Pope Benedict XVI has formally challenged governments to address the moral issue of placing humanity above the environment. He calls for political decisions to be based on sound science, not political agendas. His challenge to sound science over ideological pressures parallels issues in the origins debate. Note particularly the parallels between differing presuppositions versus consequences of Darwinism, Intelligent Design, and Creationism. The Pope’s message highlights the importance of sound science in following the truth wherever the data leads, versus political environmental movements with explicit or implicit agendas diverging from or running contrary to the data.
UPDATE: The Pope’s message advocates responsible stewardship based on prudent policies undistorted by ideological pressures. The post title was changed to reflect the Pope’s emphasis compared to the news article below.
See source: MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE BENEDICT XVI FOR THE CELEBRATION OF THE WORLD DAY OF PEACE 1 JANUARY 2008.
See especially: The family, the human community and the environment, Sections 7, 8.
For the human family, this home is the earth, the environment that God the Creator has given us to inhabit with creativity and responsibility. We need to care for the environment: it has been entrusted to men and women to be protected and cultivated with responsible freedom, with the good of all as a constant guiding criterion. . . . Humanity today is rightly concerned about the ecological balance of tomorrow. It is important for assessments in this regard to be carried out prudently, in dialogue with experts and people of wisdom, uninhibited by ideological pressure to draw hasty conclusions, and above all with the aim of reaching agreement on a model of sustainable development capable of ensuring the well-being of all while respecting environmental balances. . . . One area where there is a particular need to intensify dialogue between nations is that of the stewardship of the earth’s energy resources. . . .
See full message.
The Pope condemns the climate change prophets of doom
Last updated at 14:48pm on 12th December 2007
“Pope Benedict XVI has launched a surprise attack on climate change prophets of doom, warning them that any solutions to global warming must be based on firm evidence and not on dubious ideology.The leader of more than a billion Roman Catholics suggested that fears over man-made emissions melting the ice caps and causing a wave of unprecedented disasters were nothing more than scare-mongering.
The German-born Pontiff said that while some concerns may be valid it was vital that the international community based its policies on science rather than the dogma of the environmentalist movement.
His remarks will be made in his annual message for World Peace Day on January 1, but they were released as delegates from all over the world convened on the Indonesian holiday island of Bali for UN climate change talks.
The 80-year-old Pope said the world needed to care for the environment but not to the point where the welfare of animals and plants was given a greater priority than that of mankind. . . . ” See Full Article
49 Replies to “Pope for sound stewardship”
A voice of reason – it’s so refreshing. It will be interesting to see the reaction of the warm-mongers.
The Pope stated:
“that political decisions must be based on sound science, not political environmental movements.”
Isn’t it funny that the Pope himself has called for the practice of sound science on this matter.
He did not appeal to faith or any other “religiously motivated” reason. No he called attention to the fact that shabby science is being practiced in this matter!
A funny turn of events indeed.
He almost makes me want to be Catholic.
Tobin Harshaw in News Flash: Pope Prefers People to Polar Bears raises questions over the thrust of the Pope’s message vs the Daily Mail’s article. It also linked to the Pope’s message. With that heads up, I updated the lead post citing the Pope directly, linked to his message, and toned down the title.
Rick Moran in Pope Benedict Calls Out Warming Fanatics provides a measured perspective to the situation:
—–bornagain77 writes, “He did not appeal to faith or any other “religiously motivated” reason. No he called attention to the fact that shabby science is being practiced in this matter!
A funny turn of events indeed.”
Yes, Also, note that he is obviously open to intelligent design at some level. Just ask the anti-ID astromoner who recently got booted from the vatican.
Slightly off topic:
I thought this was interesting:
Christianity and the Rise of Science
of special note:
“Christian theology was necessary for the rise of science.” Science only happened in areas whose worldview was shaped by Christianity, that is, Europe.
Mark Tooley opines on The Religious Left’s Meltdown on Global Warming
Are we condemned to Darwinian shackles of scarcity in a fight for survival in the modern jungle?
Or if there is evidence for Intelligent Design, could there actually be sufficient or even abundant energy to support such population growth?
Is there sufficient intelligence among humans today to design for cost effective sustainable energy?
One would think this would at least make splash-page news, but the MSM sites don’t even mention it. Perhaps it is because the Pope takes issue with Materialism’s eschatological construct.
Or if there is evidence for Intelligent Design, could there actually be sufficient or even abundant energy to support such population growth?
Fire from Salt Water
of special note:
John Kanzius has found a way to burn salt water with the same radio wave machine he is using to kill cancer cells.
“While the phenomenon is interesting, it is not yet practical for energy generation as long as more energy is consumed by the radio frequency device than is produced for burning. Efficiency-wise, they started at around 76 percent of Faraday’s theoretical limit…They subsequently quietly reported that they surpassed 100% efficiency, which would mean that the system is somehow harnessing environmental energy.”
If this is true that they passed 100% efficiency, this could be the ultimate “green” fuel.
The global warming thing is a damn lie. Its not a scam. It’s a lie. If this pope continues they way hes going I just might start going to church again. Why do you think they called it “Greeland” becuase it use to be warm. Climate change is real but human cause climate change is not. If people realy cared about climate change and its impact on people they would be tlaking about global cooling just as much as global warming becasue the earth goes through natual ice ages and warming periods and we need to PREPARE for the climate change which is enevitible if we are to save money and lives. But nobody cares about the people they just want to take a shot at big business and/or make a buck- this is the sad nature of the human condition and the political climate is at its intellecual all time low IMOP. The earhts land mass is only 30% of the globe. Humans live on about 10% of that and human CO2 emmissions account for a startleing 1% of the earth’s CO2 emmsions. Man made global warming- We are all going to die- What a big lie. Scientists are selling their souls to make a buck again – but what else is new?
Um, why is this of interest? As far as I understand it, there is scientific consensus that we have harmed the Earth, our Mother. What some misogynist in a funny hat has to say about it is of little interest.
I’m a committed design theorist, but I don’t much care for Christians. However, at least the (largely Protestant) ones here are honest about their beliefs. Everything interesting in Catholicism (the worship of Mary, for instance) they stole from us pagans.
Again, I don’t see why this belongs on an intelligent design blog.
Yeah I’m really starting to like this Pope! It’s just so funny that the “Pope” is more in touch with science than the media.
“Again, I don’t see why this belongs on an intelligent design blog.”
I don’t understand how this type of question can pop up again and again and again and…It’s almost like there needs to be a disclaimer on the front page. Something like, “We here at UD are free to discuss topics we feel highlight or parallel the injustices being committed under the banner of ‘science'”
Trans Siberian Christmas in Lights
Amazing Guitar – Christmas Canon
Holiday Light Show to Trans Siberian part 2
Does anybody really care what the Pope says? I mean, comments like: “I may start going to church again” just don’t make sense.
Christianity is — loosely speaking — about following Jesus Christ, and part of His message and that of His contemporary followers was to meet together with other believers, irrespective of anyone’s views on human induced climate change.
bornagain77 re #9
“If this is true that they passed 100% efficiency, this could be the ultimate “green” fuel.”
If only it were true.
Unfortunately, the laws of thermodynamics still rule. Expensive fuel drives the turbines to generate electrical energy which powers the microwaves that heat the water to form the plasma that burns so beautifully.
Very pretty and impressive. Sadly this appears a very expensive way to generate and burn fuel.
Focus on the incredible abundance of solar energy we bask in.
“More energy from the Sun falls on the Earth in one hour than is used by everyone in the world in one year. In one day, the Sun provides more energy than our current population would consume in 27 years. In fact, “The amount of solar radiation striking the earth over a three-day period is equivalent to the energy stored in all fossil energy sources.”
The key challenge no is to design cost effective solar fuels. Applying ID, what insights can understanding design in nature give to this challenge?
“As far as I understand it, there is scientific consensus that we have harmed the Earth, our Mother. What some misogynist in a funny hat has to say about it is of little interest.”
What has “consensus” got to do with science? Cannot evidence overthrow theories at any time, let alone scientific dogma? Please consider some of the important contrary evidence being published. e.g.:
Skeptical scientists urge world to have the courage to do nothing at UN conference
I did not know ID was seeking to worship “the Earth, our Mother”.
Could we not all learn from that “funny hat”. With his years, study, and consultation, Benedict XVI speaks with wisdom worth reflecting on. Regarding “misogynist”, frivolous ad hominem attacks are not welcome here, nor is wasting our time. See Charter of the Rights of the Family, 24 November 1983, Holy See.
Robo asks: “Does anybody really care what the Pope says?”
Robo, I’m going to go out a limb here and suggest that perhaps, just maybe, a few of the world’s one billion Catholics might care about what the Pope says. Just a guess.
From the Pope’s statement: “Respecting the environment does not mean considering material or animal nature more important than man. Rather, it means not selfishly considering nature to be at the complete disposal of our own interests, for future generations also have the right to reap its benefits and to exhibit towards nature the same responsible freedom that we claim for ourselves. Nor must we overlook the poor, who are excluded in many cases from the goods of creation destined for all.”
Well put, and hard to disagree with. I am not a Catholic or a Christian, but as Shaner74 said, I’m really starting to like this Pope. The only problem I’ve got is the inherent contradiction. The head of an inherently theologically ideological Church urging an unbiased nonideological consideration of the matter: “….to be carried out prudently, in dialogue with experts and people of wisdom, uninhibited by ideological pressure to draw hasty conclusions…” Surely the theological pronouncements of doctrine issued by the many Popes constitute an ideology imposed on all good Catholics.
I believe the operative phrase was: “uninhibited by ideological pressure to draw hasty conclusions…” – not “nonideological”. Everyone has an ideology or worldview and cannot act without that.
Benedict’s admonishment is clearly directed against environmentalists led by Al Gore trying to push political action faster than/contrary to growing evidence on natural causes as primary causes for climate change. Is not Benedict XVI advocating prudent measured evaluation rather than pressured hasty action?
Prudent measured discourse is equally needed in origin’s discourse, especially in face of radical materialists seeking to impose their dogmatic views on the majority.
—–magnan, “The only problem I’ve got is the inherent contradiction. The head of an inherently theologically ideological Church urging an unbiased nonideological consideration of the matter: “….to be carried out prudently, in dialogue with experts and people of wisdom, uninhibited by ideological pressure to draw hasty conclusions…” Surely the theological pronouncements of doctrine issued by the many Popes constitute an ideology imposed on all good Catholics.”
Sound theological and moral doctrines do not militate against a common-sense approach to solving problems. Quite the contrary, it is impossible to understand our role of “stewards of the earth” in any other context.
Contrary to popular opinion, moral leadership does not enslave, it liberates. Legitimate authority is a very good thing, and is, in no way, an “imposition of ideology.” Illegitimate authority, on the other hand, is a very bad thing, and it really does do violence against the human spirit.
The trick is learning how to differentiate between legitimate moral authority and illegitimate moral authority.
Barry, perhaps I am wrong but I get the impression that Catholics care what the Pope says about as much as Protestants care what Jerry Falwell says. ???
There are 77 million Catholics in the U.S. About a third attend Mass weekly. I think it is safe to say they are somewhat interested in what the Pope says. Another third attend Mass once or more a month. They also can be figured to be somewhat interested in what the Pope says.
That doesn’t make your impression wrong, btw. A lot of Protestants cared what the late Rev. Falwell said. He was figure not without influence.
DLH you commented:
“Unfortunately, the laws of thermodynamics still rule.”
In response to this article I submitted:
Fire from Salt Water
I don’t believe this is analogous to the perpetual motion machine, for in fact they are seeking to release “stored energy” that is already in the hydrogen of the water molecule.
So this concept could in fact be feasible for it is somewhat similar in concept to the “extra” energy we get from our use of hydrocarbons.
We know the energy is in there (in the water), the only question is did he find a proper catalyst, in salt, and process, in his specific radio waves, to break the strong chemical bonds of “normal” water so as to liberate the hydrogen energy at a useful and economical rate.
The Pope’s comments on warming alarmism may be epochal. Big Science has invested a great deal of its credibility in the global warming crusade. If it turns out that the “consensus” was wrong, the implications for science and culture could be far-reaching. Are we witnessing the next great paradigm change? Is Modernism with its doctrinaire materialism foundering?
Its amazing how preconceived notions can color this speach.
Many here appear to be in the humans don’t cause global warming camp. Thus the focus is on how humans are more important than the animals and how “good” science needs to prevail.
I see it a little differently. Take for instance:
Prudence does not mean failing to accept responsibilities and postponing decisions; it means being committed to making joint decisions after pondering responsibly the road to be taken, decisions aimed at strengthening that covenant between human beings and the environment, which should mirror the creative love of God, from whom we come and towards whom we are journeying.
I think the “postponing decisions” is subtle jab at the US policy on global warming.
Also note how the term responsible (or variations thereof) is used many time in his speach. I think the real subtext is against those who are favor doing nothing. Keep in mind that both sides consider their science “good”, so the science comments are not defining a side.
To me this has always been a simple problem. Air pollution is a BAD thing. Some of the same sources of this pollution (gasoline cars and coal power) are also deemed to be part of the global warming problem. Now we find out that the technology has existed for some time to eliminate or nearly eliminate these sources of pollution. Doubt global warming all you want, I’m against acid rain and smog.
Mike Elzinga posted the following comment over at The Panda’s Thumb on one of the discussion threads. I repost it since it shows the spin Darwinists are putting on various activities and because it seems inline with the current discussion (what type of news or topics are relevant to ID).
You might wonder why it’s necessary to form entire organizations to promote Darwinism and wage hate mail/trolling campaigns when all they need to do is submit one piece of positive evidence…
Some of the same sources of this pollution (gasoline cars and coal power) are also deemed to be part of the global warming problem.
Right. And the same crowd that is screeching about global warming has been fighting the implementation of these sources — nuclear power, telecommuting (in the U.S. it would benefit from OSHA and tort reforms) — for as long as I can remember.
Further, this same crowd wants to rip down hydroelectic dams.
Further, this same crowd wants to turn freeways into turnpikes with traffic snarling toll booths.
Based on this I deduce that GW is a political ploy to gain power rather than a crisis.
Sorry for the off topicness of this, but I just read a report which seems to indicate Saturn’s rings are as old as the solar system, and they remain as rings because the particles keep crashing into each other and re-dispersing. This struck me as odd. The planets themselves were supposedly created within a “ring” by coalescing into, well, planets. To the young-earthers out there, aren’t Saturn’s rings sometimes cited to support a “young” solar system?
bornagain77 at 24
The key difference on the “fire from salt water” is if this is just transforming electromagnetic to chemical energy (of microwaves to plasma to split water into hydrogen and oxygen), or if this is actually leveraging nuclear energy. cf. “cold fusion” or in this case “warm fusion”.
If anyone finds evidence that the energy out/conventional energy in is > 100%, please let us know. i.e., indicating a fusion type event. Otherwise I will assume it is not and that the above energy efficiency analysis still applies.
Its a neat demonstration of energy conversion, but does not appear to be a source of “unlimited” “free” energy.
See the following links:
Directory:John Kanzius Produces Hydrogen from Salt Water Using Radio Waves
Salt water fuel gets major university review
Fire from seawater claim lights up the web
Until there is potential to generate hydrogen with this method for less than $1/kg (~ $1 / gallon gasoline equivalent, or ~ $8/GJ), lets not waste further time on this.
Lets get back to issues of ideological driven hasty decisions being made at the UN FCC in Bali etc. compared to ideologically driven decisions made for Darwinism and against ID and how to deal with them.
PlatosPlaything, I am not sure why you are confusing global warming by mixing it with mysogyny, and with the funny hats, because the latter two have nothing to do with this topic. This could be some sort of stupid provocation, but just in case it isn’t, I will answer. (I have serious doubts about you being a committed design theorist, if you are, prove it.)
This forum is wisely continuing to pursue global warming as bad science and pseudo-science, because it is interested in exposing this sort of “quasi-reasoning” and propaganda as fallacious. So thank you DaveScott for pursuing this and finding interesting links and facts. (I wanted to express my kudos in an earlier thread, but couldn’t because of the Posting Too Quickly server error.) After all, this pseudo-scientific hoax will have huge consequences similar in scale to Darwinism being showed down our throats.
But, since you mentioned them, allow me to briefly address your misconceptions by knocking the funny hat off your head.
The pope, Jesus, and the Catholic Church do not hate women. The proof is in all those multitudes of women who understand this rather simple proposition and willingly go to churches all around the world to pray. In fact, those who understand this, understand it because Christianity has been the only social force that has truly dignified women and freed them from male domination. No other culture or religion has done that. For example, Hindus abort their girls because they don’t value them. Or Muslims would rather put their women into harems, and generally treat women with harem mentality. And all the modern secularist freedoms of liberated “Playboys” have liberated women to be just sex objects in porn magazines, strip-clubs, filthy movies and brothels.
If a “Mother Earth” feminist who calls herself a Plaything is attacking the Church by trying to knock the pope’s hat off, and by accusing Christians of stealing feminist cults, it only shows how ignorant and confused she is.
BTW, if Earth is like your “mother”, why is she so cruel to us? Have you ever wondered why this “mother” is killing her children on a massive scale by all sorts of natural catastrophes, from hurricanes to ice storms to forest fires?
Bah, religious left. Kind of like communist entrepreneur…
I think that GW is one of those things that people are just not looking at reasonably. First you have to subtract almost all of the media mention the “theory” gets because the media’s scientific method is “if it bleeds it reads.” Then you need to realize that 99.9% of all people who believe in it have no reason to because they are just merely repeating what someone else has said and have no scientific credentials at all. That leaves us with the scientific community which is by and large dependent on grants and loans for studying this “phenomena” that has been going on sense the dawn of time. And right here is over 19 thousand educated people who reject the argument-
All of the physical evidence, at the very least, does not contradict evolution.
The physical evidence cited to support evolution cis what? The fossil record? The molecular clock?
The fossil record does not show gradual change of one species into another, rather it shows entire new species appearing out whole cloth.
The molecular clock was predicated on a constant DNA replication error rate across all species. That has been found to be untenable.
But when these things fail there is always a rationalization as to why they do and the theory still has to be true.
UN Climate Change Conference based on flawed science and economics
Skeptical scientists have challenged both the scientific foundations for the UN FCC in Bali, and the economics of the proposed solutions.
Don’t fight, adapt We should give up futile attempts to combat climate change
In an open letter to the UN and heads of states, 100 scientists and economists have challenged the current science and proposed strategy.
These foundational issues parallel ID – what to do when scientists believe the majority is wrong on the science, and/or when the proposed solutions (e.g. Elementary Darwinism only public education) are believed to be counterproductive.
absolutely amazing christmas lights show
Amazing Christmas Lights; Reflections
The global warming is a bit different than the ID debate. If global warming is true then the world may be doomed. If global warming turns out to be false then a lot of money would be wasted. There’s a sense of fear and immediate urgency and that tends to lower the bar for actual evidence.
How many times do we have to tell you before it sinks in. Evolution happened. Few here are denying that. What is undetermined is the mechanism for the appearance of new species.
There is no evidence supporting any specific mechanism including gradualism or ID. One has to come to a conclusion based on the forensic evidence available. Gradualism as an explanation except for trivial stuff is untenable because it predicts a massive number of intermediary forms and constant pressure to create new species but none have been found. What has been found is always massive discontinuities.
The most persuasive evidence for each position is negative evidence against each of the other positions. Since gradualism proclaims a specific mechanism for new species, one that would leave lots of traces during life’s history and there is no evidence, then it can be ruled out immediately.
All Darwin saw was the trivial and no one since has seen anything but the trivial. Hence gradualism is a bust. The argument for ID is based on probabilities. No natural process has been able to create the specified complexity seen in life except for an intelligent process, the logical conclusion is that until shown otherwise an intelligent process was involved in life’s origin.
Believe what you want but there is no empirical evidence for a naturalistic process at the moment. Whether one will eventually show up will be in the pudding but as of the moment none exist nor are there any good prospects but you can still have faith that some day there will be one.
Keep the faith.
Evolution *means* that there must be a natural mechanism in order to infer descent.
Arifreeom, get real Evolution means “change over time” period. And global warming is a bunch of BS. Once again, the world will get a lot warmer than it is today eventually, as well as it will get a lot colder eventually and neither change has any correlation with human activity. If weak evidence was really a substitute for really important dangerous “possible” challenges – then we need to start spending millions of dollars building a device and deployment system to take out giant asteroids because they are bound to hit the earth probabilistically in the future and will cause massive extinctions. No one though is talking about those asteroids or meteors because the research grants aren’t as big and you cant use them to wage war on the industrial sector all the while making huge bucks forcing everyone to change to worthless expensive green economic vehicles and energy technologies.
Just so everyone knows, I just checked the banned list and ellazimm was added to it by one of the other moderators.
Anyway, to answer the question: One of the central tenets of the “modern synthesis of evolutionary biology” as celebrated in 1959 was the idea that macroevolution and microevolution were essentially the same process. That is, macroevolution was simply microevolution extrapolated over deep evolutionary time, using the same mechanisms and with essentially the same effects. A half century of research into macroevolution has shown that this is not the case. As such, Darwinism does not have exclusive positive evidence for any mechanism to explain evolution, and scientists are in the middle of formulating a new hypothesis, while ID has exclusive positive evidence that intelligence is capable of producing such mechanisms. In addition, ID also has the design detection method EF, which also provides exclusive positive evidence for ID since it has never produced a false positive (and if it has it should be simple to provide an example along with the relevant calculations). There’s also IC. I could go on but it’s rather obvious at this point that ID has exclusive positive evidence for it while Darwinism does not. And, no, universal common descent is not exclusive positive evidence for Darwinism since UCD is also compatible with ID.
Evolution means “change over time”? That’s a pretty vacuous definition. We already know from the 2nd law of thermodynamics that everything will change over time…towards maximum entropy.
I should point out that the global warmers pull off a similar trick. oh it’s now cold? well aha you see the real problem is “climate change”
I find it very hard to believe that an ape could give birth to a human being. How? Immaculate conception? And even if it could, I doubt that such a “freak” would last very long, let alone take over a population.
If you stick around here a while, you will see that not only is evolution preposterous on first glance, it is also preposterous on all levels of evidence that are scrutinized.
The dictionary definition of evolution:
1. A gradual process in which something changes into a different and usually more complex or better form. See Synonyms at development.
a. The process of developing.
b. Gradual development.
a. Change in the genetic composition of a population during successive generations, as a result of natural selection acting on the genetic variation among individuals, and resulting in the development of new species.
b. The historical development of a related group of organisms; phylogeny.
I suggest you come up with a definition of evolution. The official one of neo Darwinism and used in biology is a change in the allele frequency of a population over time.
Despite what neo Darwinism claims, evolution has a direction. While some species persist for tens of millions of years without any visible change others appear and the new ones seem more sophisticated. The number of cell types for example has gone from about 30-40 during the Cambrian Explosion to about 220 today. Each new cell type represents a new capability for the organism.
So there is two ways to look at evolution. Find your own way but don’t beg the question of what causes it by your definiton.
This really should be not part of this thread since it is on the pope and global warming.
Jerry, there is a reason why global warming is on an ID blog.
Both camps like to switch back and forth between 2 claims. First, environmentalists will claim that humans are causing global warming. When it turns out that there is no global warming, they switch to the second claim that humans are causing ‘climate change.’ Heads I win, tails you lose. The first claim, that they can explain an upward trend, is the hook.
This site may help understand the implausibility of evolution from the information standpoint.
Debating Design: From Darwin to DNA
By William A. Dembski, Michael Ruse
Actually, I have never read ID books from the ‘standard’ IDists (Dembski, Behe, Wells, Denton etc) So, I have a major reading assignment 🙂
I have Spetner’s Not By Chance and ReMine’s Biotic Message. I’m not a ‘standard’ guy so I’ll probably read Sanford’s book next.
Joseph D’Hippolito has a good followup editorial:
The Pope vs. Global Warming
The politicization of science has serious consequences that hinder finding the truth:
[St. Paul/Minneapolis archbishop]
“Flynn’s dogmatism reflects the totalitarian attitude of his fellow activists. Skeptical scientists are called “deniers” and treated as if they were denying the historicity of the Holocaust. Worse, they are increasingly unable to procure research funding.”
Some evidence not being heard:
“Dr. Vincent Gray, a climatologist who reviewed all of the IPCC’s drafts since the panel was formed in 1990 and who shares a Nobel Prize awarded to the panel, was even more emphatic:”
And yet the UN FCC supertanker was refueled in Bali and is proceeding with incredible inertia!
This has amazing parallels with the politicization and funding of evolution vs seeking the full truth.