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  Topic: Help required!, Another evo discussion.< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 08 2007,11:59   

As the description says, I've engaged in another evo discussion recently. The guy isn't a real ID-ist, but rather someone who symphatises with them. It all started pretty clichť, that nature looks o so much like machines, that design is such a logical thing and that it is science etc etc. I explained to him why ID was not science, why his analogy with machines, nano-technology and stuff like that was flawd and couldn't be used as an argument. In other discussions I had with people like him, usually real ID-ists, they usually repeated themselfs, walked away or changed the subject to something completly different. But this guy did something I haven't seen before, he actually accepted my explanation and saw the logic in it. But ofcourse, since he sympathises with ID he sad that logic would also apply on ND/evo wich would let nothing standing of ND/evo, just like with ID. Bassicly I used the explanations from this link.
Anyway, this is a rough translation of what he sad:
 
Quote
By means of the same reasoning, as it happens, also nothing of ND/Evo, anyway no science, remains.

An example, there is there more, to make this point clear.

Common descent: Resemblance between DNA are no proof for affinity. One can possibly postulate it to be an indication for affinity but it proves on itself no affinity. Yes, individuals who are related to each other show lots of resemblance, but that you can't turn that around as if all resemblances in DNA automaticly implicate affinity. All cows are animals, but not all animals are cows.

Notice that cladistics, strictly speaking, measures no affinity but resemblance. Affinity is an unfounded diversion from these resemblances.

I used Dictionary.com, but tweaked a bit on the outcome (at least it's better then Babelfish). And if anyone here is able to speak Dutch too, then check the Dutch Science-Forum for the original text from the user named qrnlk (I'm also Assassinator there, it's a tradition ;)). I hope the translation makes things clear enough.
I'm a bit stuck on factual arguments, and not yet deep enough in the whole spiel of evo (next semester I will get deeper in it, we'll be making a phylogenetic tree for example) so I'm asking some people here for some help on the arguments, since the topic on that forum is leaving the logical part and it's entering the factual part of the subject.
Maybe some more questions will come, I can't predict how he will react. At least thanks in advance.

  
Jim_Wynne



Posts: 1191
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 08 2007,12:15   

I would start out by simply explaining the difference between "proof" and "evidence."  Similarities in DNA are evidence of common descent, but not proof of it.  In other words your friend is invoking a strawman argument, knowingly or not.  There are other lines of evidence that reinforce the idea of common descent; common descent was proposed and generally accepted long before our present knowledge of DNA. In that sense, greater understanding of genetics has served to confirm what was already proposed.

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Evolution is not about laws but about randomness on happanchance.--Robert Byers, at PT

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 08 2007,15:55   

Slap me and call me a donkey, but I alwayse thought evidence and proof were 2 synonyms. Before I want to use that in that discussion, can you explain a bit more about the difference between those 2?
(It's almost astonishing how much you can learn on the internet ;))

  
JAM



Posts: 517
Joined: July 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 08 2007,16:01   

Quote (Assassinator @ Dec. 08 2007,15:55)
Slap me and call me a donkey, but I alwayse thought evidence and proof were 2 synonyms. Before I want to use that in that discussion, can you explain a bit more about the difference between those 2?
(It's almost astonishing how much you can learn on the internet ;))

In science, every conclusion is provisional, and no conclusion is considered to be proven. We say that a hypothesis is or is not supported by evidence.

The most powerful part of science is to use one's hypothesis to correctly predict the evidence before it is in hand, something that has never been done by a creationist/IDer.

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 08 2007,16:09   

Ofcourse, that I haven't thought of that. And now to correctly translate that too Dutch :P
Anyway, so far for the starter. I predict he will say it isn't evidence either, for some random reason. I've looked around, but can't find proper links about it (e.a why it is evidence for common descent).

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 08 2007,20:52   

Organisms fit into a nested hierarchy, which is a characteristic of things that have diverged from an original. Not only that, but using different independent traits to reconstruct family trees results in virtually identical branching patterns. The probability of obtaining such similar trees purely by chance is frequently vanishingly small. There is an introduction to the topic at TalkOrigins 29+ Evidences for Macroevolution (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/section1.html#independent_consilience).

Jim is right about proof and evidence. In science we can say that a particular theory fits all the known evidence and also that predictions made on the basis of the theory have been verified, but the theory is never proven. You can demonstrate that a brick falls when it is pushed off a roof, but it can't be proven that this will always occur.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,07:11   

A, I remember that link, bad thing is that he countered that with this link. To bad I was never able to find a critique on that.

  
Reciprocating Bill



Posts: 4265
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,08:45   

[devil's advocate]
[anti-harshness filter]

Assassinator -

Perhaps, given that you aren't very familiar with the methods, epistemology and evidence that compels the conclusions of contemporary evolutionary biology, you aren't the right person to press that debate. If you don't really know the basics of your position, how do you know your discussant isn't right?

Slinging links addressing material you don't really understand, or is entirely new to you, is Ftk territory. And it's a no-win proposition, because a large repertoire of ad hoc creationist flapdoodle has been crafted to address each of the main points of evolution. For every link you produce, he'll produce another, and some familiarity with the literature is often required to make apparent the flaws in each creationist argument.

Just a thought.

[/devil's advocate]
[/anti-harshness filter]

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Here’s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,09:04   

That's why I came here for help, to understand arguments he brings better ;) Just here to learn.
I'm alright with the logical part, but still not that at home on the factual part. I'm to learn about those flaws.

  
Wesley R. Elsberry



Posts: 4807
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,09:41   

Quote (Assassinator @ Dec. 09 2007,07:11)
A, I remember that link, bad thing is that he countered that with this link. To bad I was never able to find a critique on that.

That's odd. Ashby Camp apparently was able to locate such:

 
Quote

NOTE:  The paper critiqued in this article was subsequently changed by Mr. Theobald, who also published a criticism of this articleóand changed it too, after Mr. Camp responded.  Neither this article, nor Mr. Campís response to Theobaldís criticism, have been altered to accommodate Mr. Theoboldís on-going adjustments and modifications.


Though you may note that Camp doesn't bother to share links to resources other than his own or with similar views, so you are left on your own to find what he refers to. So, just how did Camp determine that there was a response?

If you go to the TalkOrigins Archive, hit the "Search" button, and plug in "Ashby", you get this result, and the top hit returned is "A Response to Ashby Camp's "Critique"".

Of course, the first grey "sidebar" style box in Theobald's essay has this content:

 
Quote

Other Links:

A Critique of Douglas Theobald's "29 Evidences for Macroevolution"
   Lawyer, Churches of Christ minister, and young-earth creationist Ashby Camp argues that the evidence is insufficient to establish that all organisms share the same biological ancestor.

Theobald Responds to Ashby Camp's "Critique"
   The author of this essay has written a response to Camp.


Theobald apparently has no problem linking to Camp. One wonders why Camp has an apparent problem linking to Theobald.

This all leads to a question: Just how diligent a search was made in looking for Theobald's response to Camp?

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,10:02   

I overlooked the obvious. Well thanks for that, I've got some reading now ;) That guy isn't alwayse an honest discusser, he almost refuted to accept arguments from TalkOrigins because he says they're produced by atheÔstic madmen. Ridiculous ad hominem ofcourse.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,10:13   

Ass, this guy is probably a presuppositionalist.  There is an essay on the web, somewhere, by a philosopher who has debated many of these folks and has a great set of advice about how to deal with presuppositionalist arguments on logical grounds that are independent of the factual context of the debate.  It could be about anything, but the post modern relativism of pre-supps is always a good thing to keep hammering.

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You're obviously illiterate as hell.†Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Wesley R. Elsberry



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Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,10:21   

Quote (Assassinator @ Dec. 09 2007,10:02)
I overlooked the obvious. Well thanks for that, I've got some reading now ;) That guy isn't alwayse an honest discusser, he almost refuted to accept arguments from TalkOrigins because he says they're produced by atheÔstic madmen. Ridiculous ad hominem ofcourse.

Theobald is not an atheist. I'm not an atheist. The TalkOrigins Archive is not an anti-theist organization.

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
Dr.GH



Posts: 2113
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,12:57   

Quote (Assassinator @ Dec. 09 2007,08:02)
... he almost refuted to accept arguments from TalkOrigins because he says they're produced by atheÔstic madmen.

I resemble that remark! (Groucho Marx, sometime ago)

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"Science is the horse that pulls the cart of philosophy."

L. Susskind, 2004 "SMOLIN VS. SUSSKIND: THE ANTHROPIC PRINCIPLE"

   
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 09 2007,14:31   

Quote
Any set of objects, whether or not they originated in an evolutionary process, can be classified hierarchically. †Chairs, for instance, are independently created; they are not generated by an evolutionary process: but any given list of chairs could be classified hierarchically, perhaps by dividing them first according to whether or not they were made of wood, then according to their colour, by date of manufacture, and so on. †The fact that life can be classified hierarchically is not, in itself, an argument for evolution. (Ridley 1985, 8.)

I did not read all of the material in the link (to a Critique of 29+ Evidences for Macroevolution) but if this is typical of the level of argument I am not impressed. Ridley (and Camp) missed the whole point, which is that to be comparable with what is found in biology, not only the chairs could be arranged in a hierarchy, but comparisons of the chemical composition of the stains or paints, the fabric used to cover the seats, the methods used to join the pieces together, would all result in the same hierarchy.

I just noticed this
 
Quote
The cytochrome c data on which Dr. Theobald relies present some puzzles from a Neo-Darwinian perspective. †First, the cytochromes of all the higher organisms (yeasts, plants, insects, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals) exhibit an almost equal degree of sequence divergence from the cytochrome of the bacteria Rhodospirillum. †In other words, the degree of divergence does not increase as one moves up the scale of evolution but remains essentially uniform.

This shows a fundamental misunderstanding of evolution. Yeasts, plants, insects and humans have all had the same amount of time to evolve away from the common ancestor of us and Rhodospirillum. Based on this comment, I would suggest that the rest of the piece is not worth reading in detail.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 08 2008,17:30   

*cough cough* Pfew, some dust on this one. But I've got a few questions again. The discussion has reached some kind of stalemate. He says he knows that evolution happens, that he understands why. For him, the question is where the boundaries of evolution are, he gives this book as reference, but I'm not able to read it. He says that countless of experiments say that the theory of Universal Common Descent contains boundaries wich evolution can't cross. Now because I'm not able to read the book, I have no idea what he's talking about (wich experiments for example). I also wonder what that book from Behe says then about boundaries.
I wish I was able to read all those books, I've seen so much book links here and on other forums wich I'm dying to read ;)

  
Coyote



Posts: 21
Joined: Dec. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 08 2008,21:18   

Here is a good rebuttal to Behe's The Edge of Evolution:

http://www.ncseweb.org/resourc....007.asp

Behe has not fared well with his ideas outside of creationist/ID circles. His works have been demolished by numerous scientists, and his testimony in the Kitzmiller v. Dover case made him look like a complete fool.

  
Henry J



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Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 08 2008,21:40   

Quote
He says that countless of experiments say that the theory of Universal Common Descent contains boundaries wich evolution can't cross.


Does it say if any observed life forms are on opposite sides of any of those boundaries? After all, afaik the current theory doesn't imply that there aren't uncrossable boundaries, just that existing life forms would all be on one side of such. (Excepting perhaps species that have been tampered with by humans.)

Henry

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 09 2008,08:48   

Thanks Coyote and Henry J :)
But I still have some questions, next to rebutals of Behe's book, does anyone know what Behe says in his book? Does anyone also knows wich experiments the guy I'm discussing with is reffering to? I've asked, but he ignored it. Does anyone also new were the article in the 3th link in Coyote's link went? It seems like really interesting rebutal, but it's kinda gone.

  
JohnW



Posts: 2767
Joined: Aug. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 09 2008,11:22   

Quote (Assassinator @ Jan. 09 2008,06:48)
Thanks Coyote and Henry J :)
But I still have some questions, next to rebutals of Behe's book, does anyone know what Behe says in his book? Does anyone also knows wich experiments the guy I'm discussing with is reffering to? I've asked, but he ignored it. Does anyone also new were the article in the 3th link in Coyote's link went? It seems like really interesting rebutal, but it's kinda gone.

Disclaimer - I haven't read Behe's book. †I'm 45 and there are a lot of great books I want to read before I die. †I'll get to Behe around the time I get to L Ron Hubbard and Kevin Trudeau.

Mark Chu-Carroll has a splendid review of the horrible mathematics at the core of Behe's argument:

Quote
The part of the book that is most annoying to me, and thus the part that I'll focus the rest of this review on, is chapter three, "The Mathematical Limits of Darwinism". This is, basically, the real heart of the book, and for obvious reasons, it seriously ticks me off. Behe's math is atrociously bad, pig-ignorant garbage - but he presents it seriously, as if it's a real argument, and as if he has the slightest clue what he's talking about.

The basic argument in this chapter is the good old "fitness landscape" argument. And Behe makes the classic mistakes. His entire argument really comes down to the following points:

1. †Evolution can be modeled in terms of a static, unchanging fitness landscape.
2. †The fitness landscape is a smooth, surface made up of hills and valleys, where a local minimum or maximum in any dimension is a local minimum or maximum in all dimensions.
The fitness function mapping from a genome to a point of the fitness landscape is monotonically increasing.
The fitness function is smoothly continuous, with infinitessimally small changes (single-point base chanages) mapping to infinitessimally small changes in position on the fitness landscape.


A "fitness landscape" can be thought of as a map (in many dimensions) of survival probabilities - as the size, shape, or behaviour of a species changes, the psoition on the "landscape" changes (get bigger and we move a bit this way, turn a darker colour and we move a bit that way, etc.) and hence the probability of survival changes. †Behe's claim is that species become "trapped" at a local maximum in the fitness landscape - if we move a bit in any direction, the probability of survival decreases. †This means that evolution is no longer possible. †

This claim is rubbish for many reasons, as outlined in Mark's demolition referenced above. †(Read the whole thing. †It's brutal). †Just as an example, this argument only has a chance if the fitness landscape never changes - which of course it does. †Climates get warmer or wetter. †Continents drift. †Mountains rise and fall.

Regarding the "experiments" your opponent is referring to - why don't you ask him for a reference?  Don't let him escape by saying "lots of them" - if they are, as he says, countless, then it should be easy for him to find them.  As there have in fact been no such experiments, if you press the guy on this, he's going to either cite something silly, or be forced to back down.

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Math is just a language of reality. Its a waste of time to know it. - Robert Byers

There isn't any probability that the letter d is in the word "mathematics"...  The correct answer would be "not even 0" - JoeG

  
Steviepinhead



Posts: 532
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 09 2008,15:53   

VoxRat at IIDB (Internet Infidels) and others did a long waltz with a creationist calling him (or her?) self Lee_Merrill about the specifics of some of Behe's claims that there were limits to evolution.

Please note that VoxRat is a molecular biologist.  Febble, who also appears, is a virologist, I think (easy enough to check the various profiles).

Here's the thread (it's long; VoxRat makes his first appearance on p. 3...):
http://www.iidb.org/vbb/showthread.php?t=223997

A spinoff thread is good right from the get-go:
http://www.iidb.org/vbb/showthread.php?t=228441

This link also leads to good stuff:
http://www.iidb.org/vbb/showthread.php?t=233261

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,07:49   

Thanks for those links ;) I've asked indeed about the experiments, at first he ignored them but now he sad he would look something up.
Note though, that this guy isn't anything close to a biologist. He's an informatic, and he has it's own business. It seems that he copied his views about evolution almost directly from both Behe and Demski, and he's looking at life like he's looking at huma technology. I have also rebutted his silly analogy's, I wonder if it came through though. Ironically enough, he has this in his signature:
 
Quote
What evidence would it take to prove your beliefs wrong?

People like him make me go:

(God I love that picture :p)

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,15:39   

Assassinator, for what's it's worth, I've read Behe's book and it is essentially an attack on random mutation as a viable mechanism for the observed genetic diversity.  The "Edge" he refers to is the boundary between random and non-random mutation.  My problem with this argument is it approaches semantics.  At a point at which you define one mutation as non-random then any example of a random mutation may be nothing more than ignorance on our part.  Personally, I don't believe in random mutations but after reading the book I was not convinced that this was the way to refute them.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,16:09   

Quote
Personally, I don't believe in random mutations


Could someone translate this for me?  I'm not sure what in the holy hell it is supposed to mean.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell.†Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Albatrossity2



Posts: 2780
Joined: Mar. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,16:34   

Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Jan. 10 2008,16:09)
 
Quote
Personally, I don't believe in random mutations


Could someone translate this for me?  I'm not sure what in the holy hell it is supposed to mean.

"Personally, I don't believe in random mutations" = Goddidit.

There, that was simple enough, wasn't it?

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Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
† † † † † † † † † † † † - Pattiann Rogers

   
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,17:05   

Could be a space alien too.

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,17:46   

No, it means that there are no random mutations.  That sure seems simple enough to me.  All mutations are caused by something and not random rearrangements of base pairs.  IMO, citing random mutations is nothing more than hand waving.

  
Annyday



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,18:04   

Mutations appear functionally random to all known methods of analysis. What magic method have you devised that can tell that what looks random isn't actually random?

Or, in other words: unless you have evidence for guidance of mutation, this makes you a theistic evolutionist who thinks that God's hand is visible in seemingly-random mutations. This would be logically viable, if unparsimonious, but not remotely incompatible with evolution.

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"ALL eight of the "nature" miracles of Jesus could have been accomplished via the electroweak quantum tunneling mechanism. For example, walking on water could be accomplished by directing a neutrino beam created just below Jesus' feet downward." - Frank Tipler, ISCID fellow

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,18:06   

Poor skeptic.

Do you even know what is meant by "random" in this context? It's not difficult to understand. "Random" means random with regard to fitness. That is, whatever causes a given mutation is irrelevant to discussions of the range of variation selection has to work with. The handwaving is all yours.

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
Reciprocating Bill



Posts: 4265
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,18:07   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,18:46)
No, it means that there are no random mutations. †That sure seems simple enough to me. †All mutations are caused by something and not random rearrangements of base pairs. †IMO, citing random mutations is nothing more than hand waving.

Recyling a post from long ago:

Mutations, and the impact of those mutations, need not be, and indeed are not, utterly "chance events" in the quantum sense to which Einstein objected. Indeed, each one has, at least in principle, a causal story (as does a coin flip). Rather, however they are determined, mutations are "random" in the sense that they occur without respect to their impact upon the local fitness of a given organism in the context of its ecological niche.  Similarly, we flip a coin to assign the ball at the start of a football game not because coin-flips introduce quantum indeterminancy into the NFL: we flip coins because the outcome of the flip occurs without respect to the fortunes of either team.

It is this sense of "without respect to their impact upon local fitness" that distinguishes random mutation from hypothetical design events (descent with meddling).

Stephen Gould writes about this at length in "The Structure of Evolutionary Theory."

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Here’s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,18:56   

and this is what I would call higher level semantics.  If mutations are a result of causes then these causes are not occuring in a vaccum.  They are occuring within the environment that the organism lives.  In other words, mutations occur as a result of the enironment and actions of the organism.  Whether or not the mutation has a direct impact upon the fitness of future generations or has more indirect result is probably up for grabs and maybe both depending upon the situation.  To constantly claim that mutations occur with no apparent relation to fitness is only reality in a test tube, and probably not even there either.

again, my opinion but not something that gets alot of play here because the perceived implications are too scary.

  
silverspoon



Posts: 123
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,19:28   

The environment can cause mutations is somehow perceived as scary?

I donít understand.

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Grand Poobah of the nuclear mafia

  
Reciprocating Bill



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,19:30   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,19:56)
again, my opinion but not something that gets alot of play here because the perceived implications are too scary.

Sorry, Skept. That particular notion doesn't get much play here because it is mistaken, plain and simple. The causal chains that (in principle) determine a mutation take no note of the positive, neutral, or negative impact of that mutation on the future reproductive success of individual organisms destined to inherit it. Unless you are going to argue that, among other problems with his notion, causality passes from the future to the past.

[edit] Moved a u from one side of an s to the other.

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Here’s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

  
swbarnes2



Posts: 78
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,19:40   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,18:56)
In other words, mutations occur as a result of the enironment and actions of the organism.


Only in the most indirect manner...that is, an organism that live next to mutagens will get lots of mutations.

But an organism that, say, lives next to an antibiotic is no more likely to randomly develop a mutation that would grant resistance than an organism than doesn't.

Mutations happen because the laws of chemistry allow mutations to happen. †That's really the strongest statement you can make about them.

 
Quote
To constantly claim that mutations occur with no apparent relation to fitness is only reality in a test tube, and probably not even there either.


Okay, then why don't you show us the peer-reviewed paper which demonstrates that you are right, and everyone else is wrong.

Making up how you think the world works without evidence is singularly unconvincing. †Don't you know that by now?

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,19:51   

Skeptic, no one is saying that mutations don't have fitness effects, nor that some mutations are not more likely due to causal scenarios already in place (laws of chemistry, etc).  See codon bias, for instance.

The point is that mutations (and their effects) are not determined according to perceived needs of the organism.

As SWB said, hanging out next to an antibiotic doesn't increase your chances of picking up a mutation coding for some form of resistance***.  The point that no known analysis has shown direction for mutations is worth noting (and also the dagger in the heart of Daniel Smith's nonsense resurrecting the rotting corpse of Broom and Schindewolf).

***  Of course this does not deal with the probability of a population becoming fixed for such a mutation, which would be related to the proximity to such a selection pressure.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell.†Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Nerull



Posts: 317
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,21:00   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,19:56)
and this is what I would call higher level semantics.  If mutations are a result of causes then these causes are not occuring in a vaccum.  They are occuring within the environment that the organism lives.  In other words, mutations occur as a result of the enironment and actions of the organism.  Whether or not the mutation has a direct impact upon the fitness of future generations or has more indirect result is probably up for grabs and maybe both depending upon the situation.  To constantly claim that mutations occur with no apparent relation to fitness is only reality in a test tube, and probably not even there either.

again, my opinion but not something that gets alot of play here because the perceived implications are too scary.

This is quite possibly the silliest thing I've ever heard you say.

That mutations are caused by the environment does not mean that mutations are related to the environment.

Taking a bath in radioactive waste will do wonders for your mutation rate, but it has absolutely no effect on what the mutations *do*, and it won't make the result of any mutation more likely than the result of a mutation caused by any other environment.

--------------
To rebut creationism you pretty much have to be a biologist, chemist, geologist, philosopher, lawyer and historian all rolled into one. While to advocate creationism, you just have to be an idiot. -- tommorris

   
skeptic



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Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,22:04   

And that is quite possibly the silliest thing I have ever heard...mutations caused by the environment are not related to the environment!

Look, I'm not really interested in getting into this too deep because you guys really aren't interested in discussing it.  If you want to do some more research on your on check out heat shock proteins and chaperones and the AMES test and then think about how quickly environmental changes occur in relation to mutation rates.

The reason why this is scary is because, to be perfectly honest, the current theory has no good mechanistic explanations for evolution and no one wants to admit that.  Evolution is no longer science it is dogma because of the perceived threat from ID/creationism.  Under current conditions there can be no dissent because that would offer a weakness to the enemy and right now defeating the enemy is more important than scientific integrity.  This, of course, will change when enough evidence is amassed to offer a more complete mechanism to replace RM seamlessly and the enemy then will have no weakness to exploit.  In other words, right now it is about politics but one day it will actually be about science again.

  
Nerull



Posts: 317
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,22:42   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,23:04)
And that is quite possibly the silliest thing I have ever heard...mutations caused by the environment are not related to the environment!

Look, I'm not really interested in getting into this too deep because you guys really aren't interested in discussing it.  If you want to do some more research on your on check out heat shock proteins and chaperones and the AMES test and then think about how quickly environmental changes occur in relation to mutation rates.

The reason why this is scary is because, to be perfectly honest, the current theory has no good mechanistic explanations for evolution and no one wants to admit that.  Evolution is no longer science it is dogma because of the perceived threat from ID/creationism.  Under current conditions there can be no dissent because that would offer a weakness to the enemy and right now defeating the enemy is more important than scientific integrity.  This, of course, will change when enough evidence is amassed to offer a more complete mechanism to replace RM seamlessly and the enemy then will have no weakness to exploit.  In other words, right now it is about politics but one day it will actually be about science again.

Someone here certainly isn't interested in discussing anything, but its not us.

Keep feeding your martyr complex and denying reality, though.

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To rebut creationism you pretty much have to be a biologist, chemist, geologist, philosopher, lawyer and historian all rolled into one. While to advocate creationism, you just have to be an idiot. -- tommorris

   
Henry J



Posts: 4565
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,22:43   

Quote
The environment can cause mutations is somehow perceived as scary?

I don?t understand.


Certainly the possibility can be scary. Some mutations cause medical problems, after all. Of course, being scary doesn't make a hypothesis inaccurate.

Anyhow, I would think that the fact that mutations occur fairly regularly is in itself evidence of randomness. Planned mutations would seem to me to be more likely to occur in batches when needed, with long stretches in between of nothing much happening in that regard.

Another thing to check would be how evenly the mutations get distributed over the genome, when a large number of reproductive events are checked. Random would mean the events would be spread out over a large portion of the genome, and probably that more or less the same distribution would be observed regardless of what environment the sample population happens to be in. (And as pointed out above, this refers to occurance of the mutation, not its likelihood of spreading across the population once present in the gene pool.) Planned mutations, on the other hand, I would expect to occur at need, and in specific areas of the genome, without lots of irrelevant mutations also occurring all over the place as well.

Henry

  
Coyote



Posts: 21
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 10 2008,22:45   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 11 2008,08:04)
...the current theory has no good mechanistic explanations for evolution and no one wants to admit that. †Evolution is no longer science it is dogma because of the perceived threat from ID/creationism.

No mechanism for evolution? Could you explain this to me.

This does not reflect what I learned in grad school.

And, although it was a couple of decades ago, not once do I remember creationism being brought up -- as a perceived threat or otherwise -- and half of my coursework to the Ph.D. level was in fossil man, human osteology, human races, and related subjects.

Creationism simply was not important enough to be even mentioned in serious academic studies when I went to school. (Of course ID had not even been cooked up back then.)

So, for this old timer, please explain the "no mechanism" comment.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,00:43   

Quote
Anyhow, I would think that the fact that mutations occur fairly regularly is in itself evidence of randomness. Planned mutations would seem to me to be more likely to occur in batches when needed, with long stretches in between of nothing much happening in that regard.


Sounds a lot like the fossil record, doesn't it?  

Quote
Another thing to check would be how evenly the mutations get distributed over the genome, when a large number of reproductive events are checked. Random would mean the events would be spread out over a large portion of the genome, and probably that more or less the same distribution would be observed regardless of what environment the sample population happens to be in. (And as pointed out above, this refers to occurance of the mutation, not its likelihood of spreading across the population once present in the gene pool.) Planned mutations, on the other hand, I would expect to occur at need, and in specific areas of the genome, without lots of irrelevant mutations also occurring all over the place as well.


If that were true, but mutations do not occur evenly throughout the genome.  There are areas that are highly conserved and these tend to be highly functional areas also.  This, of course, may be just our perspective since these features show up throughout many different organisms and we just may not know what an alternative looks like.

Coyote, I certainly can not speak to what you were taught but as far as no mechanism give it a thought.  We've always been given RM/NS with no real explanation about how that resolves into complexity.  The fall back was always time but that doesn't necessarily jive with some estimates based upon rates.  Now we have drifts and shifts and maybe evo/devo but none of it is very explanatory beyond a high level assessment.  If you have a valid mechanism, I'd love to hear it because that's what I've been looking for for years.

  
George



Posts: 314
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,02:42   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 11 2008,00:43)
Quote
Anyhow, I would think that the fact that mutations occur fairly regularly is in itself evidence of randomness. Planned mutations would seem to me to be more likely to occur in batches when needed, with long stretches in between of nothing much happening in that regard.


Sounds a lot like the fossil record, doesn't it?

The fossil record is the result of random mutation and natural selection (and other mechanisms).

You seem to be confusing/conflating the roles of RM and NS in some of the things you say.  RM is neutral as regards fitness.  NS is where the fitness part comes in.  It's a two-stage process.

Your personal disbelief isn't a valid argument against the adequacy of RM+NS (and other mechanisms) to develop biological complexity.  Perhaps you don't fully appreciate how complex the environment is, how many different selection pressures there are, and how they change in relative importance over widely varying time scales.

  
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,07:54   

Skepti any truth to the rumor that you're writing a book for your fellow creationists called "The Power of Make Believe"?

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
Albatrossity2



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,08:26   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,22:04)
The reason why this is scary is because, to be perfectly honest, the current theory has no good mechanistic explanations for evolution and no one wants to admit that.  Evolution is no longer science it is dogma because of the perceived threat from ID/creationism.  Under current conditions there can be no dissent because that would offer a weakness to the enemy and right now defeating the enemy is more important than scientific integrity.  This, of course, will change when enough evidence is amassed to offer a more complete mechanism to replace RM seamlessly and the enemy then will have no weakness to exploit.  In other words, right now it is about politics but one day it will actually be about science again.

The number of factual and logical errors in this single paragraph is mind-boggling. In all cases the evidence for these assertions is completely lacking. For example, please tell us about your evidence for that conspiracy that is suppressing "dissent" in the scientific community; I failed to get that memo. That one alone is worth 40 points on the crackpot index.

But when an IDist maintains that the problem with evolutionary theory is that it does not provide "good mechanistic explanations", that's downright hilarious.

Thanks for the best laugh I've had all week!

--------------
Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
† † † † † † † † † † † † - Pattiann Rogers

   
Darth Robo



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,08:58   

Quote
We've always been given RM/NS with no real explanation about how that resolves into complexity.


What's comlexity?

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"Commentary: How would you like to be the wholly-owned servant to an organic meatbag? It's demeaning! If, uh, you weren't one yourself, I mean..."

  
oldmanintheskydidntdoit



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,08:59   

Quote (Darth Robo @ Jan. 11 2008,08:58)
Quote
We've always been given RM/NS with no real explanation about how that resolves into complexity.


What's comlexity?

You'll know it when you see it.

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I also mentioned that He'd have to give me a thorough explanation as to *why* I must "eat human babies".
FTK

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Darth Robo



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,08:59   

Quote
We've always been given RM/NS with no real explanation about how that resolves into complexity.


What's complexity?

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"Commentary: How would you like to be the wholly-owned servant to an organic meatbag? It's demeaning! If, uh, you weren't one yourself, I mean..."

  
Darth Robo



Posts: 148
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,09:00   

AAAARGH!!!

Too complex for me to spell, apparently!    :angry:


Can I has edit button?    :(

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"Commentary: How would you like to be the wholly-owned servant to an organic meatbag? It's demeaning! If, uh, you weren't one yourself, I mean..."

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,09:01   

you guys are too far behind the curve here.

Alba, I don't support ID, never have, and I've made multiple statements indicating that.  Sorry, I don't fit in that box.

George, would you mind providing me some evidence that indicates the fossil record is a result of RM/NS?

  
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,09:09   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 11 2008,09:01)
you guys are too far behind the curve here.

Alba, I don't support ID, never have, and I've made multiple statements indicating that. †Sorry, I don't fit in that box.

George, would you mind providing me some evidence that indicates the fossil record is a result of RM/NS?

Skepti, you're a creationist who lives in a make believe world.  Claiming you're not an IDists does not get you off the hook. :-)  You fit perfectly in the kook/crank box.


Chris

--------------
Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
Albatrossity2



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,09:23   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 11 2008,09:01)
you guys are too far behind the curve here.

Alba, I don't support ID, never have, and I've made multiple statements indicating that.  Sorry, I don't fit in that box.

Well, then, give me your "good mechanistic explanations" for the diversity of life that derive logically from whatever box you do find yourself in these days.

thanks

--------------
Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
† † † † † † † † † † † † - Pattiann Rogers

   
Nerull



Posts: 317
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,10:37   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 10 2008,23:04)
And that is quite possibly the silliest thing I have ever heard...mutations caused by the environment are not related to the environment!

I want you to answer something for me, Skeptic.

A bit of ionizing radiation from said bath comes in and nails the DNA of a developing organism.

Where in the DNA this happens is entirely random.

Now explain how the mutation will somehow relate to the environment it happened in.


Also, a stable area of DNA doesn't mean no mutations happen there, but that no mutations have become widespread and passed on to future generations. This could be due to the fact that most mutations to that area are deadly - for example if it produces a protein that said organism has become dependent on. Break the protein and the organism dies. This tends to prevent the mutation being passed on to the next generation. This is what we called "natural selection.", and its a rather important bit of evolution that you seem to ignore.

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To rebut creationism you pretty much have to be a biologist, chemist, geologist, philosopher, lawyer and historian all rolled into one. While to advocate creationism, you just have to be an idiot. -- tommorris

   
EoRaptor013



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,13:19   

Seems there are a couple of discussion disjuncts here. First, the "fossil record" is NOT created by RM+NS. It's the consequence of chance preservation, chance revelation of the strata and location of the fossil, and perhaps somewhat guided discovery. However, when George says the fossil record results from RM/ NS, I understand him to be using shorthand for the fact that the fossilized thing is proof of a living thing that was, itself, wholly the product of RM/NS.

Second, to say there are highly conserved genes, says absolutely nothing about mutation rates or causes. That bit of ionizing radiation nerull mentions is as likely to zap a highly conserved region of an individual cell's genome as it is any other region of that genome. Highly conserved means when that cell divides -- or, if its a germ cell, when it combines with another -- the result is unlikely to be viable -- even if the change is relatively minor.

So, I'm sorry, but you sitll don't have a pot to piss in.

$0.02

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,14:32   

Quote
Whether or not the mutation has a direct impact upon the fitness of future generations or has more indirect result is probably up for grabs and maybe both depending upon the situation.  To constantly claim that mutations occur with no apparent relation to fitness is only reality in a test tube, and probably not even there either.

Well skeppy, there are many more ways to miss a point than to get it, and, in this case, you seem determined to try out every last one.
No one is asserting that "mutation[s have no] direct impact on...fitness..." What we are saying, in small words whenever possible, is that the occurance of a mutation happens without regard to fitness. That is, nobody has succeeded in bringing light to a mechanism whereby "directed mutation" or "frontloading" would be a live possibility. As far as any investigator can tell, mutations just happen, willy-nilly, and pass into the great filter of natural selection. Conserved regions are regions where mutations do not get passed on, not regions where they never occur in the first place. This is clearly on the selection side of things.

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
swbarnes2



Posts: 78
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,15:19   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 11 2008,00:43)
Sounds a lot like the fossil record, doesn't it? †


Sigh.

The fossil record is the result of Natural selection acting on mutations.

You are talking only about the chemcial appearance of mutations, not how they fare in population over time.

Quote
We've always been given RM/NS with no real explanation about how that resolves into complexity.


It resolves into "complexity" just fine. †If a mutation adds complexity, and it helps the organisms reproduce, then it will become more common. †Further mutations can accumulate, leading to more complexity.

Quote
The fall back was always time but that doesn't necessarily jive with some estimates based upon rates.


What estimates? †Are they any good, or is it just one of your pals making up numbers?

Present the calculations, and we'll determine if they are worth anything.

You tried this argument months ago, and it was refuted then, and you gave no response.

But we can always try again.

Remember ENU screens?

Why don't you tell us what you think happens during an ENU screen, and what you think evolutionists predict should happen. †Then you can go about proving that you predicted right, and they predicted wrong.

No hand-waving about "complexity" or "high-level assesments". †Just tell us in plain, specific English, with numbers where appropriate.

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,22:24   

sorry Nerull, it's quite a bit more complicated than that.  Also, lethality is not the driving mechanism in conservation.  Quick suggestion, you guys might want to study up on that which you appear to know nothing about.  You could start with Wikipedia, I hear that is fertile ground for the lazy mind.

  
Nerull



Posts: 317
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 11 2008,22:28   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 11 2008,23:24)
sorry Nerull, it's quite a bit more complicated than that.  Also, lethality is not the driving mechanism in conservation.  Quick suggestion, you guys might want to study up on that which you appear to know nothing about.  You could start with Wikipedia, I hear that is fertile ground for the lazy mind.

You still have to explain how a mutation that effects a random location in the DNA sequence creates a change related to the environment, Skeptic.

Stop dodging.

EDIT: Also, I never said lethality was the only reason, just one.

I'm not your babysitter. I don't have time to hold your hand and give you the education you so desperately need, which apparently also includes basic reading comprehension.

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To rebut creationism you pretty much have to be a biologist, chemist, geologist, philosopher, lawyer and historian all rolled into one. While to advocate creationism, you just have to be an idiot. -- tommorris

   
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,01:26   

I'm sorry, I'm not dodging.  I'm not sure you realize what you're saying.  I am not saying that mutations occur at random locations in the genome.  And all mutations are related to the environment, nothing happens in a vacuum.  It may help if I clarify one thing, the environment is not just what some are trying to save, in this instance it is the complete system and state that the organism is in.

off topic but has anyone seen or heard from Louis lately?  I'm starting to get a little worried about him.

  
Albatrossity2



Posts: 2780
Joined: Mar. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,07:23   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 12 2008,01:26)
I'm sorry, I'm not dodging.  I'm not sure you realize what you're saying.  

You may not be "dodging" Nerull's arguments, but you are certainly backpedaling frantically. And you are ignoring  this, just a few posts up. I'm pretty sure I know why you are ignoring it, but I'd appreciate your response nonetheless.
Quote
give me your "good mechanistic explanations" for the diversity of life that derive logically from whatever box you do find yourself in these days.


--------------
Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
† † † † † † † † † † † † - Pattiann Rogers

   
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,07:29   

sorry Alba, not sure which specific post that link was for.  It brought up the whole page but as far as a mechanistic theory, I'll put together a summary and post it here.

  
Albatrossity2



Posts: 2780
Joined: Mar. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,08:07   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 12 2008,07:29)
sorry Alba, not sure which specific post that link was for.  It brought up the whole page but as far as a mechanistic theory, I'll put together a summary and post it here.

It refers to your statement  
Quote
The reason why this is scary is because, to be perfectly honest, the current theory has no good mechanistic explanations for evolution and no one wants to admit that.  Evolution is no longer science it is dogma because of the perceived threat from ID/creationism.  Under current conditions there can be no dissent because that would offer a weakness to the enemy and right now defeating the enemy is more important than scientific integrity.  This, of course, will change when enough evidence is amassed to offer a more complete mechanism to replace RM seamlessly and the enemy then will have no weakness to exploit.  In other words, right now it is about politics but one day it will actually be about science again.

wherein you express your opinion that there are "no good mechanistic explanations for evolution". I'm assuming that you mean that current evolutionary theory provides no good mechanistic explanations for the diversity of life that we see today, but if the original is what you really meant, please justify that as well. Meanwhile, since the perceived lack of mechanistic explanations seems to peeve you, I'm sure that you can provide a fuller, more mechanism-rich explanation to replace evolutionary theory.

--------------
Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
† † † † † † † † † † † † - Pattiann Rogers

   
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,10:00   

Quote
I am not saying that mutations occur at random locations in the genome. †And all mutations are related to the environment, nothing happens in a vacuum.

Then what are you saying? No-one is claiming that the environment has no effect on the number or even the type (deletion, substitution, etc) of mutations that occur. What people are saying, and you seem to be ignoring, is that there is no evidence that mutations †preferentially help the population to adapt to the current environment.

 
Quote
It may help if I clarify one thing, the environment is not just what some are trying to save

This is comparable with writing on a sports blog 'It may help if I clarify one thing, not all sports are played with spherical balls.' That you felt it was a useful thing to write tells us about your level of expertise.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Nerull



Posts: 317
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,11:12   

Skeptic, lets try something simpler you might be able to understand.

Lets say I have a normal 6 sided die.

I drop it on a carpet, a hardwood desk, and a rubber mat.

These all change the manner, number, type of bounces.

Which makes the die more likely to read '4'?




None of them. Though all affect the die in different ways, they do not change the essentially random outcome. (We're ignoring the fact that the die could be modeled if we knew its starting state and every force acting on it with precision, since its irrelevant to the discussion.)

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To rebut creationism you pretty much have to be a biologist, chemist, geologist, philosopher, lawyer and historian all rolled into one. While to advocate creationism, you just have to be an idiot. -- tommorris

   
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,11:20   

Skeptic I think you are a few bricks shy of a load.

That is irrelevant.  Regarding louis, I was wondering if we might use the EF to determine if this is his post on pharyngula.


Louis?

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You're obviously illiterate as hell.†Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,14:54   

that's good news, even if he's not here it's good to know he's somewhere...and not the alternative.

  
Lou FCD



Posts: 5402
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 12 2008,22:36   

Quote (Erasmus, FCD @ Jan. 12 2008,12:20)
Skeptic I think you are a few bricks shy of a load.

That is irrelevant.  Regarding louis, I was wondering if we might use the EF to determine if this is his post on pharyngula.


Louis?

The disclaimer remark smacks of our dear friend.

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Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
I think I might love you. Don't tell Deadman -Wolfhound

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silverspoon



Posts: 123
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(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 23 2008,18:49   

Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 12 2008,07:29)
sorry Alba, not sure which specific post that link was for. †It brought up the whole page but as far as a mechanistic theory, I'll put together a summary and post it here.

Um--- Bump

--------------
Grand Poobah of the nuclear mafia

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 01 2008,06:38   

Joy, the dude in the discussion I started this topic about is back. I really don't get it, he still thinks specified complexity is new and research-able. I tried to address the fact that those things are long since addressed, I even showed an article from Wesley but he ignores it saying it would be wise to show something else then arguments from own ground (and he means evolutionists by that). So annoying, how do you EVER discuss with people like that?

  
rhmc



Posts: 340
Joined: Dec. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 01 2008,15:43   

ask for peer reviewed papers, experiments and proof.
and when he finally admits there are none, tell him hand waving and wild theories and invisible rabbits aren't gonna cut it and that you'll be glad to carry on the discusion when he provides something a bit more substantial.

at first he'll throw up some half baked garbage but the web and this site are an excellent source of information to disprove the creation/ID trash.

the approach really depends on if you wanna simply grind him into oblivion and humiliate him or educate him.

i prefer the former.  the results are more lasting.

make him stick his neck out.  then the option is yours. :)

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,05:35   

I asked him indeed for papers on specified complexity. He just came up with someone named Orgel, wich is apperantly the one who came up with specified complexity (Dembski's inspiration?). Apperantly, he thinks that he also supports the ID hypotheses (at least I made him admit ID is not a theory at all) but I'm not that sure. He also popped up something, wich made me wanted to ask a question too:
He says that fossils and genetic similarity's don't say affinity, but jķst similarity's. So they're not really proof for common descent. He also sad that they're extremly prone to interpretation, people see in them what they want to see. That made we wonder, what do fossils and genetic similarity's proof? I know about TalkOrigin's 29 evidences for common descent article, but strangly he doesn't accept it. It may work for me, but not for him.
The last thing he sad wich makes me wonder is (rough translation):
Macroscopic events wich require extremly improbable microscopic events don't happen spontaneously, but can happen with intelligent intervention.
Now I asked for an explanation for that statement, where he got it from etc etc. But he's in the hospital atm, so it can take a while. So maybe, in the meantime, someone here can explain what he means with that statement and where he got it from.
It's an odd fellow, sometimes he dodges more questions then Neo dodges bullets, sometimes he's a really good person to discuss with, and sometimes he simply spews ad hominems vs sources and people (like he called TalkOrigins a collection of atheÔstic madman not worth mentioning, and he swept all things I got from that website from the table).

  
oldmanintheskydidntdoit



Posts: 4999
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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,06:09   

Ask for

a) A demonstration of the Explanatory Filter, or the location of such a demonstration of it in use.
b) A figure for the Complex Specified Information in *anything*  at all. Also, what units is CSI measured in?

The fossil record proves (or, rather, is not incompatible with) the idea that my invisible space unicorn arranges each bone in turn, as required, to make the arrangement of bones look earthy like the arrangement of bones somebody who is not aware of the existence of invisible bone placing unicorns would expect to see.

Same facts. Different interpretation.

Therefore ID.

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I also mentioned that He'd have to give me a thorough explanation as to *why* I must "eat human babies".
FTK

if there are even critical flaws in Gaugerís work, the evo mat narrative cannot stand
Gordon Mullings

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,08:02   

I don't think he actually supports the Explanatory Filter, but it never hurts to ask ;)
But yea, the thing about the fossils, you exactly make his point. What's the foundation for the common-descent interpretation from the fossil record and genetic data.
He also decided he wanted to shift the subject to the origin of life and why it is so improbable and doesn't happen without an act of intelligence intervening. He says that a replicator can't arise from stochastic processes because that would violate the 2nd law of thermodynamics. Ofcourse I asked for peer-reviewd papers and experiments, and I also asked if the processes involved in making a replicator are indeed stochastic or random.

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,09:55   

Have you pointed out that the Theory of Evolution does not specify that a supernatural designer was not involved, it just does not require that one was involved? I would tend not to argue that there is no supernatural designer but that one is not needed. Can he point to anything that could not have evolved, remembering that there is a big difference between 'I cannot imagine how' and 'this violates the laws of physics or chemistry'? He cannot blame the TOE for his own lack of imagination.

In his view, exactly how does the designer actually make the required changes to organisms? This is one of the things I find hardest to imagine. Does God (presumably) cause a strand of DNA to get broken here and a nucleotide to be inserted there, and if so how could this be distinguished from random changes?

A crucial point about the fossil data is that it all fits into a nested hierarchy, exactly as if evolution were true. In addition, the information from genetic studies fits the same nested hierarchy. For even a small tree, the probability of this happening by chance is extremely small, sufficient to make the construction of a 747 by a tornado look commonplace (I have seen data on this but I can't recall where). Other traits such as geographical distribution are in accordance too. It can confidently be predicted that organisms not yet discovered will also fit into this hierarchy. No-one will ever find a bat with a beak or a tree fern with colourful flowers.

Have you been able to pin him down into telling you just what he would accept as evidence that evolution has taken place?

Good luck!

Edit: to insert a missing word.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,10:03   

Quote (Assassinator @ Feb. 03 2008,08:02)
He says that a replicator can't arise from stochastic processes because that would violate the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

I forgot to add:
Ask him to explain the second law of thermodynamics in his own words because he does not understand it and has probably forgotten the crucial 'in a closed system' part. Also ask why, if abiogenesis violates a fundamental physical law, in more than 100 years physical scientists have ignored this point?

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,10:10   

Yes I have addressed that, since he kept talking about a No Design hypotheses and talked about it if it was the crux from the evolutional theory. I just sad that evolutional research hasen't found design or a designer yet, and thus it's not involved in the current research since they manage without.

He does not talk about the workings from the so-called designer, I can't remember he ever did. He once sad that †it didn't sound that wierd to him if we would've been designed by aliens.

I've read about the nested hierarchy yes, but only like half a year ago or something like that. I sure have to fresh things up, I'll first dive back into Biology (International and 7th edition) from Campbell and Reece and I'll look up some info on the internet before I address it to him. I'll have to look first where the OOL discussion is going anyway ;) At least I've asked for papers and experiments, and I've "firmly" addressed his ad-hominems vs TalkOrigin-linked sources. I'm curious how he works himself out of that, I think he'll ignore it.

Edit:
He suddenly flooded me with quotes from an article from Orgel: http://biology.plosjournals.org/perlser....0060018
I'm reading it atm, but I could use some help understanding the article. I can't really ask the dude himself, since he's an IT person and not into chemistry. I've only just begun studying chemistry, so again if anyone could help me understand this article (what the article wants to say, things like that): help would be appreciated ;)

  
rhmc



Posts: 340
Joined: Dec. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,17:33   

Quote (Assassinator @ Feb. 03 2008,11:10)
he's an IT person

is he familiar with self modifiying code?

  
Henry J



Posts: 4565
Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 03 2008,18:27   

Quote
Ask him to explain the second law of thermodynamics in his own words because he does not understand it and has probably forgotten the crucial 'in a closed system' part.


Yeah, find out if he's noticed that bright yellow thing that can be seen in the sky on clear days. :p

Henry

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 04 2008,07:01   

He only has a problem with the 2nd law with the origin of life, not really with evolution. His problems with evolution are bassicly with Common Descent.
@rhmc:
I don't know, but I'm not. It sounds very interesting though, I'll look something up about it for myself first :)

  
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