Category: "Debunking"

The Daily Creationism the third

Well I stumbled across my old friend, TheDailyCreationism. On a new website, again claiming to do daily updates but failing to do regular posts. Quite disappointing I have to say as I'd love to read a creationist blog that is well, up to date with fresh arguments not those stale things from a hundred years ago.

Anyway one of the posts on this blog featured Mr Kent Hovind's $250,000 offer. He presents it like James Randi presents the $1 million paranormal challenge, prove evolution and you get $250,000. Simple right?

Wrong. Look how this whack job defines evolution.

1) Brought time, space, and matter into existence from nothing.
2) Organized that matter into the galaxies, stars, and at least nine planets around the sun. (This process is often referred to as cosmic evolution.)
3) Created the life that exists on at least one of those planets from nonliving matter (chemical evolution).
4) Caused the living creatures to be capable of and interested in reproducing themselves.
5) Caused that first life form to spontaneously diversify into different forms of living things, such as the plants and animals on the earth today (biological evolution).

So yes only the fifth one has anything to do with evolution. This is how it falls down and becomes improvable:

Prove beyond reasonable doubt that the process of evolution [...] is the only possible way the observed phenomena could have come into existence.

Hmmmmm OK, oh wait, there's more, now he redefines evolution to mean:

When I use the word evolution, [...] I am referring to the general theory of evolution which believes these five major events took place without God:

1) Time, space, and matter came into existence by themselves.
2) Planets and stars formed from space dust.
3) Matter created life by itself.
4) Early life-forms learned to reproduce themselves.
5) Major changes occurred between these diverse life forms (i.e., fish changed to amphibians, amphibians changed to reptiles, and reptiles changed to birds or mammals).

So in effect, he is requiring you to disprove the existence of god. This isn’t possible, as you can’t disprove a negative. A comparable analogy would be me putting forward the following statement.

The Invisible Pink Unicorn created the universe ten minutes ago, and gave everybody false memories of events, and planted evidence of events that happened before the creation to give the impression that the universe is 13.7 billion years old. Disprove this and I will give you $250,000.

Or disprove the existence of Zeus, Apollo, and the Flying Spaghetti Monster and I'll give you $250,000.

Obviously it is not possible, Mr Kent Hovind's offer is junk. He's not asking somebody to prove evolution, he's asking somebody to disprove god.

Blinded by faith (literally)

Jesus is well known for "curing" the blind, in this case the irony is overwhelming when a christian goes blind while searching for the Virgin Mary in the Sun.

Amal Nassif believed 17-year-old Francesca Zackey when she said the Virgin Mary would appear if Nassif gazed into the sun.

Now 37-year-old Nassif, a devout Catholic, may be blind for life.

She went to Zackey - the Benoni girl who claims to have repeatedly seen the mother of Jesus - to receive a blessing.

Now she says at least four other people also damaged their eyes after being told "the lady" would spin the sun and confirm her presence to her believers.

[...]

Meanwhile, at her home, Zackey performed several "spiritual healings" and insisted thousands of people around the world had looked into the sun to confirm Mary's presence.

Her mother Bridgette said she looked into the sun each and every day.

The teenager has started a prayer group and is launching a youth group - a demand she says that Mary made on one of her appearances.

Apparently the Virgin Mary failed to tell Zackey that looking at the Sun can cause blindness in any of her visions. I'd like to see criminal charges brought against Zackey.

Full article here.

Bogosity, debunking creationism

I stumbled upon this guy's YouTube videos thanks to Phil Plait. Here he is taking on a few creationist claims, mainly from the damn evolution vs. creationism video that's been floating around for ages on many internet video websites, it's the one with the annoying host, with far too much money wasted on flashy graphics, yes that one, the one set in studio, made up to look like a court room.

Great stuff, he says completely bogus exactly like me. He's also done an episode on astrology (another favourite topic of mine) and the Moon hoax.

Is it me or does his bogosity machine look like a Game Boy?

Hilarious atheist nightmare videos debunked

I know I've posted the banana one up on Portal Forums, but I'd thought I'd cover it again here, as well as a new video. Simply because they're so dumb, you couldn't be any dumber if you tried. This is, frankly, in my opinion the finest work "creation science" has ever done, they moved into "creation comedy" so seamlessly. It is disappointing that some people have taken these seriously and have used them to re-enforce their beliefs, I look forward to a world where people, all people, will be educated and intelligent enough to laugh at how ridiculous these guys are.

The Atheist's Nightmare: The Banana.

There's one small problem with this argument. It assumes that god created the banana in its present form. Guess what? He didn't. We created the banana over the last ten thousand years. God's wild banana looks something like this:

Musa maclayi (banana)

In fact this proves evolution. We changed that thing into the bananas we eat today. Like almost everything else connected with agriculture, we produced the species we have today, crops of all kinds, cows, pigs, you name it we've changed it. We selected which varieties could reproduce and which could not.

The banana and all domesticated species are proof that evolution works.

The Atheist's Nightmare: Peanut Butter.

There's one small problem with this argument too. It assumes the early Earth was a giant peanut butter jar. The early Earth was rich in hydrogen based gases, methane, ammonia, water vapour etc. A peanut butter jar is not the right conditions.

It also confuses evolution with spontaneous generation, nobody is saying you'll magically get something like an insect in there, it took the Earth four billion years to do that. Evolution explains why we have so many different species in the world, and how we get new species, evolution assumes you already have life. It doesn't deal with how life started, that's where abiogenesis comes in, and you don't start out with anything remotely resembling a modern single celled life form, something that took four billion years to evolve.

You start off with methane, hydrogen, ammonia, water vapour etc, a few sparks of lightning and you'll get amino acids, they self-assemble we've watched it happen in only a few hours. Amino acids go on to build proteins, nucleic acids form which can make copies of themselves and so on. Sure there is much more research to do, but all the bits are there and the number of gaps god has to hide in is progressively shrinking.

It shows the intellectual dishonesty of the creationists, they've made these points for decades and no matter how much evidence, no matter how many times they're told that evolution doesn't deal with the origin of life, or how many times they're told that a banana is a domesticated plant they just carry on parroting the same utterly nonsensical arguments because they need to keep the faithful inline.

"Evolution is a fact not a theory, it really happened" - Carl Sagan.

But it's "natural"

I was going through some of the comments posted by people on BBC News' thread on non-proven drugs (popularly known as alternative medicine) being available on the NHS.

Obviously they shouldn't be, NHS funds should only be spent on things that actually work. However certain aspects of society, like the Royal Family insist on promoting un-proven drugs. Un-proven drugs unlike clinically tested drugs have no evidence to show any effect, have not been tested for safety, for effects with other drugs, for the proper doses etc. They're just put on shelves untested and sold.

Anyway one comment stood out.

Dont forget that all chemical produced medicines have side effects and are addictive natural medicines have no side effects and are not addictive and work in a slow gentle way.

What a load of nonsense! All drugs are chemicals, everything is chemicals, "natural medicines" are drugs, they're chemicals too and they of course have side effects. Just off the top of my head:

Cyanide (produced by plants, bacteria etc). Side effects include death.
Digitalis (produced in plants like foxgloves). Side effects include heart failure.
Heroin (produced by opium poppies). Side effects include addition.
Uranium (produced by supernova). Side effects include death.
Arsenic (produced by supernova). Side effects include death.

I demand freedom of choice from the national health service that is my basic human right as per the charter to deny me that is a form od dictatorship

The NHS, being publically funded must make best use of the money the public give to it. Wasting it on unproven, and by unproven I don't mean studies haven't been done, they have been done and there is no effect, is a waste of the tax payers money, and indeed it would be responsible for the loss of life of a great many people, when that money could be spent on drugs and treatments that do actually work and save people's lives.

and dont forget the chinese have been using alternative medicines for thousands of years and they are doing ok thankyou

That's nice but they often used the drugs being sold today for different purposes than what they're currently sold for. So that's irrelevant.

Until the introduction of scientific medicine life expectancy worldwide was about 40-45 at the most. So for all those thousands of years those un-proven drugs had no effect on average life span. With the introduction of scientific medicines and treatments life expectancy is now around 75.

We are so lucky to have scientific medicine, most people throughout history have not been so fortunate. Don't throw it away and squander it with such utter nonsense I'd rather not have to break out the leeches again.

Science is a method of understanding, with science we can discover what actually works and what doesn't. Science should be applied to everything so we can stop wasting our time, and money with things that don't work. When drugs are found to have no effect they should no longer be sold, they shouldn't hide under the "natural" umbrella and fool people into thinking they're actually getting treatment when they're not.

New super paranormal alien rods discovered

Some of you may remember my entry a few months back, dealing with the ridiculous claims of some individuals that we're being visited by alien rods. Yes the article was satire, I am not disturbed like one of the comments seems to suggest.

A bit of background, back in the summer I went out and took some images of rods; in reality I knew they were just flies or other insects. A camera doesn't take an image in a single instant of time, typical day time exposures are 1/125th of a second, so very short, however flies fly very fast, so just like any moving object they'll appear to blur over the image, which is why they appear as a line, usually with a regular pattern due to the position of the wings.

The Sun was at a fairly low angle and I could see insects at the bottom of my garden go shooting past, well illuminated by the Sun, perfect conditions for catching rods insects on camera.

If they're at the right distance to be in focus you'll get the classical rod object in your photo, some of my images show the orb which ghost hunters tell people is actually a ghost; this is because the insect (or dust, seeds or dozens of other things that can float around in the air) isn't at the right focus and just appears as a fuzzy blob.

Anyway back in September I was out photographing Jupiter and the Moon and I noticed there were a couple of moths flying around in the garden, so I decided to create an image of a super-rod. I turned on our light and sure enough a moth came over to it, I pointed the camera and left the shutter open for 4 seconds, to give the moth plenty of time to fly all over the image.

This is the result:

New super paranormal alien rod

I proudly present my new discovery of a super paranormal alien hyper ghost rod moth.

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