We Don’t Know Everything About Electric Fish

There are six different lineages of so-called “electric fish,” each of which evolved its potential independently and convergently. The most famous of these is the electric eel, though speaking of convergent evolution that species is not actually an eel. The portion of the body that produces the electric field is called the “electric organ,” and appears to be derived from muscle cells, but are quite different from each other. A recent paper in Science – “Genomic basis for the convergent evolution of electric organs” (pdf, press release) – investigating representatives of four of six lineages determined that, despite their differences, the same underlying genetic and cellular processes have been leveraged (or hijacked) in each case.

Nathaniel Jeanson has an article up today about this paper called “Darwin’s ‘Special Difficulty’ Solved?” His conclusion is, if anything, unusually weak, and it’s difficult to know what to make of it. He begins by quote-mining Darwin, a common tactic but one which the ICR doesn’t seem to often resort: Continue reading

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Infant Language Learning

There is nothing to be said about the Monday article, Scientists Get Glimpse Into Infant Language Learning. The concluding paragraph is the closest we get to anything remotely resembling a creationist claim:

No animal on earth matches this capacity for expressing abstract ideas, and no animal’s brain undergoes such a remarkable shift in multiple, coordinated language learning schemes. This new research shows a glimpse of the Creator’s handiwork in equipping people to develop into beings that share His image, by sharing His ability to use language.

Yes that’s it. Though perhaps a certain Darwin quote might be relevant: (Emphasis added.)

[T]he difference in mind between man and the higher animals, great as it is, certainly is one of degree and not of kind.

The Book that Deceived the World

The Institute for Creation Research has a weekly radio show called Science, Scripture, & Salvation. Or at least they had a radio show – certainly, I can’t find any evidence that they’re still making new episodes. The Book that Deceived the World is one of these episodes, and yes, they’re talking about The Origin of Species:

Words can be a powerful and persuasive tool for good or evil. In 1859 a book that challenged the truthfulness of God’s Word and denied Him as Creator was published and became widely received. What was this book that deceived the world? Tune in to find out and to learn why it is still so popular.

The radio show shares certain similarities with the That’s a Fact videos. Most importantly both shows contain a lot of spurious claims about how the evidence shows that evolution is false, but at the same time they never actually show this “evidence.” As such, both SSS and TaF constitute examples of how the ICR presents its case to the true believers. It’s not particularly nuanced. Continue reading