James Tour on the Riddle of Life’s Beginnings

Hollywood, Intelligent Design, Intelligent Design YouTube Festival, James Tour, origin of life, Rice University, Science Uprising, television industry, young professionals
From June 16-30, we are holding an Intelligent Design YouTube Festival by highlighting 15 Center for Science and Culture YouTube videos that have received more than 100,000 views each. Here is video #5, an episode from our series “Science Uprising.”  A filmmaker from Hollywood contacted us with the vision of creating a sharp-edged YouTube series, which ultimately became “Science Uprising.” The series drew on the talents of a lot of young professionals from the commercial television industry. Here’s the installment on the origin of life featuring renowned scientist James Tour of Rice University.  If you’d like us to create more videos like this one, please consider becoming one of our “movie producers” by donating to our video production fund. The post James Tour on the Riddle of Life’s Beginnings appeared…
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Trapped in the Naturalistic Parabola

abiogenesis, American Federation of Teachers, cell phone, Chemistry, Evolution, evolutionists, Faraday cage, federal courts, geometry, hydrolysis, Intelligent Design, Ludwick Fleck, Luke, methodological naturalism, National Academy of Sciences, Naturalistic Parabola, Oparin-Haldane model, origin of life, Origin of Species, parabola, paradigm, Prado Museum, proteins, reducing atmosphere, San Francisco, Sisyphus, smoked herring, strange loop, Thomas Kuhn, Titian
The principles of an alien [thought] collective are, if noticed at all, felt to be arbitrary and their possible legitimacy as begging the question. The alien way of thought seems like mysticism. The questions it rejects will often be regarded as the most important ones, its explanations as proving nothing or as missing the point, its problems as often unimportant or meaningless trivialities.Ludwik Fleck, 1935  When paradigms enter, as they must, into a debate about paradigm choice, their role is necessarily circular. Each group uses its own paradigm to argue in that paradigm’s defense.T.S. Kuhn, 1970 …a wide chasm has been fixed between us, so that those who want to cross from this side to you cannot do so, nor can they cross from your side to us.Luke 16:26 Don’t…
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Origin Stories — RNA, DNA, and a Dose of Imagination

abiogenesis, breakdown, building blocks, Cambridge University, components, cross-reactions, cytidine, deoxyadenosine, deoxyinosine, DNA, early Earth, Engineering, Evolution, Evolution and Intelligent Design in a Nutshell, genes, genetic alphabet, intelligence, Intelligent Design, naturalism, origin of life, polynucleotides, prebiotic environment, primordial soup, RNA, RNA world, self-driving cars, self-replication, silicon, unguided natural processes, uridine
Editor’s note: Eric Anderson is an attorney, software company executive, and co-author of the recently released book, Evolution and Intelligent Design in a Nutshell.  A new paper in Nature seeks to shed light on life’s origins from non-life on the early Earth, that is, on abiogenesis. Several outlets have picked up the story, including New Scientist. Phys.org explains that the research, led by Cambridge scientists, “shows for the first time how some of the building blocks of both DNA and RNA could have spontaneously formed and co-existed in the ‘primordial soup’ on Earth.” My purpose is not to question the research protocol or the results. No doubt the work is impeccable and the results as described. I am willing to assume that the researchers recreated early Earth conditions and demonstrated…
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Lancet Hydroxychloroquine Paper Scandal Illustrates Scientific Bias, Not Only in Medicine

Atheism, censorship, confirmation bias, coronavirus, COVID-19, Donald Trump, Evolution, Evolution News, human evolution, Human Origins, hydroxychloroquine, Indiegogo, James Todaro, Latin America, LinkedIn, Macroevolution, malaria, materialism, Medicine, Michael Behe, Microevolution, Neurodynamics Flow, origin of life, Sapan Desai, scientific culture, Surgisphere, The Guardian, The Lancet, The New England Journal of Medicine, World Health Organization
If you’ve ever wondered how much of high-stakes science is politicized, reflecting the ideological views of the scientists involved despite all their insistences to the contrary, look no further than this. A blockbuster paper in the leading British medical journal, The Lancet, reported increased mortality associated with the “controversial” malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, being tested for use against COVID-19. Why would a malaria drug, of a value that has yet to be determined, be controversial? You already know the answer: it’s because of the identity of the medicine’s biggest cheerleader. He Looked Them Up on LinkedIn In briefest terms, scientists drew on shady data from a previously obscure company, Surgisphere, operated by a skeleton crew with a questionable Internet profile. Having won the approval of the journal’s expert peer reviewers, they…
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Evolving a Self-Replicating Molecule Is a “Purple Unicorn”

3D printer, Big Bang, biology, Cambrian Explosion, cell's, Charles Darwin, Eric H. Anderson, Evolution, Evolution & Intelligent Design in a Nutshell, ID The Future, Intelligent Design, Irreducible Complexity, origin of life, Podcast, purple unicorn, Richard Dawkins, self-reproducing molecule
On a new episode of ID the Future, Eric H. Anderson reads from his newly co-authored book Evolution and Intelligent Design in a Nutshell, written to provide a clear and simple introduction to the evolution/ID controversy, and a broad overview of the evidence for design in nature. That evidence includes cosmic fine tuning and the Big Bang, the origin of life, irreducibly complex machines, and the Cambrian explosion. Download the podcast or listen to it here. In this excerpt, Anderson tells of Richard Dawkins’s glib assurances that the mystery of the origin of life is one not far from being solved. Not so, Anderson says. Origin-of-life researchers haven’t found a pathway to a self-replicating biological entity, the beginning point for any sort of Darwinian evolution. And it’s not for lack of time, effort,…
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Book Excerpt: A Factory That Builds Factories That Build Factories That…

abiogenesis, bacteria, Charles Darwin, Darwinian evolution, early Earth, factories, Gerald F. Joyce, Harvard University, Holy Grail, Intelligent Design, Jack Szostak, Joseph Hooker, Max Schultze, metabolic pathways, molecules, National Public Radio, natural selection, origin of life, Oxford University, protoplasm, random mutations, Richard Dawkins, self-replication, The Origin of Species, The Selfish Gene
Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from the the new book from Discovery Institute Press, Evolution & Intelligent Design in a Nutshell. Eric H. Anderson is a lawyer, software engineering executive, and writer on intelligent design. Nobel Prize recipient and Harvard origin-of-life researcher Jack Szostak once remarked, “In my lab, we’re interested in the transition from chemistry to early biology on the early earth…. You want something that can grow and divide and, most importantly, exhibit Darwinian evolution.”1 Another noted origin-of-life researcher, Gerald F. Joyce, says much the same thing. When asked about the idea that chemicals might have come together on the early Earth to form something that could copy itself, Joyce responded, “That’s what we and others are interested in because that’s sort of, you know, the…
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Stephen Meyer, Eric Metaxas: Gain and Loss and the Origin of Life

abiogenesis, Adolf Hitler, agnosticism, Atheism, Brian Miller, Charles Thaxton, Darwin's Doubt, Douglas Axe, Eric Metaxas, Evolution, Günter Bechly, Intelligent Design, James Tour, Jews, materialism, Nazi Germany, origin of life, Petra Moser, Richard Sternberg, Roger Olsen, Stanford University, Stephen Meyer, The Mystery of Life’s Origin, United States, Ur-text, Walter Bradley
Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany “revolutionized U.S. science and innovation,” as Stanford University historian Petra Moser and others have pointed out. Hitler’s loss was our gain. Something not entirely dissimilar is the case in the history of the intelligent design movement and its own revolution. On his radio show today, Eric Metaxas talked with Darwin’s Doubt author Stephen Meyer about the reissue of the expanded version of the Ur-text of intelligent design, a 35th anniversary edition of The Mystery of Life’s Origin. Dr. Meyer contributed a new chapter, as did James Tour, Brian Miller, and other scientists who have come to doubt purely materialist accounts of how the first life arose. Steve points out to Eric that “Some of our very best scientists are refugees from top-level institutions in the mainstream science establishment.”…
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An Astronomer Considers the Origin of Life, with Sobering Results

abiogenesis, astronomers, biologists, biology, calculation, Chemistry, Drake equation, Erlenmeyer flask, Evolution, Fischer Scientific, inflation, inflationary universe, metaphysics, meteorites, monomers, Nature (journal), nucleotides, origin of life, Physics, Earth & Space, reagents, RNA molecules, RNA world, silver atom, snowflakes, Tomonori Totani, tooth fairy, universe, University of Tokyo
Live Science reports: Is life a gamble? Scientist models universe to find out Scientists suspect that the complex life that slithers and crawls through every nook and cranny on Earth emerged from a random shuffling of non-living matter that ultimately spit out the building blocks of life. Even so, the details to support the idea are lacking. But researchers recently got creative in figuring out the probability of life actually emerging spontaneously from such inorganic matter — a process called abiogenesis. In the study, Tomonori Totani, a professor of astrophysics at the University of Tokyo, modeled the microscopic world of molecules across the epic scale of the entire universe to see if abiogenesis is a likely candidate for the origin of life. He was essentially looking at whether there were…
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The Passing of Jon Buell

Alzheimer’s disease, Charles Thaxton, Christian Worldview, Country Inn & Suites, Dallas, Discovery Institute Dallas, Discovery Institute Press, Foundation for Thought and Ethics, Intelligent Design, Kitzmiller v. Dover, Linda Buell, Linda Montgomery, materialist biology, Never Before in History, Of Pandas and People, origin of life, Pam Bailey, Phillip E. Johnson, relativistic ethics, revisionist historicism, Roger Olsen, Sex and Character, The Design of Life, The Mystery of Life’s Origin, Walter Bradley
I learned with sadness this week that my good friend and colleague Jon Buell passed away on Saturday, March 14. I had been Jon’s academic editor for the Foundation for Thought and Ethics (FTE), a Dallas publisher of books aimed at un-indoctrinating high school and college students. He hired me in 1997 and I stayed on in that position until my family’s move from Texas to Iowa in 2012. We didn’t produce a lot of books at FTE, but it was quality work and it articulated without apology a broadly Christian worldview against a materialist biology, a relativist ethics, and a revisionist historicism. In short, FTE served as an antidote to the PC and progressivist culture. Given how this culture has unfolded and seemingly prospered since FTE’s founding by Jon…
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Unguided Origin of Life: “Completely Impossible but Must Have Happened”

Charles Thaxton, Dallas Conference on Science & Faith, Discovery Institute, Evolution News, Faith & Science, Intelligent Design, John West, Jon Buell, origin of life, Robert J. Marks, Robert Shapiro, Roger Olsen, Stephen Meyer, The Mystery of Life’s Origin, Walter Bradley, Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence
“It’s completely impossible, but it must have happened.” That’s how philosopher of science Stephen Meyer summarizes most responses from proponents of unguided chemical evolution when challenged on the origin of life. In January, Meyer led a panel discussion with the authors of the foundational intelligent design text The Mystery of Life’s Origin at the Dallas Conference on Science & Faith. You can see the entire interaction now, as Discovery Institute begins launching videos of the presentations from the hugely successful event: The occasion for the panel was the release of a new and greatly expanded 35th-anniversary edition of the book, The Mystery of Life’s Origin: The Continuing Controversy. You’ll enjoy the discussion between Meyer and Walter Bradley, Charles Thaxton, and Roger Olsen. It’s introduced by materials scientist Walter Bradley, and…
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