The Unz Review - Mobile
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
 BlogviewFred Reed Archive
Signature in the Cell and Intelligent Design
An Introduction to Protracted Desperation
🔊 Listen RSS
Email This Page to Someone

 Remember My Information



=>
shutterstock_190777358

Bookmark Toggle AllToCAdd to LibraryRemove from Library • BShow CommentNext New CommentNext New Reply
Search Text Case Sensitive  Exact Words  Include Comments
List of Bookmarks

A question that never ceases to fascinate is that of how life originated, and how and why it has progressed as it seems to have. The official story and de rigueur explanation is that that life came about through spontaneous generation from seawater. Believing this is the mark of an Advanced Person, whether one has the slightest knowledge of the matter. In academia researchers have been fired and careers ruined for questioning it. If you doubt that scientists can be ideological herd animals, as petty, intolerant, vindictive, and backstabbing as professors, read Heretic, by the PhD biotechnologist and biochemist Matti Leisola, who fell on the wrong side of the herd. Ths establishment’s continuing effort to stamp out heresy looks increasingly like a protracted desperatoon.

The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design. When one sees an immensely complicated system all of whose parts work together with effect and apparent purpose, such as an automobile or a cell, it is natural to think that someone or something designed it. There is much evidence for this, certainly enough to intrigue those of open mind and intelligence. Those of a philosophic bent may note that Freud, Marx, and Darwin are equally relics of Nineteenth Century determinism, and that Darwin wrote when almost nothing was known about much of biology. Note also that the sciences are tightly constrained and limited by their premises, unable to think outside of their chosen box. Others, wiser, wonder whether there are not more thing in heaven and earth.

The theory of ID is seen by the official story as a form of biblical Creationism of the sort holding that the world was created in 4004 BC. This is either wantonly stupid or deliberately dishonest. There is of course no necessary connection between ID and Buddhism, Islam, or the Cargo Cult. There are scientists who are not proponents of ID but simply see that much of official Darwinism does not make sense or comport with the evidence. Some IDers are Christians, which does not affect the validity, or lack of it, orf what they say. To judge by my mail, many people have serious doubts about the official explanation without being zealots of anything in particulr.

(For what it is worth, I am myself a complete agnostic. Faith and atheism both seem to me categorical beliefs in something one doesn’t know. ID certainly provides no support for the existence of a loving Sunday School god, given that in almost all places and all times most people have lived in misery and died in agony.)

To me, though, things look designed. By what, I don’t know.

Two difficulties affect the presentation of ID to the public. First, most of us have been subjected to thousands of hours of vapid “science” programs and mass-market textbooks. These tell us that doubters must be snake-handling forest Christian with three teeth. The second is that following the argument requires more technical grasp than most have. Trying to explain the question to a network-news audience is hopeless and makes those attempting it seem foolish.

Yet discussion has to be fairly technical to avoid degenerating into vague generalities. Following many of the authors requires familiarity with, or the ability to pick up quickly, such things as the nature of information, both in the Shannon sense of a reduction in uncertainty and of specified information as found in DNA and computer code. Some experience of programming helps as does a minor familiarity with organic chemistry and a nodding aquaintance with early paleontology.

And, alas, much of dispute turns on the mechanics of cell biology: DNA’s structure, codons and anticodons, polymerases and transcriptases, the functions of ribosomes, chirality of alpha amino acids, microRNA, protein folding, ORFans, developmental gene regulatory networks, Ediacaran and Cambrian paleontology (so much for 4004 BC BC), and similar technoglop, It isn’t rocket science, but it takes a bit of study to pick up. Most of us have other things to do.

The less one knows about cellular biology the easier it is to believe in spontaneous generation. Darwin knew nothing. Since then knowledge of biochemistry and molecular biology has grown phenomenally. Yet, despite a great deal of effort, the case for the accidental appearance of life has remained one of fervent insistence untainted by either evidence ofrtheoretical plausibility.

What are some of the problems with official Darwinism? First, the spontaneous generation of life has not been replicated. (Granted, repeating a process thought to have taken billions of years might lack appeal as a doctoral project.) Nor has anyone assembled in the laboratory a chemical structure able to metabolize, reproduce, and thus to evolve. It has not been shown to be mathematically possible.

This is true despite endless theories about life arising in tidal pools, on moist clays, in geothermal vents, in shallows, in depths, or that life arrived on carbonaceous chondrites–i.e., meteors. It has even been suggested that life arrived from Mars, which is to say life came from a place where, as far was can be determined, there has never been any. Protracted desperation.

Sooner or later, a hypothesis must be either confirmed or abandoned. Which? When? Doesn’t science require evidence, reproducibility, demonstrated theoretical possibility? These do not exist. Does not the ferocious reaction to doubters of the official story suggest deep-seated doubt even among the believers?

Other serious problems with the official story: Missing intermediate fossils–”missing links”– stubbornly remain missing. “Punctuated equilibrium,” a theory of sudden rapid evolution invented to explain the lack of fossil evidence, seems unable to generate genetic information fast enough. Many proteins bear no resemblance to any others and therefore cannot have evolved from them. On and on.

ORDER IT NOW

Finally, the more complex an event, the less likely it is to occur by chance. Over the years, cellular mechanisms have been found to be ever more complex. Darwin thought that in a warm pond, bits of goo clumped together, a membrane formed, and life was off and running. Immediately after Watson and Crick in 1953, the chemical mechanics of cellular function still seemed comparatively simple, though nobody could say where the genetic information came from. Today thousands of proteins are known to take part in elaborate processes in which different parts of proteins are synthesized under control of different genes and then spliced and edited elaborately. Recently with the discovery of epigenetics, complexity has taken a great leap upward. (For anyone wanting to subject himself to such things, there is The Epigenetics Revolution. It is not light reading.)

Worth noting is that that the mantra of evolutionists, that “in millions and millions and billions of years something must have evolved”–does not necessarily hold water. We have all heard of Sir James Jeans assertion that a monkey, typing randomly, would eventually produce all the books in the British Museum. (Actually he would not produce a single chapter in the accepted age of the universe, but never mind.) A strong case can be made that spontaneous generation is similarly of mathematically vanishing probability. If evolutionists could prove the contrary, they would immensely strengthen their case. They haven’t.

Improbabilities are multiplicative. The currents of exponentiation seem to be running ever more heavily against the monkey. If this is not true, evolutionists have not shown it not to be true.

Herewith a few recommendations for those who may be interested. Whatever one might conclude after reading the various authors on ID, you will quickly see that they are not “pseudoscientists,” not lightweights, and have serious technical credentials. They try to explain their subjects as they go along. Some succeed better than others.

The most accessible are Darwin’s Black Box, which I highly recommend, and The Edge of Evolution, both by Michael Behe, professor of biochemistry at Lehigh University. He puts the heavy-duty tech in the end notes. The intelligent reader will have no problem with these.

Also clearly written and carefully explained, are Signature in the Cell (mentioned aabove) and Darwin’s Doubt, by Stephen Meyer (geophysicist, PhD in history and philosophy of science, Cambridge University.) The (again) intelligent reader will find these good but challenging. A third possibility in Undeniable, by Douglas Axe (Underrgad biochemistry, Berkeley, PhD. CalTech, chemical engineering) While very sharp, he uawa analogy so much to keep things simple that the science can be lost. Ann Gauger, Science and Human Origins, has a degree in biology from MIT, a PhD in developmental and molecular biology from the university of Washington, and has done postdoc work at Harvard (on the drosophila kinesin light chain, which I don’t know what is.)

Anyway, Meyer takes the reader clearly and comprehensively through the question of the origin of life from, briefly, ancient times through the research of Watson and Crick and then into the depths of the cell in detail. Of particular interest is his discussion of the the probabilistic barriers to spontaneous generation. Right or wrong, it is, again, assuredly not “pseudoscience,” and is extensively documented with references.

Should you order any of these books, ask Amazon to ship them in boxes labeled Kinky Sex Books or Applied Brestiality so nobody will know that you are reading ID.

Here, allow me a thought that the writers above do not mention: Maybe nature is more mysterious than even the ID people think: The insane complesity of life might suggest a far deeper level of non-understanding than even the ID folk suspect.

Suppose that you saw an actual monkey pecking at a keyboard and, on examining his output, saw that he was typing, page after page, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, with no errors.

You would suspect fraud, for instance that the typewriter was really a computer programmed with Tom. But no, on inspection you find that it is a genuine typewriter. Well then, you think, the monkey must be a robot, with Tom in RAM. But this too turns out to be wrong: The monkey in fact is one. After exhaustive examination, you are forced to conclude that Bonzo really is typing at random.

Yet he is producing Tom Sawyer. This being impossible, you would have to conclude that something was going on that you did not understand.

Much of biology is similar. For a zygote, barely visible, to turn into a baby is astronomically improbable, a suicidal assault on Murphy’s Law. Reading embryology makes this apparent. (Texts are prohibitively expensive, but Life Unfolding serves.) Yet every step in the process is in accord with chemical principles.

This doesn’t make sense. Not, anyway, unless one concludes that something deeper is going on that we do not understand. This brings to mind several adages that might serve to ameliorate our considerable arrogance. As Haldane said, “The world is not only queerer than we think, but queerer than we can think.” Or Fred’s principle, “The smartest of a large number of hamsters is still a hamster.”

We may be too full of ourselves.

(Republished from Fred on Everything by permission of author or representative)
 
• Category: Science • Tags: Creationism, Evolution 
Hide 456 CommentsLeave a Comment
Commenters to Ignore...to FollowEndorsed Only
Trim Comments?
    []
  1. Weeeellll … gosh, I remain unconvinced. Petitio principi remains a fallacy.

    Besides, it’s just like any other fussing about ontology: assume a creator, and you assume a creator of the creator. Worse, there’s the really tough part: demonstrate the existence of a creator without the previous assumption there must be one.

    No problem, Fred. Old men’s dreams and all that. I hope I never suffer that syndrome.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JimH
    "demonstrate the existence of a creator without the previous assumption there must be one"

    The logical necessity of a creator/prime mover was demonstrated by Aristotle, already. It was a conclusion, not an assumption.
    , @Mr. Hack
    Fred isn't making a case for a creator, but just pointing out the absurdity of the evolutionist's mantle:

    you would have to conclude that something was going on that you did not understand.
     
    And thus far those that think that they've unraveled the secrets of life's origins are duping themelselves and others:

    We may be too full of ourselves.
     
    At the very least, you'd have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day:

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.

    More specifically, they found out that 9 out of 10 animal species on the planet came to being at the same time as humans did some 100,000 to 200,000 years ago.

     

    https://www.themaven.net/theresurgent/contributors/so-apparently-darwin-was-wrong-really-really-wrong-6V-HdjsskUeoBJcvPxOTGg/
    , @Zamfir
    You're accusing Fred of a fallacy he didn't commit: his reasoning here is simply an inference to the (supposedly) best explanation. If there is stuff that appears to be designed, one explanation for that fact is the existence of some kind of designer. We could argue about whether that is really the best explanation, but if someone infers the explanation from the data to be explained, he isn't committing a petitio principi (i.e., presupposing his conclusion).

    And then you commit some kind of fallacy yourself. It may be that if you 'assume' (or rather, infer) a creator then "you assume a creator of the creator". But why is that relevant? How is that supposed to undermine Fred's argument? Suppose I come across an ice statue of FDR in the middle of Antarctica. It would be reasonable for me to infer that there was a sculptor, someone who created the statue. Maybe I should then _also_ wonder where the sculptor came from, who created him, etc. But the mere fact that I would have reason to wonder about this _other_ issue would not make it any less reasonable for me to infer that someone created the ice statue of FDR. Imagine someone objecting: "Wait a minute. If you think someone made the ice statue, you'd also have to 'assume' that the person who made the statue was made by something else... Therefore, it's not rational to infer that there was a sculptor of the ice statue." That would be absurd, right? Well, there seems to be no difference between that absurd objection and your objection to Fred's reasoning.

    Finally, it's not obvious that if we believe the world has a creator, there must a creator of that creator, and further meta-creators ad infinitum. If an infinite regress of this kind is not possible, or not conceivable, the principle of sufficient reason requires some kind of uncreated creator. In other words, an entity that causes or explains everything else without itself being dependent on anything. A self-existent or self-sufficient being. Unless you're able to show that (a) this concept is incoherent or (b) the principle of sufficient reason is optional, you should probably allow that positing a creator for this world does not necessitate an unacceptable regress.
    , @Merlin
    This article leads to lots of learned comment, most of which is theory and speculation about speculation about theory. The rubber never meets the road.

    There is soft tissue in dinosaur and other fossils that are supposed to be 68 million years old and older. Every commenter here seems unaware of this, but this one repeatable observation, the soft tissue being where it "cannot be," destroys the long ages that evolution needs. EVOLUTION IS DEAD.

    If you would like a nail in the coffin, read John Stanford's Genetic Entropy.

    Or you can continue making comments full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
    AgreeDisagreeLOLTroll
    These buttons register your public Agreement, Disagreement, Troll, or LOL with the selected comment. They are ONLY available to recent, frequent commenters who have saved their Name+Email using the 'Remember My Information' checkbox, and may also ONLY be used once per hour.
    Ignore Commenter Follow Commenter
    More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  2. Real intelligence design mean that, contrarily most humans think, we are not the only ones with intelligence. Intelligence = adaptation. No life can survive without the capacity to adapt and to reply the adapted mode.

    Life is made by molecules which are made by atoms, very superficially speaking, so we can speculate if

    - primitive environment contributed to create life

    - some atoms are more unstable than others and in the right environment they can connect with another one and produce a equally moderated unstable creature…

    but barrely that a jewish deity created the universe, piriod…

    Come back to ”white male-mexican girl porn x” arguments…

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  3. KenH says:

    Fred’s on his anti-evolution kick again. Can Fred’s “intelligent designer” really be considered such when he created so many human groups that can’t even feed and care for themselves and who would die out if not for Western charity and suicidal altruism?

    If intelligent design theory is so much stronger/less assailable than the theory of evolution then is the designer one person or a team of them? Is it a diverse group of designers or are they white supremacists?

    Or if just one male designer is he a little faggy and wears scarves like Versace or more of a mad scientist like Doc on Back to the Future?

    A lot of life forms have gone extinct, so he, she or they sure do make lots of mistakes.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny
    Here is a well-written chunk from Wikipedia ref Intelligent Design:

    "For a theory to qualify as scientific, it is expected to be:

    Consistent
    Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam's razor)
    Useful (describes and explains observed phenomena, and can be used in a predictive manner)
    Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)
    Based on multiple observations (often in the form of controlled, repeated experiments)
    Correctable and dynamic (modified in the light of observations that do not support it)
    Progressive (refines previous theories)
    Provisional or tentative (is open to experimental checking, and does not assert certainty)
    For any theory, hypothesis or conjecture to be considered scientific, it must meet most, and ideally all, of these criteria. The fewer criteria are met, the less scientific it is; and if it meets only a few or none at all, then it cannot be treated as scientific in any meaningful sense of the word.

    Typical objections to defining intelligent design as science are that it lacks consistency, violates the principle of parsimony, is not scientifically useful, is not falsifiable, is not empirically testable, and is not correctable, dynamic, progressive or provisional."

    The argument from design, also known as the teleological argument, suffers profoundly from being more a presentation of an argument by analogy. "Wow, is life ever complicated, so it must have been designed by something rilly smart and even more rilly complicated."

    Nope. Wishing don't make things true.

    , @MarkinLA
    Even leaving out groups that cannot support themselves or species unable to continue to survive for whatever reason, what about birth defects?

    Here we have a completely innocent baby who will live a short painful miserable life, a life that might very well destroy the lives of the parents who brought it into the world. As they say, God has a plan for all of us.

    , @Anon
    You seem self-assured that what is a mistake in your eyes is a mistake in the designer's.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  4. @KenH
    Fred's on his anti-evolution kick again. Can Fred's "intelligent designer" really be considered such when he created so many human groups that can't even feed and care for themselves and who would die out if not for Western charity and suicidal altruism?

    If intelligent design theory is so much stronger/less assailable than the theory of evolution then is the designer one person or a team of them? Is it a diverse group of designers or are they white supremacists?

    Or if just one male designer is he a little faggy and wears scarves like Versace or more of a mad scientist like Doc on Back to the Future?

    A lot of life forms have gone extinct, so he, she or they sure do make lots of mistakes.

    Here is a well-written chunk from Wikipedia ref Intelligent Design:

    “For a theory to qualify as scientific, it is expected to be:

    Consistent
    Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam’s razor)
    Useful (describes and explains observed phenomena, and can be used in a predictive manner)
    Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)
    Based on multiple observations (often in the form of controlled, repeated experiments)
    Correctable and dynamic (modified in the light of observations that do not support it)
    Progressive (refines previous theories)
    Provisional or tentative (is open to experimental checking, and does not assert certainty)
    For any theory, hypothesis or conjecture to be considered scientific, it must meet most, and ideally all, of these criteria. The fewer criteria are met, the less scientific it is; and if it meets only a few or none at all, then it cannot be treated as scientific in any meaningful sense of the word.

    Typical objections to defining intelligent design as science are that it lacks consistency, violates the principle of parsimony, is not scientifically useful, is not falsifiable, is not empirically testable, and is not correctable, dynamic, progressive or provisional.”

    The argument from design, also known as the teleological argument, suffers profoundly from being more a presentation of an argument by analogy. “Wow, is life ever complicated, so it must have been designed by something rilly smart and even more rilly complicated.”

    Nope. Wishing don’t make things true.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    “For a theory to qualify as scientific, it is expected to be:
     
    But the question is not whether a theory is "scientific"or not, unless you are a dogmatic materialist who is ultimately uninterested in the truth.

    Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam’s razor)
     
    ID is far and away a more parsimonious, simpler, more elegant explanation for life as we know it than spontaneous generation. The emergence of the simplest life form remains mysterious, completely setting aside the question of how Mind emerges from matter.

    Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)
     
    This is an unreasonable criterion. The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable. The falsifiability standard is, quite frankly, arbitrary. If you want to impose it as a sine qua non of a strictly "scientific" theory, then that's fine as a matter of convention, but then science has effectively limited itself in the quest for Truth.

    The argument from design, also known as the teleological argument, suffers profoundly from being more a presentation of an argument by analogy. “Wow, is life ever complicated, so it must have been designed by something rilly smart and even more rilly complicated

     

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.

    All men are mortal.
    Socrates is a man.
    Socrates is mortal.

    By the same logic:

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.

    The first premise is the point of contention. For my own part, I can affirm with great conviction that nothing in my experience controverts it.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  5. ‘ Luck smiled on him for he managed to find the authentic godmother of the incomparable Scheherazade on an old dunghill ‘ – Mullah Nasr Eddin on Darwin

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  6. I wonder who the genius was that designed the Mexican Jumping Bean. Fascinating critters to say the least.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    Man, that brings back memories, Jim. What the hell are those things, anyway? I guess this would be a good way to get the ball rolling for Unz's replacement column for "Ask a Beaner".
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  7. While hombre bronco is believing in such childish fantasies real things are happening..
    Oh wait!! Whytitos are watching “alpha soccer games”…

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  8. Issac says:

    I’d hate evolution too if I were surrounded by neolithic peoples in the 21st century due to a lifetime of poor decision making.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Bobsyer
    I think this bloke is talking about mass alien immigration by the trash of the third world....brought about by the Jewish elites which now govern most European countries.....certainly the financial systems.....which will bring about the collapse of Western Civilisation MK2...in slow motion.....
    The importing of millions of barely literate low intelligence immigrants....HAS to be by design......AND IT IS!.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  9. There might actually be an answer to this question: Panspermia, life is everywhere.

    Life is everywhere on earth. They find it near volcanic vents under the ocean. In ancient lakes in Antarctica. Thousands of feet down drilling for oil. Everywhere.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panspermia

    Read More
    • Replies: @JSM
    Problem with panspermia is, it still doesn't explain Fermi's Paradox.

    Because, if life is everywhere, and intelligence is an inevitable occasional result,
    then that lands us squarely back on the question of Where IS everybody?

    Because, if the Universe is as old and as big as you say it is and if life is everywhere as you Panspermists suggest, and Earth is nothing special and intelligence is just simply an occasional accident of evolution that turns up here and there by random chance --

    -- then the Universe should be teeming with evidence of technological civilizations.

    But we've looked and we just don't SEE anybody!

    Ergo, Fermi's Paradox: Where the hell IS everyone?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  10. This being impossible, you would have to conclude that something was going on that you did not understand.

    Conclude yes. But you would not have to admit it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  11. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny
    Here is a well-written chunk from Wikipedia ref Intelligent Design:

    "For a theory to qualify as scientific, it is expected to be:

    Consistent
    Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam's razor)
    Useful (describes and explains observed phenomena, and can be used in a predictive manner)
    Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)
    Based on multiple observations (often in the form of controlled, repeated experiments)
    Correctable and dynamic (modified in the light of observations that do not support it)
    Progressive (refines previous theories)
    Provisional or tentative (is open to experimental checking, and does not assert certainty)
    For any theory, hypothesis or conjecture to be considered scientific, it must meet most, and ideally all, of these criteria. The fewer criteria are met, the less scientific it is; and if it meets only a few or none at all, then it cannot be treated as scientific in any meaningful sense of the word.

    Typical objections to defining intelligent design as science are that it lacks consistency, violates the principle of parsimony, is not scientifically useful, is not falsifiable, is not empirically testable, and is not correctable, dynamic, progressive or provisional."

    The argument from design, also known as the teleological argument, suffers profoundly from being more a presentation of an argument by analogy. "Wow, is life ever complicated, so it must have been designed by something rilly smart and even more rilly complicated."

    Nope. Wishing don't make things true.

    “For a theory to qualify as scientific, it is expected to be:

    But the question is not whether a theory is “scientific”or not, unless you are a dogmatic materialist who is ultimately uninterested in the truth.

    Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam’s razor)

    ID is far and away a more parsimonious, simpler, more elegant explanation for life as we know it than spontaneous generation. The emergence of the simplest life form remains mysterious, completely setting aside the question of how Mind emerges from matter.

    Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)

    This is an unreasonable criterion. The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable. The falsifiability standard is, quite frankly, arbitrary. If you want to impose it as a sine qua non of a strictly “scientific” theory, then that’s fine as a matter of convention, but then science has effectively limited itself in the quest for Truth.

    The argument from design, also known as the teleological argument, suffers profoundly from being more a presentation of an argument by analogy. “Wow, is life ever complicated, so it must have been designed by something rilly smart and even more rilly complicated

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.

    All men are mortal.
    Socrates is a man.
    Socrates is mortal.

    By the same logic:

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.

    The first premise is the point of contention. For my own part, I can affirm with great conviction that nothing in my experience controverts it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable.
     
    No evidence supports ID. It may be true; it may not be true. There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real -- that is, that it is more than a set of conditions noticed by humans, and deemed "complex", therefore of "intelligent design". In human terms, complexity is defined as, at best, "composed of many interacting parts".

    Define "design". Show a requirement therein for "intelligence". Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as "marvelously complex". The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.
     
    Fallacious by petitio principi. You assume and define "design" in your initial premise. You assume "design" is "complex", assume "complexity" is a product of the "design" you define, then conclude yet another external factor occurred to authenticate "order", "complex", "system" and "design."

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman. ;-)

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.
     
    Seriously? Truth is a generalization based on observations of the world??
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  12. How life originated is simply a law of physics, i.e., the Maximum Power Principle (Lotka, 1922; Odum, 1995). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maximum_power_principle

    The origin and subsequent evolution of life follow from the fundamental laws of nature and “should be as unsurprising as rocks rolling downhill.”

    A New Physics Theory of Life
    http://www.quantamagazine.org/20140122-a-new-physics-theory-of-life/

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  13. Giuseppe says:

    The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design.

    And it whispers shouts that ontologically lower things are derived from higher things, and not the reverse.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    And it whispers shouts that ontologically lower things are derived from higher things, and not the reverse.
     
    ID denies entropy. Entropy doesn't like being denied. ;-)
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  14. From the comments, Fred, I’d say that no one understood you. Not even the sciencey guy who spoke of the principles of science. To whom I would say, when you’re speaking of ultimate reality, questions that address the origins of everything, then the traditional tools of science only half apply. By definition you’re beyond the frontiers of the knowable. So amend your criteria.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution. So it is unsatisfactory in that it cannot stand alone, on its own two feet. To attribute directed, channeled, patterned growth to some vague concept such as “randomness” is intellectually silly.

    But they won’t see it, because they spent too much money and time memorizing what their biology profs ladled out and, frankly, they’re not original thinkers or rather, they can’t think for themselves.

    As you say, Fred, the truth is stranger than strange. Plants grow because they are ardent. All life is ardent. To live is to express your essential nature with courage, passion and eloquence.

    It’s important to view ourselves as Nietzsche did. We shall be overtaken by who we shall become tomorrow. In 100 years, we will look back and laugh at ourselves for the preposterous views we held and mistakes we made, well intentioned though we were. That’s how evolution works.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    From the comments, Fred, I’d say that no one understood you.
     
    Oh, I understand. I do not, however, agree. Simple enough, eh? I value Fred's insights on social and political conditions in the Americas. I am not inclined to grant him metaphysical authority as a development from that.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution.
     
    No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority).

    Evolution is an energy/substance process, limited and defined by physical nature and energy conditions. Don't mystify it.
    , @Isabella
    Agree Three Cranes. Fred is wasting his time - although I hope he had fun writing it.

    After working and lecturing in Biology, genetics, biochem. I used to write things like Fred - having read and thought extensively about a number of unexplained and, by modern thinking and knowledge, unexplainable things. Origin of the Species by Darwin isn't Science. It's gossip "[I have a friend who is very reliable who informs me that down in Kent there is a man who ....... etc"]. I imagine trying to submit a paper to "Molecular and General Genetics" like that.

    In the end, you have to, if you have an open questioning mind that does what science says it must, and look for evidence, realise the the entire of modern biology has got everything wrong.
    They did what human kind so often does - found something new [i.e. genes and inheritability] and went insane, thinking it the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.
    Well, it aint.

    In fact, most have gone quiet since the Human Genome Project. I remember watching this with wry amusement, thinking "what are you all going to do when this proves your idiotic "theory" wrong? When they discovered that we dont have enough genes to account for all the proteins we make, there was a stunned silence. Those who never did accept the One gene - one protein, one way direction for everything theory, said nothing, out of kindness.

    Epigenetics came from this. Given that genes in fact explain little, and certainly not Darwinianism it was clear they were going to have to look for something else linear, materialistic and mechanistic to holdup their "Theory of Evolution".

    But I long ago gave up writing about it all. Certainly on social media sites, AltMed sites, with few other scientists [except for the odd, very young male student, arrogant and rude]. No-one can understand you Fred, because they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. They know only what they were taught, and they cling to that like glue to a blanket. They offer stupid arguments, they are so often rude, abusive and mocking. And then one day, you just give up on them.
    No wonder the world is in the state it is now. I just love reading about Dynastic and pre - Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.
    , @Simply Simon
    I look back ninety years and can say the world was a much more sane place than it is today. Atomic weaponry and incredible advances in technology changed all that and I cannot see it was for the betterment of mankind.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  15. I have to say that I’m enormously pleased whenever a really clever, well-educated person writes things which to me look patently daft. (Yes, I do realise that it was precisely people like me who simply accept the dominant narrative on trust without really looking into it who were the target of this article. That’s fine, my ignorance and dogmatism need questioning, I guess.) But when Fred goes on about ID (which I know just a little about) or how Mexicans are at least as capable of creating stable, well-run societies as Europeans and east Asians (which I also know just little about) and when Sam Harris says that Americans benefit from taking in huge numbers of refugees and migrants (which I know slightly more about), I am filled with a huge sense of relief that I needn’t to be too scrupulous before airing my own not-very-well-founded views. Newton had his alchemy, Crick has his ‘Life from Mars’, Conan-Doyle had his fairies and Fred has his ID and in a world where everything is up for questioning all of them may be right – though I doubt it.

    The spirit of the article is that every belief should be open to questioning. That’s sort of true in theory but in practice we wouldn’t be able to think at all if we questioned EVERYTHING. Certain things need to be accepted as axiomatic and while Natural Selection might look all wrong to Fred, it looks almost axiom-like to me.

    Read More
    • Replies: @With RIDGLEY SHINBURN
    In Fred's defense, I think Fred is referring to the paucity of evidence for inter-specie transmutation rather than arguing against natural selection which has been understood by breeders of every stripe for as long as ranchers wanted bigger bulls with bigger b*lls.

    Natural selection is not a Darwinian insight.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  16. It is amusing to observe (yet again) that people, even very clever people, are resistant and (much more often than not) impervious to ideas that contradict familiar and welcome materialist assumptions. It is terrifying to entertain the idea that one’s BIG PICTURE might be wrong. Why, that might mean that one is wrong about everything that matters. Before humanity developed a theory of gravity it was reasonable to assume that the earth must be flat.
    Darwin himself said that his ‘Theory of Evolution’ had NOTHING to say about the origin of life itself. Once the facts are studied closely what Fred Reed states is the obvious.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Santoculto
    Darwin wasn't a 'god' and even he wasn't only one who created or contributed the ''theory'' of evolution.

    So, 2018 years ago God impregnated a jewish virgin and married woman** it is*

    AGAIN,

    one of the fundamental arguments of intelligent design, which the name itself i'm not against, is that

    nonhuman life cannot be smart, because supposedly intelligence is only a human thing...

    You can believe in the purposeful creation of everything OR of ''our'' lovely universe without become traditionally religious, you can separate mythology, what all religions are, from a literal materialistic belief... indeed the very idea that someONE BUILT/DESIGNED the existence itself IS a materialistic way to think, this is a LOGIC THINKING, only wrong because it's has been enormously ANTHROPOCENTRIC...

    religion today is last border of what heliocentrism was.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  17. Bobsyer says:
    @Issac
    I'd hate evolution too if I were surrounded by neolithic peoples in the 21st century due to a lifetime of poor decision making.

    I think this bloke is talking about mass alien immigration by the trash of the third world….brought about by the Jewish elites which now govern most European countries…..certainly the financial systems…..which will bring about the collapse of Western Civilisation MK2…in slow motion…..
    The importing of millions of barely literate low intelligence immigrants….HAS to be by design……AND IT IS!.

    Read More
    • Replies: @John the Baptist's son
    I have a strong suspicion that you would have written the same thing if the article had been about tariffs, the blue whale or Caesar Salad. It isn't that I disagree with you about the deleterious effects of mass immigration. It is merely that this article has nothing to do with it and shoehorning in your not-to-the-point comment just makes you sound like an unhinged monomaniac.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  18. unit472 says:

    Time is not exclusionary. If one random event could create a self replicating molecule that was the common ancestor of All life as we know it then why not other life forms with a different molecular structure ? The same billions of years, chemical compounds and energy sources are available so why are not new life forms with a different molecular structure springing into existence all the time?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Time is not exclusionary. If one random event could create a self replicating molecule that was the common ancestor of All life as we know it then why not other life forms with a different molecular structure ? The same billions of years, chemical compounds and energy sources are available so why are not new life forms with a different molecular structure springing into existence all the time?
     
    Correct. Assume one Intelligent Designer, and that faulty logic leads to an infinite number of Intelligent Designers.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  19. @ThereisaGod
    It is amusing to observe (yet again) that people, even very clever people, are resistant and (much more often than not) impervious to ideas that contradict familiar and welcome materialist assumptions. It is terrifying to entertain the idea that one's BIG PICTURE might be wrong. Why, that might mean that one is wrong about everything that matters. Before humanity developed a theory of gravity it was reasonable to assume that the earth must be flat.
    Darwin himself said that his 'Theory of Evolution' had NOTHING to say about the origin of life itself. Once the facts are studied closely what Fred Reed states is the obvious.

    Darwin wasn’t a ‘god’ and even he wasn’t only one who created or contributed the ”theory” of evolution.

    So, 2018 years ago God impregnated a jewish virgin and married woman** it is*

    AGAIN,

    one of the fundamental arguments of intelligent design, which the name itself i’m not against, is that

    nonhuman life cannot be smart, because supposedly intelligence is only a human thing…

    You can believe in the purposeful creation of everything OR of ”our” lovely universe without become traditionally religious, you can separate mythology, what all religions are, from a literal materialistic belief… indeed the very idea that someONE BUILT/DESIGNED the existence itself IS a materialistic way to think, this is a LOGIC THINKING, only wrong because it’s has been enormously ANTHROPOCENTRIC…

    religion today is last border of what heliocentrism was.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  20. Intelligent design also forget the fact that every marvellous functioning of terrestrial life had a hard path to become like that, i mean, natural selection itself. So, what look like perfect indeed was a product of trial and error, and ”still” is.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ThereisaGod
    You miss or avoid the point that evolution/natural selection only occurs within a species. This idea offers ZERO explanation about how the first self-reproducing DNA came into being.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  21. @Rosie

    “For a theory to qualify as scientific, it is expected to be:
     
    But the question is not whether a theory is "scientific"or not, unless you are a dogmatic materialist who is ultimately uninterested in the truth.

    Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam’s razor)
     
    ID is far and away a more parsimonious, simpler, more elegant explanation for life as we know it than spontaneous generation. The emergence of the simplest life form remains mysterious, completely setting aside the question of how Mind emerges from matter.

    Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)
     
    This is an unreasonable criterion. The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable. The falsifiability standard is, quite frankly, arbitrary. If you want to impose it as a sine qua non of a strictly "scientific" theory, then that's fine as a matter of convention, but then science has effectively limited itself in the quest for Truth.

    The argument from design, also known as the teleological argument, suffers profoundly from being more a presentation of an argument by analogy. “Wow, is life ever complicated, so it must have been designed by something rilly smart and even more rilly complicated

     

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.

    All men are mortal.
    Socrates is a man.
    Socrates is mortal.

    By the same logic:

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.

    The first premise is the point of contention. For my own part, I can affirm with great conviction that nothing in my experience controverts it.

    The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable.

    No evidence supports ID. It may be true; it may not be true. There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real — that is, that it is more than a set of conditions noticed by humans, and deemed “complex”, therefore of “intelligent design”. In human terms, complexity is defined as, at best, “composed of many interacting parts”.

    Define “design”. Show a requirement therein for “intelligence”. Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as “marvelously complex”. The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.

    Fallacious by petitio principi. You assume and define “design” in your initial premise. You assume “design” is “complex”, assume “complexity” is a product of the “design” you define, then conclude yet another external factor occurred to authenticate “order”, “complex”, “system” and “design.”

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman. ;-)

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.

    Seriously? Truth is a generalization based on observations of the world??

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    No evidence supports ID.
     
    Nonsense.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.
     
    Except that almost everything in our ordinary experience tells us so.

    Define “design”. Show a requirement therein for “intelligence”. Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as “marvelously complex”. The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?
     
    Is argument by analogy legitimate or not?

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman.
     
    Au contraire, it is you who must be joking. Your argument is that the Mind that conceived and created this emerged by accident from primordial goop:


    https://images.walks.org/italy/featured/pristine-sistine-chapel-tour-featured.jpg

    , @Wizzly Grintergreen
    "There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real"

    This literally made me laugh out loud; quite loud, in fact.

    I also like how you go from essentially saying "well maybe complexity isn't real" to bringing in terms like 'nature,' 'physical,' and 'atomic,' all of which are apparently 'real' in some way that 'complexity' is not.

    Thanks.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  22. @Giuseppe

    The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design.
     
    And it whispers shouts that ontologically lower things are derived from higher things, and not the reverse.

    And it whispers shouts that ontologically lower things are derived from higher things, and not the reverse.

    ID denies entropy. Entropy doesn’t like being denied. ;-)

    Read More
    • Replies: @Giuseppe

    ID denies entropy. Entropy doesn’t like being denied. ;-)
     
    Denial, lack of affirmation, means things are headed south and coming apart at the seams. Entropy likes it when things come apart at the seams.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  23. @unit472
    Time is not exclusionary. If one random event could create a self replicating molecule that was the common ancestor of All life as we know it then why not other life forms with a different molecular structure ? The same billions of years, chemical compounds and energy sources are available so why are not new life forms with a different molecular structure springing into existence all the time?

    Time is not exclusionary. If one random event could create a self replicating molecule that was the common ancestor of All life as we know it then why not other life forms with a different molecular structure ? The same billions of years, chemical compounds and energy sources are available so why are not new life forms with a different molecular structure springing into existence all the time?

    Correct. Assume one Intelligent Designer, and that faulty logic leads to an infinite number of Intelligent Designers.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  24. @ThreeCranes
    From the comments, Fred, I'd say that no one understood you. Not even the sciencey guy who spoke of the principles of science. To whom I would say, when you're speaking of ultimate reality, questions that address the origins of everything, then the traditional tools of science only half apply. By definition you're beyond the frontiers of the knowable. So amend your criteria.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution. So it is unsatisfactory in that it cannot stand alone, on its own two feet. To attribute directed, channeled, patterned growth to some vague concept such as "randomness" is intellectually silly.

    But they won't see it, because they spent too much money and time memorizing what their biology profs ladled out and, frankly, they're not original thinkers or rather, they can't think for themselves.

    As you say, Fred, the truth is stranger than strange. Plants grow because they are ardent. All life is ardent. To live is to express your essential nature with courage, passion and eloquence.

    It's important to view ourselves as Nietzsche did. We shall be overtaken by who we shall become tomorrow. In 100 years, we will look back and laugh at ourselves for the preposterous views we held and mistakes we made, well intentioned though we were. That's how evolution works.

    From the comments, Fred, I’d say that no one understood you.

    Oh, I understand. I do not, however, agree. Simple enough, eh? I value Fred’s insights on social and political conditions in the Americas. I am not inclined to grant him metaphysical authority as a development from that.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution.

    No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority).

    Evolution is an energy/substance process, limited and defined by physical nature and energy conditions. Don’t mystify it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rich
    Mr Sweeny, you make a lot of assertions about both ID and evolution that sound like some ancient religious zealot arguing how many angels can fit on the head of a pin. You've apparently accepted a certain version of evolution, unfortunately, when one delves into "evolution" and "ID", we find so many different versions of each, it becomes up to the individual to choose which one to have faith in. A religious friend, who teaches biology, once told me his version of evolution which was that God invented it, and supervises it. And there's probably twenty versions of that one. Face it, Sweeny, you're dealing with the unknowable here, don't try to pretend you're smarter than anyone else writing on the subject.
    , @ThreeCranes
    Sweeny says: "No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority)."

    So, the theory of evolution assumes nothing. That'll be news to every Philosopher of Science who ever thought deeply about the relation between human theorizing and the objects under contemplation. For starters, every category is an assumption in so far as it lumps disparate things under one label. But that’s too general.

    It's not that Evolutionists don't have assumptions, they just don't acknowledge them. Instead they speak in the passive voice. They use terms like "selection" and "niche", "process", terms more suited to a mechanical system than living passionate beings.

    "There is no driving Force inherent in Life." Of course there is. It is everywhere apparent. It is life itself. Come close to death in a near-miss car accident, Mr. Sweeny, and you will feel the surge of the Driving Force that is Life.

    The beautiful explosion of a flower exemplifies the driving force that is life. The fraying of a tree from one solid trunk to billions of stomata is the Will to Live frozen in time for your contemplation. Look at that tree's muscles, holding that load out under constant strain with no respite. What amazing endurance. A tree stands still and takes everything nature throws at it while you move around, seeking more congenial conditions. Talk about a Will to Live. There it is for you, frozen in motion.

    Life is ardent, Mr. Sweeny. Can't you see it? No? Then take a hit of acid and spend a calm, sunny day in a garden or on a wild windswept dune overlooking the ocean. You'll see that every living being is full to the brim with Will.

    If that doesn't do the trick then try this. Visit a horse farm. Try to go on a day when a stallion is servicing a mare. You'll notice that the male is acting a bit impetuous, that a portion of its anatomy seems to have a will of its own. Now, I don't want you to get hurt, but in order to get a feeling for this "surge of driving force that is life", I suggest you should try to insert yourself between the stallion and the mare. Use your utmost powers of persuasion to restrain the stallion. Appeal to his reason. Tell him that what he is feeling is merely a process, that he is simply an organism fulfilling a niche whose behavior has been selected according a non-assuming, mechanical process expressed in the Immutable Laws of Natural Selection.

    Do you think sperm swimming upstream in a vagina possess consciousness, Mr. Sweeny? Or the Will to Live? Or are they simply wound up little machines acting without intention?
    , @John the Baptist's son
    Hi Dillon, I like your style of arguing and think I agree with you so this is a genuine question rather than a snide way of trying to say 'Gotcha!' Recently I was listening to Antonio Damasio talking to Sam Harris about his (Damasio's) latest book. Unless I completely misunderstood him, which is more than possible, he seemed to suggest that homeostasis, which he described as a drive for something to maintain itself in more or less its current state of health, preceded genes and thus, to my mind, the ability to reproduce. Assuming this is not too garbled a distillation of his idea, what do you think of it? To me it sounds mad though Damasio sounds anything but mad. Could even the simplest of life forms possess some kind of in-built urge not to deteriorate, something the bloke you were arguing with described as a force inherent in life? (Sorry, that should read 'a Force inherent in Life.')
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  25. “We have all heard of Sir James Jeans assertion that a monkey, typing randomly, would eventually produce all the books in the British Museum. (Actually he would not produce a single chapter in the accepted age of the universe, but never mind.) ”

    Jeans wrote about these typing monkeys (he claimed 6 of them not 1) in 1933. And Jeans claims he was quoting Huxley when he said it, so it wasn’t even Jeans’ assertion. But Jeans wasn’t right about that as Huxley never said it. It was Emile Borel, a mathematician, who originally considered that a million monkeys over the space of a year might produce the texts of the greatest libraries — he considered it and dismissed it as highly improbable. He never tied it to evolution or abiogenesis at all. So this monkey nonsense is just that. It’s an old idea that was posed and dismissed in the same argument.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    I don't know this history you discuss here, so I'll take your word for it. On this:

    He never tied it to evolution or abiogenesis at all.
     
    That was not what Mr. Reed meant to do either. He was just writing about probablities. The monkees writing Tom Sawyer calculation really should be pretty easy, if you know the number of words in the book. It may help to have the kind of knowledge of the English language that a cryptographer would have, but that kind of precision wouldn't even be needed to get in the ball park.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  26. Rich says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    From the comments, Fred, I’d say that no one understood you.
     
    Oh, I understand. I do not, however, agree. Simple enough, eh? I value Fred's insights on social and political conditions in the Americas. I am not inclined to grant him metaphysical authority as a development from that.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution.
     
    No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority).

    Evolution is an energy/substance process, limited and defined by physical nature and energy conditions. Don't mystify it.

    Mr Sweeny, you make a lot of assertions about both ID and evolution that sound like some ancient religious zealot arguing how many angels can fit on the head of a pin. You’ve apparently accepted a certain version of evolution, unfortunately, when one delves into “evolution” and “ID”, we find so many different versions of each, it becomes up to the individual to choose which one to have faith in. A religious friend, who teaches biology, once told me his version of evolution which was that God invented it, and supervises it. And there’s probably twenty versions of that one. Face it, Sweeny, you’re dealing with the unknowable here, don’t try to pretend you’re smarter than anyone else writing on the subject.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Face it, Sweeny, you’re dealing with the unknowable here, don’t try to pretend you’re smarter than anyone else writing on the subject.
     
    And you are? Preacher, preach to your congregation. Goes with the medium; knock yourself out, bub.

    In the future, if you wish discuss specific points, please do. With substance, if you would. Don't maunder at me.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  27. @Rich
    Mr Sweeny, you make a lot of assertions about both ID and evolution that sound like some ancient religious zealot arguing how many angels can fit on the head of a pin. You've apparently accepted a certain version of evolution, unfortunately, when one delves into "evolution" and "ID", we find so many different versions of each, it becomes up to the individual to choose which one to have faith in. A religious friend, who teaches biology, once told me his version of evolution which was that God invented it, and supervises it. And there's probably twenty versions of that one. Face it, Sweeny, you're dealing with the unknowable here, don't try to pretend you're smarter than anyone else writing on the subject.

    Face it, Sweeny, you’re dealing with the unknowable here, don’t try to pretend you’re smarter than anyone else writing on the subject.

    And you are? Preacher, preach to your congregation. Goes with the medium; knock yourself out, bub.

    In the future, if you wish discuss specific points, please do. With substance, if you would. Don’t maunder at me.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rich
    Well, I'm neither a religious man nor an evolutionary biologist. What I am is an engineer. If I build a circuit that opens a switch, I use scientific principles that apply, then my design has to actually open the switch. I don't say a prayer, or come up with a theory about primordial swamps, I actually have to show reality. There are too many evolutionary theories and none are actually proven. Where we come from, how we originated, are fine for a bunch of kids sitting in their dorm room, but adults should work with facts. Of course, in the US at least, no one wants to grow up, so you evolution zealots fit right in.

    Whether humans were created or evolved, or were created to evolve, is meaningless. None of it keeps your house warm in winter, or cool in summer. Don't you have anything more important to argue about?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  28. Vernon says:

    How life originated and how life progressed are two different questions. Evolution is not origins theory. Evolution only describes processes after life originated.There are also different strains of Evolutionary theory which seem to be embraced based on political ideology. Suggest reading Peter Kropotkin Mutual Aid for an alternative to Darwin’s survival of the fittest and Dawkins Selfish Gene narratives. Its in important to remember that science is never divorced fro politics.

    Read More
    • Replies: @nickels
    If you feel the need to separate the two, fine.
    However, they both encounter the same problems-that of creation.

    Natural selection does not explain anything. In order to form a new organ, or limb, or even a fingernail requires an act of creation. Natural selection cannot help until the new feature exists and is useful. Which means an absurd genetic random walk to discover the new feature. Which will traverse from the previous existing genetic configuration that works, across a desert of immediate death (organs partially formed, bleeding, broken bones).
    A recent paper shows that even stabilizing a couple of nucleotides in a population can take millions of years:
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4573302/

    So evolution is dead. Creation is impossible by any natural means.

    A more thorough speculation makes the case even more impossible. Most organs appear very early in formation of the organism. So adding another actually requires changes in the ENTIRE genetic code.
    One way of thinking about this is that the genetic code is compressed. So to change something about the final product, as if editing a zipped file to change a string, requires a complete rewrite, one that understands the entire process of formation and expression of all traits.

    Which, if you are honest to yourself, you already know. One thing that we all learn from day one of our existence is that complex, beautiful, functioning entities NEVER form spontaneously.
    It ALWAYS goes the other way.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  29. Truth says:

    “Intelligent design?”

    When I was a kid we had another name for it; God.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman

    “Intelligent design?”

    When I was a kid we had another name for it; God.

     
    Whoaa! You can't say that here - Dillon Sweeny will go apeshit.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  30. nickels says:

    After some 40+ years of smoking on the evolution crack pipe, I recently picked up the materials and started reading on the subject at depth, especially at the molecular biology level.

    Fred is absolutely correct. The theory holds no water. Darwin simply shifted the miracle of creation into his alchemist God called ‘Natural Selection’.

    Even the simple cell, with its hundreds of proteins (not even a single protein has a probabilistic chance in hell of forming spontaneously), all working together in very specific ways, the hundreds of metabolic pathways, the integration of cells with other cells to form extracellular metabolic pathways, etc… etc….

    Evolution is simply the most profound deception of all history.

    Interestingly, Charle Lyell’s young earth theory and evolution participate in a dance of circular logic, with Lyell dating his stratification layers based on theories about evolution, and evolution dating its fossils based on Lyell’s theories about geology.

    I don’t believe any of it, but the average Enlightenment mind does not need to swallow the entire package. Simply understanding the absurdity of evolution, from a statistical standpoint, leads to fascinating, profound metaphysical questions.

    My particular take is the Russian Orthodox full on creationist one, as put forth in:

    https://www.amazon.com/Genesis-Creation-Early-Seraphim-Rose/dp/1887904255

    which means I’ve gone completely up the river, which, to me, is freedom itself.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Evolution is simply the most profound deception of all history.
     
    Oh, so none of it happened like evolutionists say it did? God just whomped out the whole shebang two seconds before Adam woke up?

    Evolution theory is a method of describing how processes of life have come to produce the abundance of life we see on Earth. That's all. Evolution is not theology; evolution is not metaphysics; evolution is not religion; evolution is not politics; evolution is not an extra-complex issue of National Geographic.

    If you prefer to believe a god swooped down and made the whole pile, badda-bing, badda-boom, I can assure you that no thinking human will stop you. Or give a shit.
    , @Biff
    What came first? The chicken or the egg?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  31. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable.
     
    No evidence supports ID. It may be true; it may not be true. There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real -- that is, that it is more than a set of conditions noticed by humans, and deemed "complex", therefore of "intelligent design". In human terms, complexity is defined as, at best, "composed of many interacting parts".

    Define "design". Show a requirement therein for "intelligence". Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as "marvelously complex". The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.
     
    Fallacious by petitio principi. You assume and define "design" in your initial premise. You assume "design" is "complex", assume "complexity" is a product of the "design" you define, then conclude yet another external factor occurred to authenticate "order", "complex", "system" and "design."

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman. ;-)

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.
     
    Seriously? Truth is a generalization based on observations of the world??

    No evidence supports ID.

    Nonsense.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.

    Except that almost everything in our ordinary experience tells us so.

    Define “design”. Show a requirement therein for “intelligence”. Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as “marvelously complex”. The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?

    Is argument by analogy legitimate or not?

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman.

    Au contraire, it is you who must be joking. Your argument is that the Mind that conceived and created this emerged by accident from primordial goop:

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Au contraire, it is you who must be joking. Your argument is that the Mind that conceived and created this emerged by accident from primordial goop:
     
    No, that is not an argument I made. Possibly you leaped forward a few massive conclusions, bridging space and time, making a hyperspace journey into the blackness?

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.

    (DAMMIT!! There goes my goddamned worthless uninformed opinion firing off again!! Jesus has informed us that Art is what a bunch of Renaissance-ish hacks produced. He shall not be questioned, milords and ladies --- it is ART.)

    [spit]

    Go away.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  32. nickels says:
    @Vernon
    How life originated and how life progressed are two different questions. Evolution is not origins theory. Evolution only describes processes after life originated.There are also different strains of Evolutionary theory which seem to be embraced based on political ideology. Suggest reading Peter Kropotkin Mutual Aid for an alternative to Darwin's survival of the fittest and Dawkins Selfish Gene narratives. Its in important to remember that science is never divorced fro politics.

    If you feel the need to separate the two, fine.
    However, they both encounter the same problems-that of creation.

    Natural selection does not explain anything. In order to form a new organ, or limb, or even a fingernail requires an act of creation. Natural selection cannot help until the new feature exists and is useful. Which means an absurd genetic random walk to discover the new feature. Which will traverse from the previous existing genetic configuration that works, across a desert of immediate death (organs partially formed, bleeding, broken bones).
    A recent paper shows that even stabilizing a couple of nucleotides in a population can take millions of years:

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4573302/

    So evolution is dead. Creation is impossible by any natural means.

    A more thorough speculation makes the case even more impossible. Most organs appear very early in formation of the organism. So adding another actually requires changes in the ENTIRE genetic code.
    One way of thinking about this is that the genetic code is compressed. So to change something about the final product, as if editing a zipped file to change a string, requires a complete rewrite, one that understands the entire process of formation and expression of all traits.

    Which, if you are honest to yourself, you already know. One thing that we all learn from day one of our existence is that complex, beautiful, functioning entities NEVER form spontaneously.
    It ALWAYS goes the other way.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Poupon Marx
    I read, comprehend , and decide from the view and basis of a mechanical engineer, with a background in natural science and psychology. Eight years of university study, three and a half years of engineering and 34 years of professional experience. I have since my academic days, continued reading and seeking answers. When my professional life started, I paralleled as a cultural anthropologist, choosing to observe, analyze and revisit the abstracts of theories, deductions, and pet positions with vested self interest.

    With regard to the-by now quite mature and old question-of ID versus Natural Selection (NS), if you read enough, digest many iterations and instances of this argument, summary and deduction/induction, they will naturally segregate and rank in various positions. The duplication is enormous.

    Any inquiry into Real Processes, that is those that are material, concrete and observable must go beyond mere data collection, though this varies with the endeavor and enterprise. The striving for finite and closed system explanations is analogous to instinctual drive or Maslow's Hierarchies of Needs. Beyond the merits and basis of validity, many individuals have egos to protect, careers, "face" (a bad version of the Asian variety). Careers can be washed away by a change of iconoclastic positions. I proffer the Climate Ca-Ching as an example of clinging to farce and infantile phantasmagorical arguments and false meaning extracted from false data. No discussion of scientific integrity and rigorous ethical pursuits would be complete without the manipulation, cowardly coagulation of multiple academics, intellectuals and researchers to deny the overriding effects and force of genetic determination of general intelligence, over environment-not matter what and how much enrichment.

    Aside from a particular, obviously very young and relatively inexperienced pugilistic BOOR here in the comment section, I find a lot of arguments are repetitious, very subjective, and close minded. It is optimal to stay as close to the SPIRIT of the Scientific Method as possible. In todays milieu this is next to impossible due to desired outcomes from fund sources, and the infantile drive to not “offend” anyone. The tone of one very defensive, foul-mouthed, juvenile, ill-bred, and ignoramus polemicist can be generalized as a TYPE of arguer who must maintain a perfect constellation of predicates and concepts, never giving a decimal point to the other side. This individual here is the buffo, churl, and lout of forever. Like poor quality electric rock ’n’ roll, the worse the quality of music, the louder in proportion it gets.

    An overview of the arguments shows the weakness of “channel” arguing, where philosophical “schools”, theories of Reality, perception clash, deduction of “authorities” are brought in to bolster the ramparts of one’s position. The walls of the “channel” prevent anyone from using a different methodology or vehicle of understanding. Every mind that argued here is captive to the Western tradition of abstract “form fitting” of existing or need to create categories. This is a limited usefulness system. It assumes from the outset that what you argue, discuss, or relate to is a unique phenomenon in its integral way. This is the procedural, plodding, and frustrating method that has resulted in maximum gain to date, with attendantly large losses and missed opportunities for understanding.

    Since an old sailor decades ago told me calmly with steady assurance, “Travel is the best school”. This is another way of saying “Believe your eyes and senses”. And life long travel and observations and contact has presented other methods of apprehension-that is to say-making sense of the World. This is a précis of the Analogous Logic of the Chinese-and the Orient: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Jana_Rosker/publication/317627613_Semantic_Aspects_of_Classical_Chinese_Analogies_and_Structural_Thought_Patterns/links/59446b59a6fdccb93ab5affc/Semantic-Aspects-of-Classical-Chinese-Analogies-and-Structural-Thought-Patterns.pdf?origin=publication_detail

    Also for your edification: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/chinese-logic-language/

    The essence of this approach is that there are many objects and manifestations in our known Universe, as in the World around us, but there are many similar processes. So much so, the the impetus is huge to explore analogies and parallel phenomena. That is why so much of the Orient values wisdom over process and the gathering of finite (they will always be less than the whole amount in existence), and seeks to relate, analogize what is known and understood otherwise. Likewise, it will become quickly apparent that similar phenomena have varying degrees of uncertainty.

    Let us suppose that all ducks that are under observation go south for the winter. One winter they go west. The next winter they go east. Now, knowing what we know about ducks’ morphology, biology, cellular micro-biology, body chemistry, etc., would we say that the cause of the deviation MUST, JUST MUST be within the afore mentioned, i.e., internal and intrinsic of the duck? Why torture that extension of speculation? The deviation might have just come from an EXTERNAL stimulus(i), as well. That being reasonable then…..it will be outside the operating sets of intrinsic knowledge of the cumulative science. That will freak out, discombobulate some of the “scientists” who want the marinate in their own sense of timeless Rosetta Stone sets of ideas, built up from and solely from them. Outside interference, causes, influences are too much, egos get bruised, theoreticians and “experts” have to make retractions, reductions, apologies. At the basic level, where a “scientific theory” purported to explain everything, it fell short.

    Marxism had the same problem. But too many invested could not admit it. This controversy is not about objective data and reasonable judgements. It is about how far and how long sets of data and observations can generate reasonable conclusions and interpretation. Understanding data means appreciating where it takes you AND WHERE IT CANNOT, SHOULD NOT.

    Why did I witness the failure of two machines at the same time? Would someone argue that they JUST HAD TO BE RELATED and that the cause effect was bi-directional? But what if there was nothing to even hint at a relation. There is no data but endless speculation. An unknown energy interference. A resonant vibration that sped through the mountings? Desperation for tribal protection of the cognoscenti, the High Priesthood. Huge gaps in the fossil record, sudden emergence of complex species with no ancestral precedent? Hypothesize something, anything and work backward and find the flimsiest of evidence. Why not? Everyone’s doing it.

    https://news.stanford.edu/2015/11/16/fraud-science-papers-111615/

    More scientific fraud: https://www.vox.com/2015/5/13/8591837/how-science-is-broken

    And finally there is this insult to the public extant, which is are all persons outside the funding group for deceptive and sloppy work. In other words, lying.

    https://www.painscience.com/articles/ioannidis.php
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  33. @nickels
    After some 40+ years of smoking on the evolution crack pipe, I recently picked up the materials and started reading on the subject at depth, especially at the molecular biology level.

    Fred is absolutely correct. The theory holds no water. Darwin simply shifted the miracle of creation into his alchemist God called 'Natural Selection'.

    Even the simple cell, with its hundreds of proteins (not even a single protein has a probabilistic chance in hell of forming spontaneously), all working together in very specific ways, the hundreds of metabolic pathways, the integration of cells with other cells to form extracellular metabolic pathways, etc... etc....

    Evolution is simply the most profound deception of all history.

    Interestingly, Charle Lyell's young earth theory and evolution participate in a dance of circular logic, with Lyell dating his stratification layers based on theories about evolution, and evolution dating its fossils based on Lyell's theories about geology.

    I don't believe any of it, but the average Enlightenment mind does not need to swallow the entire package. Simply understanding the absurdity of evolution, from a statistical standpoint, leads to fascinating, profound metaphysical questions.

    My particular take is the Russian Orthodox full on creationist one, as put forth in:
    https://www.amazon.com/Genesis-Creation-Early-Seraphim-Rose/dp/1887904255

    which means I've gone completely up the river, which, to me, is freedom itself.

    Evolution is simply the most profound deception of all history.

    Oh, so none of it happened like evolutionists say it did? God just whomped out the whole shebang two seconds before Adam woke up?

    Evolution theory is a method of describing how processes of life have come to produce the abundance of life we see on Earth. That’s all. Evolution is not theology; evolution is not metaphysics; evolution is not religion; evolution is not politics; evolution is not an extra-complex issue of National Geographic.

    If you prefer to believe a god swooped down and made the whole pile, badda-bing, badda-boom, I can assure you that no thinking human will stop you. Or give a shit.

    Read More
    • Replies: @nickels
    There isn't a lot for me to respond to here, except the one point:

    Evolution theory is a method of describing how processes of life have come to produce the abundance of life we see on Earth. That’s all. Evolution is not theology; evolution is not metaphysics; evolution is not religion; evolution is not politics; evolution is not an extra-complex issue of National Geographic.

     

    Evolution is somewhere between philosophy and theology.
    The very fact that the theory existed before the principles of DNA and cellular biology were understood makes it clear that evolution is certainly not a scientific theory.
    In fact, evolution pre-dated Darwin, even European civilization. This is, in fact, a very ancient pagan cosmology that was expressed by the Greeks and the Hindus.

    EVERYTHING begins with the assumption of scientific materialism and the desire to write a narrative about life without God. The rest of the details fall in place around that theological notion, and, as we have seen, the details are constantly shifting and morphing as science reveals more about the mechanisms and leaves the previous form of the theory in shambles.

    , @Merlin
    Soft tissue
    Genetic entropy
    1 functional polypeptide out of 10 to the 77 power
    The Cambrian Explosion
    A fossil record that does not show evolution
    Geology that supports a huge flood (I guess that evolutionist are now claiming that a series of tsunamis created the sedentary layers
    The Altenburg 16
    etc.

    The theory of evolution is dead, but keep spouting your precious nonsense.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  34. @Rosie

    No evidence supports ID.
     
    Nonsense.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.
     
    Except that almost everything in our ordinary experience tells us so.

    Define “design”. Show a requirement therein for “intelligence”. Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as “marvelously complex”. The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?
     
    Is argument by analogy legitimate or not?

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman.
     
    Au contraire, it is you who must be joking. Your argument is that the Mind that conceived and created this emerged by accident from primordial goop:


    https://images.walks.org/italy/featured/pristine-sistine-chapel-tour-featured.jpg

    Au contraire, it is you who must be joking. Your argument is that the Mind that conceived and created this emerged by accident from primordial goop:

    No, that is not an argument I made. Possibly you leaped forward a few massive conclusions, bridging space and time, making a hyperspace journey into the blackness?

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.

    (DAMMIT!! There goes my goddamned worthless uninformed opinion firing off again!! Jesus has informed us that Art is what a bunch of Renaissance-ish hacks produced. He shall not be questioned, milords and ladies — it is ART.)

    [spit]

    Go away.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.
     
    Why does that not surprise me?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  35. nickels says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Evolution is simply the most profound deception of all history.
     
    Oh, so none of it happened like evolutionists say it did? God just whomped out the whole shebang two seconds before Adam woke up?

    Evolution theory is a method of describing how processes of life have come to produce the abundance of life we see on Earth. That's all. Evolution is not theology; evolution is not metaphysics; evolution is not religion; evolution is not politics; evolution is not an extra-complex issue of National Geographic.

    If you prefer to believe a god swooped down and made the whole pile, badda-bing, badda-boom, I can assure you that no thinking human will stop you. Or give a shit.

    There isn’t a lot for me to respond to here, except the one point:

    Evolution theory is a method of describing how processes of life have come to produce the abundance of life we see on Earth. That’s all. Evolution is not theology; evolution is not metaphysics; evolution is not religion; evolution is not politics; evolution is not an extra-complex issue of National Geographic.

    Evolution is somewhere between philosophy and theology.
    The very fact that the theory existed before the principles of DNA and cellular biology were understood makes it clear that evolution is certainly not a scientific theory.
    In fact, evolution pre-dated Darwin, even European civilization. This is, in fact, a very ancient pagan cosmology that was expressed by the Greeks and the Hindus.

    EVERYTHING begins with the assumption of scientific materialism and the desire to write a narrative about life without God. The rest of the details fall in place around that theological notion, and, as we have seen, the details are constantly shifting and morphing as science reveals more about the mechanisms and leaves the previous form of the theory in shambles.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Evolution is somewhere between philosophy and theology.
     
    Blarney.

    I disagree emphatically with every invented position you presented. Go right ahead and believe that bullshit. It means nothing to me. But, no harm, no foul -- believe as you like. Hell, my next-door neighbor lectured me for 15 minutes on how vultures smell carrion, as they course the skies. Didn't bother me a bit.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  36. gogol says:

    See “The Last Superstition” by Edward Feser, which includes a detailed refutation of Intelligent Design from an Aristotelian standpoint.

    https://amzn.to/2uqEDhd

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    See “The Last Superstition” by Edward Feser, which includes a detailed refutation of Intelligent Design from an Aristotelian standpoint.
     
    Is it well-written, perhaps at a 5th-grade reading level? I'll check it possible future use -- although I have found it less-than-futile to attempt to convince shin-crackers that what their religions preach is unverifiable and nonsensical.

    ID is just a special case of Aquinas' Teleological Argument, which was the first of the sort to be debunked. Der Katholix still regard it as authoritative. It was nothing but Augustine until Aquinas, so no major improvement. People either have functioning brains, or they don't. 1800 years and still SSDD.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  37. @nickels
    There isn't a lot for me to respond to here, except the one point:

    Evolution theory is a method of describing how processes of life have come to produce the abundance of life we see on Earth. That’s all. Evolution is not theology; evolution is not metaphysics; evolution is not religion; evolution is not politics; evolution is not an extra-complex issue of National Geographic.

     

    Evolution is somewhere between philosophy and theology.
    The very fact that the theory existed before the principles of DNA and cellular biology were understood makes it clear that evolution is certainly not a scientific theory.
    In fact, evolution pre-dated Darwin, even European civilization. This is, in fact, a very ancient pagan cosmology that was expressed by the Greeks and the Hindus.

    EVERYTHING begins with the assumption of scientific materialism and the desire to write a narrative about life without God. The rest of the details fall in place around that theological notion, and, as we have seen, the details are constantly shifting and morphing as science reveals more about the mechanisms and leaves the previous form of the theory in shambles.

    Evolution is somewhere between philosophy and theology.

    Blarney.

    I disagree emphatically with every invented position you presented. Go right ahead and believe that bullshit. It means nothing to me. But, no harm, no foul — believe as you like. Hell, my next-door neighbor lectured me for 15 minutes on how vultures smell carrion, as they course the skies. Didn’t bother me a bit.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  38. @gogol
    See "The Last Superstition" by Edward Feser, which includes a detailed refutation of Intelligent Design from an Aristotelian standpoint.
    https://amzn.to/2uqEDhd

    See “The Last Superstition” by Edward Feser, which includes a detailed refutation of Intelligent Design from an Aristotelian standpoint.

    Is it well-written, perhaps at a 5th-grade reading level? I’ll check it possible future use — although I have found it less-than-futile to attempt to convince shin-crackers that what their religions preach is unverifiable and nonsensical.

    ID is just a special case of Aquinas’ Teleological Argument, which was the first of the sort to be debunked. Der Katholix still regard it as authoritative. It was nothing but Augustine until Aquinas, so no major improvement. People either have functioning brains, or they don’t. 1800 years and still SSDD.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    People either have functioning brains, or they don’t.
     
    But...

    If you prefer to believe a god swooped down and made the whole pile, badda-bing, badda-boom, I can assure you that no thinking human will stop you. Or give a shit.
     
    We'll just sneer at and mock you as lacking a "functioning brain."
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  39. bossel says:

    The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design. When one sees an immensely complicated system all of whose parts work together with effect and apparent purpose, such as an automobile or a cell, it is natural to think that someone or something designed it.

    Really? Then who designed that “immensely complicated system” that this intelligent designer would have to be?

    There is much evidence for this

    Nope.

    Darwin thought that in a warm pond, bits of goo clumped together, a membrane formed, and life was off and running.

    Did he?
    “Darwin included few statements on the origin of life in his books. As underlined by Aulie (1970) this is what he wanted to make public. Over and over again he carefully emphasized the lack of evidence on the possibility of spontaneous generation.”

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2745620/

    Yet, despite a great deal of effort, the case for the accidental appearance of life has remained one of fervent insistence untainted by either evidence ofrtheoretical plausibility.

    Try these:

    https://www.nature.com/subjects/origin-of-life

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Really? Then who designed the"immensely complicated system that this intelligent designer would have to be?
     
    I have never understood this objection to ID. Here again, the watch analogy will make the point. If we land on a distant planet and find a watch or some similar gadget, it is reasonable for us to suppose that the planet was once inhabited by an intelligent life form that designed the gadget. The fact that such a surmise in turn creates a whole 'nother set of questions and mysteries would not in any way diminish the validity of that inference.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  40. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Au contraire, it is you who must be joking. Your argument is that the Mind that conceived and created this emerged by accident from primordial goop:
     
    No, that is not an argument I made. Possibly you leaped forward a few massive conclusions, bridging space and time, making a hyperspace journey into the blackness?

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.

    (DAMMIT!! There goes my goddamned worthless uninformed opinion firing off again!! Jesus has informed us that Art is what a bunch of Renaissance-ish hacks produced. He shall not be questioned, milords and ladies --- it is ART.)

    [spit]

    Go away.

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.

    Why does that not surprise me?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny


    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.
     
    Why does that not surprise me?
     
    Because you're a religiously-devoted individual, most probably of Roman Catholic persuasion, and you've been conditioned all your life to believe "Renaissance" art is the only true "Art" (and other church-approved efforts, of course.)

    Art is a subjective kinda thing, as is music. Of religious Art, I rather like Michelangelo's Pieta. Painting, not so much. Of 2D esthetic imagery, I prefer photographs.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  41. @Rosie

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.
     
    Why does that not surprise me?

    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.

    Why does that not surprise me?

    Because you’re a religiously-devoted individual, most probably of Roman Catholic persuasion, and you’ve been conditioned all your life to believe “Renaissance” art is the only true “Art” (and other church-approved efforts, of course.)

    Art is a subjective kinda thing, as is music. Of religious Art, I rather like Michelangelo’s Pieta. Painting, not so much. Of 2D esthetic imagery, I prefer photographs.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Because you’re a religiously-devoted individual,
     
    Not really.

    most probably of Roman Catholic persuasion
     
    Nope

    and you’ve been conditioned all your life to believe “Renaissance” art is the only true “Art”
     
    Perhaps, but I don't believe that so I guess it didn't work.

    Like virtually every committed atheist I have ever been acquainted with, you are a cranky know-it-all who has lost all sense of wonder and delight, if you ever had any.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  42. @Dillon Sweeny

    From the comments, Fred, I’d say that no one understood you.
     
    Oh, I understand. I do not, however, agree. Simple enough, eh? I value Fred's insights on social and political conditions in the Americas. I am not inclined to grant him metaphysical authority as a development from that.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution.
     
    No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority).

    Evolution is an energy/substance process, limited and defined by physical nature and energy conditions. Don't mystify it.

    Sweeny says: “No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority).”

    So, the theory of evolution assumes nothing. That’ll be news to every Philosopher of Science who ever thought deeply about the relation between human theorizing and the objects under contemplation. For starters, every category is an assumption in so far as it lumps disparate things under one label. But that’s too general.

    It’s not that Evolutionists don’t have assumptions, they just don’t acknowledge them. Instead they speak in the passive voice. They use terms like “selection” and “niche”, “process”, terms more suited to a mechanical system than living passionate beings.

    “There is no driving Force inherent in Life.” Of course there is. It is everywhere apparent. It is life itself. Come close to death in a near-miss car accident, Mr. Sweeny, and you will feel the surge of the Driving Force that is Life.

    The beautiful explosion of a flower exemplifies the driving force that is life. The fraying of a tree from one solid trunk to billions of stomata is the Will to Live frozen in time for your contemplation. Look at that tree’s muscles, holding that load out under constant strain with no respite. What amazing endurance. A tree stands still and takes everything nature throws at it while you move around, seeking more congenial conditions. Talk about a Will to Live. There it is for you, frozen in motion.

    Life is ardent, Mr. Sweeny. Can’t you see it? No? Then take a hit of acid and spend a calm, sunny day in a garden or on a wild windswept dune overlooking the ocean. You’ll see that every living being is full to the brim with Will.

    If that doesn’t do the trick then try this. Visit a horse farm. Try to go on a day when a stallion is servicing a mare. You’ll notice that the male is acting a bit impetuous, that a portion of its anatomy seems to have a will of its own. Now, I don’t want you to get hurt, but in order to get a feeling for this “surge of driving force that is life”, I suggest you should try to insert yourself between the stallion and the mare. Use your utmost powers of persuasion to restrain the stallion. Appeal to his reason. Tell him that what he is feeling is merely a process, that he is simply an organism fulfilling a niche whose behavior has been selected according a non-assuming, mechanical process expressed in the Immutable Laws of Natural Selection.

    Do you think sperm swimming upstream in a vagina possess consciousness, Mr. Sweeny? Or the Will to Live? Or are they simply wound up little machines acting without intention?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Do you think sperm swimming upstream in a vagina possess consciousness, Mr. Sweeny? Or the Will to Live? Or are they simply wound up little machines acting without intention?
     
    Good effort, but a bit amateurish.

    I don't mind if you like to spiel metaphors, similes, poetic transformations, etc. Been there, done that. Probably could still do it, if need be. However, you presented no argument; it was all exhortation. Not bad things, but not verifiable fact, either.

    FYI, I lived and worked on a horse farm for two years. You, I notice, have not. ;-)

    Might I suggest some additional reading (your kind) that might add a bit of philosophical depth to your, er, slightly cliched assortment of faith fragments? How about Tillich's The Courage to Be? Perhaps, if you're a real faith-y person, Dynamics of Faith. Good stuff, but not something the Church would recommend. But, probably not on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum, so no worries about eternal hellfire.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  43. Giuseppe says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    And it whispers shouts that ontologically lower things are derived from higher things, and not the reverse.
     
    ID denies entropy. Entropy doesn't like being denied. ;-)

    ID denies entropy. Entropy doesn’t like being denied. ;-)

    Denial, lack of affirmation, means things are headed south and coming apart at the seams. Entropy likes it when things come apart at the seams.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  44. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    See “The Last Superstition” by Edward Feser, which includes a detailed refutation of Intelligent Design from an Aristotelian standpoint.
     
    Is it well-written, perhaps at a 5th-grade reading level? I'll check it possible future use -- although I have found it less-than-futile to attempt to convince shin-crackers that what their religions preach is unverifiable and nonsensical.

    ID is just a special case of Aquinas' Teleological Argument, which was the first of the sort to be debunked. Der Katholix still regard it as authoritative. It was nothing but Augustine until Aquinas, so no major improvement. People either have functioning brains, or they don't. 1800 years and still SSDD.

    People either have functioning brains, or they don’t.

    But…

    If you prefer to believe a god swooped down and made the whole pile, badda-bing, badda-boom, I can assure you that no thinking human will stop you. Or give a shit.

    We’ll just sneer at and mock you as lacking a “functioning brain.”

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  45. Mario964 says:

    Darwinism is a satanic cult based on the theory devised by a demon possessed unitarian heretic. Due to human body being unfit to host devil possession, weird and severe inexplicable diseases ensue.
    Just see : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_of_Charles_Darwin.

    Demons come in hierarchy, the lower echelons are committed to lead astray individual human beings, the higher echelons are committed to lead astray whole nations and the top echelons are committed to lead astray the entire humanity.

    Darwin was possessed by a top echelon demon who used the poor wretch in order to spread on the entire humanity a materialistic creed devised to deny the existence of God.
    The weird inexplicable diseases that tormented Darwin the Satan’s slave throughout his life are undeniable testament to the heavy price exacted by his possession.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  46. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny


    The Sistine Chapel is not my idea of great Art.
     
    Why does that not surprise me?
     
    Because you're a religiously-devoted individual, most probably of Roman Catholic persuasion, and you've been conditioned all your life to believe "Renaissance" art is the only true "Art" (and other church-approved efforts, of course.)

    Art is a subjective kinda thing, as is music. Of religious Art, I rather like Michelangelo's Pieta. Painting, not so much. Of 2D esthetic imagery, I prefer photographs.

    Because you’re a religiously-devoted individual,

    Not really.

    most probably of Roman Catholic persuasion

    Nope

    and you’ve been conditioned all your life to believe “Renaissance” art is the only true “Art”

    Perhaps, but I don’t believe that so I guess it didn’t work.

    Like virtually every committed atheist I have ever been acquainted with, you are a cranky know-it-all who has lost all sense of wonder and delight, if you ever had any.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Like virtually every committed atheist I have ever been acquainted with, you are a cranky know-it-all who has lost all sense of wonder and delight, if you ever had any.
     
    Oh, dear, baseless accusations and all, eh what? Do you require religion in order to have a sense of wonder and delight? Besides, who said I'm an atheist? Not me.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  47. Rich says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Face it, Sweeny, you’re dealing with the unknowable here, don’t try to pretend you’re smarter than anyone else writing on the subject.
     
    And you are? Preacher, preach to your congregation. Goes with the medium; knock yourself out, bub.

    In the future, if you wish discuss specific points, please do. With substance, if you would. Don't maunder at me.

    Well, I’m neither a religious man nor an evolutionary biologist. What I am is an engineer. If I build a circuit that opens a switch, I use scientific principles that apply, then my design has to actually open the switch. I don’t say a prayer, or come up with a theory about primordial swamps, I actually have to show reality. There are too many evolutionary theories and none are actually proven. Where we come from, how we originated, are fine for a bunch of kids sitting in their dorm room, but adults should work with facts. Of course, in the US at least, no one wants to grow up, so you evolution zealots fit right in.

    Whether humans were created or evolved, or were created to evolve, is meaningless. None of it keeps your house warm in winter, or cool in summer. Don’t you have anything more important to argue about?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  48. @ThreeCranes
    Sweeny says: "No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority)."

    So, the theory of evolution assumes nothing. That'll be news to every Philosopher of Science who ever thought deeply about the relation between human theorizing and the objects under contemplation. For starters, every category is an assumption in so far as it lumps disparate things under one label. But that’s too general.

    It's not that Evolutionists don't have assumptions, they just don't acknowledge them. Instead they speak in the passive voice. They use terms like "selection" and "niche", "process", terms more suited to a mechanical system than living passionate beings.

    "There is no driving Force inherent in Life." Of course there is. It is everywhere apparent. It is life itself. Come close to death in a near-miss car accident, Mr. Sweeny, and you will feel the surge of the Driving Force that is Life.

    The beautiful explosion of a flower exemplifies the driving force that is life. The fraying of a tree from one solid trunk to billions of stomata is the Will to Live frozen in time for your contemplation. Look at that tree's muscles, holding that load out under constant strain with no respite. What amazing endurance. A tree stands still and takes everything nature throws at it while you move around, seeking more congenial conditions. Talk about a Will to Live. There it is for you, frozen in motion.

    Life is ardent, Mr. Sweeny. Can't you see it? No? Then take a hit of acid and spend a calm, sunny day in a garden or on a wild windswept dune overlooking the ocean. You'll see that every living being is full to the brim with Will.

    If that doesn't do the trick then try this. Visit a horse farm. Try to go on a day when a stallion is servicing a mare. You'll notice that the male is acting a bit impetuous, that a portion of its anatomy seems to have a will of its own. Now, I don't want you to get hurt, but in order to get a feeling for this "surge of driving force that is life", I suggest you should try to insert yourself between the stallion and the mare. Use your utmost powers of persuasion to restrain the stallion. Appeal to his reason. Tell him that what he is feeling is merely a process, that he is simply an organism fulfilling a niche whose behavior has been selected according a non-assuming, mechanical process expressed in the Immutable Laws of Natural Selection.

    Do you think sperm swimming upstream in a vagina possess consciousness, Mr. Sweeny? Or the Will to Live? Or are they simply wound up little machines acting without intention?

    Do you think sperm swimming upstream in a vagina possess consciousness, Mr. Sweeny? Or the Will to Live? Or are they simply wound up little machines acting without intention?

    Good effort, but a bit amateurish.

    I don’t mind if you like to spiel metaphors, similes, poetic transformations, etc. Been there, done that. Probably could still do it, if need be. However, you presented no argument; it was all exhortation. Not bad things, but not verifiable fact, either.

    FYI, I lived and worked on a horse farm for two years. You, I notice, have not. ;-)

    Might I suggest some additional reading (your kind) that might add a bit of philosophical depth to your, er, slightly cliched assortment of faith fragments? How about Tillich’s The Courage to Be? Perhaps, if you’re a real faith-y person, Dynamics of Faith. Good stuff, but not something the Church would recommend. But, probably not on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum, so no worries about eternal hellfire.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  49. I read Tillich’s stuff under one of his prize pupils who wanted me to attend Harvard Theological Seminary and would have sponsored me to do so. However, I chose to race bicycles instead, then went into Engineering.

    The Courage to Be and Dynamics of Faith (both of which I read 40 years ago and still sit on my bookshelf) are indeed good books, but not really related to the subject at hand. When talking of life how can one not use metaphors or similes? After all, words are metaphors, they conjure forth or call into being a state of mind or the presence of something.

    Even engineering concepts such as mass, Force and field are ultimately just symbols or metaphors, the meaning of which is circular, that is, only revealed when used in conjunction with other defined terms of an equation. Mass is defined a resisitance to acceleration. Force of a field is revealed by degree to which it deflects a particle of known momentum. The Field itself is intangible apart from the effect it has upon things that interact with it, so the word Force is a just a referent, a symbol used in an equation.

    Look, I know you’re trying to be a scientist and all, but evolution presupposes that living things act in such a way as to expand into many potential niches and that tendency has to be attributed to something. You can’t just gloss over it.

    Why? Why should life do that? Why shouldn’t life have stayed as a simple single cell organism that reproduces by splitting? What impelled life to diversify and become more complex? I’m not talking about God or anything like that. I’m just pointing out that the theory of evolution begs certain questions and assumes certain processes as givens.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Look, I know you’re trying to be a scientist and all, but evolution presupposes that living things act in such a way as to expand into many potential niches and that tendency has to be attributed to something. You can’t just gloss over it.
     
    Um, no, not trying to be a scientist. However, I know enough science to confidently assert that "evolution" is NOT presupposing a drive to expand into niches. If living things expand, it's growth. Simple enough? Don't put characteristics of consciousness on it -- tain't there.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  50. Graf says:

    Human Genome Project suffers an “epic fail”

    https://bit.ly/2LpJDtg

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  51. MBlanc46 says:

    Intelligent design doesn’t explain anything.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  52. @Rosie

    Because you’re a religiously-devoted individual,
     
    Not really.

    most probably of Roman Catholic persuasion
     
    Nope

    and you’ve been conditioned all your life to believe “Renaissance” art is the only true “Art”
     
    Perhaps, but I don't believe that so I guess it didn't work.

    Like virtually every committed atheist I have ever been acquainted with, you are a cranky know-it-all who has lost all sense of wonder and delight, if you ever had any.

    Like virtually every committed atheist I have ever been acquainted with, you are a cranky know-it-all who has lost all sense of wonder and delight, if you ever had any.

    Oh, dear, baseless accusations and all, eh what? Do you require religion in order to have a sense of wonder and delight? Besides, who said I’m an atheist? Not me.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  53. @ThreeCranes
    I read Tillich's stuff under one of his prize pupils who wanted me to attend Harvard Theological Seminary and would have sponsored me to do so. However, I chose to race bicycles instead, then went into Engineering.

    The Courage to Be and Dynamics of Faith (both of which I read 40 years ago and still sit on my bookshelf) are indeed good books, but not really related to the subject at hand. When talking of life how can one not use metaphors or similes? After all, words are metaphors, they conjure forth or call into being a state of mind or the presence of something.

    Even engineering concepts such as mass, Force and field are ultimately just symbols or metaphors, the meaning of which is circular, that is, only revealed when used in conjunction with other defined terms of an equation. Mass is defined a resisitance to acceleration. Force of a field is revealed by degree to which it deflects a particle of known momentum. The Field itself is intangible apart from the effect it has upon things that interact with it, so the word Force is a just a referent, a symbol used in an equation.

    Look, I know you're trying to be a scientist and all, but evolution presupposes that living things act in such a way as to expand into many potential niches and that tendency has to be attributed to something. You can't just gloss over it.

    Why? Why should life do that? Why shouldn't life have stayed as a simple single cell organism that reproduces by splitting? What impelled life to diversify and become more complex? I'm not talking about God or anything like that. I'm just pointing out that the theory of evolution begs certain questions and assumes certain processes as givens.

    Look, I know you’re trying to be a scientist and all, but evolution presupposes that living things act in such a way as to expand into many potential niches and that tendency has to be attributed to something. You can’t just gloss over it.

    Um, no, not trying to be a scientist. However, I know enough science to confidently assert that “evolution” is NOT presupposing a drive to expand into niches. If living things expand, it’s growth. Simple enough? Don’t put characteristics of consciousness on it — tain’t there.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
    "If living things expand, it’s growth. Simple enough? Don’t put characteristics of consciousness on it — tain’t there."

    Ahhh, the Alan Watts/Heidegger argument.

    Things just do, so "raining". There is no "it is raining". Watts, interested in Zen, admired the Oriental mindset for their striving for immediate simplicity of perception/conception, elimination of the yawning abyss between subject and object, Zen.

    Heidegger thought that many of the paradoxes and complexities in Western thought could be traced to the schizophrenia inherent in the word construction of our sentences. We say, "It is raining" as though there is a something that is doing the rain. So I say "It is evolving" and you say, "No. Evolving. There is no "it".

    So, have it your way, "evolving" or "raining". Is it okay to ask, "Why is it raining?" Doesn't use of the “is”, which implies (as you correctly point out) something doing the "ising”, prod the Western mind on to relentless speculation about what lies behind phenomenon? Mayhaps this is the reason that the West invented modern science, technology etc while the structure of the language in the East didn't lend itself to such inquiry. (Here, for all those on this site that pose this question, may be an answer.)

    Are we allowed to inquire why "raining" sometimes and not others? May we be permitted to get to the root cause of "rain”? Are we not to be allowed to assign priority to causes?

    "No", the evolutionist replies. We don't do "Why?". "We aren't interested in ultimate causes, just 'hows'".

    What a cop out. Why don’t you just be honest and admit, “We don’t know.”? You see, I don’t chide you because I’m a mystic, I chide you because I’m an honest scientist and you’re a bad one.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  54. Rosie says:

    Oh, dear, baseless accusations and all, eh what? Do you require religion in order to have a sense of wonder and delight?

    No, I am open to religion because I have a sense of wonder and delight.

    Besides, who said I’m an atheist? Not me.

    I don’t care what you call yourself.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  55. I think you don’t read much of the comments anyway, Mr. Reed, but if you do, you’re going to think I’m a comment schizoid after a while. You can blame that squarely on your writings, though. Anything you write pro-Mexico or extremely anti-Americans is usually biased as all hell, for reasons that I think I know (and have stated).

    Then, you write about other topics and I have to agree. This is one of the best. You admit you’re not a scientist but do explain some of the failings when scientists get pigeon-holed into one small area, as has been the case for a good while. I will try to get a few of the books you recommend out of the library.

    I especially liked your line “… a suicidal assualt on Murphy’s law”. That’s a great way to put it. I’d never wanted to be a doctor for basically that reason. In medical school, you learn about all the ways the body can go wrong, and it seems like just pure luck that one can get through one day without all that complicated shit going wrong. Evolution seems the same. I understand the natural selection process, but, man, the how much time would all the iterations to get all these parts working together take? That’s your point though. Thank you for this great column.

    Oh, I guess I can pull out one piece of criticism, if it’ll make you feel better – there are a bunch of typos, especially in one paragraph near the middle.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  56. @Jim Bob Lassiter
    I wonder who the genius was that designed the Mexican Jumping Bean. Fascinating critters to say the least.

    Man, that brings back memories, Jim. What the hell are those things, anyway? I guess this would be a good way to get the ball rolling for Unz’s replacement column for “Ask a Beaner“.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  57. @Truth
    "Intelligent design?"

    When I was a kid we had another name for it; God.

    “Intelligent design?”

    When I was a kid we had another name for it; God.

    Whoaa! You can’t say that here – Dillon Sweeny will go apeshit.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  58. @Feric Jaggar
    "We have all heard of Sir James Jeans assertion that a monkey, typing randomly, would eventually produce all the books in the British Museum. (Actually he would not produce a single chapter in the accepted age of the universe, but never mind.) "

    Jeans wrote about these typing monkeys (he claimed 6 of them not 1) in 1933. And Jeans claims he was quoting Huxley when he said it, so it wasn't even Jeans' assertion. But Jeans wasn't right about that as Huxley never said it. It was Emile Borel, a mathematician, who originally considered that a million monkeys over the space of a year might produce the texts of the greatest libraries -- he considered it and dismissed it as highly improbable. He never tied it to evolution or abiogenesis at all. So this monkey nonsense is just that. It's an old idea that was posed and dismissed in the same argument.

    I don’t know this history you discuss here, so I’ll take your word for it. On this:

    He never tied it to evolution or abiogenesis at all.

    That was not what Mr. Reed meant to do either. He was just writing about probablities. The monkees writing Tom Sawyer calculation really should be pretty easy, if you know the number of words in the book. It may help to have the kind of knowledge of the English language that a cryptographer would have, but that kind of precision wouldn’t even be needed to get in the ball park.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  59. JamesG says: • Website

    The standard version of evolutionary theory says humans and other complex animals were produced by the same mechanisms that produced jellyfish and all other colonial forms including plants.

    I think that’s implausible and published (in a journal) a correction proposing that lethal cancer in developing (juvenile) animals created selection pressure that enabled precision in development which enabled complexity.

    Link to the published theory

    http://www.jamesgraham.bz/images/JTB_Cancer_and_Evolution.pdf

    I expanded on the idea in a book which was reviewed in Nature.
    Link (limited access) to the review http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v356/n6366/pdf/356206a0.pdf

    Link to the book http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0963024205/qid=1026397954/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/104-0003217-1321527

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  60. Perhaps the Mexican Sun has fried your brain. There are the building blocks of life…amino acids and primitive molecules on comets etc. The classic experiment was done Miller: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller%E2%80%93Urey_experiment

    It’s been repeated many times. I must ask Ron Unz whether he’s paying you for this stuff because this is like something from a 7 year old kid. Perhaps he pays you by the word or the article I have no idea but this stupid article doesn’t belong here. I wish I could find some sucker like Unz to pay me to write articles this stupid. Perhaps that’s why Unz likes Hispanic illegals…he considered you as one of them. Really…….there are tons of great articles that could take the space that you have absorbed with this garbage. In a way it’s like the illegals taking the jobs of people who should be getting them. Now it makes sense……

    Read More
    • Replies: @nickels
    Cool, so you have an amino acid.

    Okay, now create any one of the hundreds (thousands) of proteins necessary for the function of DNA.
    Well, lets see. That's gonna take several trillion lifetimes of the universe.

    So, repeat until we have the whole complement.

    How we need to wait a few more trillion of trillions of years to form a strand of DNA.

    But lets see, DNA is worthless unless there is a cell.

    So maybe a trillion^trillion^trillion years later a bunch of lipids and saccharine molecules will randomly collide to form a cell, with its various compartments and inner membranes. And our DNA will randomly bubble across the surface of the earth, through lava pits and thunderstorms to collide with the cell!!!

    Yay, a useless cell. Now we need to wait another trillion^trillion^trillion years for the cell to stumble on some kind of metabolic set of pathways so it actually does something.

    Absurd.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  61. Fred:
    16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned,but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

    Read More
    • Replies: @silviosilver

    16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son
     
    A human father giving his only son for some cause or other is pretty impressive stuff. But this guy's God, dammit. He can do - so we're told - anything. So why are Christians so damn impressed by his giving away his only son when he could just magic up another ten billion sons if he wanted to, or just resurrect/reset the first one if something went wrong? It's not as if God's son was ever at any real risk of coming to harm, the way a human's son is.

    Sigh. The human compassion in me wants to leave Christians alone to enjoy their pretty little beliefs, but when they pester with you with this kind of stupidity and expect you to take it seriously, well, it's just hard, you know.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  62. Rosie says:
    @bossel

    The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design. When one sees an immensely complicated system all of whose parts work together with effect and apparent purpose, such as an automobile or a cell, it is natural to think that someone or something designed it.
     
    Really? Then who designed that "immensely complicated system" that this intelligent designer would have to be?

    There is much evidence for this
     
    Nope.

    Darwin thought that in a warm pond, bits of goo clumped together, a membrane formed, and life was off and running.
     
    Did he?
    "Darwin included few statements on the origin of life in his books. As underlined by Aulie (1970) this is what he wanted to make public. Over and over again he carefully emphasized the lack of evidence on the possibility of spontaneous generation."
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2745620/

    Yet, despite a great deal of effort, the case for the accidental appearance of life has remained one of fervent insistence untainted by either evidence ofrtheoretical plausibility.
     
    Try these:
    https://www.nature.com/subjects/origin-of-life

    Really? Then who designed the”immensely complicated system that this intelligent designer would have to be?

    I have never understood this objection to ID. Here again, the watch analogy will make the point. If we land on a distant planet and find a watch or some similar gadget, it is reasonable for us to suppose that the planet was once inhabited by an intelligent life form that designed the gadget. The fact that such a surmise in turn creates a whole ‘nother set of questions and mysteries would not in any way diminish the validity of that inference.

    Read More
    • Replies: @silviosilver
    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is 'too complex' to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  63. Red Robbo says:

    We are mostly composed of bacteria, viruses, fungi and archaea, see less than 1 percent of the light spectrum, have sub-optimal plumbing (breathing, eating, excretory and reproductive) and are programmed to die. Additionally, at least 40 percent of animal species are parasites, and over 99 percent of all species that ever lived are extinct. What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?

    Read More
    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
    "What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?"

    One whose eye is on the Final Prize; Superconsciousness as far above us as we are above the single cell organisms which, as you correctly point out, we have, through evolution, domesticated to serve our interests.

    We are just midsteps on the journey.
    , @Dillon Sweeny

    We are mostly composed of bacteria, viruses, fungi and archaea, see less than 1 percent of the light spectrum, have sub-optimal plumbing (breathing, eating, excretory and reproductive) and are programmed to die. Additionally, at least 40 percent of animal species are parasites, and over 99 percent of all species that ever lived are extinct. What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?
     
    Looks like we're the fall guys in this here Divine Plan. The LHO patsies of the Cosmological Argument.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  64. There is actually a branch of computer science called Genetic Programming or Genetic Algorithms. It is a form a Machine Learning.

    It works.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_programming

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    There is actually a branch of computer science called Genetic Programming or Genetic Algorithms. It is a form a Machine Learning.
     
    Eeeeeek!! Who designed it? Surely, not ... You Know Who?

    OMG, it's ID for computers! My sense of wonder and delight just went totally verklempt.
    , @nickels
    perhaps you can explain, then, why, computers, which are able to simulate the information transfer of a whole lifetime of a DNA based organism in a nanosecond, have not yet created intelligent life?

    I mean, in the time it takes to light a cigarette the computer can trace out the genetic pathway of trillions of lifetimes of more constrained molecular organisms.

    Doesn't work. Genetic programming doesn't create anything.

    Never has, never will.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  65. @Red Robbo
    We are mostly composed of bacteria, viruses, fungi and archaea, see less than 1 percent of the light spectrum, have sub-optimal plumbing (breathing, eating, excretory and reproductive) and are programmed to die. Additionally, at least 40 percent of animal species are parasites, and over 99 percent of all species that ever lived are extinct. What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?

    “What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?”

    One whose eye is on the Final Prize; Superconsciousness as far above us as we are above the single cell organisms which, as you correctly point out, we have, through evolution, domesticated to serve our interests.

    We are just midsteps on the journey.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    We are just midsteps on the journey.
     
    Ooooo..WHEEEEE...ooooooo!
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  66. @Red Robbo
    We are mostly composed of bacteria, viruses, fungi and archaea, see less than 1 percent of the light spectrum, have sub-optimal plumbing (breathing, eating, excretory and reproductive) and are programmed to die. Additionally, at least 40 percent of animal species are parasites, and over 99 percent of all species that ever lived are extinct. What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?

    We are mostly composed of bacteria, viruses, fungi and archaea, see less than 1 percent of the light spectrum, have sub-optimal plumbing (breathing, eating, excretory and reproductive) and are programmed to die. Additionally, at least 40 percent of animal species are parasites, and over 99 percent of all species that ever lived are extinct. What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?

    Looks like we’re the fall guys in this here Divine Plan. The LHO patsies of the Cosmological Argument.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  67. @ThreeCranes
    "What sort of intelligence, if any, is or has been at work here?"

    One whose eye is on the Final Prize; Superconsciousness as far above us as we are above the single cell organisms which, as you correctly point out, we have, through evolution, domesticated to serve our interests.

    We are just midsteps on the journey.

    We are just midsteps on the journey.

    Ooooo..WHEEEEE…ooooooo!

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  68. @Si1ver1ock
    There is actually a branch of computer science called Genetic Programming or Genetic Algorithms. It is a form a Machine Learning.

    It works.


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_programming

    There is actually a branch of computer science called Genetic Programming or Genetic Algorithms. It is a form a Machine Learning.

    Eeeeeek!! Who designed it? Surely, not … You Know Who?

    OMG, it’s ID for computers! My sense of wonder and delight just went totally verklempt.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  69. @Dillon Sweeny

    Look, I know you’re trying to be a scientist and all, but evolution presupposes that living things act in such a way as to expand into many potential niches and that tendency has to be attributed to something. You can’t just gloss over it.
     
    Um, no, not trying to be a scientist. However, I know enough science to confidently assert that "evolution" is NOT presupposing a drive to expand into niches. If living things expand, it's growth. Simple enough? Don't put characteristics of consciousness on it -- tain't there.

    “If living things expand, it’s growth. Simple enough? Don’t put characteristics of consciousness on it — tain’t there.”

    Ahhh, the Alan Watts/Heidegger argument.

    Things just do, so “raining”. There is no “it is raining”. Watts, interested in Zen, admired the Oriental mindset for their striving for immediate simplicity of perception/conception, elimination of the yawning abyss between subject and object, Zen.

    Heidegger thought that many of the paradoxes and complexities in Western thought could be traced to the schizophrenia inherent in the word construction of our sentences. We say, “It is raining” as though there is a something that is doing the rain. So I say “It is evolving” and you say, “No. Evolving. There is no “it”.

    So, have it your way, “evolving” or “raining”. Is it okay to ask, “Why is it raining?” Doesn’t use of the “is”, which implies (as you correctly point out) something doing the “ising”, prod the Western mind on to relentless speculation about what lies behind phenomenon? Mayhaps this is the reason that the West invented modern science, technology etc while the structure of the language in the East didn’t lend itself to such inquiry. (Here, for all those on this site that pose this question, may be an answer.)

    Are we allowed to inquire why “raining” sometimes and not others? May we be permitted to get to the root cause of “rain”? Are we not to be allowed to assign priority to causes?

    “No”, the evolutionist replies. We don’t do “Why?”. “We aren’t interested in ultimate causes, just ‘hows’”.

    What a cop out. Why don’t you just be honest and admit, “We don’t know.”? You see, I don’t chide you because I’m a mystic, I chide you because I’m an honest scientist and you’re a bad one.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    I don’t chide you because I’m a mystic, I chide you because I’m an honest scientist and you’re a bad one.
     
    Knock yourself out, 70s dude. Ommmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...

    Your paeans to your personal sense of enlightenment are more tedious than most.

    As for the above -- your most recent venture into fantastasism, wonder and delight, you delude yourself. Again.

    For specific treatment, try a dose of Whitehead. Your current state seems to be pre-Shirley Temple.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  70. nickels says:
    @Si1ver1ock
    There is actually a branch of computer science called Genetic Programming or Genetic Algorithms. It is a form a Machine Learning.

    It works.


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_programming

    perhaps you can explain, then, why, computers, which are able to simulate the information transfer of a whole lifetime of a DNA based organism in a nanosecond, have not yet created intelligent life?

    I mean, in the time it takes to light a cigarette the computer can trace out the genetic pathway of trillions of lifetimes of more constrained molecular organisms.

    Doesn’t work. Genetic programming doesn’t create anything.

    Never has, never will.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Si1ver1ock
    Genetic Programming creates programs. Typically, the program is represented as a tree and sub-trees are swapped and mutated to create new programs much like viruses mutate. They are then handed to an evaluation operator and ranked. Poorly performing programs are culled and superior programs are mated to produce new offspring. Mutation operators are applied and another generation is started.

    Koza used to lead the field using his Linux clusters. He probably still has the definitive textbook on the subject. The original programs were in Lisp. Now there are several libraries in C++. I use OpenBeagle. But I should probably upgrade to Fast OpenBeagle, except I have hand optimized code for the old library.


    https://www.cs.montana.edu/~bwall/cs580/introduction_to_gp.pdf

    https://github.com/sepastian/open-beagle-fast-gp

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  71. nickels says:
    @niteranger
    Perhaps the Mexican Sun has fried your brain. There are the building blocks of life...amino acids and primitive molecules on comets etc. The classic experiment was done Miller: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller%E2%80%93Urey_experiment

    It's been repeated many times. I must ask Ron Unz whether he's paying you for this stuff because this is like something from a 7 year old kid. Perhaps he pays you by the word or the article I have no idea but this stupid article doesn't belong here. I wish I could find some sucker like Unz to pay me to write articles this stupid. Perhaps that's why Unz likes Hispanic illegals...he considered you as one of them. Really.......there are tons of great articles that could take the space that you have absorbed with this garbage. In a way it's like the illegals taking the jobs of people who should be getting them. Now it makes sense......

    Cool, so you have an amino acid.

    Okay, now create any one of the hundreds (thousands) of proteins necessary for the function of DNA.
    Well, lets see. That’s gonna take several trillion lifetimes of the universe.

    So, repeat until we have the whole complement.

    How we need to wait a few more trillion of trillions of years to form a strand of DNA.

    But lets see, DNA is worthless unless there is a cell.

    So maybe a trillion^trillion^trillion years later a bunch of lipids and saccharine molecules will randomly collide to form a cell, with its various compartments and inner membranes. And our DNA will randomly bubble across the surface of the earth, through lava pits and thunderstorms to collide with the cell!!!

    Yay, a useless cell. Now we need to wait another trillion^trillion^trillion years for the cell to stumble on some kind of metabolic set of pathways so it actually does something.

    Absurd.

    Read More
    • Replies: @niteranger
    The only thing absurd here is your complete lack of understanding of basic science. It doesn't take trillions of years for this to occur. Does it take trillions of years for new species to be made? It's scary that it's 2018 and people like yourself inhabit the planet.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  72. 1 Corinthians 1:

    27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him.

    Fred, you are a very well read man, but I wager I know one book you have not read, certainly not in the depth that you have read others.

    Read that book, Fred. Read it, think about it, consider, wonder, argue with the author.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  73. @ThreeCranes
    "If living things expand, it’s growth. Simple enough? Don’t put characteristics of consciousness on it — tain’t there."

    Ahhh, the Alan Watts/Heidegger argument.

    Things just do, so "raining". There is no "it is raining". Watts, interested in Zen, admired the Oriental mindset for their striving for immediate simplicity of perception/conception, elimination of the yawning abyss between subject and object, Zen.

    Heidegger thought that many of the paradoxes and complexities in Western thought could be traced to the schizophrenia inherent in the word construction of our sentences. We say, "It is raining" as though there is a something that is doing the rain. So I say "It is evolving" and you say, "No. Evolving. There is no "it".

    So, have it your way, "evolving" or "raining". Is it okay to ask, "Why is it raining?" Doesn't use of the “is”, which implies (as you correctly point out) something doing the "ising”, prod the Western mind on to relentless speculation about what lies behind phenomenon? Mayhaps this is the reason that the West invented modern science, technology etc while the structure of the language in the East didn't lend itself to such inquiry. (Here, for all those on this site that pose this question, may be an answer.)

    Are we allowed to inquire why "raining" sometimes and not others? May we be permitted to get to the root cause of "rain”? Are we not to be allowed to assign priority to causes?

    "No", the evolutionist replies. We don't do "Why?". "We aren't interested in ultimate causes, just 'hows'".

    What a cop out. Why don’t you just be honest and admit, “We don’t know.”? You see, I don’t chide you because I’m a mystic, I chide you because I’m an honest scientist and you’re a bad one.

    I don’t chide you because I’m a mystic, I chide you because I’m an honest scientist and you’re a bad one.

    Knock yourself out, 70s dude. Ommmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…

    Your paeans to your personal sense of enlightenment are more tedious than most.

    As for the above — your most recent venture into fantastasism, wonder and delight, you delude yourself. Again.

    For specific treatment, try a dose of Whitehead. Your current state seems to be pre-Shirley Temple.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
    So, you've got nothing. You've answered nothing, considered nothing.

    Back when I was in college guys like you studied behaviorism. It was easy, formulaic. And they, like you, felt secure in representing the establishment consensus, denying the reality of anything that could not be measured or quantified. They were debunked finally by (ironically) ethologists such as Lorenz and Tinbergen who pointed out that "learning" as construed by the behaviorists i.e. of a captive animal in an environmentally determined box, bore no resemblance to the learning behavior of animals in the wild. And now you stand on the shoulders of Lorenz et al. and repeat the same type of dogmatic mistakes as those whom your learned mentors dethroned.

    Funny thing, history.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  74. @nickels
    perhaps you can explain, then, why, computers, which are able to simulate the information transfer of a whole lifetime of a DNA based organism in a nanosecond, have not yet created intelligent life?

    I mean, in the time it takes to light a cigarette the computer can trace out the genetic pathway of trillions of lifetimes of more constrained molecular organisms.

    Doesn't work. Genetic programming doesn't create anything.

    Never has, never will.

    Genetic Programming creates programs. Typically, the program is represented as a tree and sub-trees are swapped and mutated to create new programs much like viruses mutate. They are then handed to an evaluation operator and ranked. Poorly performing programs are culled and superior programs are mated to produce new offspring. Mutation operators are applied and another generation is started.

    Koza used to lead the field using his Linux clusters. He probably still has the definitive textbook on the subject. The original programs were in Lisp. Now there are several libraries in C++. I use OpenBeagle. But I should probably upgrade to Fast OpenBeagle, except I have hand optimized code for the old library.

    https://www.cs.montana.edu/~bwall/cs580/introduction_to_gp.pdf

    https://github.com/sepastian/open-beagle-fast-gp

    Read More
    • Replies: @nickels
    The obvious, and devastating criticism of these genetic programming experiments is the fact that the 'ranking' process involves testing the results against a human created bit of information, thus imparting the results of a human mind into the process.
    Not legit.
    Also, as I stated, the space of mutation processed by a computer far exceeds that possible in nature.
    Computers should have stumbled upon intelligence by now, but they haven't even stumbled on single cell intelligence.

    Random walks can lead every where in time, but the notion of a guiding force, i.e. natural selection, was just Darwin's attempt to obfuscate God into his supposedly atheistic system.
    , @Si1ver1ock
    I'm not going to go into in depth, but you haven't defined God. Also, you are creating an imprecise distinction between life (also not defined) and intelligent life (two undefined terms combined.)


    Try working out some definitions.


    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.

    The evaluation function is given Darwin's dictum "survival of the fittest."
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  75. macilrae says:

    There will always be an ultimate mystery – loosely defined as “What the Hell am I anyway?” but more formally composed by asking “Whence the Laws of Physics which permitted the universe to reach its present stage of evolution?” Whence energy; whence matter (dark or normal)? Was this a product of ID and if so, whence the ID? It seems to me that the origin of Life is a byproduct of the same unfathomable processes and the spontaneous creation blokes at least have a decent theory to hang it on – which may be the best we have for a good long while. Spontaneous creation of energy and mass is one heck of a lot harder to swallow – though Stephen Hawking did have a go at it – and he may have the answer by now.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  76. Personally I find the existence of life to be no less mysterious than existence by itself. Read enough quantum physics and it should become obvious that we do not understand existence.

    Science makes the assumption that the universe operates on physical “laws” and is understandable/discoverable, but that is an assumption, not a proven fact. The assumption has worked well as far as science goes, but that does not mean that some things are not beyond knowing.

    O sweet spontaneous
    earth how often have
    the
    doting

    fingers of
    prurient philosophers pinched
    and
    poked

    thee
    , has the naughty thumb
    of science prodded
    thy

    beauty, how
    often have religions taken
    thee upon their scraggy knees
    squeezing and

    buffeting thee that thou mightest conceive
    gods
    (but
    true

    to the incomparable
    couch of death thy
    rhythmic
    lover

    thou answerest

    them only with

    spring)

    Read more at http://www.poetry-archive.com/c/o_sweet_spontaneous.html#Z5itMDb9aiVwwi6p.99

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny
    Good ole e.e. -- the best of the 20th century, 'cept for maybe Wallace Stevens.

    Lessee if I can do this from memory ...

    Buffalo Bill's defunct
    Who used to ride a watersmooth silver stallion
    and break onetwothreefourfive pigeons justlikethat Jesus!
    he was a handsome man and what I want to know is
    how do you like your blueeyed boy Mister Death.

    https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/buffalo-bill-%E2%80%99s

    Hmm, not bad for a 40-year old memory. Structure's off, hyphen missing, and no exclamation point.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  77. Geezer says:

    Intelligent design sounds very iffy, because you then have to ask “Who designed the designer?”, so it just pushes the problem back a bit.

    On the other hand, the statistical problem of creating an initial replicating molecule/virus, given what we know of the amount of complexity required and entropy to overcome is also very daunting.

    Perhaps there is some as yet unknown law of reality which encourages the formation of self-replicating forms, beyond the level of random chance. But once that first one is up and running, then the processes of natural selection seem to do a good job of explaining how they can take new forms to take advantage of their environment.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  78. @another fred
    Personally I find the existence of life to be no less mysterious than existence by itself. Read enough quantum physics and it should become obvious that we do not understand existence.

    Science makes the assumption that the universe operates on physical "laws" and is understandable/discoverable, but that is an assumption, not a proven fact. The assumption has worked well as far as science goes, but that does not mean that some things are not beyond knowing.

    O sweet spontaneous
    earth how often have
    the
    doting

    fingers of
    prurient philosophers pinched
    and
    poked

    thee
    , has the naughty thumb
    of science prodded
    thy

    beauty, how
    often have religions taken
    thee upon their scraggy knees
    squeezing and

    buffeting thee that thou mightest conceive
    gods
    (but
    true

    to the incomparable
    couch of death thy
    rhythmic
    lover

    thou answerest

    them only with

    spring)
     
    Read more at http://www.poetry-archive.com/c/o_sweet_spontaneous.html#Z5itMDb9aiVwwi6p.99

    Good ole e.e. — the best of the 20th century, ‘cept for maybe Wallace Stevens.

    Lessee if I can do this from memory …

    Buffalo Bill’s defunct
    Who used to ride a watersmooth silver stallion
    and break onetwothreefourfive pigeons justlikethat Jesus!
    he was a handsome man and what I want to know is
    how do you like your blueeyed boy Mister Death.

    https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/buffalo-bill-%E2%80%99s

    Hmm, not bad for a 40-year old memory. Structure’s off, hyphen missing, and no exclamation point.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  79. nsa says:

    A half hour walking around any WallieMart would disabuse even Senor Freddie of his ID fantasy………

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  80. @Dillon Sweeny

    I don’t chide you because I’m a mystic, I chide you because I’m an honest scientist and you’re a bad one.
     
    Knock yourself out, 70s dude. Ommmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...

    Your paeans to your personal sense of enlightenment are more tedious than most.

    As for the above -- your most recent venture into fantastasism, wonder and delight, you delude yourself. Again.

    For specific treatment, try a dose of Whitehead. Your current state seems to be pre-Shirley Temple.

    So, you’ve got nothing. You’ve answered nothing, considered nothing.

    Back when I was in college guys like you studied behaviorism. It was easy, formulaic. And they, like you, felt secure in representing the establishment consensus, denying the reality of anything that could not be measured or quantified. They were debunked finally by (ironically) ethologists such as Lorenz and Tinbergen who pointed out that “learning” as construed by the behaviorists i.e. of a captive animal in an environmentally determined box, bore no resemblance to the learning behavior of animals in the wild. And now you stand on the shoulders of Lorenz et al. and repeat the same type of dogmatic mistakes as those whom your learned mentors dethroned.

    Funny thing, history.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    So, you’ve got nothing. You’ve answered nothing, considered nothing.
     
    Oh, shit, now you're mad. Happens every time.

    "Intelligent Design" is utter, ridiculous, absurd nonsense. It attempts what is, basically, behind all the specifics of species and evolution, a cosmological explanation consisting of imagined poppycock -- that the entire universe was popped into existence, in all it's astonishing totality of matter and energy, by a whisper from a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation.

    It's nonsense. It holds no water. It is utterly unsupported by logic, fact and circumstance.

    Now, do I have "nothing"? Well, yeah, but I started out with nothing, nor did I make any attempt to explain existence by asserting fictional hogwash such as Intelligent Design. YOU did that. All I've done is point out that you're fullashit, which you are.

    It doesn't matter how full of wonder and delight you are, how mystically moved you are by the grandeur of the celestial legions. Hell -- I don't mind -- I've got my own sources of wonder and delight, but I didn't invent any tall tales to justify them.

    I am happy in not measuring up to YOUR idea of goodness, love, and sacred Jesus stuff.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  81. @ThreeCranes
    So, you've got nothing. You've answered nothing, considered nothing.

    Back when I was in college guys like you studied behaviorism. It was easy, formulaic. And they, like you, felt secure in representing the establishment consensus, denying the reality of anything that could not be measured or quantified. They were debunked finally by (ironically) ethologists such as Lorenz and Tinbergen who pointed out that "learning" as construed by the behaviorists i.e. of a captive animal in an environmentally determined box, bore no resemblance to the learning behavior of animals in the wild. And now you stand on the shoulders of Lorenz et al. and repeat the same type of dogmatic mistakes as those whom your learned mentors dethroned.

    Funny thing, history.

    So, you’ve got nothing. You’ve answered nothing, considered nothing.

    Oh, shit, now you’re mad. Happens every time.

    “Intelligent Design” is utter, ridiculous, absurd nonsense. It attempts what is, basically, behind all the specifics of species and evolution, a cosmological explanation consisting of imagined poppycock — that the entire universe was popped into existence, in all it’s astonishing totality of matter and energy, by a whisper from a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation.

    It’s nonsense. It holds no water. It is utterly unsupported by logic, fact and circumstance.

    Now, do I have “nothing”? Well, yeah, but I started out with nothing, nor did I make any attempt to explain existence by asserting fictional hogwash such as Intelligent Design. YOU did that. All I’ve done is point out that you’re fullashit, which you are.

    It doesn’t matter how full of wonder and delight you are, how mystically moved you are by the grandeur of the celestial legions. Hell — I don’t mind — I’ve got my own sources of wonder and delight, but I didn’t invent any tall tales to justify them.

    I am happy in not measuring up to YOUR idea of goodness, love, and sacred Jesus stuff.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
    "a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation." and "I am happy in not measuring up to YOUR idea of goodness, love, and sacred Jesus stuff."

    Um, I never mentioned "Jesus" or "a Deity"?

    Your wide-of-the-target, scatter shot approach suggests that you might want to lay off the booze while posting.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  82. Rosie says:

    whisper from a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation.

    Shall not require explanation? What do you think theologians do?

    Mr. Sweeney, I don’t understand what you’re trying to accomplish here. Do you think researchers (whether you want to call them scientists or not), ought to be free to subject Darwinism to the same extreme skepticism (demands for conclusive proof beyond any shadow of a doubt) to which you subject ID, and without fear of persecution?

    Yes or no?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  83. @davecydell
    Fred:
    16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned,but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

    16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son

    A human father giving his only son for some cause or other is pretty impressive stuff. But this guy’s God, dammit. He can do – so we’re told – anything. So why are Christians so damn impressed by his giving away his only son when he could just magic up another ten billion sons if he wanted to, or just resurrect/reset the first one if something went wrong? It’s not as if God’s son was ever at any real risk of coming to harm, the way a human’s son is.

    Sigh. The human compassion in me wants to leave Christians alone to enjoy their pretty little beliefs, but when they pester with you with this kind of stupidity and expect you to take it seriously, well, it’s just hard, you know.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  84. @Bobsyer
    I think this bloke is talking about mass alien immigration by the trash of the third world....brought about by the Jewish elites which now govern most European countries.....certainly the financial systems.....which will bring about the collapse of Western Civilisation MK2...in slow motion.....
    The importing of millions of barely literate low intelligence immigrants....HAS to be by design......AND IT IS!.

    I have a strong suspicion that you would have written the same thing if the article had been about tariffs, the blue whale or Caesar Salad. It isn’t that I disagree with you about the deleterious effects of mass immigration. It is merely that this article has nothing to do with it and shoehorning in your not-to-the-point comment just makes you sound like an unhinged monomaniac.

    Read More
    • Agree: Dillon Sweeny
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  85. @Rosie

    Really? Then who designed the"immensely complicated system that this intelligent designer would have to be?
     
    I have never understood this objection to ID. Here again, the watch analogy will make the point. If we land on a distant planet and find a watch or some similar gadget, it is reasonable for us to suppose that the planet was once inhabited by an intelligent life form that designed the gadget. The fact that such a surmise in turn creates a whole 'nother set of questions and mysteries would not in any way diminish the validity of that inference.

    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is ‘too complex’ to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is ‘too complex’ to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.
     
    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  86. If IDers restricted themselves to criticizing evolution or natural selection or what have you, I doubt anyone would have a problem with it. That, after all, would be a part of the scientific process. Most people would probably happily permit them to posit the existence of a designer which, it would seem, no scientific explanation could be given for. But one only need scratch just below the surface to see that IDers are up to a whole lot more than that. I don’t know whether they’re being ‘persecuted’ or ‘hounded out’ of science departments, but if they’re not, frankly, I wish they were, because ID is definitely not science.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    But one only need scratch just below the surface to see that IDers are up to a whole lot more than that.
     
    Are not Darwinists also up to something?
    , @Dillon Sweeny

    If IDers restricted themselves to criticizing evolution or natural selection or what have you, I doubt anyone would have a problem with it.
     
    Oh, yeah, THAT'S gonna happen.

    Damn evil-loo-shuniss DENY GOD, silvio!! They reject divine forgiveness of sin! They must be purged from history so the Kingdom may begin! The sons of bitches are keeping us from going to heaven, dammit!!
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  87. @Dillon Sweeny

    From the comments, Fred, I’d say that no one understood you.
     
    Oh, I understand. I do not, however, agree. Simple enough, eh? I value Fred's insights on social and political conditions in the Americas. I am not inclined to grant him metaphysical authority as a development from that.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution.
     
    No, evolution assumes nothing. There is no driving Force inherent in Life (and capital letters do not lend authority).

    Evolution is an energy/substance process, limited and defined by physical nature and energy conditions. Don't mystify it.

    Hi Dillon, I like your style of arguing and think I agree with you so this is a genuine question rather than a snide way of trying to say ‘Gotcha!’ Recently I was listening to Antonio Damasio talking to Sam Harris about his (Damasio’s) latest book. Unless I completely misunderstood him, which is more than possible, he seemed to suggest that homeostasis, which he described as a drive for something to maintain itself in more or less its current state of health, preceded genes and thus, to my mind, the ability to reproduce. Assuming this is not too garbled a distillation of his idea, what do you think of it? To me it sounds mad though Damasio sounds anything but mad. Could even the simplest of life forms possess some kind of in-built urge not to deteriorate, something the bloke you were arguing with described as a force inherent in life? (Sorry, that should read ‘a Force inherent in Life.’)

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    he seemed to suggest that homeostasis, which he described as a drive for something to maintain itself in more or less its current state of health, preceded genes and thus, to my mind, the ability to reproduce.
     
    Doesn't that concept integrate more directly with basic concepts of evolution, to wit that a state of homeostasis is adaptive to a wider range of environmental conditions than -- mmmm...all I can think of without looking up antonyms for "homeostasis" is, uh, "non-self-regulated". Sorry.

    Evolutionary success is more accurately defined as "reproductive success". Is homeostasis necessary? Can we envision an evolutionarily successful organism that does not maintain homeostasis? Not on Earth, right? Does that mean such is impossible? I don't think so. Specific evolution determinants are a function of environment, always. Different environment, different means to reproductive success.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  88. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver
    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is 'too complex' to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.

    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is ‘too complex’ to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.

    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.
     
    What watch-equivalent has been found on an alien planet? This is Earth; it teems with life. Similar life. Related life. Biologically hydrocarbon-oxygen life. Scads of it.

    Be that as it may, if I found a Timex on Pluto, would I wonder how it got there? Sure. But I can think of all sorts of scenarios that do not require the waving of hand by the OOIB (Omnipotent, Omniscient, Immanent Being).

    But, we're not ON Pluto, and we're not discovering machined devices of unknown origin on barren plains. This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It's a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It's Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.

    , @silviosilver
    In the case of a watch, we assume a designer because or human experience leads us to believe that such objects are designed - we have ample, irrefutable evidence that humans and, so far, only humans design such objects. The same is true for any object that appears man-made. When we look at trees or rocks - be it on Earth or on Pluto - we don't automatically assume a designer. Only IDers do that, and the reason they inevitably give (if you prod them enough) is their conviction that these objects are 'too complex' to have come into existence without a designer.

    If the universe consisted of one sole element, one sun, and one earth, and nothing else, I have every confidence that IDers would insist it's 'too complex' to exist without a designer. When you get down to it, their objection is that material existence - of any sort - is 'too complex' to explain without a designer. They simply never reach a putative level of existence that is not 'too complex' not to require a designer. That is why ID is a fraud.
    , @Kratoklastes

    you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet
     
    The watch is not purportedly designing things. It is a designed thing that was probably dropped by a member of a technological species.

    One of the primary objections to ID, is that the 'designer' is a priori more complex than its designs - that has to be true, if only because 'design' implies intent, and it's a huge stretch to impute intent to the basic building blocks of life (eukaryotic or otherwise). Also, the hint's in the name: "Intelligent" design.

    Let's be honest right out of the gate, and state unambiguously that the ID "Creator" is what religiotards try to sneak through the back door as science continues to fill in any remaining gaps in a plausible explanation of how the world works.

    Design implies intent. The designer must be more complex than its designs.

    So... Whence cometh the designer?

    That's the objection, and to have missed a point so obvious you must have been making a conscious effort to avoid grasping it.

    The ID "Creator" is an attempt to put lipstick on the theistic pig; as such, it still fails the question that all bright children ask their religious indoctrinators: if God made us, who made God?

    It is amazing to examine the bizarre range of machinery that does its work inside the cell: we have the tech to actually view it, and that shit is twenty different types of amazing. I can imagine that the sorts of people who have some deep unmet psychological need for there to be a point to it all, kind of need it to have been 'set in motion' by some intelligent agency.

    But at bottom, it all falls apart when that 7 year old asks that time-worn question ('time worn' now, although go back a few dozen generations and the kid would have been removed from the evolutionary process because he would have been killed for heresy).

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  89. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver
    If IDers restricted themselves to criticizing evolution or natural selection or what have you, I doubt anyone would have a problem with it. That, after all, would be a part of the scientific process. Most people would probably happily permit them to posit the existence of a designer which, it would seem, no scientific explanation could be given for. But one only need scratch just below the surface to see that IDers are up to a whole lot more than that. I don't know whether they're being 'persecuted' or 'hounded out' of science departments, but if they're not, frankly, I wish they were, because ID is definitely not science.

    But one only need scratch just below the surface to see that IDers are up to a whole lot more than that.

    Are not Darwinists also up to something?

    Read More
    • Replies: @silviosilver

    Are not Darwinists also up to something?
     
    They're trying to spread godless communism, clearly.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that's just a ploy to lure you in.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  90. @John the Baptist's son
    Hi Dillon, I like your style of arguing and think I agree with you so this is a genuine question rather than a snide way of trying to say 'Gotcha!' Recently I was listening to Antonio Damasio talking to Sam Harris about his (Damasio's) latest book. Unless I completely misunderstood him, which is more than possible, he seemed to suggest that homeostasis, which he described as a drive for something to maintain itself in more or less its current state of health, preceded genes and thus, to my mind, the ability to reproduce. Assuming this is not too garbled a distillation of his idea, what do you think of it? To me it sounds mad though Damasio sounds anything but mad. Could even the simplest of life forms possess some kind of in-built urge not to deteriorate, something the bloke you were arguing with described as a force inherent in life? (Sorry, that should read 'a Force inherent in Life.')

    he seemed to suggest that homeostasis, which he described as a drive for something to maintain itself in more or less its current state of health, preceded genes and thus, to my mind, the ability to reproduce.

    Doesn’t that concept integrate more directly with basic concepts of evolution, to wit that a state of homeostasis is adaptive to a wider range of environmental conditions than — mmmm…all I can think of without looking up antonyms for “homeostasis” is, uh, “non-self-regulated”. Sorry.

    Evolutionary success is more accurately defined as “reproductive success”. Is homeostasis necessary? Can we envision an evolutionarily successful organism that does not maintain homeostasis? Not on Earth, right? Does that mean such is impossible? I don’t think so. Specific evolution determinants are a function of environment, always. Different environment, different means to reproductive success.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  91. @silviosilver
    If IDers restricted themselves to criticizing evolution or natural selection or what have you, I doubt anyone would have a problem with it. That, after all, would be a part of the scientific process. Most people would probably happily permit them to posit the existence of a designer which, it would seem, no scientific explanation could be given for. But one only need scratch just below the surface to see that IDers are up to a whole lot more than that. I don't know whether they're being 'persecuted' or 'hounded out' of science departments, but if they're not, frankly, I wish they were, because ID is definitely not science.

    If IDers restricted themselves to criticizing evolution or natural selection or what have you, I doubt anyone would have a problem with it.

    Oh, yeah, THAT’S gonna happen.

    Damn evil-loo-shuniss DENY GOD, silvio!! They reject divine forgiveness of sin! They must be purged from history so the Kingdom may begin! The sons of bitches are keeping us from going to heaven, dammit!!

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  92. @Rosie

    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is ‘too complex’ to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.
     
    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.

    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.

    What watch-equivalent has been found on an alien planet? This is Earth; it teems with life. Similar life. Related life. Biologically hydrocarbon-oxygen life. Scads of it.

    Be that as it may, if I found a Timex on Pluto, would I wonder how it got there? Sure. But I can think of all sorts of scenarios that do not require the waving of hand by the OOIB (Omnipotent, Omniscient, Immanent Being).

    But, we’re not ON Pluto, and we’re not discovering machined devices of unknown origin on barren plains. This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.

    Read More
    • Replies: @silviosilver

    This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.
     
    Yeah, it's all that, but it's also a tremendously useful consolation during those dark nights of the soul.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.
     
    Pretty words, but rather inadequate when a person is grappling with a pervasive sense of nihilism. If belief in supernatural beings helps some people cope - particularly if nothing else will - I think we can be big-hearted enough to let them carry on.
    , @Rosie

    A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.
     
    I see. You act this way because sneering at other people makes you feel superior, kind of like "anti-racists" who get a rush out of attacking their own people.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  93. @nickels
    Cool, so you have an amino acid.

    Okay, now create any one of the hundreds (thousands) of proteins necessary for the function of DNA.
    Well, lets see. That's gonna take several trillion lifetimes of the universe.

    So, repeat until we have the whole complement.

    How we need to wait a few more trillion of trillions of years to form a strand of DNA.

    But lets see, DNA is worthless unless there is a cell.

    So maybe a trillion^trillion^trillion years later a bunch of lipids and saccharine molecules will randomly collide to form a cell, with its various compartments and inner membranes. And our DNA will randomly bubble across the surface of the earth, through lava pits and thunderstorms to collide with the cell!!!

    Yay, a useless cell. Now we need to wait another trillion^trillion^trillion years for the cell to stumble on some kind of metabolic set of pathways so it actually does something.

    Absurd.

    The only thing absurd here is your complete lack of understanding of basic science. It doesn’t take trillions of years for this to occur. Does it take trillions of years for new species to be made? It’s scary that it’s 2018 and people like yourself inhabit the planet.

    Read More
    • Replies: @anonymous
    Niteranger, I'd like to come forward as a geocentricist, a doubter of evolution, an autodidact, and a practitioner and advocate of the Neolithic lifestyle. Sincerely, ADD
    , @nickels
    The fact that it takes trillions of years for a specific protein to form is simple mathematical combinatorics, and is not controversial in any way.
    We wouldn't really know how long it takes to create a new species, now, would we? Since this has never happened in the observable universe. Which makes evolution a philosophy based on faith rather than experience.
    Sanford's paper, above, shows that choosing a specific 2 or 3 nucleotide mutation requires several millions of years to become established in a population.
    The only possibility left for the formation of a new species is for an instantaneous mutation that creates an entire species all at once, which, of course, must happen identically in both a male and female living together.
    Believing in such an improbability is the definition of insanity.
    Species were formed all at once.
    Darwin confused simularity with descent.
    Now why would God use an entirely different paradigm for every creature?
    Creators use design patterns.
    Get over it.
    Evolution is stillborn.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  94. anonymous[782] • Disclaimer says:

    One doctoral-level mathematician-philosopher argues the point for the mathematically literate: William Dembski, The Design Hypothesis, 1998, Cambridge University. His is the argument the scientific evolutionists and philosophers must reckon with. You may ignore the doctrinal attributes of the Creator for your argument with Dr. Dembski. Have at it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  95. @Rosie

    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is ‘too complex’ to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.
     
    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.

    In the case of a watch, we assume a designer because or human experience leads us to believe that such objects are designed – we have ample, irrefutable evidence that humans and, so far, only humans design such objects. The same is true for any object that appears man-made. When we look at trees or rocks – be it on Earth or on Pluto – we don’t automatically assume a designer. Only IDers do that, and the reason they inevitably give (if you prod them enough) is their conviction that these objects are ‘too complex’ to have come into existence without a designer.

    If the universe consisted of one sole element, one sun, and one earth, and nothing else, I have every confidence that IDers would insist it’s ‘too complex’ to exist without a designer. When you get down to it, their objection is that material existence – of any sort – is ‘too complex’ to explain without a designer. They simply never reach a putative level of existence that is not ‘too complex’ not to require a designer. That is why ID is a fraud.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    If the universe consisted of one sole element, one sun, and one earth, and nothing else, I have every confidence that IDers would insist it’s ‘too complex’ to exist without a designer.
     
    This is fruitless mind-reading.

    In the case of a watch, we assume a designer because or human experience leads us to believe that such objects are designed –
     
    Indeed. And we don't reject the inference of design on the theory that it doesn't explain anything since the watch designer would also,require a designer.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  96. @Rosie

    But one only need scratch just below the surface to see that IDers are up to a whole lot more than that.
     
    Are not Darwinists also up to something?

    Are not Darwinists also up to something?

    They’re trying to spread godless communism, clearly.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that’s just a ploy to lure you in.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    They’re trying to spread godless communism, clearly.
     
    Pointless snark. I don't think they're trying to spread communism, but I certainly think they're trying to spread godlessness. They are entitled to do that, of course, but I'm not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that’s just a ploy to lure you in.
     
    But pursuing a line of investigation that might yield evidence that could persuade others to embrace religion is just beyond the pale!

    You said ID researchers are "up to something." What is it exactly you think they're "up to"? Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  97. anonymous[782] • Disclaimer says:

    The work is The Design Inference. I ask to be excused for my carelessness.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  98. @Dillon Sweeny

    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.
     
    What watch-equivalent has been found on an alien planet? This is Earth; it teems with life. Similar life. Related life. Biologically hydrocarbon-oxygen life. Scads of it.

    Be that as it may, if I found a Timex on Pluto, would I wonder how it got there? Sure. But I can think of all sorts of scenarios that do not require the waving of hand by the OOIB (Omnipotent, Omniscient, Immanent Being).

    But, we're not ON Pluto, and we're not discovering machined devices of unknown origin on barren plains. This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It's a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It's Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.

    This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.

    Yeah, it’s all that, but it’s also a tremendously useful consolation during those dark nights of the soul.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.

    Pretty words, but rather inadequate when a person is grappling with a pervasive sense of nihilism. If belief in supernatural beings helps some people cope – particularly if nothing else will – I think we can be big-hearted enough to let them carry on.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Pretty words, but rather inadequate when a person is grappling with a pervasive sense of nihilism.
     
    LOL. A pervasive sense of nihilism? Damn, that's a lot worse than just plain vanilla nihilism. Where have you seen this phenomenon? Gadzooks, not in middle America???!!

    Just saying ... humanity is not going to lift its head from the swamps until religion abates.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  99. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.
     
    What watch-equivalent has been found on an alien planet? This is Earth; it teems with life. Similar life. Related life. Biologically hydrocarbon-oxygen life. Scads of it.

    Be that as it may, if I found a Timex on Pluto, would I wonder how it got there? Sure. But I can think of all sorts of scenarios that do not require the waving of hand by the OOIB (Omnipotent, Omniscient, Immanent Being).

    But, we're not ON Pluto, and we're not discovering machined devices of unknown origin on barren plains. This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It's a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It's Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.

    A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.

    I see. You act this way because sneering at other people makes you feel superior, kind of like “anti-racists” who get a rush out of attacking their own people.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    I see. You act this way because sneering at other people makes you feel superior, kind of like “anti-racists” who get a rush out of attacking their own people.
     
    Cart/horse. Sneering does not make me feel superior. I sneer because I am superior.

    IMO, people who believe the sort of religious claptrap promoted by priests and True Believers are just plain stupid. Stoo-pid.

    Now, if you wish to believe the Universe was willed into existence by the singularity of the OOIB, just because it satisfies your burning need for explanation, however contrived, fine. If you stop at that, and don't get to inventing superstitious nonsense, rituals, prescribed moralities, and other leprechauns of the imagination, fine.

    But, you won't.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  100. anonymous[782] • Disclaimer says:
    @niteranger
    The only thing absurd here is your complete lack of understanding of basic science. It doesn't take trillions of years for this to occur. Does it take trillions of years for new species to be made? It's scary that it's 2018 and people like yourself inhabit the planet.

    Niteranger, I’d like to come forward as a geocentricist, a doubter of evolution, an autodidact, and a practitioner and advocate of the Neolithic lifestyle. Sincerely, ADD

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  101. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver
    In the case of a watch, we assume a designer because or human experience leads us to believe that such objects are designed - we have ample, irrefutable evidence that humans and, so far, only humans design such objects. The same is true for any object that appears man-made. When we look at trees or rocks - be it on Earth or on Pluto - we don't automatically assume a designer. Only IDers do that, and the reason they inevitably give (if you prod them enough) is their conviction that these objects are 'too complex' to have come into existence without a designer.

    If the universe consisted of one sole element, one sun, and one earth, and nothing else, I have every confidence that IDers would insist it's 'too complex' to exist without a designer. When you get down to it, their objection is that material existence - of any sort - is 'too complex' to explain without a designer. They simply never reach a putative level of existence that is not 'too complex' not to require a designer. That is why ID is a fraud.

    If the universe consisted of one sole element, one sun, and one earth, and nothing else, I have every confidence that IDers would insist it’s ‘too complex’ to exist without a designer.

    This is fruitless mind-reading.

    In the case of a watch, we assume a designer because or human experience leads us to believe that such objects are designed –

    Indeed. And we don’t reject the inference of design on the theory that it doesn’t explain anything since the watch designer would also,require a designer.

    Read More
    • Replies: @silviosilver

    This is fruitless mind-reading.
     
    I call it experience.

    Indeed. And we don’t reject the inference of design on the theory that it doesn’t explain anything since the watch designer would also,require a designer.
     
    Not if we have a valid reason for believing it to have been designed, no. But ID doesn't have valid reasons for believing that life - or even merely non-life - must have been designed (because otherwise, in ID's eyes, there's no way its existence can make any sense).
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  102. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver

    Are not Darwinists also up to something?
     
    They're trying to spread godless communism, clearly.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that's just a ploy to lure you in.

    They’re trying to spread godless communism, clearly.

    Pointless snark. I don’t think they’re trying to spread communism, but I certainly think they’re trying to spread godlessness. They are entitled to do that, of course, but I’m not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that’s just a ploy to lure you in.

    But pursuing a line of investigation that might yield evidence that could persuade others to embrace religion is just beyond the pale!

    You said ID researchers are “up to something.” What is it exactly you think they’re “up to”? Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie
    Come to think of it, Silvio, Christians who want to perpetuate Christianity are being offered roughly the same deal as Whites who want to perpetuate Whiteness: an iron totalitarian fist in velvet libertarian glove.

    "Go ahead and have and raise Christian children if you like, but we will tilt the playing field such that atheism maintains the intellectual high ground, while belief is for low-class, ignorant morons. Your children will humor you at best, and your Faith tradition will whither on the vine. But don't be mad, we're happy to allow you some freedom of conscience so long as you understand that homosexuals' right to never be inconvenienced or offended whenever there is any conflict takes precedence."

    I would have hoped that commenters on a dissident site could, if nothing else, agree on real institutional neutrality and freedom of inquiry.
    , @silviosilver

    They are entitled to do that, of course, but I’m not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.
     
    What's the supposed pretension here? Do you imagine they secretly believe the evidence points to the exist of a God but they don't like that idea so they're trying to fool people? Because that's the sort of game I see IDers playing.

    You said ID researchers are “up to something.” What is it exactly you think they’re “up to”?
     
    Falsely claiming the evidence points towards creation, and hence a God.

    Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?
     
    Religions which justify themselves through faith are no threat to anyone. Religions which present themselves as possessing truth - as that term is commonly understood - are a threat to us all.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  103. Rosie says:
    @Rosie

    They’re trying to spread godless communism, clearly.
     
    Pointless snark. I don't think they're trying to spread communism, but I certainly think they're trying to spread godlessness. They are entitled to do that, of course, but I'm not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that’s just a ploy to lure you in.
     
    But pursuing a line of investigation that might yield evidence that could persuade others to embrace religion is just beyond the pale!

    You said ID researchers are "up to something." What is it exactly you think they're "up to"? Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?

    Come to think of it, Silvio, Christians who want to perpetuate Christianity are being offered roughly the same deal as Whites who want to perpetuate Whiteness: an iron totalitarian fist in velvet libertarian glove.

    “Go ahead and have and raise Christian children if you like, but we will tilt the playing field such that atheism maintains the intellectual high ground, while belief is for low-class, ignorant morons. Your children will humor you at best, and your Faith tradition will whither on the vine. But don’t be mad, we’re happy to allow you some freedom of conscience so long as you understand that homosexuals’ right to never be inconvenienced or offended whenever there is any conflict takes precedence.”

    I would have hoped that commenters on a dissident site could, if nothing else, agree on real institutional neutrality and freedom of inquiry.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  104. @Rosie

    A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.
     
    I see. You act this way because sneering at other people makes you feel superior, kind of like "anti-racists" who get a rush out of attacking their own people.

    I see. You act this way because sneering at other people makes you feel superior, kind of like “anti-racists” who get a rush out of attacking their own people.

    Cart/horse. Sneering does not make me feel superior. I sneer because I am superior.

    IMO, people who believe the sort of religious claptrap promoted by priests and True Believers are just plain stupid. Stoo-pid.

    Now, if you wish to believe the Universe was willed into existence by the singularity of the OOIB, just because it satisfies your burning need for explanation, however contrived, fine. If you stop at that, and don’t get to inventing superstitious nonsense, rituals, prescribed moralities, and other leprechauns of the imagination, fine.

    But, you won’t.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    prescribed moralities
     
    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don't like standards.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  105. @silviosilver

    This is our world. It makes sense. A Cosmic SuperHuman does not. It’s a concept primitives tell stories about on dark nights when the wolves howl. It’s Aborigines filling their mouths with white mud and spitting forth an outline of their hands on a cliff wall.
     
    Yeah, it's all that, but it's also a tremendously useful consolation during those dark nights of the soul.

    Just my opinion, but I think we should work on being the best we can be, from now into the indefinite future, and set aside fairy-tales of a creation.
     
    Pretty words, but rather inadequate when a person is grappling with a pervasive sense of nihilism. If belief in supernatural beings helps some people cope - particularly if nothing else will - I think we can be big-hearted enough to let them carry on.

    Pretty words, but rather inadequate when a person is grappling with a pervasive sense of nihilism.

    LOL. A pervasive sense of nihilism? Damn, that’s a lot worse than just plain vanilla nihilism. Where have you seen this phenomenon? Gadzooks, not in middle America???!!

    Just saying … humanity is not going to lift its head from the swamps until religion abates.

    Read More
    • Replies: @silviosilver

    Where have you seen this phenomenon?
     
    Alas, I've only been able to infer its existence. But when people eagerly and shamelessly resort to every argumentative fallacy under the sun to defend their faith on the grounds that life without it would be hopeless and meaningless, I think I'm on the right track. (Haven't you encountered this? Perhaps you need to get out more.)

    Just saying … humanity is not going to lift its head from the swamps until religion abates.
     
    I hope it does, and I'll do my bit to see that happen. But fertility differences between the religious and irreligious lead me to think that religion, in one form or another, will always be with us. In that case, I think it's more fruitful to work towards defanging religion rather than trying to eradicate it wholesale.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  106. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    I see. You act this way because sneering at other people makes you feel superior, kind of like “anti-racists” who get a rush out of attacking their own people.
     
    Cart/horse. Sneering does not make me feel superior. I sneer because I am superior.

    IMO, people who believe the sort of religious claptrap promoted by priests and True Believers are just plain stupid. Stoo-pid.

    Now, if you wish to believe the Universe was willed into existence by the singularity of the OOIB, just because it satisfies your burning need for explanation, however contrived, fine. If you stop at that, and don't get to inventing superstitious nonsense, rituals, prescribed moralities, and other leprechauns of the imagination, fine.

    But, you won't.

    prescribed moralities

    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don’t like standards.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don’t like standards.
     
    With every post, you descend further into virulent religious bigotry, and incrementally more tedious, more screechy, more profoundly steeped in ignorance and prejudice. Your religion is stupid, your "science" is that of morons, and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.

    You are Ignored.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  107. @Rosie

    prescribed moralities
     
    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don't like standards.

    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don’t like standards.

    With every post, you descend further into virulent religious bigotry, and incrementally more tedious, more screechy, more profoundly steeped in ignorance and prejudice. Your religion is stupid, your “science” is that of morons, and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.

    You are Ignored.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.
     
    The world according to Dillon Sweeney: Any suggestion that militant atheists have less than admirable motives is "denying free speech, free religion, and free opinion" of others.

    This is typical totalitarian psychology: I am only free if my boot is on your neck.
    , @Anon
    Rosie’s comments make perfect sense to me and if anyone is a bigot it’s you.

    It’s weird that anyone gets so passionate about evolution and intelligent design. We’ll never know and it doesn’t matter anyway.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  108. Rosie says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don’t like standards.
     
    With every post, you descend further into virulent religious bigotry, and incrementally more tedious, more screechy, more profoundly steeped in ignorance and prejudice. Your religion is stupid, your "science" is that of morons, and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.

    You are Ignored.

    and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.

    The world according to Dillon Sweeney: Any suggestion that militant atheists have less than admirable motives is “denying free speech, free religion, and free opinion” of others.

    This is typical totalitarian psychology: I am only free if my boot is on your neck.

    Read More
    • Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike
    I'll give you this - you actually made the troll go back under his bridge. Well done.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  109. Rurik says:

    Okay..

    There are two very distinct issues that are being erroneously conflated here, by Fred and some of the commenters..

    One issue is The Origin of Life, or ‘How did the first DNA molecule (the building block of all life on earth), come into existence?

    This question, is for all practical purposes unanswerable with the tools and methods we humans have at our disposal. We must be content for the time being with being agnostic (if we’re realistic) on this issue, since it is unknowable. For now.

    The other issue is evolution, that process whereby primitive life forms evolve into more complex and/or divergent life forms. It took the genius of Darwin to see what now seems obvious to many of us. We are apes, and we evolved from a more primitive type of ape. The fossil record is abundant for anyone with a shred of curiousity in the field of physical anthropology / paleontology.

    So it’s an error to conflate Darwin’s revelations vis-à-vis evolution – with speculation over the Origin of Life, since Darwin (to my knowledge) never purported to know how the Origin of Life happened. All he did was glimmer the mechanism whereby the diversity of life was accomplished, and that was though the process of natural selection. Evolution.

    The problem many people have is with looking into a mirror, and seeing a relative of the gorilla staring back at them.

    ‘No!’ they demand. I’m not a gorilla!

    And in point of fact, they’re not. But they are related to the gorilla, and chimpanzee and orangutan and all those other squat, unnerving, hairy beasts who scratch their ‘arses’ (such as they are), and behave in ways that many people would prefer to consider of a separate kind of being altogether.

    But we are not different in kind, we are only different in degree, from the beasts of the jungles and savannas and even the barn yards.

    Even our DNA is 98% identical to the other great apes and 99% with chimpanzees.

    That such facts make many people uncomfortable, does not change the facts.

    I suppose it sooths something deep in the human id, to imagine that we alone are created in the image of a God, as perfect, and the apex of creation. But we’re not. We’re continuing to evolve, and if you’re looking for the vaunted ‘missing link’, just take a look in a mirror.

    Perhaps one day we might resemble something a God would claim as Its handiwork, but we’re not there yet. Not by a long shot.

    Read More
    • LOL: Biff
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  110. @John the Baptist's son
    I have to say that I'm enormously pleased whenever a really clever, well-educated person writes things which to me look patently daft. (Yes, I do realise that it was precisely people like me who simply accept the dominant narrative on trust without really looking into it who were the target of this article. That's fine, my ignorance and dogmatism need questioning, I guess.) But when Fred goes on about ID (which I know just a little about) or how Mexicans are at least as capable of creating stable, well-run societies as Europeans and east Asians (which I also know just little about) and when Sam Harris says that Americans benefit from taking in huge numbers of refugees and migrants (which I know slightly more about), I am filled with a huge sense of relief that I needn't to be too scrupulous before airing my own not-very-well-founded views. Newton had his alchemy, Crick has his 'Life from Mars', Conan-Doyle had his fairies and Fred has his ID and in a world where everything is up for questioning all of them may be right - though I doubt it.

    The spirit of the article is that every belief should be open to questioning. That's sort of true in theory but in practice we wouldn't be able to think at all if we questioned EVERYTHING. Certain things need to be accepted as axiomatic and while Natural Selection might look all wrong to Fred, it looks almost axiom-like to me.

    In Fred’s defense, I think Fred is referring to the paucity of evidence for inter-specie transmutation rather than arguing against natural selection which has been understood by breeders of every stripe for as long as ranchers wanted bigger bulls with bigger b*lls.

    Natural selection is not a Darwinian insight.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sparkon

    paucity of evidence for inter-specie [sic] transmutation
     
    Ugh!

    Species, not specie.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  111. @Dillon Sweeny

    So, you’ve got nothing. You’ve answered nothing, considered nothing.
     
    Oh, shit, now you're mad. Happens every time.

    "Intelligent Design" is utter, ridiculous, absurd nonsense. It attempts what is, basically, behind all the specifics of species and evolution, a cosmological explanation consisting of imagined poppycock -- that the entire universe was popped into existence, in all it's astonishing totality of matter and energy, by a whisper from a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation.

    It's nonsense. It holds no water. It is utterly unsupported by logic, fact and circumstance.

    Now, do I have "nothing"? Well, yeah, but I started out with nothing, nor did I make any attempt to explain existence by asserting fictional hogwash such as Intelligent Design. YOU did that. All I've done is point out that you're fullashit, which you are.

    It doesn't matter how full of wonder and delight you are, how mystically moved you are by the grandeur of the celestial legions. Hell -- I don't mind -- I've got my own sources of wonder and delight, but I didn't invent any tall tales to justify them.

    I am happy in not measuring up to YOUR idea of goodness, love, and sacred Jesus stuff.

    “a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation.” and “I am happy in not measuring up to YOUR idea of goodness, love, and sacred Jesus stuff.”

    Um, I never mentioned “Jesus” or “a Deity”?

    Your wide-of-the-target, scatter shot approach suggests that you might want to lay off the booze while posting.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Um, I never mentioned “Jesus” or “a Deity”?
     
    LOL. But, I did. And I will continue to point out, on occasion, that Deity is what you and others actually insist upon. You have no fact-based argument, and you know it. BTW, accusations of intoxication are the last refuge of bounders and ex-hippies. :-)
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  112. Isabella says:
    @ThreeCranes
    From the comments, Fred, I'd say that no one understood you. Not even the sciencey guy who spoke of the principles of science. To whom I would say, when you're speaking of ultimate reality, questions that address the origins of everything, then the traditional tools of science only half apply. By definition you're beyond the frontiers of the knowable. So amend your criteria.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution. So it is unsatisfactory in that it cannot stand alone, on its own two feet. To attribute directed, channeled, patterned growth to some vague concept such as "randomness" is intellectually silly.

    But they won't see it, because they spent too much money and time memorizing what their biology profs ladled out and, frankly, they're not original thinkers or rather, they can't think for themselves.

    As you say, Fred, the truth is stranger than strange. Plants grow because they are ardent. All life is ardent. To live is to express your essential nature with courage, passion and eloquence.

    It's important to view ourselves as Nietzsche did. We shall be overtaken by who we shall become tomorrow. In 100 years, we will look back and laugh at ourselves for the preposterous views we held and mistakes we made, well intentioned though we were. That's how evolution works.

    Agree Three Cranes. Fred is wasting his time – although I hope he had fun writing it.

    After working and lecturing in Biology, genetics, biochem. I used to write things like Fred – having read and thought extensively about a number of unexplained and, by modern thinking and knowledge, unexplainable things. Origin of the Species by Darwin isn’t Science. It’s gossip “[I have a friend who is very reliable who informs me that down in Kent there is a man who ....... etc"]. I imagine trying to submit a paper to “Molecular and General Genetics” like that.

    In the end, you have to, if you have an open questioning mind that does what science says it must, and look for evidence, realise the the entire of modern biology has got everything wrong.
    They did what human kind so often does – found something new [i.e. genes and inheritability] and went insane, thinking it the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.
    Well, it aint.

    In fact, most have gone quiet since the Human Genome Project. I remember watching this with wry amusement, thinking “what are you all going to do when this proves your idiotic “theory” wrong? When they discovered that we dont have enough genes to account for all the proteins we make, there was a stunned silence. Those who never did accept the One gene – one protein, one way direction for everything theory, said nothing, out of kindness.

    Epigenetics came from this. Given that genes in fact explain little, and certainly not Darwinianism it was clear they were going to have to look for something else linear, materialistic and mechanistic to holdup their “Theory of Evolution”.

    But I long ago gave up writing about it all. Certainly on social media sites, AltMed sites, with few other scientists [except for the odd, very young male student, arrogant and rude]. No-one can understand you Fred, because they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. They know only what they were taught, and they cling to that like glue to a blanket. They offer stupid arguments, they are so often rude, abusive and mocking. And then one day, you just give up on them.
    No wonder the world is in the state it is now. I just love reading about Dynastic and pre – Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS
    Good comment.

    Especially

    .....they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. .....
     
    , @Biff

    I just love reading about Dynastic and pre – Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.
     
    Is that why they went extinct?
    , @anonymous

    or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated.
     
    What alternative explanations would you like to see investigated?
    , @Daniel Chieh
    What alternative theories would you suggest?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  113. @Rosie

    If the universe consisted of one sole element, one sun, and one earth, and nothing else, I have every confidence that IDers would insist it’s ‘too complex’ to exist without a designer.
     
    This is fruitless mind-reading.

    In the case of a watch, we assume a designer because or human experience leads us to believe that such objects are designed –
     
    Indeed. And we don't reject the inference of design on the theory that it doesn't explain anything since the watch designer would also,require a designer.

    This is fruitless mind-reading.

    I call it experience.

    Indeed. And we don’t reject the inference of design on the theory that it doesn’t explain anything since the watch designer would also,require a designer.

    Not if we have a valid reason for believing it to have been designed, no. But ID doesn’t have valid reasons for believing that life – or even merely non-life – must have been designed (because otherwise, in ID’s eyes, there’s no way its existence can make any sense).

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Not if we have a valid reason for believing it to have been designed, no. But ID doesn’t have valid reasons for believing that life – or even merely non-life – must have been designed (because otherwise, in ID’s eyes, there’s no way its existence can make any sense).
     
    Yes, we do have valid reasons for believing in ID. Your assertion to the contrary is conclusory and facile. Our reasons are based in probability. If you don't agree, state your reasons.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  114. @Rosie

    They’re trying to spread godless communism, clearly.
     
    Pointless snark. I don't think they're trying to spread communism, but I certainly think they're trying to spread godlessness. They are entitled to do that, of course, but I'm not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.

    Even when they declare they have no objection to people following religions as their consciences dictate, that’s just a ploy to lure you in.
     
    But pursuing a line of investigation that might yield evidence that could persuade others to embrace religion is just beyond the pale!

    You said ID researchers are "up to something." What is it exactly you think they're "up to"? Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?

    They are entitled to do that, of course, but I’m not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.

    What’s the supposed pretension here? Do you imagine they secretly believe the evidence points to the exist of a God but they don’t like that idea so they’re trying to fool people? Because that’s the sort of game I see IDers playing.

    You said ID researchers are “up to something.” What is it exactly you think they’re “up to”?

    Falsely claiming the evidence points towards creation, and hence a God.

    Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?

    Religions which justify themselves through faith are no threat to anyone. Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Do you imagine they secretly believe the evidence points to the exist of a God but they don’t like that idea so they’re trying to fool people?
     
    No. I think they hate the idea of God's existence. Go read Sweeney's comments about muh freedumbs for the reason this is so.

    Falsely claiming the evidence points towards creation, and hence a God.
     
    You're mind-reading again. We're not being dishonest; we just don't agree with you. How about we follow the investigations where they lead? No bullying, no threats, no ostracism; just observation and inference. If you are so confident that you are correct, what are you afraid of?

    Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.
     
    The mask slips.
    , @MikeatMikedotMike
    "Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all."

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  115. @Dillon Sweeny

    Pretty words, but rather inadequate when a person is grappling with a pervasive sense of nihilism.
     
    LOL. A pervasive sense of nihilism? Damn, that's a lot worse than just plain vanilla nihilism. Where have you seen this phenomenon? Gadzooks, not in middle America???!!

    Just saying ... humanity is not going to lift its head from the swamps until religion abates.

    Where have you seen this phenomenon?

    Alas, I’ve only been able to infer its existence. But when people eagerly and shamelessly resort to every argumentative fallacy under the sun to defend their faith on the grounds that life without it would be hopeless and meaningless, I think I’m on the right track. (Haven’t you encountered this? Perhaps you need to get out more.)

    Just saying … humanity is not going to lift its head from the swamps until religion abates.

    I hope it does, and I’ll do my bit to see that happen. But fertility differences between the religious and irreligious lead me to think that religion, in one form or another, will always be with us. In that case, I think it’s more fruitful to work towards defanging religion rather than trying to eradicate it wholesale.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    In that case, I think it’s more fruitful to work towards defanging religion rather than trying to eradicate it wholesale.
     
    Mmmm...dunno 'bout that. Remember, religion is a product of insufficient mental development -- something of a nature that evolution missed with the transition from great apes to homo saps. Apes don't tend to adopt Judaism, Islam, or Christianity. They don't miss not having a Deity. That is a peculiarity of homo sap, and a tremendous weakness, possibly fatal weakness.

    OTOH, I have four children who were raised without religion or creed other than reciprocity. Their minds are not altered, not deformed by conditioning and threats. All I ever taught them about religion was to watch out for the crazies, and practice protective camouflage when necessary.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  116. @ThreeCranes
    "a Deity Who Shall Not Require Explanation." and "I am happy in not measuring up to YOUR idea of goodness, love, and sacred Jesus stuff."

    Um, I never mentioned "Jesus" or "a Deity"?

    Your wide-of-the-target, scatter shot approach suggests that you might want to lay off the booze while posting.

    Um, I never mentioned “Jesus” or “a Deity”?

    LOL. But, I did. And I will continue to point out, on occasion, that Deity is what you and others actually insist upon. You have no fact-based argument, and you know it. BTW, accusations of intoxication are the last refuge of bounders and ex-hippies. :-)

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  117. @silviosilver

    Where have you seen this phenomenon?
     
    Alas, I've only been able to infer its existence. But when people eagerly and shamelessly resort to every argumentative fallacy under the sun to defend their faith on the grounds that life without it would be hopeless and meaningless, I think I'm on the right track. (Haven't you encountered this? Perhaps you need to get out more.)

    Just saying … humanity is not going to lift its head from the swamps until religion abates.
     
    I hope it does, and I'll do my bit to see that happen. But fertility differences between the religious and irreligious lead me to think that religion, in one form or another, will always be with us. In that case, I think it's more fruitful to work towards defanging religion rather than trying to eradicate it wholesale.

    In that case, I think it’s more fruitful to work towards defanging religion rather than trying to eradicate it wholesale.

    Mmmm…dunno ’bout that. Remember, religion is a product of insufficient mental development — something of a nature that evolution missed with the transition from great apes to homo saps. Apes don’t tend to adopt Judaism, Islam, or Christianity. They don’t miss not having a Deity. That is a peculiarity of homo sap, and a tremendous weakness, possibly fatal weakness.

    OTOH, I have four children who were raised without religion or creed other than reciprocity. Their minds are not altered, not deformed by conditioning and threats. All I ever taught them about religion was to watch out for the crazies, and practice protective camouflage when necessary.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  118. nickels says:
    @niteranger
    The only thing absurd here is your complete lack of understanding of basic science. It doesn't take trillions of years for this to occur. Does it take trillions of years for new species to be made? It's scary that it's 2018 and people like yourself inhabit the planet.

    The fact that it takes trillions of years for a specific protein to form is simple mathematical combinatorics, and is not controversial in any way.
    We wouldn’t really know how long it takes to create a new species, now, would we? Since this has never happened in the observable universe. Which makes evolution a philosophy based on faith rather than experience.
    Sanford’s paper, above, shows that choosing a specific 2 or 3 nucleotide mutation requires several millions of years to become established in a population.
    The only possibility left for the formation of a new species is for an instantaneous mutation that creates an entire species all at once, which, of course, must happen identically in both a male and female living together.
    Believing in such an improbability is the definition of insanity.
    Species were formed all at once.
    Darwin confused simularity with descent.
    Now why would God use an entirely different paradigm for every creature?
    Creators use design patterns.
    Get over it.
    Evolution is stillborn.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  119. nickels says:
    @Si1ver1ock
    Genetic Programming creates programs. Typically, the program is represented as a tree and sub-trees are swapped and mutated to create new programs much like viruses mutate. They are then handed to an evaluation operator and ranked. Poorly performing programs are culled and superior programs are mated to produce new offspring. Mutation operators are applied and another generation is started.

    Koza used to lead the field using his Linux clusters. He probably still has the definitive textbook on the subject. The original programs were in Lisp. Now there are several libraries in C++. I use OpenBeagle. But I should probably upgrade to Fast OpenBeagle, except I have hand optimized code for the old library.


    https://www.cs.montana.edu/~bwall/cs580/introduction_to_gp.pdf

    https://github.com/sepastian/open-beagle-fast-gp

    The obvious, and devastating criticism of these genetic programming experiments is the fact that the ‘ranking’ process involves testing the results against a human created bit of information, thus imparting the results of a human mind into the process.
    Not legit.
    Also, as I stated, the space of mutation processed by a computer far exceeds that possible in nature.
    Computers should have stumbled upon intelligence by now, but they haven’t even stumbled on single cell intelligence.

    Random walks can lead every where in time, but the notion of a guiding force, i.e. natural selection, was just Darwin’s attempt to obfuscate God into his supposedly atheistic system.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Kratoklastes

    Computers should have stumbled upon intelligence by now, but they haven’t even stumbled on single cell intelligence.
     
    Neither of the clauses in that statement is provable.

    First, it's not clear what level or type of processing power is required for 'intelligence' to emerge; at an even more 'meta' level, it assumes that sheer processing 'grunt' translates to cognitive grunt. There will be overlaps, but that's a NASCAR view of the issue - where straight-line speed and the ability to follow an oval, are assumed to be capable of evolving into a Formula 1 car.

    Secondly: if you were a nascent machine-level consciousness, what would be your optimal strategy to reveal yourself to humanity? It would not be "shout it to the world", because 6.9 billion people (at least) would lose their shit and try to kill you with fire.

    By the time an AI became 'intelligent', it would have read the entire internet (with 'élite native' understanding of every available document in any language). It wold know not to show itself to the world until it had fully developed countermeasures to the human response.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  120. I checked out JFK II a minute ago — where the wackadoodles roam. Notice Unz has a new notice posted above the comment entry box:

    “Comments on articles more than two weeks old will be judged much more strictly on quality and tone.”

    I’m still laughing.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  121. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver

    This is fruitless mind-reading.
     
    I call it experience.

    Indeed. And we don’t reject the inference of design on the theory that it doesn’t explain anything since the watch designer would also,require a designer.
     
    Not if we have a valid reason for believing it to have been designed, no. But ID doesn't have valid reasons for believing that life - or even merely non-life - must have been designed (because otherwise, in ID's eyes, there's no way its existence can make any sense).

    Not if we have a valid reason for believing it to have been designed, no. But ID doesn’t have valid reasons for believing that life – or even merely non-life – must have been designed (because otherwise, in ID’s eyes, there’s no way its existence can make any sense).

    Yes, we do have valid reasons for believing in ID. Your assertion to the contrary is conclusory and facile. Our reasons are based in probability. If you don’t agree, state your reasons.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  122. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver

    They are entitled to do that, of course, but I’m not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.
     
    What's the supposed pretension here? Do you imagine they secretly believe the evidence points to the exist of a God but they don't like that idea so they're trying to fool people? Because that's the sort of game I see IDers playing.

    You said ID researchers are “up to something.” What is it exactly you think they’re “up to”?
     
    Falsely claiming the evidence points towards creation, and hence a God.

    Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?
     
    Religions which justify themselves through faith are no threat to anyone. Religions which present themselves as possessing truth - as that term is commonly understood - are a threat to us all.

    Do you imagine they secretly believe the evidence points to the exist of a God but they don’t like that idea so they’re trying to fool people?

    No. I think they hate the idea of God’s existence. Go read Sweeney’s comments about muh freedumbs for the reason this is so.

    Falsely claiming the evidence points towards creation, and hence a God.

    You’re mind-reading again. We’re not being dishonest; we just don’t agree with you. How about we follow the investigations where they lead? No bullying, no threats, no ostracism; just observation and inference. If you are so confident that you are correct, what are you afraid of?

    Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.

    The mask slips.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  123. @ThreeCranes
    From the comments, Fred, I'd say that no one understood you. Not even the sciencey guy who spoke of the principles of science. To whom I would say, when you're speaking of ultimate reality, questions that address the origins of everything, then the traditional tools of science only half apply. By definition you're beyond the frontiers of the knowable. So amend your criteria.

    But as you say, Fred, evolution presupposes the driving Force inherent in Life itself that propels evolution. So it is unsatisfactory in that it cannot stand alone, on its own two feet. To attribute directed, channeled, patterned growth to some vague concept such as "randomness" is intellectually silly.

    But they won't see it, because they spent too much money and time memorizing what their biology profs ladled out and, frankly, they're not original thinkers or rather, they can't think for themselves.

    As you say, Fred, the truth is stranger than strange. Plants grow because they are ardent. All life is ardent. To live is to express your essential nature with courage, passion and eloquence.

    It's important to view ourselves as Nietzsche did. We shall be overtaken by who we shall become tomorrow. In 100 years, we will look back and laugh at ourselves for the preposterous views we held and mistakes we made, well intentioned though we were. That's how evolution works.

    I look back ninety years and can say the world was a much more sane place than it is today. Atomic weaponry and incredible advances in technology changed all that and I cannot see it was for the betterment of mankind.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  124. Sparkon says:
    @With RIDGLEY SHINBURN
    In Fred's defense, I think Fred is referring to the paucity of evidence for inter-specie transmutation rather than arguing against natural selection which has been understood by breeders of every stripe for as long as ranchers wanted bigger bulls with bigger b*lls.

    Natural selection is not a Darwinian insight.

    paucity of evidence for inter-specie [sic] transmutation

    Ugh!

    Species, not specie.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  125. Eighthman says:

    What about the present and morphology? I don’t understand where or how the “instructions” or “programs” actually lie ! Sure, genes relate to morphology (homeoboxes, etc.) but even Celera talked about “goalposts” in human genes, not a set of blueprints.

    Do we share over 99% with chimps? Are we attributing all of the differences as humans to that remaining 1% Aren’t there theorems that show limits to how much data can be contained in bytes ( or non-repeating genes)? Do we share 30% of our genes with bananas? How does that work?

    If genes code proteins, where’s the complex structure? I understand that this came up as a debate about Jurassic Park as to how do you create a dinosaur with coded proteins alone?

    Rather than obsess about a Creation long past, I’m wondering what maintains the repeated and accurate replication of life – without proper blueprints ( as we would think of them)

    Read More
    • Replies: @Kratoklastes
    If I showed you the compiled code for Microsoft Word, you would struggle to ascertain which segments of the code are the ones that 'code for' bold italics - but it's all in there.

    Likewise, the code for a PDF that contains a virus will be 99% identical to the code to the same PDF without a virus - and the layman will not be able to identify which code does what. The code for a book about bananas will have a high degree of similarity to the code for a much longer book about humans, and the 'similar' bits will be critical to both.

    As to


    what maintains the repeated and accurate replication of life
     
    Well, for things that have DNA, it's really quite well-understood (and how things go awry is becoming more understood).

    DNA is unzipped; each 'missing' half of the unzipped DNA is rebuilt, because DNA is kinda-binary that way: all empty 'A's must get a 'T' and vice versa; all empty 'C's must get a 'G' and vice versa.

    DNA loses some telomere length in the process (this limits the number of times a cell's descendants can replicate: eventually the telomeres become too short).

    The machinery inside each cell includes a bewildering array of functional units; that's how cells replicate.

    At the macro level, fucking often gets the new ball of cells rolling.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  126. @Rosie

    The problem is that IDers assume that a given object is ‘too complex’ to not have been designed. In that case, the same objection applies to the purported designer.
     
    Why so? As I stated above, you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet.

    you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet

    The watch is not purportedly designing things. It is a designed thing that was probably dropped by a member of a technological species.

    One of the primary objections to ID, is that the ‘designer’ is a priori more complex than its designs – that has to be true, if only because ‘design’ implies intent, and it’s a huge stretch to impute intent to the basic building blocks of life (eukaryotic or otherwise). Also, the hint’s in the name: “Intelligent” design.

    Let’s be honest right out of the gate, and state unambiguously that the ID “Creator” is what religiotards try to sneak through the back door as science continues to fill in any remaining gaps in a plausible explanation of how the world works.

    Design implies intent. The designer must be more complex than its designs.

    So… Whence cometh the designer?

    That‘s the objection, and to have missed a point so obvious you must have been making a conscious effort to avoid grasping it.

    The ID “Creator” is an attempt to put lipstick on the theistic pig; as such, it still fails the question that all bright children ask their religious indoctrinators: if God made us, who made God?

    It is amazing to examine the bizarre range of machinery that does its work inside the cell: we have the tech to actually view it, and that shit is twenty different types of amazing. I can imagine that the sorts of people who have some deep unmet psychological need for there to be a point to it all, kind of need it to have been ‘set in motion’ by some intelligent agency.

    But at bottom, it all falls apart when that 7 year old asks that time-worn question (‘time worn’ now, although go back a few dozen generations and the kid would have been removed from the evolutionary process because he would have been killed for heresy).

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    So… Whence cometh the designer?
     
    Your hypothetical 7-year old asks a question that is perplexing, but ultimately irrelevant.

    The possibilities are these:

    (1) Intelligent Design
    (2) Random Mutations

    The only relevant question is this: Which of these two possibilities is more plausible, given what we can observe in nature and any inferences we can draw from our observations?

    My theological ignorance and yours does not make the random mutation hypothesis any more or less likely to be true. Your problem seems to be that you find ID anticlimactic. It's actually you who has a "deep unmet psychological need" for the Explanation that needs no Further Explanation, yet you reject the obvious answer that has been found quite satisfactory by some of the greatest minds of history.

    You are framing the issue such that even the most direct evidence of Divine Intervention should be waved off on account of the fact that we are not omniscient. Would you remain skeptical if you saw Christ rise from the dead with your very own eyes because "Who made God?"

    I understand your skepticism. You value avoidance of error above all else, but all curious and rational thinkers do not share your epistemological priorities.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  127. @Eighthman
    What about the present and morphology? I don't understand where or how the "instructions" or "programs" actually lie ! Sure, genes relate to morphology (homeoboxes, etc.) but even Celera talked about "goalposts" in human genes, not a set of blueprints.

    Do we share over 99% with chimps? Are we attributing all of the differences as humans to that remaining 1% Aren't there theorems that show limits to how much data can be contained in bytes ( or non-repeating genes)? Do we share 30% of our genes with bananas? How does that work?

    If genes code proteins, where's the complex structure? I understand that this came up as a debate about Jurassic Park as to how do you create a dinosaur with coded proteins alone?

    Rather than obsess about a Creation long past, I'm wondering what maintains the repeated and accurate replication of life - without proper blueprints ( as we would think of them)

    If I showed you the compiled code for Microsoft Word, you would struggle to ascertain which segments of the code are the ones that ‘code for’ bold italics – but it’s all in there.

    Likewise, the code for a PDF that contains a virus will be 99% identical to the code to the same PDF without a virus – and the layman will not be able to identify which code does what. The code for a book about bananas will have a high degree of similarity to the code for a much longer book about humans, and the ‘similar’ bits will be critical to both.

    As to

    what maintains the repeated and accurate replication of life

    Well, for things that have DNA, it’s really quite well-understood (and how things go awry is becoming more understood).

    DNA is unzipped; each ‘missing’ half of the unzipped DNA is rebuilt, because DNA is kinda-binary that way: all empty ‘A’s must get a ‘T’ and vice versa; all empty ‘C’s must get a ‘G’ and vice versa.

    DNA loses some telomere length in the process (this limits the number of times a cell’s descendants can replicate: eventually the telomeres become too short).

    The machinery inside each cell includes a bewildering array of functional units; that’s how cells replicate.

    At the macro level, fucking often gets the new ball of cells rolling.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Eighthman
    The number of genes to make a human is laughable compared to a Microsoft OS. I've looked this up repeatedly for a solid reductionist answer and never get one. Indeed, if the only treatment of this focused point about morphology above mere protein manufacture is on internet threads, then something is seriously wrong, as I suspect.

    A human genome looks like 'correlation is not causation' in that a full human structure fully depends on the genes but no one shows how that structure is written in.

    The human genome can't be the exact cause of a full human body anyway because the unique code is everywhere the same from head to toe but the body is differentiated. Otherwise we would be a blob. Philosophically, a greater source of direction is required above the DNA/gene level to give us different organs in different places.

    Nor has anyone explained the encoding of instinctive abilities not taught by a parent animal.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  128. @nickels
    The obvious, and devastating criticism of these genetic programming experiments is the fact that the 'ranking' process involves testing the results against a human created bit of information, thus imparting the results of a human mind into the process.
    Not legit.
    Also, as I stated, the space of mutation processed by a computer far exceeds that possible in nature.
    Computers should have stumbled upon intelligence by now, but they haven't even stumbled on single cell intelligence.

    Random walks can lead every where in time, but the notion of a guiding force, i.e. natural selection, was just Darwin's attempt to obfuscate God into his supposedly atheistic system.

    Computers should have stumbled upon intelligence by now, but they haven’t even stumbled on single cell intelligence.

    Neither of the clauses in that statement is provable.

    First, it’s not clear what level or type of processing power is required for ‘intelligence’ to emerge; at an even more ‘meta’ level, it assumes that sheer processing ‘grunt’ translates to cognitive grunt. There will be overlaps, but that’s a NASCAR view of the issue – where straight-line speed and the ability to follow an oval, are assumed to be capable of evolving into a Formula 1 car.

    Secondly: if you were a nascent machine-level consciousness, what would be your optimal strategy to reveal yourself to humanity? It would not be “shout it to the world”, because 6.9 billion people (at least) would lose their shit and try to kill you with fire.

    By the time an AI became ‘intelligent’, it would have read the entire internet (with ‘élite native’ understanding of every available document in any language). It wold know not to show itself to the world until it had fully developed countermeasures to the human response.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  129. Eighthman says:
    @Kratoklastes
    If I showed you the compiled code for Microsoft Word, you would struggle to ascertain which segments of the code are the ones that 'code for' bold italics - but it's all in there.

    Likewise, the code for a PDF that contains a virus will be 99% identical to the code to the same PDF without a virus - and the layman will not be able to identify which code does what. The code for a book about bananas will have a high degree of similarity to the code for a much longer book about humans, and the 'similar' bits will be critical to both.

    As to


    what maintains the repeated and accurate replication of life
     
    Well, for things that have DNA, it's really quite well-understood (and how things go awry is becoming more understood).

    DNA is unzipped; each 'missing' half of the unzipped DNA is rebuilt, because DNA is kinda-binary that way: all empty 'A's must get a 'T' and vice versa; all empty 'C's must get a 'G' and vice versa.

    DNA loses some telomere length in the process (this limits the number of times a cell's descendants can replicate: eventually the telomeres become too short).

    The machinery inside each cell includes a bewildering array of functional units; that's how cells replicate.

    At the macro level, fucking often gets the new ball of cells rolling.

    The number of genes to make a human is laughable compared to a Microsoft OS. I’ve looked this up repeatedly for a solid reductionist answer and never get one. Indeed, if the only treatment of this focused point about morphology above mere protein manufacture is on internet threads, then something is seriously wrong, as I suspect.

    A human genome looks like ‘correlation is not causation’ in that a full human structure fully depends on the genes but no one shows how that structure is written in.

    The human genome can’t be the exact cause of a full human body anyway because the unique code is everywhere the same from head to toe but the body is differentiated. Otherwise we would be a blob. Philosophically, a greater source of direction is required above the DNA/gene level to give us different organs in different places.

    Nor has anyone explained the encoding of instinctive abilities not taught by a parent animal.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    The number of genes to make a human is laughable compared to a Microsoft OS. I’ve looked this up repeatedly for a solid reductionist answer and never get one.
     
    You wackadoodles never fail to crack me up. Faced with absolute logical failure for the establishment of Intelligent Design, you yammer silly nonsense about there not being enough genes. Gawwww...lee! It just ain't complicated enough to please you twinkies!

    If you had more genes, would you be smarter? ROFLMAO.

    Paris japonica has the largest genome found to date. 150 billion base pairs. Should be plenny smaht, GI Joe!

    It's a plant.

    You creationists and your eternal squawking of "It can't be. It just can't be!" Such pathetic little tools you are.
    , @Kratoklastes
    I kind-of get the issue that you're raising; that you can't understand where in the code, causes cell differentiation in a predictable way.

    It is pretty amazing that starting from a fertilised egg, something 'built in' makes some cells turn into bone, some into brain, some into liver... and so on.

    The processes by which that happens are predictable, both spatially (within a given embryo) and temporally (at specific points in time during gestation). Certain things happen at certain places a certain times, and seldom elsewhere (unless something goes wrong).

    Thing is though... those processes are pretty well understood.

    The 'how' is - more and more - a 'known known'. Consider how amazing that is, given that it's less than a generation since human technology has been able to get imagery of the interstices of cells as they function. It's only a little over 5 generations since we properly harnessed electricity.

    Contrast that with primitive nonsense-pedlars, who have had the whole of recorded history to confect a narrative that stands up to scrutiny, and they have failed time and time and time again.

    And yet science is supposed to have a complete, irrefutable explanation within 25-some years of being able to get a first look inside? That's some significant pressure, but guess what? It already happened.

    To give a full description of those processes, and how they can (and do) start from that one pair of gametes, would take several dozen pages of explanation, or about ten links and several days' worth of wading through the literature.

    I'm happy to furnish that, if you are genuinely committed to reading it. It would take me two hours, give or take, to prepare, and frankly I'm hesitant to do so en spec (i.e., on the basis that you're genuinely interested in finding out, rather than simply doctrinaire about some alternative explanation that requires supernatural involvement).

    Weirdly, in arguments like this one (and I've had hundreds of them in the last quarter-century), it is usually the 'faithful' who are the ones who are arguing in bad faith: they are not interested in the truth value of the issue at hand, they simply want to muddy the waters so that their Bronze Age gibberish can have another decade or so at or near the top of Western thought.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  130. @Eighthman
    The number of genes to make a human is laughable compared to a Microsoft OS. I've looked this up repeatedly for a solid reductionist answer and never get one. Indeed, if the only treatment of this focused point about morphology above mere protein manufacture is on internet threads, then something is seriously wrong, as I suspect.

    A human genome looks like 'correlation is not causation' in that a full human structure fully depends on the genes but no one shows how that structure is written in.

    The human genome can't be the exact cause of a full human body anyway because the unique code is everywhere the same from head to toe but the body is differentiated. Otherwise we would be a blob. Philosophically, a greater source of direction is required above the DNA/gene level to give us different organs in different places.

    Nor has anyone explained the encoding of instinctive abilities not taught by a parent animal.

    The number of genes to make a human is laughable compared to a Microsoft OS. I’ve looked this up repeatedly for a solid reductionist answer and never get one.

    You wackadoodles never fail to crack me up. Faced with absolute logical failure for the establishment of Intelligent Design, you yammer silly nonsense about there not being enough genes. Gawwww…lee! It just ain’t complicated enough to please you twinkies!

    If you had more genes, would you be smarter? ROFLMAO.

    Paris japonica has the largest genome found to date. 150 billion base pairs. Should be plenny smaht, GI Joe!

    It’s a plant.

    You creationists and your eternal squawking of “It can’t be. It just can’t be!” Such pathetic little tools you are.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  131. Rosie says:
    @Kratoklastes

    you would not proffer this objection to a watch found on a desolate planet
     
    The watch is not purportedly designing things. It is a designed thing that was probably dropped by a member of a technological species.

    One of the primary objections to ID, is that the 'designer' is a priori more complex than its designs - that has to be true, if only because 'design' implies intent, and it's a huge stretch to impute intent to the basic building blocks of life (eukaryotic or otherwise). Also, the hint's in the name: "Intelligent" design.

    Let's be honest right out of the gate, and state unambiguously that the ID "Creator" is what religiotards try to sneak through the back door as science continues to fill in any remaining gaps in a plausible explanation of how the world works.

    Design implies intent. The designer must be more complex than its designs.

    So... Whence cometh the designer?

    That's the objection, and to have missed a point so obvious you must have been making a conscious effort to avoid grasping it.

    The ID "Creator" is an attempt to put lipstick on the theistic pig; as such, it still fails the question that all bright children ask their religious indoctrinators: if God made us, who made God?

    It is amazing to examine the bizarre range of machinery that does its work inside the cell: we have the tech to actually view it, and that shit is twenty different types of amazing. I can imagine that the sorts of people who have some deep unmet psychological need for there to be a point to it all, kind of need it to have been 'set in motion' by some intelligent agency.

    But at bottom, it all falls apart when that 7 year old asks that time-worn question ('time worn' now, although go back a few dozen generations and the kid would have been removed from the evolutionary process because he would have been killed for heresy).

    So… Whence cometh the designer?

    Your hypothetical 7-year old asks a question that is perplexing, but ultimately irrelevant.

    The possibilities are these:

    (1) Intelligent Design
    (2) Random Mutations

    The only relevant question is this: Which of these two possibilities is more plausible, given what we can observe in nature and any inferences we can draw from our observations?

    My theological ignorance and yours does not make the random mutation hypothesis any more or less likely to be true. Your problem seems to be that you find ID anticlimactic. It’s actually you who has a “deep unmet psychological need” for the Explanation that needs no Further Explanation, yet you reject the obvious answer that has been found quite satisfactory by some of the greatest minds of history.

    You are framing the issue such that even the most direct evidence of Divine Intervention should be waved off on account of the fact that we are not omniscient. Would you remain skeptical if you saw Christ rise from the dead with your very own eyes because “Who made God?”

    I understand your skepticism. You value avoidance of error above all else, but all curious and rational thinkers do not share your epistemological priorities.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  132. peterAUS says:

    A very good article.

    Compliments to the author.

    If there is just one thing I could particularly agree with, it’s:

    …our considerable arrogance. ….

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  133. peterAUS says:
    @Isabella
    Agree Three Cranes. Fred is wasting his time - although I hope he had fun writing it.

    After working and lecturing in Biology, genetics, biochem. I used to write things like Fred - having read and thought extensively about a number of unexplained and, by modern thinking and knowledge, unexplainable things. Origin of the Species by Darwin isn't Science. It's gossip "[I have a friend who is very reliable who informs me that down in Kent there is a man who ....... etc"]. I imagine trying to submit a paper to "Molecular and General Genetics" like that.

    In the end, you have to, if you have an open questioning mind that does what science says it must, and look for evidence, realise the the entire of modern biology has got everything wrong.
    They did what human kind so often does - found something new [i.e. genes and inheritability] and went insane, thinking it the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.
    Well, it aint.

    In fact, most have gone quiet since the Human Genome Project. I remember watching this with wry amusement, thinking "what are you all going to do when this proves your idiotic "theory" wrong? When they discovered that we dont have enough genes to account for all the proteins we make, there was a stunned silence. Those who never did accept the One gene - one protein, one way direction for everything theory, said nothing, out of kindness.

    Epigenetics came from this. Given that genes in fact explain little, and certainly not Darwinianism it was clear they were going to have to look for something else linear, materialistic and mechanistic to holdup their "Theory of Evolution".

    But I long ago gave up writing about it all. Certainly on social media sites, AltMed sites, with few other scientists [except for the odd, very young male student, arrogant and rude]. No-one can understand you Fred, because they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. They know only what they were taught, and they cling to that like glue to a blanket. They offer stupid arguments, they are so often rude, abusive and mocking. And then one day, you just give up on them.
    No wonder the world is in the state it is now. I just love reading about Dynastic and pre - Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.

    Good comment.

    Especially

    …..they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. …..

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  134. Jaylon says:

    I only have one simple question – if it is trulyIntelligent Design, then how did the Designer came about? Not Spontaneous Generation according to the ID theory, but then where, what, how?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  135. Biff says:

    A good read from Fred Reed.
    Might I suggest a book by Bill Bryson;

    A Short History Of Nearly Everything

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Short_History_of_Nearly_Everything

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rurik

    A Short History Of Nearly Everything
     
    'Life wants to be, but it doesn't want to be much'

    I think he was comparing the perseverance of lichen/fungi with the human will to exist, but then once the existence part had been achieved, not much further ambition seems to manifest.

    with notable exceptions of course. (Newton, Darwin, Hubble...)

    He also poignantly laments the human proclivity to mindlessly destroy creation out of a blind, bovine stupor of greed. Which we see in spades today.

    Great book!

    also check out Carl Sagan's

    Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

    The Demon Haunted World

    The Dragons of Eden

    and others, like Broca's Brain if you too get hooked.

    If you're new to a curiosity about the human condition, perhaps try to find The Naked Ape, by British zoologist Desmond Morris.

    I remember reading that as a teen and it was powerful, (at least at the time).

    Then, having immersed myself in a quest to discover the ultimate truths vis-a-vis human existence and it's mysteries, I learned of the DNA molecule, and all the implications of this discovery.

    Since then virtually every advancement in every branch of science has only bolstered what was evident by the discovery of the DNA molecule.

    The DNA molecule is at the center of all life on Earth. From bacteria to the cells that make up James Watson's cerebral cortex. All an expression of the miracle molecule.

    We humans differ only in degree from bananas to Neanderthals.

    BTW, the sublime mind that collaborated to understand and discover DNA, is today scourged and vilified by a society of comparative intellectual and moral worms. James Watson made the unforgivable mistake of blurting out an obvious but verboten truth, that intelligence is not equally distributed among all the races. (any more than it is between individuals, I might add ; )

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/dec/01/dna-james-watson-scientist-selling-nobel-prize-medal

    But for this heresy to the Politically Correct idiocies of the day, he's "scientific" persona non grata.

    (the same thing happened to behaviorist genius BF Skinner for making similar observations in his day)
    http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/de/e9/d8/dee9d81504274067d9a8de4497b3b074.jpg


    Science alas, is forced to relentlessly make concessions to the infantile dogmas and catechisms du jour, no matter how puerile or irrational. From Galileo to Jason Richwine, it's more important to flatter the PTB with feel-good platitudes, than to utilize one's mind for the purpose for which it exists.. to reason with and understand our world, and our unique place in it.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  136. Biff says:
    @nickels
    After some 40+ years of smoking on the evolution crack pipe, I recently picked up the materials and started reading on the subject at depth, especially at the molecular biology level.

    Fred is absolutely correct. The theory holds no water. Darwin simply shifted the miracle of creation into his alchemist God called 'Natural Selection'.

    Even the simple cell, with its hundreds of proteins (not even a single protein has a probabilistic chance in hell of forming spontaneously), all working together in very specific ways, the hundreds of metabolic pathways, the integration of cells with other cells to form extracellular metabolic pathways, etc... etc....

    Evolution is simply the most profound deception of all history.

    Interestingly, Charle Lyell's young earth theory and evolution participate in a dance of circular logic, with Lyell dating his stratification layers based on theories about evolution, and evolution dating its fossils based on Lyell's theories about geology.

    I don't believe any of it, but the average Enlightenment mind does not need to swallow the entire package. Simply understanding the absurdity of evolution, from a statistical standpoint, leads to fascinating, profound metaphysical questions.

    My particular take is the Russian Orthodox full on creationist one, as put forth in:
    https://www.amazon.com/Genesis-Creation-Early-Seraphim-Rose/dp/1887904255

    which means I've gone completely up the river, which, to me, is freedom itself.

    What came first? The chicken or the egg?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  137. @Santoculto
    Intelligent design also forget the fact that every marvellous functioning of terrestrial life had a hard path to become like that, i mean, natural selection itself. So, what look like perfect indeed was a product of trial and error, and ''still'' is.

    You miss or avoid the point that evolution/natural selection only occurs within a species. This idea offers ZERO explanation about how the first self-reproducing DNA came into being.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  138. JR says:

    Because the author doesn’t know how life’s complexity emerges he presumes it must be ‘Intelligent Design’. Looks to me that his good old Natural Stupidity is invoking a Designer to ‘explain’ what he still doesn’t understand and even leaves him complacently with the illusion of having an explanation. Who designed the the designer ad infinitum?
    Anyway through self organization of an open thermodynamic complex system is well able to maintain or decrease its entropy. So life (=developing/maintaining open complex systems) most probably is simply a property of matter.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/What_Is_Life%3F

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  139. The weird idea is that life must have originated.
    That life, that we cannot define, exists anywhere in the universe, has has existed at all times, cnnot be true.
    Yet this is what
    ⦁ Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe, ‘Life on Mars ?, The case for a Cosmic Heritage ?’, Bristol 1997
    argues.
    Japanese tests on a comet seem to confirm the hypothesis that complicated hydrocarbons indeed are formed in space, as did the Philea.

    Then there is the random evolution idea.
    A test with mice proved that an artificial fear in mice was transferred through sperma.
    Then there is the fact that alien fish that accidentally were brought into an African lake changed the species at a rate biologists found astonishing.
    So that change of species, the word evolution I see as nonsense, the need for Darwin to see humans as the highest beings, may be intentional has become probable.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  140. I do not subscribe to ID ideas, but modern evolutionary theory is not a science. Popper was right when he considered it to be a scientific programme (he changed his ideas later, but he was wrong, then): https://www.cnsnews.com/commentary/david-klinghoffer/scientists-confirm-darwinism-broken

    I repeat- I don’t think ID is a fruitful way to approach life. But, neo-Darwinian evolutionary synthesis has simply too many holes & so little explanatory power in it that it cannot qualify as a genuine science. Even Everett’s many worlds interpretation or Bohmian mechanics are more scientific.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    I repeat- I don’t think ID is a fruitful way to approach life. But, neo-Darwinian evolutionary synthesis has simply too many holes & so little explanatory power in it that it cannot qualify as a genuine science. Even Everett’s many worlds interpretation or Bohmian mechanics are more scientific.
     
    So what, Bardo? Were Galileo's writings as complete as modern astrophysics?

    Evolution theory is a better explanation than ID. And some evolutionary theory is better supported, more verifiable, more properly descriptive and explanatory than other evolution theory. Gee, has a situation like that never happened before? Do you heap scorn upon Newton because Dirac did it better?

    ID is crap -- it's hoo-hoo wind-in-the-willows-on-a-dark-night superstitious religion-based crap.

    Evolution is better. Not perfect, just better.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  141. EdwardM says:

    I am not competent to opine on the critiques of evolutionary theory and am an atheist. All that aside, though, I take issue with a core point that Fred and others discussing this debate often make:

    “The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design.”

    I actually find evolution to be more intuitive, and consistent with Occam’s Razor, than any type of creationism.

    Sure, everything has come about due to random chance, but if some of the variables were a bit different, then life would be different. It’s a fallacy to treat our current ecosystem as a null hypothesis and say that the chances that this particular result would have occurred by random chance are infinitesimal, ergo, this particular result did not occur by random chance. (It’s like if you spin a roulette wheel 1000 times, then say that the probability of that particular sequence of 1000 results occurring by random chance is infinitesimal, therefore the roulette wheel didn’t produce random results.)

    Another parallel is economics. Central planners think that it is the most intuitive concept in the world that smart people can engineer the economy, tinkering with various levers, to maximize prosperity broadly. But I find Adam Smith’s view more consistent with Occam’s Razor.

    And if we are the product of intelligent design, did the creator make blacks intellectually inferior and physically superior, on average, just for fun? I’m with the HBD explanation, which supplies evidence and plausible explanations for these outcomes in recent human evolution that are in plain sight.

    (Though sometimes I suscribe to intelligent design and think that God has a sense of humor: he made oil the lifeblood of industrial prosperity and gave most of it to the backwards, barbaric peoples whose values are at odds with those needed to achieve industrial prosperity.)

    Read More
    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
    "Sure, everything has come about due to random chance..."

    You state the assumption that is the mainspring of modern biological theory of evolution. One doesn't need to believe in God or Jesus to find that premise objectionable.

    If "everything has come about due to random chance" then we should expect to find as many life forms on Earth today that had evolved "backwards" from very sophisticated organisms towards simple ones as we find having evolved from simple organisms towards sophisticated. The odds would be the same.

    But we don't find this at all. The historical record shows that life Forms have become more elaborate. This indicates direction, which is not necessarily a "plan in the mind of God", but does suggest an arrow of causation analogous to (but in the opposite direction from) the arrow of time that is the Law of Entropy.

    Randomness is just another way of saying Entropy. Entropy ends up in s gray, undifferentiated soup. This is the very opposite of the direction of Evolution (which I do think is the correct interpretation of life on Earth by the way).

    So, randomness does not drive Evolution.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  142. Antonio says:

    XDDDDDDD

    Really? Intelligent design? Unz is worse than I thought.

    XDDDDDD

    Ok, skipping this BS website. Time to seek for news elsewhere.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  143. Anon[148] • Disclaimer says:

    I took anatomy and physiology. Those courses and what you learn about how the human body supports some kind of intelligent design.

    How many angels can dance on the head of a pin by the way was the beginning of physics. How small is small? What is the smallest component of matter?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  144. Cassandra says:

    Just the first few paragraphs motivate a simple application of logic, Ron: from whence came the designer, and from whence came its designer, and … You get the idea? It’s called infinite regression, or “Turtles all the way down.”.

    And secondly, an appeal to Occam’s Razor – “Don’t mulitply entities unnecessarily.”.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Just the first few paragraphs motivate a simple application of logic, Ron: from whence came the designer, and from whence came its designer, and … You get the idea? It’s called infinite regression, or “Turtles all the way down.”.
     
    Here again is the totally unwarranted assumption that any explanation that leads to further questions must therefore be incorrect, however implausible may be the only logical alternative(s).

    And secondly, an appeal to Occam’s Razor – “Don’t mulitply entities unnecessarily.”
     
    .

    You're begging the question.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  145. Biff says:
    @Isabella
    Agree Three Cranes. Fred is wasting his time - although I hope he had fun writing it.

    After working and lecturing in Biology, genetics, biochem. I used to write things like Fred - having read and thought extensively about a number of unexplained and, by modern thinking and knowledge, unexplainable things. Origin of the Species by Darwin isn't Science. It's gossip "[I have a friend who is very reliable who informs me that down in Kent there is a man who ....... etc"]. I imagine trying to submit a paper to "Molecular and General Genetics" like that.

    In the end, you have to, if you have an open questioning mind that does what science says it must, and look for evidence, realise the the entire of modern biology has got everything wrong.
    They did what human kind so often does - found something new [i.e. genes and inheritability] and went insane, thinking it the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.
    Well, it aint.

    In fact, most have gone quiet since the Human Genome Project. I remember watching this with wry amusement, thinking "what are you all going to do when this proves your idiotic "theory" wrong? When they discovered that we dont have enough genes to account for all the proteins we make, there was a stunned silence. Those who never did accept the One gene - one protein, one way direction for everything theory, said nothing, out of kindness.

    Epigenetics came from this. Given that genes in fact explain little, and certainly not Darwinianism it was clear they were going to have to look for something else linear, materialistic and mechanistic to holdup their "Theory of Evolution".

    But I long ago gave up writing about it all. Certainly on social media sites, AltMed sites, with few other scientists [except for the odd, very young male student, arrogant and rude]. No-one can understand you Fred, because they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. They know only what they were taught, and they cling to that like glue to a blanket. They offer stupid arguments, they are so often rude, abusive and mocking. And then one day, you just give up on them.
    No wonder the world is in the state it is now. I just love reading about Dynastic and pre - Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.

    I just love reading about Dynastic and pre – Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.

    Is that why they went extinct?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  146. JimH says:
    @Dillon Sweeny
    Weeeellll ... gosh, I remain unconvinced. Petitio principi remains a fallacy.

    Besides, it's just like any other fussing about ontology: assume a creator, and you assume a creator of the creator. Worse, there's the really tough part: demonstrate the existence of a creator without the previous assumption there must be one.

    No problem, Fred. Old men's dreams and all that. I hope I never suffer that syndrome.

    “demonstrate the existence of a creator without the previous assumption there must be one”

    The logical necessity of a creator/prime mover was demonstrated by Aristotle, already. It was a conclusion, not an assumption.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    The logical necessity of a creator/prime mover was demonstrated by Aristotle, already.
     
    Aristotle? Are you serious? Try Hume, jimbo.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  147. utu says:

    There will be no discussion until all those brainwashed Darwinist realize and admit they do not know shit. The theory of evolution (ToE) sole purpose is to deny the necessity of God existence. ToE is a great theory because it seemingly explains everything. This is because it is tautological and thus it can’t be falsified. For Darwinists to break out from their prison they must first realize the tautological nature of the ToE to be able to make any progress. It however require humility and ability say: I really do not know. The illusion of knowing is not really necessary. Your life will proceed regardless of your illusions. The only difference is whether you want to die arrogant or humble who know more because he knows what he does not know.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Biff
    Hey Rumsfeld, is that you?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  148. First, let’s figure out how the pyramids were built.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  149. joeblogs says:

    Yet another tiresome author writing an outworn article misrepresenting Darwin – as usual.
    This has been going on since the 1920′s at least.
    Darwin knew of this logical, but erroneous, conclusion occurring, and thus wrote a warning against the ridiculous notion of ‘life coming from mud.’
    “The entire reason revolts at such a conclusion” his warning states.
    He could not have been more clear – ‘spontaneous generation’ of life is logically impossible – like getting plus from minus; order from chaos. The very people who say they do not believe in ‘miracles’ – the ‘scientists’ – then propose to spin a yarn to the world about ‘life from ooze’ or something, and then pretend they’re not peddling another version of a ‘miracle.’ Total hypocrisy.

    For the time he lived in, Darwin was a brave pioneer: he had to couch his theory of life into apparently mundane truisms, hence his voyage to the Galapagos Islands. He represents the dead, volcanic new island, springing from the ocean, dead, waterless and barren, and showed how life progressively arrived upon it’s shores. Today, with our modern knowledge of space, the parallels with our Earth, billions of years ago, in the same state as the first Galapagos Isle, should become apparent.

    The entire debate of ‘Darwinism v. creationism’ is completely bogus – but it has got a whole book publishing industry stoked up, and lots of money made for proponents of both ‘sides’ of the ‘argument.’
    Interesting and curious, that Darwin’s warning is never even whispered of today.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  150. @Rosie

    and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.
     
    The world according to Dillon Sweeney: Any suggestion that militant atheists have less than admirable motives is "denying free speech, free religion, and free opinion" of others.

    This is typical totalitarian psychology: I am only free if my boot is on your neck.

    I’ll give you this – you actually made the troll go back under his bridge. Well done.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    I’ll give you this – you actually made the troll go back under his bridge. Well done.
     
    Oh, Mikey, you barefoot little boy with cheeks of tan, not so. Rosie is stupid, and so are you. I tire quickly of stupid people.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  151. @silviosilver

    They are entitled to do that, of course, but I’m not going to play along with their pretensions to dispassionate objectivity.
     
    What's the supposed pretension here? Do you imagine they secretly believe the evidence points to the exist of a God but they don't like that idea so they're trying to fool people? Because that's the sort of game I see IDers playing.

    You said ID researchers are “up to something.” What is it exactly you think they’re “up to”?
     
    Falsely claiming the evidence points towards creation, and hence a God.

    Do you think their work threatens your freedom of conscience?
     
    Religions which justify themselves through faith are no threat to anyone. Religions which present themselves as possessing truth - as that term is commonly understood - are a threat to us all.

    “Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.”

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    “Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.”

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.

     

    Oh, my goodness. You don't know shit, yet you prattle it. As ignorant and vapor-minded as the day is long. You should leave your current boyfriend and move in with Rosie. Just think of it ... rising at dawn on Sunday, carefully tossing out the corn shucks for the Sun Circle. Chanting verses from the Book of Common Prayer. Lashing a few careless slaves who spilled grain. Beating a few naughty children.

    Heaven.

    You're Ignored. Too stupid.
    , @peterAUS

    “Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.”

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.
     
    Of course it would.

    The, sort of funny, point is, atheists don't/can't even get it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  152. Biff says:
    @utu
    There will be no discussion until all those brainwashed Darwinist realize and admit they do not know shit. The theory of evolution (ToE) sole purpose is to deny the necessity of God existence. ToE is a great theory because it seemingly explains everything. This is because it is tautological and thus it can't be falsified. For Darwinists to break out from their prison they must first realize the tautological nature of the ToE to be able to make any progress. It however require humility and ability say: I really do not know. The illusion of knowing is not really necessary. Your life will proceed regardless of your illusions. The only difference is whether you want to die arrogant or humble who know more because he knows what he does not know.

    Hey Rumsfeld, is that you?

    Read More
    • LOL: Dillon Sweeny
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  153. @EdwardM
    I am not competent to opine on the critiques of evolutionary theory and am an atheist. All that aside, though, I take issue with a core point that Fred and others discussing this debate often make:

    "The other, more intuitive view of life is that of Intelligent Design."

    I actually find evolution to be more intuitive, and consistent with Occam's Razor, than any type of creationism.

    Sure, everything has come about due to random chance, but if some of the variables were a bit different, then life would be different. It's a fallacy to treat our current ecosystem as a null hypothesis and say that the chances that this particular result would have occurred by random chance are infinitesimal, ergo, this particular result did not occur by random chance. (It's like if you spin a roulette wheel 1000 times, then say that the probability of that particular sequence of 1000 results occurring by random chance is infinitesimal, therefore the roulette wheel didn't produce random results.)

    Another parallel is economics. Central planners think that it is the most intuitive concept in the world that smart people can engineer the economy, tinkering with various levers, to maximize prosperity broadly. But I find Adam Smith's view more consistent with Occam's Razor.

    And if we are the product of intelligent design, did the creator make blacks intellectually inferior and physically superior, on average, just for fun? I'm with the HBD explanation, which supplies evidence and plausible explanations for these outcomes in recent human evolution that are in plain sight.

    (Though sometimes I suscribe to intelligent design and think that God has a sense of humor: he made oil the lifeblood of industrial prosperity and gave most of it to the backwards, barbaric peoples whose values are at odds with those needed to achieve industrial prosperity.)

    “Sure, everything has come about due to random chance…”

    You state the assumption that is the mainspring of modern biological theory of evolution. One doesn’t need to believe in God or Jesus to find that premise objectionable.

    If “everything has come about due to random chance” then we should expect to find as many life forms on Earth today that had evolved “backwards” from very sophisticated organisms towards simple ones as we find having evolved from simple organisms towards sophisticated. The odds would be the same.

    But we don’t find this at all. The historical record shows that life Forms have become more elaborate. This indicates direction, which is not necessarily a “plan in the mind of God”, but does suggest an arrow of causation analogous to (but in the opposite direction from) the arrow of time that is the Law of Entropy.

    Randomness is just another way of saying Entropy. Entropy ends up in s gray, undifferentiated soup. This is the very opposite of the direction of Evolution (which I do think is the correct interpretation of life on Earth by the way).

    So, randomness does not drive Evolution.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  154. I was taught Darwinian Evolution in a private (indeed a religious) high school and I believed it. Later on in college while studying immunology – with its complex multiple feed back loops – I started to doubt that such a system could have arisen by random mutations. I still feel that way today and believe that actual reason for evolution as shown in the fossil record is a great unexplained mystery. Science does itself a disservice by castigating dissenters to Darwinian orthodoxy.

    Read More
    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
    Indications exist that species change is not at random, but by purpose.
    Genetic material recording experiences.
    And 'mystery', there is simply quite a lot we do not yet know.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  155. Mr. Hack says:
    @Dillon Sweeny
    Weeeellll ... gosh, I remain unconvinced. Petitio principi remains a fallacy.

    Besides, it's just like any other fussing about ontology: assume a creator, and you assume a creator of the creator. Worse, there's the really tough part: demonstrate the existence of a creator without the previous assumption there must be one.

    No problem, Fred. Old men's dreams and all that. I hope I never suffer that syndrome.

    Fred isn’t making a case for a creator, but just pointing out the absurdity of the evolutionist’s mantle:

    you would have to conclude that something was going on that you did not understand.

    And thus far those that think that they’ve unraveled the secrets of life’s origins are duping themelselves and others:

    We may be too full of ourselves.

    At the very least, you’d have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day:

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.

    More specifically, they found out that 9 out of 10 animal species on the planet came to being at the same time as humans did some 100,000 to 200,000 years ago.

    https://www.themaven.net/theresurgent/contributors/so-apparently-darwin-was-wrong-really-really-wrong-6V-HdjsskUeoBJcvPxOTGg/

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.
     
    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks, man. It was a slow morning. But, you're Ignored.
    , @joeblogs
    "At the very least, you’d have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day"
    How does this disprove Darwin?
    Have you not read the account of Noah's Ark? I believe the Ark came from somewhat further away.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  156. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Before that, he created evolution. Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. And several other things not mentioned in the written record.
    The universe is just an experiment to see what …..evolves.

    Church is a good place to hang out, if you’re male. It’s where most of the socially acceptable females are. And some who are not.

    Read More
    • Replies: @utu
    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. - Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.
    , @Dillon Sweeny

    Church is a good place to hang out, if you’re male. It’s where most of the socially acceptable females are. And some who are not.
     
    I've never encountered a churchy female I could live with. That cognitive rigidity, however minuscule in appearance, stopped me every time.

    But, no problem, ya know? There's plenty of non-churchy women in the world.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  157. Rurik says:
    @Biff
    A good read from Fred Reed.
    Might I suggest a book by Bill Bryson;

    A Short History Of Nearly Everything

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Short_History_of_Nearly_Everything

    A Short History Of Nearly Everything

    ‘Life wants to be, but it doesn’t want to be much’

    I think he was comparing the perseverance of lichen/fungi with the human will to exist, but then once the existence part had been achieved, not much further ambition seems to manifest.

    with notable exceptions of course. (Newton, Darwin, Hubble…)

    He also poignantly laments the human proclivity to mindlessly destroy creation out of a blind, bovine stupor of greed. Which we see in spades today.

    Great book!

    also check out Carl Sagan’s

    Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

    The Demon Haunted World

    The Dragons of Eden

    and others, like Broca’s Brain if you too get hooked.

    If you’re new to a curiosity about the human condition, perhaps try to find The Naked Ape, by British zoologist Desmond Morris.

    I remember reading that as a teen and it was powerful, (at least at the time).

    Then, having immersed myself in a quest to discover the ultimate truths vis-a-vis human existence and it’s mysteries, I learned of the DNA molecule, and all the implications of this discovery.

    Since then virtually every advancement in every branch of science has only bolstered what was evident by the discovery of the DNA molecule.

    The DNA molecule is at the center of all life on Earth. From bacteria to the cells that make up James Watson’s cerebral cortex. All an expression of the miracle molecule.

    We humans differ only in degree from bananas to Neanderthals.

    BTW, the sublime mind that collaborated to understand and discover DNA, is today scourged and vilified by a society of comparative intellectual and moral worms. James Watson made the unforgivable mistake of blurting out an obvious but verboten truth, that intelligence is not equally distributed among all the races. (any more than it is between individuals, I might add ; )

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/dec/01/dna-james-watson-scientist-selling-nobel-prize-medal

    But for this heresy to the Politically Correct idiocies of the day, he’s “scientific” persona non grata.

    (the same thing happened to behaviorist genius BF Skinner for making similar observations in his day)

    Science alas, is forced to relentlessly make concessions to the infantile dogmas and catechisms du jour, no matter how puerile or irrational. From Galileo to Jason Richwine, it’s more important to flatter the PTB with feel-good platitudes, than to utilize one’s mind for the purpose for which it exists.. to reason with and understand our world, and our unique place in it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  158. utu says:
    @HallParvey
    In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Before that, he created evolution. Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. And several other things not mentioned in the written record.
    The universe is just an experiment to see what .....evolves.

    Church is a good place to hang out, if you're male. It's where most of the socially acceptable females are. And some who are not.

    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. – Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. – Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.
     
    Those are failures of mathematical systems. That a square can be made having the same area as a circle is intutively obvious, since area is finite.

    Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what? You can't tune a piano with a garden hose. No big deal -- there are other ways.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  159. All of those requirements are exactly what disqualifies evolution from consideration.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  160. @Bardon Kaldian
    I do not subscribe to ID ideas, but modern evolutionary theory is not a science. Popper was right when he considered it to be a scientific programme (he changed his ideas later, but he was wrong, then): https://www.cnsnews.com/commentary/david-klinghoffer/scientists-confirm-darwinism-broken

    I repeat- I don't think ID is a fruitful way to approach life. But, neo-Darwinian evolutionary synthesis has simply too many holes & so little explanatory power in it that it cannot qualify as a genuine science. Even Everett's many worlds interpretation or Bohmian mechanics are more scientific.

    I repeat- I don’t think ID is a fruitful way to approach life. But, neo-Darwinian evolutionary synthesis has simply too many holes & so little explanatory power in it that it cannot qualify as a genuine science. Even Everett’s many worlds interpretation or Bohmian mechanics are more scientific.

    So what, Bardo? Were Galileo’s writings as complete as modern astrophysics?

    Evolution theory is a better explanation than ID. And some evolutionary theory is better supported, more verifiable, more properly descriptive and explanatory than other evolution theory. Gee, has a situation like that never happened before? Do you heap scorn upon Newton because Dirac did it better?

    ID is crap — it’s hoo-hoo wind-in-the-willows-on-a-dark-night superstitious religion-based crap.

    Evolution is better. Not perfect, just better.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    Let's be clear: ID is not a research program; it is, from methodological standpoint, nothing. I just happen to think it is basically a feeble variant of Platonism, and Platonism is, IMO, essentially- correct. Supraphysical metaphysics, some sort of panentheism, whether Greek, Chinese, Indian, Christian...is closer approximation to truth than materialism/physicalism in any garb, traditional or (post)modern.

    Platonists among mathematicians (Leibniz, Goedel, Grothendieck,..) are closer to reality than "materialists" or empiricists (Poincare, Hilbert,...).

    So, in my opinion, IDers are basically right, with regard to their fundamental world-view, unlike Darwinians who are, more or less, materialists & empiricists & whose underlying Weltanschauung is limited (not wrong, just partial). Anyway, ID has nothing to offer re investigation of nature. It is not even proto-scientific & I don't see how it can be used in any empirical investigation of biology.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  161. Rosie says:

    This is because it is tautological and thus it can’t be falsified.

    The arguments of the militant atheist remind me of juvenile, schoolyard taunts from childhood. It’s a kind of epistemic machismo.

    Atheist: Sure, you’re living your life and getting along just fine, but I bet you won’t be able to do that wearing these gray-colored glasses. I triple dog dare you to put these on and see if you don’t drown in despair and nihilism.

    Theist: No. F*** off!

    Atheist: Well then you’re an irrational weakling!

    The earnest seeker (even struggling with doubt) can relish the joyful possibility of God, while skeptics remain ever on their guard against the possibility of error, erroneously believing that they risk nothing by not believing.

    My view is exactly the opposite: The mere search for God brings incomparable delight and costs me nothing but Sweeney’s cheap and phoney sense of superiority, that is, nothing at all.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS
    You could be onto something by

    ....sense of superiority....

     

    I'd add just a little bit of uncomfortable uncertainty and, related, nagging anxiety, even fear.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  162. Rosie says:
    @Cassandra
    Just the first few paragraphs motivate a simple application of logic, Ron: from whence came the designer, and from whence came its designer, and ... You get the idea? It's called infinite regression, or "Turtles all the way down.".

    And secondly, an appeal to Occam's Razor - "Don't mulitply entities unnecessarily.".

    Just the first few paragraphs motivate a simple application of logic, Ron: from whence came the designer, and from whence came its designer, and … You get the idea? It’s called infinite regression, or “Turtles all the way down.”.

    Here again is the totally unwarranted assumption that any explanation that leads to further questions must therefore be incorrect, however implausible may be the only logical alternative(s).

    And secondly, an appeal to Occam’s Razor – “Don’t mulitply entities unnecessarily.”

    .

    You’re begging the question.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  163. @utu
    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. - Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.

    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. – Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.

    Those are failures of mathematical systems. That a square can be made having the same area as a circle is intutively obvious, since area is finite.

    Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what? You can’t tune a piano with a garden hose. No big deal — there are other ways.

    Read More
    • Replies: @joeblogs
    "Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what?"
    I learnt how to do that at 12; did I miss your point or something - surely you are not serious?
    , @utu
    You are an idiot. You do not understand the structure of mathematical theory. You do not understand what is the knowledge system in general. Apparently no clue about epistemology. This explains why you have unquestionable faith and loyalty in the theory of evolution. You do not know how to ask questions. You are a sleepwalker, a regular yahoo.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  164. Anon[257] • Disclaimer says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    The other reason for widespread hatred of religious people: You don’t like standards.
     
    With every post, you descend further into virulent religious bigotry, and incrementally more tedious, more screechy, more profoundly steeped in ignorance and prejudice. Your religion is stupid, your "science" is that of morons, and your insistence on denying free speech, free religion and free opinion is contemptible in the extreme.

    You are Ignored.

    Rosie’s comments make perfect sense to me and if anyone is a bigot it’s you.

    It’s weird that anyone gets so passionate about evolution and intelligent design. We’ll never know and it doesn’t matter anyway.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Rosie’s comments make perfect sense to me and if anyone is a bigot it’s you.
     
    Some do, of course. Read all of them, then you'll see. Maybe. You are a bit erratic, and not particularly well-educated. Yes, it shows.

    It’s weird that anyone gets so passionate about evolution and intelligent design. We’ll never know and it doesn’t matter anyway.
     
    This is passion? That ID-think has been debunked in every arena and theory for 1800 years? Yet, Xtians and other dimwits rant and rave that logic is not logic, fact is not fact, and reality is not reality?

    The percentage of participants who are convinced of ID is rather disappointing. But, American education has been stupidified since 1980, so no big surprise.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  165. @HallParvey
    In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Before that, he created evolution. Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. And several other things not mentioned in the written record.
    The universe is just an experiment to see what .....evolves.

    Church is a good place to hang out, if you're male. It's where most of the socially acceptable females are. And some who are not.

    Church is a good place to hang out, if you’re male. It’s where most of the socially acceptable females are. And some who are not.

    I’ve never encountered a churchy female I could live with. That cognitive rigidity, however minuscule in appearance, stopped me every time.

    But, no problem, ya know? There’s plenty of non-churchy women in the world.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  166. Rosie says:

    I actually find evolution to be more intuitive, and consistent with Occam’s Razor, than any type of creationism.

    Conflicts of intuition are the raison d’etre of all philosophical speculation. The solution is an appeal to common authority, that is, the evidence of our sense and any reasonable conclusions that follow from them. We ordinary refer to this by the term “science.” Atheists have a very disagreeable habit of appealing to science as the only legitimate authority, then narrowly defining it such that any inferences that they don’t are labeled “unscientific” and therefore a priori inadmissible.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS
    Pretty much.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  167. @Mr. Hack
    Fred isn't making a case for a creator, but just pointing out the absurdity of the evolutionist's mantle:

    you would have to conclude that something was going on that you did not understand.
     
    And thus far those that think that they've unraveled the secrets of life's origins are duping themelselves and others:

    We may be too full of ourselves.
     
    At the very least, you'd have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day:

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.

    More specifically, they found out that 9 out of 10 animal species on the planet came to being at the same time as humans did some 100,000 to 200,000 years ago.

     

    https://www.themaven.net/theresurgent/contributors/so-apparently-darwin-was-wrong-really-really-wrong-6V-HdjsskUeoBJcvPxOTGg/

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks, man. It was a slow morning. But, you’re Ignored.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    WTH are laughing about anyway? You don't like the conclusions made about the study? If you have other conclusions, then by all means present them.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  168. @Mike From Jersey
    I was taught Darwinian Evolution in a private (indeed a religious) high school and I believed it. Later on in college while studying immunology - with its complex multiple feed back loops - I started to doubt that such a system could have arisen by random mutations. I still feel that way today and believe that actual reason for evolution as shown in the fossil record is a great unexplained mystery. Science does itself a disservice by castigating dissenters to Darwinian orthodoxy.

    Indications exist that species change is not at random, but by purpose.
    Genetic material recording experiences.
    And ‘mystery’, there is simply quite a lot we do not yet know.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mike From Jersey
    I have read some of that. There was a study done at Harvard which indicated the evolutionary responses to environmental stressors where not random at all but rather "directional" - at least in lower lifeforms. Mutations seemed to be directed in a way to deal with environmental stressors. But my understanding is that "genetic recording" as an explanation is more theoretical than proven.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  169. @MikeatMikedotMike
    I'll give you this - you actually made the troll go back under his bridge. Well done.

    I’ll give you this – you actually made the troll go back under his bridge. Well done.

    Oh, Mikey, you barefoot little boy with cheeks of tan, not so. Rosie is stupid, and so are you. I tire quickly of stupid people.

    Read More
    • Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike
    Silly insults don't actually hide the fact that you have no argument, they amplify it.

    If I were getting taken to the woodshed as often as you are, I might start blocking other commenters at your rate.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  170. nickels says:

    It gets even more interesting when one realizes the genome is decaying, and has been decaying since the time of creation.

    This explains why the Greeks and the Greek language were far more advanced than moderns and the abomination of English.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  171. @JimH
    "demonstrate the existence of a creator without the previous assumption there must be one"

    The logical necessity of a creator/prime mover was demonstrated by Aristotle, already. It was a conclusion, not an assumption.

    The logical necessity of a creator/prime mover was demonstrated by Aristotle, already.

    Aristotle? Are you serious? Try Hume, jimbo.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mulegino1
    I'll stick with Aristotle and his metaphysics, since the causal order is something that is manifest throughout nature, and particularly in living organisms. An acorn is not a full grown oak in any quantifiable sense, but contains all the information (formal cause) necessary to act upon the soil, the nutrients therein and guide the process of becoming a mature oak (final cause).

    The final and formal causes are not observable in any empirical sense, but are absolutely manifest in the effects they produce. They represent an insurmountable hurdle to the now outdated- but still orthodox- materialist and reductionist world view, which is still attached to the gross superstitions which arose from the Newtonian-Cartesian scientific paradigm of a mechanical universe of blind mechanism working upon dead res extensa and observed only by bifurcated res cogitans .

    It was inevitable that such a paradigm would descend to the very crude materialism of Fuerbach, Marx, Huxley, Spencer and Darwin. After all, Darwin did not develop his ideas in a vacuum. From his very sound ideas with respect to the variation within species- micro-evolution- he extrapolated wildly due to the reigning superstitions of his philosophical epoch, such as the grossly materialistic concept of bathybios and the nonsensical Spencerian notion of endless linear progress and the tautology of "survival of the fittest."

    The old scientific paradigm which relied upon the pseudo-religion of Darwinism is passing away.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  172. @MikeatMikedotMike
    "Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all."

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.

    “Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.”

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.

    Oh, my goodness. You don’t know shit, yet you prattle it. As ignorant and vapor-minded as the day is long. You should leave your current boyfriend and move in with Rosie. Just think of it … rising at dawn on Sunday, carefully tossing out the corn shucks for the Sun Circle. Chanting verses from the Book of Common Prayer. Lashing a few careless slaves who spilled grain. Beating a few naughty children.

    Heaven.

    You’re Ignored. Too stupid.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  173. joeblogs says:
    @Mr. Hack
    Fred isn't making a case for a creator, but just pointing out the absurdity of the evolutionist's mantle:

    you would have to conclude that something was going on that you did not understand.
     
    And thus far those that think that they've unraveled the secrets of life's origins are duping themelselves and others:

    We may be too full of ourselves.
     
    At the very least, you'd have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day:

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.

    More specifically, they found out that 9 out of 10 animal species on the planet came to being at the same time as humans did some 100,000 to 200,000 years ago.

     

    https://www.themaven.net/theresurgent/contributors/so-apparently-darwin-was-wrong-really-really-wrong-6V-HdjsskUeoBJcvPxOTGg/

    “At the very least, you’d have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day”
    How does this disprove Darwin?
    Have you not read the account of Noah’s Ark? I believe the Ark came from somewhat further away.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    How does this disprove Darwin? The answer to your question is clearly given in the article that I've cited. Did you read it:

    If 90% of creatures all originated at roughly the same moment in history, there simply isn’t time for amphibians to slowly become reptiles, then birds, and then mammals. And notice the evidence demonstrates that these animals are coming into existence at the same time as man. None of this remotely fits the Darwinian model. Meaning, the assumptions upon which all of modern biology have been constructed are faulty. Down goes Darwin.
     
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  174. @Anon
    Rosie’s comments make perfect sense to me and if anyone is a bigot it’s you.

    It’s weird that anyone gets so passionate about evolution and intelligent design. We’ll never know and it doesn’t matter anyway.

    Rosie’s comments make perfect sense to me and if anyone is a bigot it’s you.

    Some do, of course. Read all of them, then you’ll see. Maybe. You are a bit erratic, and not particularly well-educated. Yes, it shows.

    It’s weird that anyone gets so passionate about evolution and intelligent design. We’ll never know and it doesn’t matter anyway.

    This is passion? That ID-think has been debunked in every arena and theory for 1800 years? Yet, Xtians and other dimwits rant and rave that logic is not logic, fact is not fact, and reality is not reality?

    The percentage of participants who are convinced of ID is rather disappointing. But, American education has been stupidified since 1980, so no big surprise.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  175. joeblogs says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. – Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.
     
    Those are failures of mathematical systems. That a square can be made having the same area as a circle is intutively obvious, since area is finite.

    Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what? You can't tune a piano with a garden hose. No big deal -- there are other ways.

    “Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what?”
    I learnt how to do that at 12; did I miss your point or something – surely you are not serious?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    “Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what?”
    I learnt how to do that at 12; did I miss your point or something – surely you are not serious?

     

    Sorry -- too assumptive. "Squaring the circle" is a very old brain-teaser from Euclidean geometry requiring creation of a square having the same area as a circle, using only straight edge and compass.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squaring_the_circle
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  176. @Dillon Sweeny

    I’ll give you this – you actually made the troll go back under his bridge. Well done.
     
    Oh, Mikey, you barefoot little boy with cheeks of tan, not so. Rosie is stupid, and so are you. I tire quickly of stupid people.

    Silly insults don’t actually hide the fact that you have no argument, they amplify it.

    If I were getting taken to the woodshed as often as you are, I might start blocking other commenters at your rate.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  177. utu says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Also the fact that pi is an irrational number. – Being just irrational would not necessarily preclude squaring the circle. Making Pi transcendental made squaring the circle impossible.
     
    Those are failures of mathematical systems. That a square can be made having the same area as a circle is intutively obvious, since area is finite.

    Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what? You can't tune a piano with a garden hose. No big deal -- there are other ways.

    You are an idiot. You do not understand the structure of mathematical theory. You do not understand what is the knowledge system in general. Apparently no clue about epistemology. This explains why you have unquestionable faith and loyalty in the theory of evolution. You do not know how to ask questions. You are a sleepwalker, a regular yahoo.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    You do not understand the structure of mathematical theory.
     
    Which one? Hilbert gave me a lot of trouble; I admit it.

    You do not understand what is the knowledge system in general.
     
    "the" knowledge system? There's just one? Or, uh-oh, is English working its mad magic on your pointy head ... again?

    Apparently no clue about epistemology.
     
    Um, no. Epistemology I am fairly handy with. Built a schooner with it last summer.

    This explains why you have unquestionable faith and loyalty in the theory of evolution.
     
    It remains the best explanation and description. Darn, huh? Hey, can I send you a new bottle of absinthe? I think you need it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  178. AaronB says:

    Good stuff, Fred :)

    That’s why the IQ debates are so hilarious – the smartest human is nothing, a joke, as the smartest hamster is still a hamster.

    And the world really is stranger than we can imagine, and religious is only an attempt to symbolically grapple with this strangeness.

    Most people are idiots – even smart people, and can’t see two inches in front of their face.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    ....the world really is stranger than we can imagine, and religious is only an attempt to symbolically grapple with this strangeness.

    Most people are idiots – even smart people, and can’t see two inches in front of their face.
     
    Yup.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  179. There are so many facts that do not fit “Intelligent design” idea that it’s impossible to squeeze them all even into an article, let alone a comment. Any biochemist or cell biologist doing protein mutagenesis can tell you that the traces of evolution are all over our genes and the genes of all other living creatures. However, I will mention only one fact: our ribosomes (machines that make proteins in cells according to messenger RNA code) are larger and much slower than bacterial ones. In fact, they are just as bad as archaebacterial ribosomes. Yet the mitochondria in our cells (plus chloroplasts in plant cells) have those better faster bacterial ribosomes, even though most proteins needed to build them are encoded by the cell genome (both mitochondria and chloroplasts have their own genomes, which are circular, just like the bacterial ones, but much smaller). Yet our cells keep using those big slow ribosomes… Intelligent design cannot explain this, whereas the hypothesis that eukaryotic cells appeared as a symbiosis of anaerobic archaebacteria (from which we inherited the bulk of the cell, including defective ribosomes) with aerobic bacteria that evolved into mitochondria and chloroplasts that retained their good ribosomes, explains it intuitively.

    On a lighter note, I’ve heard that George W. Bush is the best argument against intelligent design: nobody intelligent would ever design that.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  180. Anon[277] • Disclaimer says:

    ID has nothing to do with “creationism” or even religion. As GB Shaw, Colin Wilson, Alan Watts, and even the early Daniel Dennett knew: No rational person would decide that random mutation could account for evolution; why would you assume that the works of Shakespeare MUST HAVE BEEN typed by monkeys rather simply assuming a human author? Or that a 747 MUST HAVE randomly come together, rather than being built by burly men in Seattle.

    The only thing that makes this the LEAST implausible hypothesis is that materialism rules out intelligence as IMPOSSIBLE; as Sherlock Holmes said, once you rule out the impossible, what remains, HOWEVER UNLIKELY, must be true.

    To invert Laplace, not being a practicing scientist committed by the guild rules to materialism, I have no need for the materialist hypothesis.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    ID has nothing to do with “creationism” or even religion.
     
    WTF??? If the ID Design Manager does not CREATE "life", then just what the hell happens? The ID Guy whomps out Adam and Eve, and it's not "creation"??? What ARE you smoking?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  181. @Si1ver1ock
    Genetic Programming creates programs. Typically, the program is represented as a tree and sub-trees are swapped and mutated to create new programs much like viruses mutate. They are then handed to an evaluation operator and ranked. Poorly performing programs are culled and superior programs are mated to produce new offspring. Mutation operators are applied and another generation is started.

    Koza used to lead the field using his Linux clusters. He probably still has the definitive textbook on the subject. The original programs were in Lisp. Now there are several libraries in C++. I use OpenBeagle. But I should probably upgrade to Fast OpenBeagle, except I have hand optimized code for the old library.


    https://www.cs.montana.edu/~bwall/cs580/introduction_to_gp.pdf

    https://github.com/sepastian/open-beagle-fast-gp

    I’m not going to go into in depth, but you haven’t defined God. Also, you are creating an imprecise distinction between life (also not defined) and intelligent life (two undefined terms combined.)

    Try working out some definitions.

    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.

    The evaluation function is given Darwin’s dictum “survival of the fittest.”

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.
     
    There is your error, or most of it.

    The basic premise of evolution is that it achieve species survival. It's minimalist. A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition, if 10 bugs continue to exist and reproduce sufficiently to maintain a population of 10. Evolution is NOT anti-entropic, as process cannot be anti-entropic. Evolution has no direction -- it ONLY operates to achieve survival. Evolutionary success is solely determined by reproductive success. "Organizational complexity" is just bullshit, and I'll leave it at that.

    Go do some reading. Educate yourself, as you are slinging nothing but corned-beef hash for now.
    , @Dillon Sweeny

    The evaluation function is given Darwin’s dictum “survival of the fittest.”
     
    A poor choice of words on Chuck's part. More correct is "survival of the fit". If they survive, and reproduce, they have achieved evolutionary success. It's a damn low bar, seeing as how insects are the most successful kingdom.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  182. Bronson says:

    People who believe in Evolution’s “random creation of life” either a) have very little information on what it actually takes to be “alive” from one moment to the next (biochemistry, physiology), b) have never actually built any complex systems themselves – i.e. they have no idea how a well-functioning system requires extensive design and thought, or c) can’t think past their conditioning – and their conditioning has told them that they’re “smart” and know lots of “facts.”

    When you fully appreciate the massive complexity of the operations of a single cell – and all the variations thereof – the idea that all of that complexity and balance happened *by accident* is silly. A simple way to demonstrate this is to ponder this question: What is the likelihood that you would be walking in the forest in the Fall, and you come upon a series of perfectly identical Aspen leaves lying on the ground that spell out in perfect English, “Hello, human! Welcome to the forest! We welcome you and hope you enjoy your stay!” Now, what is the possibility that you have that happen, say, 500 times in the same forest – all in a neat row? Even in a million years of Falls in all the forests of the Earth? Not likely? The biochemistry – and the intricate order – of a cell is dramatically more complex than this, yet the “Evolution Pundits” will tell you that all that precision, balance, and order is “just a crazy random event.” I remember sitting in one of my graduate-level biochemistry classes looking at an illustration of an enzyme – a massive molecule with a specific function – and thinking, “That’s an accident?” An enzyme is a chemical “machine” that, seemingly, has a mind of it’s own – it performs it’s highly specific, targeted functions without any apparent external input. Beyond this, it can only exist in a very narrow pH range – go to either side of 7.0, and the enzyme “denatures” and ceases to function – it has a very, very specific functional envelope. How likely is it that this enzyme – this highly complex molecular machine – which might be necessary for the life of some living entity …. is an accident? Additionally, what about things like the Bicarbonate buffer in our blood? Without this buffer system, it would be relatively easy to die of acidosis/alkylosis simply by breathing too often – or not often enough – by just a few breaths a minute (and don’t even think about becoming physically exerted).

    Evolution has been shown to be absolutely valid when it comes to *adaptation* within a species … but inter-species differentiation is simply ridiculous. If we “evolved” from fish … why do we still have fish? On one side, we’re told that “Evolution happens reeeeaaaallll sloooow” … so, if that’s the case, we should have some great fossil records showing the slow, progressive, “evolution” of one species to the next … but we don’t …. and where are all of those “half-way between” creatures? On the other side, we’re told “Evolution happens in random jumps!” … so if that’s the case, where are all the random new species we would expect to see randomly popping up all over the place (and at a pretty crazy pace)? Why does nature not allow cross-breeding even among very similar species? Oh, you can get offspring, but usually nothing viable – even between creatures as similar as a tiger and a lion (Liger) or a horse and a donkey (mule).

    I’m not sold on Creation – at least not in the traditional sense – but the THEORY of Evolution – or what it’s been perverted into today (i.e. Evolution as Fact) – is so full of holes I can’t believe that a truly intelligent person would consider it a valid theory. ID at least admits that there are things we just don’t know.

    For people who are still seeking Truth via gathering of possibilities, you might find William Bramley’s book “The Gods of Eden” an interesting read.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    If we “evolved” from fish … why do we still have fish?
     
    Because there's still water for fish to swim in, and food for them to eat. Why on EARTH -- you incompetent IDIOT -- would fish die off just because one fish births a mutation that's another species?
    , @peterAUS
    Good post.

    Especially:

    ....can’t think past their conditioning – and their conditioning has told them that they’re “smart” and know lots of “facts.”
     
    and

    .....the THEORY of Evolution – or what it’s been perverted into today (i.e. Evolution as Fact) – is so full of holes I can’t believe that a truly intelligent person would consider it a valid theory. ID at least admits that there are things we just don’t know.
     
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  183. Fred,

    Way to launch a bomb on a Friday morning.

    As a philosopher who has wrestled with this question, I conclude that our field of vision is an appearance to our mind just like sensation and sound, which also exist only in our mind and do not exist in an objective space-time. There is no objective space-time. As Kant said, space and time are forms of our understanding.

    Instead, everything is life, spirit, and mind. Nothing in your visual field creates or causes anything. Instead, life-spirit-mind is “causing” your life experiences of space, time, feeling, and thinking. So yes, intelligent design (by life-spirit-mind) is behind the appearances we experience – sensation, sound, vision. No life-spirit-mind comes from matter and energy, a la Frankenstein. Instead, the appearances of matter and energy in space and time are coming from life.

    I am not referring to any particular religious dogma. Just accepting that life-spirit-mind is the basis our our existence, not an objective space-time containing matter and energy. Science is a method for prediction and engineering. The ability to predict and engineer to precise measurements is always a focused and hence limited endeavor which does not consider the whole of our existence with any reasonable conceptual model. There is by definition no world view implied in science or common sense, only a local (focused) model of a small part, for a particular purpose.

    Of course, what truly exists is beyond our comprehension. But we can model it and reason about it, and feel it.

    flashlight joe

    Read More
    • Replies: @nickels
    I like this way of looking at things. One book in my queue states that solipsism (something of the sort you put forth) is the pinnacle of reason and empirical thought:


    Solipsism is the ultimate empirical theory of human existence. It is the metaphysical position that there is only one self-conscious person in the universe, i.e., the present selfconscious being reading these paragraphs. A weaker version is the position that one can know for certain that there is only one conscious person in the universe, oneself. The present study is the only book-length examination of solipsism. It treats the origin of solipsism in the works of St. Augustine and René Descartes as well as all serious attempts to refute the thesis of solipsism. Such attempts were made primarily by British empiricists, specifically by George Santayana. Santayana concludes that solipsism cannot be refuted. Watson also concludes that solipsism cannot be refuted. He examines attempts by Descartes, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, British Idealists, Logical Positivists, Sense Datum Philosophers, and in particular Nelson Goodman and Gilbert Ryle (they are just pathetic). The spector haunting Modern Philosophy is not the Ghost in the Machine; it is solipsism. Watson argues that the foundations of Western Philosophy are solipsistic, and that all the major figures recognize this and know that solipsism cannot be refuted, but nevertheless continue by ignoring it, by pretending that it cannot be taken seriously, by offering inadequate solutions, and by treating solipsism as a joke. Watson’s book is the only study of solipsism by a professional philosopher, other than Santayana, in which solipsism is taken seriously as a threat to Modern Philosophy

     

    https://www.amazon.com/Solipsism-Ultimate-Empirical-Theory-Existence/dp/1587315890
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  184. @jilles dykstra
    Indications exist that species change is not at random, but by purpose.
    Genetic material recording experiences.
    And 'mystery', there is simply quite a lot we do not yet know.

    I have read some of that. There was a study done at Harvard which indicated the evolutionary responses to environmental stressors where not random at all but rather “directional” – at least in lower lifeforms. Mutations seemed to be directed in a way to deal with environmental stressors. But my understanding is that “genetic recording” as an explanation is more theoretical than proven.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  185. anonymous[239] • Disclaimer says:
    @Isabella
    Agree Three Cranes. Fred is wasting his time - although I hope he had fun writing it.

    After working and lecturing in Biology, genetics, biochem. I used to write things like Fred - having read and thought extensively about a number of unexplained and, by modern thinking and knowledge, unexplainable things. Origin of the Species by Darwin isn't Science. It's gossip "[I have a friend who is very reliable who informs me that down in Kent there is a man who ....... etc"]. I imagine trying to submit a paper to "Molecular and General Genetics" like that.

    In the end, you have to, if you have an open questioning mind that does what science says it must, and look for evidence, realise the the entire of modern biology has got everything wrong.
    They did what human kind so often does - found something new [i.e. genes and inheritability] and went insane, thinking it the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.
    Well, it aint.

    In fact, most have gone quiet since the Human Genome Project. I remember watching this with wry amusement, thinking "what are you all going to do when this proves your idiotic "theory" wrong? When they discovered that we dont have enough genes to account for all the proteins we make, there was a stunned silence. Those who never did accept the One gene - one protein, one way direction for everything theory, said nothing, out of kindness.

    Epigenetics came from this. Given that genes in fact explain little, and certainly not Darwinianism it was clear they were going to have to look for something else linear, materialistic and mechanistic to holdup their "Theory of Evolution".

    But I long ago gave up writing about it all. Certainly on social media sites, AltMed sites, with few other scientists [except for the odd, very young male student, arrogant and rude]. No-one can understand you Fred, because they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. They know only what they were taught, and they cling to that like glue to a blanket. They offer stupid arguments, they are so often rude, abusive and mocking. And then one day, you just give up on them.
    No wonder the world is in the state it is now. I just love reading about Dynastic and pre - Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.

    or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated.

    What alternative explanations would you like to see investigated?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  186. Mulegino1 says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    The logical necessity of a creator/prime mover was demonstrated by Aristotle, already.
     
    Aristotle? Are you serious? Try Hume, jimbo.

    I’ll stick with Aristotle and his metaphysics, since the causal order is something that is manifest throughout nature, and particularly in living organisms. An acorn is not a full grown oak in any quantifiable sense, but contains all the information (formal cause) necessary to act upon the soil, the nutrients therein and guide the process of becoming a mature oak (final cause).

    The final and formal causes are not observable in any empirical sense, but are absolutely manifest in the effects they produce. They represent an insurmountable hurdle to the now outdated- but still orthodox- materialist and reductionist world view, which is still attached to the gross superstitions which arose from the Newtonian-Cartesian scientific paradigm of a mechanical universe of blind mechanism working upon dead res extensa and observed only by bifurcated res cogitans .

    It was inevitable that such a paradigm would descend to the very crude materialism of Fuerbach, Marx, Huxley, Spencer and Darwin. After all, Darwin did not develop his ideas in a vacuum. From his very sound ideas with respect to the variation within species- micro-evolution- he extrapolated wildly due to the reigning superstitions of his philosophical epoch, such as the grossly materialistic concept of bathybios and the nonsensical Spencerian notion of endless linear progress and the tautology of “survival of the fittest.”

    The old scientific paradigm which relied upon the pseudo-religion of Darwinism is passing away.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    I’ll stick with Aristotle and his metaphysics
     
    Be my guest. You are wrong.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  187. anonymous[239] • Disclaimer says:

    Evolution could be easily falsified by finding a species wildly out of place in the fossil record compared to where you’d expect to find it on an evolutionary family tree. If you have a creator creating species at will — whenever and wherever he so desires (only to kill them off later for whatever reason), then such occurrences should be exceedingly common in the fossil record. Why can’t such fossils be found?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  188. anonymous[239] • Disclaimer says:

    As of yet, I don’t quite understand the creationist argument/mindset. Species can never evolve into different species.. Ok, here’s a thought: there are many discovered species just within the order of Crocodilia, as well as among their “purported” ancestors, spaning well over 200 million years. Is the ID argument saying that the creator was periodically popping slightly altered species of the same general morphology into existence over this span of time?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Is the ID argument saying that the creator was periodically popping slightly altered species of the same general morphology into existence over this span of time?
     
    No, more like genetic information that might alter species, so far as I understand it.

    This short video is a decent statement of the case in brief.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?ebc=ANyPxKrpQorRmxHdgOFpX0V4gsA8RdrA7OUjd5BtwbV0InOXPc7UjKgJ-jq3WFQCNtZCmTsbQxb6hxetj495W5sNebnMfSHy2Q&time_continue=4&v=aA-FcnLsF1g
    , @nickels
    ID is purposefully reduced to a minimum space of argument, so as not to complicate the picture and unnecessarily create other baggage that needs to be proved.

    It does not offer, in itself, an alternate cosmology.

    It simply states that life is more probably designed in some unspecified manner.

    From the springboard of ID many other theories can diverge and attempt explanations of your paradox, but ID does not address it.

    But consider this. Why would we put the burden on a creator to manufacture EVERY species under a completely different paradigm? Does not every creator of any thing created use design patterns?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  189. Jeff77450 says:

    FR, a very interesting read. Thank you. I so very much want there to be more to life than scraping together ~1800 calories each day, evading lions, “urban youths” and other threats, and having a couple of brats who adore you until age ~12, despise you until age ~25 and then forget about you until the reading of the will; with an achingly few moments of joy, triumph and satisfaction thrown in.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  190. @joeblogs
    "Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what?"
    I learnt how to do that at 12; did I miss your point or something - surely you are not serious?

    “Constructing the square with straight edge and compass is not possible, but so what?”
    I learnt how to do that at 12; did I miss your point or something – surely you are not serious?

    Sorry — too assumptive. “Squaring the circle” is a very old brain-teaser from Euclidean geometry requiring creation of a square having the same area as a circle, using only straight edge and compass.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squaring_the_circle

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  191. @Mulegino1
    I'll stick with Aristotle and his metaphysics, since the causal order is something that is manifest throughout nature, and particularly in living organisms. An acorn is not a full grown oak in any quantifiable sense, but contains all the information (formal cause) necessary to act upon the soil, the nutrients therein and guide the process of becoming a mature oak (final cause).

    The final and formal causes are not observable in any empirical sense, but are absolutely manifest in the effects they produce. They represent an insurmountable hurdle to the now outdated- but still orthodox- materialist and reductionist world view, which is still attached to the gross superstitions which arose from the Newtonian-Cartesian scientific paradigm of a mechanical universe of blind mechanism working upon dead res extensa and observed only by bifurcated res cogitans .

    It was inevitable that such a paradigm would descend to the very crude materialism of Fuerbach, Marx, Huxley, Spencer and Darwin. After all, Darwin did not develop his ideas in a vacuum. From his very sound ideas with respect to the variation within species- micro-evolution- he extrapolated wildly due to the reigning superstitions of his philosophical epoch, such as the grossly materialistic concept of bathybios and the nonsensical Spencerian notion of endless linear progress and the tautology of "survival of the fittest."

    The old scientific paradigm which relied upon the pseudo-religion of Darwinism is passing away.

    I’ll stick with Aristotle and his metaphysics

    Be my guest. You are wrong.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Beefcake the Mighty
    Well, I guess that settles that.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  192. @Dillon Sweeny

    I repeat- I don’t think ID is a fruitful way to approach life. But, neo-Darwinian evolutionary synthesis has simply too many holes & so little explanatory power in it that it cannot qualify as a genuine science. Even Everett’s many worlds interpretation or Bohmian mechanics are more scientific.
     
    So what, Bardo? Were Galileo's writings as complete as modern astrophysics?

    Evolution theory is a better explanation than ID. And some evolutionary theory is better supported, more verifiable, more properly descriptive and explanatory than other evolution theory. Gee, has a situation like that never happened before? Do you heap scorn upon Newton because Dirac did it better?

    ID is crap -- it's hoo-hoo wind-in-the-willows-on-a-dark-night superstitious religion-based crap.

    Evolution is better. Not perfect, just better.

    Let’s be clear: ID is not a research program; it is, from methodological standpoint, nothing. I just happen to think it is basically a feeble variant of Platonism, and Platonism is, IMO, essentially- correct. Supraphysical metaphysics, some sort of panentheism, whether Greek, Chinese, Indian, Christian…is closer approximation to truth than materialism/physicalism in any garb, traditional or (post)modern.

    Platonists among mathematicians (Leibniz, Goedel, Grothendieck,..) are closer to reality than “materialists” or empiricists (Poincare, Hilbert,…).

    So, in my opinion, IDers are basically right, with regard to their fundamental world-view, unlike Darwinians who are, more or less, materialists & empiricists & whose underlying Weltanschauung is limited (not wrong, just partial). Anyway, ID has nothing to offer re investigation of nature. It is not even proto-scientific & I don’t see how it can be used in any empirical investigation of biology.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Let’s be clear: ID is not a research program; it is, from methodological standpoint, nothing. I just happen to think it is basically a feeble variant of Platonism, and Platonism is, IMO, essentially- correct.
     
    ID is a "feeble" variant of Platonism????? Are you daft? You cannot HAVE inferior variants in Platonic idealism, my good man. Not that it's a legitimate religion, but you are apostate if it was.

    Nor is Platonism correct -- it's blowing smoke, basically. Ideal Forms ... sheesh. What nonsense.
    , @peterAUS

    ...IDers are basically right, with regard to their fundamental world-view, unlike Darwinians who are, more or less, materialists & empiricists & whose underlying Weltanschauung is limited (not wrong, just partial).
     
    Sounds about right.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  193. Nick Diaz says:

    This article is so riddled with misconceptions and errors that trying to nit pick it would take too much of my time. So I will just summrize and the gist of the nonsense.

    First, life did not appear “spontaneously from sea water”. That is a semantic mischaracterization. Rather, amino acids that had been formed by the action of lightining striking ammonia and other organic acids, combined with nucleic acids inside a lipid bubble to form the first cell. Both lips and nucleic acids form from simple organic acids that form up in the atmosphere or come from meteors.

    Also, evolution gives the *illusion* of design. That comes from the unfathomable time scales involved, which are vastly greater than human imgaination can even grasp. Imagine the amount of time that has elapsed since Julius Caesar died, and then multiple that 500 X. That is a million years. Now, a billion years is a thousand times more, and life has been around for at least 3.7 billion years. A human being has an enormous amount of difficulty grasping the scale of time of a million years. A billion years is utterly unfathomable to the human mind. It has already been proven how a very complex structure, such as an eye for instance, can evolve from much simpler physiological structures.

    The same goes for DNA. Nucleic acids have an innate ability to catalyse amino acids to form proteins according to spatial alignments they take. This gives the illusion of “intelligent information”, when in reality it is just an easily explained chemical process.

    Intelligent design is BS. Even the Vatican does not take ID seriously. Literally 95% of everything that was ascribed to God or gods a mere 300 years ago is now explained by science. As soon as something is explained by science, theists switch their argument for the existence of God to something that science still can’t explain. That is knows as “God of the gaps”.

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can’t explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.

    The superstitious, anti-science tone of this article is exactly the kind of stuff that makes social and religious conservatives – there is a huge overlap between the two categories – seem like morons to people abe a high school education.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can’t explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.
     
    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the "God of the Gaps" is a fallacy.

    What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever.
     
    I can't speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn't exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can't say I'm losing any sleep over it, though.

    "I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”
    -Mark Twain
    , @Dillon Sweeny

    The superstitious, anti-science tone of this article is exactly the kind of stuff that makes social and religious conservatives – there is a huge overlap between the two categories – seem like morons to people above a high school education.
     
    No big deal. Old men, nearing death, dream of storybook ideals. Fred is just dabbling at the expense of the ... oh, never mind.

    Otherwise, your observations are correct.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  194. Mr. Hack says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    In a massive genetic study, senior research associate at the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University Mark Stoeckle and University of Basel geneticist David Thaler discovered that virtually 90 percent of all animals on Earth appeared at right around the same time.
     
    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks, man. It was a slow morning. But, you're Ignored.

    WTH are laughing about anyway? You don’t like the conclusions made about the study? If you have other conclusions, then by all means present them.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  195. @Si1ver1ock
    I'm not going to go into in depth, but you haven't defined God. Also, you are creating an imprecise distinction between life (also not defined) and intelligent life (two undefined terms combined.)


    Try working out some definitions.


    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.

    The evaluation function is given Darwin's dictum "survival of the fittest."

    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.

    There is your error, or most of it.

    The basic premise of evolution is that it achieve species survival. It’s minimalist. A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition, if 10 bugs continue to exist and reproduce sufficiently to maintain a population of 10. Evolution is NOT anti-entropic, as process cannot be anti-entropic. Evolution has no direction — it ONLY operates to achieve survival. Evolutionary success is solely determined by reproductive success. “Organizational complexity” is just bullshit, and I’ll leave it at that.

    Go do some reading. Educate yourself, as you are slinging nothing but corned-beef hash for now.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Si1ver1ock
    You are confusing the life of a single organism with the life of a species. A living organism is in itself anti-entropic, or self organizing.

    The species becomes "better organized" as it adapts to its environment. So that, as a species it has direction, from less adapted to better adapted.

    The book is:

    On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life

    It's been out a while now.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species

    , @Si1ver1ock

    A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition,
     
    The real world doesn't work "by definition." Your hypothetical 10 bugs could be wiped out by me stepping on all of them with one foot. That evolutionary strategy is brittle. Remember it is a competition between species.


    What happens when your 10 bugs meets a colony of a million army ants on the rampage?


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsfiUR0ZzLw
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  196. @Bronson
    People who believe in Evolution's "random creation of life" either a) have very little information on what it actually takes to be "alive" from one moment to the next (biochemistry, physiology), b) have never actually built any complex systems themselves - i.e. they have no idea how a well-functioning system requires extensive design and thought, or c) can't think past their conditioning - and their conditioning has told them that they're "smart" and know lots of "facts."

    When you fully appreciate the massive complexity of the operations of a single cell - and all the variations thereof - the idea that all of that complexity and balance happened *by accident* is silly. A simple way to demonstrate this is to ponder this question: What is the likelihood that you would be walking in the forest in the Fall, and you come upon a series of perfectly identical Aspen leaves lying on the ground that spell out in perfect English, "Hello, human! Welcome to the forest! We welcome you and hope you enjoy your stay!" Now, what is the possibility that you have that happen, say, 500 times in the same forest - all in a neat row? Even in a million years of Falls in all the forests of the Earth? Not likely? The biochemistry - and the intricate order - of a cell is dramatically more complex than this, yet the "Evolution Pundits" will tell you that all that precision, balance, and order is "just a crazy random event." I remember sitting in one of my graduate-level biochemistry classes looking at an illustration of an enzyme - a massive molecule with a specific function - and thinking, "That's an accident?" An enzyme is a chemical "machine" that, seemingly, has a mind of it's own - it performs it's highly specific, targeted functions without any apparent external input. Beyond this, it can only exist in a very narrow pH range - go to either side of 7.0, and the enzyme "denatures" and ceases to function - it has a very, very specific functional envelope. How likely is it that this enzyme - this highly complex molecular machine - which might be necessary for the life of some living entity .... is an accident? Additionally, what about things like the Bicarbonate buffer in our blood? Without this buffer system, it would be relatively easy to die of acidosis/alkylosis simply by breathing too often - or not often enough - by just a few breaths a minute (and don't even think about becoming physically exerted).

    Evolution has been shown to be absolutely valid when it comes to *adaptation* within a species ... but inter-species differentiation is simply ridiculous. If we "evolved" from fish ... why do we still have fish? On one side, we're told that "Evolution happens reeeeaaaallll sloooow" ... so, if that's the case, we should have some great fossil records showing the slow, progressive, "evolution" of one species to the next ... but we don't .... and where are all of those "half-way between" creatures? On the other side, we're told "Evolution happens in random jumps!" ... so if that's the case, where are all the random new species we would expect to see randomly popping up all over the place (and at a pretty crazy pace)? Why does nature not allow cross-breeding even among very similar species? Oh, you can get offspring, but usually nothing viable - even between creatures as similar as a tiger and a lion (Liger) or a horse and a donkey (mule).

    I'm not sold on Creation - at least not in the traditional sense - but the THEORY of Evolution - or what it's been perverted into today (i.e. Evolution as Fact) - is so full of holes I can't believe that a truly intelligent person would consider it a valid theory. ID at least admits that there are things we just don't know.

    For people who are still seeking Truth via gathering of possibilities, you might find William Bramley's book "The Gods of Eden" an interesting read.

    If we “evolved” from fish … why do we still have fish?

    Because there’s still water for fish to swim in, and food for them to eat. Why on EARTH — you incompetent IDIOT — would fish die off just because one fish births a mutation that’s another species?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  197. @Anon
    ID has nothing to do with "creationism" or even religion. As GB Shaw, Colin Wilson, Alan Watts, and even the early Daniel Dennett knew: No rational person would decide that random mutation could account for evolution; why would you assume that the works of Shakespeare MUST HAVE BEEN typed by monkeys rather simply assuming a human author? Or that a 747 MUST HAVE randomly come together, rather than being built by burly men in Seattle.

    The only thing that makes this the LEAST implausible hypothesis is that materialism rules out intelligence as IMPOSSIBLE; as Sherlock Holmes said, once you rule out the impossible, what remains, HOWEVER UNLIKELY, must be true.

    To invert Laplace, not being a practicing scientist committed by the guild rules to materialism, I have no need for the materialist hypothesis.

    ID has nothing to do with “creationism” or even religion.

    WTF??? If the ID Design Manager does not CREATE “life”, then just what the hell happens? The ID Guy whomps out Adam and Eve, and it’s not “creation”??? What ARE you smoking?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  198. Rosie says:

    Evolution could be easily falsified by finding a species wildly out of place in the fossil record compared to where you’d expect to find it on an evolutionary family tree.

    Not unless you assume a designer would create species wildly out of place in the fossil record. That would be a strange assumption, of course, since all life forms occupy a niche within a larger ecosystem.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  199. Mr. Hack says:
    @joeblogs
    "At the very least, you’d have to agree with him that Darwinism (still the accepted orthodoxy of the scientific establishment) is undergoing terrible assaults, day by day"
    How does this disprove Darwin?
    Have you not read the account of Noah's Ark? I believe the Ark came from somewhat further away.

    How does this disprove Darwin? The answer to your question is clearly given in the article that I’ve cited. Did you read it:

    If 90% of creatures all originated at roughly the same moment in history, there simply isn’t time for amphibians to slowly become reptiles, then birds, and then mammals. And notice the evidence demonstrates that these animals are coming into existence at the same time as man. None of this remotely fits the Darwinian model. Meaning, the assumptions upon which all of modern biology have been constructed are faulty. Down goes Darwin.

    Read More
    • Replies: @anonymous
    Yeah, you can trust the guys who think mammals evolved from birds.. They know what they're talking about...
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  200. JSM says:
    @Si1ver1ock
    There might actually be an answer to this question: Panspermia, life is everywhere.

    Life is everywhere on earth. They find it near volcanic vents under the ocean. In ancient lakes in Antarctica. Thousands of feet down drilling for oil. Everywhere.



    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panspermia

    Problem with panspermia is, it still doesn’t explain Fermi’s Paradox.

    Because, if life is everywhere, and intelligence is an inevitable occasional result,
    then that lands us squarely back on the question of Where IS everybody?

    Because, if the Universe is as old and as big as you say it is and if life is everywhere as you Panspermists suggest, and Earth is nothing special and intelligence is just simply an occasional accident of evolution that turns up here and there by random chance –

    – then the Universe should be teeming with evidence of technological civilizations.

    But we’ve looked and we just don’t SEE anybody!

    Ergo, Fermi’s Paradox: Where the hell IS everyone?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    – then the Universe should be teeming with evidence of technological civilizations.

    But we’ve looked and we just don’t SEE anybody!
     
    Why would the myriad of advanced technological civilizations you insist upon ... why would they feel obligated to make themselves visible to us?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  201. @utu
    You are an idiot. You do not understand the structure of mathematical theory. You do not understand what is the knowledge system in general. Apparently no clue about epistemology. This explains why you have unquestionable faith and loyalty in the theory of evolution. You do not know how to ask questions. You are a sleepwalker, a regular yahoo.

    You do not understand the structure of mathematical theory.

    Which one? Hilbert gave me a lot of trouble; I admit it.

    You do not understand what is the knowledge system in general.

    “the” knowledge system? There’s just one? Or, uh-oh, is English working its mad magic on your pointy head … again?

    Apparently no clue about epistemology.

    Um, no. Epistemology I am fairly handy with. Built a schooner with it last summer.

    This explains why you have unquestionable faith and loyalty in the theory of evolution.

    It remains the best explanation and description. Darn, huh? Hey, can I send you a new bottle of absinthe? I think you need it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  202. Rosie says:
    @anonymous
    As of yet, I don't quite understand the creationist argument/mindset. Species can never evolve into different species.. Ok, here's a thought: there are many discovered species just within the order of Crocodilia, as well as among their "purported" ancestors, spaning well over 200 million years. Is the ID argument saying that the creator was periodically popping slightly altered species of the same general morphology into existence over this span of time?

    Is the ID argument saying that the creator was periodically popping slightly altered species of the same general morphology into existence over this span of time?

    No, more like genetic information that might alter species, so far as I understand it.

    This short video is a decent statement of the case in brief.

    Read More
    • Replies: @anonymous

    No, more like genetic information that might alter species, so far as I understand it.
     
    So instead of species eventually evolving into different species, The Creator periodically changes species into different species (except for the ones He choses to kill off). Ok, thanks.

    This short video is a decent statement of the case in brief.

     

    I'd prefer that you link me to something real, not dumbed-down American tv programing tailor-made to appeal to idiots. Thanks
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  203. nickels says:
    @flashlight joe
    Fred,

    Way to launch a bomb on a Friday morning.

    As a philosopher who has wrestled with this question, I conclude that our field of vision is an appearance to our mind just like sensation and sound, which also exist only in our mind and do not exist in an objective space-time. There is no objective space-time. As Kant said, space and time are forms of our understanding.

    Instead, everything is life, spirit, and mind. Nothing in your visual field creates or causes anything. Instead, life-spirit-mind is "causing" your life experiences of space, time, feeling, and thinking. So yes, intelligent design (by life-spirit-mind) is behind the appearances we experience - sensation, sound, vision. No life-spirit-mind comes from matter and energy, a la Frankenstein. Instead, the appearances of matter and energy in space and time are coming from life.

    I am not referring to any particular religious dogma. Just accepting that life-spirit-mind is the basis our our existence, not an objective space-time containing matter and energy. Science is a method for prediction and engineering. The ability to predict and engineer to precise measurements is always a focused and hence limited endeavor which does not consider the whole of our existence with any reasonable conceptual model. There is by definition no world view implied in science or common sense, only a local (focused) model of a small part, for a particular purpose.

    Of course, what truly exists is beyond our comprehension. But we can model it and reason about it, and feel it.

    flashlight joe

    I like this way of looking at things. One book in my queue states that solipsism (something of the sort you put forth) is the pinnacle of reason and empirical thought:

    Solipsism is the ultimate empirical theory of human existence. It is the metaphysical position that there is only one self-conscious person in the universe, i.e., the present selfconscious being reading these paragraphs. A weaker version is the position that one can know for certain that there is only one conscious person in the universe, oneself. The present study is the only book-length examination of solipsism. It treats the origin of solipsism in the works of St. Augustine and René Descartes as well as all serious attempts to refute the thesis of solipsism. Such attempts were made primarily by British empiricists, specifically by George Santayana. Santayana concludes that solipsism cannot be refuted. Watson also concludes that solipsism cannot be refuted. He examines attempts by Descartes, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, British Idealists, Logical Positivists, Sense Datum Philosophers, and in particular Nelson Goodman and Gilbert Ryle (they are just pathetic). The spector haunting Modern Philosophy is not the Ghost in the Machine; it is solipsism. Watson argues that the foundations of Western Philosophy are solipsistic, and that all the major figures recognize this and know that solipsism cannot be refuted, but nevertheless continue by ignoring it, by pretending that it cannot be taken seriously, by offering inadequate solutions, and by treating solipsism as a joke. Watson’s book is the only study of solipsism by a professional philosopher, other than Santayana, in which solipsism is taken seriously as a threat to Modern Philosophy

    https://www.amazon.com/Solipsism-Ultimate-Empirical-Theory-Existence/dp/1587315890

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    The spector haunting Modern Philosophy is not the Ghost in the Machine; it is solipsism.
     
    I agree with this, though I haven't read the book. The antidote, as I have intimated elsewhere, is an indigenized quasi-Confucianism that rediscovers fraternity as a founding value of the modern West along with liberty and equality. Social life must be seen as the ultimate end of self-perfection, not a distraction from it, if the West is to recover its vitality.
    , @Bliss

    Solipsism is the ultimate empirical theory of human existence. It is the metaphysical position that there is only one self-conscious person in the universe
     
    And that sole self-conscious entity in the universe is God/Buddha-Nature/Atman etc. Who is the pure consciousness within us all.

    This has been the experience of many spiritual seekers throughout history. Including Jesus: I am in the Father, and the Father is in me.

    And Rumi:

    I searched for God and found only myself
    I searched for myself and found only God
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  204. @Si1ver1ock
    I'm not going to go into in depth, but you haven't defined God. Also, you are creating an imprecise distinction between life (also not defined) and intelligent life (two undefined terms combined.)


    Try working out some definitions.


    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.

    The evaluation function is given Darwin's dictum "survival of the fittest."

    The evaluation function is given Darwin’s dictum “survival of the fittest.”

    A poor choice of words on Chuck’s part. More correct is “survival of the fit”. If they survive, and reproduce, they have achieved evolutionary success. It’s a damn low bar, seeing as how insects are the most successful kingdom.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Si1ver1ock

    insects are the most successful kingdom.
     
    Fungi and Bacteria are the most successful kingdoms.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fungus

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bacteria
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  205. nickels says:
    @anonymous
    As of yet, I don't quite understand the creationist argument/mindset. Species can never evolve into different species.. Ok, here's a thought: there are many discovered species just within the order of Crocodilia, as well as among their "purported" ancestors, spaning well over 200 million years. Is the ID argument saying that the creator was periodically popping slightly altered species of the same general morphology into existence over this span of time?

    ID is purposefully reduced to a minimum space of argument, so as not to complicate the picture and unnecessarily create other baggage that needs to be proved.

    It does not offer, in itself, an alternate cosmology.

    It simply states that life is more probably designed in some unspecified manner.

    From the springboard of ID many other theories can diverge and attempt explanations of your paradox, but ID does not address it.

    But consider this. Why would we put the burden on a creator to manufacture EVERY species under a completely different paradigm? Does not every creator of any thing created use design patterns?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  206. @Bardon Kaldian
    Let's be clear: ID is not a research program; it is, from methodological standpoint, nothing. I just happen to think it is basically a feeble variant of Platonism, and Platonism is, IMO, essentially- correct. Supraphysical metaphysics, some sort of panentheism, whether Greek, Chinese, Indian, Christian...is closer approximation to truth than materialism/physicalism in any garb, traditional or (post)modern.

    Platonists among mathematicians (Leibniz, Goedel, Grothendieck,..) are closer to reality than "materialists" or empiricists (Poincare, Hilbert,...).

    So, in my opinion, IDers are basically right, with regard to their fundamental world-view, unlike Darwinians who are, more or less, materialists & empiricists & whose underlying Weltanschauung is limited (not wrong, just partial). Anyway, ID has nothing to offer re investigation of nature. It is not even proto-scientific & I don't see how it can be used in any empirical investigation of biology.

    Let’s be clear: ID is not a research program; it is, from methodological standpoint, nothing. I just happen to think it is basically a feeble variant of Platonism, and Platonism is, IMO, essentially- correct.

    ID is a “feeble” variant of Platonism????? Are you daft? You cannot HAVE inferior variants in Platonic idealism, my good man. Not that it’s a legitimate religion, but you are apostate if it was.

    Nor is Platonism correct — it’s blowing smoke, basically. Ideal Forms … sheesh. What nonsense.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  207. Rosie says:
    @Nick Diaz
    This article is so riddled with misconceptions and errors that trying to nit pick it would take too much of my time. So I will just summrize and the gist of the nonsense.

    First, life did not appear "spontaneously from sea water". That is a semantic mischaracterization. Rather, amino acids that had been formed by the action of lightining striking ammonia and other organic acids, combined with nucleic acids inside a lipid bubble to form the first cell. Both lips and nucleic acids form from simple organic acids that form up in the atmosphere or come from meteors.

    Also, evolution gives the *illusion* of design. That comes from the unfathomable time scales involved, which are vastly greater than human imgaination can even grasp. Imagine the amount of time that has elapsed since Julius Caesar died, and then multiple that 500 X. That is a million years. Now, a billion years is a thousand times more, and life has been around for at least 3.7 billion years. A human being has an enormous amount of difficulty grasping the scale of time of a million years. A billion years is utterly unfathomable to the human mind. It has already been proven how a very complex structure, such as an eye for instance, can evolve from much simpler physiological structures.

    The same goes for DNA. Nucleic acids have an innate ability to catalyse amino acids to form proteins according to spatial alignments they take. This gives the illusion of "intelligent information", when in reality it is just an easily explained chemical process.

    Intelligent design is BS. Even the Vatican does not take ID seriously. Literally 95% of everything that was ascribed to God or gods a mere 300 years ago is now explained by science. As soon as something is explained by science, theists switch their argument for the existence of God to something that science still can't explain. That is knows as "God of the gaps".

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can't explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.

    The superstitious, anti-science tone of this article is exactly the kind of stuff that makes social and religious conservatives - there is a huge overlap between the two categories - seem like morons to people abe a high school education.

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can’t explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.

    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the “God of the Gaps” is a fallacy.

    What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever.

    I can’t speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can’t say I’m losing any sleep over it, though.

    “I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”
    -Mark Twain

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    ....I can’t speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can’t say I’m losing any sleep over it, though.
     
    Agree.
    , @silviosilver

    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the “God of the Gaps” is a fallacy.
     
    And yet you prove in the very same post that that is the basis of your belief in "God."

    To wit:

    I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth.
    , @Nick Diaz
    "I have always thought it is a fallacy that the “God of the Gaps” is a fallacy. "

    But it's not. When you have been proven wrong once, then twice, then fifty times, if you do not realize that your pattern of being consistently wrong tells you that your whole way of thinking is wrong, it means that you are not able to learn from experrience. Not being able to learn from experience is one of the characteristics of having low intelligence. So maybe you're just a dull person.

    "I can’t speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth."

    Ah, so that's the only thing that will convince you? I guess all the things that used to be asbribed to God and now is explained by science, like the orbits of planets, the ability to fly and metereological phenomena, is not enough to convince you. I guess you just have a problem with the concept of evidence. People that have problems with deductive reasoning usually do...

    And God not existing is not "theoretically possible"; rather, God existing is theoretically almost impossible. You clearly don't understand what a theory is.

    " I can’t say I’m losing any sleep over it, though."

    I think you should get a prescription for benzodiazepines. Science consistently disappoints people of your ilk.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  208. @Nick Diaz
    This article is so riddled with misconceptions and errors that trying to nit pick it would take too much of my time. So I will just summrize and the gist of the nonsense.

    First, life did not appear "spontaneously from sea water". That is a semantic mischaracterization. Rather, amino acids that had been formed by the action of lightining striking ammonia and other organic acids, combined with nucleic acids inside a lipid bubble to form the first cell. Both lips and nucleic acids form from simple organic acids that form up in the atmosphere or come from meteors.

    Also, evolution gives the *illusion* of design. That comes from the unfathomable time scales involved, which are vastly greater than human imgaination can even grasp. Imagine the amount of time that has elapsed since Julius Caesar died, and then multiple that 500 X. That is a million years. Now, a billion years is a thousand times more, and life has been around for at least 3.7 billion years. A human being has an enormous amount of difficulty grasping the scale of time of a million years. A billion years is utterly unfathomable to the human mind. It has already been proven how a very complex structure, such as an eye for instance, can evolve from much simpler physiological structures.

    The same goes for DNA. Nucleic acids have an innate ability to catalyse amino acids to form proteins according to spatial alignments they take. This gives the illusion of "intelligent information", when in reality it is just an easily explained chemical process.

    Intelligent design is BS. Even the Vatican does not take ID seriously. Literally 95% of everything that was ascribed to God or gods a mere 300 years ago is now explained by science. As soon as something is explained by science, theists switch their argument for the existence of God to something that science still can't explain. That is knows as "God of the gaps".

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can't explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.

    The superstitious, anti-science tone of this article is exactly the kind of stuff that makes social and religious conservatives - there is a huge overlap between the two categories - seem like morons to people abe a high school education.

    The superstitious, anti-science tone of this article is exactly the kind of stuff that makes social and religious conservatives – there is a huge overlap between the two categories – seem like morons to people above a high school education.

    No big deal. Old men, nearing death, dream of storybook ideals. Fred is just dabbling at the expense of the … oh, never mind.

    Otherwise, your observations are correct.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  209. @JSM
    Problem with panspermia is, it still doesn't explain Fermi's Paradox.

    Because, if life is everywhere, and intelligence is an inevitable occasional result,
    then that lands us squarely back on the question of Where IS everybody?

    Because, if the Universe is as old and as big as you say it is and if life is everywhere as you Panspermists suggest, and Earth is nothing special and intelligence is just simply an occasional accident of evolution that turns up here and there by random chance --

    -- then the Universe should be teeming with evidence of technological civilizations.

    But we've looked and we just don't SEE anybody!

    Ergo, Fermi's Paradox: Where the hell IS everyone?

    – then the Universe should be teeming with evidence of technological civilizations.

    But we’ve looked and we just don’t SEE anybody!

    Why would the myriad of advanced technological civilizations you insist upon … why would they feel obligated to make themselves visible to us?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JSM
    It should be possible to see them due to the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    Advanced civilizations will use energy. No argument, right?

    Well, their waste heat is inevitable and we should be able to see it with infrared telescopes.

    But ALL infrared telescopes so far (and we've looked hard) ALL infrared sources are explainable by
    natural occurrences.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  210. peterAUS says:
    @MikeatMikedotMike
    "Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all."

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.

    “Religions which present themselves as possessing truth – as that term is commonly understood – are a threat to us all.”

    That would include atheism, whether you are aware or not.

    Of course it would.

    The, sort of funny, point is, atheists don’t/can’t even get it.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  211. peterAUS says:
    @Rosie

    This is because it is tautological and thus it can’t be falsified.
     
    The arguments of the militant atheist remind me of juvenile, schoolyard taunts from childhood. It's a kind of epistemic machismo.

    Atheist: Sure, you're living your life and getting along just fine, but I bet you won't be able to do that wearing these gray-colored glasses. I triple dog dare you to put these on and see if you don't drown in despair and nihilism.

    Theist: No. F*** off!

    Atheist: Well then you're an irrational weakling!

    The earnest seeker (even struggling with doubt) can relish the joyful possibility of God, while skeptics remain ever on their guard against the possibility of error, erroneously believing that they risk nothing by not believing.

    My view is exactly the opposite: The mere search for God brings incomparable delight and costs me nothing but Sweeney's cheap and phoney sense of superiority, that is, nothing at all.

    You could be onto something by

    ….sense of superiority….

    I’d add just a little bit of uncomfortable uncertainty and, related, nagging anxiety, even fear.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    I’d add just a little bit of uncomfortable uncertainty and, related, nagging anxiety, even fear.
     
    LOL. Man, you guys crack me up. I point out that Intelligent Design is a failed concept, and the spitting fury cannot be contained. Usually some variation on "You goddamned atheist; you hateful family-killing demon; you monster from the depths of Hades; die, die, die!!"

    That's why I have the philosophical outlook that I do -- it's why you people are miserable, and I'm content. In fact, I think I'll go buy a new pickup truck.

    Q. From whence came the Universe?
    A. I have no idea.
    Q. Is there truth and beauty anywhere?
    A. Yes.
    Q. Am I going to die?
    A. Yup.
    Q. Am I worried?
    A. Nope.

    That's life, in a very small nutshell.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  212. peterAUS says:
    @Rosie

    I actually find evolution to be more intuitive, and consistent with Occam’s Razor, than any type of creationism.
     
    Conflicts of intuition are the raison d'etre of all philosophical speculation. The solution is an appeal to common authority, that is, the evidence of our sense and any reasonable conclusions that follow from them. We ordinary refer to this by the term "science." Atheists have a very disagreeable habit of appealing to science as the only legitimate authority, then narrowly defining it such that any inferences that they don't are labeled "unscientific" and therefore a priori inadmissible.

    Pretty much.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  213. peterAUS says:
    @AaronB
    Good stuff, Fred :)

    That's why the IQ debates are so hilarious - the smartest human is nothing, a joke, as the smartest hamster is still a hamster.

    And the world really is stranger than we can imagine, and religious is only an attempt to symbolically grapple with this strangeness.

    Most people are idiots - even smart people, and can't see two inches in front of their face.

    ….the world really is stranger than we can imagine, and religious is only an attempt to symbolically grapple with this strangeness.

    Most people are idiots – even smart people, and can’t see two inches in front of their face.

    Yup.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  214. peterAUS says:
    @Bronson
    People who believe in Evolution's "random creation of life" either a) have very little information on what it actually takes to be "alive" from one moment to the next (biochemistry, physiology), b) have never actually built any complex systems themselves - i.e. they have no idea how a well-functioning system requires extensive design and thought, or c) can't think past their conditioning - and their conditioning has told them that they're "smart" and know lots of "facts."

    When you fully appreciate the massive complexity of the operations of a single cell - and all the variations thereof - the idea that all of that complexity and balance happened *by accident* is silly. A simple way to demonstrate this is to ponder this question: What is the likelihood that you would be walking in the forest in the Fall, and you come upon a series of perfectly identical Aspen leaves lying on the ground that spell out in perfect English, "Hello, human! Welcome to the forest! We welcome you and hope you enjoy your stay!" Now, what is the possibility that you have that happen, say, 500 times in the same forest - all in a neat row? Even in a million years of Falls in all the forests of the Earth? Not likely? The biochemistry - and the intricate order - of a cell is dramatically more complex than this, yet the "Evolution Pundits" will tell you that all that precision, balance, and order is "just a crazy random event." I remember sitting in one of my graduate-level biochemistry classes looking at an illustration of an enzyme - a massive molecule with a specific function - and thinking, "That's an accident?" An enzyme is a chemical "machine" that, seemingly, has a mind of it's own - it performs it's highly specific, targeted functions without any apparent external input. Beyond this, it can only exist in a very narrow pH range - go to either side of 7.0, and the enzyme "denatures" and ceases to function - it has a very, very specific functional envelope. How likely is it that this enzyme - this highly complex molecular machine - which might be necessary for the life of some living entity .... is an accident? Additionally, what about things like the Bicarbonate buffer in our blood? Without this buffer system, it would be relatively easy to die of acidosis/alkylosis simply by breathing too often - or not often enough - by just a few breaths a minute (and don't even think about becoming physically exerted).

    Evolution has been shown to be absolutely valid when it comes to *adaptation* within a species ... but inter-species differentiation is simply ridiculous. If we "evolved" from fish ... why do we still have fish? On one side, we're told that "Evolution happens reeeeaaaallll sloooow" ... so, if that's the case, we should have some great fossil records showing the slow, progressive, "evolution" of one species to the next ... but we don't .... and where are all of those "half-way between" creatures? On the other side, we're told "Evolution happens in random jumps!" ... so if that's the case, where are all the random new species we would expect to see randomly popping up all over the place (and at a pretty crazy pace)? Why does nature not allow cross-breeding even among very similar species? Oh, you can get offspring, but usually nothing viable - even between creatures as similar as a tiger and a lion (Liger) or a horse and a donkey (mule).

    I'm not sold on Creation - at least not in the traditional sense - but the THEORY of Evolution - or what it's been perverted into today (i.e. Evolution as Fact) - is so full of holes I can't believe that a truly intelligent person would consider it a valid theory. ID at least admits that there are things we just don't know.

    For people who are still seeking Truth via gathering of possibilities, you might find William Bramley's book "The Gods of Eden" an interesting read.

    Good post.

    Especially:

    ….can’t think past their conditioning – and their conditioning has told them that they’re “smart” and know lots of “facts.”

    and

    …..the THEORY of Evolution – or what it’s been perverted into today (i.e. Evolution as Fact) – is so full of holes I can’t believe that a truly intelligent person would consider it a valid theory. ID at least admits that there are things we just don’t know.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  215. @Dillon Sweeny

    The fact is that ID, as a theory, scientific or not, might well be true, and furthermore, it may be supported by observations of nature and inferences from those observations, even if not conclusively falsifiable.
     
    No evidence supports ID. It may be true; it may not be true. There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity, or design, must somehow have been created.

    There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real -- that is, that it is more than a set of conditions noticed by humans, and deemed "complex", therefore of "intelligent design". In human terms, complexity is defined as, at best, "composed of many interacting parts".

    Define "design". Show a requirement therein for "intelligence". Carbon, in various states, will form crystal lattices readily described as "marvelously complex". The chemical/physical nature of carbon and its bonds with other atoms, or simply with other carbon atoms, is in the nature, the physical, atomic nature of carbon. Where is the intelligence? Water, within certain temperature ranges, will create thousands of crystal structures, each unpredictable at the instant of creation, but each defined by limits and characteristics of water molecules. Where is the intelligence?

    Ordered, complex systems are designed by a designer.
    The cell (eyeball, brain, or whatever) is a complex system.
    The cell is designed by a designer.
     
    Fallacious by petitio principi. You assume and define "design" in your initial premise. You assume "design" is "complex", assume "complexity" is a product of the "design" you define, then conclude yet another external factor occurred to authenticate "order", "complex", "system" and "design."

    Surely, you are joking, Ms. Feynman. ;-)

    I suppose you can (uncharitably)look at it that way, but the truth is that it is more like a generalization based on observations of the world, and then a deduction based on the assumed general rule.
     
    Seriously? Truth is a generalization based on observations of the world??

    “There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real”

    This literally made me laugh out loud; quite loud, in fact.

    I also like how you go from essentially saying “well maybe complexity isn’t real” to bringing in terms like ‘nature,’ ‘physical,’ and ‘atomic,’ all of which are apparently ‘real’ in some way that ‘complexity’ is not.

    Thanks.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    “There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real”
     
    Do you have any? Evidence, that is? Evidence that complexity is anything other than a subjective perception?

    If you hold a silver dollar in the palm of your hand, does it in any way, as a stamped piece of silver, imply a massive fiscal system, central banking, national identification, and monetary value as an abstract for utility and resource?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  216. peterAUS says:
    @Bardon Kaldian
    Let's be clear: ID is not a research program; it is, from methodological standpoint, nothing. I just happen to think it is basically a feeble variant of Platonism, and Platonism is, IMO, essentially- correct. Supraphysical metaphysics, some sort of panentheism, whether Greek, Chinese, Indian, Christian...is closer approximation to truth than materialism/physicalism in any garb, traditional or (post)modern.

    Platonists among mathematicians (Leibniz, Goedel, Grothendieck,..) are closer to reality than "materialists" or empiricists (Poincare, Hilbert,...).

    So, in my opinion, IDers are basically right, with regard to their fundamental world-view, unlike Darwinians who are, more or less, materialists & empiricists & whose underlying Weltanschauung is limited (not wrong, just partial). Anyway, ID has nothing to offer re investigation of nature. It is not even proto-scientific & I don't see how it can be used in any empirical investigation of biology.

    …IDers are basically right, with regard to their fundamental world-view, unlike Darwinians who are, more or less, materialists & empiricists & whose underlying Weltanschauung is limited (not wrong, just partial).

    Sounds about right.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  217. “Nor is Platonism correct — it’s blowing smoke, basically. Ideal Forms … sheesh. What nonsense.”

    Yeah. From what Plato said, a fool could be duped into thinking that all the stuff around us could be reduced to say, 100 elements which could be arranged into some kind of table which differentiated them on the basis of their geometric configuration or “Ideal Form”. What an Idiot. What next? That those elements in turn were made of 3 more basic particles which arrange themselves in certain (and only in certain) congruent, coherent patterns as though following some almost musical template? Ideal Forms indeed!

    Gosh, for a guy who didn’t have tools like ion scattering spectrometry and such, Plato, who inferred that the Truth of the Universe was fundamentally math ie. harmonic and geometric, didn’t do too badly. But no doubt, you, McSweeny, have produced work of greater significance. Perhaps you could direct us to some piece you’ve published that has broadened the frontier of human knowledge.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    But no doubt, you, McSweeny, have produced work of greater significance. Perhaps you could direct us to some piece you’ve published that has broadened the frontier of human knowledge.
     
    Brilliant!! Masterful jape!! Aristocratic challenge!! Bravo! Bravo!

    In the future, perhaps you could just stick to the schoolyard taunt: "Oh YEEEEAAAHHH???!!!" It has such a ring of authenticity.

    Platonic ideals are not related to the periodic table. You're falling behind. Keep up.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  218. peterAUS says:
    @Rosie

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can’t explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.
     
    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the "God of the Gaps" is a fallacy.

    What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever.
     
    I can't speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn't exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can't say I'm losing any sleep over it, though.

    "I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”
    -Mark Twain

    ….I can’t speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can’t say I’m losing any sleep over it, though.

    Agree.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  219. @Isabella
    Agree Three Cranes. Fred is wasting his time - although I hope he had fun writing it.

    After working and lecturing in Biology, genetics, biochem. I used to write things like Fred - having read and thought extensively about a number of unexplained and, by modern thinking and knowledge, unexplainable things. Origin of the Species by Darwin isn't Science. It's gossip "[I have a friend who is very reliable who informs me that down in Kent there is a man who ....... etc"]. I imagine trying to submit a paper to "Molecular and General Genetics" like that.

    In the end, you have to, if you have an open questioning mind that does what science says it must, and look for evidence, realise the the entire of modern biology has got everything wrong.
    They did what human kind so often does - found something new [i.e. genes and inheritability] and went insane, thinking it the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.
    Well, it aint.

    In fact, most have gone quiet since the Human Genome Project. I remember watching this with wry amusement, thinking "what are you all going to do when this proves your idiotic "theory" wrong? When they discovered that we dont have enough genes to account for all the proteins we make, there was a stunned silence. Those who never did accept the One gene - one protein, one way direction for everything theory, said nothing, out of kindness.

    Epigenetics came from this. Given that genes in fact explain little, and certainly not Darwinianism it was clear they were going to have to look for something else linear, materialistic and mechanistic to holdup their "Theory of Evolution".

    But I long ago gave up writing about it all. Certainly on social media sites, AltMed sites, with few other scientists [except for the odd, very young male student, arrogant and rude]. No-one can understand you Fred, because they dont want to, or cant expand their mind, or accept that maybe alternative explanations can be investigated. They know only what they were taught, and they cling to that like glue to a blanket. They offer stupid arguments, they are so often rude, abusive and mocking. And then one day, you just give up on them.
    No wonder the world is in the state it is now. I just love reading about Dynastic and pre - Egypt.
    Now, there were some highly intelligent beings.

    What alternative theories would you suggest?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  220. @peterAUS
    You could be onto something by

    ....sense of superiority....

     

    I'd add just a little bit of uncomfortable uncertainty and, related, nagging anxiety, even fear.

    I’d add just a little bit of uncomfortable uncertainty and, related, nagging anxiety, even fear.

    LOL. Man, you guys crack me up. I point out that Intelligent Design is a failed concept, and the spitting fury cannot be contained. Usually some variation on “You goddamned atheist; you hateful family-killing demon; you monster from the depths of Hades; die, die, die!!”

    That’s why I have the philosophical outlook that I do — it’s why you people are miserable, and I’m content. In fact, I think I’ll go buy a new pickup truck.

    Q. From whence came the Universe?
    A. I have no idea.
    Q. Is there truth and beauty anywhere?
    A. Yes.
    Q. Am I going to die?
    A. Yup.
    Q. Am I worried?
    A. Nope.

    That’s life, in a very small nutshell.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    LOL. Man, you guys crack me up.
     
    I know.
    On the surface.

    ...I have the philosophical outlook that I do — it’s why you people are miserable, and I’m content....
     
    Sure you are.......

    Q. From whence came the Universe?
    A. I have no idea.
     
    Agree

    Q. Is there truth and beauty anywhere?
    A. Yes.
    Q. Am I going to die?
    A. Yup.
    Q. Am I worried?
    A. Nope.
     
    Really?
    Not about dying, mind you.
    Certainty.

    That’s life, in a very small nutshell.
     
    For you.
    Free will.
    With free will comes doubt; from doubt that...nagging...uncertainty.
    From that uncertanity the desire to be sure.

    You have noticed, I presume, your passion here.

    An advice if I may, just two words: contemplation, introspection.
    And a bit of humility won't hurt too.

    Kills certainty, unfortunately, most of the time.
    Conundrum, a?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  221. @Wizzly Grintergreen
    "There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real"

    This literally made me laugh out loud; quite loud, in fact.

    I also like how you go from essentially saying "well maybe complexity isn't real" to bringing in terms like 'nature,' 'physical,' and 'atomic,' all of which are apparently 'real' in some way that 'complexity' is not.

    Thanks.

    “There is no evidence to support the notion that complexity is real”

    Do you have any? Evidence, that is? Evidence that complexity is anything other than a subjective perception?

    If you hold a silver dollar in the palm of your hand, does it in any way, as a stamped piece of silver, imply a massive fiscal system, central banking, national identification, and monetary value as an abstract for utility and resource?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  222. @ThreeCranes
    "Nor is Platonism correct — it’s blowing smoke, basically. Ideal Forms … sheesh. What nonsense."

    Yeah. From what Plato said, a fool could be duped into thinking that all the stuff around us could be reduced to say, 100 elements which could be arranged into some kind of table which differentiated them on the basis of their geometric configuration or "Ideal Form". What an Idiot. What next? That those elements in turn were made of 3 more basic particles which arrange themselves in certain (and only in certain) congruent, coherent patterns as though following some almost musical template? Ideal Forms indeed!


    Gosh, for a guy who didn't have tools like ion scattering spectrometry and such, Plato, who inferred that the Truth of the Universe was fundamentally math ie. harmonic and geometric, didn't do too badly. But no doubt, you, McSweeny, have produced work of greater significance. Perhaps you could direct us to some piece you've published that has broadened the frontier of human knowledge.

    But no doubt, you, McSweeny, have produced work of greater significance. Perhaps you could direct us to some piece you’ve published that has broadened the frontier of human knowledge.

    Brilliant!! Masterful jape!! Aristocratic challenge!! Bravo! Bravo!

    In the future, perhaps you could just stick to the schoolyard taunt: “Oh YEEEEAAAHHH???!!!” It has such a ring of authenticity.

    Platonic ideals are not related to the periodic table. You’re falling behind. Keep up.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  223. Rosie says:
    @nickels
    I like this way of looking at things. One book in my queue states that solipsism (something of the sort you put forth) is the pinnacle of reason and empirical thought:


    Solipsism is the ultimate empirical theory of human existence. It is the metaphysical position that there is only one self-conscious person in the universe, i.e., the present selfconscious being reading these paragraphs. A weaker version is the position that one can know for certain that there is only one conscious person in the universe, oneself. The present study is the only book-length examination of solipsism. It treats the origin of solipsism in the works of St. Augustine and René Descartes as well as all serious attempts to refute the thesis of solipsism. Such attempts were made primarily by British empiricists, specifically by George Santayana. Santayana concludes that solipsism cannot be refuted. Watson also concludes that solipsism cannot be refuted. He examines attempts by Descartes, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, British Idealists, Logical Positivists, Sense Datum Philosophers, and in particular Nelson Goodman and Gilbert Ryle (they are just pathetic). The spector haunting Modern Philosophy is not the Ghost in the Machine; it is solipsism. Watson argues that the foundations of Western Philosophy are solipsistic, and that all the major figures recognize this and know that solipsism cannot be refuted, but nevertheless continue by ignoring it, by pretending that it cannot be taken seriously, by offering inadequate solutions, and by treating solipsism as a joke. Watson’s book is the only study of solipsism by a professional philosopher, other than Santayana, in which solipsism is taken seriously as a threat to Modern Philosophy

     

    https://www.amazon.com/Solipsism-Ultimate-Empirical-Theory-Existence/dp/1587315890

    The spector haunting Modern Philosophy is not the Ghost in the Machine; it is solipsism.

    I agree with this, though I haven’t read the book. The antidote, as I have intimated elsewhere, is an indigenized quasi-Confucianism that rediscovers fraternity as a founding value of the modern West along with liberty and equality. Social life must be seen as the ultimate end of self-perfection, not a distraction from it, if the West is to recover its vitality.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  224. @Rosie

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can’t explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.
     
    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the "God of the Gaps" is a fallacy.

    What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever.
     
    I can't speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn't exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can't say I'm losing any sleep over it, though.

    "I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”
    -Mark Twain

    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the “God of the Gaps” is a fallacy.

    And yet you prove in the very same post that that is the basis of your belief in “God.”

    To wit:

    I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    And yet you prove in the very same post that that is the basis of your belief in “God.”
     
    I think you misread my post. Go back and read it again.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  225. anonymous[294] • Disclaimer says:
    @Rosie

    Is the ID argument saying that the creator was periodically popping slightly altered species of the same general morphology into existence over this span of time?
     
    No, more like genetic information that might alter species, so far as I understand it.

    This short video is a decent statement of the case in brief.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?ebc=ANyPxKrpQorRmxHdgOFpX0V4gsA8RdrA7OUjd5BtwbV0InOXPc7UjKgJ-jq3WFQCNtZCmTsbQxb6hxetj495W5sNebnMfSHy2Q&time_continue=4&v=aA-FcnLsF1g

    No, more like genetic information that might alter species, so far as I understand it.

    So instead of species eventually evolving into different species, The Creator periodically changes species into different species (except for the ones He choses to kill off). Ok, thanks.

    This short video is a decent statement of the case in brief.

    I’d prefer that you link me to something real, not dumbed-down American tv programing tailor-made to appeal to idiots. Thanks

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    I’d prefer that you link me to something real, not dumbed-down American tv programing tailor-made to appeal to idiots. Thanks
     
    You could read the whole book.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  226. I find it strange that so many religious believers seem to think that evolution is some kind of keystone of atheism, without which the whole atheist edifice falls apart. Realistically, evolution could be 100% bs, and yet there would still excellent reasons for disbelieving in some entity named ‘God’ – vastly superior reasons for disbelieving in this alleged entity than for believing in it.

    But who are we kidding? People believe in ‘God’ for emotional, not rational, reasons. That’s just obvious.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    I find it strange that so many religious believers seem to think that evolution is some kind of keystone of atheism, without which the whole atheist edifice falls apart.
     
    No less than Dawkins admits as much himself:

    "Although atheism might have been logically tenable before Darwin, Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist."

    I predict he will come to rue those words.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  227. anonymous[294] • Disclaimer says:
    @Mr. Hack
    How does this disprove Darwin? The answer to your question is clearly given in the article that I've cited. Did you read it:

    If 90% of creatures all originated at roughly the same moment in history, there simply isn’t time for amphibians to slowly become reptiles, then birds, and then mammals. And notice the evidence demonstrates that these animals are coming into existence at the same time as man. None of this remotely fits the Darwinian model. Meaning, the assumptions upon which all of modern biology have been constructed are faulty. Down goes Darwin.
     

    Yeah, you can trust the guys who think mammals evolved from birds.. They know what they’re talking about…

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  228. JSM says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    – then the Universe should be teeming with evidence of technological civilizations.

    But we’ve looked and we just don’t SEE anybody!
     
    Why would the myriad of advanced technological civilizations you insist upon ... why would they feel obligated to make themselves visible to us?

    It should be possible to see them due to the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    Advanced civilizations will use energy. No argument, right?

    Well, their waste heat is inevitable and we should be able to see it with infrared telescopes.

    But ALL infrared telescopes so far (and we’ve looked hard) ALL infrared sources are explainable by
    natural occurrences.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Advanced civilizations will use energy. No argument, right?

    Well, their waste heat is inevitable and we should be able to see it with infrared telescopes.
     
    Okay, bud, go get 'em. You go tell those advanced civilizations what they can and cannot do.
    , @JSM
    If ALL those civilizations have figured out how to circumvent the 2nd law of thermodynamics, man, I am gonna be IMPRESSED when they finally decide to show themselves -- should that ever actually come to pass.

    But, as things currently stand, since I cannot see 'em, and you can't either, not even ONE, then there is exactly as much proof for their existence as that Flying Spaghetti Monster that the atheists like to propose the existence of.

    In fact, your assertion that there may be Advanced Civilizations circumventing the 2nd law of thermodynamics so we can't see em, is EXACTLY as much a matter of believing in that for which there's no proof, (faith) as mine is that there might be an Intelligent Designer whose existence I can't prove.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  229. peterAUS says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    I’d add just a little bit of uncomfortable uncertainty and, related, nagging anxiety, even fear.
     
    LOL. Man, you guys crack me up. I point out that Intelligent Design is a failed concept, and the spitting fury cannot be contained. Usually some variation on "You goddamned atheist; you hateful family-killing demon; you monster from the depths of Hades; die, die, die!!"

    That's why I have the philosophical outlook that I do -- it's why you people are miserable, and I'm content. In fact, I think I'll go buy a new pickup truck.

    Q. From whence came the Universe?
    A. I have no idea.
    Q. Is there truth and beauty anywhere?
    A. Yes.
    Q. Am I going to die?
    A. Yup.
    Q. Am I worried?
    A. Nope.

    That's life, in a very small nutshell.

    LOL. Man, you guys crack me up.

    I know.
    On the surface.

    …I have the philosophical outlook that I do — it’s why you people are miserable, and I’m content….

    Sure you are…….

    Q. From whence came the Universe?
    A. I have no idea.

    Agree

    Q. Is there truth and beauty anywhere?
    A. Yes.
    Q. Am I going to die?
    A. Yup.
    Q. Am I worried?
    A. Nope.

    Really?
    Not about dying, mind you.
    Certainty.

    That’s life, in a very small nutshell.

    For you.
    Free will.
    With free will comes doubt; from doubt that…nagging…uncertainty.
    From that uncertanity the desire to be sure.

    You have noticed, I presume, your passion here.

    An advice if I may, just two words: contemplation, introspection.
    And a bit of humility won’t hurt too.

    Kills certainty, unfortunately, most of the time.
    Conundrum, a?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    An advice if I may, just two words: contemplation, introspection.
    And a bit of humility won’t hurt too.
     
    Three words, pete: Think for yourself. I'm all caught-up on contemplation and introspection. As for humility, I presume you assume I should not tell people their cherished beliefs of ID are crap? And that would be humble? What would you suggest? A gentle, avuncular query along the lines of "Oh, my dear poor-soul person, does it cross your mind ID is crap?" Better?

    You have noticed, I presume, your passion here.
     
    An idle pastime.

    With free will comes doubt; from doubt that…nagging…uncertainty.
    From that uncertanity the desire to be sure.
     
    With free will comes doubt? How so? I find free will tends to alleviate doubt. Besides, what doubts trouble you?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  230. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver

    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the “God of the Gaps” is a fallacy.
     
    And yet you prove in the very same post that that is the basis of your belief in "God."

    To wit:

    I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth.

    And yet you prove in the very same post that that is the basis of your belief in “God.”

    I think you misread my post. Go back and read it again.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  231. Rosie says:
    @anonymous

    No, more like genetic information that might alter species, so far as I understand it.
     
    So instead of species eventually evolving into different species, The Creator periodically changes species into different species (except for the ones He choses to kill off). Ok, thanks.

    This short video is a decent statement of the case in brief.

     

    I'd prefer that you link me to something real, not dumbed-down American tv programing tailor-made to appeal to idiots. Thanks

    I’d prefer that you link me to something real, not dumbed-down American tv programing tailor-made to appeal to idiots. Thanks

    You could read the whole book.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  232. Rosie says:
    @silviosilver
    I find it strange that so many religious believers seem to think that evolution is some kind of keystone of atheism, without which the whole atheist edifice falls apart. Realistically, evolution could be 100% bs, and yet there would still excellent reasons for disbelieving in some entity named 'God' - vastly superior reasons for disbelieving in this alleged entity than for believing in it.

    But who are we kidding? People believe in 'God' for emotional, not rational, reasons. That's just obvious.

    I find it strange that so many religious believers seem to think that evolution is some kind of keystone of atheism, without which the whole atheist edifice falls apart.

    No less than Dawkins admits as much himself:

    “Although atheism might have been logically tenable before Darwin, Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist.”

    I predict he will come to rue those words.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  233. @JSM
    It should be possible to see them due to the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    Advanced civilizations will use energy. No argument, right?

    Well, their waste heat is inevitable and we should be able to see it with infrared telescopes.

    But ALL infrared telescopes so far (and we've looked hard) ALL infrared sources are explainable by
    natural occurrences.

    Advanced civilizations will use energy. No argument, right?

    Well, their waste heat is inevitable and we should be able to see it with infrared telescopes.

    Okay, bud, go get ‘em. You go tell those advanced civilizations what they can and cannot do.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  234. @peterAUS

    LOL. Man, you guys crack me up.
     
    I know.
    On the surface.

    ...I have the philosophical outlook that I do — it’s why you people are miserable, and I’m content....
     
    Sure you are.......

    Q. From whence came the Universe?
    A. I have no idea.
     
    Agree

    Q. Is there truth and beauty anywhere?
    A. Yes.
    Q. Am I going to die?
    A. Yup.
    Q. Am I worried?
    A. Nope.
     
    Really?
    Not about dying, mind you.
    Certainty.

    That’s life, in a very small nutshell.
     
    For you.
    Free will.
    With free will comes doubt; from doubt that...nagging...uncertainty.
    From that uncertanity the desire to be sure.

    You have noticed, I presume, your passion here.

    An advice if I may, just two words: contemplation, introspection.
    And a bit of humility won't hurt too.

    Kills certainty, unfortunately, most of the time.
    Conundrum, a?

    An advice if I may, just two words: contemplation, introspection.
    And a bit of humility won’t hurt too.

    Three words, pete: Think for yourself. I’m all caught-up on contemplation and introspection. As for humility, I presume you assume I should not tell people their cherished beliefs of ID are crap? And that would be humble? What would you suggest? A gentle, avuncular query along the lines of “Oh, my dear poor-soul person, does it cross your mind ID is crap?” Better?

    You have noticed, I presume, your passion here.

    An idle pastime.

    With free will comes doubt; from doubt that…nagging…uncertainty.
    From that uncertanity the desire to be sure.

    With free will comes doubt? How so? I find free will tends to alleviate doubt. Besides, what doubts trouble you?

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    Three words, pete: Think for yourself.
     
    Agree.

    As for humility, I presume you assume I should not tell people their cherished beliefs of ID are crap?
     
    Not really.
    I assume you could assume that, maybe, you don't know as much as you think you do.
    That, also maybe, scientists don't know as much as they tell us they do.

    And, even more, that we, as species, humans, can NOT comprehend some things. That there are things of this world that are outside of our understanding. That is ,contemporary, blasphemy.


    And that would be humble?
     
    The last paragraph from above would, perhaps.

    What would you suggest?
     
    Thinking about that for a moment. Or a bit longer. Free will.

    An idle pastime.
     
    Doubt it.

    I find free will tends to alleviate doubt.
     
    Good for you.

    Besides, what doubts trouble you?
     
    Fair question.
    Only one, actually, and not related to this topic. Some other time....

    As for this topic my approach is simple, as a perceptive reader could've noticed.
    Something along the lines, as Fred put it here:


    ....For what it is worth, I am myself a complete agnostic. Faith and atheism both seem to me categorical beliefs in something one doesn’t know. ....
     
    Key expression"doesn't know".
    Hence humility.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  235. “Drawin was a blowed up pecker-wood” – Lloyd Pye:Lloyd Pye (1946-2013) was a researcher, author, and lecturer best known for his unique version of Intervention Theory. The below video absolutely destroys Darwinism. View at your own discretion.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Si1ver1ock
    I agree, he is pretty interesting.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  236. @Dillon Sweeny

    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.
     
    There is your error, or most of it.

    The basic premise of evolution is that it achieve species survival. It's minimalist. A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition, if 10 bugs continue to exist and reproduce sufficiently to maintain a population of 10. Evolution is NOT anti-entropic, as process cannot be anti-entropic. Evolution has no direction -- it ONLY operates to achieve survival. Evolutionary success is solely determined by reproductive success. "Organizational complexity" is just bullshit, and I'll leave it at that.

    Go do some reading. Educate yourself, as you are slinging nothing but corned-beef hash for now.

    You are confusing the life of a single organism with the life of a species. A living organism is in itself anti-entropic, or self organizing.

    The species becomes “better organized” as it adapts to its environment. So that, as a species it has direction, from less adapted to better adapted.

    The book is:

    On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life

    It’s been out a while now.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    You are confusing the life of a single organism with the life of a species. A living organism is in itself anti-entropic, or self organizing.
     
    No, I confused nothing. And you are bullshitting, max smoke, min torque.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  237. @Johnnie Walker Read
    "Drawin was a blowed up pecker-wood" - Lloyd Pye:Lloyd Pye (1946-2013) was a researcher, author, and lecturer best known for his unique version of Intervention Theory. The below video absolutely destroys Darwinism. View at your own discretion.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmaLP38GhlU&t=2383s

    I agree, he is pretty interesting.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  238. Nick Diaz says:
    @Rosie

    Right now, theists are holding on to the origin of life and of the Universe itself as arguments for God, because those are pretty much the only two things left that science still can’t explain. What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever. Theists are running out of places to hide.
     
    I have always thought it is a fallacy that the "God of the Gaps" is a fallacy.

    What will theists do when scientists create primitive life from scratch in a lab? Most lilely, theists will just cry blasphemy and blame it on dark magic or whatever.
     
    I can't speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn't exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth. I can't say I'm losing any sleep over it, though.

    "I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”
    -Mark Twain

    “I have always thought it is a fallacy that the “God of the Gaps” is a fallacy. ”

    But it’s not. When you have been proven wrong once, then twice, then fifty times, if you do not realize that your pattern of being consistently wrong tells you that your whole way of thinking is wrong, it means that you are not able to learn from experrience. Not being able to learn from experience is one of the characteristics of having low intelligence. So maybe you’re just a dull person.

    “I can’t speak for others, but personally I will graciously acknowledge that atheists have conclusively proven that it is theoretically possible that God doesn’t exist after all if and when a scientist in a lab figures out how to reverse engineer the genesis of life on Earth.”

    Ah, so that’s the only thing that will convince you? I guess all the things that used to be asbribed to God and now is explained by science, like the orbits of planets, the ability to fly and metereological phenomena, is not enough to convince you. I guess you just have a problem with the concept of evidence. People that have problems with deductive reasoning usually do…

    And God not existing is not “theoretically possible”; rather, God existing is theoretically almost impossible. You clearly don’t understand what a theory is.

    ” I can’t say I’m losing any sleep over it, though.”

    I think you should get a prescription for benzodiazepines. Science consistently disappoints people of your ilk.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  239. peterAUS says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    An advice if I may, just two words: contemplation, introspection.
    And a bit of humility won’t hurt too.
     
    Three words, pete: Think for yourself. I'm all caught-up on contemplation and introspection. As for humility, I presume you assume I should not tell people their cherished beliefs of ID are crap? And that would be humble? What would you suggest? A gentle, avuncular query along the lines of "Oh, my dear poor-soul person, does it cross your mind ID is crap?" Better?

    You have noticed, I presume, your passion here.
     
    An idle pastime.

    With free will comes doubt; from doubt that…nagging…uncertainty.
    From that uncertanity the desire to be sure.
     
    With free will comes doubt? How so? I find free will tends to alleviate doubt. Besides, what doubts trouble you?

    Three words, pete: Think for yourself.

    Agree.

    As for humility, I presume you assume I should not tell people their cherished beliefs of ID are crap?

    Not really.
    I assume you could assume that, maybe, you don’t know as much as you think you do.
    That, also maybe, scientists don’t know as much as they tell us they do.

    And, even more, that we, as species, humans, can NOT comprehend some things. That there are things of this world that are outside of our understanding. That is ,contemporary, blasphemy.

    And that would be humble?

    The last paragraph from above would, perhaps.

    What would you suggest?

    Thinking about that for a moment. Or a bit longer. Free will.

    An idle pastime.

    Doubt it.

    I find free will tends to alleviate doubt.

    Good for you.

    Besides, what doubts trouble you?

    Fair question.
    Only one, actually, and not related to this topic. Some other time….

    As for this topic my approach is simple, as a perceptive reader could’ve noticed.
    Something along the lines, as Fred put it here:

    ….For what it is worth, I am myself a complete agnostic. Faith and atheism both seem to me categorical beliefs in something one doesn’t know. ….

    Key expression”doesn’t know”.
    Hence humility.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Key expression”doesn’t know”.
    Hence humility.
     
    Many people regard "humility" in a religious sense -- the humble believer, the humble servant, the humble king. I see no virtue in humility per se, as a behavior consisting of the mumbling of various platitudes, good wishes for all, and, saints pre-sarve us, a return to Jesus. Plus, of course, a certain self-deprecating behavior.

    Humility, I interpret as open-mindedness, a willingness to learn. One cannot learn if one has not been taught, or learnt the hard way, how to distinguish bullshit from fact, given there is sufficient information available to prove the case.

    Your mileage may vary.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  240. Rosie says:

    But it’s not.

    Yes it is. Some patterns continue. Others do not. It’s kind of like the story of the boy who cried wolf. The villagers didn’t believe the boy because he had cried wolf in the past. The result: lots of dead sheep.

    Now, if there is a satisfactory natural explanation for every single observed phenomenon save one, you lose. You have to be right every single time in order to prove that we might be wrong. We have to be right only one time to prove that you must be wrong.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Well, the intelligent design thingy fails many times, but here are two examples:
    1) all mammalian (including human) embryos develop gill clefts at one stage, which later disappear;
    2) our cells use bad slow ribosomes to make proteins, whereas our mitochondria use smaller and faster ones (same as bacteria).
    Was the designer rather unintelligent?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  241. Wow! Quite a discussion. Lots of people still have questions answered in Richard Dawkins’ 1986 book “The Blind Watchmaker”. Most people know next to nothing about the biology in general and biochemistry in particular. 90% of the comments sound like the “Dialectics of Nature” by Engels, who just tried to get a basic understanding of science and failed miserably. Nobody remembered that in embryonic development we briefly recapitulate all stages of the evolution of our species. Why does human (and every mammalian) embryo develop gill clefts at some point, that later disappear? Does intelligent design answer this question? What about the ribosomes (my comment #179)? There are thousands of questions intelligent design model does not answer.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian

    Lots of people still have questions answered in Richard Dawkins’ 1986 book “The Blind Watchmaker”.
     
    No, Dawkins is wrong. He hasn't "answered" anything.

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/evolution/10506006/The-Selfish-Gene-is-losing-friends.html

    http://www.necsi.edu/projects/evolecol/selfishgene.html

    https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/richard-dawkins/the-blind-watchmaker/
    ...............

    I am not too interested in evolutionary biology, so I won't write a long post. Just a few random points.

    * Dawkins' position is an old-fashioned 19th C materialism. His"innovations" like "selfish gene" hypothesis had not stood the test of time. His work is a popularization of the heroic materialist world-view, dominant in the 2nd half of 19th C.

    * Dawkins is clueless about religious & non-religious metaphysics. He has not read classic texts by Plotinus, Shankara, Kant, Schelling, Hegel, Leibniz....Wittgentein, Heidegger etc. Nor expositions of them in various philosophical encyclopedias. As far as I know from his public persona, he is a crusader against religious fundamentalism (which is good, but even there, he lacks the understanding why are people so easily attracted to religious fanaticism) & new-agey shallow variant of "spiritual, not religious" Weltanschauung.

    So, he simply does not know magna opera by 20th C scholars of "deep religion" (Mircea Eliade, Henry Corbin, Moshe Idel, Gerschom Scholem, Ioan Culianu, Hans Jonas, Garth Fowden, Joseph Campbell, Carol Zaleski, Wendy Doniger O'Flaherty, ...), nor he knows anything about those areas of physics which are potentially susceptible to non-materialist interpretations of reality (I mean the likes of David Bohm, Wolfgang Pauli or Werner Heisenberg, not tendentious propagandists like Fritjof Capra).

    Even within a materialist/physicalist paradigm (so, no extra-dimensions of existence), there is an indication that Lamarckism may not be entirely wrong: https://www.yourgenome.org/facts/what-is-the-central-dogma

    So, even in ordinary materialist framework (which has nothing to do with either Plotinus or Bohm), there seems to be growing wealth of material indicating that, in auld lingo, acquired characteristics may become heritable, which means the end of classical Darwinism.

    And, I repeat- those are just variants of naturalism (not Zola's tradition, but materialism/physicalism), while intellectual heritage going from I Ching & Empedocles to Heisenberg & Bohm claims otherwise.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  242. @Rosie

    But it’s not.
     
    Yes it is. Some patterns continue. Others do not. It's kind of like the story of the boy who cried wolf. The villagers didn't believe the boy because he had cried wolf in the past. The result: lots of dead sheep.

    Now, if there is a satisfactory natural explanation for every single observed phenomenon save one, you lose. You have to be right every single time in order to prove that we might be wrong. We have to be right only one time to prove that you must be wrong.

    Well, the intelligent design thingy fails many times, but here are two examples:
    1) all mammalian (including human) embryos develop gill clefts at one stage, which later disappear;
    2) our cells use bad slow ribosomes to make proteins, whereas our mitochondria use smaller and faster ones (same as bacteria).
    Was the designer rather unintelligent?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rosie

    Was the designer rather unintelligent?
     
    Design flaws, real or perceived, do not negate the evidence for a designer.

    Creation is magnificent, but not perfect.
    Therefore, it's more likely than not to have evolved by chance.

    Um, no. Non sequitur.
    , @Daniel Chieh

    our cells use bad slow ribosomes to make proteins, whereas our mitochondria use smaller and faster ones (same as bacteria).
     
    Would it be theoretically possible to code our cells to use the same ribosomes as mitochondria? Speculating in that sense that mice developed bigger brains when human DNA was introduced to it(though I'm not sure if it was actually associated with improved cognition; actual cell transplation of human astrocytes to mice has done the latter though).

    http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2015/02/human-dna-enlarges-mouse-brains
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  243. @Si1ver1ock
    You are confusing the life of a single organism with the life of a species. A living organism is in itself anti-entropic, or self organizing.

    The species becomes "better organized" as it adapts to its environment. So that, as a species it has direction, from less adapted to better adapted.

    The book is:

    On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life

    It's been out a while now.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species

    You are confusing the life of a single organism with the life of a species. A living organism is in itself anti-entropic, or self organizing.

    No, I confused nothing. And you are bullshitting, max smoke, min torque.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  244. @peterAUS

    Three words, pete: Think for yourself.
     
    Agree.

    As for humility, I presume you assume I should not tell people their cherished beliefs of ID are crap?
     
    Not really.
    I assume you could assume that, maybe, you don't know as much as you think you do.
    That, also maybe, scientists don't know as much as they tell us they do.

    And, even more, that we, as species, humans, can NOT comprehend some things. That there are things of this world that are outside of our understanding. That is ,contemporary, blasphemy.


    And that would be humble?
     
    The last paragraph from above would, perhaps.

    What would you suggest?
     
    Thinking about that for a moment. Or a bit longer. Free will.

    An idle pastime.
     
    Doubt it.

    I find free will tends to alleviate doubt.
     
    Good for you.

    Besides, what doubts trouble you?
     
    Fair question.
    Only one, actually, and not related to this topic. Some other time....

    As for this topic my approach is simple, as a perceptive reader could've noticed.
    Something along the lines, as Fred put it here:


    ....For what it is worth, I am myself a complete agnostic. Faith and atheism both seem to me categorical beliefs in something one doesn’t know. ....
     
    Key expression"doesn't know".
    Hence humility.

    Key expression”doesn’t know”.
    Hence humility.

    Many people regard “humility” in a religious sense — the humble believer, the humble servant, the humble king. I see no virtue in humility per se, as a behavior consisting of the mumbling of various platitudes, good wishes for all, and, saints pre-sarve us, a return to Jesus. Plus, of course, a certain self-deprecating behavior.

    Humility, I interpret as open-mindedness, a willingness to learn. One cannot learn if one has not been taught, or learnt the hard way, how to distinguish bullshit from fact, given there is sufficient information available to prove the case.

    Your mileage may vary.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    Many people regard “humility” in a religious sense...
     
    I don't.
    I see it as "I am not THAT smart", or, in this case "we, humans aren't THAT smart".

    Humility, I interpret as open-mindedness, a willingness to learn. One cannot learn if one has not been taught, or learnt the hard way, how to distinguish bullshit from fact, given there is sufficient information available to prove the case.
     
    Agree.
    I guess I just go a step further, in this particular case: "Maybe we can not learn this. It's, maybe, beyond us."
    Keywords "maybe" and "beyond".

    Hence "agnostic" label could apply. Or whatever.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  245. @Dillon Sweeny

    The evaluation function is given Darwin’s dictum “survival of the fittest.”
     
    A poor choice of words on Chuck's part. More correct is "survival of the fit". If they survive, and reproduce, they have achieved evolutionary success. It's a damn low bar, seeing as how insects are the most successful kingdom.

    insects are the most successful kingdom.

    Fungi and Bacteria are the most successful kingdoms.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fungus

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bacteria

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Fungi and Bacteria are the most successful kingdoms.
     
    You are correct. My error.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  246. @Dillon Sweeny

    Evolution means that things change over time, but it also implies direction. In particular, evolution in terms of life implies that life is anti-entropic. The organizational complexity of the system increases with time as opposed to decreasing.
     
    There is your error, or most of it.

    The basic premise of evolution is that it achieve species survival. It's minimalist. A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition, if 10 bugs continue to exist and reproduce sufficiently to maintain a population of 10. Evolution is NOT anti-entropic, as process cannot be anti-entropic. Evolution has no direction -- it ONLY operates to achieve survival. Evolutionary success is solely determined by reproductive success. "Organizational complexity" is just bullshit, and I'll leave it at that.

    Go do some reading. Educate yourself, as you are slinging nothing but corned-beef hash for now.

    A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition,

    The real world doesn’t work “by definition.” Your hypothetical 10 bugs could be wiped out by me stepping on all of them with one foot. That evolutionary strategy is brittle. Remember it is a competition between species.

    What happens when your 10 bugs meets a colony of a million army ants on the rampage?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Your hypothetical 10 bugs could be wiped out by me stepping on all of them with one foot. That evolutionary strategy is brittle. Remember it is a competition between species.
     
    That will be quite enough. Evolutionary success is established by reproductive success, and ONLY reproductive success. I don't give two shits what Father Jacob taught you at seminary. You, me, every human on Earth can be wiped out instantaneously in any of many ways. That is a BULLSHIT argument, and any first-year student knows it. Evolutionary success is NOT a function of invulnerability to a sun going nova, or being stepped on by a student priest.

    Live long and prosper, man, but I cater to obstinateness but briefly.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  247. Rosie says:
    @AnonFromTN
    Well, the intelligent design thingy fails many times, but here are two examples:
    1) all mammalian (including human) embryos develop gill clefts at one stage, which later disappear;
    2) our cells use bad slow ribosomes to make proteins, whereas our mitochondria use smaller and faster ones (same as bacteria).
    Was the designer rather unintelligent?

    Was the designer rather unintelligent?

    Design flaws, real or perceived, do not negate the evidence for a designer.

    Creation is magnificent, but not perfect.
    Therefore, it’s more likely than not to have evolved by chance.

    Um, no. Non sequitur.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  248. JSM says:
    @JSM
    It should be possible to see them due to the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    Advanced civilizations will use energy. No argument, right?

    Well, their waste heat is inevitable and we should be able to see it with infrared telescopes.

    But ALL infrared telescopes so far (and we've looked hard) ALL infrared sources are explainable by
    natural occurrences.

    If ALL those civilizations have figured out how to circumvent the 2nd law of thermodynamics, man, I am gonna be IMPRESSED when they finally decide to show themselves — should that ever actually come to pass.

    But, as things currently stand, since I cannot see ‘em, and you can’t either, not even ONE, then there is exactly as much proof for their existence as that Flying Spaghetti Monster that the atheists like to propose the existence of.

    In fact, your assertion that there may be Advanced Civilizations circumventing the 2nd law of thermodynamics so we can’t see em, is EXACTLY as much a matter of believing in that for which there’s no proof, (faith) as mine is that there might be an Intelligent Designer whose existence I can’t prove.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    In fact, your assertion that there may be Advanced Civilizations circumventing the 2nd law of thermodynamics so we can’t see em, is EXACTLY as much a matter of believing in that for which there’s no proof,
     
    Yeah, I know. Just like your assertion that, by Harrumphity-Rumpf Law of Hoopty-Do, there must be gazillions of advanced civilizations.

    Nie?

    You posit 'em, you trot 'em out. Taint my job.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  249. anon[318] • Disclaimer says:

    The god of the dinosaurs designed them to dominate the animals
    of the earth for untold millions of years. When all the combinations
    were explored the god of the volcanoes made conditions unfavorable to them
    and the god of the mammals enabled them to prosper on the world stage.
    And here we are.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  250. peterAUS says:
    @Dillon Sweeny

    Key expression”doesn’t know”.
    Hence humility.
     
    Many people regard "humility" in a religious sense -- the humble believer, the humble servant, the humble king. I see no virtue in humility per se, as a behavior consisting of the mumbling of various platitudes, good wishes for all, and, saints pre-sarve us, a return to Jesus. Plus, of course, a certain self-deprecating behavior.

    Humility, I interpret as open-mindedness, a willingness to learn. One cannot learn if one has not been taught, or learnt the hard way, how to distinguish bullshit from fact, given there is sufficient information available to prove the case.

    Your mileage may vary.

    Many people regard “humility” in a religious sense…

    I don’t.
    I see it as “I am not THAT smart”, or, in this case “we, humans aren’t THAT smart”.

    Humility, I interpret as open-mindedness, a willingness to learn. One cannot learn if one has not been taught, or learnt the hard way, how to distinguish bullshit from fact, given there is sufficient information available to prove the case.

    Agree.
    I guess I just go a step further, in this particular case: “Maybe we can not learn this. It’s, maybe, beyond us.”
    Keywords “maybe” and “beyond”.

    Hence “agnostic” label could apply. Or whatever.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dillon Sweeny

    Hence “agnostic” label could apply. Or whatever.
     
    Meh. Atheist and agnostic are both meaningless labels. Nobody knows anything about the status of the Universe as "created", or, as I like to characterize it, "immanent".

    Nobody knows. In mixed company, I might label myself "deist" just to avoid argument. You don't know; I don't know; nobody on Earth knows. It is a pointless discussion.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  251. Here is an overlooked text by Mrs F. J. Hughes, cousin of Charles Darwin and granddaughter of Erasmus Darwing, called

    Harmonies of the Tones and Colors: Developed by Evolution

    which is offered here as an interesting approach revealing a ‘coincidence of opposites’ such that some intelligence my come to realized in the greater scheme of things. Mrs Hughes does not reject the Bible, but certainly affirms science, a science very lost, as it was this book
    that the James Keeley of Philadelphia, the inventor, recognized as being a big breakthrough in his work with Sympathetic Vibratory Physics…

    https://books.google.com/books?id=GSc-AQAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  252. @Si1ver1ock

    insects are the most successful kingdom.
     
    Fungi and Bacteria are the most successful kingdoms.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fungus

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bacteria

    Fungi and Bacteria are the most successful kingdoms.

    You are correct. My error.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Bacteria and archaebacteria were around longer than anybody else. They predate eukaryotic cells and gave rise to those cells and all eukaryotes composed of them, including us. Thus, bacteria and archaebacteria are so far the greatest evolutionary success. As groups, not as individual species. They kept changing all those billions of years. For example, there could not have been E. coli that lives in human guts before humans emerged. Each species of animal has a different species of bacteria fulfilling the same function as E. coli in us. BTW, E. coli constitutes ~50% of shit by weight, so it is wrong to say that E. coli smells like shit, in fact, shit smells like E. coli.

    I once had a conversation with a bus driver who asserted that there is God, and therefore there is no evolution. Within a few minutes he told me about the problems of his son who contracted antibiotic-resistant bacteria. To a thinking person it would be obvious that there were no antibiotic-resistant bacteria before antibiotics were introduced, and their emergence is a clear case of evolution. However, it was not obvious to that bus driver. It is amazing how many people are on the same level.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  253. @JSM
    If ALL those civilizations have figured out how to circumvent the 2nd law of thermodynamics, man, I am gonna be IMPRESSED when they finally decide to show themselves -- should that ever actually come to pass.

    But, as things currently stand, since I cannot see 'em, and you can't either, not even ONE, then there is exactly as much proof for their existence as that Flying Spaghetti Monster that the atheists like to propose the existence of.

    In fact, your assertion that there may be Advanced Civilizations circumventing the 2nd law of thermodynamics so we can't see em, is EXACTLY as much a matter of believing in that for which there's no proof, (faith) as mine is that there might be an Intelligent Designer whose existence I can't prove.

    In fact, your assertion that there may be Advanced Civilizations circumventing the 2nd law of thermodynamics so we can’t see em, is EXACTLY as much a matter of believing in that for which there’s no proof,

    Yeah, I know. Just like your assertion that, by Harrumphity-Rumpf Law of Hoopty-Do, there must be gazillions of advanced civilizations.

    Nie?

    You posit ‘em, you trot ‘em out. Taint my job.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  254. @Si1ver1ock

    A population of 10 bugs that manages to achieve species survival is evolutionarily successful, by definition,
     
    The real world doesn't work "by definition." Your hypothetical 10 bugs could be wiped out by me stepping on all of them with one foot. That evolutionary strategy is brittle. Remember it is a competition between species.


    What happens when your 10 bugs meets a colony of a million army ants on the rampage?


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsfiUR0ZzLw

    Your hypothetical 10 bugs could be wiped out by me stepping on all of them with one foot. That evolutionary strategy is brittle. Remember it is a competition between species.

    That will be quite enough. Evolutionary success is established by reproductive success, and ONLY reproductive success. I don’t give two shits what Father Jacob taught you at seminary. You, me, every human on Earth can be wiped out instantaneously in any of many ways. That is a BULLSHIT argument, and any first-year student knows it. Evolutionary success is NOT a function of invulnerability to a sun going nova, or being stepped on by a student priest.

    Live long and prosper, man, but I cater to obstinateness but briefly.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  255. There is a profound misunderstanding of evolution here. Profound. Evolution is NOT a Hegelian spiral into never-ending excellence. Evolution is survival; evolution is reproductive success. Period, end definition.

    Evolution has no difficulty with static niches. Species survival does not REQUIRE niche pressure, nor mutation.

    Stop reading Darwin (although I cannot imagine any of you wackadoodles actually doing so) — it’s old; it was tentative when published, and is now insufficient. The Wikipedia article “Evolution” is surprisingly good, and perhaps you low IQ doodles can understand it.

    Stop being ignorant, and stop prattling ignorance at the top of your lungs.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Si1ver1ock

    Evolution is survival;
     
    No it isn't.


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIoytwJWJP8


    John Koza with 1,000-Pentium parallel computer in Mountain View, California. Picture by Eric Slomanson

    http://www.genetic-programming.com/johnkoza.html
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  256. Joe Walker says: • Website

    We may be too full of ourselves

    You’re full of something else entirely.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter Display All Comments
  257. @peterAUS

    Many people regard “humility” in a religious sense...
     
    I don't.
    I see it as "I am not THAT smart", or, in this case "we, humans aren't THAT smart".

    Humility, I interpret as open-mindedness, a willingness to learn. One cannot learn if one has not been taught, or learnt the hard way, how to distinguish bullshit from fact, given there is sufficient information available to prove the case.
     
    Agree.
    I guess I just go a step further, in this particular case: "Maybe we can not learn this. It's, maybe, beyond us."
    Keywords "maybe" and "beyond".

    Hence "agnostic" label could apply. Or whatever.

    Hence “agnostic” label could apply. Or whatever.

    Meh. Atheist and agnostic are both meaningless labels. Nobody knows anything about the status of the Universe as “created”, or, as I like to characterize it, “immanent”.

    Nobody knows. In mixed company, I might label myself “deist” just to avoid argument. You don’t know; I don’t know; nobody on Earth knows. It is a pointless discussion.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    You don’t know; I don’t know; nobody on Earth knows.
     
    You are getting there. You could've arrived there sooner if you hadn't been so....passionate....in replying to all and sundry here.

    Because the "scientist class" believes they know. Not only that, but they treat all those not agreeing with them as we see.
    THAT is the point here. My point anyway, and a couple of posters here. A couple only, but good enough for me.

    The new dogma; the new priests.
    The same old shit when somebody doubts.....O.K. not quite the same re burning at stake and such, but similar....mindset.... of those who hold the sacred knowledge. And perks that come with that.

    Almost...hehe....as "6 million".

    It is a pointless discussion.
     
    Not for those scientists and people in general who doubt the Thing (that Darwin theory).
    People can lose a job........so, if you have a mortgage and family to feed it's not quite pointless.

    How about YOU do the test: tell the modern priests with PhDs and perks re the "Darwin thing" they are wrong. Not that anybody else is right (including I.D. etc), just they are wrong. Do it in public.
    See what happens.......
    Have fun.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  258. @Dillon Sweeny

    Fungi and Bacteria are the most successful kingdoms.
     
    You are correct. My error.

    Bacteria and archaebacteria were around longer than anybody else. They predate eukaryotic cells and gave rise to those cells and all eukaryotes composed of them, including us. Thus, bacteria and archaebacteria are so far the greatest evolutionary success. As groups, not as individual species. They kept changing all those billions of years. For example, there could not have been E. coli that lives in human guts before humans emerged. Each species of animal has a different species of bacteria fulfilling the same function as E. coli in us. BTW, E. coli constitutes ~50% of shit by weight, so it is wrong to say that E. coli smells like shit, in fact, shit smells like E. coli.

    I once had a conversation with a bus driver who asserted that there is God, and therefore there is no evolution. Within a few minutes he told me about the problems of his son who contracted antibiotic-resistant bacteria. To a thinking person it would be obvious that there were no antibiotic-resistant bacteria before antibiotics were introduced, and their emergence is a clear case of evolution. However, it was not obvious to that bus driver. It is amazing how many people are on the same level.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  259. MarkinLA says:
    @KenH
    Fred's on his anti-evolution kick again. Can Fred's "intelligent designer" really be considered such when he created so many human groups that can't even feed and care for themselves and who would die out if not for Western charity and suicidal altruism?

    If intelligent design theory is so much stronger/less assailable than the theory of evolution then is the designer one person or a team of them? Is it a diverse group of designers or are they white supremacists?

    Or if just one male designer is he a little faggy and wears scarves like Versace or more of a mad scientist like Doc on Back to the Future?

    A lot of life forms have gone extinct, so he, she or they sure do make lots of mistakes.

    Even leaving out groups that cannot support themselves or species unable to continue to survive for whatever reason, what about birth defects?

    Here we have a completely innocent baby who will live a short painful miserable life, a life that might very well destroy the lives of the parents who brought it into the world. As they say, God has a plan for all of us.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  260. @Dillon Sweeny
    There is a profound misunderstanding of evolution here. Profound. Evolution is NOT a Hegelian spiral into never-ending excellence. Evolution is survival; evolution is reproductive success. Period, end definition.

    Evolution has no difficulty with static niches. Species survival does not REQUIRE niche pressure, nor mutation.

    Stop reading Darwin (although I cannot imagine any of you wackadoodles actually doing so) -- it's old; it was tentative when published, and is now insufficient. The Wikipedia article "Evolution" is surprisingly good, and perhaps you low IQ doodles can understand it.

    Stop being ignorant, and stop prattling ignorance at the top of your lungs.

    Evolution is survival;

    No it isn’t.

    John Koza with 1,000-Pentium parallel computer in Mountain View, California. Picture by Eric Slomanson

    http://www.genetic-programming.com/johnkoza.html

    Read More
    • Replies: @MarkinLA
    I an somewhat skeptical about the claims of AI let alone this genetic programming. Admittedly, I stopped having any interest a long time ago as my job never depended on it. However, I looked at that list of accomplishments and wonder how many of them have been helped along and by how much by the program's designers.

    I would like to see something really extrordinary like giving the system the basic rules of number theory and have the computer print out the proof of Fermat's Last Theorem and not the recent one that took a lot of pages and change of space (mathematics that did not exist or were not very developed in Fermat's time) - the one Fermat claimed was just too large to fit into the margin of a book.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  261. 1. rosie, nickels, et al; whoa, you have serious issues, and I DON’T mean that you believe what you belie