Science & Faith

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Posted 3/6/12 at 11:00 PM | Mike Keas

Human Uniqueness vs. Modern Dethronement Ideology: Part 3 (Human Speech and Reason)

Noam Chomsky: Defender of Human Uniqueness

Today I conclude my series of thoughts about Tom Bethell's Washington Times essay Why Humans are Unique. Bethell writes:

Efforts to get chimpanzees to talk have produced nothing but disappointment. Talking logically is something that small children suddenly do and animals never learn. Our mastery of complex language may be the pre-eminent demonstration that humans are exceptional.

The leading supporter of our linguistic uniqueness is Noam Chomsky of Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Children have an innate knowledge of a basic grammatical structure common to all human languages, Mr. Chomsky said. It allows them to produce an infinite number of sentences, including ones that no one ever previously uttered. They learn language so quickly that only an innate capacity can explain it. FULL POST

Posted 3/3/12 at 10:27 PM | Mike Keas

Human Uniqueness vs. Modern Dethronement Ideology: Part 2 (A Space Odyssey)

2001: A Space Odyssey
An Ape-like Creature Allegedly Evolving Toward Humanity

Today I continue my series of thoughts (here is part 1) about Tom Bethell's Washington Times essay Why Humans are Unique. Bethell writes:

One of the great dogmas of our age is that there is nothing unusual about the human race. We are told that only in degree do we differ from the apes. The belief that nature and human nature form a continuum came to prominence with Charles Darwin, whose avowed aim was to bring man and nature "under one point of view."

Yet the evidence for that continuum is still missing--despite a search that has persisted for over a century. If humans are not exceptional, intelligence at the human level should be widespread and easily detected. But we are still looking. We have still not been able to find any trace of the intelligence that children display by the age of 3. FULL POST

Posted 3/3/12 at 9:51 AM | Mike Keas

Human Uniqueness vs. Modern Dethronement Ideology

NASA

Tom Bethell prods us to consider Why Humans are Unique in The Washington Times this week. I shall offer my own thoughts about parts of his pithy essay. Bethell writes:

Almost daily there are new reports of distant planets [for example, see my last CP blog on the latest, greatest of these planets]. They may outnumber the 100 billion stars in our galaxy. What we're looking for, of course, is extraterrestrial intelligence, not just orbiting rocks. But nothing has been found. The silence in outer space "is maddening," Charles Krauthammer has written. It "makes no sense."
...
Fifty years ago, a mathematical exercise called the Drake Equation posited that extraterrestrial civilizations should be numerous. Carl Sagan thought there might be a million advanced civilizations in our own galaxy. But the numbers in the Drake Equation were guesses, and they were skewed by Sagan himself. They deliberately boosted the odds that life can arise by chance from non-life. As far as we know, life has only appeared here, and perhaps not by chance. FULL POST

Posted 2/23/12 at 9:44 AM | Mike Keas

New Climategate-Heartland Scandal: How a Darwin-Lobbying Group is Connected

This week a new Climategate scandal has surfaced, and the leading Darwin-only educational advocacy group (the National Center for Science Education) has been tarnished by the affair. First, a little background from January 2012 before we focus on this week's blowout.

The politically correct viewpoint of catastrophic anthropogenic (human-induced) global warming (CAGW) received a boost on January 16th when the National Center for Science Education (NSCE), known for its Darwin-only educational advocacy in the USA, announced "the launch of its new initiative aimed at defending the teaching of climate change." This was a political, not evidential, boost for CAGW. Evidence for CAGW continues to erode in the wake of new studies and the unveiling of Climategate, which demonstrated how climate alarmists systematically suppressed data supportive of CAGW skepticism.

On January 18, 2012 the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation posted an important blog critiquing the expansion of the NSCE's advocacy work form "Darwin-only" to "CAGW-only" public education. Cornwall authors Douglas Gregory and E. Calvin Beisner clearly explained how these two issues share certain ideological traits. In the executive summary of this earlier lengthy Cornwall report, E. Calvin Beisner and his associates make this important point about the naturalistic and anti-theistic viewpoints that underwrite much of the CAGW movement. FULL POST

Posted 2/15/12 at 10:48 PM | Mike Keas

Peppered Moths: Evidence for Evolution or Trivial Change?

This dark peppered moth stands out against a light background.

Biologist Jonathan Wells has penned an important update to the discussion over the legitimacy of using the peppered moth story in biology textbooks to provide evidence for Darwinian evolution. He writes:

Before the industrial revolution, most peppered moths in England were light-colored; but after tree trunks around cities were darkened by pollution, a dark-colored ... variety became much more common.... In the 1950s, British physician Bernard Kettlewell performed some experiments that seemed to show that the proportion of ... [dark] moths had increased because they were better camouflaged on darkened tree trunks and thus less likely to be eaten by predator

Posted 2/8/12 at 11:00 PM | Mike Keas

Darwin's Birthday to be Celebrated in Church this Sunday: Liberal Christianity Supports Darwinism

University of Oklahoma History of Science Collections

What will be the focus of attention in your church this Sunday? For many liberal churches and synagogues, Charles Darwin will have his day of glory in services this weekend. Sunday February 12, Darwin's birthday, is the centerpiece of the 2012 "Evolution Weekend" event invented by The Clergy Letter Project.

Here is how the National Center for Science Education (NCSE), the leading Darwin-only educational advocacy organization, advertises the annual "Evolution Weekend" and it host organization, The Clergy Letter Project:

The brainchild of Michael Zimmerman, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University, the Clergy Letter Project was founded in 2004; its activities include a similar letter for Christian clergy, currently endorsed by over 11,000 members [now 13,000] of the clergy across the country and around the world; a pool of scientists willing to work with clergy on promoting scientific literacy; a collection of sermons, articles, readings, and websites relevant to the Clergy Letter Project's goals; and Evolution Weekend (formerly Evolution Sunday), in which religious leaders are encouraged to discuss the compatibility of faith and science in their sermons, Sabbath or Sunday schools, and discussion groups, on or about Darwin's birthday.... FULL POST

Posted 2/4/12 at 9:04 PM | Mike Keas

Just Discovered: A Nearby Planet with Life-Friendly Traits. How Friendly?

Carnegie Instit. / UCSC
Artistic visualization of the newly discovered planet in the foreground. It orbits the sun that is brightest in the background.

Did God create life on planets in other distant places in the universe?  The Bible is silent on this topic. God could have done it if he wanted.  Scientists have been searching for "habitable" planets (those suitable for life) for over a decade, and the best candidate to date was announced this week.  I hate to dampen your ET enthusiasm, but this "best candidate" for another habitable planet has some major problems. Read why below.

Welcome to my new blog: Science & Faith.  This is my first post.  Tell your friends and watch for future "Science & Faith" blogs here at CP.

Two days ago Space.com writer Denise Chow reported the discovery of a planet called GJ 667Cc, which orbits a star located 22 light years from us. There are only about 100 stars closer to us than this star that hosts GJ 667Cc. What is noteworthy about this discovery according to Ms. Chow and many others reporting on this newest addition to the 700 documented planets that exist outside our own solar system? Chow writes: FULL POST

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