REPLY #29d TO|
"EVOLUTION VS. CREATIONISM"
Boldfaced statements are parts of the original essay (or a subsequent reply) to which the respondent has directed his comments.
Italicized/emphasized comments prefaced by (R) are those of the respondent and are presented unedited.
My replies appear under the respondent's comments in blue text and are prefaced by my initials (MB).
This is the fourth of a five-part reply. Select the "Go to next reply" link at the end of each part to read the next part of the reply.
(R) Just as recent as the early 1800s, the scientific paradigm was
(MB) True. And, when additional evidence was gathered, that paradigm was shown
to be incorrect. Therefore, it had to be replaced. That is the nature of the
scientific method. Ideas are continually tested and retested against the latest
evidence. If they hold up, they get stronger. If they fail the test, they must
be discarded. No ideas or theories are exempt from this.
(R) Great scientists like Newton
and Pasteur were theists who were operating under a Creation scientific
paradigm. So in that regard, I do not define "Science" by the attributes
of the current paradigm it just happens to be in.
(MB) Just because you don't agree with its conclusions, you can't just
off-handedly throw away the entirety of science. To do so just indicates that
you only care about what you want to believe and really could care less about
whether or not any of those beliefs have anything to back them up. What do you
think that Newton and Pasteur would believe if they had access to today's
totality of scientific knowledge?
ANSWER(S) REMAINING UNQUESTIONED
Why are you so afraid of it? Even though you believe in it, why do you
not want to discuss or support it in the context of this debate?
- "The hoax of Piltdown Man survived only until additional evidence was uncovered
in the same area that brought the original into question. Sure, scientists
*wanted* to believe that Piltdown Man was genuine. But, no theory is safe from
scrutiny and none is so cherished that it couldn't fall victim to disproof at
any time. Certainly, Creationists don't apply the same standards to their own
(R) I am not afraid of it at all. My main interest is in discussing the
"factuality" of evolution. I don't see religion as a necessary attribute
to that goal.
(MB) Religion is not necessary at all -- much less to discuss the factuality of
evolution. However, absolutely nobody questions evolution in its entirety,
denigrates the discipline of science and its methods, and blusters about the
evils of materialism and naturalism without wishing to promote a religious
alternative to it all. Certainly, you consider that alternative to be somehow
"better", don't you? Why, then, are you reluctant to discuss or defend
QUESTION(S) REMAINING UNANSWERED
As should we all. However, that "say" should be informed and
intelligent rather than emotional and dogmatic
- "Isn't it a sin not to believe in God? The Bible also contains many verses
which denigrate any attitude other than pure faith."
- "For example, how long did Christians continue to believe that the Earth was
flat after the ancient Greeks had proven otherwise? How about the creation
tales and Flood story of Genesis? Perhaps you'd like to join my Religion debate
and get more into detail on these and other related matters."
- "On the other hand, you see no problem with them [school children] being taught
supernatural garbage like Creationism and being indoctrinated with Christian
(R) That comment is presupposing that my "say" *isn't* informed or
(MB) No, it's just a general comment about which arguments are the more worthy
of consideration. Would you disagree that informed and intelligent arguments
are better than emotional and dogmatic ones? As to the qualities of what you
are saying, I can only pass judgments based upon how you present your arguments
and whether or not any of them are sound. So far, they haven't fared too
(R) What you are basically saying is that if my "say" isn't the
same as yours, then it is unintelligent and uninformed. This is an
arrogance that ruptures the bounds of credulity.
(MB) I'm not saying anything about whether or not anybody agrees with me.
However, when someone present objections to evolution that have been
conclusively debunked for decades, can't (or won't) answer the majority of
questions put to him, refuses to defend his own beliefs, and can't even
demonstrate a basic understanding of the terms and concepts he is disputing,
that speaks volumes about how "informed" those objections are.
Ah, yes, the famous "equal time" whine. Since Creationism is clearly
not science (as determined by the Supreme Court), why should it get equal
time (or *any* time) in a science classroom?
(R) The Supreme court has been, is, and can be wrong.
(MB) Of course that can happen. Unfortunately for your argument, they were not
wrong in this particular case. If you dispute this, you will need to analyze
the Court's decision and point out their errors in detail.
(R) Thats why Supreme Court rulings are overturned almost every year.
(MB) The Supreme Court overturns the rulings of lower courts every year -- not
its own rulings.
(R) Also, Evolutionists and
naturalists do not "own" science. People who adhere to the Creation Model
have every bit of a claim to science as any evolutionists does. Science
belongs to everyone.
(MB) Exactly. Also, the methods of science apply equally to all proposals.
This is where Creationism fails so miserably and where Creationist argument is
at its absolute worst. How can Creationism hope to be taken seriously when its
advocates refuse to subject it to the same standards of evidence and
investigation that science demands of its own theories?
Should we also introduce every other piece of pseudoscientific or
paranormal nonsense that opposes science? Finally, do you believe in "equal
time" to the point where you would willingly invite scientists, atheists,
and the clergy of other religions into your church to get equal time with
the clergy in the interest of letting the congregation hear all sides in
order to make up their own minds?
(R) Already stated that you do not own science, nor its definition.
(MB) And, I've shown that your argument is
(R) Therefore, your qualifications of what does and does not oppose "science"
are merely your personal opinion and not fact.
(MB) Nope. If one understands what science is, then those things that oppose it
are readily apparent. This determination does not require my say-so.
Creationism would be just as foolish whether or not I say anything about
(R) I would absolutely love for
atheists, scientists, etc., to come and speak at our churchs. In fact,
there are many churchs around the country who's ministries are focused on
reaching skeptics. These churchs have live debates between atheists and
theists, creationists and evolutionists every month with coffee room
(MB) You just made my point. Those ministries "are focused on reaching
skeptics". In other words, they are trying to convert them into believers.
Most certainly, they have no interest in allowing skeptics to try to deprogram
current believers. Perhaps, you could provide me a few examples of these
ministries of which you speak?
(R) There is nothing to be afraid. The fact that
these types of churchs exist flies in the face of your ignorant
stereotyping of Christians/religious people.
(MB) So far, you have said nothing that flies in the face of anything other than
reality. Since you haven't (and, perhaps, can't) provide specific examples of
"these types of churches", how can I judge whether or not they actually exist
and whether or not they actually do what you claim for them?
A religion is a system of belief in a divine or supernatural
entity. Religion normally includes rituals, but it is much more.
(R) The root word meaning for religion is "ritual." That is not
(MB) Please tell me what dictionary backs up your claim. None that I've consulted so far say anything of the sort.
Just what did you research and study to answer all of your doubts?
(R) Many different books. Everything from Micheal Martin's "The Case Against
Christianity" to books by C.S Lewis, Josh MacDowell, R.C. Sproul. I also
spent a lot of time studying the Bible in its original languages using my
Interlinear Hebrew/Greek Bible, my Strong's Exhaustive Concordance, Nave's
Topical Analysis of the Bible, and Harbinger's guide to resolving Biblical
difficulties. Want pictures?
(MB) If necessary, but I'd prefer hard facts. If you have actually done all of
this research, why do you find it so difficult to provide specific examples when
asked for them? Everything you listed is apologetics material with the
exception of Martin's work -- which, I assume, you do not agree with. Do you
have any specific objections to his arguments?
What extra-Biblical historical reference is there
that provides evidence for the existence of God? For that matter, what in
the Bible provides evidence for it? What about the history of the
Egyptians, Indians, and Chinese (among many others) that include references
to many different gods -- none of which are the one that you worship?
Finally, are you claiming Yahweh for the Christians and discarding the
claims of the Jews and Muslims?
(R) 1) The existence of God is not determined by any book.
(MB) Correct. This includes the Bible, right? Then, how *is* the existence of
(R) 2)Just like their can be real money and conterfeit money, their can be a real God, and a
(MB) Correct again. However, this doesn't answer my questions. If we make the
assumption that God exists in some form, how do we differentiate a "real" God
from a "false" one?
(R) 3) I'm not claiming anything. *Yahweh* claimed the Christians
and diregards the others.
(MB) This just restates your original claim and does not answer my questions.
On what evidential basis should one accept your claim as being true? You are
also going to have an extremely difficult time justifying your statement that
Yahweh claimed the Christians and discards all others -- to include Jews and
Muslims. After all, Jews and Muslims worship the very same Yahweh that
QUESTION(S) REMAINING UNANSWERED
OK, as soon as you can demonstrate how the Big Bang is a part of the
theory of evolution and how you computed those ridiculous odds.
- RE: God is the biggest hoax of all time.
What else would you consider a story that has been repeated in numerous
incompatible versions and which has hoodwinked billions of people for thousands
- "I'll provide the evidence you want [God was not creating the universe 10
billion years ago] if you can first provide empirical evidence that no other
entity was responsible for the creation of the universe."
(R) The Big Bang was not brought up in regards to evolution. It was brought
up in regards to theism/atheism.
(MB) Uh-huh. That's why you wanted me to prove how the Big Bang could have
produced a universe which contains life, right?
(R) The odds that the Big Bang would produce
life-permitting intial conditions is 1 to 10 billion^124. I did not come
up with these odds. Cosomologist Donald Page did.
(MB) OK, then, how did Page compute those ridiculous odds and why do you believe
They *do* exist. After all, we live in a reality with four macroscopic
dimensions (length, width, depth, time), don't we?
(R) I wasn't referring to those four.
(MB) Does that make any difference? Why should the macroscopic dimensions be
excluded from consideration?
(R) For example, some astrophysicists
postulate that there may be as many as 11 different dimensions existing in
our universe. God could easily exist in one of these, or in a state where
all 11 intertwine.
(MB) Actually, it's 10 dimensions according to superstring theory, but why
quibble? Your last statement is impossible if God exists outside of his
creation (as you have previously stated). Furthermore, since he would have
created those dimensions under your model, they couldn't have existed prior to
creating them. Yet, if that's where he exists, we have a paradox, since you are
saying he exists in a place that didn't exist prior to his creating it. Where
did God exist prior to creating the place where he exists?
QUESTION(S) REMAINING UNANSWERED
Exactly. It also exists independently of *your* interpretation of it.
The key here is that it *exists*. Because it exists, it constitutes
- "Since everything in the universe is made of the same component elements and
since Man contains nothing other than those elements, why couldn't the universe
(R) But what the evidence constitutes is what is in question. Your
interpretation says it constitutes evolution, while others say it
(MB) Exactly. Unfortunately, for your argument, only those who say it
constitutes evolution can support those claims coherently.
The current point is whether or not we have anything from the past
that can be tested. You suggested that we do not. I'm proving otherwise
(R) I wasn't talking about substances or physical properties, but
(MB) Don't events have effects upon the physical properties of substances which
follow consistent rules and which can be tested?
(R) We don't have past *events* to test.
(MB) Including special creation, correct? Once again, it is demonstrated that
you don't subject your own ideas to the same standards you demand of
QUESTION(S) REMAINING UNANSWERED
I see you don't know what an organic compound is, either. Simply
stated, an organic compound is a carbon compound.
- "Is there some problem with using bacteria for testing purposes?"
(R) Are you about to tell me that proteins and amino acids are not organic
(MB) Nope. But, you said that organic compounds can't be created by natural
processes without realizing that the chemistry involved is not restricted to
those things which produce the building blocks of life. You may wish to amend
this claim to narrow the field a bit.
ANSWER(S) REMAINING UNQUESTIONED
Perhaps you would care to use the link below to read a paper which
should clear up your misconceptions. [link deleted]
- "They [organic compounds] are self-assembling because of the unique associative
properties of the carbon atom. Basic chemistry shows how this works."
- "A "prebiotic evolutionist" would be somebody who studies developments prior to
the appearance and evolution of life. Hence, the name. It should be obvious
that there could be no evolution in the Darwinian sense before life first
(R) Perhaps you would answer my question yourself instead of sending me to
your website bible.
(MB) Is there something wrong with presenting you with links to first-hand
evidence and scholarly papers that provide the answers to your questions? But,
I'm a reasonable sort of guy. Why don't you explain the difficulties you have
with Acyl transferase and Ribozyme-Nucleotide reactions (if you even know what
they are) and why you think they can't work. Then, I'll have something specific
that I can address rather than just another blanket denial.
(R) Obviously, you are basing much of your belief-system upon the information
that is presented at these sites.
(MB) No, not any more than I base the belief that 2+2=4 based upon what is
published on a basic math site. Since I have a limited amount of space for my
web site, it is more efficient to link you to relevant documents than to reprint
their contents here. Either way, the information will be presented to you (and
will, presumably, be brushed off), so that can't be the real problem.
(R) By the way, I read through a good part of it, and nowhere did I see my
contention answered, or rebutted.
(MB) Gee, another blanket denial without so much as one specific objection.
What a surprise...
QUESTION(S) REMAINING UNANSWERED
This is nothing but desperate and incoherent rambling.
- "At this point, we have another deliberate excision of the bulk of a response in
order to make a weak attack on a single sentence. The entire paragraph in
This is nothing but desperate and incoherent rambling. I would agree that
the existence of God is antithetical to naturalism, but how would the Big Bang
qualify? Isn't that theorized to be a purely natural process? Also, you'll
have to say which "creation of the universe" theory you are referring to.
Finally, whatever the "philosophy of evolution" might be, it makes no difference
as concerns whether or not the mechanics of evolution theory are right or
As to your "indirect" relationships, they are exclusively one-way. The Big
Bang, for example, leads to evolution and not the other way around. Therefore,
it is not logical to demand that evolution explain the Big Bang."
(R) Translation: "Since I don't seem to know much about the relationship of
Big Bang initial conditions and the probability of evolution, I'll just
make a derogatory blanket statement."
(MB) Since you just quoted one short sentence out of context from the much
larger response I initially posted (as shown above), your attempt to attack that
sentence is dishonest in addition to being pathetically incorrect. Explain to
me exactly what is the relationship of Big Bang initial conditions to the
probability of evolution. That should be good for a few chuckles. Then, you
might get around to addressing what you blew off the first time.
No, I expect that you will actually start to deliver up some of this
so-called "evidence of the creation model". In an earlier comment, you said
that you didn't own any Creationist books. Now, you say you have a whole
library of them. Which is the true story?
(R) I said I have a whole library of Books that "support" the Creation model.
Not the "Creationist" model.
(MB) What's the difference? If you believe in Creation, aren't you a
Creationist? No matter how either of us wishes to label those books, if you
really have them, why can't you present any of the supporting evidence for
Creation that you say is contained within them? Until that happens, not only is
the existence of any such evidence in doubt, but so is the claimed state of your
(R) After reading books like "Scientists
Confront Creationism," my understanding of Creation is all the more
(MB) How? That book has not one single word in it that can be shown to be
support for Creationism. How, then, can it possibly strengthen your faith?
Please provide details.
(R) I use books that try to disprove Creation as my source of
factual support for it. I use their deviations as springboards for
(MB) Again, how is this possible? This is akin to using James Randi's
refutations of Uri Geller's "powers" as "evidence" that Geller actually has
those powers. Clearly, that is a futile and illogical effort.
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