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When Beliefs and Facts Collide
New York Times ^ | 07/05/2014 | Brendan Nyhan

Posted on 07/05/2014 8:16:26 PM PDT by SeekAndFind

Do Americans understand the scientific consensus about issues like climate change and evolution?

At least for a substantial portion of the public, it seems like the answer is no. The Pew Research Center, for instance, found that 33 percent of the public believes “Humans and other living things have existed in their present form since the beginning of time” and 26 percent think there is not “solid evidence that the average temperature on Earth has been getting warmer over the past few decades.” Unsurprisingly, beliefs on both topics are divided along religious and partisan lines. For instance, 46 percent of Republicans said there is not solid evidence of global warming, compared with 11 percent of Democrats.

As a result of surveys like these, scientists and advocates have concluded that many people are not aware of the evidence on these issues and need to be provided with correct information. That’s the impulse behind efforts like the campaign to publicize the fact that 97 percent of climate scientists believe human activities are causing global warming.

In a new study, a Yale Law School professor, Dan Kahan, finds that the divide over belief in evolution between more and less religious people is wider among people who otherwise show familiarity with math and science, which suggests that the problem isn’t a lack of information. When he instead tested whether respondents knew the theory of evolution, omitting mention of belief, there was virtually no difference between more and less religious people with high scientific familiarity. In other words, religious people knew the science; they just weren’t willing to say that they believed in it.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Philosophy; US: New York
KEYWORDS: beliefs; brendannyhan; climatechangefraud; consensusnonsense; demagogicparty; facts; faith; globalwarminghoax; memebuilding; newyork; newyorkcity; newyorkslimes; newyorktimes; nyt; partisanmediashill; partisanmediashills; scientificfraud; stupidcitizens

1 posted on 07/05/2014 8:16:26 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

“If you don’t accept global warming, you are a flat-earth moron.”


2 posted on 07/05/2014 8:18:20 PM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: SeekAndFind

It takes a whole lot more faith to believe in evolution and global warming than the alternatives.


3 posted on 07/05/2014 8:19:01 PM PDT by Kandy Atz ("Were we directed from Washington when to sow and when to reap, we should soon want for bread.")
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To: SeekAndFind
In other words, religious people knew the science; they just weren’t willing to say that they believed in it.

Evolution is a faith-based religion. Some folks believe, others do not.

The Believers are outraged that not everyone attends their church.

4 posted on 07/05/2014 8:19:31 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy ("Harvey Dent, can we trust him?" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBsdV--kLoQ)
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To: SeekAndFind

Let me get this straight. The NYC public school system cannot teach the majority of their children to be proficient in algebra, but they can teach them enough statistical physics and error analysis to set them straight on climate change? Maybe they could teach them enough about differential equations so they can teach them to calculate the half life of carbon-14 too.


5 posted on 07/05/2014 8:22:27 PM PDT by ALPAPilot
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To: SeekAndFind

The target audience of this news outlet operates purely on emotion. So any discussion of facts and beliefs have no bearing. They believe in evolution - not because of science - but because it makes them feel good to believe in evolution. It fills them with a feeling of intellectual superiority over those knuckle-dragging religious wacko conservative types.


6 posted on 07/05/2014 8:22:41 PM PDT by Hoodat (Proverbs 29:2)
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To: ALPAPilot

This nation is quickly evolving into a broke, Third World mess, and THIS is what they’re concerned about???? Unbelievable!


7 posted on 07/05/2014 8:31:16 PM PDT by Frank_2001
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To: SeekAndFind
In other words, religious people knew the science; they just weren’t willing to say that they believed in it.

There is no "belief" in science, given that science is a methodological way of gathering evidence about the physical world. To claim that one does not "believe" in observational data is like claiming that one does not " believe" that the sky often appears to be blue. No one can " believe" facts into or out of existence.

OTOH, anthropogenic global warming does not have solid evidence to support its major hypothesis. The issue has become co-opted by politicians, who are subverting what should be the impartial nature of science.

8 posted on 07/05/2014 8:36:33 PM PDT by exDemMom (Current visual of the hole the US continues to dig itself into: http://www.usdebtclock.org/)
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To: SeekAndFind

It’s amazing to me how the scientific method has been reduced to a ‘consensus’ in public opinion polls of people that really don’t have a clue one way or the other.

I and others here on FR have over the years posted quite a bit about a fellow named Lysenko in the old Soviet Union. His brand of ‘science’ came to be known as Lysenkoism. Today’s anthropogenic global warming or climate change (AGW/ACC)proponents appear as a sort of replica of Lysenkoism brought into today’s setting.

With all that we know about history and its failures we really shouldn’t allow these people (AGW/ACC activists) to be funded to carry forward the false pseudo-science of yesteryear.


9 posted on 07/05/2014 8:37:01 PM PDT by Hostage (ARTICLE V)
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To: SeekAndFind
Anthropogenic global warming is scientifically bogus on so many levels, that anyone who still believes in it is the true anti-science ignorant luddite.

The data, the methodology and modeling, and the conclusions are all complete and utter crap.


10 posted on 07/05/2014 8:38:09 PM PDT by chrisser (Senseless legislation does nothing to solve senseless violence.)
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To: Hostage

Galileo new all about consensus too.


11 posted on 07/05/2014 8:41:25 PM PDT by seowulf (Cogito cogito, ergo cogito sum. Cogito.---Ambrose Bierce)
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To: Hostage

It’s really funny to me that the AGW proponents and the flood geology folks us the same abuses of logic. That is appeals to authority, ad hominem attacks, straw man propositions are favored by both groups. From a scientific viewpoint, it is undeniable that the climate is changing. The earth record is one of constantly changing climates both regionally (most common) and worldwide. The question is “What combinations of factors cause what changes?”


12 posted on 07/05/2014 8:47:39 PM PDT by JimSEA
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To: Frank_2001

“This nation is quickly evolving into a broke, Third World mess, and THIS is what they’re concerned about???? Unbelievable!”

More than that, there is a difference between a Theistic-Evolutionist or a Scientist who is a believer and an uneducated ideologue. To state that people who do not believe in atheistic evolution are less well educated or less intelligent than those that do is simply character assassination.

The question itself at least as it is phrased in the article is also misleading because it is too broad. Evolutionist, atheistic ones themselves say that life remains in a constant state with very little or NO change for many millions of years (Punctuated Equilibrium) and that evolutionary changes tend to occur very rapidly and then slow down or stop for millions of years. That is why we can’t actually see evolution occur. It appears to me that there is a lot of room in such a system for God to work. If you actually read the first few chapters of Genesis you clearly see and almost textbook evolutionary progression of initial creation, a differentiation of matter an energy, lessor animals like fish and birds, higher animals and then humans.

The issue that most Christians have with evolution is actually not evolution but natural selection and the time scale. Einstein showed that time is not constant. Thus it is entirely possible that what Good could do in 6 days would appear as billions of years to us. Even scientist have abandoned natural selection for the most part as the driver for evolution.

As to Climate Change, the issue is actually is it primarily related to human activity or part of a larger climate cycle inherent in nature? What you do about it, if anything is very different depending upon what you think causes the problem.

This is just another in the endless stream of articles that the godless-left SPEW (To use one of their their favorite pejoratives) to try and convince themselves that they are really smarter than everyone else. It is also their justification for tyranny.


13 posted on 07/05/2014 8:53:39 PM PDT by Fai Mao (Genius at Large)
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To: SeekAndFind

BS on top of BS. The writer asserts that 97% of climate scientists
agree that human activity CAUSES GLOBAL WARMING. If you pinned
this doof down he would say that 97% of climate scientists agree
that human activities CONTRIBUTE to CLIMATE CHANGE which is
really ownly slightly less dubious in my book. However, there is a
real distinction.

If the scientists took a vote in 1490 then Columbus would never have
bothered to set sail.


14 posted on 07/05/2014 8:54:49 PM PDT by Sivad (NorCal red turf)
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To: Kandy Atz; All

If you believe it is wise to get your annual flu vaccine, then you believe in evolution, whether you know it or not.


15 posted on 07/05/2014 8:57:58 PM PDT by gleeaikin
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To: Hostage; All

Lysenko was dealing with genetics, and Gregor Mendels experiments and those of subsequent geneticists proved Lysenko was wrong. The “Communist Religion” had to one-up the rest of international science with their own dogma. Climate science has nothing to do with genetics, and the Lysenko falacies have nothing to do with climate opinions, facts and falacies. It’s like comparing apples and garlic.


16 posted on 07/05/2014 9:04:37 PM PDT by gleeaikin
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To: SeekAndFind
No smoking hot spot

1. The greenhouse signature is missing. We have been looking and measuring for years, and cannot find it.

Each possible cause of global warming has a different pattern of where in the planet the warming occurs first and the most. The signature of an increased greenhouse effect is a hot spot about 10km up in the atmosphere over the tropics. We have been measuring the atmosphere for decades using radiosondes: weather balloons with thermometers that radio back the temperature as the balloon ascends through the atmosphere. They show no hot spot. Whatsoever.

If there is no hot spot then an increased greenhouse effect is not the cause of global warming. So we know for sure that carbon emissions are not a significant cause of the global warming. If we had found the greenhouse signature then I would be an alarmist again.


17 posted on 07/05/2014 9:06:23 PM PDT by TigersEye ("No man left behind" means something different to 0bama.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Let see 97% of those study to become climate scientists believe there study isn’t junk science.
Ok. Must people do believe their chosen field of study.

Or

97% of climate scientist whose income depends on human activities being the causing global warming.
When your income depends on giving the results the people who pay you want, this could cause some to question it’s accuracy.

Or

97% of climate scientist whose degree would worthless as an degree in the study transgender circus elephants believe that human activities being the causing global warming.

I hope this comment that is meant to be totally ridicules doesn’t start a new field of study a some major university.


18 posted on 07/05/2014 9:07:52 PM PDT by ThomasThomas (Them there voices may not be real but they sure have some fun Ideas.)
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To: SeekAndFind
If proponents of man-made climate change could prove their theories there would be no need for the Times to trash a skeptical U.S. public.
19 posted on 07/05/2014 9:18:06 PM PDT by Brad from Tennessee (A politician can't give you anything he hasn't first stolen from you.)
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To: Fai Mao; SunkenCiv; neverdem; All

Punctuated Equilibrium is loosing adherents as more is known about the effects of catastrophes like major boloid strikes, megavolcanoes, etc. on evolution and climate. For example hominid evolution began about 5 million years ago, and has changed over the years. In the past 100,000 years we have had several large/major events. The eruption of Toba which left a crater about 18 by 65 miles had a very major effect on all the hominid populations 74,000 years ago. Basically, only Neanderthals and Homo Sapiens were left in large enough quantity to continue as populations. Neanderthals died off for whatever reason between 20 and 35 thousand years ago, leaving about 1 to 4% genetic traces in the Sapiens population. They were apparently adapted to northern glacial conditions with pale skin and eyes and red hair. Around 40,000 years ago southern Sapiens mutated a white skin gene which allowed them to move north since their women could absorb enough Vitamin D to develop good child bearing hip structure. About 7 or 8 thousand years ago the genetic capacity for people to continue using milk into adulthood appeared in people moving into Europe from central Asia. This genetic change had strong survival benefits in the people with cattle and cold winters. So evolution is hardly static even for us.

Another more recent event was boloid(s) which hit the Northern Hemisphere about 13,000 years ago, destroyed the Clovis culture and probably started the rapid disappearance of many large northern mammals. Three million years ago North and South American linked up in the Panama area and led to significant biota changes and more evolution.

Please state your sources for the idea that scientists have dropped natural selection as the driver for evolution. Maybe meteorologists have dropped it but certainly not geneticists. When conditions change significantly, natural selection among minor (or occasionally major) varients is what increases their presence in the surviving population—white skin, lactose tolerance, etc.


20 posted on 07/05/2014 9:34:20 PM PDT by gleeaikin
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To: gleeaikin

You are right but I think my argument still stands in that the Darwinian concept of natural selection in a Uniformitatarian construct is being discarded. I do Metaphysics not Physics so my terminology may be behind. You simply made the point better than I could in that we see species change when there is an external stressor that causes the environment to rapidly change and thus animals and plants to have to adapt or die not in a slow gradual process envisioned by Darwin.


21 posted on 07/05/2014 9:53:35 PM PDT by Fai Mao (Genius at Large)
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To: SeekAndFind

Do moronic reporters from the Slime understand that consensus (if it were to actually exist) carries no weight in science?


22 posted on 07/05/2014 10:23:01 PM PDT by aquila48
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; cardinal4; ColdOne; ...

Thanks SeekAndFind.


23 posted on 07/05/2014 10:30:06 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: gleeaikin; Fai Mao

I just finished reading “Darwin’s Doubt” by Stephen Meyer. He completely dismantles Darwin as well as Gould and his punctuated equilibrium thesis which was to explain large changes in organisms.


24 posted on 07/05/2014 10:39:06 PM PDT by aquila48
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To: gleeaikin

Climate change is like Lysenkoism in that it is driven by ideology rather than science.

Lysenko had to appease Stalin and explain the crop failures that were causing wide spread famine and starvation. Lysenko created a baseless narrative for genetics and techniques in agriculture to cast blame on farmers so as to save his own skin and to promote collectives.

In much the same way today the Left and their ideology search for any narrative that fits the goal of controlling the atmosphere, regulating power plants and controlling the oceans. Their narrative is baseless and is designed to cast blame on industrialization and to promote environmentalism.

Both Lysenkoism and AGW were or are based on a lie to conform to a political ideology and to create a political control mechanism.


25 posted on 07/05/2014 10:45:10 PM PDT by Hostage (ARTICLE V)
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To: SeekAndFind

I guess the global warming scheme isn’t going so well and they are out once more trying to sell it


26 posted on 07/05/2014 11:27:35 PM PDT by reefdiver (Be the Best you can be Whatever you Dream to be)
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To: Frank_2001

Unbelievable you say?

It is eminently believable.

Sin has redirected people’s ideas of the most important matter in existence to everywhere OTHER than God.

Since the idols are not the same for everybody, there is going to be a fundamental conflict and people will say about one another, “Unbelievable.”


27 posted on 07/05/2014 11:35:34 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Embrace the Lion of Judah and He will roar for you and teach you to roar too. See my page.)
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To: reefdiver

The snottier the sales pitch, the less sales there will be, however. And question-begging condescension is about all they have left.


28 posted on 07/05/2014 11:36:39 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Embrace the Lion of Judah and He will roar for you and teach you to roar too. See my page.)
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To: aquila48

Be careful about ascribing theories to Charles Darwin personally which he never propounded. It makes one sound ignorant.


29 posted on 07/05/2014 11:38:16 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Embrace the Lion of Judah and He will roar for you and teach you to roar too. See my page.)
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To: Fai Mao

It might (actually, I would theologically expect that, but for sake of discussion I say “might”) never be possible for science-as-we-know-it to fathom some of the mysteries of creation or even how the world has been kept up. So I have to give an emphatic “maybe” to both the YEC and OEC crowds. They eventually both end up pushing into areas of dubious reasoning.

Scriptural accounting embraces a number of periods each having certain unique characteristics. Pre-Edenic, Edenic, pre-Flood, Flood, post-Flood, and (eschatologically) more.

Details aside, it is philosophically clear the present world is in fact “subject to frustration.” Our lives, with all their amazing capabilities, simply seem doomed to nothing, as inexorably as rot or as the death of the stars.


30 posted on 07/05/2014 11:49:21 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Embrace the Lion of Judah and He will roar for you and teach you to roar too. See my page.)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

What theory are you assuming I’m ascribing to Darwin?


31 posted on 07/06/2014 3:30:36 AM PDT by aquila48
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To: Travis McGee
“If you don’t accept global warming, you are a flat-earth moron.”

Wait a minit - the earth ain't flat? Then why are we not always either going up or down the hill?

Actually, I know it ain't flat - look at the mountains and the canyons - lots of bumps and crannies.

32 posted on 07/06/2014 3:47:39 AM PDT by trebb (Where in the the hell has my country gone?)
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To: SeekAndFind
I believe ALGORE invented global warming to get rich.
He got rich.
He had to change it to Climate Control as it got colder than ever.
THERE IS NO MAN MADE GLOBAL WORMING- - - - - - - - - - NONE, NADA.
33 posted on 07/06/2014 3:53:32 AM PDT by DeaconRed (Why would ANYBODY want to be President after the mess ZERO is leaving?)
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To: SeekAndFind

TRANSLATION: “We still have not brainwashed them enough yet.”


34 posted on 07/06/2014 3:53:33 AM PDT by Gaffer
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To: exDemMom

Science, a study of the observable, is clear concise and rather limited in scope. However, evolution, anthropogenic climate change etc is not science in that strict sense.

If an experiment is fraught with assumptions of the otherwise unobservable, then it is not science, but a mixture of assumptive belief and observable phenomenon. Not science. You cannot observe what was, only what is.

Example, If we assume that all carbon was of a uniform atomic number at the origin, then we can infer that so much time has passed since origin based on the observable amounts of isotopic carbon in nature compared to decay rates (assuming static rates of decay-see another wrench). However, if we assume that at origin, there were numerous isotopes of carbon, and or that decay rates may not remain constant) then we have no idea how much time has transpired since origin.

The former assumption is what is used in the “science” of time today, the latter is what skeptics of that first assumptive timeline outcome question. Since no observation can be made as to the actual condition of carbon at origin, then the whole of the output is questionable.

The best answer to this question is “we don’t know” what the characteristic of carbon was at origin; unfortunately, that leaves the output of “how much time” has transpired since origin (creation) has passed. For secularists, that poses a problem, for the faithful, it is irrelevant.


35 posted on 07/06/2014 5:30:58 AM PDT by Manly Warrior (US ARMY (Ret), "No Free Lunches for the Dogs of War")
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To: DeaconRed

RE: I believe ALGORE invented global warming to get rich.

This man is so versatile that he also invented the internet... :)


36 posted on 07/06/2014 6:00:11 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Writers at the New York Times know everything.


37 posted on 07/06/2014 6:51:56 AM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: SeekAndFind
That’s the impulse behind efforts like the campaign to publicize the fact that 97 percent of climate scientists believe human activities are causing global warming.

Hmmm. They have to start a campaign to prove a belief? Sounds sort of Crusade-ish. Seriously, would they have done this before discovering the world wasn't really flat?

38 posted on 07/06/2014 6:59:18 AM PDT by Big Giant Head
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To: Manly Warrior
Science, a study of the observable, is clear concise and rather limited in scope. However, evolution, anthropogenic climate change etc is not science in that strict sense.

Evolution is science, in any sense. As a process, it is quite well documented with millions of observations and tested by countless controlled experiments. If you have noticed that children are not identical to their parents, you have observed evolution in action. Evolution impacts just about all of life science. As a theory, it does everything a theory is supposed to do: provide a framework that unites all known facts and allows for the formulation of working hypotheses that scientists use to design experiments to reveal new facts.

If an experiment is fraught with assumptions of the otherwise unobservable, then it is not science, but a mixture of assumptive belief and observable phenomenon. Not science. You cannot observe what was, only what is.

In that case, forensics must not be a science, but is just a guessing game, since determining what happened at a crime scene depends completely on what was, not what is. Although you cannot observe directly the process of evolution as it happened thousands or millions of years ago, you can look at the evidence left behind, both in the paleontologic record and in phylogenetic analyses of current and recent living species. And you absolutely can look at the process of evolution as it shapes currently living species, since it is an on-going process.

Example, If we assume that all carbon was of a uniform atomic number at the origin, then we can infer that so much time has passed since origin based on the observable amounts of isotopic carbon in nature compared to decay rates (assuming static rates of decay-see another wrench). However, if we assume that at origin, there were numerous isotopes of carbon, and or that decay rates may not remain constant) then we have no idea how much time has transpired since origin.

The atomic number of carbon is invariable. Carbon is an atom with the atomic number of 6, meaning that it has 6 protons in the nucleus. If the atomic number is not 6, then the atom is not carbon. The atomic mass of an atom is the number of protons plus the number of neutrons. Most carbon atoms have 6 neutrons, but small fractions of carbon have 7 or 8 neutrons, making the average atomic mass slightly more than 12. The ratio of higher atomic mass carbon (C-13 and C-14) to C-12 is fairly constant, and is a reflection of solar activity since carbon isotopes are created when solar radiation interacts with carbon. The decay rate of isotopes is absolutely constant; the only people who have tried to say that decay rates can be random or variable are non-scientists, usually those running pseudoscience scam sites like Answers in Genesis, and their target audience are those who know nothing about real science.

The former assumption is what is used in the “science” of time today, the latter is what skeptics of that first assumptive timeline outcome question. Since no observation can be made as to the actual condition of carbon at origin, then the whole of the output is questionable.

The best answer to this question is “we don’t know” what the characteristic of carbon was at origin; unfortunately, that leaves the output of “how much time” has transpired since origin (creation) has passed. For secularists, that poses a problem, for the faithful, it is irrelevant.

I'll be blunt--these last two paragraphs don't make any sense.

The truly faithful should not have to try to discredit science or call scientists liars to maintain their faith. I would question the strength of faith of anyone whose faith is threatened by the fact that the evidence is that the universe and life have been evolving for billions of years, and that everything did not just spring into existence some 6,000 (+/-) years ago.

39 posted on 07/07/2014 1:26:32 PM PDT by exDemMom (Current visual of the hole the US continues to dig itself into: http://www.usdebtclock.org/)
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To: Fai Mao
You are right but I think my argument still stands in that the Darwinian concept of natural selection in a Uniformitatarian construct is being discarded. I do Metaphysics not Physics so my terminology may be behind. You simply made the point better than I could in that we see species change when there is an external stressor that causes the environment to rapidly change and thus animals and plants to have to adapt or die not in a slow gradual process envisioned by Darwin.

Metaphysics is not science, and any terminology associated with it is not applicable to science. Whatever "Uniformitatarian" means, it is not a scientific term.

Also, strictly speaking, there is no adaptive evolution. Whenever reproduction occurs, mutations occur--the accumulation of DNA mutations is the mechanism of evolution. Either an organism with its specific set of mutations (all organisms have mutations in their genetic material) can survive and reproduce in a specific environment, or it can't. If it cannot survive, its mutations will not remain in the population. If it can survive, its mutations might remain in the population. If its specific mutations give it a survival advantage in that environment, then its mutations will probably spread throughout the population. Not all mutations are lethal, or even have much of an effect. Some mutations have a survival disadvantage in one environment, and advantage in another. In any case, whatever the effect (if any) is of a mutation, it is not adaptive.

40 posted on 07/07/2014 1:47:23 PM PDT by exDemMom (Current visual of the hole the US continues to dig itself into: http://www.usdebtclock.org/)
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To: SeekAndFind

There is no such thing as “consensus” in science.


41 posted on 07/07/2014 1:49:05 PM PDT by Fledermaus (Conservatives are all that's left to defend the Constitution. Dems hate it, and Repubs don't care.)
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