Total Drek

Or, the thoughts of several frustrated intellectuals on Sociology, Gaming, Science, Politics, Science Fiction, Religion, and whatever the hell else strikes their fancy. There is absolutely no reason why you should read this blog. None. Seriously. Go hit your back button. It's up in the upper left-hand corner of your browser... it says "Back." Don't say we didn't warn you.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

And the amazing part is that they suggest this is a bad thing.

Oh dear! It looks like Bradley Byrne, Republican candidate for governor of Alabama, is in trouble for making some ill advised decisions. Was he caught on a junket with a prostitute? Was he insulting to women? Nah. He just suggested that some parts of the bible are not true and that evolution is the best explanation for the origin of life.* Good thing there are other Republicans to call him on it:

Yeah! Stupid candidate Byrne! We want the state to be led by a man who is entirely ignorant of science!

Heh. Some of the bible "is not true". Absurd!

* Actually, that is fairly embarrassing since evolution is by no means a theory of abiogenesis. Still, that's way too subtle a distinction to be what the conservatives are pissed at him for.

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Blogger Marf said...

I've seen the argument many times now that we can't prove evolution because we've never created life in a lab. That's always been a point I try to make clear: it is not the business of evolution to explain how life first developed. That's a different set of theories with far less scientific support behind them.

Well, guess what? We finally did it: Life Form Created With Man-Made DNA. Seeing as this was deliberately constructed, it's still not a working theory of abiogenesis. But damnit, we've now created life in a lab!

Friday, May 21, 2010 1:15:00 PM  
Blogger Drek said...

Yeah, I saw that story as well. So far I see the creationists responding in one of three ways. Response 1 is that "This proves life had to be designed!" Um... no. That argument is akin to claiming that because Humans can dig ditches, rivers must be the result of conscious agency. Response 2 is that "Sure, they've created life, but let's see them produce it accidentally [ed. note: think the Miller-Urey experiment]." This is called moving the goal posts. Response 3 is that "They didn't really create life since they used an existing cell and just inserted synthetic DNA." This point is actually valid but, one would think, is splitting the hair finely enough that it should be apparent how unwise a god of the gaps argument really is.

And, as you point out, the really funny bit is that since evolution is not a theory of abiogenesis, this whole question matters not a whit for evolution. Lovely.

Speaking just on my own, however, I have to say that if we can figure out how to synthesize a living organism, a non-supernatural origin of life looks a lot more likely to me. And hell, I'd say it looks pretty damned likely already!

Friday, May 21, 2010 1:37:00 PM  

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