Saturday, May 30, 2015

Gang-Ham style logic

Logic Ken Ham Style: No cat has eight tails:  A cat has one tail more than no cat: Therefore, a cat has nine tails.

As a bit of light relief between posts I thought I would feature the following piece of thinking by fundamentalist theme park manager Ken Ham: (See "NASA Scientists on God, Creation, and Evolution" dated  30 May). The "logic" here has a close parallel with the logic I showcased in this post: :

But there are also many scientific problems with the idea of an old universe. For example, the universe is full of brightly burning blue stars. These stars burn so brightly that they would burn out in just a few millions years, and yet they appear all over the universe no matter how far away we look. Scientists posit that they must be forming spontaneously even in modern times in order for them to remain so populous all throughout the universe. Yet scientists have never observed even one forming!* (see footnote) This confirms a young universe, not a billions-of-years-old one.

Now, if Ken could provide evidence that blue stars last for less than 10 thousand years (as opposed to millions of years) I might concede that there is a strong case for a universe of only 6000 years in age!. But no, all Ken can do is appeal to the unknowns of blue star formation. Ken links to an AiG article by one of his tame academics, an article that produces no strong evidence for a 6000 year old cosmos but simply exploits the tendency among fundamentalists to automatically interpret problems and unknowns in current cosmology as strong evidence for a 6000 year old cosmos!,,,, as does Ham himself; viz: "This confirms a young universe, not a billions-of-years-old one." And while I'm here I'll mention that Russ Humphrey's geocentric gravitational model, a model which attempts to solve the YEC star light problem, posits an old cosmos beyond the immediate cosmic vicinity of the Earth! Thus, presumably Humphrey's model has a blue star problem!

Here's another clunker by Ham:

Now, an old universe is not the only idea in secular thought that has major scientific problems. Evolution also has huge problems. For example, evolution requires the addition of huge amounts of brand-new information into the DNA of a creature in order for new features to arise. But there is no known process that adds brand-new information into the genome of a creature. But without new information you absolutely cannot turn an amoeba into an astronaut no matter how much time you have! Evolution just cannot happen.

This man is a complete embarrassment to the faith!   He's utterly unaware of the information debate: See here:

* This statement "never observed even one forming" parallels the fundamentalist claim that speciation has never been observed. It is statement that will appeal to the largely scientifically illiterate fundamentalist audience who Ham is targeting. The reference to "observation" trades on the illusion that we can directly observe some parts of the world and when we do it gives special authority to those things we think we observer directly: No; observations are samples taken from presumed background theoretical structures; if the theoretical background structure is highly organised and the observations are consistent with it, the probability of the theory being right is enhanced: See here:

Of course, the likelihood of us actually seeing a blue star formation event depends on how long it takes: If blue star ignition only takes place over a few months the likelihood of seeing it happen in human time scales is very small.

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