Showing posts with label Apologetics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Apologetics. Show all posts

Saturday, October 10, 2020

Obey the Consensus Because Experts are Smarter than You

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

We have seen numerous example of how people are unwilling, even unable, to think rationally and challenge assertions. Many are willing to follow what "scientists say", but this is often a cessation of thought. Worse is appealing to the majority — the so-called consensus.

Not only do secularists and political groups appeal to consensus in many areas, but they discourage people from thinking for themselves.
Original image: Unsplash / Jo-Anne McArthur, modified at Big Huge Labs

Let's mount up and ride to the top of yonder hill and get the bigger picture. Dr. Michael Crichton had some excellent statements about how science and consensus are mutually exclusive. While there is a consensus on many things, those things are not necessarily ironclad facts. Also, the consensus is often wrong and even biased:

  • Geocentrism (the earth stands still while the sun, moon and stars orbit it) was the prevalent view for a mighty long time
  • Things burned because they had phlogiston in them
  • Ignaz Semmelweis determined that doctors should wash their hands, but was ridiculed
  • Piltdown Man fooled the scientific establishment for over 40 years
  • The idea that birds evolved into dinosaurs is baseless conjecture, and although there is a "consensus", not all evolutionists have accepted this position
  • Lockdowns regarding the Wuhan virus were required, which was a consensus among leftists, but probably did little or nothing to contain the disease
  • Anthropogenic climate change is "settled science", so there is no reason to consider facts and arguments presented by non-leftists
Like the Piltdown Man fraud, fake science that has been disproved still makes it into the textbooks, such as Haeckel's embryo drawings. Scientists, like anyone else, have their presuppositions. Materialists presuppose deep time and evolution, then work from there. Why submit diamonds and dinosaur bones for radiocarbon dating, since there will be no trace of it left? When those and other things were finally tested, they indicated ages of far less than the dates assumed and expected by secularists.

Click to enlarge
This hatetheist dodged the point of the post,
then indulged in logical fallacies such as
invalid comparisons, conflation, appeal to motive —
and implicitly appealing to consensus
(Used under Fair Use provisions for educational purposes)

These presuppositions lead to incomplete research, which in turn often contributes to confirmation bias. When scientists "know" and have "a consensus", they are disinclined to finish their research. They also indulge in circular reasoning by assuming what they want others to believe and then claiming that they have done so. Not hardly!

The article linked below by Dr. Jay Wile (a former atheist) inspired this here article I wrote for y'all. There are three complaints I have. First, he didn't do what I did here by bringing in how evolutionists appeal to consensus. Second, I disagree with his statement about science correcting itself, which is not entirely accurate. Finally, he would have more impact if he was more biblical by using presuppositional apologetics. Aside from those things, I am (obviously) recommending that all y'all take a gander at it.
I have written about a couple of instances where Forbes has censored articles because they disagree with the “scientific consensus” . . . it didn’t surprise me to find that they are now actively trying to discourage people from thinking for themselves. This discouragement comes in the form of a blog article written by Dr. Ethan Siegel, who holds an earned Ph.D. in astrophysics. It is entitled, “You Must Not ‘Do Your Own Research’ When It Comes To Science”.

Dr. Siegel believes that in order to assess any scientific statement, a person must have some expertise in the relevant field. Otherwise, the person’s “research” will only end up confirming what he or she already wants to believe. He writes:
You can finish reading by visiting "Forbes Tells You Not To Think For Yourself". You'll thank me later.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Snap Judgemental

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Being judgemental is usually frowned on in Western societies, often based on misusing verses like Matthew 7:1. The immediate context and other parts of Scripture command Christians to exercise righteous judgement. Here is an example of an unrighteous snap judgement.


A lesson from a very brief experience on how I could have used unrighteous judgement, and how hasty conclusions can be harmful.
Credit: Unsplash / John Tuesday
People use the corridors at the workplace for conversation and smartphone use. This is a common thing in places of employment. I was on my way to the restroom, and a woman was in the corridor using her phone. She looked up at me for a split second and went back to her activity. No greeting or acknowledgement of my presence, but we had briefly seen each other several times before.

My snap judgemental thoughts included that she is stuck up, aware that she is very attractive, possibly afraid of me (I believe that women nowadays are trained by leftists to loathe men, but that's a topic for another time), that I am unimportant (well, I am in that place), and so on. Maybe she wants to go mattress dancing with me but is afraid to ask. (No, she's not blind or drunk, so that thought is easily dismissed.) But what did I really know from her actions?

This ties into something I have tried to teach in several of my articles: we only know so much, thus making hasty judgements counterproductive. As A. Conan Doyle had Sherlock Holmes say in A Study in Scarlet, "It is a capital mistake to theorize before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment." I reckon those words are true for just about everyone.

The woman was using her phone. She briefly glanced up at me, then back down. I know that she works for the same company as I do but in a different department. I don't know much more than that, not even her name. I have no reason to judge her. Interestingly, the next day I was told to grab my gear and saddle up, I was working in her department for a spell. This woman was nearby. Someone engaged her in a brief conversation, but she is not like some chatterboxes that I've been around. Nope, the quiet type. If I had judged her harshly in my mind, I would have had to modify my opinion in light of more information.

But in any case, I would not have been exercising righteous judgement. I certainly don't like being in the gunsites of judgemental folks, so I try to walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-26). That helps reduce bad behavior on my part. I still have a long way to go.



Monday, November 5, 2018

Ken Ham and Me

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen
Edited 11-07-2018

Somewhere around 1990 or 1991, I attended an Institute for Creation Research seminar in Schaumburg, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago). I first met Ken Ham ("on loan" from the Creation Science Foundation, if I have it right). Also, I met Drs. Henry M. and John Morris, Dr. Duane Gish, and I think a few others. Although I was not completely new to creation science and had been receiving ICR materials, this seminar made a big impression on me. Part of the reason was Ken Ham's presentations.


A couple of things I have in common with Ken Ham is that people hate us, and that we uphold the authority of the Bible.
Original image before modification courtesy of Answers in Genesis
ICR, Answers in Genesis, Creation Ministries International, Creation Today, and other biblical creation science ministries uphold the authority of Scripture, the importance of foundations, and show how real science supports the Bible. But Ken's presentations had humor and directness that impacted me. Even in the period when I rudely put God on the back burner, I still held to the fact of the authority of the Bible. I'll allow that I was irrational in that period.

After I rededicated my life to Christ, I was not going to get involved with creation science again. God had other plans, and I had access to the internet. If found that there is a wealth of creation science and apologetics materials! In my writings at Piltdown Superman, Biblical Creation and Evangelism, and other sites, I have emphasized biblical authority and proper biblical foundations. This has attracted the wrath of owlhoots that oppose authority and elevate atheistic interpretations of science into the magisterial position. Angry folks include atheists, theistic evolutionists, and other old-earth advocates who want to evosplain why I'm "wrong". It has been manifested in rancorous personal attacks, criminal cyberstalking, defamation, and in other ways.

Mr. Ham and I have that hatred in common. While he has no idea who I am and has developed a huge ministry, I am a nobody. (But I did start Question Evolution Day a few years ago.) Interesting that tinhorns want to slap leather with lil' ol' me. I suspicion that it is a sign of the end times and that hatred of Jesus and his people is on the increase, and their materialistic worldviews are threatened by the truth. Such attacks will not silence me. Obviously, Ham's ministry work is also going strong, so pettifoggery ain't frettin' him overmuch. He keeps on proclaiming real science and especially the authority of Scripture.


Image taken from the Ken Ham - Bill Nye Debate,
which Ken Ham and AiG make freely available.
Let me reign in here and say that I do not agree with everything Ham or AiG say. For that matter, I do not accept certain things from many ministries and teachers. They won't go away crying about it because they know some people think for themselves and differences of opinion happen. (Of course, we agree on the core values and essentials of salvation, those are not at issue.) For that matter, I would be a mite bothered if someone agreed with everything that I said as well. It has been rightly said, and I will apply it to all ministries: do not listen with an open mind on theological matters, but listen with an open Bible. You savvy that?

I wanted to share the background and current information on the occasion of this child's 59th birthday. At this point, I want to recommend an article written by the wretched Todd Friel, "Ken Ham—The Man Everyone Loves to Hate" for the 25th anniversary of Answers in Genesis. I'd be much obliged if you'd read it. Also, there's a short video below that helps drive home the point about authority.