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mdowe's Avatar Jump to comment 19 by mdowe

I really think these programs just give a great deal of air-time to creationist nutters. Allowing them to air their views in opposition to a legitimate scientific person just falsely implies they have a credibility where none exists. They belong on a show with flat-earth people and alien abductees ... not on a show opposite legitimate scientists.

That said, I think Dr. Dawkins dropped the ball a bit when he emphasised his distaste and dismay for the sad fact that the Leeds-nutball (Andy McIntosh was it?) somehow still has a professorship rather than just dismissing the crap that he was spouting. Everyone trips up once in a while I suppose =)

Debates and live questions forums are not especially amenable to honest inquiry. Creationists always try to score points by showing that the scientific perspective is 'imperfect', and so is just an alternative (and on equal footing) to their own. The professor from Leads was dishonestly trying to get the audience to call a point a draw, which would be perceived as a default victory for him. He was doing this by putting forwarding an argument the vast majority of listening audience could not judge, and was hoping perhaps to draw Dr. Dawkins out of his field so he would sound ignorant.

As to DNA stability and the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics argument, it was nonsense of course. The second law just says entropy in a system always increases. It doesn't say organisation (such as DNA structure) can never occur in a local system. Energy is being used to maintain the organised long chains of DNA over time, and thus entropy is held off in this local system. That energy comes from the Sun, and thus in the larger system entropy is indeed increasing, and the second law is (what a surprise) not being violated. You can't tell me Prof. McIntosh was not fully aware of this fact. Pure dishonesty ...

Sun, 10 Dec 2006 17:07:00 UTC | #10328