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# Why creation science is an oxymoron

Discussion in 'Politics' started by kut2k2, Feb 4, 2010.

1. ### kut2k2

Creationists like to pretend to be scientifically rigorous and say things like "Evolution violates the second law of thermodynamics" without ever providing any proof or anything else beyond a lot of hand-waving and misdirection.

Here's proof that evolution doesn't violate the second law of thermodynamics.

The second law of thermodynamics says that the entropy of a closed system will never decrease: it will either increase or remain the same. Entropy is a non-intuitive scientific concept that more or less equates to a measure of the randomness or disorder of a system. The more entropy in a system, the less ordered it is, as a rule.

The key element of the second law is that it only applies to closed systems. A closed system is a part of the universe that is essentially cut off from the rest of the universe. There is absolutely no exchange of matter or energy between a closed system and the rest of the universe (the "surroundings"). While there is no such as a perfectly closed system in the real world, a good example of a (almost) closed system would be a thermos bottle. You put your favorite beverage, hot or cold, into a well-made thermos bottle and the beverage inside the closed thermos will take a long time to achieve room temperature, unlike an open container that allows a heat exchange to occur readily and rather quickly between the beverage and the ambient atmosphere.

Creationists like to claim that evolution is based upon a decrease in entropy and therefore violates the second law of thermodynamics.

Rather than argue against this unsupported assertion as some scientists have, let's agree for the sake of argument. Fine: in order for evolution to occur in a biological system, there must be some corresponding decrease of entropy within the biological system.

My answer is, So What? The second law doesn't say that entropy can never decrease, it says that entropy can never decrease in a closed system.

The Earth is not a closed system. We receive a humongous amount of solar radiation during the day and re-radiate a goodly portion of it to the night sky.

Furthermore it should be obvious that all of life on earth is dependent directly or indirectly on the sun. Even the things that hate sunlight, like fungus, are totally dependent for their food on stuff that thrives on sunlight. If the sun stopped shining (radiating energy) this minute, all life on earth would be dead in a matter of days, and not just due to the temperature drop. Even if we heated all of Earth's surface with a vast array of geothermal heat exchangers, the lack of photosynthesis would kill the plant life, which would eventually kill all the herbivores and the predators that feed on them.

The sun is a giant thermonuclear furnace. It generates an enormous amount of radiation and has an associated enormous amount of entropy increase due to the spontaneous nuclear reactions responsible for solar energy. Does the "sun-plus-earth's-biosphere" system undergo a net increase in entropy or a net decrease due to evolution?

It turns out that the earth receives less than one billionth of the energy put out by the sun. Let's make the reasonable assumption that sun puts out energy equally in all directions. We are 93 million miles from the sun. The surface area of the earth that receives sunlight is half the total surface area of the earth. So basically we divide half the surface area of the earth (assuming a mean radius of 3,959 miles) by the surface area of a sphere with a radius of 93 million miles and the answer is just under one part per billion.

All of life on earth is the result of less than one billionth the energy output of the sun. Do I really have to argue that the associated entropy increase in the sun completely dwarfs whatever entropy change is taking place on earth due to evolution, be that later change positive or negative?

The second law of thermodynamics tells us nothing about evolution. It simply is not germane.

2. ### smilingsynic

There are many, many other reasons why "creation science" is an oxymoron.

But none matter to those who believe in it. Their belief has nothing to do with science, and they are OK with that.

3. ### kut2k2

We still have some who spout the "evolution violates thermodynamics" line. I don't care what they believe in, I just wanted to debunk the pseudoscience.

4. ### Wallet

Almost correct, but it's spelled Son.

5. ### stu

..as in... "Son of a bitch" ?

6. ### Wallet

Funny how someone who doesn't believe in God is so outraged by the mentioning of something they say doesn't exist.

Have a good day stu

7. ### Gabfly1

The only problem is that they can make shit up faster than you can debunk it. It takes less time to throw shit on the wall than it does to remove it.

8. ### Free Thinker

nice piece but it does not matter. a scientist can spend days writing up a detailed explaination of a subject and a creationist will dismiss it out of hand without even reading it with a simple"the bible tells me so". their minds are closed. they did not come to believe their superstition through evidence so evidence will have no effect on changing their minds.

9. ### stu

Funny how a simple question in response to a flippant remark can make someone think someone is outraged.

You have a good one too Wallet

10. ### fhl

I'm not at all surprised that a thread of this nature would be initiated right about now.

Right in the midst of the uncovering of the greatest swindle in history by the so-called "real scientists, the true scientists", where scientists at the very top of their profession have been caught red-handed lying for decades, making up evidence, destroying evidence, making a mockery of the peer review process, etc. And how thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of their peers quickly lined up like obedient little puppies behind them to "confirm and give consensus" to the lies.

In other words, the high regard for the "real, true scientists" that had been cultivated for decades is not shot to hell.

I would expect some sort of pushback, and so this thread doesn't surprise.

#10     Feb 4, 2010
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