Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Politifraud: Left-wing Politifact’s “Lie of the Year” is literally true

Here’s Politifact’s “Lie of the Year“:

It was a lie told in the critical state of Ohio in the final days of a close campaign — that Jeep was moving its U.S. production to China. It originated with a conservative blogger, who twisted an accurate news story into a falsehood. Then it picked up steam when the Drudge Report ran with it. Even though Jeep’s parent company gave a quick and clear denial, Mitt Romney repeated it and his campaign turned it into a TV ad.

And they stood by the claim, even as the media and the public expressed collective outrage against something so obviously false.

People often say that politicians don’t pay a price for deception, but this time was different: A flood of negative press coverage rained down on the Romney campaign, and he failed to turn the tide in Ohio, the most important state in the presidential election.

PolitiFact has selected Romney’s claim that Barack Obama “sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China” at the cost of American jobs as the 2012 Lie of the Year.

Now that the election is over, Reuters is reporting that… Chrysler is going to build Jeeps in China: (H/T The Weekly Standard)

Fiat (FIA.MI) and its U.S. unit Chrysler expect to roll out at least 100,000 Jeeps in China when production starts in 2014 as they seek to catch up with rivals in the world’s biggest car market.

Output could double, the Italian carmaker’s Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne, without giving a precise timeframe.

Chrysler, in which Fiat has a 58.5 percent stake, said on Tuesday it had agreed to make Jeeps in China with Guangzhou Automobile Group (601238.SS).

[...]“We expect production of around 100,000 Jeeps per year which is expandable to 200,000,” Marchionne, who is also CEO of Chrysler, said on the sidelines of a conference, adding production could start in 18 months.

The Romney ad said: “Obama took GM and Chrysler into bankruptcy and sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China. Mitt Romney will fight for every American job.”

And the literal truth is that Fiat, an Italian car company, owns a 58.5% majority of Chrysler. And the literal truth is that Chrysler IS “going to build Jeeps in China” –  exactly what Romney said. We now know that for a fact because it has been reported by Reuters. Jeep production is starting up in China, it is not being expanded in the United States. Politifact has exposed itself as a left-wing organization that is willing to lie in order to get their Democrat candidate elected.

What happens when you raise taxes on businesses and punish people for working hard and playing by the rules? Very simple. They leave and move to a place where they can keep more of what they earn. Obama likes to hear the sound of applause from those who depend on government for handouts and bailouts, but he is being applauded for spending other people’s money. Money he himself did not earn. Eventually, people get sick and tired of being abused by big-mouth politicians and they take their capital and move on. It’s the Democrat Party that causes jobs to be shipped overseas.

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Is anything that Deepak Chopra says remotely logical?

I say “NO”. It’s just happy-clappy jibba-jabba!

Here, look at this post from CARM.

Excerpt:

Logic is the backbone of critical thinking. Logic is extremely useful for uncovering error and establishing truth. There are principles of logic and I would like to introduce you to the first three laws of logic. These are very important.

  1. The Law of Identity
  2. The Law of Non-Contradiction
  3. The Law of Excluded Middle

The law of identity states that A is A. An Apple is an Apple. In other words, something is what it is. If something exists, it has a nature, an essence. For example, a book has a front and back cover with pages. A car has four wheels, seats, doors, windows, etc. A tree has branches, leaves, a trunk, and roots. This also means that anything that exists has characteristics. We recognize what something is by observing its characteristic. You know that a tree is a tree because you see its branches, it’s leads, its trunk, etc.
Furthermore, if something has an identity, it has a single identity. It does not have more than one identity. In other words, if something exists it has a set of attributes that are consistent with its own existence. It does not have a set of attributes that are inconsistent with itself. Therefore we can easily conclude that a cat is not a parachute. An Apple is not a race car. A tree is not a movie.

The law of non-contradiction tells us that A cannot be both A and not A at the same time and in the same sense. In other words, something (a statement) cannot be both true and false at the same time and in the same way. We use the law of non-contradiction constantly in discussions and debates because we are naturally able to recognize when someone is contradicting himself. If I were to tell you that yesterday I went shopping and then later I told you that yesterday I did not go shopping, you would be correct in saying there was a contradiction. A contradiction occurs when one statement excludes the possibility of another and yet both are claimed to be true. Since we know that both cannot be true, we see a contradiction. From this principle, we can conclude that truth is not self-contradictory. This is a very important concept. Let me repeat it. Truth is not self-contradictory.

The law of excluded middle says that a statement is either true or false. For example, my hair is brown. It is either true or false that my hair is brown. Another example: I am pregnant. The statement is either true or false. Since I am a male, it is not possible for me to be pregnant. Therefore, the statement is false. If I were a female, it would be possible for me to be pregnant (given normal bodily conditions). A woman is not “kind-of” pregnant. She either is or is not pregnant – there is no middle position. The law of excluded middle is important because it helps us deal in absolutes. This is particularly important in a society where relativism is promoted and truth statements are denied.

Please review these three laws and become familiar with them. They are extremely important when developing critical thinking skills.

Deepak Chopra says what feels good to him. But we have to test his words using the laws of logic. If his words pass that test, then we go on to empirical validation against the external world.

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Has the progress of science vindicated Mike Behe or Ken Miller?

ECM send me a couple of articles recently from Uncommon Descent and Evolution News that I wanted to write about.

The topic is Junk DNA, which is the name given by naturalists to the portions of the DNA code that do not code for proteins. Is Junk DNA really just leftover junk from a blind, purposeless process of fully naturalistic evolution? Or does it have a function, like intelligent design theorists say? Let’s put these predictions to the test and then update our worldviews to fit with the scientific evidence.

The prediction of Ken Miller

Anti-theistic biologist Ken Miller said in 1994 that DNA is filled with junk left over from naturalistic, random evolution:

…the designer made serious errors, wasting millions of bases of DNA on a blueprint full of junk and scribbles.

Ken Miller

One thing you have to like about Ken is that he manages to fit in some predictions along with his factually incorrect statements under oath.

The prediction of Michael Behe

Theistic biologist Michael Behe said in 2002 that DNA isn’t as junky some people think, because of the evidence:

As a public skeptic of the ability of Darwinian processes to account for complex cellular systems and a proponent of the hypothesis of intelligent design, (1) I often encounter a rebuttal that can be paraphrased as “no designer would have done it that way.” …
If at least some pseudogenes have unsuspected functions, however, might not other biological features that strike us as odd also have functions we have not yet discovered? Might even the backwards wiring of the vertebrate eye serve some useful purpose?
….
Hirotsune et al’s (3) work has forcefully shown that our intuitions about what is functionless in biology are not to be trusted.

Sincerely, Michael J. Behe
An Open Letter to Nature

Those are the two predictions.

So, what does the progress of science say to confirm one prediction or the other? Well, let’s see what Nature, the most prestigious peer-reviewed science journal, has to say.

In 1961, French biologists François Jacob and Jacques Monod proposed the idea that ‘regulator’ proteins bind to DNA to control the expression of genes. Five years later, American biochemist Walter Gilbert confirmed this model by discovering the lac repressor protein, which binds to DNA to control lactose metabolism in Escherichia colibacteria1. For the rest of the twentieth century, scientists expanded on the details of the model, but they were confident that they understood the basics. “The crux of regulation,” says the 1997 genetics textbook Genes VI (Oxford Univ. Press), “is that a regulator gene codes for a regulator protein that controls transcription by binding to particular site(s) on DNA.”

Just one decade of post-genome biology has exploded that view. Biology’s new glimpse at a universe of non-coding DNA — what used to be called ‘junk’ DNA — has been fascinating and befuddling. Researchers from an international collaborative project called the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) showed that in a selected portion of the genome containing just a few per cent of protein-coding sequence, between 74% and 93% of DNA was transcribed into RNA2. Much non-coding DNA has a regulatory role; small RNAs of different varieties seem to control gene expression at the level of both DNA and RNA transcripts in ways that are still only beginning to become clear. “Just the sheer existence of these exotic regulators suggests that our understanding about the most basic things — such as how a cell turns on and off — is incredibly naive,” says Joshua Plotkin, a mathematical biologist at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

On the Evolution News post, pro-ID guy Rob Crowther writes:

…not that long ago, junk DNA was being defended as an important element of the Darwinian evolution paradigm… The question now seems to be whether Ayala, Dawkins, Collins, Falk and other junk DNA proponents will continue to defend junk DNA, whatever they call it?

The post by Rob Crowther has more information on this story.

If you are one of those people who thinks that naturalistic molecules-to-man evolution is as proved as is the fact that the Earth goes around the Sun, then check out the links below – ESPECIALLY the debates. Peter Atkins, Michael Shermer and Lewis Wolpert are some of the most prominent prominent proponents of naturalism and materialism out there. Watch the debates. Have an open mind. If science can be hijacked by global warmists, then it can be hijacked by evolutionists, too. We need to guard against that.

I know there is a lot of pressure on people to just believe in naturalism, especially when their degree or career depends on a public profession of faith in the power of chance and material processes. But we have to follow the evidence – science is about evidence, not ideology. Science is about testing to see what is true, not forcing the evidence to confirm what you want to believe (e.g. – materialism). There is a difference between the religious assumption of naturalism/materialism and the scientific method of predicting and testing.

Related posts

Learn more about intelligent design

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MUST-READ: NASA admits that their data is worse than CRU Climate-gate data

Story here from Fox News. (H/T Andrew)

Excerpt:

NASA was able to put a man on the moon, but the space agency can’t tell you what the temperature was when it did. By its own admission, NASA’s temperature records are in even worse shape than the besmirched Climate-gate data.

E-mail messages obtained by a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that NASA concluded that its own climate findings were inferior to those maintained by both the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) — the scandalized source of the leaked Climate-gate e-mails — and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center.

The e-mails from 2007 reveal that when a USA Today reporter asked if NASA’s data “was more accurate” than other climate-change data sets, NASA’s Dr. Reto A. Ruedy replied with an unequivocal no. He said “the National Climatic Data Center’s procedure of only using the best stations is more accurate,” admitting that some of his own procedures led to less accurate readings.

“My recommendation to you is to continue using NCDC’s data for the U.S. means and [East Anglia] data for the global means,” Ruedy told the reporter.

“NASA’s temperature data is worse than the Climate-gate temperature data. According to NASA,” wrote Christopher Horner, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute who uncovered the e-mails. Horner is skeptical of NCDC’s data as well, stating plainly: “Three out of the four temperature data sets stink.”

Global warming critics call this a crucial blow to advocates’ arguments that minor flaws in the “Climate-gate” data are unimportant, since all the major data sets arrive at the same conclusion — that the Earth is getting warmer. But there’s a good reason for that, the skeptics say: They all use the same data.

“There is far too much overlap among the surface temperature data sets to assert with a straight face that they independently verify each other’s results,” says James M. Taylor, senior fellow of environment policy at The Heartland Institute.

My guess is that they’ll need a lot of government money to research why their data is so corrupted. But Obama will surely oblige them.

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MUST-HEAR: Brian Auten explains why Christians ought to learn apologetics

A super 20-minute podcast from Apologetics 315.

The MP3 file is here. (20 minutes)

PDF Transcript here.

Topics:

  • what is the definition of apologetics?
  • what do you mean by defense? a testimony?
  • what is the goal of apologetics?
  • does apologetics create belief? should it?
  • what are offensive and defensive apologetics?
  • should Christians fear intellectual opposition to Christianity?
  • is apologetics good for believers?
  • does apologetics help you to be more confident when witnessing?
  • what was the role of apologetics in the Bible?
  • what was the role of apologetics in the early church?
  • was apologetics central or peripheral to Paul’s ministry?
  • does the Bible present Christianity as personal preference or public truth?
  • did Jesus appeal to objective evidence to get people to believe him?
  • is there a requirement for all Christians to make a defense of their faith?
  • should Christians care if non-believers have false beliefs about God?
  • does the Bible need to be defended? What does the Bible say about it?
  • Is an intellectual approach to evangelism antithetical to faith?

My posts on apologetics advocacy are here:

    These were all quite popular when they were originally posted, so it’s good to re-post them.

    Actual arguments and counter-arguments are here, if you want to know the basics. Debates and lectures are here to see how this gets used. Most Christians never even dream that their faith can be debated at Harvard or Columbia or Oxford!

    Christianity is a knowledge tradition. It’s not a feelings tradition.

    UPDATE: If you’re really good at apologetics, you can debate the top atheists in public, and say things like this:

    (The full debate is here)

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