AS vs eyewitness experience, “non-testimonial” evidence and the reasonableness of Ethical Theism

In a recent UD thread on evidence vs selectively hyperskeptical dismissal, AS has been challenging that “religious” belief [= theism as worldview, worked into way of life]  is ill founded, lacks evidence beyond testimonials, and the like. (Such is not new, already at UD I have had occasion to rebut his blanket dismissals of religious […]

Parallel universe on temporary hold

Hey, not much religion news today, as the new atheists must be on vacay or something. But our old fave Peter Woit is back, and offers this re discovering the parallel universe: The plan has been to inject a beam into the LHC this week, leading to a news item in the UK Daily Express […]

Failure of the “compensation argument” and implausibility of evolution

Granville Sewell and Daniel Styer have a thing in common: both wrote an article with the same title “Entropy and evolution”. But they reach opposite conclusions on a fundamental question: Styer says that the evolutionist “compensation argument” (henceforth “ECA”) is ok, Sewell says it isn’t. Here I briefly explain why I fully agree with Granville. […]

How Darwin gave us post-modernism

Here, Excerpt. from Nancy Pearcey’s Finding Truth: 5 Principles for Unmasking Atheism, Secularism, and Other God Substitutes:, When postmodern thought was applied to literary theory, it gave rise to an offshoot called deconstructionism. Recall that for postmodernism, individuals are constituted by their membership within a community. The implication is that individuals do not really have […]

Another non-Darwinian biologist we need to know about: Mae-Wan Ho

Says there is no boundary between genetics and epigenetics Interviewed by Suzan Mazur: Suzan Mazur: Over the last few decades there have been several movements regarding deficiencies of the Modern Synthesis. “The Osaka Group” was one of them, “theThe Altenberg 16” another, and now “The Third Way of Evolution” — otherwise known as “the Oxford […]

Stephen Hawking Should Visit Elfland

Some people say that Stephen Hawking is the smartest man in the world, and doubtless he is a brilliant physicist. But when it comes to metaphysics he has said some silly things. Consider his famous universe-from-nothing quote: “Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing.” Read […]

Darwin and Wallace: “Even if you’re a Victorian gentleman, you want to be first”

In a review of Wallace, Darwin, and the Origin of Species, from the Weekly Standard, we read: In this deeply absorbing book, James T. Costa seeks to establish Alfred Russel Wallace as the fully vested co-creator of what he feels we should once again call the “Darwin-Wallace Theory” of evolution by natural selection. That Wallace had […]

Bumblebee research casts doubt on integrity of science?

From New Scientist: Do neonicotinoid pesticides kill bumblebees? We still don’t know, but the latest research is alarming – and casts doubt on the integrity of science. … “This is a scandal,” said Matt Shardlow of the charity Buglife, which has campaigned on the issue. “The scientific process appears to have been deliberately manipulated to […]

Newly discovered lobster-like predator half a billion years old

From ScienceDaily: The study presents evidence that Yawunik was capable of moving its frontal appendages backward and forward, spreading them out during an attack and then retracting them under its body when swimming. Coupled with the long, sensing whip-like flagella extending from the tip of the claws, this makes the frontal appendages of the animal […]

Denis Noble on physiology “rocking” evolutionary biology

In case you didn’t know it was free, here’s Denis Noble: The ‘Modern Synthesis’ (Neo-Darwinism) is a mid-20th century gene-centric view of evolution, based on random mutations accumulating to produce gradual change through natural selection. Any role of physiological function in influencing genetic inheritance was excluded. The organism became a mere carrier of the real […]

Adam and Eve existed, says the Guardian. But never met.

From the Guardian: Humans are evolving more rapidly than previously thought, according to the largest ever genetics study of a single population. Scientists reached the conclusion after showing that almost every man alive can trace his origins to one common male ancestor who lived about 250,000 years ago. The discovery that so-called “genetic Adam”, lived […]

Rob Sheldon tries to help Darwin follower get over ENCODE findings

PZ Myers whiffles here re little junk DNA. (The world yawns and marches on.) Rob Sheldon responds, Thomas Kuhn gave a name to this phenomenon, he called it a “paradigm shift”. And it is essentially unresolvable for reasons that haven’t changed in 100 years, which is why I’m partial to Max Planck’s version: “Science progresses […]

Free speech shouldn’t need defending

Spread the news. From News’ compatriot Mark Steyn: Free speech shouldn’t need “defending”. It’s the shut-uppers who should be on the defensive, who should be made to explain why only their side of the argument can be heard. Before Mann launched his suit, I was broadly familiar with the corruption of the scientific process that […]

Okay, we promise to get back to serious science coverage soon, but

… can’t resist this first – evolution of metabolizing booze: From The Scientist: How we are able to metabolize booze: A mutation in an ethanol-metabolizing enzyme arose around the time that arboreal primates shifted to a more terrestrial lifestyle, perhaps as an adaptation to eating fermented fruit. Why are humans so attracted to alcohol, and […]

Darwin’s defender PZ Myers remains unhappy with the ENCODE findings

Not much “junk DNA.” From him: Dan Graur has snarled at the authors of a paper defending ENCODE. How could I then resist? I read the offending paper, and I have to say something that will weaken my own reputation as a snarling attack dog myself: it does make a few good points. But it’s […]

Cornell University now happy to front terror?

Well, that’s way better than fronting design in nature, right? Remember the conference on the source of biological information at Cornell? Where the papers couldn’t be published at first , due to a publisher’s disgraceful retreat in the face of a campaign by Darwin’s rags and tatters? The Cornell conference was most enlightening. And so is […]

Human evolution: Well, this IS a new take on “genetically modified organisms” (GMOs)

From the Economist: Alastair Crisp and Chiara Boschetti of Cambridge University, and their colleagues, have been investigating the matter. Their results, just published in Genome Biology, suggest human beings have at least 145 genes picked up from other species by their forebears. Admittedly, that is less than 1% of the 20,000 or so humans have […]

Cosmologists engage in natural philosophy without admitting it?

 Except in this case?: Philosopher of science Massimo Pigliucci (defender of falsifiability*) offers a thoughtful review of The Singular Universe and the Reality of Time by by Roberto Mangabeira Unger and Lee Smolin: Before we get to what the authors set out to accomplish, it is worth discussing a more basic premise of the book: […]

Physicist Rob Sheldon’s somewhat different take on New York Times’ science writing

Yesterday, we asked, “Should the dying Gray Lady stop writing about science?” That got started because the Real Clear Science founding editor wondered about it, based on recent coverage he deems faulty. (It would be no surprise to us.*) Anyway, Sheldon here: Fascinating blog on NYT! It is exactly what Paul Johnson said would happen […]

Rupert Sheldrake talks about herd mentality in science

Sheldrake, author of Science Set Free, is a Cambridge-trained biochemist and plant physiologist, is a prominent public intellectual critical of the authoritarianism and closed-mindedness that he finds increasingly typical of mainstream science. But we will let him tell it to philosopher James Barham here: The Best Schools: On p. 93 of your new book, Science […]

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