Thursday, June 10, 2010

Big Bang 2: Support for BB


Taking up Rawhn Joseph's arguments (see previous post) first, in the last chapter I documented disproof of his assertion that the Big Band has failed every important test. It hasn't failed in, in fact it's the only theory that hasn't failed any. Let's look at Joseph's specific arguments.

I. BB theorizes universe is 8 Billion years old but there are stars and galaxies more than 8 billion light years away. Joseph explains:

For  example, the big bang theory predicts that the universe is about 8  billion years old, which is 5 billion years younger than our own Milky  Way Galaxy. Also, according to prediction, there should be no stars or  galaxies more than 8 billion light years from Earth. And yet, there are  stars and more stars as far as the Hubble eye can see; old and fully  formed galaxies which are not newly created as predicted by theory, but  over 13 billion years in age and so incredibly distant that Astronomers  and NASA refused to continue looking as the very existence of these  stellar objects completely refutes the big bang. Moreover, predications  based on the Big Bang can account for less than 20% of the mass and  density of the known, observable universe.  Nor can this theory explain  the discordant data on red shifts, galaxy distribution, colliding  galaxies, the abundance of helium, and why the movement of galaxies  appears to be speeding up, and so on.   

The answer to this one is so obvious even I know it. There are two answers:

(1) The original BB estimate of the age of the Universe was wrong. That doesn't effect the BB theory it just means the age is different. That has no effect on the actual theory at all. The real age of the Universe is about 15 Billion years.

(2) Joseph is  not allowing for the Lambda force. The principle that speeds up the expansion. BTW the planets and stars are not just propelled away from each other, but space itself is expanding like a loaf of bread the oven, things like stars are analogous to nuts in the bread, they move further away as space expands. Space is not  expanding at a steady rate but the rate of expansion is always accelerating.

Joseph's answer to this argument is nothing short of stupid:

To  bridge the fatal discrepancies between observation and theory, and to  account for acceleration, the greater than predicted gravitational  influences, the missing 80% of the universe, and so on, the  acolytes of  this religion invent multiple universes, alternate realities, and   hypothetical, invisible, undetectable substances, and supernatural  constructs such as "inflation," "dark energy" and "dark matter."  And  yet, although proposed as a patchwork fix, to paper over the increasing  number of holes in this theory, these constructs actually refute the big  bang and support instead the theory of the eternal, infinite universe.  

So all the facts that have been discovered just excuses to cover up for the failure of the Big Bang to predict something it's not even about, and all scientist are acolytes of religion! He dismisses mulitiverse as a mere "religious excuse" to cover up the failure of the BB but that's the principle answer to the fine tuning argument and atheists use it all the time for many things. I'm sure the atheists wouldn't want to lose that answer. Be that as it may the expansion and the lambda force have proved over and over again by more than one kind of study, radio telescope, red shift and more.

Joseph's arguments are all based upon problems with the original predictions of the Big Bang as though he's not willing to allow a theory to be tweaked. Probably all theories get tweaked so that's not reasonable. He also argues that there's no physics to explain the expansion. That's true and I've seen staunch proponents of the BB say that, and yet the theories that would replace it are only half baked. There are lots of theories that are only way done, such as "string," and "GUT" and quantum gravity but science does not give them up becuase they are not yet fully fleshed out. Those theories don't have the empirical verification that the Big Bang has. Joseph continues to link the problems of the BB with the Supernatural account of religious belief and thus to insist that it's problems its origins in religious thinking. Ironically when I first started on message boards I had a long bitter argument when atheists who refused to bleieve that a priest made up the big bang becuase scinece accepts it so it must be true and therefore a stupid religious person could not have thought of it.

Of cousre this Joseph character hasn't the intelligence to see that his anti-religious hatred and bigotry are driving his irrational arguments which are fraught by such typically atheist fallacies as genetic fallacy, guilt by association, and bait and switch. Moving on to a serious commentator.

blog: the  answer that saves the world. warning this site has very  aggressive pop-ups

answering question what is  the problem with the BB.

I'd say Redshift. Redshift has been interpreted to represent  distance  and velocity. Because redshift "shows" that everything is moving away  from everything else, the cause is presumed to be a big explosion. This is  supported by background radiation, which is presumed to be the echo of  the big bang.

However, there are many examples where the standard interpretation of  redshift is in doubt. For example, objects displaying very different  redshifts being connected by a tunnel of gas.

The discoverer of Redshift (Hubble) warned against a misinterpretation  of redshift, and his student did a lot of work attacking the standard interpretation of redshift, and was shut out for his efforts.    

This is going to be important in the 3d segment because it's typical  of a paradigm shift. This is an anomaly and it will be absorbed into the  paradigm until there are too many to keep absorbing. The answer to this  one is these same phenomena are also used to back alternatives so they  can't be too vigilant about dismissing all red shifts since they need  them to back the alternatives. There's also no data to show who often  these kinds of problems come up. A lot of atheists take inflation as an  argument against the BB but inflation includes the singularity and the  Big Bang so it's not opposition. Inflation is just part of the tweaking  of the BB. Now they will argue against the CA that this means BB is not  creation, but they still have no evidence at all (no empirical) for  anything prior. They have theories and speculation but nothing concrete.

As for actual scientists:

Eric Lerner a Plasma physicist argues in a book of this title The Big Bang Never Happened.

this is the publisher's blurb

Lerner, a plasma physicist, points out flaws in the Big Bang model and  proposes an alternative theory: an eternal, self-sustaining "plasma"  universe where electromagnetic fields within conducting gases provide  other, simpler explanations for observed phenomena. His contention that  the Big Bang is merely a repackaged creation myth is presumptuous, but  well argued. To present a current scientific controversy to a general  audience risks, on one hand, misleading the public and, on the other,  circumventing the peer review process. This book, however, makes valid  points in a convincing manner and does neither. Recommended for general  science collections.

But it's not as dramatic as all that. I'm sure Lerner's book is good and I'm not saying don't read it, it is given high from reader reviews, but the first reader review I see says this:

And his objections to the Big Bang are neither  new nor shocking; with  the exception of the age of the "Great  Wall," they comprise the same  problems that cosmologists have been  working indefatigably to explain  since the Big Bang theory gained mass  acceptance. His heresy is simply  in seeking outside the parameters of the  Big Bang for a solution. One  reviewer, who finds Lerner's conclusions--and  perhaps even his  search--unjustifiable, says that this book "deserves  to be burned."  There are several unflattering names for this approach  to debate...

Apropos of reviewers, a couple of them recommend that  prospective  readers seek out the works of Nobel laureates, who "know  what they're  talking about." The "obscure Lerner" based his  book on the work of  Hannes Alfven, who won the Nobel prize in 1970 for his  work in plasma  physics and is considered the father of that discipline.  (Alfven took  another heretical position when he claimed that electrical  currents  could pass through space. Both his idea and the proofs he offered  were  met with howling derision, but oddly enough he turned out to be  right!)

That would bring Lerner's theory under the answer of Odenwald in part one where he deals with the 1970 theory.

all about

Big Bang Theory - The  Only Plausible Theory?
Is the standard Big Bang theory the only model consistent with these  evidences? No, it's just the most popular one. Internationally renown  Astrophysicist George F. R. Ellis explains: "People need to be aware  that there is a range of models that could explain the observations….For  instance, I can construct you a spherically symmetrical universe with  Earth at its center, and you cannot disprove it based on  observations….You can only exclude it on philosophical grounds. In my  view there is absolutely nothing wrong in that. What I want to bring  into the open is the fact that we are using philosophical criteria in  choosing our models. A lot of cosmology tries to hide that."4

In 2003, Physicist Robert Gentry proposed an attractive alternative to  the standard theory, an alternative which also accounts for the  evidences listed above.5 Dr. Gentry claims that the standard  Big Bang model is founded upon a faulty paradigm (the Friedmann-lemaitre  expanding-spacetime paradigm) which he claims is inconsistent with the  empirical data. He chooses instead to base his model on Einstein's  static-spacetime paradigm which he claims is the "genuine cosmic  Rosetta." Gentry has published several papers outlining what he  considers to be serious flaws in the standard Big Bang model.6  Other high-profile dissenters include Nobel laureate Dr. Hannes Alfvén,  Professor Geoffrey Burbidge, Dr. Halton Arp, and the renowned British  astronomer Sir Fred Hoyle, who is accredited with first coining the term  "the Big Bang" during a BBC radio broadcast in 1950.

The answers on these would seem to be spelled out above that the same materiel supports one theory as well as the other, where it says "the evidence listed above." One of the major problems associated with gentry that atheists harp on is the non conservation of energy. That violates one of Newton's laws of physics.(see Article by Gentry himself Orion foundation: exposing flaws in the Big bang). He claims the Einstein's static cosmology of 1917, as the true "Rosetta stone" that is included by Odenwald on is list of alternate theories that haven't panned out and his 16 reason for backing the big bang answer it.

When atheists find out the truth about Gentry they will drop his theory like a hot rock:

Robert V. Gentry              
  • Creationist          
  • Physicist and chemist           
  • D.Sc. (honorary) from Columbia Union College           
  • M.S. in Physics from University of Florida           
  • Graduate work at Georgia Institute of Technology           
  • Often considered the world's foremost authority on  radiohalos           
  • Former Guest Scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratories,  Atomic Energy Commission           
  • Published scientific papers in Nature, ScienceApplied Physics Letters, Earth and Planetary Science LettersAnnual Review of Nuclear Science, etc.

That's going to be a problem for them. If the Big bang exists to provide propaganda for belief in Creation as Joseph says, how does he explain the fundamentalist hatred of the Big bang? That Orion foundation site article above, if one explores that site one sees creationist papers. This must be a real problem for the kind of irrational atheist opposes the Big Bang because he wants to get away from a God argument. What it mean for real science? It means that scinece is going on, moving on, doing what it does. It also means a paradigm shift is coming because that's what scinece does ot. Major changes happen in scinece through paradigm shifts, we can see one shaping up with the Big bang. The role of and Christian apologists in the Paradigm shift is merely as part of the political battle that ensues over a Paradigm. I'll deal with that in the third installment.


Loren said...

Many fundies (many of your fellow Christians, I may add) oppose the Big Bang theory because it requires the Universe to be much older than what they believe the Universe to be -- only about 6000 years old. They get that date by adding up the begots in your favorite book, the Bible.

That aside, I agree that Rawhn Joseph is just plain wrong about how well the Big Bang fits the evidence.

Metacrock said...

I am still pro BB too. That's one thing we agree upon. Unfortunately Kuhn didn't talk that much about how challenged paradigms can triumph. He said they absorbed the anomalies into the paradigm but when there are too many that it shifts, he didn't say what happens when it looks like it's about to shift, can it be defended and brought back.

I assume that if the BB is true it will be brought back when more evidence for it is discovered.

We all know fundies are misguided if they weren't they wouldn't be "fundies."

I think a tiny minority of Christian still buy into Usher's thing of adding up the begatts and getting a 6000 year old earth. Too many Evangelicals have come out in favor of the idea gaps in the begats.

Even the big "intellectual" of fundies Francis Shaffer came out saying there are gaps and the earth can be old.

Now don't go thinking Shaffer is someone I admire. I find it really disconcerting that you don't seem to get that I'm a liberal. Like Rex you seem to argue from guilt by association a lot.

Loren said...

Metacrock, why don't you look at opinion polls on how old people think the Universe is? Young-earthism is a lot more common than you seem to think.

Or do opinion polls only count when they support your pet beliefs?

As to being a "liberal", you have a jingoistic belligerence about your beliefs that would make a fundie proud.

Metacrock said...

Loren you really don't understand any sort of issues. sorry you don't. you are so out of the loop you don't understand even the basic issues involved in my argument.

The level of YEC support in the popular culture has absolutely nothing to do with anything I'm talking about.

My basic point is that scinece is not absolute, it's not even necessarily truth, its' a socially constructed world view. The proof is we are embarking upon a paradigm shift in which a theory that was all but taken as fact is about to be dumped in favor of some paradigm that's a closer to older views there dumped in favor of the one that's now being discorded.

Paradigm shifts in scinece do not happen among the general public. What the masses think about that is nothing to do with it at all. Scientists make paradigms in scinece not regular people.

Loren said...

Whatever "replaces" the BB will include the BB back to some point VERY early in the history of the Universe, most likely when quantum-gravity effects or extra-dimension effects were strong.