Friday, April 22, 2011

Ray Comfort fails at even basic science

Atheist Central -- Ray Comfort's Blog: Genesis on Trial

The continued rotation of the earth is caused by inertia as was observed keenly by Newton; understanding it more deeply requires ~8 years of university-level education in mathematics and physics. But, a mere inability to understand it is no excuse for making an argument from ignorance. If you want an example of the kind of thing you need to grasp to properly grapple with these questions try this equation:

Your statement, "the reason for the 24 hour numbering is that it takes the earth 24 hours to spin on its axis", may be the worst circular argument ever made. First of all, a day is not exactly 24 hours, it is 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4.091 seconds

And the actual reason we have 24-hours in a day is because the ancient Sumerians decided to divide the day/night cycle into groups of 12. They used base-12 and base-60 counting systems because they were easier for them to divide evenly since they lacked a decimal representation system (base 60 can be evenly divided by 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 12, 15, 20, and 30). This is also why we have 60 minutes, and 60 seconds and because they also divided the year into 12 groups of 30, giving 360 'degrees' in a circle (they were wrong, about the length of a year of course). By using Base-12 to count on your fingers (using your thumb as a pointer to each segment of the fingers, 12 on each hand) allows you to keep a count to a total of 144 on your fingers.

To learn more, read up on the Sumerians, Akkadians, and Babylonians of ancient Mesopotamia. This is considered the birthplace of civilization and is where we trace the origin of writing, astronomy, and mathematics.

Furthermore, the rotation of the earth and our path around the sun are ANYTHING but precise, the earth wobbles on it's axis, the length of the day changes constantly (and is constantly slowing down due to tidal transfer of energy to the moon), our orbit varies our distance from the sun by 3.5 MILLION miles, there is constant solar pressure (of 4.5 ┬ÁPa), energy radiated by the earth also causes constant variations, and convective forces within the earth also vary our rotation.

And this has NOTHING to do with evolutionary theory, you are conflating different theories together. Are you unable to understand the differences or are you just being dishonest about them?

You are also grossly conflating the beliefs of atheists with those of science. MANY religious people accept that these scientific theories are accurate and you do yourself a disservice when you do this.

I can reject the claims you make about god on their own merits - I do not need to know how the universe came into being in order to see through your sophism, your logical fallacies, your poor reasoning, and your errant 'facts'.

The whole of your issue is that you have setup your epistemic philosophy in opposition to that of science. You have accepted a claim as true (claims about the Christian god) - and you seek out only evidence which supports that claim and you reject a priori all evidence, facts, and reason which is counter to those beliefs.

Imagine that I said the sky was red - because I measured it with a meter sensitive to 620–750 nm light. And then I reject your data that you also measure light of other frequencies. I HAVE my evidence of red light in the sky and my faith is unshakable.

But I would be wrong - the sky has SOME red light but in terms of human perception it is blue. Arriving at this understand requires that we DO NOT seize upon presupposed conclusions and then proceed to seek out only data which confirms our conclusion.

Your approach is the antithesis of science.

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