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"Cosmos- A SpaceTime Odessey" -–Tonight 'Rivers of Life' covers Evolution and Mass Extinction Events
The Daily Galaxy ^ | March 16, 2014

Posted on 03/16/2014 3:02:10 PM PDT by EveningStar

"Cosmos- A SpaceTime Odessey" --Tonight in 'Rivers of Life' Neil deGrasse Tyson Covers Evolution and Mass Extinction Events

Tonight, the second of 13 episodes of "Cosmos- A SpaceTime Odessey" hosted by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson airs at 9 pm tonight on Fox and at 10 pm Sunday night on the National Geographic channel. Tonight's episode is "The Rivers of Life" and covers evolution and natural selection processes that have made life on Earth as we know it today, and also covers mass extinction events such as asteroid impacts with our planet that have drastically altered the course and progress of life.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Astronomy; History; Science; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: carlsagan; cosmos; cosmosreboot; cosomos2; evolution; massextinction; neildegrassetyson; odysseynotodessey; waronreligion; waronsciencememe
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1 posted on 03/16/2014 3:02:10 PM PDT by EveningStar
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To: All

Note: “Odyssey” is misspelled in the source document.

2 posted on 03/16/2014 3:06:37 PM PDT by EveningStar
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To: EveningStar

There have been so many mass extinctions that it seems to be the rule not the exception.

3 posted on 03/16/2014 3:07:50 PM PDT by Mikey_1962 (Democrats have destroyed more cities than Godzilla)
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To: EveningStar

Looked ok to me Hi ES

4 posted on 03/16/2014 3:08:06 PM PDT by al baby (Hi MomÂ… I was refereeing to Obama)
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To: EveningStar
Covers evolution?? I could do that in six words ( "Evolution is a bunch of bullshit.")...

The big lie which is being promulgated by evolutionites is that there is some sort of a dialectic between evolution and religion. There isn't. In order to have a meaningful dialectic between evolution and religion, you would need a religion which operated on an intellectual level similar to that of evolution, and the only two possible candidates would be voodoo and Rastafari.

The dialectic is between evolution and mathematics. Professing belief in evolution at this juncture amounts to the same thing as claiming not to believe in modern mathematics, probability theory, and logic. It's basically ignorant.

Evolution has been so thoroughly discredited at this point that you assume nobody is defending it because they believe in it anymore, and that they are defending it because they do not like the prospects of having to defend or explain some expect of their lifestyles to God, St. Peter, Muhammed...

To these people I say, you've still got a problem. The problem is that evolution, as a doctrine, is so overwhelmingly STUPID that, faced with a choice of wearing a sweatshirt with a scarlet letter A for Adulteror, F for Fornicator or some such traditional design, or or a big scarlet letter I for IDIOT, you'd actually be better off sticking with one of the traditional choices because, as Clint Eastwood noted in The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly:

God hates IDIOTS, too!

The best illustration of how stupid evolutionism really is involves trying to become some totally new animal with new organs, a new basic plan for existence, and new requirements for integration between both old and new organs.

Take flying birds for example; suppose you aren't one, and you want to become one. You'll need a baker's dozen highly specialized systems, including wings, flight feathers, a specialized light bone structure, specialized flow-through design heart and lungs, specialized tail, specialized general balance parameters etc.

For starters, every one of these things would be antifunctional until the day on which the whole thing came together, so that the chances of evolving any of these things by any process resembling evolution (mutations plus selection) would amount to an infinitessimal, i.e. one divided by some gigantic number.

In probability theory, to compute the probability of two things happening at once, you multiply the probabilities together. That says that the likelihood of all these things ever happening, best case, is ten or twelve such infinitessimals multiplied together, i.e. a tenth or twelth-order infinitessimal. The whole history of the universe isn't long enough for that to happen once.

All of that was the best case. In real life, it's even worse than that. In real life, natural selection could not plausibly select for hoped-for functionality, which is what would be required in order to evolve flight feathers on something which could not fly apriori. In real life, all you'd ever get would some sort of a random walk around some starting point, rather than the unidircetional march towards a future requirement which evolution requires.

And the real killer, i.e. the thing which simply kills evolutionism dead, is the following consideration: In real life, assuming you were to somehow miraculously evolve the first feature you'd need to become a flying bird, then by the time another 10,000 generations rolled around and you evolved the second such reature, the first, having been disfunctional/antifunctional all the while, would have DE-EVOLVED and either disappeared altogether or become vestigial.

Now, it would be miraculous if, given all the above, some new kind of complex creature with new organs and a new basic plan for life had ever evolved ONCE.

Evolutionism, however (the Theory of Evolution) requires that this has happened countless billions of times, i.e. an essentially infinite number of absolutely zero probability events.

And, if you were starting to think that nothing could possibly be any stupider than believing in evolution despite all of the above (i.e. that the basic stupidity of evolutionism starting from 1980 or thereabouts could not possibly be improved upon), think again. Because there is zero evidence in the fossil record (despite the BS claims of "crew" and others of their ilk) to support any sort of a theory involving macroevolution, and because the original conceptions of evolution are flatly refuted by developments in population genetics since the 1950's, the latest incarnation of this theory, Steve Gould and Niles Eldredge's "Punctuated Equilibrium or punc-eek" attempts to claim that these wholesale violations of probabilistic laws all occurred so suddenly as to never leave evidence in the fossil record, and that they all occurred amongst tiny groups of animals living in "peripheral" areas. That says that some velocirapter who wanted to be a bird got together with fifty of his friends and said:

Guys, we need flight feathers, and wings, and specialized bones, hearts, lungs, and tails, and we need em NOW; not two years from now. Everybody ready, all together now:

You could devise a new religion by taking the single stupidest doctrine from each of the existing religions, and it would not be as stupid as THAT.

But it gets even stupider.

Again, the original Darwinian vision of gradualistic evolution is flatly refuted by the fossil record (Darwinian evolution demanded that the vast bulk of ALL fossils be intermediates) and by the findings of population genetics, particularly the Haldane dilemma and the impossible time requirements for spreading genetic changes through any sizeable herd of animals.

Consider what Gould and other punk-eekers are saying. Punc-eek amounts to a claim that all meaningful evolutionary change takes place in peripheral areas, amongst tiny groups of animals which develop some genetic advantage, and then move out and overwhelm, outcompete, and replace the larger herds. They are claiming that this eliminates the need to spread genetic change through any sizeable herd of animals and, at the same time, is why we never find intermediate fossils (since there are never enough of these CHANGELINGS to leave fossil evidence).

Obvious problems with punctuated equilibria include, minimally:

1. It is a pure pseudoscience seeking to explain and actually be proved by a lack of evidence rather than by evidence (all the missing intermediate fossils). Similarly, Cotton Mather claimed that the fact that nobody had ever seen or heard a witch was proof they were there (if you could SEE them, they wouldn't BE witches...) This kind of logic is less inhibiting than the logic they used to teach in American schools. For instance, I could as easily claim that the fact that I'd never been seen with Tina Turner was all the proof anybody should need that I was sleeping with her. In other words, it might not work terribly well for science, but it's great for fantasies...

2. PE amounts to a claim that inbreeding is the most major source of genetic advancement in the world. Apparently Steve Gould never saw Deliverance...

3. PE requires these tiny peripheral groups to conquer vastly larger groups of animals millions if not billions of times, which is like requiring Custer to win at the little Big Horn every day, for millions of years.

4. PE requires an eternal victory of animals specifically adapted to localized and parochial conditions over animals which are globally adapted, which never happens in real life.

5. For any number of reasons, you need a minimal population of any animal to be viable. This is before the tiny group even gets started in overwhelming the vast herds. A number of American species such as the heath hen became non-viable when their numbers were reduced to a few thousand; at that point, any stroke of bad luck at all, a hard winter, a skewed sex ratio in one generation, a disease of some sort, and it's all over. The heath hen was fine as long as it was spread out over the East coast of the U.S. The point at which it got penned into one of these "peripheral" areas which Gould and Eldredge see as the salvation for evolutionism, it was all over.

The sort of things noted in items 3 and 5 are generally referred to as the "gambler's problem", in this case, the problem facing the tiny group of "peripheral" animals being similar to that facing a gambler trying to beat the house in blackjack or roulette; the house could lose many hands of cards or rolls of the dice without flinching, and the globally-adapted species spread out over a continent could withstand just about anything short of a continental-scale catastrophe without going extinct, while two or three bad rolls of the dice will bankrupt the gambler, and any combination of two or three strokes of bad luck will wipe out the "peripheral" species. Gould's basic method of handling this problem is to ignore it.

And there's one other thing which should be obvious to anybody attempting to read through Gould and Eldridge's BS:

The don't even bother to try to provide a mechanism or technical explaination of any sort for this "punk-eek"

They are claiming that at certain times, amongst tiny groups of animals living in peripheral areas, a "speciation event(TM)" happens, and THEN the rest of it takes place. In other words, they are saying:

ASSUMING that Abracadabra-Shazaam(TM) happens, then the rest of the business proceeds as we have described in our scholarly discourse above!

Again, Gould and Eldridge require that the Abracadabra-Shazaam(TM) happen not just once, but countless billions of times, i.e. at least once for every kind of complex creature which has ever walked the Earth. They do not specify whether this amounts to the same Abracadabra-Shazaam each time, or a different kind of Abracadabra-Shazaam for each creature.

I ask you: How could anything be stupider or worse than that? What could possibly be worse than professing to believe in such a thing?

5 posted on 03/16/2014 3:12:09 PM PDT by varmintman
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To: EveningStar

I wonder if we’ll get all the secular atheistic cr%p from DeGrasse like usual.

It’s too bad they went with the hater instead of a more likeable guy like Mike Roe who did that other series.

Wasted oppotunity.

6 posted on 03/16/2014 3:14:01 PM PDT by Sapwolf (Talkers are usually more articulate than doers, since talk is their specialty. -Sowell)
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To: EveningStar
That's the way it was misspelled on the 1960's rock group Zombies' famous album Odessey and Oracle.
7 posted on 03/16/2014 3:18:07 PM PDT by MUDDOG
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To: EveningStar

I’m just finishing a fascinating book called “Darwin’s Doubt” by Stephen Meyer.

Prior to reading this book, I was pretty much a believer in evolution as described by Darwin. After reading that book, I’m convinced that Darwinian evolution is at best a very incomplete description of how life on earth came about, applicable only for minor changes.

Meyer totally obliterates that theory, similar to the way a top notch prosecutor demolishes the case of a defense. He does so scientifically.

I recommend it to anyone interested in the subject and who has some nagging doubt about Darwin’s theory being able to explain some of life’s incredible creations.

As an alternative explanation Meyer proposes intelligent design (without necessarily involving a god). But I found that not very satisfying since he presents no evidence of how such an intelligent design would have occurred.

So, after reading the book my current position of how life “evolved” is that we really don’t know. Much more research is needed before we come up with the answer (if ever).

8 posted on 03/16/2014 3:27:39 PM PDT by aquila48
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To: EveningStar

9 posted on 03/16/2014 3:38:01 PM PDT by shove_it (my real nickname is Otter)
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To: EveningStar

I’ll pass.

10 posted on 03/16/2014 3:45:29 PM PDT by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: EveningStar

I was lukewarm about Ep 1. I’m hoping for a better Ep 2.

11 posted on 03/16/2014 3:50:05 PM PDT by workerbee (The President of the United States is DOMESTIC ENEMY #1!)
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To: EveningStar

I really don’t give a rats hind end about them teaching Evolution and Mass Extinctions on Cosmos.

Here is what really chaps MY Hide, is that they will probably try to “Connect it” with their silly craptastic anti-human environmental whacko agenda!

Next thing is they will try to tie CO2 levels to mass extinctions and try to claim that evolution of humans from the trees to walking upright was a mistake they would love to solve by killing off 99% of the human population...

12 posted on 03/16/2014 4:07:36 PM PDT by GraceG
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To: varmintman
Excellent rant.
13 posted on 03/16/2014 4:28:41 PM PDT by El Cid (Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house...)
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To: Sapwolf

All biological machinery, programming and processes at every level have to be described in mechanical terms because they are in fact machines. Furthermore, practically every machine mankind “invents” is found after the fact to be present in some biological form in some biological creature. In fact, it’s only until AFTER man has “invented” a particular kind of machine that man is then able to recognize that which was previously a mystery in biology as being an example of the machine man just “invented”.

A person would would be considered a fool if they proclaimed that all of man’s machines built in all of man’s existence arose spontaneously and accidentally as a random product of “nature” with no possibility whatsoever of an intelligent designer or builder, and yet the official, central dogma of “science” is a similar proclamation that all life in Earth’s biosphere (a situation a trillion times a trillion more complex than man’s puny accomplishments) is merely the mindless, capricious product of a grotesquely improbable and accidental “nature”.

Only a fool would believe either of the above two propositions.

14 posted on 03/16/2014 4:37:41 PM PDT by catnipman (Cat Nipman: Vote Republican in 2012 and only be called racist one more time!)
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To: catnipman
"Only a fool would believe either of the above two propositions."

And nobody does.

15 posted on 03/16/2014 4:44:35 PM PDT by mlo
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To: EveningStar
Screw that affirmative-action baby NDT. Brian Greene gives some of the clearest explanations of quantum theory that I've ever seen.


16 posted on 03/16/2014 4:48:53 PM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: EveningStar

Remember David Attenborough’s LIFE ON EARTH ? ( 1979! ) That was 13 episodes, and the longer time allowed a more detailed treatment, complete with dramatic segues. He emphasized methods of reproduction, and I particularly remember the segue from amphibians to reptiles. The amphibians were chained to the water, and evolved all kinds of strategies to stretch this bond, but could not escape it. Next week, EGGS! ( i.e. eggs as we know them. ) Oh boy!

17 posted on 03/16/2014 4:59:29 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: aquila48

“So, after reading the book my current position of how life “evolved” is that we really don’t know. “

But we can make an intelligent guess. All we have to do is analyze the one example we do have available to us of evolutionary intelligent design, namely the evolution of all that which has been created by mankind and how that has occurred, and then comparing that to the structures and processes of earth’s biosphere and all that it contains.

In fact, we see the same design principles, structures and processes embodied in biologic life that we ourselves have used to create our own manosphere, which includes the totality of all man-made machines, systems, infrastructure and processes on earth. We see the principle of modular construction in life, as embodied by the endosymbiotic origin of mitochondria. We see the reuse of common structures and processes throughout large numbers of highly varying life forms and at multiple levels. We see that chromosomes are a form of computer programming using chemical codons for coded byes and ribosomes as the computer.

We see that simpler life forms existed before more complex lifeforms, and that there has in fact been an evolutionary progression from simpler to more complex life forms over time, just as we’ve seen the evolution of discrete component digital computing evolve inthe 1940’s to the current massively integrated forms we have only 70 years later. Of course, when I use the word “evolution”, I mean “intelligently directed evolution”, not accidental evolution, with the latter of course actually being an oxymoron.

I’ve intensely studied computer programming, biologic processes and mechanisms and many other sciences for that matter, and to me, there is no doubt whatsoever that we and all other living parts of the earth’s biosphere were deliberately made by a higher intelligence than our own, and made in the same fashion as what we ourselves have made.

Personally, I believe we were made by beings somewhat similar to ourselves and only a million years (or maybe much less) more advanced than ourselves. And yes, that believe does indeed beg the question as to where THAT bunch of beings came from, but personally, I am satisfied just to know where we came from and not necessarily where everything came from.

18 posted on 03/16/2014 5:05:42 PM PDT by catnipman (Cat Nipman: Vote Republican in 2012 and only be called racist one more time!)
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To: martin_fierro
I don't go for that "things get weird" stuff. All you need to peer into the heart of the Quantum is this:

... and the book ain't bad, either!

So here we go:

... Just roll your eyes back and GROK!

19 posted on 03/16/2014 5:24:29 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: Sapwolf

Uh, cause Mike Roe is a former opera singer and TeeVee pitchman while Tyson has a PhD in astrophysics and is the Director of the Hayden Planetarium?

20 posted on 03/16/2014 5:47:43 PM PDT by stormer
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