July 14, 2015

The origin of the specious: How academia chased its own tail for a century

Tim BallRebel Columnist
 

In the 19th century, English-speaking universities comprised two faculties, The Natural Sciences and the Humanities. The word scientist didn’t exist until the middle of the century. Naturalist was the general name for people we call scientists today. Darwin, as a naturalist, published The Origin of Species in 1859 as a theory, which it remains today. 

Over time, the science community used Darwin’s Theory of Evolution effectively to replace religion, especially in the public school system. The use of the Theory to counter religion prevented science testing it, as the scientific method requires. The science community automatically ostracizes any scientist challenging Darwin for giving comfort to creationism.

A side effect of effectively removing God from the academic world was ironical, the same challenge Darwin faced. Alfred Russell Wallace sent Darwin a copy of his version of Evolutionary Theory before Darwin published his, and chided him for not explaining the vast difference between humans and all over animals, including the other primates. Wallace proposed a form of intelligent design. In his follow-up book, The Descent of Man, Darwin suggested other animals variously had all the abilities of humans. The confusion all this creates foolish comments such as this by David Suzuki.

Economics is a very species–chauvinistic idea. No other species on earth - and there are may be 30 million of them - has had the nerve to put forth a concept called economics, in which one species, us, declares the right to put value on everything else on earth, in the living and non-living world.

He is wrong about the number of species; there are millions more. He is also wrong about humans as the only ones who put a value on everything. All animals put a value on everything: "Can I eat it or not?" It doesn't get more basic than that. Of course, he doesn’t even seem to realize his statement disproves his argument. No other species could think of economics or write about it.

Darwin and the removal of God had a dramatic impact on the academic world. Religious studies remained a part of the Humanities, but now it was a minor academic study of religions as a curiosity rather than an answer to fundamental questions of why we are here and clearly different. If God didn’t put us here and makes us dramatically different then what did?

One response of the academic world involved social Darwinism. This applied his rule of nature to human behavior and triggered Herbert Spencer’s famous phrase, “Survival of the fittest.” Darwin liked it so much he included it in the sixth edition of his Origin of the Species.  

A much larger response developed based on the academic ability to try and answer questions nobody else is asking or are of any consequence. This is why the saying “it’s academic,” means it is irrelevant to the real world. Academia created an entire new discipline with the oxymoronic title, the Social Sciences.

The entire focus, from psychology, sociology, economics, political science and others is humans and their behavior. Transitional among these subjects is anthropology because it tries to reconstruct our evolutionary history. Along the way it created indicators of our difference from other primates and identified the characteristic that identified us as the humans at that stage. The fact we can do this exercise shows how very different humans are. The fact academics do it measures how far removed they are from reality.  

The first name assigned to a characteristically human trait was arrogantly academic in Latin. We were Homo Erectus, the primate that walked upright. Other primates showed some bipedalism and it wasn’t a particularly distinguishing intellectual feature. We were smarter than those other primates, so they decided what made us different was the ability to make tools, hence the name Homo Habilis, Man, the toolmaker.

Then primatologist Jane Goodall’s observation of chimpanzees making tools eliminated the difference. Clearly, we needed something on a higher intellectual scale so they decided humans could think conceptually. This involves taking two separate ideas and linking to evolve a third idea - solving problems or conceptual thinking. The Latin word chosen was sapiens, which means wise, so we became Homo sapiens, the wise ape.

Another study of chimpanzees involved placing them in a large, high room with bananas hanging from the ceiling and a pile of boxes in the corner. It didn’t take the chimpanzees long to pile up the boxes and get the bananas. A conceptually thinking, problem-solving chimpanzee forced the need for another unique quality for humans.

They decided that our ability to tell lies made us unique. Doesn’t that just make your human chest swell with pride? Lying requires a double thought process, the truth then a way to get round it - a doubly wise process made us Homo sapiens sapiens, the doubly wise primate.

Again another study dismissed this claim to distinction. Researchers watching gorillas through a one-way glass noticed that one broke one of the toys. The gorilla was trained in American Sign Language (AMSLAN) so they asked him who broke the toy. Almost without hesitation the gorilla pointed at a fellow gorilla.

Over the years, I discussed these issues with anthropologists, but especially cultural anthropologist Professor Mel Holstein.  He said the latest thinking involved the ability to think of, or be aware, of death. I described video showing elephants lingering over bones and carrying them around for some time that appear to indicate an awareness of death. We agreed this suggested some awareness of death. However, he said anthropologists considered thinking about death in the concept of an afterlife. 

At that point, we agreed this brings us full circle. Concern about an afterlife is central to religion. Elimination of God and religion as the explanation for human presence and the difference is where the Social Sciences began. Essentially the Social Sciences amount to 100 years of human navel gazing. They add little to our understanding of life or death.

Sociology is a good example because some say they try to prove scientifically what everybody already knew. The Social Science faculties are vast factories of bizarre ideas about people and society that they inflict on society through the schools and government, all without any moral responsibility. 

 

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commented 2015-07-20 15:10:43 -0400
“Tim, you use the word theory as the dictionary defines it. Scientific theory cannot exist without out a proven hypothesis that is confirmed with substantial evidence and then peer reviewed by other scientists that would be considered experts in the field. The scientific theory of evolution has so much evidence you could fill a library. It’s amazing to be how much humans can believe in a book were the foundational stories have been falsified or are downright ludicrous. Don’t try to justify your religion with science because religion is based on faith, science is based on evidence.”
Sorry Wiley . but your paragraph is so riddled with error, I’m not too sure where to start.
1. Evolution is not a scientific theory but is in fact a hypothesis. There are NO experiments that can prove something that happened in the past. We can only infer what happened from the evidence we see in the present.
2. " The scientific theory of evolution has so much evidence you could fill a library" What kind of "EVOLITION are you talking about? A birds beak getting larger or smaller (selection of existing genetic information), or are you talking about a fish changing into a amphibian changing into a reptile changing into a mammal. etc. That kind of evolution requires wholesale additions to the genetic code of which we have no evidence that it can actually happen.
3. “Don’t try to justify your religion with science because religion is based on faith, science is based on evidence.” Right back at you my friend. You believe in your ‘Faith’ in evolution because as Richard Lewontin put it “we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.”

Full quote (emphasis mine)
“Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science IN SPITE of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, IN SPITE of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, IN SPITE of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have A PRIOR COMMITMENT, A COMMITMENT TO MATERIALISM.

It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow COMPEL us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our A PRIORI ADHERENCE TO MATERIAL causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, FOR WE CANNOT ALLOW A DIVINE FOOT IN THE DOOR.

The eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that Miracles may happen."
commented 2015-07-20 14:50:14 -0400
Richard said “Going from a zygote to a full grown organism is also an increase in information. As for NEW information, that happens EVERY TIME there is a codon change error. Some of those errors produce a change in the function of the protein it codes for. That in turn has a new function. If that function is beneficial to the individual, then it will be selected for (your feed back loop) and passed on to subsequent generations. NEW information has been shown to form in the genome all the time.”

Sorry you are missing the point of what Information actually is. A zygote is PROGRAMED to develop into a full grown organism. What you get is an increase in complexity which is not information.

As for changing a codon, sorry that is a decrease in information as whatever that sequence used to create is now suspect.
Lets move that analogy into the computer realm. A random changed in a computers operating system is not going to improve it, but will cause harm to the computer, (some subroutine will stop working or perhaps some error trapping function. No NEW information is added.
commented 2015-07-20 14:43:13 -0400
Robert: which of these statements do you disagree with?
a) Some characteristics are transferred from parent to offspring through their genes.
b) Some characteristics enable an organism in a specific environment to produce more offspring than other of its species.
c) Over generations, sufficient changes in genetic structure result in organisms formerly of the same species being unable to breed together.
That’s Darwin, in a nutshell. Which of those three statements do you think is incorrect, and why?

Actually for A and B I have no problem with. I have a small quibble with C, when it comes to defining what “sufficient changes in genetic structure” really means. Does it mean new information? than no I don’t agree with it. If it means reshuffling or eliminating existing DNA than I agree .
commented 2015-07-17 20:00:10 -0400
Tim, you use the word theory as the dictionary defines it. Scientific theory cannot exist without out a proven hypothesis that is confirmed with substantial evidence and then peer reviewed by other scientists that would be considered experts in the field. The scientific theory of evolution has so much evidence you could fill a library. It’s amazing to be how much humans can believe in a book were the foundational stories have been falsified or are downright ludicrous. Don’t try to justify your religion with science because religion is based on faith, science is based on evidence.
commented 2015-07-16 11:31:22 -0400
“But the process of evolution has been observed in the wild,…”
What kind of evolution? some bird getting a bigger beak or molecules to man? You cannot prove one by pointing to the other. One is a shuffling of existing genes the other the continual adding of new information. Where does the new information come from.

Going from a zygote to a full grown organism is also an increase in information. As for NEW information, that happens EVERY TIME there is a codon change error. Some of those errors produce a change in the function of the protein it codes for. That in turn has a new function. If that function is beneficial to the individual, then it will be selected for (your feed back loop) and passed on to subsequent generations. NEW information has been shown to form in the genome all the time.

The best example of this in the wild, where you can see new information in the genes emerging in a population, is in the founder effect. That’s when a small number of individuals colonize an area, generally an island. Small populations preserve new information changes better than large populations. That in turn means those populations quickly evolve in to different species with distinctly different forms from their ancestors. There is no doubt they are related to their continental counterparts. Phylogenetic analysis of the mistakes in their genes proves it.

Let me ask this. Look up the Palm Cockatoo. Then go look up the the Muloccan Cokcatoo. Quite the difference between them. Different beak shape, different colour, and different temperament (Palsm cant really be pets, they’re nasty, where as Muloccans love to be cuddled and make great pets). Would you agree that to go from the Palm to the Muloccan would require new information? Yes, it would. Palms cannot mate with Mulloccans, they are definitively separate species.

Yet we know how the evolution of cockatoos happened. Palms and Muloccans share a common ancestor. http://docslide.us/documents/cockatoos-invade-indonesia.html
commented 2015-07-16 09:36:27 -0400
And! The creator marches on regardless of the anti humanists, rest assured the last man and woman will celebrate the birth of their child and not insist on abortion, a crime against all humanity and God!
commented 2015-07-16 07:58:42 -0400
Robert: which of these statements do you disagree with?
a) Some characteristics are transferred from parent to offspring through their genes.
b) Some characteristics enable an organism in a specific environment to produce more offspring than other of its species.
c) Over generations, sufficient changes in genetic structure result in organisms formerly of the same species being unable to breed together.
That’s Darwin, in a nutshell. Which of those three statements do you think is incorrect, and why?
commented 2015-07-16 07:48:44 -0400
Just found a comment on the one of the links you suggested I look at here it is:
“A computer is programmed to build random circuits and run tests on them to complete a certain task. The best performing circuits are randomly combined into hybrids and tested again. After hundreds of generations the evolved circuit performs the task really well.

The researchers thought this would provide insight on more efficient circuit design, but the circuit that evolved was so bizarre they couldn’t even understand how it was doing the task. Recreating the circuit on another identical system makes it fail, so apparently it relies on quirks and imperfections in the transistors to function. No human would ever design a circuit this way."

The operative word was that the computer was programs to act a certain way and what resulted is not very practical.

BTW sorry for the code blow, the editor removed all the white space.

A genetic algorithm is basically a trial and error program DESIGNED to reach an optimal result. such as the traveling salesman problem. but consider this
1) pre determined result, in your example a more efficient chip
2) complex program to run it.
3) It had a sort of feed back loop to check on the result and compare it to others. (from what I understand poor results were eliminated)

Bottom line INTELIGENCE was needed to set this up.

“But the process of evolution has been observed in the wild,…”
What kind of evolution? some bird getting a bigger beak or molecules to man? You cannot prove one by pointing to the other. One is a shuffling of existing genes the other the continual adding of new information. Where does the new information come from.
commented 2015-07-16 07:14:24 -0400
Richard, here is the here is the GA function for a Genetic algorithms that is DESIGNED to solve the traveling salesman problem (note for the entire program to work it requires several more functions)
/*
  • GA.java
  • Manages algorithms for evolving population
    */
    package tsp;


public class GA { /* GA parameters */ private static final double mutationRate = 0.015; private static final int tournamentSize = 5; private static final boolean elitism = true; // Evolves a population over one generation public static Population evolvePopulation(Population pop) { Population newPopulation = new Population(pop.populationSize(), false); // Keep our best individual if elitism is enabled int elitismOffset = 0; if (elitism) { newPopulation.saveTour(0, pop.getFittest()); elitismOffset = 1; } // Crossover population // Loop over the new population’s size and create individuals from // Current population for (int i = elitismOffset; i < newPopulation.populationSize(); i++) { // Select parents Tour parent1 = tournamentSelection(pop); Tour parent2 = tournamentSelection(pop); // Crossover parents Tour child = crossover(parent1, parent2); // Add child to new population newPopulation.saveTour(i, child); } // Mutate the new population a bit to add some new genetic material for (int i = elitismOffset; i < newPopulation.populationSize(); i++) { mutate(newPopulation.getTour(i)); } return newPopulation; } // Applies crossover to a set of parents and creates offspring public static Tour crossover(Tour parent1, Tour parent2) { // Create new child tour Tour child = new Tour(); // Get start and end sub tour positions for parent1’s tour int startPos = (int) (Math.random() * parent1.tourSize()); int endPos = (int) (Math.random() * parent1.tourSize()); // Loop and add the sub tour from parent1 to our child for (int i = 0; i < child.tourSize(); i++) { // If our start position is less than the end position if (startPos < endPos && i > startPos && i < endPos) { child.setCity(i, parent1.getCity(i)); } // If our start position is larger else if (startPos > endPos) { if (!(i < startPos && i > endPos)) { child.setCity(i, parent1.getCity(i)); } } } // Loop through parent2’s city tour for (int i = 0; i < parent2.tourSize(); i++) { // If child doesn’t have the city add it if (!child.containsCity(parent2.getCity(i))) { // Loop to find a spare position in the child’s tour for (int ii = 0; ii < child.tourSize(); ii++) { // Spare position found, add city if (child.getCity(ii) == null) { child.setCity(ii, parent2.getCity(i)); break; } } } } return child; } // Mutate a tour using swap mutation private static void mutate(Tour tour) { // Loop through tour cities for(int tourPos1=0; tourPos1 < tour.tourSize(); tourPos1++){ // Apply mutation rate if(Math.random() < mutationRate){ // Get a second random position in the tour int tourPos2 = (int) (tour.tourSize() * Math.random()); // Get the cities at target position in tour City city1 = tour.getCity(tourPos1); City city2 = tour.getCity(tourPos2); // Swap them around tour.setCity(tourPos2, city1); tour.setCity(tourPos1, city2); } } } // Selects candidate tour for crossover private static Tour tournamentSelection(Population pop) { // Create a tournament population Population tournament = new Population(tournamentSize, false); // For each place in the tournament get a random candidate tour and // add it for (int i = 0; i < tournamentSize; i++) { int randomId = (int) (Math.random() * pop.populationSize()); tournament.saveTour(i, pop.getTour(randomId)); } // Get the fittest tour Tour fittest = tournament.getFittest(); return fittest; } }

Please demonstrate how this particular program could have evolved spontaneously (random changes in ones and zeros)

“Here is the article which explains what Robert says is impossible to do. Computer code using natural selection, through random changes in the 1s and 0s, to create better computer programs that change to changing environments. "

Actually it does nothing of the sort. IT is a program designed to reach a predetermined result. In this case distinguish between two audio tones. I would like to see the code used to develop this program. It seems to me that we are still talking past one another and the root of that problem is that we have different world views and therefore look at the evidence differently.
commented 2015-07-15 17:33:54 -0400
Robert, if the universe is only 6000 years old, how come we see light from stars that are millions and billions of light years away? Did god create the photons of light in space AS IF they came from distance stars, but didnt? This is a super nova that happened 8000 years ago:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/spitzer/multimedia/pia14872.html

But it couldnt have if the universe is only 6000 years old. That means god must have put the photons in space AS IF there was a super nova that never happened. Your god is lying to us.
commented 2015-07-15 17:27:38 -0400
“A few points. First of all Evolution equally cannot be tested, and cannot be observed to happen (the modules to man kind) it takes to long for that. "

True, the latter took 4.5 billion years. But the process of evolution has been observed in the wild, has been observed to happen in the lab with experiments, and is recorded in our DNA due to codon mistakes which have been passed down from generation to generation for the last billion years at least.
commented 2015-07-15 17:25:02 -0400
“Second as in Natural Selection, there must first be something to select.”

It selects for or against any and all physical or behavioural characteristics of individuals in a population, either allowing them to produce offspring, or not to produce offspring if selected against. Why are you having such a hard time understanding that simple process? If you know how to look for it, you can see it happening with organisms every day. And yes, over 4.5 billion years those small selection processes, passed down from generation to generation, did turn molecules into man. It’s recorded in our own DNA.
commented 2015-07-15 17:20:27 -0400
“As for how creation happened. In the simplest terms God spoke and it happened. Your error is that you hope to explain with natural laws (where did they come from by the way?) the existence of life. Furthermore you hope to explain this without God, and that is the crux of the issue. I find pleasure in studying God creation, for it reveals his greatness to me. And before you go on about all the bad things that happen. Realize that the Earth was created in a perfect state, but because man rebelled against God (as he is still doing) the earth was corrupted. "

I submit to you then that the world was created by God 10 minutes ago. That’s the world view I will start with a new religion. Society is far too complex to have evolved on its own, man couldnt have created it, it’s too complex. Only God could have created this modern society, 10 minutes ago. What makes your creation myth superior to my creation myth?
commented 2015-07-15 17:16:36 -0400
“But the way the random changing of ones and zeros in a computer program do not create a better program, they cause the program to stop working.”

Read up about artificial intelligence as that is EXACTLY what they are doing to get better computer programs. You missed, and keep missing every time, is the process of SELECTION. The computer programs SELECT from the random changes those changes which DO produce a better program, then incorporate those changes into their own code.
commented 2015-07-15 17:13:41 -0400
“I see DNA much like a computer program. A program requires an intelligence to create it. No program ever came into existence by a random shuffling of one and zeros”

No wonder you dont understand. That is empathetically NOT how DNA works. You really need to take an on line course on genetics. Your outdated and lack of understanding of what is known is hampering your abilities to see how evolution works.
commented 2015-07-15 17:11:03 -0400
“Genetics does no such thing, At best it is an idea imposed on the DNA by an evolutionist.”

Yes it does. Google: genetic transcriptional and translational error. I have seen phylogenetic analysis done. They do this analysis at every major university, The Gene Bank contains all the research done. You are working from misinformation.
commented 2015-07-15 16:51:55 -0400
“Bone up on genetic algorithms, Robert, which mimic natural selection on an optimization problem. There is no random changing of bits, as there isn’t in natural selection, and near-optimal computer programs or solutions can be created.”

First of all a genetic algorithms are programed into the computer and they do not arrive spontaneously. That is they need an intelligence to create them. Second as in Natural Selection, there must first be something to select. As I said before I have absolutely no problem with the concept of Natural Selection, as a concept. I just believe that it cannot be used to explain molecules to man evolution
commented 2015-07-15 16:44:33 -0400
“In creation circles is seems NO ONE is interested in seeking how creation happened, not even the Institute for Creation Research does this. Your creation is based on supernatural mechanisms to have happened, hence cannot be tested, cannot be observed to happen”

A few points. First of all Evolution equally cannot be tested, and cannot be observed to happen (the modules to man kind) it takes to long for that.

As for how creation happened. In the simplest terms God spoke and it happened. Your error is that you hope to explain with natural laws (where did they come from by the way?) the existence of life. Furthermore you hope to explain this without God, and that is the crux of the issue. I find pleasure in studying God creation, for it reveals his greatness to me. And before you go on about all the bad things that happen. Realize that the Earth was created in a perfect state, but because man rebelled against God (as he is still doing) the earth was corrupted.

Earlier I explained the concept of ‘world view’ and that is why you don’t understand where Creationists are coming from. We believe that God created us for a purpose (to be changed to be like him and be with him forever). When we turn our back on God, he gives us up to what Paul refers to as a “reprobate mind” and although we think we are wise we are actually fools. Case in point, today we practically worship Science, the word is from Latin and means knowledge. That is Science is the sum total of what we know, what we have arrived at through our own effort. In this sense we are worshiping ourselves and the pride that comes with us. Every so often we fall prey to hubris and find out that we do not know as much as we thought we did. So because you cannot understand our motivations does not in anyway make them unworthy.
commented 2015-07-15 16:37:32 -0400
Robert: “A program requires an intelligence to create it. […] But the way the random changing of ones and zeros in a computer program do not create a better program, they cause the program to stop working.”

Bone up on genetic algorithms, Robert, which mimic natural selection on an optimization problem. There is no random changing of bits, as there isn’t in natural selection, and near-optimal computer programs or solutions can be created.
commented 2015-07-15 16:29:50 -0400
Richard: “Hence I submit to you, that god created the entire universe 10 minutes ago.”

I love this! Nicely done, Richard.
commented 2015-07-15 16:25:57 -0400
“Well, that is the most absurd statement on this blog. You are batting 1000 on wrong assumptions. As I noted, but I guess you ignored, genetics records the pathway of decent, evolution, through mistakes in the codon sequence. I already explained how it works, so either you didnt read it, or didnt understand it.”

Genetics does no such thing, At best it is an idea imposed on the DNA by an evolutionist.

I see DNA much like a computer program. A program requires an intelligence to create it. No program ever came into existence by a random shuffling of one and zeros. So finding out how the A U G C letters of DNA were produces does not explain how they are arranged to create a code necessary for life, much the same way that a series of transistors does not create a computer program. Both require an intelligence to encode them in a specific pattern for them to be useful. But the way the random changing of ones and zeros in a computer program do not create a better program, they cause the program to stop working.
commented 2015-07-15 16:25:14 -0400
“It seems to me to be a rather unreasonable request since he cannot explain how the advent of the first cell happened “in detail” or any detail at all for that matter.”

The difference is our quest to know, and we want to know, is based on natural laws, which can be measured and observed, and attempted in the lab.

In creation circles is seems NO ONE is interested in seeking how creation happened, not even the Institute for Creation Research does this. Your creation is based on supernatural mechanisms to have happened, hence cannot be tested, cannot be observed to happen. It just did, and no one is to question how. Yet not one of you is willing to speculate as to what the planet looked like right after creation. You people claim it was a “perfect” creation. Everything we see as being so complex must have been created AS IS, right? If that is the case, then right after creation there would have been no way to know it was just created. A created forest would have looked exactly as a forest does today. Trees would have had tree rings, but never grew them. Detritus on the forest floor, decaying leaves, were never leaves on the trees. They were created AS IF they were once on trees. Rivers had silt and sand accumulated in bends, AS IF the river had been flowing for thousands of years, but it had just been created. Volcanoes were instantly created, but had lava flows, and cinder cones AS IF they were emitted from the volcano, but never was.

This has serious consequences, theologically, for all Christians. Because your god could have created the world, life and the universe 10 minutes ago, and you would not know it. Hence I submit to you, that god created the entire universe 10 minutes ago. Everything you have, all your memories, never happened. God put those memories in your mind when he created you 10 minutes ago.

Everything just popped “POOF!” into existence. One moment, nothing, the next the world in perfect creation popped into existence from nothing with the appearance of previous events making the world which never happened.

That also means god created the planes you fly, they were never built by man, they only LOOK like they were made by man.

That is the creation you expect us to accept.
commented 2015-07-15 16:09:12 -0400
Never said I reject natural selection, but the very term implies that there must be something to select. My contention is that you cannot use natural selection to explain how a fish evolved into an amphibian which evolved into a reptile which evolved into…

If you understood how evolution works, then you would know that what selection acts on is the physical and behavioural characteristics of each organism. It selects specific traits, it filters out (select against) other traits. It is a well understood and observed phenomenon. It is genetics and sexual recombination which produces the variation of individuals in a population.

Natural selection indeed did make amphibians from fish, not in one step, but in millions of small incremental steps over millions of generations. That process is well understood. And we have ample examples of how it happened, not just in the fossil record, but some existing organisms. It’s on the Internet, you have have to have the courage to read it.
commented 2015-07-15 15:50:36 -0400
“Well, that’s an interesting comment. Because you creationists accept small scale evolution, including speciation. Yet that happens because of natural selection!!! Which you now want to reject!!! So which is it?”

Never said I reject natural selection, but the very term implies that there must be something to select. My contention is that you cannot use natural selection to explain how a fish evolved into an amphibian which evolved into a reptile which evolved into…

As for aeroplanes and flight, I am a pilot. I have a basic understanding of how it works, but I do not know every little detail (no one does). This example was in response to Richard’s desire for me to explain how “creation happened, in detail.” It seems to me to be a rather unreasonable request since he cannot explain how the advent of the first cell happened “in detail” or any detail at all for that matter.
commented 2015-07-15 15:31:08 -0400
Bill: “For instance don’t tell the Prog cult of scientocracy that their patron saint of species evolution was never formally schooled in science and had no idea of proper scientific method”

That’s a transparent attempt at an ad hominem attack, Bill. What’s your point? Einstein dropped out of school, wrote his first paper before he was 16, studied teaching at another school but studied physics independently, and became a patent clerk. Using only math, he turned the world of physics on its head but not before the physicists of his day mocked him openly and rejected his ideas. Many of our best minds followed a similar path, Darwin is not the only one.

Untold numbers of scientists have reviewed and built on Darwin’s work since he introduced it over 150 years ago. If he was ridiculed in his day, he has some great company: Einstein, Galileo, Tesla, Gauss, Ohm, to name a few. Again, so what?

Bill: “but still a theory” “many detractors in the scientific community”

Not this again. As are plate tectonics and continental drift, but I’m sure geologist Dr. Tim would be a little ruffled if you said those were “just theories.” Please, name some prominent scientists who doubt evolution, not just Darwin. Name some other current scientific theories for organic evolution which which run counter to natural selection and which fit the evidence.
commented 2015-07-15 15:15:46 -0400
Bill, you failed to mention that Wallace, who was a professional scientist, came to the exact same conclusion as Darwin. You also failed to mention that in those early days, many major discoveries were done by hobby scientists/naturalists. This was true not only in biology, but also geology, chemistry, physics and astronomy. Times have changed. Lots more has been discovered on evolution since. But I guess you didnt bother to read the comments posted below where it is explained. Again, phylogentic systematics proves evolution must have happened. That is a branch of biology that is barely 30 years old, yet it has advanced our understanding of evolution far more than all the years combined. It’s so powerful, that a new mechanism of taxonomy, the Phylocode, had to be implemented to categorize the world’s biota. The Linnean system of taxonomy, based on creationism, is being thrown out as incapable of taxonomic classification of life.
commented 2015-07-15 14:52:01 -0400
Great Gaia’s ghost Dr. Tim – Don’t be dissin’ the new-age Prog deities – This is St. Darwin we be talkin’ ‘bout. here – a little sanctimony puleeeese.
For instance don’t tell the Prog cult of scientocracy that their patron saint of species evolution was never formally schooled in science and had no idea of proper scientific method – That he was in fact a university med school drop-out who became a taxidermist and hung out at up-scale naturalist clubs with other idle rich who were wound up in the natural romanticism of the era. Or that he and his pretentious peerage relatives were social bigots (social Darwinists) who believed the under classes and “lesser civilized” ethnicities to be the result of poor genetics and breeding choices (can you see how that bias transposed itself into Darwins view of nature?) Or that the main opponents to Darwin’s “theory” were legitimate scientists of the day who were appalled at the unscientific methods used to come to his theoretical conclusions. Or that today this is still a theory, probable, but still a theory which still has many detractors in the scientific community – that there are other equally viable and probable scientific theories for organic evolution.
For Gaia’s sake no Dr. Tim – don’t be assaulting scientocracy acolytes with awkward truths and scientific counter theory that would make them doubt their “faith” . Say you won’t do it. ;-)
commented 2015-07-15 14:47:28 -0400
“Fact is . . . today no scientist can create even a Single Cell . .”

Fact is, at one time we believed god made it rain. Then we understood meteorology. Science explained why it rains. So because we have YET to make a cell in the lab (the understanding of how it evolved is on going) means that god must have done it, like he did rain? That is classic god of the gaps. Once day we will do it. It’s just a matter of when. Then where will you be?