I Hate to Do This to You

Friends,

Here’s Richard Dawkins, hero to the atheistic movement and evolutionists everywhere. I’m not saying a word one way or the other. Here he is:

jerry

 PS–be prepared. We will be told this video is a hoax.

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  1. Joe

    What’s that supposed to do to me?

  2. Dan

    That sounds about right to me… how would it be a hoax?

    Perhaps he’s talking to you Jerry, when he says that many people misunderstand evolution.

  3. Jill

    So by this explanation I am to understand evolution to be an ancient occurence but one not happening today? So using the scientific method how do we prove or disprove this theory if one cannot observe and repeat the process? But the actual question was if there was any increase in information of the genome from mutation… is there ever any gain or increase in information in any mutation in which one sees today? Richard Dawkins apparently does not know of one.
    I would not think this to be a difficult question to answer for one of the brightest minds in evolutionary science. More surprising is the idea that fish turning into reptiles is a misconception? why was it taught that way in textbooks and charts on classroom walls during the last 30 years? oh wait,there are misconceptions being taught regarding evolution? But we who question the theory are told we do not understand it thoroughly….does anybody??
    All I see is piecemeal explanations that lead to more and more questions,leading to changes in this “factual theory”. One must have quite alot of faith to believe in evolution.

  4. Joe

    “So by this explanation I am to understand evolution to be an ancient occurence but one not happening today? So using the scientific method how do we prove or disprove this theory if one cannot observe and repeat the process?”
    No. His point was that modern reptiles did not evolve from modern fish. But that they both evolved from an ancient (now extinct) common ancestor.

    “But the actual question was if there was any increase in information of the genome from mutation… is there ever any gain or increase in information in any mutation in which one sees today? Richard Dawkins apparently does not know of one.”
    Yes, he seemed to be answering a different question than was asked. I don’t know if that is due to an unfair edit or what. But if he was answering the question asked I would assume he would ask the interviewer what they meant by “increase in information” and then he would probably talk about gene copying.

    “One must have quite alot of faith to believe in evolution.”
    There is no faith needed to believe in scientific theories. They all live and die by the evidence.

  5. “They live and die by the evidence.” Right, and apparently Mr. Dawkins has none.

    Sad. Really, really sad.

    jerry

  6. Dan,

    Thanks. Perhaps if you and half a dozen other evolutionists keep telling I don’t understand evolution, you’ll actually start believing it. What is there to understand except that there is not one single, credible, shred of evidence to prove it? You’re right, Dan. I don’t understand it. And every time I ask a question with the intent of learning about it, you evolutionists 1) change the question, 2) tell me I don’t get it, 3) bring up ‘evidence’ that can be refuted rather easily, 4) avoid the questions I ask, and 5) ridicule, criticize, & tell me what I can and cannot say at my blog. But you never mount a credible defense. You need to prove evolution. You need to prove that we have common ancestors. You need to prove that at some point one of our common ancestors decided to fuse one of the 48 chromosomes into 46 so that apes became humans. (That was the video I saw at BlueRat’s blog–Dr Miller, I think.)

    Still no evidence.

    Seriously, thank you. I’m learning a lot.

    regards,
    jerry

  7. Joe

    “‘They live and die by the evidence.’ Right, and apparently Mr. Dawkins has none.”
    How exactly is that apparent?

    “You need to prove evolution. You need to prove that we have common ancestors. You need to prove that at some point one of our common ancestors decided to fuse one of the 48 chromosomes into 46 so that apes became humans.”
    There are thousands of science books out there that could educate you on this subject. Why do you think it is the job of some random people on the internet?

  8. Joe, (reply 7)

    If you don’t like what I post, stop reading my blog! It’s that simple, really. It’s not your job; but you can’t do it either way.

    And as far as ‘apparent’ is concerned: He didn’t answer the question, did he?

    jerry

    We live and die by the evidence. Mine is the empty tomb, with plenty of eyewitnesses. What is yours? Has anyone, one single person, witnessed evolution. No. Conveniently, that is something that doesn’t happen in ‘modern’ species. That’s too bad. Too bad.

  9. Joe

    No he didn’t answer the question and neither of us know why. Since even I could come up with an answer to it, I know the reason why is not because there is no answer. It could very well be an edit (i.e. he was obviously answering a different question.) or he could have misheard/misunderstood the question. It is obvious that he wasn’t answering that question, so the clip is really irrelevant. If you really cared about the answer to that question you would just do a little research and find it.

    “We live and die by the evidence. Mine is the empty tomb, with plenty of eyewitnesses.”
    Which doesn’t contradict evolution at all. Evolution is NOT a atheistic theory, it is a scientific theory.

    “What is yours? Has anyone, one single person, witnessed evolution.”
    If you were genuinely interested you would just look it up. There is plenty of evidence.

    “No. Conveniently, that is something that doesn’t happen in ‘modern’ species. That’s too bad. Too bad.”
    If you did do some research you wouldn’t make silly statements like that. Evolution is happening today. The reason why we can’t see it easily is because it happens over generations. The only place it can be witnessed on short timescales are species with short generations. Plants, insects, bacteria, etc. It HAS been witnessed on those scales.

    “If you don’t like what I post, stop reading my blog! It’s that simple, really. It’s not your job; but you can’t do it either way.”
    I don’t like what you post so I tell you why. If you can’t handle that then delete all my comments.

  10. Jon

    Dawkins actually wrote about this particular video. And no, it’s not a hoax. Although replying here seems useless, since you’re not going to approve my comment, I’ll do it anyway.

    According to Dawkins, the filmers called him asking for an interview. When they arrived and asked him this particular question, he realized that they were really just looking for propaganda to put on the web.

    Of course, you’ll discount anything anyone says which conflicts with your already-formed opinion, but whatever.

  11. Joe,

    I have done the research. What plants have you seen evolving? What insect? And a bacteria? Who cares if a bacteria evolves? How does that prove that man evolves? It is convenient to your theory that evolution takes place over many generations and cannot be witnessed as such. I have read much of the evidence and the much I have read has been refuted by others much smarter me (for example, that story I read at yahoo where evolutionist contradict their own theory; and yes, I have read the paper.)

    Where has science (or you) witnessed evolution, one species changing into another species? Where? I want to see it myself. Point me to a book, a paper, a tree. Show me. I want to see it.

    Take for example a praying mantis. (I’m speaking hypothetically here, imagining a scenario. You can insert any animal or condition here you like.) I caught one the other day and let it climb on my hand and arm for a few minutes, and I photographed it on some lillies. It is a perfect insect, as far as it goes. Can you forsee anything that would cause it to need to change: it eats well, has good camouflage, probably has a nice ‘home’, it reproduces exact replicas of itself, has wings to fly, legs to walk, big eyes to see prey, can sit really still when it hunts. None of this is flawed. If it’s flawed, the insect won’t eat and will thus die, or it won’t mate and will eventually become extinct, or it will be eaten by a predator and neither eat nor reproduce, but will die.

    Let me go this way, let’s say (for the argument’s sake since I don’t know if this is precisely true of a mantis or not) that a mantis can only live in moderate conditions such as that of Ohio. Let’s say that all of the sudden the temperature dropped and we became fixed, suddenly, in an ‘ice-age’ (like I saw in the movie The Day After Tomorrow). How would there be enough time for the mantis to mutate it’s DNA so that it could withstand the ‘ice-age,’ when it happened so fast, and thus survive to hunt, eat, and reproduce another generation of Mantis’ that had that cold-withstanding, mutated DNA?

    It couldn’t, unless, the mantis had forsight and started to develope those genes many years before the ice-age hit. They would all simply die when the ice came and thus they would be extinct and their DNA, mutated or not, would not be passed on at all. Unless they had foresight, (or unless someone put them on an ark and protected them until the conditions went back to normal), they would die. It’s a bad example I know since there are mitigating factors like whether or not a mantis lives in moderate temperatures and whether an ice-age could actually come upon us like in the movie Day After Tomorrow. But my question is, which hasn’t been answered yet, how does an animal or a chromosome know that unknown condition B is better than current condition A as far as it’s DNA is concerned? If Condition A causes an animal to not hunt as well, and it starves and dies, how can it develop condition B so that it will not starve and die? (And don’t tell me that there are animals with condition B and condition A at the genetic level because means there are two different animals–someone else already lectured me about species. And I have already pointed out that the addition of extra chromosomes or the removal of chromosomes renders a creature ‘imperfect.’) How does a creature know that it needs to alter or die?

    I realize that your first response will be that I just don’t understand evolution at all. So, dispense with that comment and I’ll just assume that you made it. Then procede to work on my questions from the scenario I have drawn for you. If you have the time and the patience to instruct someone as unschooled as I am.

    One final thing: You said he didn’t answer the question, maybe he didn’t hear it. OK. You did hear the question. Tell me what the answer is, show me the research, point me to the book (I’ll go the library today or Amazon if it’s cheap). Or better, you answer it. The clip is relevant, because it shows that the question cannot be answered. And I’ve already pointed out that someone would say it is a hoax–that is the only possible defense you can mount.

    Who are the witnesses Joe? Where are they? I know, I know. If only I would do some research I wouldn’t make silly statements. OK. I retract my statement. Show me the proof. I’ll wait patiently. And I’ll also have to assume that your witnesses always tell the truth, that your witnesses are never contradicted by other witnesses, and that your witnesses have no other agenda but to report exactly what they have seen without interpretation.

    OH, and for the record, evolution is an atheistic theory, Dawkins has said so himself. If gives you all the opportunity to be intellectually satisfied atheists. I didn’t say it, he did.

    I’ll say this, in conclusion for now, simply writing a paper does not make for proof either. I can read Steven Gould or Richard Dawkins or Mary Leakey until I’m blue in the face and my fingers are bleeding from paper cuts. But proof is in actual, physical evidence that I can touch, feel, smell. It’s in lab experiments whose results can be tested and reproduced. But anyone can do anything in a lab: there’s still someone there adding all the requisite ingredients.

    Thanks again, Joe. I appreciate your conversation very much, even if most of the time it we are miles, and miles apart.

    jerry

    PS–You are free to post, but don’t get angry when I point out the lunacy of your points of view and the logical fallacies that you commit. I won’t delete your comments because up until now you have been fairly pleasant. When you start acting like Jon, then we might have to talk. For now, disagree we may, but you are still considered a friend.

  12. Jon, (reply 10)

    How does that change the fact that he couldn’t and didn’t answer the question?

    jerry

    PS-for the record, I don’t have to agree with anyone but myself at my blog. This is the same rule for you at your blog.

  13. Joe

    Sorry I don’t really have the time to answer all that. But I will respond to some. I don’t think it is a bad idea for you to research this elsewhere, not because it would convince, but so you could at least understand what the theory of evolution is claiming happened. it would answer most of the questioned you asked, whether you choose to believe it is true or not.

    First, your bugs do not produce exact copies of themselves. (Even animals that clone themselves don’t always produce exact copies.) The bugs reproduce sexually, which means every individual is a unique combination of DNA (barring twins). This means that any population of a species can contain a vast amount of genetic diversity. Especially in times of plenty when the population is large, then the genetic diversity can be extreme. Then if there are changes in their environment or a particular combination of genes gives some individuals an advantage those genes will become more common within the species. Any hard times that come will tend to kill more of the individuals without the advantageous mutations.

    You are right that sudden changes to the environment will often lead to extinction. But ice ages weren’t sudden. They came and went more slowly than the man influenced climate change we are seeing now. Even then they no doubt lead to the extinction of some species.

    One way that “information” gets added to a genome is that during reproduction some genes are copied, then in later generations changes happen to the new gene or the other so that eventually they are two different genes. We find evidence in this in animal DNA when we see very similar sequences of DNA right next to each other that now perform different functions in the animal.

    Regarding evidence: I think the key is what exactly you are looking at evidence for. If you are looking for evidence of common descent the fossil record is quite clear in that.

    If you want evidence that a god was not involved in the origin of life on earth you are not going to find it. Many people have no problem believing in god and accepting the theory of evolution, when you insist on conflating the two issues it really just adds that much more confusion to a discussion.

    Thanks

  14. Jon

    How does that change the fact that he couldn’t and didn’t answer the question?

    If I answer you, would it change your mind? Probably not. You view everything I write as an attempt to appear better than you, for some reason. But whatever, I’ll respond.

    First of all, the question from the film doesn’t make sense unless you specify what you’re defining “complexity” as. By complexity, do you mean more chromosomes? More mutations? Less junk DNA? More efficiency? Are you talking about complexity in terms of Shannon information theory, Kolmogorov complexity theory, or some other metric? I could say a fern is more complex than a human being because it has hundreds more chromosomes; most people, including scientists, would likely disagree.

    If by complexity you mean a beneficial mutation that increases survival in a particular environment, then yes, obviously that has happened. Look at Darwin’s finches. Or look at the numerous Drosophilia fruit fly experiments. You’ve heard about the nylon-eating bacteria discovered in a factory sludge pool in Japan, right? Nylon was invented in 1935. It’s an artificial, human-made substance. Dawkins had a plethora of responses to give to them, he just didn’t.

    As to why he didn’t, I can only let him speak for himself. In his editorial about this video, he says that it’s after they ask this question he realizes they’re out for propaganda, and he figures it doesn’t matter what he says, that they’ll just edit it to suit their purposes. So he cuts the interview off.

  15. Jon,

    Thank you for being kind enough to treat me like I can think. I appreciate your reasoned response, and your answer. You’re right. I don’t agree, and I’m sure there are those who can refute the evidence you have cited, but I have decided not to argue anymore since it is equally unlikely that my arguing will persuade you either. Again, thanks for reading and writing. I’ll look forward to more replies from you in the future.

    jerry

  16. Joe

    I think there are more important goals of a conversation than persuasion. For the record it is never my intent or goal to convert anyone to atheism. However, I must admit that I do intend to defend science and its findings from unwarranted attacks. I think I understand a lot more about why we were talking past each other in this conversation.

    See you around.

  17. ankabyuth

    Jerry, heres Dr. Dawkin’s explanation for the 11 second pause.

    http://www.skeptics.com.au/journal/1998/3_crexpose.htm

    http://www.skeptics.com.au/articles/dawkins.htm

    A similar thing seems to be have happened to Prof. PZ Myers:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2007/08/im_gonna_be_a_movie_star.php

    (sorry bout the long links, I still haven’t figured out how to do links)

  18. Anka,

    Of course it’s propaganda, a word that was made famous during the Nazi era of WWII Germany and Communist Soviet Union.

    I said it would be explained away or written off as a hoax.

    I still haven’t heard an answer to the question. I watched the clip, he doesn’t look angry to me, he doesn’t look like one regretting a decision to me, he looks like the fool he is: And one without an answer.

    Can you answer the question? I’ll give you as much time as you need.

    I don’t know PZ Myers, but he seems very, very angry.

    jerry

  19. Dan

    “I don’t know PZ Myers, but he seems very, very angry.”

    Of course he does. He also sounds very correct in his criticisms.

  20. Dan,

    Thanks for reading. I didn’t read the whole blog, but what I did read didn’t sound any different from any other evolutionist I have read. I’m not going to argue with you, because it is what it is. You believe your way, which I think is wrong, and I believe my way, which you think is wrong. I don’t have to be right because if I’m wrong I’ve lost nothing. But I think you better hope that the evolutionists are right, because if they are wrong, and God did make the world and all that is in it…well…you will lose everything.

    But have a nice day anyhow.

    jerry

    PS–does PZ Myers’ anger help make his case a little stronger? A little more believable? A little more credible?

  21. Dan

    Pascal’s Wager?! Clearly you haven’t actually debated atheists very much, have you? That argument falls apart for a long list of reasons.

    But no, anger doesn’t make him more correct or wrong, as the case may be. It just makes people that disagree with him get angry in return.

  22. Dan,

    I’m not debating. There is no debate. Atheism is a lost cause–it is hopelessness in action. I’m glad you pointed to Pascal, but I regret that of all the reading I do, he is not one that I have read in his entirety. I’ve read parts of Pensees, but not the entire volume. I had never heard of Pascal’s Wager until you pointed it out, but now I’m determined to read a little further in his Pensees.

    By the way, I’m not angry. What ever gave you that impression? As I said, I don’t need to prove anything. I’ll have to check on those reasons why Pascal falls apart later because now I have to go to the grocery store. Sadly, evolution has not yet invented a way for me to live without the intake of fuel that will produce energy. I wish my genetic code could be altered or mutated so that I wouldn’t have to keep killing animals and eating them or growing vegetables to eat (and share with groundhogs) 🙂

    I’m not sure what the word ‘clearly’ here means. There is no argument. You will never see God because you don’t want to, and I cannot help but see Him. Ask, Seek, Knock.

    Oh, BTW, I’ll gladly give you all the space you want here if you want to prove that God does not exist. I don’t seriously think you can do it, but you can try. Or, I can look at your ‘evidence’ at your blog. Still, regardless, atheism is, by definition, an exercise in futility. Do you realize that when you die that’s it?

    thanks again,
    jerry

    PS–Can you answer the question that Prof. Dawkins could not (or would not) answer? I’ll give you all the time in the world. No double-talk. Just an answer.

  23. Dan

    On debating, again, I’m fine with each of us thinking that the other is ‘misguided,’ so I wasn’t debating – but that is a rather common and easily criticized argument that comes up in theist-atheist debates. Anyway…

    I didn’t say you were angry, only that it does tend to anger people in general.

    You will never see God because you don’t want to, and I cannot help but see Him.

    Exactly! It’s just that obvious statement that leads many people to conclude that god(s) are imaginary.

    How does one disprove the imaginary, you ask? Well I can’t, regardless of whether it’s your God, Zeus, Thor, fairies, goblins, or monsters under the bed.

    On Dawkins’ question though – the question itself was pretty ignorant in my opinion, betraying a lack of understanding of a little process we biologists call “descent with modification.” So I return a question to you – how does one answer a question based upon false pretenses?

  24. Dan,

    So, you are saying you cannot answer the question either, right?

    jerry

    PS–My comment about you not seeing him has nothing to do with proving your point. Your comment assumes that God is imaginary. Be that as it may, you cannot provide any evidence that God does not exist except your own disbelief, or unbelief, and your mocking condescension. I’ll ask again, aside from your own unbelief, what evidence can you provide that God does not exist? Yours is not so much a matter of not believing in God as much as it is a matter of not wanting to believe. There’s a difference. Your unbelief in no way mitigates His Reality.

    And, can you answer the question that Dawkins cannot answer or not? Or, can you provide me with some information on the little process you call ‘descent with modification’ which still necessitates, either by addition or subtraction, genetic change? If addition, show me how it helped the species, if subtraction, show me how it did not damage it. You cannot demonstrate a beneficial change by the addition or subtraction of information in genome.

    You see, your other wrong assumption is that I don’t understand your vocabulary or your ‘little processes’ that you ‘little biologists’ with your ‘little toys’ define and manipulate. I’ll turn the question back on you: strip away all the false pretenses (which in no way alters the true premise of the question) and answer the question. It’s that simple. (You see, there is a grammatical and functional difference between the words ‘pretense’ and ‘premise’ a difference you don’t seem to understand.

  25. Dan

    No, I cannot answer a stupid question intelligently. If you’d like, I could explain why it was a stupid question, however.

    And yes, my comment assumes that god is imaginary. Your comment assumes he’s not. Without actually seeing god, we’re left saying “yes he is, no he’s not.” How do we solve this disagreement? Well, the only way is if you show me he’s not imaginary (it’s impossible to show something that’s imaginary, isn’t it?) – which you refuse to do.

  26. Dan,

    All you do is get angrier and angrier and angrier and continue to embarass yourselves because you cannot answer questions whether intelligent or stupid or otherwise. You are on display for the entire universe to see, you and your stupidity that mascarades as wisdom–which is little more than humanism. I can’t see oxygen either, but it’s certainly ‘there’. I can’t ‘see’ the wind, but it’s there. You can’t see evolution, but you assume it is there. I can’t see love, but it is there.

    Look, Dan, I appreciate your efforts, but you have followed the same course as every other atheist and evolutionist who has visited here and tried to argue me away. (You obviously haven’t debated much with a Christian who knows what he believes and why.) That is, the only argument you have against what I believe is that you assume I either a) am not intelligent enough to understand your argument or b) am stupid enough to believe my own argument. Either way, yours is an exercise in futility. You have no hope beyond this earth and when you die, your ‘wisdom’ will die with you. There is no hope in atheism, evolution, or agnosticism, or humanism. Currently, you are a lost soul, a dying breed, already under God’s judgment, already dead. Man, my heart aches for you and your little biologist friends. You are so lost.

    But there is hope in Christ who died for your sins. Now, if you want historical, irrefutable, evidence: There you have it. Jesus was real. He died a real death. He resurrected to real life. It’s history, friend, that you cannot refute. Jesus is my proof of God. And he is a historical reality, an historical person, that you cannot deny existed (well, you can deny it, but history is against you and your denial won’t change the truth). There, I have not refused to show you evidence, but in fact, I have demonstrated quite convincingly that God is real. His Name is Jesus.

    Thanks for stopping by. When you have your irrefutable evidence for evolution or atheism, you let me know. In the meantime, I’ll assume that you need my prayers to God for mercy and peace.

    your friend,
    jerry

    PS-As far as refusing to do something, I think you are the one who has yet to answer a single question or provide a single syllable of proof for God’s non-existence. Good luck!

  27. ankabyuth

    Jerry, im posting the second link again. u seem not to have read it. That is professor Dawkin’s answer to the “information question”. I hope you still won’t assume the question is unanswerable.
    http://www.skeptics.com.au/articles/dawkins.htm

    And heres the response from the producer of the tape.
    http://www.skeptics.com.au/journal/1998/4_response.pdf

  28. Anka,

    Let me explain this to you in as clear a language as I can: Evolution is a hoax, a lie, an unsubstantiated myth, an invalidated hypothesis for atheists. It is in no way compatible with Christian faith or doctrine. It gives atheists ‘intellectual fulfillment.’ I read what Dawkins wrote–u seem not to understand that it is called ‘spin.’ Of course he has to defend himself, of course it was ‘creationist propaganda,’ of course prof. Dawkins is the wisdom of wisdom. He’s an idiot (in the intellectual sense of the word).

    It’s just like I told my friends Dan, Joe and Jon–evolution, and the atheism it undergirds, is a exercise in futility. Without Christ there is no hope. So, you can post the link a few more times if you like, but that will in no way change the fact that evolution is simply not true, simply does not happen, simply cannot produce the sort of life and results that evolutionists say it produces. You have been deluded by a lie, and lied to by delusionists.

    But thanks for trying. Try another angle.

    jerry

    ps–which version of evolution do you subscribe to?

  29. ankabyuth

    Evolution is descent with modification.

    I leave you to your convictions. And since you’ve been such a good friend heres a little parting.

  30. Anka,

    Thanks. I’m glad you consider us friends. I checked the link. I don’t get it. Sorry. (I removed it from your reply because I don’t want people to think badly of you.)

    yours,
    jerry

    ps–evolution is descent with modification of what? how does the ‘what’ know what to modify? When to modify it? How to modify it? It’s just silly–as silly as the notion that the building blocks of life, or indeed life itself, came from a comet! (See my other post.) I’ll leave you to your hopelessness.

  31. Jon

    ps–evolution is descent with modification of what? how does the ‘what’ know what to modify? When to modify it? How to modify it? It’s just silly–as silly as the notion that the building blocks of life, or indeed life itself, came from a comet! (See my other post.) I’ll leave you to your hopelessness.

    People have answered these questions before on your blog.

    evolution is descent with modification of what?

    The modification of genetic material.

    How does the ‘what’ know what to modify?

    The environment selects against certain traits and for others. It doesn’t know it’s doing it, just as a sieve doesn’t know it’s sifting out larger flour grains from smaller ones.

    When to modify it?

    Genes mutate any time DNA is replicated. The important mutations occur during meiosis, when the sex cells (sperm and ova) develop, and during sexual reproduction, when the sperm and ovum meet and recombine each of the DNA of the parents into a new potential organism.

    Selection occurs at differing times, depending on the mutation. For instance, if an organism mutates the inability to develop into a fetus, that mutation is selected against quite quickly, because the organism can’t reproduce. On the other hand, if an organism develops a neutral mutation, such as an allele mutation (purple eyes, for instance), no selection occurs; that mutation is subject to random genetic drift, not natural selection. Thirdly, a mutation could differentially increase the survival of an organism; maybe someone living in the tropics garners a slightly darker skin tone. In that case, the selection occurs as a function of how many successful offspring the mutated organism has.

  32. Jon,

    “1Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. 2This is what the ancients were commended for. 3By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible” (Hebrews 11:1-3, NIV)

    Thanks, Jon.

    jerry

    PS–evolution is a lie perpetuated by people who don’t want to believe, not by the wise who know something we don’t.

    Don’t you realize how absurd the statement ‘descent with modification’ is?

  33. Jon

    PS–evolution is a lie perpetuated by people who don’t want to believe, not by the wise who know something we don’t.

    I want a million dollars, a private jet, and a perpetual motion machine. But wanting something doesn’t make it happen or make it true.

    Don’t you realize how absurd the statement ‘descent with modification’ is?

    No, it’s actually quite descriptive. It highlights the importance of variation and selection in evolution. Don’t get caught up on the words; examine the concepts. The word “modification” is just a metaphor; there’s not actually anything conscious going on.

  34. Jon

    Um, I think I missed a blockquote tag somewhere in my last post, if you could fix that.

  35. Dan

    “Don’t you realize how absurd the statement ‘descent with modification’ is?”

    Um, no, I for one don’t understand how that is absurd at all… you do understand how ancestry and descendants work, and how descendants are not identical, don’t you?

    Please forgive me, but you make yourself sound extremely ignorant about biology, if not science in general.

  36. Dan

    Also, for your other ‘p.s.’:

    “evolution is a lie perpetuated by people who don’t want to believe, not by the wise who know something we don’t.”

    That sounds like something straight out of the Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, it’s so patently absurd. I suppose that all of science is a lie then, and we should just practice magic.

    Please get an education, and not that homeschooling boatload of dogmatic ignorance.

  37. Jon,

    Thanks. I am from the old school, so to speak, that believes ‘words mean things.’ I accept creation as a fact, not a metaphor. Evolution is barely a metaphor, and not a very good one at that.

    I don’t know how there can be nothing conscious going on when you have said earlier that it was due to the environment that these modifications occure.

    Look, I understand everything you say about evolution, I just don’t beleive it. There is nothing to suggest where these pieces and parts come from in the first place (unless you buy into that comet theory I posted the other day). Where did the constituent parts come from?

    At best, evolution explains variation (another theory I reject). It does not explain origins. So even if I grant you variation (which I don’t), you still have no answer for origins. The only ‘theory’ that satisfies both variation and origin is creation, ex nihilo; Genesis 1.

    thanks again,
    jerry

  38. Dan,

    The theory of evolution is more intelligent sounding that you are. Is that all you have for me: ‘get an education’, ‘not homeschool,’ ‘the gospel of flying spaghetti,’ and ‘ignorant of biology’? Wow, you are simply a fountain of witticisms!

    Dan, what would you like to know about biology? I learned all I need to know to survive in about 9th grade. I also took a class in college where I managed a meager 4.0 in the class. But seriously, if all you have is insults, what can I say? You cannot even make an intelligent argument so you must resort to playground name-calling and insults. I must have hurt your feelings when I suggested that your pet philosophy of life is a lie–because that suggests your whole life is a lie being wasted in pursuit of something that is philosophically empty, theologically untrue, and scientifically untenable.

    So, you are saying that, since I am different in appearance from my dad that somehow that proves ‘descent with modification’? I think you are the one who doesn’t understand DNA, RNA, Chromosomes from two parents, etc., etc., etc. I actually think you are the mindless robot here. You are the one with nothing original to offer. I’m married, and have three children. I understand quite well how genetics work. I understand that when my mom and dad’s egg and sperm met, and I was conceived, I got a share of both of their traits, however, nothing is fundamentally different between me and them. I’m still human, just as they are. I got my dad’s eyes, my mom’s temper, two legs, two arms, etc. I’m still human, not a different version of a human. I think, perhaps, you don’t understand this too well now do you?

    (I’d like you to do a google search of the great Americans who were homeschooled, probably some of your favs. I actually received an education at the expense of the public.)

    But, in conclusion, I say this: I’m not ignorant because I don’t belive the BS that you call science, the stuff that passes itself off as truth, the mindless gibberish that passes itself off as wisdom, the lunacy that passes itself off as intelligence, the stuff that has been used to justify rape, slavery, arian supremacy, abortion, and a host of other social ills (do the Amazon search, you’ll see what I mean!). And just because you believe it does not mean that it is true. Evolution is not observable and, conveniently, according to Freeman Dyson (one of your own), Darwinian evolution has ended. How majestic that is!

    But you go ahead and continue warping your mind and the minds of children. Keep on telling people that the only purpose for their existence is so that DNA can live–to what end? Go ahead and keep justifying criminal behavior by appealing to Darwinism. I’ll gladly play the part of fool for believing that God made this world and all that is in it. I’ll gladly be the idiot who believes he was created in the image of God and not descended from a monkey like grandparent who also gave rise to, strangely enough, monkeys. I’ll gladly accept your insults because that is, frankly, the best you can do; you have nothing. You are just angry because you cannot win this argument no matter how hard you try, no matter how angry you get, no matter how many books you quote, or bones you parade in front of us.

    I’ll say this again: There is no credible evidence to support a scientific inquiry of evolution. It cannot be reproduced in a lab. It cannot be observed. It cannot be anything. You have been sold a lie, you have believed a lie, and you have perpetuated a lie. And you know who the father of lies is, don’t you?

    I’m sorry Dan, but you are wasting your time with me. I’m 100% sold out on God and Jesus Christ.

    Your good friend who prays for your lost soul,
    jerry

  39. Jon

    Evolution is barely a metaphor, and not a very good one at that.

    I wasn’t saying evolution is a metaphor. I was saying the word “modification” was. You could change “descent with modification” to “descent with selected genetic variation” if you were really worried about the word. That phrase is just something scientists use to explain evolution in a colloquial way. At the end of the day, what you name things doesn’t matter. As the physicist Richard Feynman once pointed out, it doesn’t matter if you know that the name of a bird is “brown-throated thrush”. That tells you nothing interesting about the bird itself, except that it has a brown throat. It’s just a name. Knowing names and knowing concepts are quite different.

    There is nothing to suggest where these pieces and parts come from in the first place

    Which pieces and parts are you referring to?

    At best, evolution explains variation (another theory I reject).

    Which variation are you talking about? Evolution doesn’t explain genetic variation. That’s a result of genetic crossover during the creation of sex cells. Every sperm and every egg has a unique genetic code as a result. We can observe this process under a microscope.

    Or did you mean variation between species?

    It does not explain origins.

    No, of course not. Evolution requires that replicators exist in the first place. It assumes they exist. It doesn’t say anything about where they come from (although scientists are working on that, too). This is why many religious folk say things like, “God created those first replicating molecules”, when they reconcile their faith with evolutionary theory.

    The only ‘theory’ that satisfies both variation and origin is creation, ex nihilo; Genesis 1.

    It can’t be tested, so no, it doesn’t satisfy those things, and in the same way that Hindu creation stories or Zoroastrian creation stories don’t satisfy them.

    Keep on telling people that the only purpose for their existence is so that DNA can live–to what end?

    He never said that, and evolutionary theory doesn’t either. That’s you doing some interpretation.

    I’m not ignorant because I don’t belive the BS that you call science.

    Never mind the fact that literally almost everything you own is the result of scientific research. Computers. The Internet. Plastic. Medicine. Electricity. Et cetera. 🙂 What has the hypothesis “God created the universe” physically contributed to society? Nothing. That’s because it doesn’t explain anything.

    I’ll say this again: There is no credible evidence to support a scientific inquiry of evolution. It cannot be reproduced in a lab.

    I’ve posted links here before documenting extensive evidence, but you removed them and, I’m guessing, didn’t read them. So please qualify your statements. By “There is no credible evidence” you mean to say “I’ve not read any credible evidence”. Which is your failing, not Dan’s or mine or science’s.

  40. Dan

    “I learned all I need to know to survive in about 9th grade. I also took a class in college where I managed a meager 4.0 in the class.”

    In an actual High School, and they couldn’t explain descent with modification for you? Sounds like an A average might’ve been given out for no effort or learning in that class, or in college. What college was it, anyway?

    As for insults, it’s really ashame that you find my above comments all that insulting, but I’m sorry that you did. Heck, I’m sorry that you don’t understand simple concepts like ancestry and descent.

    “I’m not ignorant because I don’t belive the BS that you call science”

    Yet you use the products of science every day. Do you think we’d have computers, the internet, 21st century medicine, or anything beyond the Dark Ages technology, were it not for science? Of course not.

    “Keep on telling people that the only purpose for their existence is so that DNA can live–to what end?”

    Please don’t lie about me. That is not something I’ve ever said, nor would I ever say. Claiming that I’m an existentialist and a nihilist is dishonest of you in the highest degree.

    “There is no credible evidence to support a scientific inquiry of evolution. It cannot be reproduced in a lab. It cannot be observed. It cannot be anything. You have been sold a lie, you have believed a lie, and you have perpetuated a lie. And you know who the father of lies is, don’t you?”

    Just keep chanting that mantra, and maybe someday it will come true. Yes, and maybe we’ll return to the Dark Ages of superstition, when religion was supreme.

    “I’m sorry Dan, but you are wasting your time with me. I’m 100% sold out on God and Jesus Christ.”

    Yes, clearly I am wasting my time with you.

  41. Jon & Dan,

    I’ll say a few things here that apply to you both, and might make you uncomfortable at times. Jon, I appreciate that you have a slight sense of humor and some levity. Dan, I’m worried about your blood pressure. You seem so offended that you cannot persuade me with your caustic insults and terrible grammar. Nevertheless, to my comments.

    You wrote (Jon):

    “Never mind the fact that literally almost everything you own is the result of scientific research. Computers. The Internet. Plastic. Medicine. Electricity. Et cetera. What has the hypothesis “God created the universe” physically contributed to society? Nothing. That’s because it doesn’t explain anything.”

    Dan said something similar. So, with both of you having said that, how does the fact that ‘science’ or ‘scientic research’ produced computers, medicine, etc., (something I have never denied) prove evolution? What does the fact that a scientist can create play-doh or legos have to do with whether or not I was created or evolved? What does the accidental discovery of penicillin have to do with ‘descent by modification’? (A concept that, while I fully understand, simply is incomprehensible to me since as yet you have not adequately explained how things know they must change or die. Things cannot change if they don’t know they need to. That is a logical assumption to make. Why would anything change unless it knew it needed to? Oh, did science ‘invent’ or even ‘discover’ electricity Jon? Wasn’t it (relatively speaking) ‘always’ there? You might be better off to say that science learned how to manipulate it for serving man. That’s much closer to the truth.

    Jon, you said that the ‘replicators’ are assumed. That’s an awfully big assumption to make, my friend! I don’t agree that anything just happens–even my computer had to be made by a scientist. I could just as easily say, and with as much faith, that those replicators were created by Someone. But as in the other article I posted, scientists, at least some, want us to beleive those replicators came from comets and outer space. Come on! Or that one fine day, in a pool of muck, ‘they’ ‘decided’ to ‘get together’ and ‘form a new thing.’ They would have us believe those comets (or asteroids) then landed on earth, killed the dinosaurs, but delivered the building blocks for humanity and the rest! Seriously.

    What has God contributed to this society? Again, you don’t see it because you don’t believe and you don’t believe because you don’t see it.

    Jon, you have posted links for me to read. And I’m sure there are books. But what do those links and books prove? Nothing. They are simply another opinion, they are, your bible. They are no more proof than the fly on my window. They are man’s opinions, and man is necessarily flawed to the core. I’ve read Dawkins. I’ve read Gould. I’ve read Denton. Dembski. And more (although, I should point out that I am not merely an Intelligent Design advocate. I believe in Creation, Genesis 1 style.) I’ve read papers that other bloggers have sent me about how man ‘learned to walk so he could save energy,’ about skulls, jaw bones, and piltdown man. I’ve read National Geographic, Nature, Astronomy, and Natural History magazines (I had subscriptions for a long time.) I’ve read it. It is not proof; it is hypothesis. It is cojecture–and idea about what they think the evidence is saying. It is still just an idea about things. And there are always other scientists who will check that data and some with come to completely opposite and contradictory ideas. There’s not even consensus on evolution for crying out loud! You can’t guess that I have not read this stuff because I have. I have not read credible evidence because there is none. I have not read consensus. Many believe evolution: But I ask you, what evolution do you believe in? (I’ll keep it simple. Do you believe Dawkins or Gould? Or do you have your own idea of how it happened? Some people think God actually guided evolution. Do you believe that sort of evolution? Which evolution is it that you believe in?)

    Thanks for the conversation. It is a pointless conversation because I will not be persuaded by your junk science or Dan’s pathetic insults about my intelligence and education. Dan, I don’t think you listened in 9th grade biology because if you had, you would have heard your teacher telling you that evolution is a theory, not a proven fact.

    Jon, at least you have learned to an extent to be polite. Dan is just an ass at this point and I don’t know if I will be responding to him. You people only have one argument and every single evolutionist who has visited here has used it: Oh, poor dumb creationist isn’t educated enough to understand our complicated scientific theories and big words. Therefore, we must insult him and talk down to him.

    But I’ll tell you what I’m going to do. I’m going to start posting some questions at the main portion of my blog. These will be serious, scientific questions (drawn from the reading I have done in a variety of sources, like those I mentioned above) that I’m sure anyone with even Dan’s scant educational background can understand. I will post them, and if you have time, you can answer them. And we’ll see where the conversation goes from there. But be prepared, I’ll have answers too.

    Dan, I seriously wish you weren’t so angry. But I love seeing you all fired up. Your rants sound like the things I heard on the playground as a kid, things I sometimes participated in too! I wish you could grow up a little and instead of being so terribly angry, you would just defend your evolutionary god with sound reasoning and evidence–other than someone else’s papers and books which are just that: papers and books. You really haven’t done that. Even Jon admits that you have to assume the replicators, that ‘descent with modification’ is a metaphor, and that science has merely produced computers and phones–but as yet, even though Jon assures me ‘science is working on it’, no life ex nihilo.

    PS–I noticed that neither of you commented on that essay by Freeman Dyson. Could you? Would you? I’d like to know if you agree with him or not.

    your sincerest Christian friend, who prays that you will have the eyes of your heart opened, to the sacrifice of Christ on your behalf,

    jerry

  42. Dan

    “So, with both of you having said that, how does the fact that ’science’ or ’scientic research’ produced computers, medicine, etc., (something I have never denied) prove evolution?”

    More to the point – You don’t trust science. You claim that scientific theories and their intellectual forebearers are liars. Yet you use the technological products of other scientific theories, cherry-picking what scientific theories to call ‘just theories’ and which ones to use as pragmatic facts. And you do this for no other reason than because some of the theories threaten your cherished beliefs.

    That, my friend, is placing beliefs above reason.

    “Dan, I don’t think you listened in 9th grade biology because if you had, you would have heard your teacher telling you that evolution is a theory, not a proven fact.”

    And if you listened in other science classes, all of chemistry and physics were also based upon theories, including the theory of gravity.

    The mere fact that you bring up the “it’s just a theory” argument just goes to show that you don’t have the faintest idea how certain an idea must be before it is called a theory among scientists.

    “Dan, I seriously wish you weren’t so angry.”

    Please don’t confuse my habit of being blunt with me being angry. I think you’re deluded and misguided, but I don’t hate you.

    I do feel a bit sorry for you, however.

  43. Dan

    Jon,
    I do, however, think that he’s correct on one thing at least: We are wasting our time with Jerry – it’s a wonder that he accepts heliocentrism even.

    Jerry,
    I wish you the best, and hope that you can find the courage to test your cherished convictions in the court of reason and open inquiry one day.

  44. Jon

    So, with both of you having said that, how does the fact that ’science’ or ’scientic research’ produced computers, medicine, etc., (something I have never denied) prove evolution?

    It doesn’t prove evolution. My point is this: you criticize science selectively. You criticize those bits that don’t seem to jive with your faith, and that’s the only reason you criticize them. You assert all of these things about the evidence, that its just a bunch of hypotheses, that scientists come up with contradictory conclusions, et cetera. But you’ve not once provided a credible demonstration of this. For instance, take your Gould/Dawkins example. Creationist authors are well-known for quoting Gould out of context in order to support their claims. I offer, yet again, to provide you links if you want them. Just to be clear, Gould accepted evolution based upon natural selection, both micro and macro. Dawkins and Gould did not disagree about how evolution occurs. Gould certainly did not accept creationism. He even wrote about it:

    “Scientific creationism” is a self-contradictory, nonsense phrase precisely because it cannot be falsified. I can envision observations and experiments that would disprove any evolutionary theory I know, but I cannot imagine what potential data could lead creationists to abandon their beliefs. Unbeatable systems are dogma, not science.

    Jerry, I’m not saying you’re stupid. I’m just saying you don’t have a grasp of all of the relevant evidence. The reason Dan insults you is because you claim the opposite; you claim you’ve read the evidence. But from what you write, it’s quite clear that you don’t. It’s not about your ability to understand the theory. Anyone can understand it, it’s quite simple. It’s about your ability to research effectively.

    …‘descent with modification’ is a metaphor…

    I still think you’re misunderstanding me. “A great glowing ball” is a metaphor for the sun, but that doesn’t mean the sun doesn’t exist. Just because the phrasing is metaphorical doesn’t mean the concept behind it is.

    I noticed that neither of you commented on that essay by Freeman Dyson. Could you? Would you? I’d like to know if you agree with him or not.

    I agree with the essay. If we have the ability to perfectly control the cells of our bodies and our environment, then how we evolve depends on our whim and nothing more; it depends on how we want to upgrade ourselves. It’s no longer Darwinian natural selection, in that case. But you’re missing the point. We can’t control our bodies and our environment perfectly. Until that time, we are subject to Darwinian natural selection.

    As for pre-Darwinian evolution, sure, it’s possible. As Dyson remarks, it wouldn’t have lasted long, because very quickly those ancient replicators would have spread to different parts of the ocean. In that case, lateral gene transfers would hinder them; they’d be getting genes they wouldn’t have any use for. Replicators who were more efficient would dominate the landscape, and those pre-Darwinian replicators would quickly die out.

  45. Jon, [Jon, I edited this slightly because I realize that I wrote something that you will invariably take in the wrong sense of my meaning. I don’t want there to be any confusion.–Jerry]

    I only have a minute or two, but allow me a couple of thoughts. I’m not going to respond tit-for-tat, but a couple of ideas will suffice.

    First, Stephen Gould was also an atheist. Of course he did not believe in Creation and of course he promoted evolution. Duh. (For the record, I have no idea what ‘scientific-creationism’ is. I support Biblical Creation. I thought I made that clear.) That is, for me, creation is not a religion (‘ism’), as much as it is a foundational doctrine of all that follows in Scripture, including the incarnation, crucifixion, Resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ. (And a few other doctrines to be sure.)

    Second, you accuse me of selectively criticizing science which is not true, but what’s your point? You selectively ignore evidence that contradicts the theory of evolution, and you selectively ignore 1000’s of scientist who say, and publish books, refuting evolution. You want evidence for my claims: Read: Michael Denton, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis or Nature’s Destiny(remember: Denton is no defender of Christian doctrines!); Michael Behe, Darwin’s Black Box; William Dembski (two earned PhD’s), Intelligent Design (and half a dozen or so other books he’s written or contributed to)(although, I believe in Creation by God not necessarily some generic Intelligent Design which is more to appease those who won’t accept simple Creation); Philip Johnson, Darwin on Trial; GK Chesterton, The Everlasting Man; Lee Strobel, The Case for a Creator. And there are many, many, many more books. Not to mention that three major religions, comprising most of the world’s population, accepts creation and rejects out of hand evolution.

    I should think that would be a sufficient list of titles for you to read to make the case against evolution. (Also, if you go to the Answers in Genesis website, you will find a very long list of scientists who reject evolution. Keep in mind, however, that I do not subscribe to all of the theological conclusions of AIG.)

    Third, contrary to your assertion, the reason folks like you and Dan continue to insult those of us who reject Darwinian evolution (or any evolution) is because that’s all you can do. You have nothing else. You are just offended that there are people who won’t worship at the altar of Darwin. It’s about control, John. And here you have none.

    Fourth, I’m quite certain I understand what a metaphor is. But thanks for the lesson.

    Fifth, and finally, I can do all the research you want me to do. And again, contrary to your statements, I have a very good grasp on what you call ‘research.’ The problem with that research is this: It assumes that evolution is true. Thus, it sets out to arrive at conclusions that are either a) based on evolution or b) to prove evolution. The problem is that if you begin with a premise and look at evidence objectively, you might not arrive at the conclusion you hope for (that’s called science). On the other hand, when you go looking for proof, for something you already assume is true, you are likely to find it. It’s the same with certain people who try to ‘proof text’ their lifestyles or agendas. Take a verse of Scripture out of context and it can mean just about anything.

    I think it is the same with evolution. And why is it true? It’s true because you want to see it and because your worldview necessitates and demands you seeing it. And as long as you are looking for it, you will find it. You will ignore evidence that contradicts evolution and points to a Creator, God (and there is plenty of it available. SEE: THE CASE FOR A CREATOR, by Strobel.) And if there is one piece of evidence that contradicts or disproves your theory, what will you do? Your entire world will be shaken. But you will choose to ignore that one bit because you need evolution or else you have to confess that there is a God. And that, my friend, evolutionists are unwilling to do.

    I agree with Scripture: The god of this age [the devil] has blinded you to the truth.

    PS–Just to be clear: Dawkins and Gould did disagree. Gould believed in punctuated equilibrium and Dawkins espouses the slow, linear form of evolution. There is significant disagreement between those two ideas. Dawkins wrote, “…because the theory [punctuated equlibrium] is heavily promoted and widely misunderstood, I must just stress that the theory of punctuate equilibrium does not have–or should nor be represented as having–any legitimate connection with macro-mutation…This ‘punctuation as rapid gradualism’ is very different from macro-mutation, which is instantaneous change in a single generation” (Climbing Mount Improbable, 105-107). Dawkins goes on to explain in some more detail the gist of Gould’s ‘soft spot for certain kinds of macro-mutations, and he occasionally underplays the distinction between rapid gradualism and true macro-mutation…’ (106)

    Nevertheless, Dan, I appreciate your time and your efforts, but you must concude with Dan that you are not going to change my mind. I’m going to continue pointing out the lie called evolution and its main purpose which is to undermine belief in the Creator and to instill some sort of purpose in the minds of atheists. Feel free to repond when you wish, but the bottom line is that you and Dan only look at one side of the evidence. While I have read the works of those promoting and refuting, you have only read the work of those promoting.

    It’s your own people who continue to write papers that undermine the theory. Not me. All I’m doing is reporting it.

    Good luck!
    jerry

  46. Jon

    You selectively ignore evidence that contradicts the theory of evolution, and you selectively ignore 1000’s of scientist who say, and publish books, refuting evolution.

    Books? I’m talking about peer-reviewed articles in academic research journals. You should note that almost none of the people you mentioned has contributed a single research article to a single journal. Their books are hypotheses, not evidence. (By the way, almost all of those books have been thoroughly debunked in the scientific blogosphere and in scientific journals. By scientists who actually do research in the field.)

    Not to mention that three major religions, comprising most of the world’s population, accepts creation and rejects out of hand evolution.

    Before Galileo showed us otherwise, the majority of people believed the Earth to be the center of the universe. Doesn’t mean it was. Your argument only shows that belief in creationism is popular, not that it’s correct.

    Third, contrary to your assertion, the reason folks like you and Dan continue to insult those of us who reject Darwinian evolution (or any evolution) is because that’s all you can do.

    I didn’t insult you. I just said you don’t have a grasp of the evidence. If I got into an argument with a physicist about black holes without knowing anything about black holes, I would expect that physicist to call me on it. It’s intellectual courtesy, that’s all. That you take it as an insult is a failing on your part, not mine.

    On the other hand, when you go looking for proof, for something you already assume is true, you are likely to find it.

    I refer you, again, to the Gould quote. The reason evolution is science is because you can develop experiments which would falsify it. If evolution were not true, we would expect to see certain results. And we don’t see those results. Creationism, on the other hand, is completely immune to this process. You can’t ever disprove it, even if you wanted to. This is why creationists specialize in trying to snipe evolution down. They can’t make any useful claims using their own hypothesis because it makes no useful claims. It doesn’t explain a thing. And that is, at the end of the day, what science tries to do, explain things.

    It’s true because you want to see it and because your worldview necessitates and demands you seeing it.

    And what world view is that? I grew up a Christian. It’s when I learned about evolution and biology (in the private Christian schools that I went to) that I started doubting Christian dogma. An understanding of evolution contributed to my atheism, not the other way around. So my “world view” (whatever that means) really has nothing to do with it.

    Just to be clear: Dawkins and Gould did disagree.

    That’s not what you said. You said Dawkins and Gould posited different kinds of evolution, which isn’t true. Punctuated equilibrium versus gradualism is a disagreement as to the rate of evolution, not the method by which it occurs, or if it occurs. But this is irrelevant; Dawkins didn’t disagree with punctuated equilibrium, only with the relative importance Gould placed on it. Conversely, Gould did not disagree with gradualism, only with the relative importance the evolutionary biology community placed on it. Even if they did disagree, this doesn’t contradict evolution. There’s no solid evidence that either Dawkins or Gould is correct, without a doubt. Therefore their disagreement is purely hypothetical.

    By the way, evolution doesn’t give me purpose. I just want to know how the universe works. It’s a selfish desire, nothing more.

  47. Jon,

    Of course you are talking about ‘peer reviewed’ articles in scientific journals! (How could I have missed that!) But what you really mean is: Essays written by evolutionists, reviewed by evolutionists who are already assume evolution’s veracity, and validated by the same evolutionists who agree already with the ultimate conclusion which is always, not ironically, evolution. Uh, OK. I’m not going to argue. Still, I’d like to see those ‘peer reviewed’ articles reviewed by peers who do not assume evolution as a concluded matter. If books are hypothesis, how much more are mere papers? I know how academic research works. I read theological journals so I do get it. Doesn’t change anything. Books are simply a whole bunch of papers sewn together. They can still be peer reviewed and often are (in places far more substantial than the ‘theological blogosphere’).

    As to your comment about books somehow being inferior (or being ‘thoroughly debunked in the scientific blogosphere’) all I can say is, Huh? So now the blogosphere is a place of scientific and academic authority? Jon, as I said, you conveniently choose to ignore the thousands of scientists who simply do not believe like you, who have as many, if not more credentials than you, who are reviewed by their peers in many ways, and places, who hold posts in science departments of major universities, and who also blog for a hobby. I’m not the one ignoring evidence. I will accept any credible evidence you give me, but I will test it, and find someone just as credentialed as the author who will rip it to shreds (even you must admit that there’s at least two ways of looking at everything–just as Dawkins and Gould argue about whether evolution occured through gradulism or ‘punk-eek’). But if you challenge me to read peer reviewed research, why don’t you pay any attention to the very well credentialed scientists who think evolution is bunk and write papers to that end? (The reason is, because as an atheist you need, in your words, ‘some explanation for how the universe works.’ But what does it benefit a man to gain such knowledge and forfeit his soul? That’s the real problem for you.)

    I would say that Gould and Dawkins did disagree whether it is hypothetical or not, but you are right: It changes little. One believes in slow, linear gradualism (one sort of evolution) and the other believes in punctuated, bursts of evolution (another sort of evolution). There are others who believe God directs evolution (a third kind of evolution!) I see it as two different types of evolution, but perhaps I’m nit-picking.

    You wrote:

    And what world view is that? I grew up a Christian. It’s when I learned about evolution and biology (in the private Christian schools that I went to) that I started doubting Christian dogma. An understanding of evolution contributed to my atheism, not the other way around. So my “world view” (whatever that means) really has nothing to do with it.

    I have a real hard time with this, and while not calling you a liar, I do wonder if it is entirely accurate of your experience. However, if that ‘private Christian school’ was a ‘private catholic christian school’ then there’s the problem since those idiots that Catholics call ‘pope’ have aided and abetted the cause of atheism more than Christianity. However, I would sincerely doubt that there is anything Christian about a school that denies the foundational doctrine of the Scripture, namely the Creation. Or, perhaps, you simply read too much into their instruction in those matters. I’m sorry, but it seems awfully convenient that you and I have written back and forth, what, a hundred times, and only now is this being revealed? Too convenient friend. You say yourself you were ‘doubting Christian dogma’ when evolution was introduced. You simply replaced ‘christian dogma’ with ‘evolutionary Darwin.’ Something else was going on–like perhaps you never believe ‘christian dogma’ to begin with–and did your parents or were they doubters too?

    In other words, you are still religious whether you admit it or not. I’d like to know how you know there is a god not to believe in? (Or, as some have said, ‘Does God believe in atheists?’)

    But even if evolution ‘created’ your atheism it really changes little as far as my argument is concerned. It is still your worldview. One is still necessitated by, and upholds, the other. If you did believe in God you wouldn’t believe in atheism. And if you weren’t an atheist, you’d probably believe in creation. (Remember, I hold that there is nothing compatible between Christianity and evolution at all.) I suspect, that somewhere along the line, you had a very bad experience with God and you chose to shut him out of your life and fill that void with something else, namely, evolution and denial.

    I know evolution doesn’t give you purpose. That’s why I continue writing to you. If you lost a faith once held onto, I’d love for you to come back (I don’t hold much hope for that, but some) to that faith and once again fight the good fight. I have that hope for you because, well, Christ died for you.

    Finally, you said evolution can be tested, well, here’s what you wrote:

    “The reason evolution is science is because you can develop experiments which would falsify it. If evolution were not true, we would expect to see certain results. And we don’t see those results.”

    OK. What tests can you perform under laboratory conditions that will demonstrate a genetic mutation giving rise, from a common ancestor, to two new species of creatures? I think that is a fair test. That is the assumption, right? That, say, humans and gorillas evolved from a common ancestor? Can that hypothesis be demonstrated, repeatedly, under lab conditions? And don’t tell me I don’t understand what I’m saying. I’m repeating things you have said. Don’t tell me I can’t see evolution, because your argument against creation is that you ‘can’t demonstrate it or repeat it or prove it or disprove it’ in a lab. If that is what happened, that ‘we’ descended from common ancestry (you might have, but I was created in the image of God), scientists ought to be able to reproduce those results, even minimally, in a lab setting using catalysts, gentic codes, chemicals, the environment, and all the other stuff you told me was necessary for such changes to take place in the common ancestor. (But of course there’s an answer for this too, isn’t there? Like Dawkins said on pages 105-107 that’s part of the reason we see no intermediary, transitional fossils.)

    You’ll have to explain what you mean: “If evolution weren’t true we would expect to see certain results. We don’t see them.” That’s mighty convenient for your cause isn’t it! Who determined what you would or would not expect to see? People already assuming that evolution is true? Peers? Come on! That is about as circular as it gets. Who gets to determine what should and should not be seen in these experiments? Who gets to set up these experiments? What controls would one use in such experiments? And so on and so forth.

    How can something like evolution ever be proved in a lab? It is just as full-proof as creation, isn’t it? It’s air-tight! Locked down! How can anyone argue with the esteemed scientists who assure us that, even though their research is always correcting formerly bad conclusions, that they are on the right path? We can trust scientists who tell us global warming is occuring, but cannot accurately predict weather for a day or two.

    Jon, why do you come here? What do you hope to accomplish? I have to be honest, because I have been milking this in the hopes you might wake up and see Christ (evidently, again). But do you think you will change my mind? Do you think that somehow I feel inferior to you because you have showed me an ‘intellectual courtesy’? I seriously do not need your pity! Please, Jon. Spare me your sympathy! You may as well tell me I’m an idiot because you will never produce a shred of hypothesis, evidence, peer reviewed research, or fossil that will convince me that the Bible is not true (which is really what this is about, right?). And if that makes me an intellectual inferior to an atheist, well, so be it. I’m willing to take that, for lack of a better word, chance.

    But really, if you have no interest in Christ, there’s really no point in continuing the conversation. I will not believe evolutionary ‘science’ or ‘theory’ or ‘hypothesis’ or ‘metaphor.’ My purpose at this blog is to open minds by opening Scripture. You are welcome to visit and interact any time you like, but if you have no interest in Jesus or salvation or the Cross, then really, there is not much point in us talking about this any further. In chess they call it a stalemate. (Although, to be sure, I’m not conceding that you have ultimately won. You may have all the ‘right answers’, but ultimately, Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He has already won, so I don’t have to.)

    Thanks again, this has been fun. I wish you well in your atheism. I hope your selfish desires flesh themselves out for you. I hope it gets you wherever it is that you wish it to get you in this life because I doubt seriously it is going to get you anywhere after this life.

    your friend always,
    jerry

  48. Jon,

    I had a wee bit more time this evening. 🙂

    jerry

  49. Jon

    [Jon, I have added my thoughts to this reply. They are in boldface.–Jerry]

    Books are simply a whole bunch of papers sewn together.

    I’m talking about research papers. Look through all of those books you’ve read and name a single experiment any one of them has done to verify their claims. [What is your point again? Books are just as susceptible to verification as research papers are. ‘Research papers’ are no more important than books. Darwin, in fact, published a book, not a research paper, right?]

    So now the blogosphere is a place of scientific and academic authority?

    I think I said “the scientific blogosphere and scientific journals”. Yep, I just reread it. [And your point is? I never said you didn’t. I was merely commenting on your assumption that the scientific blogosphere is as accurate as scientific journals. Anyone can blog. They don’t even need to have any credentials, just an opinion.]

    Jon, as I said, you conveniently choose to ignore the thousands of scientists who simply do not believe like you.

    Getting a degree doesn’t make you a scientist. The degree is the easiest part. Real scientists publish research. “Creation scientists” don’t publish research. They publish rhetoric. Which usually comes in the form of lucrative book deals that their political base will (and do) eat up. [And what do evolutionist ‘scientists’ do? Do Dawkins and Harris and all your heros do their work for free? Do not their ‘political base’ ‘eat it up’ (and often people like me eat it up too!)? After all, you seem fairly convinced, you eat it up, you believe it, and buy it. Right? So this is a moot point that has nothing to do with anything, especially our conversation. ‘Creation science’ is an oxymoron in my opinion. But there are still plenty of ‘creation scientists’ who publish their work for their peers and for the public. You overstated your case. And once again, you have resorted to, “I don’t have a better argument so I will insult their intelligence and belittle their credentials. I thought you were interested in serious dialogue! Turns out you are just as weak as Dan when it comes to arguing your point.]

    The reason is, because as an atheist you need, in your words, ’some explanation for how the universe works.

    The quote is right up there. You don’t have to mangle it to make your point. I said I wanted to know how the universe works, not that I need “some explanation for how the universe works”, which falsely implies that any explanation will do. [I didn’t mangle your quote. I took your quote for what it was. Again, your anger is showing through. If you don’t like my assessment of your comments, don’t publish your comments. Even so, did I take your quote out of context? Darwinism supplies you with your ‘explanation of the universe’ does it not? How have I mangled your quote?]

    There are others who believe God directs evolution (a third kind of evolution!) I see it as two different types of evolution, but perhaps I’m nit-picking.

    You’re not nit-picking. You’re conflating. Whether it’s gradualism or punctuated equilibrium, evolution is unguided. That’s the whole point. Saying “God did it” isn’t an equivalent statement. [I agree that evolution is ‘unguided’. I don’t know what you mean by saying ‘saying, ‘God did it’ isn’t an equivalent statement.’ Unless you are simply stating, with more mixed terminology that you don’t believe in creation. But I assume that so it doesn’t need stated.]

    What tests can you perform under laboratory conditions that will demonstrate a genetic mutation giving rise, from a common ancestor, to two new species of creatures?

    I’ve provided you links before to dozens of experiments, and you removed them. I ask for about the fourth or fifth time: do you want me to post them again? [No, actually you haven’t. And I have indicated when I have altered the content of your posts, which I think, was one time. I think you have provided me three links to blogs, not one link has ever provided a shred of physical evidence for Darwinism.]

    That’s mighty convenient for your cause isn’t it! Who determined what you would or would not expect to see?

    This is how science works. We think up a hypothesis, and test the things that hypothesis predicts. If the tests falsify some of those predictions, the hypothesis is wrong and we change it. If not, and after many other such experiments, it becomes a scientific theory. Simply put, we mold our theories to match the facts. [You still haven’t explained who determines what an experiment should and should not show. You assume that science, and the laws of nature, have certain unalterable characteristics that will be the same in all situations. Where did those laws come from?]

    For instance, evolutionary theory would be falsified if we could locate irreducibly complex structures (as Behe points out). The problem with Behe, though, is that all of the structures he names in his books are not irreducibly complex, as has been documented ad nauseum by Ken Miller and others. [Oh, so your saying that ‘Creationists’ have published work that has been ‘peer reviewed’? I thought you said creationists didn’t publish work for review. Hmmm. Strange, Jon. I don’t think you can have it both ways. What evidence do you have that Ken Miller is any more qualified to make such judgments than Behe is? You have none.]

    How can something like evolution ever be proved in a lab?

    Do you want the links? [The links will ‘prove’ that someone did an experiment with a conclusion in mind, and a premise (evolution) in place. They will not prove that evolution, what you call ‘descent with modification from a common ancestor’, is true. You can send me all the links you want. I’ll read papers that have been read and reviewed both both evolutionists and people who are not evolutionists. Just because someone has a hypothesis and does an experiment to prove his assumption does not prove that we have evolved from anything. I don’t know why you can’t understand this. Evolution, Jon, is a lie, plain as day. Don’t send me blogs because blogs are blogs. But I guarantee that I will be able to find adequate nullification and an alternate explanation for every single piece of nonsense you send me. Your pet theory will not undo what is written in the Word of God. That’s where you have gone wrong.]

    I have to be honest, because I have been milking this in the hopes you might wake up and see Christ

    Oh. And here I thought you actually cared about things like truth and evidence. I guess I’m just naive. [Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” He also said, “Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” And it is said, “He came from the Father full of grace and truth.” Jon, friend, you are the one not interested in truth, not me. You are the one who is lost, not me.]

    [Jon, this is really rather pointless. The links you provide will only prove that people who believe in Darwinism have written papers about Darwinism that have been approved by others who believe in Darwinism. It will not prove that we evolved from anything, anywhere, at any time. I’d like you to show me the fossil evidence of one fish that grew legs and crawled out of water and onto land. Oh, that’s right, Prof. Dawkins gave enough reasons why such a fossil cannot be uncovered–which is certainly convenient for you isn’t it? Hm. I guess I’m beaten again!–jerry]

  50. Jon

    You keep asking and asking for evidence, and then when I offer to provide links, you turn me down.

    What is your point again? Books are just as susceptible to verification as research papers are

    Books aren’t research. They don’t have to give experimental evidence to back up their claims.

    I was merely commenting on your assumption that the scientific blogosphere is as accurate as scientific journals

    I think you’ll find I never said that.

    Do Dawkins and Harris and all your heros do their work for free?

    They aren’t my heroes. In fact, Dawkins’ God Delusion is the only book explicitly about atheism I’ve ever read. I haven’t read Harris (who, by the way, isn’t a scientist and doesn’t write about science). This is beside the point, though. I don’t claim that popular books count as science. You do claim that.

    But there are still plenty of ‘creation scientists’ who publish their work for their peers and for the public.

    Unfortunately, their peers know as little about science as they do. And they still don’t do experimental research, whatever they may publish in book format.

    I didn’t mangle your quote.

    You misquoted me completely and then ran with it. Darwinian evolution explains how lifeforms develop, not how the universe works. But to understand the universe, you have to understand its constituent parts. Evolution is one of those parts. Just like gravity, or protein formation, or plate tectonics.

    I don’t know what you mean by saying ’saying, ‘God did it’ isn’t an equivalent statement.’

    You said that some people think God directs evolution, and equated that hypothesis to punctuated equilibrium or gradualism. I’m saying that’s a fallacious equation.

    I think you have provided me three links to blogs, not one link has ever provided a shred of physical evidence for Darwinism.

    I provided you links to talkorigins, which has a cited point-by-point refutation of common creationist claims. It’s written by biology doctorates who do active research in the field. It also lists dozens and dozens of physical experiments which have been done (also cited, in case you want to look them up yourself).

    You still haven’t explained who determines what an experiment should and should not show.

    That depends on the experiment. Say I hypothesize that mixing an atom of nitrogen with three atoms of hydrogen produces helium. Well, what do I do? I mix an atom of nitrogen with three atoms of hydrogen and see what comes out. It happens that I get two atoms of ammonia, which means I hypothesized incorrectly. This same simple process is what all experiments do (essentially).

    You assume that science, and the laws of nature, have certain unalterable characteristics that will be the same in all situations. Where did those laws come from?

    This is a very vague argument, and I’m not sure what you’re getting at. Five hundred years ago, people thought that time was constant. Today, we know that time is relative to velocity and mass. In that sense, science is alterable, and thankfully so. We replace cruder theories with more refined ones.

    As for the laws of nature, we assume they can’t change because when we do, we end up discovering more and more. In other words, that assumption seems to pay off. If it isn’t true, then at least we’ve discovered what happens in particular situations with particular laws. As for where they come from, for many we don’t know. You’re free to speculate. Just make sure you design an experiment that can verify or falsify your speculation.

    Oh, so your saying that ‘Creationists’ have published work that has been ‘peer reviewed’? I thought you said creationists didn’t publish work for review.

    Um, I was talking about Behe’s book.

    What evidence do you have that Ken Miller is any more qualified to make such judgments than Behe is?

    It doesn’t matter if he is qualified (which he is, by the way). Biologists have shown experimentally that the systems Behe claimed were irreducibly complex are not so. Not the eye. Not the immune system. Not blood clotting. Not any of it.

    But I guarantee that I will be able to find adequate nullification and an alternate explanation for every single piece of nonsense you send me.

    Alternate explanations are easy to find. Why is the Sun spherical? Because little fairies press it into that shape.

    Find me explanations that have been verified experimentally.

    Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” He also said…

    Jesus lied. 😦

    I’d like you to show me the fossil evidence of one fish that grew legs and crawled out of water and onto land.

    They’re called amphibians. Y’know. Frogs. They start as tadpoles, in the water. They grow legs. And they hop out of the water. Start with gills, end up with lungs. Where do you live that you’ve never heard about frogs before? 😦

    Of course, I’m making fun of your question, because it makes no sense. An adult whale can’t grow legs and just walk out of the ocean. Evolution doesn’t say it can. If you’re asking about transitional forms between seafarer and landfarer, that’s easy. They exist today. Look at the mudskipper, for instance. It holds water in its sacs so it can jump out onto the land and still breath. Much like we would hold oxygen in our lungs and dive into a pool. It’s a fish that walks on land. And despite what you said, we DO have fossil evidence of other such creatures.

  51. Jon,

    I hardly think that an amphibian qualifies as a transitional form since that is what a frog has always done (there’s no evidence to suggest it hasn’t always been amphibious). Furthermore, a tadpole is still a frog; it’s a frong in waiting. It’s DNA does what it is supposed to do, what its programmed to do. It doesn’t mutate its because it’s environment dictates it. It doesn’t alter its form and become a new species. And frogs and tadpoles have not descended from common ancestry. A tadpole, my friend, is simply an adolescent frog. I’m really surprised you didn’t know that. A frog is a rather poor example Jon. 😉

    As to whales, it’s funny you’d say that because my son’s ‘science’ teacher, in the fifth grade, last year, on the first day of school, said that whales breathe air because they, ironically, used to walk on land and their legs actually became flippers.

    As to the rest, your arguments are full of generalisms and assertions that are simply not valid. Once again, as I said, your only resort is that the scientists I rely on for information are not as qualified as yours. That’s simply a stupid thing to say and you know it.

    As to the rest, *Yawn*, nothing new.

    I’m surprised you don’t understand why the sun is spherical!?! That is strange for someone who claims to be so erudite. Jon, I hate to tell you this, but there is no such thing as fairies.

    You say the mudskipper evolved that characteristic. I say God made it that way to begin with.

    I’m not sure what your angst is against books. Dawkins writes books. Gould wrote books. All of them write books and papers. No one writes a book without it being reviewed by their peers. Check out the first few pages of any research book, it’s called a ‘forward.’ Normally, those forwards contain lists of people that the author thanks for, among other things, reviewing and correcting pages, arguments, chapters, etc.

    You are once again, mistaken.

    Jon, where are those fossiles that you claim ‘we’ have? I’d like to see them and I would like to read some research on them.

    I still don’t know what links you are talking about. I have not seen what you are referrring to. You may have posted them at someone else’s blog.

    Take care.
    jerry

    PS–I’m sorry you think Jesus lied. I’m even sorrier that you’ll have to find that out the hard way. But I’m here for you, Jon, if you need me or my prayers. To whom are you going to pray that I might be convinced of your Darwinism?

  52. Jon

    (there’s no evidence to suggest it hasn’t always been amphibious)

    Wrongo. See the link down below.

    As to whales, it’s funny you’d say that because my son’s ’science’ teacher, in the fifth grade, last year, on the first day of school, said that whales breathe air because they, ironically, used to walk on land and their legs actually became flippers.

    Ask the teacher about it. Ask him if that’s actually what he meant. If it is, the teacher doesn’t know what he’s talking about. I suspect, however, that he was speaking of the whale in terms of its ancestors. Because its ancestors did in fact live on land.

    This is the misunderstanding you constantly come back to. You think evolution says fully-developed organisms can morph into other fully-developed organisms. It doesn’t say that. And then when I start explaining it to you, you say, “Oh I know what it says, stop patronizing me.” But you don’t know it. Because here you are coming right back to the argument you’ve made on this blog about a hundred times. I’m not going to explain it again. Look at previous posts I’ve made in this and other threads.

    As to the rest, your arguments are full of generalisms and assertions that are simply not valid.

    Thanks for, y’know, not actually pointing them out to me. I suppose I’ll have to take your word for it.

    Once again, as I said, your only resort is that the scientists I rely on for information are not as qualified as yours. That’s simply a stupid thing to say and you know it.

    I believe.. yep, I did. I said it doesn’t matter that Ken Miller or the others are qualified. It matters that they did research which falsified Behe’s supposed irreducibly complex structures. It doesn’t matter who does the science. It does matter who does it right.

    Jon, I hate to tell you this, but there is no such thing as fairies.

    The Fairy King said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” It saddens him that you won’t let him into your heart.

    You say the mudskipper evolved that characteristic. I say God made it that way to begin with.

    I suppose God also designed the malaria and the AIDS that kills dozens of millions of people a year. And the 4 billion or so species of insects. And the hundreds of species of microscopic bacteria that inhabit your gut. And the 99% of all species that have ever lived which are now extinct.

    No one writes a book without it being reviewed by their peers. Check out the first few pages of any research book, it’s called a ‘forward.’

    It doesn’t matter, even if what you say is true. No experimental research goes into a book. I’m not sure why I’m repeating myself here. We test hypotheses, and thus do science, through experiments. No experiments, no science.

    Jon, where are those fossiles that you claim ‘we’ have? I’d like to see them and I would like to read some research on them.

    Here’s a list of some of the vertebrates to start. Citations here.

    I’m sorry you think Jesus lied.

    He was a pterodactyl, too. A midget pterodactyl. I suppose you’ll take great offense to that, so I’ll follow up with this: I don’t care.

    To whom are you going to pray that I might be convinced of your Darwinism?

    This piece of English muffin I have with the Virgin Mary’s face on it. If I can survive the temptation to eat it. Oh Father of Lies, damn thee for thine temptation!

  53. Jon,

    What is really sad is that no one is reading what you write except for me. All those good arguments gone to waste!

    jerry

  54. Jon,

    What ‘peer’ reviewed that website that hasn’t been updated since 1997?

    jerry

    Also, I note in the citations that the author quotes a lot of books or at least cites a lot of books. Doesn’t that somehow, according to your logic, invalidate her research?

  55. Jon

    What is really sad is that no one is reading what you write except for me. All those good arguments gone to waste!

    Doesn’t bother me. It improves my knowledge and my writing skills. Richard Feynman once wrote that if you can’t explain science to someone else, you don’t know it well enough.

    Also, I note in the citations that the author quotes a lot of books or at least cites a lot of books. Doesn’t that somehow, according to your logic, invalidate her research?

    What I linked wasn’t research the author did. She merely compiled it. Feel free to ignore her article and just look up the research citations. Books are cited for general information, so you can ignore them too if you want.

  56. Jon,

    All arguments and dislike aside, what do you have against books? I really don’t understand it, seriously. One man to a descendant of a common ancestor, why do you hate books? I really don’t get it.

    PS–I read an essay about how skull bones and the like being found in an area where it appears two different species may have evolved simultaneously instead of separately. I read it well and sent a detailed summary to another evolatheist who never wrote me back. But the gist was that two ‘human’ type creatures appeared to have evolved together (at least in that place) and not consecutively (as in other places).

    My point in making reference to this ‘research’ (based on one skull, and one jawbone) is that it was written by an evolutionist. I didn’t even write the article. It was written by someone who believes like you. Why would someone write a research paper undoing their own theory?

    You understand my point, I hope. The paper was not written by a creationist, but by an evolutionist. I read the paper. I understood every single word in the paper and the conclusion too (so don’t say I don’t understand what they were saying). But tell me what it means because, to me, this is far more than ‘science correcting itself.’ What does it mean when the theories you depend upon are undone by the very people who espouse the theories in the first place? And then, what does it mean when the theories are undone, by the people who espouse them, and they go on believing the theories anyway?

    Isn’t that just a wee bit intellectually dishonest?

    jerry

    ps–I’ll try to look up some more of those ‘research’ papers, but I’m telling you right now that my mind will not be changed because they begin with the end in mind (a little Stephen Covey lingo for you). In other words, evolution is presupposed, hypothesized, researched, ‘proven by experiments’, concluded, and peer reviewed by people who have the same intellectual premise. It’s all very, what’s a word you would use, circular. Yes. That’s it. Circular.

  57. Jon

    …why do you hate books? I really don’t get it.

    I never said I hate books. All I said is that they aren’t substitutes for experiment-based research.

    But the gist was that two ‘human’ type creatures appeared to have evolved together (at least in that place) and not consecutively (as in other places).

    Why would someone write a research paper undoing their own theory?

    I’m assuming you’re talking about the Homo habilis fossil that was found. So I’m going to ask: Which theory does it undo?

    Previously we thought the descent went:

    Homo habilis -> Homo erectus -> Homo sapiens

    We now have found that at least some H. habilis and H. erectus lived at the same time. So there are two conclusions you could draw, given the information we now know. Either H. habilis and H. erectus have a common ancestor that we haven’t found, or H. habilis continued to survive after H. erectus diverged from them.

    In the first case, our hypothesis that each of these species descended linearly from the other still holds.

    In the second case, the descent just becomes a bit more complicated. In other words, it doesn’t refute anything about evolutionary theory (evolution via natural selection, common descent, or any other explanatory principle). It only contradicts a specific hypothesis about a specific order of descent.

  58. Jon

    Sorry, I mixed up the cases.

    It should be, “In the second case, our hypothesis that each of these species descended linearly from the other still holds.”

    And the other is the first case.




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