Today’s Adam and Eve post now at The New Republic

This morning’s post on Bryan College and its new-Adam-and-Eve policy has, after a bit of rewriting, just appeared on The New Republic website. It’s now called “A Tennessee college is forcing its faculty to swear that they believe Adam and Eve existed.”  Feel free to go over there to participate if any action develops.

18 Comments

  1. Posted March 4, 2014 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    You’re gonna make me gain weight from eating too much popcorn….

    b&

    • gbjames
      Posted March 4, 2014 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

      heh

    • Grania Spingies
      Posted March 4, 2014 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

      At least the TNR seems to have a goodly proportion of intelligent commenters.

      • Posted March 4, 2014 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

        Well, Jerry’s Whole Paycheck critique brought an awful lot of homeopaths out of the woodwork…quite a painful sight.

        That’s been the only one so far; Jerry’s other articles have had reasonably sane commenters, at least as far as I’ve seen.

        b&

        • gbjames
          Posted March 4, 2014 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

          Yeah… Homeopathy, anti-vaxery, and GMO paranoia are acceptable forms woo across the political spectrum.

  2. moarscienceplz
    Posted March 4, 2014 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    I never see any comments at the NR site. Does one need to sign in to read comments?

    • Posted March 4, 2014 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

      They do a lot of Javascript trickery. You have to scroll all the way down, at which point the comments might or might not dynamically load.

      b&

  3. waylan77
    Posted March 4, 2014 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

    Funny thing about the past. It appears to be a certain way based on the decisions you make in the present. Quantum eraser experiments, delayed choice, etc. Not to bring up free will, but… It’s all information. In a way, Ken Ham is right. Were you there?

    • Posted March 4, 2014 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

      Erm…sorry, but no.

      As an almost-absolute rule, extrapolations from Quantum Mechanics to human-scale phenomena are unjustified and invalid. Quantum Mechanics, especially the “weird shit” it’s so famous for, only applies in very specific regimes — mostly the very, very small (typically near-atomic scales) or the very cold (Bose-Einstein condensates are about as cold as anything can even theoretically get) or variations on those themes. Unless you’re a physicist or an electrical engineer working on the most sophisticated of chip designs, Quantum Mechanics is only of academic interest to you and you’re not going to encounter much in the way of real-world quantum phenomena. (Radioactive decay in your smoke detector, perhaps, or maybe some advanced medical imaging techniques…and, come to think of it, you need QM to explain lasers, too…but it should be pretty obvious that there’s nothing “spooky” about any of those examples.)

      Don’t get me worng; Quantum Mechanics is one of the most important discoveries in the history of civilization, and it’s going to be an increasingly important factor driving technological innovations.

      But, best we know now, it’s never going to power the type of universal eraser you’re hinting at, and we already know it doesn’t play any computational role in the brain. Brains are far too hot and neurons far too big for Quantum Mechanics to apply in any “interesting” manner.

      Cheers,

      b&

      • Timothy Hughbanks
        Posted March 5, 2014 at 7:07 am | Permalink

        Unless you’re a physicist or an electrical engineer working on the most sophisticated of chip designs, Quantum Mechanics is only of academic interest to you and you’re not going to encounter much in the way of real-world quantum phenomena.

        Just to clarify for readers who are naive in the ways of physical science – and I suspect that nothing I’ll say is a surprise to you: Quantum mechanics actually affects everything in almost every conceivable way, since all chemistry is a consequence of quantum mechanics. The structure of atoms, the way they combine to form molecules, the course of chemical reactions – all consequences of quantum mechanics and (mostly) Fermi-Dirac statistics. Just because we don’t think of these phenomena as “spooky” or “weird”, you don’t want to leave people with the impression that quantum mechanics is somehow arcane.

        • Posted March 5, 2014 at 9:46 am | Permalink

          Yes, of course. I wasn’t trying to suggest that Quantum Mechanics is meaningless; just that the “spooky” bits are very much limited in their scope — not unlike how out intuitions fail us for optical illusions, but that doesn’t mean that the whole world is spinning snakes on a checkerboard that’s really not moving and has same-colored squares.

          Cheers,

          b&

  4. moarscienceplz
    Posted March 4, 2014 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Thanks, Ben.
    Well, my Java says it is up to date, and I even looked at a couple of Jerry’s older articles, and I still don’t see any comments.
    So, I used my Nook tablet, and I see comments! I’m thinking maybe this is an Internet Explorer issue.

    • Posted March 4, 2014 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

      To be fair, it’s as much their fault as your browser’s. There’s no need for any fancy nonsense for what they’re doing; all it does is slow things down at best and frequently break them at worst.

      b&

    • Diane G.
      Posted March 4, 2014 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

      FWIW, I can see the comments with IE.

      • tomh
        Posted March 4, 2014 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

        Same here with IE10. Which allowed me to see Ben’s snarky comment. :)

    • Posted March 5, 2014 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      You need javascript enabled, not Java. These two are very different things.

  5. Posted March 5, 2014 at 12:36 am | Permalink

    Hi Jerry,

    I’ve just received your book! I’m looking forward to reading it in the few coming days.

    Regards

    Georges Melki Civil Engineer Beirut-lebanon


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