Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Evolution Professor: DNA Code Indicates Common Descent Because ... Why?

Makes No Sense

In my previous post we saw that evolutionist Jerry Coyne claimed that “Darwin showed that ‘design-like’ features could arise from a purely naturalistic process.” That whopper was not even thinly disguised. What is particularly striking about Coyne’s lie is that the science ever since Darwin has not demonstrated this either. It is not as though Coyne was merely confusing something Darwin showed with something that was discovered after Darwin. We are nowhere remotely close to showing that “design-like” features can arise from a purely naturalistic process. Is it possible? Sure, anything is possible. But Coyne wasn’t referring to theoretical possibilities. Unfortunately it turns out this was not simply a rare fib from the University of Chicago evolutionist. In another post from the same day Coyne informed his readers that the universal genetic code indicates common descent from a single ancestor:

It is the near-universality of this code … that gives us confidence that modern life traces back to a single ancestor. If there was more than one origin of life, and its descendants independently developed the DNA—>protein system, it would be very unlikely that all modern species would have the same code.

In other words, we find the same DNA code in all the species, therefore they must have evolved from a common ancestor which had that code. The same elaborate code would not have evolved more than once.

Sorry but evolutionists cannot even explain how the DNA code evolved, period. In fact the universality of the code, according to evolutionary theory, means that it is essentially impossible to change. Over billions of years and billions of species, evolution hasn’t been able to nudge the code. The DNA code is one of the most extreme examples of a conserved design in all of biology. It is biology’s Rock of Gibraltar—it cannot normally be changed.

But if the code cannot be changed, then how did it evolve in the first place? The very universality which Coyne celebrates undercuts the theory Coyne is so sure is a fact.

Imagine the gradual evolutionary steps leading to the DNA code. In the penultimate step, the code was slightly different. And in the step before that, it was a slightly more different code. And so forth. The code must have been evolving—it must have been changing. And yet suddenly the code could no longer evolve. It makes no sense and, beyond hand-waving, evolutionists have no explanation for it.

Furthermore the code is also unique and special. It has several profound properties that are very helpful. For instance its arrangement is such that the effects of copying errors are minimized. Not only did the code just happen to evolve in early evolution, evolution just happened to find a one-in-a-million code.

524 comments:

  1. Nice article. Coyne is out to lunch, as always.

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  2. In other words, we find the same DNA code in all the species, therefore they must have evolved from a common ancestor which had that code. The same elaborate code would not have evolved more than once.

    How clever "in other words" makes the author of the post.

    Nobody is claiming that life could not have evolved more than once.

    Why do you feel the need to misrepresent what people say?

    Because you can't deal with what they really say?

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    1. Sorry but evolutionists cannot even explain how the DNA code evolved, period.

      As if that is relevant. Oy veh!

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    2. Not only did the code just happen to evolve in early evolution, evolution just happened to find a one-in-a-million code.

      No kidding. Improbable things can't happen!

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    3. No kidding. Improbable things can't happen!

      That's what happens to science in the hands of religion. No longer looking for how nature likely works--anything goes. Make up whatever you want. Anyone who disagrees is guilty of getting in the way.

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    4. How does Nature likely work, Dr Hunter?

      The World is waiting for your insight.

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    5. It's interesting trying to imagine how a tRNA would have had to differentiate. Imagine an organism's entire genome instantly riddled with new residues at every 20th position or so.

      On the other hand, imagine how the first tRNA functioned. Start Start Start Start etc... or maybe it was stop or maybe all early proteins were made out of the same amino acid :D Luckily there was a ribosome already floating around to make sense of this emerging code. It was probably being used as a tie clip by the cell, but now it could be used as a decoding machine.

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    6. Sorry but evolutionists cannot even explain how the DNA code evolved, period.

      Pedant: "As if that is relevant. Oy veh!"

      Well Pedant, is that all you got? Ridicule and faith?

      Darwin's legacy to us is that we no longer need to give hard experimental evidence for our beliefs in order for them to be considered fact. Can't explain how it evolved? So what! That's not relevant! It used to be, but unfortunately, you are right. It is no longer relevant. Evolutionists simply believe what they want even though their ideas cannot be substantiated or falsified.

      That kind of thinking ain't gonna persuade me, but if you eliminate the possibility of Design, then sure, it has to be right!

      Now, if you could only provide some evidence to support your rejection of intelligence, you'd really have something! In the end, we all take our worldview by faith. If you feel the evidence supports the tenets of your worldview, that's your decision. Many people see the evidence as challenging the tenets you hold on to so tightly!
      But now we are beyond science.

      It is enlightening to realize that all of your interpretations of the data are based on this worldview belief of yours that you cannot prove, but must take by faith.

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    7. tokyojim: Can't explain how it evolved? :

      You don't have to explain the origin of mass to have a theory of gravity. You don't have to explain the origin of life to have a theory of how life changes over time.

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    8. How life originated directly impacts how it evolved.

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    9. Joe G: How life originated directly impacts how it evolved.

      Without a valid theory of origins, that would be hard to substantiate. However, we do know a lot about how life has evolved.

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    10. Z:
      However, we do know a lot about how life has evolved.

      That is your opinion and only an opinion. However I can easily show that how life originated directly impacts how it evolved.

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    11. Joe G: However I can easily show that how life originated directly impacts how it evolved.

      Please do.

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    12. Look at all artifacts- cars run the way they were designed to run. Computers run the way they were designed to run. Stonehenge's placement was as designed as the structure.

      That means if the OoL was intelligently designed then they were intelligently designed to evolve and evolved by that intelligent design. It is only if the OoL was an accident that we would infer its subsequent evolution was by accident.

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    13. Joe G: That means if the OoL was intelligently designed then they were intelligently designed to evolve and evolved by that intelligent design.

      Yes, if it was designed to evolve then it would evolve. Isn't that a tautology? What specific and independent tests can you propose?

      Joe G: It is only if the OoL was an accident that we would infer its subsequent evolution was by accident.

      It's not clear that the origin of life was an accident. Most scientists believe it was due to natural properties of matter under certain conditions.

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    14. Z:
      Yes, if it was designed to evolve then it would evolve.

      Then it would evolve by design as opposed to accumulations of genetic accidents.

      It's not clear that the origin of life was an accident.

      I know that it wasn't. But that is beside the point.

      Most scientists believe it was due to natural properties of matter under certain conditions.

      What they believe is irrelevant.

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    15. If it was designed to evolve then it would evolve. Isn't that a tautology? What specific and independent tests can you propose?

      Joe G: What they believe is irrelevant.

      You have to know what scientists claim before you can critique it.

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    16. Z:
      If it was designed to evolve then it would evolve. Isn't that a tautology?

      That isn't what we said. Obviously you are just an arse.

      You have to know what scientists claim before you can critique it.

      Yes, you do. And only the Creationists and IDists say that the OoL was not an accident.

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    17. Joe G: That isn't what we said.

      Here's what you said.

      J: That means if the OoL was intelligently designed then they were intelligently designed to evolve and evolved by that intelligent design.

      Not sure if that statement is particularly useful. You're saying it was designed to be what it is.

      Joe G: And only the Creationists and IDists say that the OoL was not an accident.

      No, as we said, most scientists working in abiogenesis think the origin of life was due to specific properties of matter and the particular environment on the primordial Earth.

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    18. Z:
      Not sure if that statement is particularly useful.

      Not to you, perhaps. However I explained its usefulness. Obviously you are too dim to follow along.

      No, as we said, most scientists working in abiogenesis think the origin of life was due to specific properties of matter and the particular environment on the primordial Earth.

      All of which came about by accidents- all of it, by accidents. Meaning it was not planned and basically just happened, as in a happenstance occurrence. Accidents.

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    19. Joe G: I explained its usefulness.

      We'll read it again.

      J: That means if the OoL was intelligently designed then they were intelligently designed to evolve and evolved by that intelligent design.

      From what we can gather, you admit that life evolves, therefore it was designed to evolve. In other words, you're saying it was designed to be what it is.

      Joe G: All of which came about by accidents- all of it, by accidents.

      You might want to define accident. Does salt accidentally dissolve in water?

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    20. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    21. Z:
      From what we can gather, you admit that life evolves, therefore it was designed to evolve.

      That means we can gather that you are a moron as I made no such admission.

      You might want to define accident.

      We did.

      Does salt accidentally dissolve in water?

      Your position cannot account for neither water nor salt.

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    22. Joe G: I made no such admission.

      We're not looking for an "admission", but understanding of your position.

      Do you agree life evolved by some process, presumably designed?

      Does salt accidentally dissolve in water?

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    23. Z:
      , but understanding of your position.

      Liar. We explained our position and you ignored it, as usual.

      Z:
      Do you agree life evolved by some process, presumably designed?

      Yes.

      Does salt accidentally dissolve in water?

      No.

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    24. Joe G: Yes.

      Good. So do you also agree that the posited pattern is a result of branching descent?

      Joe G: No.

      accidental, "Meaning it was not planned and basically just happened, as in a happenstance occurrence. Accidents."

      So salt dissolving in water doesn't "basically just happen"?

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    25. the whole back and forth essentially over the issue of a workable abiogenesis model not being necessary for evolution betrays the major point

      Intelligent design does not concern itself with only evolution but life in general. IF you can't come up with a workable model of abiogeneis -

      YOU LOSE

      and will continue losing which is why the numbers on atheism even after decades of Darwin in public schools are so abysmal in the US.

      To almost everybody besides atheists abiogenesis does matter.

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    26. Elijah2012: To almost everybody besides atheists abiogenesis does matter.

      Abiogenesis is an important question in science, and there has been significant research on the topic, such as by the Szostak Lab:
      http://molbio.mgh.harvard.edu/szostakweb/

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    27. Zac try telling us something we don't know - like an actual model that works despite the decades long research

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    28. Elijah2012: like an actual model that works despite the decades long research

      The Szostak model appears to offering some answers, but is hardly complete. So?

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    29. so you still have nada after more than half a century trying

      Delete
    30. Most of everything is shrouded in mystery. So?

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  3. The probability of life arising all by itself out of dirt is exactly 0. Anybody who claims otherwise is just a superstitious dirt worshipper.

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    1. 1. "Out of dirt" isn't the prevailing hypothesis.
      2. Can you show your workings?

      Thanks!

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    2. I'm intrigued by your definition of prevailing. There's pratically a theory for every conceivable source of energy found on the planet... and even off of the planet.

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    3. LoL!@Rich Hughes- Richie's position doesn't have any hypotheses- none that are testable anyway.

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    4. "I'm intrigued by your definition of prevailing"

      I suspect he means the one that is trotted out the most but still fails miserably.

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  4. Hughes: 1. "Out of dirt" isn't the prevailing hypothesis.

    That is the the Darwinist/materialist hypothesis. It is stupid.

    2. Can you show your workings?

    I'll show you mine when you show me yours. How about that?

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    1. "That is the the Darwinist/materialist hypothesis."

      Source?

      You're the only one with a probability "exactly zero" so it's incumbent on you to show your workings. Thanks.

      Delete
  5. The universality of the code points to a Cpmmon Design as evolutionism cannot account for any codes

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  6. Jerry Coyne: It is the near-universality of this code … that gives us confidence that modern life traces back to a single ancestor.

    In isolation, it's not persuasive, but as the root of the phylogenetic tree, it supports universal common descent.

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    1. In what world does universal common descent predict that there will only be one code? Please provide a reference.

      What part of evolution prevents another code from evolving, ie diverging from the observed code? Please provide a reference.

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    2. Joe G: In what world does universal common descent predict that there will only be one code?

      Universal common descent posits that all life descended from common ancestors, so all life would share certain common characteristics.

      Joe G: What part of evolution prevents another code from evolving, ie diverging from the observed code?

      The code has diverged slightly, but is largely constrained by interactions with the rest of the molecular machinery of the cell.

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    3. Z:
      Universal common descent posits that all life descended from common ancestors, so all life would share certain common characteristics.

      Not necessarily and it does NOT answer my question. Typical of you. And no reference.

      The code has diverged slightly, but is largely constrained by interactions with the rest of the molecular machinery of the cell.

      Not an answer and still no reference. It's as if you think you can just make stuff up and that is it.

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    4. Joe G: Not necessarily and it does NOT answer my question.

      Related organisms share characteristics. Darwin 1859.

      Joe G: In what world does universal common descent predict that there will only be one code?

      Universal common descent predicts shared characteristics. That the genetic code is shared is an observation consistent with that prediction.

      Joe G: Not an answer and still no reference.

      "While slight variations on the standard code had been predicted earlier,[31] none were discovered until 1979, when researchers studying human mitochondrial genes discovered they used an alternative code."
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_code#Variations_to_the_standard_genetic_code

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    5. Darwin didn't know anything of the genetic code so by calling on him you expose your dishonesty. Universal common descent would be OK without observing shared characteristics because it doesn't say anything about the loss and replacement of characteristics. And wikipedia is not an accepted reference nor does it help you. However it does prove that you prefer obfuscation over education.

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    6. Joe G: Darwin didn't know anything of the genetic code

      No, but it's fundamental to his theory that common ancestry implies shared characteristics.

      Joe G: Universal common descent would be OK without observing shared characteristics because it doesn't say anything about the loss and replacement of characteristics.

      We have substantial evidence of the rate of morphological and genetic change.

      Joe G: And wikipedia is not an accepted reference nor does it help you.

      The article provided footnotes to the primary literature.

      Crick & Orgel, "It is a little surprising that organisms with somewhat different codes do not coexist.", Icarus 1973.

      Jukes & Osawa, "The genetic code in mitochondria and chloroplasts", Experientia 1990.

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    7. Joe G: Joe G: Darwin didn't know anything of the genetic code

      Just in case you're still confused on this point, Darwin didn't know about specific characteristics of many organisms. Many organisms were yet to be discovered, many traits yet to be determined. But he knew the pattern those characteristics would tend to fall into, the pattern expected from furcating descent with modification.

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    8. OK so Zachriel doesn't have anything that says the genetic code should be universal. Universal common descent would be OK without observing shared characteristics because it doesn't say anything about the loss and replacement of characteristics. Also there isn't any pattern expected from furcating descent with modification. You are just making stuff up again, as usual

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    9. Joe G: Universal common descent would be OK without observing shared characteristics because it doesn't say anything about the loss and replacement of characteristics.

      The prediction isn't specific to a particular set of character traits. Rather it predicts the pattern of character traits.

      Joe G: Also there isn't any pattern expected from furcating descent with modification.

      Sure there is, and it's easy to show, even with paper and pencil and a randomizer.

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    10. So, to be clear, Zachriel has not, because it cannot, demonstrate that universal common descent predicts a universal genetic code. Not only that it is confused wrt pattern making.

      It is a very good day.

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    11. Joe G: demonstrate that universal common descent predicts a universal genetic code

      That's right. Rather the theory predicts the pattern of character traits across taxa.

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    12. Great, Zachriel agrees that Zachriel has not, because it cannot, demonstrate that universal common descent predicts a universal genetic code. Not only that it is confused wrt pattern making.

      And now Z is making another claim it cannot support.

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    13. Joe G: demonstrate that universal common descent predicts a universal genetic code

      Why would we? The prediction is the pattern of character traits across taxa, as we said in our original post on the thread.

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    14. Kook, moron, you were arguing with me because I said universal common descent does not predict a universal genetic code. And now you are agreeing with me.

      You have serious issues.

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    15. Joe G: And now you are agreeing with me.

      That's fine, however, your point doesn't contradict the Theory of Evolution which doesn't posit specific characteristics of organisms, but the pattern of characteristics across taxa.

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    16. What "theory of evolution"? Please provide a reference.

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    17. If Darwin is all you have for the "theory of evolution", then you have nothing as Darwin is no longer relevant.

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    18. Joe G: If Darwin is all you have for the "theory of evolution", then you have nothing as Darwin is no longer relevant.

      While the Theory of Evolution has undergone many changes, Darwin has priority on the claim concerning the pattern of characteristics across taxa that results from common descent.

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    19. Here's a more modern, albeit simplified treatment.
      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/IIBPhylogeniesp2.shtml

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    20. Darwin had nothing to say about what characteristics, if any, would be preserved. And the "theory of evolution" has changed so much that it isn't even a theory as it cannot produce testable hypotheses and testable models.

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    21. Here's a more modern, albeit simplified treatment.
      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/IIBPhylogeniesp2.shtml


      Very simplified and as such not indicative of reality.Hey, just like evolutionism...

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    22. Joe G: Darwin had nothing to say about what characteristics, if any, would be preserved.

      "This preservation of favourable variations and the rejection of injurious variations, I call Natural Selection." — Darwin, Origin of Species

      Joe G: Very simplified and as such not indicative of reality.

      It provides an illustration of the pattern under discussion.

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    23. Darwin had nothing to say about what characteristics, if any, would be preserved.

      Z: crickets

      It provides an illustration of the pattern under discussion.

      It is wrong and misleading.

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    24. Joe G: It is wrong and misleading.

      It's precisely the pattern under discussion, the same pattern that generations of scientists have considered as important evidence of common descent.

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    25. So scientists have been using a wrong and misleading pattern? Really? Why would they do that?

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    26. Joe G: So scientists have been using a wrong and misleading pattern?

      Actually, it's easy to show that furcating descent with modification leads to the predicted pattern, even if the modifications are random changes to a genome.

      In any case, you do understand the pattern in question now? It's the same pattern that Darwin drew in the 19th century.

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    27. Z:
      Actually, it's easy to show that furcating descent with modification leads to the predicted pattern, even if the modifications are random changes to a genome.

      Nonsense. I can easily show that a very confusing pattern can arise.

      In any case, you do understand the pattern in question now?

      The alleged pattern doesn't have anything to do with what I have claimed. As I have said you have issues.

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    28. Joe G: I can easily show that a very confusing pattern can arise.

      Great! Provide the simulation.

      Delete
  7. I understrand that there were attemots in the past to create a universal computer code. It seems that there are design advantages to having a universal code.

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    1. Sorry "understrand" should be "understand" and "attemots" should be "attempts."

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  8. Cornelius Hunter: Not only did the code just happen to evolve in early evolution, evolution just happened to find a one-in-a-million code.

    Optimization is something evolution is quite adept at. Here's from the "one in a million" paper. Note the evidence of selection.

    Freeland & Hurst, The Genetic Code Is One in a Million, Journal of Molecular Evolution 1998: "if we employ weightings to allow for biases in translation, then only 1 in every million random alternative codes generated is more efficient than the natural code. We thus conclude not only that the natural genetic code is extremely efficient at minimizing the effects of errors, but also that its structure reflects biases in these errors, as might be expected were the code the product of selection."

    By the way, the code is only partly optimized for point mutation and mistranslation. There are 20! ≈ 2.4e18 possible codes, so one in a million is not fully optimized. However, if we restrict the amino acids to those from which the canonical code is thought to have evolved, then the code is at or near the global maximum. See Freeland et al., Early Fixation of an Optimal Genetic Code, Molecular Biology and Evolution 2000.

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    1. Zach:

      Note the evidence of selection.

      I encourage you to think about what the authors mean by this. when evolutionists say they have found evidence for selection, what exactly do they mean?

      They do not mean that they have found some sort of direct evidence that evolution occurred via natural selection, though that is exactly what it sounds like. What they mean is that they have found evidence for function (or what evolutionists would call a fitness improvement). And from their perspective, anything that has some function or fitness improvement, over the alternatives, was likely selected rather than just produced by random drift with no selection.

      That is all it is. They found the code has profound, subtle functionality, making it better than many other codes. And so they say they found evidence of selection.

      And then people can say things like "Optimization is something evolution is quite adept at." I encourage you to think about the underlying assumptions that are doing the heavy lifting, and think about the scientific evidence, without all those assumptions. Just the evidence by itself.

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    2. Dr Hunter:
      And then people can say things like "Optimization is something evolution is quite adept at." I encourage you to think about the underlying assumptions that are doing the heavy lifting, and think about the scientific evidence, without all those assumptions. Just the evidence by itself.


      Evidence isn't evidence without a hypothesis which requires assumptions, at least in everyday life, but perhaps you can elaborate on how your assumption of how real science works. Thanks

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    3. Cornelius Hunter: And then people can say things like "Optimization is something evolution is quite adept at." I encourage you to think about the underlying assumptions that are doing the heavy lifting, and think about the scientific evidence, without all those assumptions.

      The comment, "Optimization is something evolution is quite adept at" was in reply to your comment about one in a million, which is nothing particularly out of the realm of possibility given evolution.

      Cornelius Hunter: They do not mean that they have found some sort of direct evidence that evolution occurred via natural selection, though that is exactly what it sounds like.

      Given the biosynthetic contraints thought to determine the primordial code, the specific optimization is consistent with evolution from that primordial code, rather than a process of conscious selection from all possible codes. The two independent forms of evidence support the hypothesis of natural selection.

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  9. Hunter:

    Just the evidence by itself.

    Stamp collecting is not science.

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  10. Excellent thread on DNA and its uncooperativeness in making evolutions case.
    The thing i would add is WE should expect a like Dna if common design was true.
    if a creator made biology and its innards, DNA, then it could only be that dna be intimately related in all biology.
    evolutionists sincerely missed this option for dNA likeness.
    its not logically demanding to see like dNA from common descent. common design fits just as well and better.
    A creationist would predict like DNA after seeing natures likeness in eyeballs, feet, butts, lips and spleens etc etc.

    Also otherwise evolutionism is saying a creator absolutely would not figure out to make biology off the same dna rack.
    They are saying, if they were the creator, every thing would have dna of a unique sequence.
    I wouldn't.
    I would make all biology in its basics the same.
    DNA being alike in biology is evidence for a thinking being.

    Evolutionists truly jump to quick to insist dNA likeness has only a option from common descent.
    common design works fine.
    Therefore dna/genetics IS NOT SCIENTIFIC BIOLOGICAL evidence for evolution but only a line of reasoning from raw data.
    The option of common design destroys a exclusive common descent opyion.
    AND evolutionism only had the exclusive option as the EVIDENCE for saying dna equals common descent proof.
    Genetics is not providing science proof for evolution.
    Why do they think it does??

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    1. Robert:
      A creationist would predict like DNA after seeing natures likeness in eyeballs, feet, butts, lips and spleens etc etc.


      While it is easier to predict things that have already happened, it is more persuasive to do it before.


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    2. Robert Byers: The thing i would add is WE should expect a like Dna if common design was true.

      Keep in mind that isn't just the universality of the genetic code, but the predicted pattern of character traits across taxa consistent with common descent.

      What's amazing, as Joe G pointed out, is that Darwin's theory predicted the pattern of genetic traits across taxa even though he hadn't a clue about genes.

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    3. Zachriel,

      "one in a million, which is nothing particularly out of the realm of possibility given evolution."

      Is there anything which is out of the realm of possibility given evolution? I suppose due to the fact evolution gave you the mind you have which allows you to even perceive of such concepts as 'possibilities' and 'realms' one would have to answer, no.

      So there we have it, absolutely anything is possible with evolution. All we have to do now is figure out how this all-powerful force works its wonders by simply selecting from among a vast and unending supply of mutations to build the wonders we see all around us. No need to ask why or where or by what, it's all just evolution.

      I guess I will have to finally admit I was wrong, evolution is not a science stopper after all. In fact, it's now obvious, evolution is the reason science exists at all. Without evolution there would be no genetics, no biology, no geology, etc. There would be nothing, nothing at all.

      I must say I feel so much better now that I have come to see the truth. I can now go on with my life with the comforting knowledge that my existence is but a mere accident and it will, in the long run, really have no meaning at all. Other than to be a little, tiny cog in the unending march of the machine which is evolutionary advancement. I can take comfort in knowing that I existed and did my share of mutating which allowed the wonder which is evolution to continue on its noble journey to bigger and better things.

      But wait. If my mind is nothing more than the result of natural selection working on random mutations how can I know if anything I believe is actually the truth? If my mind came about via evolution everything I believe could be a lie and I would never know it.

      Nah, that's silly, with evolution everything is possible, it would surely result in my mind being able to determine what is true and what isn't. I would imagine however, as evolution works its magic on random mutations there would have to have been billions of people who lived their entire lives in a lie so I could get the finely tuned evolutionary brain I have which allows me to know the truth. Oh well, cest' la vie, too bad for them. At least I now know the truth and that is all that matters.

      Thanks, Zachriel, for being so patient with me as I stumbled my way to the real truth, that with evolution anything is possible. But I guess all those years of doubting the tremendous creative force which is evolution was just my evolutionary destiny, wasn't it.

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  11. Nic: Is there anything which is out of the realm of possibility given evolution?

    Sure. Evolution generally works by incremental change from existing structures, so the vast majority of possible structures are not consistent with evolution.

    Nic: If my mind is nothing more than the result of natural selection working on random mutations how can I know if anything I believe is actually the truth?

    That's not quite correct. The mind is not simply the result of the activity of the brain, but the complex human cultural environment.

    Nic: If my mind came about via evolution everything I believe could be a lie and I would never know it.

    That's true—regardless of evolution. However, the Theory of Evolution posits that brains evolved to more-or-less sense and understand the world.

    Nic: Thanks, Zachriel, for being so patient

    Not a problem. We try to always assume the best in others. Whatever doubts you may have about the science are undoubtedly sincere.

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    1. Zachriel,

      Nic: "If my mind is nothing more than the result of natural selection working on random mutations how can I know if anything I believe is actually the truth?"

      Zachriel: "That's not quite correct. The mind is not simply the result of the activity of the brain, but the complex human cultural environment."

      The so-called 'complex human environment' would originate via evolution as well, would it not? Therefore, that environment is just another factor in the evolutionary process which shapes the mind.

      Nic: "If my mind came about via evolution everything I believe could be a lie and I would never know it."

      Zachriel: "That's true—regardless of evolution. However, the Theory of Evolution posits that brains evolved to more-or-less sense and understand the world."

      But how would one know his senses are telling him the truth? You're not addressing the real issue at all.

      Nic: "Thanks, Zachriel, for being so patient"

      Zachriel: "Not a problem. We try to always assume the best in others. Whatever doubts you may have about the science are undoubtedly sincere."

      I appreciate that sentiment. As for my doubts being sincere, it goes way beyond that, I'm afraid.

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    2. Nic: The so-called 'complex human environment' would originate via evolution as well, would it not?

      While the capability for culture evolved, culture is an emergent condition beyond biological evolution.

      Nic: But how would one know his senses are telling him the truth?

      The metaphysical question remains regardless of (is orthogonal to) whether or not evolution is a valid scientific theory.

      Delete
    3. Zachriel,

      Nic: "The so-called 'complex human environment' would originate via evolution as well, would it not?"

      Zachriel: "While the capability for culture evolved, culture is an emergent condition beyond biological evolution."

      Sorry, Zach, you can't have it both ways. If evolution is the source of the mind, and mind is the reason for the emergence of culture, then it follows that culture emerged via evolution.

      Nic: "But how would one know his senses are telling him the truth?"

      Zachriel: "The metaphysical question remains regardless of (is orthogonal to) whether or not evolution is a valid scientific theory."

      So, you have faith that your mind, which arose via evolution, is telling you the truth? Interesting.

      Delete
    4. Nic: If evolution is the source of the mind, and mind is the reason for the emergence of culture, then it follows that culture emerged via evolution.

      The brain evolved. The human mind is an interaction between the person and the culture.

      Nic: culture emerged via evolution.

      Culture changes independently of biological evolution. Humans today are not much different than humans ten thousand years ago, however, the culture is very different.

      Nic: So, you have faith that your mind, which arose via evolution, is telling you the truth?

      Actually, it's easy to show that humans only incompletely sense the world, and often inaccurately.

      Delete
    5. Zachriel,

      Nic: "If evolution is the source of the mind, and mind is the reason for the emergence of culture, then it follows that culture emerged via evolution."

      Zachriel: "The brain evolved. The human mind is an interaction between the person and the culture."

      Doesn't address the problem.

      Nic: "culture emerged via evolution."

      Zachriel: "Culture changes independently of biological evolution. Humans today are not much different than humans ten thousand years ago, however, the culture is very different."

      Sure the culture is very different today than it was 10,000 years ago, it evolved.

      Nic: "So, you have faith that your mind, which arose via evolution, is telling you the truth?"

      Zachriel: "Actually, it's easy to show that humans only incompletely sense the world, and often inaccurately."

      And this helps your case how?

      Delete
    6. Nic: Sure the culture is very different today than it was 10,000 years ago, it evolved.

      Biological evolution led to the human capability of culture. Culture evolves by different mechanisms. You're conflating two different meanings of the word evolve.

      cultural evolution ≠ biological evolution

      Delete
    7. Nic: And this helps your case how?

      Human sensory and cognitive limitations are apparent regardless of any particular theory of origins. They are, however, entirely consistent with evolutionary theory.

      Delete
    8. Zachriel,

      Nic: "Sure the culture is very different today than it was 10,000 years ago, it evolved."

      Zachriel: "Biological evolution led to the human capability of culture. Culture evolves by different mechanisms. You're conflating two different meanings of the word evolve."

      It's obvious the concept of sarcasm is foreign to you.


      Nic: :"And this helps your case how?"

      Zachriel: "Human sensory and cognitive limitations are apparent regardless of any particular theory of origins. They are, however, entirely consistent with evolutionary theory."

      This still does nothing to help your argument. Human sensory and cognitive limitations are entirely consistent with a Christian world view as well. As such, why should I believe these limitations are a result of evolution?

      Delete
    9. Nic: It's obvious the concept of sarcasm is foreign to you.

      Perhaps. You said this:

      Nic: If evolution is the source of the mind, and mind is the reason for the emergence of culture, then it follows that culture emerged via evolution.

      The original emergence was due to biological evolution, but subsequent cultural changes were not completely due to biological evolution. There are other factors involved.

      Nic: Human sensory and cognitive limitations are entirely consistent with a Christian world view as well.

      Solipsism is consistent with any empirical world view.

      Delete
    10. Zachriel,

      Nic: "If evolution is the source of the mind, and mind is the reason for the emergence of culture, then it follows that culture emerged via evolution."

      Zachriel: "The original emergence was due to biological evolution, but subsequent cultural changes were not completely due to biological evolution. There are other factors involved."

      But all factors are the result of evolution in your world view. If all factors arise due to evolution the consequences of those factors are tied to evolution as well. You're simply trying to have your cake and eat it too. It does not work that way. If you're going to hang your hat on evolution, you're going to have to live with the consequences.

      Nic: "Human sensory and cognitive limitations are entirely consistent with a Christian world view as well."

      Zachriel; "Solipsism is consistent with any empirical world view."

      I think you had better look a little further into the concept of solipsism. It most definitely is not consistent with any empirical world view. You're getting in over your head if you're going to try and argue this way.

      Delete
    11. Nic: But all factors are the result of evolution in your world view.

      Um, no.

      Nic: If all factors arise due to evolution the consequences of those factors are tied to evolution as well.

      It's tied to chemistry, as well, but you can't just wave your hands in the general direction of chemistry and say you have a working theory.

      Nic: If you're going to hang your hat on evolution, you're going to have to live with the consequences.

      That doesn't follow. Biological evolution is a generally slow process, and does not explain human cultural change. Just because we use the word "evolution" to describe that change doesn't mean they are the same process.

      However, it's clear that the human propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution, and that there has been some biological evolution along with changes in culture.

      Nic: It most definitely is not consistent with any empirical world view.

      You seem to keep harping on metaphysical solipsism. You might want to clarify your views.

      Delete
    12. Zachriel,

      Nic: "But all factors are the result of evolution in your world view."

      Zachriel, "Um, no."

      So, you're admitting that evolution cannot explain everything? You're admitting it cannot account for all factors in the world?

      Nic: "If all factors arise due to evolution the consequences of those factors are tied to evolution as well."

      Zachriel: "It's tied to chemistry, as well, but you can't just wave your hands in the general direction of chemistry and say you have a working theory."

      I'm not the one doing that.

      Nic: "If you're going to hang your hat on evolution, you're going to have to live with the consequences."

      Zachriel, "That doesn't follow. Biological evolution is a generally slow process, and does not explain human cultural change. Just because we use the word "evolution" to describe that change doesn't mean they are the same process."

      I am aware they are not the same process. However, that does not get you off the hook that the theory of evolution claims to be the source of all systems we see in the world today, be they biological or otherwise. There is a whole discipline dedicated to explaining how evolution is responsible for our minds and all perceptions we develop via our minds. That, by logic, makes evolution the source. You're in a corner with this one, Zach, and you have no way out but to admit evolution is not the source of our minds and our consciousness. Once you do that you will need to explain, via another source, the existence of our minds and consciousness.

      Zachriel: "However, it's clear that the human propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution, and that there has been some biological evolution along with changes in culture."

      How is it clear that our propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution? I agree with Joe G, you just make things up and expect people to accept them as true. You're going to have to clearly demonstrate exactly how culture comes about as a result of biological evolution. I am not going to be holding my breath.

      Nic: "It most definitely is not consistent with any empirical world view."

      Zachriel: "You seem to keep harping on metaphysical solipsism. You might want to clarify your views."

      Pardon me! You're the one who brought up solipsism, not me. You're the one who claimed it was compatible with any and all empirical world views. I pointed out you were clearly wrong. Now you're claiming I'm the one harping on solipsism.
      Really, Zach, try a little honesty.

      The truth of the matter is simply that you now realize you've cut off the limb you were sitting on and the ground is rushing up to meet you, so you're trying to deflect your failures onto me. Sorry Zach, it's not going to fly. You've made a number of claims you could not support hoping I would fall for them. It did not work. The honest thing to do now is admit your blunders and move on. Trying to deflect them onto me is intellectually and ethically dishonest.

      Delete
    13. Nic: you're admitting that evolution cannot explain everything? You're admitting it cannot account for all factors in the world?

      Of course it can't. The biological theory of evolution only explains biological phenomena.

      Nic: However, that does not get you off the hook that the theory of evolution claims to be the source of all systems we see in the world today, be they biological or otherwise.

      There's nothing in Darwin's Theory of Evolution about the lifecycle of stars. You are conflating different meanings of the word evolution.

      Nic: There is a whole discipline dedicated to explaining how evolution is responsible for our minds and all perceptions we develop via our minds.

      Evolution is certainly a component of explaining perception and aspects of the mind.

      Nic: That, by logic, makes evolution the source.

      There's an overlap. That doesn't make them identical.

      Nic: How is it clear that our propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution?

      Given the overwhelming evidence for evolution, there are several avenues to fill in the blanks. We might look for aspects of culture in closely related organisms, which exists in other apes, including evidence of culture in extinct hominids.

      Delete
    14. Nic: you just make things up ...

      Nope. Our claims are nearly always quite orthodox, and we clearly state when they are not.

      Nic: and expect people to accept them as true

      Nope. We support our comments where appropriate, and expect the same courtesy. If you ever feel support is lacking, just ask.

      For instance, in our previous comment, we noted evidence of culture in extinct hominids. This is generally well known, but if you were unsure, then you can always ask for support.
      http://hoopermuseum.earthsci.carleton.ca/neanderthal/n-culture.html

      Delete
    15. Why did culture evolve?

      And if our brains are the product of evolution, how do we know that they evolved to see the truth? Maybe they merely evolved to allow us to survive.

      Delete
    16. Zachriel,

      Nic: "you're admitting that evolution cannot explain everything? You're admitting it cannot account for all factors in the world?"

      Zachriel: "Of course it can't. The biological theory of evolution only explains biological phenomena."

      Biological evolutionary theory does nothing of the sort, but that's a different topic. Evolutionary theory claims to explain all phenomena not just biology. It claims to explain geology, it claims to explain genetics, it claims to explain astronomy. It claims to be an explanation for everything. That is what you signed up for, so it is disingenuous of you to now try to limit the discussion to biology only. Sorry, Zach, that line of reasoning is not going to soften your landing.

      Zachriel, "There's nothing in Darwin's Theory of Evolution about the lifecycle of stars. You are conflating different meanings of the word evolution."

      That Darwin did not address the life cycle of stars is irrelevant to the fact modern evolutionary theory claims to explain the entire range of phenomena. You're simply flailing your arms arguing this way.

      "Evolution is certainly a component of explaining perception and aspects of the mind."

      How is evolution a component of explaining perception and aspects of the mind. Do you have anything to support this outside of evolutionary claims or are you just making stuff up again? Telling stories seems to be a habit of yours.

      Nic: "That, by logic, makes evolution the source."

      Zachriel: "There's an overlap. That doesn't make them identical."

      What in logic would requires the result to be identical to its the source? There is no doubt rugby is the source of North American football and Australian Rules football, yet they are not identical.

      Nic: "How is it clear that our propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution?"

      Zachriel: "Given the overwhelming evidence for evolution, there are several avenues to fill in the blanks. We might look for aspects of culture in closely related organisms, which exists in other apes, including evidence of culture in extinct hominids."

      You're kidding, right? Do you realize you're claiming evolution as evidence for evolution?

      Delete
    17. natschuster: And if our brains are the product of evolution, how do we know that they evolved to see the truth?

      They evolved to provide a reproductive advantage. That means to provide some reasonable information about the environment, and the ability to process that information.

      Nic: Evolutionary theory claims to explain all phenomena not just biology. It claims to explain geology, it claims to explain genetics, it claims to explain astronomy.

      That is incorrect. There is no evolutionary theory of everything. There is a biological theory of evolution, and a theory of stellar evolution, but they are not the same theories whatsoever.

      Nic: How is evolution a component of explaining perception and aspects of the mind.

      There's all sorts of ways to explore human perception. For instance, primates evolved binocular vision and color perception due to their life in the trees and their diet. Humans inherited this ability. We can explore illusions to see the limitations of human senses, and how this, again, relates to the environment. Why and how humans make snap judgments is also instructive.

      Nic: There is no doubt rugby is the source of North American football and Australian Rules football, yet they are not identical.

      Your example is an historical process. The overlap between chemistry and biology is an overlap of scientific domains.

      Nic: Do you realize you're claiming evolution as evidence for evolution?

      Um, no. Please try to learn basic logic.

      Given evolution*, then ....

      * Darwin 1859, and generations of evidence accumulated since Darwin.

      Delete
    18. Nic: Do you realize you're claiming evolution as evidence for evolution?

      To reiterate. You want to separate each individual phenomenon from the rest of the evidence. That's not how science works. We'll restate.

      "Given {fill in generations findings in evolutionary biology}, there are several avenues to fill in the blanks. We might look for aspects of culture in closely related organisms, which exists in other apes, including evidence of culture in extinct hominids."

      If you wave away the body of evidence, then we have to back up and start at the beginning. The hypothesis is that life diverged from common ancestors. This predicts a specific nested pattern of traits. Etc.

      Delete
    19. Zachriel,

      Nic: "Evolutionary theory claims to explain all phenomena not just biology. It claims to explain geology, it claims to explain genetics, it claims to explain astronomy."

      Zachriel: "There is a biological theory of evolution, and a theory of stellar evolution, but they are not the same theories whatsoever."

      How is this different than what I said? A hint, it is no different.

      Nic: "How is evolution a component of explaining perception and aspects of the mind."

      Zachriel: "For instance, primates evolved binocular vision and color perception due to their life in the trees and their diet."

      Do you really not understand that what you believe happened does not qualify as evidence that it did indeed happen?

      Now, taking that fact into account, demonstrate that primates evolved binocular vision and colour perception as a result of their life in trees and their diet. Don't worry, I know you cannot do that so I will not expect an answer.

      Nic: "There is no doubt rugby is the source of North American football and Australian Rules football, yet they are not identical."

      Zachriel: "Your example is an historical process. The overlap between chemistry and biology is an overlap of scientific domains."

      It's an analogy, look them up.

      Nic: "Do you realize you're claiming evolution as evidence for evolution?"

      Zachriel: "Um, no. Please try to learn basic logic.

      Given evolution*, then,..."

      Please, Zachriel, knock off the arrogant and condescending 'um, no'.

      You are woefully guilty of fallacious reasoning, so fallacious in fact that it is laughable.

      Evolution is what you are trying to demonstrate. As such you cannot begin with the premise that evolution is a given and proceed to use it as evidence for your position stating evolution is true.

      Is your critical thinking so deficient that you fail to realize that fact? If so, I am embarrassed for you.

      So yes, you're guilty of trying to use evolution to provide evidence for evolution. As such, your arrogant and condescending comment that I should learn basic logic is all the more embarrassing for you as it is obvious it is you who needs to work on basic logic, badly.

      Delete
    20. ""natschuster: And if our brains are the product of evolution, how do we know that they evolved to see the truth? "

      They evolved to provide a reproductive advantage. That means to provide some reasonable information about the environment, and the ability to process that information."

      They didn't have to evolve beyond seeing food as food, danger as danger, and a mate as a mate. Survival and reproduction does not require that brains go beyond that. Our survival doe not require that. Anything beyond that could be illusions. misinterpretations, etc.

      Delete
    21. Nic: How is this different than what I said?

      You claimed "Evolutionary theory claims to explain all phenomena not just biology."

      There is no singular evolution theory, and the evolution paradigm doesn't apply to all domains. Nor does evolution mean the same thing in biological evolution as it does in stellar evolution. The latter is more akin to life cycle.

      Nic: It's an analogy, look them up.

      And we showed where the analogy fails.

      Nic: Evolution is what you are trying to demonstrate.

      Evolution of the propensity for culture was the question. Given the strong evidence for the evolution of organisms from common ancestors, we then look for evolution of the propensity for culture.

      Again, the argument is Given the evidence for biological evolution ... then this is the evidence for evolution of the propensity for culture. If you reject the premise, then we must start by establishing the evidence for biological evolution.

      We start with the predicted pattern from common descent and the fossil succession.

      Delete
    22. natschuster: They didn't have to evolve beyond seeing food as food, danger as danger, and a mate as a mate.

      Yes, and all that may require intelligence.

      natschuster: Survival and reproduction does not require that brains go beyond that.

      Niels Bohr and Albert Einsten were taking a walk in the woods, vigorously debating the philosophical underpinnings of quantum theory, when a gigantic bear suddenly burst out of the underbrush and raced toward them. Bohr immediately whipped out his fine running shoes and began lacing them up.

      Einstein, furrowing his brow at Bohr, said: "Niels, there's no way you can outrun that bear."

      "That's true, dear Albert," Bohr calmly replied, "but I don't need to outrun the bear. I only need to outrun you."

      Delete
    23. Zachriel,

      Nic: "How is this different than what I said?"


      Zachriel: "There is no singular evolution theory, and the evolution paradigm doesn't apply to all domains. Nor does evolution mean the same thing in biological evolution as it does in stellar evolution. The latter is more akin to life cycle."

      Where did I say I believed there was only theory when it comes to evolution? Whether you wish to admit it or not, evolution, in whatever from it may take, claims to explain all phenomenon.

      Nic: It's an analogy, look them up.

      Zachriel: "And we showed where the analogy fails."

      I believe you think you did.

      "Evolution of the propensity for culture was the question. Given the strong evidence for the evolution of organisms from common ancestors, we then look for evolution of the propensity for culture."

      You just don't ever learn, do you?

      Zachriel: "Given the strong evidence for the evolution of organisms from common ancestors,..."

      That's what you're trying to demonstrate, genius. You can't use what you are trying to prove as evidence for what you're trying to prove. Can you not understand that?

      Zachriel: Again, the argument is Given the evidence for biological evolution ... then this is the evidence for evolution of the propensity for culture."

      And again, it is fallacious. Why do you think repeating the same fallacious argument will somehow render it a valid argument? Can you answer that for me? You can't seem to answer anything else.

      Zachriel: "If you reject the premise, then we must start by establishing the evidence for biological evolution."

      That would be a good idea. Good luck with that.

      Zachriel: "We start with the predicted pattern from common descent and the fossil succession."

      Not a good start as you're already assuming evolution is the source of your pattern and the fossil record.

      You might want to think this through a little more.

      Delete
    24. Nic: Whether you wish to admit it or not, evolution, in whatever from it may take, claims to explain all phenomenon.

      Sorry, but we are the master of our own views.

      Nic: That's what you're trying to demonstrate

      No, we were discussing the evolution of the propensity for culture. If you reject biological evolution generally, then we have to establish that before discussing the propensity for culture.

      Nic: And again, it is fallacious.

      It's not a fallacy. The general evidence supporting biological evolution is not identical to the specific evidence supporting the evolution of the propensity for culture. We can establish the former without having established the latter.

      Our argument is the form of Given A then B. That is a standard logical structure. You may reject the premise, but that doesn't make the argument fallacious.

      Nic: Not a good start as you're already assuming evolution is the source of your pattern and the fossil record.

      It's called hypothetico-deduction, a.k.a. the scientific method. The nested hierarchy and fossil succession are predictions from common descent, so they support (but don't prove) the hypothesis.

      Delete
    25. Zachriel,

      Nic: "Whether you wish to admit it or not, evolution, in whatever from it may take, claims to explain all phenomenon."

      Zachriel: "Sorry, but we are the master of our own views."

      Whatever I wish to be true, is true. Brilliant!

      Nic: And again, it is fallacious.

      Zachriel: "It's not a fallacy. The general evidence supporting biological evolution is not identical to the specific evidence supporting the evolution of the propensity for culture. We can establish the former without having established the latter."

      You're really entertaining. Of course the evidence supporting biological evolution would not be the identical as that supporting the evolution of culture. The two forms of 'evolution' are not even remotely related.

      As for being able to establish the biological form of evolution, that is exactly what you cannot do. If it had been established, there would be no debate regards the subject. And please, don't say there is no debate. The wheels of evolutionary thought have long ago fallen off, especially those of Neo-Darwinism.

      Nobody denies culture 'evolves', but the evolution of culture has nothing, zero, nada, to do with the claims of biological evolution. You're simply playing the evolutionist game of bait & switch. Demonstrating the evolution of cultures does less than zero to support the concept of biological evolution, so please, give up this line of arguing.

      Zachriel: "Our argument is the form of Given A then B. That is a standard logical structure. You may reject the premise, but that doesn't make the argument fallacious.:

      So, if I propose A as the Moon is made of green cheese, I'm justified in accepting B as being a Galactic Grilled Cheese sandwich. Again, brilliant. I'll try one more time to get through to you on this. A, or in your case biological evolution, is not a given, it is what you are trying to demonstrate. Please, try to comprehend that fact.

      Your logical structure of if A then B works if you know A to be true. You do not know A to be true in your argument. A being true is what you're trying to demonstrate, as such you cannot begin with A being known as true. Is it starting to sink in?

      Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario. We've been over this before and you did not come out of that exchange in good shape. I do not intend to go over old ground again. So, do you have anything better to present than a fallacious syllogism to support your belief in evolution?

      Delete
    26. Nic: Whatever I wish to be true, is true.

      No. However, you are not the master of our views. When you argue against a misrepresentation of someone's views, it's called a strawman argument.

      Nic: Of course the evidence supporting biological evolution would not be the identical as that supporting the evolution of culture.

      The question concerned the propensity for culture. Culture, as you noted, evolves by different mechanisms than biological structures.

      Nic: don't say there is no debate

      There certainly is a debate, but it's social, not scientific.

      Nic: So, if I propose A as the Moon is made of green cheese, I'm justified in accepting B as being a Galactic Grilled Cheese sandwich.

      Only if you accept the premise. You have rejected the premise, so we have to establish that first.

      Nic: A being true is what you're trying to demonstrate, as such you cannot begin with A being known as true.

      A ≠ B, so no. You simply reject the premise. That doesn't make the syllogism a fallacy.

      Nic: Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario.

      Why does design predict a singular nested hierarchy and the fossil succession?

      Delete
    27. When you argue against a misrepresentation of someone's views, it's called a strawman argument.

      It's also called mendacity.

      Delete
    28. Mendacity
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GiiE-h9ZYag

      Delete
    29. Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario.

      The classical juvenile creationist riposte.

      Write this on your bathroom mirror:

      A hypothesis without entailments is epistemologically vacuous.

      Delete
    30. Zachriel,

      Nic: "Whatever I wish to be true, is true.

      Zachriel: "No. However, you are not the master of our views. When you argue against a misrepresentation of someone's views, it's called a strawman argument."

      Demonstrate in what way I am misrepresenting your views.

      Nic: "Of course the evidence supporting biological evolution would not be the identical as that supporting the evolution of culture."

      Zachriel: "The question concerned the propensity for culture. Culture, as you noted, evolves by different mechanisms than biological structures."

      Zach, it was you who tried to relate the two, not I.

      Nic: "don't say there is no debate."

      Zachriel: "There certainly is a debate, but it's social, not scientific."

      That ranks as the most palpably absurd, naive statement I've heard this year, without an ounce of doubt. Incredibly naive!

      Nic: "So, if I propose A as the Moon is made of green cheese, I'm justified in accepting B as being a Galactic Grilled Cheese sandwich."

      Zachriel: "Only if you accept the premise. You have rejected the premise, so we have to establish that first."

      Guess what, Zach, that is what I've been trying to tell you for three or four days! So, are you finally going to try to establish A, without resorting to A as evidence, as you have been doing?

      Nic: "A being true is what you're trying to demonstrate, as such you cannot begin with A being known as true."

      Zachriel: "A ≠ B, so no. You simply reject the premise. That doesn't make the syllogism a fallacy."

      I reject the premise due to the fact you cannot support the premise. That's basic logic. You cannot establish your premise, so yes, your syllogism is fallacious. How can you possibly have a sound syllogism if your basic premise is unsupportable?

      Nic: "Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario."

      Zachriel: "Why does design predict a singular nested hierarchy and the fossil succession?"

      You don't find a singular nested hierarchy. The fossil record is simply the result of death. In what way would design not predict such a record?

      Joe G, is 100% correct, you just make stuff up.

      Delete
    31. Nic: Demonstrate in what way I am misrepresenting your views

      You said this: Whether you wish to admit it or not, evolution, in whatever from it may take, claims to explain all phenomenon.

      We said that was not our view, yet you have repeatedly insisted it is our view.

      Nic: it was you who tried to relate the two

      We drew a clear distinction between the propensity for culture, and the culture.

      Nic: that is what I've been trying to tell you for three or four days!

      No. You've been insisting it's a fallacy, when it is a matter of whether the premise is true or not.

      Nic: How can you possibly have a sound syllogism if your basic premise is unsupportable?

      It wouldn't be sound if the premise is false. It would still be a valid syllogism, and not fallacious.

      Nic: You don't find a singular nested hierarchy.

      There's certainly an orthodox nested hierarchy. How else would you parsimoniously categorize organisms? Certainly you wouldn't put whales with fish, would you?

      Nic: In what way would design not predict such a record?

      If you are claiming design, it's your job to show the entailments.

      Pedant: A hypothesis without entailments is epistemologically vacuous.



      Delete
    32. Pendant,

      Nic: "Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario."

      Pendant: "The classical juvenile creationist riposte."

      Is that meant in the linguistic sense or fencing? I guess it really doesn't matter as you have no recourse in either sense.

      Pendant: "Write this on your bathroom mirror:

      A hypothesis without entailments is epistemologically vacuous."

      Why would I want to write anything on my bathroom mirror, let alone something which is patently false?

      How about we deal with it this way, Pendant, why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?

      Delete
    33. Zachriel,

      "You said this: Whether you wish to admit it or not, evolution, in whatever from it may take, claims to explain all phenomenon."

      How is that misrepresenting your views?That is clearly what evolution argues. You may not agree with the statement, and that is your prerogative, but it is a valid statement nonetheless, whether you agree with it or not.

      Zachriel: "We said that was not our view, yet you have repeatedly insisted it is our view."

      I know you have said it is not your view, but you continue top argue your position using that view. As an example, trying to equate cultural evolution with biological evolution.

      Nic: "it was you who tried to relate the two."

      Zachriel: "We drew a clear distinction between the propensity for culture, and the culture."

      You did? Where?

      Nic: "that is what I've been trying to tell you for three or four days!"

      Zachriel: "No. You've been insisting it's a fallacy, when it is a matter of whether the premise is true or not."

      If your premise is wrong, what are your chances of having an argument which is not fallacious?

      Nic: "How can you possibly have a sound syllogism if your basic premise is unsupportable?"

      Zachriel: "It wouldn't be sound if the premise is false. It would still be a valid syllogism, and not fallacious."

      Yes, it would possess the correct construct of a syllogism, but it would be a fallacious syllogism. You score no points for simply constructing a syllogism.

      Nic: "You don't find a singular nested hierarchy."

      Zaschriel: "There's certainly an orthodox nested hierarchy.

      Orthodox and singular are not synonyms. Your view of nested hierarchies may be orthodox within evolutionary thought, but that does not mean it is the singular view.

      Nic: "In what way would design not predict such a record?"

      Zachriel: "If you are claiming design, it's your job to show the entailments."

      I'll take that to mean you have no answer.

      Pedant: "A hypothesis without entailments is epistemologically vacuous."

      You're now turning to Pendant for support? You must be getting desperate.

      Delete
    34. Pedant: A hypothesis without entailments is epistemologically vacuous.

      Nic: Why would I want to write anything on my bathroom mirror, let alone something which is patently false?

      It's called hypothetico-deduction, a.k.a. the scientific method. How did you think it was done?

      Nic: That is clearly what evolution argues.

      "Evolution" doesn't argue or claim. Rather theories encompass claims. The biological Theory of Evolution doesn't encompass all possible claims. There is no theory which does.

      Nic: As an example, trying to equate cultural evolution with biological evolution.

      In fact, we stated the opposite — several times! These are our first two statements on culture.

      Z: While the capability for culture evolved, culture is an emergent condition beyond biological evolution.

      Z: Culture changes independently of biological evolution.

      Nic: If your premise is wrong, what are your chances of having an argument which is not fallacious?

      The former is no indication of the latter. The structure of an argument is independent of the truth of the premises. Saying an argument is fallacious is referring to the structure of the argument.

      Nic: Orthodox and singular are not synonyms.

      Which is why we drew the distinction, so that we could converse about it.

      Nic: I'll take that to mean you have no answer.

      We can't answer until we reach agreement on the singular nature of the biological nested hierarchy, as it has to do with the "record".

      You claimed there wouldn't be a singular nested hierarchy. How else would you parsimoniously categorize organisms? Certainly you wouldn't put whales with fish, would you? Would your classification scheme not have mammals nested under vertebrates?

      Delete
    35. Why would I want to write anything on my bathroom mirror, let alone something which is patently false?

      Sticking your fingers in your ears and yelling Nyah, Nyah, is not a rebuttal.

      By the way, when did you invent your own epistemology?

      How about we deal with it this way, Pendant, why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?

      You're not in left field, Nic, you're not even within a parsec of the ballpark. Haven't you gotten the memo: Design fits everything? It always has and always will.

      Delete
    36. Zachriel,

      Nic: "That is clearly what evolution argues."

      Zachriel: "Evolution" doesn't argue or claim. Rather theories encompass claims. The biological Theory of Evolution doesn't encompass all possible claims. There is no theory which does."

      You said yourself there were many theories of evolution, which collectively, by logic, compose evolutionary thought. To state evolutionary thought does not make claims or present arguments to defend its worldview is complete and palpable nonsense. Such a statement hardly warrants a response.

      Zachriel: "In fact, we stated the opposite — several times! These are our first two statements on culture."

      As I said before, I believe you believe you did.

      "Z: While the capability for culture evolved, culture is an emergent condition beyond biological evolution."

      Zachriel 4/10/14:"Given {fill in generations findings in evolutionary biology}, there are several avenues to fill in the blanks. We might look for aspects of culture in closely related organisms, which exists in other apes, including evidence of culture in extinct hominids."

      Zachriel 05/10/14: "Again, the argument is Given the evidence for biological evolution ... then this is the evidence for evolution of the propensity for culture."

      So which statement are you going to go with? The one which says culture is emergent beyond biological evolution or the statements which claim biological evolution as evidence for cultural evolution?

      This is what happens when you make stuff up, you get confused and begin to lose track of your argument.

      Nic: "If your premise is wrong, what are your chances of having an argument which is not fallacious?"

      Zachriel: "The former is no indication of the latter. The structure of an argument is independent of the truth of the premises. Saying an argument is fallacious is referring to the structure of the argument."

      I'll retire to bedlam. It's no wonder you're continually confused if you think the structure of your argument has no bearing on its validity.

      Nic: "Orthodox and singular are not synonyms."

      Zachriel: "Which is why we drew the distinction, so that we could converse about it."

      WHAT! What on earth are you talking about? Your claim was to the existence of a singular nested hierarchy. When I pointed out there was no singular nested hierarchy you claimed there was an orthodox hierarchy. Not at all the same thing as I pointed out. Now you're claiming you're trying to draw a distinction. You're totally confused, my friend. As I said, this is what happens when you make stuff up.

      Nic: "I'll take that to mean you have no answer."

      Zachriel: "We can't answer until we reach agreement on the singular nature of the biological nested hierarchy, as it has to do with the "record".

      How can we possibly do that when no singular nature of a biological nested hierarchy exists outside of your mind and perhaps the minds of other like minded evolutionists?

      "You claimed there wouldn't be a singular nested hierarchy. How else would you parsimoniously categorize organisms? Certainly you wouldn't put whales with fish, would you? Would your classification scheme not have mammals nested under vertebrates?"

      I think you had better define what you mean by a 'singular nested hierarchy' because I'm beginning to think you do not understand what you're claiming.

      Delete
    37. Pendant,

      Nic: "Why would I want to write anything on my bathroom mirror, let alone something which is patently false?"

      Pendant: "Sticking your fingers in your ears and yelling Nyah, Nyah, is not a rebuttal."

      Typical response from Pendant, no answer to a perfectly valid question, just childish tripe. If you would like to attempt a mature response, I'm willing to listen.

      Nic: "How about we deal with it this way, Pendant, why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?"

      Pendant: "You're not in left field, Nic, you're not even within a parsec of the ballpark. Haven't you gotten the memo: Design fits everything? It always has and always will."

      Why not just say you have no answer, Pendant? It would take less time and you would not look so juvenile.

      Delete
    38. Nic: You said yourself there were many theories of evolution

      We also pointed out that the term "evolution" is often used in different ways. For instance, stellar evolution is more akin to life cycle.

      Nic: which collectively, by logic, compose evolutionary thought.

      Um, no. That's not a logical imperative, especially as the term is used in different ways in different fields.

      Nic: To state evolutionary thought does not make claims or present arguments to defend its worldview is complete and palpable nonsense.

      Well, there must be someone who thinks that way. So?

      Nic: The one which says culture is emergent beyond biological evolution or the statements which claim biological evolution as evidence for cultural evolution?

      Really, Nic. You need to learn to read. Do you understand the difference between culture and the capability of culture?

      All three statements are defensible. The first draws a distinction between biological evolution and cultural evolution. The others concern the capability for culture.

      Nic: It's no wonder you're continually confused if you think the structure of your argument has no bearing on its validity.

      A sound argument requires a valid structure and true premises. Fallacy refers to structure. See Aristotle c.325 BCE.

      Nic: Your claim was to the existence of a singular nested hierarchy.

      That's correct. You denied it, so we pointed to the orthodox hierarchy, which we both should be able to recognize, and asked how else you would classify organisms. If there is no other such scheme, then there is a singular classification.

      Nic: I think you had better define what you mean by a 'singular nested hierarchy' because I'm beginning to think you do not understand what you're claiming.

      That there is a single most parsimonious nested hierarchy for organisms.

      You claimed there wouldn't be a singular nested hierarchy. How else would you parsimoniously categorize organisms? Certainly you wouldn't put whales with fish, would you? Would your classification scheme not have mammals nested under vertebrates?"

      Delete
    39. Pedant: A hypothesis without entailments is epistemologically vacuous.

      Nic: Why would I want to write anything on my bathroom mirror, let alone something which is patently false?

      It's called hypothetico-deduction, a.k.a. the scientific method. How did you think it was done?

      Delete
    40. Zachriel,

      Nic: "You said yourself there were many theories of evolution"

      Zachriel: "We also pointed out that the term "evolution" is often used in different ways. For instance, stellar evolution is more akin to life cycle."

      Yes, that's what I said. Why do you keep repeating yourself?

      Zachriel: "Really, Nic. You need to learn to read. Do you understand the difference between culture and the capability of culture?"

      Yes, your point? You've clearly claimed culture is an emergent form of biological evolution and you've also claimed it is completely independent of biological evolution. You've got to pick one or the other. So, it is not me who needs to learn to read, it is you who needs to decide the nature of your argument.

      Nic: "It's no wonder you're continually confused if you think the structure of your argument has no bearing on its validity."

      Zachriel: A sound argument requires a valid structure and true premises."

      Yeah, it does. You don't have a true premises. Your personal acceptance of the traditional theory of evolution does not qualify as a true premise.

      Nic: "I think you had better define what you mean by a 'singular nested hierarchy' because I'm beginning to think you do not understand what you're claiming."

      Zachriel: "That there is a single most parsimonious nested hierarchy for organisms."

      And you think this qualifies as a definition?

      Delete
    41. Nic: Yes, that's what I said.

      Yet you want to group the two together just because they share a word, even if the word is used in different ways.

      Nic: You've clearly claimed culture is an emergent form of biological evolution and you've also claimed it is completely independent of biological evolution.

      No, cultural evolution is not a form of biological evolution. We said culture evolution is emergent beyond biological evolution.

      Zachriel: That there is a single most parsimonious nested hierarchy for organisms.

      Nic: And you think this qualifies as a definition?

      What part do you have trouble understanding? Parsimony?

      How else would you parsimoniously categorize organisms? Certainly you wouldn't put whales with fish, would you? Would your classification scheme not have mammals nested under vertebrates?"

      Delete
    42. Why not just say you have no answer, Pendant? It would take less time and you would not look so juvenile.

      The answer was right there in front of your eyes:

      Design fits everything.

      Why is that not an answer to your challenge that I prove that design can't accommodate nested hierarchies or the fossil record?

      How can anybody disprove "design" when it has no entailments?


      Delete
    43. Zachriel,

      "Yet you want to group the two together just because they share a word, even if the word is used in different ways."

      Good grief, Zachriel, do you even pay attention to what you write? It was you, not me, who drew the parallel between biological evolution and cultural evolution. Now you're tripping over yourself trying to baacktrack.

      Zachriel: "No, cultural evolution is not a form of biological evolution. We said culture evolution is emergent beyond biological evolution."

      Your following statement would appear to counter this claim. It would appear to be saying that generations of findings in evolutionary biology provide several avenues for filling in the blanks vis a vis cultural evolution.

      Zachriel 4/10/14:"Given {fill in generations findings in evolutionary biology}, there are several avenues to fill in the blanks. We might look for aspects of culture in closely related organisms, which exists in other apes, including evidence of culture in extinct hominids."

      You're very confused. I suggest you make up your mind whether cultural evolution and biological evolution are related or not.

      Zachriel: "That there is a single most parsimonious nested hierarchy for organisms."

      Nic: "And you think this qualifies as a definition?"

      Zachriel: "What part do you have trouble understanding? Parsimony?"

      You're stating an opinion, you are not defining anything.

      Delete
    44. Pendant,

      Nic: "Why not just say you have no answer, Pendant? It would take less time and you would not look so juvenile."

      Pendant: "The answer was right there in front of your eyes:

      Design fits everything."

      And the claim evolution fits everything differs how?

      Pendant: "Why is that not an answer to your challenge that I prove that design can't accommodate nested hierarchies or the fossil record?"

      If design fits everything why would it not fit nested hierarchies or the fossil record?

      Pendant: "How can anybody disprove "design" when it has no entailments?"

      You haven't demonstrated design has no entailments, you've simply asserted it has none.

      Remember this question?
      Nic: "Why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?"

      You've yet to provide an answer.

      Delete
    45. Nic: It was you, not me, who drew the parallel between biological evolution and cultural evolution.

      Good grief, Nic. Do you pay attention to what is written? We said cultural evolution is not a form of biological evolution.

      Nic: Your following statement would appear to counter this claim.

      No. The latter statements concerned the propensity or capability for culture.

      Nic: It would appear to be saying that generations of findings in evolutionary biology provide several avenues for filling in the blanks vis a vis cultural evolution.

      Here's the context:

      N: How is it clear that our propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution?

      Z: Given the overwhelming evidence for evolution, there are several avenues to fill in the blanks.

      Please note that you yourself used the term "propensity for culture", and that we were responding to that.

      Nic: You're stating an opinion, you are not defining anything.

      You asked how we were using the term.

      When we say "singular nested hierarchy", we mean there is only one way to parsimoniously classify organisms into a nested hierarchy. Our claim is that there is only one way to parsimoniously classify organisms into a nested hierarchy.

      You suggested there wouldn't be only one way to parsimoniously classify organisms into a nested hierarchy. How else would you parsimoniously categorize organisms? Certainly you wouldn't put whales with fish, would you? Would your classification scheme not have mammals nested under vertebrates?'

      Nic: And the claim evolution fits everything differs how?

      Because not everything is consistent with the theory of evolution. A simple counterexample would be if rabbits appeared in the fossil record before more primitive vertebrates.

      Delete
    46. And the claim evolution fits everything differs how?

      I know of no such claim by anyone except creationists. All that exists, starting from the Big Bang, can be and has been attributed to "design" by theists. But biological evolution is not a theory about the origin of everything. It's a theory about the origins of living and extinct organisms - the History of Life.

      If design fits everything why would it not fit nested hierarchies or the fossil record?

      Of course it does. That's an entailment of "Design fits everything."

      You haven't demonstrated design has no entailments, you've simply asserted it has none.

      That's correct. Let me explain: So far, I haven't encountered any entailments of Design, except that Design implies the existence, at some time in history, of a Designer. But (and here's the rub) the existence of a Designer implies a nature (animal, vegetable, mineral?) of said Designer, and I haven't seen any effort directed at moving beyond that point. If you know of any testable entailments of Design, please disclose them.

      Remember this question?
      Nic: "Why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?"
      You've yet to provide an answer.


      Answered above. Design fits those scenarios, since it fits everything, so there is nothing to "lay out."


      Delete
    47. Zachriel,

      "Good grief, Nic. Do you pay attention to what is written? We said cultural evolution is not a form of biological evolution."

      Zachriel, you're a real piece of work. But typical of evolutionists. IT WAS YOU, not me who drew the parallel between biological and cultural evolution. I do not adhere to the idea of biological evolution, so obviously I would not believe there was a connection between the emergence of culture and biological evolution. I simply pointed out to you the logical progression of your argument.

      Zachriel: "Here's the context:"

      N: "How is it clear that our propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution?"

      Perhaps you will notice the context of my comment is in the form of a question in response to what you had claimed; that our 'propensity for culture' is the result of biological evolution.


      Zachriel: "Please note that you yourself used the term "propensity for culture", and that we were responding to that."

      Wow, there is simply no end to your attempts to twist what people say. You're lack of integrity is stunning. I used the term 'propensity for culture' as that was the phrase you used in your comment.

      As it is necessary to refresh your memory following are the original statements which precipitated this exchange:

      Nic 2/10/14: "The so-called 'complex human environment' would originate via evolution as well, would it not? Therefore, that environment is just another factor in the evolutionary process which shapes the mind."

      Your response;

      Zachriel: 2/10/14 "While the capability for culture evolved, culture is an emergent condition beyond biological evolution."

      To which I responded;

      Nic 3/10/14: "Sorry, Zach, you can't have it both ways. If evolution is the source of the mind, and mind is the reason for the emergence of culture, then it follows that culture emerged via evolution."

      And you followed with,....;

      Zachriel 3/10/14: "However, it's clear that the human propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution, and that there has been some biological evolution along with changes in culture."

      That's the context, Zachriel, and it proves you are the one who unequivocably stated that the emergence of culture was tied to biological evolution. Do you still wish to deny that fact?

      Nic: "You're stating an opinion, you are not defining anything."

      Zachriel: "You asked how we were using the term."

      No, Zachriel, I asked you to define your terms. That is not at all the same thing.

      Zachriel: "When we say "singular nested hierarchy", we mean there is only one way to parsimoniously classify organisms into a nested hierarchy. Our claim is that there is only one way to parsimoniously classify organisms into a nested hierarchy."

      Okay, thank you. Now, for the sake of brevity we'll accept this as true. How does that provide evidence only for biological evolution?

      Delete
    48. Pendant,

      "But biological evolution is not a theory about the origin of everything. It's a theory about the origins of living and extinct organisms - the History of Life."

      I guess that must be why evolutionary scientists have been working so hard for so long to demonstrate life could arise spontaneously, because they are not concerned about the origin of life.

      "But (and here's the rub) the existence of a Designer implies a nature (animal, vegetable, mineral?) of said Designer,..."

      Why must the designer be animal, vegetable or mineral?

      "Answered above. Design fits those scenarios, since it fits everything, so there is nothing to "lay out."

      Nope, still not answered. If design did explain everything I would think there would be a considerable amount to 'lay out'.

      Delete
    49. Nic: IT WAS YOU, not me who drew the parallel between biological and cultural evolution.

      No, and this is an exact quote, we said "cultural evolution is not a form of biological evolution".

      Nic: I do not adhere to the idea of biological evolution, so obviously I would not believe there was a connection between the emergence of culture and biological evolution.

      Yes, that is clear.

      Nic: I used the term 'propensity for culture' as that was the phrase you used in your comment.

      That's right, so it's hard to see why you are confused about the distinction between culture and the propensity for culture.

      Nic: you are the one who unequivocably stated that the emergence of culture was tied to biological evolution

      Yes, that is correct.

      1) Organisms evolved from common ancestors.
      2) The capability of culture evolved in some organisms.
      3) Culture then evolved by mechanisms independent of biological evolution.

      Nic: I asked you to define your terms.

      Which we did, as in 'Let A = whole bunch of other words'. However, we restated using the whole bunch of other words in order to avoid your semantic quibbles.

      Nic: How does that provide evidence only for biological evolution?

      There are always an infinitude of conceivable explanations for any set of facts. However, the nested hierarchy is a direct entailment of branching descent.

      This returns to hypothetico-deduction, a.k.a. the scientific method. A scientific hypothesis is a tentative assumption held for the purpose of deducing its empirical implications. If those implications are confirmed it lends support, but not proof, for the hypothesis.

      In this case, the hypothesis is branching descent. The entailment, the necessary consequent of branching descent, is the nested hierarchy. We observe the nested hierarchy, so this lends support to the hypothesis of branching descent.

      Does this prove common descent? No. We might look for an independent source of evidence. Branching descent also makes specific predictions about the fossil succession. We observe these as well.

      Does this prove common descent? No. But it is well-supported by multiple lines of evidence.

      Delete
    50. Nic: I guess that must be why evolutionary scientists have been working so hard for so long to demonstrate life could arise spontaneously, because they are not concerned about the origin of life.

      Evolutionary biologists are very interested in the origin of life. However, there's no workable theory to explain the origin of life, but there is a valid theory of biological evolution.

      It's sort of like a theory of motion without a theory of where the mass came from.

      Delete
    51. Zachriel,

      Nic: "IT WAS YOU, not me who drew the parallel between biological and cultural evolution."

      Zachriel: "No, and this is an exact quote, we said "cultural evolution is not a form of biological evolution".

      Following is an exact quote from you Zachriel;

      Zachriel 3/10/14: "However, it's clear that the human propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution, and that there has been some biological evolution along with changes in culture."

      So at the very least this indicates you're confused as to exactly what you believe.


      Nic: "I do not adhere to the idea of biological evolution, so obviously I would not believe there was a connection between the emergence of culture and biological evolution."

      Zachriel: "Yes, that is clear."

      Good, then I will not expect to see you distort my position on that subject.

      Nic: "I used the term 'propensity for culture' as that was the phrase you used in your comment."

      Zachriel: "That's right, so it's hard to see why you are confused about the distinction between culture and the propensity for culture."

      I'm not at all confused. That would be you as I have amply demonstrated.

      Nic: "you are the one who unequivocably stated that the emergence of culture was tied to biological evolution"

      Zachriel: "Yes, that is correct."

      Then why have you been denying it?

      Nic: "How does that provide evidence only for biological evolution?"

      Zachriel: "However, the nested hierarchy is a direct entailment of branching descent."

      In your opinion. Do you think there is no other explanation possible? If not, why not?

      Delete
    52. Zachriel,

      "but there is a valid theory of biological evolution."

      It certainly is not valid in my opinion. It consists almost exclusively of presuppositions, extrapolations, circular reasoning and extensive story telling. None of which lends validity, quite the contrary.

      Delete
    53. Nic: So at the very least this indicates you're confused as to exactly what you believe.

      No. However, it's clear you are confused on our view, but don't seem to want to actually understand our position.

      Nic: I'm not at all confused.

      The usual way to show that is by restating the distinction rather than just saying you know.

      Nic: Then why have you been denying it?

      We drew you a diagram. Not sure how else to help you.

      Nic: In your opinion.

      No, it's a straight deduction. That's the second part of hypothetico-deduction.

      Nic: Do you think there is no other explanation possible?

      You are still confused. You assume the hypothesis to deduce its implications. So we assume branching descent. From this assumption, the nested hierarchy is a direct deduction.

      If Branching Descent then Nested Hierarchy.

      Delete
    54. Nic: Do you think there is no other explanation possible?

      What part of "There are always an infinitude of conceivable explanations for any set of facts" do you not understand?

      Delete
    55. Zachriel,

      Nic: "So at the very least this indicates you're confused as to exactly what you believe."

      Zachriel: "No. However, it's clear you are confused on our view, but don't seem to want to actually understand our position."

      No, I'm sorry, Zachriel, it is indeed you who are confused. But it is not surprising you don't recognize your confusion. That is common with someone who relies on rhetoric. I'm sure you have never taken the time to analyze the arguments you make. That's obvious throughout this latest exchange wherein I have on numerous occasions, pointed inconsistencies in your arguments.

      Zachriel: "We drew you a diagram. Not sure how else to help you."

      A diagram, really? How does a diagram counter this very clear statement?

      Zachriel 3/10/14: "However, it's clear that the human propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution, and that there has been some biological evolution along with changes in culture."

      Draw all the diagrams you want, Zach, that statement says it all, in spades. However, it is obvious you're so deluded that you will deny the implications of your own comments till hell freezes over. It's obvious you've managed to convince yourself what you clearly said means something other than what it actually says. I'm afraid there is nothing I can do about that. Self delusion is extremely difficult to overcome.

      Nic: "In your opinion."

      Zachriel: "No, it's a straight deduction. That's the second part of hypothetico-deduction."

      That so-called 'straight deduction' is strictly your opinion, Zach. In my opinion it could result from purposeful design. Why am I wrong, Zach?

      Nic: Do you think there is no other explanation possible?

      Zachriel; "You are still confused. You assume the hypothesis to deduce its implications. So we assume branching descent. From this assumption, the nested hierarchy is a direct deduction."

      Your assumption of branching descent is what you need to demonstrate, and cannot demonstrate. In case you're unaware of the fact, you now find yourself back at square one. Assuming what you're trying to prove. A basic logical fallacy.

      Zachriel: "If Branching Descent then Nested Hierarchy."

      As stated, you need to demonstrate branching descent before you can progress to using it as an explanation for nested hierarchies. But you cannot use nested hierarchies as evidence for branching descent, which is what you and other evolutionists do consistently. It's classic circular reasoning, a problem which you and virtually all evolutionists fail to recognize, so strong is the metaphysical commitment to naturalism.

      Good luck, Zach.

      "What part of "There are always an infinitude of conceivable explanations for any set of facts" do you not understand?"

      I understand the comment clearly. The only thing you might be justified in accusing me of is asking the question in an awkward way. As such, I'll rephrase the question. If there are other explanations, as you admit, why are you so committed to your explanation of naturalistic origins only?

      Delete
    56. Nic: How does a diagram counter this very clear statement?

      Zachriel: However, it's clear that the human propensity for culture is the result of biological evolution, and that there has been some biological evolution along with changes in culture.

      There are two statements in the quote:

      1) Propensity for culture is due to biological evolution.
      2) Some biological evolution occurs along with culture.

      That does not contradict the claim that culture evolves by different mechanisms than biological evolution. Biological evolution is much too slow to account for the vast changes in culture.

      Nic: That so-called 'straight deduction' is strictly your opinion

      It's a straight deduction due to the geometry of a branching tree.

      Nic: In my opinion it could result from purposeful design.

      Sure it could be. Maybe the designer likes nested hierarchies. That doesn't change the fact that branching descent *entails* the nested hierarchy.

      Nic: you need to demonstrate branching descent before you can progress to using it as an explanation for nested hierarchies.

      You clearly don't understand the scientific method. A hypothesis is a tentative assumption made in order to draw out and test its empirical consequences.

      For instance, IF the Earth rotates, it should bulge at the equator. If it bulges at the equator, then a point on surface near the equator should have less gravitational attraction to the Earth than a point at higher latitude. If it has less gravity, then a pendulum should have a longer period, that is, be retarded. And that is what we observe.

      Notice that we assume the hypothesis in order to make our deduction about what we should observe. If we then verify the prediction, it lends support to the hypothesis. However, it does not prove it. There may be many other reasons the pendulum is retarded. Neverthless, it supports the hypothesis. And as the result would be otherwise unexpected, the support is stronger than otherwise.

      Delete
    57. Zachriel,

      Nic: "That so-called 'straight deduction' is strictly your opinion"

      Zachriel: "It's a straight deduction due to the geometry of a branching tree."

      Zachriel, your 'branching tree' is simply another way of saying branching descent. As such, you are no further ahead.

      Nic: "In my opinion it could result from purposeful design."

      Zachriel: "Sure it could be. Maybe the designer likes nested hierarchies. That doesn't change the fact that branching descent *entails* the nested hierarchy."

      But we are not discussing the entailments per se, we are discussing the source of any entailments. Or are you unaware of that?

      Nic: "you need to demonstrate branching descent before you can progress to using it as an explanation for nested hierarchies."

      Zachriel: "A hypothesis is a tentative assumption made in order to draw out and test its empirical consequences."

      I'm aware of that, thank you. But your 'tentative' assumption cannot then be used as evidence for your conclusion as you at the same time use your conclusion as evidence for your assumption. That is not scientific, that is fallacious logic.

      Zachriel: "For instance, IF the Earth rotates, it should bulge at the equator."

      Zachriel, all these factors are observable, testable an repeatable experimentally. You can do none of that vis a vis branching descent and nested hierarchies. Therefore your analogy is without weight.


      Delete
    58. Nic: your 'branching tree' is simply another way of saying branching descent

      Yes, that's called the hypothesis, the tentative assumption held for the purpose of deducing its empirical implications.
      http://stanford.library.usyd.edu.au/archives/spr2014/entries/evolution/treediagram.jpg

      Nic: But we are not discussing the entailments per se, we are discussing the source of any entailments.

      Entailments are deduced from the hypothesis.

      Nic: But your 'tentative' assumption cannot then be used as evidence for your conclusion as you at the same time use your conclusion as evidence for your assumption.

      Hypothesis: branching descent
      Entailment: nested hierarchy of traits

      Nic: all these factors are observable, testable an repeatable experimentally.

      When the original experiment was done, the Earth's rotation could not be observed. Hence, they assumed the Earth rotated, and deduced the entailments. Then they tested those entailments.

      Nic: Therefore your analogy is without weight.

      It's not an analogy. It's an instance of hypothetico-deduction. We discussed the hypothesis, the entailments, and the limitations of the method.

      Delete
    59. Nic:

      Why must the designer be animal, vegetable or mineral?

      Those were some suggested possibilities, not an attempt to provide a comprehensive list. (You do bend over backwards to find any possible disagreement, when a more selective and reasoned approach might have more traction. Slow down, actually read and reflect upon what your interlocutors are saying. That might empower you provide more effective responses.)

      Design and its entailed Designer could be anything conceivable, even something immaterial. Think about it, and I bet you'll agree.

      Delete
    60. If design did explain everything I would think there would be a considerable amount to 'lay out'.

      That wasn't your question. Your question was:

      "Why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?"

      Was it the word "neither" that misled me, when you meant say "either"? Or was it your earlier claim:

      Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario.

      So please tell me why it isn't your job to "lay out" how a Design scenario explains nested hierarchies and the fossil record.

      Delete
    61. Zachriel,

      Nic: "But we are not discussing the entailments per se, we are discussing the source of any entailments."

      Zachriel: "Entailments are deduced from the hypothesis."

      So, how does that address my comment?

      Nic: "But your 'tentative' assumption cannot then be used as evidence for your conclusion as you at the same time use your conclusion as evidence for your assumption."

      Zachriel: "Hypothesis: branching descent
      Entailment: nested hierarchy of traits"

      My point was you cannot use nested hierarchy as evidence for branching descent while at the same time using branching descent as evidence for nested hierarchies. What's your point?

      Delete
    62. Zachriel,

      Nic: "Why must the designer be animal, vegetable or mineral?"

      Pendant: Those were some suggested possibilities, not an attempt to provide a comprehensive list.

      Pardon my presumption. Many people do believe God (aka a designer) must in some way be physical in nature, and a created entity. Thus the 'who made god' argument. I apologize if you felt my response was intended to be confrontational, it was not.


      Pendant: Design and its entailed Designer could be anything conceivable, even something immaterial. Think about it, and I bet you'll agree."

      I most certainly do agree that God is most likely immaterial. I wouldn't go as far as saying he could be anything conceivable. I believe we are given a fairly clear picture of the nature of God via Scripture. I am under the impression you and I would not agree on that, however.

      Delete
    63. Pendant,

      Nic: "Why don't you lay out in detail why neither nested hierarchies or the fossil record can be scenarios which would fit design?"

      Pendant: "Was it the word "neither" that misled me, when you meant say "either"? Or was it your earlier claim:"

      It could be either. You could provide an explanation for either nested hierarchies or the fossil record as to why they would not fit a design scenario. Or you could provide an explanation why neither of them would fit a design scenario.


      Pendant: "So please tell me why it isn't your job to "lay out" how a Design scenario explains nested hierarchies and the fossil record."

      As it appears to me you're claiming nested hierarchies and the fossil record cannot be incorporated into a design scenario the onus would be on you to explain why. It would also help me understand why you think they cannot be incorporated with design. A better understanding of your reasons would help in my formulating a response.

      Delete
    64. Nic: So, how does that address my comment?

      You said, "we are discussing the source of any entailments". The source of entailments is deduction from the hypothesis.

      Nic: My point was you cannot use nested hierarchy as evidence for branching descent while at the same time using branching descent as evidence for nested hierarchies.

      But that's not what we said. We observe the nested hierarchy. This is what we said.

      Hypothesis: branching descent
      Entailment: nested hierarchy of traits

      Delete
    65. Zachriel,

      Nic: "So, how does that address my comment?"

      Zachriel: "You said, "we are discussing the source of any entailments". The source of entailments is deduction from the hypothesis."

      No, my friend, the entailments are the result of the effects stemming from the actual source, be that by evolution or by design.

      If nested hierarchies are true, but the not result of branching descent they would still be an entailment, but the result of a different source. So, no, entailments do not necessarily stem from the hypothesis.

      Nic: "My point was you cannot use nested hierarchy as evidence for branching descent while at the same time using branching descent as evidence for nested hierarchies."

      Zachriel: "But that's not what we said. We observe the nested hierarchy. This is what we said."

      And you attribute the nested hierarchy to branching descent, while using the nested hierarchy as evidence for branching descent. There is absolutely no way out of your dilemma, it's assuming what you're trying to demonstrate, aka, circular reasoning.

      It's obvious you're completely blind to this fallacy, and I'm simply wasting my time trying to make you understand.

      Delete
    66. Nic: the entailments are the result of the effects stemming from the actual source

      That is not quite correct. In science, entailments are the effects deducted from the *posited* source. For instance, if the Earth rotates, ... a series of deductions, the retardation of the pendulum. Then you get on a ship, and sail to the equator and observe the pendulum.

      Nic: If nested hierarchies are true, but the not result of branching descent they would still be an entailment, but the result of a different source

      Entailment means logical consequence of. That's what hypothetico-deduction means. The entailment is deduced from the hypothesis.

      Nic: And you attribute the nested hierarchy to branching descent, while using the nested hierarchy as evidence for branching descent.

      The nested hierarchy is a logical, not an empirical, consequence of branching descent. It's a mathematical deduction, and is necessarily true. That's the deduction part of hypothetico-deduction.

      Delete
    67. Nic,
      It is difficult with you to understand where the points of disagreement are:
      1) The structure of the hypothetico-deduction methodology?
      2) Its general validity in science (also if science is based on it)?
      3) Its particular application in biology (e.g. common descendent related to nested hierarchies or fossil record)?
      4) Why design hypothesis doesn’t entails nested hierarchies or fossil record.
      If 1) I have tried to imagine how can I explain you this, but at the end I would be obliged to repeat exactly what Zachriel has already said to you.
      I have found in the web an example that maybe can help you to understand what it is meant as hypothetico-deduction. The example is from the relativity theory of Einstein. At the beginning there was not a solid empirical foundation, but Einstein proposed three possible tests. He meants: “if” my theory is correct you have to observe these three phenomena”; in other words the theory entails these consequences. All these phenomena were observed at the end. The scientists say then that the theory has been “confirmed”, meaning that it is supported by osservations. You can always object that this is not a proof and that another explanation could be. Of course, this can be the case, but if this confirmation is repeated in several other independent tests then the scientists "accept" this theory. Maybe in the future other observed phenomena will oblige them to produce a new theory.
      But if 1) is not an issue for you, then we can move and discuss also the other points, of course if you are interested in this.

      Delete
    68. Zachriel,

      Zachriel: "Entailment means logical consequence of. That's what hypothetico-deduction means. The entailment is deduced from the hypothesis."

      Can your deduction be wrong and still be logical?

      Zachriel: "The nested hierarchy is a logical, not an empirical, consequence of branching descent. It's a mathematical deduction, and is necessarily true. That's the deduction part of hypothetico-deduction."

      In what way is the nested hierarchy a mathematical deduction and necessarily true?

      Delete
    69. Germanicus,

      "Why design hypothesis doesn’t entails (sic) nested hierarchies or fossil record."

      That is what I have been asking Zachriel repeatedly. He cannot give me an answer. If you believe you can, I would be interested in hearing it.

      Delete
    70. Nic: Can your deduction be wrong and still be logical?

      If you mean the conclusion is contradicted by observation, then that means the hypothesis is falsified. It doesn't mean the deduction is wrong.

      For instance, if Special Relativity is true, then we can deduce that accelerated particles should have longer half-lives. If we don't observe longer half-lives, it falsifies Special Relatively.

      Nic: In what way is the nested hierarchy a mathematical deduction and necessarily true?

      If we have branching descent with relatively rare mutations, then the lineal descendants will form a nested hierarchy. While we can simulate this easily, let's try a simplified example with one mutation for each bifurcation.

      Here's the zeroth generation:
      oooo oooo

      1st generation
      oooo oooo
      oAoo oooo

      2nd generation
      oooo oooo
      oooo Booo

      oAoo oooo
      oAoo ooCo

      A nested hierarchy.

      Delete
    71. Zachriel,

      "A nested hierarchy."

      I agree traits can be passed down via descent. That is plainly obvious within animal breeding.

      What this hypothesis (branching descent)-deduction (nested hierarchy) pattern does not support is evolution of all life from a single common ancestor, which is what I believe you are trying to make it do.

      I accept that all canines came from a single wolf-like creature. But I do not believe that all canines and all felines came from a common mammal ancestor. And despite your claims, your branching descent - nested hierarchy argument does not support the belief they did share a common ancestor.

      You have still to demonstrate why nested hierarchy patterns could not arise within a design scenario. Can you do that or not?

      Delete
    72. I believe we are given a fairly clear picture of the nature of God via Scripture. I am under the impression you and I would not agree on that, however.

      Probably not, but I'm not concerned about that.

      You could provide an explanation for either nested hierarchies or the fossil record as to why they would not fit a design scenario. Or you could provide an explanation why neither of them would fit a design scenario.

      You may have me confused with someone else. I've been maintaining consistently that

      Everything fits Design

      As it appears to me you're claiming nested hierarchies and the fossil record cannot be incorporated into a design scenario the onus would be on you to explain why.

      On the contrary. I've maintained ad nauseam that nested hierarchies and the fossil record CAN BE incorporated into a design scenario.

      I'd apologize for the misunderstanding if I could find the fault in what I've written.

      Delete
    73. Nic: nested hierarchy argument does not support the belief they did share a common ancestor.

      Yes, it does support common descent because it is the predicted pattern. It's very strongly supported for vertebrates, strongly for eukaryotes, but there are difficulties at the root of the tree. Of course, it's not unexpected that the further back in time we go, the less certain the evidence will be.

      Nic: You have still to demonstrate why nested hierarchy patterns could not arise within a design scenario.

      It certainly could. The designer may just have a preference for beetles, er, nested hierarchies. Or maybe the designer made everything Last Thursday, but made it look like branching descent. But it does look exactly like the pattern we would expect of branching descent.

      Delete
    74. Pendant,

      "I'd apologize for the misunderstanding if I could find the fault in what I've written."

      It is not always the fault of the writer, often the reader is to blame. I would think that is the case in this situation.

      I went back and read again some of your posts. I think what I had done originally is assume some sarcasm on your part. That is one of the problems of this format, the reader has no vocal intonation from which he can take a cue if the writer was employing sarcasm for example. My mistake.

      Delete
    75. No problem. Go in peace, my Son.

      Delete
    76. Z: But it does look exactly like the pattern we would expect of branching descent.

      So now we would then look for some sort of independent evidence, something not directly dependent on the pattern of traits in extant organisms. Maybe life left evidence and we can reconstruct the history of the posited evolution. If so, we would expect a pattern such as primitive chordates, vertebrates, tetrapods, amniotes, mammals, primates. We might even find evidence of human-like organisms with brains intermediate in size between humans and their posited ancestors. If, by some miracle, this evidence existed, maybe we could even put it into temporal order to unravel the history.

      Delete
    77. Pedant,

      "No problem. Go in peace, my Son."

      Thank you for the kind sentiment. I must apologize again. I have been steadily referring to you as Pendant, instead of Pedant. Sorry.

      Delete
    78. Zachriel,

      Z: "But it does look exactly like the pattern we would expect of branching descent."

      So what? What would it look like if there was no branching descent via evolution? What if descent was part of the design process? What if canines were designed to vary over the course of generations? What would it look like then?

      You're still avoiding my question as to why 'nested hierarchies' could not arise via design. Is there a problem?

      "We might even find evidence of human-like organisms with brains intermediate in size between humans and their posited ancestors."

      To clarify, are you relating brain size to intelligence?

      Delete
    79. Nic: What would it look like if there was no branching descent via evolution?

      Unless you are specific, there's no way to say.

      Nic: What if descent was part of the design process?

      The nested hierarchy is due to branching descent. A design process that worked by branching descent might well form a nested hierarchy.

      Nic: You're still avoiding my question as to why 'nested hierarchies' could not arise via design.

      Of course they could. We answered that above. Anything could arise from some undefined design process. The designer may just have a preference for beetles, er, nested hierarchies. Or maybe the designer made everything Last Thursday, but made it look like branching descent. But it looks exactly like the pattern we would expect of branching descent.

      Delete
    80. Nic: To clarify, are you relating brain size to intelligence?

      No. But if humans evolved from primitive apes, then we would expect that brain size increased over time. If only organisms left evidence of their existence, then we would have independent evidence to support our hypothesis!

      Delete
    81. No. But if humans evolved from primitive apes, then we would expect that brain size increased over time. If only organisms left evidence of their existence, then we would have independent evidence to support our hypothesis!


      Now you are just being ridiculous

      Delete
    82. Nic said:
      “That (4.Why design hypothesis doesn’t "entail" nested hierarchies or fossil record?) is what I have been asking Zachriel repeatedly. He cannot give me an answer. If you believe you can, I would be interested in hearing it.”
      So, point 4) seems your major point of disagreement (but I have the feeling, looking at your conversation with Zachriel that also points 1,2 and 3 are not agreed completely).
      It seems to me that Zachriel gave you several times the answer, but I will try to make my summary (with the premise that I am moving inside the hypothetico-deduction methodology as is done in science):
      a) If you propose a hypothesis (in your case design) you have also to define which are the logical consequences so that you can test it (see example of Einstein).
      b) The weakness of the design hypothesis (as proposed in ID) is that without further specifications of who/what is the designer, how he/she/it operates, which constraints has, it is mostly impossible to “deduce” consequences that than can be tested.
      c) In particular the “deductions” nested hierarchy and fossil record arrangement are not logical consequences of the design hypothesis; it could be or not, we don’t see any necessity.
      These points seem to me not so difficult to agree. They don’t imply any conclusion on the “true” of design or branching descent, they are “only” a discussion on application of a specific methodology. But, to be frankly, it seems to me that your dissent is more important on other parts:
      Nic said: “You don't find a singular nested hierarchy. The fossil record is simply the result of death.”.
      So the real issue is that you deny in total the existence of these patterns.

      Delete
    83. Germanicus,

      "If you propose a hypothesis,..."

      I understand the process and the logic behind it. However, it is a process which can often lead to false conclusions, therefore it is not a process which can be depended upon to the extent Zachriel seems to depend upon it. For example, you could have drawn the same hypothesis-deduction model for the appendix.

      You can reach conclusions which seem very logical and are consistent with your hypothesis, but which are totally wrong.

      "The weakness of the design hypothesis (as proposed in ID) is that without further specifications of who/what is the designer, how he/she/it operates, which constraints has, it is mostly impossible to “deduce” consequences that than can be tested."

      Complete, palpable nonsense. I don't need to know anything about the engineer who designed an airplane to understand and deduce consequences regards the aircraft, that can be tested. I don't need to know anything about the person who designed the aircraft to deduce it was indeed designed. This is a totally fallacious argument.

      "In particular the “deductions” nested hierarchy and fossil record arrangement are not logical consequences of the design hypothesis;,..."

      In what way are nested hierarchies and the fossil record not logical consequences of design? You offered to provide an answer which Zachriel could not provide and all you've done is parrot his comments almost word for word.

      "it could be or not, we don’t see any necessity."

      You don't see any necessity? Guess what, who cares whether or not you can see any necessity. Where is the rule you have to comprehend the necessity? This is a purely religious argument. It has less than zero to do with science.

      "So the real issue is that you deny in total the existence of these patterns."

      How did you come to that conclusion? I said a nested hierarchy can be explained via design as well, if not better, due to design. The repeated use of specific design features over a variety of applications is a major hallmark of designed systems. The fossil record is just what I said it was, a record of death. It can be interpreted in a multitude of ways.

      Delete
    84. Nic: I understand the process and the logic behind it. However, it is a process which can often lead to false conclusions

      Yes, that's why all scientific conclusions are considered tentative.

      Nic: I don't need to know anything about the person who designed the aircraft to deduce it was indeed designed.

      You just provided the answer. It's a featherless biped.

      Nic: In what way are nested hierarchies and the fossil record not logical consequences of design?

      If you claim there's an entailment, you have to show how it was deduced from the hypothesis.

      Nic: Guess what, who cares whether or not you can see any necessity.

      If there is such a deduction, then it should be possible to make it explicit.

      If the Earth rotates, series of deductions ..., then retardation of the pendulum.

      Nic: The repeated use of specific design features over a variety of applications is a major hallmark of designed systems.

      Now we're getting somewhere. If we were to arrange artifacts into a nested hierarchy classification, do you think there is only one reasonable way to do so? Say vehicles?

      Delete
    85. Zachriel,

      Nic: "I don't need to know anything about the person who designed the aircraft to deduce it was indeed designed."

      Zachriel: "You just provided the answer. It's a featherless biped."

      You want to play semantic games? Fine. I don't need to know anything about the entity which designed the aircraft. Happy?

      Nic: "In what way are nested hierarchies and the fossil record not logical consequences of design?"

      Zachriel: "If you claim there's an entailment, you have to show how it was deduced from the hypothesis."

      Wrong, my friend. You made the claim that nested hierarchies and the fossil record are not a logical consequences of design. The onus is squarely on you to provide a logical presentation, not make a groundless assertion and then demand I counter that assertion.

      Also, did you happen to notice I was asking you do to that very thing? If you did why don't you provide an answer instead of demanding an explanation from me? Could it be you have no idea how NHs and the fossil record are illogical in a design scenario? I know where I would place my money.

      Nic: "The repeated use of specific design features over a variety of applications is a major hallmark of designed systems."

      Zachriel: "Now we're getting somewhere. If we were to arrange artifacts into a nested hierarchy classification, do you think there is only one reasonable way to do so? Say vehicles?"

      Forget it, Zachriel. A while ago I spent more than a week going over this very topic with you. At that time I clearly demonstrated the concept of nested hierarchies can be accommodated easily within the realm of intelligently designed systems. I refuse, under any circumstances, to go through this with you again. I simply will not waste any more time with you on this subject.

      Delete
    86. Nic: I don't need to know anything about the entity which designed the aircraft.

      Except that your actual inference relies very much on your knowledge of human design. Furthermore, anyone investigating an airplane would attempt to link the artifact to the art and the art to the artisan. Each of these causal links would strengthen the original hypothesis.

      Nic: You made the claim that nested hierarchies and the fossil record are not a logical consequences of design.

      It's a pretty long discussion, but this is the exchange we remember:

      N: Your precious nested hierarchies and the fossil record are equally supportable via a design scenario.

      Z: Why does design predict a singular nested hierarchy and the fossil succession?

      We would say that a bald claim of design is lacking in the specifics necessary to make clear deductions, but we would be happy to consider your proposed entailments.

      Nic: Could it be you have no idea how NHs and the fossil record are illogical in a design scenario?

      They're not illogical, just vacuous.

      Nic: I refuse

      We understand. You will post thousands of words, but not answer the question. Indeed, there are several equally consistent nested hierarchies for vehicles, but for whatever reason, you couldn't even provide just one.

      Delete
    87. Nic said: ”In what way are nested hierarchies and the fossil record not logical consequences of design?”

      This brings us again to our discussion on the mechanism of deduction (hypothesis -> deductions). To summarizing from examples:
      1) General Theory of Relativity -> deflection of light and perihelion precession of Mercury
      2) Common descents -> nested hierarchy and fossil record.
      Now what is not a deduction:
      3) ID (as usually proposed) -> nested hierarchy or fossil records.
      Simply because these pseudo “deductions” are not a necessary consequences of a “not specific” design process. The outcome could be completely in another direction; it is not constrained by the premise. Can you see the difference among 3) and 1) and 2)? My suggestion, the concept of necessary condition in mathematic.
      I try an example. If you specify further the designer saying: “my hypothesis is that aliens arrived few billions years ago on the earth and seed it with proto-cells starting the life process”. Then I can say that nested hierarchy and fossil record are a deduction of the hypothesis. If I change the hypothesis in the form “aliens arrived 10000 years ago with large space shuttles bringing all the different species of life on the earth” so fossil record is not more a deduction and also nested hierarchy if I don’t make further assumptions on the development of the life in the aliens’ planet.

      Delete
    88. Nic said:
      “ How did you come to that conclusion?”
      From your words:
      Nic said: “You don't find a singular nested hierarchy. The fossil record is simply the result of death.”

      You know very well what Zachriel and I mean about nested hierarchy, or you hide yourself in the word “single”? When we discuss about deduction from common descents we means “single nested hierarchy”. So you deny a single, but accepts that more nested hierarchy co-exist?
      Now I am curious, please explain me exactly which observed hierarchy/ies you accept and your interpretation of the fossil records. It will help to understand better each other.

      Delete
  12. Velikoskys
    Yes your right.
    However i think once dna was shown as a background to physical bodies any thoughtful creationist would predict like body equals like dna from a like design from a creator.
    Anyways common descent is not the only option for likeness in looks or dna.
    Common design fits fine and better.
    Why not?

    ReplyDelete
  13. Zachriel
    First things first.
    Common design predicys at basic thresholds common results.
    dNA should be alike at basic levels of biology and up the tree.
    Why not?
    Common descent is just a line of reasoning from basic data. Its not PROVED by likeness in dna. Its a error of analysis evolutionists make even if they were right.
    its a ingrown bias.

    Then the rest fits fine also.
    Creation week was not the end of biological change. the fall came and later biological changes ALL from existing ability of biology to change. God did nothing after creation week.
    All Darvin/common descent predicts is obvious like results from like biology.
    in fact mutationism should be doing more damaging to results.
    The likeness of biology hints at other mechanisms and not random mutationism.
    Common design is very persuasive as the reason for common dna and looks in biology.
    common descent is very much less likely.
    In fact its unlikely if selection on mutations is really the great engine just by looking at dna relationships.
    its all about comparing dna data points.
    We need some science here before conclusions are drawn about dNA as a indicator, for or against, of common descent.
    no more guessing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Robert Byers: Common design predicys at basic thresholds common results.

      Common creationist design does not predict the pattern expected of diverging descent from common ancestors.

      Robert Byers: Its not PROVED by likeness in dna.

      Nothing is proved in science, but supported. The theory of common descent is strongly supported.

      Delete
    2. From DNA common descent is not supported by biological evidence or genetic evidence if thats the word.

      Why not common design predict diverging or difference in kinds?
      All one needs is a original created kind and then later differences being from changes but not needing common descent by evolution mechanism.
      all that is seen is biological data points dealing with dna.
      The connections are in relationship easily from common design idea.
      No need to see common descent at all and anyways its only another option.

      Delete
    3. You are ignoring the fundamental difference between evolution and intelligent design.

      Evolution, like all scientific theories, is a provisional and testable explanation of how life changed and diversified over time, after it had appeared. It says nothing about how life itself originated.

      Intelligent Design is a speculation about who - or, maybe, what - did it. It says nothing at all about the how of anything. The closest it gets to science is attempts to develop mathematical tools for the detection of design in Nature but these are unproven and possibly unprovable at this time. What it mostly has are argument by analogy and argument from incredulity. It points to to biological structures that are analogous to human artefacts and, more often, it points out alleged shortcomings of evolution.

      The problem for ID is that, whatever the shortcomings of evolution, its own are far worse.

      Delete
    4. Robert Byers: Why not common design predict diverging or difference in kinds?

      "Kinds" diverging might create nested traits, but it doesn't explain the nesting of traits between kinds. Based on your argument, there is only one "kind", that is, all of life, which diverged from a common ancester

      Delete
    5. no. All life is from a common design or equation at basic levels. Atomic levels. yet after that there are kinds. Then minor differences in kinds.
      So common design easily accounts for likeness in looks or dna and is very likely from a creator.
      thats what I would do.
      Common descent is not proved by these nests.
      Its just a line of reasoning from comparing things.
      common design is a line of reasoning also.
      Yet evolutionists try to say common descent is shown by scientific evidence of the nest thing.
      It isn't.
      its a flaw of investigative thinking.

      Delete
    6. Robert Byers: So common design easily accounts for likeness in looks or dna and is very likely from a creator.

      It's not just likeness, but a nesting of character traits. Not to mention the fossil succession.

      Delete
  14. Ian: "What it mostly has are argument by analogy and argument from incredulity."

    As for the argument from incredulity, I don't think that's correct. For example, rather than saying that the bacterial flagellum must have been designed because I can't imagine how it could have emerged via Darwinian processes, I would simply say that I see no reason to believe that it did emerge by Darwinian processes. In other words, it's not that I can't imagine how Darwinian processes could create the flagellum; it's that I've been given no compelling reason to believe that they did.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alethinon61: I've been given no compelling reason to believe that they did.

      There's a lot of evidence to support the evolution of life generally, even if little is known about the flagellum.

      But let's say go with it. There's no reason to accept evolution. What do you conclude thereby?

      Delete
    2. IIRC, Behe's original claim was that there was no conceivable way such things could have come about through natural processes. When various biologists showed that there were at least conceivable ways for such things to happen, that claim was refuted.

      It's true that science cannot demonstrate the exact step-by-step sequence of events that led from precursor structures to the bacterial flagellum. There's no neat little series of microfossils to illustrate exactly how it happened. But that doesn't mean Behe's claim of IC succeeds by default. It means we don't know. Maybe we'll never know.. Who knows?

      You're right in the sense that the proposed explanations for the evolution of the bacterial flagellum are conjectures. They are not compelling.. They are, however, better than Behe's unwarranted claim of hard certainty, that there are structures in Nature that could not, under any circumstances, have come about through natural processes. Just because Behe can't imagine how something happened doesn't mean it didn't, doesn't mean it did.

      We just don't know.

      Delete
  15. We learned certain things from making machines and stuff. We learned that you can't get more than you put in. We also learned that it is even really hard to get as much s you put in. We assume that this is because of things we call laws of nature. We also learned that it is really, really hard to make things that are irreducibly complex, have highly specified complexity, and functional integration of parts without intelligent input. It's like another law of nature.

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    1. natschuster: We learned that you can't get more than you put in.

      If you mean energy, then yes. If you mean widgets, then no.

      natschuster: We also learned that it is even really hard to get as much s you put in.

      If you mean energy, then no. We learned you can't get as much out as you put in.

      natschuster: We assume that this is because of things we call laws of nature.

      We don't assume it, but have found it to be so. Law of nature is just a statement of this finding.

      natschuster: We also learned that it is really, really hard to make things that are irreducibly complex, have highly specified complexity, and functional integration of parts without intelligent input. It's like another law of nature.

      Except it's not a law of nature. Part of the problem is defining exactly what you mean by complexity, which is not as simple as it seems.

      Delete
  16. Since it seems to happen every time, then we assume it is because it is a law of nature. Every time people try to make things that work in a certain way because they have certain parts that have to be arranged in a certain way, it requires intelligent input. So it is just like a law.

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    Replies
    1. natschuster: Since it seems to happen every time, then we assume it is because it is a law of nature.

      A scientific law must be precisely stated; hence, you have to be able to unambiguously define complexity and irreducible.

      natschuster: Every time people try to make things that work in a certain way because they have certain parts that have to be arranged in a certain way, it requires intelligent input.

      The counterexample is life, of course. That is, unless you are simply assuming your conclusion.

      Delete
    2. Why does a law need to be precisely stated? Anyway, I give it a try. Irreducibly complexity means if you remove a part the things doesn't work. And integration of parts means that the part fit together so they can do something. And highly specified complexity means only a few arraignments of things that work. Is second thermodynamics clearly defined? Entropy tends to increases?

      Delete
  17. Its kind of like the Second Law. Things fall apart, They don't fall together. Unless someone is using intelligence to put them together,

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    Replies
    1. natschuster: Its kind of like the Second Law. Things fall apart, They don't fall together.

      We understand the analogy, but it doesn't work. Organisms consume nourishment, and rearrange it into complex forms without the intervention of intelligence.

      Delete
  18. But they a built in mechanisms that looks like it they were designed. We have experience making machines that can operate automatically. But they require lots and lots of intelligent intervention to design. At some point intelligence was required. That much we know from experience. Have we ever experienced the spontaneously creation of a machine that could operate automatically?

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    Replies
    1. natschuster: But they a built in mechanisms that looks like it they were designed.

      They have some superficial resemblance to designed mechanisms. Evolution provides an alternative explanation for this resemblance, while also predicting a lot of other data.

      natschuster: Have we ever experienced the spontaneously creation of a machine that could operate automatically?

      http://www.zawaj.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/fetus-sucking-thumb.jpg

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  19. Has any one ever seen the appearance of a machine that could make other machines without all the complex mechanism found in designed things or in life? Or a machine that could do anything, without a complex mechanism? If not, why not? All our experience with machines shows us that doing complex things cannot arise without intelligent input at some level. And I keep on hearing that evolution only kicked in after life reached a certain level of complexity, replicator in place, protein already ready to evolve into other proteins, etc. So you need another explanation to explain how it reached the point were evolution could take over.

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  20. Anyway, the point is that design is not an argument from incredulity. Rather, based on our experience we assume a certain law.

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    1. The law of design.

      How does that work?

      Everything is designed.

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  21. "There's a lot of evidence to support the evolution of life generally, even if little is known about the flagellum."

    I think that depends on what you mean by "evolution". If you mean change over time, sure. If you mean common ancestry, again, sure; you and I both come from common ancestors, human beings. If you mean that all life forms come from one or a few original forms, and that all the diversity of life we see emerged primarily via natural selection acting on random variations, then I would have to disagree.

    What we actually have, IMO, isn't "evidence for evolution", but data to be interpreted. Most scientists interpret the data in light of the presupposition of naturalism/Darwinism, whereas I choose to interpret the data according to the presupposition of a common designer. From my perspective, most of the data fits the presupposition of a common designer at least as well if not better than it does the presupposition of one or a few common ancestors.

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  22. From my perspective, most of the data fits the presupposition of a common designer at least as well if not better than it does the presupposition of one or a few common ancestors.

    Great. You have a "perspective."

    What privileges your personal perspective? I mean, how do you test its reliability for ascertaining truth?

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  23. Hi Ian,

    See: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2011/03/michael_behe_hasnt_been_refute044801.html

    And: http://vimeo.com/9032112

    As I said, it's not that I can't imagine how the flagellum could have emerged via Darwinian processes and therefore I say it must be designed; it's that I see no reason to believe that it did emerge via Darwinian processes.

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    1. ...I see no reason to believe that it did emerge via Darwinian processes.

      Can you see any reason to consider the possibility that any living or extinct organism might have emerged that way?

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  24. Alethinon61: If you mean that all life forms come from one or a few original forms,

    That's what is normally meant by common ancestry.

    Alethinon61: nd that all the diversity of life we see emerged primarily via natural selection acting on random variations, then I would have to disagree.

    That was a conjuction. Which part do you disagree with? Common ancestry? Natural selection? Both?

    Alethinon61: What we actually have, IMO, isn't "evidence for evolution", but data to be interpreted.

    In science, evidence is evaluated with respect to a hypothesis. So common descent predicts a nested hierarchy, and we observe a nested hierarchy. Common descent predicts a succession in time, and fossils support this succession in time.

    Alethinon61: From my perspective, most of the data fits the presupposition of a common designer at least as well if not better than it does the presupposition of one or a few common ancestors.

    "From your perspective" doesn't constitute a valid scientific hypothesis.

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