Instructional materials proposed for use in Texas promote classic errors about the 1950s Miller-Urey Experiment and its relevance to the origin of life.
In a documentary from the Discovery Channel on the search for extraterrestrial life, Stephen Hawking provides an extraordinarily candid example of the fallacious materialist logic for why extraterrestrial life “must” be possible. Around 1:15 of the clip below, Hawking states: The life we have on earth must have spontaneously generated itself. It must therefore be possible for life to be generated spontaneously elsewhere in the universe. The gaping hole in Hawking’s logic should be immediately apparent to anyone willing to think critically and skeptically: If we haven’t yet explained how life could have spontaneously generated on earth, how do we know that it can be generated spontaneously elsewhere in the universe? What makes Hawking’s position even worse is that in Read More ›
Skeptic Magazine shows no skepticism towards the Miller-Urey experiment, instead claiming the experiment simulated the early earth’s atmosphere. Recently I went to a local bookstore and found myself perusing the latest issue of Skeptic Magazine, “A Perspective on the Nature and Origin of Life.” The cover story was on the origin of life, and written by chemical engineer Paul F. Deisler Jr. (Vol. 16, No. 2). While the article admits that “[c]urrent scientific detection technology and exploration have not yet found traces within the transition period to show how non-life became life,” it nonetheless puffs the weak evidence for the origin of life. In particular, it promotes the Miller-Urey experiment without any mention of the fact that there are severe Read More ›
The great debate over the adequacy of evolution continues. Sort of. The latest head to head meeting had Dr. Stephen Meyer and Dr. Richard Sternberg debating Dr. Michael Shermer and Dr. Donald Prothero. Heading into the debate I was quite excited; these aren’t lightweights, after all. The defenders of evolution are well known in science circles and to followers of the overall debate. Indeed, we’ve blogged a fair amount on Dr. Prothero who has, shall we say, a colorful and cavalier way with the facts. He is known more for polemical bromides and spurious personal attacks than for any serious science. Waiting for the event to start, I was wondering if Prothero would be better behaved in person than he Read More ›
In a recent ENV post, Stephen Meyer critiqued a May 2009 Nature paper co-authored by John D. Sutherland titled, “Synthesis of activated pyrimidine ribonucleotides in prebiotically plausible conditions.” The paper claimed to have produced RNA nucleobases under prebiotic conditions, but Meyer observed that it utterly failed to address the most crucial question in the origin of life (OOL): the origin of information, a topic Meyer addresses extensively in his new book Signature in the Cell. Other scientists agree with Meyer. Organic chemist Dr. Charles Garner recently noted in private correspondence that “while this work helps one imagine how RNA might form, it does nothing to address the information content of RNA. So, yes, there was a lot of guidance by Read More ›