Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Some Good News for Biology Students

Evolutionists have complained bitterly that some states are requiring biology classes to present evolution from a theory-neutral perspective--that is, the evidence should be presented without first presenting evolution as true. And evolutionists have mounted an offensive against such efforts.

But here's some good news. Some evolutionists, rather than using political manipulation, say they are going to use science. The new standards call for science, and to the science they will go.

Ken Miller and Steve Nowicki, for instance, authors of Prentice Hall and Holt McDougal texts, respectively, are looking forward to beefing up the scientific description and evidences for evolution. As Nowicki says:

I understand that there may be a political agenda behind the standards, but I am taking them at face value. If a state thinks students need more information to understand evolution, I am happy to provide that.

You mean there actually are evolutionists who will follow the standards (which call for science class to present science), rather than impute false motives and engage in political offensives? That is terrific news and Nowicki needs to be applauded. Last time I reviewed a Holt text it was, frankly, pathetic. The publisher's response to my review was equally disappointing. We look forward to better things.

62 comments:

  1. I'm glad you're happy. So no pre-supposition of evolution until even more science proving it is delivered.
    'I understand that there may be a political agenda behind the standards' - not silly is he?

    So no pre-supposition of ID or creationism until there is ANY evidence?
    '(which call for science class to present science), rather than impute false motives and engage in political offensives' - such as you do?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wait, did someone who works for the DISCOVERY INSTITUTE actually write this sentence!?

    "You mean there actually are evolutionists who will follow the standards (which call for science class to present science), rather than impute false motives and engage in political offensives?"

    The whole plan for the Discovery Institute was to impute false motives and engage in political offensives! What the hell do you think Phillip Johnson's whole attack on "materialism" is? A big fat imputation of false motives, as I spell out in this blog post. Phillip Johnson sure as hell never cared about science!

    The Discovery Institute's Wedge Document lays out that their whole plan is false imputation of motives and political offensives. Have you read it?

    "Goals: ... To see design theory permeate our religious, cultural, moral and political life... we seek to cultivate and convince influential individuals in print and broadcast media... Because of his long tenure in politics, journalism and public policy, Discovery President Bruce Chapman brings to the project rare knowledge and acquaintance of key op-ed writers, journalists, and political leaders. ...Alongside a focus on influential opinion-makers, we also seek to build up a popular base of support among our natural constituency, namely, Christians. We will do this primarily through apologetics seminars. We intend these to encourage and equip believers with new scientific evidence's that support the faith, as well as to "popularize" our ideas in the broader culture."

    The Discover Institute is almost entirely lawyers and armchair philosophers, and it was planned that way.

    Again, Phillip Johnson: "The problem with rationalism is that it isn’t rational. ...People were caught in a rationalist mentality. They were thinking, "If we present facts and evidence, Stephen J. Gould will say, ‘Oh yes, you’re right and I’m wrong,’" and then the scientists would let them in. Well, I understand a little bit better how that world works, and I thought of it like a political campaign or big case litigation."

    Here, for another example, is the debate on William Buckley's show. Ken Miller brings plots, pictures and data. Phillip Johnson immediately falsely imputes materialism to the evolutionists (talking to Catholic Miller) and then gets into an asinine argument with Eugenie Scott of the NCSE, dwelling endlessly on the fact that her website sells Darwin Fish bumper stickers! Bumper stickers, he cares about-- and has no response at all to Ken Miller's evidence showing common descent!

    “I told them I was a postmodernist and a deconstructionist just like them, but aiming at a slightly different target.” – [Phillip Johnson, cited by Robert Pennock, The Postmodern Sin of Intelligent Design Creationism.]

    "This isn’t really, and never has been a debate about science. It’s about religion and philosophy." Phillip Johnson

    Scientific failure drives creationism, and it matters!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I've seen one of Miller's presentations in which he has a chart of proposed whale evolution with dotted lines drawn on it, between drastically different species. Exactly who drew the lines on the chart?

    Partial List Of Fossil Groups - (without the artificially imposed dotted lines) - Timeline Illustration:
    http://www.earthhistory.org.uk/wp-content/majorgroups.jpg

    Whale Evolution Vs. Population Genetics - Richard Sternberg PhD. in Evolutionary Biology - video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4165203

    Ancient Fossils That Have Not Changed For Millions Of Years - video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4113820

    THE FOSSILS IN THE CREATION MUSEUM - 1000's of pictures of ancient "living" fossils that have not changed for millions of years:
    http://www.fossil-museum.com/fossils/?page=0&limit=30

    The Fossil Record - The Myth Of +99.9% Extinct Species - Dr. Arthur Jones - video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4028115

    ReplyDelete
  4. "Why, if species have descended from other species by fine gradations, do we not everywhere see innumerable transitional forms? Why is not all nature in confusion, instead of the species being, as we see them, well defined? But, as by this theory innumerable transitional forms must have existed, why do we not find them embedded in countless numbers in the crust of the earth? But in the intermediate region, having intermediate conditions of life, why do we not now find closely-linking intermediate varieties?" Charles Darwin - Origin Of Species

    "The extreme rarity of transitional forms in the fossil record persists as the trade secret of paleontology."
    Stephen Jay Gould

    Whale Evolution? - Exposing The Deception - video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4032568

    ReplyDelete
  5. How about imputing true motives? As Diogenes points out, Intelligent Design Creationism is a religiously motivated political movement with absolutely no empirical evidence supporting it and no scientific theory to test. The Dominionists behind the Discovery Institute want to institute a theocracy. Those are the real motives of Cornelius and his brethren who are working so hard to destroy science education in this country.

    For people so ready to wrap themselves in the flag, they demonstrate a great hatred of America.

    ReplyDelete
  6. bornagain77 -

    Are you really quoting Charles Darwin as an authority AGAINST the theory of evolution, or are you merely quoting a century-and-a-half old book to imply our CURRENT fossil record is lacking?

    Either way, a swing and a miss.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Ritchie; do you want more up to date quotes? and will the quotes really make any difference to your religion of atheism that is driving your science?

    "The point emerges that if we examine the fossil record in detail, whether at the level of orders or of species, we find' over and over again' not gradual evolution, but the sudden explosion of one group at the expense of another."
    Paleontologist, Derek V. Ager


    "A major problem in proving the theory has been the fossil record; the imprints of vanished species preserved in the Earth's geological formations. This record has never revealed traces of Darwin's hypothetical intermediate variants - instead species appear and disappear abruptly, and this anomaly has fueled the creationist argument that each species was created by God."
    Paleontologist, Mark Czarnecki


    "There is no need to apologize any longer for the poverty of the fossil record. In some ways, it has become almost unmanageably rich and discovery is outpacing integration. The fossil record nevertheless continues to be composed mainly of gaps."
    Professor of paleontology - Glasgow University, T. Neville George


    "Evolution requires intermediate forms between species and paleontology does not provide them."
    David Kitts - Paleontologist


    "The long-term stasis, following a geologically abrupt origin, of most fossil morphospecies, has always been recognized by professional paleontologists" – Stephen Jay Gould - Harvard


    Genesis 1:21 & 25
    So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.,,,,, each according to its kind”; and it was so. 25 And God made the beast of the earth according to its kind, cattle according to its kind, and everything that creeps on the earth according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.


    "Now, after over 120 years of the most extensive and painstaking geological exploration of every continent and ocean bottom, the picture is infinitely more vivid and complete than it was in 1859. Formations have been discovered containing hundreds of billions of fossils and our museums now are filled with over 100 million fossils of 250,000 different species. The availability of this profusion of hard scientific data should permit objective investigators to determine if Darwin was on the right track. What is the picture which the fossils have given us? ... The gaps between major groups of organisms have been growing even wider and more undeniable. They can no longer be ignored or rationalized away with appeals to imperfection of the fossil record." Luther D. Sunderland, Darwin's Enigma 1988, Fossils and Other Problems, 4th edition, Master Books, p. 9


    "The evidence we find in the geological record is not nearly as compatible with Darwinian natural selection as we would like it to be .... We now have a quarter of a million fossil species but the situation hasn't changed much. The record of evolution is surprisingly jerky and, ironically, we have even fewer examples of evolutionary transition than in Darwin's time ... so Darwin's problem has not been alleviated".
    David Raup, Curator of Geology at Chicago's Field Museum of Natural History


    The Fossil Record - Don Patton - in their own words - video
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4679386266900194790

    ReplyDelete
  8. Bornagain77, you might want to add this to your collection of quotes:

    Many species when once formed never undergo any further change but become extinct without leaving modified descendents and the periods, during which species have undergone modification, though long as measured by years, have probably been short in comparison with the periods during which they retain the same form.

    ReplyDelete
  9. bornagain77 -

    I appreciate the effort, but you're supposed to put in some links there so I can verify these quotes for myself to see whether they're really saying what you are presenting them as saying.

    For example, one of your quotes is from Stephen Jay Gould, on of the most prominent evolutionists of our age. So it's a pretty safe bet that he's not saying exactly what you want him to be saying.

    And as for quoting Genesis, that is a joke, surely?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Cornelius Hunter: Evolutionists have complained bitterly that some states are requiring biology classes to present evolution from a theory-neutral perspective--that is, the evidence should be presented without first presenting evolution as true.

    Presenting data without theories isn't science.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Zach states, "Presenting data without theories isn't science."

    Maybe in your world presenting something as factual first before the evidence is presented is what you call, "science" but not in reality.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Ritchie-

    Of course he doesn't provide links. Most are horribly quote mined, hacked into pieces, and divorced from their original intent. Of course, this is the kind of intellectual dishonest 'evidence' against evolution that creationists would like in the textbooks!!!

    FYI, you can find most of these in the quote mine project:
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/mine/search.html

    Except for the ones discussing non-gradualism (gasp? is anyone a pure gradualist? I've argued even Darwin himself wasn't), most are howlers.

    For example, a Google search of "Mark Czarnecki paleontology" turns up only the quote mine! He must not be very famous. Maybe its because he says historically anachronistic things like:

    "Essentially, Darwin stated that a species evolved by the random mutation of genes, which then produced variants of the original species."

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/mine/part1-2.html#quote26

    Darwin knew of genes DNA, and Mutations? Wow, a man ahead of his time!
    _________________________________________________
    Another: T. Neville George, 1960 Is a thirty page essay from 1960 describing the progress of the fossil record in defending evolution. Lines from different pages have been cobbled together to make the quote presented.

    Here is what BA posts:
    "There is no need to apologize any longer for the poverty of the fossil record. In some ways, it has become almost unmanageably rich and discovery is outpacing integration. The fossil record nevertheless continues to be composed mainly of gaps."

    No ellipses....no indication this is anything but a complete quote.

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/mine/part1-3.html

    Scroll to #43

    Here is some context to the quote:

    "There is no need to apologize any longer for the poverty of the fossil record. In some ways it has become almost unmanageably rich, and discovery is out-pacing integration: the growing number of species of Formaminifera that remain undescribed in the cabinets of the oil companies probably is of the order of thousands; and while most other organic groups are not so fully collected the ratio of added finds to palaeontologists studying them is constantly expanding. But what remains to be discovered is likely to be of less and less radical importance in revealing major novelties, more and more of detailed infilling of fossil series whose outlines are known. The main phyla, in so far as they are represented by fossils, now have a long and full history that is made three-dimensional by a repeatedly cladal phylogeny. The gaps are being closed not only by major annectant forms, the "missing links" that Darwin so deplored, like the fish-amphibian ichthyostegids, the amphibian-reptile seymouriamorphs, and the reptile-mammal ictidosaurs, but also by new discoveries of phyletic affiliations, as in graptolite structure.

    George now goes on to summarize several other topics, and then, concluding this section, he writes:

    Together, the discovery of new fossil forms, the filling out of the details of bioserial change, the interpretation of biofacies, the adoption of new techniques both in fossil morphology and in fossil manipulation, and the establishment of a progressively refined timescale contribute to a present-day palaeontology offering the strongest support, the demonstrative "proof," of the fact and the process of evolution in terms wholly concordant with the essence of Darwinian theory."

    And the second half of the quote refers to the most ancient fossils (circa 1960, which he admits have gaps).

    ReplyDelete
  13. Continuing:

    Kitts is quote 54 (1974) in the archive

    Gould's is a nice quote-again punctuated equil.

    The Bible...(didn't that have something about lying, BA?)

    Sunderland is a aerospace engineer, and creation science author.

    Raup 1979 is discussing gradualism and the evidence for the mechanism of evolution (not merely common descent) in the fossil record.

    http://commondescent.net/articles/Raup_quote.htm

    Google is an amazing thing. Sadly, for Bornagain77, it only reveals the intellectual dishonesty of these quote mines.

    And who, other than anti-science forces,
    really thinks lists of out of context quote mines is scientific evidence against evolution?


    Secondly, did anyone else notice the link Dr. Hunter presents for efforts to present biology as theory-neutral links to the Texas controversy?

    Is Young Earth Creationism and the rejection of a biology textbook that included evolution, that was vetted by Texas A&M Baylor University Biology faculty theory neutral?

    Is man who says: "Why is Intelligent Design the big tent? Because we’re all lined up against the fact that naturalism, that nature is all there is. Whether you’re a progressive creationist, recent creationist, young earth, old earth, it’s all in the tent of Intelligent Design." espousing neutrality?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don_McLeroy
    http://www.grace-bible.org/downloads/sermons/Intelligent_Design/DM05404_Intelligent_Design_Theory_Primer.mp3

    This is theory neutral? Is ID not a theory, but a religious presumption, then?

    ReplyDelete
  14. RobertC -

    Wow. Impressive. Thanks for doing the leg work there. That's a lot of misquoted text.

    Of course, not that I think bornagain77 himself did the quote-mining. Probably just accepted this all at face value from an unreliable source.

    And because I believe in giving people a chance to learn from their mistakes, bornagain77, do you acknowledge that these quotes are indeed fallacous? Or will you merely bury your head in the sand on this?

    Please, prove my inner cynic wrong here.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Rob: "Of course he doesn't provide links. Most are horribly quote mined, hacked into pieces, and divorced from their original intent. Of course, this is the kind of intellectual dishonest 'evidence' against evolution that creationists would like in the textbooks!!! "

    Sorry, its already in the texts books.
    You get lamer every day.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Being a talkO fan reveals acute gullibility Rob.
    You really are getting lower and lower as each denial of reality passes through your mind

    ReplyDelete
  17. Patrick said...

    " Intelligent Design Creationism"

    Lame.

    "is a religiously motivated political movement with absolutely no empirical evidence supporting it and no scientific theory to test"

    Lamer.

    "The Dominionists behind the Discovery Institute want to institute a theocracy"

    ROTFLMAO!!!!

    "Those are the real motives of Cornelius and his brethren who are working so hard to destroy science education in this country"

    Science ed is already down the tubes in the US and that's the fault of secular humanist dupes like you. Its already controlled by secular humanist fanatical fundamentalists and has been dropping BS ever since your kind took over.

    " For people so ready to wrap themselves in the flag, they demonstrate a great hatred of America"

    ROTFLMAO .... Again!!

    Not even a decent try at asinine insults

    Your are lame, lamer and pathetically ignorant.

    Why don't you crawl into diogenes dirty little roadside barrel of glaring idiocy and stay there with him and his dogs. At least he'll have another friend.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Its amazing the level of social and intellectual blindness that motivates the Darwinian clades.

    The US president is a Muslim marxist, who is ruining the country.

    Yet, these hapless twits still think the Judeo/Christian principles that the US was founded upon are the true enemy.

    A truly stunning reversal strategy wrought through propaganda-based marketing techniques by Americas greatest enemies.

    But they're far too blind and lost to either see it or understand it.

    No wonder liberals are such fustilarian scum.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I don't see how ID proponents can be dscreibed as having a religious agenda when they belong to so many different religious groups. They even include a self identified agnostic or two.

    ReplyDelete
  20. natschuster you have got to be kidding! Did you read what you wrote before posting it?
    I mean, really?

    ReplyDelete
  21. natsch-Re-read Diogenes' post re: the wedge document and the founding of ID.

    Or just look around:

    Dr. Hunter's link to Darwinian assault on 'theory neutral' teaching of evolution in this very thread links to the Texas Schoolboard, as led by a young earth creationist.

    Mcleroy says:"Whether you’re a progressive creationist, recent creationist, young earth, old earth, it’s all in the tent of Intelligent Design." (ref above)

    Indeed.

    Hitch describes us as muslim marxist atheist scum, who are trying to subvert the Judeo-Christian traditions of the US, using a "propaganda-based marketing techniques by Americas greatest enemies."

    And the conclusion of front-page Uncommondescent post:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com/philosophy/the-%E2%80%9Cdesigner-of-the-universe-is-not-god%E2%80%9D-error/

    "Hence we arrive at the conclusion that the Designer of the universe is Being (God). There are two direct consequences of this argument. First, any attempt to make intelligent design compatible with atheism is incoherent. Conversely, ID is compatible with any orthodox theistic doctrine."

    I don't speak for everyone here, but this leads us to doubt the 'theory-neutrality' of ID. It knows where its advocacy lies.

    Oh, and speaking of lies, is BornAgain77 going to apologize and disavow the use of intellectually dishonest quotemines?

    ReplyDelete
  22. Looks like the Hitch afternoon squall has just passed through...I guess the good news is it is only once a day. Entertaining in a bizarre kind of way, but not worthy of any replies or refutation. If it's for real it's very disturbing but who knows?

    ReplyDelete
  23. Zachriel: Presenting data without theories isn't science.

    Michael: Maybe in your world presenting something as factual first before the evidence is presented is what you call, "science" but not in reality.

    That's not what was said, of course. Theory and evidence are the two essential components of the scientific method. Science is the process of matching theory to fact.

    ReplyDelete
  24. You want me to apologize for YOU being deceptive with the fossil evidence? That is so funny!!! Do you want me to apologize for the sudden appearance of the entire universe in the Big Bang too?

    Since you want an apology then please apologize for what atheism has wrought in this world?

    Is Atheism Even Scientific
    http://vimeo.com/2240456

    ReplyDelete
  25. The Biological Big Bang model for the major transitions in evolution - Eugene V Koonin - Background:
    "Major transitions in biological evolution show the same pattern of sudden emergence of diverse forms at a new level of complexity. The relationships between major groups within an emergent new class of biological entities are hard to decipher and do not seem to fit the tree pattern that, following Darwin's original proposal, remains the dominant description of biological evolution. The cases in point include the origin of complex RNA molecules and protein folds; major groups of viruses; archaea and bacteria, and the principal lineages within each of these prokaryotic domains; eukaryotic supergroups; and animal phyla. In each of these pivotal nexuses in life's history, the principal "types" seem to appear rapidly and fully equipped with the signature features of the respective new level of biological organization. No intermediate "grades" or intermediate forms between different types are detectable;
    http://www.biology-direct.com/content/2/1/21


    Biological Big Bangs - Origin Of Life and Cambrian - Dr. Fazale Rana - video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4284466

    Testing the Orchard Model and the NCSE’s Claims of “Nested Patterns” Supporting a “Tree of Life”
    Excerpt: Perhaps the reason why different genes are telling “different evolutionary stories” and “one group suggests one biogeographic pattern, and another group suggests another” is because the genes and organisms have wholly different stories to tell, namely stories that indicate that not all living organisms are ancestrally related, thereby fulfilling a testable prediction of the orchard model.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/03/testing_the_orchard_model_and.html

    Punctuated Equilibrium and Patterns from the Fossil Record - Casey Luskin
    Excerpt: “The Cambrian Explosion is by no means the only “explosion” in the fossil record. One evolutionist concedes that for the origin of fishes, “this is one count in the creationists’ charge that can only evoke in unison from paleontologists a plea of nolo contendere [no contest].” Plant biologists have called the origin of plants an “explosion,” saying, “the … radiation of land (plant) biotas is the terrestrial equivalent of the much-debated Cambrian ‘explosion’ of marine faunas.” Vertebrate paleontologists believe there was a mammal explosion because of the few transitional forms between major mammal groups: “There are all sorts of gaps: absence of gradationally intermediate ‘transitional’ forms between species, but also between larger groups — between, say, families of carnivores, or the orders of mammals.” Another study, “Evolutionary Explosions and the Phylogenetic Fuse,” found a bird (as well as a mammal) “Early Tertiary ‘explosion’” because many bird and mammal groups appear in a short time period lacking immediately recognizable ancestral forms. Finally, others have called the origin of our own genus Homo, “a genetic revolution” where “no australopithecine (ape) species is obviously transitional” leading one commentator to call it, like others called the Cambrian Explosion, a “big bang theory” of human evolution."
    http://www.ideacenter.org/contentmgr/showdetails.php/id/1232

    ReplyDelete
  26. On "quote mining":

    Quote Mining and Cherry Picking?
    Some might claim that citing these authorities over the lack of transitional forms misrepresents their views or constitutes "mining" their writings for quotes that fit this argument, while excluding portions that don't fit. Stephen Jay Gould complains creationists misuse his quotes about the lack of transitions: "[t]his quotation, although accurate as a partial citation, is dishonest in leaving out the following explanatory material showing my true purpose--to discuss rates of evolutionary change, not to deny the fact of evolution."13 It should thus be acknowledged that each author cited thus far is an unswerving evolutionist. Ernst Mayr, proclaims his belief that "[e]volution is no longer a theory, it is simply a fact."12 But these convictions do not invalidate the fact that the fossil record generally lacks plausible candidates for transitional forms. As explained next, many evolutionists have tried to accommodate the lack of transitions into evolutionary theory by claiming the lack of transitionals tells more about the rate at which evolution occurred rather than whether or not evolution happened.
    http://www.ideacenter.org/contentmgr/showdetails.php/id/1232

    Do genes help your atheistic fantasies?

    Congruence Between Molecular and Morphological Phylogenies - Colin Patterson
    Excerpt: "As morphologists with high hopes of molecular systematics, we end this survey with our hopes dampened. Congruence between molecular phylogenies is as elusive as it is in morphology and as it is between molecules and morphology."
    http://www.arn.org/docs/odesign/od171/sampler171.htm


    'The theory makes a prediction (for amino acid sequence similarity); we've tested it, and the prediction is falsified precisely.'
    Dr. Colin Patterson Senior Principal Scientific Officer in the Paleontology Department at the British Museum


    Walter T. Brown, In the Beginning (1989), p. 7
    Excerpt: "There is not a trace of evidence on the molecular level for the traditional evolutionary series: simple sea life > fish> amphibians > reptiles> mammals. In general, each of the many categories of organisms appear to be equally isolated."
    http://evolution-facts.org/Appendix/a21.htm

    "Why Darwin was wrong about the tree of life," New Scientist (January 21, 2009)
    Excerpt: Even among higher organisms, “the problem was that different genes told contradictory evolutionary stories,”,,,“despite the amount of data and breadth of taxa analyzed, relationships among most [animal] phyla remained unresolved.” ,,,,Carl Woese, a pioneer of evolutionary molecular systematics, observed that these problems extend well beyond the base of the tree of life: “Phylogenetic incongruities [conflicts] can be seen everywhere in the universal tree, from its root to the major branchings within and among the various taxa to the makeup of the primary groupings themselves.”,,, “We’ve just annihilated the (Darwin's) tree of life.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/05/a_primer_on_the_tree_of_life_p_1.html#more


    I would like to point out that this, "annihilation" of Darwin's genetic tree of life, article came out on the very day that Dr. Hillis, a self-proclaimed "world leading expert" on the genetic tree of life, testified before the Texas State Board Of Education that the genetic tree of life overwhelmingly confirmed gradual Darwinian evolution. One could almost argue it was "Intelligently Designed" for him to exposed as a fraud on that particular day of his testimony instead of just any other day of the year.

    ReplyDelete
  27. bornagain77, did you really watch all these stupid videos and do you really expect others who have a day job to waste their time doing the same?

    ReplyDelete
  28. Until November last year BA77 already linked to 472 videos. Assuming an avarage length of 10 min it would take more than three days of non-stop watching to get to the same state he has been end of last year.

    ReplyDelete
  29. I don't have a lot of time to reply, so I'll quickly paste some of the context of the quotes provided, and some past replies.

    Apparently, BornAgain has no shame in twisting and manipulating the words of others.

    For example, see his treatment of:
    "Why Darwin was wrong about the tree of life," New Scientist (January 21, 2009)

    He's again hacked a nice article to bits. Indeed, Worse, he's done a mashup with some other articles. Woese isn't cited in this paper! Indeed, Googling the quote attibuted to him produces only discovery.org and evolutionnews.org, which then references a PNAS paper! I wonder what the original quote is??

    It appears he values the intellectual dishonesty of these quote-mines so much that he has provided us with not only more to chew on, but also a defense from Casey Luskin on the merits of quote-mining.

    I value quoting, but when you hack the quote into bits, to make it reflect the opposite of the intended meaning, that is a lie. When you deliberately mis-cite a reference, to hide its origins, that is a lie. When you put words in another person's mouth, that is dishonest. Most Universities would cover this under academic dishonesty, along with cheating and plagiarism.

    He also shows how ID has compassion, and is inclusive of many religious beliefs, by asking me to apologize for atheism, which is the biggest non sequitur, well, since Hutch's rant above.

    And BornAgain, do you think you could make a single point, or set of points-and defend it? Maybe add some of your own words. These gallops through all the quote mines fit to print really block meaningful discussion of any topic.

    ReplyDelete
  30. As for your sources, a few quick google searhces:

    The first is from a paper titled: "The Biological Big Bang model for the major transitions in evolution."

    It doesn't say the major transitions in creation, or in defense of ID, now does it?

    In this classic paper, Dr. Eugene Koonin presents a model of evolution, where:
    "The first, inflationary phase is characterized by extremely rapid evolution driven by various processes of genetic information exchange, such as horizontal gene transfer, recombination, fusion, fission, and spread of mobile elements. These processes give rise to a vast diversity of forms from which the main classes of entities at the new level of complexity emerge independently, through a sampling process. In the second phase, evolution dramatically slows down, the respective process of genetic information exchange tapers off, and multiple lineages of the new type of entities emerge, each of them evolving in a tree-like fashion from that point on."

    Interesting proposal. But evolutionary nonetheless. A (still controversial) refinement on the existing theme. Unless in these random processes in the inflationary phase, you see design, what is there for you?

    The second is from Fazlae Rana, a creation scientist working for 'Reasons to Believe'.

    The next are from creationist lawyer Casey Luskin.

    The latter sources go on about a great many topics, and do some nice quote-mining of their own. Gould is not on your side. Get over it.

    Moving along we have Luskin's defense of quoting.

    Two quotes from Paterson, who is notorious for having been abusively misquoted several times.
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/patterson.html
    I'm not sure I'd take anyone discussing the failures of systematic molecular phylogeny PRIOR to the genomic era very seriously. Whatever his conclusions, the facts aren't in.

    Walter T. Brown is a creationist, and just completely wrong. I'd love to see the defense for that statement-but you've left it out. Again, he's making systematic molecular conclusions pre-genome (1989).


    As for the New Scientist article, which contains little of the material you attribute to it:

    It is available here to read, and others can judge how badly it harms evolution:

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20126921.600-why-darwin-was-wrong-about-the-tree-of-life.html

    For example, “We’ve just annihilated the (Darwin's) tree of life.”

    Context: The most likely explanation for this, he argues, is that tunicates are chimeras, created by the fusion of an early chordate and an ancestor of the sea urchins around 600 million years ago. "We've just annihilated the tree of life. It's not a tree any more, it's a different topology entirely."

    So chimeras make branches of the tree of life merge-in this case! Ok.

    Other quotes from the paper:

    "Both he (Bapteste) and Doolittle are at pains to stress that downgrading the tree of life doesn't mean that the theory of evolution is wrong - just that evolution is not as tidy as we would like to believe. Some evolutionary relationships are tree-like; many others are not. "We should relax a bit on this," says Doolittle. "We understand evolution pretty well - it's just that it is more complex than Darwin imagined. The tree isn't the only pattern.""

    "Nobody is arguing - yet - that the tree concept has outlived its usefulness in animals and plants. While vertical descent is no longer the only game in town, it is still the best way of explaining how multicellular organisms are related to one another"

    ReplyDelete
  31. And last, an old post of mine:

    Punctuated equilibrium does not disprove evolution. Nor does horizontal gene transfer.

    As for phylogenetics, it occasionally is confused by horizontal gene transfer, duplications, hybridization, and other factors, particularly in bacteria and archaea. In 'higher' organisms, it is fairly easy. Take your favorite gene and BLAST it, and you can have instant phylogeny. Anyone can do it.

    Even the hardest microbial subjects are getting nailed down with better technique and more genome sequences:

    En route to a genome-based classification of Archaea and Bacteria?
    Syst Appl Microbiol. 2010 Apr 19.

    "However, recent studies indicate that the species tree and the hierarchical classification based on it are still meaningful concepts, and that state-of-the-art phylogenetic inference methods are able to provide reliable estimates of the species tree to the benefit of taxonomy."

    Therein, they describe that more genome sequences and better methodologies are smoothing out the rough spots.

    Even Koonin, who argues against a universal tree of life, seeing a bush of horizontal gene transfer at the base, in the above reference says an "the evolution of large divisions of life for extended time intervals can be adequately described by trees."

    And in those large divisions of life for extended times, we see nested hierarchies, and evidence for evolution.

    The funny thing is, your little quote mines show Evolutionary biology is not the rigid, religious dogma you wish it is. There is controversy, and disputes, and dissenting voices publish their evidence freely. We'll test the hypotheses with more genomes, better algorithms, and see what fits.

    But nowhere in all the quote-mines do you find a shred of support for your position. Nowhere do they say: therefore evolution is false. Unless you are going to argue the random processes seen-like duplication, hybridization, chimera formation, horizontal gene transfer, etc. that make the tree of life messier--are all hallmarks of design and creationism, then what is the point?

    Does less orderly and more random argue more designed?

    ReplyDelete
  32. Wheres:

    Please explain how my reasoning is faulty. How can a devote Catholic, a moderate Protestant, an Orthodox Jew, and an Agnostic, be said to have a religious agenda when working to advocate ID? It actually sounds like a joke. "A Jew, a Catholic, a Protestant and an Agnostic walk into a bar. They start telling the bartender about ID..."

    ReplyDelete
  33. are you serious?!? um, because they are all religious people (apart from the agnostic who is obviously either confused or cowardly). They are all of abrahamic based religions who support ID because of their religious beliefs. Do you get it yet?

    It's like saying 'How can a devote Catholic, a moderate Protestant, an Orthodox Jew, and an Agnostic, be said to have a religious agenda when working to advocate the existence of god?'
    Do you get it yet?

    ReplyDelete
  34. Robert C, your posts are excuses not reasons. Your atheistic religion is showing very badly.

    ReplyDelete
  35. bornagain77 -

    His posts are filling in the contextual gaps you are so selectively leaving out of your quotes.

    That does not mean he has any particular religious views (or lack of them) - just that he has a sense of fair-play in not twisting people's quotes to say things they clearly don't.

    Again, I find it more likely that you have simply uncritically accepted these quotes from an unreliable source than you have actually done the quote-mining and distorting yourself. But if you still cannot see that these quotes you cited simply do not support your argument when it has been so blatantly laid out for you then there is no hope for you. How can you possibly lecture anyone on intellectual honesty?

    ReplyDelete
  36. Ritchie, frankly, if so much effort must go into making excuses for, and glossing over, the sudden appearance of fossils in the geologic record, a lack of "gradualism" which many paleontologists, and now many geneticists, readily admit, I find your "science" pathetic in its integrity. And as Dr. Hunter continues to point out, The religion of atheism is driving the "science" of evolution, and that does indeed matter.

    ReplyDelete
  37. "His posts are filling in the contextual gaps"

    you mean he is kind of falsely filling in the contextual "dotted lines" for the missing fossils, as with the fossil graphs that have artificially imposed dotted lines for fossils where no fossils exist:

    The evolutionary trees that adorn our textbooks have data only at the tips and nodes of their branches; the rest is inference, however reasonable, not the evidence of fossils. Stephen Jay Gould

    ReplyDelete
  38. bornagain77 -

    Your ability to bury your head in the sand is truly a thing to behold.

    Atheism is not a religion. It is the absense of religion. Calling atheism a religion is like calling 'bald' a hair colour, or 'off' a TV channel.

    Neither is atheism driving the science of evolution. If it was, how would you account for the many notable scientists who hold religious beliefs and yet accept still evolution?

    And RobertC is not making anything up falsely - go back over his posts and yours and it is obvious he is patiently explaining why each of your quotes in turn do NOT support your position - which you are sadly simply ignoring rather than facing up to.

    And as for your final quote from Stephen Jay Gould, I have to restate Robert's astonishment. Stephen Jay Gould was a staunch evolutionist - he strongly opposed your position of ID. Why do you keep quoting him? He was not on your side.

    The point made in the quote itself is, of course, true. Most of the tree of life we have is conjecture. We do not have fossils for every species that ever lived, but nor should we expect to. Fossilization is a rare occurence and it is totally unreasonable to expect every species to be represented in the fossil record.

    The point - which very heavily supports the theory of evolution - is that the fossils that we have in fact found do indeed fit the pattern of the tree of life. Every time we find a fossil and it fits the tree of life 'conjecture', that conjuecture is supported a little bit more. As it is, it stands, and it stands as a beautiful testimony to the predictive power of the theory of evolution. Get over it.

    ReplyDelete
  39. bornagain-

    I'm filling in the contextual gaps, not in the fossil record, but in your faulty reasoning. You come here with quotes that are outright lies or half-truths, and expect us to abandon evolution, and replace the textbooks with them?

    Your evidences for evolution are badly manipulated, sometimes fully falsified quotes from leading evolutionary biologists.

    Again, you quote Gould, who supports punctuated equilibrium.

    The quote is from:
    Gould, S. J. 1977. "Evolution's Erratic Pace" in Natural History 86(5):12-16.

    Though Gould is dead, he already has a reply for you. If you read nothing else, at least read the last paragraph.

    "[T]ransitions are often found in the fossil record. Preserved transitions are not common -- and should not be, according to our understanding of evolution (see next section) but they are not entirely wanting, as creationists often claim. [He then discusses two examples: therapsid intermediaries between reptiles and mammals, and the half-dozen human species - found as of 1981 - that appear in an unbroken temporal sequence of progressively more modern features.]

    Faced with these facts of evolution and the philosophical bankruptcy of their own position, creationists rely upon distortion and innuendo to buttress their rhetorical claim. If I sound sharp or bitter, indeed I am -- for I have become a major target of these practices.

    I count myself among the evolutionists who argue for a jerky, or episodic, rather than a smoothly gradual, pace of change. In 1972 my colleague Niles Eldredge and I developed the theory of punctuated equilibrium. We argued that two outstanding facts of the fossil record -- geologically "sudden" origin of new species and failure to change thereafter (stasis) -- reflect the predictions of evolutionary theory, not the imperfections of the fossil record. In most theories, small isolated populations are the source of new species, and the process of speciation takes thousands or tens of thousands of years. This amount of time, so long when measured against our lives, is a geological microsecond . . .

    Since we proposed punctuated equilibria to explain trends, it is infuriating to be quoted again and again by creationists -- whether through design or stupidity, I do not know -- as admitting that the fossil record includes no transitional forms. Transitional forms are generally lacking at the species level, but they are abundant between larger groups.

    - Gould, Stephen Jay 1983. "Evolution as Fact and Theory" in Hens Teeth and Horse's Toes: Further Reflections in Natural History. New York: W. W. Norton & Co., p. 258-260."

    ReplyDelete
  40. bornagain77:

    ===
    And as Dr. Hunter continues to point out, The religion of atheism is driving the "science" of evolution,
    ===

    http://darwins-god.blogspot.com/2009/08/real-problem-with-atheism.html

    http://darwins-god.blogspot.com/2010/03/sermon-from-pz-myers.html

    ReplyDelete
  41. How quickly we go from 'theory neutrality' to anti-atheism. Is pro-creationism really 'theory neutral?'

    I think Dr. Hunters linking to his 'theory neutral' advocate Don McElroy, on the Texas school board says it all:

    Is man who says: "Why is Intelligent Design the big tent? Because we’re all lined up against the fact that naturalism, that nature is all there is. Whether you’re a progressive creationist, recent creationist, young earth, old earth, it’s all in the tent of Intelligent Design." espousing neutrality?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don_McLeroy

    And is equating evolution with atheism 'theory neutral'? What about all the theistic evolutionists (including the head of the NIH!). Are they, along with a increasing number of mainstream denominations, who openly accept evolution, liars or idiots?

    ReplyDelete
  42. Sorry Dr. Hunter, you are right the only credible argument evolution has ever had originated from a twisted theistic worldview of Darwin since evolution never really has had any credible empirical evidence (save for in the imagination of man). Though you have to admit that for an atheist, evolution is "the only game in town", and thus their atheism is what is actually driving them in their refusal to come to grips with the reality of the evidence and is what is ultimately driving them to such extremes of absurdity to continue to hide in their imagination though the evidence continues to betray them relentlessly..

    ReplyDelete
  43. RobertC,
    I will not debate you anymore.

    ReplyDelete
  44. bornagain77 -

    Enjoy that little rant?

    I'd ask you to do the decent thing and support some of those massive sweeping statements, but frankly I don't really see the point. While you are certainly prepared to argue your case, you are clearly incapable of substatiating it. Your refusal to deal in specific evidence and tendancy to fall back on insulting and/or ignoring anyone who highlights the holes in your logic cast a grave shadow over whether you will ever subject your opinions to critical examination like a proper scientist should.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Where:

    No, I don't get it because, ID says nothing about the designer. It could have been the God of the Bible, an extraterrestrial, the Hindu pantheon, etc.

    And there are so many different kinds of IDers. You've got young Earth creationists, there are old Earth creationists, there are people who believe in common descent, just that Darwinism is not enough. The various flavors are so disapparate, they have very little in common.

    ReplyDelete
  46. natschuster -

    "ID says nothing about the designer. It could have been the God of the Bible, an extraterrestrial, the Hindu pantheon, etc."

    Excuse my butting in, but haven'y you just answered you own question here (ie, 'How can a devote Catholic, a moderate Protestant, an Orthodox Jew, and an Agnostic, be said to have a religious agenda when working to advocate ID?')?

    They are all religious, so they can all advocate the same position because it IS religious, and they can all do this because ID doesn't specify WHOSE invisible friend is actually doing the designing, so they can all eagerly beaver away under the unspoken but furvent belief that it's theirs.

    ReplyDelete
  47. ID is the new name for creationists, once that moniker lost any credibility it may have ever had.

    All the people you describe have one thing in common, religion. It doesn't matter which religion, that's their rationale.

    You keep trying to say that because some people drive trucks, some sedans, some vans and some buses, they can't be called motorists.

    Stop your inane ducking a weaving. Either stop your foolish pointless game or go away until you gain a modicum of intelligence.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Ritchie:

    An agnostic is not religious. And some of the ID proponents are not particularly religious. Anthony Flew comes to mind. I mentioned religious people in my post because I was questioning the assertion that IDers are driven by a religious agenda. How can that be, when some ID proponents think other ID proponents are going to hell for having the wrong beliefs, even if they accept ID?

    And how can the belief in the creation of life by extraterrestrials, as per some versions of panspermia, be considered Creationism?

    ReplyDelete
  49. natschuster, you are just being obtuse, now go play in your room like a good little child and let the grown ups get on with the debate

    ReplyDelete
  50. natschuster -

    "And some of the ID proponents are not particularly religious."

    Really? You actually believe there are many people out there who accept the concept of an 'intelligent designer' - a being capable of creating and tweaking life and the universe itself to some great cosmic plan, drawing up natural laws and conjuring matter from nothing, and yet for some reason have a problem with the concept of a god? Really?

    "Anthony Flew comes to mind."

    Anthony Flew's sudden positive appraisal of Intelligent Design (though I am not aware that he actually stated his acceptance of it...) accompanied a conversion to deism, which is a religious position.

    "I mentioned religious people in my post because I was questioning the assertion that IDers are driven by a religious agenda. How can that be, when some ID proponents think other ID proponents are going to hell for having the wrong beliefs, even if they accept ID?"

    Again, the matter of the identity of the intelligent designer comes into play - an entirely religious matter.

    "And how can the belief in the creation of life by extraterrestrials, as per some versions of panspermia, be considered Creationism?"

    I personally would not consider that Creationism. Unless, of course, someone asserted Creationism to account for the origin of the aliens.

    ReplyDelete
  51. bornagain77 said...

    RobertC,
    I will not debate you anymore


    No video left to link to?

    ReplyDelete
  52. Where's

    I guess the problem is because there is some comfusion wiht definitions. I'm defining religious as someone who pratices a religion. You are ddefining someone as religios as someone who believes in ID. According to your definition, saying someone who believes in ID is religious is a tautology. You are also saying that ID is creationism. When I hear creationism, I think of the Biblical account of creation. But ID can inlcide the belief that green men from a distant planet created life on Earth.

    Now, the question is whether a person who promotes ID has a religious agenda. According to my definition, not necessarily. A person can be a an Agnotic or Deist, like Anthony Flew, and support ID. A person can even be an atheist and support panspermia. Of course accroding to your definition, ID is religion so promomting ID is promoting religion. But

    ReplyDelete
  53. if that is what you think, then you are naiive

    ReplyDelete
  54. Zachriel:

    ======
    Cornelius Hunter: Evolutionists have complained bitterly that some states are requiring biology classes to present evolution from a theory-neutral perspective--that is, the evidence should be presented without first presenting evolution as true.

    Presenting data without theories isn't science.
    ======

    Classic rationalism.

    ReplyDelete
  55. bornagain77:

    ======
    Though you have to admit that for an atheist, evolution is "the only game in town", and thus their atheism is what is actually driving them in their refusal to come to grips with the reality of the evidence and is what is ultimately driving them to such extremes of absurdity to continue to hide in their imagination though the evidence continues to betray them relentlessly..
    ======

    Yes, that certainly is the case for many. But there are other atheists who go the other way; that is, they say they are atheists because of evolution. So the theism is the driver in those cases.

    ReplyDelete
  56. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Cornelius Hunter: Classic rationalism.

    Theory and evidence are the two essential components of the scientific method. Science is the process of matching theory to fact.

    ReplyDelete
  58. Congratulations to RobertC for systematically tracking down how BornAgain77 copied-n-pasted from creationist quote mines. We've all seen most of those quotes before, all you have to do is google TalkOrigins.

    It is shameful that BornAgain77 refused to admit that his quotes didn't mean what he said they meant-- that his "authorities" mostly disagreed with the thesis he was claiming they supported. If BA77 had honesty or integrity, he would admit that the quotes were out of context. All BA77 had to do was just say, "I copied-n-pasted, they didn't mean what I thought, sorry about that" and we could all understand that, end of story.

    But BornAgain77 doesn't give an inch, and refuses to debate RobertC-- because RobertC kicked his ass. Shameful. Can't Dr. Cornelius at least admit that BA77's quote mines were misrepresentations?

    Arguing with creationists, I must conclude that fundamentalist Christianity de-emphasizes integrity and honesty. If any of them prove me wrong, I'd be glad to revise that conclusion... well, there's Todd Wood and Kurt Wise...

    ReplyDelete
  59. Natschuster-
    In principle, it is possible to believe in ID and not be religious. In practice, it almost never happens. IDologues and creationists are almost always fundamentalist Christians, conservative Catholics, or orthodox Jews, and all are politically right-wing. There are a small number of Buddhist/Hindu mystics, e.g. Deepak Chopra.

    You have spoken of an "agnostic" in the Discovery Institute, presumably meaning David Berlinski, their "agnostic" Jew--this status of his is constantly trumpeted by the DI, as if being a Jew who eats bacon is his highest credential. (It is, actually.)

    I have doubts that the Bacon Eater is really agnostic. As I'll now show.

    In this quote, he attacks not just evolution, but all of biology: "...Evolution is but one issue. Contemporary biology has also been one of the damp breeding spots from which the mosquito of materialism arises. If we are in general disposed to identify the human mind with the human brain, or to look into the eyes of an ape and find reflected there no absolute difference between species, we are simply giving expression to the reach and influence of biological thought."

    By which he means, biology is evil and atheist. All of biology. Now what agnostic would preach against "the mosquito of materialism"?

    Continuing: "[Joshua] Chamberlain was convinced that the laws of nature are God's ways seen by man. In this, he echoed Gerard Manley Hopkins: "The world is charged with the grandeur of God. . . ." There is no question that civil society would be much improved if these sentiments were widely shared.

    Again, no agnostic really asserts that the world would be better if everyone believed in God, as Berlinski does.

    And here is the Bacon Eater's creepy, weird interview...with himself: "Why should Dawkins, of all people, find the universe wonderful if he also believes it is largely a self-sustaining material object, something bigger than a head of cabbage but not appreciably different in kind? The whole place supposedly has no meaning, no point, no purpose, and no reason for its existence beyond itself. Sounds horrible to me. Wonder is the last reaction I’d expect. It’s like being thrilled by Newark, New Jersey. A universe that is nothing more than a collection of atoms whizzing around in the void is a material slum."

    Look, these quotes (I have others) show that the Bacon Eater thinks he's fighting "the mosquito of materialism," which if replaced by belief in God, will make "civil society" greatly improved. So, this is a religious quest. I don't trust him when he says he's an agnostic, though perhaps it is true he does eat bacon.

    What ALL creationists and IDologues have in common (including the Bacon Eater) is the belief that what's wrong with society is that other people don't share their spirituality. They plan to "fix" society. As clearly spelled out in the Wedge Document, it's not about science--their main goal is "renewing" society by fixing your religious beliefs. To be... theirs. Then flowers will bloom again, and Wall Street Tycoons will refrain from defrauding millions of customers. God-topia. Sure.

    And they plan to do all that by subjecting all scientists to every dishonest calumny and defamation their imaginations can think up. (I've got quotes.)

    ReplyDelete
  60. Diogenes:

    A lot of people believe that religion is valuable even if it isn't true.

    And Anthony Flew became an Id proponent, even though he remained a deist.

    And if someone believes that people not only have to accept his ID, but his religion as well, or they go to hell, what good does advocating ID do?

    ReplyDelete