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The quickest way to confound an opponent


Want to know the quickest way to confound an opponent of creation?  Bring up the Oort cloud.  Secularists believe there is a magical place far out in the Solar System called the Oort cloud that is secretly birthing new comets.  They use this imaginary rescuing device to explain comets that are losing large chunks every time they orbit the sun.  Obviously these comets are young, and thus in their thinking there must be a creative source shooting out new comets.  The problem is there is ZERO observed evidence of this Oort cloud.  It doesn’t exist.

Silly me, I thought secularists were evidence-based!  To them, the fact that comets exist IS the evidence of an Oort cloud.  Isn’t that circular reasoning?  That’s like saying “the fact that we exist is proof of natural causes”.  No, it’s not.  Want to hear how this even gets sillier?  They teach it in our public schools!  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating a theocracy or even creationism in schools per say, but their mantra is not consistent.  They don’t want creation in schools because it has “zero evidence” and is “faith-based”.  Well… on that logic, what about the Oort cloud?  How is that any more scientific?

Of course the Oort cloud is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to things that are taught as science that are honestly faith-based.    They will use fancy terminology like “hypothetical” – yeah, that just means imaginary.  They are teaching imaginary, faith-based material as science in public schools while telling you that you can’t possibly consider teaching creation.  Have fun with that one!  🙂

By the way, comets were created on day four of creation approximately 6000 years ago.  The Hebrew word for “star” means bright, heavenly body – which would include comets.  This explanation is consistent with the evidence we DO observe.


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49 thoughts on “The quickest way to confound an opponent

  1. I don’t think you understand the meaning of ‘hypothetical’. It doesn’t mean ‘imaginary.’ The word tells us one of two things: 1) the idea has been tested and is a theory, but for the sake of the introduction, we are using this word because we have not yet presented you with sufficient evidence (which we will in the body of our study), or 2) the idea does not yet have sufficient evidence to merit the title of theory. In science, ‘hypothetical’ in no way implies imaginary. It implies something considerably more important and perhaps tangible.

    To the post itself: While the Oort cloud is not yet fully understood, we can observe it. We can measure its effects. It’s not an imaginary place. It’s hardly magical.

    Posted by Rayan Zehn | September 20, 2014, 6:24 pm
    • Can you provide the evidence for the Oort cloud? Shouldn’t be difficult since you said it can be observed.

      Posted by Tim | September 20, 2014, 8:44 pm
      • Personally no. I have not personally worked in Oort research, but several astro physicists have provided evidence for the Oort cloud. For example, this year Alex R. Howe and Roman R. Rafikov from Princeton published a peer-reviewed article (it’s post review is still in draft form, but it’s currently accessible) through Cornell. The article is titled ‘Probing Oort Cloud and Local Interstellar Medium Properties via Dust Produced in Cometary Collisions.’

        To read more about what science actually says about the Oort cloud, I suggest going straight to the sources. For a broad overview, here are some articles from various fields researching the Oort:

        Emel’yanenko, V. V., D. J. Asher, and M. E. Bailey. “The fundamental role of the Oort cloud in determining the flux of comets through the planetary system.” Monthly Notices Of The Royal Astronomical Society 381, no. 2 (October 21, 2007): 779-789.

        Fouchard, M., et al. “Planetary perturbations for Oort cloud comets: III. Evolution of the cloud and production of centaurs and Halley type comets.” Icarus 231, (March 2014): 99-109.

        Jakubik, M, and L Neslusan. “A probe to the Oort-cloud dynamics during an encounter of a dense condensation of giant molecular cloud.” Contributions Of The Astronomical Observatory Skalnate Pleso 39, no. 2 (n.d.): 85-100.

        Bockelee-Morvan, D, et al. “Herschel measurements of the D/H and O-16/O-18 ratios in water in the Oort-cloud comet C/2009 P1 (Garradd).” Astronomy & Astrophysics 544, (n.d.).

        I could post hundreds more (and I will upon request, spreading knowledge is my favorite thing to do), but that’s a hefty workload already. I would recommend reading about what we actually know than to listen to people who obviously have no idea about what we know.

        Posted by Rayan Zehn | September 20, 2014, 9:09 pm
        • I don’t need to read them. I’ve already summarized: the Oort cloud must exist because comets exist. Circular reasoning. The papers just go on to theorize how such a cloud would function, but provide no observational evidence of its actual existence.

          That’s like saying “if God exists, and the Bible is correct, then we would expect this to happen…” That is a hypothesis. Now they need to collect evidence to back up the hypothesis. If the comets themselves are evidence of the Oort cloud, then I maintain that life here is evidence of God himself.

          If you don’t believe me, I dare you to count the number of “would have”, “could have”, “may have” and “probablys” in those articles, and then get back to me on the scientific nature of it again.

          Posted by Tim | September 20, 2014, 10:00 pm
          • That’s how scientists speak, unless dealing with proofs (usually in mathematics, but sometimes in branches of mechanics). We use the konjunktiv II form to avoid being charged with confusing correlation with causation. But if you’re not willing to read what the scientific community says about Oort research, and if you’re going to continue to bastardize and misrepresent what science actually says about this region, then I’d assume we’re at an impasse.

            Posted by Rayan Zehn | September 20, 2014, 10:16 pm
            • This is simple. Provide one piece of evidence of the oort cloud… or admit that you believe in things that do not have evidence.

              Posted by Tim | September 20, 2014, 11:14 pm
              • I’ve provided you with 5 scholarly articles containing hundreds of pieces of evidence. You freely admitted that you refuse to read them and then you moved the goal posts without even looking at the evidence.

                Furthermore, I don’t believe in things. I accept what the evidence suggests and reject what the evidence doesn’t suggest.

                Posted by Rayan Zehn | September 21, 2014, 11:02 am
                • The articles can only be filled with conjecture since the Oort cloud has never been observed. It is 100% hypothetical. It may contain good arguments for its existence, but that is different that evidence – and different than science.

                  By the way – evidence does not speak for itself. Scientists interpret evidence and you agree with their interpretations. Seeing that there is no actual evidence for the Oort cloud, yet you believe in it – apparently you do not follow the evidence.

                  Posted by Tim | September 21, 2014, 9:41 pm
              • The trajectory of many comets suggests they do not come from the Kuiper Belt/Scattered Disk.

                Posted by Ashley Haworth-roberts | September 21, 2014, 11:49 pm
                • I will respond to your fun comments like this when you just plainly step in it….

                  Those trajectories are only evidence that they come from something other than the Kuiper Belt, not that they come from an oort cloud. That’s like saying there must be Coke in my refrigerator cause I’m holding one in my hand now. No… it could have come from another source than the fridge.

                  Posted by Tim | September 22, 2014, 12:56 am
                  • There is evidence that comets do not come from the Kuiper belt as you admit. The Oort cloud is an hypothesis to explain where these comets originate. Yes, there could be another explanation – perhaps Zeus periodically throws a comet towards the inner solar system – but any such explanation needs to be consistent with the explanans as well as with the rest of science.

                    What is your alternative hypothesis to the Oort cloud, which explains the existence of these comets, which is also consistent with our general knowledge of science, and which isn’t filled with ad-hoc ancillary hypothesis and which could actually be tested against reality?

                    Posted by riandouglas | October 2, 2014, 12:02 am
            • That’s how scientists speak when they have little or no observational evidence.

              Posted by joejmz | September 21, 2014, 2:50 pm
              • That’s not true. Unless dealing with proofs (math), we will never say our findings are fact. We will use the konjunktiv II tense. To do otherwise is the fastest way to fail peer review. If you don’t believe me try it. Run a simple multivariate regression in SPSS, get an adjusted R-Square of 0.001 (extremely statistically significant) and try to publish your results using terminology such as “our study proves…” or something along those lines. You’ll find it rejected at least for that sentence. We go to great lengths to be intellectually honest.

                Posted by Rayan Zehn | September 22, 2014, 1:23 am
    • “Hypothetical” is something imaginary put forward by a scientist. Just like old Uncle Elroy is senile, but since he’s rich, he’s “eccentric”.

      Posted by Question Evol Proj (@PiltdownSupermn) | September 28, 2014, 10:46 am
  2. Ooh, you’re going to be in for it! 😀

    Posted by Cheri Fields | September 20, 2014, 8:16 pm
  3. “By the way, comets were created on day four of creation approximately 6000 years ago. The Hebrew word for ‘star’ means bright, heavenly body – which would include comets. This explanation is consistent with the evidence we DO observe.” Now this is a perfect example of imaginary, magical thinking.

    Posted by Doobster418 | September 20, 2014, 8:41 pm
  4. It’s also possible to observe that automobiles do not go anywhere without people in them, and thus incorrectly conclude that people fuel the vehicle and provide the energy that allows them to move.

    You have been dishonest with your post. A scientific hypothesis is not a statement of faith, rather it is “a proposed explanation of a phenomenon which still has to be rigorously tested. In contrast, a scientific theory has undergone extensive testing and is generally accepted to be the accurate explanation behind an observation.”

    Sending a vehicle to the region of the oort cloud takes time. One is on its way. Calling it faith to say there is a hypothesis of the Oort cloud is not the same as having faith that there is a god. We can test the hypothesis of the Oort cloud and in fact are doing so. It just takes time to get a vehicle that far from Earth.

    Why don’t you put your money where your mouth is and show us how to test for gods? Without being able to test for gods, belief in any god or gods will always remain a faith based belief. The very thing you have just criticized others for.

    Germ theory started with a hypothesis, Louis Pasteur proved the hypothesis correct and now we have a much better science and medicine because the hypothesis could be tested, was tested and proved correct. The hypothesis of a god existing cannot be tested, cannot be proved right and will always be a blind faith issue.

    Your post is intellectually dishonest and shows you to be of dubious character. While that might seem like an attack on your person, it is instead an observation based on your words. It seems to me that believers often want to teach the controversy right up to the point that it means they have to allow people to doubt their belief and evidence.

    Finally, your last paragraph indicates that you _know_ when commets were created yet you have no direct evidence or observation of this. Your truth claim can never be more than a claim of faith yet you criticize those that would test their hypotheses while you will not test your own nor allow criticism of your claims. This kind of attitude is exactly why religion does not belong in the science classroom, but you already know that, don’t you?

    Posted by myatheistlife | September 20, 2014, 10:44 pm
    • Why do you assume one cannot test if God exists? I’ve done it many times. He has fulfilled his promises over and over. You see, most atheists think we believe God exists. We do not. We know Him personally. Faith comes into play in trusting he will do what he promises. And when he does – it confirms our decision to follow him over and over again.

      I have no problem with a hypothesis of an Oort Cloud, but it has no observational evidence. Again, I thought secularists only wanted evidence-based science in their textbooks. Can’t you see my confusion here?

      PS – Louie Paseur was a creationist.

      Posted by Tim | September 20, 2014, 11:22 pm
  5. https://gracesalt.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/the-quickest-way-to-confound-an-opponent/
    The evidence for the Oort Cloud is COMETS.
    This goes onto the BCSE community forum (you probably will like the publicity and if not – tough).

    Posted by Ashley Haworth-roberts | September 20, 2014, 10:45 pm
    • Ashley, I already addressed this in the post. That’s like saying humans are proof that God exists. Yes, I believe that – but you see that as foolishness, right? That the goes the other way around. It is circular reasoning.

      Yes, if you first assume naturalism, then there MUST be an Oort cloud as it’s creator. Too bad there’s not one. If there is, feel free to provide the evidence.

      Posted by Tim | September 20, 2014, 11:18 pm
  6. Quite often, creationists know more about evolution and “deep time” than devotees. I had someone tell me I was wrong about the Oort cloud being a theoretical construct because they had direct evidence: Voyager 1 went through the Oort cloud. (Facepalm)

    Posted by Question Evol Proj (@PiltdownSupermn) | September 20, 2014, 11:41 pm
  7. A secular person is one who advocates for separation of church and state. They can be both religious or irreligious. I thought I should clear this for you.
    Where is the Oort cloud?

    Posted by makagutu | September 21, 2014, 5:36 pm
  8. I checked one of the articles and I read about simulations (not evidence)
    Fouchard, M., et al. “Planetary perturbations for Oort cloud comets: III. Evolution of the cloud and production of centaurs and Halley type comets.” Icarus 231, (March 2014): 99-109.
    we present Monte Carlo simulations…..

    Posted by Xavier Silva | September 28, 2014, 10:39 pm
    • Just read the abstract of the paper you linked to.
      It seems that if we take a model of the Oort cloud and include reasonable mechanisms of purturbation, then we see the model Oort Cloud shed things like comets into the inner solar system.

      So this similation, which is apparently not evidence, shows that an “Oort Cloud” could indeed be the source for these young comets. That’s far more evidence for the Oort Cloud hypothesis for the birth of comets than provided by YEC sources.

      Posted by riandouglas | October 22, 2014, 12:08 am

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