Evolution

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Captain-Communist, May 2, 2002.

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  1. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    _Darth_Brooks_:
    You are trying to split semantical hairs,
    Semantic hairs? You called something an appeal to authority when it was not, I merely pointed that out.
    and your lumping in the Law of Gravity comparatively with Common descent by modification was exactly an "appeal to authority", or an "argument from authority." Both terms are interchangeable just as the Law of Biogenesis is interchangeably The Law of Abiogenesis.
    I disagree. As I explained, I made no argument from authority, and I only compared gravity and common descent as two scientific facts, nothing more. I did not attempt to support common descent with gravity, and I certainly did not try to support common descent by appealing to an authority on the subject.
    If you like, I could also call it the "testimonial technique", or "the glittering generality." All have similiar [sic] elements. Or. simply call it comparing apples to oranges.
    You can call it what you want, but don't expect to be understood.
    However you want to put it, it is misleading to suggest that any controversy is attached to the Law of Gravity,
    I didn't, and it is misleading to suggest that there is any scientific controversy attached to common descent.
    or that Common descent by modification is as uncontested as the Law of Gravity,
    Both are considered facts.
    or is substantiated with the strength of the Law of Gravity.
    I never stated or implied in any way that "the Law of Gravity" (what is that anyhow?) Substantiates common descent in any way.

    Peez
  2. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    _Darth_Brooks_:
    I'm not sure how you could consider this off topic or not apart of my ongoing commentary regarding it's relation to the topic.
    The topic here is not "Why do many Fundamentalist Christians not believe in evolution, abiogenesis, the Big Bang, and possibly certain other conclusions of science?" It is "Why do many Fundamentalist Christians not believe in evolution?" Thus, the objections of Fundamentalist Christians to abiogenesis are off topic. As I have explained numerous times, evolution remains evolution with or without abiogenesis.
    Quite simply naturalistic evolutionary common descent by modification had a starting point, and if not one explicitly initiated by spontaneous generation of organic matter from inorganic, perhaps you'd care to explain to us all how and where it began?
    For the sake of this argument, I will accept the proposition that a god created the first life (I have made this offer before).
    I am left with a question for which you've not ventured an answer; which pertains to at what satisfactory temporal point you seem to think evolution becomes adequate for discussion?
    I have "ventured" to answer that question, even though I find it bizarre. I have made no temporal limits on this discussion of evolution. Did you think that I was excluding abiogenesis merely based on time? Abiogenesis is not evolution, regardless of when it occurrs.
    You've continuously stated that this discussion doesn't involve the origin of life (which branch of science concerns itself with this realm? Perhaps we need such an expert here in your stead?)
    The study of abiogenesis occurs at the interface of chemistry and biology. For example, the New York Center for Studies on the Origins of Life website <http://www.origins.rpi.edu/> states: "The principal scientists of this multidisciplinary center are faculty members in astrophysics, biology, chemistry and earth sciences..." There are six "Principal Investigators", including one chemist, two physicists, two earth scientists, and one molecular biologist. In any event, you don't need an expert to discuss an issue. By all means start up a thread on abiogenesis if you are interested.
    or Biogenesis, yet one of the strictest goals of many in science seems to be unraveling that aspect of evolutionary development.
    I am not sure what a "strict" goal is, but very few scientists are engaged in research on the origin of life. Like many other areas of science it is very interesting, but it is not "evolutionary development" in any Darwinian sense.
    So, your comments are puzzling and confusing to me, being less than a layman.
    I believe that the confusion stems from a lack of understanding of what evolution is. There are many good books and web site which explain it, such as Biology, Seventh Edition by Sylvia Mader (McGraw-Hill, 2001) and <http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/evolution-definition.html>.
    As a "Fundamentalist Christian (whatever that means)" the issue surrounding evolutionary descent directly pertains to origins, which I believe is abundantly clear to virtually everyone participating in this discussion, and again, I'm caught off guard that pertinent realization seems to escape you as evidenced by your continuing statements. Certainly, I agree with "microevolutionary" variations and genetic elasticity, mutations, and other changes, occuring within the parameters of species. Therefore, what can only be left in question would be macroevolutionary changes and the naturalistic paradigm's theories speculating upon the origin of the evolutionary development of all life upon this planet at it's point of genesis.
    You will note that the topic of this thread is about one thing that "Fundamentalist Christians" do not believe: evolution. It is not about everything that they do not believe in, only evolution.
    What else would a "Fundamentalist Christian"
  3. phantomwaver Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 26, 2002
    star 1
    Peez Wrote:

    It is unlikely that any two hypotheses will have exactly the same degree of evidence in their favour, so one could (in principle) order "facts" from those with more evidence to those with less evidence.

    I agree that from a scientific view this may be true. One might divide scientific facts between those that can be demonstrated by experiment, and those that cannot. To the lay person, this division may clarify things.

    So as not to get lost in semantics -as to what I mean by "demonstrate" or "experiment," I will give some simplified examples pertinent to this thread. Common descent between fruit flies can, I assume, be demonstrated by experiment. Common descent between the common ancestor of chimps and humans can be supported by a lot of factual evidence, but cannot be demonstrated. The law of gravity can be demonstrated, while not completely explained.

    What "evidentiary problems" with natural selection do you see, and how would that affect common descent as a fact?

    Natural selection appears to me, from what I have studied so far, to have evidentiary limitations in the following ways:

    (1) "Transitional kingdom species-jumping" (my term) is not observed in living organisms.

    (2)"Transitional kingdom species-jumping" is observed in a limited way in the fossil record.

    (3) What I will call the "complexity" problem, (i.e., the one Frank Slade is working on, the one Snow Dog is frustrated about for lack of evidence for) has not been solved in a satisfactory enough manner for many objective observers.

    I greatly appreciated the eye development scenerio, and the lung development scenerio I believe you put forward here. However, these falls far short of solving the complexity problem for me.

    As I said to Frank Slade, "time and rate of change" do not, in my mind, equal "complex development." In the "true origins" link you investigated at my behest, you pointed out some biases in tone and presentation - and technical problems perhaps, which are easy for a scientist to detect. However, the substance of what is being argued there, that the complexity issue has not been adequately addressed by scientific evidence, was left undamaged as far as I can tell.

    The problem I have I can state only rationally - I do not "see" how the natural selection mechanism can lead to the formation of complex biological "systems" requiring complex, simultaneously functioning interconnections that independently have inadequate survival capabilites.

    You have convinced me to the degree I have had time to investigate the subject, that the evidence such as the "shared split gene," et.al., that humans have with chimps, and the other genetic evidence is quite compelling for common descent.

    I have seen no such evidence which addresses the complexity problem. Therefore, at this point, I must take issue with your following assertions:


    Do be more precise, natural selection as an explanation for every single example of evolution is not a fact, but natural selection certainly is sufficient (with the rest of the theory of evolution) to explain all observed evolution.

    The theory of evolution is a sufficient mechanism, even though the details remain to be worked out.

    That the theory of evolution, including natural selection, is sufficient to explain common descent is not in question. What is not held to be "fact" is that the theory of evolution, as it now stands, is the actual explanation for certain particular evolutionary lineages.


    PW wrote:

    I have heard of a San Francisco State biology teacher who attempted this, and was relieved of this teaching post. (He subsequently was reinstated after protesting to State officials.)

    Peez wrote:

    Attempted what? Creationism (including ID) have no place in a science classroom.

    It is my understanding that the professor merely stated what I am trying to say here, that natural selection as a sufficient mechanism is not, or should not considered, a scientific fact based upon the current evidence.

    If h
  4. sleazo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2001
    star 4
    First off, one cannot observe a transitional form, because one cannot predict evolution. We do not know what form any organism may evolve into. Therefore all forms in their current state are not transitional forms. When loooked at in hindsite(ie as fossils) only then can they be viewed as transitional because we know what they were and what they have become.

    But if you are looking for animals that cross species or genus boundaries, take a look at the echidna or the platypus. Both are monotremes and are similar to animals that were transitional forms between egg laying reptiles and live bearing mammals. While these animals may lay eggs, they share many charactersitics with mammals, such as the ability to feed their offspring with milk and fur.
  5. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    phantomwaver:
    Peez Wrote:

    It is unlikely that any two hypotheses will have exactly the same degree of evidence in their favour, so one could (in principle) order "facts" from those with more evidence to those with less evidence.

    I agree that from a scientific view this may be true. One might divide scientific facts between those that can be demonstrated by experiment, and those that cannot. To the lay person, this division may clarify things.
    I am not sure of what you are saying here. I did not make any reference to "experiment" as such, but I suspect that most lay people have only a vague concept of what a scientific experiment is. According to Ecological Methodology by Charles Krebs (Harper Collins, 1989):
    An experiment is an attempt to test a hypothesis about nature.
    The tendency is to picture a manipulated environment in a laboratory, but experiments may be performed inside a laboratory or outside, and they may be manipulative (imposing treatments) or mensurative (measuring what is found). Certainly common descent has been established by experiments, as have many hypotheses from the theory of evolution. The bottom line is that all scientific facts are demonstrated by experiment, how else would they be demonstrated?
    So as not to get lost in semantics -as to what I mean by "demonstrate" or "experiment," I will give some simplified examples pertinent to this thread. Common descent between fruit flies can, I assume, be demonstrated by experiment. Common descent between the common ancestor of chimps and humans can be supported by a lot of factual evidence, but cannot be demonstrated. The law of gravity can be demonstrated, while not completely explained.
    I would say that the fact that humans and chimps share a common ancestor has been demonstrated by experiment, but as you say this may be a semantic argument. Perhaps you could explain why only manipulative experiments should be considered "experiments", and why this distinction is important.
    What "evidentiary problems" with natural selection do you see, and how would that affect common descent as a fact?

    Natural selection appears to me, from what I have studied so far, to have evidentiary limitations in the following ways:

    (1) "Transitional kingdom species-jumping" (my term) is not observed in living organisms.
    Of course not. Why is this an "evidentiary problem"? Neither common descent nor the theory of evolution predict such a thing (if I understand you), so this is like saying that the lack of new planets forming in our solar system is an "evidentiary problems" for gravity.
    (2)"Transitional kingdom species-jumping" is observed in a limited way in the fossil record.
    Again, what is the "evidentiary problem"? We see transitionals between kingdoms, between phyla, between classes, etc., and they are found just where they would be expected to be found (and not elsewhere), and the DNA evidence confirms the relationships. I see no "evidentiary problem" here.
    (3) What I will call the "complexity" problem, (i.e., the one Frank Slade is working on, the one Snow Dog is frustrated about for lack of evidence for) has not been solved in a satisfactory enough manner for many objective observers.
    With all due respect, are you saying that evolutionary biologists are not objective? It is easy to dismiss the findings of a whole group of experts by claiming that they are not objective, but nobody has presented any real "complexity problem" that could not be explained by the theory of evolution. If you think that you have an example that contradicts this, by all means present it.
    I greatly appreciated the eye development scenerio, and the lung development scenerio I believe you put forward here. However, these falls far short of solving the complexity problem for me.
    What "complexity problem"?
    As I said to Frank Slade, "time and rate of cha
  6. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    "You are treating this as a political issue, which is exactly what it is. The debate between creationism/ID and science is political, not scientific. The issue is what the public thinks, not what the science shows. In any event, common descent is a scientific fact, even if one believes that the Invisible Pink Unicorn caused the observed evolution."


    Certainly it's political, political because of all the unfounded speculation involving the fact that evolutionary descent by modification from a common ancestor has never been proven scientifically. Despite all of your assertions that it has occured.

    Dr. D.M.S. Watson: "Evolution is accepted not because it can be proved by logically coherent evidence to be true, but because the only alternative, special creation, is clearly incredible." Nature, Aug 10, 1929, p. 233.





    Peez, how about you take up an offer for debate by an MIT grad?

  7. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    For Sleazo, from the Answers In Genesis site;


    Are there any Transitional Fossils?
    NONE of the five museum officials whom Luther Sunderland interviewed could offer a single example of a transitional series of fossilized organisms that would document the transformation of one basically different type to another.

    Dr Eldredge [curator of invertebrate palaeontology at the American Museum] said that the categories of families and above could not be connected, while Dr Raup [curator of geology at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago] said that a dozen or so large groups could not be connected with each other. But Dr Patterson [a senior palaeontologist and editor of a prestigious journal at the British Museum of Natural History] spoke most freely about the absence of transitional forms.

    Before interviewing Dr Patterson, the author read his book, Evolution, which he had written for the British Museum of Natural History. In it he had solicited comments from readers about the book's contents. One reader wrote a letter to Dr Patterson asking why he did not put a single photograph of a transitional fossil in his book. On April 10, 1979, he replied to the author in a most candid letter as follows:

    '. .. I fully agree with your comments on the lack of direct illustration of evolutionary transitions in my book. If I knew of any, fossil or living, I would certainly have included them. You suggest that an artist should be used to visualise such transformations, but where would he get the information from? I could not, honestly, provide it, and if I were to leave it to artistic licence, would that not mislead the reader?
    'I wrote the text of my book four years ago. If I were to write it now, I think the book would be rather different. Gradualism is a concept I believe in, not just because of Darwin's authority, but because my understanding of genetics seems to demand it. Yet Gould and the American Museum people are hard to contradict when they say there are no transitional fossils. As a palaeontologist myself, I am much occupied with the philosophical problems of identifying ancestral forms in the fossil record. You say that I should at least "show a photo of the fossil from which each type of organism was derived." I will lay it on the line- there is not one such fossil for which one could make a watertight argument. The reason is that statements about ancestry and descent are not applicable in the fossil record. Is Archaeopteryx the ancestor of all birds? Perhaps yes, perhaps no there is no way of answering the question. It is easy enough to make up stories of how one form gave rise to another, and to find reasons why the stages should be favoured by natural selection. But such stories are not part of science, for there is no way of putting them to the test. 'So, much as I should like to oblige you by jumping to the defence of gradualism, and fleshing out the transitions between the major types of animals and plants, I find myself a bit short of the intellectual justification necessary for the job . . .'


    [Ref: Patterson, personal communication. Documented in Darwin's Enigma, Luther Sunderland, Master Books, El Cajon, CA, 1988, pp. 88-90.]



    A couple more quotes;

    Charles Darwin on fossils: "The number of intermediate varieties, which have formerly existed must be truly enormous. Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps is the most obvious and serious objection which can be urged against the theory [of evolution.] Origin of Species, 6th edition, 1902 p. 341-342.

    Dr. David Raup: "We have even fewer examples of evolutionary transition today than we had in Darwin?s time," Field Museum of Natural History, vol 50, Jan 1979, p. 25.


    Dr. Douglas Erwin: "All of the basic architectures of animals were apparently established by the close of the Cambrian explosion (530 million years ago according to evolutionists); subsequent evolutionary changes, even those tha
  8. Captain-Communist Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 24, 2002
    star 3
    so this is what happens to a thread when you start it out of extreme boredom.
  9. phantomwaver Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 26, 2002
    star 1
    A parable:

    Introduction: A few weeks ago, Snow Dog, a contributor here, mentioned an extremely powerful computer built by IBM, called "blue gene." I believe that it is doing a simulation, in pursuit of a biogenesis theory, of a protein being constructed from inorganic matter, or something like that.

    I believe he said that it will take the computer 3 years to simulate a certain number of milliseconds in the protein synthesizing process. In the parable below, "The Blue Genie" will represent "science."

    Peez Wrote:

    The issue is what the public thinks, not what the science shows. In any event, common descent is a scientific fact, even if one believes that the Invisible Pink Unicorn caused the observed evolution.

    PARABLE

    The Invisible Pink Unicorn and the Blue Genie were each leading a small group of their followers on a tour of the Grand Canyon. They just happened to end up in the same helicopter.

    On one side of the Canyon, the Blue Geniests were waiting to board, when one of them noticed some roots sticking out of the ground. "These look interesting," one of them said, "lets take a sample!" And so they did.

    After an exhilarating ride to the opposite side of the Canyon, both groups deplaned and again, one of the Blue Geniests noticed a very ancient and gnarled tree growing out of the ground. "Let's take a sample," they all cried, and so they did.

    Back at the lodge, just after dinner, the Blue Genie himself emerged from his quarters and exclaimed "The samples from the tree and the root are not only from the same species, but from the same tree!"

    "How can this be?" They all cried, both the Blue Geniests and the Invisible Pink Unicornists. "I analyzed both samples with my field kit, and had the computer at the master lab confirm it by fax," said the Genie. "Well - then it must be," the Blue Geniests concurred.

    The Invisible Pink Unicornists would have none of this, at first. However, after attending a seminar ably organized by the Blue Genie, they finally accepted, provisionally, that the Tree on the one side of the Canyon had living roots sticking out of the ground on the other side.

    Soon though, they also began to be filled with enthusiasm. "Why, this proves that the Invisible Pink Unicorn exists; is powerful, and a pretty darned good botanist,?" For, they concluded, how else could a tree such as this exist?

    "This tree says nothing about the Invisible Pink Unicorn," the Blue Genie was quick to respond. "For one thing, that theory is not falsifiable. Besides, you certainly have heard those stories about plants and trees and roots at the Grand Canyon, how a small tree with its roots is powerful enough to collapse a large part of the Canyon wall."

    "Yes," the Invisible Pink Unicornists responded. "We have heard those stories - but, that doesn't explain how a single tree can have a root system that stretches clear under or around the whole Canyon."

    "I don't understand your problem," the Blue Genie said. "You know that trees have roots. You know that roots grow. You know that some trees can live for thousands of years. With enough time, this tree, inch by inch, could have spanned whatever distances and surmounted whatever obstacles were involved, because, as you can see - it exists and we can prove it."

    The Pink Unicornists huddled for a while. Soon, they emerged with an explanations that seemed reasonable. "We accept your evidence," they said. "However, we feel strongly that the Invisible Pink Unicorn intervened and assisted this tree - and that's how it accomplished this amazing feat."

    "We have several problems with that." The Blue Genie replied. "First, as I have stated, your theory is unscientific, so - while I can talk about it here, must exclude it from discussions back at the Blue Genie Temple. Second, I don't understand what you mean when you say 'we don't know how those roots could be so long, etc.,' please be more specific. I have explained that roots grow, inch by inch, year by year. I don't understand your problem."

    "Final
  10. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    _Darth_Brooks_:
    Certainly it's political,
    I am glad that you agree. There is no scientific debate about creationism, it is not science.
    political because of all the unfounded speculation involving the fact that evolutionary descent by modification from a common ancestor has never been proven scientifically.
    That depends on your definition of "proven". If we go with the one that yoi seemed to be presenting, i.e. established by evidence, then the evolution of living populations by descent with modification from common ancestors is proven.
    Despite all of your assertions that it has occured.
    Don't worry about my assertions, deal with the evidence. Just present some evidence against evolution. We have been asking for such for dozens of pages.
    Dr. D.M.S. Watson: "Evolution is accepted not because it can be proved by logically coherent evidence to be true, but because the only alternative, special creation, is clearly incredible." Nature, Aug 10, 1929, p. 233.
    Is that the best that you can offer? Some person gave their opinion 73 years ago, and you seem to be presenting this as significant in some way today? Grasping at straws like that certainly does not make your case. I do agree with one thing that the person said: "special creation, is clearly incredible".
    Peez, how about you take up an offer for debate by an MIT grad?
    This is an open forum, anyone can participate.

    Peez
  11. sleazo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2001
    star 4
    "Please note: According to these few quotes, Evolutionists admit there is no evidence that viruses, plants, reptiles, birds, rodents, fish, amphibians, snakes, horses, monkeys and humans evolved "


    Uhm no actually from these quotes i gathered that it is hard to find transitional fossils because of the improbablity of an animal getting fossilized. Besides the sources, these quotes are thrown together so the context in which they were said can also be brought into question. All in all paleontology is a hard and slow process. We learn new things every day, but it is painstakenly slow. You are right, it is impossible to test which animal is the ancestor of which, however we can give educated speculation based upon evidence. For example we have fossils of various species of Rhinoceros throughout the past 10 million years or so. Before this period there were similar creatures roaming around whose features are shared with future versions. This as peez has been saying is Science. But creationists also do not believe in radiological dating, so there really is no winning. Once you explain how fossil evidence is gathered and studied, creationists come back with the theory that the earth is 5,000 years old.


    Brooks- how do you explain the genetic condition nknown as atavism? Why would a whale be born with legs sticking out of its flanks?
    Why would all whales have vestigal leg bones?
  12. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    "Brooks- how do you explain the genetic condition nknown as atavism? Why would a whale be born with legs sticking out of its flanks?
    Why would all whales have vestigal leg bones? "

    Firstly, I would have to say that earlier in the 20th century science had a list of 180 or so vestigial organs listed as part of human anatomy. We're now down to 2 or 3. A precipitous drop to be sure. I think it can give us reasonable pause to speculate given more time and further research we may find there to be no vestgial organs in the human body.

    Apply that to what we actually know about whales. Comparatively we know a great deal more about human beings than whales. So how can you then be certain that what you are referring to is actually vestigial and not simply another erroneous list like the 180 vestigial parts attributed to human beings only a short time ago.


    Here's another article from Answers in Genesis dealing with this item.



    Some years ago, while speaking on evidence for creation at a university in New Zealand?s South Island, there was a serious challenge from someone in the audience. I later found out he was an ardent theistic evolutionist. He asked how I could possibly sustain my position when there had been a documented find of a modern whale with a complete hind leg attached to its side. I recall being somewhat taken aback. Surely such a find, if genuine, would be the pride and joy of all anti-creationist skeptics. It would have featured repeatedly as a front-line weapon in their many attacks on the defenders of Genesis and biblical authority, so why hadn?t any of the world?s creation organisations heard of it?

    I knew, of course, that some modern whales have a pair of bones embedded in their tissues, each of which strengthens the pelvic wall and acts as an organ anchor. I knew that evolutionists generally claim that these small, yet purposeful structures are vestigial (?left-over?) organs. They choose to believe that each bone of the pair is all that is left of the pelvic bone of the whale?s ancestor which, according to evolutionary doctrine, once walked and ran on land. They believe this even though these strips of bone have a known function, differ in males and females, and are not even attached to the vertebral column. I also knew that people are sometimes born with abnormalities such as an extra finger, or an extra rib, but no evolutionist claims that we evolved from a six-fingered ancestor. Whales could be born with a little extra lump of bone which evolutionists therefore insisted was a throwback corresponding to a second limb bone.

    However, the spectacle of a whale being hauled out of the ocean with an actual leg hanging down from its side was a totally different issue. I don?t remember my exact response, but I indicated that, if true, this would be a serious challenge to explain on the basis of a creation model. I expressed doubt, whereupon the challenger vigorously affirmed the truth of the ?discovery?. I invited him to send me the documentation, and he said he would.

    That was the last I heard of it until I spoke at the same university several years later. A local Christian medical specialist stood up in question time and recounted the ?whale?s leg? incident, saying he had been there at the time. What had come of the exchange ? had I ever received the documentation? I said that I hadn?t, and that I still doubted the story.

    At that time, my theistic evolutionary challenger of the previous time did not make himself known. However, he did surface at a subsequent seminar session I gave on the same visit. He challenged some point about the Genesis account, while cradling an ethically and scientifically discredited anti-creationist book by a prominent humanist crusader. He must have heard about my dismissal of the ?whale tale?, because he approached me in the interval, saying in front of the gathered bystanders that he would now provide me with the documentation. He said that he had read it in the best-selling book The Dinosaur Heresies, by renowned evolutionary paleontologist Robert Bakker.
  13. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    Peez,

    "I am glad that you agree. There is no scientific debate about creationism, it is not science."

    There really is no point in discussing anything. If the best you can do is take a single sentence from an entire paragraph out of context, as well as ignore all the other info presented, we may as well forego the semblance of discussion.

    What you basically did was intentionally create a falsehood.



    "Is that the best that you can offer? Some person gave their opinion 73 years ago, and you seem to be presenting this as significant in some way today? Grasping at straws like that certainly does not make your case. I do agree with one thing that the person said: "special creation, is clearly incredible"."

    You can't really be serious!? Lol.



    You've been repeating yourself. I find it without challenge.

    "Again, what is the "evidentiary problem"? We see transitionals between kingdoms, between phyla, between classes, etc., and they are found just where they would be expected to be found (and not elsewhere), and the DNA evidence confirms the relationships. I see no "evidentiary problem" here."

    Really?


    A quote from TrueOrigins for you:

    According to the theory of common descent, modern living organisms, with all their incredible differences, are the progeny of one single species in the distant past. In spite of the extensive variation of form and function among organisms, several fundamental criteria characterize all life. Some of the macroscopic properties that characterize all of life are (1) replication, (2) information flow in continuity of kind, (3) catalysis, and (4) energy utilization (metabolism). At a very minimum, these four functions are required to generate a physical historical process that can be described by a phylogenetic tree.

    If every living species descended from an original species that had these four obligate functions, then all living species today should necessarily have these functions. Most importantly, they should have inherited the structures that perform these functions. The genealogical relatedness of all life predicts that organisms should be very similar in the particular mechanisms and structures that execute these basic life processes.

    The alleged prediction and fulfillment are:

    1.)If universal common ancestry is true, then all organisms will have one or more traits in common.

    2.)All organisms have one or more traits in common.

    Unless one inserts an additional premise imposing a limit on the degree to which descendants can vary (which would require specification of a mechanism of descent), the claim of common ancestry does not require that all of the descendants share one or more traits. There is no logical reason why completely novel organisms could not arise in one or more lineages. Absent specification of a mechanism of descent, which Dr. Theobald purposefully avoids, there is no way to tether the traits of the descendants to those of the common ancestor.

    The belief that evolution predicts biologic universals is ?one of evolution?s major illusions.? (ReMine, 92.) As Walter ReMine says:

    First, evolution does not predict that life would arise precisely once on this planet. If there were two or more unrelated systems of life, then evolutionary theory would effortlessly accommodate that situation.[3]
    Second, even if life originated precisely once, then evolutionary theory would still not predict biologic universals. Shortly after life?s origin, nothing prevented life from branching and leading separate lineages to higher life forms entirely lacking the known biologic universals.
    Third, evolutionary loss and replacement processes could prevent biologic universals. If one organism is a distant ancestor to another, then nothing in evolution predicts the two must share similarities. If evolution were true, then distant ancestors and descendants (as well as sister groups) can be totally different.
    Evolution never did predict biologic universals, it merely accommodated them. (ReMine, 92-93.)
    Biophysicist Cornelius G. Hunter con
  14. phantomwaver Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 26, 2002
    star 1
    Peez Wrote:

    The following is not meant as an insult (remembering that I know as little about the practice of law as you do about the practice of biology ): what you seem to be saying is that you, knowing little about biology in general and evolution in particular, cannot understand how complex systems could evolve. My reaction tends to be "so what?" This is not an "evidentiary problem", this is simply someone who does not know much about the subject. I am not saying that you should blindly accept the conclusions of people who do know a lot about biology in general and evolution in particular, but neither should you consider your inability to understand an "evidentiary problem". Anyhow, I hope that I didn't come across as condescending there, that was certainly not my intention.

    As a lay person who believes in ID at some level, I look around at nature and at what
    I see on TV, and read in magazines about common descent and I - from a biased lay perspective see apparent anomalies in the fossil record.

    Then, I read more deeply and see presented, from mostly I D - biased compilers, quote after quote from recognized experts in the field of evolution, who "admit" to anomalies in the fossil record which reasonable persons can interpret as "evidentiary" problems if the theory of common descent is to be supported by the fossil record alone.

    Since I am not a biologist, and never will be (I won't invest the time), I cannot defend myself against you when you say there are no evidentiary problems in the fossil record.

    As a rational person with some training in analyzing arguments and evidence, I have attempted to check the "context" on several occasions for the above mentioned "admissions." Many, many have been posted here by D. B. and others.

    When you say they are "vague," or otherwise unworthy of rebutting, I - as a non-biologist, must assume either that: (1) the quotes were taken out of context or are archaic, or (2) that the person quoted was unqualified in the field of biology.

    As a non-scientist, who cannot do my own primary research, I cannot say with any real authority that you are either missing or intentionally avoiding an issue worthy of serious discussion.

    Therefore, for purposes of this discussion - I will attempt to get an issue out into the open so that it can be discussed in terms of logic - in the hopes that I might be able to view the "evidence" on equal grounds with a specialist

    I am going to bypass all "transitional fossil" issues, and try to focus in on what I have been calling the "complexity" problem. If it cannot be brought to a plane where my lack of expertise in biology will not disqualify me, so be it.

    While I am not well prepared at this time to discuss the "complexity" issue, I believe I can at least begin to initiate a discussion. From what I gather, there seem to be a couple of fairly recent "dueling" books which have analyzed "complexity."

    One is "The Blind Watchmaker" - from the evolution point of view, another is "Darwin's Black Box" from the I.D.perspective. I have read neither. But - I believe the issue begins with the "natural selection" mechanism, and I believe I understand it well enough to discuss it in this context.(I trust you will correct me if I get off course).

    Natural Selection as a mechanism for evolution begins with a mutation - an error in copying in the reproductive process, wherein a descendent has a biological trait not possessed by the parent(s). This change results in a benefit to the descendent which, alone or with other variable factors, gives the offspring a reproductive advantage. I.E., more of its offspring survive than those of the original "design."

    I know little of biology, but I know something of Design - as everything I have done in my life involves an element of design. Also, virtually every functioning element in my environment "works" because of, in large measure, its design.

    I have witnessed, as a lay observer, (I am not skilled technically), the "development" of such "creations" as the automo
  15. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    The one rule here is that you can't say 'I don't know.'

    Why?

    I don't know.
  16. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    _Darth_Brooks_,

    You are engaged in more of the same old creationist quote-mining. Quotes from experts can only, at best, be used to indicate the opinion of experts when they made the quotes. Of course the opinions of experts can be important (if they are timely and are presented accurately), but they are not evidence. The quotes that you have presented are apparently not even good for indicating the timely opinion of experts, as they seem to be either out of date, out of context, or both.. For example, one (from Charles Darwin) is 100 years old: are you implying that because we were lacking certain evidence 100 years ago that we must therefore be lacking it today? Even ignoring that, why should we believe this person? If he knew little about it, or if he did not understand, then his opinion is of little worth. If we accept that he did know quite a lot about the evidence available at that time, and if he did understand it, then perhaps we should listen to his opinion:
    But, as by this theory innumerable transitional forms must have existed, why do we not find them embedded in countless numbers in the crust of the earth? It will be much more convenient to discuss this question in the chapter on the Imperfection of the geological record; and I will here only state that I believe the answer mainly lies in the record being incomparably less perfect than is generally supposed; the imperfection of the record being chiefly due to organic beings not inhabiting profound depths of the sea, and to their remains being embedded and preserved to a future age only in masses of sediment sufficiently thick and extensive to withstand an enormous amount of future degradation; and such fossiliferous masses can be accumulated only where much sediment is deposited on the shallow bed of the sea, whilst it slowly subsides. These contingencies will concur only rarely, and after enormously long intervals. Whilst the bed of the sea is stationary or is rising, or when very little sediment is being deposited, there will be blanks in our geological history. The crust of the earth is a vast museum; but the natural collections have been made only at intervals of time immensely remote.
    and
    Although I am fully convinced of the truth of the views given in this volume under the form of an abstract, I by no means expect to convince experienced naturalists whose minds are stocked with a multitude of facts all viewed, during a long course of years, from a point of view directly opposite to mine.
    So, not only is that quote far out of date, but the author states that there was (even then) sufficient evidence to accept evolution.

    Another good example of quote-mining are the words from Dr. Dawkins. Ignoring for the moment the fact that this expert clearly thinks that the evidence for evolution is overwhelming, the quoted text is so obviously out of context that it is hard to imagine that it was done without a deliberate attempt to deceive (by the original people who quoted it, not by you _Darth_Brooks_). The quoted passage is from the chapter puncturing punctuationism, and Dawkins is discussing the theory of punctuated equilibria (of Eldredge and Gould). The context of the quoted text is:
    Before we come to the sort of sudden bursts that they had in mind, there are some conceivable meanings of ?sudden bursts' that they most definitely did not have in mind. These must be cleared out of the way because they have been the subject of serious misunderstandings. Eldredge and Gould certainly would agree that some very important gaps really are due to imperfections in the fossil record. Very big gaps, too. For example the Cambrian strata of rocks, vintage about 600 million years, are the oldest ones in which we find most of the major invertebrate groups. And we find many of them already in an advanced state of evolution, the very first time that they appear. It is as though they were just planted there, without any evolutionary history. Needless to say, this [b
  17. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    _Darth_Brooks_:
    Peez,

    "I am glad that you agree. There is no scientific debate about creationism, it is not science."

    There really is no point in discussing anything. If the best you can do is take a single sentence from an entire paragraph out of context, as well as ignore all the other info presented, we may as well forego the semblance of discussion.
    Even ignoring the out-of-context quotes which you presented, how can you accuse me of taking your sentence out of context when I posted every word that you posted? Here it is again:
    "You are treating this as a political issue, which is exactly what it is. The debate between creationism/ID and science is political, not scientific. The issue is what the public thinks, not what the science shows. In any event, common descent is a scientific fact, even if one believes that the Invisible Pink Unicorn caused the observed evolution."

    Certainly it's political, political because of all the unfounded speculation involving the fact that evolutionary descent by modification from a common ancestor has never been proven scientifically. Despite all of your assertions that it has occured [sic].
    You have indicated quite clearly that the debate between creationism/ID and science is political, as far as I can see. We obviously disagree on the reasons that it is political, but we seem to agree that it is political. In what sense was your sentence taken out of context?
    What you basically did was intentionally create a falsehood.
    Please do not accuse me of lying. It is unfounded, rude, and against the rules of this forum.
    You can't really be serious!? Lol.

    You've been repeating yourself. I find it without challenge.
    Finding evidence against evolution certainly seems to be a challenge, as you have not presented any.
    "Again, what is the "evidentiary problem"? We see transitionals between kingdoms, between phyla, between classes, etc., and they are found just where they would be expected to be found (and not elsewhere), and the DNA evidence confirms the relationships. I see no "evidentiary problem" here."

    Really?

    A quote from TrueOrigins for you:

    According to the theory of common descent,
    Biologists consider common descent to be a fact.
    modern living organisms, with all their incredible differences, are the progeny of one single species in the distant past. In spite of the extensive variation of form and function among organisms, several fundamental criteria characterize all life. Some of the macroscopic properties that characterize all of life are (1) replication, (2) information flow in continuity of kind,
    This is a curious way of putting it, apparently trying to make it look as if "kinds" cannot change. That is an assumption that creationist make, and is not a characteristic of life that biologists use. We would simply say that living things replicate themselves (which implies that the information is replicated as well).
    (3) catalysis, and (4) energy utilization (metabolism).
    This is not the best description of the characteristics of life that I have seen, but it is more or less workable (apart from the implication that "kinds" do not change).
    At a very minimum, these four functions are required to generate a physical historical process that can be described by a phylogenetic tree.
    In order to generate a phylogenetic tree, there must be evolution (not only evolution, but speciation and evolution at even higher levels).
    If every living species descended from an original species that had these four obligate functions, then all living species today should necessarily have these functions.
    LOL! These functions have been presented as "fundamental criteria (that) characterize all life", so by this definition all life must have these characteristics, whether or not they evolved from a common ancestor (if they didn't ha
  18. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    Peez,

    Well, if you were so familiar with the 29 Evidences, beyond a mere net search, you'd see already see where this is going and would know that by the time I finish posting from the series it more than adequately addresses your question very nicely. If you don't already see the relation to your question, then, you may wish to re-analyze the quote as it does speak to the premise of your approach.




    "Quotemining"

    A rose by any other name smells the same.
    Again, you're uselessly repeating yourself, in an attempt to try to sweep away, without merit, the qualified statements of experts.

    There's gold in them thar' hills. I'll be continuing to mine.

    No, the quotes are not out of context. The bear directly on our discussion, despite your attempts to 'rhetoricize' them away.

    The quote's you find to be 'outdated' are actually more emphatic because of their dates, dur to the reason that nothing significantly has changed in all the time since they were initially issued. As time elapses they become only more potent, not less.

    Again, it's difficult to understand how you missed that aspect of their use from my perspective.

    Further, you seem to be trying to major on the minors again. If those couple of quotes didn't meet your personally imposed expiration date, certainly the abundance of others have. If the best you can do is fail to grasp the significance of the dates of the older quotes, and entirely ignore the large body of recent quotes, you certainly can't rationally expect me to take your criticism too heavily.

    Your argument involving the Dawkin's quote is flimsy at best as well, I almost have to conclude, being as this is old hat for this thread, and we've covered this ground ad nauseam, that you are intentionally trying to 'play to the crowd.'We both should recognize, that despite the fact Dawkins believes in evolutionary advancement by modification, his quotes were directed at his observation of certain facts. Those facts have nothing to do with whether or not Dawkin's belief is rational or irrational, or well-founded, or even necessarily what those beliefs entail, and his quotes also coincide with the similar statements by other experts on the same issue.

    Further, Gould and Dawkins while both agreeing to a belief in evolutionary development, both held to personal ideologies that are innately needful of such "evidences" to support them personally, but of greater significance is that they battled with each other in publically related
    statements over the problems in the fossil record, and how to account for them. Gradulism doesn't satisfy the claims as you would seem to suggest in this forum, or there would have been no ongoing 'war' between Gould and Dawkins.

    Interestingly, Dawkins has the same problems with Punk Eek that I myself immediately saw transparent in the scheme previous to reading a professional critique by anyone, including Dawkins. It was nice to find an ally in his words. "Out of the mouths of babes,' huh.

    Youve continuously tried to allude to some ambiguous consensus that doesn't actually exist regarding gradualism, implict by the nature of your statements.




    The 2nd Law of Thermodynamics

    Offhandedly and blithely trying to disingeniusly cast aspersion on the relevence of the perils of The 2nd Law of Thermodynamics amounts to nothing more than a tactic. I've gone into depth on this previously in this thread, illustrating the outdated "flaws" in those who've attempted to deny the strength of the 2nd Law, or it's inapplicability to this subject, is itself something I think I shall refer to as "The 2nd Flaw" :). Every complaint against the 2nd Law in these regards has been shown to be outdated and overcome. The 2nd Law is a strong, robust, and virile argument.

    Again, this is just a virtual merry-go-round.

  19. sleazo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2001
    star 4
    The evidence for the common ancestry of life is very strong. To give some idea of what it is, I will simply list a few of the kinds of questions that common ancestry gives an answer to. Why is it that bats and whales have so much in common anatomically with mice and men? Why do virtually all vertebrate forelimbs have the same basic "pentadactyl" (five-fingered) design? (This is one of numerous examples of "homologous" structures exhibited by related species.) Why do some species of whales have vestigial and quite useless pelvic and leg bones, when they have no pelvises or legs? Why are all mammals native to Australia marsupials? Why is there a sequence of reptiles in the fossil record (the "therapsids") with a clear progression from reptilian to mammalian characteristics? Why does the record of life on earth show a clear trend towards greater complexity? Why is it found that the most ancient bird fossils are reptilian, and the most ancient whales have feet? Why do salamander embryos have gills and fins that they will never use?



    Actually the hands and feet of a pakicetus have been discovered in pakistan in 1999 and 2000. Posting outdated quotes really doesnt help your argument Brooks. The fact is that most animals do not get fossilized. Not only that we only uncover a small portion of these. In terms of the billions of species that have inhabited this planet, we really dont know much, but we are discovering more and more each day.


    Here is a very interesting article in the Times


    http://www.nytimes.com/2002/08/15/science/15LANG.html?tntemail1

  20. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    phantomwaver:
    As a lay person who believes in ID at some level, I look around at nature and at what I see on TV, and read in magazines about common descent and I - from a biased lay perspective see apparent anomalies in the fossil record.

    Then, I read more deeply and see presented, from mostly I D - biased compilers, quote, after quote from recognized experts in the field of evolution, who "admit" to anomalies in the fossil record which reasonable persons can interpret as "evidentiary" problems if the theory of common descent is to be supported by the fossil record alone.
    Two things. First, I did not question where you found alleged "evidentiary problems", I asked for an example. So, please provide an example of "apparent anomalies in the fossil record".

    Second, please read "Quotations and Misquotations: Why What Antievolutionists Quote is Not Valid Evidence Against Evolution" at <http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/> for a discussion of how reliable creationist quote-mining is.
    When you say they are "vague," or otherwise unworthy of rebutting, I - as a non-biologist, must assume either that: (1) the quotes were taken out of context or are archaic, or (2) that the person quoted was unqualified in the field of biology.
    When I point out that certain claims are "vague", what I mean is that it is easy to sit down and type "there are anomalies in the fossil record", but what does that mean? No definition of "anomaly" is given, no explanation as to how these might challenge evolution, and no example of even one such anomaly. How can one respond to such a vague and unsupported claim? If there are "anomalies" in the fossil record, point them out. If they are evidence against evolution, explain how. If you have made an error, perhaps I can then point it out. If you have not, perhaps I can learn something. However, making a vague assertion about unspecified evidence that might or might not exist is not helpful.
    I am going to bypass all "transitional fossil" issues, and try to focus in on what I have been calling the "complexity" problem. If it cannot be brought to a plane where my lack of expertise in biology will not disqualify me, so be it.

    While I am not well prepared at this time to discuss the "complexity" issue, I believe I can at least begin to initiate a discussion. From what I gather, there seem to be a couple of fairly recent "dueling" [sic] books which have analyzed "complexity."

    One is "The Blind Watchmaker" - from the evolution point of view, another is "Darwin's Black Box" from the I.D. perspective. I have read neither. But - I believe the issue begins with the "natural selection" mechanism, and I believe I understand it well enough to discuss it in this context.(I trust you will correct me if I get off course).

    Natural Selection as a mechanism for evolution begins with a mutation - an error in copying in the reproductive process, wherein a descendent has a biological trait not possessed by the parent(s). This change results in a benefit to the descendent which, alone or with other variable factors, gives the offspring a reproductive advantage. I.E., more of its offspring survive than those of the original "design."
    There are elements of truth there, but that is not an accurate description of natural selection (if I may be blunt :) ). I will admit up front that the term "natural selection" has been defined slightly differently by different people in the past, but mutation has never been part of it. Natural selection is simply a situation in which individual organisms with a certain trait, in a population, enjoy greater reproductive success than other individuals in that population. If (and only if) the trait in question has at least some genetic basis, it is possible for natural selection to cause evolution (but it does not necessarily do so). Mutations only produce new "alleles" (forms of genes), which may have no effect (usually), a negative effect (sometimes), or a positive effect (more rarely
  21. phantomwaver Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 26, 2002
    star 1
    Peez Wrote:

    There goes the goalpost again. I am not sure what you expect, as it seems that no matter how many times scientists explain to creationists how something could have evolved through the mechanisms of the theory of evolution, the creationists just say "Oh yeah? Well what about this?" and present yet another complex system. I could spend the rest of my life making such explanations, but nothing would change. I believe that you should ask yourself why so many (virtually all) biologists, the people who have actually discovered all that complexity, think that the theory of evolution is the scientific explanation for the fact of common descent.

    Why is this a problem? If the eye and the blood clotting system and the complement system did not change your mind, why would an explanation of this make any difference?


    I said nothing about "goalposts." I have not read the referrenced explanations about the eye and the clotting system, so how could I be expected, at this point, to understand the "solutions?" I was very clear in saying I didn't know very much.

    I was asking you, the expert, to perhaps provide a logical, condensed, thumbnail outline that addresses the "complexity" problem as I presented it in logical - design-oriented terms.

    You appear frustrated that I don't already know the "solution,", or, that I would be so bold as to ask you for an explanation. You did very well in summarizing some of the DNA evidence for common descent. I expected more from you.

    I guess we non-scientists - who also see "all that complexity" and don't right away understand how the natural selection mechanism produced it, should expect that, since "virtually all biologists, the people who have actually discovered all that complexity, think that the theory of evolution is the scientific explanation for the fact of common descent" should think that the evidence "speaks for itself" and needs no further explanation.

    I look forward to reading the "solutions" you have referrenced.

    PW




  22. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    _DarthBrooks_:
    Peez,

    Well, if you were so familiar with the 29 Evidences, beyond a mere net search, you'd see already see where this is going and would know that by the time I finish posting from the series it more than adequately addresses your question very nicely. If you don't already see the relation to your question, then, you may wish to re-analyze the quote as it does speak to the premise of your approach.
    I don't see why you are posting pages and pages of text when only a small part of it allegedly addresses with the issue. I already pointed out how the author cannot even avoid contradicting himself, so there doesn't seem to be any reason to read further. On the other hand, if you have any evidence that pertains to the "evidentiary problems" referred to, why don't you just present it?
    "Quotemining"

    A rose by any other name smells the same.
    Again, you're uselessly repeating yourself, in an attempt to try to sweep away, without merit, the qualified statements of experts.
    All the "qualified experts" that I checked emphatically disagree with what you are trying to make them out as having said.
    No, the quotes are not out of context. The bear directly on our discussion, despite your attempts to 'rhetoricize' [sic] them away.
    How relevant they are to this discussion has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not they are out of context.
    The quote's [sic] you find to be 'outdated' are actually more emphatic because of their dates, dur [sic] to the reason that nothing significantly has changed in all the time since they were initially issued.
    This is something that you are claiming without any support whatsoever. If there is a serious lack of evidence for evolution today, then why is it that evolutionary biologists today think that there is plenty of evidence?
    As time elapses they become only more potent, not less.
    ??? There was no evidence that we are made up of cells 2,000 years ago, should this become "more potent" with time?
    Again, it's difficult to understand how you missed that aspect of their use from my perspective.
    What I am still missing is the logic, if any, in your argument.
    Further, you seem to be trying to major on the minors again. If those couple of quotes didn't meet your personally imposed expiration date, certainly the abundance of others have.
    When the first few quotes that I looked at were out of context and misleading, why should I waste time reading the rest?
    Your argument involving the Dawkin's quote is flimsy at best as well, I almost have to conclude, being as this is old hat for this thread, and we've covered this ground ad nauseam, that you are intentionally trying to 'play to the crowd.'
    Please just stick to the topic.
    We both should recognize, that despite the fact Dawkins believes in evolutionary advancement by modification, his quotes were directed at his observation of certain facts. Those facts have nothing to do with whether or not Dawkin's belief is rational or irrational, or well-founded, or even necessarily what those beliefs entail, and his quotes also coincide with the similar statements by other experts on the same issue.
    And exactly what "facts" is Dawkins supposed to have observed?
    Further, Gould and Dawkins while both agreeing to a belief in evolutionary development, both held to personal ideologies that are innately needful of such "evidences" to support them personally, but of greater significance is that they battled with each other in publically related statements over the problems in the fossil record, and how to account for them. Gradulism doesn't satisfy the claims as you would seem to suggest in this forum, or there would have been no ongoing 'war' between Gould and Dawkins.
    You seem to be misuderstanding the nature of the debate between Dawkins a
  23. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    Peez,
    The author didn't contradict himself, but was in fact pointing out some of the problems with the alleged 29 evidences.
  24. Peez Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2002
    star 4
    phantomwaver:
    I said nothing about "goalposts."
    I did not mean to imply otherwise. I raised the problem with moving goalposts.
    I have not read the referrenced explanations about the eye and the clotting system, so how could I be expected, at this point, to understand the "solutions?" I was very clear in saying I didn't know very much.
    I did not say or imply that you had read those explanations, or that you could be expected too understand the solutions. The point that I was making was that no matter how many times we explain the evolution of a complex system, there will always be other systems that you could ask about. I am suggesting that you question the basic approach of trying to ?stump' scientists, and think about whether or not it is a useful route to understanding.
    I was asking you, the expert, to perhaps provide a logical, condensed, thumbnail outline that addresses the "complexity" problem as I presented it in logical - design-oriented terms.
    And I was pointing out that it is not useful for me to explain the possible evolution of yet another example of "irreducible complexity."
    You appear frustrated that I don't already know the "solution,", or, that I would be so bold as to ask you for an explanation.
    No, I am frustrated that no matter how many times such things are explained, creationists simply ignore it and move on to another complex system. Paley started over 100 years ago, and creationists are still using the same approach. What is the point?
    You did very well in summarizing some of the DNA evidence for common descent. I expected more from you.
    I will resist the temptation to respond in kind. I have done my best to explain several things here, but I am still waiting for a single example of the "evidentiary problems" that you have alleged against evolution. Unless I have missed something, you have only stated that you don't understand how certain systems could have evolved. I have explained that this has been alleged again and again by creationists, and each time that scientists have provided an explanation another creationist comes along and asks for an explanation for yet another system. How many systems do we have to explain? Would you change your mind if I presented you with a credible explanation of the evolution of this particular system?
    I guess we non-scientists - who also see "all that complexity" and don't right away understand how the natural selection mechanism produced it, should expect that, since "virtually all biologists, the people who have actually discovered all that complexity, think that the theory of evolution is the scientific explanation for the fact of common descent" should think that the evidence "speaks for itself" and needs no further explanation.
    Please avoid such sarcasm. I pointed out that the experts, who understand how complex living systems are more than most people, accept that they evolved. This does not mean that you should just throw up your hands and accept everything that we say, but you should seriously wonder why the most knowledgable people accept evolution. The implication of your questions seems to be that the experts are dishonest or incompetant, that they have entirely missed these alleged "evidentiary problems" with evolution.
    I look forward to reading the "solutions" you have referrenced.
    Enjoy, and let's keep this civil if we possibly can. :)

    Peez
  25. _Darth_Brooks_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 4
    Peez,

    Your entropy comment was already addressed previously and refuted by experts in that professional field, a subject which you obviously are not familiar with.

    The solar system is a closed system.
    Living things are definitely closed systems.
    How you could possibly suggest otherwise indicates an ignorance on your part regarding the subject matter upon which you are trying to render comment.

    Of course I probably need not remind you, but it has not ever been proven, despite suspicion to the contrary, that energy, nor information, is not lost. Not to my knowledge.

    I see no point in continuing to beat this dead horse because you simply refuse to address the facts objectively because it apparently interferes with your personal political and religious beliefs.

    Furthermore, to elaborate more on this subject is simply repetition, as stated again, as this has already been explained over the course of hundreds of posts.


    The rest of your comments were merely ad hoc, form without substance. You didn't in any way substantiate your comments which were erroneous, other than because 'you say so.' No references.

    As you stated you haven't bothered to read much of what's been written, it seems analytically careless for you to even bother commenting under such an admission. You couldn't possibly know what you were talking about. It then makes perfect sense why you would consider so much to be off-topic in our discussions. Not having read the material, as you stated, renders your opinions not only ineffectual but moot. And your grasp of the 29 evidences article also suggests you didn't bother to read it clearly.



    "All the "qualified experts" that I checked emphatically disagree with what you are trying to make them out as having said."

    No one disagreed. It is a convenience for you to suggest so.
    I have no idea what "qualified expert" that you checked with who disagreed with the quotes I presented. As you presented no references, I can guess that this is more ad hoc. Being that I presented direct quotes with reference sources from publicly available materials, as authored by those individuals, I don't see where you have a leg to stand on or a legitimate complaint. As said before, consider them hostile witnesses, but don't insinuate I have falsified anything.


    "How relevant they are to this discussion has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not they are out of context."

    This makes absolutely no sense. It also appears to undermine your own complaints.


    "This is something that you are claiming without any support whatsoever. If there is a serious lack of evidence for evolution today, then why is it that evolutionary biologists today think that there is plenty of evidence?"

    Appeal to authority. It is also something you are ironically claiming without a support whatsoever.

    What is in question is the legitmacy of that "evidence" in regard to it's interpretation.

    If you're referring to micro, I would tend to agree with you. If you are referring to macro;


    1. Where has macroevolution ever been observed? What?s the mechanism for getting new complexity such as new vital organs? If any of the thousands of vital organs evolved, how could the organism live before getting the vital organ, because without a vital organ, the organism is dead by definition? If a reptile?s leg evolved into a bird?s wing, wouldn?t it become a bad leg long before it became a good wing? How could metamorphosis evolve?






    "??? There was no evidence that we are made up of cells 2,000 years ago, should this become "more potent" with time?"


    Firstly, the quote wasn't made 2,000 years ago.

    Of course you are taking this out of context as it was specifically addressing the fossil record, not cells. This is deflection.
    That we have identified cells has no bearing whatsoever on fossil finds. Please stick to the subject and trying to provide inappropriate counterpoints.


    "What I am still missing is the logic, if any, in your argument."

    Start with reading things in their entirety.


    "Whe
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