I don’t watch a lot of television, but I must admit that I enjoy the History Channel. The other night I was watching a program on the origin of the universe and life. At one point the narrator commented (I paraphrase), “And then, unknown chemical reactions caused life to form.”
This is obviously pure speculation presented as fact, and my Carl-Sagan-inspired baloney detection kit went into immediate overdrive. I said to myself: “Self, how do they know that unknown chemical reactions caused life to form? No evidence is presented for this claim. And how did all that complex information-processing machinery come about through chemical reactions?”
Baloney detection is a two-edged sword.