Tuesday, March 29, 2016

125 Rebuttals, 26 to 30

This is a post in a series of responses to this forum post.

Let's dive right back into it.

26: The Proof of Astounding New Complex Genes

The basic premise of this argument can be found in the first part of point four, which reads as such:
4. The complexity of genetic control at this level astounds researchers
 The author then extrapolates in point five, as follows:
5. The level of coordination of such genetic complexity is almost beyond human comprehension and clearly the product of incredible bioengineering.
Importantly, the operative word here is 'almost.' It's not beyond our comprehension, otherwise the previous three points which preceded it would not be there.  Literally, if we couldn't understand it, we certainly couldn't write about it.

If you don't believe me, just try this simple experiment for yourself.  Take a piece of paper, and perhaps a pencil.  Start writing about something that's literally incomprehensible.  Not merely something which astounds you, but that you literally cannot comprehend.  It's quite impossible to think of something you can't think of, now isn't it?
6. Such complex bioengineering can/could be done only by a superhuman person all men call God.
 This is such a waffle of a sentence, but let's try to keep it simple.  Basically, the argument is that it's so complex that it can't be designed, therefore something designed it.  It's so incomprehensible that it can still be comprehended by the author to make this point.  It escapes human understanding, but somehow this guy understands it well enough to know that.  Need I continue?
7. God exists.
That doesn't follow from the last point.  Literally, there are hundreds of other options which could (and at least one that does) explain it, which are devoid of any god, including his.  This point is tired, and maybe I'll start skipping it.

Also, if all men call it god, does that mean that anyone who doesn't call his imaginary friend 'god' isn't man?  I digress.  Let's move to the next argument which doesn't argue anything.

27: The Argument from the DNA's Molecular Motor

Based upon the phrasing of this one, I'm guessing that the author doesn't understand what those last two words mean.  Maybe this one will have a coherent point that isn't just copypasta.

Unfortunately, the first three points are.  Which brings us to this set. Please note that all red text is my annotations, not part of the original text of the argument.
5. Even viruses, [as though that's all that matters] which are not even alive by the scientific definition of being able to reproduce independently [which includes things like fire, salt crystals, quartz crystals, and lots of things], show incredible design [no, they don't].
6. If [and you've shown no evidence that it's the case] design is what we observe [we do not], then there must be a designer.
Well, sure. Similarly, if we do not observe design, then the corollary is that there must not be one?  Ergo, having noticed no design (in the sense he means it), we can conclude, by his own logic, that no god is observed.  Next point.

I found some raccoon prints on a log by the river.
Embiggen to see them!

28: Basically the same thing as 27. Seriously, go check it out.

The basic premise of this argument is that, since things move, and humans created things that move, only a god can create things that move.  Similarly, that everything which moves is created by god.  It's a terrible argument, and I'll pick it up here.  Let's try some more of that nifty red text stuff.
7. Machines found in cells are absolutely extraordinary [it's true! The mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell] in their characteristics, inspiring the creativity of the most advanced researchers [also correct. scientists routinely use cellular stuff to make things nowadays]. However, the cell machines although almost identical in form but different in size are superior in efficiency to the mechanical devices that the best engineers design for everyday life [which is because cells are amazingly efficient, because they had to evolve to be that way].
8. This indicates that the biomachines found in cells require a level of intelligent design [although it actually doesn't, because point seven clearly illustrates that we're borrowing ideas from the cells, not the other way around] f, jpg, jpeg, png, gif, pdf, zip etc…
ar greater than what man has accomplished [well, arguably, if we're able to use them to our advantage, we're multiplying their abilities, but either way, this point doesn't follow].
I hope you can see the logical inconsistencies present herein.   I sh26 to [{an't tarry longer, as we've more redundant posts to cover!  Let me know if you like the red text stuff!

29: Argument from the genetic code-like (GCL) binary representation.

So we have more copypasta, which tells us that we've got a code that we use to represent specific sequences of nucleotides.  This is in fact a code which does exist, which is a sort of shorthand for the various bits of stuff that exist in DNA, etc.  We are then presented with this dubiously-worded sentence as point three:
3. The GCL binary representation and the genetic code are both isomorphic systems. Thus, the characteristics that are true of the GCL binary representation must also be true of the genetic code.
Taken on it's own, this isn't a terrible thing.  However, it's dubiousness comes full circle in point five:
5. Such a graceful symmetry, organization, and structure indicates a code that has been designed for a purpose.
Basically, it's saying that because we developed a code to explain DNA, that the DNA itself must also be such a designed code.  This isn't true, and it's a category error.  It's exactly the same as saying that, because we have a system for naming trees, they must have been designed to receive those names.  An 'Elm' isn't simply an 'Elm' just because it's the name we gave it, but because god designed it specifically to be an 'Elm.'  We did indeed invent the code which describes trees, exactly as we did with DNA.  However, there's absolutely no indication that Elm trees were designed to be Elm trees just so we could give them that name, or so that they could occupy elm-shaped voids in the atmosphere where they happen to reside.  This is similarly the kind of symmetry that exists in DNA, such that a tree occupies space which would otherwise be filled with air in its absence.  Labeling it does not mean it was designed to be labeled, or to signify anything in the code we gave it.

30: The argument of the double function of the genetic code. 

For disclosure, the article from which the information was pulled is titled "The Hidden Codes that Shaped Protein Evolution." The author is literally using an article on evolution to cherry-pick bits of information to argue against evolution.  I don't have access to the full article, but I can surmise what the actual points being made are, given the information in this argument.

Point four seems to be the first bit not directly from the article, based on the writing style.
4. According to the research [which is nowhere to be found in your absent citations], natural selection constrains or eliminates change [sometimes, and other times it favors change] (purifying selection) [I'm not sure of this term in context] is not helpful for creating new organs or functions [except when it is, of course]
Our intrepid forum user shows great disdain over his inability to understand evolution, and even more to understand that evolution can exist in a designed universe.  Any argument which lays its fundamental groundwork on the idea that evolution cannot exist within a designed universe is flawed, because it could.  A designer could easily design such an algorithm, it's how chatbots learn things.  I leave the Google search for 'Microsoft Tay' as an exercise for the viewer.

5. Thus, for Darwinists [citation needed] to explain unguided physical processes [evolution is guided by multiple things, but none of them is a designer] is already impossible [citation needed] and with this new discovery [it would be the first new thing in 30 arguments] they are even in bigger trouble [I dunno, I think the biggest trouble is the grammatical inconsistency of this argument].
As we can see, this is just a terrible projection.  This is a person who doesn't understand science, who doesn't understand that being wrong can be the most exciting thing in science.  

6. The words: information, architecture, optimized, and function are not always and not only referring to a person with thinking feeling and willing. Other proposed agents [like the god you speak of] cannot on their own give information [can god show himself?], design [what designed god, again?], optimize [can god remove junk DNA, or cancer?] or execute [any joke here would be in bad taste] tasks. This has never been shown.
Basically, the entire premise is that a signifying gene can act in more than one way, and this could never happen in nature.  We all know quite well that one thing cannot serve two purposes depending on context, in nature.  Actually, that's bollocks, so let's end it there for now.  Again, if you like what I'm doing here, feel free to let me know!  I'm on twitter @acce245 and I'm on youtube.  Look me up, check my stuff out, and if you really enjoy reading my words, follow me on patreon!

Best regards to all of you, and have a great day!

Saturday, March 26, 2016

125 Rebuttals, 23 to 25

This post is one of a series dissecting the points contained herein.

If you are not aware, I do a few things on Youtube.  Currently I'm working through a strange book I found at Goodwill.  It's from the middle of last century, but interesting and terrible nonetheless.  Give it a view, like it, dislike it, comment on it, subscribe, or whatever.  Here's the most recent one.  Be warned, they are lengthy, but given the point that you're reading my posts here, I'm sure that's not a terrible problem.

With that out of the way, let's continue this tearing down of the overly built-up arguments.

23: The Evidence of the Protein Origin

So we have before us, not an actual argument, but some form of evidence!  I do hope it actually is.

The opening is basically pulling information from this article.  There are bits of the original within his argument, presumably.  The author thinks that these words somehow form sentences which detract from the idea that evolution works, while simultaneously saying that this is exactly what must have happened after god did something. It's a bad flaw of logic, wherein the presumption is that because science works, god must be making it work, even if the science directly contradicts the dogma. 

Everything before point 8 is basically not supporting the claim made in point 8, which is
8. Intelligent design and its greatest intelligent designer God was a must to create DNA, RNA, proteins etc.
In fact, this entire argument is an argument from verbosity as well, another common fallacy whereby lots of words are substituted for any real argument.  Arguments from verbosity generally are when someone uses big words needlessly, or when someone gives rapid-fire point which are essentially non-sequiturs, but these are not requirements of the fallacy.  In this case, it's simply an argument that is made by using such a convoluted explanation that a reply is necessarily longer and more complex.

24: The Evidence of the Urey-Miller Experiment

This is actually an interesting argument I've heard, but it's never made very well, and this is no exception.
1a. Amino Acid Synthesis (1953). When Stanley Miller produced a few amino acids from chemicals, amid a continuous small sparking apparatus, newspaper headlines proclaimed: “Life has been created!” But proponents of evolution  hid the truth: The experiment had disproved the possibility that evolution could occur. 
Basically, it's a false premise.  Let's have a tiny bit of background on the experiment.  Basically, the important part from that is under the "Other Experiments" section:
This experiment inspired many others. In 1961, Joan Oró found that the nucleotide base adenine could be made from hydrogen cyanide (HCN) and ammonia in a water solution. His experiment produced a large amount of adenine, the molecules of which were formed from 5 molecules of HCN.[15] Also, many amino acids are formed from HCN and ammonia under these conditions.[16] Experiments conducted later showed that the other RNA and DNA nucleobases could be obtained through simulated prebiotic chemistry with a reducing atmosphere.[17]
The Miller experiment, in conjunction with experiments that came after, are clear evidence that all the basic parts of DNA and RNA can occur naturally in the presence of the elements which exist on earth.  It's literally a lie to say that this experiment disproves evolution.  Similarly, it's supposedly a sin to tell a lie.  It's fascinating, then, how many people willingly believe in a god they know is going to send them to purgatory or hell for this transgression.

Now I'm going to pick apart the next half-point in steady fashion.
1b. The amino acids were totally dead,
Well, amino acids aren't the most complex things.  I suppose one could say they are alive, or they are dead, but they'll never be both.  They were not dead in the sense that they had been born earlier.  A simple chemical process brought them about, and as long as they are the specific chain that makes a given acid, they are that acid.  It's not like when an organism dies, it's more like saying that a piece of dirt, or a glass of soda, is somehow dead.  These things aren't going to come to life, and they're similarly never going to die.
and the experiment only proved that a synthetic production of them
Sure, it's a synthetic production.  That's the point.  We're going to address a few points here.  In this context, anything which is made is synthesized.  It's not the greatest choice of wording.  We can synthesize things, but so can nature.  Rain clouds, salts, quartz crystals, oil, plate tectonics, all these thing are synthetic in the sense that they are synthesized, or given rise to by some process.  I don't think this is the intent of the author, however, so I'll not tarry.

The next point is that the synthesis mimics what happens in nature.  It's a bit like the neat experiment you can do at home, wherein you pressurize a bottle, and see the condensation of water that builds up in the air.  Essentially, a mini-cloud machine, completely created by you.  This in no way discredits the fact that clouds above us are formed by a similar process: pressure fronts and raindrop nucleus dirt, et cetera.  It's not an exact representation, but it gets the point across, and demonstrates the underlying principles.  This is science, plain and simple.
would result in equal amounts of left- and right-handed amino acids.
That's exactly right, and it's an interesting thing to think about.  Until they actually start being used in more complicated processes (it's very difficult to include every single element in a test tube, after all) it's not clear that chirality would have any negative consequences when the acids are just sitting there in a literal chemical stew.  Again, we're not sure why chirality tends to be right-handed in living things, but we can presume there's some interesting reason.  It probably has something to do with how cells form, but we simply don't have enough science yet to make any real determination.

Here's an example of two shells which show chirality reverse of one another.
By Scanned by Tom Meijer - Nyst, P.H., 1878-1881. Conchyliologie des terrains tertiaires de la Belgique. -- Ann. Mus. r. Hist. nat. Belg., 3: 1-262 (1878), 28 pls. (1881)., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6113367

Here's an example hypothesis that I came up with one day.  We know that chirality favors one type of twist.  We know also that astronauts have a difficult time retaining good physiques, and plants simply do not grow well, in the absence of gravity, given the lack of a need for the same kind of strength as people walking under gravity all day.  Plants seem to need gravity to have a proper stress to develop the various parts of its cells and so on.

Therefore, It's my hypothesis that chirality of DNA has something to do with gravity, and something to do with the well-being of cells that exist in creatures.  I could be wrong.  Perhaps it's something along the lines that radiation tends to affect negatively left-hand chirality, or that magnetic fields simply permit easier construction of constituent parts of cells.  Perhaps it's some process we're not even familiar with yet, and we'll accidentally stumble on the answer in 2078.

Regardless, that's how science works.  A hypothesis is put forward, all evidence is evaluated, and the most logical (and usually simplest, but not always) explanation that explains the greatest number of things wins.
Since only left-handed ones exist in animals, accidental production could never produce a living creature.
Alright, I got left and right mixed up.  We've all got left-handed chirality.  Although, maybe I did that on purpose, to demonstrate how to fix an error one has made.  Maybe someone will learn something here.  So many maybes.

Also, the assertion that it couldn't is simply incorrect.  We don't know if it could or could not, we only know that it did or (in this case) did not.
2. Till nowadays
Oh, is that what you are doing? Until you learn how to use words, perhaps tilling the land is a more productive use of your time. GOOD JOB!
life could not be created in any laboratory.
Yeah, penicillin and stuff, who needs them anyway?
Therefore it must have been created by God. 
Of course.  How many want to bet that he ends nearly every one of these the same way?  Well, trudge on I must.  Naturally, he misses the point again, but this time it's much more straightforward.  Let me sum it up in my own quote here.
Chirality works because evolution and chemistry work, but every single possible chemical process is not necessarily represented here on earth, therefore god must have made everything.  Even those things which we claim that science explains, absent a god.
I would like to think that I could make the point more concisely, but now we've got ourselves a very large number of words, all to dissect a few points.  Onward and upward, as they say.

25: The Argument of the Zip Codes within the Cells

The basic premise here is that of irreducible complexity.  Let's see if we can't reduce the complexity of this argument, and I think I shall do so.  Basically, as the author puts more words into his argument, it seems that I need fewer in mine.
5. All the above speaks about amazing, irreducible complexity and intelligent design of one of the simplest cells, the yeast.
Neatly, we can skip directly to point five, since points 1-4 are just a rip of someone else's words again.  Although,the author is missing the point here, and let's jump back to a line from those first four.
Proteins are the workhorses of the cell, but to get the most work out of them, they need to be in the right place.
This is correct.  It's almost as though proteins can indeed exist independent of cells, like amino acids (which our intrepid author dared to prove actually happen in literally the penultimate argument).  It's not irreducibly complex, and now I'm quite sure that the author knows not what 'irreducible complexity' actually means.

6. How this complex system evolved was not explained.
That's correct.  It's discussing how it functions, not how it came to function.  This is what makes me think he honestly just doesn't understand the words he's using.
This complexity found in the simple cell of yeast is one more example out of innumerable complex systems that are necessary for the existence of the cell.  
Yeast isn't the simplest cell, to be certain, but it's one of the simplest.  It's also interesting that a creationist is using yeast as an example of creation.  To be clear, yeast reproduce asexually, either through mitosis or budding.  If a god did create humans, it certainly would not have needed to make us sexual creatures.  To be certain, things like yeast and bananas and most asexual things do not evolve at nearly the speed of sexual things, which for this purpose I'm also including nonsexual things which swap dna (like bacteria, for example, which typically don't have a sex either in the typical sense).

I only bring up that point because it clearly contradicts points 7 & 8.
7. The irreducible complex systems are evidence of an intelligent design that could have been made only by a super intelligent person all men call God.
8. God is a must, He exists.
As you can see, this post has gone on quite long enough, so tune in here next time to hear some more unraveling.

See you space cowboys.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

125 Rebuttals, 13 to 22

This is a post in a series of rebuttals to this website.

Sorry it's been a while.  Life has been busy.  I'm gonna omnibus this one, so hang on tight.  We'll move a bit faster here.

13: The Argument of Amino Acids

This one is so poorly constructed I feel it's a waste to spend more than one sentence here.

Point 6 is cherry picking.

14: Proof by Self-Replicating RNA

Point two is simply wrong.  I mean, how do these people think RNA is formed, exactly?  Without RNA somehow?

15: Argument of Cellular Complexity

I'm done typing out the terribly-worded headings, so I'll fix them.

It's basically the same bad argument he made for the past several points.

16: DNA Evidence by Molecular Machines

Again, we see further arguments from ignorance.  Point six is made without describing why a god is necessary, and points one through five don't establish anything about the development of the process.

17: I don't even care what this title is.

Reverse point 10 and 11.  God exists therefore something must have created him.  So much special pleading.

18: The Argument of Holy Crap, DNA tends to act like DNA argument.

I really do want to stay on topic.  This list just keeps getting worse.  I can't imagine how bad 125 is going to be if this keeps up.

Point 9 demonstrates his misunderstanding of how genetics work.  You can work out the rest.

19: The argument of the cloned title.

Oops, I accidentally read this one for the last one because they've both the same name.  Oh well.  Same problem, just on point 6.  Also, stupid stuff in the preceding premises.

20: The Argument of misappropriation of terms.

Basically, the fellow takes words out of context in every point, and presumes his option must therefore be the only correct one, despite the fact that our intrepid author hasn't offered one actual hypothesis.

21: The Proof by Evolutionary Storytelling

Although, unfortunately, we don't get any here.  It's an argument from verbosity, and it also seems that the author doesn't understand how words work.

7. In serious scientific circles unsupported storytelling was never accepted as an evidence for truth.
That's right.  You can't just make crap up and pretend you're correct.  Come on, man, have you no intellectual integrity at all?  The cognitive dissonance hurts.

22: The Argument of Protein Something or other

 Literally, in point two, he says that evolution happened.  Then he says in point three that evolution doesn't happen.  I'm not sure what else to say on this one.

I'm gonna stop there for today.  All you wonderful people be good!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Socialism and You: A Thought Experiment

Sorry I've been away for a few days, I've just been busy.  However, a friend of mine recently posted something on facebook that got me to thinking, and I thought I'd spill some words here now.

The basic premises of socialism aren't so bad.  In fact, when people think of how great America used to be, it was largely because of a special kind of socialism that worked.  For this thought experiment, I want to focus on telephones, solar panels, and cars.

For a bit of preface, Bell Labs is important here.  If you're not familiar with them, I'd suggest reading up a bit.  The important bit to remember here is that they were amazingly innovative, essentially creating and effectively implementing the transistor.  This allowed for a wide range of products which would come to change the way America functioned since.

It wasn't so long ago (through the 1960s) that telephone services were largely run through Bell Telephone, a subsidy of the United States Government (not so different in this respect from the postal service).  This led to a unique situation, one that we've largely moved away from today.  During this period in time, the phone company would own the equipment in your house, including the telephone.  Today this probably seems odd, given how everyone likes to have their own cell phone.  However, it did solve one problem, and that was the ability of the phone company to provide service to essentially anyone.  If the phone malfunctioned, it was simply replaced.  Again, this is a bit of an oversimplification, but bear with me.

Let's move forward another ten years or so.  NASA was a similar subsidiary, responsible for countless innovations, but most notably for this illustration: the solar cell.  The thing most people know as a silicon chip, usually blue, which can be placed in the sun and generate electricity.  Let's imagine for a second what might have happened if we had adopted a similar approach.

Power companies were similarly a type of subsidiary for a very long time as well, even until much more recent deregulation in the early part of this century.  Imagine for a moment if the power company had been installing solar panels on the roof of most of the houses to which it supplied power, and had set up infrastructure conducive to allowing feeding that energy back into the grid.  We could have had a power grid which would have been much less prone to outages, and therefore more reliable.  This would have given the same sort of push to create innovation like we see in the current communications market, also.  Now, as it stands, we will have to play nearly fifty years of catching up just to come close.  This scenario even allows for the replacement of faulty equipment at no 'cost' to the end user: the costs would be divided among the base of users exactly as the cost for a new phone would have been.

Now, let's move to the realm of automobiles.  The employees of a car manufacturer (who are typically unionized in the same fashion as the employees of those other industries) would be similar subsidiary employees of the government.  Instead of worrying about what you'd do when your car breaks down, you simply take it to the nearest Car Service shop, and it's fixed in much the same way.  This could have allowed for much better infrastructure also, as it would have given much more incentive to the government (and subsidiary car companies) to develop the best automobiles in their own self-interest.  A car which gets only 200,000 miles would no longer be seen as practical, nor a car that was not as efficient as reasonably possible.

We're actually moving toward a world where the car scenario is becoming more plausible.  Self-driving cars are fast approaching, and electric vehicle technology is only improving.  Imagine, if instead of owning a car, the car could drive itself.  No longer would the car you drive to work have to sit most of the time.  It could be functional, and provide transport for countless individuals.  Similarly, since the car would be owned in much the same way as the phone in the previous example, if it breaks it's simply fixed or replaced. This keeps the people who perform those functions in a job, and even grants greater incentives to make those jobs better.

Nothing in this scenario limits your own ability to go out and buy something better.  It does, however, provide much more opportunity for people who might not reach the same kind of earning threshold as yourself.  Like it or not, the number of physical labor jobs in the past century has decreased massively, and it's not likely to increase simply because someone might want it to.  One hundred years ago, it took around 50% of the population to produce enough food to feed the population.  Now, it takes less than one percent.  Automotive assembly lines require far fewer people than in the past, and so on.  Computer manufacturers and software developers no longer need the same kind of human labor they once did - you can even compile simple programs from your phone if you were determined enough, which would have taken years of man-hours in the past.

Again, I'm not saying capitalism is bad, or that it can't work.  I'm simply saying that, in perhaps another hundred years, 'capital' won't necessarily be a thing.  When's the last time you actually had to use cash to buy something?  When money is digital, it's just a fancy way to count the time you've worked.  There's absolutely no reason this couldn't continue.  Be a productive member of society, log your hours on your bankcard (as you probably already do), and you get the things you want and need to survive and thrive.  Your consumption of other folks' service keeps them working, and their consumption keeps you working.  The problem with modern capitalism is that less and less of the capital is actually going back into the pool.  This kind of socialism also solves that problem, by creating a logical demand for workers in whatever fields are being demanded.

I realize this might be a bit out in left field for some of you, but I guarantee that socialism isn't evil, and that capitalism isn't either, in their purest forms.  Think back one hundred years, and I'm sure people would swear we'd still be doing things basically the same way as we had been.  Think back ten years, however, and I bet you can't even imagine using the same phone today as you had then.


Friday, March 4, 2016


To those of you just joining my blog, and to those who've been here since the beginning, welcome!  I'll be taking a break tonight from my series of 125 Rebuttals, to address a very old topic which I think could use some breaking down.

Context is Everything.

I was party to a Twitter debate recently, concerning free will.

You can view the context at that link, but I'm going to skip ahead a bit to this part:

 That's the important bit, because I promised I'd address the claims that exist within the context of that blog post.  I shall be as respectful as I can, and I'll do my best to avoid copying the full text here.  It's typically much easier to address points when they're directly on this page, however, so there will be some of it here.  Fair use and all that.  I recommend visiting his site, if for nothing else than to verify that I'm actually addressing the arguments he makes.

What is Determinism?

In keeping with the flow of his blog, I'll address each section in the same way it's presented.  I'll first start by saying that he's not using the reasonably standard definition of determinism, which google gladly provides as follows:
  1. the doctrine that all events, including human action, are ultimately determined by causes external to the will. Some philosophers have taken determinism to imply that individual human beings have no free will and cannot be held morally responsible for their actions.
For handy reference, here's his definition.
 Determinism is the belief in the reliability of cause and effect. We are so used to living in a deterministic universe that it would be difficult to imagine anything else.
 Suffice to say, his basic definition isn't actually that far from this mark.  It is via illustration, however, that the actual terms he's using to define 'determinism' aren't actually what he's intended.

Given is the example that there exists a dial, which can be adjusted from complete determinism to complete non-determinism.  Adjusting this dial one way, and reality maintains consistency.  Adjust it the other, and it loses all consistency.  The example specifically mentions objects literally changing to other objects.  This is a fallacy of false correlation, for one, because it doesn't actually address the argument of will, but rather of the consistency of the universe.  Apples do not spontaneously become bananas (but some subatomic particles can spontaneously become others, etc), and even if they did, it says nothing about the actions that may be performed upon it.  The consistency of the universe isn't really part of the greater argument of determinism, which deals with our ability to interact with the universe, not the universe's ability to spontaneously change.

Even so, in a universe which could spontaneously change, that doesn't rule out the fact that a complete lack of consistency (his definition of determinism) would have no bearing on freedom of will, or even its existence.  It's entirely possible that the spontaneity would have its own rules.  However, I'm getting off-track here, so let's continue.

The claim is then made that "we need a deterministic universe." While it may be true that organisms might not develop via evolution in such a universe lacking consistency, it in no way rules out that organisms like us could just crop up, completely 'indeterminate' of past or future.  Surely we need a deterministic universe to do things which we can do in our universe, but there's no evidence that things like us couldn't exist in some other universe.  It sounds like a fine-tuning fallacy, so I'll leave it at that.

His next statement is basically correct, regarding how science presumes rationality (although this isn't strictly true - if the universe were not rational, science would observe that too).  I'll leave it stand for now, because we find out something interesting in the next paragraph:
But there is another side to determinism that really bothers people. If cause and effect are perfectly reliable, then the future can only unfold in a single way. This bothers us because it makes us feel like the future is out of our control.
Well, it might bother some of us, but it's not what I'm here to discuss.  I want to call this a fallacy of composition/division, but I'm not sure it is exactly.  It's definitely a modified Appeal to Consequence of Belief fallacy, which is a form of Appeal to Emotion fallacy.  There's absolutely nothing stating that we are in control of the future.  Lots of things beyond our control can happen.

Also, and perhaps more importantly, it shows a more basic misunderstanding of cosmology and quantum sciences.  That's where that composition/division fallacy works in.  The macro universe doesn't work like the micro.  Some things really are going to happen whether we like them or not.  Other things we might actually be able to have influence over.

I will take one moment here to say that I think the idea of 'will' is merely an idea.  As a complex organism, we have at our disposal an open system, rather than a simply closed one like the entire universe.  Entropy becomes important here a bit, because we can actually harvest energy and use it for purposes other than what it would have been used 'naturally.'  That is, if you exclude humans from the rest of nature.  Arguably, building rockets is one of the natural outcomes of a planet like earth existing long enough around a star.  Everything we are comes from nature.  This doesn't mean we are forced to do one thing or another, but simply that anything we do is natural.  This'll probably be an important part later, so I thought I'd simply take a moment now to mention it.

But [the idea that the universe only has one outcome] is an illusion. To be true, determinism must include all causes. One of those causes is us.
Actually, we're not a cause, unless we're also an effect.  Your parents had a choice to give you birth, presuming you survived your birth and are now able to read this.  If not, sorry about your luck, I guess?  I mean, you're not going to be reading this anyway.
The laws of nature don’t just hold atoms together and keep the planets in orbit. They also keep our blood running, give power to our muscles, and provide the neurological framework in which we think and feel.
Again, all of those things are because atoms get held together.  The strong force and weak force are pretty important, but don't really have a lot to do with entropy at the level we tend to experience it.  Similarly, it doesn't have much bearing on will.  If anything, it introduces a case where 'will' doesn't actually exist, but we do indeed still have the ability to make choices.  I'd call this a quasi-will universe, wherein when a system becomes complex enough, it can indeed start to use the laws of nature to its benefit.  Which is a pretty damning argument against free will, considering that most things don't choose how to use their energy, but rather work to utilize it in the most efficient form.  In fact, your body is doing this as you read these words.

I'm gonna let some of that stuff sink in.  Let's take a small intermission here.
Since we're on the topic of free will anyway...

I wonder if that video will be important later?

What are we?

Well, there's a loaded question fallacy.  It presumes we 'are' something.  I'm something of a nihilist,  but for the sake of not wanting to drag this out forever, I'll grant that one.  Here's what he says we are:
We are purposeful causal agents in a deterministic universe.
Well, maybe.  Again, the entire universe may not be deterministic, and even if it is, one of the effects is that the determinism can determine that some aspects aren't. It's a bit meta, this argument, but I'm sticking with it.
Like any other biological organism, we come into this world with a built-in purpose: to survive, thrive, and reproduce.
Well, for a particular definition of purpose, I completely agree.  I don't like using the word purpose, however, because it implies something that isn't actually part of the given defintion.
And, more so than most biological organisms, we have evolved a complex brain that helps us adapt our behavior to our environment and to adapt our environment to our own needs.
See, that's what I was afraid of.  We didn't consciously decide one day that we need a bigger brain.  It's literally deterministic: our brains grew because people with larger brains tended to mate together. and produce offspring who, on average over long periods of time, happened to have larger brains.  This is a fallacy of conflation (ambiguity), such that two different definitions of purpose are being used here.  I really don't like that word.  Here's what google has to say on it:
noun: purpose; plural noun: purposes
  1. 1.
    the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists.

    • a person's sense of resolve or determination.

    • a particular requirement or consideration, typically one that is temporary or restricted in scope or extent.

There is indeed a reason why we exist: because of progeny.  There is exactly the same kind of purpose to our brain: it exists because we selectively bred for that trait, whether we were conscious of it or not.   It certainly helps us make decisions, lots of which are done autonomously, but a few of which might be conscious.

The second sense of the word can literally be seen as following from this: mating is the purpose of sexuality.  Hunger is the purpose for eating.  Logic is the purpose for wanting to figure things out, to make the first two easier.  As an asexual, I don't find people sexually attractive.  I still feel those purposeful urges (not so different from needing to use the bathroom, or eat).  I don't think there's any special purpose in not having sexuality, any more than there is in having it.  But I digress, let us continue.

The rest of this section does not argue effectively that it is the case, even though it's the conclusion which is given absent logical premises to support it.
In short, we cause stuff, we make stuff happen. And we do these things for a purpose: to survive and thrive as individuals, as societies, and as a species.
Again, pure determinism actually does account for that.  We do things because things cause us to do them, and some things happen because of the stuff we did.  It's what I'd call a fallacy of ignoring a common cause, or perhaps a false dichotomy.  No argument has been made effectively yet, for the conclusion provided, and it ignores any argument in-between (as well as the argument that it could simply not exist, or be consistently inconsistent like some kinds of entropy/open systems, etc).

What is Free Will?

Now here's the part of the article where things should start to get interesting. It is, after all, the whole point of the prior two sections existing, one presumes.
Within a deterministic universe, we decide what we will do.
Actually, you just argued against that in the previous two sections.  In a deterministic universe, it's actually impossible to do that.  I think that generally our universe is deterministic: stars will die, black holes will collapse, and so on.  I think that specifically, some things aren't bound exactly this way.  In fact, he also made this argument earlier.  I stick by my assertion that a quasi-will state exists for any sufficiently-advanced organism.

The “free” distinguishes our own decisions from cases where someone forces us to do what they want, against our will. In those cases, our will is not free, but subordinate to theirs.
The only problem is, if you're arguing for free will from determinism, it's certainly a choice whether or not to obey the coercion.  You can hold your bladder indefinitely if you so desired, but you might die.  It would likely be extremely painful, but there's nothing (apart from your own physical limitations) that actually stops you doing that, or so free will actually argues.  If we follow this backwards a bit, let's imagine that a person wants something badly but can't afford it.  Is the person coerced into stealing it simply because some other factors limit that person's income?  Most people would say that theft is an act of free will, however, there is definite coercion (in the form of a price, or of laws, or any number of other factors) which should limit free will.  The same goes with speed limits.  Do you actually have free will to violate speed limits, or do you not have free will since you're being coerced into not doing that?

Again, this kind of argument for free will breaks down as a false dichotomy.  However, in either a quasi-will, or will-free scenario, the choices are best framed as "what's the most advantageous?" It's not dissimilar at all from other natural biological processes, like evolution or mating pressures.

I'm going to skip the next couple sections, as I think the last couple paragraphs here have addressed most of the arguments presented there.  This will give you a good opportunity to consider both sides as well, if you're able to, that is.  Maybe you feel as though my side, or his side, is coercing you into thinking one or the other is correct.  It's a bit of a (modified) slippery slope, I guess, is what I'm saying.

Myths of Incompatibility

Well, as I discussed earlier, the two are not mutually exclusive necessarily. It's merely my claim that 'will' doesn't exist as presented here, and possibly doesn't exist at all, unless it exists in some quasi-state (which makes the most sense, I think), like a will of advantages as I posited a couple paragraphs ago.

Since we're on the idea of the future and the past being set in stone, let's take some words from an expert.  Sit back, make some popcorn, grab a beer or draw some tea.  I think you'll enjoy this.  It's only nine more minutes.  If you've read this far, you owe yourself something nice like this video, don't you think?  I do.  Also, this video is quite lengthy, but you only need to watch perhaps the first 8-10 minutes to get my point.  By all means, I suggest watching the entire thing.

As should be quite apparent now, the idea that the past and the future are separable is not such a strong idea.  Partially, this is because time doesn't move just one direction, and partially this is because of observation.  Your observation that you move forward in time is dependent on something we've possibly not figured out yet.  Why do we only experience time in the direction that we do?  Why does the future not seem determined, even though every bit of evidence shows us that it probably is?  It probably has something to do with the observation itself, collapsing the waveform that is 'choice' into the one you actually observed in this direction in time.  It's entirely possible that every 'choice' you could ever make was made simultaneously.

While his argument didn't delve into it here, it's the same argument against a god having will.  If a god can literally see everything that exists all at once, it would be impossible for it to draw any meaning from anything.  For it would observe everything, including the infinite observations where it isn't necessary, and it wouldn't be able to react to any of them.  You might ask why, and I'd tell you simply that it's because such a god could only observe the things it could observe.  If it observed everything in this way, it would make literally every choice ever.  If it didn't, it wouldn't, and it would be forever prohibited from it.  This is why we say it's complicated to think about things outside of nature, the universe, etc.  We've gotta master this one before we try jumping on toward the next one.

If you managed to get all the way here, congratulations!  You have some wonderful mental stamina, and I look forward to your continued readership!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

125 Rebuttals, 10 through 12

This is a post in a series dealing with this site. If you're new here, welcome!  I see that my blog is getting nearly a hundred people per post viewing it now, so thanks a bunch!  If you're simply returning and enjoying, thanks also!  I'm glad my work is interesting to you, and I welcome any feedback at all.  Now, back to where I left off.

It looks like we're going to have another rapid-fire day ahead of us, so let's dive in!  As a reminder, if you've a specialty here, feel free to let me know if I make any technical mistakes.  Also, just to break up the flow, here's a neat set of pictures I took some time ago.

Apparently Google will sometimes turn a series of pictures into a .gif file automatically.
I'm actually impressed, Google.  I just wish you were better at notifying me of things.
It's a pertinent picture, I think, because it shows an amazing display of evolutionary traits.  Butterflies and grass, two things that have adapted to their environment.  Good luck little butterflies, even though you're likely dead because that photo is several years old now.  I hope you had wonderful lives!

10: The Argument from Transitional Fossils

Alright, I'll quit being lazy.  Time to capitalize things again.  Let's see what kind of logical breakdowns we have today.
The evidence of the words of Charles Darwin
1. “As by this [evolution] theory, innumerable transitional forms must have existed. Why do we not find them in the fossil record? Why is not all nature in confusion instead of being, as we see them, well-defined species?”—Charles Darwin (1866)
We need to put this in context, because it's actually quite important here.  From the first few paragraphs of chapter six of The Origin of Species, from whence the quote was mined (around page 131 in that edition), we can see that Darwin is actually setting up these headings with the actual purpose of discussing them.  He acknowledges that they are indeed points of contention (at the time) for which some science still needed to be done. In the hundred and fifty years or so hence, we've discovered the answers to most of those questions.  Note also that this isn't a premise.  It's simply a cherry-picked quote so dearly out of context that, were it anything else, it might tear the fabric of time.

But I digress.
2. Even the few transitional forms claimed by  scientists to be good ones are very questionable and what to say about not finding innumerable transitional forms.
Well, it's terribly incorrect, this premise.  Ring species, like the salamanders found in the greater California area, are literally a set of species in transition.  If you'd like, I can go into more detail on those later, but suffice to say, they are an excellent example of how speciation happens.  Another excellent example is the Mule/Hinney.  Horses and donkeys are starting to become divergent, such that they can still reproduce, but the offspring are (in the case of the mule) born sterile, and are a distinctive species from either parent.  This is a prediction of the divergence of species.  It's probably similar to exactly what happened between Humans (that's us) and Neanderthals.

But again, I digress.  The premise is false, it's an appeal to authority (and a bad one), and it lacks a citation.  Also, god of the gaps.
3. The work of a designer and his creation is obvious. All men call him God.
Again, nope and nope.  First, not all men believe in a god.  A large portion of religious people are Buddhist, for example, a religion that is generally atheist.  Buddhists don't necessarily believe in a god, though most do believe in Nirvana or something similar.  However, I'm moving beyond my scope here.  False premise, false assertion, Argument from heaven, moving on.
4. God exists.
It's interesting to note that the argument is supposedly from transitional fossils, but no fossils were mentioned.  I feel as though I'm really aiming low to keep going, but I'm a dedicated son of a gun, so away we go.

11: The Argument of Information.

I bet it's not.  This might be the most ironic one yet.  Did I mention I'm not reading these before I address each one?  I'm hoping that, in this veritable goldmine of futility, I'll find at least one compelling argument.  Wish me luck as we delve further!
1. There is matter or energy.
Well, actually, there's both.  It's a false dichotomy, in part because it's not an either/or, and in part because they're both the same thing in some frames of reference.  YAY SCIENCE!
2. It is useless or inactive to direct the origin and make of complex life forms without information and consciousness.
[citation needed]
I'd like to know why the author thinks it is useless, or what's even meant by inactive.  Similarly, I can't really make sense of the rest.  Is PSH implying that organisms can't exist without consciousness, like bacteria or plant seeds?  Do trees have thoughts, can cabbage contemplate its own existence?

Also, information is sometimes used to describe matter / energy relations.  It doesn't mean 'information' in the same statistical way you're probably thinking of it right now.  These glyphs you're looking at, that make words on this screen, are one kind of information.  When we're talking about the 'information' of a cell, or of a photon, we're not talking about the same kind of information; we're generally talking about energy, and its attributes, like the polarity of a photon, or the chirality of a strand of DNA or something.  Again, it can change based on the context, so we shan't dwell upon it here, where no context is given.
3. The DNA displays a huge level of coded,
Not really
specified, complex information.
Only because we give it arbitrary meanings.  It's really not so complex a system as you make it out to be.
Many DNA strands have 100 million, or even billions of  segments
This is actually basically correct.
(one segment is called a nucleotide. Nucleotides are the building blocks, namely purines: adenine, guanine; and pyrimidines: cytosine, thymine and uracil).
 Again, basically correct.

4. Even  scientists are amazed by the amount of information in the DNA and every day they discover new things about it.
PSH is on a roll.  This is also correct, it's amazing how much 'information' a strand of DNA can hold.  That is to say, it's amazing how the multitude of base pairs can react with its surroundings (like RNA) to fabricate very complex things.  As complicated as it looks, however, it's still chemistry, and it's still governed by the same laws that make vinegar and baking soda interact in your kitchen.  Well, basically the same laws, but we'll discuss that later perhaps.
5. Proponents of materialism have no answer to the question what generated the first DNA strands, and the information stored in it.
Well, I'm not sure what materialism has to do with anything here, but let's roll with it.  Basically, either DNA is or is not material.  Ignoring this special pleading fallacy, we do have some idea, actually.  very simple versions of RNA, over time, became specialized to the point that they became something like DNA, which pretty much every organism shares now.  The proto-RNA to DNA change may have happened relatively quickly, who can say.  It's probably much more logical, for whatever reason, for there to be separate DNA and RNA within a cell, to create the interaction.  It's entirely possible that DNA evolved covergent with RNA, and the two became specialized over time in unison.  It's not terribly important how you think about it for now, because the mechanism that would have produced it would have been the same.
6. Therefore, there must have been a first, super-intelligent designer of not only of one DNA code but many of them.
Well, there's only one DNA code on earth, and that's the DNA every organism shares.  Sure, each one institutes it differently, but it's literally the same AGTC coding.
7. That creator all men call the all-powerful, all-knowing God.
Again with this.  I grow weary of hearing it.  Especially when it follows such floundering.

I think I said it once before, and I'll say it once again.  If your god is letting such bad logic define him, even if he's real, I think I'd stop believing in him.  I don't mean in the sense that I'd think he's not there, but more like when someone says they don't believe in a sports team.  I'd give him absolutely no quarter.  The fact that this particular sort of argumentation is so common among theists, when it's supposedly one of the most important things in their life, seems bad.  God, the most important thing ever, but no respect is given by the arguments presented.  It seems really disrespectful to the gods they believe in, to use such faulty logic to defend them.  If I were a theist (and even when I was), I really wouldn't want such terrible logic defending something I hold so dear.

Anyway, enough caveats. Back to the grind. But first, the weather.

I play the harmonica. I'm don't have any fancy equipment, but I play.
If you enjoy it, let me know!  If you don't, let me know!
If you just want me to get on with it, here we go.

12: The Argument of Co-option

Well, I've not heard of this one, methinks.  Let's find out what's going on.  Maybe it'll be the diamond in the rough.
1. Co-option in microbiology means borrowing parts of systems from different places to form a new system. When in this way a new system is generated it has a new function. This proves evolution.
That's interesting.  I've never heard it put that way before, but it's true that some things were co-opted by other things. After all, the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell.  It's important to note that this explains where mitochondria came from.
2a. But in the evolutionary scheme not all the systems were available by co-option.
That's absolutely correct.  Some systems had to develop independently so they could be co-opted.  Others make no sense to co-opt.  There's a reason plants have chloroplasts and you don't.  Animal cells simply don't make good use of solar energy that way, but plant cells do.  It's really as simple as that.  Early animals didn't co-opt it because it simply didn't make sense generally.  Sure, some cyanobacteria and stuff do, but chloroplasts suit them well, because they're relatively simple compared to a human or a cat. [citation needed, probably]

2b. In the simple example of E-coli only 10 out of 40 components can be traced back as having been developed by co-option.
Neat.  Again, false dichotomy fallacy - not everything must be co-opted.  In fact, by definition, it should only tend to happen when it's mutually useful, and that's what we see.  It even happens environmentally, cleaner fish will clean larger animals in return for protection.  Bacteria in your gut evolved to live there.  The fact that they help with nutrient absorption is kinda the reason they're there, regardless whether or not it's a byproduct of why gut bacteria initially developed in the gut.
2c. The rest of the 30 components are unique and new. There are simply no known homologues to them.
Wonderful.  Again, there don't have to be.  One of your premises, supported in fact by your further premises, is that evolution is evidently true (read:proven).  Again, there's no purpose, no guiding light, telling things why they have to do things.  Things just kind happen, and that's that.  The fact that, sometimes, one process benefits another, is not evidence that it's impossible for two processes which have no bearing on each other to exist.  This is a false corollary!  A new kind of fallacy!  Haha, many discoveries were made today, mark the day!
      These 30 components were not available for co-option in hypothetic ancestral lines leading from e.g. a bacterium with no flagellum.
Science-sounding stuff pulled out of context and then not put back into a context. This is really just sloppy.  Also, the premise admits that it could have been co-opted from elsewhere, whatever thirty other traits it supposedly references.  I'm not even going to bother looking up a source for this, because we can all guess what comes next.
3. This again proves the existence of a designer who is no one else then God.
Actually, it does exactly the opposite.  It shows that evolution is evidently true, and uses evolution to explain how symbiosis works. Good job!  PSH is literally so disingenuous that he's claiming that the premise supports exactly the opposite conclusion from what was actually shown in the premise.  Imagine if I said this.

  1. Clouds are made of raindrops
  2. Raindrops form around dirt nuclei
  3. Those nuclei can be any number of very tiny particulates
  4. Some raindrops form because of tiny ice crystals instead of dirt
  5. Clouds don't actually contain any raindrops because some raindrops don't contain dirt
I've kept you all here more than long enough, and I appreciate you stopping by!
Again, I'll take just a few seconds to mention my Patreon, link in the sidebar.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

125 Rebuttals, 6 to 9

This is a post in a series of rebuttals to this forum post.

Thankfully, the next few points are rather concise, so let's zip right through.

6: Argument of the Protocells

1. “Protocells may have formed in a salty soup,” says chemist Wilhelm Huck, professor at Radboud University Nijmegen. (July 2, 2013) 
2. DNA and RNA molecules, however they emerged, may have clustered together without a cell membrane at first. 
3. But despite the interesting story Wilhelm Huck admitted: “A functioning cell must be entirely correct at once, in all its complexity.”
Basically a fallacy of appeal to authority.  Just because an authority makes a claim (and likely out of context), doesn't mean the claim is valid.   Similarly, as nearly as I can tell, the claim is in reference to a specific bit of research the chemist was doing.  He appeared to be explaining that, in order to call it a cell, it must contain the fundamental bits associated with a cell.  It's not an implication that a cell couldn't be any simpler, but that a recreated cell must have its constituent parts to be called a cell.

Again, I don't know why I'm reiterating this - PSH is just going to mine things out of context anyway.
4. This conclusion points to the supreme designer all men call God.
No, it doesn't.  A premise wasn't even introduced here, and it clearly does no such thing.
5. God exists.
 Again, PSH doesn't understand formal logic.

7: The argument of emerging from the ooze

I'm really getting tired of capitalizing the titles, so I'm not doing that anymore.  If PSH can be lazy, so can I.
1. George Poinar at Oregon State has tried to understand the evolution of nematodes (roundworms) that originated a billion years ago as one of the earliest forms of multicellular life.  He says, “They literally emerged from the primordial ooze.”
2. The article enumerated all the parts that would have had to emerge. In one of the paragraphs we read, “But they are functional animals, with nervous and digestive systems, muscles, good mobility, and they are capable of rapid reproduction and learned behavior.”
3. Although Poinar wrote a book on nematode evolution, he admitted, “There’s still a huge amount we don’t know about nematodes.”
It seems that this article is the one in question.  Again, it'd be really swell if PSH could simply learn how to attribute things, but I'm guessing that's never going to happen.  That's actually a really interesting article, and I suggest you all go read it now. FOR SCIENCE or whatever.
4. And he did not explain how something so complex could emerge from ooze.
Except that he kinda doesn't have to, because literally, it's like saying that some creatures emerged from the water and became land-dwelling creatures.  It's not as though the ooze had sentience.  It's a medium in which things would have grown.  Nevermind that evolution and abiogenesis deal with that anyway, and the scope of the book is about how nematodes developed, not necessarily about how they came into existence.
5. This again points to the work of an intelligent designer all men call God. God exists.
It does no such thing. Argument from Heaven (god of the gaps argument).  Now PSH is getting so lazy he isn't even making the conclusion separate from a premise.

8: The evidence of panspermia

Again, I discussed this at a few points, but let's humor it here on its own.
1. In 1981,
Really reaching here.
Francis Crick, the co-discoverer of the structure of the DNA molecule, published a book, declaring that “directed panspermia” was responsible for life on earth.  
 Actually, it was that it could have been, for life on earth, not that it absolutely was, as the premise would lead one to believe.
2. Crick admits that this does not explain how nearly all our plant and animal species came into existence. Nor does it explain the transportation problem.  Centuries of travel through the cold of outer space would be required. This theory is a desperate, gasping effort to provide a solution to the question of how living creatures originated, a puzzle which thousands of scientists in 150 years of diligent work have not been able to solve. Very few intellectuals have accepted panspermia.
This is just a jumble of stuff that the author is attempting to compress into a coherent idea.  Essentially, cherry-picking again.  I'm not going to go into any specifics here, except to say this statement is a load of something.  Crap, probably.

Again, it's important to note that panspermia only addresses life on earth. It doesn't discuss how that life formed, wherever it formed.
3.  Life cannot originate from matter.
That's right, boys and girls, we're not made of matter! Oh wait.  That's an unfounded premise.
 4. Panspermia also means that all the species were designed by an intelligent designer all men call God.
Panspermia makes no such claims.  Google it, the blog will be here until you return.
5. God exists.
Again, that's not a conclusion which is supported by the premises that don't exist here.

9: The argument of extraterrestrial life origin.

Well, this ought to be fun. Again, it encounters the same pitfalls as panspermia, because it still doesn't address how life began. Evolution does, and does so quite nicely.  I like how the idea that aliens could have started life somehow argues that god is an alien.  This would mean that god couldn't create the universe, since god would by definition exist within it.  But I digress, let's see where it goes from here.
1. Vladimir I shCherbak of al-Farabi Kazakh National University of Kazakhstan, and Maxim A Makukov of the Fesenkov Astrophysical Institute have come to the conclusion after researching for years that we, as human beings living on earth, are not originally from the earth planet, nor that we are alone in the Universe.
Good for them!  I'd love to see their paper, but I'm getting tired of googling everything.  Also, Kardashev makes similar claims, as do other people.  Again, appeal to authority fallacy, and since he'll probably claim that their authority is moot later, we'll just move merrily along.  Can't have it both ways, either they're authority gives them credence or it doesn't: special pleading fallacy.
2. shCherbak and Makukov say that “our genes could have an intelligently designed ‘manufacturer’s stamp’ inside them, written eons ago elsewhere in our galaxy.”
Sure, it could have.  I'm almost certain the paper doesn't actually show any such evidence, though.  Fine, I'll hit the google machine one last time today.


The absolute level of idiocy displayed by this argument alone is staggering.  I don't think the journal is a proper peer-reviewed journal, for one.  I don't think SETI is working under any presumption that codes in our DNA might contain messages from aliens.  I mean, if a code could survive for that long, evolution probably wouldn't work. Again, I'm not going into specifics here.  It's from an intelligent-design website, no less, and the authors of the speculation are from a theistic university in Kazakhstan.
3. Such a ‘designer label’ is an indelible stamp on our DNA of a master extraterrestrial civilization that preceded us by many millions or even billions of years.
4. Writing in the journal Icarus, the two scientists say that such a signal embedded in our genetic code would be a mathematical and semantic message that cannot be accounted for by Darwinian evolution. They call it ‘biological SETI’ — the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence — that’s been ongoing for over four decades now without finding anything.

4a. “Once fixed, the code might stay unchanged over cosmological timescales; in fact, it’s the most durable construct known. Therefore, it represents an exceptionally reliable storage for an intelligent signature. Once the genome is appropriately rewritten, the new code with a signature will stay frozen in the cell and its progeny, which might then be delivered through space and time.”
5. Makukov and shCherbak assert that simple arrangements of the code reveal an ensemble of arithmetical and ideographical patterns of symbolic language. This includes, they say, the use of decimal notation, logical transformations, and the utilization of the abstract symbol of zero. They write: “Accurate and systematic, these underlying patterns appear as a product of precision logic and nontrivial computing.”
Stuff from some article, probably.  I'm just gonna go ahead and move along, since I have absolutely no way to discern the claims without paying for the paper.
6. This theory is called panspermia or the theory that life on earth originated from organisms coming from outer space or that it came to our planet carried by meteors and asteroids which got seeded before being flung across space to land here.
Well, at least it got that right.
7. This latest panspermia theory makes it sound less like serendipitous happenstance and more like a well thought out experimental endeavor with a purpose, by entities who wanted to leave their signature behind on a part of the universe.
Certainly, it sounds that way, but lots of things that happen by chance can be seen as intended.  It's our mind's natural response to find patterns or purpose behind any given thing.  A rock that hit a planet which contained some life, picked up some of that life (probably bacteria or simple molecular structures) and flung them here, where some of it thawed out and started growing again.

If you think it's hard to get things to grow when they've been frozen, just stick some moldy bread in your freezer.  In fact, soak it in liquid nitrogen if you want.  Then thaw it out in a sterile bag or something.  See if the mold keeps growing.  Hint: it probably will.  You've just done a panspermia experiment, bringing life to a lifeless bag.
8. This theory although un-testable or un-falsifiable is still supported by the view of Anthony Flew, a renowned British philosopher belonging to the analytic school of thought. 
Actually, I just showed you a great way to test and falsify it.  In fact, go ahead and stick it in a vacuum for a bit as well.  See if you can't get anything to survive.
9. For more than half a century he was considered the world’s leading atheist, advocating the need for believing that one should always presuppose the non-existence of God until empirical evidence proves otherwise. However, in December 2004, Flew, aged 81, based on scientific evidence, had changed his mind and accepted the existence of God because a super-intelligence was the only good explanation for the origin of life.
Actually, he probably changed his mind for other reasons.  Argument from authority fallacy also.  If I wake up tomorrow, and a respected marine biologist tells me the oceans are made of ice cream now, that doesn't make it true.

10. Flew specifically stated that biologists’ investigation of human DNA “has shown, by the almost unbelievable complexity of the arrangements which are needed to produce (life), that intelligence must have been involved.” That’s exactly what Messrs shCherbak and Makukov are now reporting.
Again, argument from authority.  Flew can say that there are innumerable teakettles orbiting the moon, and that faeries visit him nightly.  Simple assertions don't make something true.  Evidence that can be tested does, though.
11. God exists.
Oh it's the premise that's false without end, it keeps getting claimed over and over again.  Some people started preaching it, not knowing how or why, and they'll continue preaching it until the day they die cause it's the premise that's false without end...

Peace until next time!