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We are told: The hunt for extraterrestrial life is about to enter a new era


Hope springs eternal:

In October 2021, a NASA flagship telescope called the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is scheduled to be launched into space. At 6.5 metres in diameter, it is twice the size of the previous largest telescope ever launched. Its large size will make it possible to measure the extremely dim atmosphere of planets hundreds of trillions of kilometres away.

And, being in space, its view won’t be hindered by Earth’s atmosphere, so will produce extremely crisp images and accurate measurements. NASA is so excited about finding signs of life with the JWST that it allocated 25 per cent of the telescope’s assigned observation time to study exoplanet atmospheres.

Chima McGruder, “The hunt for extraterrestrial life is about to enter a new era” at New Scientist

We shall see what we see.

See also: Aliens who landed here would just starve, a science writer predicts. We tend to assume that any life form could live with our complicated chemistry but what if — fundamentally — not? That if an intelligent life form landed on Earth with the opposite chirality to the one on which life forms on Earth depend = sugars right, amino acids left?

Evolution is an object of faith:
It is completely right to say that since the evidence for evolution is so absolutely totally overwhelming, nobody who looks at it could possibly doubt that if they were sane and not supid. So the only remaining possibility is that they are ignorant. And the most people who don't believe in evolution are indeed ignorant.
Richard Dawkins, italics mine. From here (between 30:53 and 31:10): https://youtu.be/V5EPymcWp-g It is funny to see this sort of quotes loaded with "absolutely", "totally", "could possibly", "completely", "the only". Emotions instead of facts. EugeneS
This is from a review of his book Evo-Illusion on Amazon:
Why don’t you read the book?
You’re easily impressed.
Mocking me doesn’t get it done. What about his insight that DNA has nothing to do with the evolution debate. He’s right on. By the way I searched for your examples and they don’t appear in the book I’m reading. Must be another book of his. I’m reading one book at a time. Also your reviewer commits one of the major fallacies of the evolution debate, changing the subject. jerry
Blume is very insightful
Really? You're easily impressed. This is from a review of his book Evo-Illusion on Amazon:
Blume asks a lot of question about evolution, but "Asking questions" does not provide an explanation. Nor does it help at all when the questions are stupid. Let's look at some questions and other stuff from chapter 12 of the book to see whether Blume's questions help us understanding nature. Page 153: "Why did it take fourteen years for Shubin to figure out it was a frog?" - Why wouldn't it? This is not a race, and the clue to figuring it out might have been unearthed 14 years later. Blume continues to ramble on about the time and cost spent to find the Tiktaalik. Yes, digging in the arctic is expensive and time-consuming. What is Blume's point? However, he suppresses one of the best pieces of evidence for the Theory of Evolution in the whole story: Biologists used the Theory of Evolution to predict where to find early tetrapods, went there AND FOUND THEM! How do you explain that, if the ToE is rubbish? (See here for details: http://tiktaalik.uchicago.edu/searching4Tik.html) Page 153: "Why didn't frogs evolve much in two hundred million years?" - Why would they? If you are adapted to your environment, any change would lower your chances of successful reproduction. This question exposes a fundamental lack of knowledge about the Theory of Evolution. There is no "goal" in evolution, and if somethings works for you, you should keep it. Page 153: "Was Darwin wrong?" - Not Blume's question mind you, but all the more enlightening. The answer he puts in the biologist's mouth is: "Darwin was going to be absolutely right." Again that exposes a deep, fundamental ignorance of the Theory of Evolution. Darwin published Origin in 1859, and since then thousands, if not millions of biologists and other life scientists have corrected and expanded the Theory of Evolution. The most important step is the "Modern Synthesis" from the middle of the 20th century. So was Darwin wrong? Yes he was, and in many ways. No serious biologist would claim otherwise. Page 155: "Shubin, because of his find and his PhD education, is now an expert on how we humans were made from fish". - Doh, no, it's the other way round. Shubin, because he is an expert on how we humans evolved from fish, was able to find the Tiktaalik. Page 156: "All you need to do in evolution is say, and it's true." - That shows that Blume not only does not understand Evolution, he does not understand Science. Blume's statement is almost the opposite of science. Page 158: "So many artists' renderings show the hind end of Tiktaalik with two healthy limbs, which don't exist on the fossil itself." - Maybe not on the first one. Here is a hint: In 2014 Shubin along with Daeschler and Jenkins published a paper called "Pelvic girdle and fin of Tiktaalik roseae." Hm, what might this be about we wonder? In the worst case, Shubin correctly predicted the tiktaalik's pelvis. Page 158: "Did it 'dis-evolve' three [digits] so its descendants could have a five-fingered forelimbs? No vertebrate today has an eight-digit forelimb." - So many ways to repond to this. First, the Tiktaalik did not evolve in this way on purpose, as implied. Second, digits are a liability, smaller digits can be injured easier and the added value of additional digits diminishes rapidly. It is not at all suprising that Tetrapods lost some once they were firmly land-based. Third, today we have mammals from one to six digits. Even within the same species, the number of digits can be up or down by one. Why would it be so suprising to have a species with eight digits? Fourth, do you think the vertebrae of a snake evolved individually? Changing the number of a thing is easy to do in genetics. Page 160: "The fossil record does not show any evolution within species over millions to hundred of millions of years." - This is a real face palmer, so twisted that I have a problem assuming ignorance, and have to consider malice. What alternative would Blume expect? Large-scale changes visible in the fossil record - but within the same species? A recent change in humans is lactase persistence. It's a huge change, opening a whole new food source for adults, vastly affecting their survivability. Would Blume expect it to be reflected in the fossil record? Given large-scale changes between two fossils, how would Blume determine that they belong to the same species? It makes no sense. In conclusion, the assumption that a layperson's book would fundamentally threaten the most important theory in modern biology is far-fetched from the start. In Blume's case, you can easily find evidence that he does not know what he is talking about.
[Scientific materialists] are getting really worried about the possibility of finding life out there because it will undermine all our parochial little ... religion? Yes especially intelligent life capable of laughter at the idea of a religious figurehead of a so-called 'scientific' religion who happened to have been (strangely enough) a 19th century, philosophically driven non-scientist. groovamos
A quote from Blume
Science has promoted a massive illusion that fools people into thinking we understand far more than we do. Exacerbating this illusion is our phenomenal technology. There is no doubt that human technology has advanced beyond anything we thought possible in the 1950’ s, when Watson and Crick deciphered the structure of the DNA molecule. Can you imagine what Darwin would say if he could observe modern science and technology? He would be stunned. The line between science and technology has become hazy. Most people think the two have advanced equally. In reality, advances in technology have lead to more new advances. Advances in scientific knowledge have given rise to new advances, but have also caused science to move exponentially farther away from solving The Puzzle of Life and how the universe works and how they originated.”
So science points away for the origin of life not toward how it began. He goes on
All the while, science promotes the illusion it is closer to solving the how’s. Of course, the biggest question of all is why? Why is the universe, Earth, and life existent at all?
Blume is very insightful
The modern version of the Dark Ages is still loaded with fables and illusions that try to explain inexplicable scientific phenomena. The illusions are so profound because they are mixed in with modern technology, valid phenomenal scientific discoveries, unimaginable amounts of new information that weren’t available to the thinkers of ancient times, and great illusionists who sell the fables such as Richard Dawkins. Unfortunately, modern fables and illusions are far more difficult to detect than were ancient fables.”
We live in a modern day land of Fairy Tales and don’t realize it. jerry
Seversky, I used to believe aliens were the real deal. When I was a kid I was a huge X-Files fan, I had a telescope, and I used to stargaze all the time hoping to find that one glimpse of a UFO As technology got better I kept looking and I would always find nothing My Christian faith had nothing to do with my loss in faith that there are aliens out there My loss of faith for extraterrestrials happened from finding the myriad of fake photos and hoaxes from all over the world that involved UFOs My faith in Christianity demands that God would not have made a wasteful universe filled with emptiness but us Never once did I question my faith, The only ones that set up that stupid narrative are atheist like yourself it’s another STRAWMAN! I don’t think there’s life out there because we haven’t found any And the nonsense Star Trek crap that aliens such amazing technology it’s magic and that they can just hide from us is silly You attribute to them the same powers and abilities Angels and Gods would have because their technology is soooooo advanced They’re just so advanced we won’t find them And if that’s the case then why even look It’s silly I don’t believe they exist because if they were out there we would’ve seen them by now It’s more believable that some race is going to come floating by our little planet and go “oooh resources” and take our a little planet But This has not happened and it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen anytime soon Because if they are advanced enough to get to us they are advanced enough to just take this planet away from us and they don’t have to worry about a retaliation My faith in aliens would be restored if I saw one rocksolid photo that did not involve a blotchy image that you can’t focus on I’ve seen ghost pictures far clearer than the ones that I have seen of UFOs But remember there’s so advanced they have magic abilities to hide from us indefinitely Or some horseshit prerogative to let us evolve on our own without their interference Both of those excuses are sci-fi fantasy dreamt up for Star Trek AaronS1978
Sev- Great to see you have such faith , as you **believe** there is something out there , how about some science to back up that belief , not that "billions of stars , hence millions of planets" junk , some good old actual, testable, experimental , science. Marfin
Earth to seversky- ID predicts there are extraterrestrial beings. ET
All anybody is asking is that you accept the situation as we know it today: No evidence of extraterrestrial communication. No evidence of extraterrestrial spacecraft that anyone can actually display to the public. Other planets are all hostile to life. Life itself is too improbable to form spontaneously. The best/simplest explanation is that we are alone. (I hear the argument frequently that discovering aliens would cause mass panic. I don't buy that as a reason the authorities haven't revealed them to us yet. Business-people would immediately start trying to figure out how to sell them stuff. Hollywood would get a (badly needed) boost to its collective imagination, sci-fi-wise. People would flock to any museum that actually had real hardware from another planet to look at. Anthropologists and biologists would have a literal field day! [_Anthro_pologists would need a new name of course.] [If aliens were aggressive, we'd know by now.] There would be no panic. Oh, and every religion on earth would have a new source of converts.) EDTA
Sorry, i don’t buy it.
Too late ...you've already bought that reason can be produced by some dumb chemicals. Sandy
It sounds to me like ID/creationists are getting really worried about the possibility of finding life out there because it will undermine all our parochial little conceits about being privileged or unique. Alright, I'll allow we are privileged in a sense to find ourselves on a relatively hospitable little planet but this is a really big universe and we are supposed to be the only life anywhere and at any time? Sorry, i don't buy it. Seversky
Wait! We may be able to detect intelligence by identifying information in a radio wave and deduce space aliens??? But no one has independently confirmed that space aliens exist. I’m afraid this is just another “Aliens-of-the-Gaps” boondoggle. dreeves
Well, at least this is a proper part of NASA's original mission. Money spent on this telescope won't be spent on censorship and Gaian propaganda. polistra
MikeW@5 Couldn't agree more. Well said. doubter
@ET No what you think are aliens are actually demons or angels They are extrademensional beings aren’t they And in space? I mean aren’t these beings capable of being anywhere at any point And damn that comment of yours it popped “PIGS IN SPACE” into my head AaronS1978
Mahuna@1, The data from Webb will make it more and more obvious how special and finely-tuned are the Earth-Moon system, the Sun-Earth system, and our solar system as a whole. Scientists like Hugh Ross will be vindicated as their theories about Earth as a “Privileged Planet” and “Rare Earth” are confirmed. That’s what’s happening now in biology as mounting evidence from detailed genetic data reveals how little the Darwinian mechanism can accomplish, except to devolve existing genetic information from higher animal templates into lower forms. The Darwinian edifice is crumbling as predictions from pioneers like William Dembski and Michael Behe are continually being confirmed with actual data. (Information and data are friends of the truth.) MikeW
Demons in space ships. Really? ET
There’s always a possibility that the aliens that are supposedly here are not exactly aliens but something more on the lines of a celestial or demonic nature AaronS1978
They are already here. 1947 Roswell NM. Continue to deny it if you want. That won't change the facts. ET
Haven't we ALREADY gone through this half a dozen times? And haven't we CONSISTENTLY come up with "nothing important"? There ain't NOTHING interesting out there. And if one the MANY exo-telescopes found ANY planet with ANY atmosphere (including poisonous gases) 1,000 light years away, SO WHAT? The most promising planet we have EVER found is Venus, which is darn close to a description of Hell. And we realized way back in the '60s that any planet with intelligent life would obviously be broadcasting radio and TV signals 24/7 (or whatever the Exo equivalent is). And there simply AIN'T no such planet: none, nada, zip. On the other hand, the more we look at Earth, and the delicately balanced Earth-Moon system, the more we come away saying: This ain't Natural; somebody (i.e., THE Somebody) spent more years than we can count CONSTRUCTING the Earth-Moon system. Why isn't there more "gaping in astonished Wonder" at that Earth-Moon system? mahuna

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