Sunday, January 22, 2012

Evolution Professors: Evolution is Simply Genetic Change (And a Fact)

As we saw here, here, here and here Randy Moore and Sehoya Cotner, in their new book Arguing for Evolution: An Encyclopedia for Understanding Science, list altruism as an evidence for evolution, make religious arguments that prove evolution, say that evolution predicts “There will be anatomical similarities among related organisms,” begin the book with a bogus prediction claim, define science as strictly naturalistic and say it would be perverse not to accept the scientific fact of evolution.

Of course Moore and Cotner are not saying anything new. These types of arguments are standard in evolutionary thought. They can be found throughout evolutionary apologetics. After all, the book is meant to be an encyclopedia. So the book is a useful compendium of evolutionary thought.

And as the book reveals, the most serious problems in evolutionary thought lie not in the scientific details that are brought forth as evidence, but in how those details are interpreted and arranged. Everyone agrees on the scientific observations, but how are we to understand those observations? It is here that the main problems arise, and it is here where one begins to learn the essence of evolutionary thought.

The underlying religious motivation drives evolutionary thinking into several common, predictable patterns. These include the construction of bogus predictions, the ignoring of substantial scientific problems, and misrepresenting how the evidence bears on the theory.

This is all in support of the false claim that evolution is a scientific fact. Evolution may have occurred or it may not have occurred. People can argue over the this, but there is no question that evolution is not a scientific fact. That is to say, the scientific evidence, no matter how generously interpreted, does not make evolution a fact. Not even close. There are significant scientific problems with the theory.

So evolutionists have a problem. The science contradicts their theory yet they say it is a fact.  One strategy evolutionists use to rationalize their claims is to make undefendable demarcation claims about what science is. Though they have made metaphysical claim after metaphysical claim, they then hypocritically say science must be strictly naturalistic. And if science is strictly naturalistic, then the species must have arisen naturalistically, at least according to science.

So evolutionists both rely on and eschew metaphysics. Not surprisingly Moore and Cotner follow in this tradition. For instance, they tell us that “Nonnatural, or supernatural explanations, are neither scientific nor evidentiary.” Yet elsewhere they approvingly quote Darwin who wrote that “nothing can be more hopeless than to attempt to explain this similarity [pentadactyl pattern] … by utility or by the doctrine of final causes.”

So when convenient, metaphysics are allowed, but when not convenient metaphysics are ruled out as “not scientific.” After all, we all know metaphysical claims are not scientific (except when we make them).

As if sensing a problem, evolutionists deploy yet another backstop. To rationalize their rationalizations, they lower the bar and reduce evolution to mere change over time. This way, no one can argue that evolution is not a fact. Change occurs over time, therefore all of biology arose spontaneously, strictly by the play of natural laws.

For instance, Isaac Asimov once wrote that mere color changes in the peppered moth prove evolution. How could such trivial change prove evolution? Of course it doesn’t—this is an equivocation on evolution.

Similarly Steve Jones wrote that the changes observed in HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus) contain Darwin’s “entire argument.” According to science writer Jonathan Weiner, the changes in the beaks of birds show us “Darwin’s process in action.”

Likewise Professor Marta Wayne tells us that “Evolution is change in gene frequency” and science writer Emily Willingham defines evolution as “a change in population over time.” Professor Pamela Bjorkman states that a mutating virus is “evolution at work” and that “In the same way, people have evolved, but over a much slower time scale.”

So it is not surprising that Moore and Cotner follow this tradition of equivocation. After approvingly quoting Stephen Jay Gould that it would be perverse not to accept the fact of evolution, they next inform the reader that “Most simply, evolution is any change in a population’s genetic composition over time.”

All of this would be laughable if it weren’t so real. The book’s promotional material states that:

The book shows how scientists have tested the predictions of evolutionary theory and created an unshakeable foundation of evidence supporting its truth. As such, it demonstrates how evolution serves as a case study for understanding the scientific method and presents a logical model for scientific inquiry.

Unfortunately the truth is close to the exact opposite. This new book by Moore and Cotner does not demonstrate the truth of evolution any more than previous apologetics have. Nor do Moore and Cotner help reveal anything about “the scientific method” or “scientific inquiry.”

There’s nothing wrong with exploring new or unlikely ideas, but evolution is about the manipulation and misrepresentation of science to prove a preconceived conclusion. Evolutionists do not merely explore an unlikely idea, they insist it is a fact in spite of the science.

Moore and Cotner are not demonstrating the scientific method, they show yet again how evolution abuses science. They do not reveal the truth of evolution, but rather how unfounded are its proofs. Evolutionary thought is a Trojan Horse that has infected science. This new book from Moore and Cotner is simply one more example.

Religion drives science, and it matters.

143 comments:

  1. You were funnier when you made up your own charts and graphs and put bogus data on them.

    This same old repetitive slop is just boring.

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  2. PS that's so typical. People can't post resonable, adult, civil debates, they have to resort to juvenile name calling and mocking instead. It's time people grew up!

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    1. Melinda

      PS that's so typical. People can't post resonable, adult, civil debates, they have to resort to juvenile name calling and mocking instead. It's time people grew up!


      How about you Melinda - you willing to discuss and debate the relative merits of evolutionary theory vs. Intelligent Design Creationism? Cornelius sure isn't. Cornelius works for the Discovery Institute, an organization of professional liars pushing anti-science propaganda. Their stated goal is to get Christian creation values forced back into public schools and government. All Cornelius does is post his lie-of-the-week for them and collect his 30 pieces of silver.

      We in the professional scientific community get tired of hearing the lies and innuendos - that we're at best incompetent and at worse deliberate frauds. Yes, some of us do take it personally, especially when the cowardly pieces of dog dirt making the claims will never stick around to support or defend them.

      I've been trying for years to get any IDCer to discuss the technical details of their position, but none will. Maybe you can be the first. You up to the task?

      Delete
    2. When speaking with hardcore creationists a question you'll often hear is "If evolution is true then why are there still monkeys?" The reason, of course, is that monkeys didn't turn into humans as is assumed in the question. Rather both monkeys and humans share a common ancestor. It's just like your cousin who can exist because s/he didn't become you, but instead is a product of the same common ancestor.

      Often, when this is reasonably and civilly explained, it's answered by another question, namely "But then why are there still monkeys?" A patient person may explain it again, and possibly even a third time. By the forth time they usually end up having to ask "Are you an idiot or something?" It's at this point that they are accused of being totally unable to discuss the issue reasonably and civilly.

      The points that CH raises have been raised over and over again, and have been patiently, reasonably, and civilly explained over and over again. Invariably he ends up asking the same questions and raising the same points in later posts as though they've never been addressed. Given this history, any thinking person will eventually come to the conclusion that reasonable and civil discussion is worthless because it has no impact whatsoever. Some people like Zachariel, Ritchie, and many others have patience far surpassing my own and are able to mostly remain reasonable and civil, even on the thousandth time explaining the same point. But for others, like me and Thorton, our patience is not so great and having seen that reasonable and civil discussion has no real impact, opt instead for mockery and derision because it's easier, more entertaining, and likely to end up having just as much impact.

      Basically the main reason that I am more likely to resort to mockery and derision is because almost every post by CH can essentially be paraphrased as "Then why are there still monkeys?"

      Delete
  3. What's grown up about believing in and promoting an imaginary sky daddy, a married virgin giving birth to a god's son, the same guy rising from the dead and walking around like nothing happened, angels, demons, devils, a talking snake and a talking donkey, a heaven, a hell, animals becoming striped simply because their parents have sex near sticks, miracles, a magic tree, two of every (and seven of some) critter on Earth on one boat during a non-existent flood, and all the other insane hooey in religions?

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  4. Cornelius said:

    "There are significant scientific problems with the theory."

    What's your alternative 'scientific' theory, Cornelius? Please provide all of the 'scientific' details and then "we" can determine if there are any significant problems with it.

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  5. Cornelius Hunter: This is all in support of the false claim that evolution is a scientific fact. Evolution may have occurred or it may not have occurred. People can argue over the this, but there is no question that evolution is not a scientific fact. That is to say, the scientific evidence, no matter how generously interpreted, does not make evolution a fact. Not even close. There are significant scientific problems with the theory.

    The term evolution can refer to the fact of evolution or to the theory. Your argument seems to be about Common Descent, except when it's not. Your argument seems to be about natural selection and adaptation, except when it's not. You need to be clear what you are arguing about.

    In any case, as evolution is directly observed, the best place to start is by establishing the broad history of change, that is, the diversification of organisms from common ancestors. Tracing one lineage, from first appearance on Earth, we have single-celled organisms, then metazoans, chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amphibians, amniotes, mammals, primates, apes, homo, humans, in that order.

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  6. "Tracing one lineage, from first appearance on Earth, we have single-celled organisms, then metazoans, chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amphibians, amniotes, mammals, primates, apes, homo, humans, in that order."

    This all happened by try and error?

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    1. Blas

      "Tracing one lineage, from first appearance on Earth, we have single-celled organisms, then metazoans, chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amphibians, amniotes, mammals, primates, apes, homo, humans, in that order."

      This all happened by try and error?


      No. It happened by the iterative process of genetic variation filtered by selection with creatures that maintain heritable traits.

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    2. Blas: This all happened by try and error?

      No.

      However, once you understand the basic historical sequence, then it might be possible to piece together the various mechanisms involved.

      Delete
  7. Thorton said...

    "This all happened by try and error?

    "No. It happened by the iterative process of genetic variation filtered by selection with creatures that maintain heritable traits."

    And the difference with try and error is ...

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    1. Blas

      Thorton said...

      "This all happened by try and error?

      "No. It happened by the iterative process of genetic variation filtered by selection with creatures that maintain heritable traits."

      And the difference with try and error is ...


      Trial and error doesn't maintain and accumulate heritable traits.

      Delete
    2. Ok, then:

      Tracing one lineage, from first appearance on Earth, we have single-celled organisms, then metazoans, chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amphibians, amniotes, mammals, primates, apes, homo, humans, in that order."

      This all happened by cumulative try and error?

      Delete
    3. Blas

      This all happened by cumulative try and error?


      That's a rather child-like oversimplification of evolutionary processes, but if that's the only way you can grasp the concept then yes.

      Delete
    4. Then where are the errors of the iterations trial and error? I mean, when vertebrates became tetrapods in a trial and error way should be the trial of tripods, pentapods haxapods, octopods... No one could found a niche where survive? No one lived long enough to leave a fossil?

      Delete
    5. Blas

      Then where are the errors of the iterations trial and error? I mean, when vertebrates became tetrapods in a trial and error way should be the trial of tripods, pentapods haxapods, octopods... No one could found a niche where survive? No one lived long enough to leave a fossil?


      Evolution doesn't explore every combination and permutation of possible morphologies. It only explores the local search space that can be reached by small modifications to existing morphologies.

      The earliest vertebrates known had a single median fin, not the paired fins we see in fish today. Evidence shows that paired appendages evolved from these early midline forms

      Evidence that mechanisms of fin development evolved in the midline of early vertebrates

      Once finned vertebrates happened upon the first four limbed configuration in their earliest ancestors over 500 million years ago that form was more or less locked in. The first land tetrapods evolved from these early Devonian fishes.

      Other animal phyla have explored different limb configurations. Arthropods for example can have 6, 8, or even dozens of legs. Animals with bilateral symmetry have even numbers of legs. Animals with radial symmetry (i.e starfish) can have odd numbers of legs.

      Delete
    6. And the difference with try and error is...

      I think it's mostly in the assumption of 'right' and 'wrong'. It makes it sound like an adaptation is either 'correct' or an 'error', when the matter is more subtle than that.

      Then where are the errors of the iterations trial and error?

      The 'errors', to use the analogy, don't spread into the gene pool. Deleterious mutations get removed, more or less as soon as they arise.

      This does, of course, depend on the 'malignancy' of the 'error'. A mutation does not need to be bad to go extinct - it only needs to succeed slightly less often than a more successful one.

      I mean, when vertebrates became tetrapods in a trial and error way should be the trial of tripods, pentapods haxapods, octopods...

      When early tetrapods were taking their first steps out of the water, there were creatures with six (Tulerpeton), and seven (Ichthyostega) digits have been found.

      Delete
    7. Ooops, excuse the terrible grammar. Must proofread. But I'm sure you get the point.

      Delete
  8. CH:

    Though they have made metaphysical claim after metaphysical claim, they then hypocritically say science must be strictly naturalistic. And if science is strictly naturalistic, then the species must have arisen naturalistically, at least according to science.

    Science IS naturalistic. It must be. It has to be. It is absolutely essential. There is absolutely no way of performing science which is not naturalistic. It is impossible. Cannot be done. Not a chance. No way.

    I cannot understand how you simply cannot grasp this. Criticising ToE for insisting on naturalism is merely criticising a theory for being scientific (which is, of course, deep down, what you really ARE criticising it for).

    That is to say, the scientific evidence, no matter how generously interpreted, does not make evolution a fact. Not even close. There are significant scientific problems with the theory.

    Wrong. There are absolutely no scientific problems with ToE. It is completely compatible with all the evidence. Which, given the sheer vast scale of the evidence, does indeed make it a scientific fact.

    Your basic problem is that you do not understand science. Neither what it is nor how it works. The most important prevailing fact in your head is that ID should be considered science (and a theory at least as good as ToE at that), and your view of everything remotely scientific is seen through the lens of that bias. Which causes all sorts of tragic misconceptions since it is fundamentally flawed. ID is NOT science. Science IS naturalistic. ToE does NOT make any metaphysical claims.

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  9. First Link: No quote that claims altruism proves evolution.

    Second link: No quote that claims anatomical similarities among related organisms proves evolution.

    Third link: As with above, no quote.

    Fourth link: We finally have an actual quote!

    Nonnatural, or supernatural explanations, are neither scientific nor evidentiary (i.e., they cannot be supported by scientific evidence). Scientific hypotheses must be testable and falsifiable. Making conclusions that cannot be tested through experimentation and observation is not scientifically valid.

    in which Cornelius objects...…

    CH: So if the ground rules are that science must be strictly naturalistic—if science must not stray from the naturalism paradigm—then science cannot test naturalism. Naturalism, insofar as science would be concerned, cannot be falsified. Therefore, according to the evolutionist’s logic, the naturalism ground rule is not scientifically valid.

    But this is essentially a truism.

    Specifically, If the claim that science must be strictly naturalistic is merely a useful "rule of thumb", rather than an explanation, then it's not scientific. However, Cornelius merely makes the presumption "science must be strictly naturalistic" is just a rule of thumb. Nor does he quote anyone making this claim.

    Furthermore, Cornelius has yet to disclose how he explains our ability to make progress in the first place, and why it's only accelerated dramatically in the last 300 years or so. Apparently, differing rates of progress over time is not evidence. Changes in how science justifies conclusions over time is not evidence, etc.

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  10. CH: Everyone agrees on the scientific observations, but how are we to understand those observations?

    Do we?

    Are we all justificationists? Are we all empiricists? Are we all inductivists? Do we all agree that knowledge of how to build be biosphere has always existed? Therefore, evolution is scientifically unlikely?

    Apparently, you're either woefully ignorant about various philosophies of science or you're disingenuously presupposing your particular philosophy as being correct, rather than disclosing it and arguing for it.

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  11. CH: This is all in support of the false claim that evolution is a scientific fact. Evolution may have occurred or it may not have occurred. People can argue over the this, but there is no question that evolution is not a scientific fact. That is to say, the scientific evidence, no matter how generously interpreted, does not make evolution a fact. Not even close. There are significant scientific problems with the theory.

    There is no question about how we justify conclusions in science?

    Apparently, you've never read anything by Karl Popper or David Deutsch.

    See ,Critical Rationalism and Fallibilism.

    In addition, this is yet another post that collaborates my explanation for Cornelius' objections to evolutionary theory. Specifically, he seems to assume that the knowledge of how to build the biosphere is a "fact" in that a particular theory is either exhaustively true or false. However, this would be an impossible criteria unless that knowledge had always existed and was static.

    If the knowledge of how to build the biosphere was created over time, then any theory would need to be continually revised to account for the creation of new knowledge.

    Finally, it's unclear why Cornelius would expect answers to lead to questions, which would lead to better answers, which lead to better questions, etc. Apparently, he thinks every agrees on this as well.

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  12. ThortonJan 23, 2012 12:08 PM

    "Evolution doesn't explore every combination and permutation of possible morphologies. It only explores the local search space that can be reached by small modifications to existing morphologies."

    Why? If it is blind try, you have the same chance for all the combination and permutations, and for the evolution from vertebrates to tetrapods we had 500 Mya.
    As Ritchie said "there were creatures with six (Tulerpeton), and seven (Ichthyostega) digits have been found."
    why not six legs, or six leg with two pairs of wings at that moment the most successful body on earth.

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    1. Blas

      Thorton "Evolution doesn't explore every combination and permutation of possible morphologies. It only explores the local search space that can be reached by small modifications to existing morphologies."

      Why? If it is blind try, you have the same chance for all the combination and permutations, and for the evolution from vertebrates to tetrapods we had 500 Mya.


      It's not completely "blind try". That's your stupid misunderstanding. It's "blind try the local search space that can be reached by small modifications to existing morphologies."

      As noted before, paired limbs evolved from a central midline ridge long before legs or wings did. There may well have been a vertebrate creature 530 million years ago with three or more pairs of primitive proto-fins, but if there were it was outcompeted by the two-paired-limb variety. If such a variation did exist it was extinct by the early Devonian, and no trace of it has been found in the fossil record.

      Ritchie's example was of the number of digits on a limb, not on total number of limbs on the animal. That's quite a different situation.

      Delete
    2. Blas: Why? If it is blind try, you have the same chance for all the combination and permutations,

      That's a common misconception. It's not blind try, but evolution, meaning each organism has to be fit in their own environments, and any new organism has to descend from what already exists. That means many organic forms will never be explored as there was never such a predecessor. And once a niche is filled, other forms tend to be crowded out.

      Blas: why not six legs, or six leg with two pairs of wings at that moment the most successful body on earth.

      The insect respiratory system limits their size. While insects are quite successful in their niches, larger organisms were developing in the oceans, which later would invade the land. Don't worry. There's still plenty of insects in the world. The Creator apparently has an inordinate fondness for beetles.

      Delete
    3. ThortonJan 23, 2012 01:55 PM

      “As noted before, paired limbs evolved from a central midline ridge long before legs or wings did. There may well have been a vertebrate creature 530 million years ago with three or more pairs of primitive proto-fins, but if there were it was outcompeted by the two-paired-limb variety. If such a variation did exist it was extinct by the early Devonian, and no trace of it has been found in the fossil record.”

      Seems to me that if evolution is RM+NS, a cumulative trial an error process, then this vertebrate should have exist.
      Assuming they did 530 Mya ago, why this type of creature never happened again? Why only then vertebrate with different paired of limbs appeared from a central midline ridge never evolve again? The mokey typed Me think is like a weasel 530 Mya ago and never again.

      Delete
    4. ZachrielJan 23, 2012 01:58 PM,

      “That's a common misconception. It's not blind try,”
      Then mutations know wich one works before selection'
      “That means many organic forms will never be explored as there was never such a predecessor. And once a niche is filled, other forms tend to be crowded out.”
      Ok, I undeerstand that evolution is cumulative then you have start from what you have, but when the first tetrapode appeared the chance to be tripod, hexapod or octopod should be the same, the natural selection should make the tetrapod the winner.

      “The insect respiratory system limits their size. While insects are quite successful in their niches, larger organisms were developing in the oceans,”

      My question was why there is no traces of a vertebrate hexapod. Evolutions knew beforehand that tetrapods will work better and do not even try to make an hexapod?

      Delete
    5. Blas: My question was why there is no traces of a vertebrate hexapod.

      Because land vertebrates evolved from fish, through a long and involved process. First the pectoral, then the pelvic fins evolved into bony appendages capable of supporting weight. Legs didn't evolve "from scratch", but from existing structures. They were good enough at the time.

      Delete
    6. Why the existing structures were "tetrapods" and not "hexapods"?
      There are fossil fishes with more or less finns?

      Delete
    7. Blas

      Seems to me that if evolution is RM+NS, a cumulative trial an error process, then this vertebrate should have exist.


      Maybe they did. That's a testable hypothesis. Get your paleontology degree and go look for them.

      Assuming they did 530 Mya ago, why this type of creature never happened again?

      Why should it if it doesn't confer an evolutionary fitness advantage?

      Why only then vertebrate with different paired of limbs appeared from a central midline ridge never evolve again?

      Again, why should they? Once the four limb pattern was established there is no simple path to go from the four limb pattern to a six limb pattern by making small genetic changes. Evolution only works by making small changes to what already exists, remember?

      Do you have a point in asking the same inane trolling question so many times? You were already provided the answer.

      Question for you: if you think six and eight limb vertebrates should be common, why didn't your Omnipotent Magic Designer create some?

      Delete
    8. ThortonJan 24, 2012 06:38 AM

      "Why should it if it doesn't confer an evolutionary fitness advantage?

      But evolution do not know if they are going to "confer an evolutionary fitness advantage" so evidence of the new failed try should exist.

      "Again, why should they? Once the four limb pattern was established there is no simple path to go from the four limb pattern to a six limb pattern by making small genetic changes. Evolution only works by making small changes to what already exists, remember?"

      But, did the fish genoma "knows" that the four limb pattern was established? There is any restricción that since 530 Mya ago to today "making small changes to what already exists" evolve in something different than tetrapods?


      Question for you: if you think six and eight limb vertebrates should be common, why didn't your Omnipotent Magic Designer create some?

      I do not six and eight limb vertebrates should be common, but if the watchmaker was blind and working by small changes from what it has I expect more failed tries, and I do not understand why the blind watchmaker stopped to try so long ago.

      Delete
    9. Blas

      But evolution do not know if they are going to "confer an evolutionary fitness advantage" so evidence of the new failed try should exist.


      If it failed then it died out 500+ million years ago. You're welcome to go look for it if you wish.

      But, did the fish genoma "knows" that the four limb pattern was established? There is any restricción that since 530 Mya ago to today "making small changes to what already exists" evolve in something different than tetrapods?

      Going from a midline fin to pairs of fins was a relatively minor genetic change. Going from established tetrapod vertebrates to hexapod vertebrates would take a major genetic change.

      I do not six and eight limb vertebrates should be common, but if the watchmaker was blind and working by small changes from what it has I expect more failed tries, and I do not understand why the blind watchmaker stopped to try so long ago.

      He didn't. Transitioning from an established pattern of four limbs to a pattern of six limbs is not a small change. Evolution still tests only the local search space available through small changes as it always has. Transitioning from four to six legs is a major change not within the local search space.

      Please stop being an idiot troll.

      Delete
    10. Blas: Why the existing structures were "tetrapods" and not "hexapods"?
      There are fossil fishes with more or less finns?


      Have you actually ever looked at a fish?

      In any case, the forelimbs probably developed first, allowing the organism to lift its head and to pull itself forward, and hindlimbs developing later, allowing for greater mobility.

      Delete
    11. ZachrielJan 24, 2012 11:19 AM
      "In any case, the forelimbs probably developed first, allowing the organism to lift its head and to pull itself forward, and hindlimbs developing later, allowing for greater mobility."

      I will refrase my question: As evolution is a blind process why there is no trace of animals with more limbs. Why only "tetrapods". Did the process tried this structures and failed and we do not have evidence of them?

      Delete
  13. Why? If it is blind try, you have the same chance for all the combination and permutations, and for the evolution from vertebrates to tetrapods we had 500 Mya.

    Because evolution can only progress in small, incremental steps. The genes for, for example, producing silk has only been acquired by certain invertebrates. They are themselves the result of millions of years of evolution towards the production of silk. They could not, for example, be combined with genes for the production of that exclusively mammalian substance - milk, because mammals have never acquired silk-making genes.

    why not six legs, or six leg with two pairs of wings at that moment the most successful body on earth.

    Once the basic plan of a body feature has been established, you cannot simply fundamentally change it in a single step. The odds against a random mutation changing a bipedal tetrapod's body plan to six-legged, winged creature in a single step are astronomical. Absurdly unlikely. But this is not the way evolution works. I do not understand why you imagine it should work this way.

    Tulerpeton and Ichthyostega are throwbacks from a time when quadrupedal locomotion was first becoming established. At this extremely formative stage the pattern of a five-fingered forelimb had not been established. They are examples of nature's 'trial and error' approach to designing the forelimb. Again, six or seven digits weren't necessarily BAD, just not as successful as five.

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  14. Evolution being not true could not possibly be the result of the higher standard of investigation called science.

    So before the errors of its facts or conclusions are shown creationists show unravel the great error of the methodology behind evolutions claims to scientific evidence.
    Sincere intelligent people believe in evolution while not realizing its conclusions are not from scientific methodology.

    Evolutionism is largely one grand line of reasoning from unverified presumptions.

    creationism has missed this point and instead been just dealing with the ideas of evolution.
    In fact the methodology has no claim to using the scientific method in most of its points or all.

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    1. Robert -

      Sincere intelligent people believe in evolution while not realizing its conclusions are not from scientific methodology.

      That is absolutely untrue. ToE is scientific through and through.

      Delete
  15. Some C/E haiku

    ****************

    Oh Robert Byers
    cheese done slid off his pizza
    plop right on the floor

    ****************

    Creationist fools
    try to twist reality
    with no sense of shame

    ****************

    Liar for D.I.
    corrupts the truth for Jesus
    ninth commandment broken

    ****************

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  16. ThortonJan 24, 2012 07:29 AM

    "He didn't. Transitioning from an established pattern of four limbs to a pattern of six limbs is not a small change. Evolution still tests only the local search space available through small changes as it always has. Transitioning from four to six legs is a major change not within the local search space."

    Is it your opinion or there is any evidence or rationale behind it?

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  17. Blas

    Thorton:

    "He didn't. Transitioning from an established pattern of four limbs to a pattern of six limbs is not a small change. Evolution still tests only the local search space available through small changes as it always has. Transitioning from four to six legs is a major change not within the local search space."

    Is it your opinion or there is any evidence or rationale behind it?


    There's over a hundreds years supporting data from dozens of different scientific disciplines.

    You should try reading some of it sometime.

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    1. Then there is no chance to see hexapod vertebrates in the future. No other fish will escape from the water and strat to leave in the land as the anphibians did. No other big brain bepedal cousin is going to join us.
      Evolution was "from first appearance on Earth, we have single-celled organisms, then metazoans, chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amphibians, amniotes, mammals, primates, apes, homo, humans" and here ends.

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. Here it ends? Not at all! Evolution is happening all the time. As long as environments change, life will change to adapt to them. Life is still evolving - including humans.

      Even now there are aquatic creatures adapting to life out of water (mudskippers) and land animals returning to the water (otters. Or, more distantly, seals). The boundary between land animal and aquatic animal has been crossed many times. (Indeed, turtles especially seems to have bounced between the two in their developmental history).

      The first tetrapod to do so some 375 million years ago is remarkable only because it was the first. It's descendants quickly filled the land and took advantage of the bounty to be had there. Any subsequent creatures doing so would have found the land already occupied - which makes propagating prolifically rather more difficult.

      Delete
    4. RitchieJan 24, 2012 12:46 PM
      Here it ends? Not at all! Evolution is happening all the time. As long as environments change, life will change to adapt to them. Life is still evolving - including humans.

      According to Thorton,
      “Evolution still tests only the local search space available through small changes as it always has. Transitioning from four to six legs is a major change not within the local search space."

      There's over a hundreds years supporting data from dozens of different scientific disciplines.

      We probably won't see pigs with wings, or crocoducks, or IDCers with brains either”


      “Even now there are aquatic creatures adapting to life out of water (mudskippers) and land animals returning to the water (otters. Or, more distantly, seals). The boundary between land animal and aquatic animal has been crossed many times. (Indeed, turtles especially seems to have bounced between the two in their developmental history).”

      I would call that example adaptations not evolution.


      The first tetrapod to do so some 375 million years ago is remarkable only because it was the first. It's descendants quickly filled the land and took advantage of the bounty to be had there. Any subsequent creatures doing so would have found the land already occupied - which makes propagating prolifically rather more difficult.

      Ok then the evolution reached a limit, there is no way a fish would evolve in a air breathing tetrapod, so evolution will still doing minor enviromental adaptions of existing life forms, because “major change not within the local search space” are impossible.

      Delete
    5. Blas -

      According to Thorton...

      What Thornton said did not contradict what I said.

      I would call that example adaptations not evolution.

      Why? Why wouldn't you call it evolution?

      Ok then the evolution reached a limit, there is no way a fish would evolve in a air breathing tetrapod, so evolution will still doing minor enviromental adaptions of existing life forms, because “major change not within the local search space” are impossible.

      The point about the local search space is that evolution can only take small and immediate steps. But build up enough of these and great things can indeed be achieved - such as air-breathing tetrapods returning to fully aquatic life, as in the case of whales.

      Delete
    6. RitchieJan 24, 2012 06:36 PM

      "The point about the local search space is that evolution can only take small and immediate steps. But build up enough of these and great things can indeed be achieved - such as air-breathing tetrapods returning to fully aquatic life, as in the case of whales."

      Ritchie, you cannot have it in both ways, if the small steps- cumulative try and error process that is evolution has limits and then we are not going to see any other air breathing tetrapod, hexapod or tripod or has no limits so we should have seeing evidence of the failed attempts.

      Delete
    7. Blas

      Ritchie, you cannot have it in both ways, if the small steps- cumulative try and error process that is evolution has limits and then we are not going to see any other air breathing tetrapod, hexapod or tripod or has no limits so we should have seeing evidence of the failed attempts.


      Blas, are you deliberately trying to be an idiot? It's disingenuous clods like you who are the exact reason IDC gets laughed right out of science labs.

      Evolution tests the local search space with small steps per each generation. There's no barrier that prevents the small changes from accumulating over many generations.

      However, the evolution of a new hexapod vertebrate from an existing tetrapod that you demand would require thousands if not tens of thousands of such small incremental steps. In order for such small changes to accumulate you'd also have to have an environment where such steps provide a selective reproductive advantage over those who don't have the changes. 500 million years ago when paired fins were first evolving such an environment existed, but not today.

      So no, contrary to your IDiot claims evolution is not impossible. But to get any specific result you also need the proper environmental conditions.

      Delete
    8. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    9. ThortonJan 25, 2012 05:01 AM

      "Evolution tests the local search space with small steps per each generation. There's no barrier that prevents the small changes from accumulating over many generations.

      However, the evolution of a new hexapod vertebrate from an existing tetrapod that you demand"

      I´m not demanding that. I´m demanding evidence that an inferior vertebrate try to become again a tetrapod, hexapod or whatever the chance guide it.

      "would require thousands if not tens of thousands of such small incremental steps. In order for such small changes to accumulate you'd also have to have an environment where such steps provide a selective reproductive advantage over those who don't have the changes. 500 million years ago when paired fins were first evolving such an environment existed, but not today."

      So they evolved 500 millions years ago and never again, never even tried to evolve no matter they do not know how was the enviromental conditions in this 500 Mya.
      Why they are going to evolve in the next 500 Mya?

      Delete
    10. Blas

      I´m not demanding that. I´m demanding evidence that an inferior vertebrate try to become again a tetrapod, hexapod or whatever the chance guide it.


      And you've already had it explained to you several times why that's a ridiculous demand.

      So they evolved 500 millions years ago and never again, never even tried to evolve no matter they do not know how was the enviromental conditions in this 500 Mya.

      Populations don't "try" to evolve. They do evolve through natural processes just by reproducing and surviving. What features they end up with depends on the environment and selection pressures. Environment encompasses all aspects of their surrounding that influence their existence - local geology and climate, food supply, danger from predators, competition from other species, competition within their own species.

      550 million years ago there were no legged vertebrates of any kind. The first vertebrates to evolve paired fins had no competition in that particular niche. Way back then the four limb body plan outcompeted any others and became the standard for vertebrates.

      Now you're stupidly demanding that evolution produce and test six limb vertebrates even though the tetrapods have a 500 million year head start. That's why you Creationist clowns don't get taken seriously.

      Why they are going to evolve in the next 500 Mya?

      Because they will still be influenced by evolutionary processes. There will still be small incremental changes every generation, and these changes will accumulate. The morphology that results we can't know because we don't know their future environment.

      It's a shame you don't want to learn or understand the science involved, because it's fascinating. But you're happy to be just another trolling idiot.

      Delete
  18. Blas

    Then there is no chance to see hexapod vertebrates in the future. No other fish will escape from the water and strat to leave in the land as the anphibians did. No other big brain bepedal cousin is going to join us.
    Evolution was "from first appearance on Earth, we have single-celled organisms, then metazoans, chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amphibians, amniotes, mammals, primates, apes, homo, humans" and here ends.


    We probably won't see pigs with wings, or crocoducks, or IDCers with brains either. Oh well.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Exposing Darwinism as a ‘degenerate science program’
    ‘Before you can ask ‘Is Darwinian theory correct or not?’, You have to ask the preliminary question ‘Is it clear enough so that it could be correct?’. That’s a very different question. One of my prevailing doctrines about Darwinian theory is ‘Man, that thing is just a mess. It’s like looking into a room full of smoke.’ Nothing in the theory is precisely, clearly, carefully defined or delineated. It lacks all of the rigor one expects from mathematical physics, and mathematical physics lacks all the rigor one expects from mathematics. So we’re talking about a gradual descent down the level of intelligibility until we reach evolutionary biology.’
    David Berlinski

    Science and Pseudoscience – Imre Lakatos
    “nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific” – Imre Lakatos (November 9, 1922 – February 2, 1974) a philosopher of mathematics and science, , quote as stated in 1973 LSE Scientific Method Lecture

    In fact, by the criterion laid out by Lakatos in the following audio lecture, Darwinism is found, in reality, to be a ‘degenerate science program’, i.e. a ‘pseudoscience’;

    Science and Pseudoscience – Lakatos – audio
    http://richmedia.lse.ac.uk/philosophy/2002_LakatosScienceAndPseudoscience128.mp3

    The following evidence shows Darwinism to be a ‘degenerate science program’ using Lakatos’s criteria

    Predictions of Materialism compared to Predictions of Theism within the scientific method:
    https://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=dc8z67wz_5fwz42dg9

    Falsification Of Neo-Darwinism by Quantum Entanglement/Information
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1p8AQgqFqiRQwyaF8t1_CKTPQ9duN8FHU9-pV4oBDOVs/edit?hl=en_US

    Where’s the substantiating evidence for neo-Darwinism?
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1q-PBeQELzT4pkgxB2ZOxGxwv6ynOixfzqzsFlCJ9jrw/edit

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here is how neo-Darwinian evolution avoids falsification from ‘anomalous’ genetic evidence:

      A Primer on the Tree of Life – Casey Luskin – 2009
      Excerpt: The truth is that common ancestry is merely an assumption that governs interpretation of the data, not an undeniable conclusion, and whenever data contradicts expectations of common descent, evolutionists resort to a variety of different ad hoc rationalizations to save common descent from being falsified.
      http://www.discovery.org/a/10651

      How to Play the Gene Evolution Game – Casey Luskin – Feb. 2010
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/02/how_to_play_the_gene_evolution032141.html

      Pattern pluralism and the Tree of Life hypothesis – 2006
      Excerpt: Hierarchical structure can always be imposed on or extracted from such data sets by algorithms designed to do so, but at its base the universal TOL rests on an unproven assumption about pattern that, given what we know about process, is unlikely to be broadly true.
      http://www.pnas.org/content/104/7/2043.abstract

      Here is how neo-Darwinian evolution avoids falsification from the fossil record;

      Seeing Ghosts in the Bushes (Part 2): How Is Common Descent Tested? – Paul Nelson – Feb. 2010
      Excerpt: Fig. 6. Multiple possible ad hoc or auxiliary hypotheses are available to explain lack of congruence between the fossil record and cladistic predictions. These may be employed singly or in combination. Common descent (CD) is thus protected from observational challenge.
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/02/seeing_ghosts_in_the_bushes_pa031061.html

      The Fossil Record and Falsifiable Predictions For ID – Casey Luskin – Audio
      http://intelligentdesign.podomatic.com/player/web/2010-03-26T14_56_42-07_00

      Delete
    2. Here is how evolutionists avoid falsification from the biogeographical data of finding numerous and highly similar species in widely separated locations:

      More Biogeographical Conundrums for Neo-Darwinism – March 2010
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/03/sea_monkeys_are_the_tip_of_the032471.html

      The Case of the Mysterious Hoatzin: Biogeography Fails Neo-Darwinism Again – Casey Luskin – November 5, 2011
      Excerpt: If two similar species separated by thousands of kilometers across oceans cannot challenge common descent, what biogeographical data can? The way evolutionists treat it, there is virtually no biogeographical data that can challenge common descent even in principle. If that’s the case, then how can biogeography be said to support common descent in the first place?
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2011/11/the_case_of_the_mysterious_hoa052571.html

      Let's not forget another prevalent means that neo-Darwinism avoids falsification; the fraudulent practice of literature bluffing;

      In this following podcast, Casey Luskin interviews microbiologist and immunologist Donald Ewert about his previous work as associate editor for the journal Development and Comparitive Immunology, where he realized that the papers published were comparative studies that had nothing to do with evolution at all.

      What Does Evolution Have to Do With Immunology? Not Much - April 2011
      http://intelligentdesign.podomatic.com/entry/2011-04-06T11_39_03-07_00

      The deception (literature bluffing), from neo-Darwinists at Dover, did not stop with immunology;

      The NCSE, Judge Jones, and Bluffs About the Origin of New Functional Genetic Information – Casey Luskin – March 2010
      http://www.discovery.org/a/14251

      Many more instances of Darwinism avoiding falsification from the empirical data, by ad hoc models (rationalizations), are found in this following site:

      Darwin’s Predictions – Cornelius Hunter PhD.
      http://www.darwinspredictions.com/

      Delete
    3. Whereas, in contrast to there being no identifiable falsification criteria for neo-Darwinism (at least no identifiable falsification criteria that neo-Darwinists will accept), here is a very rough outline of the basic falsification criteria for Intelligent Design:
      Michael Behe on Falsifying Intelligent Design – video
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8jXXJN4o_A
      Stephen Meyer – Functional Proteins And Information For Body Plans – video
      http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4050681
      Here is a more detailed list of the falsification criteria for Intelligent Design:
      A Positive, Testable Case for Intelligent Design – Casey Luskin – March 2011 – several examples of cited research
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2011/03/a_closer_look_at_one_scientist045311.html
      Three subsets of sequence complexity and their relevance to biopolymeric information – Abel, Trevors
      Excerpt: Shannon information theory measures the relative degrees of RSC and OSC. Shannon information theory cannot measure FSC. FSC is invariably associated with all forms of complex biofunction, including biochemical pathways, cycles, positive and negative feedback regulation, and homeostatic metabolism. The algorithmic programming of FSC, not merely its aperiodicity, accounts for biological organization. No empirical evidence exists of either RSC of OSC ever having produced a single instance of sophisticated biological organization. Organization invariably manifests FSC rather than successive random events (RSC) or low-informational self-ordering phenomena (OSC).,,,
      Testable hypotheses about FSC
      What testable empirical hypotheses can we make about FSC that might allow us to identify when FSC exists? In any of the following null hypotheses [137], demonstrating a single exception would allow falsification. We invite assistance in the falsification of any of the following null hypotheses:
      Null hypothesis #1
      Stochastic ensembles of physical units cannot program algorithmic/cybernetic function.
      Null hypothesis #2
      Dynamically-ordered sequences of individual physical units (physicality patterned by natural law causation) cannot program algorithmic/cybernetic function.
      Null hypothesis #3
      Statistically weighted means (e.g., increased availability of certain units in the polymerization environment) giving rise to patterned (compressible) sequences of units cannot program algorithmic/cybernetic function.
      Null hypothesis #4
      Computationally successful configurable switches cannot be set by chance, necessity, or any combination of the two, even over large periods of time.
      We repeat that a single incident of nontrivial algorithmic programming success achieved without selection for fitness at the decision-node programming level would falsify any of these null hypotheses. This renders each of these hypotheses scientifically testable. We offer the prediction that none of these four hypotheses will be falsified.
      http://www.tbiomed.com/content/2/1/29

      Delete
  20. Moreover here is the true principle governing the vast majority, if not all, biological adaptations (a principle that is certainly very antagonistic to Darwinism, and very friendly to Intelligent Design)

    “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain – Michael Behe – December 2010
    Excerpt: In its most recent issue The Quarterly Review of Biology has published a review by myself of laboratory evolution experiments of microbes going back four decades.,,, The gist of the paper is that so far the overwhelming number of adaptive (that is, helpful) mutations seen in laboratory evolution experiments are either loss or modification of function. Of course we had already known that the great majority of mutations that have a visible effect on an organism are deleterious. Now, surprisingly, it seems that even the great majority of helpful mutations degrade the genome to a greater or lesser extent.,,, I dub it “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.(that is a net ‘fitness gain’ within a ‘stressed’ environment i.e. remove the stress from the environment and the parent strain is always more ‘fit’)
    http://behe.uncommondescent.com/2010/12/the-first-rule-of-adaptive-evolution/

    Evolution Vs Genetic Entropy – Andy McIntosh – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4028086

    further note:

    Is evolution pseudoscience?
    Excerpt:,,, Thus, of the ten characteristics of pseudoscience listed in the Skeptic’s Dictionary, evolution meets nine. Few other pseudosciences — astrology, astral projection, alien abduction, crystal power, or whatever — would meet so many.
    http://creation.com/is-evolution-pseudoscience

    Music and Verse:

    Sara Groves – Miracle (Official Music Video) – Music Videos
    http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=FM1CEFNU

    1 Corinthians 2:9
    However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”–

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thanks batspit 77. This conversation needed a half dozen more gibberish posts from a deranged Fundy nutjob. It needed those thousands of words of inane drivel and links to some Christian music videos to be complete.

    ReplyDelete
  22. bornagain77 -

    Why did you do that? Please don't just paste-dump a list of URLs the length of a phone directory.

    If you have a relevant point to make then make it. But no-one is going to pay any attention to a solid wall of links.

    It's just trolling.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's the internet version of the Gish Gallup and BA77 is (in)famous for it. Most people have learned to just ignore any comments by him.

      You're probably right about the trolling, though. Pirates of the Carribean probably best sums up his mindset. Allow me to paraphrase:

      Thorton: "You are without a doubt the worst deranged Fundy nutjob I've ever heard of."

      ba77: "But you have heard of me!"

      Delete
  23. ThortonJan 24, 2012 11:26 AM

    " or IDCers with brains either. Oh well."

    You know Thorton, the brain is not important. The key if the faith gene or the atheist gene will prevail and seems that religious people is best fitted!

    Glad to agree that man is the end of evolution.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Blas

      You know Thorton, the brain is not important.


      To Intelligent Design Creationists it sure doesn't seem to be. Why else would they keep posting the same stale 100x refuted anti-science nonsense day after day after day?

      Glad to agree that man is the end of evolution.

      Agree with who? Certainly no one with the slightest bit of scientific training or understanding. I suppose that covers 99.9% of IDCers.

      Delete
  24. Blas

    you ask interesting questions.

    Where are you from?

    You speak like Yoda.

    This is not an insult. I'm allowed to ask questions like this.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thorton

    nice try on haiku but sorry, they suck. Is it because 49ers lost?

    ReplyDelete
  26. Eugen

    Thorton

    nice try on haiku but sorry, they suck. Is it because 49ers lost?


    Nah, my haiku would still suck even if the 49ers had won 100-0 :)

    I just got bored waiting for an honest IDCer to come by.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Have I ever been dishonest IDCer?

    ReplyDelete
  28. Eugen

    Have I ever been dishonest IDCer?


    I personally have never seen you deliberately misrepresent scientific findings like CH does, or troll with silly "gotcha" questions like Blas and natschuster, or flat out lie like Pav/Lino and Tedford.

    Which certainly makes you the rara avis.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Well thanks, I'm also a legend ( in my own mind)

    :)

    ReplyDelete
  30. Thorton:

    What's wrong with "gotcha" questions? Didn't Plato use "gotcha" questions?
    Did I getcha?

    ReplyDelete
  31. natschuster

    What's wrong with "gotcha" questions?


    When the person asking them lies about his motives for asking, and purposely uses 'loaded' questions so he can deliberately spin and misrepresent the answers, I'd say there's lots wrong with that person's ethics. You should know.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Ladies, Gentlemen, and rabid atheists,

    There is a new documentary online which you can view for free which describes the life of Alfred Russell Wallace which you can view here.

    I especially love the part where Darwin's head explodes when he reads Wallace's paper that natural selection and evolution cannot account for the appearance of the human race! It really illustrates where Darwin's heart was and what motivated him psychologically.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. wg -

      This is one of the great differences between science and religion.

      Science has no prophets. It has no saints. There is no-one whose every word is revered as inerrant, divine truth.

      All that matters is ideas. People put forward ideas and theories and we can test them to see if they are right. If so, we might admire the people who originally came up with it (such as Darwin), but that is all.

      It could be that Darwin was the very worst human being imaginable - a genocidal, mass-murdering, sex beast. He could have had the oddest beliefs imaginable - that the universe was a dream of a magic puffer-fish. And it wouldn't matter in the slightest. All that matters is whether they have come up with an idea which has stood the test of time and rigorous scientific scrutiny. And Darwin did.

      That Alfred Russell Wallace accepted Intelligent Design might be an interesting quirk of scientific history. But it has absolutely no bearing on the validity of the modern theory of evolution in the slightest.

      Delete
    2. It's also worth pointing out the substance of the video - basically nothing other than God of the Gaps logic and the argument from incredulity, which does not become any less of a logical fallacy just because you employ the incredulity of a man who lived 150 years ago.

      Basically there is nothing at all here of any substance.

      Delete
    3. wgbutler777: It really illustrates where Darwin's heart was and what motivated him psychologically.

      This represents justificationism.

      Specifically, wgbutler777 is implying whether something is true or not is based on who said it or proposed it, rather than via arguments presented about the claim itself.

      This doesn't come as a surprise as theism is ultimately based on justificationism.

      Delete
  33. wgbutler777

    Ladies, Gentlemen, and rabid atheists,


    LOL! The simple minded creationist is back pimping another choice bit of anti-science propaganda from the Discovery Institute that he doesn't understand and can't defend.

    Quick simple minded creationist, start screaming about you're too busy and that it's beneath you to actually support this latest steaming pile of horsecrap. Tell us again how you're the persecuted martyr and everyone hates you and attacks you merely for being a Christian!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Behold the personification of the rabid atheist! I can just imagine him staring down his computer monitor, fists clenched, veins bulging out of his forehead and spittle dripping down his chin as he seethes in white hot rage that someone, somewhere in the world doubts that everything came from nothing and then some goo self-assembled into a living organism which then mutated into a human being!

      And so he continues his crusade to educate the world and get everyone to agree that he right once and for all! Situated in the command headquarters of his parents basement, he bravely presses on, unabashed, undaunted, relentless in his mission. He WILL be relevant! He WILL not fail, even if he has to stick with it until his parents force him to get a job and start paying rent!

      Delete
    2. Looks to me like you just described yourself and the other IDiots.

      I'm pretty sure that Thorton is laughing his a** off at you. I know I am.

      Your insane beliefs will never be relevant to science, except maybe the science that deals with mental illnesses.

      Delete
  34. Can I ask how the OP is supposed to be taken seriously, especially after his recent blog post which consisted solely of plot of public debt versus belief in evolution? It was not even presented as a joke; there was no mention of correlation not implying causation. And there was no comment from the OP clarifying one bit of the nonesense. Amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Zachriel said, "However, once you understand the basic historical sequence, then it might be possible to piece together the various mechanisms involved."

    --

    Through the fog of 30,000 feet it looks like you might have a story, but when one looks at the details your storyline becomes a completely superstitious fairy tale.

    This is where rationalism based on a foregone conclusion sees evolution as the only possible route. You haven't even got off the ground in showing how the first cell was formed via chemical evolution, nor how prokaryotes evolved into eukaryotes, and we could go right through your historical sequence with nothing more than the assumption that evolution did it somehow and "we speculate that possibly this is how it could have happened, maybe, we suppose". Very, very weak stuff from beginning to end.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Tedford the idiot said...

    Through the fog of 30,000 feet it looks like you might have a story, but when one looks at the details your storyline becomes a completely superstitious fairy tale.


    HAHAHAHA! As opposed to all the details you can provide? That's pretty funny there idiot.

    You haven't even got off the ground in showing how the first cell was formed via chemical evolution, nor how prokaryotes evolved into eukaryotes, and we could go right through your historical sequence with nothing more than the assumption that evolution did it somehow and "we speculate that possibly this is how it could have happened, maybe, we suppose".

    Both the evolution of the first cell and the evolution of eukaryotes have working hypotheses supported with evidence that are being actively researched as I type.

    What does your side have idiot? "POOF"?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies

    1. Both the evolution of the first cell and the evolution of eukaryotes have working hypotheses supported with evidence that are being actively researched as I type


      Neal,

      Don't believe any of this malarky for a second. OOL researchers are nowhere near being able to make a case for chemical evolution. And they will never be able to prove this. This is pure science fiction concocted by atheists to escape the reality that life can only come from life.

      In fact, atheistic scientist Jerry Coyne is refusing to even discuss this issue anymore and concocting fake reasons to avoid debating Moshe Averick on the issue!

      Here is an interesting video which talks about this very subject. It's a bit on the long side (51 minutes) but well worth the time.

      http://edinburghcreationgroup.org/video/28

      Delete
    2. wgbutler777

      Here is an interesting video which talks about this very subject. It's a bit on the long side (51 minutes) but well worth the time


      Wow simple minded Creationist, that site is full of even more lame-brained "Gish Gallop" style PRATT stupidity that the last one you pimped. How do you find these winners?

      Do you ever get your 'science' from sites that don't have as their stated purpose things like "Edinburgh Creation Group is an active forum where scientifically minded people meet to discuss evidence supporting the biblical account of creation."

      It's a pity you're so scientifically illiterate and don't have the chops to discuss any of the YEC crap you keep linking to. That's probably why so swallow so much of this anti-science nonsense without so much as a single thought. Maybe some day when you grow up you can read a real book on biology or take a real class in genetics.

      For those who aren't simple minded Creationists: The journal Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere has collected the abstracts of over 300 papers on various aspects of abiogenesis into one volume. This is from a 2008 symposium, so keep in mind it is at least 3 years behind additional new research.

      SPECIAL ISSUE: ABSTRACTS FROM THE 2008
      ISSOL MEETING


      ISSOL is the combined International Society for the Study of the Origin of Life and Astrobiology Society.

      Lots of neat topics in there - chirality, pre-biotic energy sources, interstellar organic molecules, etc. But according to the YEC dimbulb here scientists are doing no work in this field whatsoever.

      Delete
    3. To any reader following this thread. I am not a young earth creationist, nor does any of the evidence I link to argue for young earth creationism.

      Thorton has nothing but insults and snarl in his bag of tricks. His position is intellectually bankrupt and he knows it, so the only thing he can do is try to intimidate and bully other people into silence. Don't ever let people like this silence you from speaking the truth.

      Delete
    4. One other thing. Don't let tools like Thorton deceive you into thinking that scientists are on the verge of figuring out a naturalistic scenario for OOL.

      When they think no one is looking they will admit that they are completely lost. For example here and here.


      The improbability involved in generating even one bacterium is so large that it reduces all considerations of time and space to nothingness. Given such odds, the time until the black holes evaporate and the space to the ends of the universe would make no difference at all. If we were to wait, we would truly be waiting for a miracle.

      Robert Shapiro OOL researcher

      Delete
    5. wgbutler777

      To any reader following this thread. I am not a young earth creationist, nor does any of the evidence I link to argue for young earth creationism


      Hey dimbulb, the
      Edingurgh Creation Group whose video you just pimped is nothing but Biblical young earth creationism. That's why I provided their mission statement

      "Edinburgh Creation Group is an active forum where scientifically minded people meet to discuss evidence supporting the biblical account of creation."

      Maybe you can tell us how their video Evidence for a Young Earth isn't about a young earth.

      His position is intellectually bankrupt and he knows it, so the only thing he can do is try to intimidate and bully other people into silence.

      LOL! How can anyone "bully" another through a computer screen? I don't want to silence you dimbulb, I'm actively asking you to explain the empirical evidence like the patterns in the fossil record. Well?

      You may feel intimidated and inadequate because of your pathetic scientific ignorance, but that's your problem, not mine.

      Delete
    6. wgbutler777

      One other thing. Don't let tools like Thorton deceive you into thinking that scientists are on the verge of figuring out a naturalistic scenario for OOL.

      When they think no one is looking they will admit that they are completely lost. For example here and here.

      "The improbability involved in generating even one bacterium is so large that it reduces all considerations of time and space to nothingness. Given such odds, the time until the black holes evaporate and the space to the ends of the universe would make no difference at all. If we were to wait, we would truly be waiting for a miracle."

      Robert Shapiro OOL researcher


      I guess we'll add clueless scoundrel to your list of attributes. That is a dishonestly quote-mined quote rather popular on Creationist web sites. It was made by Shapiro back in 1986, in his book Origins, a Skeptic’s Guide to the Creation of Life on Earth. In it he debunked some of the more zany ideas from OOL that were floating around at that time. In that particular quote he was talking about the stupid Creationist idea that all the parts of a complete cell had miraculously self assemble all at once, not any work on abiogenesis.

      Shapiro today is still a strong advocate for a naturalistic OOL, although he is a critic of the RNA world hypothesis. Shapiro is in the "metabolism-first" camp, and believes self-sustaining autocatalytic reaction associated with amino acids predated RNA.

      Here you can read Shapiro's own words on OOL, as he puts it

      "The sudden appearance of a large self-copying molecule such as RNA was exceedingly improbable. Energy-driven networks of small molecules afford better odds as the initiators of life."

      Once again we see the dimbulb C&Ping things from Creationist sites he doesn't understand and can't defend.

      What a maroon.

      Delete
    7. Thorton has nothing but insults and snarl in his bag of tricks. His position is intellectually bankrupt and he knows it, so the only thing he can do is try to intimidate and bully other people into silence.

      You know all those comments that you see peppered throughout the comments on this blog about self awareness? Those aren't just random insults thrown about to try and make you look bad. They're trying to get you to pay attention to the fact that in many cases you are doing exactly the thing that you are accusing others of doing while you are accusing them of it.

      Please take just a moment for self reflection. You have just insulted Thorton and provided no other substantive content even as you were accusing him of that exact thing.

      Delete

    8. Maybe you can tell us how their video Evidence for a Young Earth isn't about a young earth.


      Thorton,

      I have to admit, I can't decide if you are just an incredibly stupid fool or an Internet troll who is baiting and goading people for entertainment, desperate to get them to pay attention to you.

      Regarding the Edinburgh Creation Group, I don't know if some of them believe in a young earth or not, and frankly it's irrelevant. The link I posted in my original message was from Professor John Walton, a research professor of Chemistry who is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. In his presentation, he argues from the perspective of the Earth being 4.5 billion years old. He was invited to speak to the Edinburgh group, because, lo and and behold, they both happen to agree that a naturalistic OOL didn't happen!

      But instead of actually listening to an actual expert in the field make arguments, you instead want to put fingers in your ears and try to find some fault with the GROUP that invited him to speak to them, as though that completely undermines the case WALTON is making.

      This is a classic example of why you are really not worth responding to.

      Delete
    9. Venture Free,


      They're trying to get you to pay attention to the fact that in many cases you are doing exactly the thing that you are accusing others of doing while you are accusing them of it.


      Have you read the typical comment from Thorton? You'd be hard pressed to find even one where he doesn't get some personal attack or nasty comment in. And this isn't just with me, its with anyone who profess allegiance to atheism.

      This is why I typically ignore him and don't waste the time. I've only responded to him this last time to correct a flat out lie that he was trying to say about me (that I was a young earth creationist or was presenting evidence for a young earth).

      My preference would be to engage others in a respectful way where everyone honestly presents ideas and tries to see the perspective of the other person, or at least have a discussion with someone where I am learning something. I initially tried to do this with Thorton, but quickly grew weary of his obnoxious style and awful logic. I don't have the time or desire to hang out on random websites and swap insults with strangers who happen to disagree with me.

      Delete
    10. wgbutler777

      Venture Free: "They're trying to get you to pay attention to the fact that in many cases you are doing exactly the thing that you are accusing others of doing while you are accusing them of it."

      Have you read the typical comment from Thorton? You'd be hard pressed to find even one where he doesn't get some personal attack or nasty comment in. And this isn't just with me, its with anyone who profess allegiance to atheism.


      Ahh here it comes. "All those who oppose my Creationist stupidity do so because they're evil atheist!! They hate me and persecute me because I'm a Christian!! WAAAAAH!!"

      How do those childish temper tantrum work out for you in real life there dimbulb?

      I guess I should point out to you that you haven't addressed or defended a single technical detail in the Creationist crap you've posted. You can't even frame an argument in your own words because you're too ignorant on the topics.

      Once again, all you know is argument from authority. Some guy on a Creationist web site says something so it must be right because he's an authority doncha know! You just did the same thing with your latest "expert" in OOL, a chemistry professor whose work has nothing to do with OOL research. Did you watch any of that crap video? I did. It's the same old "gee, amino acids forming by themselves is just too darn improbable" nonsense the IDiots have been pushing for years, the same old refuted arguments and outright falsehoods.

      I posted a link to the abstracts of over 300 OOL papers. You want to pick one and discuss the technical contents? Or just run away screaming again?

      My preference would be to engage others in a respectful way where everyone honestly presents ideas and tries to see the perspective of the other person, or at least have a discussion with someone where I am learning something.

      What a giant steaming crock of bull. All you've done since you've gotten here is preach and post Creationist crap. You don't understand a word of it and have fled from all attempts at technical discussion so fast you leave skid marks.

      You haven't shown have the faintest interest in learning. I offered to walk you through and teach you some of this fascinating material *if you lost the attitude* but you refused. So now you get the respect you've earned dimbulb. Nothing less, nothing more.

      I initially tried to do this with Thorton, but quickly grew weary of his obnoxious style and awful logic.

      You mean you got tired of having your pitiful ignorance exposed and now have to lie to try and save face. But we understand.

      I don't have the time or desire to hang out on random websites and swap insults with strangers who happen to disagree with me.

      Heh. But you *do* have time to post these long blustering diatribes about what a persecuted martyr you are.

      You don't get insulted because of your views or your religion. You get insulted because of the huge amounts of lying, arrogance and ignorance you keep bringing in lieu of any actual arguments.

      Multiple people have pointed out that out to you but as I predicted - you just don't get it.

      Delete
    11. Thorton,

      It really is silly to argue about this. If you want to claim that a naturalistic OOL is feasible, all you have to do is set up a sterile environment in a lab and create a living organism out of non-living ingredients.

      If you can't do this and feel frustrated by that because it undermines your worldview, then I suggest finding another hobby because screaming at and insulting people who don't think this can happen isn't going to change anything!

      Delete
    12. Thorton,

      One other thing. If you watched the video then you knew that he was arguing from the perspective of a 4.5 billion year Earth.

      So why did you try to lie about the young earth creationism, since you already knew that none of that stuff was in the presentation?

      Delete
    13. wgbutler

      It really is silly to argue about this. If you want to claim that a naturalistic OOL is feasible, all you have to do is set up a sterile environment in a lab and create a living organism out of non-living ingredients.


      LOL! Sure thing dimbulb. Right after you get your magic Intelligent Designer to create a new universe, planet, and all our extant life forms by going POOF!

      If you can't do this and feel frustrated by that because it undermines your worldview, then I suggest finding another hobby because screaming at and insulting people who don't think this can happen isn't going to change anything!

      If you can't discuss any of the science involved and are just doing this to justify your new 'born again' Fundy beliefs you should find another hobby. Merely posting links to Creationist crap you don't understand and can't defend isn't going to change anything.

      BTW dimbulb, I really couldn't care less if you stay a willfully ignorant clod your whole life. I post here for the lurkers to show them how full of it you Creationists really are. You're just a clueless stage prop.

      There are still hundreds of paper I'm waiting for you to discuss. I'm also still waiting for you to provide your explanation of the temporal and spatial distribution of the fossil record. But you won't, because you're can't.

      One other thing. If you watched the video then you knew that he was arguing from the perspective of a 4.5 billion year Earth.

      Another LOL! You link to a YEC website with YEC videos like "Evidence for a young Earth" and "The Grand Canyon and Noah's Flood" then wonder why you get associated with YECs. You really do have zero self-awareness.

      Delete
    14. Thorton,


      Right after you get your magic Intelligent Designer to create a new universe, planet, and all our extant life forms by going POOF!


      Except that I thought that the narrative was that I was supposed to be the person taking taking things on dumb blind faith and you were the enlightened rational person who was only persuaded by scientific evidence.

      Well I say that life can only come from life. If you think I am stupid for believing that then it should be simple to prove me wrong. Create a life form from non-living chemicals simulatating early Earth conditions in a laboratory and I'll admit that you were right!


      You link to a YEC website with YEC videos like "Evidence for a young Earth" and "The Grand Canyon and Noah's Flood" then wonder why you get associated with YEC


      No, you were trying to say that the presentation argued for a young earth. If you watched the video as you claim, then you would know that was a flat out lie. Why do you have to resort to lying and dishonesty to prove your point?

      Maybe some people in that group do believe in a young earth. Who knows and who cares? They invited a distinguished scientist to discuss the origin of life issue with them and presented a compelling case against naturalistic OOL scenariors from a 4.5 billion year old Earth viewpoint. Why did you try to distort the facts?


      I'm also still waiting for you to provide your explanation of the temporal and spatial distribution of the fossil record.


      I think in all your rantings and ravings you have confused me with someone else. I have never discussed this issue with you (or anyone else).

      Delete
    15. wgbutler777

      Well I say that life can only come from life.


      Please provide your technical definition of life. Is a virus alive? Yes or no, and why?

      If you think I am stupid for believing that then it should be simple to prove me wrong. Create a life form from non-living chemicals simulatating early Earth conditions in a laboratory and I'll admit that you were right

      If you think scientists are stupid for believing that a Magic Man didn't POOF living whole creatures into existence then it should be simple to prove them wrong. Have your Magic Man create a living whole creature by going "POOF!" in a laboratory and I'll admit that you were right.

      BTW I don't think you're stupid per se. I think you're woefully ignorant on these topics and too arrogant / egotistical / immature to face it. In other words you're a typical Creationist.

      No, you were trying to say that the presentation argued for a young earth.

      No I didn't you liar. I said it came from a YEC source, which it did.

      Why are you lying about what I said?

      Why did you lie and post that quote-mined quote from Shapiro, then lie about his actual position?

      Why do you continually lie and call me an atheist when I specifically told you that I'm not one?

      You better take a good long look in the mirror dimbulb before you start pointing fingers at anyone else.

      Delete

    16. Please provide your technical definition of life. Is a virus alive? Yes or no, and why?


      No offense, but I'm really not interested in taking pop quizzes from you.


      Have your Magic Man create a living whole creature by going "POOF!" in a laboratory and I'll admit that you were right.


      What a weird request. You keep demanding this. Are you saying that the they are on the same level then? Are you saying that simulating an early Earth environment in a laboratory and trying to create life from non-life using one of the theories in those 300 papers you keep carping about would be as miraculous as God creating life? Are you saying that it requires as much faith to believe that this is possible? That's a very strange admission on your part!

      Although I'd have to disagree with you. I'd say it requires more blind faith to believe that is possible then that God created life. As far as your "poof" event is concerned, just take a look at the scientific evidence from the Big Bang. Once there was absolutely nothing, then POOF!, a singularity popped into existence and expanded into the Universe. You can even see a picture of the baby Universe expanding from the singularity here.



      I think you're woefully ignorant on these topics and too arrogant / egotistical / immature to face it.


      I think the definition of Hell has to be listening to someone like you telling people that they are too arrogant, egotistical, and immature for all eternity.


      said it came from a YEC source, which it did.


      I believe your exact words were:

      Hey dimbulb, the Edingurgh Creation Group whose video you just pimped is nothing but Biblical young earth creationism.


      Anyone who read that remark would logically assume that I was posting a young earth video as evidence. Since you said you watched the video, you knew that was not the case. Thus you made a deliberately misleaking statement, aka a flat out lie.

      And if not, what was your original point then? Were you ticked off that a member of the Royal Society would speak to a group that had YECs in it? What exactly were you trying to imply?


      Why did you lie and post that quote-mined quote from Shapiro, then lie about his actual position?


      I did not lie about Shapiro. Shapiro is an atheist so of course he disagrees with Intelligent Design. But he's also honest enough to point out that the prevailing OOL theories out there (including RNA world) have about as much chance of being correct as you do of winning Miss Congeniality!


      Why do you continually lie and call me an atheist when I specifically told you that I'm not one?


      I haven't called you an atheist. Please give me the time/date stamp of the post where I said you were an atheist. The closest thing I can think of is where I pointed out that you are vicious and nasty to anyone who doesn't profess allegiance to atheism. And that is true. Of course, if you can point out a poster on this blog who is a Christian/Jew/Muslim that you think is a reasonable person and whom you like, I would be corrected. Does any such person exist, or are all the Christians on this blog stupid blind idiots?

      And btw, why AREN'T you an atheist?

      Delete
    17. wgbutler -

      Once there was absolutely nothing, then POOF!, a singularity popped into existence and expanded into the Universe.

      It always amuses me when theists pose use this derisive version of events to explain the atheists position, when in fact it is THEIR position.

      Correct me if I'm wrong, of course, but it is YOUR position that the universe/life 'poofed' into existence out of absolutely nothing by the will of a magic man in the sky. The universe/life just suddenly went 'poof' and appeared just BY MAGIC. You just cry 'miracle' and stop there.

      Unless of course you have a detailed workable hypothesis of the actual MEANS God used to bring about these events?

      Contrary to what you seem to believe, just crying 'magic/miracle' as a cause of a mystery is not, in fact, an explanation.

      Delete
    18. wgbutler777

      No offense, but I'm really not interested in taking pop quizzes from you.


      Of course you're not interested in any discussion. You're only interested in regurgitating garbage Creationist talking points and don't have the brains or balls to defend them. I'm just making sure the lurkers understand that too.

      What a weird request. You keep demanding this. Are you saying that the they are on the same level then?

      I just asked for the same standard of evidence you are demanding from science. It's that level playing field thing you Creationists are scared spitless of. Thanks for the great demonstration of your hypocrisy.

      Anyone who read that remark would logically assume that I was posting a young earth video as evidence.

      Damn but you're a dumb one. The phrase "biblical young earth creationism" refers to the Edingurgh Creation Group, not the specific video. -1 on the reading comprehension there dimbulb.

      I did not lie about Shapiro.

      Yes, you did. You claimed Shaprio admitted that OOL research is completely lost. Shapiro neither admitted nor said any such thing. In fact Shapiro has his own naturalistic OOL hypothesis as I showed in his paper I linked to. You lied.

      I haven't called you an atheist. Please give me the time/date stamp of the post where I said you were an atheist.

      If you insist:

      "wgbutler777Jan 14, 2012 11:04 AM

      Thorton,

      Thanks for taking the time to snipe at me man! I haven't had this much fun with an internet atheist in a long time!"

      and in another reply to me

      "wgbutler777Jan 25, 2012 09:14 AM

      Behold the personification of the rabid atheist!"

      If you're going to lie so blatantly you're going to need a better memory.

      Of course, if you can point out a poster on this blog who is a Christian/Jew/Muslim that you think is a reasonable person and whom you like, I would be corrected. Does any such person exist, or are all the Christians on this blog stupid blind idiots?

      I don't even know the religious beliefs of most of the posters here because they are not relevant to any scientific discussions. It's only Fundies like you who come in wearing their religion on their sleeve and scream about being the "hated poor Christian martyr!!" when your anti-science stupidity gets shot down.

      There are certainly stupid blind idiots on this blog like Tedford and BA77, but it has nothing to do with their personal religious beliefs and everything to do with their slimy dishonest behavior in attacking science and scientists.

      You still just don't get it.

      Delete

    19. I just asked for the same standard of evidence you are demanding from science.


      Now wait a second here. You are the one telling going around calling everyone stupid for believing that life has to come from life.

      I'm just asking you to show us this "fact" in a laboratory setting. You keep going on and on about all of this promising research and hundreds of papers. Well, if the research is so fertile lets create a lifeform out of dead matter! Is it possible or is it not? Where exactly do you stand? How do you believe it happened and can you demonstrate it to us? There really is no need to march around biting everyone's heads off for being skeptical!

      When I ask you to put up or shut up you come back with some flippant remark about demanding that I snap my fingers and ask God to create another Universe just to prove you wrong. I think the lurkers can all see who the clown is here.


      Damn but you're a dumb one. The phrase "biblical young earth creationism" refers to the Edingurgh Creation Group, not the specific video. -1 on the reading comprehension there dimbulb.


      OK, what was the point you were trying to make? Since you saw the video, you knew that the speaker wasn't advocating young earth creationism. Why were you repeatedly throwing the phrase "young earth creationism" around, even after I went out of my way to say that I didn't post a young earth creationist video? Yeah, right.....We both know what you were doing.


      In fact Shapiro has his own naturalistic OOL hypothesis as I showed in his paper I linked to. You lied.


      Well, Shapiro is invited to do the same thing and use his own naturalistic hypothesis and create us all a lifeform from scratch. He's as clueless as all of the other scientists when it comes to OOL, but at least he's candid enough to admit that all (the other) ideas are fairy tales.


      If you insist


      Now here's another example of you being dishonest again. The first quote that you cited was before you ever informed me that you are (supposedly) an agnostic. It was in response to that quote that you, for the first time, informed me that you are not actually an atheist. And here you are using that to accuse me of saying false things about you. You are a liar and a deceiver.

      Regarding the second quote, I stand by that. You ARE the personification of the rabid, internet atheist. Full of rage, disrespectful, a person who uses dishonest tactics and horrible logic to push your flimsy opinions on other people.

      I'm still waiting for an answer to my previous question: why aren't you an atheist?


      I don't even know the religious beliefs of most of the posters here because they are not relevant to any scientific discussions.


      OK then, let me rephrase the question. Is there anyone here who doesn't think abiogenesis is true that you haven't insulted yet?

      Delete
    20. wgbutler777

      Now wait a second here. You are the one telling going around calling everyone stupid for believing that life has to come from life.


      Tsk tsk tsk...lying for Jesus again. Do you really think that will get you into heaven?

      I notice you still refuse to define "life". Makes your claim pretty meaningless, eh?

      What do you think about this? Some 8 million year old bacteria frozen in deep Antarctic ice came back to life when thawed. By every definition of 'life' I know they were dead for those 8 million years - no energy transfer, no nourishment, no reproduction. But here they are today, alive and squirming. Their life now didn't come from life.

      That's why I asked you about the definition of 'life', to get you to think for once. The definition is not nearly as clear cut as you might imagine. The zone between 'life' and 'not-life' is extremely murky.

      I'm just asking you to show us this "fact" in a laboratory setting.

      It's not a fact yet, it's still a hypothesis that is being actively investigated. To date we have lots of tantalizing clues that the hypothesis is correct and no data that falsifies it.

      You keep going on and on about all of this promising research and hundreds of papers. Well, if the research is so fertile lets create a lifeform out of dead matter!

      Maybe you could donate your brain as the test material. It seems to be pretty dead.

      Seriously, you keep making these ridiculous ignorance-based demands then getting all hissy when you get called on them. What responses do you expect from such frankly idiotic behavior?

      Is it possible or is it not? Where exactly do you stand?

      Based on the current research I have every reason to believe it is possible and no reason to believe it is not.

      How do you believe it happened and can you demonstrate it to us?

      I can demonstrate plausible parts of the process, not the whole thing. What do you think is in those 300+ papers anyway?

      There really is no need to march around biting everyone's heads off for being skeptical!

      I didn't bite anyone's head off for being skeptical. I called you on your dishonest misrepresentations that there is NO evidence and scientists said there is NO hope.

      You still can't get it through that titanium noggin that it's your behavior, not your position, that gets you scorn. Your self-awareness is less than zero.

      You ARE the personification of the rabid, internet atheist. Full of rage, disrespectful, a person who uses dishonest tactics and horrible logic to push your flimsy opinions on other people.

      You're projecting again. Really bad habit you have there.

      why aren't you an atheist?

      Why should I be? I don't care which of the over 10,000 different Gods people have described you believe in. Just keep your beliefs out of public science classes.

      OK then, let me rephrase the question. Is there anyone here who doesn't think abiogenesis is true that you haven't insulted yet?

      Are there any of your pets that you haven't beaten and practiced bestiality with?

      Delete
    21. Thorton,

      This dialogue with you is rapidly going down the sewer. It's a waste of time and energy. I have better things to do, and I'm sure you do too. Let's agree to disagree and leave it at that. I wish you no ill will.

      Delete
    22. Ritchie,


      Correct me if I'm wrong, of course, but it is YOUR position that the universe/life 'poofed' into existence out of absolutely nothing by the will of a magic man in the sky.


      If that's your derogatory way of asking if I believe in the creation ex nihilo of the Universe by God, then yes that is my position.


      Unless of course you have a detailed workable hypothesis of the actual MEANS God used to bring about these events?


      I don't agree with your philosophical presuppositions. Just because we can't understand or explain how an advanced intelligence accomplishes something doesn't make it illegitimate. For example, if alien beings opened a wormhole in space, and buried a black obelisk on the moon that was impenetrable to our technology to study or analyze, would you insist that it had to come from non-intelligent processes?

      In essense, you seem to be saying that because something is unexplainable it must therefore be the result of unintelligent processes. That is a total non sequitur in logic.

      We know that the Universe had a beginning. It either came from something or it came from nothing. You say it came from nothing. I say it came from something. I find your position quite absurd.

      Delete
    23. wgbutler777

      In essense, you seem to be saying that because something is unexplainable it must therefore be the result of unintelligent processes. That is a total non sequitur in logic.


      No one on this blog has argued anything even close to that big fat red herring.

      When science doesn't know something it has no problems saying "we don't know".

      You're the guy arguing that if we do have something unexplainable that your particular God be given credit by default.

      That's known as the God-of-the-gaps argument and was debunked over a hundred years ago.

      For a guy who's always banging on about the logic of others you sure do a truly atrocious job yourself.

      Delete
    24. wgbutler777

      Thorton,

      This dialogue with you is rapidly going down the sewer. It's a waste of time and energy. I have better things to do, and I'm sure you do too. Let's agree to disagree and leave it at that. I wish you no ill will


      OK. The emergency exit for you to slink away through is over there. I'm sure you're familiar with it. It was pretty mean of me to put you on the spot like that by asking you to actually think. Hopefully you're not scarred for life.

      Ah well, no hard feelings here either. Have a cold one on me.

      Delete
    25. wgbutler -

      In essense, you seem to be saying that because something is unexplainable it must therefore be the result of unintelligent processes.

      No, that's not the case. Thornton has it spot on. If something is a mystery then the only truly honest, rational conclusion is that it is a mystery. It is thoroughly fallacious to use a mystery to prop up whatever theory we WANT to be true via God of the Gaps logic.

      I am not saying it MUST have been the result of unintelligent processes, but the only rational way to investigate a mystery is by the application of the scientific method, which yes, does require the assumption of naturalism.

      And just so we're clear on this point - science does not disqualify intelligent agents as an explanation - it disqualifies the supernatural. THAT is the problem. Intelligent agents are perfectly fine as long as those intelligent agents are not supernatural.

      We know that the Universe had a beginning.

      We don't know any such thing for certain. What evidence we have on the subject is extremely limited and far from conclusive. It may well be that the universe had a beginning, but we don't have the evidence to take it as red quite yet.

      It either came from something or it came from nothing. You say it came from nothing. I say it came from something.

      For one thing I said no such thing. There are a number of theories on the origin of the universe. None of them terribly conclusive yet. As I said, evidence of any sort is scarce.

      But that does not justify the leap in logic you have taken. You seem to have gone straight from 'It's a mystery' to 'Therefore it was a supernatural being who did it by magic'. There is absolutely no logical reasoning linking the two. There is only religious dogma.

      What's more, it is no explanation at all. 'It was magic' is scientifically useless. Worse than useless in fact; toxic, since it actively discourages rational investigation.

      Delete
    26. Ritchie,
      Ritchie,


      Intelligent agents are perfectly fine as long as those intelligent agents are not supernatural.

      These are arbitrary rules conveniently made up simply to affirm your worldview. At any rate, feel free to redefine science all you like, you can't redefine truth.

      Science affirms what the scriptures tell us, "In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth".

      We now know that the Universe was indeed created out of nothing, to which you reply....


      We don't know any such thing for certain. What evidence we have on the subject is extremely limited and far from conclusive


      I'm not going to get sucked into another debate with you where you spend 3 weeks hemming and hawing and denying all of the scientific evidence and scholarly work on this subject because it contradicts your beliefs. I've seen that movie before, and its a complete waste of time.

      Tell you what, since you've demonstrated a willingness to do this in the past, why don't you write Vilenkin (who is probably the smartest guy in the world on this subject) and convince him that he is wrong for thinking that the Universe had a beginning.

      After doing that, write some emails to physicists like Weinberg, Susskind, and Martin Rees and convince them than the universe doesn't really appear to be fine-tuned for advanced life.

      Once you have done either done that, or have finally accepted the scientific consensus on these issues, get back to me and we'll talk.

      Delete
    27. Wow, speaking of ignoring scientific consensus and hemming and hawing and denying all of the scientific evidence and scholarly work on scientific subjects because it contradicts your beliefs. Sheesh.

      And how many other religions/myths/fairy tales, besides christianity, say that the universe had a beginning? Do you adhere to and practice all of those religions/myths/fairy tales too?

      Appealing to authority is typical for you IDCs. None of the people you brought up KNOW how the universe came about, and whether the universe had a beginning or not has nothing to do with substantiating your religious beliefs.

      Your beliefs are only as valid as the evidence that supports them, and there is NO evidence. What you call evidence is just a bunch of ridiculous, non-evidential fairy tales, conjured up by superstitious, ignorant, fearful, controlling and/or submissive people with extremely limited minds and knowledge.

      It's amazing that anyone would believe that a being powerful and knowledgeable enough to create an entire universe would deal with things as depicted in the "scriptures". How can you possibly believe that a being who is allegedly that omnipotent and omniscient would actually concern itself with all the incredibly trivial crap that's in the bible?

      Why can't you see that the people who conjured up those stories were just making it all up on the basis of their fears, ignorance, lack of knowledge, primitive lifestyle, superstitious imaginations, and their desire to control others or submit to others?

      How can anyone living in any sort of modern country still fall for that antiquated, asinine garbage?

      Delete
    28. wgbutler777J

      Ritchie: "Intelligent agents are perfectly fine as long as those intelligent agents are not supernatural."

      These are arbitrary rules conveniently made up simply to affirm your worldview.


      LOL! That science assumes naturalism isn't arbitrary, it's 100% necessary to have a system that produces predictable, repeatable results.

      How would you do science if you had to account for a supernatural God interfering in the results? How would you produce a medicine if one day it cured you, and the next day the Loki God turned it into a deadly poison? How would you build an airplane if the Loki God could double the force of gravity on a whim?

      Science assumes naturalism because it works.

      At any rate, feel free to redefine science all you like, you can't redefine truth.

      You're the guy trying to redefine science here, not us. If you want to change science to include the supernatural, then you need to show how such a system would work better, produce more consistent results that what we have now. You can't do it.

      Science affirms what the scriptures tell us, "In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth".

      Here we go again: "The Bible is true because the Bible says it is true!". Another major logic FAIL there wg.

      I'm not going to get sucked into another debate with you where you spend 3 weeks hemming and hawing and denying all of the scientific evidence and scholarly work on this subject because it contradicts your beliefs.

      Once you have done either done that, or have finally accepted the scientific consensus on these issues, get back to me and we'll talk.


      Wow. Just wow. If projection was an Olympic sport you'd take the gold, silver, and bronze combined.

      Sadly, the behavior you exhibit is all too common among 'born again' types. After you make the big change you guys have to go around preaching how terrible those evil atheists are, and how you're saved, and how everything you see supports the TRUTH of your new beliefs. You're not doing it to convince others however. You're doing it to convince yourself, and to reassure yourself that you made the right decision.

      To those of observing from the outside it's painfully obvious and almost embarrassing to watch your emotional and psychological floundering. And as always, you remain completely self-unaware.

      Delete
    29. wgbutler -

      ME:Intelligent agents are perfectly fine as long as those intelligent agents are not supernatural.

      YOU: These are arbitrary rules conveniently made up simply to affirm your worldview.


      They absolutely are not. It is totally essential that science presupposes naturalism. Science is impossible if we don't. Absolutely impossible. If you do not grasp this point, you simply do not understand science. And no you won't hear this point from any ID/Creationist sites because it is the single salient point which totally deflates their agenda trying to pretend 'Goddidit' has any validity as a scientific explanation.

      Science affirms what the scriptures tell us, "In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth".

      No it hasn't. It hasn't affirmed anything of the sort. It has not come up with the slightest reason to think a God exists at all (or a Heaven), never mind that he built the Earth. Unless, of course, I am merely ignorant on this any you can provide direct positive evidence on these points...?

      Once you have done either done that, or have finally accepted the scientific consensus on these issues, get back to me and we'll talk.

      Whether the universe had a beginning or not is rather besides the point. If it did or it didn't, neither fact being true would justify your '...therefore a magic being magically created it' conclusion. It is a thoroughly illogical, irrational and unscientific position no matter what facts you start off with.

      Think of it this way: if we allow miracles in our scientific explanations, then how is a scientist to ever trust the results of their own experiments? A miracle might have occurred and affected the results without them knowing. The mere possibility of miracles makes any data unreliable. Thus science is impossible.

      Delete
    30. Ritchie,

      As I said before, once you are ready to concede that according our best scientific knowledge, the Universe had a distinct beginning and appears to be fine tuned for life, then I'll be happy to have this discussion with you.

      I'm not wasting another three weeks presenting scientific evidence to you while you put your fingers in your ears and sing "LA LA LA" as loud as you can.

      Delete
    31. wgbutler777

      Ritchie,

      As I said before, once you are ready to concede that according our best scientific knowledge, the Universe had a distinct beginning and appears to be fine tuned for life, then I'll be happy to have this discussion with you.

      I'm not wasting another three weeks presenting scientific evidence to you while you put your fingers in your ears and sing "LA LA LA" as loud as you can.


      LOL! Says the scientifically illiterate goober who's spent the last month putting his fingers in his ears and singing "LA LA LA" as loud as he can to the huge amount of scientific evidence for evolution he's been presented.

      People for miles around are going to be sending you bills for the hypocrisy meters you just melted.

      BTW goober, the evidence is that life as we know it evolved to fit the parameters of our universe, not the other way round. The water in the puddle conforms to the hole, the hole wasn't designed to fit the shape of the water.

      Delete
    32. wgbutler -

      As I said before, once you are ready to concede that according our best scientific knowledge, the Universe had a distinct beginning and appears to be fine tuned for life, then I'll be happy to have this discussion with you.

      As far as having a beginning goes, fine. I'll go along with that if it'll keep you happy. I was not arguing otherwise. I wasn't saying in which direction the evidence pointed, I was just saying that there wasn't a conclusive amount of it, which is a rather different proposition.

      But as far as being 'fine-tuned for life', what exactly do you mean by that? How exactly can it be 'fine-tuned for life' when the unfathomably vast majority of it is completely hostile to life? The universe it big. Really, really big. Seriously, we're talking unfathomably colossal here. And as far as we know, hospitable conditions for life exist only on the surface of one single, solitary planet. How does that square up with the universe being 'finely tuned for life', exactly? If it is, it surely hasn't been 'finely tuned' very well, has it?

      I'm not wasting another three weeks presenting scientific evidence to you while you put your fingers in your ears and sing "LA LA LA" as loud as you can.

      A rather unfair account of our previous discussion. You were the one who failed to provide anything in the way of solid evidence. You classed the flimsiest, weakest evidence as rock solid, irrefutable proof just because it propped up your religious bias.

      A simple question for you: Do you or do you not accept the simple truth that science absolutely MUST presuppose naturalism?

      Delete

    33. I was just saying that there wasn't a conclusive amount of it, which is a rather different proposition.


      This doesn't sound like a concession to me. I realize this causes real issues with your worldview, but frankly, that's your problem, not mine.

      And your statement is wrong, btw. Atheistic scientists have been straining mightily to find some other explanation for the existence of the Universe. This is possibly the most tested conclusion in the history of modern science.

      If you feel like arguing about this, I'd suggest taking the discussion here.


      But as far as being 'fine-tuned for life', what exactly do you mean by that?


      Are you REALLY not familiar with the argument for design from the fine tuning of the laws and constants of physics? This is one of its main arguments.

      If you're not up to speed on this topic I'd begin by watching this, this, and read this, this and this.

      Regarding your question, I'll be happy to answer it once you agree with atheistic cosmologicsts and physicists like Alexander Vilenkin, Martin Rees, and Leonard Susskind and concede that the Universe had a distinct beginning and appears to be exquisitely fine tuned to allow advanced life to exist.

      If you are not willing to concede this, then try to debate those people because nothing I tell you is going to make any difference.


      The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.”
      They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds,
      there is none who does good.

      Psalm 14:1

      Delete
    34. Ritchie,

      One more thing. In response to your statement that:


      how exactly can it be 'fine-tuned for life' when the unfathomably vast majority of it is completely hostile to life? The universe it big. Really, really big. Seriously, we're talking unfathomably colossal here. And as far as we know, hospitable conditions for life exist only on the surface of one single, solitary planet. How does that square up with the universe being 'finely tuned for life', exactly? If it is, it surely hasn't been 'finely tuned' very well, has it?


      I have to say I find this incredibly amusing! For years we had to listen to skeptics like Carl Sagan endlessly drone on about how the Earth was some ordinary, insignificant planet, of which there were billions or even trillions of similar planets littered across the Universe, and that life was abundant and human beings were nothing special, and by the way this was all evidence for atheism and against the Bible.

      Now we have atheists like Victor Stenger (and you) saying the exact opposite thing. The Universe is a very hostile place, and as far as we know only the Earth can support life, and this is ALSO evidence for atheism and against the Bible!

      Isn't it funny how everything always proves atheism?

      Delete
    35. Most of the universe is hostile to life, and especially human (what you call "advanced") life.

      Prove me wrong by going to Pluto without a space ship and any supplies from the Earth, and surviving. In fact, you can prove me wrong by just walking across the Pacific Ocean. After all, if even just the Earth is "exquisitely fine tuned" for "advanced" (human) life, you shouldn't have any trouble doing that with your two legs and feet.

      Delete
    36. wg -

      This doesn't sound like a concession to me.

      Why not, exactly? I was just clarifying my position, and trying to clarify yours. I already agreed for the purposes of this discussion that the universe had a beginning (even though it is a position I do not necessarily hold). And no, nothing here is in the slightest a 'challenge to my worldview'.

      This attitude of "I'm not talking to you unless you admit XYZ from the start" is incredibly high-handed and patronising of you.

      And your statement is wrong, btw. Atheistic scientists have been straining mightily to find some other explanation for the existence of the Universe.

      Some OTHER explanation? You say that as if 'Goddidit' should be the default explanation. As though unless scientists can come up with rock solid evidence for an entirely naturalistic hypothesis, we should just ASSUME supernatural agency. This is incredibly fallacious thinking.

      The origin of the world is, basically, a mystery. We have little evidence to go on. We do have theories and hypotheses. Some scientific, some not. Some well evidenced, some not. It is indeed a puzzle as yet unsolved. But you seem to be making the massive leap in logic of 'It's a mystery, therefore God'. That's just illogical thinking to prop up your religious beliefs.

      Are you REALLY not familiar with the argument for design from the fine tuning of the laws and constants of physics?

      I am familiar with it, but to my mind it is a phrase which is often misused. All it really means is that the conditions which allow life (at least, life as we know it) to exist lie within a narrow range. I fully accept that this is true. If this is all you want me to agree to, then I do.

      I think the phrase 'finely tuned' gets misused far too commonly, especially in the religious community, to mean 'SHOWING SIGNS OF BEING TUNED by an external agent' and used in this context, it is indeed wrong.

      It is of course viable to explain the 'fine tuning' of the universe with the explanation of: 'It was designed and created by an external agent', but this is not a scientific argument, nor one which is back up by any evidence at all. Nor is it at all a likely one, since it presupposes the existence of a being who is, by definition, more improbable than that which it is being used to explain.

      If you are not willing to concede this, then try to debate those people because nothing I tell you is going to make any difference.

      Untrue and unfair. Please don't make me out to be stubborn and blinkered. Present a well-reasoned, logical argument with lots of evidence and that will change my mind. I think it is YOU who is refusing to accept even the possibility that you are wrong. You have decided that 'God is the answer' and no amount of evidence or reasoned argument to the contrary will change your mind. I hope I am wrong, but your lofty tone suggests not.

      Isn't it funny how everything always proves atheism?

      For a start, nothing PROVES atheism because the religious keep defining God as beyond our ability to falsify (very conveniently).

      But on this point in general, the Earth is the only planet we know of that hosts life. That alone does make it unique in the known universe. However there is nothing to suggest other, undiscovered planets might not host life too. Yes, the Earth meets certain statistically unlikely criteria for being hospitable to life. But given the sheer probable number of planets in the universe, it is not at all unlikely that there is not at least one more which also meets them. These points are not in contradiction, nor are they hailed as 'proofs' for atheism.

      And now please do me the courtesy which I have done you and answer my question: do you or do you not accept the fact that science absolutely must presuppose naturalism?

      Delete
    37. Ritchie,


      Please don't make me out to be stubborn and blinkered. Present a well-reasoned, logical argument with lots of evidence and that will change my mind.


      Well said, and fair enough.


      And now please do me the courtesy which I have done you and answer my question: do you or do you not accept the fact that science absolutely must presuppose naturalism?


      Absolutely! It depends on what you mean by "presuppose naturalism".

      I understand that science can only study physical things and draw conclusions based on experiments in the physical universe. If there is some other part of reality that extends apart from the physical universe, science is unable to do any tests or make any conclusions about that.

      And when something can be explained by a plausible naturalistic explanation, the naturalistic explanation should be preferred. For example, a lightning strike is the result of weather behavior and clouds interacting with one another instead of the god Thor displaying his might. I totally get that.

      On the other hand, the information sciences can detect intelligent patterns and intelligent causation. We do this in things like forensics and the SETI program. Science can also detect physical phenomena that it is completely at a loss to plausibly explain (for example, the appearance of the big bang singularity, the fine tuning of the constants in physics, or the image on the Shroud of Turin). So it is possible to look at the scientific work and draw theistic friendly conclusions.

      I do not agree that science must assert that reality only contains material things and therefore atheism must be true. Since science is unable to look at anything other than natural phenonema, it is unable to make statements about metaphyics either way.

      And scientists should be free to bring whatever philosophical inclinations they like and draw whatever conclusions they like, as long as they realize their beliefs are not a scientific finding of fact. In other words, Richard Dawkins should have the freedom to believe that God does not exist and some goo self assembled into a living organism through random processes, and Isaac Newton should have the freedom to see the divine hand of God in the beauty and design of nature. Neither person should be penalized or marginalized for interpreting their work through their philosophical predispositions.

      And now I have a question for you. Since you have conceded that the Universe had a beginning and has some extremely unlikely values set in the laws and constants of physics that allow complex life to exist, what is your atheistic explanation for this?

      Delete
    38. wgbutler -

      I understand that science can only study physical things and draw conclusions based on experiments in the physical universe. If there is some other part of reality that extends apart from the physical universe, science is unable to do any tests or make any conclusions about that.

      Well put. That is quite so.

      On the other hand, the information sciences can detect intelligent patterns and intelligent causation. We do this in things like forensics and the SETI program.

      How could we do this in biology? How could we look at a biological feature/organism and test for - or otherwise determine - design?

      I do not agree that science must assert that reality only contains material things and therefore atheism must be true.

      Actually I don't agree with it either. I'm sure you'll find most scientists don't. Religion is simply beyond the scope of science. That is not the same as it presupposing atheism.

      It is ID apologists like Cornelius who will insist the scientific elite bar the doors of academia to ID/Creation "scientists" because of some atheistic agenda.

      Since you have conceded that the Universe had a beginning and has some extremely unlikely values set in the laws and constants of physics that allow complex life to exist, what is your atheistic explanation for this?

      Well, I could go with "I don't know, it's a mystery, let's wait until someone solves it" and leave it there.

      Nevertheless, I'm keen to show that the universe's apparent 'fine tuning' does not imply a designer, so let me elaborate.

      Life arose inside this universe. So obviously it had to arise in such a way which was fitting to the laws of this universe. I do not think it is just a random coincidence that the universe happens to contain conditions hospitable for life. But it was surely life which formed itself to suit the universe in which it found itself, not the universe which was 'finely tuned' in advance to suit life.

      The way I see it, the badger evolved to suit life in the woods. It was not the woods which were pre-emptively designed to suit the badger. The squirrel evolved to suit life in the trees. It was not the trees which were pre-emptively designed to suit the squirrel. And all Earthly life evolved to suit life on this planet, in this universe. It was not the planet, nor the universe which was pre-emptively designed to suit us. To think of it the other way round is to imagine we humans are pre-ordained, pre-destined, inevitable. It is to imagine ourselves as the very reason for the universe to exist - that the universe's entire purpose is to host us humans. Which is a monumentally absurd thing to think.

      If we are going to calculate the odds of a universe which can host life (in however miniscule a pocket of it), we need to know two things: the number of possible universes, and the number of universes which could host life OF ANY KIND. No matter how enormously large the first number is, if the second one is, say, two-thirds, then our existence is not at all unlikely and requires no particular explanation.

      I agree that if we change the laws of physics even a tiny bit, life as we know it might well be impossible. But that surely just means life would have risen to be NOT as we know it. It would have risen in such a way as to suit the laws of THAT universe instead.

      Does that all make sense?

      Delete
  37. Blas: I will refrase my question: As evolution is a blind process why there is no trace of animals with more limbs. Why only "tetrapods". Did the process tried this structures and failed and we do not have evidence of them?

    As vertebrates moved into their new terrestrial niche, evolution adapted already existing structures, the pectoral and pelvic fins.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Neal Tedford: Very, very weak stuff from beginning to end.

    Actually, a great deal of historical information is available from the geological record.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Zachriel said, "Actually, a great deal of historical information is available from the geological record."

    --

    Right, and it doesn't give evidence of gradualism. Hence the concept of punctuated equilibrium. Puncuated equilibrium according to wikipedia is "Punctuated equilibrium (also called punctuated equilibria) is a theory in evolutionary biology which proposes that most species will exhibit little net evolutionary change for most of their geological history, remaining in an extended state called stasis. When significant evolutionary change occurs, the theory proposes that it is generally restricted to rare and geologically rapid events of branching speciation called cladogenesis. Cladogenesis is the process by which a species splits into two distinct species, rather than one species gradually transforming into another.[1]"

    Agree?

    So, please tell us WHY punctuated equilibrium was proposed based on the historical information available from the geological record.


    So, we see bird beaks and peppered moths in real time showing us absolutely nothing about genuine evolution and we see a fossil record that doesn't show gradualism. We are to trust evolutionists that the evidence is there, but it's hiding???

    Perhaps if evolutionists weren't so subborn as to assume evolution is a fact in the first place, lack of evidence would lead an honest inquirer to believe that perhaps his theory is just plain wrong.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zachriel: Actually, a great deal of historical information is available from the geological record.

      Neal Tedford: Right ...

      Then why did you suggest otherwise?

      Delete
    2. Tedford the idiot said...

      So, please tell us WHY punctuated equilibrium was proposed based on the historical information available from the geological record.


      Punk Eek isn't a replacement of gradualism in evolutionary theory you idiot, it's an addition to the theory. As more and better fossils were collected and gaps in our knowledge filled it became clear that not all lineages followed a smooth linear transition. Research showed that the rate of evolution is not constant across all times and all species but basically tracks changes in a species' environment. When things were stable you got long periods of little change, when things were turbulent you got short bursts of rapid change. In the fossil record we have well documented cases of both gradualism and punk eek because not all species have the same environment over time.

      Here's a fun challenge for you idiot, or any other anti-science pusher out there: give us your "design" explanation for the spacial and temporal distribution of the fossil record. Give us your explanation for why we see both gradualism and punk eek.

      I'll get ready for the chirping crickets...

      Delete
  40. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  41. Neal -

    Punctuated Equilibrium is a theory OF EVOLUTION. It is not an alternative to it.

    So, we see bird beaks and peppered moths in real time showing us absolutely nothing about genuine evolution...

    Utter nonsense. They plainly demonstrate the power of natural selection - one of the key forces in evolution via natural selection.

    ...and we see a fossil record that doesn't show gradualism. We are to trust evolutionists that the evidence is there, but it's hiding???

    The fossil record shows as much sign of gradualism as we can reasonably expect, given the nature of the fossil record.

    But the best evidence for evolution is genetics. The whole field of, basically.

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  42. Okay, I've read too many of these articles to not comment. As to your equivocation 'argument': A change in the color of moths does not, on its own, prove evolution. The fact that phenotypic variability comes about in a population provides a way for the environment, that is nature (as in natural selection), to select which phenotype, which form of an organism, is most likely to reproduce (thus passing on its genome which gives rise to the characteristics observed). This gives a mechanism for evolution to occur. I'm am quite positive that no scientist would see color changing moths and instantly say that, by that observation alone, proves anything other than that type of moth changed colors. If it were that simple the myriad of other scientist before Darwin (or Wallace) that noticed species changed over time (a good number of them) would have figured something out more so than the fact that they do change.
    Okay, now as for the change in the genetic make-up of a particular population: No, individual organisms do not evolve. But they vary, and that variability is acted on, naturally. No, populations evolve. They change and over time that amount of change can separate a population, this is called speciation (the formation of species). You can see this in what could be a 6th grade science fair project. You have bacteria. In this bacteria, there is genetic variability. By pure chance, odds, statistically speaking (as replication is not perfect) there are differences in the long chains of A's,G's,T's, and C's contained in the DNA of these organisms. Some of them will be so different that they have a string of these bases that codes for a protein (in short, a gene) that protects them from an antibiotic. (For fungi sometimes a gene that disallows the cell to make a certain amino acid to build proteins is used in the same capacity)

    This population (called a culture) has a certain percentage of bacteria that can withstand an antibiotic, lets say .01% of them. You can then transfer this population to a new environment, one that contains the antibiotic. This changes the selective pressure. After incubation, the cells without the ability to resist the drug will die, those that have it will reproduce, and reproduce etc. Now you have this same culture which now contains a high percentage of cells containing this specific gene. That is evolution, that is a change in genetic frequency, the change in a population's genetic make-up over time. It happens. It has happened a great many times. Again this ADDS to the evidence SUPPORTING (note it does not say PROVING) evolution

    Cornelius, I have tried to respond in a way that assumes you know as much biology as my little sister in middle school. This way I am making fewer assumptions. But please, stop saying the same things; using the way the data, the evidence, is communicated to distort what it points to. It supports evolution.

    ReplyDelete
  43. tedford said:

    "...but when one looks at the details your storyline becomes a completely superstitious fairy tale."

    Self awareness isn't your strong suit.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Zachriel and Ritchie, according to the same wikipedia article on punctuated equilibrium...

    "Punctuated equilibrium is commonly contrasted against the theory of phyletic gradualism, which states that evolution generally occurs uniformly and by the steady and gradual transformation of whole lineages (called anagenesis). In this view, evolution is seen as generally smooth and continuous.

    In 1972, paleontologists Niles Eldredge and Stephen Jay Gould published a landmark paper developing this theory and called it punctuated equilibria.[2] Their paper built upon Ernst Mayr's theory of geographic speciation,[3] I. Michael Lerner's theories of developmental and genetic homeostasis,[4] as well as their own empirical research.[5][6] Eldredge and Gould proposed that the degree of gradualism commonly attributed to Charles Darwin IS VIRTUALLY NON-EXISTENT IN THE FOSSIL RECORD, and that STASIS DOMINATES THE HISTORY OF MOST FOSSIL SPECIES".
    --

    So you have well known paleontologists saying that gradualism is virtually non-existent in the fossil record. They didn't say this is because "the fossil record shows as much sign of gradualism as we can reasonably expect, given the nature of the fossil record". Their not saying its a poor fossil record as Ritchie does.

    Zachriel and Ritchie, do you agree with their assessment of the fossil record and the reason why it does not show gradualism? A simple yes or no would suffice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Neal Tedford: do you agree with their assessment of the fossil record and the reason why it does not show gradualism?

      It's a bit of an overstatement. As Gould pointed out, there are a number of excellent fossil series showing gradual change, such as the therapsid transition from reptiles to mammals.

      Do you know what the phrase "virtually non-existent" means?

      Delete
    2. Neal -

      Go back and read that quote again. I'll make the relevant bit obvious for you:

      "Eldredge and Gould proposed that THE DEGREE OF gradualism commonly attributed to Charles Darwin is virtually non-existant in the fossil record."

      Not, as you seem to desperately want it to say 'gradualism itself is virtually non-existant'. It's not that. They're saying it's not as smooth as people imagine.

      Zachriel and Ritchie, do you agree with their assessment of the fossil record and the reason why it does not show gradualism?

      They do not say it does not show gradualism. Go back and read it again until this point sinks in.

      Gould and Eldridge absolutely accepted the truth of the theory of evolution. Are you in any doubt at all on this? Do you need me to support this?

      A simple yes or no will suffice.

      Delete
  45. Tedford the idiot said...

    Zachriel and Ritchie, do you agree with their assessment of the fossil record and the reason why it does not show gradualism? A simple yes or no would suffice


    Tedford, why are you harping on punc eek again? It isn't germane to the conversation. Looks like you're trying another one of your famous flail-n-bail distractions.

    BTW idiot, we're still waiting for your explanation of the temporal and spatial distribution of the fossil record. Give us your explanation for why we see both gradualism and punk eek.

    chirp chirp chirp go the crickets...

    ReplyDelete
  46. Nate said, "The fact that phenotypic variability comes about in a population provides a way for the environment, that is nature (as in natural selection), to select which phenotype, which form of an organism, is most likely to reproduce (thus passing on its genome which gives rise to the characteristics observed). This gives a mechanism for evolution to occur."

    --

    I'm glad that you decided to comment. Welcome! I think bird beaks and such provide observational evidence for natural selection (nonrandom death), but not evolution (i.e. unbounded and directional genetic change over time from a single cell to man).

    You said that "a certain percentage of bacteria that can withstand an antibiotic, lets say .01%..."

    Okay, so you take that .01% Bacteria population and see it prosper and become the 99% ... no pun intended to the Wall Street people.

    What it provides evidence of is that an existing trait and become more frequent in a population. Which is what farmers have been doing with artifical selection for thousands of years. In either case, no evolution (i.e. unbounded and directional change over time from a single cell to man) has occured.

    What we need to observe to even begin to validiate evolution is unbounded and directional genetic changes in populations via mutations and natural selection. There is not a single observed example of this occuring in the history of science. You can change the frequency of the bacteria from .01% to 99% and back and forth until the cows come home, but you have nothing new. Everything that evolutionists illustrate as their evidence is either bounded, not directional or both.

    Evolutionists have hid behind a flawed definition of evolution full of unfounded assumptions and eqivocations.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Tedford the idiot said...

    What it provides evidence of is that an existing trait and become more frequent in a population.


    Yet Lenski's E coli showed the evolution of an entirely new trait that wasn't in the population before. He even mapped out the specific mutations that caused the major change. But to Tedford the idiot that's not "real" evolution.

    Which is what farmers have been doing with artifical selection for thousands of years. In either case, no evolution (i.e. unbounded and directional change over time from a single cell to man) has occured.

    Tedford the idiot keeps flogging his own stupid made-up defintion: "evolution means an okapi giving birth to a rudabaga!!"

    The idiot will never learn.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Zachriel said, "Do you know what the phrase "virtually non-existent" means?

    It means another failed prediction by Darwin that the fossil record would show gradualism given more time to dig them out.

    It means that out of the immense mosaic of millions of species that have ever existed in the history of the earth, evolutionists are rarely able to show a supposed gradual record of ancestry in the fossil record. The pattern of gradualism was not confirmed. Using a past analogy of yours, the circle pattern is not even elliptical, but a square.

    Taking this analogy further, if evolutionists were mathematicians a square pattern is close enough in shape to a circle pattern for evolutionists to confirm that a circle pattern prediction is accurate enough. This is why nothing is allowed to falsify evolution. It has fudge factors built into it the size of galatic nebula. Evolution accommodates whatever is found. Evolution is supposed to be gradual, except when it isn't. The beauty and power of evolutionary predictions is astonishing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Neal Tedford: It means another failed prediction by Darwin that the fossil record would show gradualism given more time to dig them out.

      Well, no. Darwin recognized that evolution didn't work at a constant rate, and that "the periods during which species have undergone modification, though long as measured in years, have probably been short in comparison with the periods during which they retain the same form."

      Delete
  49. Neal -

    What we need to observe to even begin to validiate evolution is unbounded and directional genetic changes in populations via mutations and natural selection.

    Define 'unbounded', and explain why the change witness by the moths, finches beaks, and Lenski's E.Coli did not exhibit this. What were the 'boundaries' of the change? Contrast an example of 'unbounded' change with an example of 'bounded' change.

    Define directional and explain why the change witness by the moths, finches beaks, and Lenski's E.Coli did not exhibit this. Contrast an example of 'directional' change with an example of 'non-directional' change.

    You are making up totally arbitrary reasons to dimiss completely valid demonstrations of evolution in action.

    ReplyDelete
  50. "Please provide your technical definition of life. Is a virus alive? Yes or no, and why?"


    "No offense, but I'm really not interested in taking pop quizzes from you."



    I don't know who asked the question but it's interesting, isn't it?


    I think virus is not alive because it cannot reproduce on its own. It has to hijack cell's machinery and energy to reproduce. It's a form of parasite.


    Anybody else?

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  51. Eugen

    "Is a virus alive? Yes or no, and why?"

    I don't know who asked the question but it's interesting, isn't it?


    Mea culpa.

    Yes, it's a very interesting question. Good arguments for both sides can and are made in the scientific community.

    The only correct answer is "it depends on your definition of life".

    Here is one nice overview

    Are Viruses Alive?

    and here is another 2004 Scientific American article on the topic

    Are Viruses Alive?

    Food for thought.

    BTW Eugen, are you a Christian and/or don't believe in abiogenesis? If yes to either then wgbutler777 tells me I have to hate you, and call you stupid, and generally be unpleasant to you. We're not allowed to be friendly. :(

    Maybe I'll come over and force you to listen to more of my poetry. That will make you lose your Heineken. ;)

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  52. Thorton

    "Maybe I'll come over and force you to listen to more of my poetry"

    Maybe your haiku but I hope not Vogon poetry :)

    Cool links, I just gave them a quick look. I'll check them tonight and then like my Asian colleague would say: tomovov I come ova we tok.

    You know I'm from the other side: more specifically Catholic.

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    Replies
    1. Props for Hitchhiker's reference. :D

      Delete
  53. Eugen

    Maybe your haiku but I hope not Vogon poetry :)


    Douglas Adams. :) I got to meet him once briefly at a book signing. May he rest in peace.

    You know I'm from the other side: more specifically Catholic.

    Darn! Now I have to wait for wgbutler again to tell me if I'm suppose to hate you or not. ;)

    ReplyDelete