As a young boy, I loved science. On standardized tests, I always scored highest in the science category. Astronomy was a favorite interest, but it didn’t take me long to realize that astronomy is a spectator sport. While the moon is near enough, there was no way that I was ever going to hop scotch through the universe. I soon turned my scientific interests to electricity, short wave radios, and Morse Code. My lack of aptitude in math dashed any hope I had of excelling in the field.
To this day, science remains a fascinating area of study for me, if it’s science and not metaphysics. The scientific world was all atwitter (before there was Twitter) over the discovery “of a rocky ‘super Earth-like object’ orbiting a nearby star much like our own sun.” Reading this opening paragraph, one gets the distinct impression that these astronomers have found an “Earth-like object” orbiting a sun much like our own. That’s what a group of European astronomers reported. Reading deeper into the article, science gives way to literary license that borders on fraud.
The system is particularly interesting because the star, which is visible to the naked eye in the Southern Hemisphere, closely resembles our sun and lies a mere stone’s throw away, in astronomical terms—about 50 light-years, or roughly 300 trillion miles. The sun, by comparison, is 93 million miles from Earth.
Scientists still don’t know what our oceans are all about, but they are capable of making dogmatic assertions about a flicker of light 300 trillion miles away. And what about this “super Earth-like object”? I know what the Earth looks like, and I have a pretty good idea what “Earth-like” should mean. This newly discovered “planet” has a surface temperature that exceeds 1,000 degrees. We are finally told ten paragraphs into the article and hundreds of words later that the planet “isn’t the Earth-like ‘blue marble’ and potential oasis for life that astronomers hope future telescopes will one day enable them to see.” So it’s not really “Earth-like” after all. In fact, it’s not anything like Earth unless you’re an evolutionist who hopes against hope to find a smidgen of evidence that can support a theory in crisis. We know better. These announced “discoveries” are designed to keep the funding rolling in. Who will pay scientists who can only come up with the astronomical equivalent of a dry hole?
Mike Toner, “New world, more on horizon,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (August 27, 2004), A4.