, till some little moon pops off
    and says, Yoo-hoo! Remember me?
  • Io, Io Its Not So Long Ago
  • Jupiters volcanic moon Io is a pain in the
    astronomical dating game.  Imagine if
    similar-sized Earths moon were carrying on like
    that it would be a fireworks show every night,
    keeping scientists awake wondering how it stays
    active.  Planetary modelers have had a hard time
    figuring out Ios heat source (and how long it
    could last) since Voyager revealed the eruptions
    in 1979 and no, tidal flexing is not
    sufficient.  Now, some NASA and ESA scientists
    say the volcanoes are all wrong the volcanoes
    are in the wrong places from where models say
    they should be.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • A press release from NASA Goddard opens with a
    dramatic image from the New Horizons flyby in
    2007, showing a huge plume at Ios north pole in
    action.  If the tidal flexing models worked, the
    expected volcanic action should be 30 to 60
    degrees east of where it actually is.  We found
    a systematic eastward offset between observed and
    predicted volcano locations that cant be
    reconciled with any existing solid body tidal
    heating models, Christopher Hamilton (U of
    Maryland) said.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Possibilities to explain the offset include a
    faster than expected rotation for Io, an interior
    structure that permits magma to travel
    significant distances from where the most heating
    occurs to the points where it is able erupt on
    the surface, or a missing component in existing
    tidal heating models, like fluid tides from an
    underground magma ocean, according to the team.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Each of those possibilities seems a stretch,
    except for the admission something might be
    missing in their models.  Another possibility is
    that their starting assumptions are wrong.  None
    of the discussion dealt with how this heating
    could persist for 4.5 billion years a time
    period so long, Io would have disgorged its
    entire mass 40 times over by now
    (CEH 09/27/2002, Science), in addition to losing
    mass to a torus around Jupiter at the rate of a
    ton a secondthat would amount to 145 quadrillion
    tons over 4.5 billion years. And if Io has a
    magma ocean and magnetic field, as the article
    said scientists are tending to believe, keeping
    that ocean liquified for billions of years is
    another serious issue.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • The article tried to distract attention from
    these problems by briefly titillating onlookers
    with thoughts of life at Europa or Enceladus. 
    But when pressed, the scientists tried another
    tack pride in ignorance
  • The unexpected eastward offset of the volcano
    locations is a clue that something is missing in
    our understanding of Io, says Hamilton. In a
    way, thats our most important result. Our underst
    anding of tidal heat production and its
    relationship to surface volcanism is incomplete.
    The interpretation for why we have the offset and
    other statistical patterns we observed is
    open, but I think weve enabled a lot of new
    questions, which is good.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Readers who had faith in scientific
    understanding may be taken aback by this
    statement.  Here, after over 30 years of
    knowledge of Ios volcanism, and centuries of
    understanding about planetary motion and the
    behavior of heat, more questions have emerged
    than answers.  Live Science discussed this
    mystery with its surprising conclusions that
    the Volcanoes on Jupiters Moon Io Are All
    Wrong.  Correction the volcanoes are what they
    are.  Its only the scientific interpretation
    that could possibly be all wrong.  Much of the
    mystery is resolved instantly if Io is not that

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Deep trouble at Enceladus
  • Another embarrassing erupter is Saturns little
    moon Enceladus.  It has one thousandth the mass
    of Io and is subject to far less tidal
    friction.  Universe Today leaked something that
    was revealed at the Lunar and Planetary Science
    conference in Houston last month.  It appears
    that the salty water jets blasting out of the
    moons south pole reach all the way to an
    interior ocean.  Scientists think that the ocean
    lies under 10 kilometers of ice.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Where the jets are getting their supply of
    liquid water has been a question scientists
    have puzzled over for years. Is friction caused
    by tidal stresses heating the insides of the
    stripes, which melts the ice and shoots it
    upwards? Or do the fissures actually extend all
    the way down through Enceladus crust to a
    subsurface ocean of liquid water, and through
    tidal pressure pull vapor and ice up to the
  • Researchers are now confident that the latter is
    the case.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • No longer can researchers assume, therefore, that
    the eruptions are a near-surface phenomenon.  The
    heat source reaches deep into the moon, implying
    melting on a vaster scale that requires even more
  • In a presentation at the Lunar and Planetary
    Science Conference titled How the Jets, Heat and
    Tidal Stresses across the South Polar Terrain of
    Enceladus Are Related (see the PDF here) Cassini
    scientists note that the amount of heating due to
    tidal stress seen along Enceladus tiger stripes
    isnt nearly enough to cause the full spectrum
    of heating observed, and the hot spots that
    have been seen dont correlate with the type of
    heating caused by shear friction.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • The heat must be carried upwards along with the
    pressurized water vapor from the subsurface sea,
    warming the areas around individual vents as well
    as serving to keep their channels open.  You
    dont say. How long has that been going on?  They
    didnt say.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Color Divination Keeps the Faith
  • Meanwhile, other planetary scientists found a new
    story line to keep the Saturn system old.  A
    JPL press release turned public attention to a
    homey analogy.  Saturn Is Like an Antiques Shop,
    Cassini Suggests Moons and Rings Date Back to
    Solar Systems Birth.  Perhaps so, if that birth
    were recent but no, they mean billions of
    years.  Apparently they dont want to devalue
    their antiques.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Gianrico Filacchione from Italy did some
    divination with colors on the rings and moons and
    concluded that the Saturn system is old.  One
    myth can lead to another.  Since the little
    F-ring shepherd moon Prometheus has a similar
    color to the rings, Bonnie Buratti added to the
    story. Scientists had been wondering whether
    ring particles could have stuck together to form
    moons  since the dominant theory was that the
    rings basically came from satellites being broken
    up, she said, preparing the reader for a
    dramatic turnaround.  The coloring gives us
    some solid proof that it can work the other way
    around, too.  Solid proof has a nice-sounding
    ring of certainty to it.  If it can work the
    other way around, why, then, it must have.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • The press release conveniently left out any
    discussion of how long the Enceladus eruption
    affair has been going on.  The handlers of these
    aberrant moons know their job mitigate the bad
    news by controlling the focus of attention.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Divination, distraction, domination.  Thats how
    the scientific guild maintains its grab on public
    trust.  Divination One cannot look at color and
    come up with an age.  The article even said that
    the deposits from the geyser spray and dust from
    asteroids is only skin deep.  Does that sound
    like its been going on for billions of years? 
    Distraction Lets not talk about the age of
    these things lets talk about life!  If theres
    water going out of this moon, maybe it produced
    the ingredients for life or could support
    life.  Domination Just state the party line
    boldly and repeatedly.  That should be enough to
    keep the peasants from doubting the experts
    understanding of how things came to be.  After
    all, theyre scientists the knowers of the
    culture.  It would be very upsetting for the
    knowers not to know.

Bimbo Eruptions in the Solar System ????????
  • Note to secularists Our criticisms here are not
    with the observational data.  We love
    observational data more power to the champion
    observers and data collectors of the Cassini
    team.  The criticisms are directed
    at interpretations that violate the evidence
    interpretations that insist on billions of years
    of undirected natural processes producing
    planets, life, and human brains possessing the
    audacity to imagine their own undesigned brains
    being capable of assessing true knowledge.

  • Gloria Deo ??????

Laughing Matters ????
  • Why is it that scientists need to investigate
    the evolutionary origins of anything humans do?
  • An article on PhysOrg, The Origins of Laughter,
  • We know the benefits of laughter on health. But
    why do we laugh? What are the evolutionary
    origins of laughter and humour? Steven Légaré has
    asked these questions and has made them the
    subject of his masters thesis, which he recently
    submitted to the Université de Montréals
    Department of Anthropology.
  • Science provides few answers to these questions
    other than in psychology and neuroscience. From
    the perspective of anthropology, laughter and
    humour are often overlooked. However, it is a
    serious subject, says the recent graduate.

Laughing Matters ????
  • Before chuckling at the idea of laughter as a
    serious subject, lets see what Steve came up
    with.  Its not enough to say, laughter and
    humour exist in all cultures and times.  Nor is
    it enough to describe the different kinds of
    laughter, or say, sense of humour varies
    considerably from one individual to another. 
    Whats Darwin got to do with it?

Laughing Matters ????
  • What then is the primary function of laughter
    and humour? Communication principally, says
    Légaré. But it was not until the evolution of
    language that verbal humour could be involved in
    the process of socialization. Such humour is
    impossible if we have little mastery of language.

Laughing Matters ????
  • Steve is still not there.  If language was
    designed, humor has a function and makes sense. 
    How could language or humor arise by unguided
    natural processes?  To distinguish the origin of
    laughter from intelligent design, Steve needs to
    describe its origin by natural selection without
    reference to purpose or function.

Laughing Matters ????
  • The article is accompanied by a photo of a
    capuchin monkey appearing to make a laughing
  • As in case of the vocalizations of apes in
    response to tickling, the primary function of
    laughter was to communicate an intention to play
    or indicate a desire to continue play in
    progress. The evolution of laughter and humour
    was marked by three distinct adaptations
    acquisition of a theory of mind language
    evolution and recognition of incongruities in
    symbolic representations.

Laughing Matters ????
  • As if by magic, we suddenly see three distinct
    adaptations.  Where did they come from?  Theory
    of mind refers to the ability to ascribe
    intentions to another.  If monkeys can do that,
    why do we have to believe they got it by
    evolution?  Maybe they were designed to do that. 
    Language evolution is a classic case of
    question begging.  One cannot answer the
    question, How did language evolve? by saying,
    By language evolution.  And symbolic
    representation is a distinctly human quality. 
    Steves answer is filled with intention,
    function and communication that are hallmarks
    of design, not evolution.

Laughing Matters ????
  • To reach this conclusion, the researcher analyzed
     five evolutionary theories about laughter and
    humour social manipulation, socialization,
    sexual selection, honest signalling, and
    emotional contagion. The researcher
    extracted predictions he then compared to empirica
    l work from various disciplines, including
    ethnology, psychology, and neurobiology.

Laughing Matters ????
  • In conclusion, he proposed an evolutionary
    scenario that reconciles the various theories disc
    ussed. In the 3,000 publications listed in a
    recent bibliographic guide on the psychology of
    laughter and humour, the words Darwin and
    evolution appear only four and two times,
    respectively, while the concept of natural
    selection is completely absent, says Légaré.
    The transcultural recurrence of laughter and
    humour and the facial expressions with which they
    are associated nevertheless suggest a certain
    genetic determination.

Laughing Matters ????
  • All of the highlighted words above imply
    intelligent design analyzing, comparing,
    concluding, proposing, suggesting.  They refer to
    immaterial things like theories,
    concepts and disciplines.  By his own admission,
    the 3,000 publications he searched for the origin
    of laughter did not use natural selection at
    all.  Should he not have concluded that laughter
    emerged by a non-Darwinian process?
  • The article detoured into two types of laughter,
    and suggested they had different evolutionary
    histories.  That doubles the problem for Steve.

Laughing Matters ????
  • In the end, his research into the origin of
    laughter devolved into a mere opinion
  • In his opinion, it is likely that the capacity
    for humour was influenced by the effect of sexual
    selection. As such, the expression of humour
    functioned during human evolution as an indicator
    of fitness. Once developed, verbal
    humour gradually gained in sophistication and
    complexity, which illustrates its remarkable
    cultural variability today.

Laughing Matters ????
  • Steve did not explain how likely his opinion
    was, how humor developed, or to what extent
    sexual selection influenced laughter.  Did
    Neanderthal men tell dumb blonde jokes in the
    cave?  Did Homo erectus women laugh at the mens
    dangling participles?  How, exactly, did this
    indicate fitness?  Was it by the other sexs
    ability to take a joke?
  • Its not known whether the thesis advisor wrote
    A or LOL on Steves paper.

Laughing Matters ????
  • You have to admit that evolutionists are funny. 
    Read our evolutionary humor page and see if you
    evolve more sophistication and complexity.  We
    intelligently designed it to do that.

Laughing Matters ????
  • For more funnies in evolutionary anthropology,
    see 9/08/12, Evolution Funnies 7/08/12, Eats
    Shoots and Leaves and 6/10/12, Myth Busters
    Flubs in Evolutionary Anthropology.   For more
    on the evolution of laughter, see 6/08/09 Tickle
    Me Darwin5/02/06, The Evolution of Slapstick
    and 11/22/05, On the Origin of Hee-Hees by
    Natural Selection.
  • The Dream Dream Dream song at the end of
    the 1/30/13 entry makes a nice encore to this

  • Gloria Deo ??????

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • One might think that 154 years after Darwins
    book about it, natural selection would be
    empirically obvious.  The journal Nature went on
    a search for it in DNA.
  • Natures piece, Evolutionary Genomics Detecting
    Selection begins with hopes and worries
  • Advances in population genetics and genome
    sequencing have made it possible to identify
    anonymous fragments of DNA that have undergone
    selection. This yields some evolutionary answers,
    and a panoply of puzzles.

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • Two things must be clarified before detecting
    natural selection.  One is that artificial
    selection has nothing to do with it.  Artificial
    selection is intelligently designed for a
    purpose natural selection, by contrast, is
    unguided and purposeless.  Even survival fails as
    a purpose its only a consequence of selection,
    not a goal of selection.   The other is that
    natural selection is more than variation.  To
    differentiate itself from creationism, natural
    selection has to overcome small changes within a
    population that creationists willingly
    acknowledge help an organism adapt. 
    Evolutionists need to demonstrate innovation, an
    undirected change providing new functional
    information.  A mutation that produces more of
    the same effects, like a change in enzyme
    production, does not qualify.

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • With that in mind, what did the Nature article
    find in its selection hunt?  The authors
    acknowledged the awesome power of artificial
    selection directed by the mind of man, such as
    in dog breeding, but claimed that dogs and humans
    have been partners in natural selection for
    10,000 years in a case of parallel evolution. 
    They praised a recent paper in population
    genetics that promises to revolutionize
    evolutionary biology, by challenging us to detect
    traits affected by evolution on the basis of
    genotype rather than an organisms
    characteristics, or phenotype.  Then they
    praised two other papers that rise to this
    challenge and show how hypotheses about an
    adaptive human genotype can be tested in
    controlled experiments.  Sounds impressive.  But
    is this something new?  Whats gone on in the
    past 154 years of research on natural selection? 
    It must not have been very revolutionary.

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • Together, the three papers are
    a wonderful intersection between genomics,
    population science and experimental genetics a
    synergy that has tremendous potential for
    teaching us more about how and why organisms

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • Unfortunately, the evidence cited in the first
    paper concerns genetic changes found between
    wolves and domestic dogs.  Even the staunchest
    creationists put those two animals within the
    same created kind.  The genetic changes,
    moreover, were in the more of the same category
    enhanced ability to digest starch, presumably
    from crumbs dropped from the dog owners tables. 
    Nevertheless, the authors were ecstatic that dogs
    and humans both produce more starch-digesting
    enzymes the same molecular mechanism has acted
    on similar genes in different species exposed to
    the same dietary pressure  a striking example of
    parallel evolution.

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • The other two papers merely found evidence of
    selective sweeps without tying the changes to
    phenotypic change.  Even when causal
    relationships seem obvious, caution is
    warranted, the authors warned, noting a case
    with ambiguous results.  Is detection of natural
    selection in human populations even possible? 
    Classical genetic studies are the optimal way to
    establish causal relationships, but in many cases
    these are impossible because the appropriate
    populations do not exist.  The third paper
    invented a model organism to tease out evidence
    of natural selection.  Its researchers concluded
    that a mutation in East Asians produces thicker
    hair and more sweat glands they verified that
    effect in mice (see 2/19/13, last section).  But
    thats another example of more of the same
    variation people already had sweat glands and
    hair, and so did mice.

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • Remarkably, this article, poised to showcase the
    power of natural selection, ended with ignorance
  • Kamberov and colleagues study is an exceptional
    example of experimental genetics, but does it
    provide, as the authors suggest, a general
    framework for assessing candidate adaptive
    mutations? Genetically altered mice are a
    powerful experimental tool, but the extent to
    which recent positive selection in humans acts on
    pathways and amino-acid residues that have
    been conserved across mammalian
    evolution is uncertain. More importantly, it
    is often not clear how to investigate positively
    selected genomic regions for which the target
    gene, let alone its action, is unknown. And so a
    major challenge for population genomics remains
    the construction of meaningful null hypotheses.
    As Charles Darwin, the best known evolutionary
    biologist, once said, It is always advisable to
    perceive clearly our ignorance.

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • So even though the paper they praised was an
    exceptional example of looking for natural
    selection, the authors of this article worried
    its conclusions are uncertain.  Worse, (more
    importantly), its not even clear how to look
    for selection in genomic regions where the action
    is unknown.  How does a researcher compare the
    findings with a null hypothesisa baseline
    hypothesis that posits no effect from the
    cause-when meaningful null hypotheses are

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • Thats why the summary of this triumphantly-titled
    article spoke of some evolutionary answers, and
    a panoply of puzzles.  Even the answers, though,
    wouldnt impress a creationist no clear evidence
    of positive selection toward new functional
    information was presented.  One can only hope the
    authors of all these papers are following
    Darwins advice to perceive clearly their

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • And they call creationists ignoramuses.  OK, show
    us, Darwinites.  Darwin believed people have
    bacteria ancestors.  All the advances beyond
    bacteria for every species on earthbe they
    wings, eyes, or brainsare supposed to be the
    result of natural selection.  Yet here it is, 154
    years after the Origin, and evolutionists still
    cannot show any example in the genes bigger than
    starch digestion in dogs, or thicker hair and
    more sweat glands in certain humans (all
    interfertile members of the same species, Homo
    sapiens).  The authors admit the studies are
    unclear.  Its appalling that the sole theory
    allowed to be presented in public school science
    classes is ignorant, not only of examples, but of
    ways to test them.  What hath evolutionary theory
    wrought?  A panoply of puzzles!  Schools are
    teaching ignorance!

The Hunt for Selection in the Genes ???????
  • If evolutionists do not perceive clearly their
    ignorance, those of us who do perceive it need to
    hold it up to their faces.  We can quote Darwin
    for support It is always advisable to perceive
    clearly your ignorance.

  • Gloria Deo ??????

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • Fudging and finagling often underlie the
    confident-sounding claims of cosmologists.
  • Finagles Rules prescribe ways to ameliorate
    Murphys Law in science.  They are needed
    because, according to Finagle, The perversity of
    the Universe tends towards a maximum.  Here are
    the rules
  • 1. To study a subject, understand it thoroughly
    before you start.
  • 2. Always keep a record of data it indicates
    that you have been working.
  • 3. Draw your curves first, then plot your data.
  • 4. If in doubt, make it sound convincing.
  • 5. Experiments should be reproducible they
    should fail in the same way.
  • 6. Do not believe in miracles, rely on them.

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • The case of the impossible star  A Methuselah
    star older than the universe was reported on  That, of course, is impossible, so
    what did astronomers do?  In order to keep
    current theory intact, they worked the puzzle
    from both ends.  They increased the age of the
    universe, and worked to decrease the estimated
    age of the star from 16 billion years down to a
    more reasonable level, by altering theory to let
    it burn faster.  But the new estimate is still
    paradoxical, because the star has to be
    significantly younger than the big bang to allow
    time for gas to condense into galaxies.  In the
    end, the astronomers estimated that HD 140283 was
    born 14.5 billion years ago, plus or minus 800
    million years, the article ends.  Further
    observations could help bring the Methuselah
    stars age down even further, making it
    unequivocally younger than the universe,
    researchers said.  Is that further observations,
    or further finagling?

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • The case of the unwelcome supernova  Type-Ia
    supernovas are the standard candles of
    cosmology, critical links for determining
    distance and age of the universe.  An upstart new
    type of Type-Ia has been found, potentially
    blurring the calibration.  Called Type-Iax, it is
    1/100th fainter and less energetic than classical
    Type-Ia supernovae, Science Daily said, and may
    account for a third of all Type-Ia supernovae. 
    Couldnt that call into question earlier
    estimates, making some supernova events look
    farther away than they were?  The article didnt
    say.  What it did say was not particularly
    encouraging for standard theory.  Researchers
    arent sure what triggers a Type Iax, for one
    thing.  What one astronomer said was even more
    disconcerting The closer we look, the more ways
    we find for stars to explode. Maybe thats why
    Space.coms headline read, Whoa! Mini-Supernovas

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • The case of the anomalous good fit  Most of the
    science news media gave excited headlines about
    how a new map of the cosmic background radiation
    made from Planck Telescope data confirms
    standard cosmology (Science Now see Finagle
    Rule 4). The Planck telescope, three times more
    sensitive than its predecessor WMAP, backs
    sudden inflation after the big bang, according
    to Nature News.  They were less excited, and more
    worried, about the anomaly in the data, the
    so-called axis of evil.  Planck seems to have
    confirmed the presence of a preferred direction
    in space a violation of the so-called
    Copernican Principle that expects every
    direction to look the same

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • The asymmetry defines a preferred direction in
    space, which is an extremely strange result,
    says Efstathiou. This rules out some models of
    inflation, but does not undermine the idea
    itself, he adds. It does, however,
    raise tantalizing hints that there may yet be new
    physics to be discovered in Plancks data.

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • Not only that, Planck found a cold spot that
    covers a large area. discussed how
    the new map makes the universe older than
    thought by about 100 million years, based on its
    calculated value of the Hubble constant.  The new
    truth to be told in textbooks is 13.82 billion
    years, not 13.7, meaning that space and time are
    expanding slightly slower than scientists
    thought.  The phrase than thought appears
    again in New Scientist The universe is almost
    perfect, 80 million years older than we thought,
    and maybe a little bit evil.  New Scientist
    suggested the anomaly might represent a bump from
    a neighboring universe born from eternal
    inflation putting a bruise on ours a
    speculative notion far beyond experimental
    confirmation.   At best, Efstathiou said, There
    is less stuff that we dont understand, by a tiny

Using Finagles Rules in Cosmology????????????
  • If you dont know how much you dont understand,
    then you dont know how much you do understand. 
    Suppose you dont understand 99.99 of reality. 
    Improving that to 99.98 (a tiny amount) is
    hardly cause for rejoicing.  A bad sign is when
    you have to conclude, based on your favored
    notions, that the stuff of stars and galaxies is
    perverse or evil.  Since gas cannot be evil, the
    evil must reside in the minds of the theorists
    who fudge and finagle the data, or invent new
    physics, to keep their presumably righteous
    theories intact.  When you hear a cosmologist
    worrying about an extremely strange result, ask
    whether it is the evidence, or the astronomer,
    that deserves the adjective.

  • Gloria Deo ??????

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • A new record for soft tissue in a dinosaur fossil
    was reported in Nature collagen in dinosaur eggs
    from the early Jurassic.
  • The Nature paper is all over the news, but not
    all the science reporters are mentioning the most
    damaging admission to long ages the preservation
    of organic material in fossil sauropod eggs from
    China,  said to be 190197 million years old from
    the early Jurassic 100 million years older than
    the previous record.  The Nature paper by Reisz 
    et al. states, This discovery also provides
    the oldest evidence of in situ preservation of
    complex organic remains in a terrestrial
    vertebrate. Heres how Chris Palmer reported it
    in Nature News

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • But it is not just the age of the fossils that
    is notable, the researchers say. Spectroscopic
    analysis of bone-tissue samples from the Chinese
    nesting site revealed the oldest organic material
    ever seen in a terrestrial vertebrate. That
    was surprising because the fossilized femur bones
    were delicate and porous, which made them
    vulnerable to the corrosive effects of weathering
    and groundwater, says Reisz.
  • That suggests to us that other dinosaur fossils
    might have organic remains, he says. We just
    havent looked at them in the right ways.

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • The organic material is thought to be collagen.  
    The researchers reported organic residues,
    probably direct products of the decay of complex
    proteins, within both the fast-growing embryonic
    bone tissue and the margins of the vascular
    spaces.  They mentioned Schweitzers
    controversial reports of dinosaur soft tissue
    and corroborated them by their own methodology

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • The embryonic bones were also studied using
    synchrotron radiation-Fourier transform infrared
    (SR-FTIR) spectroscopy. In contrast to previous
    studies of organic residues based on extracts
    obtained by decalcifying samples of bone, our
    approach targeted particular tissues in
    situ (Fig. 5). This made it possible to detect
    the preservation of organic residues, probably
    direct products of the decay of complex proteins,
    within both the fast-growing embryonic bone
    tissue and the margins of the vascular spaces
    (Fig. 5a, b).

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • This is indicated by the multiple amide peaks
    revealed by both infrared (1,5001,700?cm-1
    strong band from amide I and II, and 1,2001,300
    cm-1 weak band from amide III) and Raman
    spectroscopy (amide A peak at 3,264?cm-1)
    (Supplementary Figs 6.1 and 6.2). Previous
    reports of preserved dinosaur organic compounds,
    or dinosaurian soft tissues, have
    been controversial because it was difficult to
    rule out bacterial biofilms or some other form of
    contamination as a possible source of the
    organics. Our results clearly indicate the
    presence of both apatite and amide peaks within
    woven embryonic bone tissue (Fig. 5a), which
    should not be susceptible to microbial
    contamination or other post-mortem artefacts.

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • References in that quote were to Schweitzers
    2005 and 2007 papers. The Supplementary Material
    indicated that mathematical manipulation was
    necessary to see the amide peaks
  • The original FT-IR amides peaks from the organic
    residues of Dawa (Lufeng) embryonic limb bone
    were convoluted, and provided relatively little
    detailed information (Fig.5, main document),
    showing a big unresolved hump around 1600
    cm1. Deconvolution is a mathematically based
    process to reverse the effects of convolution on
    recorded data. The deconvoluted peaks shown above
    match well known secondary structures of protein.
    Thus, it can be concluded that complex proteins
    were preserved in our specimen.
  • A table after this statement shows that they
    identified typical secondary structures of
    protein, such as  alpha helices, beta sheets, and
    side chains i.e., actual protein structures,
    not just amino acid building blocks of protein.

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • Science Now said the researchers suspect the
    presence of organic remains, but maintained some
    caution on the grounds that its hard to rule out
    contamination. Still, if the evidence holds up,
    the find could finally tip the scale in favor of
    soft tissue preservation, the article said. 
    The BBC News and New Scientist didnt mention the
    organic remains, but Science Daily did, based on
    a press release from the University of
    Toronto where Robert Reisz works.  He said, To
    find remnants of proteins in the embryos is
    really remarkable, particularly since these
    specimens are over 100 million years older than
    other fossils containing similar organic
    material.  Live Science briefly mentioned the
    soft tissue, and added an Image Album about the

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • National Geographic completely ignored the soft
    tissue evidence, but did add this detail the
    eggshells were found crushed, and the bones were
    sorted and concentrated. Reisz presumes they were
    buried in a flood It became inundated, the
    embryos were smothered by sediment and water, and
    they basically rotted and fell apart, he
    said.  The original paper described what the site
    looked like completely disarticulated skeletal
    elements at various stages of embryonic
    development with calcium carbonate nodules often
    surrounding tightly packed appendicular skeletal
    elements.  What does this imply?  The paper

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • We interpret the bone bed as a
    para-autochthonous assemblage, formed
    by low-energy flooding and slow inundation of a
    colonial nesting site. The host sediment is
    a heavily bioturbated, massive siltstone,
    throughout which are dispersed isolated skeletal
    elements, eggshell fragments and the small,
    fossil-rich nodules of calcium carbonate. There
    are no preserved nest structures or uncrushed
  • It would seem that vulnerable, porous bones
    buried underwater in silt subject to bioturbation
    would have difficulty preserving the dinosaurs
    protein parts for 197 million years.  It would
    also seem that a low-energy local flood by a
    riverbank would not leave massive siltstone
    filled with bone fragments.

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • Interesting that the Brits at BBC  New Scientist
    (as well as NG) ignored the most important part
    of the story, the soft tissue, as if trying to
    protect their national hero Charlie from
    embarrassment.  The other articles simply assumed
    that soft tissue can last almost 200 million
    years!  Why isnt anyone seeing the obvious? 
    Chris Palmer admitted that the eggs were
    vulnerable to the corrosive effects of
    weathering and groundwater, making it
    unbelievable that up to 197 million years passed
    without obliterating the proteins.  Who are you
    going to believe, evolutionary scientists or your
    own eyes?

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • Notice also that Reisz suggested soft tissue
    would likely be found in other dinosaur fossils. 
    Why havent they all been looking?  Evolutionary
    theory often dictates what scientists look for
    and what they expect to see.  Thank goodness
    Reisz team made an effort to find the protein
    signal, even if they didnt dwell on the
    implications for geological dates.  This is a hot
    topic for creation research.  Unfortunately, when
    they try, they are often severely criticized for
    (1) poor technique or (2) agenda-driven bias
    (example to be forthcoming).  As if those
    problems never occur in the secular world.

Intact Protein Remnants Found in Dinosaur
  • Multiple reports now from different parts of the
    world are making a watertight case for soft
    tissue in dinosaur bones.  Critics of the reports
    are not necessarily driven by respect for the
    evidence, but by fear of what it means to
    evolutionary geology, evolutionary dating and the
    whole evolution industry.

  • Gloria Deo ??????

 Students Need to Argue Science, Not Memorize It
  • A professor of science education has a radical
    idea teach science through argumentation,
    because thats the way scientists do it.
  • If you were bored in science class having to
    learn a bunch of facts, you might have perked up
    if your teacher taught it the way Jonathan
    Osborne recommends argue a position from
    available evidence.  PhysOrg introduced its
    article by saying, Teaching students how to
    argue based on available evidence engages them in
    the scientific process and provides a better idea
    of how science actually works.

 Students Need to Argue Science, Not Memorize It
  • Earth orbits the sun. Microorganisms cause
    infectious disease. Plants use carbon dioxide to
    grow. Most of us know these scientific
    truths from our earliest school days.
    Theyre accepted facts. But astronomers,
    microbiologists and botanists once fought for
    these concepts using arguments based on
    evidence. Science, it seems, arrives at its
    tenets through argument.
  • Science education should follow suit, says
    Stanford education Professor Jonathan Osborne.
    Teachers should help students learn to argue a
    position from available evidence, he
    says, helping them learn why we know what we

 Students Need to Argue Science, Not Memorize It
  • In short, Osborne wants students to think about
    evidence, not just be told conclusions.  In
    science, people argue for their ideas, in terms
    of the evidence that they have, he said. There
    should be more opportunities to look at why some
    ideas are wrong, as well as what the right ideas
  • The concept of justification for right ideas
    is lacking in science education, Osborne
    believes.  His recommendations were published in
    the Journal of Research in Science Teaching.
    503, March 2013.  The only hard part is training
    science teachers to change their ways.
  • The article led to a flurry of argumentation in
    the comments about what constitutes a legitimate
    scientific theory.  Osborne was mentioned in
    our 5/21/2012 entry where he promoted
    collaborative discourse in the science class.

 Students Need to Argue Science, Not Memorize It
  • Osbornes ideas are good, but he doesnt go far
    enough.  Indoctrination into a consensus is still
    possible under his model, if the concepts of
    evidence and justification are not unpacked. 
    This is another good time to remind readers of
    the course on Philosophy of Science offered by
    The Teaching Company, where you can see how
    difficult it is to justify even the simplest of
    scientific truths.  Another worthwhile course
    (though flawed when it discusses intelligent
    design) is Science Wars What Scientists Know and
    How They Know It.  (Reader tip these go on sale
    for 70 off from time to time).

 Students Need to Argue Science, Not Memorize It
  • Its not clear from the article if Osborne
    understands the problems with peer review and
    consensus.  Does he have a Popperian view of
    science, or a Kuhnian view?  How about the view
    of Feyerabend, Cartwright, or van Fraasen?
    Lakatos or Polanyi?  What is even meant
    by science these days, when it covers everything
    from sociology to string theory? Students should
    learn not just to argue evidence, but to argue
    philosophy of science.  They cant study science
    without knowing what it is.  Yes, normal science
    includes argumentation, but it can also include
    social pressure.  Students need to know that
    scientific institutions, made up of fallible
    people who dont know everything, can enforce
    conformity within popular paradigms, which
    regulate what questions are important and what is
    meant by evidence.

 Students Need to Argue Science, Not Memorize It
  • Dead ideologies can be dangerous.  Positivism and
    scientism still parade through high schools, like
    zombies, without students realizing theyre
    dead.  Let them learn to beware the zombie
    science teachers who say, Scientists now know.

  • Gloria Deo ??????

 Human and Animal Brains Uniquenesses and
Similarities ?????????????
  • Grammar test  A Science Daily entry tells the
    upshot in the headline Young Children Have
    Grammar and Chimpanzees Dont.  Scientists at
    University of Pennsylvania believe they have
    shown that children as young as 2 understand
    basic grammar rules when they first learn to
    speak and are not simply imitating adults.  For
    instance, children tend to get the definite
    article the and the indefinite article a
    correct every time when referring to objects. 
    They also exhibit more extensive diversity of
    abstract grammatical concepts.  Chimpanzees, by
    contrast, just dont get it.  The famous 1970s
    ape Nim Chimpsky never grasped rules like those
    in a 2-year-olds grammar.  To the researchers,
    This suggests that true language learning is
    so far  a uniquely human trait, and that it
    is present very early in development.  An
    article on PhysOrg, though, claimed that
    chimpanzees have metacognition, the ability to
    think about thinking.  This was based on how they
    responded to a touch screen to find a hidden
    reward.  None of them, however, were found
    mumbling, I think, therefore I am.

 Human and Animal Brains Uniquenesses and
Similarities ?????????????
  • Math test  Another headline tells all, this time
    from Medical Xpress Despite what you may
    think, your brain is a mathematical genius. 
    Researchers at the Salk Institute were impressed
    that the brain appears to run an algorithm called
    the Gabor Transform when confronting a change of
    environment.  The brain picks out the salient
    signals in both time and space, and learns to
    ignore others, in order to extract the maximum
    amount of useful information.  Confronted with
    precision on the time channel and not the
    location channel, or vice versa, how does an
    information theorist decide the best compromise? 
    Nobelist Dennis Gabor, who invented holography in
    1971, came up with a mathematical theorem, known
    as a Gabor Filter that helps obtain the most
    precise measurements possible for
    both qualities.  A Salk researcher said that our
    brains employ a similar strategy.

 Human and Animal Brains Uniquenesses and
Similarities ?????????????
  • Music test  Several science sites reported on
    Canadian research that identified how the brain
    learns to like (in the Facebook sense) a new
    piece of music and file it in the favorites
    folder.  A part of the brain called the nucleus
    accumbens lights up on fMRI scans when tested on
    various human subjects.  Science Now, Live
    Science and Medical Xpress discussed how this
    shows that different human brains appear to have
    the same responses to a new music experience. 
    Another Live Science article explained how this
    shows music is a universal language for humans. 
    That article quoted a neuroscientist opining,
    without evidence, Evolutionarily, music is
    something people came together to do. None of
    the articles mentioned if animals have a similar

 Human and Animal Brains Uniquenesses and
Similarities ?????????????
  • Your brains janitors  Some things go on in your
    brain without your knowledge, and good thing
    Science Daily described how your brain does
    spring cleaning.  All brains have stem cells
    lying in wait to be called on, ready to become
    nerve cells or brain cells whenever and wherever
    you need them most.  To keep them in readiness,
    a process in th