Random Thoughts 8/24/2009

1] There is a feud going on near Selma, Alabama between 2 families and it is making the national news. THANKS FOR TAKING US BACK 70 YEARS YOU IDIOTS!!!!

2] When did Montgomery get so cool? Queensryche and Alice Cooper are both performing in the month of October at the Montgomery Performing Arts Center. Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac played a solo show at the Davis Theater a  while back. Just AWESOME! Way to go Montgomery.

 3] Football season is almost upon us, that time of year where grown men start talking to each other as if they themselves are a member of the team they support. You know what I’m talking about “We really took it to y’all” or “We ain’t played that good in years”. I don’t get how the triumph or failure of a team directly involves these yahoos, unless they have money on the game or have attended the college. As related to the guys I work with, what I find humorous about the whole thing is that, with the exception of 1 man, none of them have been to college. The one man who has, is a supporter of his college’s rival. I suppose the ones who didn’t attend a college choose to support ones team based on Colors, the Mascot, who their Daddy liked, whatever. I suppose if I chose to support a college team it would be based on cheerleaders and their relative “Hotness”. I guess maybe that is only funny to me.

4] I don’t understand people who don’t accept evolution. I overheard (but did not involve myself with) a conversation about why a man I work with took his child out of public school and decided to have his wife home school her. It is not because the school is in a dangerous area, it is not. It is not because the teachers are unqualified, he speaks highly of them and the school system in general, with one exception. They teach the “Theory of Evolution“. He says, quite ignorantly, that evolution is a theory, not a fact, so why are they teaching it instead of the Genesis Creation story, which is a fact. Let us stop for a moment to learn something new. Here is what you know: A group of Sheep is called a Flock. Also,a group of Crows is called a Murder. Here is what you may NOT know, a group of facts is called a Theory. I know, the one word you can’t use… but there it is. Here is the actual definition, as it relates to Science – A set of statements or principles devised to explain a group of facts or phenomena, especially one that has been repeatedly tested or is widely accepted and can be used to make predictions about natural phenomena.For example, we all know that germs cause disease, they cause you to get sick. We know it is not demons that have taken up residence inside of us or targeted us. Why do we know this, because of a series scientific facts. Guess what those facts are called?  “The Germ Theory of Disease, also called the Pathogenic Theory of Medicine.” That’s right, it is a theory also. The fact of evolution does not discount GOD, or make Jesus any less important or inconsequential. It just makes the guess work put forth by the author of Genesis… irrelevant.

That’s all. Thanks for reading. \m/

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3 thoughts on “Random Thoughts 8/24/2009

  1. You and I discussed this topic, regarding theory, when I was still in Alabama last year. You related murder to crows and pride to lions as theories are to facts. At the time, I thought “Really?”(not sarcastically but genuinely), and wondered why did I not know this. I’ve never considered myself to be more than an average educated man, but I thought surely this information would have crossed my path earlier. Why had no science teacher I ever had ever reinforced his subject matter with this when teaching his class about any theory? So after reading this today, and again feeling ignorant, I decided to research this myself. According to Dictionary.com, the word ‘theory’ has seven definitions that I divide into three categories; propsed or suggested explanations, body or branch of subject matter (i.e. number theory, music theory…), or lastly, speculation or guess, none of which associate the word in conjuntion with the word fact(s).
    When I was in school, and we built science fair projects, we built the project based on a theory, something we could prove/disprove. Then we established facts through the use of tools, research, experiments, and collected data. Later on in school the word theory was replaced with the word ‘hypothesis’, which is what I have always associated the word theory with.
    According to Thesaurus.com, theory is considered the antonym of fact. See below:
    Main Entry: theory

    Part of Speech: noun

    Definition: hypothesis, belief

    Synonyms: approach, argument, assumption, base, basis, code, codification, concept, conditions, conjecture, doctrine, dogma, feeling, formularization, foundation, grounds, guess, guesswork, hunch, idea, ideology, impression, method, outlook, philosophy, plan, position, postulate, premise, presentiment, presumption, proposal, provision, rationale, scheme, shot*, speculation, stab*, supposal, suppose, supposition, surmise, suspicion, system, systemization, theorem, thesis, understanding

    Antonyms: certainty, fact, proof, reality

    I am unable to find any correspondence between theory and fact.

    The closest I can come is what I have read in an article entitled “Evolution is a Fact and a Theory”, by Laurence Moran[http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/evolution-fact.html], wherein, I found what I considered a most suitable compromise. One of the most notable quotes therein was:

    In the American vernacular, “theory” often means “imperfect fact”–part of a hierarchy of confidence running downhill from fact to theory to hypothesis to guess. Thus the power of the creationist argument: evolution is “only” a theory and intense debate now rages about many aspects of the theory. If evolution is worse than a fact, and scientists can’t even make up their minds about the theory, then what confidence can we have in it? Indeed, President Reagan echoed this argument before an evangelical group in Dallas when he said (in what I devoutly hope was campaign rhetoric): “Well, it is a theory. It is a scientific theory only, and it has in recent years been challenged in the world of science–that is, not believed in the scientific community to be as infallible as it once was.”
    Well evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world’s data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts don’t go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them. Einstein’s theory of gravitation replaced Newton’s in this century, but apples didn’t suspend themselves in midair, pending the outcome. And humans evolved from ape-like ancestors whether they did so by Darwin’s proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered.

    Moreover, “fact” doesn’t mean “absolute certainty”; there ain’t no such animal in an exciting and complex world. The final proofs of logic and mathematics flow deductively from stated premises and achieve certainty only because they are not about the empirical world. Evolutionists make no claim for perpetual truth, though creationists often do (and then attack us falsely for a style of argument that they themselves favor). In science “fact” can only mean “confirmed to such a degree that it would be perverse to withhold provisional consent.” I suppose that apples might start to rise tomorrow, but the possibility does not merit equal time in physics classrooms.
    – Stephen J. Gould, ” Evolution as Fact and Theory”; Discover, May 1981

    The Bible, as I see it, is a theory; Elaborate, full of wonderous stories and fantastic characters, packed with good morals, and ideas, some good, some not so good. I do not believe in a Christian God, but am compelled to believe there is a higher power. The Bible may as well be called the Theory of God. I put more stock in the Theory of Evolution myself because as you once said, …”science and modern technology may not have the means to explain[life’s specific ancestor] but I know one day it will, be it tomorrow or years from now.”

    And on that note, GO RAIDERS! We’re gonna beat the crap outta’ your team this year!

  2. Within the United States Government, there is a department in charge of everything outdoors (Forestry, National Parks, etc.). That department is called The Department of The Interior. Interior… the one word you can’t use. According to the “Professor for Public Understanding of Science at Oxford” the word Theory, as related to Science (which is important) is defined as “A set of statements or principles devised to explain a group of facts or phenomena, especially one that has been repeatedly tested or is widely accepted and can be used to make predictions about natural phenomena”. That is what I stated before, that is what is being stated now.

    As for FACTS, a fact is what is TRUE based on current evidence. At one point it was believed that the Earth was flat. What evidence was provided as proof of this… The Bible. If you want chapter & verse, let me know. Because of men such as Galileo Galilei & Nicolaus Copernicus challenging what the Church held to be UNQUESTIONABLY TRUE, we know that the Earth is round and revolved around the Sun (not vice-versa) & eventually evidence was found that proved them right and the Bible (as usual) wrong.

    Lastly, the Bible is not packed with anymore good morals than your average horror movie. GOD approved of Slavery, Abuse, Genocide, Racism, Misogyny, and Righteous Hatred. Christians, or just religious people in general, are good IN SPITE of the Bible. For example: Commandment no.6 “Thou shall not Kill”. We now know the text translates to “You shall not murder” specifically, Jews cannot murder other Jews. You can kill non Jews all the live long day if they do not believe as you do. GOD has no problem with this killing, see Deuteronomy 13:6-9

    6] If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, (or no god at all) which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;

    7] Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth;

    8] Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him:

    9] But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people.

    In my opinion, there is nothing good about that book.

  3. The whole ‘good morals’ thing; yet another failed attempt at sarcasm. My mistake. I’ve GOT to work on my timing. I’ll try harder.

    I think the more widely accepted ideas of the Commandments are fundamentally sound, though as, say a child might understand them; Thou shall not kill, Thou shall not steal, Thou shall not lie… Those are sound beliefs(in and of of themselves, I’m speaking). I was taught these very things in church as a child. Never once did the word murder, or killing non Jews come into play. I’m not saying that’s not how they were originally intended, rather how most people consider them today, and based on that view, askew as it may be, aren’t bad.
    As for the ‘theory’ discussion, the definition you give as offered by The Deparment of The Interior-“A set of statements or principles devised to explain a group of facts or phenomena, especially one that has been repeatedly tested or is widely accepted and can be used to make predictions about natural phenomena”… I’m still failing to understand how a theory is plural for facts. I mean aren’t theories sometimes wrong or false? If this is true, how can the theory be a fact. Don’t people have theories about, say, ‘global warming’? Is global warming real? If so, what kind of a threat does it pose? My ‘theory’, and I can’t quote my sources, however, is based on logic and facts, is it’s not really a problem. However, Al Gore, inventor of the internet(see? yet another attempt at humor and sarcasm here!), says otherwise. He too has a theory, based on logic, facts, and pretty pie charts and colorful bar graphs(this is not sarcasm, but that’s what makes it so funny) that says global warming is very real. Again, I’m playing the IGNORANT card here. If I have a theory and he has an opposing theory regarding the same matter, won’t one theory be wrong and therefore not fact? I mean I understand in some cases two opposing theories do not necessarily disprove one another. Take Miller Lite for example. Tastes great. Less filling. Both sound theories based on fact regarding the same matter, and both true(according to some people I suppose anyway) thus keeping the integrity of both theories intact. Maybe I’m using the word in the wrong context. I noticed also you defined facts as being according to current evidence. Well, yes but people once believed the world was flat according to faith not fact. Once somebody said ‘Bible-Schmible! Give me that protractor!’, the world was round based on fact not faith.

    In conclusion and attempting to maintain some shred of adhering to this topic’s original purpose(“Random Thoughts”), today I saw a Rubik’s Cube in a blister pack, completely sealed, and written in big bright neon letters on the front of the package was “TRY ME!!”. I thought, “How?”.

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