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View Diary: Atheist Digest ’10:  Ben Stein is a Moran:  The Retrospective Improbability Fallacy (64 comments)

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  •  Good stuff... Thanks... (5+ / 0-)

    Wanna discuss:

    All those stars in the sky? They’re actually discarded, non-winning cosmic lottery tickets.

    Those stars that don't support biological life forms are a more fundamental form of life, don'tcha think...?  Each one is creating (in its thermonuclear fusion-driven core) the elements heavier than hydrogen.  The calcium in your bones and the iron in your blood were formed inside a star.  

    You know this, of course.

    Without generations of those stars churning out sodium and silicon and nitrogen and oxygen etc. (and occasionally exploding their guts into space), a rocky planet with a carbon-based life form that uses water as a solvent wouldn't exist in the first place.

    I say this not so much as a challenge but in addition to what you've written.

    When fundies want to discount the idea of biological evolution / argue for I.D., I always laugh.  I laugh not only because they want to appear so humble but are arrogant enough to suppose the mind of god, but also because they can't even BEGIN to envision the evolution (of the periodic table) that had to happen before biological life could exist.

    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell

    True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else. -------------------------------------------------------Clarence Darrow

    by Leroy the Roadie on Mon Aug 23, 2010 at 10:21:50 AM PDT

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    •  Well said. (3+ / 0-)

      Your statement reminds me of, to me, the most effective argument against young earth creationism:  God would have had to create the light from the stars already on its way here.  Of course if you believe in an omnipotent being that's not unthinkable, but the whole concept is just absurd on the face of it.

      "Religion allows people by the millions to believe things, that only a crazy person could believe on their own." -Sam Harris

      by XNeeOhCon on Mon Aug 23, 2010 at 10:25:43 AM PDT

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    •  Stars do not meet the critera for (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rieux, SciMathGuy, gardnerjf

      "life" as that term is defined in biology not even "fundamental forms of life", whatever that means. At least at our current level of understanding of how starts form.

      Cosmologists and astronomers use terms like "star nurseries" and "death of a star" as metaphors, just like biologist, unfortunately and carelessly, talk about an organism "wanting to adapt", which is just a shorthand for the unconscious process of evolution operating on many generations of multiple individual organisms.

      As far as we know today, stars are not "alive" in any scientific sense.

      Always make new mistakes - Esther Dyson

      by RandomActsOfReason on Mon Aug 23, 2010 at 11:18:34 AM PDT

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