Upsets in Space

first_imgThree different astronomy teams have announced findings that upset long-held beliefs.  What does this portend about the confidence we can have in other theories?Galaxy growth: direct challenge:  “Galaxies are thought to develop by the gravitational attraction between and merger of smaller ‘sub-galaxies’, a process that standard cosmological ideas suggest should be ongoing,” announced the Royal Astronomical Society.  “But new data from a team of scientists from Liverpool John Moores University directly challenges this idea, suggesting that the growth of some of the most massive objects stopped 7 billion years ago when the Universe was half its present age.”    How serious is this claim?  “The lack of growth of the most massive galaxies is a major challenge to current models of the formation and evolution of large scale structure in the Universe,” commented Claire Burke, team member.  “Our work suggests that cosmologists appear to lack some of the crucial ingredients they need to understand how galaxies evolved from the distant past to the present day.”Star spin: poking holes:  Researchers at the University of Michigan have poked holes in a “century-old astronomical theory.”  The theory, called the von Zeipel law, “has been used for the better part of a century to predict the difference in surface gravity, brightness and temperature between a rapidly rotating star’s poles and its equator.”    Doctoral student Xiao Che and other astronomers on the team found that the data from Regulus don’t fit the theory.  “It is surprising to me that von Zeipel’s law has been adopted in astronomy for such a long time with so little solid observational evidence.”Impossible wet comet: shattering paradigms:  “Current thinking suggests that it is impossible to form liquid water inside of a comet,” states a press release from University of Arizona.  But lo and behold, Comet Wild-2 explored by the Stardust spacecraft found minerals that could only have formed in the presence of water.    This is a shattering find: “For the first time, scientists have found convincing evidence for the presence of liquid water in a comet, shattering the current paradigm that comets never get warm enough to melt the ice that makes up the bulk of their material.”  The press release was echoed on PhysOrg.When a paradigm gets shattered in one area of science, there can be ramifications for others, depending on how foundational it was.  The American philosopher Willard Quine noticed that when faced with potentially falsifying data, scientists often absorb the shocks into their “web of belief” without changing the web.There are several dynamics at work here.  One is that scientists enjoy finding flaws in earlier beliefs because it makes their research seem important.  They usually limit their hole-poking to small claims that can be absorbed by the web of belief without tearing it.  Another dynamic is that beliefs and “laws” like the von Zeipel law are often taken on faith – yes, even scientists have faith.  Nobody has the time to check out the validity of every claimed law, so they are assumed to be laws of “nature” rather than the sausage-type laws of legislature.    We see often that long-held beliefs in science are vulnerable to new evidence.  What’s next to go?  Darwinism?  Unlikely.  Darwinism’s web of belief is so paramount to the cultural world view, its supporters are ready with reinforcements any time falsifying evidence comes along.  All the original web is long gone.  It is now a steel framework of belief, protected behind a Berlin Wall with machine-gunners ready to mow down any creationists trying to cross the line.(Visited 16 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Diatoms: A Case Study in Darwinian Explanation

first_imgSome of the most beautiful, elegant, and vital organisms on earth demand a better explanation than ‘stuff happens over and over.’Your life depends on tiny glass architectures that were not even visible until the invention of the microscope, except in vast numbers in certain geological formations. These creatures are microscopic algae called diatoms. There are 100,000 species of diatoms, says an open-access paper in Nature Scientific Advances, distinguished by the exquisite glass ‘houses’ they build. The eight authors of this paper now have demonstrated that the glass structures called frustules, that fit together like two sides of a pill box, actually protect the cells’ DNA from damage by ultraviolet light.….Diatoms are single photosynthetic algal cells populating the oceans and waters around the globe. They generate a considerable fraction (20–30%) of all oxygen from photosynthesis, and 45% of total primary production of organic material in the sea. There are more than 100,000 species of diatoms, classified by the shape of the glass cage in which they live, and which they build during algal growth. These glass structures have accumulated for the last 100 million of years, and left rich deposits of nano/microstructured silicon oxide in the form of diatomaceous earth around the globe. Here we show that reflection of ultraviolet light by nanostructured silica can protect the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in the algal cells….We saved the opening and closing of that paragraph for consideration separately. So far, we have learned that these are absolutely vital to the health of the biosphere. We’ve read that there is a tremendous variety of them. We’ve learned they exist in vast numbers, forming thick deposits of diatomaceous earth, even though the date of 100 million Darwin Years we would dispute. New to this paper, we’ve seen that the glass has a function of protecting the cells’ DNA from UV light.Now, let’s supply the opening and closing:The evolutionary causes for generation of nano and microstructured silica by photosynthetic algae are not yet deciphered….  Here we show that reflection of ultraviolet light by nanostructured silica can protect the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in the algal cells, and that this may be an evolutionary cause for the formation of glass cages.Diatoms (Mark Armitage)Surely the eight Darwinian biologists can demonstrate the evolution, can’t they? An investigation of the paper says, ‘No.’ First, we learn that evolutionists have puzzled over this question for over a century since the fraud Haeckel illustrated some of them.Since the time of Ernst Haeckels elegant illustrations of diatoms in his Kunstformen der Natur, the evolutionary causes for the existence of the nanostructured glass cages, frustules, confining diatoms have been discussed. Special proteins, the silaffins and cingulins, extract silicates from water and build the frustules along a chitin-based scaffolding network in geometries specific for different species. The open structure allows material transport but with some limitations; therefore, filtering has been suggested as a reason for their existence. It has also been suggested that the frustule gives mechanical protection from predators; experiments have verified that mechanical strength can be improved.Some of the causes that have been suggested sound like intelligent design:In more recent times, it was noted that the somewhat periodic 10–100 nm patterns of holes, slits and ribs, are reminiscent of the geometries of photonic bandgap structures…. It has also been noted that the frustules may act as small spectrographs, focusing photons into specific volumes inside the diatom, possibly for absorption in chlorophyll and other chromophores.Others have hypothesized that the frustules are lenses, or act as photonic structures. These authors focus on a different view: “Protection from UVR may be a reason for the evolution of frustules.” If they had simply said, “A reason for the frustules,” nobody would likely dispute the suggestion. The scientists do, in fact, establish that the shells are good at filtering out UV light. But can the Stuff Happens Law suffice as a cause for them?Diatoms (Mark Armitage)In their Conclusion, the Darwinians add to the fallacy by saying that stuff happens repeatedly:We suggest that the redistribution of UVR due to SiO2 frustules is an important evolutionary cause of the presence and evolution of frustules in diatoms, by decreasing the rate of UVR-induced degradation of DNA inside the cells. This will improve the energy budget for the photosynthesizing cell, as well as reduce mutations. These weak effects may be sufficient to help explain the surprising number of different diatom species with varying geometries generated by convergent evolution.A basic course in philosophy of science should render such statements illogical. First of all, evolution is causeless, so “evolutionary cause” collapses to a sophoxymoronic phrase. Darwinian evolution is by definition unguided, aimless, and purposeless. One cannot look at existing function and say evolution “caused” it, any more than one can say an “accident caused” a golf ball to land in a hole without a golfer. Causation implies direction that is predictable. If evolution had been the predictable cause in the case of diatoms, then why didn’t all microbes, cells and plankton evolve glass houses?Also illogical is the notion that evolution caused diatoms to reduce mutations. In neo-Darwinian theory, mutation is the seed-plot of innovation. Reducing mutations would seal the fate of diatom evolutionary progress, leaving the first glass-protected species unchanged for millions of Darwin Years, not diversifying into 100,000 species. One would expect a single species locked in its un-evolving genome, or degrading and going extinct by other means of DNA decay besides UV light.Finally, “convergent evolution” (Darwin Flubber) is not a cause able to generate anything. It’s an empty after-the-fact phrase that assumes evolution (circular reasoning). And even if it were a ’cause’ able to generate new species, why would it generate varying geometries? The geometry of a diatom frustule has little or nothing to do with UV protection; otherwise, the best UV protecting geometry would flourish, and the others would go extinct. The 100,000 vibrant species demonstrate that almost any geometry is successful at UV protection.The authors, therefore, have explained nothing about diatom ‘evolution.’ They have only exposed the sad truth that vacuous ‘explanations’ can still get published in the world’s most prestigious journals.We’ve got to stop them. Darwinians are leading the public down the primrose path to stupidity, pretending to explain things by cause and effect, when actually embracing the opposite of causation (“stuff happens”). Their bad storytelling habit is bad for science in many ways. Here are two of them: (1) it misleads the public into thinking that Darwinism ‘explains’ everything in nature, when it explains it away with hot air, and worse (2), it distracts attention from the really important aspects of diatoms: the exquisite beauty, wonder, and variety of some of God’s most elegant creations that not only serve the biosphere but showcase His glory and creative genius. We’ll keep quoting Romans 1:19-22 till these pseudoscientists see their reflections in its mirror: For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools….There’s causation and explanation for you. (Visited 1,008 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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U.P. Assembly passes UPCOC Bill, Oppn. dubs it ‘black law’

first_imgThe Uttar Pradesh Assembly on Thursday passed the stringent Uttar Pradesh Control of Organised Crimes (UPCOC) Bill, 2017, aimed at curbing organised crime and terror, by voice vote after the Opposition members staged a walkout alleging that it was a “draconian” legislation.A united Opposition expressed apprehension that the UPCOC Bill could be misused against political adversaries and the press and demanded that it be sent to the select committee of the House for scrutiny. The Bill was tabled by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to enact a law on the lines of the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA). It entails stern punishment for those trying to dislodge the government forcibly or violently. The Opposition members were of the view that there was no need for such a legislation as there were sufficient provisions in the IPC and the CrPC. They called it a “black law”. The Bill is likely to be taken up on Friday in the Legislative Council where the ruling BJP does not enjoy majority. Initiating the debate, the Chief Minister assured the members against any possible misuse of the proposed law.‘Security without bias’ “Ever since the day the draft of the Bill was approved by the Cabinet, I have noticed that the Opposition parties are against it. I can give the guarantee that the BJP has never misused any law and will never do so. We have come to bring development and give security without any bias,” he said. The Chief Minister compared the Bill with similar laws in Maharashtra and Karnataka and said it will create terror in the minds of those who have made “crime a trade”. Seeking the Opposition’s backing for the Bill, he cited its salient features and said it was “unfortunate that they wanted to support those who were indulging in organised crime by opposing the proposed law”. The Chief Minister said that another Bill is on the anvil through which about 20,000 political cases will come to an end.Earlier attempt Tarring the Bill as a “black law” and an “undeclared emergency”, Leader of the Opposition Ram Govind Chaudhary referred to an earlier attempt by the then Mayawati government in 2007 which had got a similar Bill passed but it failed to get presidential assent.Mr. Chaudhary even read the previous speeches of BJP leaders Hukum Singh, now an MP, and MLA Suresh Khanna, who is the Parliamentary Affairs Minister, and stressed that both had opposed the measure expressing fear that it will be used against the Opposition parties.“All rights have been given to the administration and to the police in the Bill. The government which had promised to establish Ram Rajya is making provision for capital punishment,” he said and stressed that the basic ethos of the Constitution are that no innocent should be punished. “I request you against creating a “Bhasmasur” (self-destructive demon)… having the feeling of autocracy in a democracy is not good,” Mr. Chaudhary said. Lalji Verma and Sukhdev Rajbhar of BSP, SP leader Azam Khan and Ajay Kumar Lallu (Congress) alleged that the Bill has been brought to crush the voice of politicians, farmers, social workers and journalists and is against the constitutional right of freedom of expression.last_img read more

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