Atheist: That's called the black swan fallacy. It is one in which the arguer ignores contradictory evidence on the basis of past experience. This can also be a variation of an argument from ignorance, i.e. Every swan we've ever seen is white, therefore there cannot be black swans, ignoring the possibility of a black swan occurring in the future.
Reply: In that case, we should as well expect to find green Swans that lay golden Faberge eggs with diamond ornaments that use Bulgari designer glasses,. Just because it has never been observed, doesn't mean one day, eventually, we will find a colony of such swans.
The fact that the odds of a minimal genome are 10^722.000, which is not zero, and therefore possible, is nonsensical to the extreme. I use the statistical argument just to illustrate a point.
Leading scientists have calculated that the statistical probability of the fine-tuning of the universe, and life emerging by random unguided events, is far beyond the limit of Borel's law, which is in the order of 1 in 10^50.
This probability is hard to imagine but an illustration may help. Imagine covering the whole of the USA with small coins, edge to edge. Now imagine piling other coins on each of these millions of coins. Now imagine continuing to pile coins on each coin until reaching the moon about 400,000 km away! If you were told that within this vast mountain of coins there was one coin different to all the others. The statistical chance of finding that one coin is about 1 in 10^50. In other words, the evidence that our universe is designed is overwhelming!
A statistical impossibility is a probability that is so low as to not be worthy of mentioning. Sometimes it is quoted as 10^50 although the cutoff is inherently arbitrary. Although not truly impossible the probability is low enough so as to not bear mention in a rational, reasonable argument. If the probability of an event is an infinitesimally small, then, for all practical purposes, the probability is equal to zero.
The Criterion : The "Cosmic Limit" Law of Chance
To arrive at a statistical "proof," we need a reasonable criterion to judge it by :
As just a starting point, consider that many statisticians consider that any occurrence with a chance of happening that is less than one chance out of 10^50, is an occurrence with such a slim a probability that is, in general, statistically considered to be zero. (10^50 is the number 1 with 50 zeros after it, and it is spoken: "10 to the 50th power"). This appraisal seems fairly reasonable, when you consider that 10^50 is about the number of atoms which make up the planet earth. --So, overcoming one chance out of 10^50 is like marking one specific atom out of the earth, and mixing it in completely, and then someone makes one blind, random selection, which turns out to be that specific marked atom. Most mathematicians and scientists have accepted this statistical standard for many purposes.
LES PROBABILITIES DINOMBRABLES ET LEURS APPLICATIONS ARITHMtTIOUES.
Par M. EmiIe BoreI (Paris) 8 novembre 1908