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Origin of Life: Claiming Something for Almost Nothing

Getting life to emerge from nonliving chemicals is either a cinch or the most impossible thing in the universe, depending on whom you ask.  Let’s look at a couple of recent papers that suggest the origin of life was no big deal.     A press release from the University of Colorado advertised a paper […]

Swinging at Saturn’s Moons: Keep Your Eye on the Ball

Cassini flew by Saturn’s moon Rhea March 2 at just 100 km.  Dr. Paul Schenk, one of the planetary scientists, said on his blog Stereo Moons, “it should be axiomatic by now that the closer you look at a planetary object the more surprises you see.”  Keep your eye on the ball.     One […]

Depressed? Believe in a Caring God

“Belief in a Caring God Improves Response to Medical Treatment for Depression, Study Finds.”  That’s what Science Daily said.  The statement assumes, of course, that psychiatry knows what depression is.  Another story on Science Daily worried that “Psychiatry’s Main Method to Prevent Mistaken Diagnoses of Depression Doesn’t Work.”     It makes sense that diagnosis […]

How to Call Your Opponent Stupid Using Evolution

It may be that Professor Kanazawa was intending to be compassionate by couching his assessment in the language of evolutionary theory, but he essentially made a categorical judgment that conservatives and Christians are stupid, and atheists and the sexually promiscuous are smart.  How could he say such a thing?  He could dodge the charge of […]

Life Leads the Way to Invention

Here’s a factoid for the party: a cell is 10,000 times more energy-efficient than a transistor.  PhysOrg tells us that “ In one second, a cell performs about 10 million energy-consuming chemical reactions, which altogether require about one picowatt (one millionth millionth of a watt) of power.”  This and other amazing facts lead to an […]

Making Evolution Simple

Getting the vast diversity of highly complex creatures seems an impossible task for evolutionary theory, but some recent stories claim it’s not so hard.  Beak of the finch:  Darwin’s finches keep pecking their way into the media.  A new study claims that the wide diversity of beak shapes that have evolved can be explained by […]

Spider Hair: The Perfect Water Repellant Surface

To keep dry, make like a spider.  “Engineering researchers have crafted a flat surface that refuses to get wet,” began a press release from University of Florida.  “Water droplets skitter across it like ball bearings tossed on ice.  The inspiration?  Not wax.  Not glass.  Not even Teflon.”  The audience waits breathlessly for the answer.  “Instead, […]

Hopeful Monsters and Other Tales: Evolutionists Challenge Darwin

Two recent articles show that Darwin is not invincible.  On one side he is being attacked by hopeful monsters.  On the other, he is being attacked by an atheist truth-seeker.  Neither of these attacks are coming from creationists. Return of the hopeful monster:  Tanguy Chouard raised eyebrows in Nature News with a headline that sounds […]

Evolutionary Inferences: Are They Incontrovertible?

No matter what is found in plants or animals, it finds its way into an evolutionary explanation eventually.  Are these explanations driven by the data, or forced into a belief system?  Are other explanations possible?  Some recent reports might inform these questions. Your inner plant:  Get in touch with your inner plant with a report […]

Solomonic Wall in Jerusalem Announced

A large wall dating from the time of Solomon is being announced by the news media (see PhysOrg, Live Science and Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs).  Archaeologist Eilat Mazar linked the structure, near the southeast end of the Temple Mount, to a Biblical passage in I Kings 3:1 that speaks of “until he (Solomon) had […]

Multiverse Explanations Are Fashionable, If Not Justifiable

How can scientists get away with speculating about unobservable universes, when science is supposed to concern itself with observation?  “In the end, there is no way to know for sure what other universes are out there, or what life they may hold,” an article in PhysOrg ended, “But that will likely not stop physicists from […]

The Brain You Use, and How It Uses You

Neuroscientists continue to find out amazing things about the human brain.  In some ways we are responsible to use our brains, but in other ways the brain does things to us.  If nobody has figured out where the dividing line is for thousands of years, it’s unlikely we will today; but the following findings can […]

Molecular Highway Motor Comes into Focus

A beautiful new image of kinesin, a molecular machine that carries cargo on cellular highways, has been produced in greater detail than ever by a team at Berkeley and Brandeis Universities.  Science Daily published a picture and description of how kinesin works.  “Life’s smallest motor – a protein that shuttles cargo within cells and helps […]

Media Uncritical of Science, Journalist Says

Reporters need to stop regurgitating the self-promotion of scientists and start criticizing them, a veteran science reporter wrote in Nature News.  Colin Macilwain had a lot to say about what’s wrong with science’s relationship with the mass media.  “Like sausages being made, or legislation being passed, the process that turns scientific developments into headlines and […]

Flabbergast: “Primitive” Human Ancestors Were Sailors

Could the headline be any more shocking if it read, “iPod found in King Tut’s tomb”?  Heather Pringle began a report in National Geographic News with, “It wasn’t supposed to happen like this.”  Stone tools alleged to be up to 130,000 years old have been found on the island of Crete.     Since Crete […]
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