Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Intellectual Bankruptcy

PZ Myers and Larry Moran both post on a YouTube YEC video promoting the population growth argument for a young Earth. (See here and here). The YEC argument from population growth uses a crass form of uniformitarianism that assumes a simple population growth formula and then plugs into this formula a growth constant in order to come up with a four and half thousand year history of uniformly exponentiating population growth since Noah.

To be fair we should of course use the very methods of YEC’s science of negation to question the simplistic assumptions built into their calculations. This would no doubt lead us to consider just what affects the vagaries of food supply, predation, disease, and climate etc. might have on the fluctuating fortunes of a struggling small population.

But then this exercise has little to do with science; it is slick showmanship and sales talk directed at the converted in order to convince them that the 6000 year old Earth theory is in safe patriarchal hands thus promoting the sense of security needed to bolster fundamentalist flocking instincts.

But it cuts no ice with critics; Myers and Moran laugh the video to scorn. For them the whole thing is a joke and further evidence of the intellectually debauched state of Christianity, which in turn is further confirmation that Christians can make no claim to special revelation from a Divine being. But the trump card of YEC theorists is fideism: “For the preaching of YEC theory is foolishness to those that are being lost, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God”.

Stop Press 4/9/9
In this link PZ Myers notes the impenetrable fideist defensive barrier that the Mormons have thrown up; you have no chance of seeing the truth of Mormon history unless you believe Mormonism in first place – and that only comes to those with a sublime connection with the “Spirit of God”

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