Astrobiologist David Deamer’s Views On Evolution and Creationism

David Deamer works for NASA’s Astrobiology program. He recently conducted a phone interview about the origins of life, naturalistic complexity, and of course Creationism. The interview starts off by suggesting people are not smart enough to understand their explanations about so-called mechanisms in the hypothesis of evolution. So he dumbs down his answers…I think he’s wrong for doing so as people are smarter than he thinks.

Let’s take a look on where everything starts, the origin. This is where David Deamer makes an interesting comment;

David Deamer: I think genetic information more or less came out of nowhere by chance assemblages of short polymers. We don’t know that these polymers were exactly like RNA and DNA of contemporary life, but in the laboratory we use those polymers as experimental model systems.

The interviewer failed to ask where is the evidence for genetic information (specialize complexity) coming “out of nowhere” as the basis for his belief. Does his explanation really sound like science?

David Deamer: No matter what we do, the creationists are going to focus on things we don’t know and forget about all the things we do know. I’m not sure there is any fundamental disagreement among scientists about the basic facts of evolution.

Well he does have somewhat of a point there, creationism as well as it’s compliment (not a replacement) intelligent design do in fact believe in the scientific principle of “irreducible complexity” which generally explains what evolution cannot do.

But he’s incorrect with his assumption about creationists focusing on what scientists don’t know. In fact, I believe it’s the other way around. Creationists generally focus more on the assumption aspects of evolution for example, computer models trying to simulate real behavior either in outer space, or between thousands and billions of years ago.

A classic piece of focusing on assumptions is computer statistical methods that fail to show how the genetic changes relate to adaptive benefits to the organism…” There are tens of thousands of papers which contain statistical methods in favor of positive selection.  Being skeptical and critical of these statistical methods which by the way have no observational data (no signature detected in the genome), isn’t harping on gaps in evolutionary theories, but rather the actual evidence that is presented to the public.

When you take the age of the Earth, the solar system or just the Universe in general, Creationists take observational data which point out their position for example the Magnetic Galaxies: Displaying Their Age. The post is hardly a piece about a gap (something we don’t know).

Even take this entire blog, all the posts here (and future ones) generally focuses on a progression of  discoveries in science (with some historical background) which all has to do with current data, not gaps filled in by God’s Word. Rather it’s data that confirms it. So Creationism will tend to focus more on what we do know when studying nature, having a fairly good grasp of certainty, and avoid drifting so much into the realm of story telling (assumptions) for conclusions.

On the other hand, Evolution relies on numerous assumptions and then future studies shows those assumptions to be incorrect, while opening the door for new assumptions. The cycle is endless. The rest which cannot be seen or tested, those assumptions are generally unchanged for the most part. However, there is an exception to the rule. An experiment is being conducted with a huge particle-smashing machine they hope will simulate the “Big Bang.”

Even though there is real no certainty (more like impossibility) of creating what they believed happened billions of years ago, it will open the door for changes (assumptions) in what they think happened with the big bang. Since it’s a very costly project, they will indeed claim to have found some insight to what they believe is the big bang.

But going back to David Deamer who is a smart man in his own right, although he doesn’t think much of  people’s intelligence like he should. It appears he deems creationism and intelligent design as competition (more ways than one) to what he believes in. He gives a shallow conclusion based only on his debates with creationists. It’s an outdated argument to say the least. He then appeals to consensuses of scientists as evidence.

Well pulsars were a consensuses at one time about it’s characteristics. After observing 100 of them, scientists made a conclusion, but later on they found a pulsar which had a different orbit, going around the wrong star, at the wrong speed. So consensuses means nothing, it’s the evidence which speaks volumes.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s