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Does evolution happen by chance?

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Description: Is evolution directed or not
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mentari
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« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2009, 22:27:57 PM »

And nor did Darwin’s ignorance of genetics invalidate his observations re descent with modification.


It was Halloy's term from his paper in 1848. Halloy was a Catholic theist who believed in God. See http://groups.google.com/group/alt.talk.creationism/browse_thread/thread/d138b2c03c35d64f. Your concept with Descent with modification isn't the same as Halloy: Why are you then using his term? - what is your concept.

http://www.discovery.org/a/1408

In a recent essay in COMMENTARY, "Has Darwin Met His Match?" (December 2002), I discussed, evaluated, and criticized theories of intelligent design, which have presented the latest challenge to Darwin's theory of evolution. In the course of the discussion I observed that the evolution of the mammalian eye has always seemed difficult to imagine. It is an issue that Darwin himself raised, and although he settled the matter to his own satisfaction, biologists have long wished for a direct demonstration that something like a functional eye could be formed in reasonable periods of time by means of the Darwinian principles of random variation and natural selection.

"....Darwinian principles of random variation and natural selection....."

Note how "random and directed" ,"random + non-random" or "motive + non-motive" is brought in with this sentence. Selection is the protocol string we use to transmit from signal sender to signal receiver the concept of directed, motive, intent and consciousness. "Selection" is not some sort of abstract entity it is a word - semantics, below pragmatics. Like a king is above his subjects pragmatics is above semantics.

The concept that anything is the result of either random or directed,motive,non-random has got nothing to do with "Darwinian principles". It is a disguised truism reformulated in bogus undefined "Darwinian" terminology. It is sad that Berlinski and YEC,ID and EVO fails to notice the truistic nature of the sentence. We are dealing with an underlying myth of sea monsters being slain by Gods, followed by circular reasoning (nobody knows whether Tiktaalik had offspring), http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truism and http://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTology sealed with a web of incorrect grammar such as Dawkins ".... if you add in selection...". The word "selectus" can't be added to anything like you would add sugar to coffee, in the same way that John can't crank wooden cheese: it makes no sense.

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« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2009, 23:46:45 PM »

Luthon, I don't particularly like this definition because it confuses the process of evolution with the study of evolution (i.e. Biology).
Not really.  The process of evolution is the resultant (or the emergent, if you wish) of variations in gene frequencies over successive generations, as determined by all of the factors affecting them.  In this way, the definition cuts straight to the heart of the matter, both in terms of what evolution is and what needs to be studied in order to understand it.

Note also that “random” in the context of evolution is not to be taken as meaning “arbitrary” or “indiscriminate” or “chaotic.”  As indicated in an earlier post, “random” in this context must be taken to mean that evolution is not goal-directed except perhaps in the same trivial way that a freefalling object can be said to be goal-directed, i.e. as governed by natural laws.  This is actually what these discussions with religious nuts are all about: they reject the idea that their existence is effectively an accident because they can’t live without the reassurance that they were meant to be.  When you scrape the surface a little, it soon becomes clear that it’s an ego thing, really.




Your concept with Descent with modification isn't the same as Halloy: Why are you then using his term? - what is your concept.
Okay, so once again you’ve taken to your favourite tactic of flogging that tired old semantic goalpost-shifting hobbyhorse of yours, all the while bouncing around in a decidedly unproductive game of intellectual hopscotch.  It is no doubt derived from the very wellspring Werner Gitt tapped for his farcical informatics absurdities.

… in the same way that John can't crank wooden cheese: it makes no sense.
Just like your above reply, then.  Given the fact that evidently you never actually pay attention to what others tell you, that you never address the counterpoints made to your claims with anything besides the usual incoherent, inconsequent, irrelevant and frequently incomprehensible drivel, and that you post the same nonsense all over the Internet again and again, I’ll no longer engage with you.  If you wish a rational discussion with me then I suggest that you abide by the usual rules for such.  Those rules would include a modicum of respect for sticking to the topic and also, if nothing else, at least acknowledging counterpoints.

'Luthon64
« Last Edit: April 01, 2009, 23:58:49 PM by Anacoluthon64 » Logged
Rigil Kent
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« Reply #17 on: April 02, 2009, 09:10:26 AM »

Quote
Those rules would include a modicum of respect for sticking to the topic and also, if nothing else, at least acknowledging counterpoints

Amen to that!

As an example of how rational and polite discussion should play out, I have queried Luthon's definition of evolution as a field of study in my previous post. She has not just skipped over my query in the hope that it  will go away, but immediately offered a rational clarification. While I sort of  Undecided see the point, I still think her definition will lead to unnecessary confusion. But I have at least been exposed to a fresh outlook on a topic I thought I knew quite well, and will give it some thought. This is the point of debate. Everyone is a winner if we can put ego aside.

Mintaka
« Last Edit: April 02, 2009, 09:40:55 AM by Mintaka, Reason: Addition. » Logged
mentari
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« Reply #18 on: April 02, 2009, 09:40:45 AM »

The process of evolution is the resultant (or the emergent, if you wish) of variations in gene frequencies over successive generations
Where was this formally established ?

Note also that “random” in the context of evolution is not to be taken as meaning “arbitrary” or “indiscriminate” or “chaotic.” 

Who says so ?

As indicated in an earlier post, “random” in this context must be taken to mean that evolution is not goal-directed except perhaps in the same trivial way that a freefalling object can be said to be goal-directed, i.e. as governed by natural laws. 

John S. Wilkins from  scienceblogs.com says there is no such thing as a natural law. Nobody knows if gravity will be 10m/s.s 5mins from now, we are assuming it will be. Assumptions aren't laws, laws are absolute certainties.
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Rigil Kent
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« Reply #19 on: April 02, 2009, 09:53:42 AM »

Quote
Quote from: Anacoluthon64 on Yesterday at 23:46:45
The process of evolution is the resultant (or the emergent, if you wish) of variations in gene frequencies over successive generations

Where was this formally established ?


Molecular biology teaches us that genotype determines phenotype. So gradual phenotypic changes in subsequent generations must have its basis in genetic variation.

Quote
Quote from: Anacoluthon64 on Yesterday at 23:46:45
Note also that “random” in the context of evolution is not to be taken as meaning “arbitrary” or “indiscriminate” or “chaotic.” 


Who says so ?


You just did:
Quote
Like a king is above his subjects pragmatics is above semantics.

Quote
John S. Wilkins from  scienceblogs.com says there is no such thing as a natural law.

Thats good to know. I will keep that in mind next time I walk through a wall.

Mintaka


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« Reply #20 on: April 02, 2009, 16:33:18 PM »

Molecular biology teaches us that genotype determines phenotype. So gradual phenotypic changes in subsequent generations must have its basis in genetic variation.


rephrase:
Genes determines the characteristic of an organism - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truism

Gradual changes in generations has its basis in genes. - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truism

The abstract authority Mr.Molecular biology doesn't teach anything, who is the individual that influenced your mind to think truistically ?
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« Reply #21 on: April 02, 2009, 18:14:18 PM »

Molecular biology is hardly an abstract authority. It is a discipline that investigates and applies biochemical knowledge about macromolecules, and routinely finds application in fields such as agriculture and medicine. For instance, by introducing a new piece of DNA into a yeast cell, a molecular biologist can have the yeast cell produce a new protein that it normally has no business producing. I hope the mere though sends shivers down your spine, because it should. It is a massively exciting principle!

But lets take it one step at a time:

Can we agree that the appearance of any organism is determined by its genetic constitution?

Mintaka
« Last Edit: April 03, 2009, 07:35:59 AM by Mintaka » Logged
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« Reply #22 on: April 02, 2009, 19:05:17 PM »

Can we agree that the appearance of any organism is determined by its genetic constitution?

Mintaka


We agree but your sentence is a logical fallacy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truism. Also see the Wikipedia article on Tautology the bulk of which I wrote. They censored about half but the essence remains, there I explained in more detail what a tautology is and how it relates to a Truism. See http://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTology for the uncensored version.
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« Reply #23 on: April 02, 2009, 19:27:17 PM »

Ok hang on. Then we don't quite agree. Are you calling my sentence a logical fallacy because genotype implies phenotype, and it is therefor a tautology?

By the way, are you equating "tautology" with circular reasoning?

Mintaka
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« Reply #24 on: April 02, 2009, 23:24:23 PM »

… I have queried Luthon's definition of evolution as a field of study in my previous post. … I still think her definition will lead to unnecessary confusion.
Actually, the definition is one favoured by biologists.  I merely restated it slightly – perhaps inadequately so.  By way of an analogy, the layman will possibly be puzzled by the definition of a computer (Turing machine) as “a device for manipulating symbols,” yet that is exactly what a computer does.  By thinking of a computer as a powerful calculator or arithmetical contraption, you are, in fact, limiting your view unnecessarily.



rephrase:
Genes determines the characteristic of an organism - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truism

Gradual changes in generations has its basis in genes. - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truism
Who says that either (or both) of the above is a truism (which neither of them is)?

The abstract authority Mr.Molecular biology doesn't teach anything, who is the individual that influenced your mind to think truistically ?
Tell that to molecular biologists.  I’m sure they’ll have a good chuckle.  Who is the individual who taught your mind to conjure up such flawed drivel?



By the way, are you equating "tautology" with circular reasoning?
Please, if I may?  Despite evolution having been described to this person amply and repeatedly and in many different ways, mentari/metari1/backspace has a proven track record of saying anything in an attempt to discredit evolution.  (S)He seems to have a particular liking for the idea that criticising the rigour of the terminology is criticism of the theory itself.  Like all creationists, (s)he is very selective about where (s)he applies those standards.  Specifically, (s)he’s completely loose about answering questions and defining his or her god who is supposed to be an answer to everything (s)he doesn’t understand.

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« Reply #25 on: April 03, 2009, 14:16:14 PM »

..... in an attempt to discredit evolution. ..... criticism of the theory itself.....

As I explained on Wikipedia and scratchpad a tautology is not circular reasoning. What theory precisely am I attacking? You still have not given me the formally established , defined theory of evolution. It doesn't exist on Wikipedia because ToE redirects to Evolution and "evolution" is a word not a theory. Evolution the word can be used in multiple contexts, it isn't a theory.
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« Reply #26 on: April 03, 2009, 14:36:51 PM »

I think the answer to the question posed in this topic was given in the first few posts. I don't see the need to continue with the direction the topic has taken. A final link which was probably posted already, and will no doubt not be satisfactory to mentari, as he will likely label it as a tautology as well:

Introduction to Evolutionary Biology on talkorigins.org

@mentari
Go read it, go read the research and books at the bottom of that article. I think we all hear you loud and clear, and not for the first time (see the links to other threads where this was already discussed that Luthon posted).

I'm not closing the thread, but unless you have something new to add to the discussion, don't bother.
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« Reply #27 on: April 03, 2009, 17:12:33 PM »

Despite evolution having been described to this person amply and repeatedly and in many different ways,  mentari/metari1/backspace has a proven track record of saying anything in an attempt to discredit evolution.   (S)He seems to have a particular liking for the idea that criticising the rigour of the terminology is criticism of the theory itself.
Evolution the word can be used in multiple contexts, it isn't a theory.
The trivial absurdity and absurd triviality of your argument should now be clear even to the most obtuse reader.

You would, I’m sure, defend the idea that the Christian bible must be read with due regard for context.  Why then do you so hypocritically seek to deny scientists the same privilege when it comes to their own jargon?

I really do rest my case except for one thing:  Who is the individual who influenced your mind to think so irrelevantly?

'Luthon64
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« Reply #28 on: April 03, 2009, 19:09:22 PM »

Go read it, go read the research and books at the bottom of that article. I think we all hear you loud and clear, and not for the

This is a logical fallacy know as shifting the burden of proof: You claim to have the Theory of Evolution, it is for you to tell me who established it and where, not me. Show me the page and the Nobel prize that was awarded to the author for the formal establishment of the ToE and what exactly is this theory.   

Futuyma, Douglas J. (1997). Evolutionary Biology. Sunderland, Mass.: Sinauer Associates.

Ridley, Mark. (2003). Evolution. Boston: Blackwell Scientific.

Hartl, Daniel L. & Andrew G. Clark. (1997). Principles of Population Genetics. Sunderland, Mass.: Sinauer Associates.

Crow, James F. & Motoo Kimura. (1970). Introduction to Population Genetics Theory. Edina, Minn.: Burgess Publishing Company.

Graur, Dan & Wen-Hsiung Li. (2000). Fundamentals of Molecular Evolution. Sunderland, Mass.: Sinauer Associates.

Lewontin, Richard C. (1974). The Genetic Basis of Evolutionary Change. New York: Columbia Univ. Press.

Gillespie, John H. (1997). The Causes of Molecular Evolution. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

Golding, Brian, ed. (1994). Non-Neutral Evolution. Boston: Chapman and Hall.

Kimura, Motoo. (1983). The Neutral Theory of Molecular Evolution. Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Endler, John A. (1986). Natural Selection in the Wild. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton Univ. Press.

Eldredge, Niles. (1989). Macroevolutionary Dynamics. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Cowen, Richard. (2004). History of Life. Boston: Blackwell Scientific.

Dawkins, Richard. (1987). The Blind Watchmaker. New York: W.W. Norton.

Kitcher, Philip. (1982). Abusing Science. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.

Wilson, Edward O. (1992). The Diversity of Life. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Belknap.

Darwin, Charles. (1859). On the Origin of Species.

Darwin, Charles. (1871). The Descent of Man.

Haldane, J.B.S. (1932). The Causes of Evolution. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton Univ. Press (reprinted 1990).

Simpson, George G. (1944). Tempo and Mode in Evolution. New York: Columbia Univ. Press.

Mayr, Ernst E. (1982). The Growth of Biological Thought. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard Belknap.

Provine, William B. (2001). The Origins of Theoretical Population Genetics. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.
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Rigil Kent
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« Reply #29 on: April 03, 2009, 20:12:06 PM »

At the risk of committing an unspeakable logical fallacy, guys, I think we've been had. Surely this must be an elaborate April fool's prank?

Nice one! Smiley

Mintaka
« Last Edit: April 03, 2009, 20:47:01 PM by Mintaka » Logged
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