Saturday, November 24, 2007

Galileo Was Wrong: The Church Was Right

The Catholics! There is no end to their ability to amuse and inform.
From Catholic Apologetics International:

Galileo Was Wrong is a detailed and comprehensive treatment of the scientific evidence supporting Geocentrism, the academic belief that the Earth is immobile in the center of the universe. Garnering scientific information from physics, astrophysics, astronomy and other sciences, Galileo Was Wrong shows that the debate between Galileo and the Catholic Church was much more than a difference of opinion about the interpretation of Scripture.

Scientific evidence available to us within the last 100 years that was not available during Galileo's confrontation shows that the Church's position on the immobility of the Earth is not only scientifically supportable, but it is the most stable model of the universe and the one which best answers all the evidence we see in the cosmos.
Readers agree.

I honestly thought the last of the geocentric adherents died out a couple of hundred years ago, and I know the official position of the Vatican on this subject is heliocentric. Still... as a fully trained astrophysicist, I can't help but wonder what "discoveries" in the last 100 years would support geocentrism. Did someone discover the aether and not let me know*?

Maybe we should just "teach the controversy"!

Also, see this from the Biblical Astronomer, a proud son of Cleveland! It must be right, he has a Ph.D.

*I did take a stroll through this, the logic is irrefutable. Assuming the bible is literally true, then a heliocentric cosmology cannot explain the Sun standing still for Joshua and a variety of other biblical miracles, so it must be false. Quod erat faciendum!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Alternative Fuel: Salt Water?

Extremely interesting:

We watched as they poured Morton's salt into a container, mixed it with water and then exposed the fluid to the Kanzius radio frequency device.An intense flame erupted over the test tube."In this case we weren't looking for energy," said John Kanzius. "We were looking for something that might do desalinization. And the more we tried desalinization, the more heat we produced until we got fire."

I'm guessing that the RF ionized the water, producing hydrogen and water vapor, which is the actual buring part. If I'm right, the burning would have to begin long before you see the flame becuase hydrogen flames are invisible. Once enough water vapor got mixed in, you'd see something.

It's still an open question if it's producing more energy than it requires though.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Why Atheists Should Fear the Big Bang Theory

I have to admit, as an astronomer/atheist, I am more than a little curious about this:

Why Christianity explains what modern science tells us about the universe and our origins—that matter was created out of nothing, that light preceded the sun—better than atheism does

How Christianity created the framework for modern science, so that Christianity and science are not irreconcilable, but science and atheism might be

Why the alleged sins of Christianity—the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Galileo affair (“an atheist's fable”)—are vastly overblown

*Why atheist regimes are responsible for the greatest mass murders of history

*Why evolution does not threaten Christian belief, but actually supports the “argument from design”

Why atheists fear the Big Bang theory and the “anthropic principle” of the universe, which are keystones of modern astronomy and physics

How Christianity explains consciousness and free will, which atheists have to deny

Why ultimately you can't have Western civilization—and all we value from it—without the Christianity that gave it birth.Provocative, enlightening

This seems like the usual rhetorical ass-hattery from Dinesh D'Souza, a fellow who beleives that how you talk about science seems to him to be more important than science itself.
In this case, the least of his sins seem to be confusing the existance of god with the correctness of Christianity.

If science can't bat down a fool like this, we deserve to lose the public debate.

Sunday, November 18, 2007