Tuesday, 20 November 2012

More evidence of...waste, propaganda and bias

The BBC radio news this morning gave extensive coverage to a story about chimpanzees assertedly experiencing a mid life crisis analogous to that said to be experienced by men. More evidence for evolution!

Even a few of the commenters on this item on the Guardian on line seemed to think it was simply a subject to make jokes about. One said he hoped his tax dollars hadn’t been spent on the research. Some hope, does he think these studies are self funded by enthusiastic amateurs?

The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and has been claimed by commentators to support the idea that we evolved from apes, or ape like ancestors, or hominids, or whatever. Stands to reason dunnit? Men have mid life crises, so do chimps, so obviously we must have evolved from them! So please renew our research grant, please.

The international researchers asked zookeepers and other 'carers'  to complete questionnaires on the animals, commenting on their mood, social pleasure, success at achieving goals and how observers thought they would feel being in the apes’ skin.

Analysis allegedly showed that ape wellbeing declined in middle age and climbed again in old age.

Robin Dunbar, professor of evolutionary psychology at Oxford University, was dubious about the findings. Well, that’s two of us, but I’m even more dubious about public money being spent on a university department vainly calling itself ‘evolutionary psychology.’ Studying the psychology of evolutionists might be more interesting, but eliminating bias and providing true randomisation in any studies might prove difficult.

This study and more particularly the way it has been reported confirms two things. First, that there is never a shortage of money for research to try to prove that we descended from animals, or willingness to hype and report the findings. The BBC carries a story like this every few weeks, there is never a sceptical voice heard. Secondly, that scientists and propagandists still love to use Uncle Charlie’s old trick, of doing some banal science and then WHATEVER the findings calling it support for his theory of common descent. Or if the findings are troublesome for evolutionism, for example Stephen Meyer's work on information theory, or Michael Behe's criticism of the overhyped claims about the Lenski e.coli experiments, ignore or rubbish them.

This strategy was perfected in ‘Origin of Species’, for example Darwin’s banal experiments with seed germination from a dead pigeon’s crop, his observation of plant population change in mown and unmown grass squares, tree regeneration when grazing pressure was removed from a heath by fences etc. It has been in constant use ever since, for example peppered moths. In none of these experiments or observations is evolution in the sense of one creature turning into another demonstrated, but the weight of such studies and the style in which they are reported is used to support the ‘mountains of overwhelming evidence’ hype.

The actual evidence that humans evolved from ape like ancestors can be summed up in a playground song I remember from my childhood.

‘Happy birthday to you
I went to the zoo
I saw a monkey
And thought it was you.’

Men and women were created by God in his image. From him we came and to him we will return-to give account for what we did and for what we culpably failed to do, including our failure to investigate the controlling anti-God lies and bias of the evolutionist establishment. The time to get right with God is now-'for the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus.'

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