‘Primordial Soup’ Ousted from the Origin of Life?!?

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PrimordialSoupPPR.jpg

Science Daily reports today that

For 80 years it has been accepted that early life began in a ‘primordial soup’ of organic molecules before evolving out of the oceans millions of years later. Today the ‘soup’ theory has been over turned in a pioneering paper in BioEssays which claims it was the Earth’s chemical energy, from hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor, which kick-started early life.

“Textbooks have it that life arose from organic soup and that the first cells grew by fermenting these organics to generate energy in the form of ATP. We provide a new perspective on why that old and familiar view won’t work at all,” said team leader Dr Nick lane from University College London. “We present the alternative that life arose from gases (H2, CO2, N2, and H2S) and that the energy for first life came from harnessing geochemical gradients created by mother Earth at a special kind of deep-sea hydrothermal vent – one that is riddled with tiny interconnected compartments or pores.”

The soup theory was proposed in 1929 when J.B.S Haldane published his influential essay on the origin of life in which he argued that UV radiation provided the energy to convert methane, ammonia and water into the first organic compounds in the oceans of the early earth. However critics of the soup theory point out that there is no sustained driving force to make anything react; and without an energy source, life as we know it can’t exist. …

Discuss.

291 Comments

Science at its Best! Probing, challenging old ideas, applying new techniques, looking for a better answer. Even if this one isn’t exactly it either, it’s another route that’s been probed. May prove to be the best answer–or maybe not. But we keep trying.

Whereas creationism…

Looks like an interesting paper and I’ll have to take a closer look when I have some more time, but this sentence made me groan:

Today the ‘soup’ theory has been over turned in a pioneering paper in BioEssays

This isn’t a brand new idea that’s just been proposed and is overturning the previous hypothesis. At least in general terms it’s been floating around and being evaluated by scientists, not “over turn[ing] in a pioneering paper” in one day.

While I think that this model of the beginning of life is plausible, there was one point really got my goat:

“[soup] there is no sustained driving force to make anything react; and without an energy source, life as we know it can’t exist”

So the sun isn’t a sustained energy source now? Last time I checked photochemistry was a pretty powerful beast that drives much of current life. It seems odd that the same ball of fusing gas couldn’t have done the same for the primordial soup…

Likewise, chemical energy could also have provided initial energy; with a switch to other forms (photochemical, etc) coming later. The whole energy bill of life on earth didn’t need to be present at the beginning; all that was needed was enough to get the ball rolling.

And while not immediately relevant to the above, I’ve never understood this kind of “conflict” in science. The primordial soup hypothesis is hardly incompatible with this hypothesis, or with the hypothesis that much of the starting material formed in space. Hell, if I had to bet (and there was a way to prove it), I’d bet that life arose from a combination of space-derived organics, “primordial soup” chemistry and the geothermal chemistry discussed here. If anything, they complement each other nicely, with elements of life hard to explain with one model (i.e. the formation of complex organics from the fairly simply gasses coming out of geothermal vents) with materials coming from another of the models (i.e. space-ices are full of complex organics).

mcmillan said:

Looks like an interesting paper and I’ll have to take a closer look when I have some more time, but this sentence made me groan:

Today the ‘soup’ theory has been over turned in a pioneering paper in BioEssays

This isn’t a brand new idea that’s just been proposed and is overturning the previous hypothesis. At least in general terms it’s been floating around and being evaluated by scientists, not “over turn[ing] in a pioneering paper” in one day.

Agreed. The Black Smoker Hypothesis has been championed by Nick Lane, Bill Martin, Eugene Koonin, and a host of others for years. I’m also not sure if it really “overturns” Primordial Soup. Maybe it’s because my entry into all of this as a graduate student is quite recent, but to my mind since its inception the “Primordial Soup” hypothesis has become a shorthand for any such scenario of life arising out of a mixed chemical environment, presumably in the ocean, with some sort of energy input. The environment inside a Black Smoker, rich in organic compounds, gases, and thermal energy, to my mind is still very much a “Primordial Soup”-like environment.

“For 80 years it has been accepted…”

Something of an oversimplification. I remember attending a series of lectures by Leslie Orgel

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leslie_Orgel

at Haverford College in about 1974 in which Orgel argued against the “soup” because it would have been too dilute. He suggested instead that prebiotic chemistry started with organic components dissolved in raindrops, falling on hot rock. If I remember correctly he called this “sizzle instead of soup”.

The point being that there have always been a large number of possible scenarios for the origin of life. No one is or was wedded to the soup hypothesis.

This is yet another case where “science by press release” really does us a disservice, and may be in the running for the worst science press release of the year. The paper does nothing to “oust” the so called primordial soup, it does add another potential energy source to the prebiotic system but its just another version of the hydrothermal energy systems that have been around for years. The press release (and, sadly, the paper), ignores a number of energy systems powering the so called “soup”.

And it was Oparin who started the whole soup thing off, although Haldane did come up with it as well.

Here’s why they reject the primordial soup scenario: “The reason that all organisms are chemiosmotic today is simply that they inherited it from the very time and place that the first cells evolved – and they could not have evolved without it,” said Martin. “Far from being too complex to have powered early life, it is nearly impossible to see how life could have begun without chemiosmosis,” concluded Lane. “It is time to cast off the shackles of fermentation in some primordial soup as ‘life without oxygen’ – an idea that dates back to a time before anybody in biology had any understanding of how ATP is made.”

I like the picture of Campbell’s soup, BTW. :)

Bilbo said:

I like the picture of Campbell’s soup, BTW. :)

Campbells Primordial soup; It’s “Mm Mm goo”

Bilbo said:

Here’s why they reject the primordial soup scenario: “The reason that all organisms are chemiosmotic today is simply that they inherited it from the very time and place that the first cells evolved – and they could not have evolved without it,” said Martin. “Far from being too complex to have powered early life, it is nearly impossible to see how life could have begun without chemiosmosis,” concluded Lane. “It is time to cast off the shackles of fermentation in some primordial soup as ‘life without oxygen’ – an idea that dates back to a time before anybody in biology had any understanding of how ATP is made.”

Hmm. Flowery rhetoric against the (supposed) prevailing theory and an argument from incredulity. Perhaps they’re Intelligent Design Creationists in disguise. :)

stevaroni said:

Bilbo said:

I like the picture of Campbell’s soup, BTW. :)

Campbells Primordial soup; It’s “Mm Mm goo”

As opposed to the creationist view of nature; “It’s Mm Mm zoo”

Bilbo said:

I like the picture of Campbell’s soup, BTW. :)

The only beef I have with the can is that the primordial soup was probably a few amino acids, not all 20.

“life arose from gases…” that would seem somewhat a bold assertion…

The article is open access and available here

Also check out Wickramasinghe’s 1974 book “Diseases from Space.” Well, I’d probably say don’t check it out, just know that it exists. Sorry, but I’m not inclined to believe that anything that could form in space, save for perhaps some “pathogen” consisting of only six nucleotides, is saavy enough to compete with the vertebrate immune system or the natural defenses of any terrestrial life. Wickramasinghe (also an author on this paper) apparently suggests that radioactive elements in comets could keep the water in their cores liquid for a million years or more–wonder what that would do to the comet itself at the outset, when said radioisotopes would have been the most abundant…

There’s also the clay-based life theory (originated?) by Graham Cairns-Smith. It has some similarities to this paper’s ideas, without the black-smokers references, since I think most of his work was done before the tectonic plate concept had been accepted.

Sensationalism much?

Definitely a potential boon for text book publishers, save for Texas and Louisiana.

The almost obsessive-compulsive journalistic convention of making a hackneyed declaration that a “major theory” has been “overturned by mavericks” strikes again.

I don’t mean to come down to hard on potentially well-meaning science reporters, but if they could just let go of that “lone maverick genius overturns all of accepted science” meme, they could do a far better job.

For 80 years it has been accepted that early life began in a ‘primordial soup’ of organic molecules before evolving out of the oceans millions of years later.

This just isn’t true. This is more than an overstatement. This sentence claims that someone came up with an explanation for abiogenesis 80 years ago (!) and that it has been accepted ever since. But now “overthrown”. “Primordial soup” was a hypothesis.

It isn’t impossible to write readable journalism that is also accurate.

Today the ‘soup’ theory

This is a misuse of the term “theory”. There is no such thing as “soup theory”.

Does this matter? Of course it does.

Ignorant but potentially educable lay people are now going to be told by creationists that “those crazy scientists ‘concede’ that ‘soup theory’ has ‘been wrong for eighty years’”, and “evolution is just another theory like soup theory”. In fact, a creationist will show up soon and display that line of reasoning. You heard it here first.

The more often people are exposed to deception and brainwash, the harder it is for them to learn about reality.

But wait - the overall article doesn’t have anything to offer creationists, so they’d have to take quotes out of context. They’d never do that…oh, wait…

has been over turned in a pioneering paper in BioEssays which claims it was the Earth’s chemical energy, from hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor, which kick-started early life.

That sounds like an interesting paper and a good reason to write a journalistic summary piece.

If only some of the dumber conventions of science journalism didn’t always involve themselves.

harold said:

The almost obsessive-compulsive journalistic convention of making a hackneyed declaration that a “major theory” has been “overturned by mavericks” strikes again.

I don’t mean to come down to hard on potentially well-meaning science reporters, but if they could just let go of that “lone maverick genius overturns all of accepted science” meme, they could do a far better job.

I agree. Sadly “Major new discovery overturns all that is known about science!” plays better than the far more realistic “One more tick mark in the hydrothermal vent side of the score card”.

The only beef I have with the can is that the primordial soup was probably a few amino acids, not all 20.

The can has been labeled truthfully. The can might not contain all the 20 amino acids, but the label just says it is a “good source of 20 amino acids”. Just give it time and the missing amino acids might just evolve?

…”no sustained driving force to make anything react; and without an energy source, life as we know it can’t exist”

Be still my beating heart.

Lion (IRC)

You’re kidding, right? This argument has been going on for years! The idea that any one study is going to be a slam dunk for one theory of abiogenesis is absurd. Unless you have a time machine, all theories are going to be highly speculative. We’re going to need many, many independent lines of evidence excluding other theories and supporting one before we are even close to settling this debate.

Terrible, terrible science reporting.

Are there actual college courses in science journalism where you learn to do this sort of breathless hype? (Though it seems at least partly the authors’ fault in this particular case.)

Lion IRC said:

…”no sustained driving force to make anything react; and without an energy source, life as we know it can’t exist”

Be still my beating heart.

Lion (IRC)

Of course, if you actually read about the primordial soup hypotheses, the energy driving the reactions are assumed to be ultraviolet radiation, heat, and or electrical discharges from storms.

Oh, wait, no, you haven’t read about science. Ever.

For crying out loud, this isn’t even a research paper, it’s all speculation. Nothing wrong with that, the article is clearly marked “Problems and Paradigms,” but this is completely distorted through “science by press release” as Ian noted. It’s the sort of ignorance that made people believe that Stephen Meyer’s review paper, published by dint of editorial misconduct in Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, represented “ID research.”

If it isn’t new, it isn’t news. Sad, but that’s journalism.

I, too, heard about this idea at least twenty years ago. I don’t know of anything about it that overturns anything - it just offers another possible scenario for the origin of life by natural means, with the proviso (which applies to all such scenarios) that it will be very difficult to show that this is what actually happened, until an experiment can be run for some millions of years.

By which time, I guess, it will be old news.

But if creationists think that this means that black smokers = God, the hot rocks are in their heads.

Second (or third or fourth) the rage this stupid reporting puts me in. In the case of “Darwin was Wrong!!!!!!” articles that are shit out every month even by National Geographic (cover says “Darwin was a retard!” inside says “Oh we found something slightly unexpected that actually still strongly supports common descent, so never mind I guess”), I always assumed it was a ploy to sell mags to creotards - ever hopeful for vindication. But how does this soup business play with them? So pointless, insipid, transparent, and obnoxious… -

IDists go on about how schools should teach alternative hypotheses for the “origin of life”. We’ve discussed plenty of them so far!

Lion IRC said:

…”no sustained driving force to make anything react; and without an energy source, life as we know it can’t exist”

Without an energy source, life as we don’t know it can’t exist, either.

Yes. If the sun were to go out, and the geothermal vents were to go out, and all other energy sources were to go out, there would be no life. (That’s the first law of thermodynamics.)

In fact, even if there were plenty of energy all around, but evenly distributed (in the sense of uniform temperature), there would again be no life. (That’s the second law of thermodynamics.)

Possibly OT here, but relevant in many posts:

For anybody interested, I just learned a great trick (Thanks to Paul Gilster at Centauri-dreams.org) You can use HTML tags to insert subscripts: the tags are sub and /sub, (each between a “less than” and a “greater than” sign). So you can get CO2 instead of CO2. For superscripts, the tags are sup and /sup, e.g. 104

Dave Luckett said:

A scientific hypothesis is an explanation for a natural phenomenon that can be tested against evidence, with a view to ruling it out - falsifying it. It is true that the various scientific hypotheses about the origin of life are difficult to test, because the evidence is scant, and not enough is known. They are at the cutting edge of science. Nevertheless, and despite your claim to the contrary, these hypotheses are potentially falsifiable by experiment, and that’s exactly what scientists are working to do. They are therefore scientific hypotheses, and may be covered in science class, with the proper disclaimer that no conclusions have yet been reached.

I’m sorry but you need to change from scant evidence to “NO EVIDENCE”, be honest there is absolutely no evidence of first life. If you have any evidence of first life, where it arose, when it arose, how it arose, what the earth atmosphere actually was when it arose, what was first life, then why don’t you give me the facts. Doing experiments is not evidence of how first life really arose. It would just be a possibility among many possibilities.

But if you don’t provide any evidence at all, which you haven’t, or if your evidence or reasoning fails scientific scrutiny - which is the case with Dembski and with all the attempts at evidence that creationists come up with from time to time - then you don’t have a hypothesis. It’s merely an assertion.

See, you are asking me for evidence that is impossible to get. You expect creationists to somehow come up with evidence that even you can’t get. You have absolutely no evidence of how first life actually arose.

The First Amendment to the US Constitution states that Congress may make no law respecting the establishment of a religion. For over a century now the Supreme Court has interpreted this to mean that Congress may not use the resources of the State in any way whose main purpose or actual effect is to promote any particular religion, or religion in general. An assertion that is intrinsically and necessarily religious in nature cannot therefore be taught as fact in the public schools.

I’m sorry but is has not be for over a century. The founders of the constitution did not want a national church or a national religion, but if you read the constitution you will also read the that the government shall not prohibit the free exercise of religion, which has been violated many times by our government. But, to the point creationism isn’t a religion, as this belief is not exclusive to one religion. I’ve never said that schools should teach the Genesis account of creationism. Creationism/ID is the idea that everything we see has a design to it, which is evidence of a designer. When you see a TV, do you question whether someone created it? When you see a piano, do you question whether someone made it or not? I see evidence of intelligent design in everything I see, and you would have admit that the human body is amazing and more sophisticated then any computer or device known to man.

ben said:

IBelieveInGod said:

ben said:

“You don’t know everything about life, so therefore you don’t have any idea about it at all”.

”…and therefore, any goofy unsubstantiated claim about life is just as valid as any of the findings of science.”

Your quote is not from me, and it was not my contention. Don’t try to put words in my mouth, it is so dishonest! logical fallacy!!!

It’s not dishonest, it’s a paraphrase of what you’re essentially claiming.

Even if we were alleging you had actually said that, it wouldn’t be a logical fallacy, it would just be wrong. The fallacious thinking is yours, i.e. that alleged problems with one hypothesis (evolution in this case) comprise evidence for some other hypothesis (creationism).

You don’t need to put words in my mouth. It is dishonest and example of putting words in mouth, and then arguing your position. Not very ethical!!!

IBelieveInGod said:

Many of you have criticized Dembski for not attempting to falsify his hypothesis, and I really don’t know if he has or not

Dembski has a hypothesis!?!

Did he finally publish something?!?

Is there an actual equation after 15 years???!!!

Oh. It was just a rhetorical question.

You got me all excited there for a moment, IBIG.

but the truth is that no hypothesis of origin of first life could never be falsified. It is just not possible, and it would be dishonest to say that one could falsify any such hypothesis.

False, False, False.

Absolutely false.

True, no physically possible hypothesis could be falsified, because, if it were possible, well, it wouldn’t be false.

But it would straightforward enough to demonstrate that a hypothesis isn’t feasible.

In fact, the famous Miller/Urey experiment has been a lightning rod for criticism as people argue back and forth about the exact oxygen content of the atmosphere and pH of the oceans.

The early popularity of the “black smoker” hypothesis was driven at least in part by the belief that UV radiation could have rendered the “slimy pool” model unviable.

And in the past few years several promising “catalyst” models have been demonstrated to be chemically impractical.

Of course, once a hypothesis is proven physically possible it becomes very difficult to eliminate it, but then your argument becomes…

“These known viable theories are unfalsifiable because it’s impossible to know which one of the possible options abiogenesis took”

… which, um, doesn’t really mean very much.

It becomes like saying I can’t prove that my ancestors came to America because all I know for sure is that I’m in America, they were from Europe and there were many, many, boats making the trip.

“I and none of you can really explain what life really is.”

Hey, you claimed to be the ONLY person here who can actually define life!

Please, please do that!

As an exercise in reasoning, I used to ask my students to define “human being” in such a way that ALL humans would be included, and NONE would be excluded. None ever succeeded.

I’ve exercised a few neurons on thinking about an all-inclusive, and properly exclusive definition of life. My contention is that it can’t be done. Some things are so clearly alive that there’s no argument, and some so clearly nonliving. But there’s a twilight zone in there such that if you draw a clear line, knowledgeable people can argue that you’ve left some things on the wrong side of the line (viruses? prions? amphibians frozen solid? etc.).

But IBIG can do it!

So let’s have it!

IBelieveInGod said:

I’m sorry but is has not be for over a century. The founders of the constitution did not want a national church or a national religion, but if you read the constitution you will also read the that the government shall not prohibit the free exercise of religion, which has been violated many times by our government. But, to the point creationism isn’t a religion, as this belief is not exclusive to one religion. I’ve never said that schools should teach the Genesis account of creationism. Creationism/ID is the idea that everything we see has a design to it, which is evidence of a designer. When you see a TV, do you question whether someone created it? When you see a piano, do you question whether someone made it or not? I see evidence of intelligent design in everything I see, and you would have admit that the human body is amazing and more sophisticated then any computer or device known to man.

TVs and pianos cannot reproduce themselves via genes that can mutate, therefore your analogy fails.

We do not have evidence YET for exactly how life began, but at least we know that the current hypotheses of abiogenesis do not violate the known laws of chemistry and physics and can be tested by reference to them until they are falsified via experiment and the discovery of more detailed data. Creationist dogmas do not refer to such laws at all and thus they are not falsifiable.

IBIG wrote:

“…creationism isn’t a religion, as this belief is not exclusive to one religion.”

I see. So if it part of many religions, then that means it is not religion. Got it. Man you don’t have to put words into this guys mouth, the ones that come out of it are bad enough already.

So when are you going to start teaching creationism in public school science classes? We’re waiting.

Here is what the constitution clearly states in the first amendment:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html#Am1

The US Constitution clearly states, “congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion”, how is teaching creation at individual school districts congress making law? It does not say that religion is not allowed in public schools does it? or that religion has no place in public forums either does it? What it means is that congress shall not pass a law making a religion the national religion that all it says. The Supreme Court was wrong in their ruling, it is clearly a case of legislating from the bench, which is a total disregard for the constitution that you use to keep creationism out the schools.

DS said:

IBIG wrote:

“…creationism isn’t a religion, as this belief is not exclusive to one religion.”

I see. So if it part of many religions, then that means it is not religion. Got it. Man you don’t have to put words into this guys mouth, the ones that come out of it are bad enough already.

So when are you going to start teaching creationism in public school science classes? We’re waiting.

No, what I’m saying it is “it’s not a religion” which is much different.

Wasn’t evolution and spontaneous a belief of certain religion also? How about the Totems.

The Mayan culture began about 600 BC, and its religion incorporated a a belief in evolution that taught that the rain god constructed humans by adding to his previous creations, therefore changing them. This rain god first made rivers, then fish, next serpents and, last, humans. The members of a totem clan believed:

Here is from the Encyclopaedia Britannica: ‘themselves to be of one blood, descendants of a common ancestor. … Thus, the Turtle clan of the Iroquois are descended from a fat turtle, which, burdened by the weight of its shell in walking … gradually developed into a man. The Cray-Fish clan of the Choctaws were originally cray-fish and lived underground, coming up occasionally through the mud to the surface. Once a party of Choctaws smoked them out, and, treating them kindly … taught them to walk on two legs, made them cut off their toe nails and pluck the hair from their bodies, after which they adopted them into the tribe. But the rest of their kindred, the cray-fish, are still living underground. The Osages are descended from a male snail and a female beaver.’

Encyclopaedia Britannica, The Werner Co., New York, Vol. 23, p. 467, 1898.

So, religion is being taught in the schools right?

The scientists are demonstrating amino acids and polypeptide chains created by natural means. They are discussing “self-replication” and “RNA” and “chemical pathways” and “reaction energies”. They’re modelling chemical environments and comparing them to what is known of the ancient earth. They’re searching for the signatures of earliest life in the rocks, and having some success. They’re debating the possibilities of RNA to DNA. Above all, they’re getting closer and closer to demonstrating a fully self-replicating, self-sustaining organism in the laboratory. As a result of these researches, this body of data, this evidence, and this knowledge, the scientists think that life began by natural causes from natural means that they will discover in time.

Meanwhile creationists say, “God did it.”

IBIG thinks that these are equivalent in status. They are not. The first is a scientific hypothesis. It is the product of research, data gathering, and reason. Deny it as IBIG will, there is evidence for it, though the evidence is not conclusively for any specific proposal. The other is a religious doctrine. It is backed by dogma, with no evidence at all.

The Supreme Court has always held that the United States Government, and since the passage of the fourteenth amendment, the governments of the various states, may not use State resources to promote a religion or a religious doctrine. It is true that it was not until the 1960’s that the court devised a definition of religious intent or purpose and decided, correctly, that creationism was religion; but the general principle goes back into the nineteenth century and before.

It does not violate any person’s freedom of religion that the State may not sponsor or promote a religion, in the schools or elsewhere. To say that it does so is a flat lie.

That creationism isn’t peculiar to one religion is irrelevant. It is still a religious doctrine because it is without evidential support, or any support outside the holy books of the various religions, and because by its very nature it posits a creator of divine power.

The rest of IBIG’s remarks amount to Paleyism, the argument from specified complexity. It is nonsense. Something complex that fulfils a specified purpose need not have been designed. All that is needed is reproduction with variation and selection, many times repeated. Nothing more. This applies to the human body, and even more amazingly, to the human brain.

I doubt anyone is going to get anywhere with this troll.

The troll’s shtick is to assume his own ignorance applies everyone else and then to argue that because he can’t conceive of any scientific evidence for anything, no one else can either.

Then he just keeps shoveling the crap in huge batches and stands back with the smug satisfaction that he has just confounded a bunch of scientists with his “clever jousting.”

As long as he refuses to learn any science, there is not one handle one can find that might get him to start considering that he is wrong about everything.

This troll is a classic case of prideful ignorance encased a hermetically sealed package.

The troll has just recited the phony story that ID/creationists keep repeating to themselves over and over. This very story and mischaracterization of science also appeared on TV in just the last couple of days.

IBelieveInGod said:

No, what I’m saying it is “it’s not a religion” which is much different.

Teaching “God probably just created everything” is not religious?

Wasn’t evolution and spontaneous (generation?) a belief of certain religion also?

Your assertion is that because some religions accept the simple physical reality of basic biology, this makes biology implicitly religious?

Many religions accept heliocentrism, the round Earth and the modern value of pi (though some don’t). Does that make physics and math religion?

All religions apparently accept Boyles Law and Maxwell’s Equations. Does this make air pressure and electricity (both things that cannot be seen directly) religous?

How about the Totems.

Yeah, How about them Totems.

They were having a great season till they lost their starting pitcher.

The Mayan culture began about 600 BC, and its religion incorporated a a belief in evolution that taught that the rain god constructed humans by adding to his previous creations, therefore changing them. So, religion is being taught in the schools right?

You want to argue that we should teach kids that the Earth was poofed into existence one sunny day in the middle of the bronze age because juxtaposition against 150 years of empirical science paints the Mayan Gods of creation as somewhat more mechanically adept than Yaweh and possibly better with tools?

Wow. Until this point I was reasonably confident that I had already heard all possible creationist arguments.

Now my head hurts and I have to go write code all afternoon.

Thanks, IBIG.

This troll is right out of a Jack Chick cartoon.

IBelieveInGod said:

He was caught by his own logic. He was demonstrating how his view was determined by his bias.

Yup. Ya got us there. Because one unnamed scientist in a hypothetical conversation used colloquial vernacular and allowed his imprecise words to get twisted by someone intent on word twisting.…

Well, that means 150 years of careful measurements are useless and millions of fossils somehow mean nothing.

Models of science are subject to change for both creationists and evolutionists. But the beliefs that these models are built on are not.

Yeah, how can you argue with that?

Beliefs must be better than science because beliefs by definition are always absolutely correct.

All science has is 20 decades of meticulous measurement and verification, and rabid peer review, all against the background of massive success that has literally transformed the world as we know it.

I mean, really, how could anybody put their money on actually going out and measuring stuff when you have a 3000 year old book written by nomadic shepherds to rely on?

Mike Elzinga said:

This troll is right out of a Jack Chick cartoon.

This one is really amazing, even by troll standards.

IBelieveInGod said:

Here is an excerpt from the book “Evolution Is Religion” …

IBIG, I will not allow you to take up Panda’s Thumb bandwidth with the bilge of Ken Ham.

Ken Ham’s and other creationist websites are the proper storing place for this useless drivel.

Rather than dragging this antiscience prattle here, why don’t you start commenting over there?

Oh, that’s right, creationists don’t allow comments.

Folks, I’m tired of babysitting this pompous buffoon who thinks he is so smart, but in fact is simply a ‘legend in his own mind’.

Get yer last licks in, this post is closing up shop imminently.

Are you saying that someday you will know everything about first life?

Are you saying that you actually have evidence of where first life arose, how it arose, when it arose, how long it lived, how it reproduced, what kind of life it was, what it evolved into, what it’s genetic code was, etc…???

The truth is that you don’t have any evidence whatsoever of first life and never will. So, when you develop a hypothesis it is based on what you assume happened and not based on what really happened. Your assumptions are based on your presuppositions about life. Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen. In other words believing in something without evidence. You all believe creation is a myth, demonstrating that you have put your trust, conviction, faith in Abiogenesis without any evidence of it actually occurring.

IBIG wrote:

“Are you saying that someday you will know everything about first life?”

Are you saying that until we do you will ignore everything we actually do know? Are you saying that we really aren’t putting words in your mouth?

I prayed to Dave to make you go away. My prayers have been answered. God did not answer them, Dave did. Long live Dave the powerful. Down with IBIG the foolish. Now I don’t have to pray to Joe Pesci.

IBelieveInGod said:

Are you saying that someday you will know everything about first life?

We don’t know EVERYTHING about current life. So what? Get over this binary view of knowledge you have, it stunts your intellectual growth.

DS said:

IBIG wrote:

“Are you saying that someday you will know everything about first life?”

Are you saying that until we do you will ignore everything we actually do know? Are you saying that we really aren’t putting words in your mouth?

I prayed to Dave to make you go away. My prayers have been answered. God did not answer them, Dave did. Long live Dave the powerful. Down with IBIG the foolish. Now I don’t have to pray to Joe Pesci.

Do you really believe that scientists are attempting to discover the origin of life? You do know that we will never know the true origin of life through scientific experiments?

DS said:

IBIG wrote:

“Are you saying that someday you will know everything about first life?”

Are you saying that until we do you will ignore everything we actually do know? Are you saying that we really aren’t putting words in your mouth?

I prayed to Dave to make you go away. My prayers have been answered. God did not answer them, Dave did. Long live Dave the powerful. Down with IBIG the foolish. Now I don’t have to pray to Joe Pesci.

I think we’re going to see a prayer answered. Hallelujah!

Seriously, I gots papers to grade!

I’ll leave it with this most appropriate quote from Isaac Asimov. No, we might not know every detail about everything, but we do know SOME things, despite the bilgings of such as “IBelieveInPrattling”.

“[W]hen people thought the earth was flat, they were wrong. When people thought the earth was spherical, they were wrong. But if you think that thinking the earth is spherical is just as wrong as thinking the earth is flat, then your view is wronger than both of them put together.” - Isaac Asimov (1989). “The Relativity of Wrong.” The Skeptical Inquirer, 14(1), 35-44. Fall 1989.

Cheers, Dave

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Dave Thomas published on February 3, 2010 1:06 PM.

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