Bill Nye to debate Creationist tonight at 7 - 2.4 on CNN

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by DarthTom, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. Robert D. Robot

    Robert D. Robot Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Nye: "I am joyful about discovery. The beliefs of creationists are unsettling to me. We need engineers for the future for the U.S. to remain economically strong in the future. Mr. Ham, please give us any example of how creation 'science' predicts anything."

    Ham: "I believe every word in the Bible and I believe that there is nothing exists that could ever change my mind on this. The Bible DOES predict that -after the Tower of Babel- there would be all these people on Earth that speak different languages... and guess what? There ARE all these people on Earth that speak different languages! Predicted outcome = confirmed!!"

    This seemed to be mainly (in my mind) how the debate went. I don't know what I was hoping for, exactly, but I doubt anyone who was in either 'camp' changed their mind about the issue. I don't feel that Bill Nye did as well in being as sharply convincing with his arguments as I had hoped, but Ham was essentially repeating that "Obviously, God did it."

    Maybe God did get things started. I, personally, can not argue against someone holding that belief. What I do have an issue with is something like the issue of the fossil record and the flood and the Grand Canyon. How can creationists continue to use this as evidence of the Great Flood? I found Trilobite fossils in the creek behind my house. Also straight-shelled nautiloids. No boney fish fossils. No dolphin fossils. No pelican or other bird fossils. And if you go to places where there are fossils of 'more advanced' life forms, there are no trilobites or Ordovician cephalopods. So no pterodactyl or condor or puma ever fell into a shallow sea or onto a beach to lay alongside the bodies of dead 'early' marine organisms and no trilobite succumbing to the Great Flood was apparently ever able to swim up into the rising flood waters to end up fossilized alongside a bass or a drowning deer or donkey or dog or seagull or human? Unless God actually 'directed' where each and every organism was to die at what 'depth/altitude', creating this specific 'ascending' order of fossilized organisms. And why would a creator do this? Just to fool the race on humans that he had created.... the ones who He had instructed to never lie to one another?
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2014
  2. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I agree Nye didn't connect how creationism hurts science and engineering. Ham stated something I never heard before. That the past doesn't matter because things were different (talk about compartmentalization).
    Nye should made it Very clear. By Ham's own claims the laws of nature are NOT consistent therefore future endeavors are worthless since these same laws can change on you. Hey that MRI that creationist invented may not work because God could change his mind on the laws of electoromagnetism.
     
  3. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    To be honest, Bill had so much stupid coming at him he could only address it the best way possible that was easily understandable, and in a small one or two minute rebuttal. All Ken had to do was say "goddidit."
     
  4. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah but I loved Bill's game plan. Focus on the weakest aspect of creationist theory (age of the Earth) and hammer on it until everybody gets it.

    I'm disappointed that he didn't take the next step. Honestly I had a hard time explaining why creationism hurts modern science until today.
     
  5. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This also the creator God that changed the law of nature on a whim and why would God create logic if he himself doesn't follow it.
     
  6. Robert D. Robot

    Robert D. Robot Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Ham kept saying that while you can trust the 'observation science' that can be used today to create tests & observe/record the results, he also said that you can not trust 'historical science' because no one living now was there to confirm the assumptions made today (such as if natural processes acting in the past centuries worked at the same rate as they do today).

    So, to Mr. Ham: Who is currently living that was around in the first few centuries A.D. to confirm how and when the Bible was written and if it was truly the authentic word of the Creator?
     
  7. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I agree it's basically a form of special pleading. That's why he wanted to confuse science with religion. The problem is that what he called "assumptions" are facts. Radioactive decay is constant. The speed of light is consistent. Contamination can be accounted for by finding what isotopes you are dealing with. Tree ring growth is consistent. So is ice deposition (more snow means thicker layers NOT more layers).

    Oh and that list of inaccurate dating methods. All of them show that the earth is more than 4,000 years old. Ham never explained that.
     
  8. gturner

    gturner Admiral

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    But do note that Ham is a good speaker (and with a nice sounding accent). The people at his position are generally not going to be walk-overs in a debate, because such debates are pretty much all they do.

    Some of the things I would suggest are sort of like flanking maneuvers. With such a vast array of scales in the universe, from galaxy clusters to bacterial flagella, does it make sense that only one god was at work? Wouldn't it make more sense if the different aspects were handled by specialist gods? Would a god who could create the big bang really be shoving his hand up a sheep's butt to tweak a gut bacteria? In science different forces and effects work at different scales. Drug resistance, river erosion, and star formation aren't the same specialties, and if they all manifest a higher power then they probably don't all manifest the <i>same</i> higher power.

    The thing about creationists is that they find the idea of polytheism anathema, probably worse than atheism because it's a competitor, not an alternative. It's been ages since they've never had to argue against it, and they've hardly ever had to do so logically, other than "my God can beat up your gods!" And none of the weak arguments they advance for creationism would indicate that one god makes more sense than hundreds of thousands of more specialized gods. When they introduce a place for supernatural forces, they're opening a can of worms that is not at all limited to the Biblical accounts, and I don't think they realize that.
     
  9. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Ham was terrible. All he did was spew out a bunch of nonsense while quoting the Bible. Nye was consistent and on point.

    Yeah Nye didn't address this well. What he should have said if the supernatural exists, why is your creation myth any more valid than the Native American, Hindu or African creation myths. Last time I looked there was no evidence of Noah outside of the Bible.
     
  10. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    The risk there, though, is that when you go off message, you might dilute your point in the process. If Bill would have followed that line of questioning, he would have had to explain various religions to make his point, and when that happens, you start confusing the audience you're trying to reach. I think his best bet was to stay where he did. Sure, he didn't hit on various other religions, but his time was short, and he had to get that point driven home.
     
  11. Venardhi

    Venardhi Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Ughh, couldn't make it through the first hour.
     
  12. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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  13. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I agree with you but I think Nye was making that point when he said about the billions that didn't agree with Ken Ham. It just was a clunky argument.

    I also respect Nye for staying with the science but some theology would have hit Ham in the gut.

    1. Genesis is full of inconsistency. Gen 1:1 and Gen 1:2 is the most famous. God created man and woman together in 1:1 and then created woman AFTER man in 1:2. Also God orders Noah to originally save 6 pairs of the sacred animals and then orders Noah to save a pair of every animal. Good Grief Lord which is it.

    2. Ark means box that holds something sacred. It does not mean boat.

    3. People lived HOW LONG back then. Let Ham explain that.

    4. On the first day God created the Sea and the Sky. Uh how can you do that without creating a planet first.

    5. If stars came at the same time why are they different ages.

    6. Why does God hate DINOSAURS!!!

    Etc. infinitum.
     
  14. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    True, and I would have loved to see him do it, but again, that's the kind of stuff that will get you mired down in the details. Bill seemed like he was trying to stay on top of the bilge that Ken Ham was flooding him with.
     
  15. gturner

    gturner Admiral

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    Well, I think the polytheist angle would leave the creationist having to make a completely different argument as to why monotheism is true and polytheism is not, completely changing their game because you can't even pretend to make that argument scientifically, so they'd be left spouting some stuff about Jesus or the Ten Commandments. I'm not sure the tactic would work, but it might be worth trying in some lesser forum.

    The idea stems from a thought I had upon reading the Popul Vu, the Mayan creation story, which was actually much more scientifically accurate than Genesis, holding that the universe is made of a four-fold symmetry (built with strings), and that different physical forces were the result of different gods, and that mankind's direct ancestors are monkeys. It also better handles things like disease and horrible death, which some gods find very amusing, and it is scientifically testable because it holds that we each have a spirit animal living inside a known mountain in Mexico, which could be explored by mining or drilling if you don't get sued by a bunch of lawyers whose spirit animals are worms, spiders, and cockroaches that might be killed during the process.
     
  16. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I have to agree because that's what happened to Kevin Ham. :lol:

    He did a great job but he seamed to lose focus. He missed too many opportunities to "score points" against Ham to make his lame appeal to promote STEMI. That's the one thing that really annoyed me about Nye. American scientific supremacy is ending soon and there is nothing to cry over.
     
  17. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well Ham did that anyway. I don't know if he did it to win points with his "base" (Christians) or a response to the fact that his arguments were so weak.
     
  18. gturner

    gturner Admiral

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    He probably can't help but do it because he's an evangelical Christian who believes in the literal word of the Bible.

    Another question is that if God really made the world and all we see, including the fossils, why was it man who had to write it all down? Couldn't have God made an HP Laserjet and printed a million copies of His holy word, and made flatscreen TV's for the Hebrews that would show how he did it all?

    I'd also make attacks on the flood story, because that much water doesn't exist on Earth, that much water can't fall as rain, if there was that much rain in the air then the Earth's surface air pressure would be the same as the pressure 30,000 feet under the ocean, where a nuclear submarine would be crushed like an egg, and that it requires one to believe that all the animals in the Americas and Australia swam across the ocean to get on a boat so they wouldn't drown, just so they could swim back. In fact, it was the discovery of North and South America and their unique species that convinced the Catholic hierarchy that Noah's flood wasn't literally global, because thousands of land mammals swimming across the Atlantic and back didn't make a lick of sense.
     
  19. Gov Kodos

    Gov Kodos Admiral Admiral

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    That's only a problem for Fundamentalist literalism not theology.
     
  20. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Good point. Another is who is the author? It certainly is not God neither can it be Moses (since Exodus and Leviticus are written in the third person). I think that's a better argument since Ham is obsessed with being "observable".

    According to the bible, deep wells under the Earth but there is no evidence of all that extra water.

    Hence Pangea existed in the time of Noah. Of course the separation of the continents in such a short period would release so much energy, that the seas would boil and rocks would literally melt and all life would have perished.
     

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