Posts Tagged ‘crazy’

Plastic from the Air, Global Warming Solution or SCAM?- Transcript

August 16, 2014

MANY thanks to Linda for supplying the transcript for these videos!

[0:00] news clips: “Well it’s a simple idea with big potential, turning polluted air into actual products that most of us will use every day.”
“Absolutely! Here in a Southern California plastics factory you are NOT gonna imagine WHERE this comes from. Just wait until you see this story.”
“We connect to a Newlight through our technology innovation funnel at Dell . . . who’s doing, of all things, making plastic out of carbon in the air. It almost seemed like it was too good to be true.”

[0:26] Thunderf00t: WOW. So the solution to global warming is here:

[0:31] clip from “Plastic made from air may help solve carbon emissions crisis” (CBS): “This building in Costa Mesa, California, looks unremarkable. And what’s happening inside sounds unreal.”
“So that’s plastic? That was literally made out of thin air?”
“We would be breathing this right now.”

[0:46] Thunderf00t: A way of turning carbon in the air into plastic. And the GREAT thing is, it’s gonna be CHEAPER than regular plastic. And it’s been featured on USA Today, The Guardian, The Weather Channel, CBS, and of course, Fox News, and the computer company, Dell, is promoting this AMAZING new technology, hard—so it can’t be complete bullshit. Right? I mean surely, someone must have fact-checked this. Right?

[1:16] So, firstly they claim that they’re gonna be making this plastic out of exhaust gases:

[1:21] clip from The Weather Channel: “-supposed to be a big game-changer for climate change, and Dave, you were telling us earlier about how they take the carbon out of the atmosphere and turn into plastic. How exactly do they do that, and Stephen our producer said, ‘well, why don’t they just hook up kind of a vacuum to, you know—smokestacks—and just get it right like that?’

[1:38] Thunderf00t: Well, that’s great. So now we know what we’re talking about: carbon dioxide.

[1:43] clip from The Weather Channel: “Yeah, that would be the way to do that. And they ARE doing that. In the future they hope to get it from a concentrated source. Right now they’re taking it from the air and they’re taking it from concentrated sources. But everything you see here—the cups, the bag, the plates—even, in fact, the chair that I’m sitting on right now, it’s all made from this plastic that comes from the air, and it’s one man’s dream.”

[2:07] Thunderf00t: And here’s their CEO saying that, just like trees take carbon dioxide out of the air:

[2:13] clips from Weather Channel, Dell: “pull Southern California’s polluted air from the roof and make something with all that carbon coming from cars, power plants, and farms.”
“Plants do this every single day. The way a tree grows is by pulling carbon out of the air.”
“Every single thing that you see that’s green—that’s ALL produced by pulling carbon out of the air. So we do precisely the same thing. It’s all around us. We just found a way to pull it out of an airstream and then turn it into a plastic molecule, and that plastic molecule we can then turn into shapes and things like that.”
“The environmental impact has the potential impact to be massive.”

[2:47] Thunderf00t: Yeah, that’s mostly right. Trees take carbon dioxide from the atmosphere AND water and a load of energy from the sun, and turn that into sugar—which is then polymerized to make things like cellulose, which is essentially wood.

[3:03] Now, plants GET that energy from the SUN. They are solar powered. Where’s he gonna get his energy from? Solar Roadways [LOL] , thorium-powered cars? Because the one place he can’t get it from is burning fossil fuels, ‘cos that would dump about as much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere as he’s going to be sequestering.

[3:24] As of rough chemical compositions, most plastics are basically petroleum-based polymers. And their chemical composition is basically that of oil; which is approximately this:

[3:37] Sugars and their polymers, which is cellulose, make up things like wood. And can, at a simple chemical composition-level be looked at as partially combusted hydrocarbon. That is, IF you could simply transform these petroleum-based polymers into wood, it would release a load of energy. And then of course you can simply finish off that oxidation in a very simple manner just by burning wood, which everyone knows releases a load of heat. I mean, it’s basically turning wood, into carbon dioxide, water, and a load of energy; effectively reversing what photosynthesis did in the first place.

[4:16] But energy is conserved here. There are no free lunches. If you wanna turn that carbon dioxide back into wood, you gotta put a load of energy in from somewhere and it will cost you AT LEAST as much energy as you got out from burning it in the first place.

[4:34] And the same thing is true if you’re trying to turn carbon dioxide into hydrocarbon-based plastics. WHERE is this energy going to come from?

[4:46] Secondly of course, this would just be a drop in the ocean. I mean from my last video you’ll recall that humans breathe out about 1 kilogram of carbon dioxide per day. That’s just your carbon footprint for being alive. And then you have all these people from CBS just gasping with awe at how someone has maybe sequestered 50 or so grams of carbon in a cellphone cover:

[5:13] clip from CBS “Plastic made from air may help solve carbon emissions crisis”: “So I know this sounds more like magic than science, so I wanted to make sure you guys could actually touch and feel this . . .”

[5:35] I mean, seriously, that’s only about 1/20th of their personal daily metabolic carbon footprint and they’re impressed by it!

[5:43] news clips: “Newlight is selling its plastic to companies such as furniture maker KI, which uses it to create chairs. There are also air carbon cellphone cases, soap dishes, and even plastic bags.”
“a big game-changer for climate change, and Dave, you were telling us earlier about how they take the carbon out of the atmosphere and turn into plastic.”
“At a recent Fortune Magazine event, Michael Dell announced he will use Newlight’s air carbon bags to wrap his Dell computers.”

[6:17] Thunderf00t: And just a personal metabolic carbon footprint is peanuts compared to the total carbon footprint. I mean, like I was saying, this is a drop in the ocean AT BEST. I mean let’s keep this in perspective:

[6:32] clip from Weather Channel: “2011, the U.S. alone generated almost 14 MILLION TONS of plastic. Only about 8 percent was EVER recycled.”

[6:39] Thunderf00t: 14 million tons might sound like a lot. Until you realize that the U.S. carbon footprint is about 5,000 MILLION TONS, which was achieved by burning about 2,000 million tons of oil. Yeah, ALL of the plastics that you consume are give-or-take only take about 1 percent of your ENTIRE carbon footprint. If we were talking about carbon dioxide, he’s simply talking crap.

[7:12] Buuut it turns out that all that speak about basically doing what trees do—not entirely honest. Turns out that this process is actually gonna run on methane. That’s right—it’s basically turning hydrocarbon into plastic—which sounds exactly like what the oil industry is currently doing.

[7:32] So, what’s the difference? Well, they claim that they’re gonna get the methane OUT of the air:

[7:38] clip from Dell: “We connect to a Newlight through our technology innovation funnel at Dell . . . who’s doing, of all things, making plastic out of carbon in the air. It almost seemed like it was too good to be true.”

[7:48] Thunderf00t: And I simply call BULLSHIT on that. Well you’ve gotta understand that there really isn’t much methane in air—and for good reason—it gets oxidized away in our atmosphere really quite quickly with a half-life of about 10 years.

[8:01] Now, while it’s true methane IS a very big greenhouse gas, it’s also true that its concentration in air is very low—only about 1 part per million. There is just bugger-all methane in the air.

[8:16] So, I mean, just some ballpark numbers, the cubic meter of air is what this girl is essentially sitting in, weighs about 1 kilogram. So if you wanted to make about 1 kilogram of plastic, you would need to harvest the methane of 1 MILLION cubic meters of air with 100 percent efficiency. I mean, look, this is the tube they claim they’re sucking all our air through to make this plastic:

[8:41] clip from Weather Channel: “pull Southern California’s polluted air from the roof and make something with all that carbon.”
“This plastic comes from the air.”
“And this is it right here, more than 50 percent of THIS plastic right here came from the air on top of this building.”

[9:01] Thunderf00t: So let’s do a real simple back-of-the-envelope calculation. For a TRIVIAL task of say, producing 1 kilogram of plastic per hour—that means they’ve gotta suck 1 MILLION cubic meters of air through that tube. That tube, if you’re generous, is about 0.1 meters by 0.1 meters. So if they’re gonna achieve the paltry task of making 1 kilogram of plastic per hour, iiit turns out they’d have to be sucking air through that tube at about 100 TIMES the speed of sound. And that’s just the flow problem. Unless they’ve got some magic method for extracting the methane out of the air, it’s simply pointless.

[9:41] Now, 100 times the speed of sound—about a 100 times the speed of a bullet—might not sound impossible to some people. So let me put this into more human dimensions. So, we basically need about 1 million cubic meters of air to create a single kilogram of plastic. Well, by happy coincidence, the volume of the Empire State Building is also about 1 million cubic meters. So the bare minimum you would have to do is pump a volume of air the size of the Empire State Building—ignoring all the stuff about extracting the methane and turning it into plastic.

[10:20] But just for the moment, let’s just take a look at the costs of pumping that sort of volume of air. It’s actually going to take a sort of industrial pump that can pump about 2 cubic meters per second, and it runs on about 2 kilowatts. So this pump would take about one week to pump that million cubic meters of air. And just the grid electricity to pump that volume of air would generate about 200 kilograms of carbon dioxide—the equivalent of burning about a 100 kilograms of oil to generate 1 KILOGRAM of plastic.

[10:58] And just to put that into some perspective, the petrochemical industry basically works by taking about 1 kilogram of oil and turning it into about 1 kilogram of plastic.

[11:08] clip from “Dell AirCarbon Plastic – Made from Air, Not Oil”: “Gone from doing less harm, to do no harm, to ‘let’s make it better than we left it’.”
“Newlight’s technology is such a great partner for that, but they’re making it better.”

[11:22] Thunderf00t: This really is the problem that you face, that you have essentially 1,000 tons of air, and you’re trying to extract from that 1 kilogram of methane, which can maybe be converted into about a kilogram of plastic.

[11:36] Look, this is the thing—you can get methane from the petrochemical industry fairly cheaply. But these ‘air carbon’ people claim that their process is cheaper than the petrochemical industry:

[11:47] clip from The Weather Channel: “although Mark truly believes he has found a way to make air plastic cost less than oil plastic.”

[11:55] Thunderf00t: In which case, the obvious question, if your air methane is cheaper than petrochemical industry methane, why not just sell it as ‘fuel’? You know, just for burning. It would be incredibly bio-friendly, as methane’s about 30 times as bad a greenhouse gas as carbon dioxide.

[12:15] I mean there’s just something about this that REALLY stinks. That is, I simply don’t believe that there would EVER be a cost-effective way of extracting methane from the atmosphere like this.

[12:27] Now if you were doing this with BIO sources of methane—weeell, now that’s a little different. But that’s MUCH more what the petrochemical industry is essentially doing at the moment. And calling it “air carbon”, you know, pulled out of the air:

[12:40] clip from The Weather Channel: “Right. So this is actually air carbon.”
“Air carbon is the product name they use for this white powder.”
“How does this become plastic though?”
“Heat it up, and air carbon becomes a plastic called, PHA.”
CBS clip: “So that’s plastic that was literally made out of thin air?”
“We would be breathing this right now.”

[12:58] Thunderf00t: -seems to be ENTIRELY misleading.

[13:01] So, in summary, if they’re talking about making plastic from the carbon dioxide in the air, then they’re simply talking crap, as it could NEVER be cost-effective unless you can find a cheaper source of energy than fossil fuels. If he’s talking about methane in the air, then he’s MORE full of crap than the Empire State Building is full of air. And if he’s talking about bio methane created on a farm IN A BIOLOGICAL REACTOR—you know, to generate the methane in the first place—he’s talking about bio methane generated on a farm and he’s not talking about pulling it out of the air. And all those claims about ‘carbon out of the air’—not really true.

[13:47] clip from Dell: “Almost all plastics today come from fossil fuels. So, the difference with air carbon is, air carbon is made from air and carbon that we would otherwise be breathing right now.”

[13:56] Thunderf00t: Look, there’s ONE polymer that is the UNDISPUTED claim to call itself ‘air carbon’. It’s the most abundant biomolecule on Earth: cellulose, created by plants and the key structural component of trees—you know, wood. You wanna use ‘air carbon’ to wrap your computers, use paper. THEN at least the carbon GENUINELY came from the atmosphere and not some fraudulent claims about being able to make plastic cost-effective out of thin air. But I still just wail with despair at just how much scientific illiteracy there is throughout the mainstream media.

[14:38] clip from CBS: “So I know this sounds more like magic than science, so I wanted to make sure you guys could actually touch and feel this.”

[14:45] Thunderf00t: And just how a large company like Dell can promote this pseudo-science without even a cursory look as to if those claims are even remotely possible.

[14:57] clip from Dell: “We connect to a Newlight through our technology innovation funnel at Dell . . . who’s doing, of all things, making plastic out of carbon in the air. It almost seemed like it was too good to be true.”

Why do people laugh at creationists? (part 11). – Transcript

August 16, 2014

Many thanks to Linda for supplying this transcript!

[0:03] clip from VenomFangX: “Jesus spoke about a second death. There are two types of death: mortal death, which is when our soul is separated from our body; and spiritual death, which is when our soul is separated from God. Adam and Eve had their souls separated from God the day they ate from the forbidden fruit. That’s why God kicked them out of the Garden. Now, that is also why we are born spiritually dead in our sins. You are dead in your sins, and that’s why Jesus said you have to be born again right now by repenting of sin and putting your faith in Jesus Christ. You will then be born again of the spirit of God and be able to remain with God forever. If you don’t do that now, during this life, you will remain separated from God forever.

[0:41] clip from The Terminator

[0:52] clip from VenomFangX: “I’m gonna make a challenge for ya. Do you wanna debate with me? Live? We’ll record it, post it on YouTube, make it a big event. We could even have one of those Mortal Combat screens, you know, me on one side you on the other. It’ll be crazy right? Let’s do it. It’ll be fun.”

[1:05] Thunderf00t: Well, it’ll be fun for me. But then again that’s because I’m not so stupid as to say that the Grand Canyon was formed at about five times the speed of sound.

[1:14] clip from VenomFangX: “If the planet flooded like the Bible says, the Grand Canyon could have been formed in about five minutes. The Grand Canyon could have been formed in about five minutes.”

[1:28] Thunderf00t: However the reason I have little interest in humoring you with a debate is exemplified by these videos. Put simply, someone who has repeatedly demonstrated such a crass lack of scientific understanding as yourself, is not in need of a debate, but an education.

[1:45] However you shouldn’t feel bad about this attribute as it’s so much pervasively true of all young earth creationists. Let’s see what gems you have for us this time:

[1:56] clip from VenomFangX: “The Bible says Noah only had to bring things that breathe with their nostrils. Fish don’t breathe with their nostrils, and I bet you even know that.”

[2:03] Thunderf00t: Aaaah, Noah’s Ark. It’s almost shameless that anyone could try and defend this. But let’s look at the facile point that Noah took nothing onto the ark that didn’t have nostrils. Well, sure that would’ve meant that Noah wouldn’t have to take any bugs on the ark. But then again it would’ve also meant the extinction of almost all insects and plant life on earth, and of course the humble earthworm and thereby ensuring that Noah and everything else on the ark would’ve starved to death on a dead planet.

[2:33] But then again, what about the whales? They breathe through their nostrils. Shown are the nostrils of the largest creature ever to live on the earth, the blue whale. I really would’ve loved to see how Noah got all the animals that

[2:45] clip from VenomFangX: “breathe with their nostrils”

[2:46] Thunderf00t: on the ark.

[2:47] clip from VenomFangX: “The Bible says Noah only had to bring things that breathe with their nostrils. Fish don’t breathe with their nostrils, and I bet you even know that. So insects breathe, not through their nostrils but through their skin, so no insects either. Now, the seas get saltier at an increasing rate every year. And if you take the rate in which they’re getting saltier in reverse time, about 4,400 years ago the seas would be totally freshwater.”

[3:08] Thunderf00t: Aaah, so the water was totally fresh 4,000 years ago, eh? Well, where did these come from? These are chalk cliffs. They’re known to be composed of microscopic shells of a form of creature similar to the modern phytoplankton called coccolithophores. These phytoplankton require two materials to make their calcium carbonate shells: firstly, calcium, which is dissolved in the sea water. Secondly, carbonate, which is usually obtained from carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

[3:41] The geological period of time in which these deposits were laid down is named after these chalk deposits; the Latin name for chalk being ‘creta’. In the Cretaceous period these areas were covered with oceans and the chalk deposits were laid down between 150 and 70 million years ago.

[3:59] Now comes the amusing bit. The raw materials required for coccolithophores to make chalk, or calcium carbonate, are a salt solution of the iron calcium and carbon dioxide. Now if the oceans were purely fresh water, as the creationist states, then where did these calcium carbonate deposits of coccolithophores come from?

[4:20] clip from The Matrix

[4:23] clip from VenomFangX: “Jesus spoke about a second death. There are two types of death: mortal death, which is when our soul is separated from our body.”

[4:31] Thunderf00t: I can only assume that by ‘death’ he means ‘brain death’. We’ve known for decades now that the only thing that causes irreversible death is the death of the brain. Once the neurochemistry goes south, it doesn’t come back.

[4:45] However, this is the thing: animals have brains that function on a very similar fashion to our own. Yet I somehow doubt that the creationist would argue that it’s impossible for animals to die, because they have no souls to separate from their bodies. Next of course comes the obvious question: we know our brains make our decisions, so what’s the purpose of the soul that the creationist speaks of? Why do those who claim that they have been ‘born again’ with souls have behavioral characteristics that are indistinguishable—or worse—than those who haven’t been born again with a soul? For instance, divorce rates and the such like.

[5:20] clip from VenomFangX: “-and spiritual death, which is when our soul is separated from God.”

[5:24] Thunderf00t: Okay, so the creationist is now saying we have a soul, and that there is a god. And that having your soul separated from god counts as death. Umm, okay. Well, I’m still struggling to see how if god is omnipresent and omnipotent, how you can ever be separated from him.

[5:40] clip from VenomFangX: “Adam and Eve had their souls separated from God the day they ate from the forbidden fruit. That’s why God kicked them out of the Garden.”

[5:47] Thunderf00t: Okay, so Adam was born with his soul alive, and killed it by eating forbidden fruit. So what did we learn? Well, in creationism it’s possible to kill your soul by eating.

[6:00] clip from VenomFangX: “Now, that is also why we are born spiritually dead in our sins.”

[6:04] Thunderf00t: Okay, so in creationism it’s not only possible to kill your own soul by eating, but it can also cause ALL the children you have to be born with dead souls.

[6:15] clip from VenomFangX: “You are dead in your sins, and that’s why Jesus said you have to be born again right now by repenting of sin and putting your faith in Jesus Christ.”

[6:23] Thunderf00t: Okay, so when you’re born, your soul is automatically tied to your body, but it’s dead. Then when you choose for your soul to come alive, uuh, how? What makes the choice? The dead soul, bad chemistry of life? Well let’s leave that for a minute and see where this goes.

[6:40] clip from VenomFangX: “You will then be born again of the spirit of God and be able to remain with God forever.”

[6:45] Thunderf00t: So your soul is born into a piece of bad chemical machinery, thanks to your ancestors not being picky enough about their diet. And now, if you manage to get your soul to come alive by some undescribed process, then you get to become a part of god.

[7:00] clip from VenomFangX: “If you don’t do that now, during this life, you will remain separated from God forever.”

[7:05] Thunderf00t: And if you don’t obey the creationist’s fantasy, then his fantasy will punish you for your disobedience. But of course the funny thing is the creationist’s fantasy would automatically kill the souls of all the babies who haven’t chose to have their souls born yet. That’s a pretty unpleasant fantasy.

[7:22] But now let’s compare what we know, and can PROVE with the physical evidence, to the creationist’s fantasy.

[7:30] clip from VenomFangX: “If you don’t do that now, during this life, you will remain separated from God forever.”

[7:35] clip from The Terminator

[7:49] clip from VenomFangX: “The Bible says Noah only had to bring things that breathe with their nostrils . . . 4,400 years ago the seas would be totally freshwater.”

Why do people laugh at creationists? (part 10)- Transcript

August 16, 2014

Many thanks to Linda for supplying this transcript!

[0:03] clip from “LEE STROBEL The Case for a Creator Full documentary”: “If the universe looks like it’s fine-tuned for complex life, maybe there’s a fine-tuner. Maybe it was fine-tuned for life.”
“If we didn’t have the electromagnetic force you would have no bonding between chemicals. You would have no light and the list goes on. So you need all these sorts of fundamental principles have to be in place in order for life to occur. Wipe out one of those principles, wipe out one of those laws—no life.”

[0:28] Thunderf00t: Okay, so he’s saying that there’s only one unique way for life to exist. This of course is purely speculative creationist tosh. To demonstrate this point I’m going to go to the microscopic level of molecular dynamics. Shown is a molecular dynamic simulation of the bee sting protein called melatin. These simulations that are routinely used are very useful for the interpretation of experimental results and the predictions of microscopic behaviors of such systems. It’s a well-established and mature field of chemistry. There’s just one thing: there is no gravity whatsoever in these calculations. Nor is there any gravity whatsoever in the more detailed quantum mechanical calculations.

[1:12] Gravity is about 1000 billion billion billion billion times weaker than the electromagnetic force. It’s an irrelevant factor in the molecular forces which determine molecular dynamics. Which is why you can leave it out of the equation altogether.

[1:28] It’s also notable that life is remarkably robust to the absence of gravitational fields, functioning almost as well on the earth as it does in microgravity. Put simply, there is no reason whatsoever why you couldn’t get life functioning perfectly happily in a universe with no gravity.

[1:48] There are just four forces that we are aware of. That’s gravity, the strong, the weak, and the electromagnetic force. Now I’ve just shown that gravity is not necessary for the functioning of life. Further, a recent paper has suggested that a universe without the weak force would look largely indistinguishable from our current universe (Harnik, Kribs, Perez, A Universe Without Weak Interactions).

[2:09] So half of the forces that we know about are not essential for the functioning of life. So much for the creationist statement that everything needs to be perfect for life to function.

[2:22] But now let’s move on to the simple deceit of creationists:

[2:26] clip from “LEE STROBEL The Case for a Creator Full documentary”: “One example of this fine-tuning is the force of gravity.”
“Imagine a ruler divided up into one inch increments, and then stretched across the entire universe, a distance of some 14 billion light years. For the purposes of illustration, the ruler represents the possible range for gravity.”

[2:51] Thunderf00t: Yep, you always need dramatic music if you’re gonna play god and choose a new gravitational force constant to the universe. However if you want to play god, as the creationist seems intent on doing, then the limits for the gravitational constant is zero and infinity.

[3:06] However you cannot put an infinite number of finite-sized inch strips together on a finite distance—it’s impossible by definition. Like say, for instance a square with five sides. What the guy’s describing is simply mathematically impossible.

[3:23] clip from “LEE STROBEL The Case for a Creator Full documentary”: “In other words, the setting for the strength of gravity could’ve been anywhere along the ruler, but it just happens to be situated in exactly the right place so that life is possible. Now if you were to change the force of gravity by moving the setting just one inch compared to the entire width of the universe, the effect on life would be catastrophic.”

[3:45] Thunderf00t: Weell, in fairness, the animation was neat and the music was fine. However it’s still pointlessly speculative mathematical nonsense. The creationist demonstrating that he doesn’t understand mathematics is Lee Strobel, author of such books as The Case for Christ, The Case for Faith, and The Case for a Creator. The title of these books and his gesturing are unsurprising given that Strobel’s highest degree was not in physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics—or any other scientific discipline for that matter—but law.

[4:16] Yep, that’s right. The creationist fielding the case for creation is a lawyer. Now at this point an inquiring mind will be asking ‘what is a lawyer doing making predictions about diddling with the fundamental force constant to the universe when he has no real scientific understanding of the one he currently lives in?’ In this sense, Strobel’s mathematically impossible speculation on the gravitational constant has about as much academic credibility as a burger-flipper lecturing a brain surgeon on cerebral aneurysms.

[4:47] The principle difference between lawyers and scientists is that scientists gain their reputation on track record based on what they can establish from the physical evidence and logical deduction. However for lawyers, truth is an irrelevance as the criterion that determines a successful lawyer is their ability to present a successful case, not their ability to establish truth; although obviously it helps for those who harbor a conscience if the two coincide once in a while.

[5:17] clip from A Few Good Men

[5:26] Thunderf00t: But let’s take another look at this case for a fine-tuned universe. There’s about 75 cubic kilometers of life on earth, while the volume of the earth is approximately one trillion cubic kilometers. That means that by volume the earth is approximately one billionth of a percent life.

[5:48] For me, this device is an example of fine-tuning. For this object, each of the thousand billion billion billion billion atoms are arranged—sorry, fine-tuned—for the purpose of human transport. Now if you found a rock of comparable size and found a fleck of iron in it the size of a pinhead that’s approximately the equivalent volume fraction of life on earth, would you conclude that the rock was fine-tuned for the purpose of being a car? So why would you conclude that the earth is fine-tuned for the purpose of life?

[6:23] However, it’s better than that, as the creationists in this video go on to argue that we are the only life in the Milky Way. Fantastic. The volume between us and the nearest galaxy is about five times [Equation]cubic kilometers. That means that the creationists are happy to argue that something where you find one part in [Equation] that works, means that that object is fine-tuned for that purpose.

[6:51] Now for the creationist to call this a fine-tuned universe for the purpose of life is like taking a billion earths and finding a single iron atom on one of those earths and then concluding that these billion earths are fine-tuned for a purpose.

[7:08] In summary, it is deeply unconvincing to try and argue that a universe which has essentially no life in it is fine-tuned for the purpose of life.

[7:24] clip from “LEE STROBEL The Case for a Creator Full documentary”: “Wipe out one of those laws—no life.”
“Maybe there’s a fine-tuner. Maybe it was fine-tuned for life.”

Why do people laugh at creationists? (part 9)

August 16, 2014

Many thanks to Linda for supplying this transcript!

[0:03] clip from “RRS vs. Kirk Cameron / Ray Comfort Nightline FULL”: “Listen to what two of the greatest scientific minds in history said about the design in creation: Sir Isaac Newton: “the most beautiful system of the sun, the planets, and comets, could only proceed from the council and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being.” Albert Einstein—he said, “in view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no god.”

[0:33] Thunderf00t: Aaaah, quote mining; another favorite ploy of the creationist, using partial or misleading quotes from real scientists in the hope that some of their academic credibility will rub off on them. It’s trivial to do. For instance, these are the words of the devoted creationist Kirk Cameron and his partner Ray Comfort:

[0:52] clips from “RRS vs. Kirk Cameron / Ray Comfort Nightline FULL”: “You guys who believe in god are idiots. You’re small-minded people who are unintelligent. You don’t think.”
“There’s no god.”
“I’d rather go to hell than to believe in a megalomaniac like god.”

[1:08] Thunderf00t: This is the worst kind of deceit; worse in many ways than actually lying in that it is specifically designed to intentionally mislead people by either misquoting people or misrepresenting academic discourse (which is essential to the progression of science) as a weakness of a theory.

[1:25] It is also very noticeable these creationists plead with you to accept their views. In academic circles this would be instantly interpreted as a man with no case to present, which is why he resorts to such snake oil-salesman-style techniques.

[1:40] In academic lectures on research science, it’s taken that any argument presented stands on its merits. The lecturer is expected to present his case clearly, but any attempt to suggest that his arguments should be accepted based on the pleading or scoffing of the lecturer would be instantly greeted with academic skepticism.

[2:00] This sort of thing might fly in the pulpit and in political forums, but it has no place in the academic arena.

[2:11] clip from “RRS vs. Kirk Cameron / Ray Comfort Nightline FULL”: “You know if a Coca-Cola can was MADE, there must be a maker. When I look at a painting, how can I know there was a painter? Well the painting is absolute, 100 percent scientific proof there was a painter. Well a building is absolute, 100 percent scientific proof there was a builder.”

[2:32] Thunderf00t: Yeaaah, tell it brother! Just like rocks are 100 percent absolute proof of a rock-making god. Just like sunsets is 100 percent absolute scientific proof of a sunset-making factory. Yeah, just like a nearly perfectly spherical Mars is 100 percent absolute proof that there is a Mars-maker. Oh yeah, that’s right. I remember now. The reason we don’t think that sunsets are made by a sunset-making god is because we understand the origin of sunsets. We can still say that god did it. It’s just that that doesn’t advance our understanding of the world any. And it’s a path that leads to an intellectual dead-end.

[3:10] clip from “RRS vs. Kirk Cameron / Ray Comfort Nightline FULL”: “If it’s designed, there MUST be a designer.”

[3:14] Thunderf00t: This statement is of course tautological. But the question is how can you recognize design? For instance, crystals are among the most ordered objects in the universe. Yet we do not instantly reach for a crystal-making god to try and explain the existence of these highly ordered structures. Again, the reason we do not reach for a god to explain these structures is because we have a perfectly satisfactory naturalistic explanation of the origin of crystals.

[3:41] There is nothing wrong with a tautological statement that designed objects are designed. There’s nothing wrong with the statement that paintings, etc. are designed, simply as they have no plausible naturalistic explanation for their origin. However, there IS a naturalistic explanation for life. It’s called evolution. And before the creationists start coming out with their unfounded tosh about how ‘it’s never been observed’ and so on: it’s more than observed. The principle of evolution is used by the likes of engineers to design aerodynamic bodies—a sort of design without a designer.

[4:16] Indeed, even I myself have written such pieces of code. All you need is reproduction with variation, and environmental attrition and evolution intrinsically follows. This is not just some animation about the front end of an evolutionary algorithm, where the bugs are actually evolving to the environment.

[4:38] Well let’s just highlight the logical flaws of this typical creation argument that ‘designed objects such as paintings, buildings, etc. require a designer. Life looks designed, so it must have a designer’.

[4:51] Let me parody this creationist logic. Let me take a load of pebbles, and see if any of them perfectly fit a shot glass. The answer is no. Indeed I could keep on trying to get pebbles to fit the shot glass in perpetuity and never find one that fits it perfectly. Indeed, I could happily conclude that the only way for a pebble to fit the shot glass perfectly is if it were designed to fit the shot glass.

[5:17] Liquids however fit a shot glass perfectly every time. So, by the creationist’s logic, liquid must be designed to fit the glass. Now the reason this argument is bogus of course, is simply because the two objects being compared have different critical properties. In my case I am comparing deformable matter such as liquids to solids, and drawing the bogus conclusion that liquids must be designed to fit the glass.

[5:45] In the creationist’s case, they are comparing objects that are known to be manufactured, with objects that can evolve—that is, objects that suffer environmental attrition and reproduction with variation—and then drawing the bogus conclusion that life must be designed.

[6:08] clip from “RRS vs. Kirk Cameron / Ray Comfort Nightline FULL”: “When I look at this building, how do I know there was a builder? You can’t see him, hear him, touch him, taste him, or smell him. I mean, what evidence is there that there was a builder?

[6:18] clip from “Bob the Builder”

[6:27] Thunderf00t: Yeah, that’s right. You know there was a builder because you CAN see him, hear him, touch him, taste him, and smell him—although few builders would allow you to go that far. But even if you couldn’t see him, hear him, touch him, taste him, or smell him, you can watch builders building buildings all the time. And even if you couldn’t do that, you go down to the planning department and get the blueprints for the building and get the date the building was erected on and how it was made.

[6:53] clip from“RRS vs. Kirk Cameron / Ray Comfort Nightline FULL”: “When I look at this building, how do I know there was a builder? You can’t see him, hear him, touch him, taste him, or smell him. I mean, what evidence is there that there was a builder?

Skepchick go approval seeking from ‘White Male Privilege’

August 1, 2012

So having gotten roundly called for her shameful behavior at TAM (The Amazing Meeting), Amy ‘crying over a T-shirt’ Roth from Skepchick has gone approval seeking! Not from female bastions of the secular community like Harriet Hall (who clearly was distancing herself from folks like the evermore erratic and fringe Skepchicks), but ironically from what under almost any other circumstances the Skepchicks would call the ’white male privilege’ of the secular community.  However in reality she has not actual got any! NONE!

Ronald Lindsey, Dave Silverman and Nick Lee have all ‘spoken out against hate directed against women’ on Skepchick.

Y’see this is one of those ‘dissent from Darwin’ type stunts that the Discovery institute would pull.  For those who don’t know the dissent from Darwin thing was done to create the appearance of dissent when in fact essentially none existed, just like skepchick are suggesting that there is all this ‘hate against women’ when in fact essentially none exists (beyond criticism and/or trolling).  So how did the Discovery Institute and Skepchick achieve such a remarkable feat? Why by using language so broad that anyone and everyone, including myself, could agree with it.

In the case of the dissent from Darwin the statement was basically that all theories including evolution should be subject to critical scrutiny (well of course! who could disagree?), and in the case of Skepchick it’s ‘speak out against hate against women’ (well of course! who could disagree?).  Now firstly, if someone had asked me this question, my immediate response would be ‘why is Skepchick embracing sexism on this issue? Shouldn’t we be against all hate, irrespective of gender?’  Indeed at least two of the respondents actually elucidated to this. Kudos to:

Dave “American Atheists stands by all its members, supporters, and allies, and we will not tolerate hate directed at any of us. Period” Silverman, and Ronald “Hate-filled invective has been directed at many different people, male and female” Lindsey.

Then of course my second question could be, ‘why are you asking me such loaded questions?’  Really what do you expect me to say? is there ANYONE who would disagree with that position?  I mean if these people had been asked to speak out against hatred against males? or blacks? or puppies? how would they have responded? “No hatred against all of the above is obviously okay”?, of course they wouldn’t.  It’s such an obviously manipulative question.  Thankfully most of the respondent gave measured answers not far off where I would have planted my banner.

I would have started with the obvious and fair first question.

“do you think there is a real problem with ‘hate against women’ in this community? “

I’ve got to say I’ve seen essentially NONE.

I’ll tell you what I have seen, I’ve seen people get called idiots for saying and doing stupid things, y’know stuff about elevators (Rebecca Watson) and T-shirts (Amy Roth), although it is very conspicuous to those who can read what is obviously not said, that NONE of those who speak out against ‘hate against women’ actually specify that they think either Amy Roth or Rebecca Watson had a valid grievance in either case.

Indeed, while Amy Roths introduction to Nick Lee was glowing, if she had actually bothered to read what he wrote, she might have found precious little support for either her or Rebecca Watson.

“Not every flirtation is unwelcome attention, until one side announces it is, and then it should stop.”

So according to Nick there was nothing wrong with what happened to Rebecca Watson in the elevator. NOTHING.

“It is also complicated by the right of people to say what is on their minds even if it makes us feel uncomfortable.”

And there’s Amy ‘crying over the T-shirt’ Roth CLEARLY rebutted in the very next sentence.

Calling someone an idiot for acting like an idiot does not become ‘hate against women’ simply because the person in question was a woman.  This is one of the two general categories of the ‘hate against women’ that Skepchick encounters.  Look it’s obvious, how would people respond if I ‘embraced victim-hood’ like the Skepchicks.  That is any time anyone said anything ‘nasty’ against me I simply claimed that this was just sexism and misandry?  Yup, I would expect exactly the mockery that the Skepchicks get.  Far from sexism, this treatment represents equality in the secular community in that these people (the Skepchicks) are being judged on what they say and do, rather than on their gender.

The second general category of ‘hate against women’ Skepchick encounters is people trolling them.  Now it’s my reckoning that of the three ‘leaders’ Skepchick have thus far got to ‘speak out’ on this, two probably have no idea what trolling is.  Trolls do not hate anyone; they just get off on how easy it is to control people, particularly people who are hypersensitive on an issue (e.g. feminism) by pushing the right psychological buttons.  Skepchick is grade A trolling material and are seen to be some of the most easily puppeteered people on the webs.  What trolls will do is type some manipulative reactionary shit into a comment box and then laugh as those being trolled dance like puppets on strings.  With experience it’s easy to spot most trolls.  To be honest it is shameful that the Skepchick are so easily trolled as it shows their grotesque naivety to the interwebs.  So how can I be so sure that the Skepchick is just getting trolled?  Well it’s very easy, unless you actually think that there are really hundreds of atheists who are looking to rape Rebecca Watson (in which case the atheist community would have a huge fractional population of folks intending to be rapists and the ‘leaders’ response would be ENTIRELY inadequate), SHE’S BEING TROLLED!  Her ‘rape threats’ are exactly as valid as the ones I got on my first video that addressed this,

I’d just like to say thunderf00t should be raped, and I want to rape thunderf00t so he loosens up a little bit, and also thunderf00t is too ugly to rape.
Oh Noes, I’ve got multiple rape threats.  Where are all the atheist leaders speaking out against hate directed against men in the secular community?

and to be honest her parading these around like a ‘trophy proof’ of misogyny in the atheist community at conference after conference makes her, and anyone else who is taken in by it look as stupid to the new internet savvy generation of atheists as Oprah and the 9000 penises that she was worried a pedophile syndicate had ready to rape children.

Really leaders, you are showing your age in the internet generation to be taken in by this sort of thing.  There is only one way to win against a troll.  DO NOT FEED THE TROLLS.

Skepchick do not only openly violate this law, they put up glowing neon signs saying ‘we seek out and feed any and all trolls’.  On the internet this is almost as bad as feeding the gremlins after dark then throwing them in a lake Superior, then complaining about the gremlin infestation, it’s the equivalent of putting a big sign on your own back saying ‘kick me’ then crying about the ‘sexism’ of those who kick you.

Ana from the Young Turks pretty much calls it like it is on this segment.

Other than that, where are these people who ‘hate women’?  Does anyone actually have any evidence for this ‘hate against women’ that is NOT someone being calling out someone for saying or doing something outrageously stupid, or being trolled, or some mixture of the two?

In which case I have to ask these Leaders, who exactly are these people that they talking out against?  Where are they?  If no one actually knows, then why are they speaking out against a problem that doesn’t exist?  Inquiring minds need to know!

Feminist reduced to tears by T-shirt

July 19, 2012

Good God, your know someone is on the fringe when you cannot tell the difference between someone pretending to be a crazy feminist, and a skepchick-type feminist expressing their opinion.  That’s right, feminism in the secular movement has reached poe-tastic proportions!

So lets see if you can tell me which one of the following is someone pretending to be crazy, and which is a serious feminist (being supported by who else but ‘Freethoughtbloggers’ and skepchick).

Is it a)

There has been a lot of sexually harassing by text (textual harassment) at TAM, and therefore the skeptichicks are planning to implement a policy banning such harassment at their conferences.  To ensure that women feel safe at conferences this policy will strictly prohibit people sending unwanted text messages, specifically including the following:

( . ) ( . )


or is it b),

…that wearing a T-shirt at TAM saying that says ‘I’m a skeptic, not a skepchick, not a woman skeptic, just a skeptic’ constituted such powerful and dehumanizing harassment, that it reduced a grown feminist to tears, forcing her to spend the rest of the conference with her mother.  Then eventually when she simply couldn’t take the devastating harassment of the T-shirt anymore, she had to change her flight and leave early.

Well if you answered a), sorry to say you are wrong.  Textual harassment was from a parody site of ‘freethoughblogs’.  In reality it was one of those fearless feminist types, Amy Roth, who ended up crying because she didn’t like someones T-shirt at a conference (TAM).  What’s more is the absolute vanilla level of meek criticism that was required to turn this steely eyed feminist into blubbing girl.  I kid you not, it was no more than this T-shirt.  Seriously, this is not being mean, this is just like one of those “WTF is she going on about? there is no way she can possibly be that fragile and thin skinned”, type things.

Here’s the actual text of her describing the event, but if you can’t be bothered to read it, here is the video form (see 46s onwards):

This takes being thin skinned to a whole new level.  I mean really this level of offendability makes the ‘war on christmas’ people look positively sane, rational and thickskinned!  Really, did you ever see any of them in tears because someone wore a T-shirt slightly disparaging to xmas?  If they had would they not be laughed off the planet?  Then why should a feminist get any more slack than the craziest of the fundamentalists simply because shes calls herself a skeptic of sorts? And no surprises this horrible ‘harassment’ suffered by Amy was promoted by freethoughtblogs.

However deep at the bottom of this I can’t but help feel the skepchick-types REALLY needed something to be offended about, and they defiantly need to be the victims of something!  There clearly wasn’t any sexual harassment at TAM, without even a single instance of someone being asked for coffee in an elevator.  Then of course TAM had a sexual harassment policy in place.  Really what is left for the skepchick-types to get hysterical about?  Well, by a T-shirt saying they are “not a skepchick” of course- oh the horror… the horror.

Remember, if you oppose the T-shirt harassment policy at future conferences then you must be a bigoted, rape enabling, misogynistic radical woman hating MRA and you will get called an asshole before getting blocked for being a ‘troll’! It’s part of the inclusive forward thinking policy of this blog to promote equality. -jk or skepchick-style-feminism logic?

The Edge: This time its HARDCORE!

November 1, 2011

   Before next year (2012) is out, I plan to have taken you to the edge of the unknown, and give you vision beyond mere sight.  To guide you up the more accessible foothills of the unknown on a voyage of discovery leading to an intellectual vantage point from which you will understand why, given nothing but natural processes, emergent self replicating life seems inevitable, rather than improbable.

-Damn straight! If you are going to do open n accessible science, make it interesting! Shining the magic light of knowledge on the hidden origin of life seems to be a pretty entertaining place to start 🙂

The first footstep on the journey of discovery

   Further, now that many know my real name, I can openly link up with other high profile groups promoting science education (to be announced) to publish this work in the peer review literature.  And sure, why not, let’s be bold and set a goal of getting this work published in one of the top research journals like Science or Nature.

   How does this work start? Why with a good drink of bacardi of course!

And I can fully assure you that by this time next year, you will see SOO much more than an amber, highly volatile liquid that is well know for its intoxicating properties on many carbon based life forms!


   ….and yeah, if anyone’s got a wizard name for this epic endeavor, I’d love to hear it it the comments section below 🙂

Dawahfilms, and the (lynch) PARTY!

October 26, 2011

     So it looks like Da-WAAHHHH-films has played all the cards in his hand.  His devastating ‘Thunderf00t, Game Over’ play being about as effective as his prayer and as impotent as his Allah.  Y’see he evidently hoped (against reality I might add) that this would be some devastating show stopper, but in reality it turns out that no one really cared what this one VERY whiney muslim with a victimhood complex was complaining about.

Delusional enough to believe in Islam? Why hold back? Why not claim to have won the game even while everything is proceeding exactly as it was before.

     So I find myself at a lose end for a few minutes flicking through his comments on his video, just for chuckles (and believe me there are plenty of them!), and what do I find, but yeah, apparently Da-Waaaah-films actually enjoys taking part in lynch parties with his muslim friends!

Don't like someone, why bother with law and order when you can take part in and enjoy a good old fashioned Islamic lynching!.

    Thats right, Da-wahhhh-films happily displaying the skills he’s learning at his muslim university which describes itself as ‘a garden of knowledge and virtue’.  Of course why would you waste your time with law, order and a judicial process when you have yourself an Islamic education and a lynch mob!

Islamic gardens of knowledge and virtue, known by the fruits of the lynch parties 'liked' by their students :-p

  Even more funny is the fact that Da-wahhhhh, the wannabe ‘Islamic scholar’ (similar to Toothpixie scholar) has found a new word to describe me and everyone who disagrees with him ‘sociopath’.

Losing the argument and shouting 'Bigot' not working? Try calling someone a sociopath, and hope no-one notices the projection!

Comically enough, wikipedia’s line one item for sociopathic behavior is:

‘failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors as indicated by repeatedly performing acts that are grounds for arrest’ -wikis line one item on sociopathic behavior

   Hmmm, now I wonder how I would describe someone who says he ‘likes’ being part of a lynch mob.

Yeah Da-wahhhhhhhh, I’ve got another word for you to look up, PROJECTSHUUUNNNNNNN

    However while I must admit it’s been great fun watching dawahfilms puff himself up like a ‘big man’ in the delusion that, given the public forum, youtube, and the legal arena all thought he was a whiney little pussy, that somehow an Ivy League University would come to an ENTIRELY different conclusion, I really should try to draw a line under this.  Not so much because he doesn’t deserve it, as his actions have shown him to be a petty, spiteful and capricious man (probably from eating all that fruit from his Islamic ‘garden of knowledge and virtue’), but for pity.

     But regrettably, while there are a billion or so muslims in the world, the number stupid enough to 1) believe in this non-sense (things like ‘Mohammad was a perfect man and that god wanted him to have sex with this 9 year old girl, so it was all okay then’, and YES Dawahfilms is stupid enough to actually believe, and try to justify this),

When the best excuse you can think of for sleeping with a 9 year old girl is that, 'Allah told me to do it', your ass is going to jail! Well unless you are living among v. dumb and v. gullible camel herders!

and 2) try to defend it on a public and open forum, is comically small.  So yup, if Dawahfilms and Amenakin are dumb enough to try to promote such comically stupid ideas on a public forum, they can fully expect to get called on it, especially if they intend to profit of the institutional subjugation of women by islam, as is the case with Amenakin.


October 11, 2011

    YES Dawahfilms, giving away my docs to people who ask is doc dropping, and you were doing this, not only to me, but to at least one other member of my family.  What’s even more pathetic is that EVEN NOW, after you have been caught, dropping my docs, you insist on trying to use weasel words to try and define your way out of this.  Not just in your latest video (thunderfoot, lies vs truth), where you state:

“none of my VIDEOS doc dropped” -Dawahfilms

but in the email you wrote to me:

 Im also pissed still at your “Dawahfilms doc dropped me” accusation, which is bullshit. You know as well as I do this info has been around for awhile. The fact that you had to pin it on me is nonsense.  -Dawahfilms

     I mean really, you expect to be this comically frugal with the truth to my face and expect me not to notice IMMEDIATELY?  All that ‘belief in god’ had addled your brain with unrealistic wishful thinking.  Y’see this is the thing, if you had any integrity, you would have been able to simply say, ‘I did not disseminate ANY of Tfoots docs, nor did I enable other to acquire them’.

     I can already hear his next set of excuses, ‘well I only sent links to the data that ‘someone else’ had hosted so it I am completely innocent’

     No dawahfilms.  Giving away my personal details to people who asked is doc dropping and you were doing it in your personal spite filled hate vendetta.  But I and you both know why you did this, because it was impossible for you to defend the stupidity of your religion on the public forum, or the violent behavior it induced in you in that you think your religion actually gives you a mandate to kill certain people.

And your threats to sue me:

I just want you to know that when I get the chance, I’ll be contacting your next place of employment if its a university, so as to protect them from your bigotry. Or, by that time, I’ll have you in court for defamation. Depends on which one is more suitable. .-Dawahfilms

these are even more unrealistic than the idea that the epileptic ramblings of some desert crazy were actually ‘Allah’ trying to communicate with the world.  If you were really serious about suing someone, it’s dead simple, you subpoena YT and the service provider for the personal details, and take it forward from there.   However this is all contingent of course on you actually having a prima facie case for getting a subpoena issued, and that’s where it really all crashes and burns, because you see DaWAHHHH, it turns out you can’t sue people for saying whats evidently true.