Sal Cordova's Path to Young Earth Creationism

Introduction

(Salvador Cordova) #104

We may be agnostic intelectually, but our actions often say otherwise. I learned this in the gambling world especially.

I wear seatbelts, aside from the fact it is illegal to drive without seatbelts, I would wear them any way because I might be in an accident even if I don’t know for sure that I would absolutely be or not be in an accident! I fear what could happen to me if I get in a wreck and the level of injury could be mitigated.

I may not know something for sure, but I live my life in a way that weighs benefit/risk. When I nearly left the Christian faith because I didn’t like what I was hearing from the pulpit and other parishioners, I decided to embark on my own search and came to my own conclusions.

I know very little relative to all that can be known. Like a child I have faith in many things I cannot prove for sure.

But, if I can relate a couple experiences. At least one person I know of likely committed suicide over Urey-Miller, well even other OOL researcher reject Urey-Miller as the likely mechanism. Lee Strobel lost his faith over Urey-Miller. I would not want to put something on the table like that and advertise it as truth.

Some people my look at other issues like Ohno’s nylonases, Alu elements, LINES, “junkDNA”, ERVs, etc. Well just the last two years, John Sanford and I in a pre-print falsified Ohno’s claims, something that was Dennis Venema’s favorite example of evolution. It was a total bust for Venema.

John told me if anything would convince him of common descent it was Alu, but then he had suspicions of its function. It was an ongoing project for him (even before we met) to find out about Alus. He was googling and found one of my essays at TheSkepticalZone and said he was writing a book, Contested Bones, and asked me to prepare a bibliography and report. The wording in the book is Rupe and Sanford, but I was the librarian who found the data. My essay on this is here:

I describe discovery of the overturning of one transcript that was thought to be junk here, a linc/lncRNA:

I’ve been asked to keep my eye out on developments on ERVs and I’ve talked about what I found about ERVs recently.

Same for LINE1. Introns and other junkDNA, etc.

The point is, what if someone left the Christian faith for scientific ideas that have now been overturned or COULD be overturned, such as in the list here. I would rather fall on the side of YEC than atheism.

I don’t want to risk be unfriended from God’s facebook page permanently, and I don’t want that for others who are going through a phase of doubt, because in the end there is a chance YEC could be right. I believe it to be true, and evidentially I put it at better than 30% odds.


(Dan Eastwood) #105

I have no basis to object to your beliefs; they are yours to have. It’s your facts that seem … problematic. :wink:


(James McKay) #106

I watched the first ten minutes or so of the video and was similarly unimpressed. For starters, if the binding energy curve really did disprove supernova nucleosynthesis, it would also mean that we couldn’t create heavy elements in nuclear reactors either. Since scientists have managed to create heavy elements in nuclear reactors, there is no reason whatsoever why supernovae could not do the same.

Heavy elements don’t form in stars because in equilibrium conditions of ongoing nucleosynthesis, such as the centres of stars, the rate at which they break apart is faster than the rate at which they form. Supernova explosions on the other hand are not equilibrium conditions of ongoing nucleosynthesis: they are sudden events which are too short to allow the resulting heavy elements to be broken up after being formed.

This is an interesting one. The “helium in zircons” argument is actually a very, very complex one, and it took me two whole evenings to just get my head round the gist of what was going on. But that doesn’t justify giving them the benefit of the doubt: the fact of the matter is that complex claims are easy to get wrong, difficult to get right, easy to fudge, and difficult to fact-check. Accordingly, anything other than stringent scepticism would also be giving a free press to cold nuclear fusion, Myers-Briggs, enneagrams, anti-vaxxers, feng shui, homeopathy, astrology, reading tea leaves, the Loch Ness Monster, and claims that Facebook takes your privacy seriously.

But having said that, once the fact-checking has been done, it does demand an adequate response, and the fact of the matter is that reviewers such as Gary Loechelt and Kevin Henke pointed out some very, very serious methodological flaws: meaningless equations, cherry-picked data, misinterpreted graphs, misidentified rock samples, and even raw data being changed by a factor of ten to account for “typographical errors” without providing any evidence whatsoever (e.g. original lab notes) to demonstrate that such “corrections” were warranted. To the best of my knowledge, the RATE team have never provided a satisfactory response to these objections.

Where did you hear that Lee Strobel lost his faith over anything, let alone Urey-Miller? That one’s news to me.

For what it’s worth, Urey-Miller doesn’t faze me in the slightest. It’s only one small piece in what, as far as I can make out, is a very, very large puzzle.


The Complex Case of Zircons and Helium
(S. Joshua Swamidass) #107

3 posts were split to a new topic: Sanford on Nylonase: Falsified?


(S. Joshua Swamidass) #108

8 posts were split to a new topic: Gold From Nuclear Reactors Floating in Space


(S. Joshua Swamidass) #110

5 posts were merged into an existing topic: Granville Sewell: Why Evolution and Reproduction Are Unnatural


(John Harshman) #111

Sure. You have but to look above for plentiful examples. He also tends not to do any literature search before making pronouncements. Do you have a reference for Negoro?


#112

A warm living human isn’t an isolated system at equilibrium either. Neither is a dead rat or an ice cube. What are the values of the macroscopic variables?


(Salvador Cordova) #119

No it hasn’t.


The Complex Case of Zircons and Helium
(James McKay) #120

You need to substantiate this assertion, Sal.


(Retired Professor & Minister.) #121

Indeed. If there has been an impressive new defense of the “helium in zircons” argument for a young earth, I’m very interested in reading about it.

I would also be interested in hearing reactions to the R.A.T.E. Project results in general from any and all Young Earth Creationist participants on this forum. When that Project was first announced and the generous financial support described, I thought that it could be an exciting “fish or cut bait” moment for the Young Earth Creationist movement. For many years (including my own days as an enthusiastic “creation science” advocate of a young earth long ago) we were told, “If only YEC scientists had the kind of generous funding other scientists enjoy, we could settle many of these scientific issues once and for all.” By any measure, the results published by the eight-year, well over a million dollars of funding, Creation Research Society and Institute for Creation Research project was starkly underwhelming. Indeed, I was surprised at how frank was the admission of disappointing results.

Whenever I read Answers in Genesis’ and ICR’s “10 best arguments for a young earth” [There’s also a “100 best arguments” list which appears occasionally], I’m reminded that they are aimed at non-scientists who are unlikely to notice the logic fallacies and long-debunked misunderstandings of the science. To my knowledge, they’ve never attempted drafting such a list for consideration by scientists. This suggests that they are well aware that scientists would not find such arguments convincing. And this was among the reasons why I left the “creation science” YEC camps many years ago.


What Did The RATE Project Reveal About YEC?
(S. Joshua Swamidass) #122

4 posts were merged into an existing topic: What Did The RATE Project Reveal About YEC?