Astronomy and Cosmology: Where Are They Now?

Next month is going to be exciting because for the first time in man’s history, we are going to get some secular pictures from the space probe, “New Horizons” . Currently the probe is less than 30 million miles away and has already transmitted some historical pictures of Pluto.

“We can also see that every face of Pluto is different and that Pluto’s northern hemisphere displays substantial dark terrains, though both Pluto’s darkest and its brightest known terrain units are just south of, or on, its equator…”  

-says New Horizons Principal Investigator Alan Stern.

This project without its planetary evolution conclusions is good science. The more probes that are out there, the better we learn what is going on in space. It’s exciting! Star formation on the other hand has been used to mislead the public. There is no doubt that Nature News along with Science Daily and certain Astronomers have committed fraud, perhaps but not exclusive to, for the reason of helping fund these types of projects.

Let’s begin by displaying the headlines:

The first one is from Nature News which is also found in Scientific American as well as in other publications.

“Astronomers Claim to Take First Glimpse of Primordial Stars”

In the Southern European Observatory where the discovery took place makes and even more profound statement in their science release.

“Best Observational Evidence of First Generation Stars in the Universe” 

Wow, it sounds as though a major discovery was made, this could be the hard evidence that certain scientists were looking for, but the question remains. Is it really? Let’s go back to Nature News again…

“Now astronomers think they may have spied a late-blooming cluster of such stars, in the brightest distant galaxy observed to date. The stars, seen as they were when the Universe was around 800 million years old, appear to be primordial in compositionbut also to have formed more recently than some second-generation stars.”

How can these Astronomers claim this discovery to be first generation of stars? ‘Appearing’ to be primordial in composition is not the same as being first generation! These stars are considered younger than second-generation of stars! Not only that, but these stars were discovered in a galaxy which has elements that according to their theory could only have formed well after the first generation of stars!

“That primordial stars should turn up in such a large and already-evolved galaxy presents a challenge to the group’s interpretation.” 

Indeed, but these Astronomers used the classic “fit the data into a theory technique” rather than let the data speak for itself. Here is how they answered the challenge which make stars younger than second generation into first generation…

“Sobral and colleagues suggest that the primordial stars may be late-developers, formed from a cloud of pristine and uncontaminated gas that was prevented from cooling and coalescing by the heat of strong radiation from earlier-blooming stars. “We think we’re seeing the last episode of Population III star formation,” he says.” 

This is a prime example on how some scientists (not all) are misleading the public with their so-called discoveries in Astronomy. There is no real evidence here that would make any logical person to conclude that these stars are first generation. None! The headlines are a bunch of lies!

Moving on to Cosmology…

“As is your habit, you are reading Science at breakfast (today’s treat: an omelet made with dodo eggs). But as soon as you finish this paragraph, a carnivorous wombat crashes through the door into your apartment and chomps angrily on your prehensile tail. Right … now” (No this isn’t Star Wars -emphasis mine).

“Ridiculous? Certainly—here. But it’s true somewhere in the universe, according to many scientists. An increasing number of mainstream physicists have espoused an almost unspeakably bizarre picture of the cosmos, one filled with mirror worlds and parallel universes, with doppelgängers and alternate histories. In many of these parallel universes—countless ones—an exact duplicate of you is doing exactly what you’re doing: reading this article in Science magazine. In others, you exist with subtle (and not-so- subtle) changes from your present-day life—you sport horns or speak in Latin or make a living by juggling hedgehogs at cocktail parties.”

This is a classic of opening your mind to fiction because it may be reality someday. Some of this is used in Hollywood. Bob Berman, wrote a very thought-provoking article in Astronomy magazine (July 2004, page 16) which I quoted some of it once before in 2012, it certainly applies to what is going on now with Cosmology. In fact, he gives a pretty good science lesson.

“The problem in cosmology is that facts are few and the imaginations of people who cook up theories are fertile. We have known for nearly seventy years that the cosmos is expanding. Every measurement made of galaxies showed that everything is moving away from everything else. The picture looked very much like what happens when a firecracker explodes, with material on the outside edge of the object that exploded moving the fastest and material to the inside moving less quickly.

“The term “big bang” or “inflation” was at least partially rooted in this observation. Temperature measurements of intergalactic space supported the theory by being exactly what they should be if the cosmos was infinitely hot and cooled during the expansion of the cosmos. What banged or who banged it was not knowable, and that is where all the theories came from. It is interesting that the Bible agrees with the observation of the expanding universe. Numerous passages in the Bible describe the cosmos as an expanding entity. “God who created the heavens and stretched them out” appears in one way or another over and over in scripture (see Isaiah 42:5; 40:22; 44:24; 45:12; 48:13; 51:13; Job 9:8; 37:18; Psalm 104:2; Jeremiah 10:12; 51:15; Zechariah 12:1).”  

“Many atheists had a problem with the “big bang” concept because it suggested a beginning, and if there was a beginning there had to be a cause which suggested a causer. To get around this problem, it was recognized that since gravity seemed to be a property of mass, everything in the cosmos was attracting everything else, and that meant that eventually gravity would stop the expansion of the universe and pull everything back to a central point. The fact of gravitational attraction seemed sure and the fact that things were coasting from the initial process seemed unquestionable. One could theorize that whatever caused the big bang could happen over and over. This theory was called the oscillating universe theory, and was heavily promoted by leading atheists.”

“There were lots of scientific problems with the oscillating universe theory. Only mass would be affected by gravity and much of the energy in the cosmos was in the form of light which would not be gravitationally susceptible. It also seemed that some objects on the outer edge of the expansion were traveling so fast that they would never be significantly affected by gravity. In spite of these and other problems, the oscillating universe theory was in textbooks and even used by Carl Sagan in his famous Cosmos series in which he compared it to the Hindu concept of reincarnation.”

“In the late 1990s another observation was made by astronomers that totally disrupted this whole picture. It was discovered that the cosmos was not slowing down in its expansion as gravitational effects would have been expected to do, but that the cosmos was actually accelerating in its expansion. This observation has been confirmed by several different methods and is now considered to be a fact. The problem is that the fact that the cosmos is accelerating in its expansion is at odds with everything we can do in the laboratory.”

“What does a good scientist do when confronted with such an astounding fact? The answer should be to propose explanations that are testable and for which experiments can be conducted to see whether or not the proposal is consistent with scientific experiments. The problem with today’s public speakers on this subject is that proposals are being made that have no possible way of being tested, and each pronouncement is made with such pomp and flair that the average reader assumes that not only has the theory been tested, but it has been successful on every point.”

“One proposal has been that 70% of the universe must be made of an antigravity force called dark energy (* which has been adjusted since this article has been written to 95% of the universe. * -emphasis mine). No one knew what it was or how it could exist, but the concept has appeared in hundreds of magazines and newspapers that we have seen. Recently we have seen statements that the dark energy loses its power over time, so eventually the acceleration will stop and the universe will collapse as the oscillating universe theory suggested. There is no evidence of this, and no way of testing it.”

“Some periodicals have said that Einstein’s cosmological constant is what is causing the acceleration of the cosmos. This is a constant that Einstein threw into his equations to make them fit his opinions about the cosmos–an act that he later called his greatest blunder. The problem is that no one has any idea what the constant would represent or be caused by. Now it is fashionable to refer to the “Big Rip.” This is a theory that says that eventually everything will explode–even atoms. Another theory is called “string theory” which assumes that there are eleven spacial dimensions and then suggests that membranes from these other dimensions sometimes touch each other explosively creating things like our universe.”

“Suddenly, we’re imbedded in a frothy quantum foam of unlimited possibilities. It’s a free-for-all where each solemnly presented theory is soon changed or rebutted.. Throw the math this way, that way, tweak the equations, set fire to the physics building, nothing matters. It’s Alice in Wonderland meets Stephen Hawking.”

New proposals about dark matter come out all the time, New Scientist actually asked a valid question, “How long can we keep looking for dark matter?” 

“WE HAVE been aware of the need for dark matter since the 1930s. Without this stuff, we can’t make sense of the rotation of galactic clusters, or how galaxies formed in the first place. And yet, to date, we have found nothing. Even CERN’s Large Hadron Collider, our best and by far most expensive tool for finding it, has so far drawn a blank. How much longer can we keep looking?”

The universe is not making sense for those who believe in non-design. This usually happens when a theory is not true. Does the article answer its own question? No! Rather, it looks for remedies to find dark matter. This is the problem. It is true, it would be hard to pin point an exact time frame but looking more than 80 years with very expensive tools, I would say it is time to move on. There are so many other things in science which requires work that may turn out to be fruitful. I can’t wait till next month! Pluto, here we come! :)

Paleoanthropologist Debunks His Colleagues

It was 50 years ago, when a Professor from the University of California, Berkeley, named Thomas Kuhn released a challenge to the scientific community that argued against the traditional view of science which was collecting facts that would lead to a greater understanding of nature. Rather, Kuhn believed scientific discovery relied on what questions scientists would ask, their philosophical commitments, and so on.

Kuhn also wrote about how a theory breaks down which involves many unsolved mysteries, or in other words...“anomalies,” where the accuracy of the theory comes into question thus prompting scientists to look for new ways at interpreting the data. But in evolutionary research, it’s not a new way of interpreting the data, once a theory has been falsified many times over with new discoveries, it’s finding ways to rescue the theory to keep it intact!

Another from the University of California, Berkeley exposes fraud that goes on in Paleoanthropology! He’s not a creationist nor an intelligent design proponent, but the things that go on in his field of work that consists of human evolution, have bothered him so much, he writes about it in current biology and it is jaw dropping…

“The unilineal depiction of human evolution popularized by the familiar iconography of an evolutionary ‘march to modern man’ has been proven wrong for more than 60 years. However, the cartoon continues to provide a popular straw man for scientists, writers and editors alike.”

“The authors take an unusual approach to constructing, in 3-D digital space, what they think the dental arcade of the new fossil maxilla should have looked like. They accomplish this feat by filling the fossil’s empty and broken tooth sockets with digital models of modern human teeth. Why modern human teeth were better suited than available contemporary fossil teeth is left unexplained.”  

“Paleoanthropology’s ecosystem of publishing, access, fundraising, career advancement, media promotion and celebrity seems squarely aligned against the field’s ability to self regulate, a condition exacerbated by the limited fossil resources available.”

“There is ample and obvious motivation for authors to generate ‘new’ species names in this environment. Readers should, therefore, beware of attendant species diversity claims. Illegitimate names have become part and parcel of the symbiosis itself. Furthermore, ‘chronospecies’ are merely artificial segments of evolving species lineages, rather than truly separate species.”

Such assertions of biological species diversity via taxonomic hyperbole are questionable representations of the real paleobiology of our ancestors and their few close, now extinct biological relatives. Despite the branch waving, our family tree still resembles a saguaro cactus more than a creosote bush.”

This is something one doesn’t read every day in published science articles! Tim White gives the public an honest view of what been going on in the work of trying to create a story about human evolution from fossils. He accuses his colleagues of being greedy, not caring for the research itself, but are in it for just to self-promotion, to make as much money as they can! White is also frustrated that his field of work cannot self-regulate which in turn would reduce the problems that exist.

Trusting proclamations about human evolution is getting harder even for some evolutionists themselves!

Scientific Fraud Cases Have Increased Dramatically

There is no other field that creates such scholarly activity which generates a lot of writing as does science research along with opinion. These publications are supposed to be peer-reviewed, inspected, and replicated. Many titles are published every single week by labs all over the world!

A scientist is held to a high moral standard, because scientific research requires honesty! So why are fraud cases in the scientific community have been increasing so dramatically in recent times? Is there better detection on discovering the fraudulent papers or what? Are there just more errors as a result of more complexity in the papers or more errors being detected because of the amount of papers being submitted?

According to nature, a survey reveals some disturbing news…

“Conventional wisdom says that most retractions of papers in scientific journals are triggered by unintentional errors. Not so, according to one of the largest-ever studies of retractions. A survey1 published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has found that two-thirds of retracted life-sciences papers were stricken from the scientific record because of misconduct such as fraud or suspected fraud — and that journals sometimes soft-pedal the reason.”

“The survey examined all 2,047 articles in the PubMed database that had been marked as retracted by 3 May this year. But rather than taking journals’ retraction notices at face value, as previous analyses have done, the study used secondary sources to pin down the reasons for retraction if the notices were incomplete or vague. These sources included investigations by the US Office of Research Integrity, and evidence reported by the blog Retraction Watch.”

Wow, the 2,047 retracted papers surveyed they find…43 percent were fraud cases and they find another 24 percent were due to either duplicate publication or copies from other scientists! The 2047 papers which  had been retracted all came from major publications that dominate the secular science realm, like nature, PNAS, and science. Only one-fifth of those papers were retracted due to mistakes. An incredible low number amount!

The Scientist attempts to explain why this is happening…

“The disproportionate number of fraud-related retractions from high-IF journals likely reflects the pressures on scientists to publish impressive data in prestigious journals. “There’s greater reward,” said Resnik, “and more temptation to bend the rules.”

Wait a minute, there are many people who work under stress, and have temptations to bend the rules, but it doesn’t compel them to break the rules! Shouldn’t scientists be models of integrity? Misconduct in scientific papers is not a victimless crime. Some have suggested that “scientific misconduct may be a crime that only affects the perpetrators.” Not so, scientists do publish papers on a variety of topics that the public cares about!

Also not only the 2/3 of the papers retracted because of fraud, but some reviews of the papers are frauds too! The Scientist discovered a new trend where scientists log into another name, posing as someone else and then give rave reviews on their paper! Only a few of them have been caught so far, it’s unknown how large this trend has become.

 “At least four scientists have been cheating the peer review system in a whole new way: when submitting a paper to a scientific journal, they suggest reviewers with email addresses that track back to themselves; then they write a glowing review.… “I find it very shocking,” Laura Schmidt, an Elsevier publisher, told The Chronicle. “It’s very serious, very manipulative, and very deliberate.”

“This “has taken a lot of people by surprise,” Irene Hames, a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics that advises journals on how to handle misconduct, said in an e-mail to The Chronicle. “It should be a wake-up call to any journals that don’t have rigorous reviewer selection and screening in place.”

One of the bigger problems in fraud concerning the scientific community is the length of time some of them have lasted before being retracted as reported in Nature News

“One of the biggest purges of the scientific literature in history is finally getting under way. After more than a decade of suspicion about the work of anaesthesiologist Yoshitaka Fujii, formerly of Toho University in Tokyo, investigations by journals and universities have concluded that he fabricated data on an epic scale. At least half of the roughly 200 papers he authored on responses to drugs after surgery are in line for retraction in the coming months.”

“Like many cases of fraud, this one has raised questions about how the misconduct went undetected for so long. But the scope and duration of Fujii’s deception have shaken multiple journals and the entire field of anaesthesiology, which has seen other high-profile frauds in the past few years.”

This is unquestionably the most dangerous (for people physically) when fraud in the medical field happens and is able to prolong its detection by spreading itself out in various journals.

Last month, Marc Hauser, former Harvard evolutionary psychologist admitted making mistakes in his research that eventually lead to a misconduct investigation which prompted him to resigned. Harvard magazine listed various things that investigators discovered about Hauser doing such as fabricating data and falsely describing results.  His department voted against him resuming his normal teaching duties.

In light of Hauser’s misconducted, an opinion in nature says…“The scientific community must be diligent in highlighting abuses, develop greater transparency and accessibility for its work, police research more effectively and exemplify laudable behaviour,” he warned. “This includes encouraging more open debate about misconduct and malpractice, exposing our dirty laundry and welcoming external examination.”

Science Daily lists options to solve the fraud problem…

1) More emphasis on the quality of publications rather than quantity

2) Less emphasis on impact measures when rating journals

3) Fostering a cooperative and collaborative culture in the research community

4) Developing more stable and sustainable sources of research funding.

5) Creating more flexible career pathways to prevent the ongoing loss of capable scientists due to inadequate funding

While it’s great to read that there is now a growing concern over scientific fraud cases and those five solutions science daily had given can help limit fraud but some have tried to marginalize the problem. But one has to keep in mind, nobody knows how many papers should have been retracted. Yes,  over 2,000 were retracted and that is quite the number in itself as well but how many more went undetected?

The evolutionists worldview doesn’t account for sin, it doesn’t have a reasonable explanation on why stuff happens, only it happens. They only borrow from Judeo-Christian moral principles found in the Bible while claiming it was the result of natural selection in a purposeless world.

In a biblical worldview, sin is accounted for, the Bible says all men have come short of the glory of God and all men are sinners and how to deal with it. While it’s true that the scientific community are not the only ones who have committed such sins as fraud. The Biblical worldview teaches God demanding holiness. Not as merit to get into heaven, but fruits of salvation!

How Trustworthy Are Scientists Nowadays?

Most of us grew up with a positive perception of a scientist. We viewed him as honest, objective, unbiased, searching for truth, and improving every day life using the scientific method which enables him or her to be able to distinguish empirical fact from subjectivity. And when a mistake would occur, the rest of the scientific community was relied upon in finding those mistakes before publication.

It’s dream of perfection, but it’s not the real world. Scientists are just as fallible like the rest of us. Ultimate source for understanding is not rewarded, but what works and those things which are just agreed upon as what might work. Scientists face temptations of money and prestige while being constantly made sure either by rewards or other means they remain in the liberal bias or otherwise they face consequences.

A study of a scientist’s ethics which is a great concern was reported in Science Daily…

“Recent scandals like Hwang Woo-Suk’s fake stem-cell lines or Jon Sudbø’s made-up cancer trials have dramatically demonstrated that fraudulent research is very easy to publish, even in the most prestigious journals. The media and many scientists tend to explain away these cases as pathological deviations of a few “bad apples.”

“Common sense and increasing evidence, however, suggest that these could be just the tip of the iceberg, because fraud and other more subtle forms of misconduct might be relatively frequent. The actual numbers, however, are a matter of great controversy.”

Estimates of fraud in science papers hasn’t been complied very well. According to science daily, different questions are asked by researchers in various countries whose scientists are under different disciplines. So they tried to compiled the data into one focused objective which is “fraud” and the results are interesting…

Not surprisingly, only 2 percent of scientists have admitted to committed fraud or falsification, or altering when writing scientific papers.  34 percent admitted to questionable acts such as going by a “gut” feeling or contradicting their own previous data.

What they thought of their peers reveals some more interesting data. 17 percent said they knew of someone who fabricated a science paper while a whooping 72 percent knew of other scientists committing questionable acts.

Did you know that fabrication and falsification are rarely reported by whistleblowers? Why? Because it’s hard to detect, because it’s a subjective judgment. It’s also very difficult to prove if it was an honest mistake, or inserted into the paper on purpose. But we know for a fact, the researchers do know if their peers are willfully committing fraud or not when it comes to science papers.

The question remains, how trustworthy do you think are scientists nowadays? Paleontologist Christopher Beard pointed out other problems exist as well like the hype we observed with the Ida fossil which evolutionists admitted, damages the public’s perception of objectivity in scientists.