URCall: Biomolecules

From the ICR’s URCall series of videos, hosted by Markus Lloyd. (link)

Transcript:

DNA, RNA, and proteins are “biomolecules” which, together, are essential for life. DNA and RNA are needed to make protein. Protein and RNA are needed to make more DNA. DNA and protein are needed to make RNA. So – which came first? Evolution doesn’t have an answer. But creation scientists do.

And that answer is, of course, “God did it.”

Here’s a slightly different question: how do we get metal? The answer of course involves mining, but have you ever noticed that the trucks and bulldozers and detonators used in this process all also require metal in some way? A conundrum emerges: how did it all start? Did Lloyd’s god give Adam and Eve a Caterpillar truck and a stick of dynamite when they left Eden? I don’t think so. Continue reading

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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.” Continue reading

Abiogenesis and Information

I was wrong: the new article at the ICR is not what I thought it would be. Instead, it’s called Evolution of Life Research Close to Creation, and is about a paper in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface called “The algorithmic origins of life.” For some other resources on the paper, you can read the press release, an article by the main author of the paper (Sara Walker) on her site, another essay by Walker, this blog post, or the Evolution News and Views post about it. There’s also a video of a lecture by Walker, which I am yet to finish. Please read at least some of those – I’m not going to be able to give you a good summary below, and neither does Brian. Continue reading

The Next Breakthrough

One of the more famous young Earth creationist escape hatches, to be used when there is no other way to dismiss evidence contrary to their position, is to invoke the spectre of “historical science”. Historical science is a legitimate term for observational, i.e. non-experimental science, which deals with things that cannot be directly tinkered with. Creationists, however, try to spin this as meaning that such science is less reliable or useful than experimental science, though this is far from the truth.

Brian’s latest use of the term, however, in What Will the Next Biological Breakthrough Be? is rather different. He comments on another freely available Nature feature, Life-changing experiments: The biological Higgs. This one asks “what fundamental discoveries in biology might inspire the same thrill [as the search for the Higgs]?

The discovery of life on Europa would probably do it, yes, but what else? Continue reading