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Saturday, August 14, 2010

People will say anything to defend Darwin

Get a load of this one:
Infants presumably acquire the special strain of bifido from their mothers, but strangely, it has not yet been detected in adults. “We’re all wondering where it hides out,” Dr. Mills said.

The indigestible substance that favors the bifido bacterium is a slew of complex sugars derived from lactose, the principal component of milk. The complex sugars consist of a lactose molecule on to which chains of other sugar units have been added. The human genome does not contain the necessary genes to break down the complex sugars, but the bifido subspecies does, the researchers say in a review of their progress in today’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The complex sugars were long thought to have no biological significance, even though they constitute up to 21 percent of milk. Besides promoting growth of the bifido strain, they also serve as decoys for noxious bacteria that might attack the infant’s intestines. The sugars are very similar to those found on the surface of human cells, and are constructed in the breast by the same enzymes. Many toxic bacteria and viruses bind to human cells by docking with the surface sugars. But they will bind to the complex sugars in milk instead. “We think mothers have evolved to let this stuff flush through the infant,” Dr. Mills said. - "Breast Milk Sugars Give Infants a Protective Coat" Nicholas Wade, New York Times (August 2, 2010)
Read the whole article. You know Darwinism is a religion when you see how people will twist themselves into corkscrews in order to avoid considering design.

Find out why there is an intelligent design controversy:


News from the evil Discos: Temporary setback for tax mooches

Discovery Institute mentioned a while back (and, for various reasons, I did not get around to noting it), that
Documents to be released relate to the Science Center’s cancellation of a screening of the science documentary Darwin’s Dilemma in its IMAX theater by the non-partisan American Freedom Alliance (AFA) last October. The AFA has filed its own free speech and breach of contract suit against the Science Center, which is still pending. Darwin’s Dilemma investigates the intelligent design of organisms during the “Cambrian Explosion” more than 500 million years ago.

The Science Center claimed that it had turned over all the documents requested by Discovery Institute, but when Institute staff learned that this was not true the Institute filed suit to compel full disclosure. In response, the CSC made the incredible claim that its key decision-makers, clearly identified as CSC staff on the museum’s website, were really employed not by the museum but by a private foundation and so were immune from the public records request.
This is precisely what I mean by tax mooch-ism, where public employees or beneficiaries of the tax regime feel free from the normal standards of thought, speech, and action that govern the rest of us.

Find out why there is an intelligent design controversy:


DNA evidence: The gold standard?

In "Fallible DNA evidence can mean prison or freedom" (New Scientist , 11 August 2010), Linda Geddes discusses the limitations of DNA evidence:
If DNA analysis were totally objective, then all 17 analysts should reach the same conclusion. However, we found that just one agreed with the original judgement that Robinson "cannot be excluded". Four analysts said the evidence was inconclusive and 12 said he could be excluded.
It is nice to see New Scientist doing something useful*, in the best traditions of journalism. This is what journalism is supposed to be.

Essentially, there are practical limitations in all systems of accumulating evidence in the real world. There is also the risk of incompetence, and there could sometimes even be corruption.

*This is just so unlike the world of Darwinism because it is all about known events in real time, affecting real people. I am not nearly as interested in the inner life of baboons (?) as in the possibility that someone is stuck in the slam because the jury is convinced that DNA evidence is always the gold standard for truth - but the researchers overinterpreted flimsy evidence.

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Karl Popper bangs his fist on the table

A friend writes, regarding this information regarding some information about science philosopher Karl Popper on a Scientific American blog: "It's the first time I've read that Popper later regretted allowing himself to be browbeaten on the subject of the irrefutability of Darwinism."

In A Dubitable Darwin? Why Some Smart, Nonreligious People Doubt the Theory of Evolution, John Horgan writes (Jul 6, 2010)
The philosopher Daniel Dennett once called the theory of evolution by natural selection "the single best idea anyone has ever had." I'm inclined to agree. But Darwinism sticks in the craw of some really smart people I don't mean intelligent-designers (aka IDiots) and other religious ignorami but knowledgeable scientists and scholars.
He goes on to trash knowledgeble scientists and scholars, then notes
Early in his career, the philosopher Karl Popper (yes, cited by F and P-P)called evolution via natural selection "almost a tautology" and "not a testable scientific theory but a metaphysical research program." Attacked for these criticisms, Popper took them back. But when I interviewed him in 1992, he blurted out that he still found Darwin's theory dissatisfying"One ought to look for alternatives!" Popper exclaimed, banging his kitchen table.
and adds
Postscript: I'd like to thank my buddy Robert Hutchinson -author, editor, polymath, punster, triathlete -for suggesting that I call this blog "Cross-check"A cross-check is an illegal hit in hockey. I don't cross-check on the ice, but on this blog anything goes.
Well, my own best guess is that Popper couldn't deal with the mob of (largely) tax mooch Darwinist thugs who cross-check, and neither can Horgan. So Horgan joined the mob. All this is interesting coming from John Horgan who, himself, took a serious hit for his book, the End of Science. (Scroll down past this story to the next one.)

This is by way of warning to any who question the Darwin industry: You are up against a racket, which means you are up against thugs. Just about everyone knows that the evidence for large scale transformations of one species to another via Darwinism is very poor. Evidence does not matter. Enforcement does. Selling out is common. People regret selling out, but they do.

Find out why there is an intelligent design controversy:

This is a word of advice for any who question the Darwin industry: You are up against a racket, which means you are up against thugs. Just about everyone knows that the evidence for large scale transformations of one species to another via Darwinism is very poor. But evidence does not matter. Enforcement does. selling out is common.


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