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Date: 2006/12/14 09:48:52, Link
Author: mitschlag
Thanks, Dave, for pointing out how much we owe The Creator for giving us (besides malaria):

African trypanosomiasis
Amebiasis
Ascariasis
Babesiosis
Chagas Disease
Clonorchiasis
Cryptosporidiosis
CysticercosisDiphyllobothriasis
Dracunculiasis
Echinococcosis
Enterobiasis
Fascioliasis
Fasciolopsiasis
Filariasis
Free-living amebic infection
Giardiasis
Gnathostomiasis
Hymenolepiasis
Isosporiasis
Kala-azar
Leishmaniasis
Metagonimiasis
Myiasis
Onchocerciasis
Pediculosis
Pinworm Infection
Scabies
Schistosomiasis
Taeniasis
Toxocariasis
Toxoplasmosis
Trichinellosis
Trichinosis
Trichuriasis
Trypanosomiasis

(List from Wikipedia)

One of my favorites is filariasis.  See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/medical_notes/6146722.stm

That Creator is somethin'. alright.

Date: 2006/12/16 08:27:31, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (afdave @ Dec. 16 2006,08:05)
So ... please answer my simple question.

"DO YOU DENY THAT CELLS ARE REAL FACTORIES AND THAT PROTEINS ARE REAL MACHINES?  DO YOU DENY THAT THE KEY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THESE AND THEIR MAN-MADE COUNTERPARTS IS LEVEL OF AUTOMATION AND SOPHISTICATION?"

Simple "Yes" or "No" to both questions would be uber-great.  If you say "No" please restrict your objections to the SPECIFICS of these particular statements--nothing more.

Yes, I deny both assertions.  Is that simple enough?

Date: 2006/12/28 16:28:31, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (stevestory @ Dec. 28 2006,16:00)
Hmm...on the one hand, dgszweda definitely appears at first blush to have enough content to merit his own thread. On the other hand, AFDave probably wants him to stay here and take some of the heat off AFDave's UNSUPPORTED Cut and Paste Hypothesis. So what do you think, gang? A new thread for dgszweda?

Please, cut Dogswede his own post.  I'm not a member of your gang, just a peeper out of the shadows, but the thread has lost some edge for me since Dogswede popped in.  He seems sincere, but he lacks AFDave's scintillating wit.

Date: 2007/01/01 16:54:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
I knew Eric would come through on "kinds" in the ark.  He did a great job with the "insect kind."

My personal interest is in the 'skeeters.  Those marvelous vectors of malaria, yellow fever, etc. etc.

I sure would appreciate knowing how those delicate creatures survived the flood.

Date: 2007/01/04 11:06:29, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (thurdl01 @ Jan. 04 2007,07:18)
 
Quote (CloneBoySA @ Jan. 04 2007,02:05)
PS I can't help feeling that all Dave's have been given a bad name, by Afdave and DaveScot...

As a fellow David, I know the feeling.  Glad to know there's more of us on the correct side of this whole thing.  Maybe we need a sequel to Project Steve.

Omigod, this is uncanny.  I'm another one.

Sayonara, AFDave

Date: 2007/01/04 16:11:36, Link
Author: mitschlag
What drives these people to make such asses of themselves?

Edit: I mean "people like dgszweda"

Date: 2007/01/09 18:58:01, Link
Author: mitschlag
Febble, I'm glad you're here.  I thought your posts at UD were brilliant and I was surprised that the crowd over here didn't pay attention.  I was looking forward to your rebuttal to DaveScot's last put-down before he banned you.
 
Quote
63. DaveScot // Jan 8th 2007 at 7:50 pm
febble
You’re still making mistakes in describing rm+ns. Saying it learns from mistakes is misleading. It needs constant reinforcement of what it learns or it forgets even faster than it learned. This known as conservation of genomic information. Anything that is not immediately useful (no selection value) is not conserved within the genome forever. The genomic information with no immediate use gets peppered with random mutations and quickly becomes useless as a result. This is really basic stuff you don’t know.

Date: 2007/01/10 16:48:36, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote
Comments About Comments
by DaveScot on January 10th, 2007 · No Comments
We used to keep this linked on the sidebar. I added it back.

Comments about Comments
by William Dembski on April 16th, 2005
I want to encourage productive comments on this blog. To that end, let me indicate some initial policies that I plan to enforce:
(1) Thou shalt not be boring, and the person you least want to bore is me. In particular, I’ve been at this game for about fifteen years now, so I’ve seen most of the objections. Don’t repeat what I likely have already seen (for an overview of the sorts of objections I’ve seen and handled, consult my book The Design Revolution).
(2) I don’t plan on policing or editing comments. If you post a comment that I don’t think is productive, I’ll probably not just eliminate your comment but you from this blog (which, given the way WordPress handles comments, means all your comments will be removed). So if you have any doubts about whether I’m going to react negatively to your comments, back them up — I won’t. Note also that I’ve had it happen where someone ingratiates himself with me and then turns. Bait and switch is a sure way to be banned from commenting here.
(3) This blog is for me mainly to get out news items about the ID movement and my work in particular. For more sustained writing and development of my ideas, I refer you to my website: www.designinference.com. I am not a journalist nor do I intend to become one. Thus this is not “The ID Answer Man” or “Ask Your Questions about ID Forum.” If I don’t respond to your comments and questions, even if they are good comments and questions, understand that I have way more commitments than I can fulfill, and that I will only occasionally contribute to a comment thread here.
Finally, there is one cardinal rule at this blog, namely, I make up the rules as I go along. In other words, these policies can change at any time. Moreover, if they change, it will most likely be in the direction of curtailing the time I need to spend with comments.

Indeed, this is one sick puppy.

Date: 2007/01/29 06:59:29, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (avocationist @ Jan. 29 2007,00:47)
Then ther's the problem I can't cut and paste from the article because it's in pdf. I was going to ask for clarification of a couple of things.

To cut and paste from a pdf file, go to the Tools menu, click on "Select and Zoom."  If the tool is checked, you can select text with the I-beam cursor.  Right-click on the selected text to copy.

Date: 2007/01/29 07:58:33, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (avocationist @ Jan. 29 2007,01:24)
...I do not believe in the supernatural, and I don't think there is such a thing as disrupting the laws of physics...

Either we live in a God universe or we don't, and they are mutually exclusive. If there is a God, then existence without God is a nonpossibility. If there is no God, then God is a silly notion, and there is not possibility of one. If we live in a God universe, it is a designed universe, and if it is a designed universe then a nondesigned one cannot have any existence and therfore cannot be rationally postulated.

Avo, you present yourself as a sincere seeker of truth, and your efforts to understand the science involved in nylon-eating bacteria speak to that.  But I have trouble interpreting your thoughts excerpted above.  You seem to be able to hold contradictory positions simultaneously.  If you don't believe in the supernatural, how can you believe in design of the universe by a god?

Date: 2007/01/29 16:23:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (avocationist @ Jan. 29 2007,11:21)
 
Quote
You seem to be able to hold contradictory positions simultaneously.  If you don't believe in the supernatural, how can you believe in design of the universe by a god?
I don't consider God to be supernatural. I don't think the situation is one where God is here but not there. I think it is a lot like the idea of two dimensional beings seeing a third dimensional being jump up and down. When he jumps up off the flat plane, he disappears, so he is supernatural and has magical powers. It seems obvious enough that we are also like these two dimensional beings, and when we see only dimly or not at all or by clues and inferences, we consign the phenomenon to a realm called supernatural.

Wow, thanks for clarifying that!

OK, God is not supernatural.  We just think it [he/she] is beyond nature because it [he/she] exists in  another dimension that we can't perceive, because it's beyond nature.  But it's not supernatural.  
Sure, I get it!

Date: 2007/01/29 16:42:59, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Henry J @ Jan. 29 2007,16:37)
Hmm. Quantum physicists also put a bunch of stuff in other dimensions too. Wonder how that fits in with the natural/supernatural distinction?

Henry, you are so pedestrian.

There's dimensions and then there's D!I!M!E!N!S!I!O!N!S.

Date: 2007/02/12 16:34:05, Link
Author: mitschlag
Multiple statements by Cornelius Hunter on Feb 12, 2007:
   
Quote
Makes perfect sense? If this is your claim then we are on the same page, but the evolution claim here is that it is powerful evidence.

   
Quote
I know my questions must seem terribly naïve, but perhaps you will put up with one more. I’m still unclear as to why homologies such as the pentadactyl pattern are such powerful evidence (perhaps you do not think they are). If, as you point out with your dog example, proportions are easier to evolve than differences in structure, then how did all the structural differences we find in organisms evolve? Why is it that those differences present no big problem whereas the pentadactyl pattern pattern is “hard” to evolve, and so stand as powerful evidence? Now, let’s see, where’s that community college catalog?

   
Quote
I appreciate this good description of the evolution perspective. But how can I use this to argue that homologies are powerful evidence?

 
Quote
Again, this is subjective. I’m supposed to say limb homologies are powerful evidence for evolution because it is “unlikely” they would be designed that way?

   
Quote
Evolutionists claim that homologies such powerful evidence. The question is: Why is this so?

   
Quote
Do not merely explain the data according to evolution. This does not explain why it is powerful evidence.

"POWERFUL EVIDENCE" has been a Cornelius Hunter mantra from the beginning of this thread.  I have encountered this terminology in theology and law, but not in a scientific context.  Is there an epistemological point here, or is it empty rhetoric?

Date: 2007/04/08 15:44:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Ftk @ April 07 2007,19:40)
I simply do not believe that other religions provide as much evidence for their claims as Christianity does.

Is this the scenario that justifies such a statement?

1. FTK is brought up a Christian and accepts the religion thoughtlessly.

2. At some point in her life, possibly late adolescence, a time of rebellion, she has an epiphany: "Maybe this Christianity isn't the right religion after all.  Maybe its claims aren't backed up by evidence."  So she investigates the world's religions.  She reads.  She attends services.  She discusses.  She Googles.  She collects evidences.  She compares the evidences for Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Shintoism, Zoroastroism, Mormonism, Animism, etc, etc.  She weighs these evidences.  She agonizes.

3. How many evidences for each?  How do you weigh them?  Could this take a lifetime?

At what point does FTK throw in the towel and go back to that old time religion?

Date: 2007/04/19 16:20:18, Link
Author: mitschlag
I'm an MD.  Does that count as chopped liver?

Date: 2007/05/04 12:25:22, Link
Author: mitschlag
You can connect wherever there is a WiFi transmitter/receiver (access point), like in motels, airports, coffee bars.  But all interaction with the Net will be insecure.  Your ISP is out of the picture; you're interacting with the local host's ISP.

Date: 2007/06/29 16:50:06, Link
Author: mitschlag
Shame on you all.  No wonder FTK is aghast.

And Ian, happy birthday and all that!

But what's the point of this FARCE?

Read the whole freakin' goddam Brown book already before you start a thread about discussin' it.

*Sheesh*  *Sigh*  *Etc*

Date: 2007/08/03 18:53:12, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (ppb @ Aug. 03 2007,11:29)
This is just my own idle speculation, not based on any research, so take it for what it's worth.  I think a part of it is the idea that the story of Creation is all about Us.  The bible takes us from the garden through the fall, redemption, second coming.  God's history is human history.  Why would God be doing stuff with the universe for billions of years without us?  :)

Profound insight.  Seems worth a lot to me.

Date: 2007/08/13 19:27:14, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote
I’ve already had this debate a number of times. Do you expect that if yet another group of atheists tell me “no, we don’t hate God. Why, we hardly think of him at all” that I would say “Gee, so sorry, my bad. I didn’t realize.” This argument has some subtleties for which this UD thread is not the appropriate venue. But as a thumbnail (and my last comment on the matter, at least on this thread), the hatred of God by all atheists is synonymous with Original Sin, and also with the T in TULIP.

I find the obtuse arrogance of Heddle's statement supremely offensive.

How dare he tar anyone with Original Sin or any other imputed moral deficiency based on his bizarre belief system?

Let him take the damned beam out of his own sinful eye and stop bearing false witness against his neighbors.

Date: 2007/08/14 08:01:55, Link
Author: mitschlag
Heddle:
Quote
But to clarify just a bit further, this is some of what the bible says about  fallen man's natural attitude and relationship toward God:

• The intent of our heart is "only evil continuously". Gen. 6:5
• Our "righteous" deeds are filthy garments. Isa. 64.6
• Nobody is good. Luke 18:19
• We cannot see the Kingdom of God . John 3:3
• We are not righteous. Rom. 3:10
• We do not understand; we do not seek God. Rom. 3:11
• We have turned aside; we are useless. Rom. 3:12
• None of us does good. Rom. 3:12
• We do not fear God. Rom. 3:18
• We are hostile to God. Rom 8:7
• We are unable (not just unwilling) to submit to the law of God. Rom 8:7
• We cannot please God. Rom 8:8
• We were dead (not just gravely ill) in our sins. Eph 2:1
• We walked according to Satan. Eph 2:2
• We lived in the lusts of our flesh. Eph 2:3
• We were children of wrath. Eph 2:3

Such a picture is fairly summarized by saying all unsaved men hate God.

Quote
I believe you hate God for the reasons I gave.

Those are reasons?

Date: 2007/08/14 10:47:44, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote
Total Depravity sends a wrong message, that atheists are sitting around with vile thoughts, plotting how to commit heinous acts, when of course the truth is that most atheists are by human standards good and moral people who do wonderful acts of charity. Original Sin argues, however, that at the deepest level those deeds are ultimately self-centered and not meritorious (before God) although I certainly appreciate them.

So Heddle's god says,

"Knock yourselves out being good to each other, but kiss my ass, or you'll fry forever!"

Date: 2007/08/14 16:56:25, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (GCT @ Aug. 14 2007,16:42)
 
Quote (heddle @ Aug. 13 2007,21:37)
GCT,

   
Quote
I've already had this "atheists hate god" debate with Heddle.  See, he will say that atheists deny god and hate him.  When you point out that you can't hate something that you don't believe in


You remind me a bit of Kim Jung Il. Your descriptions of our "debates" on my site are always, when retold by you on this site, glorious victories for you. Nevermind. I'll just point out that the contention is "athiests don't believe in God, and they hate him," so carrying the argument nowhere beyond "we don't believe in God, therefore we can't hate him" is hardly worth the effort.

BTW, I didn't say C. S. Lewis was an atheist (though I believe, rather obviously, he was prior to converting) rather the Wiki article Kristine linked to said he was, and that he was angry with God.

I invite anyone to go back and read it for themselves.

http://www.haloscan.com/comments/dheddle/2652051098260940728/#628714

If you can't handle the truth, that you did change your position and got called out on it, then that's simply too bad.

Heddle is a hypocrite.  Surprise.

Date: 2007/08/15 13:16:54, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (heddle @ Aug. 14 2007,17:16)
Mitschlag,

I see you have read the comments from the link GCT has provided and agree with him that I have changed my position (am a hypocrite.) Do you care to back that up?—Where in those comments have I deviated from what I have been claiming here:
1) Atheists deny God
2) Atheists hate God
3) That hatred is expressed by the doctrine of Original sin

Where did I back down? Yes, this is a challenge

I have nothing to add to the exchange between you and GCT - or to this fascinating discussion, but I retract my accusation of hypocrisy.  Just as you have no way of knowing whether I have a visceral antipathy to your sky-lord, I have no way of testing the sincerity of your antinomial beliefs.

Date: 2007/09/09 16:11:06, Link
Author: mitschlag
The Cell Cycle editorial board is loaded with really big names.  Impressive.  And puzzling.

Interesting editorial policy.  It's true that there is "good" research that can't fit into the more prestigious journals.  There has always been a second tier.  I wonder what floor this tier is on?

No reason for a working scientist to subscribe.  They're peddling it to libraries.

Date: 2007/09/24 12:43:08, Link
Author: mitschlag
Wouldn't the simplest and fairest thing be to reinstate JAM?  Then, if he "misbehaves" again, ban him again.

It's easy.

Date: 2007/10/02 16:35:18, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (C Gieschen @ Oct. 02 2007,08:24)
To me it matters not where things come from in order to understand how they work.  One need not visit Edison's lab or study the first light bulb to see how today's light bulbs work.  Even if you can explain to me logically how the first living thing knew how to divide does not mean that you are right.  I can believe that God originated the information in every cell's DNA to have the "machines" running at the time of creation.  You choose to believe that a cell put itself together.  I find no value of either belief in understanding how a cell divides today.

Chris, you're missing out on a lot of good science. Regarding cell division, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telomere, especially the table at the end of the article.

Since God's creative intentions are inscrutable, there is no reason why anyone would expect telomere sequences in all those "lower" forms to bear any resemblance to those of "higher" forms, including humans.  Nor would there be much point to studying telomere biology in any organism except humans.

Nor does it help the theist's case to say at this point in time, "Of course God did it that way," since (as far as you know) your inscrutable God could have done it any way she wanted.

Date: 2007/10/03 09:59:36, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 03 2007,02:06)
Don't those individuals within a species that live longer, reproduce more?  Isn't this exactly what NS is supposed to select for?

On the evolutionary significance of grandmothers:  
Quote
Proc Biol Sci. 2007 Sep 18; [Epub ahead of print]
Testing evolutionary theories of menopause.Shanley DP, Sear R, Mace R, Kirkwood TB.
Henry Wellcome Laboratory for Biogerontology Research, Institute for Ageing and Health, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne NE4 6BE, UK.

Why do women cease fertility rather abruptly through menopause at an age well before generalized senescence renders child rearing biologically impossible? The two main evolutionary hypotheses are that menopause serves either (i) to protect mothers from rising age-specific maternal mortality risks, thereby protecting their highly dependent younger children from death if the mother dies or (ii) to provide post-reproductive grandmothers who enhance their inclusive fitness by helping to care and provide for their daughters' children. Recent theoretical work indicates that both factors together are necessary if menopause is to provide an evolutionary advantage. However, these ideas need to be tested using detailed data from actual human life histories lived under reasonably 'natural' conditions; for obvious reasons, such data are extremely scarce. We here describe a study based on a remarkably complete dataset from The Gambia. The data provided quantitative estimates for key parameters for the theoretical model, which were then used to assess the actual effects on fitness. Empirically based numerical analysis of this nature is essential if the enigma of menopause is to be explained satisfactorily in evolutionary terms. Our results point to the distinctive (and perhaps unique) role of menopause in human evolution and provide important support for the hypothesized evolutionary significance of grandmothers.

Date: 2007/10/03 16:29:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (C Gieschen @ Oct. 03 2007,10:20)
To mitschlag,

I read the entire article and fail to see how this shows the evolution of mitosis, more specifically how did this process orginate after the first cell put itself together.

Thanks for your due diligence.  I thought you were claiming that evolution was irrelevant to understanding anything about mitosis, and telomeres being relevant to mitosis, isn't it neat that we know so much about their evolution?

But now you are asking for scientific evidence pertaining to the origin of mitosis.

1. To paraphrase blipey, So, you're saying that the origin of mitosis can never, EVER, EVEN IN PRINCIPLE, be determined by the scientific community?

2. And you are saying that science at this moment is absolutely clueless about how mitosis originated?

3. You are unaware of the existence of organisms that divide without a mitotic apparatus?

4. You are unaware of the differences in cell division mechanisms between dinoflagellates, hypermastigotes, yeasts, and higher plants and animals that entail increasing levels of complexity?

5. Why bother to learn anything when ignorance is so much easier?

(And a tip of the hat to Albatrossity2 for his reference.)

Date: 2007/10/04 08:30:35, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (C Gieschen @ Oct. 04 2007,06:57)
For example on the barmin problem of Dr. Wise.  He could use a little help, wheres the species debate still rages in biological circles between the lumpers and the splitters.  I guess if I can have it both ways, so can you.

You may have it both ways, but there is a telling difference:

Baraminology is an effort to shoe-horn classification into a supernatural history derived from Genesis.

The scientific "species problem" is being debated on naturalistic grounds.

Date: 2007/10/04 16:07:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (C Gieschen @ Oct. 04 2007,15:35)
John W

I just e-mailed the NIH and they said a response will come in 7 to 10 days.  Our tax dollars at work!  Please be patient on the STD question.  Thanks!

Amazing.

Date: 2007/10/07 06:09:48, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 07 2007,05:46)
I also must clarify that I do actually believe that all functional sequences (as I've defined them) are evolutionarily constrained.  It's just that I don't think you can find functionality or constraint by comparing sequences to other lineages (since I posit that there are no truly neutral sites).  If comparing to other lineages, the function must first be known and then the entire sequence that provides that function compared.  However, the only true test of constraint is comparison to ancestral DNA within the same lineage.  

So, with that in mind, how do we go about testing this?

You are the scientist, DS.  You are responsible for devising the test.

Date: 2007/10/08 07:02:54, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 08 2007,04:27)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Oct. 07 2007,06:09)
You are the scientist, DS.  You are responsible for devising the test.

Well, I'm not a scientist, but I think I've got an idea for a test:

Take two members of the same species that have been geographically and reproductively isolated for a long period of time (the longer the better), sequence their genomes and compare them.

My prediction is that the coding and non-coding sequences (basically all sequences) will show an equal amount of evolutionary constraint.

Please define "evolutionary constraint."

Predict the expected results that would falsify your hypothesis.

Date: 2007/10/10 12:47:34, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 10 2007,02:30)
The results that would falsify my hypothesis would be if the coding sequences showed evolutionary constraint while the non-coding sequences didn't.
There's a fair amount of evidence showing that (contrary to expectation) non-coding sequences have fewer base changes than coding sequences, see, for example:
http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2148/7/66
Quote
The primary result is that the mean rate of intergenic nucleotide substitution is two-thirds that of the synonymous coding data, with an absolute rate estimated to be 1.05 × 10-8 substitutions per site per year. This result holds with alternative nucleotide models (see Methods), and thus does not appear to be solely an issue of estimation procedures.

Slower rates in non-coding regions relative to synonymous sites are becoming a surprisingly frequent observation. For example, a recent study of Drosophila demonstrated that non-coding DNA evolves considerably slower than synonymous sites in terms of both divergence between species and polymorphism within species [16]. By comparing studies, one can also make the case that pseudogenes [32,33] and introns [34,35] evolve more slowly than synonymous sites in apes and other mammals [13,36-38]. Studies of mammalian intergenic regions have also found slower rates than synonymous sites [35,39,40]. Although most of these studies encompass only a handful of genes, an overall picture of relatively slow non-coding rates is emerging.

What do you make of that?

Date: 2007/10/10 15:47:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Henry J @ Oct. 10 2007,15:00)
What's makes a site synonymous?

 
Quote
Nucleotide substitutions in genes coding for proteins can be either synonymous (do not change amino acid), alternatively called silent substitutions, or non-synonymous (changes amino acid). Usually, most non-synonymous changes would be expected to be eliminated by purifying selection, but under certain conditions Darwinian selection may lead to their retention. Investigating the number of synonymous and non-synonymous substitutions may therefore provide information about the degree of selection operating on a system.
From http://pubmlst.org/software/analysis/start/manual/dsdn.shtml

Date: 2007/10/10 16:23:05, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Ftk @ Oct. 10 2007,16:12)
Blah, blah, blah...

Sigh....must I?  Blipey is such a relentless little soul, I suppose it wouldn’t kill me to actually read one of his posts....be back in a bit.

Shameful.

Date: 2007/10/12 16:48:04, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Ftk @ Oct. 12 2007,16:19)
You're really a piece of work, Dave.  You slam IDists with everything you've got on a *daily basis* and then have the audacity to complain when they laugh at the thought of Gore with a Nobel prize.

What in hell does ID have to do with Al Gore?

What in hell does ID have to do with global warming?

There's a smell somewhere...

Date: 2007/10/13 18:22:14, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 13 2007,13:53)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Oct. 10 2007,12:47)
     
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 10 2007,02:30)
The results that would falsify my hypothesis would be if the coding sequences showed evolutionary constraint while the non-coding sequences didn't.
There's a fair amount of evidence showing that (contrary to expectation) non-coding sequences have fewer base changes than coding sequences, see, for example:
http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2148/7/66
       
Quote
The primary result is that the mean rate of intergenic nucleotide substitution is two-thirds that of the synonymous coding data, with an absolute rate estimated to be 1.05 × 10-8 substitutions per site per year. This result holds with alternative nucleotide models (see Methods), and thus does not appear to be solely an issue of estimation procedures.

Slower rates in non-coding regions relative to synonymous sites are becoming a surprisingly frequent observation. For example, a recent study of Drosophila demonstrated that non-coding DNA evolves considerably slower than synonymous sites in terms of both divergence between species and polymorphism within species [16]. By comparing studies, one can also make the case that pseudogenes [32,33] and introns [34,35] evolve more slowly than synonymous sites in apes and other mammals [13,36-38]. Studies of mammalian intergenic regions have also found slower rates than synonymous sites [35,39,40]. Although most of these studies encompass only a handful of genes, an overall picture of relatively slow non-coding rates is emerging.

What do you make of that?

If this is true, then it would be a confirmation of my hypothesis with better than expected results.

It's true, all right, but it doesn't confirm your hypothesis.

To learn why, read the cited paper.  Hint: TE=transposable element.

(Sorry that I won't be able to participate in this discussion for the next two weeks due to travel in arcane regions.  In the meantime, I want to commend DS for  his courteous and patient responses to the many challenges that have been addressed to him.)

Date: 2007/11/02 05:08:44, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Oct. 31 2007,19:17)
It's biology. You delete a gene with an essential function. You replace it with random sequence. You go through cycles of genetic variation (random wrt fitness) and selection (only reproduction).

You end up with a functional sequence that is nothing like the designed/evolved one that it replaced.

Hey JAM, I'm curious, too.  What's the reference for your claim?

Date: 2007/11/02 16:45:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Ftk @ Nov. 02 2007,16:25)
 
Quote
Sure, he could have done it anyway he chose, but I'm guessing that at the time of creation incest between siblings was not considered wrong in any way.  So, it would have been no big deal.  Different time...no reason to look at it as immoral.

Dudes, my god can do anything it wants.  Even create its own morality at one point in history and change that morality 180 degrees at another point in history.

No big deal.

Date: 2007/11/03 05:35:36, Link
Author: mitschlag
"More than the calf wants to suck, the cow wants to give suck."

- Attributed to Rabbi Isaac

Date: 2007/11/03 06:26:29, Link
Author: mitschlag
More to the point, Louis (your eloquent appeal to reason notwithstanding), there ain't no raccoon in that tree.  Ain't never gonna be.

Alas.

Date: 2007/11/03 07:15:37, Link
Author: mitschlag
Count your blessings.

Date: 2007/11/04 16:16:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Hermagoras @ Nov. 04 2007,08:53)
Block that metaphor!  
Quote
In short, the evidence points to a fatal malaise for our Civilisation, and the vultures are already circling and waiting to pounce.

Good old kairosfocus the insane.

Date: 2007/11/10 12:50:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,11:05)
My expectation then is that the provisional definition of "junk DNA" will continually evolve until it no longer includes any portion of the genome.

So natural selection (new data) will elicit mutations (deletions) in the definition of "junk DNA."

Another nail in the coffin of Darwinism.

Date: 2007/11/10 13:06:47, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,12:30)
Davison took their work and expanded upon it - suggesting a workable mechanism.  This mechanism (semi-meiotic reproduction) has been experimentally verified possible here,
here,
and here.

             
Quote
Gynogenetic reproduction, employing the inhibtion of meiosis I1 and yielding diploid rather than triploid progeny, can be used to map G-K distances as well as
to develop “inbred” strains*. This mode of reproduction is known in several natural populations of invertebrates and vertebrates (SUOMALAINEN 1950; WHITE 1948, 1970; OLSEN 1962; CARSON 1967) and has been produced experimentally in vertebrates when the appropriate meiotic events are altered (TYLER 1955; BEATTY 1967; GRAHAM 1970; TARKOWSKI, WITKOWSKA, and NOWICKA 1970).
(Emphasis mine)


A search for the terms parthenogenesis, gynogenesis, and hybridogenesis reveals more data in this area.

That's not the issue.  The issue is not whether semi-meiotic reproduction can occur.  The issue is whether that is the driving mechanism of evolution, as Davison claims.

Furthermore, let's assume that Davison is correct in that claim.  How would that logically entail "front-loading"?
     
Quote
I have no idea why these scientists are ignored, but my guess is that their views don't fit the paradigm, and - based on my own observations - scientists whose ideas don't fit are generally ostracized, lose funding, and eventually relegated to the sidelines.

No one wants to lose their position over such things, so they stick to the paradigm.

That's my guess.

My guess is that their findings (not their "views," whatever they may be, not having been expressed in the papers you cited), are not RELEVANT to the paradigm.  It's survival of the fittest out there.  (Your case is not strengthened by such gratuitous ad hominems.)

Date: 2007/11/10 17:08:28, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,15:51)
These saltational events are too extensive to be random.  This is what implies front-loading.

I've read Davison's Evolutionary Manifesto

Please quote where in that document he makes that point.

And please state the criteria that would distinguish "too extensive" from "random," citing data upon which you base your claim.

Date: 2007/11/10 17:14:40, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,15:51)
I wasn't aware that I was using "gratuitous ad hominems".  I based my statements on observed incidents such as this one; where a proponent of ID decides to sever his ties (at least publicly) to the movement because he was accepted into a graduate program at Johns Hopkins University.  This after being advised that he "may expect possible complications" for his public involvement with ID.

The persecution complexes of evolution deniers are legion, on this thread and throughout the blogosphere.

Can you tell the difference between anecdote and reality?

The more you pile on crap like this, the more you undermine your credibility.

Date: 2007/11/10 18:47:48, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,15:51)
Dr. Davison suffered extensive repurcusions at the University of Vermont.

Try to put yourself in the position of authority.  You have a tenured faculty member who has become scientifically unproductive (check publications and grants lists) and is making a public spectacle of himself.

You can't fire him.  What do you do?  (Cue Lehigh and Behe.)

Date: 2007/11/11 06:29:08, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (VMartin @ Nov. 11 2007,03:15)
 
Quote

It is our collective position that hermetism has no basis in science, has not been tested experimentally, and should not be regarded as scientific.


Surely true and yet it was the faked work of Hermes Trismegistus and his worshipping of the Sun, that led Giordano Bruno to support solar system of Copernikus (who in his drawing of new Solar system used Hermes Trismegistus name as well).  From bad pressupositions good results.

The Lord works in mysterious ways, VMartin.

Date: 2007/11/11 08:46:28, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (VMartin @ Nov. 11 2007,07:49)
My point was that at the root of the modern science stood men of Rennaisance who had a much more complex view of the reality than reductionism  so common today.

Maybe they were just confused.

Date: 2007/11/11 16:12:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (VMartin @ Nov. 11 2007,11:38)
Did anyone of you published so young in the Nature (if you have ever published there something)  that entitles you to dismiss your antidarwinian adersaries who  published there as "confused"?

Yes, yes, and yes.

Date: 2007/11/11 16:20:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 11 2007,12:52)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Nov. 10 2007,17:08)
         
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,15:51)
These saltational events are too extensive to be random.  This is what implies front-loading.

I've read Davison's Evolutionary Manifesto

Please quote where in that document he makes that point.

He doesn't make that point in the Manifesto.  He does make it in his many postings on the web since that time.  The only place in his manifesto where he hints at it is here:
         
Quote
While it is true that the existence of a Creator, while a logical necessity, has never been rigorously proved and perhaps never can be, it is also true that neither has been the spontaneous generation of life. (emphasis mine)

.

Coherence is evidently not one of Davison's strong suits.

Date: 2007/11/11 16:28:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 11 2007,12:52)
If these differences are the result of a small number of saltational events, they could not be random and still produce working, living organisms.

If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.

One more time: At what point, quantitatively, does a "small number of saltational events" equal "could not be random"?

Date: 2007/11/11 16:34:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 11 2007,14:58)
You know, I began this discussion expecting to talk about Schindewolf, Berg, and the fossil record.  I was almost immediately sidetracked with molecular arguments - so I took the bait and waded right in - figuring that design would show in that arena as well.  

I began that discussion with a severely limited knowledge of genetics - only knowing that there were genes (which I assumed to be regions that only coded for proteins) and non-coding regions between them (which I assumed to be what-is-commonly-referred-to-as "junk DNA").  With this limited knowledge, I made several predictions indicating what I'd expect to find molecularly - including increasing complexity and overlapping and embedded codes.

As I delved in, I found all this and more.  While my view of genes as solely protein coding regions was wrong, as well as my definition of "junk", my expectations as to the complexity of the genome was confirmed many times over.  I learned that many, many transcriptions (both coding and non-coding) overlap each other - with differing reading frames on the same strand, overlapping transcriptions on opposite strands, and overlapping transcriptions in opposite directions on either the same strand or the opposite strand.  

Such things as sense and anti-sense transcriptions, ribosomal {r}RNAs, transfer (t)RNAs, small nuclear (sn)RNAs, small nucleolar (sno)RNAs, microRNAs (miRNAs) and exogenous small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), were all unheard of for me.  Couple that with the newly minted classification "Transcripts of unknown function" (TUFs), and you're talking about a world of complexity I'd never dreamed of when I made those predictions.

Aren't you glad you came here, then?

Date: 2007/11/12 14:07:39, Link
Author: mitschlag
The evolution of the horse:



No gradualism here, nossir.  All saltational, yessir.

Fig. 4 from Davison's Manifesto.

Date: 2007/11/12 14:51:32, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Richardthughes @ Nov. 12 2007,11:32)
Music wise, get yourself some 1210's and take good care of your vinyl. Its worth remembering that a lot of early music was mixed for the medium, so it will sound better (warmer) on vinyl.
Gimme that old time harmonic distortion:
Quote
Programmable analog distortion/warmth: Helpful in the pristine but unforgiving digital world. Three audio modes provide user programmable, warm harmonic distortion. Emphasized tube-like 2nd harmonic in clean and Distort 2 mode. In Distort 3 mode the distortion becomes dominated by 3rd harmonic (similar to tape).

From this lair of Satan.

Date: 2007/11/13 08:13:15, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 12 2007,22:35)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Nov. 11 2007,16:28)
One more time: At what point, quantitatively, does a "small number of saltational events" equal "could not be random"?

First, the number of saltational events doesn't have anything to do with it.

Thanks for your response.
 
Quote
(Daniel Smith @ Nov. 11 2007,12:52)
If these differences are the result of a small number of saltational events, they could not be random and still produce working, living organisms.
(My emphasis)
So now a "small number" of saltational events becomes "any number," because:    
Quote
Second, I think "saltational evolution", by definition, excludes random causes - in that there are two many successful changes all at once.  Maybe I'm wrong.
Yes, the only way one could claim that "saltation" excludes "random" in this context is by definition.  Unless you can cite relevent empirical evidence.

Bearing in mind that "random" means "undirected" in this context.

Date: 2007/11/13 08:29:12, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 12 2007,22:59)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Nov. 12 2007,14:07)
The evolution of the horse:

No gradualism here, nossir.  All saltational, yessir.

Fig. 4 from Davison's Manifesto.

The horse is used as an example of evolution in a determined direction - not as an example of saltational change.  The caption reads: "Phyletic size increase in the horse". and is used in the section entitled "Are there laws governing evolution?"

I am well aware of the way Davison was using his Fig. 4.  I quoted it sarcastically for the purpose of showing that the data make the case for gradualism.
   
Quote
Davison (and Schindewolf before him) saw evolution of new types as a saltational event. What followed was a series of constrained variations within that type which usually resulted in over-specialization and extinction.  Oversized organisms were often a sign of this last stage.
Understood.  Interesting ideas.  Any reason to accept them without cocking a skeptical eye and asking for some confirmatory evidence?.  
Quote
Did the fact that this illustration was Schindewolf's own - from his book "Basic Questions in Paleontology" - escape you?
You underestimate my reading comprehension, Dan.  Now please let go of my leg.

Date: 2007/11/13 08:43:09, Link
Author: mitschlag
An update on Schindewolf from
Sciencemag:

     
Quote
Adaptive radiation of a beloved icon. Phylogeny, geographic distribution, diet, and body sizes of the Family Equidae over the past 55 My. The vertical lines represent the actual time ranges of equid genera or clades.

Date: 2007/11/15 16:14:01, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 15 2007,15:39)
You are convinced (based on VISTA) that I am wrong.  That's fine - I very well may be wrong!  After all, I'm trying to guess what God was thinking when he designed life.  I'll probably be wrong more than I'm right.

Hi, Dan,

I hope you don't mind me kibitzing here, since you and JAM have this thing going between yourselves, but it seems to me, based on my sectarian Christian education, that the answer is in the Catechism.

Why waste energy on all this sciency stuff?

Date: 2007/11/17 07:25:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 16 2007,18:50)
One thing I find interesting here is that most of you have shown no interest in any of the various papers I've cited from the ENCODE project.

These papers clearly show a multi-layered, overlapping, multi-directional "coding" scheme within the human genome.  (I put "coding" in quotes since most of the genome "codes" for things other than proteins and so is currently classified as "non-coding").

They also show quite clearly that most of the human genome is transcribed and functional.

These scientists are suggesting that a re-defining of the most basic term in genetics - the gene - is necessary.

I'll ask again:  When did any of your various theories or hypotheses predict such a complex interwoven tapestry within our genome (or any other)?
And...
Is that why none of you want to talk about it?  Does it cause difficulties for you?

One thing I find interesting is that when he can't provide answers to standing questions, Daniel changes the subject.

It's not that we are afraid to talk about it.  We just don't see it as being a problem.  And especially not as evidence for a Designer.

Why should we be shocked to learn something new?   That's the way it goes in science, in which empirical data trump previous belief.  And the pace of discovery keeps accelerating.

So it is irrelevant whether anyone predicted or did not predict new findings.  The excitement is in learning new things and in overthrowing the existent paradigm...whenever possible.

You might understand better if you would read The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.

Date: 2007/11/17 08:08:59, Link
Author: mitschlag
Unfortunately, the PowerPoint falls flat without fart noises.

I'm eagerly awaiting the YouTube version.

Date: 2007/11/21 06:42:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 20 2007,19:20)
And, no one even tried to answer this question I posted:              
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 10 2007,11:29)

In the human genome, what percentage of genomic sequence would you say is likely to be transcribed as nuclear primary transcripts?

So.  Are you all running away? (Or does that only apply to me?)

But, but, but hasn't a start in obtaining data that answer your question been obtained by the ENCODE Project?

And hasn't this just been discussed (e.g. JAM Nov. 17 2007,10:30, among others)?

Looks to me like the ball is in your court to make whatever you want to make out of the data.

Date: 2007/11/21 07:19:23, Link
Author: mitschlag
In case memories need to be refreshed, here is Figure 4 of Identification and analysis of functional elements in 1% of the human genome by the ENCODE pilot project


Three different technologies (integrated annotation from GENCODE, RACE-array experiments (RxFrags) and PET tags) were used to assess the presence of a nucleotide in a primary transcript. Use of these technologies provided the opportunity to have multiple observations of each finding. The proportion of genomic bases detected in the ENCODE regions associated with each of the following scenarios is depicted: detected by all three technologies, by two of the three technologies, by one technology but with multiple observations, and by one technology with only one observation. Also indicated are genomic bases without any detectable coverage of primary transcripts.

Date: 2007/11/22 11:25:57, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 22 2007,10:57)
I'm trying to steer you toward the wealth of papers produced by the ENCODE consortium with the hope that maybe we can get specific and you can explain to me how mutational mechanisms, natural selection and drift produced the systems found within our genome.          

Steer away.



And please explain how the data (specific citations would be helpful) show that  "mutational mechanisms, natural selection and drift [could not have] produced the systems found within our genome."

Date: 2007/11/22 11:35:33, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 22 2007,10:21)
Correct, and natural selection has little to nothing to do with it.  Evolution is based on internal mechanisms, is constrained along certain paths (convergent), and is directed (as in prescribed).  The creation of new types is saltational (happens all at once), is most likely the result of chromosome reordering and is also prescribed in advance.  This view is consistent with the fossil record, (as Schindewolf so eloquently documented), observations in the wild (see Berg's Nomogenesis), and genetics (See virtually any recent paper describing the molecular workings within genomes) and has a workable, testable mechanism (See Davison's Semi-meiotic hypothesis).

And so, after two months, we're back here with the original claims, still supported only by references to "authorities."

Let's try one: Davison's semi-meiotic hypothesis that you say is testable.  How so?

Date: 2007/11/22 11:53:20, Link
Author: mitschlag
A quote from Schindewolf, by Daniel,  here:
 
Quote
"And these are by no means just isolated occurrences; these strange new forms are usually also represented by large numbers of individuals.  Nonetheless, there is no connecting link with the stock from which they derived.  The continuity of the other species gives us no reason to suspect interruptions in the deposition of the layers, or subsequent destruction of layers already deposited, which, furthermore, would be revealed by other geological criteria.  Nothing is missing here, and even drastic changes in living conditions are excluded, for the facies remain the same.

Further, when we see this situation repeated in all stratigraphic sequences of the same time period all over the world... we cannot resort to attributing this phenomenon to immigration of the new type from areas not yet investigated, where perhaps a gradual, slowly progressing evolution had taken place. What we have here must be primary discontinuities, natural evolutionary leaps, and not circumstantial accidents of discovery and gaps in the fossil record"

ibid. pp 104-105 (emphasis his)

How so?  (How does his belief make it so?)

Date: 2007/11/23 16:44:29, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 23 2007,13:41)
Schindewolf based his theory on some of the most abundant fossils that appear in the fossil record - cephalopods and stony corals.  These fossils are so abundant they are used as index fossils.  He extensively documented the changes within lineages among these organisms.  He came to his conclusions based on this evidence.  His belief has nothing to do with it.  

So when he says something like this (from your quote above (emphasis mine)):
"The continuity of the other species gives us no reason to suspect interruptions in the deposition of the layers, or subsequent destruction of layers already deposited, which, furthermore, would be revealed by other geological criteria. Nothing is missing here, and even drastic changes in living conditions are excluded, for the facies remain the same."
... he's making a case for the continuity of the fossil record within which these "leaps" between types are found.

Again, it has nothing whatsoever to do with "belief", it is an observation - made by one of Europe's leading Paleontologists.

Schindewolf's theory and conclusions are not equivalent to observation or evidence.  Theory and conclusions may or may not be based on evidence.  If you can't distinguish fundamental categories, you'll continue to be confused.  And your arguments will be futile.

Appeals to authority are also futile: Schindewolf's eminence in paleontology is long gone and was limited to the special circumstances existing at the time (50 years ago!) in German academia.  Outside of Germany, his theory had no traction and it is now a minor footnote in the history of paleontology.

Date: 2007/11/24 12:51:47, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 24 2007,11:19)
OK.  Because you said so, I'll abandon my affinity for Schindewolf's theory.  This in spite of the fact that you have provided no evidence or observations to contradict it.  

I am abandoning it because you said, "Appeals to authority are also futile".  

That convinced me!

This charming outburst is not reasonable or logical, so I take it as sarcasm.

I intended no offense.  My admittedly sharp remark about argumentum ad verecundiam was directed at your statement:  "Again, it has nothing whatsoever to do with "belief", it is an observation - made by one of Europe's leading Paleontologists."

Do you not agree that it's the quality of Schindewolf's argument that is at issue, not his credentials?

That he was an expert in the paleontology of cephalopods and stony corals is not at issue.  His work in those areas may well have stood the test of time.  The current issue is, I believe, whether his ideas about saltation and orthogenesis are valid.

Since Schindewolf's ideas about saltation and orthogenesis are interpretations of the evidence, they can only be challenged by alternative interpretations, as provided in the modern synthesis.  

But let's assume for fun that saltation and orthogenesis are valid.  Is there any compelling reason to assert that these supposed mechanisms are not "natural"?  Is there any compelling reason to think that a supernatural agency had to bring them about?

The same goes for Davison's semi-meiosis, by the way.

Date: 2007/11/24 16:46:58, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 23 2007,14:29)
   
Quote

Tell me Daniel, is there *any* evidence that random mutations coupled with natural selection *cannot* produce complex genomes and all the other elegant complexities within life?

Links please.

Since almost anything is possible, I don't see how anyone can prove that negative.  I would say though that the lack of experimental evidence that random mutations coupled with natural selection can produce complex genomes and all the other elegant complexities within life, is a strong case against such a mechanism.

You were not asked to "prove a negative."  You were asked for evidence.

See also here where mitschlag asks for data:    
Quote
And please explain how the data (specific citations would be helpful) show that  "mutational mechanisms, natural selection and drift [could not have] produced the systems found within our genome."

You are not the first person to choose to answer the question you would like to answer instead of the question you were asked.  

Care to try again?

Date: 2007/11/25 16:40:27, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 25 2007,13:18)
Actually Schindewolf saw these mechanisms as 100% natural - not supernatural in any way.

It's me who sees the supernatural mind behind it all.

Thank you, Daniel.  Your honesty is exemplary.

And for me, this chapter in the unending conflict between science and religion closes on a welcome conciliatory note.

Date: 2007/12/16 15:57:21, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Dec. 16 2007,15:44)
You have to remember that creation took place a long time ago, and lots of evolution and variation has happened since then.  The fact that so much of what remains is still functional is a testament to the brilliance of the Creator.

One expects no less from an omniscient, omnipotent being.  So I'm not terribly impressed.

But when did that being stop tinkering?

Date: 2008/01/07 07:35:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
The Jerry Falwell explanation for AIDS:
   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 05 2008,13:25)
Oh and HIV is a disease.  God introduced disease as a consequence of the fall.  It's all there in black and white if you want to read about it.  A designer can make things however he wishes.  God chose to allow humans (and everything else) to die.  It's a fact of life.  Are you only willing to accept a God that makes a perfect world for you to live in?
Considering that HIV-induced AIDS originated in the 20th century, it's evident that Jesus the angry tinkerer wasn't satisfied with the amount of misery he'd already inflicted upon humanity, so he deliberately designed and created that charming little enhancement to our suffering.  Makes perfect sense.

Date: 2008/01/09 07:34:32, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Jan. 09 2008,05:15)
Hey Daniel,
Seeing as things have taken a turn for the off-topic, perhaps you could answer a few simple questions that'll allow the lurkers to decide if you are sincere?

a) How old is the earth?
b) How old is the solar system?
c) How old is the universe?
d) Did man and dinosaur share the planet at the same time?
e) Did every human but 8 die in a global flood?
f) Does the "designer" actively "interfere" with the day to day running of the universe?
g) If "yes" to f) then how come we've not noticed?

There are plenty more, of course.

Please pay attention, Daniel has already answered.

f) Does the "designer" actively "interfere" with the day to day running of the universe?

Answer: he created HIV in the 20th century.

g) If "yes" to f) then how come we've not noticed?

Answer: We've noticed the effect.  Big time.

Date: 2008/01/20 05:18:45, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (clamboy @ Jan. 20 2008,01:03)
It disgusts me that our educational system churns out millions of "Daniel Smith"s per year. He is not just pointed the wrong direction, he's like an aircraft carrier going that way at full steam. Just to turn to face the right way will require miles and miles and hours and hours of effort.

Don't blame the system.  Daniel and his compatriots have issues that interfere with learning.

Date: 2008/01/21 05:08:06, Link
Author: mitschlag
Crackpot liberalism.

Date: 2008/01/21 12:10:46, Link
Author: mitschlag
Dembski the tease on 01/14/08:    
Quote
I have my own list of answers, but I’d like to hear those of this group.

EvoMat prediction: There is no list.

(Meanwhile, the thread has fallen below the fold and has become the PaV and jerry show.)

Date: 2008/01/24 04:46:33, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 23 2008,18:32)
All the men I mentioned expressed serious reservations about the power of NS.  They all felt basically the same.  Berg wrote a book in which he chronicles example after example, from his own observations and the observations of others, which gave him tremendous pause in his assessment of NS.  Schindewolf chronicled obvious patterns in the fossil record in support of his view for the limited power of selection.  Goldschmidt came to the same conclusion from his study of genetics.  These men were not creationists, they were evolutionists.  They all held to common descent.  They just rejected NS as a viable mechanism for macro-evolutionary change.

I get the distinct impression that no one here has read anything these men have published.  I also get the impression no one here wants to.

Those mutants did not confer reproductive advantages and left no progeny.  They are fossils in the boneyard of intellectual history.

Date: 2008/01/24 04:53:20, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 23 2008,18:32)
I get the distinct impression that no one here has read anything these men have published.  I also get the impression no one here wants to.

Please give citations to PEER-REVIEWED papers.

Date: 2008/01/24 13:43:35, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 24 2008,11:05)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Jan. 24 2008,02:53)
   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 23 2008,18:32)
I get the distinct impression that no one here has read anything these men have published.  I also get the impression no one here wants to.

Please give citations to PEER-REVIEWED papers.

Like Darwin's?

Please....

If Darwin's ideas had not been useful, they would have been discarded.

The ideas of your icons have not been useful, apparently.

Your job is to correct that impression and establish the utility of those ideas by citing relevant empirical data - as published in the PEER-REVIEWED literature.

Can you do it?

Date: 2008/01/24 15:54:56, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Ftk @ Jan. 24 2008,14:21)
Daniel,

I certainly hope there are lurkers reading this thread who are interested in getting at the truth with regard to what the mechanisms of evolution can actually accomplish, because you are doing a marvelous job of asking the right questions and pointing out the Darwinian fallacies.  Keep up the good work.

BTW, I envy your gift of patience.  It won't pay off with these folks, but like I said, hopefully there are open minded lurkers following this discussion.

Hey, FTK, what's your take on Davison, Schindewolf, Berg, and Goldschmidt?

Have YOU read those books that Daniel is touting?

What's your position on Stammengeschichte, Stammesentwicklung and Gesetzmäßigkeiten?

Have you checked your Baupläne lately?

Date: 2008/01/25 07:17:25, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 24 2008,17:53)
     
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Jan. 24 2008,09:29)
         
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 24 2008,11:05)
         
Quote (mitschlag @ Jan. 24 2008,02:53)

Please give citations to PEER-REVIEWED papers.

Like Darwin's?

Please....

So, that'll be a no then?

Then why not just say that?

I've cited peer-reviewed papers plenty of times in this thread.  I can't help the fact that you won't click on the links.

You seem to think that you have already provided enough documentation to make your case.

If that is so, it would be a kindness and a properly scholarly contribution to this discussion if you would bring together in a single post your list of relevant PEER-REVIEWED PRIMARY* publications.  It would be especially helpful if you would comment on each citation to make clear the point or points that you consider to have been made.

*As noted by JAM.

Edited to add: Sorry oldman, I see that you made a similar point already.

Date: 2008/01/25 15:50:26, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Jan. 25 2008,12:13)
 
Quote
The explanation lies, as I believe, in the extreme imperfection of the geological record.


The answer is in the question VMartin.

So I guess VMartin your position is that the fossil record is in fact perfect?

Of course it is.

Stop digging.

Date: 2008/01/26 12:58:55, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 26 2008,10:52)
Schindewolf is claiming that--although incomplete in many areas--the fossil record is complete enough in certain areas "that we are entirely capable of arriving at binding evolutionary assertions, even by stringently critical standards".  He believed that the fossils that did speak, spoke volumes against Darwin's theory.

To quote the scholar, "That doesn't help me much."

What exactly did Schindewolf say that the fossils said and where* did he say they said it?

*Page citations in Basic Questions in Paleontology.

Date: 2008/01/29 07:10:21, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Jan. 28 2008,22:23)
Your reflexive mendacity is amazing. So, if Schindewolf's influence was confined entirely to his own university as you claim, you must have evidence that he:

1) Never reviewed any manuscripts from authors at other universities.
2) Never was asked for a tenure recommendation letter from tenure committees at any other universities.
3) Never wrote a letter of recommendation for a student or colleague to any university but his own.

Since all of those are negatives, you must have done an exhaustive search before (ethically) making such a grand claim.

Do you have any evidence that any of the above conditions existed, or were you simply talking out of your pompous hind end again?

Not necessarily pompous.

Inexperienced and uninformed, more likely.

Date: 2008/01/30 05:40:06, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 29 2008,19:09)
Schindewolf believed the horse to be one of the best evidenced examples of smooth, gradual, transitional, mammalian evolution of the type Darwin theorized - with just one minor exception; he felt the development of the horse's toes showed a definite direction.
IOW, the 'toes fit for running on the plains' came first, the 'plains to run on' came later.

Surely that is one of the stupidest things that Schindewolf might have said.

I find it hard to believe that he made such an insane claim.

Exact quotation, please, with literature citation.

(The backlog of unsupported claims by Daniel is enormous and keeps growing.)

Date: 2008/01/30 15:54:43, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 29 2008,19:09)
But to answer your question: If I've "won", what I've done is introduced you to the works of Otto Schindewolf and Leo Berg, shown you that Darwin's is not the only theory out there with the word "evolution" in it, and hopefully expanded your horizons a bit.

Condescension also noted from this quarter.

What's been accomplished so far is a display of the irrelevance of the archaic, muddled ideas of a few individuals whose predictions have been unconfirmed and whose theories have been discredited.

Of historical and forensic interest, to be sure.  I'm enjoying the autopsy, thanks.

Date: 2008/01/31 09:53:24, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 30 2008,19:06)
             
Quote (mitschlag @ Jan. 30 2008,03:40)
                   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 29 2008,19:09)
Schindewolf believed the horse to be one of the best evidenced examples of smooth, gradual, transitional, mammalian evolution of the type Darwin theorized - with just one minor exception; he felt the development of the horse's toes showed a definite direction.
IOW, the 'toes fit for running on the plains' came first, the 'plains to run on' came later.

Surely that is one of the stupidest things that Schindewolf might have said.

I find it hard to believe that he made such an insane claim.

Exact quotation, please, with literature citation.

It's already been discussed in this thread - beginning here.
The quote is there too.

Beautiful.

Schindewolf in his own words:      
Quote
However, in the formulation of this view, not enough consideration has been given to the fact that the evolutionary trend of reduction in the number of toes had already been introduced long before the plains were occupied in the early Tertiary by the precursors of the horse;

As honestly construed by Daniel:      
Quote
IOW, the 'toes fit for running on the plains' came first, the 'plains to run on' came later.

So, Schindewolf saw a trend, and Daniel sees a fait accompli.

It's all moot, anyway, being unsupported by the evidence:

   
Quote
Adaptive radiation of a beloved icon. Phylogeny, geographic distribution, diet, and body sizes of the Family Equidae over the past 55 My. The vertical lines represent the actual time ranges of equid genera or clades. The first ~35 My (Eocene to early Miocene) of horse phylogeny are characterized by browsing species of relatively small body size. The remaining ~20 My (middle Miocene until the present day) are characterized by genera that are either primarily browsing/grazing or are mixed feeders, exhibiting a large diversification in body size. Horses became extinct in North America about 10,000 years ago, and were subsequently reintroduced by humans during the 16th century. Yet the principal diversification of this family occurred in North America. Although the phylogenetic tree of the Equidae has retained its "bushy" form since the 19th century [for example, see (2, 3)], advances in knowledge from fossils have refined the taxonomy, phylogenetic interrelationships, chronology, and interpretations of the ancient ecology of fossil horses.

Note especially the symbols representing feeding patterns in relation to the geologic time-scale.

Date: 2008/01/31 10:06:56, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 30 2008,19:06)
     
Quote
(The backlog of unsupported claims by Daniel is enormous and keeps growing.)

Such as?

Of recent memory, see here, here and here.

Date: 2008/02/01 08:15:41, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 31 2008,19:06)
I don't see anything in this graph or in its description that contradicts Schindewolf.  In fact, all the older species (until 25MY ago) were "mostly browsers" - just like Schindewolf said.  And, since the reduction in toes began then, Schindewolf is again proved correct by modern evidence.

Once again, Daniel faces away from the target, takes careful aim, and misses.

No one is disputing the observation that Hyracotherium (early Eocene, about 55 mya) displayed a reduction in the sizes of some digits.

At issue is Schindewolf's claim:            
Quote
In the descendants, then, the rest of the lateral toes degenerated and the teeth grew longer step by step... regardless of the mode of life, which... fluctuated repeatedly, with habitats switching around among forests, savannas, shrubby plains, tundra, and so on.
If selection alone were decisive in this specialization trend, we would have to ascribe to it a completely incomprehensible purposefulness...

as honestly construed by Daniel:        
Quote
IOW, the 'toes fit for running on the plains' came first, the 'plains to run on' came later.

Consider that by the late Eocene and early Oligocene (32–24 mya), grasslands were becoming abundant, yet Mesohippus still had three-toed feet.
 So, "mode of life" was already changing long before the reduction of digits to Schindewolf's one-toed horse:            
Quote
To this extent, the one toed horse must be regarded as the ideal running animal of the plains.

Schindewolf is artificially selective about "giving enough consideration" to facts that don't favor his criticism of the evolutionary power of natural selection.

Date: 2008/02/02 06:45:25, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 01 2008,19:18)
My statement, on the other hand, was my own and probably does a great disservice to Schindewolf.  You'd be much better off to read his book for yourself (if you're interested) than to rely on me for a summary of his views.

No, thanks.

Your misrepresentations are entertaining enough.  :D

Date: 2008/02/02 16:03:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (mitschlag @ Jan. 31 2008,10:06)
   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 30 2008,19:06)
           
Quote
(The backlog of unsupported claims by Daniel is enormous and keeps growing.)

Such as?

Of recent memory, see here, here and here.

So, Daniel Smith, what gives?   ???

Edited to add: I'm having so much fun with these emoticons now that I know how to make them work!

Date: 2008/02/02 16:13:19, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote
The essence of democracy is that you can lie about who you voted for.  Charles Krauthammer

What the hell is that supposed to mean?

Edited to add:   ???

Date: 2008/02/04 15:44:59, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 04 2008,11:01)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 02 2008,14:13)
   
Quote
The essence of democracy is that you can lie about who you voted for.  Charles Krauthammer

What the hell is that supposed to mean?

Edited to add:   ???

It means he thinks caucuses are undemocratic.

Thanks.  :)

Date: 2008/02/05 05:10:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 04 2008,19:16)
There's a lot more that can be said about Schindewolf, that's for sure, and we didn't really even get into Berg's Nomogenesis much at all!

But I honestly don't feel that people here are much interested.   I know none of you ran out to buy Schindewolf's or Berg's books!  I guess that's understandable though.  If you're confident in your position, why would you seek evidence against it?

Actually, I bought a copy of Basic Questions and have dipped into it.  What I've seen is a vigorous rejection of selection as a driving force in evolution and the substitution of orthogenesis.

As I've mentioned before, Schindewolf's ideas are of historical interest, but they have not survived the rough and tumble of scientific practice.  Ideas that are not usefully heuristic are doomed.

If Daniel has not read The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, he is missing an opportunity to learn how science has worked through history and how it is likely to continue to work.  It will give him insight into how we operate.  (And it's a lot shorter than Grundfragen.)

Date: 2008/02/06 04:51:27, Link
Author: mitschlag
Daniel Smith, why have the ideas of Schindewolf, Berg, Goldschmidt, and Davison failed to gain scientific traction and have become footnotes in the history of biological thought?

My answer: They have not generated fruitful, testable hypotheses.

Your answer: ?

Date: 2008/02/06 14:00:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 06 2008,13:48)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 06 2008,02:51)
Daniel Smith, why have the ideas of Schindewolf, Berg, Goldschmidt, and Davison failed to gain scientific traction and have become footnotes in the history of biological thought?

My answer: They have not generated fruitful, testable hypotheses.

Your answer: ?

I think it's because their proposed mechanisms are saltational - and that seems to be a dirty word in scientific circles.

Thank you for responding, Daniel, but you didn't really answer, did you?

So, we'll work with what we've got:  Why do you think that "saltational" is a "dirty word" in scientific circles?

Could it be the case that saltational theories of evolution are neither fruitful nor testable?

You realize, don't you, that if a scientific idea is fruitful and testable, its attraction to scientists is irresistible?

Date: 2008/02/06 14:22:42, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 06 2008,14:03)
 
Quote (blipey @ Feb. 06 2008,11:54)
     
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 06 2008,13:48)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 06 2008,02:51)
Daniel Smith, why have the ideas of Schindewolf, Berg, Goldschmidt, and Davison failed to gain scientific traction and have become footnotes in the history of biological thought?

My answer: They have not generated fruitful, testable hypotheses.

Your answer: ?

I think it's because their proposed mechanisms are saltational - and that seems to be a dirty word in scientific circles.

So you think it's a conspiracy?

No, I think that people are afraid of being ridiculed for wanting to test a saltational theory - so they dismiss it out of hand.  I base this on the great lengths Gould and Eldredge went to in order to show that their theory was not saltational.

Here's how it actually works, Daniel:

In the privacy of his/her own laboratory, the scientist can test a saltational hypothesis to his/her heart's content.  And if the tests advance understanding, the scientist can tell the world about it. The scientific literature is full of examples of papers that made extravagant claims, challenging the prevailing wisdom. In some cases, these claims were not confirmed by subsequent work or were otherwise refuted.  In other cases, the findings were seminal and earned the publishing scientists great renown.

A smart person who knows he's on to something does not fear ridicule.  And that's what separates the women from the girls.

Date: 2008/02/08 04:35:28, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 07 2008,18:39)
Follow the link, look at the data, and tell me what you see in this evidence that IYO falsifies Schindewolf.  I really doubt you will be able to do this because it would involve first learning what Schindewolf said about Jurassic ammonite evolution and his systems of classification -- something I just can't see you (or anyone else on this board) doing.

Thanks for the link to the Moyne & Neige paper.

It would also be a kindness, and I hope not too much trouble, if you would either quote or give page citations to the relevant statements in Grundfragen that are in contention by JAM.

Kudos for stepping up to the plate in this fashion.

Date: 2008/02/08 11:38:26, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Feb. 08 2008,11:16)
Gould, later in the same foreword, specifically criticizes Schindewolf for paying attention only to confirming evidence, and ignoring disconfirming evidence.

It seems that Schindewolf has found an apt pupil.

See, Dan, some of us have read Schindewolf's book.

Date: 2008/02/08 13:32:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Bob O'H @ Feb. 08 2008,13:22)
OK, which one of you is Joseph?
 
Quote
11

Joseph

02/08/2008

1:32 pm

Unless Dr Gonzalez really likes to teach then perhaps the Discovery Institute could hire him to start an astrobiology project.

The Cosmologic Institute

All that tard in the past must have been a cover.

Bob

Joseph misspoke.

He meant to say cosmetology institute.

Date: 2008/02/08 15:54:42, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 08 2008,13:44)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 08 2008,09:38)
     
Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Feb. 08 2008,11:16)
Gould, later in the same foreword, specifically criticizes Schindewolf for paying attention only to confirming evidence, and ignoring disconfirming evidence.

It seems that Schindewolf has found an apt pupil.

See, Dan, some of us have read Schindewolf's book.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think Wesley has only read the foreword, and you have just skimmed through it (the book that is).  

Is that correct? (Wesley?)

My comment was intended in jest.  I guess I overestimate my comedic skills.  And my audience.

Date: 2008/02/09 04:55:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 08 2008,19:09)
JAM has specifically mentioned pages 105-106, and I quoted some from pages 102-103 in one of my responses.  I can't read his mind though.  

As for me though, I would recommend reading pages 125-145 to start -- this is where Schindewolf first goes into some detail on the topic of Ammonoid evolution as an "Introductory Example" for his theory.  The time period under discussion (for this one paper at least) is the Middle Jurassic.

Hope that helps!

Thanks, I'll work on it!

In the meantime, I've read the Moyne & Neige paper, and I see that their cladistic analyses (which certainly took a large number of morphologic characters into account) led to the conclusion that  there were two middle Jurassic ammonite lineages.  It seems reasonable that later work would have refined the product of Schindewolf's labors.  So, like Daniel, I don't see anything in the paper that bears on the issue of orthogenesis vs natural selection.

And, like Daniel, I need HELP! in understanding JAM's points.

Date: 2008/02/09 05:07:31, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Albatrossity2 @ Feb. 08 2008,19:51)
Sorry, Daniel, but it doesn't matter now. You had a chance to prove that you were indeed sincere in this discussion, by admitting that you were mistaken. By acting as if you knew it all along, you have defined yourself fairly concretely as just another creationist poser.

All of that notwithstanding, isn't it more interesting to focus on his arguments?

It's not easy for many of us to admit error.

Date: 2008/02/09 16:17:57, Link
Author: mitschlag
JAM, you are most definitely a BOLD fellow.

Date: 2008/02/09 16:51:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Feb. 09 2008,13:51)
       
Quote
And now I'm going to rephrase my position on the paper specifically for your anal-retentive benefit:
I looked at their evidence and found that it supports Schindewolf's classifications of middle Jurassic ammonites.

You're a fundamentally dishonest joke. I never challenged Schindewolf's classifications of anything. I challenged his assumption, that I have now quoted for you at least four times:
           
Quote
"The gaps that exist in the continuity of forms, which we always encounter at those very points, are not to be blamed on the fossil record; they are not illusions, but the expression of a natural, primary absence of transitional forms."

What don't you understand about this?

So, what in the name of Darwin (may his name be eternally praised) does the Moyne & Neige paper have to do with    
Quote
"The gaps that exist in the continuity of forms, which we always encounter at those very points, are not to be blamed on the fossil record; they are not illusions, but the expression of a natural, primary absence of transitional forms."
?

Let the Delphic Oracle speak...

Date: 2008/02/09 18:30:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Feb. 09 2008,17:15)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 09 2008,16:51)
So, what in the name of Darwin (may his name be eternally praised) does the Moyne & Neige paper have to do with              
Quote
"The gaps that exist in the continuity of forms, which we always encounter at those very points, are not to be blamed on the fossil record; they are not illusions, but the expression of a natural, primary absence of transitional forms."
?

The gaps are, to a large extent, blamed on the incompleteness of the fossil record in Schindewolf's day. Thus, they are largely illusory.

This negative assumption is integral to Schindewolf's thesis, and it's hooey.

Note also that to credibly assert a negative, one needs a LOT of evidence, and Daniel has zero interest in determining whether any gaps in the ammonite fossil record have been bridged in the last 50 years by new finds.

Yeah, of course you're right in principle.  And of course Schindewolf was insane to predict that transitional forms would never be found, because their existence would be "not even possible or conceivable" (page 106).

But, but , but isn't the devil in the details?  That Moyne and Neige and others have added new data is great.  But is it too much to ask you to point out how their data fill the gaps that Schindewolf made such a stink about?

Date: 2008/02/10 04:52:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Feb. 09 2008,22:13)

   
Quote
As of this date, I am not aware of anything found in the fossil record that falsifies his theory.  Are you?

You are blatantly dishonest, Dan, as Schindewolf's hypothesis makes clear predictions about the molecular evidence, and what we know about molecular and developmental biology falsifies his hypothesis.

For example,

1) What magnitude of genetic change is required to change the number of vertebrae in a vertebrate?
2) What magnitude of genetic change is required to change the IDENTITY of a vertebra in a vertebrate?
------------
Note that I was not avoiding context, I am PROVIDING context, while you are avoiding context.
         
Quote
         
Quote
it should follow, if the assumption of a gradual bridging of the type boundaries by means of small developmental steps is correct, that the same situation applies between them.

Dan, THIS ASSUMPTION IS FALSE. That's why I keep asking you those questions about vertebrae and "hind limb genes."

I don't think the student is going to get it on his own.

Here's a clue, Dan: "Endless forms most beautiful..."

Date: 2008/02/11 09:45:46, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 10 2008,19:27)
Here's an example:

            A
           /  \
          B   C
          B   /\
          B  D E
     
     

In this example, the lineage B extends through the period where the lineage C splits and forms D and E.  The problem, according to Schindewolf, is that although we have ample fossilized evidence of the B, C, D, and E lineages throughout this period, there is no evidence of the transition from 'C to D' or from 'C to E' at all.  C disappears and D and E appear suddenly while B is all the while well represented.

According to Schindewolf, this pattern is repeated throughout the fossil record.

Help!  In the context of Grundfragen, pp 125-145 (Ammonoids) can you cite examples of C, D and E and what a "transition" would have looked like if it were to be found?   What was Schindewolf looking for that he couldn't find?

Those escargots look so much alike to the untrained eye, don't you know?

Date: 2008/02/12 07:00:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 11 2008,18:44)
As to your question of what a transitional ammonite might look like: To me (and you too apparently), they all look alike, but Schindewolf saw so many differences that he said he often could not envision what a transitional would look like between specific lineages.

Thanks for your reply, Daniel, but it was not responsive to my request for examples of the ammonites that Schindewolf was discussing in his chapter.

Regarding the quote above, where did Schindewolf say that?  How could that be true in every case where a transitional might be posited?  How could he find (or fail to find) a transitional if he didn't know what it might look like?

I hope you will understand my confusion.

Date: 2008/02/12 15:58:37, Link
Author: mitschlag
Would Schindewolf have recognized a transitional fossil if he saw one?

Apparently not:        
Quote
Even the initial joyous satisfaction that once greeted, for example, the discov­ery of the famous ancestral bird Archaeopteryx did not prove to be justified. Despite all its similarities to reptiles, Archaeopteryx is a true bird; the boundary between the reptile type and the bird type has not yet been bridged by a continu­ous, uninterrupted linking series.
Basic Concepts, p 103.

(Note the sarcasm: "initial joyous satisfaction."  Veddy scientific.)

Some reptilian features of Archaeopteryx (From a post on IIDB):

1. cervical vertebrae with simple concave articulation points (birds have long, saddle-shaped ones)
2. unfused trunk vertebrae
3. gastralia (abdominal ribs)
4. no uncinate processes on the rib cage and no articulation with the sternum
5. a sacrum with just 6 vertebrae (birds have between 11 and 23)
6. mobile elbow, wrist and finger bones (they're fused in birds)
7. downward-orientated shoulder socket
8. a long bony tail
9. teeth
10. theropod-like skull fenestrae
11. a short, heavy, forwardly-inclined quadrate
12. a thin straight jugal bone (as in reptiles)
13. a preorbital bar
14. an occipital condyle and foramen magnum above the back end of the quadrate, like that of therapods (birds have theirs below the quadrate) -- IOW the neck attaches to the head at the rear of the skull, not underneath.
15. no bill
16. unfused metatarsals
17. claws on three of the fingers

Blinded by ideology, was Otto Heinrich.

Date: 2008/02/13 06:31:50, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 12 2008,15:58)
Would Schindewolf have recognized a transitional fossil if he saw one?

Apparently not:            
Quote
Even the initial joyous satisfaction that once greeted, for example, the discov­ery of the famous ancestral bird Archaeopteryx did not prove to be justified. Despite all its similarities to reptiles, Archaeopteryx is a true bird; the boundary between the reptile type and the bird type has not yet been bridged by a continu­ous, uninterrupted linking series.

In a book on paleontology comprising over 400 pages, it is revealing that the sole reference to Archaeopteryx is that short paragraph.

Two sentences that dismiss, without any analysis, one of the most important fossil finds in history.

Date: 2008/02/14 06:45:04, Link
Author: mitschlag
Stale, warmed-over Plantinga.

Date: 2008/02/14 16:15:33, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 13 2008,19:37)
Sorry for the delay mitschlag, but my time is limited.

I apologize also for not being able (yet) to find you a good example from Schindewolf's chapter on ammonites, (he doesn't give, very often, the specific names of the ammonites he speaks of, so it's hard to find the type of specific example you want), but I did find a pretty detailed example in one of Schindewolf's stony corals examples:  

It is found on pages 205 - 208 in the section entitled "The Origin Of Major Types".  Look at the figure on page 207, and read the corresponding description of it on the pages already outlined.  

What you are looking at here is Schindewolf's breakdown of the splitting off of the heterocorals from the pterocorals.  Like the suture line in ammonites, he uses the septal structure in the corals to retrace their evolution.

I appreciate your diligence.  Regarding Ammonoid evolution, Schindwolf says on p 204,          
Quote
The examples cited of the transformation of type from the Triassic ceratites to the Jurassic ammonites or from the pterocorals to the cyclocorals show particularly well that each appearance of a new type signifies a radical break in the course of evolution.

I went back to pp 125-145, looking for his argument, but couldn't find a clear statement.  Such efforts are not helped by the author's reluctance to give page numbers for his backward- and forward-looking references and by a poor job of indexing by his translator-editors ("ceratite" isn't indexed, for example).

Anyway, regarding the corals, I grasp his point, and I agree that a gradualistic intervening sequence of adult forms between the heterocorals and the pterocorals is hard to envision.  His suggestion of an ontogenetic switch looks reasonable to me.

And that could have happened without divine intervention!

Date: 2008/02/15 09:54:11, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 14 2008,20:01)
I think what you're looking for is on page 140, in his section entitled "Mesozoic Ammonoids":                    
Quote
This progressive evolution [Note: among Triassic ceratites - D.S.] from smooth shells to those with multibifurcate ribs takes place within a whole cluster of parallel lineages, not always absolutely simultaneously and in many conservative or prematurely extinct lines also not attaining the highest stage of sculpturing, but we can still speak, in general, of a directional, steady progression of sculpture.  All these lines then died off conspicuously, after having reached their highest degree of sculptural specialization, at the boundary between the Triassic and the Jurassic--all except one, which remained smooth and undifferentiated and survived this critical juncture to become the starting point of a new cycle of ammonoid evolution, of a renewed and profuse proliferation.
Exactly the same course of sculptural evolution that we see in the Triassic is repeated in the Jurassic-Cretaceous era in the Ammonitacea: at the beginning, there are once more smooth, unsculptured forms; these go on to develop simple ribs, then bifurcate ribs, then multibifurcate ribs (figs. 3.32 and 3.152).
BQiP, pg. 140, (my emphasis)


Does that help?

Not really, though I appreciate the effort.  I hadn't picked up the reference to Fig 3.152 before, but neither the text nor that figure nor the other Ammonoid figures convey to me a level of discontinuity comparable to that shown in the corresponding text and figures on corals.  
Quote
...we can still speak, in general, of a directional, steady progression of sculpture.

Inasmuch as Schindewolf explicitly excluded teleological notions, he should have been more circumspect in making easily misconstrued pronouncements like this.  But he had another category of mysticism on his mind, unfortunately.

Date: 2008/02/15 10:05:53, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 14 2008,20:01)
       
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 14 2008,14:15)

And that could have happened without divine intervention!
 
Perhaps, but I'd like to believe that--taken altogether--the sheer volume of such evolutionary steps lends itself more to a 'preprogrammed plan' explanation than to 'trial and error' and chance.

Believe whatever you'd like, dear boy.   :)

The scientific question remains: How was it accomplished?



Front-loaded?

Edited to add:  That is not a rat in the lower left-hand corner.

Date: 2008/02/16 17:26:39, Link
Author: mitschlag
Hey, thanks for the link.  :)

Looks good.

It almost slipped under the radar.

Date: 2008/02/17 07:08:13, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 16 2008,21:45)
mitschlag,

I'm sure this is not exactly what you're looking for either, but figure 3.37 (on page 134), gives an example of how Schindewolf used suture lines to draw similar conclusions about ammonoids to those he drew from the corals.  

Each suture line depicted there represents 1) an ontogenetic developmental stage of two specific ammonoids, ('a' = the Permian adrianitid, and 'b' = the Permian stacheoceratid),  AND,  2) a mature phylogenetic stage for various other forms of ammonoids, (with 'a6' and 'b3' being the mature suture lines for the adrianitid and the stacheoceratid respectively).  He goes into some detail about this on the surrounding pages, (I also found the same figure repeated later in the book [pg. 209, fig. 3.75] with more explanation there.)

The arrow from 'a3' to 'b1' illustrates the ontogentic stage at which the stacheoceratid splits off from the adrianitid (they share the same first 3 stages -- 'a1-3' ).  It's not as obvious to the untrained eye as it is from his coral diagrams, but if you study it closely, you can see that the same principle applies.

Excellent.  Now I get it!  :)

I think the issue of suture lines was tainted for me by the statement in Moyne and Neige:    
Quote
Suture line characters are not used in this analysis because of their high variability between the different species of each genus.

So, I now see the parallel in Schindewolf's claims for corals and ammonoids: an ontogenetic switch.

Is that the gist of his saltationist hypothesis?  It looks testable.  Are there any molecular-genetic-devolopmental data pertaining thereto in the literature?

Date: 2008/02/17 08:05:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 16 2008,21:45)
 
Quote
   
Quote
...we can still speak, in general, of a directional, steady progression of sculpture.

Inasmuch as Schindewolf explicitly excluded teleological notions, he should have been more circumspect in making easily misconstrued pronouncements like this.  But he had another category of mysticism on his mind, unfortunately.

I don't know what "mysticism" you're talking about.  Schindewolf felt that the "direction" was entirely constrained by the original saltational event.

"Mysticism" was off the mark.  How about "metaphysics"?

I was trying to emphasize that it's too easy to read teleology into statements like this - and into his entire argument.  As you yourself have done.

Date: 2008/02/17 08:14:48, Link
Author: mitschlag
Regarding the picture of the  Chihuahua and the Great Dane...

Did the creator anticipate our need for Great Danes and Chihuahuas?

Date: 2008/02/17 16:13:44, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 17 2008,14:37)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 17 2008,06:14)
Regarding the picture of the  Chihuahua and the Great Dane...

Did the creator anticipate our need for Great Danes and Chihuahuas?

Apparently.

I thought you wanted to stick to science though!

Yes, I do.

What do you want to stick to?

Date: 2008/02/18 06:55:45, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 17 2008,14:32)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 17 2008,05:08)
So, I now see the parallel in Schindewolf's claims for corals and ammonoids: an ontogenetic switch.

Is that the gist of his saltationist hypothesis?  It looks testable.  Are there any molecular-genetic-devolopmental data pertaining thereto in the literature?

Yes this is the gist of his saltational hypothesis (and one of the cornerstones of his theory).  I don't know if anyone has tested it or not.  A quick search on Google Scholar turns up many articles that are unavailable, except for the abstracts, without a subscription.
<snip>
As you know, Schindewolf favored Goldschmidt's theory of macromutations via chromosomal rearrangements.  Davison has expanded on this as well.  I personally don't know enough about it to know if this is the direction you would go in looking for whether or not Schindewolf's saltational mechanism has been tested.  What do you think mitschlag?

I think a look at neoteny is a start:
     
Quote
Neoteny plays a role in evolution, as a means by which, over generations, a species can undergo a significant physical change. In such cases, a species’ neotenous form becomes its “normal” mature form, no longer dependent upon environmental triggers to inhibit maturity. The mechanism for this could be a mutation in or interactions between genes involved in maturation, changing their function to impede this process...

Date: 2008/02/19 06:42:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 18 2008,19:37)
I think that maybe Neoteny could apply to the coral example, but I don't see how it would apply to the ammonoid example - since both lineages continued in their respective development after the "switch" took effect.

Remember, you're dealing with enormous populations here, subject to differing environmental conditions (selective pressures) that vary over space and time.

There's no a priori reason to assume a global switchover independent of selective forces (despite Schindewolf's partiality to such notions).

Date: 2008/02/19 06:52:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 18 2008,19:37)
What do you think of this?        
Quote
TE-induced and other gross chromosome rearrangements can lead to postzygotic isolating mechanisms that result in almost total cross-fertilization barriers between different lines of the same species in experimental organisms in a relatively short time period, as, for instance, in Pisum sativum (71).
CHROMOSOME REARRANGEMENTS AND TRANSPOSABLE ELEMENTS, Wolf-Ekkehard Lonnig and Heinz Saedler (my emphasis)


The footnote for 71 points to the following (unfortunately) German paper:
Lamprecht H. 1974. Monographie der Gattung Pisum. Graz: Steierm¨ark. Landesdruck. 655 pp.

Haven't read the paper yet, but the reference is probably moot.  Such a mechanism for speciation looks perfectly reasonable to my relatively inexpert understanding of such matters.

Date: 2008/02/20 07:40:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 19 2008,18:11)
I think you should read the paper then, especially since they seem to be proposing this as a mechanism to explain the origin of higher categories ala Schindewolf:

So?  The Loennig paper is a speculative review.  If it stimulates research, it will have made a contribution to our understanding.

Date: 2008/02/21 07:06:02, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 20 2008,17:46)
   
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 20 2008,05:40)
           
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 19 2008,18:11)
I think you should read the paper then, especially since they seem to be proposing this as a mechanism to explain the origin of higher categories ala Schindewolf:

So?  The Loennig paper is a speculative review.  If it stimulates research, it will have made a contribution to our understanding.

Well, I didn't want you to read it so much for the opinions expressed but for the research they point to.  Particularly promising (IMO) is the research of A. Lima-de-Faria, B. McClintock, and J.A Shapiro.
If you don't want to read it, then don't.
I was just trying to answer your question:          
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 17 2008,05:08)

So, I now see the parallel in Schindewolf's claims for corals and ammonoids: an ontogenetic switch.

Is that the gist of his saltationist hypothesis?  It looks testable.  Are there any molecular-genetic-devolopmental data pertaining thereto in the literature?

Sorry for the misunderstanding.  :(

Kudos for finding the paper, which is relevant, as far as it goes, to my question.  And I have read it.

The point remains, however, that the paper's thesis is hypothetical.  Are there any subsequent confirming data?  For example, now that we have the complete genome sequences of chimps and humans, can we account for a saltational leap between them based on transposable element-mediated chromosomal rearrangements?

Anything else pertaining thereto in other fully or partially sequenced genomes?

Date: 2008/02/22 06:06:39, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 21 2008,19:26)
I'm finding that the in-depth study of chromosomal evolution appears to be relatively new and most papers seem to reflect this.
I found this paper.  I haven't read it yet, but the abstract mentions evidence of "regions of extraordinarily rapid, localized genome evolution":              
Quote
Large-scale genome sequencing is providing a comprehensive view of the complex evolutionary forces that have shaped the structure of eukaryotic chromosomes. Comparative sequence analyses reveal patterns of apparently random rearrangement interspersed with regions of extraordinarily rapid, localized genome evolution. Numerous subtle rearrangements near centromeres, telomeres, duplications, and interspersed repeats suggest hotspots for eukaryotic chromosome evolution. This localized chromosomal instability may play a role in rapidly evolving lineage-specific gene families and in fostering large-scale changes in gene order. Computational algorithms that take into account these dynamic forces along with traditional models of chromosomal rearrangement show promise for reconstructing the natural history of eukaryotic chromosomes.

Structural Dynamics of Eukaryotic Chromosome Evolution, Evan E. Eichler and David Sankoff

If you're interested in more papers, just go to Google Scholar, search for "chromosome evolution", (or something more specific), and scroll through the results until you find a pdf file - the rest are usually just abstracts.  Although sometimes, if you click on the "All_ versions" link, there'll be a pdf there as well.

Good hunting!

Dear boy, we really must focus.

Your job, as I understand it, is to justify and rehabilitate Schindewolf and your other authorities in defiance of the modern evolutionary synthesis.

My job, as I understand it, is to point out to you the futility of your job.

So when I ask you to come up with evidence to support your thesis, it does not advance the discussion for you to ask me to hunt for that evidence.    :)

Date: 2008/02/22 11:09:15, Link
Author: mitschlag
Ah, analogies!   Sources of so many good ideas, but also of so many fundamental fallacies.  As stated in my ancient college textbook of logic:
   
Quote
An analogy doesn't prove anything; it merely calls to mind a possibility that might not have been thought of without the analogy. It's the experiment that counts in the end. Bohr's classic model of the atom is only a picture. It has clarified some points about the atom, it has hinted at some good hypotheses; but if you take it as proving anything about the atom, you are misusing the analogy. You can be fooled just as much by it as were those early inventors who tried to construct airplanes that flapped their wings, on the analogy with birds. Analogies illustrate, and they lead to hypotheses, but thinking in terms of analogy becomes fallacious when the analogy is used as a reason for a principle. This fallacy is called the argument from analogy.

Nota bene, Daniel:  "It's the experiment that counts in the end."

Date: 2008/02/22 11:18:04, Link
Author: mitschlag
Hard to believe that we've been at this so long.  Remember this post?
 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Sep. 22 2007,04:48)
There are many things I have yet to make up my mind about.  For instance; I have not made my mind up in regard to the age of the earth/cosmos as I have not seen all the evidence and probably do not have the expertise to rightly interpret it.

My main problem is that I want to see unbiased and unadulterated evidence; not evidence that is made-to-fit the observers viewpoint.  I'm finding that hard to do - since both sides of this issue tend to color the evidence with their own interpretive brush.

The first book I read on the subject (other than my high school science books) was "Scientific Creationism" by Dr. Henry Morris, and, although he makes some good points, I found some of his views to be a bit of a stretch and recognized his attempts to fit science to the bible.

I then spent quite some time on talk.origins and did much research on the internet looking at the case for the currently held theory of evolution.  I found that much of the evidence for the theory was being interpreted under the assumption of the theory.

I decided what I needed was just to see the evidence for myself.

This is the reason I have sought out authors such as Berg, Schindewolf, Denton, Davison and others.  First, they are true scientists - there are no religious views expressed in their books.  Second, they hold to no preconceived paradigm and they have (or had) nothing to gain by publishing their views.  Most were either ridiculed or shunned, or just put on a shelf and forgotten, but their works stand the test of time (at least so far).  These are the type of people I want to get my information from.

Have you made up your mind about the age of the earth yet?

Date: 2008/02/23 07:13:40, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 22 2008,18:36)
     
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 22 2008,09:18)
Hard to believe that we've been at this so long.  Remember this post?
             
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Sep. 22 2007,04:48)
There are many things I have yet to make up my mind about.  For instance; I have not made my mind up in regard to the age of the earth/cosmos as I have not seen all the evidence and probably do not have the expertise to rightly interpret it.

My main problem is that I want to see unbiased and unadulterated evidence; not evidence that is made-to-fit the observers viewpoint.  I'm finding that hard to do - since both sides of this issue tend to color the evidence with their own interpretive brush.

<snip>

I decided what I needed was just to see the evidence for myself.

This is the reason I have sought out authors such as Berg, Schindewolf, Denton, Davison and others.  First, they are true scientists - there are no religious views expressed in their books.

<snip>

These are the type of people I want to get my information from.

Have you made up your mind about the age of the earth yet?

Nope.  Not yet.  That's a rabbit trail I'm not prepared to go down at this time.

You can't be serious, Daniel.

Here's what Schindewolf said:
 
Quote
THE BASIS FOR MEASURING TIME AND DETERMINING AGE

We have already said that a fundamental of geology, on which it stands or falls, is the possibility of determining the age of rocks and strata. Geology as a historical science with the goal of writing a history of the earth must have at its disposal a temporal system to date its events and arrange them within a time scale. Otherwise, geology would be a chaotic scrap heap of isolated facts and in no position to come up with systematic insights into the structure of the earth's crust and the mineral resources it holds. The same is true for paleontology, which must know the relative ages of the various faunas and floras if it wants to demonstrate their historical development.
Basic Questions, p 8.

Do you see the inconsistency in your thinking?

(Edited to add emphasis - and a tip of the hat to oldman, who just hit the same nail smartly on the head.)

Date: 2008/02/23 17:01:32, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 23 2008,16:39)
I'd suggest you read pages 11-13 where Schindewolf makes it pretty clear that it's only the relative ages of fossils he's concerned with -- not the absolute ages.            
Quote
The only thing that concerns us in geology is the determination of the sequence of events...

...absolute age based on certain number of years is of no importance at all.  In this area, too, the only concern is to establish the relative age.

page 12 - his italics

Please, Daniel, don't play these silly quotemining games.  If you look at the context, he's deflecting criticism about imprecisions in geological dating to emphasize the points about temporal succession that he wants to make.  Look at what else he has to say on page 12 about dating methods and at Fig 2.2, which gives "Absolute time span in millions of years" for the divisions of geologic history.

In any case, you should be concerned about the age of the earth and the universe if you want to have an understanding of evolution.  Or of much else in science.

Date: 2008/02/23 17:07:48, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 23 2008,16:51)
I don't really care about the age of the earth.  I don't know why you think that's such a big deal anyway.  The sequence of events are already well established.  I'm arguing for a theory of evolution!  (or did that fact escape you?)
What's your beef?

Because IT ALL HAS TO FIT TOGETHER TO MAKE SENSE!

Date: 2008/02/24 04:42:27, Link
Author: mitschlag
When  that bug in JAM's avatar sprouts wings I'll believe in evolution.

Date: 2008/02/24 16:32:42, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 24 2008,13:55)

Actually, it's only the gradual evolution of Darwinism that requires hundreds of millions of years to bring about 'life as we know it'.  A saltational evolution theory does not require that timespan.

Well, then, what timespan does it require?  I believe that you've been asked this before.  Is it 6,000 years?

Date: 2008/02/24 16:35:36, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 24 2008,13:55)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 23 2008,15:01)
In any case, you should be concerned about the age of the earth and the universe if you want to have an understanding of evolution.  Or of much else in science.

Did you get my point?

Date: 2008/02/26 05:13:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
[parody]

Listen up, Brethren:

In contradiction to the Genesis story, GOD did not create all living things IN THE BEGINNING.  Each TYPE was CREATED in a saltational event.  (Especially the pinnacle of CREATION, MAN.)   A more leisurely approach befitting a BEING with eternity on HIS hands.

It doesn't matter WHEN in history each TYPE was created, as long as we keep the RELATIVE ORDER of CREATION straight.   Because we must keep it SCIENTIFIC.

Indeed, it's prudent to disbelieve evidence of an OLD EARTH, because that supports the DARWINIST interpretation. For DARWINISM (a work of the DEVIL) leads to UNBELIEF in saltation, and thus to unbelief in CREATION.   And GOD gets irritated when we don't believe in his ALMIGHTY POWER!

[/parody]

Date: 2008/02/28 12:32:56, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (IanBrown_101 @ Feb. 28 2008,11:41)
 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 28 2008,17:10)
 
Quote (IanBrown_101 @ Feb. 27 2008,19:20)
     
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 28 2008,00:05)
     
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Feb. 26 2008,01:13)
Sure, your saltational theory does not require a millions of years old earth but the fossils we're talking about do!

How do you know that oldman?  How long does fossilization take?  What's the timespan needed to produce "the fossils we're talking about"?  How did you arrive at that figure?  Have you even thought about it?  Or are you just parotting what you've heard someone else say?

Hi Mr Smith, come in, I'd like to introduce you to Mr Radiometric Dating.

How much do you actually know about radiometric dating?

Well considering I finished my science education at my A-levels, and the only one I continued that far was biology, only what I've read and so on, so not a huge amount.

Why, do you know more about it than, say, the people who use it?

Brace yourself.  Strong tard on the horizon.

That's my fear, at any rate

Date: 2008/02/28 16:12:25, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (swbarnes2 @ Feb. 28 2008,14:35)
 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 28 2008,00:05)
 
How much do you actually know about radiometric dating?
 

It's just astonishing.

We had already seen tons of evidence that, when given a choice between his Creationist beliefs, and his integrity, Daniel chooses his Creationist beliefs.

And now, given the choice between his Creationism, and pretty much all of science, he again throws science away, and clings to his Creationism.

There is no falsehhod transparent enough, no stupidity blatent enough to prevent Daniel from trampling every moral principle he possesses to embrace it, if it supports his Creationism.

It's not just that creationism requires you to throw away facts and reason.  But that defending it requires that it requries you to throw away your honesty and integrity.  It kills not only your mind, but your soul.

That's OK.  Creationist souls are expendable.   :D

Date: 2008/02/29 15:46:26, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Feb. 29 2008,13:26)
Is this better?

I may vomit.

Date: 2008/03/01 05:52:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 29 2008,20:11)
Both of these papers advance a saltational mechanism for evolution, similar to what Schindewolf proposed.  That such mechanisms require far fewer transitional steps than the gradualism Darwin proposed is IMO vindication for Schindewolf.  If these karyotypic changes resulted in morphological changes, these transitional steps would be next to invisible in the fossil record - thus explaining Schindewolf's gaps between types.

From Kinetochore reproduction in animal evolution: Cell biological explanation of karyotypic fission theory:

<snip>

From Karyotypic fissioning and Canid phylogeny:

You  pays your  money and you takes your choice.*  Try this one on for size:

A test of the karyotypic fissioning theory of primate evolution
 
Quote
Stanyon R.

Karyotypic fissioning theory has been put forward by a number of researchers as a possible driving force of mammalian evolution. Most recently, Giusto and Margulis (BioSystems, 13 (1981) 267-302) hypothesized that karyotypic fissioning best explains the evolution of Old World monkeys, apes, and humans. According to their hypothesis, hominoid karyotypes were derived from the monkey chromosome complement by just such a fissioning event. That hypothesis is tested here by comparing the G-banded chromosomes of humans and great apes with eight species of Old World monkeys. Five submetacentric chromosomes between apes and monkeys have identical banding patterns and nine chromosomes share the same pericentric inversion. Such extensive karyological similarities are not in accordance with, or predicted by karyotypic fissioning. Apparently, karyotypic fissioning is an extremely uneconomical model of chromosomal evolution. The strong conservation of banding patterns sometimes involving the retention of identical chromosomes indicates that ancient linkages of genes have probably been maintained through many speciation events.
(Emphasis added)

*Cherry-picking the literature is a  favored Creationist tactic.

Date: 2008/03/01 07:24:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 29 2008,20:19)
Somehow, I got the impression that radiometric dating methods were calibrated originally by the "known" length of time it took for evolution to take place.

A classic Creationist canard.

If that were the case, it would be an example of CIRCULAR REASONING, wouldn't it?

Stupid scientists, assuming what they want to conclude!   :angry:

Date: 2008/03/02 04:40:20, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 01 2008,21:17)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Mar. 01 2008,03:52)
     
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 29 2008,20:11)
Both of these papers advance a saltational mechanism for evolution, similar to what Schindewolf proposed.  That such mechanisms require far fewer transitional steps than the gradualism Darwin proposed is IMO vindication for Schindewolf.  If these karyotypic changes resulted in morphological changes, these transitional steps would be next to invisible in the fossil record - thus explaining Schindewolf's gaps between types.

From Kinetochore reproduction in animal evolution: Cell biological explanation of karyotypic fission theory:

<snip>

From Karyotypic fissioning and Canid phylogeny:

You  pays your  money and you takes your choice.*  Try this one on for size:

A test of the karyotypic fissioning theory of primate evolution
         
Quote
Stanyon R.

Karyotypic fissioning theory has been put forward by a number of researchers as a possible driving force of mammalian evolution. Most recently, Giusto and Margulis (BioSystems, 13 (1981) 267-302) hypothesized that karyotypic fissioning best explains the evolution of Old World monkeys, apes, and humans. According to their hypothesis, hominoid karyotypes were derived from the monkey chromosome complement by just such a fissioning event. That hypothesis is tested here by comparing the G-banded chromosomes of humans and great apes with eight species of Old World monkeys. Five submetacentric chromosomes between apes and monkeys have identical banding patterns and nine chromosomes share the same pericentric inversion. Such extensive karyological similarities are not in accordance with, or predicted by karyotypic fissioning. Apparently, karyotypic fissioning is an extremely uneconomical model of chromosomal evolution. The strong conservation of banding patterns sometimes involving the retention of identical chromosomes indicates that ancient linkages of genes have probably been maintained through many speciation events.
(Emphasis added)

*Cherry-picking the literature is a  favored Creationist tactic.

Here's the paper they refer to:
Karyotypic fission theory and the evolution of old world monkeys and apes.
link
Abstract:      
Quote
The karyotypes of living catarrhines are correlated with the current concepts of their fossil record and systematic classification. A phylogeny, beginning at the base of the Oligocene, for those animals and their chromosome numbers is presented. Todd's (1970) theory of karyotypic fissioning is applied to this case - three fissioning events are hypothesized. A late Eocene event (the primary catarrhine fissioning) is hypothesized to underlie the diversification of the infraorder Catarrhini into its extant families, the second fissioning underlies the radiation of the pongidae/Hominidae in the Miocene and the third accounts for the high chromosome numbers (54 - 72) and the Neogene(Miocene-Pliocene-Pleistocene) radiation of members of the genus Cercopithecus. Published catarrhine chromosome data, including that for "marked" chromosomes (those with a large achromatic region that is the site for ribosomal RNA genes) are tabulated and analysed. The ancestral X chromosome is always retained in the unfissioned metacentric state. The Pongidae/Hominidae have 15 pairs of mediocentric chromosomes that survived the second fissioning whereas the other chromosomes (besides the X) are thought to be fission-derived acrocentrics. Both the detailed karyology and the trend from low to high numbers is best interpreted to support Todd's concept of adaptive radiations correlated with karyotypic fissioning in ancestral populations.

So I guess the jury's still out on this one.

The HYPOTHESIS presented in the Giusto and Margulis paper that you cited has a time stamp of 1981.  The TEST of their hypothesis by Stanyon that found their hypothesis wanting was published in 1983.

Unless subsequent work has further enriched the topic, the judgment of Stanyon holds.

Date: 2008/03/02 04:56:11, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 01 2008,21:50)
Quote (JonF @ Mar. 01 2008,10:09)
   
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Mar. 01 2008,05:10)
Daniel, you should also know that the first wave of geologists were creationists who went digging to prove the account of the bible (ok, this is a simplified version of the real events) and found instead that the evidence they were digging up could not support the biblical account. And changed their minds. I'm sure somebody can provide a good reference to these events, if not I'll dig one up for you.

History of the Collapse of "Flood Geology" and a Young Earth, adapted from a book by an evangelical Christian, adapted by an evangelical Christian.

Thank you for that.  I'll give it a read - along with the other links posted by oldman.
Like I've said before, I haven't really studied this, so I really have no opinion on it yet.  I only raise questions to check whether those who would presume to teach me something here have actually studied this area themselves.

You made a smart move coming here.  The light is so much better than in that cave.

Date: 2008/03/03 07:06:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Mar. 02 2008,18:47)
         
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 02 2008,12:40)
           
Quote (JAM @ Mar. 01 2008,22:10)
               
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 01 2008,21:46)
                 
Quote (JAM @ Mar. 01 2008,11:18)
Schindewolf's hypothesis was about MORPHOLOGICAL saltation. Can't you read and comprehend the adjective CHROMOSOMAL?

Did Schindewolf even mention chromosomes in his Bib--er, book?

Yes, in notes 21 and 22 on pages 349 and 352 where he speaks of Goldschmidt's Systemmutationen.  
On page 352 he says:                            
Quote
This repatterning, or Systemmutation, is attributed to cytologically provable breaks in the chromosomes, which evoke inversions, duplications, and translocations.  A single modification of an embryonic character produced in this way would then regulate a whole series of related ontogenetic processes, leading to a completely new developmental type.
(his emphasis)

Schindewolf was wrong.

The point you keep missing is that these karyotypically visible events (fission, fusion, inversion, translocation, etc.) can produce speciation with absolutely zero change in phenotype.

On the other hand, a single nucleotide substitution can cause massive phenotypic changes.

Can you manage to wrap your brain around that fundamental point?

I'm aware of the former,...

Since you know he was wrong about that, why would you claim that he was vindicated?
         
Quote
...but can you give me examples of the latter?

Yes; oligodontia, orofacial cleft, optic atrophy, absence of radius, radioulnar synostosis, absence of thumbs, chondrodysplasia, GH insensitivity, split-hand/foot malformation with long bone deficiency, etc.

Remember this?



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Science 6 April 2007:
Vol. 316. no. 5821, pp. 112 - 115

 
Quote
A Single IGF1 Allele Is a Major Determinant of Small Size in Dogs

The domestic dog exhibits greater diversity in body size than any other terrestrial vertebrate. We used a strategy that exploits the breed structure of dogs to investigate the genetic basis of size. First, through a genome-wide scan, we identified a major quantitative trait locus (QTL) on chromosome 15 influencing size variation within a single breed. Second, we examined genetic variation in the 15-megabase interval surrounding the QTL in small and giant breeds and found marked evidence for a selective sweep spanning a single gene (IGF1), encoding insulin-like growth factor 1. A single IGF1 single-nucleotide polymorphism haplotype is common to all small breeds and nearly absent from giant breeds, suggesting that the same causal sequence variant is a major contributor to body size in all small dogs.

Date: 2008/03/03 07:39:20, Link
Author: mitschlag
As I exercise due diligence in reading Schindewolf, I've been working on the concept of Orthogenesis, which looms large in his thought.

I ran across this account (among many others) on the Web, and I wonder whether Daniel Smith thinks that it fairly represents the concept:
 
Quote
Orthogenesis is the notion that evolution proceeds in straight lines. This can refer to the idea that evolution proceeds straight from species A to species B without any side branches. More importantly, it refers to the idea that an evolutionary lineage changes steady, uniform way with no reversals. Sometimes, but not always, it was imagined that species were evolving steadily towards a goal. Usually this trend was supposed to be caused by some “mysterious inner force” (to use Simpson’s words) of the species that compelled it to evolve. Some supporters of orthogenesis would say that once a trend got started in a lineage that it would unchangingly continue until extinction occurred.

Lets use some concrete examples to illustrate what this meant. Supporters of orthogenesis had pointed to the sabertooths. They claimed that the sword-like canine teeth of these cats over evolutionary time continuously got bigger until they were overgrown to the degree which they caused the animals extinction...

Date: 2008/03/03 15:48:27, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Mar. 03 2008,12:06)
Point of clarification--

The single nucleotide in this case was not shown to cause the phenotype; it was just a marker (SNP). The likely cause is variation in the promoter.

IOW, it still counts as evidence against Schindewolf's claim of correlation between the magnitude of events at the DNA and phenotypic levels, it just doesn't fit into the category of single-nucleotide substitutions.

Thanks.

(Hey, Daniel, see how science works?)

Date: 2008/03/05 06:38:54, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 04 2008,18:33)
Schindewolf speaks at length about Orthogenesis.  If I understand it correctly, his views were that evolution followed repeatable patterns, was irreversible, eventually led to overspecialization and ultimately ended in extinction.

Of the description you quote I'd say this much applies to Schindewolf's view:        
Quote
Orthogenesis ... refers to the idea that an evolutionary lineage changes [in a] steady, uniform way with no reversals. Species [are not] evolving steadily towards a goal, [rather the path they were set on was "decided" by the saltational event that first formed that type].  [T]his trend was [not] caused by some “mysterious inner force” (to use Simpson’s words) of the species that compelled it to evolve. [Rather, Schindewolf] would say that once a trend got started in a lineage, it would unchangingly continue until extinction occurred.

Thanks for the clarification.

GG Simpson and others who worked in the field found that Schindewolf's orthogenesis theory did not fit the evidence of horse evolution:

Date: 2008/03/09 13:55:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
And now, a brief interlude, as we return to those thundering hoofs of yesteryear...
         
Quote (Tracy P. Hamilton @ Mar. 06 2008,21:20)
           
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 06 2008,19:21)
             
Quote (mitschlag @ Mar. 05 2008,04:38)
               
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 04 2008,18:33)
Schindewolf speaks at length about Orthogenesis.  If I understand it correctly, his views were that evolution followed repeatable patterns, was irreversible, eventually led to overspecialization and ultimately ended in extinction.

Of the description you quote I'd say this much applies to Schindewolf's view:                          
Quote
Orthogenesis ... refers to the idea that an evolutionary lineage changes [in a] steady, uniform way with no reversals. Species [are not] evolving steadily towards a goal, [rather the path they were set on was "decided" by the saltational event that first formed that type].  [T]his trend was [not] caused by some “mysterious inner force” (to use Simpson’s words) of the species that compelled it to evolve. [Rather, Schindewolf] would say that once a trend got started in a lineage, it would unchangingly continue until extinction occurred.

Thanks for the clarification.

GG Simpson and others who worked in the field found that Schindewolf's orthogenesis theory did not fit the evidence of horse evolution:


Schindewolf used the example of horse evolution as evidence for an orthogenetic trend towards phyletic size increase. (See figures 3.130-35 on page 292)

I think your chart fairly supports that conclusion as well.

The thing I'm finding most often is that those who criticized Schindewolf often don't seem to have taken the time to try to fully understand his positions and the reasoning behind them.

florida natural history museum says

"Were all fossil horses larger than their ancestors?
Archaeohippus means ancient horse
Though many horses became larger than their ancestors, Archaeohippus actually became quite a bit smaller! Archaeohippus descended from the larger Miohippus. Nannippus is another example of a horse that was smaller than its ancestors."

Another theory slain by TWO ugly facts.


Cogent points, Tracy P. Hamilton (typically ignored by Mr Smith).  We will see more on that below, but first let's hear what Otto Heinrich Schindewolf himself had to say:
           
Quote
Schindewolf, pp. 290-291

Phyletic Increase in Size

A special case of an orthogenetic trend is size increase during the course of evolution. This may even be the essential, central process of orthogenesis and one that contributes to and effects at least a portion of the other phenomena.
<snip>
The genus Eohippus, of the Lower Eocene of North America, which stands at the beginning of the horse lineage, had a shoulder height of twenty-five centi­meters and was the size of a cat. The subsequent forms were, in order, the size of a fox terrier and then of a sheep before gradually attaining the size and proportions of the modern horse. A yardstick for the increase in size is provided by the series of skulls of some horse forms, shown to scale in figure 3.109, and by the reconstructions in figures 3.130—35. A further example is the evolution of camels, which also begins with dwarf species about the size of a rabbit, miniatures of the Recent representatives (pl.27A).

In these examples, the size of the body increases with the approach to modern times, and the Recent forms, as the provisional terminal stages of the lineages in question, are the largest of their respective kinds...

Here is GG Simpson's rejoinder:
     
Quote
GG Simpson, The Meaning of Evolution, revised 1967, pp. 136-137:

The horses even provide us with exceptions to the rule that animals tend to increase in size in their evolution. Dur­ing the Eocene the record, contrary to a rather general im­pression, does not show any net or average increase in size. In fact the known late Eocene horses average rather smaller than eohippus in the early Eocene. Then still later, in the Miocene and Pliocene, there were at least three different branches of the horse family characterized by miniature or decreased size (Archaeohippus, Nannippus, Calippus), while at the same time other lines were, according to “rule,” in­creasing in size. At that time, too, others were fluctuating around a mean size without notable change and still others developed different species of decidedly different sizes — as, indeed, is the case in Equus today.

There is increasing evidence that mammals in general, especially some of the relatively large forms, have tended to decrease in average size since the Pleistocene ice age. In it­self this negates any invariability in the rule of increase of size, and it certainly strongly suggests adaptive response to climatic conditions as opposed to size control by some inner tendency or life urge within the organisms alone. We know that climates have tended to become warmer since the Pleistocene. We also know that closely related living mam­mals show the adaptive phenomenon of being, on an average, relatively smaller in warmer climates. It is certainly reason­able to suppose that this is the same sort of phenomenon in­volved in size decrease from Pleistocene to Recent.

To be concluded...

Date: 2008/03/09 13:56:22, Link
Author: mitschlag
Otto Heinrich, the cherry-picker:
 
Quote
Schindewolf, pp. 291-295 (continuing from the previous excerpt):

...And yet, this [he means inexorable increase in size] is by no means always the case; extremely often it is just the opposite, that extinct, ancient animal forms are characterized by unusual size, and the layman is indeed inclined to imagine these, without exception, as gigantic monsters.

In fact, we know that among extinct tigers, bears, elephants, rhinoceroses, and so on, there are some  extinct species that were considerably larger than those living today. A particularly conspicuous example is the mighty Baluchitherium, from the Oligocene of Asia, which is assigned to the rhinoceros group even though (like most ancient rhinoceroses) it has no horn on its nose (fig. 3.136). The shoulder height of this animal comes to about 5.3 meters, and the length of the torso is as much as 10 meters, making it one of the largest terrestrial mammals that ever lived. The enormous size of this animal is clearly seen in the comparison of a reconstruction of Baluchitherium with the Recent Indian rhi­noceros, both shown to scale in figure 3. 137.

These examples, however, by no means represent a contradiction to our rule of phyletic increase in size, for the extinct forms in question are not the imme­diate predecessors of the smaller Recent species. They are only members of a broader, related group within which they represent the terminal forms of extinct collateral lines (fig. 3.138). To this extent, they thoroughly confirm the general rule that gigantic forms mark the end of evolution.

Unquestionable examples of a once-attained body size being secondarily re­duced are almost unknown except in instances where such a reduction is suc­ceeded by a thorough remodeling to a completely new typal structure, which, itself, begins again with small forms. The exceptions occasionally cited are prob­ably only apparent, for in those cases it has not been shown that the forms with the supposed reduction in size really issued from larger ancestral forms of the same genetic lineage; only in such a situation would our rule be contradicted.

Accordingly, the evolution of size is, in general, irreversible. However, it is immediately clear that gigantic forms are indicators of dying lineages, for ulti­mately a point would be reached beyond which continued increase in size would be impossible for physiological reasons.

However, you are full of it, Schindewolf:
 
Quote
Simpson, op. cit., pp.137-138:

In this connection, it is known that many large animals of the past became extinct and are not the ancestors of their smaller living relatives. Mammoths were not ancestral to smaller elephants. (As a matter of fact, most mammoths were no larger than some living elephants, but a few were.) The elephantine ground sloths were not ancestral to the little living tree sloths. The dinosaurs were not the ancestors of the small lizards of later times. But this does not mean that forms that were the ancestors of living animals were not also somewhat larger than the latter at one time or another, and such does appear to be the case for some of them.

Some paleontologists have been so impressed by the fre­quent trend for animals to become larger as time goes on that they have tried to work it the other way around. If they find, say, a Pleistocene bison that is somewhat larger than a Recent bison (so-called Bison taylori, associate and prey of early man in America, is a good example), then they conclude that it is not ancestral to later bison because it is larger. You can establish any “rule” you like if you start with the rule and then interpret the evidence accordingly.

That last line is a keeper.

Date: 2008/03/09 17:27:31, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JAM @ Mar. 09 2008,16:20)
That's why his hypothesis is on the trash heap of science. His data are still useful.

Gotta give credit where credit is due.

And it's due.

Date: 2008/03/12 14:24:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Mar. 12 2008,11:09)
I don't know enough about the particulars of horse evolution to say whether it (the entire evolutionary history of the horse lineage) is a problem for Darwinism or not.  I was merely pointing out that I (as far as I can remember) only made one reference to horse evolution being a problem for a Darwinist interpretation and that was regarding the pre-adaptive selection for the reduction in toes.  It has never been the focus of my arguments here however.

That might be a problem if it were supported by evidence.  How can one be confident that a trait is non-adaptive if one does not have a clear picture of the environment at the time the trait emerged?

Note that the plains came before the one-toed horses, contrary to Schindewolf's belief.  (You can't have plains without grazing animals, and you don't need to be one-toed to be a grazing animal.)

Note that three-toed horses were running on plains (and eating grass) capably enough to survive for millions of years.

Note that one-toed horses became extinct in the Americas despite an abundance of plains for them to run on and grass to graze on.

Schindewolf appears to have selected evidence to fit his  orthogenetic preconceptions.

Date: 2008/03/13 06:25:50, Link
Author: mitschlag
Tough love rocks!

Congratulations, Daniel Smith, as you continue your adventure.


(Anybody interested in a slightly used copy of Grundfragen?)

Date: 2008/03/15 16:51:58, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (dheddle @ Mar. 14 2008,09:14)
Ian, you have, in my opinion, created a false dilemma rooted, again in my opinion,in  an incorrect assumption about the nature God. If by “omnibenevolent” you mean that God loves everyone--well the scripture is not there to support such a pleasant idea. “Jacob I loved,” we are told, “but Esau I hated.” Furthermore, God was manifestly unbenevolent  to the Egyptians and to the various races upon whom he instructed Joshua’s army to commit genocide. God, according to scripture in toto, does not love the people he sends to eternal damnation, he hates them.  You can argue if “hate” means what we mean by hate—but you cannot argue that it is a feeling attributed to God that is in contrast to love—even if it just the absence thereof.  In other words, when you wrote:
         
Quote
I fail to understand how a being that loves us would knowingly condemn us to eternal punnishment.

I would say—that’s good, because he does no such thing. The very concept is, in fact, unthinkable and would render the notion of love meaningless.

That's a wonderful god you have there.  An omnipotent being that creates sentient beings that it hates and condemns to eternal torment.

I admire you for being so intelligent, yet believing such juvenile sadistic claptrap.

Date: 2008/07/11 16:14:08, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Ftk @ July 11 2008,16:01)
Dave seems more than willing to engage in conversation with you bananators...

Banana tors?

Date: 2008/07/14 09:28:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (lcd @ July 14 2008,09:21)
So for those of you who have no religious beliefs, do you believe in something else?  What if those beliefs were desecrated?  What would you do?

I believe in Truth, Justice and the American Way.

My beliefs have been desecrated by the Bush administration.

What I will do is vote Democratic. :angry:

Date: 2008/08/03 16:27:11, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Jkrebs @ Aug. 03 2008,08:57)
Yesterday we discussed the creationists tendency to be over-enamoured of math without regard to its relationship to reality.  Another thing they are over-enamoured of is analogies, and Daniel King's post at UD, with accompanying quote, is excellent.  Therefore, the IDists don't get it.
<snip>
You are both entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own logic.

DaveScot is immune to logic:
 
Quote
DK

It’s actually an argument by analogy. Bfast accurately described the characteristics of several artificial languages then showed that the language of DNA conforms to those same characteristics. Unless you adhere to some unsupportable dogma that nothing in the universe predating humanity is artificial in nature then the best explanation for a language of unknown origin is that it is, like every other known language, artficial in origin.

The burden of proof then obviously falls on the person who claims that languages can arise by means devoid of intelligence. Good luck with that.


"It's an argument from analogy and I'm proud of it!"

Date: 2008/08/04 16:29:56, Link
Author: mitschlag
If it weren't for the banning, there'd be nothing of interest going on there.

Date: 2008/10/18 10:08:20, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 17 2008,19:22)
In order to explain these things in detail, we'd need to know what God knows everything.  We'll never get there.

Damn right.

Date: 2008/10/19 13:11:34, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 19 2008,12:49)
Let me get this straight: you have no idea how any of this originated, yet you are sure of one thing - God didn't do it.

Let's get this straight:

The issue is not whether God did it.

The issue is how God did it.

By defying his own laws of nature, or by working within nature?

If the latter, science is the route to understanding God's work.  As practiced by those eminent theists Galileo, Newton, etc., etc.

Date: 2008/11/10 09:13:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 09 2008,15:22)
I'm fairly convinced that most atheists would argue that there is "no evidence" for God even if he was standing right in front of them.

This was probably meant in jest, but it raises questions:

How would one recognize such a being?

What properties detectable by the senses would identify a god?     ???

Date: 2008/11/16 07:28:12, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 15 2008,19:01)
It's much more of a miracle to believe that life could be put together that way than it is to believe a higher intelligence did it.

A problem with the willful creator hypothesis is justifying the creator's motivation for generating so much misery and suffering.  As one of the leading intellects in the anti-evolution movement has noted:

[quotemine]  
Quote
Here?s something to ponder long and hard: Malaria was intentionally designed. The molecular machinery with which the parasite invades red blood cells is an exquisitely purposeful arrangement of parts. C-Eve?s children died in her arms partly because an intelligent agent deliberately made malaria, or at least something very similar to it.

What sort of designer is that? What sort of “fine-tuning” leads to untold human misery? To countless mothers mourning countless children? Did a hateful, malign being make intelligent life in order to torture it? One who relishes cries of pain?

[/quotemine]

Apparently. :(

Date: 2008/11/16 16:08:29, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 16 2008,09:46)
I did not claim that anyone posits natural selection controls external forces, I merely pointed out that it doesn't.  This was aimed more at the atheist fringe that hangs out here - those who seem to accept abiogenesis without question because it supports their atheism - than at serious researchers.

The hypothesis of a non-magical origin of life has nothing to do with atheism.  It has to do with logic and scientific methodology.  And intellectual maturity.

Believers who accuse non-believers of hating God are at best ill-informed and at worst slanderers.  

:angry:

Date: 2008/11/17 16:14:07, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Louis @ Nov. 17 2008,12:16)
My guess, being as god seems to have a few "issues" ...

If he was mine, I'd send him to bed without pudding.

Date: 2008/11/30 07:10:46, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Reed @ Nov. 30 2008,06:18)
 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 29 2008,17:53)
In all your bluster, in all of Bill's musings, and in all of Wesley's pontificating, there is one thing you're all forgetting:  Only a designer can organize complex materials for specific function.

We're not forgetting it Daniel... we've heard it from you and the rest of The Argument Regarding Design club a thousand times. We still don't fucking buy it, because it's just a bald assertion that isn't based on evidence.

Daniel assumes what he sets out to prove.

Why can't he realize that? ???

Date: 2008/11/30 16:02:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Nov. 30 2008,15:31)
Were not arguing about "the existence of God", we're arguing whether life was created by God or not.

But, but, but...

If one does not presuppose the existence of whatever entity is meant by the term "God," there is no argument.

Date: 2008/12/01 16:41:18, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Dec. 01 2008,16:19)
What will you accept as evidence for design?

Evidence for a designer?

Date: 2008/12/03 12:37:31, Link
Author: mitschlag
To be fair, Daniel didn't say that evolution is unfalsifiable (not this time), he said that Natural Selection is unfalsifiable.

Setting that aside, the formulation "Natural Selection = Atheism's God" makes no sense.  Naturalism, empiricism, philosophical materialism, etc. have been branded (erroneously) as atheistic religious convictions, but Natural Selection?

What's next?

Population Genetics = Atheism's God

Nested Hierarchies = Atheism's God

Date: 2008/12/04 15:36:48, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Dec. 04 2008,11:09)
No, natural selection is the creative agent most often cited by atheists.  It is the reason (according to them) that most things work so well and it is also the reason some things don't work so well.  It is the 'all and all' for atheists.  It is a God replacement.

No, doofus, it's the "creative agent" most cited by evolutionary scientists.

You're no atheist, but I know atheists, and none of them are evolutionary scientists.   :angry:

Date: 2008/12/04 15:55:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Albatrossity2 @ Dec. 04 2008,11:32)
This conflation of science and theology is really tiresome, Daniel. It may be true that your belief system requires you to erect strawmen and tilt at them, but other belief systems allow you to accept reality and marvel at it without having to invoke a meddling deity.  Maybe you could look into one of those...

Thank God the theologians know better.

Date: 2008/12/05 07:15:09, Link
Author: mitschlag
Are Daniel Smith and Joseph the same person?

Joseph:
   
Quote
The Strength of Natural Selection in the Wild

It should be rquired reading for all evolutionists. However they won’t read or won’t accept its conclusion because bto them natural selection is a deity.

Date: 2008/12/05 11:21:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Dec. 05 2008,10:27)
If God really did create life, and science cannot consider any supernatural mechanisms, what would the state of biological science be?

I'd argue that it would be exactly in the state we find it in today - with no plausible explanations for the origins of any living system.

Plausible: Appearing worthy of belief.

"Not plausible": argument from incredulity.

*yawn*

Date: 2008/12/06 05:36:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Dec. 06 2008,05:06)
Analogy is not your strong point

Analogy is all he has.

Date: 2008/12/08 07:33:17, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Dec. 07 2008,16:57)
I've already refuted this once - all it takes to empirically falsify the "God theory" is to show how one complex biological system originated naturally.  Of course, you conveniently don't remember that.

This is getting confusing.  How could any empirical finding falsify the "God theory"?

Which god is it?  Is the god Jesus, the Trinity, Brahma, Vishnu, Zeus, The Great Spirit, Satan?  What?

What are the god's properties?  I hope one of them is perfect goodness, because malevolent gods give me the creeps.
   
Quote
So, what are we left with then?  We have a choice between a theory that explains everything and can be easily falsified, or one that explains nothing and cannot be falsified.

I vote for the former.


Now I'm thoroughly confused.  I thought the God theory was the one that explained nothing and couldn't be falsified.

Date: 2008/12/08 09:20:14, Link
Author: mitschlag
I, on the other hand, am a denier of global electron depletion.

Date: 2008/12/08 16:10:48, Link
Author: mitschlag
Holy cow, it sure gets complicated.  That God guy has a lot on his plate.

Date: 2008/12/08 16:30:02, Link
Author: mitschlag
Ribczynski (keiths) was too intelligent to be tolerated by the ideologues.

Reincarnate yourself soon, in another guise, I pray.

Date: 2008/12/09 07:24:28, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Dec. 08 2008,18:38)
 
Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Dec. 08 2008,07:25)
Daniel Smith:

                   
Quote

I've already refuted this once - all it takes to empirically falsify the "God theory" is to show how one complex biological system originated naturally.  Of course, you conveniently don't remember that.  

So, what are we left with then?  We have a choice between a theory that explains everything and can be easily falsified, or one that explains nothing and cannot be falsified.

I vote for the former.


In previous outings, we've established that Daniel Smith was ignorant of science and the history of science. Now, Daniel insists on the trifecta, showing conclusively that he is without clue when it comes to the philosophy of science, too.

Daniel shares this particular mistake with high-profile company; both Michael Behe and William Dembski have said similar tosh in the past.

Falsifiability isn't a statement about the capabilities of another theory. It is, instead, a statement about what must be true if your theory is true. If that turns out to be false, then your theory is falsified. If not, then your theory has survived a falsifying test.

Daniel, read a book. I'd suggest this one for starters.

I don't get how you don't get what I'm saying.

I don't get how Daniel doesn't get how Wesley gets exactly what Daniel is saying.   ???

Date: 2008/12/09 16:14:05, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (afarensis @ Dec. 08 2008,18:55)
By an amazing coincidence the current edition of Evolution deals with the origin and evolution of complex systems. The entire issue is also open access so feel free to download to your hearts content...

A great link.  But the journal is Evolution Education Outreach.  And the main topic is the evolution of eyes. These are not negative features, but positives, because each article is short and aimed at people who are not professional researchers.  I'm having a ball working through them.

Date: 2008/12/12 11:17:09, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Zachriel @ Dec. 12 2008,10:20)
But will Prof_P.Olofsson be crushed when the tard-mine collapses under the sheer weight of tard? Is he even aware of the dangerous levels of tard that have built up?

This has undoubtedly been noted before, but isn't it odd that Dembski doesn't bother to defend himself - or clarify his positions - on his own blog?    ???

It's not as if his defenders are making sense, or representing his views correctly.  I guess he doesn't care...

Date: 2008/12/14 07:41:27, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Dec. 14 2008,07:20)
It never occurred to him that original sin and the fall is a bag on the side of Judeo-Christian (and Islamic) theology, a kludge fastened there exactly because the world doesn't look much like a world authored by compassionate God at ANY level.

Christianity (some species), yes.

Islam and Judaism, no.

They have other kinds of 'splainin to do.

Date: 2008/12/14 12:45:39, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Badger3k @ Dec. 14 2008,10:49)
What kills me about the people who spout out drivel like this - the ones who believe it, not the ones doing it sarcastically - is that it devalues the other people incredibly.  It says, "I am so important that {God, the Universe, Whatever} will kill somebody just to teach me something.  Nevermind that this was a human being, their worth is really only what they can do for me, even in death."

I recall that this was notoriously the tack that C.S. Lewis took in trying to reconcile his devastation at the death of Joy Gresham with his commitment to belief in his god's goodness.  His god was teaching him a lesson by killing her with bone cancer.:

A Grief Observed

Date: 2008/12/18 06:19:14, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Louis @ Dec. 18 2008,03:29)
Danny, what are you doing inserting creationist tripe inbetween actual science?

Sadly, Daniel can't tell the difference.

Date: 2008/12/29 06:40:57, Link
Author: mitschlag
Tucked behind the Christmas tree:

Steve Fuller joins the Tardfest!

:D

Date: 2008/12/31 15:57:25, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (sledgehammer @ Dec. 31 2008,14:45)
At the risk of flogging a dead horse...

Some bozos can use a good flogging.

Happy New Year!

:D

Date: 2009/01/08 12:56:42, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (midwifetoad @ Jan. 08 2009,12:22)
Seems to be a Khan shaped elephant in that chat room.

Yes, but currently, the really heavy lifting is being done by Sal Gal.

Date: 2009/01/09 07:50:23, Link
Author: mitschlag
Read my book.
 
Quote
By the way, Prof. Fuller, (semi off-topic here)…
I sent you Ch. 1 (actually, Act 1) of the draft of my next novel, Jake Killjoy, P.I., in: Dial D for Darwin. Have you had a chance to read it?

Date: 2009/01/17 16:10:19, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Albatrossity2 @ Jan. 17 2009,13:55)
No, you successfully counter a strawman argument by pointing out that it is a strawman argument.

Then you point out the hypocrisy of someone asking for excruciating detail of a pathway while holding on to another explanation which is mechanism-free, unsupported by evidence, and a prime example of wishful thinking.

Daniel's ignorance is correctible.

Daniel's arrogance is correctible.

Daniel's hypocrisy is correctible.

The only person who can correct those character flaws is... ???

Date: 2009/01/18 07:16:50, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Jan. 17 2009,19:18)
   
Quote (Reed @ Jan. 17 2009,16:23)
So does your inability to distinguish between the droolings of a kook like Davison and actual science.

Is this "actual science"?

(Link to JA Davison's 1984 paper in J. theor. Biol: Semi-meiosis as an evolutionary mechanism)

The challenge is for Daniel to defend this paper.  Google Scholar displays six citations in the 25 years since its publication, five of which are by Davison himself.  The abstract of the other begins:  
Quote
The following topics are included: ideas received from Max Born and Karl Weissenberg; Born's definitions of internal energy and heat flow; features common to science and religion; fallacious improbability arguments in the evolution literature...

:D

Date: 2009/01/23 08:14:16, Link
Author: mitschlag
Steve Fuller hits a sweet spot:
Quote
While I realize that today’s ID people usually promote a conservative political agenda, it is telling that mainstream religious people keep their distance from them. And I don’t think that’s simply because ID is such a political ‘hot button’ topic. Rather, I think a lot of devoutly religious people find ID an intellectual monstrosity that violates ideas of natural piety, etc.

Date: 2009/01/25 13:26:10, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Zachriel @ Jan. 25 2009,13:10)
 
Quote
jerry: Pubdef,

Your arguments are fatuous. They seem more like an attempts of a disruptive toddler rather than constructive adult.

 
Quote
jerry: Mark Frank,

I don’t want to leave you out. So thank you too for your inane arguments.

That's jerry.  Polite in disagreement and incisive in argument.

Date: 2009/01/30 14:06:08, Link
Author: mitschlag
Paul Giem invites djmullen to clean the Augean stables:      
Quote
Periodically someone will burst upon the scene here spouting platitudes from Panda’s Thumb as if they are Gospel, seeming to think, like some street preacher, that we just haven’t been given the straight truth and that if you just hit us between the eyes, our belief systems will all crumble and we will be converted. I hate to tell you this, but it will be a whole lot more work than that.

Date: 2009/02/02 16:05:47, Link
Author: mitschlag
This place used to be funny.

But currently, Uncommon Descent is funnier.

(As it should be.)

:D

Date: 2009/02/07 07:37:46, Link
Author: mitschlag
gpuccio, following a 1,500 word post by kairosfocus, proclaims:
Quote
kairosfocus:

thank you for the clear and exhaustive contribution.

Further,    
Quote
1) Of the two properties of CSI (I am using the term here in the more general, inclusive sense, until we agree on nomenclature), it is “specifictaion” which is the real mark of design.
Specifictaion.  Precimesly.

Date: 2009/02/08 08:14:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (JLT @ Feb. 08 2009,06:24)
Fuller is even more deluded than I previously thought:
     
Quote

My own view on Young Earth Creationism is relatively relaxed.

Not entirely deluded.  Foundationally ignorant.  (The whole thread is a delightful exercise in cognitive dissonance.)

Date: 2009/02/08 12:17:11, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Kristine @ Feb. 08 2009,10:41)
Yes, Wes has encapsulated it.

Dealing with creationists reminds me of my experiences of being a cashier. :p
   
Quote
Customer: “So I got my discount on this?”

Me: “Yep, see there on each item it says ‘Member 10%’, and it shows what you saved.”

Customer: “Wait…is it 10% off each item, or 10% off the total?”

Me: “10% off the total. Well, it works out the same either way.”

Customer: “I thought it was supposed to be 10% off each item. I should be getting a bigger discount on the total.”

Me: “No, you got your discount! 10% off each item adds up to the same amount as 10% off the total.”

Customer: “No, I got 10% off the first item. Then 10% off the second item, so that’s 20%. And 10% off the third item; that’s 30%!”

Me: *pause* “No, that’s…that’s not how percentages work… I can show you on a calculator; it works out the same. You are getting the right discount.”

Customer: “No, it’s all right. But I know I won’t be getting this card again. I was told I was going to be getting a 10% discount on each item, and this really isn’t fair.”

repeat ad managerstepinism

[Adopts managerial stance]

By that reasoning, buy 10 items and pay nothing.

Buy 11 items, etc., etc.

[/Adopts managerial stance]

Date: 2009/02/08 15:45:24, Link
Author: mitschlag
I don't think Daniel wants to leave the comfort of tile walls, ceramic appliances, and odor control wafers.

Date: 2009/02/10 16:42:21, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 09 2009,14:06)
Atheism, on the other hand, is heavily invested in the findings of science.  Atheism needs there to be a way for life to arise naturally.  Atheism needs evolution to be unguided.

What a strangely irrelevant notion.  What does atheism care about science?

Maybe he thinks that science is 'strongly invested in' atheism.  If so, he's definitely correct.  Science needs there not to be an omnipotent tinkerer suspending at whim the regularities of nature.

Date: 2009/02/11 16:39:46, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Kristine @ Feb. 11 2009,16:12)
They want to trick people into believing in God, but even if they accomplished that, they can't dictate the next response.

Trick me once, shame on me.  Trick me twice, shame on you.

Are some people born stupid?

So it seems.  Didn't PT Barnum have something to say about that?

Date: 2009/02/12 05:10:43, Link
Author: mitschlag
David Brown has a nice D-Day feature on human evolution in todays WaPo  Check out the nice graphic on global gene distributions.

Date: 2009/02/14 07:40:29, Link
Author: mitschlag
DaveScot:  
Quote
Answer carefully if you wish to post in any of my threads in the future. I don’t tolerate stupidity well.
An auto-immune reaction?

Date: 2009/02/18 06:00:49, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 17 2009,19:26)
Read Schindewolf's Basic Questions in Paleontology for an eye opening experience.

It is a losing gambit for Daniel to play the Schindewolf card.

I have read Grundfragen, and I can testify that it was an eye-closing experience.

Schindewolf musters artificial selection of data and tortuous argumentation to support preconceived notions of front-loading (orthogenesis) in evolution.

Remember Daniel's thread arguing that the evolution of the horse was a problem for modern evolutionary theory, and how Daniel bailed out of the discussion when Schindewolf's errors and omissions were pointed out to him, as in George  Gaylord Simpson's  The Major Features of Evolution?

Date: 2009/02/18 11:37:01, Link
Author: mitschlag
JayM makes an unreasonable request:  
Quote
KF, you responded at great length, but nowhere in your post did you simply address the question. You claim is unfounded and constitutes begging the question. You can’t simply say “Human intelligence generates complexity, there is complexity in the genome, therefore the genome is a product of intelligence.”

If you could, please, briefly provide any references to any empirical evidence that supports your claim, then we could discuss it seriously. Until then, it is simply a logical fallacy.


(Edited to fix link)

Date: 2009/02/20 13:38:24, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 19 2009,18:28)
My reason for discussing horse evolution in the first place was because of the toes - that's it.
....
Classic strawman.

Quote
Ah, but the strawberries!

That's where I had them. They laughed at me and made jokes,
but I proved beyond the shadow of a doubt, and with geometric logic,
that a duplicate key to the wardroom icebox did exist!

Date: 2009/02/21 04:51:34, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 20 2009,18:32)
 
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 20 2009,11:38)
     
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 19 2009,18:28)
My reason for discussing horse evolution in the first place was because of the toes - that's it.
....
Classic strawman.

       
Quote
Ah, but the strawberries!

That's where I had them. They laughed at me and made jokes,
but I proved beyond the shadow of a doubt, and with geometric logic,
that a duplicate key to the wardroom icebox did exist!

Snip and ignore.  That's the M.O. around here when backed into a corner isn't it?

Do you still want to talk about Schindewolf?

Possess thy soul in patience, Dear Boy.

I have dusted off my copy of Schindewolf and look forward to working with you on its exegesis when I have a spare moment.

(Sorry, but I couldn't resist the association of the quoted part of your comment with Queeg's rant. The Devil made me do it.)   :angry:

Date: 2009/02/22 07:29:08, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Feb. 21 2009,07:43)
mitschlag in particular simpson's account of schindewolf suggests that there are some serious issues with the domain of observations used by schindewolf to support his contentions.  i think SJG goes over this in more detail in "Structure" but I keep forgetting to bring my copy home.  I'll be paying close attention.  This narrative is a great antidote to Popper and Kuhn.

Erasmus, whatever you care to provide from Structure will be welcome.

Your reference to Gould reminded me of his essay Life's Little Joke, which goes well beyond Simpson in demolishing the simplistic sequence portrayed by Schindewolf.  (Gould wrote in 1991 and had in hand much more data than either Schindewolf or Simpson commanded.)  The entire essay - too long to copy and post here - is provided in the link.  Daniel should read it and comprehend it.

Date: 2009/02/22 07:54:32, Link
Author: mitschlag
Contra Schindewolf, Part 1 (Introduction)
   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 19 2009,18:28)
         
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 18 2009,04:00)
                 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 17 2009,19:26)
Read Schindewolf's Basic Questions in Paleontology for an eye opening experience.

It is a losing gambit for Daniel to play the Schindewolf card.

I have read Grundfragen, and I can testify that it was an eye-closing experience.

Schindewolf musters artificial selection of data and tortuous argumentation to support preconceived notions of front-loading (orthogenesis) in evolution.

Remember Daniel's thread arguing that the evolution of the horse was a problem for modern evolutionary theory, and how Daniel bailed out of the discussion when Schindewolf's errors and omissions were pointed out to him, as in George  Gaylord Simpson's  The Major Features of Evolution?

I don't remember it like you do.  Schindewolf's data was never impeached - only his interpretation - which is understandable given the makeup of this group.


As we'll see from the record, we quoted Simpson, who accused Schindewolf of cherry-picking the data.  Does that qualify as "impeachment"?

(As an aside, you might consider avoiding ad hominems like "the makeup of this group" in the future. They add nothing to your argument.)
         
Quote
I repeatedly reminded all of you that horse evolution was one of Schindewolf's examples of gradualism, in fact he called it one of the most well documented cases of gradual evolution in paleontology, (You must've missed that part when you "read" the book), yet you all kept arguing that because horse evolution was gradual - Schindewolf was wrong.


I'm not clear about your point here.  Can you point me to one or more statements by Schindewolf that connect "horse" and "gradualism"?  What's the connection between gradualism and Schindewolf being "wrong"?  Wrong about what?

         
Quote
My reason for discussing horse evolution in the first place was because of the toes - that's it.  But you all read the thread title and jumped to unfounded conclusions, and then congratulated yourselves for "dismantling" them.


What were those "unfounded conclusions"?

Toes to follow...

Date: 2009/02/22 08:32:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Contra Schindewolf, Part 2 (On horse toes - dialog with George)

I believe that this is where toes were introduced into the discussion:
   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Sep. 28 2007,03:31)
       
Quote (Alan Fox @ Sep. 27 2007,11:25)
If you recall, this thread was originally intended for you to show how the evolution of the horse is a problem for the current theory of evolution. I have not seen a great deal of evidence from you, yet.

You're right.  

In order to keep this thread on topic, I will try to keep my posts focused on the work of Schindewolf and Berg and (at least in the case of Schindewolf) also on the evolution of the horse.

Berg doesn't say a lot about horses other than this from section IV, "Convergence":
                         
Quote
"At the very time when in North America the Equidae were being evolved, forms of the order Litopterna were being elaborated in South America in the plains of the Argentine.  The latter are extinct ungulates, in many respects recalling horses: they had also lost the lateral digits of their limbs, and for progression made use of the median digit; their extremities and neck were likewise lengthened, and in the former, the ball-and-socket joints, by which movements in all directions could be accomplished, were being gradually supplanted by pulley joints, which restricted their limbs to being moved only backwards and forwards; their teeth lengthened and grew more complex (although no cement was present).  This group was extinct in South America before the arrival of horses. The Litopterna, or pseudo-horses, thus copied the horses in many ways.
The same course (as to limbs and teeth) as in horses was followed in the evolution of camels in the New World, and of deer, antelopes, sheep and oxen in the Old"
Nomogenesis, pg. 212.

As for Schindewolf's position, why don't I just start by using the same quote I provided for you over at Brainstorms:                  
Quote
To this extent,the one toed horse must be regarded as the ideal running animal of the plains. It's early Tertiary ancestors had four digits on the front feet and three on the hind feet, and low crowned cheek teeth. Since in the later Tertiary, an expansion of plains at the expense of forests has been observed, this change in environmental conditions and the consequent change in the mode of life has been represented as the cause of linear, progressive selection leading up to the modern horse.
However, in the formulation of this view, not enough consideration has been given to the fact that the evolutionary trend of reduction in the number of toes had already been introduced long before the plains were occupied in the early Tertiary by the precursors of the horse; these inhabited dense scrub, meaning that they lived in an environment where the reduction of the primitive five-toed protoungulate foot was not an advantage at all. In the descendants, then, the rest of the lateral toes degenerated and the teeth grew longer step by step... regardless of the mode of life, which... fluctuated repeatedly, with habitats switching around among forests, savannas, shrubby plains, tundra, and so on.
If selection alone were decisive in this specialization trend, we would have to ascribe to it a completely incomprehensible purposefulness...
Basic Questions in Paleontology pp. 358-359, (emphasis his)

Both of these men intently studied real examples from nature and the fossil record and came to the same conclusions:
1. That evolution of types happened suddenly - not gradually.
2. That subsequent evolution proceeded as if constrained by laws.
3. That natural selection had nothing to do with the formation of any organ.


George challenged Daniel on Schindewolf's claim that reduction in toes preceded the appearance of plains on the planet.  Daniel responded:
   
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Sep. 30 2007,16:56)
     
Quote (George @ Sep. 28 2007,07:44)
         
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Sep. 28 2007,03:31)
           
Quote
However, in the formulation of this view, not enough consideration has been given to the fact that the evolutionary trend of reduction in the number of toes had already been introduced long before the plains were occupied in the early Tertiary by the precursors of the horse; these inhabited dense scrub, meaning that they lived in an environment where the reduction of the primitive five-toed protoungulate foot was not an advantage at all. In the descendants, then, the rest of the lateral toes degenerated and the teeth grew longer step by step... regardless of the mode of life, which... fluctuated repeatedly, with habitats switching around among forests, savannas, shrubby plains, tundra, and so on.
If selection alone were decisive in this specialization trend, we would have to ascribe to it a completely incomprehensible purposefulness...
Basic Questions in Paleontology pp. 358-359, (emphasis his)

So basically Schindewolf is saying that horses developed single-toed hooves regardless of the selection pressures applied?  How does he know what those pressures were?  How does he know the scrub was dense?  Paleoecologists today can identify what species were present in the landscape at a point in time, but have much more difficulty in determining vegetation structure.  This has led to disagreements over what the European landscape of most of the Holocene was.  Yes there were lots of oak trees present, but was it closed forest?  Was it patches of scrub interspersed with grassy plains?  Was it widely spaced parkland-like trees?

In other words, what was the quality of his data and how far is he spreading it with rhetoric?

He doesn't go into any details (in this book at least - he may have in others or in one of his papers) about how he knew the environmental conditions were such as he described, so I can't tell you how he determined that.

I'm assuming that the man described in 1965 by Stephen Jay Gould's advisor, Dr. Norman Newell as "the greatest living paleontologist", used the scientific method and the accepted evidence of his day to determine these factors.

You might be in a position to show that he made a false claim, but you must base that on evidence from that time period.


And then:

 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 01 2007,19:37)
   
Quote (George @ Oct. 01 2007,07:22)
You misunderstand me.  I'm not saying he was lying.  I'm questioning how he knew what Tertiary environmental conditions were like and how good were the data he based his conclusions on.  As I said before, it is difficult enough for today's paleoecologists to reconstruct past vegetation.  It would have been much more difficult and imprecise for the ecologists of a century ago.  Palynology, one of the more powerful tools, was only in its infancy.

To summarise:  he may have based his theories on the understanding of the day, but if that understanding is wrong, his ideas crumble.

Schindewolf's book was published (originally - in German) in 1950.  While technically that was in the last century, (so was 1999), it wasn't "a century ago".  

This is what he said:
       
Quote
Since in the later Tertiary, an expansion of plains at the expense of forests has been observed, this change in environmental conditions and the consequent change in the mode of life has been represented as the cause of linear, progressive selection leading up to the modern horse.
(emphasis mine)

I assume "has been observed" means that it was well accepted.  Perhaps newer data has proved him wrong, I don't know.


And yet again:

 
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 03 2007,02:22)
   
Quote (George @ Oct. 02 2007,07:57)
         
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 01 2007,19:37)
Schindewolf's book was published (originally - in German) in 1950.  While technically that was in the last century, (so was 1999), it wasn't "a century ago".
 

My mistake.  I thought you said he worked and wrote in the 1920s.

Perhaps you were thinking of Leo Berg?  He wrote Nomogenesis in 1922.          
Quote

I wasn't questioning this statement:

           
Quote
Since in the later Tertiary, an expansion of plains at the expense of forests has been observed, this change in environmental conditions and the consequent change in the mode of life has been represented as the cause of linear, progressive selection leading up to the modern horse.


I was questioning this one:

             
Quote
However, in the formulation of this view, not enough consideration has been given to the fact that the evolutionary trend of reduction in the number of toes had already been introduced long before the plains were occupied in the early Tertiary by the precursors of the horse; these inhabited dense scrub, meaning that they lived in an environment where the reduction of the primitive five-toed protoungulate foot was not an advantage at all.
(emphasis mine)

My question is how did he know the environment at the time was entirely comprised of dense scrub?  If I were to guess, this statement is based on finds of macrofossils or pollen of scrub species coupled with other proxy data that gave clues about climate.  This may have been the prevailing view at the time.  Don't know.  Doesn't matter.  But I suspect hand-waving.

So, after admitting that you "don't know" what evidence Schindewolf based his argument on, you say that it "doesn't matter", because you "suspect hand-waving".  Is this how science is done?
         
Quote
My point is that knowledge of what species were present at the time doesn't give an accurate picture of what the vegetation structure was at the time, especially over large areas.  I presume the ancestors of horses were widely distributed and not confined to a small isolated valley or two.

As you can see as you walk around in "the wild", vegetation structure varies considerably depending on climate, soil and other things, including the activities of grazing animals.  It is extremely unlikely that the landscape where the ancestors of horses evolved was completely dominated by "dense scrub".  It is extremely likely that there were some more open areas where having fewer toes increased fitness.

Schindewolf was overstating the case that the environment required to select for single-toedness was not present in the early Tertiary.  Because of this, he has no grounds for claiming that development of the trait preceeded selection pressure.

So based on your experience 'walking around in the wild', you've now decided that Schindewolf, one of the premier paleontologists in all of Europe, overstated his case? (a case which, I'm sure, was based on slightly more research than that!)

It's amazing to me how you can delude yourself into thinking you have actually refuted his arguments while presenting no evidence to the contrary from the Tertiary period at all!


At which point, George seems to have thrown in the towel.

More to come...

Date: 2009/02/22 08:41:55, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Feb. 22 2009,08:31)
(For Schindewolfe had to admit that the empirical record revealed no direct evidence at all for a catastrophic mechanism of mass extinction, and he therefore had to seek a potential cause that would leave no testable sign of its operation! Can one possibly imagine an unhappier situation for science? - to face the prospect of a plausible explanation that does not, in principle, leave evidence for its validation.)"

Indeed.

But if that fails, cherry-picking the data is worth trying.

Date: 2009/02/23 11:14:36, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 22 2009,12:55)
         
Quote (mitschlag @ Feb. 22 2009,05:29)
             
Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Feb. 21 2009,07:43)
mitschlag in particular simpson's account of schindewolf suggests that there are some serious issues with the domain of observations used by schindewolf to support his contentions.  i think SJG goes over this in more detail in "Structure" but I keep forgetting to bring my copy home.  I'll be paying close attention.  This narrative is a great antidote to Popper and Kuhn.

Erasmus, whatever you care to provide from Structure will be welcome.

Your reference to Gould reminded me of his essay Life's Little Joke, which goes well beyond Simpson in demolishing the simplistic sequence portrayed by Schindewolf.  (Gould wrote in 1991 and had in hand much more data than either Schindewolf or Simpson commanded.)  The entire essay - too long to copy and post here - is provided in the link.  Daniel should read it and comprehend it.

Schindewolf is not mentioned at all.  Gould seems to be "demolishing" every simplistic phylogenic tree here - including Simpson's.

Exactly!  Need I remind you that that's how SCIENCE works?  (But why the scarequotes around demolishing?  Gould brings evidence to bear on the subject.)
       
Quote
One thing you repeatedly fail to mention is that Schindewolf's area of expertise and study was not horses - it was cephalopods and stony corals - for which he documented extensive patterns of evolution.  Horses were a periphery issue for him - one for which he probably accepted the commonly delineated pathway for his day.  

Thus I can understand why you'd want to focus on horses, since - as you've just documented - all Schindewolf's contemporaries missed the mark to a degree, but no discussion of Schindewolf is worth having if it's not about the area he excelled in - cephalopods and stony corals.

It looks like you're conceding that Schindewolf was wrong about horse evolution being an example of orthogenesis*.  But isn't it significant that in his introduction of the concept, Orthogenesis (Chapter Three, pages 268-272), he cites as examples  ammonites, nautiloids, stony corals, and (drumroll) horses!

I sympathize with the burden you have in dealing with the several lines of inquiry that have been opened among your opponents here, and if you are indeed conceding the horse issue, I am willing to leave unexpressed my further researches into that issue.  But I submit to you that if Schindeowlf's orthogenetic thesis is unsupported by horse evolution, it casts grave doubt on the viability of the theory as an alternative to random mutation + natural selection.

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orthogenesis
     
Quote
Orthogenesis, orthogenetic evolution, progressive evolution or autogenesis, is the hypothesis that life has an innate tendency to move in a unilinear fashion due to some internal or external "driving force". The hypothesis is based on essentialism and cosmic teleology and proposes an intrinsic drive which slowly transforms species. George Gaylord Simpson (1953) in an attack on orthogenesis called this mechanism "the mysterious inner force". Classic proponents of orthogenesis have rejected the theory of natural selection as the organising mechanism in evolution, and theories of speciation for a rectilinear model of guided evolution acting on discrete species with "essences"

(If you can find a better definition in Grundfragen, please provide it.)

Date: 2009/02/23 16:21:11, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 22 2009,12:55)

One thing you repeatedly fail to mention is that Schindewolf's area of expertise and study was not horses - it was cephalopods and stony corals - for which he documented extensive patterns of evolution.  Horses were a periphery issue for him - one for which he probably accepted the commonly delineated pathway for his day.  

Thus I can understand why you'd want to focus on horses, since - as you've just documented - all Schindewolf's contemporaries missed the mark to a degree, but no discussion of Schindewolf is worth having if it's not about the area he excelled in - cephalopods and stony corals.

Daniel, please, enough with the ad hominems.  I'm working here in good faith.  You want to discuss cephalopods and stony corals, we'll discuss them.

Here is what Schindewolf says on pages 269-270:
   
Quote
Examples of Orthogenesis
       
        In ammonites, after the frilling of the suture has been introduced as a fundamentally new process, it continues to develop step by step until the last tiny bit of lobe and saddle margin is broken up into extremely fine teeth and notches. Further, as soon as the principle of the differentiation of the suture line through saddle splitting has been acquired, it is unswervingly pursued, and one by one,one after another, new lobal elements are emplaced. This saddle splitting may affect different saddles, either the inner or the outer ones; at first, the choice was open. But after the decision was made in favor of one site or the other, further development was inevitable, preordained. The same is true for the increase in the number of lobal elements through lobe splitting. Once this mode had been “invented” by a particular form, its descendants carried it on; the mode prevailed, and there was no stopping it, no going back, and no breaking away from the evolutionary direction once it was established.

          In the nautiloids and the ammonoids, the coiling of the shell progressed in an orderly way. in the process, however, a decided difference appeared between the two groups, as we have seen (figs. 3.34 and 3.35): in the ammonoids, the axis of  coiling runs through the protoconch, located at the center of the shell; in the nautiloids, however, the protoconch is eccentric, lying next to the axis of the shell. Thus, the further course of evolution is dictated in advance by the respective initial forms: as the move toward ever tighter coiling progressed, the protoconch of the ammonoids had to participate in the process and acquired a spiral torsion; in contrast, in the nautiloids, in order to arrive at as tightly closed a spiral as possible, one with no perforation, the protoconch had to become increasingly smaller and assume a flat, cowled form. Once the preconditions were established, no other mechanical possibilities were open to the protoconch, and we then see evolution proceeding in a straight line along the path marked out for it.

          The unfolding of the stony corals is dominated by a progressive replacement of the original bilateral  arrangement of the septal apparatuses by a radial one (fig. 3.46). The direction of this course is determined ahead of time by the decidedly hexamerous stage of the six protosepta, which makes a temporary appearance early in the ontogeny of the pterocorals. Thus, the structural design of the lineage is laid down from the beginning and is executed as a complete, pure realization of this hexamerous emplacement by suppression and progressive dissolution of the bilateral features, which at first dominated the mature stages of the pterocorals. In those mature stages, as we recall, only four quadrants were completely developed, and remarkably, this peculiarity was also passed on to the heterocorals, which issued from the pterocorals, as a general morphological capability, although there, it was carried out in a completely different way.

I have bolded sections that trouble me.  Can you guess why I'm troubled?

Date: 2009/02/24 16:15:17, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Daniel Smith @ Feb. 23 2009,18:40)
I don't agree with Schindewolf on this point, but he is basing his argument on "natural science", while I am basing mine on theology.

The question you are asking is whether the actual evidence supports orthogenesis or not.  As you know, Schindewolf cataloged volumes of evidence which he thought supported such an interpretation.  Others think differently.  I don't know that horse evolution proves or disproves either conclusion.  Gould seemed much more concerned with all the branches on the evolutionary tree while Schindewolf seemed intent on the specific lineage that led to the North American Horse.

Orthogenesis is not the main issue for me - although I'm inclined to believe it is a real phenomenon.  Schindewolf, as you know, felt that evolution could be divided into three phases.  He did not believe the first phase - the saltational typogenesis - to be constrained by orthogenetic forces.  That is the phase of evolution I am most concerned about - the saltational, creative phase.

Well that's just dandy.

So, what exactly are we all supposed to learn from reading Schindewolf, Berg, Goldschmidt, Davison, etc.?

That current evolutionary science is bunk?*

Please either state your thesis or desist from claiming that we are missing something significant by not having read the works of these authors.

*Why do I think that's the point?

Date: 2009/02/24 16:29:04, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Quack @ Feb. 24 2009,03:35)
Has it never occurred to you that theology is about the poorest thinkable foundation for scientific enquiry?

Oh, I don't know.  There must be something less useful.

Wishful thinking?

Date: 2009/02/24 16:50:41, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Feb. 24 2009,16:31)
i've never been clear on what exactly is the difference, there.

Isn't it obvious?  Theology is scholarly wishful thinking.

Date: 2009/02/25 06:38:59, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Feb. 24 2009,20:11)
Don't be sad. Whatever my size, I rely upon serious scholars of biological science - e.g. Ernst Mayr in the his 1982 masterwork The Growth of Biological Thought and Stephen Jay Gould in his The Structure of Evolutionary Theory, among others - for guidance regarding where to put my limited time and energy, not obtuse science deniers with zero credibility (you). Mayr, for example, summarized several facts of evolution...
....

In short, Goldschmidt, Schindewolf, Bateson and other saltationists are part of scientific history, obsolete for a half-century and longer, and no longer relevant to current thinking. I don't have time for that.

Well said and quoted, Bill.  Here's more from Mayr on pages 530-531 that bears on your points:
     
Quote
In due time all theories defending orthogenesis were refuted, but this does not justify ignoring this literature. The major representatives of orthogenesis, whether paleontologists or other kinds of naturalists, were keen observers and brought together fascinating evidence for evolutionary trends and for genetic constraints during evolution. They were right in insisting that much of evolution is, at least superficially, "rectilinear.” In horses, the reduction of the toe bones and the changes in the teeth are well-known examples. In fact, the study of almost any extended fossil series reveals instances of evolutionary trends. Such trends are of importance to the evolutionist because they reveal the existence of continuities that are worth exploring, and have therefore been given much attention in the current evolutionary literature.

Trends may have a dual causation. On the one hand they may be caused by consistent changes of the environment, such as the increasing aridity of the subtropical and temperate zone climate during the Tertiary. This set up a continuing selection pressure which resulted in the toe and tooth evolution of the horses. A response to such a continuing selection pressure is what Plate had in mind when he introduced the term “orthoselection” (1903). On the other hand, trends may be necessitated by the internal cohesion of the genotype which places severe constraints on the morphological changes that are possible.  Hence, evolutionary trends are readily explained within the explanatory framework of the Darwinian theory and do not require any separate “laws” or principles.

Date: 2009/02/27 16:17:14, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (dvunkannon @ Feb. 27 2009,14:33)
Tiki of Mulling's new medication shcedule is working! Comments on a single topic! Fewer quotations! Sentences not requiring punctuation until the end!

KF, if you're reading here, thank you. You should try posting over here.

No. No. No.

That's "kairos", not "kairosfocus."

They be two diffurent gents.

Date: 2009/03/05 09:50:42, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Schroedinger's Dog @ Mar. 04 2009,01:39)
       
Quote (FrankH @ Mar. 04 2009,03:51)
Well Daniel?  Are you going to come back or are you going to avoid these questions?

Seems you run away when your idea of a god is questioned.  To me, it seems you are of little faith.  If your faith was strong, you'd be able to respond intelligently, factually and with vigor.

I see nothing like that in you.

Well, that's the thing, i'nit?

When you see the FTKs, RFJEs and Denials of the world, spending all their time trying to fight off science because it doesn't comply to their beliefs, you can bet your ass that it's because their faith is pretty weak.

Someone strong in faith shouldn't feel threatened by anything. And someone strong in faith shouldn't feel the need to try and indoctrinate others, because their faith is so strong they KNOW it to be the ultimate thruth, and thus are confident that others will come to the same conclusion eventualy.

Denial and co. are nothing more than your usual street corner fraud, and their faith is as solid as a chocolate kettle.

Edited to correct a typo.

[Nothing new here.  Just move along]

I've also been thinking about the motivations of Christians who expend so much energy challenging evolutionary science.  Evolution sticks in their craw because it directly debunks the Jesus Story*.

Let's review:

1. Evolution means that there was no Garden of Eden*, no Forbidden Fruit*, no Fall of Man* (and Woman).

2. No Fall of Man* means no requirement for Atonement* for the Primal Sin of Disobedience*.

3. No Atonement* negates the rationale for Jesus being Incarnated* and (Tortured to Death).

4. Without the Jesus Story*, Christianity loses its rationale.

(BTW, I suspect that Daniel Smith's reluctance to take a position on the age of the earth and to question the Noachian Flood* are reflections of a Creationist* mindset.)

-------------------
*Copyrighted myths

Date: 2009/03/05 16:07:26, Link
Author: mitschlag
Speaking about Welsh, I have a relative by marriage who thought that he might make a few pence by creating a Web site that would, for a fee, enable interactive language acquisition.

Sensing a need, the language he chose was Welsh!

He is currently pursuing alternative enterprises.

Date: 2009/03/06 04:23:56, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (k.e.. @ Mar. 05 2009,10:27)

Well it's all in their interpretation which seems to be some sort of Straussian crypto fascism.

They can justify anything when their version of god did the same.

It's been so quiet here lately.

OK, k.e., I shudder in anticipation of your explanation:

What is Straussian crypto fascism? ???

Date: 2009/03/07 16:40:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Oldman, I get the impression from your recent postings of back-to-back contradictory statements by Daniel Smith that he contradicts himself.  Often.  Repeatedly.

Do you think he appreciates the cognitive repair service you're providing?

Probably not.  It would take an effort of will.

Date: 2009/03/09 09:23:38, Link
Author: mitschlag
For Pete's sakes, anybody who says they haven't seen evidence against the Noachian flood is woefully uninformed.  Or something...

Time for Daniel to get cracking on those geology books.

Date: 2009/03/24 16:41:02, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Louis @ Mar. 24 2009,06:51)
 
You might be amused but....



We Are Not Amused.


ETA: Sorry the whole post was just an excuse to use Queen Victoria at her most Imperial (and imperious).

What a babe.  No wonder Albert couldn't ....

Date: 2009/04/13 08:31:40, Link
Author: mitschlag
jerry must be a sockpuppet:

http://www.uncommondescent.com/intelli....-312782

 
Quote
StephenB,

Thanks for the synopsis. I stay away from philosophy because it takes too much effort to understand and has always been too squishy for me. Though I love Plato and Socrates.

Let me know when anyone can explain first) why there is existence and second) why the existence is so exquisitely finely tuned. Would such a result be due to an impersonal force whatever that is or to an intelligence who can make choices. How does an impersonal force find the right combination of laws for our universe. I can understand how an intelligence could But an impersonal force?


So much stupidity condensed into so few words.

Date: 2009/04/24 07:26:26, Link
Author: mitschlag
A curious reprimand from on high:
 
Quote
Adel DiBagno

gpuccio,
   
Quote
You are an inexhaustible source of indications!

On the contrary, I am easily exhausted. But I think that a useful response to arguments from ignorance is to present evidence that may alleviate ignorance.

Please resist the urge to randomly insult people. — Admin

Date: 2009/04/24 07:51:00, Link
Author: mitschlag
Ah, yes, you've been warned DiBagno.

Some time spent in moderation detention will teach you to avoid gratuitous insults to our arguments.
:angry:

Date: 2009/04/30 15:46:09, Link
Author: mitschlag
Intelligent machines!

Two papers in Sciencemag.org, April 3, 2009:

Page 81 describes an algorithm that derives fundamental equations of motion from raw data (e.g., Hamiltonian and Lagrange equations)

Page 85 describes a robot that conducted experiments on yeast metabolism with little human intervention, then  reasoned about its results and planned appropriate next experiments. The robot, Adam, identified orphan enzymes that were confirmed (by humans) to function in yeast metabolism, solving problems that have baffled humans for the past 50 years.

The Perspective on p 43 is also worth reading, if you have access.

Date: 2009/09/07 10:01:05, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Sep. 07 2009,07:40)
...

I think Gordon has made a very big mistake here. If the F in FSCI can only be determined externally to working out the FSCI in the first place then you already know it's designed in the first place. And Gordons claims of >500 FSCI = designed become nonsensicial.

Tard

Gordon had no choice.  I give him credit for fessing up.

And I've archived his admission.

Date: 2010/01/05 07:13:46, Link
Author: mitschlag
Nakashima is on a roll:

Ockham's razor, Sweeny Todd, Augustinian monks behind curtains, beetles and straw men.

Pearls before swine.

Hilarious. :D

Date: 2010/02/07 16:39:51, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Feb. 06 2010,15:12)
StephenB:
         
Quote
To add insult the injury, these bloggers, after failing to provide their own definitions, refuse to accept the perfectly reasonable and clearly written definitions of their adversaries on the grounds that the ID formulations prematurely smuggle in the preferred conclusion. This is beyond ridiculous. A definition cannot smuggle in a conclusion because a definition is not an argument; it is linguistic description of a concept.

Stephen, for Chrissakes, we've been THROUGH this vis your definition of "natural":
         
Quote
Diffaxial: I don’t share your fondness for arriving at conclusions that are inserted into your reasoning “by definition” at the outset – more philosophy by dictionary. The above simply reduces to “by definition…intelligence cannot be natural.”

StephenB: It should be obvious that if ID defines “natural” as law and chance, and if it defines agency as something else, then agency cannot be natural under that definition. The very first step in establishing any kind of rational discussion is to define one’s terms precisely. This may be the first time in history that one group of thinkers [ID scientists ] explained exactly they mean by their terms only to have another group of non-thinkers [Darwinists] tell him that they may not do that.

Diffaxial: From the above we extract (momentarily), “ID defines ‘natural’ as law and chance. ID defines agency as something else. Therefore agency cannot be natural.” This reduces tautologically to, “ID defines agency as non-natural”.... Do you really want to say that this is only a definition, and not a claim?

StephenB:  It is a definition with respect to a hypothesis, which POSITS that the cause will be non-natural. The whole purpose of the design inference is to reason FROM that which is observed [the natural] TO its cause [intelligence]. By definition that cause would be something different that nature because nature, Darwin style, creates only the illusion of design AFTER the fact, whereas ID posits the reality of design BEFORE the fact.

Diffaxial:  IOW, “agency is non-natural” is a claim, something posited or hypothesized by ID. Hence your definitions are not merely definitions but POSITS with considerable content, and to take issue with them is not to object to an attempt to attain terminological precision, but rather to the asserted content of these claims. (BTW, they fall far short of being “operational” definitions, as no operations are anywhere described).

StephenB:  It is a precise definition that is both comprehensible and testable.

Diffaxial: Only claims are testable.

Your argument that your “definition” is “testable” makes my point: it is more than a definition. It is a claim. Supporting a claim (”intelligence cannot be natural”) by reciting a definition that includes within it the same claim (”by definition, intelligence cannot be natural”), accomplishes nothing; all you’ve done is repeat your claim.

Diffaxial's last pins down the problem with Stephen's use of his definitions. Supporting a claim (”intelligence cannot be natural”) by reciting a definition that includes within it the same claim (”by definition, intelligence cannot be natural”), accomplishes nothing; all you’ve done is repeat your claim.

Posit: "a statement that is made on the assumption that it will prove to be true."

My emphases above.

Tasty.  Linky, please.

Date: 2010/05/15 16:47:04, Link
Author: mitschlag
Cornelius George Hunter melts down completely:

http://darwins-god.blogspot.com/2010/05/let-worship-begin.html

Comments have been disabled.

Of course.

Date: 2010/06/27 05:35:07, Link
Author: mitschlag
Steve Fuller knows his history:
 
Quote
I find the proposed lists so far a bit curious, in that relatively few of the books deal with the science-religion relationship head-on – though Dembski’s ‘The End of Christianity’ is one that obviously does. For example, I’m surprised that natural theology is not more strongly represented – not even old Paley makes anyone’s list! Here I would put in a special plug for Leibniz’s Theodicy, as well as the severe criticism it receives from Kant in Critique of Pure Reason. ID is ultimately about whether one can find God through science, which is the bone of contention between Leibniz and Kant.

Date: 2010/08/24 16:39:07, Link
Author: mitschlag
My hypothesis is that Joe is an accomplished attention whore.

He enjoys pulling the chains of us earnest, academic types who have trouble resisting the challenge of correcting error.  Especially when error is so egregious.

Of course, the joke is on him, as well, but he doesn't care  as long as he gets attention.

And he's made a name for himself.  Pity.

Date: 2010/10/30 13:31:02, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (olegt @ Oct. 30 2010,08:18)
gpuccio tells it like it is:
   
Quote
Maybe I have not been clear enough. Let’s pretend for a moment that the designer is God, which is what we both believe in the end.

What's really funny about the ongoing exchange between gpuccio and bornagain77 is that pooch is defending common descent (micro common descent) against BA's arguments that creation is a better explanation all of the time.

Date: 2010/11/29 16:00:19, Link
Author: mitschlag
ck1, that photo is hilarious!

Date: 2011/01/25 07:19:39, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (dheddle @ Jan. 25 2011,05:38)
--well clearly there is a god who wants me out of my funk. (Who, I might add, creates this perfect storm of sports Nirvana with impressive regularity!)

That's funny.  I thought God was doing that for me.

Date: 2011/07/01 16:05:17, Link
Author: mitschlag
Quote (Richardthughes @ July 01 2011,12:49)
KF has a melt-down:

http://www.uncommondescent.com/intelli....2%80%9d

to be fair - "The Whole Truth", that isn't cool. Although Gordon didn't have the same apoplexy when his own side were outing people.

Come on folks, the last thing to give Dipshit KF is a crown of thorns.

ETA - Having trouble finding the offending material:

http://theidiotsofintelligentdesign.blogspot.com/


I'm not finding it at the cited location.  Would you quote it?  Has it been deleted?

 

 

 

=====