Technical Difficulties and Life on Mars

I’m having computer troubles which are going to prevent me writing anything of length for I don’t yet know how long – until I can get a new AC adaptor for my laptop, anyway. In the meantime, it appears that the ICR has slightly softened – or rather, modified – its stance on extraterrestrial life. As recently as August* we were explicitly told that there was no life on Mars (supposedly based on “a literal reading of Genesis 1″). In addition, back in December of 2011 Brian Thomas told us that if life was found on another planet – so long as it didn’t originally come from Earth – it would “essentially vindicate evolution and nullify creation.”

Today, however, Jake Hebert – in Strong Evidence for Life on Mars? – tells us something very different. He still says that evidence in favour of life being on Mars is “very weak,” and that “creation scientists do not expect intelligent extraterrestrial life to exist in the universe.” But “simple” non-intelligent life is now “barely possible.” What’s more, they’re now using this argument:

Moreover, even if microbial life were found on Mars, the same insurmountable difficulties that plague secular stories about life’s origin on earth would also plague stories about life’s origin on Mars. Far from making the evolutionary story more believable, the discovery of microbial life on Mars would require two wildly improbable series of fortuitous coincidences—one on Earth and another one on Mars!

With this Hebert has entirely abandoned the theological concerns that previous authors raised for a more pragmatic and relatively defensible position, one which is also more in line with what I’ve heard from other creationist outfits. And so the goalposts move.

Go and read the rest of the article to familiarise yourself with the new position. Alternatively I’m sure the Sensuous Curmudgeon will have something on this by tomorrow.

*NB: the ICR-affiliated blog that post came from no longer exists – see here for more information.

EDIT: In other news, the next That’s a Fact is out early. Subject is “muscles are complicated,” and much of the content is lifted from the parts of Wednesday’s article that I didn’t cover.

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One thought on “Technical Difficulties and Life on Mars

  1. “Far from making the evolutionary story more believable, the discovery of microbial life on Mars would require two wildly improbable series of fortuitous coincidences—one on Earth and another one on Mars.”
    Hebert and his allies may live to regret those words. Microbes on Mars (and almost certainly nothing more advanced which went extinct in the distant or recent past) would suggest that life BEGINS as ‘primitive’ – as suggested by the theory of evolution. It would also imply (unless you assume Mars to Earth or Earth to Mars panspermia via comets/asteroids) that abiogenesis – whether by ‘chance’ or divine design – is more common in the universe than we currently know or guess.
    And the YECs would not be able to ‘Bible bash’ as they do with Genesis about Martian microbes being created 6,000 years ago during Creation Week (as they assume the microbes of Earth were, despite microbes being unknown when the Bible was written down – which must be why God chose not to have the writer mention them).

    By the way, some at CMI seem to virtually rule OUT any life anywhere else in the universe apart from Earth.

    AiG seem more open-minded – though they suggest that SETI is merely a sort of quest to ‘prove’ evolutionism.

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