Thursday, April 23, 2015

A Standardized Conversation With An Evolutionist

So you don't have to talk to them:
“It has to be descent, look at the layers.”
“I see different animals in different layers”
“Well, I see descent”.
“Really? What does ‘descent’ look like? Does it have a color? Weight? Dimensions?”
“Descent is the process I see.”
“Ah. You see a process happening?”
“No, it happened.”
“You know that, how?”
“By the fossils progressing through the layers.”
“So you can tell that animal X progressed from Animal Q?”
“And your proof for that is what?”

“Inference to the best explanation.”
“So no experimental data then?”
“Inference to the best explanation.”
“So, no hypothetico-deductive-cause/effect-data?”
“Inference to the best explanation.”
“OK. So you have all the possible explanations and you have determined the best one… how?”
“There is only one other explanation; it is disallowed.”
“How did it get disallowed?”
“Because it can’t be tested and therefore it isn’t science, it is ideology.”
“Can your inference be tested, then?”
“OK. Your explanation is inferential; it can’t be tested; It is therefore ideological; and it is a default theory due to lack of any other theories because the competition has been disallowed for being inferential, non-testable, ideological?
“Yes. That's why it's True.”

Twentieth Century Identity and Class War

It's ironic; those who bleat about not victim-shaming or denialism are also the ones who promote anti-Semitism. Some are even holocaust deniers, and these should be directed to the following:
"'Bookkeeper of Auschwitz' tells court he once spent 24 HOURS watching Jewish families separated to be either killed or used in medical experiments as he faces charges of accessory to 300,000 murders

Oskar Groening is being tried on 300,000 counts of accessory to murder

The former SS officer described how Jews were marched to gas chambers

One survivor, Eva Kor, told of her agony as her mother was ripped from her

"A former SS sergeant described how so many Jews were brought to the Auschwitz death camp at once that he was put on a 24-hour shift guarding the ramp where they disembarked from the trains.

He told in chilling detail how cattle cars full of Jews were brought to the Auschwitz death camp, the people stripped of their belongings and then most led directly into gas chambers.

Oskar Groening is being tried on 300,000 counts of accessory to murder, related to a period between May and July 1944 when around 425,000 Jews from Hungary were brought to the Auschwitz-Birkenau complex in Nazi-occupied Poland and most immediately gassed to death.

During that period, so many trains were arriving that often two would have to wait with closed doors as the first was 'processed,' Groening testified at the Lueneburg state court."
Class and identity war is not new; it has been done to death. It is marked by one salient feature: they are better than you and I are.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

If You Had Any Doubts About the Intellectual Honesty of Muslims...

...this should do the trick:
Watch What Happens When 3 Muslim Spokesmen Are Asked About Islam’s Death Penalty for Apostasy

Quote of the Day

From Walter E. Williams:
"What's the difference between the actions of the University of Oklahoma administrators and the actions of the Islamist murderers in Paris? Both found the speech in question offensive. Both took actions against the people involved in that speech. So what's the difference? It's a matter of degree, but not kind. Both were unwilling to tolerate speech they didn't like. Of course, the difference in responses is by no means trivial -- one being expulsion and the other murder.

The principle that applies to one's commitment to free speech also applies to one's commitment to freedom of association. The true test of one's commitment to freedom of association does not come when he permits people to associate in ways he deems acceptable. The true test comes when he permits people to associate -- or not to associate -- in ways he deems offensive."
That's absolutely correct. The totalitarianism of the western Left is no less total, it merely is content for the moment to silence and demonize contrary thought. The action of the Left to remove free speech is absolutely the same in kind, if not yet the same in degree as the Islamic war to remove free speech by punishment with AK47s.

Totalitarian thinking is in lockstep with barbarism.

Actions, or Words: What to Believe?

Three headline vignettes regarding Leftist ideology mongering
Global Warming Fanatic Bill Nye Celebrating Earth Day With Flights on Airforce One

Reminder: Earth Day Co-Founder Killed and Composted His Girlfriend

National Mall Trashed After Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day Concert
Forget what they say: watch what they do.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Privilege Checking: Campus Antics

Profs say women, black students should get to speak first in college classrooms

Dalhousie University hosted a panel in order to better improve relations on campus to combat supposed instances of misogyny and racism.

Professors on the panel said men should not be allowed to speak first in class discussions.

None of the panelists were men.
Students hold ‘shit-in’ for gender neutral bathrooms, tell peers to check ‘potty privilege’

California Polytechnic University’s Queer Student Union hosted a three-day ‘shit-in’ during which students were encouraged to use “all-gender bathrooms.”

The group and its supporters constructed a fake toilet on campus and told their peers to “check your potty privilege.”

Hillary Potemkin Clinton

Clinton aide admits they SCREEN 'everyday Americans' for Hillary's campaign events as some ordinary people in a New Hampshire bakery – the employees! – refuse to shake her hand

Clinton was at Kristen's Bakery in Keene, NH in advance of a small-business roundtable event

She sat with a handful of customers and made her way to the back to greet employees

But a cashier told Daily Mail Online that some of the kitchen staff 'didn't want to come out to meet Hillary' because 'they just don't like her'

Clinton's communications director said it's helpful to recruit future Hillary evangelists from among Democratic activists by pre-screening them to meet Hillary in small settings as cameras click

'If someone like that loves her, then they'll talk to other people, and so on, and that's going to help,' she said

Palmieri wouldn't rule out the possibility that some at the bakery on Monday were asked to come
For the Left, phony is the same as "ordinary" when comes to the people Hillary will allow near her. It's all smoke and mirrors. And the press loves it.

As Predicted?

When an Atheist claims that the bible never makes testable predictions, just refer him to this:
PayPal wants to implant passwords in your stomach and your brain
Or maybe your forehead or your hand or...

Another Science Failure, Cont'd

Too many vitamins can give you CANCER, major new study warns the millions who take them
This link gives the "vital" information, but not the complete story. So the facts remain unclear.

Vitamins were declared "vital" nutrients by scientists studying nutrition, and they even declared "minimum daily requirements". But they didn't study the obvious other end of the Bell curve.

The nutrient studies were essential science at the times they were made, starting well over a century ago. Deficiencies were real and nasty. Supplements were welcomed, and for some, they were essential additions. But as far as I know, only the danger of an excess of vitamin D ever made it to the public consciousness, and the benefits of vitamin supplements are still highly promoted and highly profitable. So of course, if some vitamins are good at the minimum level, then more vitamins must be better, right?

If this current study is valid, one has to wonder how many people died from the cancer caused by the failure to study the effect of excessive dosages of supplements. But I'm not sure about the validity, or the location of the data, for this "study". It could be a journalistic twisting of "science", a separate sort of science failure.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Why You Are a Sexist, Racist, Privileged Oppressor/Tyrant... By definition

A blogger self-appelled "Just Smith" explains why there is no such thing as reverse discrimination, no such as reverse racism, no such thing as reverse sexism, and probably (not stated) no such thing as reverse antisemitism. It's all about identity and privilege:
Reverse Sexism/Racism Does Not Exist

"Different anon
Isn’t saying you can’t be sexist to men like saying to can’t be racist to white people? I know plenty of women who look down on men, call them morons and immature and rapists, who group them all together as one lump.
Looking down on someone who is a cis male seems pretty damn sexist to me. I grew up with plenty of them (I had a ton of brothers) and I know they would never raise their voice to a woman, let alone a hand

Ok. This is really problematic. Allow me to explain:

1. Bias is NOT the same thing as Discrimination. Sexism (towards females and other gender minorities) and racism (towards people of color) are deeply engrained, institutional, indoctrinated ideologies with long and violent histories. These histories continue to be played out today. What you’re describing, your female friends who “call men morons and immature and rapists” are expressing a bias. Your friends will never, ever be able to institutionalize their feelings towards men in the way feelings towards women have been. To exemplify this, and perhaps to remind you, here is some historical to this inequity:

Women’s Suffrage Women’s Rights to Property Rape as weapon of war Roe v Wade The Global Gender Gap Report Saudi Arabian Women fight for the right to drive to name only a few of an immense history of discrimination

White cis males have the entirety of the system, whether it is the government, employment, religion, health access, agency, geared in their favor. Does this make them bad people? No. If they monopolize and manipulate the system, if they abuse their power? Yes, their character is in question (Rush Limbaugh,Mel Gibson, Chris Brown, and this horrifying abuse for example) It is because of this institutionalized favoring for white, cis men, otherwise known as patriarchy, that misandry cannot exist. Bias, sure. But sexism towards males? That is called “impossible”.

2. Racism towards white people? Also does not exist. And how can it? White people continue to wield the ultimate privileges in society. Just as with sexism, racism is a deeply engrained, institutional, indoctrinated ideology with a long and violent history. Again, does white privilege inherently make you a bad person? No. But when you monopolize and manipulate that power to continue to oppress other people, then yes your character is in question. To exemplify this and remind you of some racial history:

Apartheid Slavery in the United States The Holocaust Eugenics Colonialism (of almost every inch of this earth) The erasure of Native Americans to name just a few in an immense history of segregation, killing, silencing and oppression of POC by white people.

People of Color can have a bias against white people but that bias does not equal discrimination. On any level. Black only spaces or female only spaces or LBGTQ only spaces are not discrimination, but safe places created for people experiencing levels of oppression in order to create community. Not “reverse racism” or “reverse sexism”.

Alas, neither of these examples, sexism and racism, can be found, at any point in history, to be used to such an extent towards white cis men.

On a last note, I am still scratching my head as to where this question has actually come from? I was discussing the word cunt and that, in my opinion, white cis men should not used the word unless otherwise consented from another female because, otherwise, the context of the word remains the same: degrading and obscene. At no one point in time did I say “I hate cis men” or “group them all together as one lump” nor did I suggest that they all “raise their [voices] to [women]”. Just because I am a feminist does not mean I hate men. In fact, I quite enjoy them really."
The tortuous caveat at the end is self-serving; she most certainly did do that which she denies.

So, got all that? Are you 'White People'"? Then you are part of the problem; to repeat for emphasis:
"Apartheid Slavery in the United States The Holocaust Eugenics Colonialism (of almost every inch of this earth) The erasure of Native Americans to name just a few in an immense history of segregation, killing, silencing and oppression of POC by white people.
Identity is established, and you are classified by skin tone. Never mind the white fight for liberating the blacks from slavery and giving them civil rights - whites who were Republicans, who were violently opposed by Democrats for at least a century and a half as the Leftist Democrats fought to preserve their Class System - as they still do.

And as for reversals, never mind the black mob attacks on whites around the USA, which one must search valiantly through local newscasts to even discover. But that is just "bias" according to the New Rules; fortunately for them they cannot be possessed of reverse racism, tautologically. It must be nice to curse and brutalize with Class Immunity. They are protected from such things by their SJW/Messiah definition as Victimhood Class denizens - perpetual victims incapable of their own crimes of hate. They are defined by their Class Identity, not by any residual humanity; that has been denied them. The Messiahs know best for everyone. Because everyone else is beneath them.

Moral Zombies and Weaponized Shame

I found this exchange at Instapundit:
"MEGAN MCARDLE: How the Internet Became a Shame-Storm.
Shame is one way we enforced good behavior in small groups before there were laws or trading networks. It is a very powerful motivator, and it helps us to come together in large cooperative groups with high degrees of trust and sharing. A hatred of being shamed ourselves and a love of shaming others who have transgressed both literally helped to make us human. . . .

So we need shame. The problem is, maybe we don’t always need so much of it.

In the small groups we evolved to live in, shame is tempered by love and forgiveness. People are shamed for some transgression, then they are restored to the group. Ultimately, the shamed person is not an enemy; he or she is someone you need and want to get along with. This is how you make up with your spouse after one or both of you has done or said something terrible.

In a large group, shame is punishment, but it still has a restorative aspect. One of the most surprising passages of Ronson’s book reveals that the drunken driver who had to stand by the side of the road with a sign detailing his crimes got more compassion and support than bitter catcalls from the people who drove by him.

On the Internet, when all the social context is stripped away and you don’t even have to look at the face of the person you’re being mean to, shame loses its social, restorative function. Shame-storming isn’t punishment. It’s a weapon. And weapons aren’t supposed to be used against people in your community; they’re for strangers, people in some other group that you don’t like very much.
Hence the term “Social Justice Warrior.” War is what you wage on the enemy, the other. And that’s what they do. They’re not well-meaning people who want to make our shared society better, and sometimes just get carried away. They’re angry, vicious people who want to eliminate disagreement."
I don't think that's quite it. Shame is warfare, that's true enough. But it is a carrot/stick rolled into one tactic under identity and class warfare. The Messiah Class uses shame to keep its own members in line and focused, and the same shame is used to attract new members who are susceptible to the influence of their moral shaming. It is used to define the boundaries of the designated classes, and it is used to dehumanize both the Victim Classes and the Oppressor Classes.

Using just one tactic, a self-interested faux morality, the SJW Messiah Class can accomplish all it needs without ever showing any compassion or empathy for any actual victims of any type or stripe.

I do agree that these are not well-meaning people; they indeed are mean, nasty, vicious dictator wannabes, who destroy without a twinge of self-reflection or guilt. They are self-empowered to destroy as they see fit from their position of moral eliteness.

We can never win against beasts without guilt, which are just conscious enough to use guilt as their weapon without ever being affected by guilt themselves. So counter-destruction is made essential by their very nature. They cannot respond to anything less.

The term "moral-zombies" comes to mind: they appear to be moral, yet they are morally empty.

More Failed "Science"

Science is only as good as those who are entrusted with it.
FBI overstated forensic hair matches in nearly all trials before 2000

"The Justice Department and FBI have formally acknowledged that nearly every examiner in an elite FBI forensic unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials in which they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than a two-decade period before 2000.

Of 28 examiners with the FBI Laboratory’s microscopic hair comparison unit, 26 overstated forensic matches in ways that favored prosecutors in more than 95 percent of the 268 trials reviewed so far, according to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) and the Innocence Project, which are assisting the government with the country’s largest post-conviction review of questioned forensic evidence.

The cases include those of 32 defendants sentenced to death. Of those, 14 have been executed or died in prison, the groups said under an agreement with the government to release results after the review of the first 200 convictions.

The FBI errors alone do not mean there was not other evidence of a convict’s guilt. Defendants and federal and state prosecutors in 46 states and the District are being notified to determine whether there are grounds for appeals. Four defendants were previously exonerated.

The admissions mark a watershed in one of the country’s largest forensic scandals, highlighting the failure of the nation’s courts for decades to keep bogus scientific information from juries, legal analysts said. The question now, they said, is how state authorities and the courts will respond to findings that confirm long-suspected problems with subjective, pattern-based forensic techniques — like hair and bite-mark comparisons — that have contributed to wrongful convictions in more than one-quarter of 329 DNA-exoneration cases since 1989."
26 of 28 FBI examiners should be prosecuted for their crimes. It appears that many federal agencies are at least as dangerous as those they are supposed to supervise. And now they are all equipped with their own armies.

Lawrence Krauss - Best of – Arguments and Comebacks

Lawrence Krauss, physicist and cosmologist, travels frequently as he proselytizes for Scientism. Sometimes he is with Dawkins, others he is with Dennett. Here is a video of some of his choice gems, which I have transcribed below, and commented on. Because there are diverse clips, I have numbered them for ease of reference.

1. “Beliefs are not innocuous. Belief in things that aren’t true often results in actions that are often harmful”.
Yes, associating actions with false beliefs certainly condemns the Atheist regimes of Lenin/Trotsky/Stalin/Mao/Pol Pot/Castro/Chavez, etc. Their actions were beyond harmful, they were evil, massively so. And they were based on false principles of Atheistic, Scientistic Materialism. And yes, Dialectical Materialism is the belief upon which they were and are specifically based. And these are false, have been demonstrated to be false, and more importantly,have been demonstrated to be highly harmful, even bloodily eugenic (but in a logical way). So the implication of Krauss' claim must be held especially true, highly visibly so, for Atheistic, Scientistic, Materialism.
2. (a) “The point is that the doctrines of religion are outdated, and that’s for good reason. They were created by bronze age, or iron age peasants, who didn’t even know that the earth orbited the sun. So the wisdom in those books is not wisdom at all, and people take the wisdom – in fact, we have learned something over the last 20 centuries and science has taught us how the world works (7:50). Now for science… the interesting thing for scientists is that God is completely irrelevant to scientists. Most scientists don’t spend enough time thinking about God to even know if they are Atheists. Because they try and understand how the world works and God never enters into it. It’s just completely irrelevant. And in fact, the more we learned about the natural world, the more we’ve learned that you don’t need any divine intervention to explain anything.

(b) As far as morality is concerned and the person you want to be, which I think is really the heart of what religion…. When religion provides many things for people and we can’t deny that. The question is, how can we take the things that people need – community; support; hope – and use the real world to build those quantities. Because if you base your beliefs and your actions on myths that are incorrect, you’re inevitably going to take irrational actions. And so what we want to do is what science does which is to force peoples’ beliefs to conform to the evidence of reality rather than the other way around, and not assume the answers to questions even before we ask them. And use the RATIONAL WORLD to build a global society, not an exclusionary society, but a global world where people can live together based on the reality that we are all humans sharing this planet. And we need to work together to build a better place. A morality based on rationality and not outmoded religious beliefs.”
The first part, 2(a), is false. There is no law of physics that predicts that any mineral combination will be self-aware, much less a conscious agent, by virtue of deterministic laws of physics. There is no law of physics that even comes close. In fact, the practice of physics requires that physical existence be deterministic, regular, orderly, stupidly so. That alone falsifies what Krauss maintains as being complete knowledge of the world and how it works. To maintain such a thing necessitates an internal contradiction. And that contradiction falsifies his use of the term “rational world”

Further, it is pointless to declare that God is irrelevant to scientists, science and the investigation of material existence. In fact that is counterproductive to open thought and hypothesis formation. Material existence is not God, and there is no expectation of finding God there. But the fact that the universe is rational, we are rational, and the question of why should that be so in a purely material, deterministic universe cannot be answered under deterministic physical laws. The source of material existence and obviously non-deterministic, non-physical features of the physical universe are outside of both the physical universe and the ability of science to address. More on that below.

And it is annoying for a person, even and especially a physicist, to pretend to know things that he doesn’t and cannot, as he implies that there is nothing which exists that cannot be addressed by science in his hurry to eliminate a non-physical agency involved with the universe. He unabashedly declares himself to more wise than any wisdom found in the ancient texts, and he Ad Hominem’s the source of the texts by declaring them bronze/iron age ignorants who didn’t know science facts which he knows. The arrogance of this pretension to supremacy entails a belief in something which cannot be true, especially considering that Krauss fails to differentiate between contingent fact and wisdom as if he, himself, is ignorant of the difference. He appears blinded by the presumed brilliance of himself as he makes proclamations for other people who he obviously considers his lessers, even while demonstrating his own limitations.

Part 2(b): Morals. My first experience with Krauss was through his book, “A Universe From Nothing”, which gave me a firm impression of the type of integrity to which Krauss holds himself. The title is a purposeful fraud designed to sell books because the book does not give any actual empirical science in support of the “nothing” which he claims in the title. If he actually had such information, he would be enshrined as a second Newton, Einstein or both. But he has no such information despite the claim of the title. He has stalwartly refused to acknowledge any error or malfeasance in his action, despite heavy criticism from public and peers. So I am pretty sure that his brand of “rational world morality” would not reflect any recognizable form of actual morality which is not self-aggrandizing.

The terms “real world” and “morals” are mutually incompatible when placed in conjunction. Morality does not spring from the “real world”, especially not the “real world” of evolution, “red in tooth and claw”, or the Atheist Nietzschean concept of “Will to Power”, much less the forced elitist drive toward communal one-world, one-concept, one-think under elitist “rational” supervision. “Rational” actions are not selfless under the scrutiny of evolution, kin selection theory notwithstanding. The hypotheses of logic are only as good as their premises, form and grounding; they are not beholden to any morality of outcome. For example, world depopulation to accomplish the salvation of the planet might be declared logical but declaring it to be moral is not actual morality. That’s because the choice of objectives requires actual moral gating before logic is applied to the tactics for accomplishing the objective. This concept lies outside the scope of empiricism.

3. “This is an amazing picture, because it is a picture of gravitational lensing.” [omitting dialog describing galaxies] “When you look at images like this, they inspire you, in ways like nothing else that I know of can inspire.”
Here he has declared in essence that his personal ability to receive or produce inspiration is unfortunately truncated, severely so.

4(a)Certainly there are limits to science; an empiricist – which is what I am – [smugness noted] empirically there are limits to what science can do. In fact, in my own field, cosmology, there are clearly limits because we are, we have one universe to observe and most of us live in that universe. The Republican Party in my country doesn’t, but, but, but, um, the, uh, therefore [11:13] there may be many universes and therefore there’s obviously in some real physical sense a limited domain in which we can explore, and that’s a key point. It’s not just tools. Every academic discipline uses tools, [11:27] in some ways they’re not that different. But the key part of what makes science, science, and what makes it work is that it is based on empirical evidence. So rational thought applies to empirical evidence. And therefore , you can’t measure, even in principle… I mean there are lots of things we can’t measure that we can talk about as theoretical physicists I think about things… a lot of things we can’t measure right now.

(b) But, if you can’t ever measure it in principle, then... then science really has nothing to say about it. I would argue that anything else you say about it is not worth much either, but, uh, uh, but… it’s certainly a fact that science generally can’t address it if you can’t measure it in principle.

And that’s, um, that’s of fundamental importance and I think that we forget that.

(c) So I think, the difference that I would say is that I don’t know what the ultimate limits of science are; there are limits now, and there are many areas where science has little to say right now.

(d) But can I say that it will NEVER have anything to say about it? Absolutely not! There’s a huge difference between what’s unknowable and what’s not known. And so the only way you can find out if science has anything to say about it is, try. And if it has something useful to say, it makes predictions which agree with experiments, then you can make progress. But you could try it and it might not work.

(e) An example might be sociology, where they tried to use the language of physics to apply to society and it was far too premature, it was too complex and consciousness, which I was just telling Dan [Dennett, sitting nearby] - I do physics because it’s easy. If I wanted to do the hard stuff, I’d do consciousness.

Having this written out allows the reader to try to follow the train of thought by backing up as the train jumps tracks, and to attempt to apply linear logic to it by going slowly through the jump. The most obvious jump off track occurs between 4(b), where he outlines the limits of empiricism, and and 4(c) where he then claims not to know the limits. All in the space of two sentences.

Then he jumps further off track from 4(b) to 4(d), by assuming that there actually are no limits. But still he pulls back to “prediction/experiment”, at least briefly. By 4(e) he's completely derailed, as he claims that it is complexity which is limiting, not ability to test it in principle which make science difficult but presumably not impossible.

He has jumped off the limiting rails of empirical science into the derailed world of Scientism as is necessary for his ideology.

Friday, April 17, 2015

An Analysis of the Speech by Sean Carroll on Naturalism

I have transcribed the entire 10+ minute speech (after 1:40). I thought it necessary, because he doesn't present a single, coherent argument, he presents a welded series of assertions which are necessary to view as a whole. In that same sense, he doesn't present a single empirical data point, but uses the meta-concept of empiricism as a weapon. So any analysis needs to be against his meta-narrative, and that meant that the entire narrative must be viewed in order that the overall truth value can be mined from it. I have made comments throughout, but the analysis is after the end of the speech, below.


"Something we learned by doing science for 400 years is something called “Naturalism”, the idea that there is only one reality; that there are not separate planes of the natural and the supernatural; that there is only one material existence; that we are part of the universe and do not stand outside of it in any way. And the way that science got there is by basically realizing that human beings are not that smart. You are not Vulcans, you are not Mr. Spock, you are not perfectly logical.

We as human beings are subject to all sorts of biases and cognitive shortcomings. We tend to be wishful thinkers and to see patterns where they are not there and so forth. And in response to this science developed techniques for giving ourselves reality checks, for not letting us believe things that the evidence does not stand up to.

[Pure Scientism with unrestricted intellectual range]

One technique is simply skepticism which you may have heard of. Scientists are taught that we should be our own theories harshest critics. Scientists spend all their time trying to disprove all their favorite ideas. It’s a little bit counter intutitve, a different way of doing things, but it helps us resist the lure of wishful thinking.

The other technique is empiricism. We realize that we are not smart enough to get to knowledge of the world just be thinking about it. We have to go out there and LOOK at the world. And what we done by looking at this for the past 400 years is to realize that human beings are not separate; that the world is one thing, the natural world, and that it can be understood.

It is all very counterintuitive; it is not very obvious, this Naturalism claim. When you talk to a person, they have thoughts and feelings and responses. When you talk to a dead person, a corpse – a bit morbid here – you don’t get those same responses, the same thoughts and feelings. It’s very natural, very commonsensical to think that a living person possesses something that a corpse does not, some sort of spirit, some sort of soul or animating life source.

[But science can’t detect it so it cannot exist]

"But this idea does not stand up to closer scrutiny. A big step toward realizing this was made back in the 1600’s by a remarkable woman named Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia. They made princesses differently back in the seventeenth century. Elisabeth carried on a year-long correspondence with Rene Descartes, the (unintelligible) theory of mind, body and dualism. And Elisabeth said, “I really don’t understand what you said, because if you really believe that my mind is a separate realm from the body, it’s my mind that makes a choice to lift my arm but it’s my body that does it. [4:09] How does an immaterial mind which you say doesn’t exist at a location in space, how does it act causally on the body? How does it interact with the stuff of which you are made? And Descartes never came up with a reliable, believable response to these objections.

[Why is this not “thinking without looking directly at it and measuring”?]
"Of course, these days the objections are enormously stronger. We say, “you are made of atoms. You’re made of molecules, you’re made of cells, you’re made of atoms, and as (unintelligible), WE KNOW HOW ATOMS BEHAVE. The laws of physics covering the behavior of atoms are COMPLETELY understood. You put an atom in a certain set of circumstances, and you tell me what those circumstances are, and as a physicist, I will tell you what the atom will do.
[pure devotion to determinism and his own ability to predict human behavior, based on determinism]
"If you believe that the atoms inside your brain and your body act differently because they are in your body as opposed to being in a rock or a crystal, then what you are saying is that the laws of physics are wrong…
[But, of course, no one is saying that]
"…that they need to be altered because of the influence of a spirit or soul or something like that. That may be true. We can’t DISPROVE that. But there is no evidence for it. [5:12]
[Of course not. Science has LIMITS, as anyone who has read Popper knows. Refusal to acknowledge the known limits of physical science is obtuse, especially for a scientist promoting metaphysical claims]

[Presupposition of the naturalist dichotomy:
"Either empirical proof for X,
Or X = superstition.
Either there is “evidence” for X,
Or, X = superstition.
“Evidence” is defined as material/empirical, under Naturalism.
But Carroll does not apply this principle to his own belief set; only to metaphysics. That demonstrates the lack of actual "evidence" which exists for direct support of metaphysical Naturalism, and Carroll fails to reveal that to the audience.]

"You get a much stronger explanatory framework by assuming that it’s just the laws of physics.
[Where’s the empirical data when you need it? Must we "assume" without such data? Of course we must; there is no data.]
"That kind of reasoning is a big step toward Naturalism.
[Yes, it would be, if you actually believe it without proof].
"Another big step also happened in the 1600s, when Gallileo came across the idea of conservation of momentum. You might say, “Why does conservation of energy get in the way of (unintelligible) and God, but it does. Before Gallileo came along, physics was described by Aristotle, and Aristotle said something that, again, was very obvious and commonsensical – that if you want something to keep moving, you need to push it. Things naturally come to rest, left to their own devices. But if you look at the world, you realize that things are moving all over the place. So Aristotle very logically eventually concluded that you need to invoke the existence of an unmoved mover, which can be identified, of course, with God.

But then of course Gallileo comes along and says, “actually the natural behavior of matter is to keep moving at a constant velocity. Motion is perfectly natural. When things stop, it is because you are acting on them through friction or air resistance or dissipation.

And then Isaac Newton comes along with an elaborate edifice of mechanics which explains the world beautifully in purely material principles. And it’s very, very interesting; once that happened, you realize that the prime mover argument doesn’t work as well, and you can actually see a change in the theological literature of the time.

Before Newton and Gallileo, there was emphasis put on ideas of prime movers and first causes, arguments from cosmology, contingency and so forth; after Newton and Gallileo, the arguments emphasized something else, the argument from design. People would say, “sure you can explain all the planets moving, that’s easy, but all the life forms, the marvelous diversity of life here on earth, that had to be made by some guiding external intelligence. In fact, in the 1700’s Immanuel Kant said, “there will never be an Isaac Newton-made blade of grass”. Then of course in the 1800’s we GOT an Isaac Newton for a blade of grass, his name was Charles Darwin.

Darwin showed how material, matter, all by itself, without guidance, without purpose, without an aim, just by the natural motions of ordinary things can lead to the marvelous diversity of organic life that we see here on Earth. Another huge step in the direction of Naturalism.
[Darwin has been debunked 150 years later. Notice how the words imply that first life is solved without actually saying so.]
Now of course I could go on, we could talk about modern cosmology and the origin of the universe, we could talk about neuroscience and what consciousness is and so forth, but I don’t want to do that right now, we can maybe talk about that later. I don’t want to do it right now, basically because it’s kind of boring.
[actually these are unanswerable; he's wise to avoid them as he so easily dances around them].
"And the reason that it’s kind of boring is that the argument is finished. The debate is over. We’ve come to a conclusion. Naturalism has won. If you go to any university physics department, listen to the talks they give or the papers they write; go to any biology department; go to any neuroscience department; any philosophy department; people whose professional job it is to explain the world, to come up with explanatory framework that matches what we see, no one mentions God. There is never an appeal to a supernatural realm, by people whose job it is to explain what happens in the world. Everyone knows that the Naturalist explanations are the ones that work.

And yet! Here we are! We’re having a debate. Why are we having a debate? Because, clearly, religion speaks to people for reasons other than explaining what happens in the world.

Most people who turn to religious belief do not do so because they think it provides the best biology or cosmology. They turn to religious belief because it provides them with purpose and meaning in their lives. With a sense of Right and Wrong. With a community. With hope.
[He has the massive hubris to declare why theism is accepted by "most people", merely in Naturalistic terms, as if he actually knows that. He most emphatically does not. It has something to do with the resonant ringing of truth value on the one hand vs. personal attachment to a blank, void ideology being declared as empirical truth without empirical proof on the other hand.]

"So if we want to say that science has refuted religion, we need to say that science has something to say about those issues. And on that I have good news and bad news for you. The bad news is that the universe does not care about you. (laughter) Qua universe. The universe is made up of elementary particles that don’t have intelligence, don’t pass judgment, don’t have a sense of Right and Wrong. And the fear is, the existential anxiety is that if that purpose and meaningfulness is not given to me by the universe, then it cannot exist. The good news is that that fear is a mistake. That there is another option: that we create purpose and meaning in the world.
[Really? I thought we were deterministic, just a bunch of atoms ruled by physics with outcomes predictable by Carroll himself.]

"If you love somebody, it is not because that love is put into you by something outside, it is because you created that from inside yourself. If you act goodness (sic) to somebody, it’s not because you are given instructions to do so, it’s that it’s a choice that you made. In the very scary world, you should be affected at a very deep level [Should? Is that the empirical ‘should’?], by the thought that the universe doesn’t care, does not pass judgment on you, but it’s also challenging and liberating [Atheist freedom of the VOID] that we can create lives that are worth living.

I have never met God. I have never met any spirits or angels. But I have met human beings; many of them are amazing people. And I truly believe that if we accept the universe for what it is, if we approach reality with an open mind and an open heart, then we can create lives very much worth living.
Thank you.

An Analysis of the Content of the Speech:

Carroll is at least consistent. He presumes that science can, in fact, disprove the existence of non-physical reality. He said so up front, and in these words:
” Something we learned by doing science for 400 years is something called “Naturalism”, the idea that there is only one reality; that there are not separate planes of the natural and the supernatural;”
This is, of course, entirely false. Under Popper's falsifiability demarcation, science is limited to the pursuit of physical questions which can be disproven during the attempt to prove them. That eliminates metaphysical issues from the scientific mix. They cannot be tested, physically, experimentally, independently replicated for data comparison. To eliminate the falsification requirement eradicates the ability to declare any unfalsifiable principle to be "objective knowledge". Such unfalsifiable principles are subjective, and are suspect at best. What Carroll has presented is of two kinds: false association (metaphysics conflated with physical phenomenon), and circular (presupposing the conclusion in the premises).

Further, it is easily shown that theism does not address the physical realm, and when ecclesiasticism attempts to do so, it frequently but not always, fails, a point which Carroll attempts to bend into a refutation. But theism is not about the physical realm, and attacking it based on that premise will fail to address the essence of theism altogether. Carroll's case does not extend that far, because empiricism doesn't go there.

So how does he form his argument? What is the basis of his proof? His proof for that assertion is not empirical; it is an Appeal to Authority (famous scientists) and an associated False Association (conflating non-physical with physical, which is also a Category Error). So he compounds at least three logic errors into a support structure for his Scientism and Naturalism, right at the start, making the entire speech circular.

One must assume that Naturalism is the case if it is asserted that Science can disprove metaphysical existence. That’s because science can disprove X only if science can test for X. To say that science has the ability to test for and disprove X, is to say that science has X-abilities. To conclude that science has X abilities, but cannot find X, is a hazardous statement, because it does not prove that there is no X. To say that would be to commit the Inductive Fallacy.

And if science has X abilities, then X is presumed to be physical (because that’s what science is). So the redefinition is implicit: X is physical by definition, and if X is then designated as "metaphysical", then metaphysical is physical by the redefinition of science. By this circular reasoning, either physical existence is actually metaphysical (not what he believes), or metaphysical existence is actually physical (also not what he believes), or metaphysical existence does not exist due to the definitional problems encountered within Naturalism (this is what he believes, although without specifically tumbling to it). So metaphysics is defined not to exist, due to this logical morass.

The convolutions in this logical train wreck are painful to observe, and astounding to watch as they are proposed without critical analysis.

Carroll does not provide the science which proves his "scientific" convictions; that's because there is no experimental data on X. What he does instead of providing empirical scientific data for a disciplined direct experimental assault on metaphysics is to claim that the increased knowledge of the universe and its physical characteristics somehow proves conclusively that there is no existence which is not available for scientific, physical analysis. How does he justify this? He does not; he presupposes it. He slides his argument into a position of Scientism - I'll predict your behavior from your atoms - in order to support his metaphysical Naturalism, which he has already presupposed, a spectacular error of circular reasoning.

He invokes Gallileo and Newton and Darwin, and winds up using their observations of cosmos, forces, and finches to conclude that they had disproven metaphysical existence. But he does that by invoking changes in ecclesiastic theory, not basic theism. Basic theism is totally unaffected by the findings of these men, or by the natural laws governing the cosmos, forces, and finches.

None of these famous scientific findings bear on metaphysics in even the remotest empirical fashion. They all describe physical characteristics, not metaphysical existence, metaphysical truths, or origins – not even Darwin’s Origins discusses actual life origins and how life came to be, merely from inanimate and rather stupid minerals obeying the laws of physics. And of course, Darwin’s premises, all of them, are now discounted fully by evolutionists themselves, who are groping for hope in meta-meta-principles for the salvation of evolution.

What Carroll preaches is metaphysical Naturalism. But science uses only methodological naturalism and abjures metaphysical Naturalism because it is (a) a physically unprovable metaphysical claim, and (b) an ideology, not an empirical conclusion, not even contingently. The idea that physical science can disprove the existence of nonphysical reality is a Category Error, and is absurd in the logical sense.

Also, Carroll repeats his idea that humans are nothing but atoms, atoms are deterministic, we know the physics and laws that govern the behavior of atoms. And yet he also asserts that humans are agents, creative, intelligent and moral. His explanation for that internal contradiction is: none.

And as a finale, he dodges consciousness and other non-physical characteristics of actual life by declaring them trivial, and the war against metaphysics to have been won… by metaphysical Naturalism.

That is hardly the case. One cannot achieve a victory in war by ignoring the atomic bombs still in the adversary's rockets and merely declaring victory any way.

This entire speech is a metaphysical, philosophical and ideological statement in support for the presumption of the omniscience of science (Metaphysical Scientism), which presumptively disproves metaphysics, philosophy and ideologies (which are anti-science and are superstitions).

The self-refutation and non-coherence are obvious.

Two Stories of Islam to Ponder

ISIS Fighter converts to Christianity

"The man, that has miraculously survived multiple gun shot wounds after an altercation between ISIS and Syrian Army forces, was rescued by members of the Saint Dominican Catholic Presbytery of Ayyash hours after the conflict had erupted.

The members of the Christian organization wanted to give the man a proper Christian burial and carried him over 26 kilometres before the man miraculously came back to life as he was believed to have died from his wounds.

As the man came back to his senses, he reported to priest Hermann Groschlin of the visions he had whilst in the afterlife, an event that profoundly changed the 32-year old jihadist and eventually led to his conversion to Christianity days later.

“He told me that he was always taught that to die as a martyr would open him the Gates of Jannah, or Gates of Heaven” recalled the priest. “Yet, as he had started to ascend towards the light of the Heavens, devilish entities, or Jinns he called them, appeared and led him to the fiery pits of Hell. There he had to relive all the pain he had inflicted upon others and every death he had caused throughout his entire life. He even had to relive the decapitations of his victims through their own eyes”, images the jihadist claims will haunt him for the rest of his life, admits the priest.
“Then Allah, or God, spoke unto him and told him that he had failed miserably as a human soul, that he would be banned from the Gates of Heaven if he chose to die, but that if he chose to live again, he would have another chance to repent of his sins and walk along God’s path once again”
The young man claims he was brought back to life moments later and eventually converted to Christianity days later, believing he had been misled throughout his religious life under the worship of Allah.

The young man, who’s wounds have surprisingly healed in a very short time, has chosen to live amongst the members of the Catholic presbytery who rescued him from the desert and hopes his story will help other ISIS fighters change their ways and convert to the one and only true God, the priest told local reporters."
Italian police: Muslim migrants threw Christians overboard

"Rome (CNN)Muslims who were among migrants trying to get from Libya to Italy in a boat this week threw 12 fellow passengers overboard -- killing them -- because the 12 were Christians, Italian police said Thursday.

Italian authorities have arrested 15 people on suspicion of murdering the Christians at sea, police in Palermo, Sicily, said.

Why migrants are dying to get to Italy

The original group of 105 people left Libya on Tuesday in a rubber boat. Sometime during the trip north across the Mediterranean Sea, the alleged assailants -- Muslims from the Ivory Coast, Mali and Senegal -- threw the 12 overboard, police said.

Other people on the voyage told police that they themselves were spared "because they strongly opposed the drowning attempt and formed a human chain," Palermo police said."

Thursday, April 16, 2015

An Analytical Review of Sean Carroll's Speech to the FFRF

Sean Carroll and the Argument From Quantum Field Theory against life after death; although he refers briefly to QFF, much of the speech is otherwise. I suggest that the reader view the speech and analyze it fully before reading my own analysis, below; that would be great exercise for the cranial logic machine. We could then compare our analyses. But it is quite an investment in time. I don't like having to work from video, because I can't use a search tool to find some point I remember being somewhere in the middle, and also because I have to type up his words in order to present his argument here. The advantage of video, though, is that it does allow the speaker's attitude to shine through. Scientists are supposed to hold their opinions conditionally, with skepticism. You are encouraged to judge for yourself.

We have here a physicist making a physical case; so we should look for sophisticated empirical solutions in the approved format for producing the objective knowledge which supports his claim: falsifiable hypotheses, experimental design and implementation, open data and data analysis, history of replication and falsifying/supporting results.

We should understand that this is not a forum for rigorous detail; still, when analyzed, the arguments should be grounded in either disciplined empirical content, or deductive premises grounded in First Principles; otherwise they should not be accepted.

1. First Argument:
p1. The mind is the brain;

P2. The brain is atoms;

P3. We know how atoms work;
(He cites quantum field theory and shows a complex equation containing “all” of the possible influences on the atoms in the brain. They are, he says, completely known, and no other influence is possible, or they (physicists) would know about it. Since they know all that, they also know that, after death, there is no possibility for the information contained in brain atoms to continue to exist.)

C. Therefore, there is no way for “you” to persist after death.
Carroll asserts that the premises are all agreed on, therefore the argument is scientifically true.

Premise P1:
With a little rhetorical prestidigitation Carroll has gotten the audience (100% Atheist) to consent to premise 1 as if it were axiomatically self-evident, a necessary Truth of the Universe and beyond. With the consent that premise 1 is axiomatically a First Principle with no actual empirical proof necessary, Carroll is not tasked with dealing with it, nor with the logical consequences of a Reductio Ad Absurdum performed on it. And without premise 1 as axiomatically True, the entire argument collapses into rubble. Premise 1 will need a Reductio, at minimum.

So let’s look at premise P1 and its necessary consequences, one of which is determinism. The entire argument hinges on the reductive physicalist notion that the mind is purely physical, is driven by purely physical phenomena (the four physical forces), and produces purely physical effects. Thus the principle of initial conditions comes into play, meaning that the outcome of any change is a result of forces acting upon initial conditions and states. That produces a completely determinable outcome with complete physical predictability, and is thus subject to physical measurement for confirmation.

So if the mind is the brain and Philosophical Materialism/Naturalism is valid, and the universe is comprehensible by scientific analysis, then every mental change or neural transaction is predetermined by its initial atomic and subatomic state and the known physical forces (irreducible forces are: electromagnetic, strong, weak, gravity). The premise, being a physical claim, should be fully testable experimentally.

Both the initial state and the influence of any force are fully predetermined in a causal chain going back to a time just after the Big Bang. This means that the mind, being merely the brain, produces nothing that cannot be attributed to this full causality, and therefore the mind is fully deterministic as well.

But, as many philosophers of mind have pointed out, and Carroll is not such a being, the effects of the mind are observably not causal, not deterministic and therefore are not the products of the brain initial states and physical forces alone. This has been called the “Hard Problem” of mind theory, an appellation most recently attributed to philosopher David Chalmers, but actually going back at least a century before. Bertrand Russell acknowledged it with the thought that a “different kind of substance” must exist which is causally involved in consciousness, agency and qualia, in his “Nine Lectures on Mind”.

The Hard Problem, aka “the mind-body problem”, has not, contra Carroll, been resolved in favor of Quantum Field Theory. And Carroll has not claimed that it has been resolved; he merely presupposes that when he asserts the validity of Premise 1.

Premise P1 cannot be accepted without being grounded in either empirical data or universal First Principles.  Further, it is most likely false, due to the Hard Problem which presents the internal non-coherence which inheres.

Ideological Dependency:
Further, Carroll’s argument presumes that a specific ideology is incorrigibly True: Philosophical Materialism. However, PM fails for a very obvious reason. It cannot prove what it claims under its own provisos. In other words, it cannot be proven – physically, empirically – that its central tenet (which that there is no non-physical existence) is a true concept. So it cannot be a known, objectively provable, empirically replicable sentence of objective knowledge that PM is true. The claim is a Category Error due to attempting to make a metaphysical claim using only physical resources, and the ideology itself cannot be shown to be  logically true under the First Principles. Thus the use of Philosophical Materialism as a premise, even (especially) an unstated, presupposed premise, nullifies the truth value of the argument.

Methodological Opaqueness:
The next problem with Carroll’s argument is that the entire argument, being a Materialist argument made by a scientist, should lead to testable hypotheses which result in affirming or negating data under the disciplined rules of empirical testing. But the argument cannot be tested, because it requires testing a state which is totally inaccessible to physical sensors. (Category Error, as shown above).  This also fails Popper's demarcation criterion of falsifiability.

That physically inaccessible state is the specific claim being made: the existence of non-physical mind, untethered to physical constraints – including the constraints of the initial conditions of atomic and sub-atomic states in the brain, the four forces of physics, the presupposed need for physical neural hosting. Any claim made for or against that specific state cannot be either validated or falsified using physical instrumentation. Therefore, any counter-claim to have falsified it materially cannot be either true or valid. And that leaves any claims made by physicists for their physics as valid premises for non-physical claims, out in the cold, even and especially from a rigorous empirical standpoint.

Conclusion regarding Carroll’s syllogism:
What Carroll actually has is just this: rhetoric which he uses with flourishes to cover for the numerous reasons that his own premises are not valid, either empirically or logically. It amounts to a shell game posing as a logic argument, even including ridicule.

2. The False Dichotomy.
He progresses to this False Dichotomy, which he presents as much as ridicule as an argument:
”What to make of the evidence for an afterlife?

Some ill-defined metaphysical substance, not subject to the known laws of physics, interacts with the atoms of our brains in ways that thus far eluded every controlled experiment in the history of science,


People hallucinate when they are nearly dead.”
The first horn of this dilemma presents some false statements regarding an actual metaphysical theory:
a. The use of the term “substance” is prejudicial and incorrect. Substance strongly implies a physical existence, even when modified by use of the term "metaphysical". No physical substance would be involved. It’s use is a leading bias toward the physicalization of metaphysics, and thus the empirical testability of metaphysical entities. That bias is false, (Category Error) and prejudices the remainder of the statement.

b. The expectation that “every controlled experiment in the history of science” is the repository for all possible knowledge is ideological (again Philosophically Materialist and Scientismist). That expectation is used, however, as a faux grounding for the first horn, giving it an aura of respectability by its Appeal To Authority.

c. The appeal to hallucination is absurd, because Carroll has no material evidence to support that claim.
Despite the blatant imagery of the authority of Scientism and Philosophical Materialism, Carroll ignores all of the issues raised above – universal determinism vs. non-deterministic life; Category Error of underlying ideologies; lack of falsifiability or testability of either horn; and in addition, the Equivocation Error in the false use of the term “substance” (the same logic error made by Russell a century earlier).

Thus the Carroll dichotomy is ungrounded, with prejudiced language attempting to bias toward Scientism, is untestable and unfalsifiable empirically, and is meaningless as either objective knowledge or a truth statement.

3. The Circular Definition.
Next he makes the classic logic error of circularity within the very question he asks:
”We can ask, OK, given that we are made of atoms, we understand what the atoms are doing, what is LIFE, what is this complex, non-fundamental phenomenon that arises out of the motions and interactions of the fundamental particles of which we are made.”
He has poisoned the well by asking for a definition, but then making a constraining definition himself which is purely Materialist/Physicalist; that prevents others from providing their own definition as he asked. By placing the desired answer inside the question he has reduced the issue to a circular tautology, defined only by himself (but with supreme confidence), without opportunity to challenge his presuppositions.

Further, he has no evidence, material or otherwise, to support the claims upon which the “definition” is declared. The definition is presented as tautological necessity, a new First Principle, a Truth statement upon which he will continue his non-empirical arguments. There are many definitions of life that precede and supercede his definition.

4. Invoking Schroedinger and negentropy.
Carroll moves on to Erwin Schroedinger and his theory of “negentropy”, as he presented in his book, “What Is Life”. Negentropy is the concept that open systems can receive extra energy from external sources, and that extra energy overcomes the lossy-ness of the system thus providing for the possibility of anentropic emergence rather than degradation. That principle is controversial among physicists, and requires some background and analysis.

Entropy is a descriptive observational law of the effect of loss in physical systems (open or closed); it is not a prescriptive causal law. Thus negentropy is not a prescriptive causal law, either. Especially since it is a terminology ploy which does not even exist physically or logically, as will be discussed below.

Says Carroll: the Sun is “low entropy energy”.

Sunshine is modulated energy, with a seasonally variable duty cycle. The type of receiving systems determine whether it is high energy or averaged energy, depending upon the duty cycle of the receiving system vs the duty cycle of the sunshine.

Entropy is defined by the excess energy transfer from the "hot reservoir" to the "cold reservoir". Energy in photonic form is the currency of entropy and the photon is not a system which incurs entropy. The entropy of energy is a meaningless concept, because entropy applies to processes and systems, not raw energy.

For sunshine energy and earth systems, entropy in our context applies to the receiving systems here on Earth. There are three possibilities for those open systems on Earth:
(a) those which require more energy still in order to avoid rundown due to internal system energy loss being greater than the input energy;
(b) those which receive exactly sufficient energy for maintaining operation indefinitely, because input energy equals energy loss in the system; or,
(c) those which must either shed the excess energy received, or face destruction due to receiving more energy input than system energy loss can shed.

Adding excess energy to an open system on Earth does not produce a negative version of entropy which might be interpreted as increasing orderliness. It cannot happen. All that happens is that excess energy must be shed in order to avoid destruction. The ideal case, where input energy equals energy loss produces a maintenance condition, not new information. Other types of loss in the system (friction, oxidation, etc.) still will lead ultimately to system disorder, randomness, and non-reducibility to algorithmic information.

Note that the discussion centers on energy loss, not system design, construction, or information loss. A pendulum that moves in ever shorter arcs is losing energy, not design, construction, or information. So adding energy to the system does not add anything to information. Adding just enough to keep the pendulum moving does not add information. Adding too much energy to the pendulum will cause it to either shed the excess energy or ultimately be destroyed by it, but no new information (algorithmic or semantic) will emerge.

The idea, “negentropy”, thus is not a process for adding useful complexity or semantic information, either universally or locally; there is no negative entropy because the systemic losses still exist, even in the presence of added energy to open systems. And in fact, too much added energy causes destruction, which is positive entropy, not negative entropy.

The use of entropy as a factor in complexity emergence is a fallacy because increased energy does not produce increased semantic information; a pre-existing mechanism for creating information must be in place, a system which utilizes energy in order to produce information. The fallacy is that of non-comprehension of systemic entropy in open systems.

5. History of the Universe: Big Bang to universal death:
At 23:00 into the video, Carroll presents a “Complexity” graph. it's a sort of Bell Curve or at least a parabola. According to Carroll, complexity in the universe starts at zero, gradually rises toward a parabolic peak at mid-life, then decreases to zero at the end of life and universal death.

Complexity is declared to be equivalent to life, based on that graph. 23:15

Carroll actually defines complexity in terms of order:
”But complexity, the organization of the stuff that is going on, is a completely different thing than [linear] entropy.” And, “It is in between [Beginning and end] that the universe becomes complex, forms planets and stars, and galaxies and living organisms.”
The terms, complexity and order (or "organization" as Carroll calls it), are not interchangeable. And the historical items of the universe he listed are not created by similar causal actions. The difference is in the information content. Because information content is not related to orderliness, the two terms are mutually independent. For example, a Shakespeare play has no rule for order of the letters of the alphabet to appear, yet it has semantic meaning (information) and is non-compressible to an algorithm. On the other hand, a repetitive sequence of 1,7,3,1,7,3,1,7,3,1,7,3… (three characters repeated for the same length as the Shakespeare play) has order, but little or no semantic meaning or information, and is easily reduced to a simple algorithm.

Here is an example of order migration vs state change, with complexity actually in complete stasis:
Water progresses from vapor (disordered individual molecules), to liquid (non-compressible with definable distance boundaries between molecules), to crystalline (ordered physical relationship with respect to other adjacent molecules), to Bose-Einstein condensate (disorder), to atomic collapse (fully disordered). This is the same curve that the universe lifetime would follow, with “ordered” in the middle. But ice contains no more information (complexity) than does vapor. Complexity does not change throughout the phase changes. That's because the behaviors of each phase are determined by the same set of algorithms (set of physical laws).
Complexity is inversely related to orderliness.[1] The most orderly is the least complex; the least orderly is the most complex. Stated differently, the most orderly requires the smallest algorithm (1,1,1,1,1,1… n=n-1, for n=2 to infinity); the least orderly requires the most difficult algorithm (random output; irreducible system).

In the physical universe, order increases as atomic bonds are made and elements combine into molecules. The algorithm for this process is not created by the process, nor is it created by the molecules controlled by the algorithm. Further, the molecules do not contain algorithmic coding for the creation of the process. The information (laws of physics) are external and stable and have been since shortly after the Big Bang.

Until, that is, first life occurred with a dramatic, singular increase in information, stored in and used by molecules in the metabolism and replication of life. With the creation of first life, local complexity instantaneously increased to far beyond the original physics algorithms. The non-living universe, however, remained at the low complexity, high orderliness level.

The information in the universe is not a curve as is shown by Carroll’s complexity parabola; information and complexity is a huge step function going from the stasis of physics laws for eons, then stepping in a singular jump immediately to the incredibly high complexity of the information required for first life, finding stasis at that level, then jumping very rapidly into the Cambrian Explosion, and then increasing gradually over time to the present.

The complexity curve should be this sort of step function, which describe life only, and NOT the universe of minerals, molecules, atoms and sub-atomic particles:
                                                           _____________--------------     ^                                                           |        ^                                    Humans
Infinity                                                | Complexity of all phyla
    |                                                     |
    |                                                     | 
    |                               ___________|
    |                              |        ^
    |                              |    Single cell complexity(high)
    |                              |              
    |                              |             Complexity of mineral universe (low)                      
v_______________| _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ V _ _ _
^                                 ^                      ^
t=0                       First Life     Cambrian Explosion

So the entropy curves given by Carroll are equivocations in terminology, resulting in incorrect interpretation. Complexity does not peak in the middle of entropic degradation. Complexity peaks locally, not universally. Complexity will vanish from the universe the instant that life is extinguished. The complexity argument placed by Carroll is seriously flawed, because it misinterprets complexity and confuses it with orderliness, its exact opposite: Equivocation Fallacy; and it mislabels the increase in complexity as "universal", when it is actually restricted to life and living things, while the remaining non-life universe remains in complexity stasis. Reductio: If this were not the case, then the laws of physics would be changing in complexity over time; physics actually depends on that not happening.

5. Michael Russell, Geochemist at Jet Propulsion Laboratories:
Russell is quoted as giving the meaning of life: “to hydrogenate carbon dioxide.” at 24:55

Carroll: Entropy “required” the increase of complexity to get from CO2 to methane, and the “sloshing about of all the complex reactions produced life – that’s what life is”.

No. Entropy does not "require" anything; it is not a force, nor is it a prescriptive law of causation. This is a continuation of misconstrual of order vs. complexity.

Next, no: methane is not an increase in complexity, it is a continuation of existing chemical laws which apply when the environment (temperature, pressure, concentration, mobility conditions, etc) allows. It is like crystallization in that it is a reduction to a lower state, one of increased order but not increased complexity.

And NO. That is not what life is. Life has specific requirements not deducible from chemistry or physics. To be defined as life requires that separate but necessary sub-systems are all activated to work in concert toward mutual goals (metabolism and replication) for no known activation cause; when they coincidentally are programmed to cease to function in concert toward mutual goals, death occurs (programmed death).[2]

Life is not a substance, not a natural force, not an energy, it is a self-animated, autonomous, self-contained process. End of life is the end of the process: “extinguishing the candle; you don’t GO anywhere. You stop happening”. The reaction stops. Ultimately we will all reach equilibrium.

6. Ridiculing heaven.
I'll just briefly acknowledge the completely non-empirical ridiculing of the concept of heaven, as if that is satisfactory proof for Carroll.

"Heaven is a bad idea, because you reach thermal equilibrium and nothing happens."
He charges though a list of non-science, nonsense, non-empirical ridicules:
Happiness is a bad idea. Heaven fetishness iconizes perfect happiness. Hedonic treadmill, in psychology: happiness is unchanging regardless of circumstances.
He even refers to the catacombs of skeletons in Paris, for proof of what, is not clear.

But he finally addresses a significant question: free will (42:30 – 43:25):
“Depends on your definition of free will. If by free will you mean that somehow you are able to override the laws of physics, no you can’t do that. You are made of atoms; if we knew the state of your brain to arbitrary accuracy, and we knew all the laws of physics to arbitrary accuracy, and we had infinite computational power, we could predict what you would do. But the point is that we don’t have any of those things. So this is a fact, and not a very relevant fact to how we should treat actual people in the actual world. The way I like to think about free will is that it is an emergent phenomenon. The right way to think about people, since we don’t know where all there atoms are and we can’t do the math, is as rational, hopefully rational, agents that have the ability to make choices.”
So yes: the mind is deterministic; and yes, people have both rationality and agency.

No internal contradiction is noticed, at least visibly, and he rapidly leaves.

As for "emergent phenomenon", this has become a very popular phrase which is code for: "it just started to happen, coming out of nowhere, for no apparent reason - it just... emerged, because: negentropy... or something complicated, here, look at my equations."

There's not much that is more entertaining than watching a physicist try to disprove metaphysics with his own metaphysics.

In Summary:

1. Empirical content of the subject matter, life after death: none.
2. Failure to produce a proper understanding of the science of complexity and information.
3. Building syllogistic arguments on false premises.

Complete failure to produce empirical, objective knowledge regarding the proposition of non-physical consciousness, intellect, qualia, etc., being detached from material host and continuing after host death.

No objective knowledge or empirical data regarding the actual subject was produced or discussed, and much inference and innuendo was produced with the apparent intent of using that as if it were objective knowledge for the discussion of the continued existence of the non-physical consciousness, intellect, etc., when detached from the physical tether of the living organism.

1. The order/complexity scale is presented by Hubert Yockey, "Information Theory, Evolution, and the Origin of Life", Cambridge University Press, 2005; p169:
"Information is a measure of complexity. Complexity is a scale with orderliness at one end and randomness at the other."
Orderliness/small information content<--less---complexity---more-->Randomness/large information content.

Orderliness is reducible to small algorithms and contains little information. Randomness, and semantic information are irreducible to small algorithms and contain large information content.

2. Cells don't just die, they are programmed to undergo a managed death and dismemberment process, called apoptosis.
Cooper and Hausman; "The Cell; A Molecular Approach"; Sinauer, 2013; p682 - 689.