ICR: Behold the Tardigrade

The Tardigrades are interesting creatures, but they’re not much discussed by creationists. Wikipedia says:

Tardigrades (also known as water bears, space bears, or moss piglets) are water-dwelling, eight-legged, segmented micro-animals. They were first discovered by the German zoologist Johann August Ephraim Goeze in 1773. The name Tardigrada (meaning “slow stepper”) was given three years later by the Italian biologist Lazzaro Spallanzani. They have been found everywhere: from mountaintops to the deep sea and mud volcanoes; from tropical rain forests to the Antarctic

Tardigrades are one of the most resilient animals known. Individual species of tardigrades can survive extreme conditions that would be rapidly fatal to nearly all other known life forms, including complete global mass extinction events due to astrophysical events, such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts, large asteroid impacts, or passing-by stars. Some tardigrades can withstand temperatures down to 1 K (−458 °F; −272 °C) (close to absolute zero) while others can withstand 420 K (300 °F; 150 °C) for several minutes, pressures about six times greater than those found in the deepest ocean trenches, ionizing radiation at doses hundreds of times higher than the lethal dose for a human, and the vacuum of outer space. They can go without food or water for more than 30 years, drying out to the point where they are 3% or less water, only to rehydrate, forage, and reproduce.

Today we have an article on tardigrades from the creation scientists at the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) — the fountainhead of young-earth creationist wisdom. It’s titled Wacky Conclusion from Tardigrade Research, written by Brian Thomas. He’s described at the end of his articles as “Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.” Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Oxford physicists David Sloan and Rafael Batista joined Harvard astronomer Abraham Loeb to publish in the online journal Scientific Reports. They used the tiny, hardy tardigrades as the top candidate for life that might survive harsh conditions on other planets like Mars.

This is the paper he’s talking about: The Resilience of Life to Astrophysical Events. You can read it on-line without a subscription. Brian tells us:

Physicist Sloan [one of the paper’s authors] told Oxford News & Events,

[Brian quotes Sloan:] To our surprise we found that although nearby supernovae or large asteroid impacts would be catastrophic for people, tardigrades could be unaffected. Therefore it seems that life, once it gets going, is hard to wipe out entirely.

What can a creationist do with that? Bear with us, it’s coming. And remember, Brian’s title describes the paper as “wacky.” He points out the big weakness:

Once it gets going? Well, how does that happen? The Oxford news merely noted, “Once life emerges, it is surprisingly resilient and difficult to destroy.” The three scientists admitted in their technical report, “We do not fully understand the mechanisms by which life started.”

Gasp! They admitted it! Brian smugly says:

Indeed, scientists don’t even fully understand the mechanisms by which life lives. But we know enough to understand that it could never happen on its own.

Yes, that’s something all creationists know. He continues:

No scientist has seen life emerge from nonlife. None have witnessed a simpler form morph into a survival master like a tardigrade. Whenever complicated machines do “emerge,” clever machinists, not natural processes, make it happen.

Jeepers, he’s right! Let’s read on:

The level of clever design within life in general, and tardigrades in particular, demands special creation. But these researchers leapfrog this clear connection with a mere assumption. They wrote in Scientific Reports, “We make the further assumption that life will evolve to adapt to the extreme environments of exoplanets as it has to those on Earth. Again, we justify this by the ubiquity of life across environmental conditions.”

Brian summarizes the shoddy thinking of the scientists:

In other words, since tardigrades exist, they must have evolved. But isn’t that just circular reasoning — assuming a conclusion at the outset?

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Creationists never engage in circular reasoning. They just start with the assumption that the bible is true, and then everything is perfectly logical.

This is how Brian ends his brilliant article:

They [those foolish scientists] conclude that life just happened to become excellent at surviving and that we should expect to find hyper-hardy life beneath the surface of Mars. But this kind of thinking, wherever it exists, blatantly ignores the clear evidence of divine design in tiny tardigrades.

Yes, the evidence is clear. But one question occurs to us: Why are tardigrades so hardy and we’re so fragile? The divine designer has some explaining to do.

Copyright © 2017. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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12 responses to “ICR: Behold the Tardigrade

  1. clever machinists, not natural processes
    Machinists, by definition, use natural processes. They wouldn’t need to be clever except by being constrained by the rules of nature.

    No scientist has seen life emerge from nonlife. None have witnessed a simpler form morph into a survival master like a tardigrade. Whenever complicated machines do “emerge,” clever machinists, not natural processes, make it happen.
    Of course, complicated living things emerge from single cells all the time, by natural processes. No clever machinist has ever been seen to design a living thing – except by starting from a similar living thing and using natural processes which we have learned about from nature.

  2. Holding The Line In Florida

    Easy. The Grand Old Designer is a Tardigrade of course.

  3. Michael Fugate

    “No scientist has seen life emerge from nonlife.”
    Has Brian seen the designer? Has he seen life emerge from the designer’s hands?

  4. “In a debate upon the development hypothesis, lately narrated to me by a friend, one of the disputants was described as arguing that, as in all our experience we know of no such phenomenon as the transmutation of species, it is unphilosophical to assume that transmutation of species ever takes place. Had I been present, I think that, passing over his assertion, which is open to criticism, I should have replied that, as in all our experience we have never known a species created, it was, by his own showing, unphilosophical to assume that any species ever had been created.”

    The Development Hypothesis – http://www.wikisource.org
    Herbert Spencer, 1852

    “For with what eyes of the mind was your Plato able to see that workhouse of such stupendous toil, in which he makes the world to be modelled and built by God? What materials, what bars, what machines, what servants, were employed in so vast a work? How could the air, fire, water, and earth, pay obedience and submit to the will of the architect?”

    Cicero – http://www.wikiquote.org
    De natura deorum (On the Nature of the Gods Book I, section 19)

  5. Damn if only they had said magic man in the sky did it, and everything would be alright. Those pesky scientists.

  6. Why are tardigrades so hardy and we’re so fragile?

    Because Earth is designed as a tardigrade-privileged planet, of course!

  7. Once [life] gets going? Well, how does that happen? The Oxford news merely noted, “Once life emerges, it is surprisingly resilient and difficult to destroy.” The three scientists admitted in their technical report, “We do not fully understand the mechanisms by which life started.”

    Neither do creationists; their explanation is simply “God spake, and it was so.” And they don’t feel they need to go any further than that. At least scientists are trying to find a real answer.

    They [those foolish scientists] conclude that life just happened to become excellent at surviving and that we should expect to find hyper-hardy life beneath the surface of Mars

    “Just happened”? Apparently our “science writer” has never heard of natural selection. Or perhaps he’s just hoping his suckers, er, readers haven’t.

  8. As far as the creation of life, Genesis 1 says that animals and plants came from the waters and the ground. There is no mention of other forms of life, such as bacteria and archaea (the majority of life, by any measure).

  9. That must mean bacteria and archaea…are creatures of SATAN!

    THAT esplains disease!!!1111!!!! Esplain that, Evilutionists!

    Bwahahahahahhahaha!

  10. iamamonkey2

    “… clear evidence of divine design in tiny tardigrades.” And God said “I will create something that will survive my planned flood. Saving poor Noah some room on his boat.”

  11. Michael Fugate

    Anyone see this hit piece on Darwin?
    https://www.standard.co.uk/comment/comment/it-s-time-charles-darwin-was-exposed-for-the-fraud-he-was-a3604166.html
    Even if Darwin were a fraud, it says nothing about the truth of evolution and natural selection. Wilson has no science background and went from studying for the priesthood to atheism and back to religion again. This is part of his born-again agitprop. Of course, conspiracy theories are currently popular and sell well – especially against “scientific elites”. Wilson’s book “Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker ” (John Murray, £25) is out next month and bound to be truly awful, but no doubt Klinghoffer will be ecstatic.

  12. Which would you throw out of the balloon, Pride and Prejudice or On the Origin of Spedies”?
    “Pride and Prejudice” if it were lost, could never be reproduced. Of that there is no doubt.
    If “On the Origin of Species” were lost, the import of it would soon be rediscovered. Indeed, Alfred Russel Wallace was close.