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Darwinists and evolutionists saving face on basic science questions

Recall the series of threads that was sparked by this comment by a Darwinist:

if you have 500 flips of a fair coin that all come up heads, given your qualification (“fair coin”), that is outcome is perfectly consistent with fair
coins,

a 22 sigma event is consistent with fair coins

which was another example of SSDD where I asked a Darwinist if a space shuttle is an example of intelligent design, and he said, “No!”.

Barry highlighted some other comments in the wake of their fiascos:

Jerad’s DDS causes him to succumb to miller’s mendacity

and

Jerad and Neil Ricker Double Down.

In their determination to disagree with IDists on every point, even basic questions, they end up saying stupid things, and after saying them, they say even stupider things to save face.

Here is the latest. In a discussion about the work of Paul Giem, a Darwin defender chimes in and says if the Sun weren’t present:

Earth will revolve around Venus

Earth will become Venus’s satellite

Comment 479832, Saluting Dr. Paul Giem

All the Darwinsits at UD were unwilling to correct this error in basic science. Why is that? I’m now giving them the chance to do so.

Here are some facts, Earth has more mass than Venus:

Venus compared to Earth

Mass of Earth: 5.9736×10^24kg
Mass of Venus: 4.868 x10^24 kg

In a 2-body system, the more massive body will not orbit the less massive body. We don’t say the massive Earth will orbit the less massive satellite!

Will any Darwinists come forward and dispute one of their own who made a stupid statement like:

Earth will become Venus’s satellite

The reason the discussion about 500 fair coins and space shuttles was instructive was that it illustrated the biased behavior of one side on even basic questions. If they cannot even concede a simple, obvious points, what hope is there that they will give ground on any other matter like evolution or the origin of life? So, calling all Dariwnists, evolutionists, and anti-IDists out there. Do you agree with this statement:

Earth will become Venus’s satellite

Here is your chance to defend science from falsehood. Do you want school kids believing such statements? Are you going to defend it or argue against it?

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37 Responses to Darwinists and evolutionists saving face on basic science questions

  1. … if you have 500 flips of a fair coin that all come up heads, given your qualification (“fair coin”), that is outcome is perfectly consistent with fair
    coins, …

    I wonder why this is repeatedly brought up. “Consistent with” is a very weak assertion. Nobody would predict 500 flips all coming up heads, and people would be wondering if the coin is really fair. Nevertheless, that outcome is consistent with the assumption that the coin is fair.

    All the Darwinsits at UD were unwilling to correct this error in basic science.

    It’s hard to say if this is a basic error. I would not say that the earth would become a venus satellite. With two bodies of roughly comparable mass, I would not call either a satellite of the other. But I haven’t checked whether “satellite” has a precise enough definition to either allow this or to rule it out.

    Einstein taught us that there’s no such thing as absolute motion. Strictly speaking, the earth and the sun are hurtling through space with intertwining paths. Strictly speaking, neither is going around the other. Heliocentrism is a convenient shorthand way of talking about it, but it involves us deciding to use the sun as a convenient center of coordinates for the sake of discussion. That’s a good pragmatic choice, but that’s all it is.

  2. Another great essay Sal!

  3. Sal.

    This numberphile video might be interesting to you on how it can relate to this topic:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CfoKor05k1I

  4. Has anybody bothered to calculate roughly how fast the Earth would be traveling, by the time it reached Venus’ orbit, if it started at its present orbital radius with zero orbital speed and fell toward the Sun under the Sun’s gravitational force?

  5. H’mm: In a two body case we would get orbits around the common barycentre, as with double-stars. With Earth heavier, it would be nearer earth. But the SS is a multi-body system so absent Sol somehow, things would be quite complex. KF

  6. C: use the difference in grav PE in the field, as a first approx. The speed should would come from the kinetic energy expression. KF

  7. C: use the difference in grav PE in the field, as a first approx. The speed should would come from the kinetic energy expression. KF

    Since I have a CAS at hand, I just set up a differential equation and solved it.

    I was wondering if anybody else bothered to crunch the numbers.

  8. Obviously Earth would bypass Venus without hardly slowing down and would plunge into the Sun. The context of this example was, “what if God created the Earth ex nihilo and put it into place.” without any relative velocity. The commenter assumed it would be pulled toward the Sun and get caught by Venus. But why would it be caught by Venus? That’s like two bullets hitting each other after being fired by opposing gunmen. Venus could be on the opposite side of the sun when Earth passes through its orbit.

  9. Rickert: Einstein taught us that there’s no such thing as absolute motion.

    Having read 3 biographies of Einstein (one of them twice) I swear I can’t remember this lesson. I took a one semester course in modern physics too.

    Could be because it ain’t necessarily so. A spinning ballerina has no particular claim to be at rest while the universe spins. What if another ballerina tried to claim a different angular velocity for the universe at the same instant.

  10. Collin. The originator of this scenario made a gross & arbitrary assumptions The argument is truly moot. At this stage, it’s a red herring, imo, to argue about a physics puzzle. Outside of just being cerebral about the physics of gravitation and masses, I don’t see the point.. other than maybe Sal’s point that conceding to a faulty argument isn’t in the forte’ of most Darwinists. But I’m not even sure what selvaRajan’s position is on Darwinism.

  11. Collin @8 wrote: “The commenter assumed…”

    Who is “the commenter” to whom you are referring?

    .

    JGuy@10 wrote: “The originator of this scenario…”

    Who is “the originator” to whom you are referring?

  12. KF:

    H’mm: In a two body case we would get orbits around the common barycentre, as with double-stars.

    Seems I’m not the only one who can google!

  13. groovamos @9 wrote:

    Rickert: Einstein taught us that there’s no such thing as absolute motion.

    Having read 3 biographies of Einstein (one of them twice) I swear I can’t remember this lesson. I took a one semester course in modern physics too.

    Could be because it ain’t necessarily so.

    What if another ballerina tried to claim a different angular velocity for the universe at the same instant.

    Weird. You say Rickert is wrong when he says Einstein taught us that there’s no such thing as absolute motion, then you give an example that illustrates there is no such thing as absolute motion.

    Non sequitur.

    What if another ballerina tried to claim a different angular velocity for the universe at the same instant.

    They’d both be right, each in her own reference frame. There’s no contradiction.

  14. Cantor @ 11

    selvaRajan at this post (also linked in the OP):

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-479832

  15. JGuy @14 wrote:

    Cantor @ 11

    selvaRajan at this post (also linked in the OP):

    http://www.uncommondescent.com…..ent-479832

    Well I’m talking about this post:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-479870

    JGuy @10 wrote:

    At this stage, it’s a red herring, imo, to argue about a physics puzzle. Outside of just being cerebral about the physics of gravitation and masses, I don’t see the point..

    The point is this: A minute or two doing the physics is more relevant than your hunches and intuition.

  16. 64 selvaRajan November 15, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-479870

  17. Scordova,

    Don’t worry too much about it. I agree that in general it is better form to admit errors one makes oneself, and to disagree (politely) with apparent errors made by one’s own side. That seems a better way to search for truth.

    But we are dealing with people who are afraid to show weakness, as they assume that human nature is Darwinian and they will be torn to shreds if they show weakness, and you seem to be expecting them to be good Christian gentlemen (and ladies) and admit when they make mistakes, or when others on their side make mistakes. You may even expect them to not immediately go on the offensive after an admission (“Well, yes, I/he/she made a mistake, but you made a mistake [or three mistakes] that dwarfs ours.”). They also don’t trust us (we’re just lying for Jesus, and in fact are as Darwinian as they are), and thus will give us no ammunition to hit them back with. So don’t be surprised at their actions. (BTW, that means that we have the obligation to acknowledge our errors even if they don’t. That means we will probably have to “fight” asymmetrical “warfare”. Sorry, we’re stuck with it if we are Christian.)

    There may be even more to it. For some debating styles the admission that the other side is right on anything is viewed as conceding a point, which should never be done. Never mind that winning the debate on such points has little or nothing to do with the rightness of one’s position, but rather impinges on a narrow definition of debating skills.

    In this particular case, usually, Charon (nearly the size of Pluto) is said to orbit Pluto, as Pluto is the larger, even though technically they both orbit their common center of mass, which is closer to Pluto than Charon. So I would be cautious about saying that Venus would orbit Earth, as it is true only in a colloquial way, but I would definitely not say that either Earth will revolve around Venus, or that Earth will become Venus’s satellite, if the two planets came close enough to form an orbiting pair. If one is pushed to pick a primary partner in this particular orbital dance, it would be Earth. SelvaRajan was wrong.

    PS. Kudos to Neil Rickert, who admitted that “I would not say that the earth would become a venus satellite.” When people do the right thing against what would appear to be their side’s interests, they deserve credit. It would be interesting to know if Neil is Christian.

  18. Dr.Paul Giem,
    Would you then say Venus will revolve around Earth?
    Let’s debate convection currents now.
    Let’s take Sun creation on day 4.The Sun will start heating up Fresh Earth after about 8 minutes of creation(calculated using speed of light). One side of Earth is not facing Sun. The surface facing sun will heat up variably. Initially, there will be small eddies, slowly, over a period of 5 hours, we will have wind system touching speed of smaller cyclones, as the cooler air from the dark side flows into this system (we assume the Earth is spinning- else we won’t have day/night),there will be wind system of medium cyclones and tornados, the more wind systems form, the more pressure differentials forms and we will have Earth exploding with cyclones and tornedos, trees ripping apart and flying around, seas welling up and columns jetting from water bodies. We need weeks for the mayhem to settle down and pressure and temperature differentials to ease wind speed. Putting any form of life into such a system on the very next day is questionable.
    At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what we believe in or what our views are, what we have to understand is

    Every body is entitled to his own views but everyone is not entitled to have his own facts!

    As of today, nobody has all the facts(we can’t account for dark energy, weak gravity force when compared to other 3 fundamental forces.We all have shades of truth, some stronger than YECs. You live in your own spell.Thank you. Hope this post is not considered Spam.

  19. Einstein taught us that there’s no such thing as absolute motion.

    But that does not preclude relative motion. Further when there is gravity, one can construct acceleration vectors that point in certain directions based on gravity.

    For example, Earth’s gravity causes objects like us to accelerate toward the Earth’s center.

    When an object orbits another object, it has a centripetal acceleration toward the center or close to the center of the object it is orbiting. Hence, we naturally say “the Earth orbits the sun, and man-made satellites orbit the Earth.”

    Strictly speaking, the earth and the sun are hurtling through space with intertwining paths. Strictly speaking, neither is going around the other.

    The Earth is centripetally accelerating toward the sun because of gravity (and General Relativity relates gravity and acceleration), so it is proper to say one (the Earth) is going around the other (the Sun). The Earth’s acceleration vector is toward the center of the sun, the sun’s acceleration vector is not toward the Earth. Helio centrism isn’t a function merely of a convenient coordinate system, it is motivated by where the acceleration vectors due to gravity are pointing. These vectors point far more to the sun, not the Earth, hence the Earth orbits the Sun.

    In light of this, Earth will not orbit Venus, and given that the two are close in mass, we probably would not say either will orbit the other.

    Despite this, selvaRajan is unwilling so far to retract his claim that Earth will orbit Venus. He is more interested right now in saving face than promoting truth.

  20. Nevertheless, that outcome is consistent with the assumption that the coin is fair.

    No it is not, unless you define consistent to be one of the possible outcomes, but then that is as vacuous a statement as “what is possible is possible”.

    The outcome is completely inconsistent with expectation. See:
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....z-critics/

    I bring these examples up to show the intense determination to save face be it an error or an extremely poor choice of words.

    And selvaRajan is still trying to save face. So much for where these debates are going…

  21. selvaRajan @ 18

    Would you then say Venus will revolve around Earth?

    This is insane. Please watch the videos I recommended to you earlier, and don’t just repeat the same stupid question.

    http://spaceplace.nasa.gov/barycenter/en/

    Ok, here’s one for you. The strength of the gravitational attraction between the Sun and the Moon is much greater than that between the Earth and the Moon. So why doesn’t the Sun strip off the Moon from its Earth orbit and send it plunging into the Sun?

    - Q

  22. Q –

    The gravitational force of earth-moon is greater than sun-moon, not sure if you intended to claim otherwise though. The distances are so vastly different – inverse square of force leaves exponentially weaker sun-moon force as distance between masses is maybe 400 times farther.

    - J

  23. The point of this essay is to illustrate the way many debates on the net go, especially about origins. Here we have a case someone is clearly wrong, and he won’t admit it.

    Further, here is a claim that is clearly unscientific, but where are the Darwinists pouncing all over it? The Darwinists claim they are out to defend science and truth, but when given the chance, they don’t even show up on a basic question. This illustrates the use of the “defense of science” banner when the real intent is persecution of certain metaphysical ideas they find disagreeable.

    No Darwinist or evolutionist or anti-IDist showed up to defend truth in this discussion save Neil, and even then it wasn’t with much vigor.

    This statement is scientifically false:

    Earth will become Venus’s satellite

    Yet these same Darwinists and evolutionists and anti-IDists will pounce on any claim an IDists makes that might even remotely seem wrong (but isn’t wrong) like:

    if coins are all heads they are sufficiently inconsistent with the Binomial Distribution for randomly tossed coins, hence we can reject the chance hypothesis.

    I said that, and what did the Darwinists say in response:

    if you have 500 flips of a fair coin that all come up heads, given your qualification (“fair coin”), that is outcome is perfectly consistent with fair
    coins,

    And I point out to selvaRajan that Earth has more mass than Venus. Yet he won’t retract his claim Earth will orbit Venus! Then Neil tries to defend it by claiming we could just have a different coordinate perspective — whereas, by that method we could all be geo centrists. No, there is a reason we say one body orbits another, and it has to do with the direction of gravitational acceleration.

    A body orbiting another is centripetally accelerating in the direction of gravitational acceleration. The direction of acceleration is toward the center of the more massive of the two bodies.

    Earth will not orbit Venus for that reason, and selvaRajan is just spewing spam and more red herrings to save face. That’s the way these debates go on the internet, and in the creation/evolution/ID debates. Saving face, reputations, and prevailing narratives are more important than the truth.

    The C14 issue is corroborated also by other lines of evidence:

    1. erosion rates would wipe out the geological column in a matter of millions of years

    2. biological materials would be racemized and depurinated by now, they wouldn’t last as long as claimed

    At the very least, even if the YECs are wrong, it’s premature to insist on the long ages of some of the fossils. Whether the universe is old is a separate question, but it seems to me the age of specific fossils is open to debate.

    But the evolution side will never be open to it. Look at how they are handling even basic questions and their determination to save face when a creationist points out their error. How much more will they resist truth in weightier matters like the age of specific fossils.

    Let’s say for the sake of argument life arose and evolved hundreds of millions of years ago. That doesn’t preclude the possibility that a dinosaur died recently according to the C14 dates, racemization, and depurination dating methods. But for Darwinsits to admit error in the dating of that dino — intolerable.

    Only in the cases like the Coalecanth, when the fossil is shown to be alive today, will Darwinists admit they were wrong to say it went extinct 105-60 million years ago.

    Otherwise, like selvaRajan, they’ll never admit error.

  24. SelvaRajan (#20),

    I already answered your question, “Would you then say Venus will revolve around Earth?“, in some detail in #18:

    In this particular case, usually, Charon (nearly the size of Pluto) is said to orbit Pluto, as Pluto is the larger, even though technically they both orbit their common center of mass, which is closer to Pluto than Charon. So I would be cautious about saying that Venus would orbit Earth, as it is true only in a colloquial way, but I would definitely not say that either Earth will revolve around Venus, or that Earth will become Venus’s satellite, if the two planets came close enough to form an orbiting pair. If one is pushed to pick a primary partner in this particular orbital dance, it would be Earth. SelvaRajan was wrong.

    Do you have problems with reading comprehension? Is perhaps English not your first language?

    I should perhaps make it clear that this would only happen if Venus and Earth had lateral movement relative to each other, and neither were close enough to the Sun to wind up colliding with the Sun before the orbit around their common center of gravity could be completed. As I said at
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....paul-giem/
    comment #95,

    On #58, you make one critical assumption that completely destroys your model. You say “The initial kinetic energy will be zero”, without any justification whatsoever. If the earth were created with a specified kinetic energy, and Venus were created 3 days later, along with the sun, there is nothing that would particularly prevent a creator (particularly an intelligent creator) from creating all of them with relative motion to keep them in orbit. I used to be YLC but not YEC, but I would never use this kind of argument against YEC. This is deliberately making one’s opponent’s model as bad as possible, and is basically creating a straw man.

    Please don’t dig yourself another hole by trying to insist that cyclones and tornadoes for weeks are the inevitable result of starting to heat the earth with sunlight. While we sometimes have tornadoes and cyclones now, there are days when none of that is happening, and there is no reason why an intelligent designer could not start out the atmosphere in relative peace and not have weeks of chaos before the system leveled out.

    There are reasons to argue against YEC, but that is not one.

  25. A spinning ballerina has no particular claim to be at rest while the universe spins. What if another ballerina tried to claim a different angular velocity for the universe at the same instant.

    Not according to General Relativity. A spinning ballerina’s body parts will experience centripetal acceleration toward the axis of spin.

    This can be confirmed by Relativistic effects such as detected by the Sagnac Interfermoter/Rotation Sensor — but that is overkill, she can feel herself spinning. General Relativity relates acceleration and gravity. Spinning creates centripetal acceleration toward the axis of spin.

  26. Otherwise, like selvaRajan, they’ll never admit error.

    Sal, You are the one who is trying to pull away from the original thread and putting selective quotes in isolation of the context (you know people will not read the whole original thread) so you can try and influence the outcome. I hope you don’t consider this as spam! I am not going to waste your or anybody’s time by arguing a non-issue. If any of the posters want to believe I was wrong, go ahead, I have nothing to lose. In fact all YECs can ignore the post @18 too.Thank you.

  27. A spinning ballerina has no particular claim to be at rest while the universe spins. What if another ballerina tried to claim a different angular velocity for the universe at the same instant.

    Alternatively, space ship designers considered creating “artificial gravity” by a spinning space station. The higher the angular velocity, the stronger the “artificial gravity”.

    See:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artificial_gravity

    The metric tensors in GR are different for bodies that are in a rotating frame versus a non-rotating frame.

    Hence, there seems to be a reference for bodies that are accelerating versus not accelerating, even though special relativity does not insist on an absolute frame of velocity reference, acceleration is another story.

    Special Relativity does not deal with accelerating frames relative to one another. General Relativity does.

  28. Earth will become Venus’s satellite

    selvaRajan,

    Do you still hold to that statement? :-)

    Whether you were talking Young Earth, Old Earth, middle aged Earth, as long as it’s an Earth more massive than Venus, it’s a false statement.

    Funny, you can’t admit your error. No one, but yourself is defending such a claim.

    This thread is for you. I want to illustrate to the UD readers the belligerence and determination to avoid admitting error and the determination to save face rather than promote truth. Your behavior so far illustrates this quite well. Keep it up in this thread if you wish, but please spare other threads at UD from such spam.

    Earth will become Venus’s satellite

    You still stand by that.:-)

  29. Sal,
    As I said,

    You are the one who is trying to pull away from the original thread and putting selective quotes in isolation of the context (you know people will not read the whole original thread) so you can try and influence the outcome

    I understand that you are a long time member of UD and so you have a lot to lose if people accept that you are wrong.You are trying your best to defend yourself, but why would you want me to accept what you quote without original context?
    I advise you to try out the approximate path using Mathematica. You could set up a Manipulate function an try various values in context of forces in Solar system.(Don’t ask me to do even that for you!)and to save you, I won’t respond to any other posts even if they bait me – posts like-”look he withdrew!”.

  30. AF: FYI, I first met the concept of mutual orbit of a barycentre in 6th form, between physics and the astronomy club. (In short, your implicit undertone has been read loud and clear.) And BTW, if earth were to be initially at rest and then falling in, Venus — in a faster orbit per Kepler’s Harmonic Law — would most likely simply deflect point of impact on Sol, the details being a three body problem if we ignore Mercury (as in, analytic solution unlikely) and Mars and Jupiter may have some influence too. It seems in the wider context there is a debate on YEC views, to which the obvious point is that if Earth were to be created 6 – 50 kYA or whatever, it would be created in orbit so the whole suggestion of it falling into the sun and supposedly then turning to orbit Venus is on a red herring intended to be led to a strawman soaked in oily ad hominems awaiting a spark of snide rhetoric. But along the way, the objector blundered — apparently not realising Earth is the biggest of the terrestrial planets in our solar system. KF

  31. SR: Pardon, but it is only appropriate to speak of body A orbiting body B if the barycentre is within B’s surface. That means the mass of A has to be a lot less than that of B. Maybe, that is a matter of language? KF

  32. F/N: Back on the 500 coins question, it is abstractly possible that any given config can emerge. However, special configs are so rare relative to the overwhelming bulk near 50:50 in no particular order that there are overwhelming odds to see the bulk. Thus, unless there is a very good reason to exclude biasing, one would be best advised to infer that something like 500 H or 500 T or coins with ascii code for the first 72 characters of this comment, etc, were NOT produced by blind chance. This is of course the analytical reason why FSCO/I is maximally unlikely to emerge on blind chance and necessity. But, we do have a known force that routinely makes FSCO/I as posts in this thread show — design. The design inference is reasonable and empirically warranted as a reliable argument on sign. But then, this simply brings us full circle, back to the Lewontinian-Saganian unwillingness to entertain the POSSIBILITY of design that seems to animate too many objectors to ID’s design inference on FSCO/I as sign. KF

  33. Sal

    Your attempt to make a big issue over some semantic hair splitting (who does not think two objects of similar mass would orbit around a common centre, who does not understand why car wheels are balanced after a tyre change?) brings to mind the proverb of “pots and kettles”.

    Do you still claim Genetic-ID were employing Dembski’ EF in their verification procedures? I recall there was a thread at UD where Dave Scot had something to say about your claim. I wonder if I can find it.

  34. selvaRajan,

    Earth will become Venus’s satellite

    You still stand by that statement. :-)

    Alan Fox, do you stand by selvaRajan’s statement. :-)

  35. You could set up a Manipulate function an try v…..blah blah blah

    So do you stand by your statement:

    Earth will become Venus’s satellite

    :-)

  36. scordova #19:

    In light of this, Earth will not orbit Venus, and given that the two are close in mass, we probably would not say either will orbit the other.

    I would not have a problem with saying that they both orbit each other. But it seems wrong to say that only one is orbiting, when the masses are comparable.

    #20 :

    No it is not, unless you define consistent to be one of the possible outcomes, …

    “Consistent with” just means “not contradicted by”.

    #23:

    Then Neil tries to defend it by claiming we could just have a different coordinate perspective — whereas, by that method we could all be geo centrists.

    I’m not particularly defending anyone. I happen to take the position that geocentrism is neither true nor false, and that likewise heliocentrism is neither true nor false. Rather, both are pragmatic conventions that make for easier descriptions by agreeing on a center of coordinates. Of course, I see heliocentrism as the far better choice of the two.

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