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Thoughts to ponder from James Tour

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Following on James Tour on the hypocrisy of origin of life conjectures –  updated: From James Tour, T. T. and W. F. Chao Professor of Chemistry, as well as Professor of Computer Science and Professor of Materials Science and NanoEngineering at Rice University, with over 590 research publications and over 100 patents: (beginning at 3:05) in his March 3, 2016 lecture titled “The Origin of Life: An Inside Story,” here:

We have no idea how the molecules that compose living systems could have been devised such that they would work in concert to fulfill biology’s functions. We have no idea how the basic set of molecules, carbohydrates, nucleic acids, lipids, and proteins, were made and how they could have coupled into the proper sequences, and then transformed into the ordered assemblies until there was the construction of a complex biological system, and eventually to that first cell.

Nobody has any idea how this was done when using our commonly understood mechanisms of chemical science. Those that say they understand are generally wholly uninformed regarding chemical synthesis. Those that say “Oh, this is well worked out,” they know nothing, nothing about chemical synthesis – Nothing!

Further cluelessness – From a synthetic chemical perspective, neither I nor any of my colleagues can fathom a prebiotic molecular route to construction of a complex system. We cannot figure out the prebiotic routes to the basic building blocks of life: carbohydrates, nucleic acids, lipids, and proteins. Chemists are collectively bewildered. Hence I say that no chemist understands prebiotic synthesis of the requisite building blocks let alone their assembly into a complex system.

That’s how clueless we are. I’ve asked all of my colleagues – National Academy members, Nobel Prize winners -I sit with them in offices; nobody understands this. So if your professors say it’s all worked out, your teachers say it’s all worked out, they don’t know what they’re talking about. It is not worked out. You cannot just refer this to somebody else; they don’t know what they’re talking about.

Isn’t the real problem here that the origin of life researchers do not have a Darwin to stand in place of fact in the popular imagination? Failure doesn’t matter if the public is buying excuses.

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2 Replies to “Thoughts to ponder from James Tour

  1. 1
    Mung says:

    Isn’t the real problem here that the origin of life researchers do not have a Darwin to stand in place of fact in the popular imagination?

    Precisely. And just as that does not matter, if there were no Darwin there would still be a designer substitute, they’d even settle for pure chance didit.

  2. 2
    jimmontg says:

    I have always thought the verse, The fool says in his heart that there is no God”. The person who thinks there is something from nothing is foolish. He can be the smartest and highest IQ in the world, but the failure to believe in a Grand Designer is the height of self deception. Jesus said it well, the Apostle Paul expounded on it. The Natural Man CANNOT perceive the things of GOD. The materialists got one thing right. There isn’t any free will in a slave to sin.

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