Monday, March 27, 2017

Science Rules?

Many think that science provides the answer for everything. Should science rule when it comes to dealing with the many issues of our day? Let me put forward some thoughts on the subject of science so that you’ll have some perspective the next time you hear someone say something like this: “Well, it’s been scientifically proven that ______ (fill in the blank, such as, ‘global warming is real.’”) Let’s understand what’s behind such statements.

What Is Science?

Let’s start by defining “science.” In its purest sense “science” consists of performing a series observable and controlled experiments, analyzing the results, and determining whether the results support a hypothesis or theory. If they don’t, that hypothesis or theory is discarded as unproven and new hypotheses and theories emerge to be tested. Or the theory or hypothesis is modified based on the data. That, very briefly, is a simplified definition of science (or the scientific method) from a non-scientist.

If repeated experiments can’t be conducted, then careful observations are made of existing evidence, analysis performed, and conclusions drawn. The results and conclusions from the experiments or observations can undergo peer review and may be published so other scientists can study and comment on the methodology and conclusions.

Is Macroevolution Science?

A lot of data are put forth under the name of “science” but they don’t have repeated experiments to verify their status as a theory, or the conclusions don’t agree with the evidence (or lack thereof). A good example of that is the theory of macroevolution – the belief that one species can evolve into another. An example might be the belief that dolphins evolved from an earlier land-based animal. Teaching such beliefs is not really scientific (in its purest sense) for a number of reasons:

First, there can be no repeated observable experiments because we are dealing with historical events that took place over eons.

Second, in light of the inability to perform experiments, the scientist then observes the subject and draws conclusions from his observations and analysis. In the case of the dolphin, examination of the animal plus the lack of any transitional animals in the fossil record leads you to the obvious conclusion that it was designed to be an aquatic creature. It could never have been a land animal.

Third, drawing such an evolutionary conclusion from observations is not sustainable because the conclusions aren’t supported by the data per my second point above. This reveals an agenda rather than unbiased scientific inquiry. So the theory of macroevolution can’t be considered real science because scientists ignore the obvious attributes of animals and totally disregard the fact that no transitional species have been found in the fossil record. The observations don’t fit their agenda and preconceived notions, so they are ignored.

The Big Hoax

Macroevolution is the biggest hoax ever perpetrated on the human race since the beginning of time. Looking at the complexity of God’s creation (such as the human body), you can’t help but marvel at what a masterpiece of engineering it is. Yet scientists and academics continue to ignore the obvious evidence of an intelligent designer. When will they ever learn?

Is the Big Bang Scientific?

The reasons outlined above regarding macroevolution apply to the Big Bang. The Big Bang starts with a dense bundle of matter that explodes and spreads throughout the universe. The big question is, where did that matter come from? Since a law of nature states that matter can neither be created or destroyed, that matter didn’t just magically appear. Hawking claims just that, totally ignoring the Law of Mass Conservation. Let’s remember that Hawking is a genius but he isn’t infallible and is an atheist.

The correct answer is that God created that matter and then set things into motion by way of the Big Bang or some other event.

Can We Consider Anything Truly Scientifically Proven?

One thing about science is that new theories appear and then are later discarded as new discoveries are made through research. That’s what makes science so interesting – it’s always changing as more knowledge becomes available. But when people say something is “scientifically proven” you still need to have some degree of skepticism. Why? Because today’s scientific “fact” is tomorrow’s discredited theory.

Look at how science has handled the egg. When I was a kid, eggs were good for you. We should eat them frequently as a good source of protein. Later in my life I was told to limit my consumption of eggs because of cholesterol concerns. Eggs are bad for you. More recent studies have shown that eggs are once again good for you. So much for “scientifically proven.”

Another aspect of scientific research is the analysis of results. Erroneous conclusions can be drawn from otherwise sound research and good data. For example, the matching of certain data can result in scientists concluding a cause-effect relationship where, in fact, none exists. We are seeing some of that, I believe, with the climate change discussion.

Science Has Become Our God

Because of all the advances in technology, science has become our god. We trust in science more than we do the Word of God, the Bible. We expect science to answer all our questions, solve all our problems, and make life better for all. In fact science and technology have answered some questions, solved some problems, and have made life better in many ways. But these are of the material world. Important as the material world may be to us, there’s another world that’s far more important and lasts forever. I’m referring to the spiritual realm.

Science should not become your substitute for God. Let’s not ignore the spiritual aspect of life but seek God and his grace. Science is limited in what it can do, and its conclusions are constantly changing as new research becomes available. We have to look beyond the material to the supernatural to be complete human beings.

Conclusion

Both science and the Bible have their places. The Bible isn’t a scientific text, yet does provide us with considerable insight concerning life and the universe that science isn’t equipped to do. Regarding the creation stories in the Bible, we don’t have to take them literally to believe they are communicating God’s truth. They very well may have been stories designed by God to pass on truths to primitive people who had minimal scientific knowledge. The main thing we should be taking away from this discussion is that God is the Creator of heaven and earth, and science is trying to figure out how he did it.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Be Responsible Citizens

The dysfunction in Washington has driven people to vote for Trump as the anti-establishment candidate who claims he will fix what is wrong with this country. We haven’t held our representatives accountable so we have nobody to blame but ourselves. Moreover, we as a society are turning our backs on our Judeo-Christian tradition, so what do you expect?

We’ve also forgotten that Democracy provides freedom, but requires responsibility as well. If we don’t vote responsibly, politicians are no longer accountable and government becomes corrupt, human rights suffer, and services to the most vulnerable in society are threatened. Particularly for those in authority and power, their decisions can have a significant impact on society.

There’s a Republican (sort of) in the White House and Republican majorities in both houses. If they can’t get things done then they should disband the party. If they can put an end to their dysfunction and put the people’s needs first for a change, then there’s hope.

Of course our real hope is in the Lord, not in politicians or government:
Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
(Psalms 20:7, NIV)

We as a country would be wise to remember these words from God:

“…if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14, NIV)

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Bias Against Christians

The mainstream media doesn’t report on it, mainly because they are part of the problem. What I’m talking about is bias against Christians. You may ask, how can the majority be discriminated against? Christians may be in the majority, but the media and academia are powerful forces in this country. They can influence people’s thinking with their ridicule of Christianity and by other means. In addition, the courts have been using an erroneous interpretation of the First Amendment to limit religious activity by Christians.

Amazingly, those same people who are biased against Christianity are upset because President Trump appears to be discriminating against Muslims with his travel ban. Doesn’t it occur to these people that some Muslims present a threat to our security so that immigration must be controlled? It was Muslims who flew into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, and who continue with terrorist attacks in the US, Europe, and even against their fellow Muslims. Of course these terrorists represent only a small number of Muslims, but even a small number can do tremendous damage, so we need to identify them and weed them out.

Those who are so upset because they feel Muslims are being unfairly targeted should remember that it was Muslims who conduct acts of terrorism, not Christians. They should also understand that our battle isn’t with Islam as a religion as much as it is against an Islamic culture that wants to take over the world. These fanatics use Islam the religion (and certain verses from the Qur’an) as their justification for their evil deeds.

Getting back to discrimination against Christians, let’s stop using the First Amendment in an attempt to marginalize Christians. The Muslim terrorists call on their god – shouldn’t we be looking to our God to help and protection?

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Is There a Right to Immigrate?

I can’t stand it when people on TV proclaim that controlling immigration is “unconstitutional.” If we don’t take certain refugees in, we are somehow going against the Constitution.

I don’t see anything in the Constitution that mandates that we have to allow in the country anybody who wants to settle here. Moreover, the Constitution only applies to people living in the US, not to people who would like to live here.

As a practical matter we can’t absorb the large number of people who want to live here, whether from Mexico, Guatemala, Syria, or any other country. Our economy isn’t generating enough jobs, so many of these immigrants would have to go on welfare, straining an already overloaded system.

Is it wrong to turn away refugees? I don’t think so, because we simply can’t take people from every country having problems. Syria is the worst one right now, but Central America, Somalia, and other parts of Africa are not safe places, particularly if you are a minority tribe or a Christian or the “wrong” kind of Muslim.

While we feel terrible for people suffering in these countries, we are forced to limit the number of refugees we allow into the country. A better solution would be for the United Nations to do something for a change. I’m not sure what the UN could do against the human rights violators in those troubled countries, but the UN should be doing something to mitigate these people’s suffering. Then they wouldn’t have to be uprooted from their homelands and migrate to other countries.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Explaining the Election II

The Message of Trump’s Victory

How could somebody like Donald Trump become President? He managed to insult just about every group, yet he was elected. He’s been called xenophobic, misogynist, and every other thing you can think of, but still the people voted him in.

I believe Trump won the election for two reasons:

(1) First, the people are beginning to realize the liberal agenda (see last couple of posts) isn’t addressing the issues that affect them the most. The liberal agenda is all about LGBT, abortion, and inclusion. Other issues, such as the disappearing middle class, are mentioned but no action is taken by the liberals to remedy the situation. Who’s fighting for the “average Joe?” Certainly not the democrats.

(2) Second, Trump won because the people are sick of politicians working for the party and not for them They are also fed up with a do-nothing Congress that has failed time and time again to address critical issues, but instead pays political games.

In the next two elections, one of two things is going to happen:

(1) With majorities in the House and Senate, the Republicans have a golden opportunity to get important things done. If the Republicans and Trump effectively address the critical issues facing this nation (see earlier post), they might get even larger majorities because they have shown themselves willing to govern. They will be able to buck the trend of the party in power losing seats in the mid-term election.

If this happens, either the Democrats face the prospect of irrelevancy or they shape up and work with Republications to solve the problems still facing us.

(2) If the Republicans fail to work with Trump and don’t effectively address the critical issues, they will be voted out of power. The will lose their majorities and face the prospect of irrelevancy. Trump will be a one-term president and the democrats will be in power.

Rather than spending so much time fund-raising so they can get reelected, politicians should seek reelection based on being effective in solving the problems we face.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Explaining the Election I

In an earlier post I alluded to the fact that the liberal agenda and priorities don’t line up with mainstream America’s. I listed many of the liberals’ priorities to prove my point. But, you may ask, why did the Democrats’ candidate, the liberal Hillary Clinton, receive roughly half the popular vote. Doesn’t that demonstrate that the liberal agenda does resonate with at least half the American public?

That’s possible, but I think there are better explanations for Clinton receiving the votes she got.

(1) First, there are those who have voted democratic all their lives and couldn’t conceive of themselves voting republican.

(2) Second, there are those who still believe that the Democratic Party is the party of the working man, the average Joe, pro-union. They aren’t very familiar with the issues and don’t realize that the Democratic Party is no longer the party of the working man but of the LGBT community and special interests.

(3) More people would have voted for Trump if he had acted more presidential during the campaign. While not thrilled with Hillary, these voters were even more turned off by Trump’s ridiculous statements and insults to Latinos and women.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Liberal Agenda Items

One of many problems I have with the liberals is that they don’t give serious issues (see my last post for list of serious issues) the attention they need, but instead focus on less critical areas (such transgender bathrooms), which I’ve listed below. By “liberal” I mean those at the far left of the political spectrum such as Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Most of academia, the entertainment industry and the mainstream media (NY Times, LA Times, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC) fall into this category.

The other things that bother me about liberals are these:
The rights of a few often take precedence over the rights of the many.
Political correctness rules – it is another form of oppression. They want to force their views on everybody.
They have their own definitions for such things as tolerance (they only “tolerate” those who agree with them) and inclusiveness (they include only those who agree with them or those groups who are politically correct).
They keep fighting battles they’ve already won, such as LGBT rights and abortion.
They are unwilling to compromise (although those on the far right also seem unwilling to compromise as well). It’s all or nothing with them.
They have their own very strict orthodoxy: even within their own ranks that don’t allow for much variation in opinions. This reminds me of the novels “1984” and “Brave New World” with the “Thought Police” controlling your thinking.
They are vicious and nasty when they lose or somebody disagrees with them. Just look at their behavior when Trump won the presidency.
They are elitist, looking down on those who disagree with them as unworthy yokels. They refer to the center part of the US as “flyover country,” conjuring up the image of a wasteland inhabited by ignorant and uneducated know-nothings. The people on the east and west coasts are the enlightened ones, whom we should all follow if we want to be considered “progressive.”
They are na├»ve. They seem to have this child-like belief in the innate goodness of humanity despite a world history of cruel dictators, wars, oppression, and deceit. They seem to think that if we just sat down and had a dialog with our enemies, we could work things out and everybody will be happy. Appeasement will break down resistance and we can all get along. Talk to Neville Chamberlain about the value of appeasement.

Below are the major issues that liberals feel are critical (as I understand it) with my comments on each one.

Diversity and Inclusion: these are notable goals but often discrimination results from actions taken in the name of inclusiveness and diversity. It should be understood that all people will benefit from solving some of the big problems mentioned in my last post.

LGBT and transgender rights (for example the bathroom issue): for liberals everything is viewed through the lens of LGBT.

Climate change: even though progress has been made regarding the environment, we still have more work to do. One problem in the liberals’ approach to climate change and the environment is that the US is asked to make significant changes while China and India continue to build fossil fuel electric generating plants, thus continuing to pollute the air. Rules and restrictions should be the same for everybody.

Protecting the right to an abortion: no right is absolute, so states should be allowed to place reasonable limitations on abortions.

Illegal immigrants’ rights: immigrants should go through the proper process, and should not be rewarded for breaking our laws by entering illegally. Nevertheless, there should be a path to legal residency for those already in the US.

Refugees: there’s nothing in the constitution that gives non-citizens free access to the US. We can not absorb hundreds of thousands of refugees.

Wealth inequality: Bernie Sanders had one answer to every question: tax the rich. Loopholes should be closed and very highly paid executives, sports figures, and entertainers should be taxed heavily, but not so much that it stifles the entrepreneurial spirit.
Racism: see “racial tensions” in my last post.

Police brutality: see “the police” in my last post.

Gun Control: keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill, children, domestic terrorists, and criminals should be the goal. Closing loopholes in our current gun control system is a good first step. Unfortunately some people who legally have guns don’t store them securely, so the wrong people may have easy access to weapons. New and stricter laws won’t change this, only, perhaps, better gun security education.

Palestinian demands at Israel’s expense: liberals favor Palestine and expect Israel to give up more land. Liberals don’t seem to understand that the Arabs want to eliminate Israel as a nation. They won’t be satisfied until they have all the land and Israel ceases to exist.

The Environment: (pipelines, nuclear plants, etc.): protecting the environment is important, but progress should not be hindered because of some relatively small risks. Regarding pipelines, fracking, and nuclear power plants, they should be engineered and built properly, with safety and the environment in mind. Workers should be well-trained and there should be regular inspections for the appropriate governmental agency.

Gender equality: liberals tend to try to raise up women by putting down men. See “equal pay for equal work” in my last post.

Enforcing political correctness: this is not a stated goal of the liberals but is behind much of what they do. Political Correctness tells people how they are to speak, what their priorities should be, which pronouns are acceptable when referring to God, what words are unacceptable when referring to women, and what your position should be regarding a host of social issues – no other opinions allowed! PC is a harsh taskmaster, unrelenting and unforgiving.

There is certainly some overlap between the major problems facing this country and the liberal agenda. Unfortunately that overlap is not as big as it used to be and should be. The liberals are wasting precious time, resources, and effort on problems that diminish in importance when you consider all the major issues of national security, the country’s debt, the economy, crime, violence, terrorism, etc.